How would you like to improve how you relate to others and become more energetic at the same time? All this without having to purchase anything? 

Here’s a surprising truth. One of the most powerful weapons to enhance our lives is our tongue! A powerful energy killer is distress over troubled relationships. Worrying about them can siphon off needed energy.

Here’s a simple five-point plan for improving relationships and increasing your energy at the same time. 

1. Speak encouraging words instead of negative ones. 

Concentrate on positive qualities in other people and dwell on those instead of others’ faults. This alone should do wonders in relieving stress in relationships. Doctors know prolonged anxiety can bring about harmful physical and mental results, however, healing words can soothe stress and lead to improved physical health. Think back in your own life when someone encouraged you. You still remember what they said and the good feeling it gave you. We store in our minds other people’s responses toward us. Which of your words would you like people to recall when they think of you?

2. Don’t bore gasoline on a verbal fire. 

Proverbs 15:1 states, “A soft answer turns away wrath,But a harsh word stirs up anger.”(NKJV) When someone gets mad at you, be careful about your response. Choose what you say before you speak and then talk. Why should you burn your relationship houses down with your own mouth? Remember A soft answer turns away wrath. That way you won’t be adding to the heat of an already roaring fire. Why not try spraying water on an argument with calm words instead? 

Many marriages have crashed because of hurtful accusations partners hurl at one another. You might as well punch a hole in a feather pillow and let the feathers fly out and then try to collect them one by one! We can’t get back the damaging effects of hurtful words either. Want to free yourself from an entrapping verbal situation? Practice waiting a while before answering someone when you’re angry. Carefully choose what you are going to say. The other person may remember your reply for years.

3. Don’t be a motormouth. 

Let’s listen more than we talk and think about what we’re going to say before we spew it out.  People who chatter on and on strain their relationships. If you enjoy monopolizing conversations, consider what other people may be experiencing when they’re with you. Also, the more you talk, the more likely you’ll be to put your foot in your mouth. So pause before you let something out you’ll regret. 

4. Practice carefully choosing your thoughts. 

If you could put your thoughts on CDs or DVDs, what would they be? And if someone played them, what would their reaction be? Would they feel uplifted or would it put them on a downer? What you’re thinking will come out sooner or later in your conversations.

5. Let’s pray for healing words to tap the Source of wisdom. 

Here’s a to-the-point prayer: “Set a watch, O LORD, before my mouth; keep the door of my lips” ( Psalms 141:3). 

Do you want a better life? Choose better words.

Do you believe Jesus Christ of Nazareth rose from the dead or do you think the resurrection is a legend?

If you are a doubter, it might surprise you as I point out rebuttals to the legend theory of the most stupendous event in human history.
1. Legends take time to develop and become embellished in the retelling, but the news of the risen Christ sprang up right away.

It takes several generations for myths to develop into their final forms. Within a short time the news Jesus rose from the dead spread throughout the Roman empire.

2. Over 500 witnesses encountered the risen Christ.

After His resurrection, Jesus Christ appeared to His followers for 40 days. At one time He appeared to over 500 people at one time. Many remained alive years later after the resurrection to tell their own personal stories about seeing the living Christ.

The number of witnesses in trials today is crucial. If you paraded 500 eyewitnesses of a murder in a court of law before a jury, they would find the accused guilty due to the sheer number of eyewitnesses.

3. The death and rebirth of mythical gods is a foreign concept to Jews.

The first Church was Jewish, and they are monotheists. Why would they accept as their Messiah a criminal crucified on a Roman cross? 

4. There is no description of the resurrection itself in the Bible.

If the resurrection is a legend, the creators would describe such a miraculous event in glowing details.

5. The first witnesses to the resurrection were women.

But the testimony of women didn’t count in Roman or Jewish courts in that day, so why would a legend revolve around women instead of men? If the resurrection is a legend, why would the people who started it want women to be the first witnesses? 

The apostles were hiding from the Jews in fear of their lives, but the courageous women put the frightened men to shame. This was a patriarchal society. If people concocted a myth about the resurrection, would they invent brave women and cowardly men in a man’s world?

6. One of the prime witnesses, Mary Magdalene, didn’t even recognize Jesus when she first encountered the risen Savior.

She observed nothing special about Jesus’ resurrected body. Mary thought He was a gardener! Does this sound like a legendary hero?

