Monday, May 1, 2017

Go Teen Writers LIVE Episode Four

Happy Monday, writers!

I've been away on a writing retreat all weekend with Roseanna White! This is our fourth time in the last five years of getting together for a long weekend of writing, writing, and more writing. We squeeze in some eating, and maybe a walk or two, but mostly we're writing:

Our first full day of writing, Roseanna and I were interrupted by a crazy exciting text from Jill Williamson, who was just reading the latest issue of Writer's Digest and sent Shannon and me this gorgeous picture:

Which she found in this gorgeous magazine:

So, to put it succinctly, our weekend was pretty awesome.

For your viewing pleasure, here's our next episode of Go Teen Writers Live! We answer a question about plot, character, and how they work together:

If you'd like to ask us a question that we will answer live in the future, watch for opportunities to participate in writing exercises on this blog, and be sure to enter on the Rafflecopter entry form below each exercise. (Shan posted a new one last Friday, if you missed it!)

If you missed the previous episodes, the links are below. While you're watching, be sure to click "like" and to subscribe to my YouTube channel to get notified of when new videos are available. Also, leave us a comment and/or feel free to ask further questions about the talk.

Go Teen Writers Live: Episode One

Go Teen Writers Live: Episode Two

Go Teen Writers Live: Episode Three


  1. This was a cool video. I can totally relate to the story taking a new direction. I feel like that's just part of writing(at least for me.) Thank you for this video and congratulations on being in an article in Writer's Digest! That's so awesome.

    Thank you ladies for the content you bring each and every week. I always look forward to reading your blog and being inspired. You've helped me learn the things I wouldn't have ever known. Thanks again.

    1. THANK YOU SO MUCH! And thank you for being so loyal. We're still smiling about the Writer's Digest thing. :)

    2. Thank you for replying! Also, thank you all for making such wonderful content that I know I can trust. All the posts are so helpful and the community in the comments section is so uplifting. I enjoy coming here and using the posts as resources for my writing. I want to thank you ladies for wonderful content. I've definitely learned a lot here that I didn't know and its been super helpful. Y'all are awesome! :)

    3. We're so honored that you continue to hang out with us! That's what makes Go Teen Writers such a fun place :)

  2. Congrats on Writer's Digest. :)

    This was a helpful video for me, especially since one of my characters just doesn't want to work nicely with the plot. I know why she's hurt, but she's just not doing anything to make it better and therein lies the problem. It's time she made some plans--stupid or wise.


    1. Ann, do you feel like you've set up her motivations well? When I'm struggling with that situation, that's the first thing I check. For a character to change, we have to build high enough stakes that they are willing to go on a difficult journey. For me, a character who isn't budging is often a character whom I haven't yet motivated well enough.

    2. Great idea, thank you! I'll see if I can't give her a stronger desire for something.


  3. That was a gorgeous picture! LOL
    I wish I could be part of a writing group that get's together occasionally. That would be SO MUCH fun. :)
    I agree with Ann. I also know why my main character is hurting, but I don't know where the hurt is gonna take him. People have told me that throwing a problem in the story helps you get along with the plot. I need to do that. I'm only on page one in my improved WIP, so it may be a little while. lol
    "What do they lose if they don't follow this path....." -hmm, I'll be thinking on that. :)
    My character's past that's still wounding him? I'm trying to weave in his past into the plot. My story problem DOES need to be bigger. My problem is not making my plot big enough to last the whole novel. I also need to work on making my character better. Oh, my. I have a lot of writing to do. Lol

    1. I definitely think it's easier to build a compelling plot when your character has something they are trying to solve rather than just having stuff happen to them.

      And I think it's perfectly normal to not make plot problems big enough to last an entire novel. That's an element of story telling that I became much better at with each completed manuscript! Be patient with yourself :)

    2. Oh, that's a good idea. :)
      I will! Do you think that if you write\publish your first book, then it'll be bad, since it's your first one? I just thought of that.

    3. It's really different for everyone. I'll say, not many people get traditionally published with their first book, unless they've done lots and lots of edits, but Shannon did! So you just never know.

