Why the Small Story Matters

On Wednesdays, I share posts, fables, songs, poems, quotations, TEDx Talks, cartoons, and books that have inspired and motivated me on my writing journey. I hope these posts will give writers, artists, and other creatives a mid-week boost.

Chuck Wendig’s informative guide, Damn Fine Story, contains a mix of personal stories, pop fiction examples, and excellent advice about storytelling. Here’s one of my favorite excerpts:

We don’t really care about the big story. We think we do. We think we care about the Empire versus the Rebel Alliance, we think we care about Spider-Man versus the Vulture, we think we care about Buffy versus the Vampires.

But we don’t. Not really. Not deeply.

What we care about is the small story embedded in there, the small story that’s the beating heart of the larger one. We care about the characters and their personal drama. We care about their families, their loved ones, their struggles to feel normal, their attempts to do right in the face of wrong. We care about Buffy wanting to fall in love and hang out with her friends and not fail out of school. We care that the villains fighting Spider-Man are often connected to him personally, and that they reflect some aspect of his troubled journey from a geeky high school student to a city-saving mutant. We care about the friendships that form between Luke, Leia, and Han.

We care because they care.

We care because their story is our story. Our story is one of friendships and family, of love lost and jealousy made, of birth and death and everything in-between.

A big story without a small story has all the substance of a laser light show. It’s pretty. It’s dazzling. And it’s very, very empty.

Look for the little story.

Look for the story about people.

Source: Damn Fine Story, pp. 79-80.

10 Interesting Facts About Forever Winter by Amber Daulton

I’m happy to welcome back multi-published author, Amber Daulton. Today, Amber shares interesting facts about her new release, Forever Winter.

Here’s Amber!

Thank you for letting me visit today, Joanne. I’m excited to share ten awesome facts about my new release.

1. Forever Winter isn’t a new book. Not really. It was originally published in a Christmas-themed anthology with Bradley Publishing back in 2012. The publisher went under two months after the release, but luckily, one of the authors I met who also wrote for Bradley suggested I submit my story to her other publisher, Books to Go Now. Thankfully, BTGN accepted Forever Winter in 2013 and re-released it as an individual book. It stayed there for years until the rights reverted to me a few months back.

2. Forever Winter is my debut book.

3. I’ve given it a makeover with a fresh cover and edit for the re-release. I’ve also added a new subplot, which carries strongly throughout the book. Honestly, I don’t know why I didn’t think of it when I first wrote the book almost ten years ago.

4. I love graphic design, so I created the cover for Forever Winter myself. After a couple failed attempts and repeat visits to the drawing board, I finally created something I really liked that also got great feedback from the artists and authors in my book design groups.

5. I prefer to write sensual to smoking hot romance, but Forever Winter is one of two sweet, no on-page sex stories in my backlist. (The other is Lightning Over Bennett Ranch.)

6. I love historical romances, and the Regency period is one of my favorite eras. Most Regency books take place in the heyday of the era—between 1811-1820—but the time period typically ranges from 1795 to 1837. Anyway, Forever Winter is set in 1834, an oddity in the world of Regency romances.

7. Most romance books begin with the protagonists meeting and falling in love with maybe a quick, sappy wedding ceremony before the book ends. Not so in Forever Winter! The reader meets Susanna and Camden on their wedding day. They’ve already courted for a year and are now ready to begin their married life together. Don’t let this put you off from the book, though! It’s a complete, standalone novella that focuses on a single day in the lives of two people who are madly in love.

8. Weddings in the Regency period were typically low-key affairs for the common-folk and just a little better for the wealthy. Most took place in a church before noon, but if you obtained a special license—which was very expensive—you could marry wherever you wanted at whatever time you liked. In addition to the bride, groom, priest, and two witnesses being present, family and friends could of course attend, but few people traveled to attend a ceremony. It was just too expensive, difficult, and time consuming to travel from town to town or clear across the country to witness an event that would be over in less than an hour. There wasn’t a big to-do about the flowers, seating arrangement, or the dress, though some wealthy women did buy a new dress for the ceremony, which they later wore as a regular dress. In Forever Winter, Camden purchases a special license and Susanna orders a new dress, but their big day doesn’t compare to the extravaganzas lots of people throw today.

