Once You Have Readers, How Do You Keep Them?

by Allison Pottern Hoch

You wrote a book—and people are reading it! Or maybe you’ve published your first short story in a literary magazine with a greater circulation than your immediate family. Perhaps your blog is getting some extra views. How do you hang on to these interested readers and get them to come back the next time you have some fresh writing to offer?

Have a web presence

It’s critical to have an up-to-date, clean, and accessible web presence so that readers can find you online, connect with you, and feel like they are getting fresh information. Whether it’s a simple web page or a Facebook fan page, make sure it’s current. Continue reading

To Rhyme…or Not to Rhyme: An Event with Josh Funk

by Lisa Rogers

My great-niece just had her third birthday, and as she’s a huge Josh Funk fan, no doubt her birthday book package had to include his latest Lady Pancake and Sir French Toast intrigue, The Case of the Stinky Stench.

Of course, she loved it, not just because Josh kindly wrote a personal inscription on the title page, and not just because the book has an amazing fold-out page that provides her with hours of entertainment. She has an entire routine about how to navigate that page that her parents ignore at their peril.

The main reason she’s crazy about Josh’s books?

She loves the rhyme. And so does her mom.

“Those books have become my go-to gift,” my niece Angela told me. “They are perfect because they can be read over and over (and over!) and they’re great for parents who want to be entertained along with their kids.”

Angela was thrilled to learn Josh has several books coming out in the next couple of years, enough (perhaps) to satisfy her daughter and new arrival.

But what’s Josh’s secret? Every newbie writer is told to stay away from rhyme. It’s tough to do. No agents or editors seem to want it. How does one write rhyme right?

Josh’s success stands out. And he’s willing to share his techniques and tips. That’s the kind of thing that happens at The Writers’ Loft craft chats, and Josh is a great example.

At this year’s New York SCBWI conference, he was singled out for his generosity in promoting other writers, sharing information about what has worked for him and the nitty-gritty on marketing your book successfully (see his detailed recent post about that at http://www.24carrotwriting.com/-blog/josh-funk-shares-powerhouse-marketing-strategies).

So, to rhyme…or not to rhyme? When is it right for your manuscript? To find out, get thee to Josh’s free craft chat at 7:30 p.m. tomorrow (Tuesday, August 8) at The Writers’ Loft.

Think It’s Too Far To Drive To The Loft? Think Again!

by Kari Allen

This spring, I drove down to South Carolina with my family. It took about 15 hours. Which was still less than the amount of time I spent driving down to the Writers’ Loft for a six-week course that I finished in April.

I have attended a bunch of Saturday workshops and craft chats at the Loft in the past, but I had never committed to a longer course. I always talked myself out if it; it always seemed like it was too much time and effort. Time that I didn’t have or couldn’t allow myself to have. Coming from central New Hampshire, it would mean hours and hours in the car, not to mention arranging childcare and figuring out my family’s schedule. But this past March, I decided to sign up for a multi-week course and gave myself one of the best gifts I could ever have as a writer. Continue reading

The Art of Freewriting…With A Purpose

by Deborah Sosin

Write about your feet. Go. Ten minutes. Hairy toe knuckles, fallen arches, that painful bunion. Ugly, smelly, too big, too small. The pedicure gone wrong. The foot-fetishist boyfriend. Whatever comes to mind. Just keep the pen moving.

That’s freewriting in a nutshell. Writing without stopping—no censoring, editing, or judging. No need to fix spelling, punctuation, or grammar. No need for perfection. Simply putting pen to paper (or fingers to keyboard) is a great way to bypass resistance, procrastination, and self-criticism. Continue reading

Under The Skylight: Maintaining Persistence During Revision

by Erin Dionne

Last month, I blogged about cultivating objectivity during the revision process. Another crucial element to effectively revising any piece of writing is persistence.

Finishing a novel or short story or poem requires persistence, so you already have that quality. But revising one…well, that is a whole new level of commitment. Taking a closer look at our work, finding flaws and fixing them, can be discouraging. Continue reading

Jacqueline Davies Dives Into the Creative Process

by Lisa Rogers

THE WRITERS’ LOFT WILL WELCOME award-winning author Jacqueline Davies on July 18 at 7:30 p.m. to chat about her creative process and tips for fellow writers. Lofter Lisa Rogers recently interviewed Ms. Davies for a sneak preview.

LR: As the author of several novels and nonfiction and fiction picture books, you must be very familiar with the mysteries of the creative process. How have you been able to unlock the key to some of those mysteries? Continue reading