    4. My goal is to get traditionally published. I'd feel like I'd accomplished more that way. But, that's just me. I'm willing to do lots of, I think i'll meet my goal. :)

    5. LHE: Yeah, my goal is to find traditional publishing, too. I've already written and rewritten my book so many times, lol. What genre are you writing? Also, if you don't mind me asking, what's your book about?

    6. I'm writing realistic fiction. You?
      My book is about a foster kid who's just trying to figure out his worth, and get over the death of his parents. Or, are they really dead? (Sorry if that was cheesy. I'm not good at summarizing. lol)
      What's yours about? If you don't mind. :)
      Wow, I wish you luck! I feels so hard to actually write it. I mean, I start it and then....yeah. Eeh.

    7. My main WIP(because I have so many ideas on my computer in all different genres) is dystopian. It's about the government getting too powerful and pretty much taking control and a group of rebels fighting against them. It's hopefully going to be a trilogy since I have the other books planned as well. I'm doing it different this rewrite and I outlined. I finished this draft about a month ago and now I'm editing which is usually where I scrap the whole thing and start over. I finally took a month away since before I refused to. Doing that has really helped me see the good so I won't scrap it.

      I've been working on it since 2015, I think. It was summer of that year. I had been writing here and there and then inspiration struck and I've stuck with this ever since.

      Sorry, that was kind of a long answer, lol. You're story sounds really cool. It wasn't a cheesy description. I think having that element of surprise will draw readers in.

      I figure I'll get into edits and start looking for an agent, but we will see. That probably means I have to start up some social media, which I haven't wanted to do. I can, I just really haven't wanted to have any social media. The other thing is I've been trying to come up with a pen name. PT is actually the initials of my first pen name, but once I found out what that pen name was tied to, I didn't want use it anymore.

      And I've made this even longer, lol. :D Have a blessed day!

    8. Wow! I usually write in my WIPs and then get so frustrated that I just ditch it. (That's not the best way to go. Lol)
      I can't even imagine writing a book trilogy. J.R.R. Tolkien is amazing! Your WIP sounds like something I would LOVE to read. I wish you luck on your editing.
      I'm so mad at myself for giving up on some of my WIPs, but they just weren't going anywhere. I had no idea where it was going to go. I mean, Im still having trouble with that, but this one seems like it could go somewhere. I'm still keeping my character's name Blake like the last one, but his home life is going to be switched up a little.
      Ugh. I don't want to start a social media thing very much. I mean, maybe a blog, but not anything more. Oh, a pen name? I usually think of choosing something that will make your readers remember you. I was thinking maybe switching up my first or last name, or maybe picking names that mean something. I don't know. Maybe I'm just rambling, but I think that'll be a fun thing to do. Hmm, maybe I could help? I mean, I'm no expert, but I could maybe give you ideas if you tell me some personalities. I dunno. I mean, it's whatever you want. :) Well, I guess sometimes it makes you feel better when you make up things like that yourself, but I'm open if you need suggestions. :)
      I love long comments, so I don't mind at all. lol
      I mean, I started writing a couple years ago. I have so much ideas that are overwhelming me. Sheesh.
      Bless you, PT! :)

    9. Thank you! I have one pen name I'm considering right now, but I'm not sure if it's the one. I know I don't want to use my real name right now. (I mean, eventually, my real name will be out there, especially if God has me speaking on stages to people.)

      Thank you for your offer, though. I may just end up with the name I'm considering right now.

      With social media these days, you just can't be too careful. So many trolls out there. I can't stand when people want to debate other people on practically anything. We all have our own opinions about things. Why can't people just accept that?

      I have ideas nearly everyday. I don't think writer's block is in my vocabulary. I have so many ideas for stories that its really bad. Some I know won't go anywhere. Others I feel like they're meant to be something. It's getting myself to focus on my WIP that's hard, lol. Like I said, I'm reading through and making notes right now. I'm trying to stick to some deadlines I've made because I need to get used to writing under more pressure.

