Friday, March 19, 2010

Interesting Interview with Nicholas Sparks

Catholic Exchange has a very interesting interview with author Nicholas Sparks today. Check it out here:

An Interview with Nicholas Sparks

Friday, March 12, 2010

Writing advice from Elizabeth Berg

Elizabeth Berg, New York Times Bestselling author, has recently penned a book on the writing process: Escaping Into the Open: The Art of Writing True.

In an interview with Jessica Strawser in Writer's Digest, she states, "In the end, always, you need to write what's in your heart and soul, and let the chips fall where they may. Let's say you try to accommodate this imaginary reader, and you produce a work you're not particularly happy with. That will always stay with you, that you didn't write what was true for you. Whereas, if you do write what's true for you, and someone doesn't like it, well, you know, that stings for a minute, but it goes away."

Advice for Writing Virgins

Many people dream of writing a novel. Despite this, relatively few actually sit down and do it. There are various reasons for this. Sometimes, life just gets in the way. Other things need to take precedence. Other times people are intimidated by the process. They aren't sure where to begin. Or they start, write a few pages, then get stuck.

Brian Klems has some very good advice for "writing virgins" in the March/April issue of

Find at least 15 minutes of every day - that's right, every day - to dedicate to writing. Whether it means you have to wake up 15 minutes earlier, go to bed 15 minutes later, eat lunch faster, take a notepad into the bathroom - whatever it takes, you have to make time to write. It's the one and only definitive prerequisite of being a writer. . . . And finally, just write. Don't worry about quality. Don't worry about grammar and style. Don't worry about agents or publishers. Don't worry about anything except telling your story. Second and third drafts are for editing, rewriting and polishing. First drafts are for getting the stories out of your head and onto paper.

Monday, March 1, 2010

Chapter 3 of "Through the Open Window" up on CatholicMom

Through the Open Window
 is continuing on CatholicMom! Check it out here:

Chapter Three

Nicholas Sparks on reaching in one's writing

I'm a huge Nicholas Sparks fan. What can I say? I'm a sucker for a good love story. I recently picked up The Guardian at my local library. It is one he wrote a while back, but that I had never gotten to read. I greatly enjoyed it! It is different from most of his other books. It still has a strong romantic storyline, but it is also very suspenseful.

In his "Author's Note," Sparks writes:

The genesis of a novel is always a tricky process. Often it begins with a vague idea, or in my case, a theme, and for this novel, I chose the theme of love and danger. In other words, I wanted to write a story in which two believable characters fall in love, but I wanted to add elements of surprise and peril that would ultimately put both characters in jeopardy. I can't remember where I was when I made the decision to attempt such a story, but I do remember thinking that I was going to enjoy the process of trying to write a type of novel that I hadn't written before. 

Boy, was I ever wrong. . . .From first to final draft, the novel went through eight major revisions until my editor and I were finally satisfied that the novel accomplished what it set out to do: that is, be a love story first and foremost, and secondly - in a way that sneaks up on the reader - a compelling thriller. . . .On my end it made for many sleepless nights.

Even the best writers have to work at it!