The Writer Diaries

Dear Diary: Time Management Tips (With Personalized Excuses)

I want it banged and nailed. What, do you ask? Well, my time management, of course. I want to do a bang-up job with nailing my time management, because currently, I suck at this. I feel like I have so much to do, and that I'm busy all the time, yet nothing important gets done. Which is unfair, because I do spend most of my time being a mommy to the twins, and what's more important than they are? Still, I feel like I'm failing as a writer. And being a writer is important as well. In light of this Ive obviously wasted more free time researching the best ways…
Read More

ALL THE RAGE Blog Tour: A TWD Writers’ Review and Giveaway

We're excited to be a part of the blog tour for Courtney Summers and her fabulous novel ALL THE RAGE. This book has been getting a lot of press and for good reason: it's an important and timely read. Laura and Catherine provide their review of the book below, but first we want to announce a GIVEAWAY! Thanks to St. Martin's Press, we'll be giving away a hard copy of ALL THE RAGE.ABOUT THE BOOK The sheriff's son, Kellan Turner, is not the golden boy everyone thinks he is, and Romy Grey knows that for a fact. Because no one wants to believe a girl from the wrong side of…
Read More

Song For A Scene: R U MIne By Arctic Monkeys

After finishing my Historical YA manuscript I knew I needed a break. I didn't want to stop writing, but I needed to try something new. A lot of my friends were writing New Adult, and I loved their work. An idea came to me and I thought it's time to challenge myself in a new way.Only problem was New Adult had a specific voice, and I wasn't sure I could capture that voice as a writer. As I toyed with a possible plot idea, I came across a new song from one of my favorite bands, Arctic Monkeys. As the lead singer, Alex Turner sang the first line from "R…
Read More

Dear Diary: You’ve been Invited!

Imagine youve finally received an invitation to an exclusive restaurant. Its so exclusive, no one knows what they serve or what it looks like on the outside, but people spend a year or more waiting to get in. Reservations are by referral only. Referrals can take months or even years to get. Youre not allowed to bring anyone else inside with you, not even the friends whove shared the waiting. By the time the doors open, youre desperately hungry. Your mouth starts watering while you stand in the foyer. Once youve finally made it inside, your waiter leads you to a random table. There are no menus. Well bring you…
Read More

Writers Review: THE NAME OF THE STAR by Maureen Johnson

Here at The Writer Diaries, we actually have this rule about not posting reviews for books that have been out over a year. But since the third book of Maureen's SHADES OF LONDON series just came out on February 10th, I'm hoping my fellow bloggers will let today's review slide. (Yes, guys? No angry vibes? You want cookies? *bribes them with cookies Maureen Johnson's SHADES OF LONDON series starts with THE NAME OF THE STAR, a paranormal thriller that released in 2012. It follows Rory, a teenager from Louisiana, who decides to study at a London boarding school just as a Jack the Ripper copycat begins recreating his murderson the…
Read More

Tuesday Topic: Writing Resources

My first book, I wrote totally blind, not really knowing what I was doing. It's no wonder that same book is still living in hiding on my laptop. I do love the story, but boy does the book need work to get it in shape! Then someone told me about Blake Snyder's Save the Cat, and that book not only saved my plotting, but it also saved my query/blurb writing. Additionally, when I get stuck in a show/don't tell rut, I pull out my Emotion Thesaurus and look for better ways to show what I'm saying. How about you all? Do you have go-to resources when you sit down to…
Read More

Tuesday Topic: Reaching the Right Word Count

So Amy Trueblood and I just finished Sun versus Snow and I made two picks that could be considered controversial because of their word count. They didn't come out in the sweet spot promoted all over the internet. One was too high and the other two low. Yet they were both really strong entries, except for the count. One got a requests and the other didn't. Though to be fair, my adult picks didn't get much attention at all, so that could be part of the reason. My question is do you pay heed to word count when doing a first draft? Do you add or subtract to make sure…
Read More

Pre-Pub Adventure: February Part 2

It's time for our second part in Pre-Publishing Adventure! It's always a time of excitement for us when our authors have reached their Pre-Pub Adventure. Their book is out in the world for your enjoyment! Happy Book birthday to Lee Kelly and City of Savages! Pre-Pub Adventure is a post we do once a month where we check in with authors to see how they're doing between publishing books. What do they actually do? Write? Prepare for book launches?
Read More

Overused Words Phrases and Other Writing Crutches

A friend recently pointed out the overuse of the phrase "I mean." He said it's the "like" of today, people say it automatically and don't even realize it. It's a filler, like an "um" or "you know." So I started paying attention to my own diction and I heard myself saying "I mean" a lot. A LOT. I said to myself...I mean, really? :) Why do people use fillers? Why don't they just say what they mean without saying "I mean"? Is it the person's way of clarifying their thoughts or further explaining a point? Or is it just lazy language? It's probably a little bit of both. I doubt…
Read More

Tuesday Topic: Editing & Revision

You've finally completed the incredible task of writing an entire novel, but now what? How do you begin the Herculean task of attacking novel revisions? Do you look forward to editing and revising, or do you prefer the drafting process? Do you revise before or after you have other people read your work, and how much do you take outside feedback into consideration in editing? Do you use outlines or charts? How do you tackle big picture issues like pacing and plot holes? Moving onto micro-edits, how do you best catch the small errors in your work? Let's hear what the Writer Diaries contributors have to say! Vicki L. Not…
Read More