Kellie McGann is the founder of Write a Better Book . She partners with leaders to help tell their stories in book form.On the weekends, she writes poetry and prose.She contributes to The Write Practice every other Wednesday.
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The next few months I’ve dedicated to finishing the book I’ve been working on for nearly two years. Inspired by Joe’s latest post, I’ve made the commitment to revise the second draft of my book.
I believe, though, the second draft is the hardest. Actually, it’s the worst. All the content of your book is sitting right in front of you like a huge slab of marble mined from your imagination, and you’re expected to take the formless hunk and turn it into Michelangelo’s David.
In finishing the second draft of three books and as I’m embarking on finishing this next one this fall, I’ve compiled these tips for the both of us. Here’s all I know about book editing and surviving the second draft.
Book Editing: How to Survive the Second Draft of Your Book »
Over the weekend, I was working on a book project. I’ve been working on it for almost a year and desperately need to finish it. But when I sat down to work on it, suddenly everything became more interesting than the writing on the screen in front of me.
I stared at the wood table for too long, before picking up my phone and texting back everyone I hadn’t in the last six months. I stared out the window, got a refill on my coffee, and then finally wrote maybe thirty words.
5 Ways to Focus on Your Writing »
A title is one of the most important tools you have to capture your readers. Your title will either grab your readers attention or be another sentence they glance over. It is the deciding factor of whether or not they read your work of art.
The Ultimate Guide to Titles: Book Titles, Article Titles, and More »
Almost all of the personality tests I’ve taken allude to my desire to be perfect. Perfectionism is the way I’m wired, and it has a huge effect on my writing.
Confessions of a Perfectionist Writer »
I’m a full-time writer with no English degree. (I’ll tell you a bigger secret, I actually don’t have a degree at all.) And after doing this for a few years I’ve realized that you don’t need an English degree to become a writer.
I’ve been writing for The Write Practice for about two and a half years. I started as an amateur and recently launched my own writing business. So really, I am the poster child for how you really CAN make it.
(I’m still not completely sure how I made it, but I’m going to spend the next couple posts sharing what I did and how you can make it as a writer too!)
Do You Need a College Degree to Be a Writer? »
Over the last few weeks, I had the opportunity to travel home for the holidays. During this time, I was inundated with advice from older friends and family about life, money, and relationships. But the best advice I received came from the an unexpected source: my seven-year-old cousin.
The Best Book Writing Advice I’ve Ever Gotten »
“How do you write so much?” asked one young writer. “I struggle so hard to write for even just a few minutes everyday!”
Needless to say, there are days I really just can’t write, but I have to. So, I’ve developed a few hacks of how to do it when I just can’t.
7 Simple Hacks to Get Writing When You Just Can’t »
Your writing deserves an audience. But do you know who that audience is? Knowing your audience—who they are, their needs and wants—will help you write things that are meaningful and powerful to them.
Not sure who your audience is? These four questions will help you find them.
Who Is Your Audience in Writing »
I’m currently working on my fifth nonfiction book and starting is always the hardest part. There are just so many options.
Should I write a preface? A prologue? An introduction? Should I find someone to write a foreword? Should I just start at chapter one?
If you’ve ever found yourself asking these questions, you’re not alone! And you’re in luck! I’ve asked these questions too and found some answers.
Let’s talk about the difference between each these and figure out which is best for you.
Prologue, Introduction, Preface, or Foreword: Which Is Right for You? »
Imagine the quintessential writer: introverted, glasses, coffee in hand, sitting alone at a small desk, while poking their fingers on a keyboard.
We all have preconceived notions as to what being a writer looks like, but whatever your idea of a writer, I can bet that one trait is uniform across the board. You probably imagine your writer alone, the Stephen King type, secluded, perhaps in a cabin in the middle of nowhere.
Interestingly enough, being a writer alone is nearly impossible, and after being part of a writers group for almost a year, I’ve learned I could never do it alone.
4 Reasons You Should Never Write Alone »
If you’ve been around The Write Practice long, you’ll have noticed we’ve recently talked a lot about which book writing software you should use. While I’m a strong believer in “use whatever works for you,” I’m also a strong believer in Scrivener.
So today, instead of giving you more reasons why I think you should use Scrivener (because there have already been plenty…) I’m going to tell you which tabs/notes you’ll want to create and have open while you’re writing.
Even if you don’t use Scrivener, you’ll want to have these as separate documents or pages on Word or Google Docs (or whichever writing software you use).
Best Book Writing Software: The 6 Documents You Always Need Open as a Writer »
As writers we are especially aware of the five senses. We use the five senses to transport our reader into the scene we are describing. However, I propose, that we are not using the five senses to their full potential. You see, I didn’t used to give the five senses much credit when it came to my writing. But the truth is, the five senses have a power to connect with our readers in a deep way.
How to Unlock All Five Senses in Your Writing »
Today on the blog we’ve decided to have a little fun. We created a quiz that will determine which classic writer you are most like. These writers set the standards high for us, and we as a community aspire to reach those together. Figuring out which writer we are most like might help us improve and hone our skills a little more.
Which Famous Classic Writer Are You? »
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Writing Contest Gift Membership »
One of my greatest excuses on days that I don’t write is I just don’t have time. Have you ever said or thought that? Well, in fact, the opposite is true. Here’s the thing about writing: If you don’t write when you don’t have time, you won’t write when you do have time.
No, it’s not easy to write on the days when you feel like you just don’t have time. But it is possible. The secret to finding time and maintaining successful writing habitsis to set an intention.
Want to Double Your Success as a Writer? Do This »
Writers encounter dialogue every day, but too often recently I’ve seen great stories ruined by choppy, incoherent, and straight up weird dialogue.
Let’s break down the essentials of dialogue tags so we can all write clearer conversations.
Dialogue Tags: What Are They and How To Use Them »
Write Your Book! »
While 2016 was completely crazy, it was also extremely productive for me as I writer. Last year, I was able to finish writing THREE books. THREE. In one year. Sounds kind of crazy in hindsight.
Through writing those three books, I learned a ton. And today I’ve compiled a list of all the reasons you should write a book too.
11 Reasons You Need to Write a Book NOW »
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