Your Creative Writing Checklist

Sometimes I read analyses of creativity. My experience is that they don’t help people be creative.

Reading Masters and Johnson is informative about sex. It will not give you an experience of an ecstatic act of love. Studying diagrams of waltz movements tells us what steps we should take. It doesn’t give us the feeling of a lovely dance. Reading instructions about improving you golf swing will not give you fine feeling of a good drive.

Here’s a checklist to give your creative writing wings.

Writers! Dump the Virgin, Toss the Whore

Let me tell you a story. When I was an undergrad, I took a class in the writing of poetry from John G. Neihardt, best known as the author of BLACK ELK SPEAKS. Though we agreed on almost nothing, I thought he was a marvelous man, and he gave me a great gift that day.  […]

Ten Ways To Get An Idea When You’re Stuck

I’ve done a lot of things that work to get my writing rolling and some things that didn’t work. Here are ten I like. All of them operate on a single principle.

Don’t think about the question you want answered. LET IT HAPPEN. When you get an idea, quit and go straight to the keyboard. And… Read on!

WHAT IF? An Eavesdropping Exercise — Have Fun This Friday!

A fun writing exercise:

Do you eavesdrop, make up stories about these strangers, what kind of place they live, what their jobs are, if they have kids?

Hello, you must be a writer!

Here is our Friday What IF? fun exercise. Enjoy!


Writer’s Block? How to Kick that Boogey Man to the Curb

Remember Mark Twain’s wry comment, “The reports of my death have been greatly exaggerated.” Apply that to reports of writer’s block. It’s a boogey man. Seduce him, kick him in the closet, or strike up a relationship. One way or another, get him out of your unique creative space.

Let’s start by getting rid of the expression “writer’s block.” Then it won’t be such a demon.

Here are forty years worth of tips to kick that Boogey Man to the curb.

WHAT IF? Friday: Find Your Beginning in the Middle? Try It!

Win often says to students, “Where do you start you story? With this, The trouble started on Wednesday.” Begin your story on Wednesday, not on Sunday. Sunday is back story. (Be bold. Begin with dialog, if that feels right.)

When we edit manuscripts, we often see the first pages rambling around the block, shuffling their feet and staring up into the sky. Then we discover the first sentence, and perhaps an opening paragraph, on page fifteen. Eureka!

Start Writing Now. Just Do It.

Every day of your life there is a story, sitting in your lap or curled inside your heart, that is waiting to be told. There is also love, food, dancing, joy, and mysteries to be part of. But that is another story.

You be the midwife. Birth the story. Breathe life into it. If you’re not doing that, then we ask you:


SEO: Ten Little-Known Tips to Increase Book Sales

SEO stands for Search Engine Optimization. When you post a blog, or add to your website, you want to optimize your content so that Google, and other search engines, can find you – that’s what SEO is about. Here are simple tips that we’ve learned from experience and a few of The Big Boys.
We’ll walk you through them – no problem. Let’s sell those books!

I’m Selling my Husband for Christmas

  It’s true. I am selling my darling husband, and editor extraordinaire, Win Blevins.  But only to five writers, or as a gift to a writer. Win will take a spin around a book you are working on, an idea that you’d like to mine, discuss how best to market your book… Whatever you’d like […]

It’s Easy to Make Sense of Change

 “The only way to make sense out of change is to plunge into it, move with it and join the dance.” –Alan Watts ENJOY THE NEW PUBLISHING DANCE! — Meredith and Win  

Need Inspiration? Ten Fail-safe Tips.

  You’re staring at the blank screen. You’ve got mud mind. Your brain is fried. Doctor, doctor, I’ve got writer’s block. Stop. Giving it that name makes it worse. You’re just stuck. Ten tips for jolting your creativity free: 1. Go for a walk. For me this one has been fail-safe. Discovered doing a four […]