When ‘a Future with Hope’ Fades

A friend who’s in the midst of a dreadful situation admitted that Jeremiah 29:11, a verse she had clung to in her youth, now seemed unbelievable. For surely I know the plans I have for you, says the Lord, plans for your welfare and not for harm, to give you a future with hope.—Jeremiah 29:11 […]


Killing my Darlings

One “rule” you hear thrown around a lot in writing circles is “Murder your darlings.” Traditionally, this means those pet phrases and over-used words, the scenes you spent hours crafting but that don’t really add to the story. It’s a way of culling your fluff to tighten your story so it continues to move and […]


Writing Free

“You’ve written this scene correctly but you’ve lost all the feeling of the original.” I inwardly cringed as I read the feedback from my latest writing assignment. I’d worked really hard on this one. I’d applied everything I’d been learning to the rewriting of my first scene and somehow still managed to miss the mark. […]

Sticks and Stones and Amazing Grace

I hate the hymn “Amazing Grace”. This is a post I’ve been dying to write mostly because of that iconoclastic line. But it isn’t meant to be a gratuitous use of shock value. It goes to something much deeper. It’s not the song but one word in the first verse, “wretch”. It’s an ugly word in […]

David Farland Realm Makers

Notes from Realm Makers: David Farland

I’ve never done live blogging, and tweeting is new to me as well. So I was into the second day of Realm Makers before it occurred to me to tweet some of the writing tips I was getting. When I did, some folks who couldn’t attend begged for more. So here you go: Some stuff […]



I had so much fun writing The Heir, and building the world, that I couldn’t stop at just one volume. Now that The Heir is complete, I’m ready to begin the next segment. So, without further ado, I present, The Amulet Saga, Volume Two: The Traveler Escape Rose pulled her violet cloak around her shoulders. […]


One More Step

“If I take one more step, it’ll be the farthest away from home I’ve ever been.”—Samwise Gamgee. Sam’s words from The Fellowship of the Ring perfectly describe the stage of writing I’m in now. Actually, every step I’ve taken since the beginning of this month when I finished my first draft has been one more […]

book store

Could You Write for the General Market?

Guest Blogger: Phyllis Wheeler Maybe you’re one of those Christian writers casting an eye at the general market these days and thinking about writing for it. Here might be your reasons: Perhaps you’ve noticed that the big publishers have cut way back on the number of books trad-pubbed in CBA. Perhaps your genre is speculative, […]

MindOverAll crop

Five Tips for Making a Living World

Guest Blogger: Karina Fabian One of the best compliments I’ve ever gotten in my Mind Over trilogy was that my world Kanaan was one of the best worlds-as-character the reader had seen since Dune. The best part for me was knowing that the world had hardly become a character yet. The review was for the […]


The Need for Opposing Worldviews in Christian Fiction

When Christian authors talk about religion in their books, the main topic is often how we’ve incorporated a biblical worldview. I have another question to throw at you: how are you incorporating non-biblical worldviews? Why bother with focusing on religions that clearly aren’t Christian? 1. Realistic Variety — The world is filled with non-Christians. It […]

Forged Steel cover

Forged Steel Cover Reveal

Downtown. Coffee shop. 2 AM. One minute, Josh is firing off sarcastic remarks at his best friend Marc – the next, they’re running from shape-shifters. Apparently, even best friends don’t share all their secrets. Now Josh is in danger. He can see the monsters among the humans. When Marc is kidnapped, Josh finds himself pulled […]

Create a Playbuzz Quiz

How To Set Up a “Which Character Are You?” Quiz with Playbuzz

Guest Blogger: Nadine Brandes Readers like to interact with their favorite authors and their favorite characters. One fantastic way to let your readers do this is to create a Which Character Are You? quiz. I recently set one up for a Facebook Party I threw for my book, A Time to Die. Here are some things I learned through […]

Author's Journey

More Farland Workshops

You are all going to get sick of me posting about David Farland. For those unable to attend his Realm Makers workshop, I tweeted a bunch of his tips on Saturday. Unfortunately, I hadn’t thought of it on Friday. So next time I will compile a shortlist from my notes. But this week, I wanted […]

Creative Nook

Misdirection and the Gullibility of the American People

Misdirection and the Gullibility of the American People

Dr. von Ratner eyed the incubators through the two-way mirror. They sat in the waiting room, arms crossed over their chests and trembling, terrified, but not of him or of what he was about to do to them. No, they feared the consequences of their own actions. They believed he was here to help. Von […]

Critical Views

Jury Duty

Jury Duty

My husband is at jury duty today. He mentioned it to a client whose computer he was working on yesterday, and the client immediately began commiserating. My husband responded with, “I’m actually looking forward to it.” His summons actually came at a pretty good time for him. Since he works for a school, his summer […]

Guest Blogs

Interview with Morgan Busse

Interview with Morgan Busse

I am so very excited for my good friend and critique partner, Morgan Busse. Last Tuesday was the release of her 3rd book (and also the final book of the her trilogy). I thought you all might want to get to know a little bit more about her and her books (which I highly recommend). […]

Life and Such

Winter Is Here

Winter Is Here

While it’s true that listening to A Dance with Dragons inspired the title, it has nothing to do with this post. Rather it’s Marissa Meyer’s upcoming release Winter that inspired the topic. For those not familiar with the Lunar Chronicles series: Cinder, Scarlet, Cress, Fairest, and Winter, they’re futuristic retellings of Cinderella, Little Red Riding Hood, […]

Marketing and Promotion

That’s Not How Advertising Works

That’s Not How Advertising Works

You know how when you’re watching TV, you see the same ad at least eleven thousand times? And how if you’re watching something online, you get the same commercial two or three times in a row sometimes? The internet has made it easy for advertisers with data tracking. If you look up shoes, you automatically […]

News for Writers

Submit Your Stories to Havok Magazine

Submit Your Stories to Havok Magazine

If y’all aren’t following Havok magazine, you should be. This flash fiction magazine is the place to get your quick hits of speculative fiction, and it’s a great paying market for you to submit to. Each issue of Havok has a theme, and submitted stories must fit the theme. Below are themes for upcoming issues. […]

Our Faith

Cinderella as Christianity

Cinderella as Christianity

The news has been full of all kinds of craziness the last week. From gay marriage rights to the Confederate flag to dire warnings about dry drowning and lyme disease, you can’t be on the internet without seeing some sort of negativity. I tried to stay out of the gay marriage debate. I really did […]

Random Things



To kind of springboard off Kristen’s post about the dark side of Realm Makers, I thought I’d share something that totally surprised me but yet didn’t. That is the atmosphere of the conference and how I left with a sense of belonging. It’s the one place I can go where I’m not “the weird one”. I set […]