7. Why would Christians be willing to die for a lie?

Thousands died horrible deaths. Some were covered with oil as human torches and lit to light Caesar’s garden rather than deny Christ. Thousands still die for Him today.

Yes, Jesus did rise from the dead! Millions have received new lives in Him. Why not you?

Trust Him and live forever! 

“For I delivered unto you first of all that which I also received, how that Christ died for our sins according to the scriptures; And that he was buried, and that he rose again the third day according to the scriptures: After that, he was seen of above five hundred brethren at once; of whom the greater part remain unto this present, but some are fallen asleep (1 Corinthians 15:3-6).



Have you ever been hiking outside enjoying the fresh air when suddenly an exquisite butterfly visits you? What a treat it is watching these shimmering creatures flit from flower to flower flashing brilliant shades of yellow, orange, and all the colors of the rainbow depending on what type of butterfly you see.


The special hand of the Creator God can clearly be seen in the metamorphosis of a butterfly. Even strong believers in evolution can experience a twinge or two watching the amazing change from a caterpillar to butterfly as it emerges from its cocoon after being tucked away from the watchful eye during the amazing stages of metamorphosis.


Darwin had his own ideas of how all life came into being. He believed a process known as natural selection was responsible for all the humans, animals and plants that have ever existed. Darwin thought that natural selection worked through a series of slight modifications over millions of years. Here’s what Darwin admitted about a weakness in his belief system: “If it could be demonstrated that any complex organ existed which could not possibly have been formed by numerous, successive, slight modifications, my theory would absolutely break down.” However, Darwin was certain that there were no examples to contradict what he believed.

Although he felt he had never seen an example to refute his ideas, consider that the butterfly is proof of dramatic change without slight modification. A caterpillar does not simply grow wings while tucked safely away in his little cocoon, he changes completely. He loses 6 legs and 3 segments of his body. This would be enough to rebuke the theory of a slight modification, yet the butterfly’s story doesn’t end there. Its number of eyes decreases and a sucking tube replaces his jaw! Add to the total amount of changes reproductive capabilities.

All this is more than slight modification — even before you take into account his new set of wings. The butterfly is set about in this world as a completely different creature than he began, and it is not by chance nor by adaptation that this occurs but through intentional design. The butterfly’s journey from larvae to adult is a proven solid argument for creation.


When a caterpillar becomes a butterfly, his entire purpose changes. The caterpillar is rather destructive. While he is food for birds and other creatures, he feeds on trees and plants, often destroying their beauty. Once he turns into a butterfly, his entire intention changes, as now he is responsible for the germination of plants and flowers. Thus, this is proof that the radical undertaking the caterpillar goes through during metamorphosis is not about adaptation, but about creation in its entirety.


When a caterpillar sleeps in his cocoon and then later emerges as a butterfly, this also reminds us that the same thing can happen to us spiritually as well as physically, but in a different way. When we arrive into the world, the Bible says we are dead in trespasses and sins and need to experience spiritual life. Second Corinthians 5: 17 states that whoever is IN Christ is a new creation!


Jesus said we must be born again. Jesus also said he would come again and those who trust Him who are alive at his coming won’t die but will be changed in an instant at the last trumpet. However, if the Lord Jesus doesn’t return before we die, believers’ bodies will be raised from the dead! Those who trust in the Lord will have bodies like the resurrection body of Jesus Christ. Wow!!!!!!! What a metamorphosis that will be!


The Bible tells us we have all sinned and fall short of the glory of God. For example, one of the 10 commandments commands us not to lie. There is a penalty attached to breaking any part of God’s Law. It is death. In Romans 6:23 we read that the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord.


Have you ever told a lie?


Jesus died on the cross to take the punishment we deserve for breaking God’s Law. He was buried but rose again from the dead on the third day.


Trust Jesus today.


Man thinks he knows how the worlds began,

accidentally without a plan.

Did the universe appear by chance?

With a big bang and amoeba’s romance?

I believe this simple fact, profound yet true:

God created all . . . A truth old—yet ever new.


Did you know there are key health benefits that can result from owning a pet? A furry companion can enhance your physical, mental and social wellbeing.

1. How can a pet help your physical health?

Owning a dog, for instance, will encourage you to get more exercise. With your faithful friend at your side, you’re much more likely to go for a walk. Walking is one of the best health activities you can do. While walking you’re also more likely to interact with your neighbors because your special pal often acts as an ice-breaker.

