Do you know how to seize a reader’s curiosity?

With a breath and a pause.

Have you ever watched a daytime soap-opera? Now I think the shows are referred to as daytime drama. LOL

One of the most memorable moments were the ominous music indicating something had or was about to happen. To find out what, the viewer had to sit through a commercial.

How do I know this? Okay, I confess. As a young sleep-deprived mother, I watched a few daytime dramas. In the afternoon I rocked and begged my baby to take a nap while watching Days of Our Lives.

So you may ask, what does this have to do with my novel?

Use a dramatic pause to hook the reader. Make them want to turn the page and continue reading.

No need to trick a reader. Just drop in a dramatic pause that makes them think, wonder and want to hurry on.

I loved this post by Janice HardyWait For It: Hook Lines and the Dramatic Pause. After reading her post, I rewrote my first page. There were a few places I could add a pause to hint at what was to come.

Have you tried or considered adding such a pause?

Did it help your hook?

Do let me know what you think about the article and the idea. I’d love to hear your thoughts.

PS: The dramatic music always woke her up. So, I spent a lot of time rocking. LOL

Go the F**k to Sleep by [Mansbach, Adam, Ricardo Cortes]

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How to know difference in your voice and a characters

Sounds hard right?

It did for me. I found myself making the process harder than it needed to be. Between my WIP, blog, and branding I tied myself in knots.

Turns out I just needed to KISS.

NO! Not smooching. Good grief, get your mind out of the gutter. 

But KISS as in – keep it simple stupid. I was trying too hard. Complicating the writing in search of my voice, when I had it all along.

After reading the following article, I rewrote the first chapter of WIP and pulled to the forefront, my voice.

What I learned from  

  • Writers (Authors) voice is how you decide to tell a story and is the same from book to book.
  • Just as we grow and change over the years, so does an authors voice, because our voice is an extension of ourselves and what is important in a writers life.
  • Character voices change from book to book. After all your not introducing the same person over and over unless in a series.
  • Branding is your persona and applies to our writing and not just advertising. Your book branding lets readers know what type of story they will find when they pick up your book. Scary, suspense, romance…

Lisa goes into a lot more detail on her website. Be sure and click the link below and read more.

In the meantime, I’d like to know…

Have you struggled with writer’s voice?

Do you often mix up character and writer voice?

How did you discover your writer’s voice?

Has your voice changed or evolved over the years? 

How To Discover Your Author Voice And Why You Probably Already Know It  by 

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How to honor and say thanks to the right people

You’re delirious with happiness. You’ve typed The End. But there is more work to do. We need to remember, someone helped us over the top. 

On the road to success, who helped you? Who encouraged you? There are a lot of people you need to add to the acknowledgment page.

How to master the acknowledgment page like a pro.

I recently had this very discussion with another writer. So, I was so excited to read a couple of good articles, Who Are You Going to Acknowledge in Your Book? By Judith Briles and Write Your Book Acknowledgments (Without Stressing Over It)By Tucker Max that gives us a good guideline.

What I learned from their articles:

  • Don’t get sloppy. People are going to read this page too.
  • Make a list before you start. Hopefully, this will prevent you from forgetting someone.
  • Important first and be specific as to why you are acknowledging them. What did they do to help you?
  • There is a difference in a dedication page and an acknowledgment page.
  • Dedication is short and sweet, usually mentions one or few people. And placed at the front of the book.
  • Acknowledgment is for everyone who helped you get to the end and is at the back of the book. You can mention, friends, family, beta readers, and all of the professionals that contributed to your book. Like designers, writing groups, even you’re babysitter. If you are grateful to someone for their help, add them here.
  • Be sincere, your readers can spot fake. But don’t go on and on either.
  • Unlike the dedication, the acknowledgment section can be as long as you need it to be. You need to find the between style and long-windedness.
  • However, if you don’t want to list each and every person, for fear of missing someone or not getting it right, you can do a blanket thank all type of acknowledgment. The choice is yours.
  • With both the Dedication Page and the Acknowledgment Page, make it personal. Make it readable and let your thankfulness shine through.

My two cents:

  • Unless you are certain they wouldn’t mind. Ask. Ask before you print someone’s name in your book. Even on the acknowledgment page. Better safe than sorry. Plus I think it’s considerate to ask permission.
  • Also, the Acknowledgment Page is optional, not mandatory. However, remember someone helped you finish and publish that book. Say thanks.

Click and read this important post to get it right.

Who Are You Going to Acknowledge in Your Book?

Write Your Book Acknowledgments (Without Stressing Over It)

Tell me…

Do you have an additional tip?

Who did you add to the acknowledgment page of your book?

Who do you think should be acknowledged?

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How to unlock the Writer hiding in a Storyteller

Do you need to convert a story to the written word?

Tried and failed? Why didn’t your story didn’t convert?

I bet at some time in your life, you’ve enjoyed telling a good yarn. Whether it’s around a campfire, the bed of a toddler, or long-winded joke with coworkers. The ability to tell a good story doesn’t always make a good writer.

When my children were very small, I would make up stories to distract them. I’d let them contribute by adding characters. When a long walk became boring or tiring for there little legs, the walk became a safari searching for animals behind trees and tall weeds. Long car drives became guessing games that could evolve into a story.  They never wondered why a giraffe was eating a neighbor’s yard eating leaves. They never questioned that lions weren’t native to the USA. 

Those were special moments when they listened in rapt awe to everything I said, too bad those years were short.

Why does a story not automatically translate with ease on to the written page?

It was this big!

I’m an animated talker. I can’t talk without my hands much less tell a good story without hand gestures, facial gyrations or even moving about. My voice rising with the action and softens with the tension. This makes it easy to convey to the listener what happened in the story.

However, all of that movement isn’t easy to put into words without exhausting the reader and losing their interest.

After reading a great article 6 Key Differences Between Storytelling and Writing by Gordon Long a few things about writing clicked into place for me.

What clicked?

  • Storytellers are performers.
    • We pace, wave, laugh and do all kind of gestures when telling a story.
  • It’s called telling a story for a reason.
    • Telling rather than showing doesn’t translate well. Readers what to see the action.
  • A storyteller peppers the story with adverbs. And we writers know all about adverbs.
  • A storyteller head hops and it works because he can act out each character. Head hopping is harder for a writer.
  • A writer must be more direct with dialog.
  • Unlike a writer, the storyteller is stuck with chronological order.

Most of all, Gordon Long points out that a storyteller is allowed to tell, a writer must show.

Be sure and click on his link and read his in-depth post to improve your writing.

6 Key Differences Between Storytelling and Writing by Gordon Long

Okay, tell me what you think.

Are you a better storyteller than a writer?

Does any of Mr. Long’s tips resonate with you?

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