9. Susanna and Camden’s wedding day tanks! Everything that could go wrong, goes wrong in a spectacular fashion. If I were Susanna, I probably would’ve postponed the wedding, but she didn’t have that option—not as a young woman living under the strict rules of 19th century England. Poor girl.

10. Forever Winter shows the strength of love, friendship, and mutual respect in the face of adversity and that no matter what happens, love will prevail.

Synopsis

A perfect Christmas wedding, a snowstorm, and a shocking secret. What could go wrong?

Susanna Lorican must marry the man she loves before the truth is discovered, or face the gossip of the ton. With an unexpected snowstorm injuring the minister, her future hangs in the balance.
Viscount Camden Beckinworth vows to keep his bride safe, even if he must betray her confidence. When their love is put to the test, how will he uphold her honor without jeopardizing his own?

– Warning: this sweet, complete Regency romance novella features a brief scene where the heroine is assaulted.

– Second edition. Newly revised and edited.

Tagline

Will their love withstand the storm to come?

Excerpt

“Susanna, please, talk to me. Let me know your thoughts.”

He grasped her arms in a firm but gentle hold. Did he expect her to flee rather than confide in him? She couldn’t lie to him, nor did she want to. The truth spilled from her lips in a rush—her shame, her frustration, her anger. Everything poured out of her, except for the most precious reason of all.

“Oh, my darling.” He pressed her close to his chest.

She sniffled. His rich scent of smoke and pure male radiated from him in a soothing balm she scarcely deserved. “I-I planned the perfect wedding but never imagined things might go wrong. I didn’t consider anyone but myself. If I could change what I did, I would, but it’s too late. Too much is underway.” She gritted her teeth and pulled back from Camden’s embrace. She wrapped her arms around her churning stomach and paced again.

As Camden rubbed his creased brow, she bit back a cry of frustration. He tried so hard to be patient with her. Every fiber in his body probably urged him to snatch her arm, pin her against his chest, and kiss her until she melted in a puddle at his feet. She almost wished he would. Who cared about the gossip that might ensue if someone caught them in the act?

“You were right.” Susanna pressed her knuckles against her aching temples. “Mama was right. A spring wedding would have been wonderful, but with my luck, these catastrophes would have happened regardless.”

“There is always the possibility of something bad happening—rain, wind, anything. The dress still might have been late, or a highwayman could have robbed the coach and stolen it. The reverend could have fallen from his horse on a dry road.”

His words rang with truth, but the misery clenching her heart doubled.

Camden blocked her path. “I’m glad you chose today, the anniversary of the day my life changed for the better. I will never forget your blue muslin dress, or how you moaned over your hurt ankle then clammed up when you saw me. You were so stubborn, so beautiful, that I lost my voice. I had never truly seen you until that moment.”

She flushed warm as the memory calmed her racing heart.

She’d been playing with a few of the servants’ children in the courtyard when she fell and twisted her ankle. While the children hurried off to find help, Camden found her and carried her inside. They were inseparable for the rest of the evening. Though his kiss in the library startled her so much that she’d slapped him, her heart had soared and nearly split her rib cage.

He suckled her lower lip between his teeth until a moan escaped her throat. He pulled back and stared deep into her eyes. “You are so kind, darling. I wish you realized that.”

“How could you believe such a falsehood? I’m selfish and—”

“Would a selfish woman invite servants to her wedding, and their brood?” He cupped her cheek. “Of course not. You wanted them to enjoy this day too. I have seen the way the children—both your flesh and blood and the others—gravitate to you. Your goodness calls to them.” He tapped his palm on her upper chest, right above her heart. “If something else happens and prohibits our union, God forbid, we will marry as soon as possible. Nothing will keep me away from you.” He hooked a stray lock of her hair behind her ear and lowered his mouth to hers.

