I've been talking about what I do in writing since I first started this blog, handing out unsolicited advice and explaining my process from conception to completion. It occurs to me, however, that I've yet to share how I came to these wold altering conclusions about the art and craft of writing. Well, loyal reader, allow me to share with you two of the many resources I have that have helped me become a better writer. Spoiler alert, both resources are published authors.
One of the first resources I found oh so long ago when I dug down and got really serious about my writing was an author named Jenna Moreci. How did I find her? I clicked on YouTube... clicked on the little search bar... and typed "how to write a novel." There is, perhaps, more to it, but really, my discovery of Jenna Moreci was nothing amazing. She was the top search result and her video was relevant to my need at the time. I'm not sure what the first video of hers was that I watched, but I'm sure it was a "pet peeves" or a "tips on writing stronger characters" video.
Once I clicked play, I was hooked. She's funny, she's informative, and very entertaining. She's gone through the entire writing process from idea to published novel and had to figure out a lot of things herself. Fortunately she was kind enough to document these things along the way and share them with the commoners that we might learn and grow. Seriously, though, her struggles have led to knowledge that she has been willing to share in the hopes that other would-be authors might not have to struggle as she did. I cannot express the gratitude I have for the knowledge she has shared in her videos. If you need writing tips or a guide (general OR specific) to the world of publishing, she is your girl.
I'd also like to mention one other resource today. When my photojournalist job gave me my first smart phone (yes, I was a little behind the times. What I can I say, I was poor!) I discovered the wonderful world of podcasts. Of course one of the first ones I subscribed to were my good friends over at Smash Fiction, but my list soon grew. NPR shows, followed by more geek shows, then I stumbled into a podcast called Writing Excuses. This podcast is a writers circle, of sorts. A group of published authors come together to talk about certain topics in writing and how they address individually address them. What's intriguing is that while a few are novelists, they've had comic writers, television script writers, video game writers, short story writers, web comic writers, and so many more! Themes like villains versus antagonists are subjects that aren't exclusive to just traditional fiction, and these writers give their take, share tips, and even give writing homework to try out.
Their rotating cast of hosts include authors like Maurice Broaddus, Amal El-Mohtar, Valynne E. Maetani, Mary Robinette Kowal, Brandon Sanderson, Howard Tayler, and Dan Wells. Each week they take fifteen minutes to explore an aspect of writing, like fleshing out side characters, and expound on it. I've found it a amazing listen while driving or running errands and their tips really help.
I hope you found these resources useful and that you'll give them a listen. They've been immensely helpful in my writing career, and they're only two of the many resources I go to. Check them out and see if they help you out with your writing.
Don't Forget to be Awesome!
Keep your eyes open for my debut novel, The Paladin.