What are Alpha and Beta Readers?

Writers throw around terms like alpha and beta readers. But really what is that? Why two different groups? Alpha readers Part of the confusion is that there are subtly different definitions depending on who you ask. Some will say that an alpha reader is simply the first people to read it–no other qualifiers. That’s how I defined it for many years. Then I read another description of it which made sense. This definition distinguishes between readers who are writers and readers who are readers. Both types of readers are critically important.

Writing Advice: Write What You Know

“Write what you know.” I’ve heard this attributed to Mark Twain but I’m not sure if this is accurately attributed. If you know more about who first said this, I’d love to hear from you in the comments or email me! The librarian in my is very concerned with giving attribution to the correct people! Many people get frustrated by this piece of advice. I was one of them because I’m a fantasy/sci-fi writer. How can one know about a creature that doesn’t really exist…dragons, unicorns (although maybe they are real, but really good at hiding), and trolls (these do actually appear on the internet all the time, just not in the literal form that I write.) I have a friend that writes about an ICU nurse who turns into an amateur sleuth. As far as I know, she’s never investigated an ACTUAL murder, although she was an ICU nurse. You get the idea right?

1st Acceptance Letter!!! My Short Story is Getting Published!

I was sitting at the lunch table at work going through my personal email when I saw the words "Story Acceptance" in the subject line of an email!! My heart started pounding and my face flushed as I opened the email. Yes! It said my story had been accepted and they will be publishing it in the Youth Imaginations Magazine April edition!

NaNoWriMo for people too busy to write 50k words

Only 4 days until NaNoWriMo! What is NaNoWriMo? Look here. Basically it is a world-wide word count challenge to write 50,000 words in the month of November. I have yet to ever write 50,000 words in one month. I haven't even come close. The most I've ever done is 15,000 words and I was pretty … Continue reading NaNoWriMo for people too busy to write 50k words