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Episode 57: Writing & Super Zoloft

In This Episode: Mel got some feedback that was not very positive, but she wasn’t surprised by it. She had a rough stretch in her personal life (hard, not-exactly-podcast-material-kinda-stuff), but she forced herself to finish her pages. When she got her edits back, she admits that it hurt. It felt like she had really screwed up in her writing. Mel says, “It just brought to light how distracted I had been. I was distracted from my story. I wasn’t really connected to it. I was trying to put...


Episode 56: A Writer's Brain

In this episode: Melanie's 8-hour writing playlist“”The GoldbergsThe GoldbergsFerris Bueller's Day OffWonder“”


Episode 55: Ending Chapters & Doing Some Research

In this episode: All writers struggle with something. That something may change every time you sit down to write, but Abby has pretty consistently struggled with how to end her chapters. Jennie gives Abby some story-specific advice about how to end her latest submission. In this episode, Abby also does a little research. Let’s face it, Abby’s research is way more boring than Mel’s. Abby didn’t get to go to a gun range and learn to shoot. Abby didn’t take her car to an ill-frequented...


Episode 54: Author Accelerator Book Coach Julie Artz on MG vs YA

In this episode: In this episode of MomWrites we talk with Julie Artz, novelist and author of blogs at Terminal Verbosity, The Winged Pen, and From the Mixed-Up Files of Middle-Grade Authors, on Twitter, or on Facebook. Julie has also been a PitchWars middle grades mentor, and is active in the leadership of her regional SCBWI. One of our friends in a writers group asks Julie: How do you tell if your book falls into middle grades territory or YA territory? Can you write about a first kiss...


Episode 53: Writer Friends and Written Cliches

In Today's Episode: Finding good writer friends can be hard. And once you throw your work into the mix, things can go bad. Fast. Abby and Mel talk about how they used a FB writers group (Writer Moms, Inc.) to find ladies who give them what they really need from writer friends— emotional support. (Hi there, Joy Rancatore and Mea Smith, we're looking at you!) Also, Melanie finds herself trapped in an embarrassing situation. She finds herself describing one of her characters as if she were...


Episode 52: What's the Worst That Could Happen?

In this episode: What's the worst that can happen if you don't sit down and write? Well, your book never gets finished. Book coach Jennie Nash and Melanie Parish talk about fear as it relates to getting words on the page. More detailed show notes to come! And... VIDEO! Coming soon, highlight reels from Mom Writes episodes. Follow us on Instagram and YouTube for more from Jennie, Abby, and Melanie.


Episode 51: Writing Under the Influence of Emotional Exhaustion

In this episode: “” Abby deals with some S-H-I-T : emotional exhaustion! Power outages! Migraines! ER visits! Parents! Writing wedding vows, shopping for dresses, trips out of state and sick kids! Writing gets pushed aside sometimes when we're dealing with real life. This week Abby channels her emotional woes into her writing and uses it to write an epic car crash scene for her book. (One of the great things about Author Accelerator coaches is that they totally get that you have a...


Episode 50: Clint Edwards and #Expectations

NSFK. Let me repeat. NSFK. (Not Suitable for Kids!) Buckle up, Buttercup, because this episode will take you all over the map when it comes to parenting and writing. Mel said it’s because we're "Grade A Bullshitters" and Clint said, "We gave the podcasting world a real gift with this one. You're welcome." We cover everything from children who narc on their parents, to dogs who pee like fountains, writing when you also have a full-time job, and... well, LIFE. Because sometimes you just...


Episode 49: Creative Obsession with Dan Blank

In this episode: This week, Abby sits down to have a conversation with writer dad Dan Blank about obsession. Dan dedicates his days to helping creatives, specifically writers, with all. the. things. And today he and Abby talk about what to do when obsession derails you from your creative work. They talk about how to harness that obsession, when to give yourself permission to take a break from your creative work, and how to get back on track if you do.


Episode 48: Interview with Writer-Dad Jim Heskett

IN THIS EPISODE: Happy Father's Day to all you writer-dads out there! In honor of, well, YOU, we bring you some interviews with our favorite writer-dads. Kicking it off is thriller writer Jim Heskett. Jim-- besides being pretty kick-butt himself-- has written a pretty kick-butt book chocked full of tips and motivation to help you put your butt in the chair and get the work done. No excuses. Today he shares some of his tips with Abby and Mel. If Jim can balance a full-time non-writing job...