Add to Goodreadshttps://bit.ly/foreverwintergoodreads

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Purchase Links

Amazon | Barnes and Noble | Kobo | Apple/iBooks | Google Play

About the Author

Amber Daulton is the author of the romantic-suspense series Arresting Onyx and several standalone novellas. Her books are published through Daulton Publishing, The Wild Rose Press, and Books to Go Now, and are available in ebook, print on demand, audio, and foreign language formats.

She lives in North Carolina with her husband and demanding cats.

Universal link – https://linktr.ee/AmberDaulton

Blurb Blitz: The Assasin’s Legacy

I’m happy to welcome author D. Lieber. Today, she shares her new release, The Assasin’s Legacy.

Blurb

He hasn’t been Aleksandr Sergeyevich Volonov, legendary monster-hunting assassin for ten years. Now, he is only Sasha, charming deckhand on a merchant airship so recently destroyed by pirates.

All he wants is to find another job and keep moving. But that simple plan is thwarted when his sister sends an assassin to murder him. His only choice is to return to Saint Petersburg and renounce his claim to his family’s title.

Trapped by his late father’s machinations, Sasha finds himself surrounded by death threats, engaged to a brutal villainess, shadowed by his cheeky assassin, and forced to lead the organization bent on eliminating all supernatural creatures from the Russian Empire.

As he struggles to keep hold on the man he is, Sasha must face who he used to be in this modern steampunk fantasy adventure full of folklore, banter, and artifice.

Excerpt

The cold wind off the Gulf of Finland seeped into my soul, greeting me like a mother’s caress. I had left the pleasant autumn of the west behind. Nothing warmed the heart quite like the promise of a Russian winter. Sighing, I smiled to myself and strolled in the direction of the river. A line of small steamboats with black and yellow striped canopies patiently waited on the river’s edge. Their smoke stacks, which stuck up through the canopies, puffed white water vapor, telling us they were ready at any time.

After we’d hopped into a taxi, I asked the driver to take us to Volonov Manor. We chugged up the Neva, and I watched the grand palaces and mansions drift by. I could still remember the names and faces of their boyar residents, those I’d grown up with. Their salons and drawing rooms, the many balls and parties, the dinners and concerts: the gilded façade that was my youth. I also remembered their cellars and basements: prisons for the creatures of the night, poor souls who were only kept alive to torture for information and study to find better ways of killing others of their kind.

Of course, not all of the noble families were members of the Ubyzniki, just the trusted few. Five families, still favored by the empress, made up the Ubyzniki. Five families with their many branches filled the ranks of “monster” hunting assassins. They lurked in forests, alleys, and ballrooms alike, stalking their supernatural prey and keeping the unknowing citizens of the Russian Empire safe. I scoffed at their hypocrisy, their righteous hubris, as all the contentment I’d felt upon landing in Saint Petersburg drained out of me.

Author Bio and Links

D. Lieber has a wanderlust that would make a butterfly envious. When she isn’t planning her next physical adventure, she’s recklessly jumping from one fictional world to another. Her love of reading led her to earn a Bachelor’s in English from Wright State University.

Beyond her skeptic and slightly pessimistic mind, Lieber wants to believe. She has been many places—from Canada to England, France to Italy, Germany to Russia—believing that a better world comes from putting a face on “other.” She is a romantic idealist at heart, always fighting to keep her feet on the ground and her head in the clouds.

Lieber lives in Wisconsin with her husband (John) and cats (Yin and Nox).