      Some of your WIP may not be meant to be just yet. Having ideas that you ditch doesn't mean you'll leave them forever. You may end up using the base idea or even some characters from there. Or you may go back to the idea with a refreshed mind and end up making it into something else. My WIP had many different plots lines. It had a common theme, but I changed details as time went on.

      Blake's a cool name for a character. My main character's name is Reagan, but she's a girl. I like using somewhat unusual names for female characters. My other main character is a boy named Peter. Those are the main two point of view characters I use, but there is some other POVs in there that add to the plot.

      Since you've thought of using pen names, are there ones you've thought of using for yourself or do you think you'll just use your real name? I guess I just like the pen name for myself just for privacy reasons. There are crazy people out there.

      I'm glad you love long comments because I can tend to ramble on, especially about writing, lol.

      Bless you, LHE :)

    10. Okay! Same here, the more I get out there, people will get to know me by my real name. I mean, I have no idea what my pen name will be as of now. Your welcome. :)

      I know! It would drive me absolutely nuts.
      Deadlines really don't help me because I never stick to it. I know it sounds crazy, but I just write at my own pace. I just let my fingers type what they may. lol I mean, I have so many ideas that are worth my time, and that I think could really help people, but I also know that I need to stick to what I've started. Sometimes, you need to let some things go. Some WIPs just won't go anywhere.
      Oh, yes, I have ideas that I know I will pursue later on. Yeah, at the moment, I'm using an outline of a story that I had started and kind of using it for my new WIP. So, I hope they mix well...
      Thanks! I LOVE the name Peter. I have an old WIP that had a boy named Peter in it. Reagan is a cool name! I've heard it before somewhere.

      I'm still deciding about that. I like my name, but I think it'd be cool if I had a pen name. Yeah, I probably will for privacy reasons, but I'm not sure. I mean, I might just change my first name up a bit. I want to have a name that people will remember when they read my work. :)

      Yeah, so do I, but for me, it really doesn't matter. If you feel compelled to say something, or write it down, then it's worth it. I have endless questions. Lol.
      Do you think you'l use your real name, and just change it up a bit, or do you think you'll change it completely?

    11. For fiction writing, I'm probably going to use a completely different name. I've thought about changing up my real name a little bit, but I'll probably go with something completely different.

      When I do more things along the lines of speaking of God, such as a blog or a YouTube, I might start off with just a nickname and eventually release my real name. Since I know God is leading me to a path to speak more, I know my real name will be out there eventually, but I think I plan to keep my fiction work and my speaking work separate. I may not even reveal I write fiction when I'm doing speaking.

      I heard the name Reagan a long, long time ago when I was reading a book series. It was used for a girl, which I thought was odd. At that time, I didn't like it, but I found the name on a website for names when I was coming up with character names. I have to use websites to come up with names since I have a hard time coming up with names for characters. This is why I have an even harder time coming up with a penname that sounds professional and noteworthy. So far I have a list of pennames.

      With Peter, I was trying to come up with names I don't typically use for male characters. I sometimes have a harder time writing from his perspective, though. I want to make it sound polished. Reagan's perspective is a little easier, lol. Reagan is really the main character, but Peter has a lot of outstanding moments.

      I'm doing deadlines/goals because I've been writing without them for a long time. I work better without pressure, but I also do better with structure in my life, so I thought it would be good to have goals to work to. But usually I do better writing when I feel like it. (Usually a lot, lol. I feel like writing is breathing to me.)

      I like my name, too. I just have always wanted a penname. Later on in life and even if I get published soon (doubt I will. I still have a lot of work, lol) I want to be protected.

      Pennames are probably harder than character names because it's the brand you're putting out there. You're making a name for yourself and its the name you use for your career.

      I agree that some stories need to be let go. I keep all of mine anyway in case a character is needed or plot idea changes and I can use the theme. Yeah, some ideas just haunt me so I write them. It's always fun to get a great idea when you're not near your computer and you can't get to your computer, but you really need to write down the idea. That happens to me a lot. I really get inspired by everything, lol.

