Monthly Archives: July 2012


I’ve published 200 posts here on my blog, but I have another forty drafts sitting around. Some are partially written, more general ideas than fleshed out posts. Others are ready to go. Some are outdated, like the wrapup of a … Continue reading

Posted in Community, Writing | Tagged , , | 18 Comments

Get the Details Right

There’s nothing so jarring as to bump up against an ill-placed detail in a story. Especially in historical fiction. One phrase or out-of-place image can make the reader lose faith in the writer. And good writing on some level, I … Continue reading

Posted in Fiction, Writing | Tagged , , | 18 Comments

Yuvi Zalkow: The Failed Writer Succeeds!

Portland author Yuvi Zalkow has earned a reputation as a failed writer. He talks openly of rejection. He runs the hilarious Failed Writer video series on his blog. But now there’s a problem. A big problem. Yuvi has succeeded–in fact, for … Continue reading

Posted in Books, Community, Fiction, Writing | Tagged , , | 21 Comments

Writing Challenge #17: Cutting Back on Minor Characters

Writing Challenge #16 focused on using organic metaphors to lend your minor characters more personality. This one is about the opposite–dealing with too many minor characters. Is your novel-in-progress full of bit players who are sitting around doing very little … Continue reading

Posted in Fiction, Plot, Writing, Writing Challenge | Tagged , , , , | 22 Comments

The Espresso Book Machine

I recently met with Polly Dugan, a consultant with the Espresso Book Machine located at Powell’s Books in downtown Portland, Oregon. The EBM arrived at Powell’s, in the Purple Room, on May 4. It’s a quick, easy way to access … Continue reading

Posted in Books, Technology, Writing | Tagged , , | 29 Comments

Interview: Angela Ackerman Discusses ‘Show Don’t Tell,’ the Writing Community and How to Build Your Blog

I’m so pleased to welcome Angela Ackerman, who blogs at The Bookshelf Muse along with Becca Puglisi. The two recently released The Emotion Thesaurus: A Writer’s Guide to Character Expression, intended to help writers show emotion instead of telling or relying … Continue reading

Posted in Books, Seven Questions, Writing | Tagged , , , , | 31 Comments

That’s Embarrassing!

Recently, I was pushing my cart through the grocery store and didn’t realize that the guy stocking the organic section had put a cardboard box on the ground. I was trying to go around his giant metal cart of supplies when … Continue reading

Posted in Fiction, Writing | Tagged , , | 20 Comments

If Your Post Doesn’t Appear in the Reader…

A while ago, I opted to “follow” my own blog to make sure my posts appear in the WordPress Reader. I usually check when running my author interview series, since those take a few weeks (or a few months!) to do, … Continue reading

Posted in Community, Writing | Tagged , | 13 Comments

Interview: Author Kim Cooper Findling Discusses Her Memoir, Travel Writing and Building a Career as a Freelancer

Chance of Sun reads like an honest love story to the state of Oregon. Kim Cooper Findling’s memoir is a beautifully drawn map of her own journey, starting with a Rogue River backpacking trip in 1975, when she was five. … Continue reading

Posted in Books, Seven Questions, Writing | Tagged , , , , , | 2 Comments