Conflict: Elixir of the Muse for Timeless Stories Readers Can’t Put Down – written by Kristen Lamb

Author Kristen Lamb writes about conflict and why it’s important for our stories. Thank you very much Kristen. I’m learning so much reading your blog and I’m convinced I’m not the only one.


Conflict is the core ingredient required for story. It is the magical elixir with the raw power to transform a story we think we’ve heard a million times before into something wholly unique and mesmerizing. FYI, there are no new stories, only new ways of telling the same stories. Just getting that out of the way.

A Thousand Acres is basically King Lear on an Iowa farm, and Avatar is Pocahontas in Space. I could give a zillion more examples but won’t.

In fairness, this makes our job simpler. We really don’t want to create a story no one has ever heard before. Not only because it’s pretty much impossible to do in the first place, but it’s also highly risky even if we managed to pull it off. Why?

Because the story ‘never before told’ cannot possibly resonate emotionally. Humans have no emotional touchpoint for something they’ve never experienced…ever.

Resonance is Critical

Love gone wrong? Betrayal? Messed up family? Righting wrongs of the past? Clearing one’s name from being falsely accused? Rebuilding after a loss? Finally earning approval, love, or acceptance? Impacts of abuse or addiction?

This stuff we get.

 

To read the entire article, please go to:

http://authorkristenlamb.com/2018/02/24039/

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A Letter to Daymond John: Robots Rise When Imagination Dies – written by Kristen Lamb

Kristen Lamb writes about imagination and robots and how the one can replace the other… Thank you for your insight and wisdom Kristen.


Imagination is fundamental to success in, well, pretty much everything. Yet, strangely, many thought-leaders and experts are pushing humans to hone skills that robots can do a billion times better and faster (like working 24/7).

Problem is, if we train like robots, think like robots, and act like robots, we’re doomed to be replaced by them.

Our best insurance for rising to the top of our profession—ANY profession—is to refine what’s essentially human. We’re wise to become the best in those areas where computers, apps, and robots don’t hold massive advantage.

These areas require a robust right brain and well-developed imagination…which might just entail a lot of ‘wasting time.’

How This Started

As y’all might know, I consume a ridiculous amount of books…all kinds of books. Novels of every genre, non-fiction, self-help, books about business, leadership, finance, and entrepreneurship.

Recently, I started listening to Daymond John’s Rise and Grind. Why? Because I loved, loved, loved The Power of Broke and recommend that book to everyone…all the time.

I’ve listened that book it at least six times and learn something new with every pass.

 

To read the entire blog post, please go to:

http://authorkristenlamb.com/2018/02/imagination-requires-nurturing/

What Chef Ramsay Would Say About Writing – written by Kristen Lamb

Kristen Lamb, one of my favorite writer’s, an amazing teacher, fantastic blogger and wonderful person, writes about current struggles in her writing profession.


The past few months have been tough. I’ve struggled with being down, depressed and stuck in a rut. The writing profession I once loved just had lost its…sparkle. In a recent post, I believe I voiced what many writers have been feeling:

Don’t know about you, but I dreamed of book signings, launch parties, my novels on pretty displays in an actual store. I imagined a real book signing with devoted fans I’d be able to meet face-to-face. Those were the dreams that kept me going in my darkest hours when it made no sense to keep on writing.

I don’t think a single one of us fantasized about favorable algorithms, a massive mailing list with a solid open rate, or a depressing spot for ten copies of our book on a Costco bargain table. And I sure as hell never dreamed of working like an organ-grinding spider monkey for fractions of KU pennies.

None of us did.

I never minded learning and doing the business of my business. I embraced branding, blogging, social media, SEO. But something was just…off. Something I couldn’t articulate. Leave it to my subconscious to kick me in the @$$ and have the answer…in a technicolor dream (okay, nightmare).

Last night *deep breaths* Chef Gordon Ramsay royally chewed my @$$ out at…a writing conference.

Bear with me, this is bizarre but salient.

To read the entire blog post, click here:

http://authorkristenlamb.com/2018/01/what-chef-ramsay-would-say-about-writing/

Battle of the Book Business: Publishing Cold War is Ending – written by Kristen Lamb

Kristen Lamb teaches us about book business and predictions. Thanks so much for all you do for us Kristen!


 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Ah, the book business. So many shifts and changes since the day I set out to become a novelist…and ended up a social media expert, blogger, teacher and self-appointed author crusader. I’ve dedicated millions of words and countless hours of research to guide y’all through the massive changes in the publishing industry.

