You Don’t Have To Do It Alone – Brainstorming Help!

As writer’s we are constantly learning new things to improve our craft. That being said, brainstorming is one of the harder aspects of the writing journey for me. It’s amazing, I can help other writers with plotting but when it comes to mine, I get stuck. I was astounded (and greatly relieved) to find out I could get help.

Last week I met with my craft buddies and we had a fantastic time brainstorming. Not only did we flesh out our next novel but Gabrielle Meyer was an awesome hostess. She planned the schedule and created the perfect atmosphere of brainstorming and relaxing. For the most part, we worked in the mornings and played in the afternoons. Listen, if I didn’t love where I lived, I would move to Little Falls Minnesota. Thank you Gabrielle!

If you want to brainstorm with a group, here are a few tips.

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Listen to me! Or: The non-list-making, non-threatening, let’s-have-a-cup-of-coffee-and-chat method of creating living breathing characters.

Christian books should reach beyond our hearts to touch our souls. Regardless of the genre — suspense, romance, historical, or chick lit — stories can touch our lives, even change us. And, while plot lines are important…it is characters that drive stories. When we think of the Hunt for Red October, we think of Jack Ryan. When we think of the Fugitive, we think of Dr. Richard Kimball. Characters drive the plot. So, how do we create characters that live and breathe and drive a story into our hearts?

Throw away the list!

When I began writing, I did what seemed logical – I filled out character lists. Answered hundreds of questions. But my characters still felt flat, and more than that, their actions, dialogue and conflict didn’t seem to connect. At the time, I was home schooling, and as I looked at developing my children’s self-esteem, it hit me. People reveal themselves from the inside out, based on how they see themselves, or want others to see them. And discovering how a character defines himself is the key to making them come alive.

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Featured Fiction Friday: All My Belongings, by Cynthia Ruchti!

We love authors here at MBT, and love to celebrate great reads (especially the kind that you could pick up and read over the weekend!!

I love Cynthia’s stories – and did you know her books have been recognized by RT Reviewers’ Choice Award, Retailers’ Choice Award, Gayle Wilson Award of Excellence, and Carol Award nominations, among other honors, including a Family Fiction Readers’ Choice Award. Most of all, Cynthia is a genuinely caring, awesome person who I LOVE hanging out with!!

I asked her to come by and share with you a bit about her newest story!

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Two Tips to Get Past “I Can’t Write”

I’m on deadline.

What that means is, writing is mandatory for me. I have a title for my manuscript. A word count. Most importantly, I have a due date. And yes, barring some unforseen catastrophe such as an alien invasion or Godzilla rampaging through Colorado Springs, I will meet my deadline. (I am not thinking about any real disasters that can happen to writers everywhere.)
But let me honest with you: there are days I don’t feel like writing.

I write anyway.

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