New York Times Bestselling author

Writing

New Year’s Resolutions for Writers

I’m not a fan of “New Year’s Resolutions.” There’s almost a kind of implied mockery in the phrase, like – oh, sure, try to make some changes and see what happens. Meanwhile, every day is actually the start of a new year. So, if habits are holding you back, and there are things you wish…

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Last Minute Gift Ideas for Writers

If you ask an aspiring writer what she wants for Christmas, she’ll probably tell you “more time to write!” And that is, of course, every aspiring writer’s biggest challenge. This holiday season, here a few ideas to offer that and more to the special writer in your life. Pen and Paper The Moleskine notebook and…

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Six Reasons You’re Not as Creative as You Could Be

Years ago, I attended a writers’ conference. After my speech was over, I sat in on a talk given by a writing professor. And what she said has stayed with me ever since. A woman in the audience lamented that she wanted to write, really wanted to, but could never find the time. The professor’s…

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Travel and Leisure – In the Key of Life

My sixteen year love affair with the Florida Keys (and my husband) in the January 2016 issue of TRAVEL AND LEISURE magazine!  Pick up a copy in stores today! The first word my husband ever said to me was yum. We were on the dance floor of Sloppy Joe’s, the wild watering hole (and Ernest…

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The Story is in the Details

I love getting mail from my readers! Occasionally, I get a question that really makes me think. And when I write the answer, I wonder if other readers or writers might enjoy it, too. Here is an edited version of a letter I received from a retired math teacher turning his attention to writing for…

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Things I Know for Sure About Writing

For a couple of years now, I have been involved with a poetry group at Brookwood Florida, a home for adolescent girls who have been removed from their domestic situations because of abuse. Under the direction of the wonderful Jeanne Chase, some of the girls gather weekly to write. And the result is some of…

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The Center for Fiction – Masters Class

New York City pals! Come chat with me about craft, process and getting published at The Center for Fiction Tuesday, March 25th at 7 PM.  I love talking about the journey from aspiring to published and everything in-between … and beyond.  This is a free event, open to the public, and seats are still available.…

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Liar, Liar

Why do people lie?  Let’s start with you.  When’s the last time you told a lie?  And I don’t mean a big one.  I mean a little one, say to protect a friend’s feelings, or to spare yourself embarrassment.  I consider myself an honest person, but I occasionally lie.  My daughter believes in Santa Claus…

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The Truth About Fiction – Part Two

I have sometimes offended people with my work.  Occasionally, I have received angry letters from readers who feel I did not paint a flattering portrait of their geographic area. (Characters have opinions that I do not share and make observations of their own.)  I have even lost a longtime friend who did not care for…

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