      What genres do you prefer reading and writing? (Totally random.) :)

    12. Wow! You are so amazing, and so obedient. Even though you don't want to speak in front of people you would do it anyway to please God. I think that's the best way to go! :)
      Ok, I might keep my first name and change my last name. I really don't know. Lol
      So do I!! I go blank when I come up with names, so I'm totally dependent on those sites. Thank God they're there. I actually was reading a book and there was a character named Blake. I fell in love immediately. Something about it.....
      I haven't made a list. Though, I might do that when I'm done with my WIP. I usually hate writing books with girls in it. I'm weird, but even though I don't know what it's like to be a boy, I'm able to write them well. Meeeee too! Like, in the middle of the night, I drive my sister crazy because I have to write an idea down. Lol
      Me to! Once my mom told me that you can change your name, and writers a lot of time do it, I was immediately drawn to the idea. I also do better with a plan, but ti's SOOOOO hard to come up with one. Sheesh.

      Me to. Well, that's pretty obvious because I'm only on page one!!! *SOB* ONE?!
      Yeah, I mean I want one that I will always like. (Hard stuff.)

      Oh, yes. I keep all mine for just in case I pursue it later. Yeah, I was trying to search for a scene that I could use in my new WIP. Oh my. Like when I'm at a relative's house and leave my laptop at home. I love just writing it all down. I get so much inspiration, and at the wrong times a lot of the time. lol

      I prefer reading AND writing realistic fiction. Though I also like fiction. Fantasy really isn't my favorite, but then again, I do get surprised. lol
      What about you?
      (Random questions are my favorites.) ;)

    13. I like mystery, some fantasy, and realistic fiction. I like dystopian stories as well. Here's a summary of the different genres I've written so far: Dystopian(my WIP), fantasy (medieval type, crazy magical story world,) mystery (One set present time, one set in a time that's not modern, but I don't have a time frame. It's hard to describe that one.) I've also just written things that may be a little more realistic, but I have so many things written in nearly every genre except romance. I think romance adds to stories, but I don't do well with the cheesy stuff, lol. I like action and adventure complimented by romance.

      Some people find it easier to write the opposite gender. I'm doing better at it, but sometimes its hard, lol.

      Having an idea and then not being able to write it down is the story of my life, lol. Not really, but there are many times it happens.

      Thank you! I hope to do God's will no matter the fear. I know fear is a lie that the devil wants us to believe, but it can be hard. God knows this and wants us to know His will for us is so much better than our own. I know He'll work through me when its time. :) It can be hard to listen to Him, but He's been speaking to me a lot lately and I know big things are coming and I look forward to whatever He plans for me to do. :)

      Maybe I should just do the same thing with my pen name. Changing my last name to something different. I'll have to keep that in mind.

      Yes, thank God that there are naming websites. I would have a hard time without them. :) I have a whole file and subfiles just for writing, lol. I like to be organized.

      Plans are hard to come up with. It took me nearly two years to come up with the outline, lol. Writing a draft first to get the bare bones and then an outline is how I work. Maybe one day, my brain will realize I need to outline first, like most people, lol. Probably won't happen. :) So sometimes I don't get organization.

      Some people work better just writing. That's usually me.

      Hey, page one is better than nothing. It's great that you're getting your ideas down and writing an idea that means a lot to you. That's what's important.

      Bless you. :)

    14. Realistic fiction is my favorite, and I think that's the only genre I've done. Lol I like romance, but not when it goes too far.

      It especially is when you're trying to write their feelings. I write is first person, so I really dig deep into his mind.

      Usually my calendar is the closest to me, so I just jot down my idea on that. Lol

      I look forward to hearing about how he uses you! (Hints)
      I've been hearing him a lot, and can't wait to see what he wants me to do with my life. Fear almost made me not listen to God. I know that if he says to do something, then it's always for good. He would never tell you to do something that is wrong.

      I think just changing my last name will be what I do. You never know with me though. Lol I change my feelings so much!