My goal was (and is) to do everything I could to shelter you (writers) from predators I knew would prey on your fears. Three books and thirteen hundred posts later…

It’s been an honor to serve and shepherd you guys through the largest changes in human history and in publishing. Frankly, without you guys, I might have given up ages ago. Thank you so much for being there for me! We are not alone, right?

After years of upheaval, good news is…I think we’re almost there.

*angels sing*

The Long Road Unknown…

To continue reading this post, please go to:

http://www.authorkristenlamb.com/2018/01/book-business/

 

The Writers’ Journey: Newbie to Mastery – written by Kristen Lamb

Kristen Lamb provides us with an excellent article on her blog about the ‘Writers’ Journey: Newbie to Mastery. She is such an excellent advisor to all of us newbies. Thank you so much Kristen!


 

Mastery is peculiar in that spectators see whatever the professional does as ‘easy.’ From starting then running a successful business, to playing guitar to writing brilliant screenplays, masters rarely seem to even break a sweat.

Same with authors. With the pros? Their stories flow, drag readers in like an unseen riptide only to release the exhausted and elated audience at The End.

Mastery, to the casual observer, appears seamless and effortless.

Everyone Begins Somewhere

I’d like to offer a glimpse of what the journey from Noob to Master is really like so you can set expectations accordingly. This will keep you pressing, and from being too hard on yourself. First and foremost, it’s vital to relax a little and give yourself permission to be new.

 

To continue reading the entire article, please click the following link:

 

http://authorkristenlamb.com/2017/12/writingtomastery/

 

Wounded: Why Pain & Wounds are Vital for Fiction – by Kristen Lamb

Kirsten Lamb informs us about why pain and wounds are vital for fiction. Thank you very much for another educational blog post! You’re great!


 

Ah, the masks we wear. We all have them because it’s impossible to be fully human and devoid of cracks. We are all wounded. Yet, therein lies the conundrum for those who long to become writers. We’re all cracked, damaged, dinged yet simultaneously bombarded by countless conflicting messages.

Media, culture, family, society are like a gaggle of cocaine-fueled stepmothers relentlessly determined to make us ‘perfect,’ only then to turn around and zing us for being ‘superficial’ and ‘fake.’

It’s okay to cry, darling. Just next time wear the waterproof mascara. You’re a mess.

Many of us are the walking wounded, encouraged to embrace our flaws, experience all our emotions…but then cover them up because no one wants to see that. Jeez!

This ‘logic’ is absurd enough in life, but for authors we must choose the painful path if we hope to write the great stories, the ones that change people and endure. Perfect, flawless, normal and well-adjusted spell death for fiction. Superb stories provide a safe place for readers to ‘feel and heal’ and our job is to deliver that .

Yet, this comes at a price. I know! Always a catch.

 

To read the entire article click this link:

http://authorkristenlamb.com/2017/11/woundedpeople/

 

 

Breaking Big: How to Impress Big Five Publishers – written by Kristen Lamb

Kristen Lamb writes about how to impress the BIG FIVE. Definitely worth reading! Her knowledge of the writing world and impressive blog posts and her willingness to share with us newbies is admirable. Thank you, Kristen!

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The BIG FIVE Publishers sing a siren’s song irresistible to most writers. Granted, in the New Publishing World we now have multiple publishing options, numerous paths to take us to our goal (whatever that goal may be).

Self-publishing, indie, small press, blog-to-book, and legacy press. I’ve worked hard for my slice of success, but I’m not so “evolved” I’ve eschewed all desire to earn my own spot as a Random-Penguin .

Big Five Fever

All publishing paths hold advantages and disadvantages, yet nothing can beguile us like the Simon & Schuster sparkle, hypnotize us as much as the Macmillan mystique.

Big Five Publishers are the sun that burns through our ennui, revealing a mere glimpse of the literary summit. Gives us a fever burning so hot, we forget all about those manuscripts that tried and died. Ignore the frozen, forgotten dead we’ll have to climb over on the way up.

A delirious insanity propels us toward the top, no matter how much we bleed. Big Five Publishers are the K-2 for the high-achieving (okay Type A) author.

Author does start with A. It’s a sign .

 

Read the entire blog post here:

 

http://authorkristenlamb.com/2017/11/bigfivepublishers/