To Follow a Dream

ACFW Advice, Authors and writing, Encouragement, Fear/Doubt, Friends of ACFW, writing 2 Comments

By Chandra Lynn Smith I entered my first Genesis contest in 2002 before it was the Genesis Contest. I think about that pitiful entry now and feel very sorry for the judges who struggled through reading it. The thing is my brave move to enter the contest was the beginning of quite a journey. In August of 2003, I attended …

Traits of a Successful Critique Group

ACFW Advice, Authors and writing, Critiques, Friends of ACFW, tips, writing 2 Comments

By Henry McLaughlin I’m sure we’ve all participated in or heard stories about horrible experiences with critique groups. I’ve had a few myself. Unfortunately, I may have contributed to some of them. To any writers I did this to, I apologize. I’ve been writing seriously for over ten years. During this time, I’ve participated in many critique groups, both on …

Confessions of an Unromantic Romance Writer

ACFW Authors and writing, Critiques, Encouragement, Friends of ACFW, writing Leave a Comment

By Ane Mulligan Hello. My name is Ane Mulligan and I don’t write romance. There. I’ve confessed. However, it’s not totally accurate. I hope my nose doesn’t grow. You see, I did write two: A Magnolia Blooms in Winter, which will come out this November from Firefly in the Southern Seasons Collection, and Love is Sweeter in Sugar Hill, in …

Creating a Crazy-Good Critique Group

ACFW Advice, Authors and writing, Critiques, Friends of ACFW, tips 3 Comments

By J.A. Marx We fondly call each other critters, and I consider this group of serious writers essential to my writing career. I’m sure online critique groups work well, but I prefer face-to-face. For one, as the facilitator, I like to observe the newbies to ensure they are holding up under the initial shock—reading their story out loud for the …

God’s Plan for You

ACFW ACFW, Advice, Authors and writing, Contests, Critiques, Encouragement, Friends of ACFW, writing Leave a Comment

By Patricia Bradley “For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the LORD, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.” Jeremiah 29:11 God has a plan for each of us, a pathway for us to walk, and it doesn’t always include what we think it should. That thought …

A Spoon Full of Sugar…Yes, Please

ACFW Advice, Authors and writing, Critiques, Encouragement, Friends of ACFW Leave a Comment

By W.G. Reese You’ve finished that article, short story, or novel that you poured your heart into for days, weeks, and months. Whoever reads this miraculous compilation of facts, imagery and relatable emotion will enjoy — no, be enthralled and begging for more, until…. You run it by a critique group, friend, spouse, and/or that special someone who totally gets …

How to Handle Criticism

ACFW Advice, Authors and writing, Contests, Critiques, Encouragement, Friends of ACFW Leave a Comment

By Donna L.H. Smith I hope to bring a fresh perspective to a sensitive subject. As writers, we’re regularly critiqued, edited, and otherwise told to change our text. It can get downright discouraging if we don’t have the proper attitude toward it. If we have rejection issues (like I do), it can feel personal, when it’s really not. It’s about …

Rules of Writing Encourage or Discourage

ACFW Advice, Authors and writing, Critiques, Encouragement, Friends of ACFW, writing Leave a Comment

By Linda Robinson After I joined a large critique group a few years ago, I was terrified to press Send for my first 2,000-word submission. How intimidating to put my work out there, knowing it was open for target practice. I wasn’t worried about grammar and punctuation, but about the story itself. Nail-biting nervous, I waited for the first critique …

The Rhino in the Writer: Thick Skin & the Value of a Critique Group

ACFW Advice, Authors and writing, Critiques, Encouragement, Friends of ACFW, tips Leave a Comment

By Hannah Conway Join a critique group. Yes, that’s some of the soundest advice given to me regarding the wonderful world of writing. Yet, the next part of that advice? Well, it’s more on the strange side. Develop rhino skin. Join a critique group, and develop rhino skin. Let that sink in. I’ll wait while your nose finishes up that …