Mind the Gap

When your characters dance into your mind, full and alive and layered and laughing, and your fingers type away at the keyboard, and the words appear on the page, how do you know? How do you know if you are painting what your mind is seeing, recording what it’s hearing, or if the sights and […]

Thanks to Jo Knowles and Steven Tyler

I’m a scene and a half into the second draft of my historical WIP. The last few days, with writing time, have been wonderful–just letting myself relax back into the happiness of putting words on the page. And, yes, with all my words about research, I’m still leaving placeholders for specifics. I hunt for a […]

More Research: AKA Resisting the Rush

Last night, I took down books down from my shelf to do a bit more research. I’m starting to move into the less general research stage and focusing on specific details I need to create Caro’s world–her world, within that of 1912 Chicago. Yes, more research. As I looked at TOCs for the information I […]

Transitioning Between Projects: How Do YOU Do It?

For the past couple of weeks, I’ve been pretty darned immersed in revising my picture book. People talk about which stage of writing a book we like best–early drafts, major revisions, final polishing. I’ll take any and all of those, as long as I get to a point where I can be and am totally […]

Friday Five: Random Info that Might Possibly, Someday, Be Useful

Write what you know. I’ve talked about that concept before, how I really think part of creating a story that we love writing (and others hopefully love reading) is stretching ourselves beyond what we know. Still, all of us have histories and worlds that we’ve lived in that could, possibly, add a layer of something […]


I’m sitting at the coffeehouse, having just dropped my son off to do volunteer work (his first day) at the little science center in town where he, many years ago, took after-school classes. I’m having semi-mushy thoughts about how far he’s come, thinking about the two friends he still has, with whom he took those […]

Getting Back to the Calendar

Here’s what I thought would happen once school started. I’d have 6-8 hours a day of just-writing time. You know, because high school would be so easy and straightforward and life, with all its complications and responsibilities and tasks would somehow magically take care of itself. Um. Yeah. Let me just say that the past […]

Five Writing Things I’ve Thought about This Week

1. Letting the first draft be the wind-up draft, knowing that the action/big stuff is stating way late in the story. Imagining myself borrowing my husband’s HUGE new shopvac and just SUCKING that slow, padding away in the next revision. 2. Reactions. When something happens in a story, the characters–ESPECIALLY the point of view character–has […]

Write What You Know? Ahem…

I don’t think so. If I only wrote what I knew, I would never have: Created a 1st-person, 12-year-old boy protagonist Written a scene at a skate-board park that ends in a get-away race to safety Listened to many explanations of DNA-matching and written about it for 7-year-olds (Hi, Lee!) Taken a trip to Chicago […]

Monday Musings: Remembering What the “Race” is About

I am not an early riser. What’s the thing I’m probably looking forward to most about summer? No alarm clock. I no longer sleep till noon, like I did when I was a teenager, but I wouldn’t really have a problem with it if I did. Every now and then. But every now and then I […]