Website | Goodreads | BookBub | Amazon Buy Link

Published Works

Conjuring Zephyr June 2016
The Exiled Otherkin (Minte and Magic Adventure, #1) November 2017
Intended Bondmates (Intended Fates, #1) June 2018
In Search of a Witch’s Soul (Council of Covens Noir, #1) March 2019
Dancing with Shades (Council of Covens Noir, #0) August 2019
Once in a Black Moon) March 2020
A Very Witchy Yuletide ) October 2020
The Treason of Robyn Hood ) March 2021
The Assassin’s Legacy (Minte and Magic Adventure, #2)
October 2021

Giveaway

D. Lieber will be awarding a Russian tea kit, which includes: podstakannik and glass, tea, jam, and spoon to a randomly drawn winner via Rafflecopter during the tour. Find out more here.

Follow D. Lieber on the rest of her Goddess Fish tour here.

Eight Pieces of Wisdom That Can Change Your Life

On Wednesdays, I share posts, fables, songs, poems, quotations, TEDx Talks, cartoons, and books that have inspired and motivated me on my writing journey. I hope these posts will give writers, artists, and other creatives a mid-week boost.

Simple and straight-forward advice for living our best lives:

Spotlight on Julie Howard

I’m happy to welcome back Wild Rose Press author Julie Howard. Today, Julie shares her author journey and new release, The Three Widows of Wylder.

Here’s Julie!

Thank you, Joanne, for hosting me today! This is a lucky day for me because my eighth book, The Three Widows of Wylder, releases today.

I never thought I’d have eight books out. My dream was to someday have one published. My journey to becoming a novelist was both long and short. My childhood dream was to be a novelist and I was always creating stories and jotting down plot and character notes. I majored in journalism in college and was a newspaper reporter, columnist and editor for a number of years. This was a great training ground as I learned quite a bit about human behavior during the stories I reported on (motivations), how different people speak (dialogue), and understanding what made an interesting story (plot). For a few years, I worked in marketing before I realized time was growing short for realizing that old childhood dream.

In my forties, I quit work and started writing my first novel. I learned writing fiction was very different than nonfiction. While I had the technical abilities, I still had a lot to learn. I took a few classes, attended conferences, and read a number of books on writing fiction. I spent a few years researching and writing a historical fiction novel and then, mentally exhausted by that effort, decided to write a mystery to clear my mind. That book, Crime and Paradise, was picked up by The Wild Rose Press.

What seemed like an immediate success to those around me was actually the culmination of years of work putting the building blocks in place. I’ve stayed with the same publisher for seven subsequent titles and am now working on my next novel. Finally, after all these years, I’m living my childhood dream.

Tagline

Three women. Three terrible secrets.

Blurb

Three women on the run.

After the death of her husband, Clara flees a hanging judge and seeks refuge with her brother in Wylder, Wyoming.

With secrets of her own and good reasons to flee, spoiled and vain Mary Rose joins Clara on the trek to Wyoming. Surely a suitable man exists somewhere.

Emma is a mystery. A crack shot and expert horsewoman, her harrowing past seeps out in a steady drip. She’s on the run from something, but what?

After the three women descend on Wylder, a budding romance leads to exposure of their pasts. As disaster looms, will any of them escape?

Excerpt

Emma stood, legs apart, one hand on the pistol at her hip. The covered wagon was the type used years ago by pioneers, before trains tamed the prairie, and they still lumbered across areas where tracks hadn’t been laid. Two women sat side-by-side, too focused on their argument to yet notice the camp they entered. Their one horse, overmatched by the heavy wagon, was damp with sweat, its mouth flecked with froth.

“We should have stayed on the main road.” The peevish one appeared much younger, curly gold hair topped by a large straw hat. She wore a light-yellow dress with lace at her wrists and throat, a perfectly inadequate outfit for travel. “Someone could have provided directions.”

The older woman had finely-drawn features, a few strands of gray threaded through her dark, uncovered hair. Dressed in sensible blue calico, she gripped the reins too tight and the poor horse gave a pathetic shake of its head. “The whole point was to avoid people,” she sniped.

Emma strode forward and seized the reins. “For God’s sake, you’re killing him.”