Research led by Dr. Karen Allen at the State University of New York at Buffalo shows that pets can help lower blood pressure. Stockbrokers with high blood pressure were studied to see what happened when they adopted a pet dog or cat. Researchers concluded that having a pet nearby helps control increases in blood pressure due to stress. 

In his studies Alan Beck, ScD (Professor of Animal Ecology, Purdue University) found that the simple act of petting your dog slows your heart rate and causes your blood pressure to drop.

An added health advantage from pet ownership is that patients may live longer after heart attacks. Some doctors recommend that a heart attack survivor adopt a dog because research has shown that a faithful canine companion can help prolong an owner’s life.

2. How Can A Pet Improve Your Mental Health?

Sharing your life with a cat may help your mental health. A study conducted at Australia’s University of New England found that people who own feline friends may experience fewer psychiatric disturbances than those without cats.

Pets can help their owners overcome depression through their companionship and unconditional love. They seem to possess the natural ability to help you relax and enjoy life more. Pets can also help when you experience times of loneliness.

English poet, Alexander Pope, has stated that histories are more full of examples of the fidelity of dogs than of friends. According to a Chinese proverb, dogs have so many friends because they wag their tails, not their tongues. When you take care of a pet, you have to develop a routine of getting out, buying food and providing exercise. This can help fight off depression and loneliness. The simple responsibility of pet care can help you get your mind off yourself and your problems.

3. How can a pet enhance your wellbeing in relationships?

American Animal Hospital Association President, Link Wellborn, believes that pets are more than just a member of the family – they’re central to a healthy lifestyle. Pets help lessen tension between family members and add a lot of fun and unconditional love to the homes where they live. When pets do cute and funny things – which they often do – family members react by laughing and being more relaxed.

If you don’t have a pet yet, consider making one part of your family, but make sure you have the time and resources necessary to provide a stable loving home for your new friend.

If you choose a dog as your new pal, remember this wise old saying. “A dog is man’s best friend.” That’s true in more ways than one. You’ll get unconditional love, companionship, loyalty and relaxation in return for your investment of time and material resources.

What a bargain! 

One morning as I glanced at the clouds from the kitchen window, I noticed with delight that the bougainvillea I assumed was dead had blossomed again. What a surprise to welcome back the purplish-red flowers peeking at me as though to say, “I’m still here.” Grasshoppers unknowingly imported from a hibiscus I purchased had swarmed over my lovely plant and ate the foliage. It was in an awkward spot to spray with bug killer or to pick off the insects one by one. And with my allergies, I was reluctant to use pesticides, so I gave up and stopped watering what remained of the once vibrant flowering shrub—only bare branches. But a downpour of rain from recent storms soaked it, and it came back to life again after many months of lying dormant.

I feel like that bougainvillea whenever I focus on my circumstances instead of on the Lord. When I rush ahead of Him and do things on my own, grasshoppers of discouragement, worry, and fear invade my life. I too dry up after opening the door to these enemies. When God points out I’ve let bugs into my life, I turn back to Jesus and ask Him to forgive and restore me to close fellowship so that I can once again please Him and enjoy the life-giving water of His Spirit and Word.

Has your life ever seemed dry? God’s living water can revive you—no matter where you are in life or what you’ve done. Just turn to Him.

Psalms 51:12   Restore unto me the joy of thy salvation; and uphold me with thy free spirit.

Prayer: Dear Lord, please help me keep my eyes on You instead of on my circumstances. In Jesus’ Name, Amen

Thought for today: Keep looking to Jesus instead of your troubles.

blogs tipsWriting a blog can be rewarding if you keep these tips about how to have a successful blog in mind.


One reason it’s worth all the work is that through blogging you have a great way to express yourself online. In addition, your blog can make money, and you can help others by sharing helpful information. 

Here’s some tips bloggers find useful. 


How to attract readers to your blog and keep them.


First of all, write about what interests you. If you don’t,  you won’t have what it takes to keep blogging year after year. Bloggers need to be persistent to eventually see the results of their hard work.


In addition, keep in mind when you first start your blog, people are looking for information. So learn how to have a successful blog and make them happy. Give readers what they want. Keep providing valuable content so people will follow you. If you want to succeed, collecting an email list is not an option. And build it from the very beginning. 


