Looking back at the best of 2019

Well, here we go off into the wild blue yonder of 2020.

Like many of you, I’ve been thinking about the coming new decade. But one can’t move forward without some retrospect. So, I looked back at the most popular posts of 2019 on my blog, and share.

So, without further ado, here is the countdown to Jean’s Writing top 10 posts of 2019.

10- How to tell if your female character is strong

9- What you can do with old stories? 

8- Be smart, and avoid my mistake

7- Want an excellent way to sell your books?

6-  Boost your writing with these awesome free tip sheets

5- Have you lost that new writer feeling?

4- How to write a good one-sentence pitch

3- Write like a professional, get the chapters right 

2- Do you want to know how long to make a story? Size Matters.

And the number one read blog post of 2019 was…

1- Encourage a child’s imagination with a book

I hope you enjoyed my walk down memory lane and wish you a wonderful 2020. I can’t wait to see what is written during the next 12 months.




A writing tip worth reading

Get your story pacing right.

I’ve read many writing tips on story pacing. Bet you have too. Wish it were as easy as moving to the beat of a good song. If it were, I’d set up a metronome next to my computer. For me though getting the pacing right in a story is often times a combination of magic, mystery and dumb luck.

However, this morning’s newsletter from On The Premises, a Web-based fiction magazine, was an ah-ha moment for me.

In spite of a story, submitted for publication, flooring the judges with a killer ending the story was rejected.

Why was that  story rejected?

Tarl Kudrick, co-publisher of On The Premises, explains in plain English their thought process and provides helpful suggestions too.

… I found its first half predictable and slow [… .]

Get a couple of good writing techniques.

… If you find yourself writing “the boring part” just to get to “the good part,” here are two techniques that should help[… .]

This critique helped me and I hope it will help you too.

Mr. Kudrick goes into detail on how to cut the purple prose get to the point and keep the story moving.

… What’s the absolutely shortest possible way to get the critical information to the reader?[…]

 Free to submit – Cash prizes

On The Premises challenges writers to produce a great story based on a broad premise supplied by the editors. Entrants pay no fees, and winners receive cash prizes in addition to exposure through publication. The winners are published in new issues every four months. Opportunity for feedback and critiques are available.

Please share this tip with your Twitter and Facebook friends. Thanks!

Publish or Perish, so the saying goes.

A writer must write.

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Getty Image

Give away, post on Facebook, Tweet,  blog and yes sell. It’s possible to get your words out there.

Looking for a place to sell your work?

Check out the markets listed at Brainstorms & Bylines and NewPages. I bet they have a place for just about every writer.

Connect with other writers. Find writing prompts.

Go to 100 Word Challenge for Grownups or Five Sentence Fiction or Describi. There you’ll find prompts and story games to stir your creative juices.

Did you find a place to submit?

Do you have a special place you prefer to submit?

Share, leave a comment and give us the scoop.

Good Luck!

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No Trespassing

The afternoon sun did little to soften the chill as they walked.

Jenna hesitated before the opening; the faded warning alarmed her, No Trespassing.

Kyle clasped her hand and ushered her past the broken boards as he said, “It’s okay.”

His flashlight bounced off the rock walls as they sank to the blanket covering the dirt floor.

She suppressed a giggle, as she sat in an old deserted mine and waited for her first kiss.

Free Writing Prompt

join in the fun with

Five Sentence Fiction-Lillie McFerrin Writes

What it’s all about: Five Sentence Fiction is about packing a powerful punch in a tiny fist. Each week I will post a one word inspiration, then anyone wishing to participate will write a five sentence story based on the prompt word.

This week’s word:  ABANDON