Don’t Get in a Rut with Your Writing Process

Happy New Year! Remember how I said last month that I always have to know where the story is going to get to the end? I mean, that’s probably still true. But this past month has also reminded me that I should never say I’m always going to do something a certain way, because then…

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All About Brainstorming

What’s the first thing you do when you start working on a new project? Do you dive right into writing, do you let the idea simmer, or do you start somewhere else? For me, the starting point is brainstorming, then outlining, with research sort of wrapped into both of those steps. For the writers following…

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Revision Tip: Why You Should Read Your Manuscript Aloud

Before I get into today’s topic, I want to mention that my November newsletter is out today, and in particular, I have several events coming up over the next month. I have two signings at St. Louis Barnes & Noble stores, a virtual panel you can tune in to from anywhere, and will be participating…

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On Binge Watching and Character Development

Hello, my name is Michelle, and I’m a binge watcher. Wait. I’m not sure this is a new confession. I’ve had that line about watching too much TV in my bio for YEARS. Plus, check out this dictionary definition for binge watching: So, what this means is, when I bought those box sets of Buffy the…

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Publishing Behind the Scenes: Interview with Cover Artist Jacqueline Li

A few months ago, I did a series of posts on what it’s like to work through the editing process with a traditional publisher. As I’ve been proceeding through some of the other steps, I realized there’s another piece of the process that readers are very curious about: covers! So today I’ve invited the cover…

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On Revising and Killing Those Darlings

Last week when I posted my review roundup I noted that it had been a while since I’d shared a writing post. So here we go! What am I even writing these days? Well, I didn’t really talk about it here on the blog, but I wrote a whole book last year–or maybe it was…

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Publishing Behind the Scenes: Pass Pages

I can’t believe it’s already February! Your Life Has Been Delayed has been out five months as of yesterday, and we’re a little more than seven months out from My Second Impression of You. I hope you caught the cover reveal for My Second Impression of You a couple of weeks ago. I’m so in love with…

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Publishing Behind the Scenes: Copyedits

Happy New Year! I can’t believe my debut year is already over and we’re now into 2022, when my second book will release. Each step of the process makes it feel more real, like this past Friday, when my editor sent me the clean copyedited version of My Second Impression of You. It was so pretty…

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Publishing Behind the Scenes: Line Edits

Happy December! My latest newsletter is out today, and I’m continuing the series I started last month going behind the scenes of publishing with book edits. Moving on from developmental edits, this month I’m talking line edits! While developmental edits look at the big picture plot, character, and overall changes that need to be made, line…

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Publishing Behind the Scenes: Developmental Edits

If you’ve been following my blog for a while, you may have seen my After the Book Deal posts back in 2019. As I have some new followers both here and for my newsletter (which is out today), I’m revisiting the topic of what happens behind the scenes when you’re working with a traditional publisher….

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How NaNoWriMo Shaped My Writing Process

One of the most common questions I receive from readers and at events is about my writing process. I don’t remember exactly when I started writing my first middle grade book, only that I started querying it in 2011. It could have been 2009 or even 2008. The reason I don’t know is that it…

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