Episode 47: Jennie Teaches Grammar! Italics in Internal Thought

In this episode: To italicize or not to italicize? That is the question. Abby uses too many italics, and Jennie gives some good guidelines to help writers decide when to italicize. Abby turned in a submission that was heavy on internal thought, which meant she had italicized huge chunks of each page. It was distracting, but she wasn't sure how to fix it. Rewrite? Just un-italicize? Leave it? This episode is perfect for those not-so-perfect writers (like Abby!) who sometimes find...


Episode 46: KJ Dell'Antonia-- Happier Parent, Happier Writer

This episode we welcome KJ Dell'Antonia, former NYT parenting writer/editor and cohost of the #AmWriting podcast! Her book, How To Be A Happier Parent, comes out in August 2018. Here are the highlights! -We discuss how to shifting your perspective from the mom guilt of putting your writing first, to setting an example for your kids with your writing. - If you're going to write about parenting, whether it be essays or journalism or stories, it's important to balance the respect for your...


Episode 45: Audrey Monke Interview Part Two

This is part 2 of Abby and Mel's interview with writer, veteran camp director, and mom Audrey Monke. Audrey talks about her upcoming book which encourages parents to bring the magic of summer camp home. In part 2 of the interview, she talks about her writing process, working with book coach Jennie Nash, how she came to get an agent, and more. Check back later for updated show notes.


Episode 44: Audrey Monke on Parenting & Writing, Part 1

An interview with veteran summer camp director and parenting author Audrey Monke. Join us as Audrey talks to Abby and Mel about the challenges of writing nonfiction, as well as her upcoming book about how to bring camp home. In this episode: On this Episode of MomWrites, we're talking with Audrey Monke, about her awesome life as camp director/mom/parenting expert, and the knowledge she's gained in 30 years of experience as a camp director. We discuss the tough lessons of childhood and...


Episode 43: WWYRD? a.k.a. What Would Your Reader Do?

In this episode: We start off the episode talking about Mel, and it’s a shame she’s not there to hear me gush about her work. But I had read her original manuscript, and then this week she had given me her new manuscript to read and HOLY CRAP! It was awesome! So, Jennie talks a little about GOOD vs. GREAT. And that bad work isn’t exactly bad, it’s just not on the page. It’s still in your head. But what writers have to do is make it accessible to the reader. Jennie goes on to talk about...


Episode 42: Lorrie Tom, Family of Writers

In this episode: Abby talks with Lorraine Tom about getting kids involved in writing, the simple ingredients for generating a love of reading and writing in your home, and providing your kids with the skills and tools to become effective writers. Abby and Lorrie go back a little bit, and Lorrie and Jennie go way way back - clear back to 2005 when Lorrie began taking classes from Jennie, before Author Accelerator was even a thing. Lorrie's a writing teacher (middle and elementary school,...


Episode 41: Voice and Message

How to Avoid Being Preachy When You're a Mom and That's Your Gig In This Episode: In a conversation with Author Accelerator book coach Kemlo Aki, Abby solved a problem she'd been having with a book. It was a little problem, but a problem nonethelesss - should kids have cell phones in her middle grades book? Kemlo pointed out an elegant solution and suggested Abby do some further research with actual middle graders. Abby and Jennie discuss the importance of timing - how to percolate a...


Episode 40: The Big 4-0

The Big 4-0, subtitled Can you make him die faster? Good news! In this episode, Jennie tells Abby and Mel that they're in totally different (awesome!) places than they were before as writers. Abby and Mel agree that the problems that they're fixing in their writing aren't as daunting as they were before they started the coaching process ten deadlines ago. In this episode:


Episode 39: Flashbacks

Melanie has left the building! Mel is on vacation! When she returns we can update our show notes, but until then, please enjoy this crappy summary. ;-) In this episode: Flashbacks! And how Abby epically screws them up.


Episode 38: All. The. Things.

In this episode: Doing All The Things One of the most challenging aspects of writing is pulling it all together - what you know about your story, what you know you should do with your story, and all the plot lines and characterizations going on in your head. In this episode Mel and Jennie discuss raising the stakes, avoiding info dumps, and where the line is between not enough and too much information. People either think one thing or the other: “”Jennie points out that Mel needs to...