I’m very excited to be speaking at this year’s WOW Conference, a day of leaders and champions. Will you be in the area? Come join us at the Blue Ocean Music Center in Salisbury, Massachusetts on April 5 and learn how you can become an Olympian gold medalist, a world-class leader, a successful entrepreneur, and a spousal serial killer (I mean, fiction writer!).

That’s what I’ll be talking about, my path to writing fiction, and tips and words of encouragement for you to find your own path to killing your significant other (I mean, to becoming a fiction writer!).

Read all about the conference here. It’s presented by the Greater Haverhill Chamber of Commerce, and I’m so grateful they asked me to join the fun. Who knew so many women are interested in killing their partners? (I mean, writing fiction!)

Hope to see you in the audience!

credit: morguefile

credit: morguefile


The Lit Fest: 3 Things You Won’t Hear

Yesterday I attended the Newburyport Literary Festival. It was wonderful—a great day. For anyone who writes, literary festivals provide an important and abundant source of inspiration. I attended five sessions, and have blisters on my heels from trying to make it to each venue on time. Festivals and literary conferences also provide the chance to socialize. As Jennifer Haigh, author of Mrs. Kimble and Baker Towers, once said, “I have no life. I sit in a room alone facing a wall making up experiences instead of actually having any.” Writing is a solitary existence, so as writers, it’s important for us to “get out more.”

Literary Festivals also provide book lovers with the chance to see their favorite authors and ask them questions like, “Why did you want to write this particular story?” “How did you come up with your characters?” and “Do you like pie?”  Okay, maybe not the last question, but the friendly authors I encountered yesterday certainly would have been happy to share their dessert preferences as well. I learned from Anita Diamant, author of The Red Tent and The Last Days of Dogtown that IKEA is where story ideas pop into her head.

Returning from an information-packed day, I realized there were common threads between the sessions, including drawing from personal experiences (a biggie), read more to write better, and that the art is in the revising.

But here is what I didn’t hear from any of the nationally-recognized authors:

  • Writing comes easy to me.
  • I write because I’m good at it.
  • I make enough money from writing so I quit my day job.

I didn’t hear it yesterday, and I’d be surprised if I ever do. Whether you are world famous or just starting out, writing is hard; you write because you love it; writing is what you do in the teeny-tiny cracks between jobs and family.

And that’s okay. It’s worth it.