Kick Start Your Creativity

Are you stuck in a writing rut or a life rut? Do you need to recharge your creativity? Here are some ways to jar you out of the mundane... 1. Exercise. Take a long walk, dance, run, or stretch. It gets the blood flowing and the endorphins flying. 2. Try another creative project like cooking, baking, painting, crafting, gardening, or sewing. It causes you to think differently. 3. Find some writing prompts and write for 10-15 minutes a day. There are a lot of books and free online sites with great ideas. You may be surprised at what you discover. This will also help you with your "write every day" goal. 4. Go on a photography adventure. Take lots of pictures. Make it a day trip and share it wi

From the Mire

As I finished writing a short story, an overwhelming mire filled the landscape of my pages. Every paragraph I reviewed appeared as boggy ground, fraught with error. My anxiety grew and the mire deepened before I extricated myself from my own morass of words by practicing one of writing’s golden rules – back away – or in the case of this swamp, lie flat to distribute your weight and inch toward security. The lying flat aspect convinced me to “sleep on it” and deal with story review another day. Before I did, though, I jotted notes about my muddied fears. It’s often dialog writing that makes me quake and question. In my story, a husband and wife use “honey” and “dear” when speaking to one anot

Foiling the plot or rather, what I learned from getting hacked

I wonder about the state of the world. Maybe things have always been so, but through the rise of social media, news from afar is as close as our hand-held devices. And these devices and websites are now the target for hackers to use as their code-abled fingers allow. They can approach through false social media friendships, attempt to gain access to your data, and in the blink of an eye dash your website dreams. Owning and operating a website, especially self-hosted comes with its own trials and tribulations. I’ve been doing this since 2009, and I never worried about getting hacked … until now. My fears were appropriate. It happened like the dawning of a new day. Although I wondered, when

Traveling with (Fictional) Murder in Mind

Readers often ask me how I come up with my ideas—since I’m a crime writer, they mean ideas about murder. On the page, of course. On a recent Baltic Sea cruise, my husband Glen and I enjoyed beautiful scenery and got crash courses in local history—all while I gathered writing ideas. My fellow tourists inspired many of my murderous ideas—while most tourists are well-behaved and polite, many are, well, not. The cruise started in Copenhagen and took us to the port cities of Rostock, Germany; Tallinn, Estonia; St. Petersburg, Russia; Helsinki, Finland; and Stockholm, Sweden before returning to Copenhagen. Rostock, Germany is in the former German Democratic Republic (GDR). When we got off the ship

Top 10 Ways to Support your Favorite Author

You loved the book. You're excited about the author. What can you do to connect with her? To show your enthusiasm? To encourage her to write another? Here are the Top Ten ways you can show your support. 10. Go to her website to find her email address and send a note telling her what you liked about the book and what it meant to you. Make suggestions for future stories. 9. Sign up for her newsletter—most serious authors send out short newsletters every quarter or every month. This lets you keep up with giveaways and upcoming books; you’ll learn when the author comes to visit your town to sign books or speak at a public event. 8. Go to her author Facebook page and leave a comment. “Like” the p

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Sisters in Crime Central Virginia 

I'm a paragraph. Click here to add your own text and edit me. I’m a great place for you to tell a story and let your users know a little more about you.

I'm a paragraph. Click here to add your own text and edit me. I’m a great place for you to tell a story and let your users know a little more about you.