The best way to entice readers to sign up for your newsletter is to offer valuable free information they can’t get anywhere else. And continue to offer more free stuff. Also, give readers a chance to sign-up for your email list at the end of each post. That’s another how to have a successful blog tip.


Consider adding a pop-up to collect emails at the bottom right of your blog. On it promise a valuable free gift. And as you continue to learn, keep giving your knowledge away. Create downloadable PDFs full of information. You can market your product in your e-book.


Here’s another how to have a successful blog tip. Be consistent. Blog at least once a week. If you send out four posts one week, one the next week, and three the next, it will confuse your readers.


As you get more and more subscribers, don’t neglect the ones you already have. Show you care about the people on your list. Never forget, real people are following you. 


Create a riveting web presence that will attract loyal readers.


Make sure your site is well-designed. A bad design will drive potential subscribers away.


Choose a theme for your blog–a specific topic that will attract targeted audiences. 


Create powerful headlines. Make them simple, useful and bold. Avoid long words–stick to the simple ones. And keep your sentences and paragraphs short. It’s up to you whether you write short posts or long ones. But write at least 300 words or you won’t get indexed by search engines.


Ask yourself when writing a post, would someone email it to a friend? 


Don’t mimic somebody else. Be yourself. After all, there’s only one you.


Always tell the truth and never mislead your viewers. You’ll lose them.


Get ideas from comments on your blog and your Twitter posts and make sure your your content is good enough to share on social media.


Use Google analytics on your site, but wait awhile—at least several months before you keep checking it.


At times don’t finish your posts, and ask your readers to add their input.


Don’t put dates on your posts. Your content will eventually appear irrelevant.


Don’t don’t let your writing sound stiff like you’re writing a term paper. It’s boring. Write like you’re talking to a friend over a cup of coffee—approachable like a real person, not a robot. Use a lot of contractions.  Hang out with your readers in a chatty tone.


Most people don’t read entire blog posts, they only scan them. So write with scanners in mind. Before you begin your post create an outline and use headers. Make a list of 10 items you want to write about and then write headers. Put one in every few paragraphs. Your post will be much easier to read. With the outline already made, just fill in the blanks. 


If you make a claim, don’t forget to back it up with a research and data.


Edit, edit, and re-edit. I use Pro Writing Aid Editing Tool to catch many errors. When I first started using it, I couldn’t believe how many mistakes it found. But even though you try as hard as you can to make a perfect post, it will probably never happen. Later you can update your posts when you find errors you didn’t notice before.


Ihope these tips about how to have a successful blog will help you on your blogging journey.  It may take a long time for you to see results, but over time it can be very rewarding. Many other people have developed a thriving online community. Why not you—if you do blogging right and don’t quit?


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how to write a self-help book step by step



The self-help book industry is booming today, and this category sells well, so it may be a good time for you to consider how to write a self-help book. It’s lucrative since people are always looking for solutions to their problems. Literary agents and publishers like self-help books because they make money for them.


Research Your Self-Help Book

To write a successful self-help book requires a lot of research. First, you must choose your topic from many possible subjects. Do you want to write about anger management? How about how to become healthier? Want to write tips on how to organize cleaning your house, becoming an online entrepreneur, and much more? Once you choose your subject, dieting, for example, you need to narrow it down. How about writing a book about nutritional supplements that help take off weight? 

Envision your audience and the problem they face. You don’t need a doctorate to write a self-help book. But you must have overcome the problem yourself to have something helpful to share. And you must master how to write a self-help book tips.

Research statistics on how well your topic ranks in Amazon. Use relevant sources to find out more. Research case studies and interesting stories and interweave them throughout your book. Start your search for information online and check out relevant forums on your topic. 

Read self-help books written by your competition. To be unique, your book must present different information than the ones on the market. When you read your competitors’ books, ask yourself if the authors did a good job. How could the authors have improved their presentations? Ask yourself how is your book different from what is already out there. Your unique overcoming situation can make your book differ from the rest of the books. And your research will help you establish credibility.


How to write a self-help book: tips

1. Understand your target audience.

2. Know what you’re talking about.

3. Use you and I for a warm tone. 

4. Don’t preach to your readers. Instead come alongside them and share what you experienced that qualified to share.

5. Use a conversational writing style. What would you say to a friend over a cup of coffee? That way you’ll establish rapport with your readers. When you write the book think about your audience as if they are friends seeking advice. 