The two women gaped as though at an apparition. The horse, released from harsh hands, lowered its head and halted. Its sides heaved as flies drank at its sweaty flanks.

“Whomever let you two fools handle a horse should be whipped.” Tempted to dispatch the women to hell for their cruelty, Emma rested her hand on the pistol’s handle.

They two travelers spoke in tandem. “Who are you?” and “How dare you call me a fool.”

As Emma crooned into in the horse’s ear, her expert fingers undid the buckles at its shoulders and haunches. By the time the older of the two women climbed to the ground, the horse was unhitched and Emma led it to the creek.

“That’s our horse,” cried the one in yellow. “Clara, what is that insane girl doing? She’s stealing him.”

Emma halted, shoulders stiff. She turned and pointed the pistol at the one with lace at her throat. “I’m no horse thief.” She cocked the hammer. “Apologize.”

Buy Links

Amazon | iBooks | Barnes and Noble | Bookbub | Goodreads

Author Bio and Links

Julie Howard is the author of the Wild Crime mystery series and Spirited Quest paranormal mystery series. She is a former journalist and editor who has covered topics ranging from crime to cowboy poetry. She is a member of the Idaho Writers Guild and editor of the Potato Soup Journal.

When she’s not writing, she enjoys spending time outdoors cycling, walking or gardening. A fifth generation Californian, she now lives in Idaho.

Website | Facebook | Goodreads | Amazon | Bookbub | Twitter | Instagram

Book Blast: To Entice a Spy

I’m happy to welcome multi-published author Diane Scott Lewis. Today, Diane shares her new release, To Entice a Spy.

Blurb

In 1794, Widowed Countess Eseld Trehearne seeks revenge for the brutal death of her female companion during a Paris riot. On her return to England, Eseld delves into espionage to defeat the French rebels.

Baron Robert Penhale, Eseld’s childhood love, rejoins the Secret Services after his wife’s death. He’s determined to protect England from the revolution terrorizing France.

A ruthless French spy fights for the common man while disguised as an English aristocrat. He’s intent on revenge against those who oppose him.

With the spy stalking them and Robert in fear for Eseld’s life, the fate of the couple verges on disaster.

Excerpt

Pierre entered the Blue Anchor tavern. At a table in the far corner, he sat and ordered a small beer. He reached into his greatcoat pocket and pulled out the letter he’d just picked up from the General Post Office. Crackling it open in the dim candlelight, he started to read the coded letter.

Men laughed and talked in the low-ceiling taproom, puffing on pipes. The word, “revolution,” popped up now and then. Had their arguments been for or against?

The nerve of the English to care about his country’s events, but the murder of useless royalty across the Channel had made George III fear for his crown. Now Britain, along with Austria, attacked France to demand the status quo.

A pretty wench in apron and cap sauntered up to his table.

“You promised to visit me. I’m that earnest to run my fingers through your hair blacker than coal, an’ gaze into them blue eyes. Handsome devil.”

“Not now, I’ll come back later tonight. I’m busy.”

Pierre was anxious to finish his note and turned from her. Another chit he dallied with. He heard her walk off in a huff.

He hunched down and snickered.

The note confirmed that a woman, a spoiled aristocrat, was in town to interfere with him.

“How delightful,” he muttered under his breath. Could that be the recent arrival, Countess Trehearne?

He crunched the paper in his fingers as if to rip apart anyone who impeded his operation. This woman, the delectable Eseld, would be easy to fool, and dispose of, if necessary.

Buy Links

Amazon | Barnes & Noble | Target | Book Depository

Author Bio and Links

Diane Parkinson (Diane Scott Lewis) grew up near San Francisco, joined the Navy at nineteen, married in Greece and raised two sons in Puerto Rico, California, and Guam. She’s a member of the Historical Novel Society and wrote book reviews for their magazine. She’s always loved travel and history and has had several historical novels published. Her most recent is the Oyster War Novel set in the 1950s: Ghost Point.

