by Kay Vandette
You don’t have to be a graphic design artist to take advantage of the online program Canva.
Even if you don’t have a drop of artistic talent, if you’re a freelance writer trying to do any sort of blogging or building a social media platform, Canva is your secret weapon with hundreds of resources waiting for you take advantage of them.
What started as the brain child of Melanie Perkins, a graphic design teacher who sought to streamline basic graphic design, has become a hugely successful online tool. Used by both professionals and amateurs, Canva’s easy to use interface makes graphic design accessible for everyone.
Continue reading Three Ways Canva Can Help with Your Writing Business
by Hope Ann
There is no one secret to producing a good book. Hard work, patience, more hard work, dogged determination, and did I mention hard work? Yet it is so worth it. And, the more I write, the more I value one particular asset every writer should have.
Beta readers are wonderful. Sometimes they are friends. Sometimes they are other writers. Sometimes they are people you’ve never met before but who have signed up to help you. Whatever the case, they provide an excellent new look at your own work, commenting on points you’ve missed because of your closeness to your story. If there are problems you are trying to ignore, they will be quick to point those out too.
Continue reading How to Work With Beta Readers
Throwback Thursday is a series where we take a look back at some of AWP’s most popular posts. Enjoy!
by Nat Leblanc
So you’ve got a great idea for a novel or story that you’re DYING to tell. The premise is profound, the symbolism is subtle, and the big reveal at the end is going to blow your readers’ minds. You throw together an outline and show it to an editor friend. They read over it and turn to you.
“Why do I care about these people? What do they want?”
“But the story!” you argue moronically, having not yet read this article. “The story is brilliant, right? The premise is great. I know it is!”
Your editor friend throws the draft to the ground. “Maybe,” he says, lighting a cigarette and staring into the distance. “But it didn’t feel like the characters cared, so why should I have cared? Don’t ever contact me again.”
Continue reading Throwback Thursday: How to Build Your Characters in Six Easy Steps
by Doug Lewars
According to Forbes there are between 600 thousand and a million books published each year and roughly half are self-published. The average number of sales per volume is less than 250.
That’s not encouraging.
Of course I have no idea where Forbes came up with these numbers. Still, they tend to be pretty careful about what they publish so let’s assume the numbers are real. Now, if you are capable of writing, editing and publishing say, two books per year, and if you want to earn a conservative income of say, $30,000, then you would need royalties of $60 per volume. Given that publishers rather like taking their cut, your book would probably need to be priced around a hundred dollars. Better make that next book non-fiction.
Continue reading Here’s the Reality Check For Writers
by Kelsie Engen
You’re standing on one mountain summit, and there are fifty miles between the next mountaintop to which you’re expected to jump. Any step you take, any direction, and you’re going to go crashing to the ground, lucky to escape with your life. There will be bruises, broken bones, broken pride, despair, and maybe, if you’re lucky, a little bit of determination that you can dig out of the rubble, dust off, and put back in place.
That is being a writer. Oh, and add a small audience watching you fail, because even beginning writers tend to have a small, critical audience watching.
Congratulations, you just failed.
Continue reading 3 Tips From My Failure As an Author
by Georgio Konstandi
“I shall not exist if you do not imagine me.” – Vlamidir Nabokov, Novelist/Poet (1899-1977)
From Blanche Dubois to Ebenezer Scrooge, literature has never failed to produce characters that resonate with millions of readers from across the globe. But where did they come from? What ignited the first wisps of smoke of these authors’ imaginative infernos? How do we, as modern-day writers, emulate such success when we sit down, a blank screen before our eyes, fingers at our keyboards?
Continue reading Creating that “Killer” Character
by Lynne Stringer
You may not know it but there are rules for writing a modern novel. Now, every good rule needs to be broken at some point but is it a good idea to say that all rules should be ignored because writing is a creative exercise?
I don’t think so but I think there are times and places for them and so I’m going to tackle each one in turn. Here’s the first:
Continue reading The First Rule for Writing a Modern Novel