6. Keep this advice simple and to the point. 

7. Write quality content with real life stories that will motivate your readers. Offer practical solutions and fresh and different content with a new spin. As you present one suggestion, let it lead into another. 

8. Before you write your book, get organized with daily goals of how much writing you’ll do each day.

9. When it’s time to submit your book to an agent or editor, properly prepare your manuscript. With your non-fiction proposal explain your book’s marketability.

10. Proofread your manuscript and invest in an editor.


Self-Help Book Mistakes

1. Don’t write in a self-absorbed manner. Instead, your book should be all about the reader.

2. Readers aren’t interested in theoretical advice. Make sure your suggestions are practical.

3. If all your content is rehashed, your book won’t succeed.

4.  If you neglect to study how the publishing industry works, don’t expect to attract an agent or a publisher.

5. Research literary agents, editors, and types of publishers. Then you’ll prepare yourself to send your book proposal to the right people.

6. In the past it wasn’t an issue, but now with advanced technology you must grow a fan base and a competitive online presence. Without a strong web platform you won’t be able to compete with other writers. And you’ll show no evidence of being able to promote your book like many others are already doing.

7. Your book proposal must be of the highest quality to have a chance at publication. 

8. Does your manuscript reek with typos and poor formatting? If it does, don’t bother sending it to an agent or publisher.


How to Write A Self-Help Book Step by Step

1. List 10 things readers might ask about their problem and create chapters based on those questions. 

2. Choose a compelling title. It should make a promise to the readers. The title should assure your readers you’ll help them solve their problem.

3. Create an outline to keep focused.

4. Write an intro, brief bio showing yourself as an expert, and why you wrote the book.

5. Outline each chapter before you write at least 10.

6. Present one skill or subject per chapter.

7. At the end of each chapter, summarize it and give readers exercises to do.

8. Create headings and subheadings to make it easier for readers and write short paragraphs.

9. Your book should be from 60,000 to 80,000 words.

Write such an excellent self-help book your audience will buy another one from you. They may also want to connect online to get your free material, and they’ll probably buy your products too. 


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how to write a queryWriters, do you want your hard work to pay off? Would you like to find your book at the local bookstore? Isn’t that every writer’s dream? A query letter serves as your introduction to agents and editors. For novelists, it is your first and probably only opportunity to attract an agent. So it’s time for you to learn how to write a successful query letter if you don’t already know how.


If you fail at writing one that grabs an agent, your book will never leave your desktop. Or you’ll have to self-publish and pay for it yourself. 


A successful query letter’s purpose

You want an agent to care about your main character and what happens to her so she’ll ask to see your novel. Agents will judge a book by the quality of your query letter. If it’s mediocre, she won’t ask to see your book.

You may be a great fiction or nonfiction writer, but that doesn’t mean you can craft a great query letter. It’s basically a sales letter, and you may not know much about writing sales copy. You have only about eight seconds to grab an agent’s attention. This requires looking at your book in a different way—as a product and not your baby. Now you must think about its salable qualities. 

Before you write a query letter, do your homework and research what literary agents want. For example, does the targeted agent accept your genre? Do they want submissions from unpublished writers? If they don’t, you are wasting your time. See how important it is to learn how to write a successful query letter.


Query letter tips

1. Your novel must be ready to send to an agent. 

2. Develop a strong internet platform, such as a blog. You’ll be responsible for much of the book’s promotion. 

3. Hire an editor to check your letter for errors.

4. Write to only one agent in each agency. Check with each literary agency’s submission requirements and follow them.

5. You may send simultaneous queries 3 to 5 at a time. You don’t have to mention you’re doing this.

6. The word count should be around 250.

7. A query letter should be a single-spaced, one-page document. 

8. Select black text and font size 12 on white paper. Choose Times New Roman font unless agent tells you otherwise.

9. Hit one space between sentences—not two.


Avoid query letter mistakes.

1. Don’t overuse adjectives and adverbs. 

2. Don’t send a hand-written letter.

3. Don’t use strange type fonts.

4. Don’t talk about how many years of effort you’ve spent to write your novel.

5. Don’t say how much your friends and relatives enjoyed reading your book

6. Don’t misspell the agent’s name.

7. Don’t send anything else until the agent requests it.

8. Don’t brag.

9. Don’t send over one page unless requested to do so.

10. Don’t forget to include an SASE or email address.


Successful query letter layout


On top left of paper

 Type your name and address in the upper left corner. 



