How to research your book

Research tips and tricks

I’m a contemporary romance author, but many of the suggestions I provide below about how to research your book apply to multiple genres. Whether you are writing your debut novel (mine is called Twist of Fate, which I’ll be querying live to literary agents this weekend) or working on your twelfth, I hope my list… Continue reading →

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Writing is seduction

Writing is seduction

Stephen King tells us writing is seduction in his craft book, On Writing. However, this doesn’t have to be sexual. A good book can seduce you away from your real life and responsibilities (what laundry?) and sweep you into a new world you don’t want to leave. What was the last page turner you read that… Continue reading →

Balancing your self-promotion

How to balance your self-promotion

If you are an entrepreneur (and authors totally count), then chances are you have wondered about balancing your self-promotion with providing value-add content to engage, motivate and inspire your followers (leading to sales). I view self-promotion as commercials. If you really like a show, you’ll be okay with the occasional interruption. However, if the only… Continue reading →

Creative entitlement

Creative entitlement

Many people don’t start their novel or other creative endeavor because they’re worried about what other people will think. In one of my favourite books, Big Magic, Elizabeth Gilbert talks about the notion of creative entitlement. She reinforces that every person on earth is a creative being with a unique voice. There are no new… Continue reading →

Kill your darlings

Stephen King's writing advice

Before you get alarmed and click away from this post, when I say “kill your darlings” I don’t mean your family members – James and Buster are both alive and kicking. I’m talking about ruthlessly editing your work to ensure the most polished product is published. Stephen King is the master and kill your darlings… Continue reading →

Don’t wait to start

How to get started on a goal

It can tempting to put things off until tomorrow (or some other arbitrary date in the future that will probably never happen) when you have x, y or z. You’ll take more pictures with your family when you lose weight, you’ll write your book when inspiration strikes, you’ll eat better when you have more time,… Continue reading →

Types of publishing

I’ve loved reading and writing since I was a kid. I always knew I wanted to be an author, but I didn’t know much about the business of writing or different types of publishing. In my naivety, I assumed that writing the book would be the hard part. Boy, was I wrong. And as Elizabeth… Continue reading →

Benefits of Himalayan salt lamps

What do Himalayan salt lamps do

I’m always researching the latest health and wellness information. It’s a good thing James is patient to a fault because I’m always bringing home random things, creating new recipes, and reading the latest books while I regal him with the exciting ways we’ll improve our lives this week (and many of these ideas make their way… Continue reading →

2018 opwrites.com roundup

Lifestyle blog roundup

As this year draws to a close and I reflect on the last seven months of blogging, I’m sharing a 2018 opwrites.com roundup of my top posts. It was a year of learning and personal growth, which I hope continues into 2019. I could do with less turbulence, but I’m sure all of us would… Continue reading →

Romance novels for Halloween

Sexy and scary romance novels

Do you love Halloween or are you indifferent? We’re in the indifferent camp at our house, but that could be because we don’t have kids. Dressing a toddler up as a pumpkin would very likely change my mind! In the meantime, how about some romance novels for Halloween? What is romantic about Halloween, you ask?… Continue reading →