      I usually bookmark them, and just rely on the website for names. It takes so much to actually come up with the story. Lol

      Two year? Oh, no. I think I may be in for it. Well, I usually don't do outlines, but that may be where my trouble's coming from. Outline's are so hard for me to do. I don't know why, but it just is. Organization really isn't my thing. Lol I try, but...yeah.

      I usually just write, but I don't know if that's messing me up or not.

      Yeah, I guess. It's kind of discouraging that I've spent two years coming up with ideas and beginning them, but never ending them. Humph.
      Bless you ^_^

    15. I can't stand some of the books out there today, especially the YA genre sometimes. They incorporate some nasty stuff that I just don't want to read.

      I write in first person, too, but a few ideas are in third person because it fits the theme better. I prefer writing in first, though.

      Thank you! I'm excited to see how He uses me. I know He has amazing plans for you as well. Jesus is greater than fear. :)

      I'll keep coming up with pennames and figure out what I need to do when it comes closer time to publish.

      I bookmark them, too. I save them in folders on the bookmarks and have subfolders for different things on writing. I have a writing bookmark folder on my computer and it has subfolders.

      Some people can't do outlines because it messes them up with their writing. I loosely follow the outline. I don't make myself stick to it because I write better with some idea of what I'm doing, but mostly by just sitting and letting it all flow out.

      It can be hard to stay with ideas when none feel just right. When you have one that just sticks with you, you'll finish it and I'm sure you'll work with the other ideas, too when the time is right. My WIP interrupted a different story I was working on and I haven't really gone back. I've done stuff for it here and there, but my WIP now always came back, lol.

      Have a blessed night. :)

    16. I know! Why would they throw in all that nasty stuff when the general idea of the book is a good one? That just ruins it. :\
      One of my scenes works better in third person, but my WIP is all in first person, so I don't want to make one scene different than the whole book. I'll have to figure it out.

      Thank you! I can't wait to see what wonderful things he has in store for me! :) He is WAY greater than fear!

      As of right now, I'm not worried about my name, so it'll be when I'm all done as well.

      Yeah, I have a writing folder too, which is like SO full right now. Sheesh. That's a good thing though. :)

      With me, I just can't figure them out. I know it might sound weird because it's about my own work, but I just can't write it. I don't even know why. I get bored and scream at myself for not actually writing IN my WIP. Lol

      I'm gonna just stick with this one, and not let it go. It needs to be written. It's so hard, but it desperately needs to be done.
      I have the rest of my life to get my bookishness figured out, so I know I will get more ideas. :)

      You as well! :)

    17. In the Angel Eyes Trilogy, some chapters were in third person and some were in first person. It didn't mess up the flow. The third person characters were never the third person characters, though.

      I just got another idea today, lol. I was supposed to edit, but instead I started writing another idea down. *shakes head*

      I did do some editing today, though, which is good. I just read through and take down notes. Then it's rewrite some things. I realize I can be terrible and punctuation and I tend to type really fast when I'm in the zone, so I misspell a lot or spell different words completely. It's pretty bad, lol.

      I think as long as you are determined to stick with your WIP, it will get done in God's timing. I wanted my book to be done a long time ago, but I underestimated the art that is writing. I realize my message is important and God has perfect timing. Everything will work out. :)

      Blessings :)

    18. Oh. Hmm, that wouldn't work for my WIP. My character would need to be third person in that one scene to make it work. Dang.
      I scream when I do it, but it's so satisfying. I'm gonna try to stick to this one until the first draft is finished. It's SO hard. *pats you on the back*

      Oh, when I see the little, red squiggly under my words, I can't stand to leave it behind. I get in zones a lot too, but my zone is usually ended before it starts because of my crazy fingers. Lol I know, I read through my work and I'm like, "What even is this word? This sentence doesn't make sense. I had to rewrite a sentence cause of it.