Address your letter to each agent by name. Make sure she is still at the agency. If this is an email submission, include your title in the subject line. Type QUERY: TITLE


Paragraph 1

Write a strong lead sentence. Share how you met or had contact with the agent. If one of her existing clients referred you, say so. Share if a famous person vouches for you. In case you’ve met at a writer’s conference, tell her. Say why you’ve approached the agent. Perhaps she has other clients who’ve written novels in your genre, and that’s what drew you to her.

Mention a professional editor edited your book—if one did. Agents appreciate the extra care you’ve put into your book.

Now share the title, genre, word count, and target market. 

In the first paragraph, your hook is what will compel an agent to ask for your manuscript. Boil down your story. What does the protagonist want? Why does he want it? What keeps him from getting it? Make the agent care about your main character.

Your hook should be between 100 and 200 words. Don’t mention over four characters. Three are better. Leave out minor points in the story. 

Now in one sentence mention you have a series in mind if you do.


Paragraph 2

Summarize your story. Tell about your main characters and what happens. And what choices they must make. But end with a cliff hanger. What does the main character what above all else, and what is standing in the way of her desire?

Reveal all this in five sentences or less. Show. Don’t tell.

 How does your manuscript differ from those with similar titles? Tell why your book is unique. Compared it to 4 to 5 similar novels. List the title, author, release year, and describe the book. Show how yours and their books are similar and would appeal to the same people.


Paragraph 3

 This is where are you add your biographical information, but make sure it’s relevant.

Show what qualifies you to write a novel. Why did you write it?

If you have many credentials, put them on another page. If you are an unpublished novelist, you need not include a bio.  But if you’ve done intriguing research, mention it. If you have no meaningful accomplishments to put in a bio, don’t include it. Many agents accept novels from unpublished writers.


Paragraph 4

 Show how you’ll market your book.

 Ask would you be interested in discussing representation of my novel?



 You can close with “warmly” or similar words.

 Type your name and under it put your telephone number and email address.


What to do after submitting your query letter

Wait about a month. If you sent your query letter through the mail, send another copy. Do not visit the agent or call her. It’s probably a rejection.

 An agent may ask for an exclusive read on your book. While they’re doing it, no one else can read your manuscript. If you grant an exclusive reading, do it for a short period—maybe two weeks.

 Most situations are non-exclusive. In that case, if someone requests the manuscript before the first agent responds, tell him your book is being considered elsewhere. But you don’t have to say with whom. Let the first agent knows the second agent offered representation. And give her the opportunity to respond.

I’ve offered several suggestions to help you learn how to write a successful query letter. Now write or rewrite one, and wow an agent. 


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how to write a novelPrepare yourself to become an author by learning how to write a novel. Then before you start, make sure you know your word-processing software in and out.



Many published authors recommend Scrivener, but there’s a steep learning curve. Want to learn it fast? Here’s an online course that will make working with this great software much easier. Click here.

Next, choose a genre. I’ve heard it said to write a detective story, you first need to read two hundred of them. This advice also applies to romances and historical fiction. Here’s a selected list of genres: romance, detective, fable, fairy tale, fantasy, folklore, historical fiction, horror, humor, legend, mystery, science fiction, thriller, and Western.


how to start writing a novel for beginnersHow to write a novel: the basics 

Write a story you would want to read. Think about the books you love that make you live vicariously through them. Do you like mysteries? Write one yourself. Do you enjoy reading historical romances? Maybe you should create your own. 

When getting started writing a novel, ask yourself why you are writing it? Your idea must be something so compelling you’ll persevere and finish your book.


basics of writing a novelIdeas for writing a novel

Decide from the beginning what kind of story you want. Is it a journey plot where the hero searches for treasure or something more important?

Is it a rivalry story such as two brothers competing to win the same woman?


writing a novel for beginnersHow to write a novel: tips for beginners 

Be persistent and commit to setting aside time almost every day to write—even if it’s only for a half hour.

