Summers are for writers (and lovers, too).

Thursday, June 4th 2015 • Advice, Goals

I am writing this with a calendar full of dates spread out in front of me. The calendar’s covered in four different pen colors from all the dates that I’ve circled and crossed out and written on. The calendar’s full up on trainings, conferences, weddings, planning, appointments, and more. In fact, I can’t remember a summer this packed full of things to do.

If you know me, you know that my summers are for writing. They’re for hiding away in coffee shops and finishing a book. That will be me this summer, too, but I’ll admit that it’s a bit more daunting this year than usual.

But that doesn’t mean that I won’t be writing!

At a time like this, I remind myself of the strategies that I’ve used before to break through busy periods. I like to give myself notecards with scenes to write on and an outline to follow. I know that I will need all the structure in the world to finish this book, but I also know that I can do it. I also know that every book needs a little life, so I also know that I want to enjoy all that this summer has to offer.

So, wish me luck, wonderful readers. Next time I check in, I hope to be telling you about another finished summer novel.

Until next time,


Are you going to #Bookfest?

Tuesday, April 14th 2015 • Events, Mara

Festival of Books

I am thrilled to announce that I will be signing books at the SCBWI booth on Sunday, April 19 at the L.A. Times Festival of Books! You can find more information here about the signing and take a look at all of the other amazing authors that will be there. I’m looking forward to a wonderful weekend celebrating books. Until then, don’t mind me as I lock myself away and edit, edit, edit.

Happy writing and reading!


5 Reasons Why You Need a Writing Community

Tuesday, February 17th 2015 • Advice, Writing

Taken from

As a Creative Writing major in college, I had a writing community built in. I would show up to my two or three (or sometimes four) writing classes a day, freshly printed drafts in hand, and pass them out for workshopping. There was structure for the feedback we received: sometimes, peers had to write comments on the drafts, or they were graded for telling us the positives and negatives during class. It was fluid, varied based on our different professors, but it was always there, that community. That community that made sure that, at the end of the day, I had written something. And more than that, people read it, and then they told me all about how they felt.

I cannot stress enough how important something like this is for a writer, and how much better it makes your writing. I also cannot tell you how hard it can be to find and keep this community, but let’s get to that next time. For now, let me tell you five reasons why you need a writing community.

Reason #1: Writing is not a solitary job.
No matter what you have been told, writing is not something that you do alone. You do not disappear into a coffee shop, hammer on your keyboard for five hours, and produce a perfect draft. Beyond that, when it gets to publishing, you will never be able to avoid people (whether you want to or not). There will be someone telling you to put more conflict here, to take out the description here, to hack off a chapter or two. Even if you go the self-publishing route and you do the cover, the editing, the formatting, and everything else by yourself, there will still be that last part. You know, the one where someone reads your work. A writing community helps make sure that you’re ready for those parts where other people get involved. They’ll save you by telling you that you named one of the characters two different things. They’ll tell you that the pace is too fast, or maybe they’ll tell you that it’s not fast enough. They’ll point out plot points that you weren’t following. It helps because, even if you don’t take the feedback, you’ll at least make every decision knowingly. If someone says they find your protagonist unlikable in a review, you can be confident knowing that you knew that, that you intended that. It will make all the difference.

Reason #2: Writers understand you.
Imagine that you’re out to dinner, listening to your friend’s story, when suddenly, you hear it. Someone having a hissed argument right next to you, and you know that it’s just the right dialogue for your story. If you’re like me, your hand’s itching to grab the notebook in your purse to write it down. If you’re with another writer, there’s no question. That notebook’s out before they finish their sentence, no apologies needed. It’s the beauty that comes with befriending other writers: they get that there’s no pause button on life, and when you see a great writing opportunity, you need to take it.

Reason #3: They know all of the great writing places (coffee shops, museums, and secret hideaways).
There are no exceptions to this rule. My writing friends have introduced me to some truly incredible spots.

Reason #4: They care more about your characters than you do.
It makes all the difference. In the past, I’ve felt beaten up by a draft, and then I walked into a critique group where people were asking about my characters. They wanted to know if I’d worked on a specific scene, or if I’d fixed my villain issue. Hearing that concern, or hearing that people wanted me to finish something, was enough to keep me writing.

Reason #5: This is a hard business, and you need friends.
It’s true. We face so much rejections as writers, and we face it at every stage. Ideas might be off, or a chapter might not work, or our favorite agent might turn down our best project. That’s when you need other writers to lift you up and to tell you to just write 200 more words. Then 500 more. Then, before you know it, you’ve written the entire draft.

Happy writing!


Is it February already?

Saturday, February 7th 2015 • Black Hill Press, Books

I remain unconvinced! How can it already be February? Well, it’s been busy. That’s my only excuse!

On Monday, I got to be on an amazing Black Hill Press panel with some incredible authors. I always love the chance to hang out at Book Soup. It’s seriously a labyrinth of books with all these great places to just hang out and read. I got there about an hour or so early just to explore. Sometimes, that’s the best part.

Here's me with my babies at Book Soup. What a blast!

Here’s me with my babies at Book Soup. What a blast!

In addition, I’ve also partnered with Black Hill Press to do a Valentine’s Day giveaway of Mara. Check it out below and don’t forget to like the Facebook page for updates!

Until next time, wonderful people!

© 2013 Veronica Bane. All Rights Reserved.