      Yeah, me as well. I thought, "Oh, writing a book will be SOO easy." I was dead wrong. It's not an easy thing, but it's my favorite. I also think my message is important. It shows how you can push someone to the point of giving up, it shows redemption, and it also shows everlasting love. I think that those things really need to be heard. Especially now with all the overdoses that are taking place. :(
      Yep, if God wants something, trust me, it'll happen. :)

      Bless you, PT :)

    19. The dreaded red line under the words. *shudders*
      Okay, the red line probably isn't the worst thing, but I hear you. The writing program I use right now doesn't have spell check, so that's even better for me. *sarcasm*

      Yes, I learned a lesson that writing a book is not easy, but it's so worth it because you're able to give a message important to you. I know one day, I'll be published, but that doesn't mean everyone is going to like my book. There are trolls out there and there are people who are just gonna hate, hate, hate. Just got to shake it off. (I don't really like Taylor Swift, but the song's catchy, lol.)

      In all seriousness, I enjoy writing and that's what matters. Same for you. One day, you'll be published and there will be fans and there will be people who may not like it because it doesn't suit them. Everyone has different opinions. (It would be nice if people in the world understood that and let their opinions be their opinions.)

      God is so good. In times of good and bad, He is there. It's so amazing how He loves everyone and how He forgives those who turn to Him.


    20. Oh, my! Yeah, the red squiggly isn't the worst. The worst is when you DON'T have the red squiggly. My writing's going along great so far. I've had so much inspiration, and my writing has emotion from what I could tell. She said she almost cried. (That's what I'm aiming to do. Lol)
      Yeah, I mean, if we're pleasing God with our writing, then who cares if the world likes it or not. It would be for him, not them. (I really don't like Taylor Swift either, but i would be lying if I said I didn't sing along to a couple songs. Lol) We just gotta shake off their comments, and do what we feel like we need to do to please God.
      Wow, I can't wait to see what my story will someday do. Same for you, PT. People may not even like it because it's Christian. I mean, I know that will happen. Yeah, people's opinions aren't facts. Facts are facts. We can't mix the two together. If people say that are writing is awful, then we can say, my writing wasn't for you. I'm here to please God, not the world. Not all writing will be Christian, and we don't have to write Christian work, and only Christian work. But, I feel like that's my little background artist work. :)

      He is a good God. He's not the kind of friend who leaves, when the going gets tough, he always stays with us. He'll always be waiting for us to lwt him in, and let him love us. No matter how long it takes. Even if we were at our dying moment, and we accept him, he'll still accept us.No matter what, he will always be waiting.
      I agree. He doesn't have to love us when we sin, or when we fall short of his glory, but he does. He willingly opens his arms for us to come to him. We can rest in his love an forgiveness. I thank him so much for that. :)

    21. Or when the line appears when you spell "its" and it wants you to change it to "it's" and then you change it and the line still appears. That's the most annoying thing that's happened when it comes to those lines.

      My favorite singers are pretty much all Christian singers, lol. A lot of music mainstream artists make today is just terrible. And dirty.

      Exactly on point! Some people won't like the writing because a mention of God or church or Jesus, but that means they can either ignore that part or they just don't like it. It's allowed. I want everyone to turn to God, but we have freewill and that means not everyone is going to. We just keep praying for the world anyway.

      God is so amazing that sometimes words just can't describe His glory. Amazing is what comes to mind, but even that's not enough of a word. :)

      That's awesome that your writing is going smoothly. I'm sure its going to be awesome! :) I'm still editing and stuff, but I look forward to fixing things up and fine-tuning. After that, I hope to market things, but we'll see. I'm very picky about my book, lol.


    22. That's never happened to me, but it sounds frustrating. Lol I think the site does it on purpose to drive us crazy. Humph.

