Forget trying to write a book
when you can't see
the forest for the trees
What you really need to know is
HOW STORIES GROW IN THE FIRST PLACE
Transforming Aspiring authors
into emerging novelists
Specializing in Fiction from Emerging Novelists
What if you finally understood what's going on under the hood of your novel manuscript?
No more stumbling through rough drafts, then paying an editor to help you find the story inside. You'll write a better book from the start, from concept and story to the words on the page.
As your story coach, I'll help you connect theory with practice. As your editor, I'll show the narrative techniques that make your writing connect with readers. You'll pick up strategies and knowledge you'll use the rest of your writing career.
This is your writing, but smarter. Your book, but better.
"(Lisa's) the real deal. Simply awesome. In the last six months, I have learned so much. And more than that, the voice inside my head has changed her tune. Now I hear, 'You're going to do this.'"—Emile Horne
"After completing the Plot Accelerator course with Lisa ... I've just hit 30K words after making a lot of cuts and reducing it to 15K. Now I’m back to where I started with a much stronger story. Nothing is lost in the process. The scenes that will never be read have enhanced my own understanding of the protagonist's situation. Originally intended to be a novella, Collisville is now writing itself. Here's to words that grow organically! Stories shouldn't be forced. Motivation drives the characters. Characters drive the action! Action and reaction IS the story."—J. C. Thomas
Empower Yourself As An Author
This is the power of a little help from a coach. (More success stories here.)
Do you know why your story will keep readers turning pages—
or are you only guessing?
If you’ve never used Microsoft Word’s Track Changes feature before, the idea of getting your manuscript back from an editor filled with all sorts of lines and squiggles you have to do something to in order to keep your novel from plummeting precipitously through a fiery ring of digital destruction and disappearing into the black Read more about Tangled up in Track Changes?[…]
Writing is a supposedly solitary endeavor, but successful authors know that a supporting writing community is worth its weight in gold. Like-minded colleagues keep you aloft during the long, parched weeks of revision. They’re friendly allies when you need an outside eye on your story or writing. They’re seasoned repositories of first-hand publishing and marketing Read more about Top 10 reasons to join a writing community[…]
So how much money can you make writing novels, anyway? For traditionally published author income, short of a few blockbuster outliers, the total is probably neither as substantial nor as reliable as you might assume. On the flip side, the income potential of self-publishing has evolved dramatically in entirely different ways over the past handful Read more about How much money do novelists make?[…]
When a manuscript isn’t firing on all cylinders, there are so many ways to shift responsibility: Characters that run away with a life of their own. Plotting systems that strip nuance and meaning. Agents who press for writing to market. It’s not my fault, writers think; the characters (or this dumb outline, or my annoying Read more about The Conscious Writer: Taking back your creative power[…]
When was the last time you thoroughly explored your publishing options? Are you determined to have your novel traditionally published, or are you eagerly anticipating the process of building a career as a self-published author? Maybe you’re somewhere in between, wringing your hands and wishing there were another alternative. (Spoiler alert: There is.) Most new Read more about Traditional publishing, self-publishing, or something else?[…]
This article is about the parts of writing a novel that don’t involve writing. It’s not about the business side of being an author. It’s not about book design and production. It’s also not about book marketing or promotion. This article is about the process of getting your story onto the page, and a lot Read more about Prewriting: 6 parts of the writing process that aren’t writing[…]
Many authors are first called to writing by the lure of memoir. Exploring the interior of one’s own life is heady stuff. And in a world held at arm’s length by Covid-19, bestselling memoirs (Wild, Becoming, Educated …) have captured the imaginations of readers eager to bridge gaps and slip into someone else’s shoes. New Read more about How to Begin Writing Memoir[…]
Stories demand so much from us. Taking apart the engine of a story and putting it together—that’s hard work, my friends. Much as your brain tugs at the knots of your story while you’re in the shower, or at the kitchen sink, or in the car, I too worry and fret over your stories. That Read more about Productivity for Fiction Writers: September 2020[…]
The decision on how long to query your manuscript can’t be determined by a formula. There’s always the chance that your very next query will knock at the right door at the right time to generate that singular confluence of fortunate events resulting in emails and phone calls and contracts and publication. But let’s face Read more about How long should you query your manuscript?[…]
We’re all familiar with the idea of getting the ideas on the page first, then revising and polishing later. You’ll spin your wheels endlessly if you indulge your desire to polish every chapter, every scene, and every line before moving on the next. Finish first, fiddle later. There’s more to succeeding at this than Herculean Read more about Keep It Rolling: Writing momentum hacks for authors[…]