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Author and Editor: A Perfect Partnership

After an author hits the last keystroke on the first draft of a new book, the real work begins. During the drafting stage, it’s just the author and the characters as a new world is built—word by word, page by page. Even as I breathe a sigh of relief when the story is finished, I…

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Which Point of View is Right for Your Story?

Who’s telling the story? One of the most important decisions you will make when writing a novel is which point of view to use. When we started writing together, we didn’t give point of view much thought. We defaulted to a third person omniscient point of view in our first book, CIRCLE DANCE. Over the…

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Not If, But When: Persistence is Key in the Writing Game

About six years ago I became serious about pursuing my dream of a writing career. I’d written a book with my sister years earlier and had coasted on that accomplishment for the next ten years—calling myself a writer, but doing very little writing. And then I saw an ad in Writer’s Digest for Thrillerfest. I…

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Guest Post on Jungle Red Writers – How Do Two Sisters Write Together?

As co-authors, we’re often asked the “how” of writing together. People are curious about our process. Fortunately, both of us are solidly in the middle of the pantser/plotter road. We begin by talking about the central idea of our book then narrow that down into a solid premise. Before we type the first word, we…

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What does it Mean to "Show Not Tell?"

A familiar axiom of writing is “show, don’t tell”. We hear it everywhere: from teachers, in articles, in writing workshops. For a long time, I had no idea what it actually meant. What do you mean, don’t tell? Aren’t we storytellers? My natural inclination was to sit down and tell what happened; hovering above my…

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Writing a Three-Dimensional Villain

While cooking up the storyline for The Last Mrs. Parrish, some of the most fun we had was bringing Amber Patterson, our antagonist, to life. Actors often talk about how exciting it is to play the villain — it’s also exciting to create a villain for the page. ♥ Only a few paragraphs in, it’s…

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Are you a Panster or a Plotter?

            At Thrillerfest 2012, I had the pleasure and honor to meet and hear from the best in the industry. A variety of topics were presented on the craft of writing including: Crafting a Story Outline, Finding Your Storytelling Voice, Creating Mind Blowing Twists, Creating Compelling and Complex Antagonists, as…

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