Link Feast For Writers, vol. 24

Writing blogs are a great way to learn about the craft and marketing our work. Enjoy the posts I’ve hoarded, some older, some recent.

Next week’s Feast will be a NaNoWriMo (National Novel Writing Month) special, dedicated to writing links that help you to plot your NaNo story, write it and finish it.

For those who don’t know what NaNo is, it’s a challenge to finish a 50 000 word story during the November. That means you must write at least 1,666 words per day over the 30 day period.

I’d love to hear from you in the comments. Will you participate NaNo this year? What challenges are you facing when plotting and writing your stories?

And then on to the links.


On Writing

Structure Part 3 – Introducing the Opposition by Kristen Lamb

Using Scrivener For Plotting by Hope Ramsay

Han Solo vs. Luke Skywalker: Who’s the Better Hero? by Tiffany Reisz

3 Ways To Create Incredible Characters by Karen Woodward

Taking Characters On a Voyage of Self-Discovery by Elizabeth S. Craig

Ax Your Cliches: Why and Whom by Margie Lawson

7 Tricks To Add Variety To Your Dialogue by Marcy Kennedy

The Sensual Writer: Sight by Lisa Lickel

What Are the Best Ways To End a Story by Christi Craig

Sometimes Stories Aren’t Yours – Writing Oppressed Classes by  S.E. Sinkhorn

Revision Checklist For Compelling Characters by Kathy Steffen

How To Write Proficiently About Things You Don’t Know About by Jody Hedlund

Why Build a World When You Can Steal One by Lori Devoti

Politics, Religion, Social Media & How Great Writers Change the World by Kristen Lamb

J.K. Rowling Shows Why Muggles Obsessed With Class by Simon Hooper (themes of her new book)

J.K. Rowling’s The Casual Vacancy: We’ve Read It, Here’s What We Think by Lev Grossman

Calvinball Mythology and the Void of Meaning by Jonathan McCalmont (long, cool article about building mythologies for TV series and movies)

What Should Newbie Writers Focus On by Jami Gold

How To Avoid Distractions and Create a Career in Fiction: Interview with Holly Lisle by Joe Bunting

On Willpower, Self Discipline and Cake by Candy Gourlay

Lessons Learned From 1 Year As a Full Time Author Enterpreneur by Joanna Penn


Your Author Platform

People Want the Real You by Chris Brogan

Finding Your Novel’s Target Market: 7 Hidden Keys In Your Novel by Jan Bear

The Genre-Free Author: Looking For the Common Themes In Your Writing by Ami Hendrickson

Finding the Right Readers Using Warning Labels by Elle Casey

Wordsmithing Your Brand by Lynn Viehl

The Secret to Attracting 1000 True Fans (Pay To Exist)

7 Steps To Writing an Author Business Plan by Susan Spann

When (And How) Should You Start Marketing Your Book by Yesenia Vargas

The Simple Power of One a Day by Seth Godin

How To Prepare For a Book Launch by Jody Hedlund

35 Ways To Engage Your Book Audience in the First 90 Days (Wise Ink)

How To Create a Killer Marketing Plan For Your Book Launch by Srinivas Rao

What Is the ONE Thing You Have Done That Brought You More Readers? Advice from Indie Authors by Laura Pepper Wu

What Is the ONE Thing You Have Done That Brought You More Readers? Part 2 by Laura Pepper Wu

What Is the ONE Thing You Have Done That Brought You More Readers? Part 3 by Laura Pepper Wu

How To Get Amazon’s Top Customer Reviewers to Review Your Book by Laura Pepper Wu

Email Marketing: How To Not Be a Dirty Rotten Spammer by Sonia Simone

Link of the Week: Booksai (Muse Tracks) – a tool for finding books similar to yours

The Seasons of Publishing by Dean Wesley Smith

Choosing the Right Publishing Route For You by Talli Roland

7 Common Self-Publishing Fears and How To Banish Them by Karen Woodward

Book Marketing Tips For First Time Self-Publishers by Karen Woodward

Ruth Harris Reports: Editors & Editing – Part 3

The Key 11 Questions Every Indie Author Must Know About the Competition (Wise Ink)