      Mine too. It's awful. There's this song called "Believer" by....someone. Lol. Anyway, I got such a bad feeling when I heard it. I don't know what it is, but for some reason, it feels demonic. I dunno. The songs are so catchy, but it reals you in. Then, you can't get it out of your head, even when you try so hard to do so. It's crazy what people will do to please this world.
      I mean, it's so sad that people just ignore the truth. Were all going to kneel down before God, every one of us, and we'll be either guilty, or paid for by the blood. You can't just ignore the truth. Deep down we all know. I want everyone to know the most amazing thing that I know, and feel like I feel, but I can't push it on anyone. People build walls. I can't talk to a stone wall. I agree with you. Prayer is what will save them. I mean, that's all I really feel like I can do for certain people.
      I'm not about to say this to brag, but I'll just prove the power of prayer. Okay, so it was like a couple months ago, and i was just talking to God like I had been. I had asked God to use me, and he did. He told me to rebuke the devil. I was so scared. Don't you love those moments when you think a thought when he's talking to you, and he speaks to you about that very thing? He did that to me. He told me to not be scared and that he will be with me. Soooo, I went to a secluded room and just started rebuking the enemy's plans. After I was done, God told me that something amazing just happened. I was so proud that he used me to do something like that. He is so amazing. I'm so happy I know him. :) I'll never be able to put him into words.

      Thank you, PT! I have a problem of going back to things that are wrongly done in the middle of actually writing. Neh. I'm not exactly jumping at the editing part. It's not that it's bad, but I hate cutting parts out. Same for me. It'll be hard to actually say "The End". Lol

    23. I don't think it's bragging to tell what God's doing. He calls us to tell our stories and how He works in our lives to encourage others. I think it's amazing He's working in your life. Prayer is very powerful. I know it works and I know He has our best interests in mind. I just get so joyful talking about Him and what He's done.

      When I write something wrong, unless I know I spelled it wrong, I'll keep going. Corrections are for editing and I used to drive myself crazy fixing the first chapter. I wasted so much time doing that, lol. Also, taking a break when I finished the entire draft, which lasted a month, it helped me see what was good and bad. Before I would scrap it all.

      God's going to use us in amazing ways. (I know I overuse the word amazing a lot, but that's the only word that even comes close to His glory)

      He will use you in ways you wouldn't believe. I know this because He's doing the same for me.

      I don't look forward to writing The End. It will make me really sad to be done, but I have so many other projects that I know I will still have a lot of work ahead of me.


    24. Yes, prayer is very powerful. The more people see in us, the more they know they can do. :) God has done so many amazing things for me. I mean, I'd definitely be dead if it wasn't for him (Figuratively, and literally). He's really kept me going, and saved me from harm. I love him so much, and I know how much he loves me. He loves us all, but we just need to listen to him, and not ignore his voice. :)

      Same for me. If I don't see the squiggly, then I'll just move on. That's kind of scary if you think of it in a publisher's eyes....sheesh. Lol Same for me. I go back and fix things, and take away from the time i could actually be writing. Oh, my goodness. I need to do the same when I'm done. Knowing myself, I wouldn't have any writing left. I'm SO happy because I'm actually going somewhere with my WIP. I just introduced a character that's going to make a huge impact on my story. :D

      I use the word amazing so much, but that just goes to show how much I really care. He's so amazing. Oh, look, I did it again. Lol Anyway, he's all I could ever ask for. His love helps me overcome even the hardest struggles. :)

      I know he will use us! He is already and will in the future too! Here's another testimony: Okay, the other day I was just sitting at the table doing homework, and all of a sudden, I felt a little urge to pray for my Aunt. I was praying in tongues since I didn't actually know what to pray for. Later, she told us that something might potentially be wrong. So, he used me the other day. He's done that before as well. I mean, I didn't even know if anything was wrong, but we need to follow those urges that God gives us. They could save lives. Also, if you have dreams with the same person so many times in it, usually you need to pray for them. Or, if something happens in the dream with that person (usually bad), then that's another way God shows you to pray for them. I've had those experiences sometimes. God is good, and if people don't listen to him, he'll tell us sometimes to pray or do something about it to help the person.

      Me either, but I know I'll finally have a chance of getting it out into the world. That's the good thing. :) Me as well. :)

    25. God is just so good. It's amazing how He uses us in prayer to help others. That's pretty amazing you felt the need to pray for your aunt and then hear she needed the prayer.

