Writing in Real Life [Second Edition]

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In the first edition of “Writing in Real Life,” we talked about finding/making the time to write. I shared about how I write for at least 30 minutes at the start of every week day.

But sometimes having or even making the time to write isn’t the problem. Sometimes the problem is knowing what to write.

I am by no means an expert on coming up with material for blog posts, books, essays, etc. There really is no magic formula…at least, not that I’ve found. Most of the time it comes in waves – I’ll have a whole bunch of blog post ideas throw themselves in my lap at one time. Or sometimes an idea comes in a flash of brilliance, truly like a light bulb turning on.

But, most of the time, not so much. It’s like digging for gold in a sandbox.

So, what to do then? When you have the time to write, but you don’t know what to write?

Take from real life.

Don’t look too far or you’ll miss it. Chances are fresh inspiration is as close as the pen in your hand or the keyboard under your fingers. What you think is ordinary may be extraordinary to your readers. Drawing writing material from real life interjects humanity into your words. It gives breath to what might otherwise be a one-dimensional process.

Some of my best writing happens when the topic I choose is based on my life or experience.

What about you? How do you decide what to write about?

Introducing the ShadowTime Writers Newsletter

It’s a new month, so it’s only fitting that we introduce something new here at ShadowTime Writers.

A newsletter! Yes, our very own. It’s about time we joined the club. We’re excited about this new addition.

If you go to our sidebar and sign up for our free newsletter, here’s what you can expect:

A short, monthly e-newsletter delivered to your inbox (we’re shooting for the 15th) that includes:

  •  A featured writing tip
  • A featured book recommendation from one of us 
  • A quick update on our books 

So, if that sounds like something you would enjoy…

Head on over to our sidebar

Click on the link

Fill out the simple form

And our newsletter will be delivered to you as soon as it’s released.

Yay for new months and new additions!

The #1 Way to Bring Your Stories to Life

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Nothing can substitute for heartfelt writing. Nothing can make up for sincerity and honesty.

When you think you have nothing to say…say what’s on your heart. This applies to fiction and non-fiction.

I always have two responses when I hit a wall in my writing.

1.) What I think I should write.

2.) What I know I should write.

And what I know I should write is always there. It’s always present. It’s just that sometimes it gets waylayed by a more proper, seemingly better (this is up for debate), more dignified idea of what I should write.

But as soon as I start to shape my writing to fit a certain idea…well, it’s all over.

The #1 way to bring our stories to life as writers?

Be real.

Don’t be proper. Or try to “write better.” Or be more dignified. Don’t try to shape your writing to fit a certain idea.

Be real.

Just as in every other area of life, being real breathes fresh air into the words you have to say. People take notice. They sit up and listen when you speak from the heart.

They will sit up and listen when you write from the heart, too.

What are some other ways we can bring our stories to life as writers?

4 Quotes to Inspire You

It feels like it’s time for a little inspiration.

Not that anytime isn’t a good time for inspiration. But now just feels like an especially good time.

So, here goes. I’ve got 4 quotes to inspire you today in whatever your craft or calling:

And a little bonus one for you:

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You can find our full writing inspiration board on Pinterest.

What is inspiring you today? Leave us a note/link in the comments!

Writing in Real Life

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Even for those of us who love to write, who were born to write…writing is a choice. A daily choice that really just boils down to doing it. 

But real life is messy and busy and a thousand other things. Some people may have the luxury of eight solid hours every day with nothing to do but write. But that’s not most of us.

Most of us have full-time jobs.

Most of us have other responsibilities.

Most of us have another life.

In less than a month I am due with my first baby. A little boy. My husband and I are thrilled! Being a wife and a mother will be my full-time job, my responsibility and my “other” life.

I still love to write and I know I was born to write. That won’t change. But how I fit writing into my life will. That’s just reality.

Here’s a simple technique that’s been working for me: I write for 30 minutes before I get out of bed in the morning. That’s it. Nothing super fancy. Just 30 minutes before the rush of the day begins.

I get more writing accomplished in those 30, focused minutes than I ever thought possible.

I make daily, consistent progress on my writing goals.

I feel so accomplished when I’m finished – like I’m on top of the world and the day can throw whatever it wants at me.

Because I did what I love and what I was born to do. That’s writing in real life for me. I don’t have hours upon hours to devote to my craft. BUT I do have a consistent block of focused time each day. My technique may need to be tweaked a little once the baby comes, but the concept will stay the same.

How do you fit writing into your life – right now, where you are?

Tahosa Treasure: Released!

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It’s finally here! The day we’ve been waiting for – the official release of our first book, Tahosa Treasure!

We are so excited to have reached this milestone. And, although lot of hard work is behind us, we know that this release is really just the beginning of the work.

Stories don’t tell themselves. They must be told. That’s what we have done through Tahosa Treasure and hope to do with the rest of the Talon Family Series.

We believe very strongly in the message of our book: trusting God when all seems lost. We believe our society – and especially young men – need more books like our book. They need good, clean reading that encourages them to be courageous and strong and full of integrity.

So, even though this official release date is just the beginning, we are so excited to continue working hard to tell the stories God has put on our hearts.

If you would like to pick up a copy of Tahosa Treasure, it is now available on Amazon, Kindle and Barnes & Noble.

Happy reading!!!

A New Year, A New Book

Happy New Year 2013!!!

Here at Shadowtime Writers, we are expecting great and wonderful things in the coming 12 months. Tahosa Treasure is set for official release on January 8th – what a way to start off the new year! Look for it then on Amazon, Kindle and Barnes & Noble!

Our number one goal for 2013 (besides successful marketing of Tahosa Treasure) is to see the next book in the Talon Family Series – Winter Chase – published as well. We hope to have it complete and ready for release by this November.

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How? 

Good question! I’ve developed a new (and highly sophisticated) approach called “Write for 30 minutes before I get out of bed every morning.” And, you know what? It seems to be working like a charm!

In fact, I predict we’ll beat our November deadline and already be starting working on the third book. Yes! A third! This is going to be one awesome series, people!

What is your number one writing goal for 2013?

The Book Trailer

We hope you all had a very Merry Christmas with the ones you love!

We had a wonderful, quiet Christmas at home. AND we got snow on Christmas Day! So exciting!

As we head quickly towards the new year and the release of our book (January 8th), we wanted to share the trailer for Tahosa Treasure with you. So, without further ado, here it is:

ShadowTime Writer’s Give Away

Tahosa Treasure

The release date for Tahosa Treasure is just one month away!

Come January 8th, our book will be available on Amazon, Kindle and Barnes & Noble. We are pretty excited!

So, today, with just one month to go, we thought we would celebrate by hosting the very first ShadowTime Writer’s give-away!

Here’s the plan:

– We will be giving away one copy of Tahosa Treasure to the winner

– Participants may enter the give-away up to three times by doing the following:

1st entry = answering the question (posted below) in the comments

2nd entry = “like” ShadowTime Writers on FB (if you haven’t already) and leave another comment letting us know you did

3rd entry = follow Shadowtime Writers on Twitter (if you  haven’t already) and leave another comment letting us know you did

– We will be taking entries until midnight Friday, December 14th

– The winner will be announced on Monday, December 17th.

So…the question is:

What was the last book you read on U.S. History?

And the give-away is on!