Amazon KDP: The Best Long-Term Strategy by Karen Woodward

How To Make the Most of Your eBook’s Free Days / KDP Select Days by Laura Pepper Wu

Where to Promote Your KDP Free Days by Cheryl Bradshaw



Top 10 Self-Sabotaging Mistakes of Author-Bloggers by Anne R. Allen

When Traffic Isn’t Enough. 3 Questions Every Blogger Should Ask Themselves by Chris Drucker

How To Write and Maintain a Great Blog That Helps You Sell More Books (With Blogging Hero Gretchen Rubin) by Laura Pepper Wu

7 Ways Partnerships Can Work For You by Michelle Schaeffer

(Some win-win partnerships that come to mind are Joanna Penn’s & C.J. Lyons’ writing courses, and Ruth Harris as a regular poster in Anne R. Allen’s blog)

One Time-Saving Way To Manage Your Author Blog by Yesenia Vargas

A 6-Step Process To Turn Ideas Into Blog Posts by Ali Luke

Writing Great Content: 3 Tips by Amy Lynn Andrews

The 6 Magic Words That Always Get Clicks by Caitlin Muir

Why You Need To Work Harder on Your List Posts by Ben Barden

How To Run a Blog Series and Get More Subscribers by Annabel Candy

How To Write a Strong Opinion Piece For Your Blog by John McLain

How To Win Some Blogger Love: Scoring the Book Review, Guest Post or Interview by Kristen Lamb

Social Share Buttons: Just Pick Three (Pushing Social)


Social Media

Social Media Explained With Coffee by Michelle Schaeffer

The Top 10 Social Networks for Creative People by Mark McGuinness

40+ Tips on How To Become a Social Media Rockstar on Twitter, Facebook and Google+ by Kristi Hines

Find the Right People To Follow on Twitter by Kristi Hines

Blogging Playbook: Getting More Twitter ReTweets (Pushing Social)

How To Use StumbleUpon: Your Comprehensive Guide by Kristi Hines

Pinterest For Authors by Jennifer Bray-Weber


Collected Wisdom

Blog Treasures by Gene Lempp

Twitterific by Elizabeth S. Craig

Friday Features by Yesenia Vargas

Fill-Me-In-Friday by Roni Loren

Bring On The Bloggy Brilliance by Jenny Hansen


Deep Stuff

The Danger of Learning Only From Succesful People (And What To Do Instead) by Dorian Mars

Is It Time to Rethink Your Routines? by Lynn Johnston (I loved her eBook Kaizen Plan For Organized Authors)

Boring Is Productive by Robert C. Pozen

The Science of Procrastination and How To Manage It by Maria Popova (2:49 min video)

The Complete Flake’s Guide to Getting Things Done by Sonia Simone

Dreading a Task? 5 Tips For Getting Yourself To Tackle It by Gretchen Rubin

5 Best Literary TED Talks (Elizabeth Gilbert’s Creativity talk is phenomenal)

50 Best Social Psychology Books on Persuasion, Influence & Understanding Your Brain by Gregory Ciotti

The Unintended Consequences of China’s One Child Policy by George Dvorsky


Fun Stuff

Beautiful Pins (40K+ gorgeous photos ranging from fantasy to humor, traveling and cheesecake)

What We Learned About the Hobbit Movies at DragonCon by Chris Lough

33 Geeky Insults You Can Use Almost Anywhere by Jason Cranford Teague

27 of the Most Insane Martial Arts Battles Ever Filmed by Cyriaque Lamar (includes video snippets)

The Most Thrilling Sci-fi and Fantasy Books Coming in September by Charlie Jane Anders

All the Science Fiction and Fantasy Books You Can’t Afford to Miss in October by Charlie Jane Anders

