Chicago Writers Association Blog
Chicago Writers Association Blog

January 19, 2021

What Writers Should Know About Taxes

by L.D. Barnes

Two things we can all be sure of are death and taxes. As a mystery writer, I deal with stories of death and as a tax preparer I deal with the intricacies of taxes. I prefer working on the former, but let’s talk here about the latter, since it’s that time of year.

Two years ago, the IRS dramatically changed the rules by increasing the standard deductions for everyone. It…

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January 12, 2021

What Your Sentences are Telling You

by Katey Schultz

A writer recently asked me if I revise line by line, in chronological order. It seemed like a simple question, but I had to stop and consider it for a moment. In one regard, yes, when I revise I start at the beginning of a story or particular scene that…

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January 5, 2021

How to Write a Memoir: 7 Creative Ways to Tell a Powerful Story

by Brooke Warner

Originally published in The Write Life

Whether you curl up with memoirs on a frequent basis or pick one up every now and again, you know powerful memoirs have the capacity to take you, as a reader, for an exhilarating ride.

When I teach people how to write and…

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December 29, 2020

Butt Off of Green Couch

by Tina Jenkins Bell

In 2000 I contracted a dangerous liver infection which had nothing to do with my lifestyle and much to do with the fact that my immune system was not my friend. My prognosis was dark, but I emerged.

Shortly after my amazing recovery, my brother Ricky was diagnosed…

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December 22, 2020

Historical Fiction…or is it Fact?

by Samantha Hoffman

Historical fiction is a very popular genre; think The DaVinci Code by Dan Brown, Lincoln in the Bardo by George Saunders, everything by Phillipa Gregory. I admit, though, it's a puzzling one for me. How much of it is truth and how much is invented? If someone really wants to…

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December 15, 2020

Weaving Controversial Issues into Your Fiction

by Marian L. Thomas

How to Weave Controversial Issues into your Fiction's Storylines

Life is full of controversy and today's multi-genre fiction readers are clamoring for stories that take a human-centric approach. Readers crave relatability and connection. One way to ensure that your storyline connects is to weave in issues such as social injustice…

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December 8, 2020

The Big Switch – Writing Outside Your Genre

by J.B. Rivard

One of the challenges you’ll frequently encounter is writing in a genre different from your preferred or customary genre. As a novelist, for example, you may be called upon to write a nonfiction essay describing how you work. As a writer of self-help books, you may want to break…

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December 1, 2020

Walter Tevis, Vincent Van Gogh and Me

by Peter Ferry

Have you seen the Netflix seven-part series called The Queen’s Gambit? It is all the rage. Five stars everywhere. It's about a young American girl who is a chess prodigy – well, the chess prodigy. Think Bobby Fisher. She is a genius. She is also an addict.

The Queen’s…

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November 24, 2020

Writers Need Community

by L.D. Barnes

Writing is a solitary endeavor; a person and the blank page in a vacuum, chugging away until a book appears fully formed. This is what many believe is the natural state of a writer. That is how it is portrayed in movies and television, but it is really?

No, and…

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November 17, 2020

Writing a Memoir

by Sophie Masson

Published by Writer Unboxed November 13, 2017

(At left, photo of Sophie at her grandmother’s.)

I was born into a family where stories were all-important. Not just stories you read in books, though those were much loved; not just stories about imaginary people and magical lands, though…

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