Writing Tips & Resources
Description: Alexa talks with Autumn Birt, Dawn Mena, Ruth Snyder, and Jamie Beth Cohen, about writing tips.
Level: This presentation is for all levels.
Author, Publisher and Summit Producer
Alexa Bigwarfe is a wife, mother, author, publisher, speaker, and author coach. She has published numerous books of her own and for many other writers and entrepreneurs through her author coaching and hybrid-publishing company Kat Biggie Press (katbiggiepress.com). Kat Biggie Press is dedicated to sharing women’s works of inspiration, self-help, and books that make the world a better place. Her children’s book imprint, Purple Butterfly Press, publishes books of encouragement, inspiration, self-love, and healing for children and parents. She is also the founder and producer of the Women in Publishing Summit. Follow her everywhere on instagram @katbiggiepress and on youtube for publishing tips at https://www.youtube.com/writepublishsell.
Author and Co-Creater of Am Writing Fantasy
Autumn is an author, educator, adventurer, and conservationist. She has written and published 17 books in genres from epic fantasy to adventure travel. She is an Amazon bestselling author in fantasy, epic fantasy, and war. Her second epic fantasy trilogy, Games of Fire, has received tremendous critical reviews and book 2, Gates of Fire & Earth, is also a Fantasia Reviews 2017 Book of Year nominee and winner of Best Worldbuilding. Along the way to her becoming a full-time author, she started helping new writers overcome the hurdles she faced. Teaming up with fellow fantasy writer Jesper Schmidt, together they founded the Am Writing Fantasy website, facebook group, podcast, and YouTube channels where they help authors with tips, courses, and newsletters. With an undergraduate degree in studio art as well as English, Autumn is also a skilled graphic designer and a bit of a website builder. She loves to create covers and maps for other authors, knowing these are another piece to helping writers fulfill their publishing dreams.
Book & Creativity Coach
Beautiful You Book & Creativity Coach and Best-selling Author, Ruth L. Snyder, is known for her captivating and engaging workshops for authors. As a Creativity Coach, Ruth enjoys helping multi-talented entrepreneurs write, publish, and market their books. She believes God takes our weakest moments and deepest hurts and transforms them into a powerful, life-changing story only we can share. Ruth’s Inspired Message Mastermind includes a virtual VIP day, monthly 1:1 coaching sessions, weekly group coaching, access to a private Facebook group, done-for-you book formatting, lifelong access to Successful Author University, and over $3,000 worth of bonuses that change the dream of publishing and selling a book into reality. You can download Ruth’s 5 Steps to Outlining Your Book at https://mastermind.ruthlsnyder.com/optin. Ruth enjoys writing articles, devotionals, short stories, and Christian fiction. Her publication credits include three novelettes, several anthologies including Chicken Soup for the Soul: Devotional Stories for Mothers: 101 Daily Devotions to Comfort, Encourage, and Inspire Mothers, Uplifting Devotionals for Parents, Equipped: Ephesians 6 Devotionals to Empower and Make You Victorious in Everyday Life, and Twitter Decoded: Tips & Tools for Authors. Check out Ruth’s author page at amazon.com/author/ruth_l_snyder Ruth’s children have taught her many things about living with special needs. She is a strong advocate and spent several years serving on the local public school board. Ruth loves her job teaching Music for Young Children. She is fascinated by children’s imaginations and enjoys helping young children learn the basics of music through play. In her spare time, Ruth enjoys reading, painting, singing, volunteering in her local community, photography, and travel. Several years ago, Ruth and her family traveled through 28 States in 30 days! As an expert in social media marketing and self-publishing, she has even been endorsed by Murray Pura and Jeff Goins. Find out more about Ruth at ruthlsnyder.com.
Book editor & Self-publishing Specialist
Dawn Mena is a book editor, self-publishing specialist, and former Los Angeles Times editor who turned in her high heels and corporate suit in favor of break-the-rules fun and author empowerment services. She works with CEO’s, industry influencers, and dream-driven entrepreneurs to help them write, polish and publish books and booklets that expand their influence, achieve their goals, and delight their readers with honest, helpful, and positive books that truly make a difference.
Jamie Beth Cohen
Author and Storyteller
Jamie Beth Cohen is a writer and storyteller who works in higher education. She writes about difficult things, but her friends think she’s funny. Her writing has appeared in TeenVogue.com, The Washington Post/On Parenting, Salon, and several other outlets. Her coming-of-age novel, WASTED PRETTY, was released by Black Rose Writing in 2019.
Mentioned in this video:
Audience: Fiction and nonfiction beginner writers
A lot was covered in this video, and our panelists have kindly provided downloadable tip sheets, which can be found HERE.
Dawn – Nonfiction, more business related books. Bite Sized Books – Often choose topics that are just too big. Pick a goal and transform change. Start with small projects; narrowing your focus so you aren’t all over the place.
Jamie Beth Cohen – long and short form; essays and fiction; works in different modality in different locations (long form when she has more time) but in her shorter windows is when she tackles the essays, not the novel.
Ruth – Master of time management so that she could find time to write even with 5 young kids. Ruth likes to remind people they can’t tackle all ideas at once, so she does a 20 minute brain dump session. After the time is up, she picks her favorite idea from the list and spends time honing in on that.
Autumn – fantasy author – why she recommends using an outline and plotting after her experience with just diving in
Two camps – fiction and nonfiction – writing concepts and ideas, basic terms and skills and how to start for both major genres
- Plotter vs. pantser
- Why it’s so important to study the genre you want to write in and know and understand the conventions of the genre and age category.
- Understanding the nuances of the genre that make the readers happy
- How fantasy as a genre as changed; new trends in different genres
- The trend in nonfiction on shorter books
- The importance of building your brand as a nonfiction author – choose topics that are aligned with your brand
- Choose topics that you are able to talk about with authority (nonfiction)
- Organizing with an outline (nonfiction)
- Include a call to action (nonfiction)
- Tips for the very beginning writer – Ruth suggests to just start where you are; even if it’s small, short, not a lot of time each day
- How Ruth started her writing by using Twitter as a mini-blogger
- Block off time to write at the best time for you
- The importance of good storytelling in nonfiction as well as fiction
- Autumn’s free video course – The Starter Kit – for new fantasy writers – https://www.amwritingfantasy.com/product/ultimate-fantasy-writers-starter-kit-short-course/
- Local writing / feedback groups – find one in your area; online communities
- Contests – especially those that offer critique
- Finding conferences, in particular small, local conferences
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