Announcing Pony Fest #12 by Rebecca Enzor

(Want to win a custom made My Little Pony looking like your book character? Sign up there *points up*)

The History of English in 10 hilarious minutes (11:21 min video)

Real-Life Superheroes: 10 People with Incredible Abilities (


  1. Lynn Kelley
    Oct 4, 2012

    I don’t plan on trying NaNo this year. Am launching my children’s book next week plus babysitting grandbaby 9 hours a day, so no time NaNo. This is an awesome mashup, Reetta! Thank you!
    Lynn Kelley recently posted..Happy First Birthday WANA 1011My Profile

    • Reetta Raitanen
      Oct 5, 2012

      Whoa, Lynn. You have a lot on your plate. Good luck with your book launch! Your grandkid’s parents are really lucky to have you helping them out.

  2. Coleen Patrick
    Oct 4, 2012

    When I saw your post it hit me how close November is–yikes! I’m going to do NaNo again. I love the built in discipline–and I got a great story out of it last year. 🙂 I am a panster, so I will be going in with an idea and a couple pages of notes.
    Thanks for the links Reetta!
    Coleen Patrick recently posted..Photography Inspiration: The World is Full of MagicMy Profile

    • Reetta Raitanen
      Oct 5, 2012

      October really crept on me too. Only three full weeks left to plan. Have fun with NaNo, Coleen 🙂

  3. Laura Drake
    Oct 4, 2012

    Wow, Reeta, thanks for the link to Writers in the Storm!
    And the hours of great info here!

    • Reetta Raitanen
      Oct 5, 2012

      Thanks for dropping by, Laura 🙂 And for contributing to the awesome Writers in the Storm blog.

  4. Jennette Marie Powell
    Oct 5, 2012

    Thanks as always for collecting such a great bunch of articles in one place! Dean Wesley Smith’s is a must-read IMO, and Kristen Lamb’s on how great writers change the world is one of my favorites of hers.

    I’ve only done NaNo once, but I did “win.” I’m trying to get a new book outlined this month, between all my other goals, but having trouble fitting it in. So I’d like to do NaNo this year, but not quite ready to commit. Looking forward to seeing your links on it next time!
    Jennette Marie Powell recently posted..WANA Wednesday: Happy Birthday, WANA1011!My Profile

    • Reetta Raitanen
      Oct 5, 2012

      I agree with you about Dean’s and Kristen’s articles. Really useful stuff. I hope the outlining goes well and you’re ready to start writing in November 🙂 Maybe not 50K words but any words on the screen is progress.

  5. Sheila Seabrook
    Oct 5, 2012

    Fantastic list of links, Reetta! I’m not partaking in NaNo but would love to one year. Enjoy and good luck!
    Sheila Seabrook recently posted..Break Out Of A Creative Rut & Happy Birthday WANA1011 Class!My Profile

    • Reetta Raitanen
      Oct 5, 2012

      Thanks Sheila. I hope you can do NaNo next year.

  6. Jenny Hansen
    Oct 5, 2012

    I don’t know yet if I’m doing NaNoWriMo. Since I discovered Fast Draft, NaNo is a lot less compelling than it used to be. But I haven’t missed a year in a long time so, who I kidding? I’ll probably be NaNo-ing away with the best of them.

    Thank you for including my link from More Cowbell and so many links from Writers In The Storm! We appreciate it.

    I’ve got like 12 tabs open, lady!!! Great mashup. 🙂
    Jenny Hansen recently posted..The Secret To Writing by Chuck WendigMy Profile

    • Reetta Raitanen
      Oct 5, 2012

      Hah, when you’ve done the hardcore thing and realized you can do it, I bet NaNo feels like the wimp path 😛 But it would be great to have you join the fun, Jenny.
      And it’s always a pleasure to read the newest post of your blog and Writers In The Storm. You know how to deliver maximum value and entertainment.

      • Jenny Hansen
        Oct 8, 2012

        Awwww, thank you Reetta!! I just read this sweet comment. 🙂

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