      His power is just ... words don't define it.

      I'm so looking forward to the Friday Exercise. It seems there's more activity on Fridays around here. I love reading other people's prompts and seeing what they write. It inspires me.

      I don't look forward to saying The End. I'm writing my book to span into a trilogy, but once its all over, I'm going to be pretty sad, but happy if it's all published. It will be bittersweet.

      Writing is fun to me. Editing isn't so bad either once a system is in place.

      I'm so glad to hear that God is working in your life. He will heal brokenness and help us through the ups and downs.


    26. It feels so wonderful when you know that he picked YOU to pray for someone else. Out of millions of people, he chose YOU to do something. His mind is on us every minute of every day. :)

      He's just so majestic. He's so kind and his love is everlasting. No matter what we do, is love will never end. No matter what. No matter what we do, or what we say, he will always love us.

      Yes! Friday exercises are the best! It IS inspiring. In the mornings, I check to see if they did a prompt. Then I get my hands to the keyboard. Lol

      It's hard enough for me to write ONE novel. The writers of trilogies deserve medals. Remind me when you're done. ;) Lol A bittersweet moment. After one finishes, a new one starts. :)

      I love building characters, and writing their personalities. :) It's my favorite! You're right, editing won't be bad once I get started.

      He will help us! No matter how hard we pull away, he'll always be there. :) I'm so glad to hear how he's working with you. :D

      Bless you, PT. :)

  4. Wow, this is really great! So much to get from that! I often fall into the trap of writing a character that is kinda detached from the plot, so, that's really helpful, although, I'm not sure about changing my character, I mean, they have their personality for a reason...
    From writing a novel from multiple character's POV, it can be interesting, trying to switch entire mindsets so that each individual character's personality and goal matches the plot. Any advice when that is the problem?

    1. Jess, I need you to clarify for me a bit more before I can answer your question very well. Is your question along the lines of, "How do you make sure each POV character has something at stake in the overarching plot?"

  5. I love how each of you gives a slightly different answer. Great perspectives and advice ladies :D

  6. Really good advice here, guys! I love the last bit about continuing to write AS IF you've already made the changes to your first half. I do this all the time and find it extremely helpful. If I go back trying to change things I get discouraged, and if I keep writing without making changes I forget what I had in mind to improve things. Changing things as I think of them (even if it's just the name of a street of how a character speaks) reminds me at the end of the changes that need to be made.
    Thanks so much for sharing!

    1. Hannah, as a young writer I suffered from constantly rewriting the first few chapters of my books. I think it's really common. Like you, I found that it was best for me to push ahead. I really started growing as a writer once I began completing manuscripts!

  7. Oh, and I saw you in Writer's Digest a few weeks ago and that was really cool! I was surprised you didn't know because I thought they would have asked permission or something when they put your website on the list. But that must be an awesome surprise!
    (I had a short piece published in the February issue, and they told me they were going to publish it, but when it came in the mail and I actually saw my name on the page, I think I screamed!)

    1. I saw your post! Wow, I'm so happy for you! I would be dancing all around my room, squealing, and emailing all my cousins. Lol xD
      I go to your site,, and I saw it! Sorry I haven't been commenting! Never mind. I just commented on it. Lol

    2. This comment has been removed by the author.

    3. Congratulations, Hannah! That's REALLY exciting!

      For a list like that where they feature you they don't need to ask or have permission. Just for original work, like you created.

  8. That was a brilliant video! I think I have that problem, too, sometimes, and I'm not sure why my characters are there and what their motivation is - especially my supporting characters. I get into the mindset that "I need these people here so they can do that," but I don't know their motivation or why they would do that. I'm really enjoying all of these videos that you are doing - thank you so much for providing all of this amazing content. And congratulations on Writer's Digest! You definitely deserve it. :)

    1. Thank you, Vera!

      Yeah, it's fine to have supporting characters there because you need them to do something ... but their motivations have to feel authentic. It's tricky! You'll figure it out :) Just that you know you need to is huge!