Chicago Writers Association Blog
Chicago Writers Association Blog

January 24, 2023

Time to Make Your Old Year’s Writing Resolutions

by Bill Ferris

Previously posted on WriterUnboxed December 8, 2021

Warning: Hacks for Hacks tips may have harmful side effects on your writing career, and should not be used by minors, adults, writers, poets, scribes, scriveners, journalists, or anybody.

This holiday season, give yourself the gift of lowered expectations by making some Old Year’s resolutions.

What are Old Year’s resolutions? Let’s start by talking about what they’re not. I’m not suggesting…

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January 17, 2023

Starting From Scratch, Tip 5 of 7

by Annie McCormick

Tip 5 of 7: Show up.

Steven Hawking once said, “Half the battle is showing up.”

And as you might imagine, he was right. You don’t need me to tell you that. He was right about nearly everything.

We all have tough days, we all hit the snooze button, and…

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January 10, 2023

You Have an Idea for a Novel - What Next?

by Kristin Oakley and Laurie Scheer

You have an idea for a novel, but what do you do next? How do you begin?

Let's Start With the Basics:

  • What is your idea?
  • Write it down. Seriously. Many people say they have an idea for a book and never write it down.
  • What is story?

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January 3, 2023

Show, Don’t Tell Disambiguation

by Tim Storm

Show, don’t tell. It’s a piece of writing advice that is nearly ubiquitous, especially among Western creative writing instruction. I maintain that 1) it’s a good skill to practice and master, 2) it’s not the only path to effective writing, 3) there are, in fact, some potential pitfalls to it,…

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December 27, 2022

Reading Like A Writer

by Jess Lourey

Editor's Note: If you're like me you're always reading articles about writing; looking for tips or trends, advice on how to work through problems, tricks to make plotting easier, someone's fool-proof writing process...
What works for one might not work for another, but what doesn't work at one…

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December 20, 2022

Oral History: Preserving Voices

by Samantha Hoffman

Oral history is a genre I was only aware of in a peripheral way, not one I ever studied or considered writing. In the tradition of Studs Terkel, oral history is a way of preserving memories and experiences of individuals and groups in their own voices. Where written…

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December 13, 2022

Starting From Scratch, Tip 4 of 7

by Annie McCormick

Creativity isn’t just reserved for your writing. It’s also a way to approach the way you work and live.

The career of an agented author is not a traditional one. There are no water cooler conversations, no marketing departments, IT support, 401K plans, or paid vacation days.

The life of…

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December 6, 2022

6 Reasons To Attend a Writers Conference

by Kristin Oakley

As writers we spend a lot of our time at our desks writing, thinking, researching, procrastinating, editing, and writing some more. We often seek feedback from a critique group, critique partner or editor, so we’re not completely isolated in our endeavor, but most of us prefer the isolation. We tend…

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November 29, 2022

How Journaling Helps Your Writing

by Samantha Hoffman

I have been journaling most of my life. I have journals going back to the 70s, called them diaries as a teenager. Back before I was cool. When I was 14 or 15 my mother found one of my diaries and read that I hated her. Like, what teenage girl…

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November 22, 2022

Thanks to the Chicago Writers Association

by Samantha Hoffman

Since it's Thanksgiving time I'm going to take this opportunity to be a little sappy and tell you how thankful I am to be part of the Chicago Writers Association.

I met Randy Richardson, CWA president, in 2012 at a romance writers conference. No, neither of us writes…

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