Her spy novella, To Entice a Spy, set in England during the French Revolution—two former lovers chase a ruthless spy; will love rekindle as murder stalks them? — will be released on October 11, 2021.

Diane lives with her husband and one naughty dog in western Pennsylvania.

Website | Amazon | Bookbub | FB Fan Page | Goodreads | Instagram | Twitter

Giveaway

Diane Scott Lewis will be awarding a $20 Amazon Barnes & Noble gift card to a randomly drawn winner via Rafflecopter during the tour. Find out more here.

Follow Diane on the rest of her Goddess Fish tour here.

Goodreads:

It Takes Momentum

On Wednesdays, I share posts, fables, songs, poems, quotations, TEDx Talks, cartoons, and books that have inspired and motivated me on my writing journey. I hope these posts will give writers, artists, and other creatives a mid-week boost.

Here’s an inspiring excerpt from What It Takes by award-winning entrepreneur Zahra Al-harazi:

When there are not enough hours in the day, when I feel totally overwhelmed, or when I feel lost or helpless, I organize.

In the calm of an organized mind, I move like a lioness in the Serengeti, taking down antelopes one by one. I get work done with incredible efficiency. A flood of serotonin improves my outlook and I revel in achievement—any achievement. Micro progress leads to macro progress. Antelopes lead to zebras and wildebeest. Rearranging my kitchen cupboards leads to hundred-page business plans.

Sitting on the sofa in yoga pants leads nowhere good. It’s not even fair to the yoga pants.

So, make a list and check things off. That last part is important—don’t skip it.

Start with whatever’s in front of you that’s sucking your focus dry; move on to easy stuff that adds up fast: make phone calls, pay bills, put in a load of laundry, throw out the aging produce in your fridge; then attack the wildebeest.

It won’t stand a chance.

Source: What It Takes by Zhara Al-harazi, page 316

Blurb Blitz: The Girl in the ’67 Beetle

I’m happy to welcome author and editor, Linda Lenhoff. Today, Linda shares her new release, The Girl in the ’67 Beetle

Blurb

The art director of Kids Press, Amy Shepherd has been assigned to reinvent the story of Goldilocks, and she finds her own life reflecting a similar tale. Will she fall for a man who’s a little too old (but exciting), a man who’s a little too young (but awfully exciting looking), or a man who’s just right, at least as far as her friends are concerned? Or will she bring Goldilocks’ story—and her own—up to date with a little help from high-technology and the Goldilocks Planet theory? Amy will have to decide how her own tale will end, all the while driving her beloved powder blue convertible through the streets of Santa Monica, where she has become known as the Girl in the ’67 Beetle, the only thing in her life that, so far at least, feels just right.

Excerpt

I think it’s a sign of our times that when we feel low or confused, unsure or unloved, we look for someplace warm and comforting, with soft colors and soothing music, and find ourselves time and again at Pottery Barn. At least, my pal Susan and I do.

“Shopping has gotten a bad name,” Susan says. Susan is my bestie from college, though we don’t use the term bestie because it’s a little too cute, and Susan is a serious person. She has a serious face with a serious haircut—auburn tinted straight hair, excellent posture, and one of those fit bodies where everything’s proportioned right. I think it’s because she’s tall. But she doesn’t lord it over me or anything.

“It’s true,” I say. “I feel guilty shopping now. Even window shopping makes me look over my shoulder to make sure no one’s watching. When did this happen?”

“It’s all those TV shows where women in too much eye makeup are constantly shopping for shoes.

“I’ve never willingly gone into one of those pricey shoe stores,” I say.

“Boutiques,” Susan corrects me.

“That’s a polite word for them,” I say. “What’s wrong with DSW? What’s wrong with grabbing your own size and putting shoes on yourself?” I ask.

“You just don’t get what it means to be a modern woman,” Susan says, raising her nose in the air. “A modern woman who spends money on shoes that hurt.”