After you’ve come up with your idea, expand it and create a story summary from beginning to end. Then ask and answer questions about what happens to your characters. Although some writers write from the seat of the pants, many writers need an outline. Write on cards a title for each scene and arrange them. Scrivener has that inbuilt function. 


basics of writing a novelHow to write a novel: avoid false beginnings

1. Don’t kill your main character off too soon.

2. Don’t start the book describing the scenery like a travelogue. That’s boring. 

3. Don’t spend pages describing your characters.

4. Don’t create a scene that readers believe is real only to discover it was only a dream. 

5. Many agents aren’t that fond of prologues. They want to hit the story running.

6. Don’t begin the story with too much telling. Show us instead.

7. Use adjectives and adverbs sparingly.

8. Avoid flowery descriptions.

9. Don’t make a secondary character too prominent.

10. Avoid information dumps—especially in the beginning of your story. These are lengthy sections of explanations and background material. You’re telling readers, “Wait, you need to know this before you read the story.” But they’re saying, “Get on with it.”


When you delve into your story, follow these guidelines for creating compelling characters.

Begin with your point of view character. Be sure to make the protagonist likable but flawed and believable. Some authors advise you to work up a dossier on your protagonist. Consider analyzing your protagonist with a psychological test. That way you delve into the depths of your point of view’s character. You won’t divulge all this in your book, but you’ll be able to make your protagonist more believable.

As soon as possible plunge your character into terrible trouble, but before you do, make the reader care about what happens to the protagonist.

Your main character should not be perfect—either physically or in any other way.

Make your character have a deep desire for something.

Give your main character a compelling goal with huge stakes. A story without a problem is no story at all.

In your character preparation list what each one looks like and how they speak. Decide on their motivations and core values and show how they’re connected to one another

In the beginning, create a significant secondary character that interacts with the protagonist.


How to write a novel: choose a point of view.

Whose eyes will view what’s happening? In the first person, use I, in rare second-person use you, in the third person, use he or she. Want to see into everyone’s head like the classic authors did? Use the omniscient viewpoint.


Invent riveting plots.

From the start, fill your readers’ heads with questions and delay answering them. A proven way to begin your novel is showing your protagonist in a stable lifestyle. Then something happens, the inciting incident, that changes everything. One incident causes another. This results in a chain reaction—like dominoes falling over.

You could show the protagonist changing first and then the rest of the story follows. Perhaps the main character i, sick of life as usual and decides to change. The characters will have to be very proactive for this to work.

Give your character a challenging problem to prod the protagonist forward. Without conflict there is no story. It may be external or internal or both.


Readers want to get involved with books where the story moves forward without stalling. Something crucial has to happen in each scene. Each must keep the action going. If it doesn’t, remove it. You can use cards or software like Scrivener to list scenes on individual index cards. Then lay the cards out in the order you desire. You’ll see right away how your story is going. Throw in enough surprises to keep your readers’ interest.

In the end, your protagonist changes for the better or worse by resolving the conflict of the story. 


Make your settings believable

Add sensory details from the beginning and to the end—sight, smell, hearing, touch, and taste. Try to make the setting as real to you as the back of your hand. Go to the location, already be familiar with the place, or research it.


Tips for writing a novel for beginners

When you write your first draft, don’t edit as you go. Take your editor’s hats off and let the words flow. The next day you can edit. You will want to edit, edit, and re-edit your work. Don’t worry about

Don’t worry about the advice you may have heard to write what you know. Instead, write about what you feel. There’s so much information on the internet. If you want to write about something you know little about, research it and then you’re qualified to pursue your book. I’ve almost completed a book about ancient Rome. I researched two ancient Roman writers, Tacitus and Suetonius. After studying their books, I  could write with authority based on their writings.


Here are the basics of writing a novel in a nutshell. 

Your story is about your chosen characters in a setting and what happens to them. Show they change for the better or worse because of the unexpected conflicts they go through. 


How to write a novel: don’t forget to save your work. 

You can use a thumb drive, Dropbox, and other devices. You can even email your work to yourself.


Now decide whether writing a novel is what you really want to do. These tips should help you as you travel the long and arduous journey ahead to publication. 


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How to Write A Memoir


Wondering how to write a memoir agents love? 


1. First, don’t turn it into an autobiography.


Don’t bore your readers with too much background information. Avoid presenting your memoir as a bunch of stories—this happened, and that happened, and then this happened.

