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Showing posts from December, 2009

Today's Excuse: I can't write NOW, I have to (insert excuse here)

We're all guilty: We've put off our writing because of more "pressing" matters. After all, if we don't get done with X, we wouldn't be able to concentrate on our writing anyway. It's better to have our minds clear. So, we'll sit right down and start writing as soon as X is done, and of course Y, and, while we're at it, might as well finish Z...

ZZZ. The next thing you know, you're wiped out from all of your non-writing tasks, and there's nothing left for your writing. You rationalize: It couldn't be helped, I had stuff to do...

Excuse Editor's Tip:
Instead of making excuses for not writing, make writing your excuse.

Of course there are things that really must get done. I'm not advocating locking yourself in a room and leaving your responsibilities totally behind. I don't want to get emails from "writing widows" missing their significant others. However, if you've been struggling to get to your writing because of…

Excuse Editor's 12 Edits of Christmas

It's the holidays! We shouldn't even think about our writing now, right? Wrong. There may be no better time of year for your writing than right now.

1.Better to Give than to Receive
This time of year you think about generosity toward others. But what about the characters in your novel? Don't they deserve some time and attention as well? Add them to your list. Give them a gift of a new setting or plot twist.

2.Home for the Holidays
 You may be looking forward to time spent with your family for the holidays. Or it may be driving you back to the egg nog again and again. Either way, pay attention. Take a step back. Let the writer in you describe the emotions. What words best describe the feeling in the room when the joyful toddler shreds the wrapping paper. What about when that one crazy cousin digs up a past event best left buried? Later, alone with your pen, a memoir might surface, or a character may discover a secret.

3.Yes, Virginia, there is a Santa Claus
Surround yourself …

One Tweet at a Time

A quick note from the desk of the Excuse Editor:

I'm making my way around the world of social networking. My Space was left to collect dust when I discovered Facebook (I'll be announcing the Excuse Editor Fan Page soon). I even discovered the Writer's Digest Community. But it's taken a while to talk myself into 'tweeting'. Still not totally conviced, I signed up anyway. I'm certainly not a singing songbird yet, but you can find my sporadic tweets at

While navigating around the one and two liners, I came across a 'novel' idea.

Did you ever play this writing game?: Someone starts off a story with one or two sentences, and then each person in the room adds one sentence at a time. I vaguely remember enjoying this as a kid. I did this for some 5th graders when I was substitute teaching one day and they had a great time with it.

Well, I came across the Twitter account, It seems like Jeffrey…

Four Places to Go Before you Novel

What's your next big Writing Trip? Are you going to travel the The Great American Novel route? Or take the back roads of A Pretty Good Book to Share with your Friends? Whatever your ambition to fill up those empty reams, Excuse Editor has a few places you'll need to stop along your journey. Inspiration StationStart asking, "What if...?"This station is full of unique characters. Take a look around you. Pay attention. Take tidbits of your life and the lives of people you hear about and start to ask, "What if...".What if the man you see timidly walking into the grocery store is on his first trip out of his house in 20 years? What if someone recognizes the dog on the Lost Pet posting because the dog had first turned up missing from the home of a neighbor whose child had been kidnapped? Let your imagination roam through possibilities until something holds on to you. Follow the trail. When you get stuck in any part of the process, know that it is part of the proc…