The Head Hopper: Narration 101

We’ve talked about multiple POVs and the importance of treating them with love; each character is a distinct person who has a unique personality worth sharing with the world. We’ve talked about having too many characters and working on who to cut from the cast; we know so many authors who have created beautiful narratives with more than two characters as their MCs…but sometimes it’s not done well.

Taking things in a different direction but still referring to multiple POVs, characters, and consistency…let’s talk about your choice in writing style (if you’re taking the route we are going to be starting a conversation for.)

Being a head hopper is fun! As the writer, you get to explore different minds and see your plot unfold in your tale through the lens of diverse brains. Sometimes, you explore a single mind for one chapter, then switch to a new persona in the next. You can even write from a completely unbiased point of view…

Okay, you already know what we’re seguing into: your narrator.


It’s crucial to keep your narrating style consistent. Flopping between third omniscient to subjective/limited to objective to first person…all because it makes sense in the moment of the scene? No. Our brains hurt simply thinking about that. It’s a heavy example but it’s worth mentioning the most extreme of cases to get your editing eye trained on your work and how you’re choosing to narrate.

The question then becomes: Am I doing this?

If you are, you should further ask yourself which POV/narrator comes off the strongest of all. Whichever one it is: choose it. Stick with it. Rewrites are a pain but the goal, if this pertains to you, is to get the work recognized as worth for publication, so it’s worth the extra time…and love!

We believe in you!

New Year, New Writing

I hope everyone had a fabulous holiday season and a very happy new year! I cannot believe it’s already 2016, where does the time go (like, for real)? The start of each year gives everyone the perfect opportunity to take a moment out of their busy schedules to reflect on what has happened over the past year, what they accomplished, what they didn’t get to do, and what they want to change for the coming year. This is a really great time for writers to sit down and think about where they want to go with their work. Are you  happy with your current success? Do you need to make any major changes to make yourself more successful? Is there something new you have always been dying to try? Do you want to write more or less? Do you want to try your hand at shorter or longer works? The new year isn’t just the perfect time to reinvent yourself, it’s also the perfect time to reinvent your writing.


If you are looking for a little new year inspiration, I came across a fun article on Business 2 Community this afternoon that gives some ideas for writer’s new year resolutions. Hopefully these suggestions will help inspire you to make your own changes. Change is the only way to continually see the results we want. If we become stagnant and comfortable, soon enough our ‘luck’ will run out.

  1. Write that ‘thing’ you have always been talking about. 

The best new year’s resolution for a writer is to stop talking and start writing. We all have that something that we have always talked about writing, but for whatever reason we haven’t picked up the pen yet. We may have even written countless other stories in the meantime, but that one project just can’t seem to make it’s way to fruitation. Think about what’s holding you back and throw that negativity out the window. 2016 is all about action and change, make it happen so you can move onto the next thing on that growing bucket list of yours.

2. Visit the places you write about or want to write about. 

The best way to effectively write a scene, chapter, or story is to write from experience. Plan a couple vacations or day trips this year to visit those places you write about. Spend some time writing in those places as well. Visual inspiration is often just the thing we need to bring our writing to life.

3. Read a book that has had a big impact.

Pick up a book that has made a difference. Read a book that has changed history, that has left many readers talking years after it’s publication. Think about why this particular book was so successful. Become part of it’s history and use it to create your own.

4. Learn a foreign language. 

This one is certainly a daring and daunting task, but one that could change the course of your writing forever. Learning how other languages construct sentences, how they use different words, and how they express emotions can open up countless new avenues for your own writing. You don’t need to become fluent is the language, just familiarizing yourself about a particular language’s ‘rules’ will teach you a lot in itself.

5. Study your own writing. 

Look back at what you have written over the past year and learn from it. Is there a particular mistake you catch yourself making over and over again? Are there certain words you use too much? Do you find all your characters to be eerily similar? Make note of the things that have worked well too. Your biggest teacher is often yourself.

Here’s to another great [writing] year! Write on.

NaNoWriMo: Say What?

I can’t believe it’s already November. As much as I love the summer months, I also love the holidays so it’s partially welcome news on my part. November is also National Novel Writing Month, also known as NaNoWriMo. If you haven’t heard of it yet, it’s exactly as it sounds. Between November 1st-30th, writers challenge themselves to put together 50,000 word novels. NaNoWriMo was founded in 1999 and has grown from 21 participants to 175,000 last year. The goal is to write until you finish. NaNoWriMo proves that writing isn’t just an individual endeavor- a little support, encouragement, and conversation with others goes a long way. Participants can share their progress with others on the website. You get acknowledgement when you reach your goals and a little push when you fall short. It also encompasses the importance of just sitting down to write and nothing else. The hardest part of writing a novel is the first draft. A first draft is never ever perfect. Setting a deadline makes sure you get the first step out of the way so you can spend more time making it a masterpiece, instead of thinking up a masterpiece.


Participating in NaNoWriMo is no easy feat and could be overwhelming just thinking about it. But, just think of all you can accomplish when you set your mind to something for thirty whole days. I think you will be surprised at what you can do. Writers doubt themselves a lot since the goals they set are often huge. Try breaking down your goals and creating deadlines for each step. Let’s start with writing a complete FIRST draft in 30 days. Don’t worry about anything else.

Here are a few tips from International Business Times to have a successful writing month:

  1. Just focus on writing a draft. That’s all we need, nothing else.
  2. Spend some time planning. How do you want to attack your novel? Do you want to plot it out first? Or write on the fly?
  3. Make your writing a priority. This might mean declining a few Friday night cocktails or Sunday football game parties. Remember, it’s just for one month.
  4. Create daily writing goals that will get you to your 50,000 words. You might want to write the same amount of words every day or write more on certain days of the week and less on days you know you are busier. Whatever works for you, just make it work.
  5. Create a schedule. When will you write? How long will you write for? Will you do it all in one sitting or break it up throughout the day?
  6. Figure out where to keep your writing. What programs will you use? Google Docs? Dropbox? Pick whatever is going to be easiest and more accessible to you.
  7. Don’t write to get published, write to write. The goal is to get to 50,000 words- nothing else.
  8. Whenever you start doubting yourself, just keep writing.
  9. Edit sober [see #10]. In my opinion, I wouldn’t do a whole lot of editing. Just write.
  10. Drink wine! There’s actually a lot of truth to the effects of opening yourself up. It doesn’t need to be alcohol, but do something that relaxes you and frees up your thought process. Whether its listening to soothing music or eating a certain type of food. When we let our guard down, the possibilities are endless.


Good luck and write on!