Feature outstanding points in your personal history and what they meant to you. Write with a purpose in mind—the message you want to get across. Skip meaningless events and highlight the most important ones.

Build tension into the story. Show yourself plunged into difficult situations as soon as possible. And resolve them. Wind up a changed person from what you went through. 


personal memoir topics 2. Here’s how to write a memoir. Avoid trying to get even.

Be cautious about slandering anyone by name when writing the story of your life. Avoid bashing people who harmed you.

Don’t wallow in your own pity party

when writing the story of your life.

Readers aren’t interested in hearing from whining writers who take no responsibility for their own wrongdoing. 


good topics for a memoir 3. Forget trying to appeal to everyone when writing your life story.

Your experience may be unique and will appeal to a specific audience–not a generic one.

When writing the story of your life, remember, you want your readers to feel as though they can relate to it.

You can target your market by age. Is this a memoir for young people, women, men, or senior citizens? Is this a story that will appeal to single adults? How about sports enthusiasts or artists? Do you want your memoir to appeal to Christians? Missionary stories have been popular over many years. 


how to write a story about your life 4. Don’t brag.

To write a good memoir don’t make yourself out to be perfect. And don’t turn yourself into a victim either. No one is innocent all the time. If you’re comfortable doing so, don’t hesitate to expose your weaknesses. Show where you fell short and your successes in your memoir stories . 


what is memoir writing5. Here’s how to write a memoir. Don’t use your memoir as therapy.

Writing a memoir gives you the opportunity to think about your life and deal with life changes. But don’t confuse writing your book with therapy.

Wondering how to write your life story? Remember, you are not just writing for yourself. You are writing for an audience who paid to buy your book. Avoid focusing on details that make no sense to your readers.

A worthy goal for writing a memoir is to inspire others. How can you  do this? Share experiences others can use to help overcome difficulties in their own lives.


memoir writing ideas 6. Ignore chronology. 

In an autobiography you rely on chronology. But while writing your memoir don’t try to include everything. You’ll bore your readers. Just because something happened to you doesn’t mean it will interest anyone else. 


memoir writing topics7. Don’t preach.

After sharing a scene from your life, if you want to drive home a moral lesson—don’t. If your readers didn’t get the point from your story, a sermon at the end won’t work. Let the story alone give the impact.


writing a memoir8. Here’s how to write a memoir: don’t leave out a theme.

A theme? Yes, your book should leave a message with your readers.

A memoir isn’t a diary or collection of memories. Good memoir ideas feature compelling themes. Here are a few. Persistence pays off. Lived a hard life with many obstacles to overcome? Show how you did it. 

Maybe you’ve overcome nothing and just want to whine about your miserable lot. Don’t bother writing a memoir. No one will want to read it. 

What are more praiseworthy themes? Continued acts of courage can win. Has everything seemed to be against you but you overcame? Tell others about it.


Another worthy theme features the importance of family. Today many marriages are falling apart and children are suffering from broken homes. If you have a story of family closeness and loyalty, write about it. If nothing else, future generations of your family will benefit.

Stories about people standing up for the right thing can make great memoirs. If in the past you fought against wrong and stood against the tide, write about it. Books about people making moral choices in the face of adversity can inspire others.

Stories showing crime doesn’t pay can be compelling too. Did you travel the wrong path and now recognize the error of your ways? You may help someone else to avoid such a terrible lifestyle. But to be a successful memoir, you now must lead an ethical life.

Cut anything not connected to your central theme when writing the story of your life. 


how to write a life story9. Here’s how to write a memoir: don’t tell. Show. 

In an experience in your life did the weather get hot? As an example, don’t say it was hot. Instead, write something like this. “When I walked barefoot outside, my feet struck the pavement like sausages on a barbecue. I raced to the lawn and then returned inside to get my shoes.”

Is someone angry? Don’t say he was mad. Here’s an example of what you could say. “He slammed his fist on the table, jumped to his feet, and strode off—slamming the door behind him.”


how to write a story about your life 10. Don’t ignore feedback from editors.

Choose beta readers and editors who have no connection to what you’ve written.

Listen to their suggestions. Does part of your story makes little sense to an editor? Even if it happened, take seriously her advice to cut that part out.

But you are the writer and have the final say when you write about your life.


I hope these tips about how to write a memoir will help you on your journey to becoming a published author.



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