“I’d rather have a nice quilt,” I say, looking at a nice quilt. It’s five-hundred dollars, so I won’t be buying it, either. But at least if I did, it wouldn’t pinch my toes.

I am scanning the aisles of Trader Joe’s, looking for something celebratory but inexpensive for dinner. It is my anniversary, and I realize I’m acting a little like a New Agey Hallmark card for a thirty-four-year-old celebrating the first anniversary of her divorce (and you just know the card would be too pink, with a girl holding a martini glass with too much martini in it).

Trader Joe’s is the grocery store where I came as a college student to buy very cheap wine (I still buy it) and big blocks of cheese (I’ve cut down on the cheese—dairy, you know).

The store looks brand new, having undergone renovation this past year. A lot like me, but more fluorescent and way more noticeable. You can now find some form of chocolate at the end of almost every aisle. Something that makes me think they know I shop here, or there are a lot more women like me than I ever thought.

A crowd has gathered around the low-carb section, which thankfully isn’t too large an area. Lots of women studying the fine print.

An older man is watching the low-carb folks, too. He looks at me, and we share a smile. He then accidentally turns and knocks over an entire rack of chocolate bars (the ones with the white wrappers and hazelnuts inside, a very good choice), and the whole group of low carb-ettes turns to see, with looks of longing on their determined faces. The older man looks slightly bemused.

“You’re a tempter, is that it?” I ask, helping him pick up the bars. I put one in my basket. I don’t care if it fell on the floor. It’s wrapped.

“Who could resist?” he says, with a mischievous smile on his face. “Thanks for the help. I should buy you a chocolate bar,” he says.

“Please, I’m over thirty,” I joke. “You should buy me two.”

Author Bio and Links

Linda Lenhoff has worked in publishing as a writer and editor for several years, having edited nearly everything from makeup techniques (apply blush up and over the “apples” of your cheeks) at Seventeen Magazine to migraine studies (cut back on that chocolate) at research institutes. She has earned an MFA in Creative Writing, and her next novel, *Your Actual Life May Vary, will be published in 2022. Linda lives in California’s Bay Area with her husband and daughter.

Contact Linda at (925) 784-9393.
Website | Amazon Buy Link | Email

Giveaway

Linda Lenhoff will be awarding one printed copy book or a $25 Amazon/Barnes and Noble gift card to a randomly drawn winner via Rafflecopter during the tour. Find out more here.

Follow Linda on the rest of her Goddess Fish tour here.

A Radical New Challenge for Writers

On Wednesdays, I share posts, fables, songs, poems, quotations, TEDx Talks, cartoons, and books that have inspired and motivated me on my writing journey. I hope these posts will give writers, artists, and other creatives a mid-week boost.

Award-winning author Julie Carrick Dalton shares a unique perspective in a recent post on the Writer Unboxed blog. Here’s an excerpt from that post:

Writers are often asked ‘Why do you write?’ in interviews, Q&As, and dinner parties (when we used to go to dinner parties.) Why do I write? For me, the answer is easy. I love to write. I have a million stories in my head. I enjoy being part of the literary community. Writing makes me feel good. I want to inspire people. I want to entertain readers, make them feel something. I have plenty of answers—all of which are true—to the question ‘Why do you write?’

This summer I discovered that for me, the more relevant question is this: When should I not write?

I suspect there are plenty of writers out there who feel like me. Pandemic stress is heavy. We’re worried about our families and friends. We’re trying to be smart and safe in the middle of a global crisis, but also trying to live our lives with some semblance of normalcy. We’re trying to hit deadlines, and hoping we don’t let anyone down.

Every time we log onto social media, someone is telling us to write faster, earlier, longer, to get our butt in a chair, finish that book, sell that book, write another book.

I’m proposing a radical new challenge: Don’t write. (At least not all the time.)

Don’t put your butt in that chair. Don’t show up to your laptop every single day. Give yourself permission to not write sometimes. Who knows, maybe it will make you a better writer—or at least a more grounded one.

Source: Writer Unboxed Blog