Nancy's Books

Sunday, August 26, 2012

Shushing the Inner Critic/Call for submissions

You know your inner critic—that voice in your head that says your writing is not worth its weight in kudzu. The one that asks, Is that the best that you can do? Who would want to read this? We writers can be our own harshest censors. We agonize over every word as we plot out the story and write the manuscript. Let’s look as some ways to put the shush on that inner critic. It can be our worst enemy.

When beginning a new story, focus on getting the story written, not getting it written in finished form. The first draft is not supposed to be your best effort; that’s why it’s called the FIRST draft. Allow yourself the right to make mistakes as you get the words strung together. Correct the mistakes later through revisions, which may include several drafts to polish the manuscript. Good writing comes from rewriting.

Keep a folder of positive feedback from editors, writing partners, critique buddies, friends, and family to bolster your confidence and filter your own negative thoughts. \
Treat your inner critic the way you would treat a pesky individual who is pessimistic or cynical in regard to your writing: ignore or counter with positive thoughts.

Convert your inner critic to an ally and veiw it as a writing partner. Consider the negative messages a citique of your work. If the negative voice is saying the paragraph isn’t working, a character isn't full developed or the dialog is cliche', use your writer’s critical eye to reexamine the piece. Make the inner critic a valued resource.

Next week, I’m beginning a series based on Sensory Description. And in each blog from September through May, I’ll list markets that accept manuscripts from adult and young writers.

Call for submissions for adult writers:
HarperTeen and Figment are partnering to provide YA writers with this contest opportunity to get their story published in an anthology along with other well-known YA authors. The contest challenge: Write a story that takes place at night or in the dark. The story can be of any genre: contemporary, paranormal, horror, science fiction, romance, humor, fantasy, etc. What happens in the dark? Why are things different at night? Maybe it’s magic, or madness or both. A new anthology coming Summer 2013 from HarperTeen, Defy the Dark explores those questions and invites you to try your hand at answering them.

What’s in it for you? A chance to be published in Defy the Dark. The winner will be noted in the book’s table of contents, on the copyright page, and have a byline on their story. The grand-prize winner will receive a $500 cash prize awarded by HarperCollins and five copies of Defy the Dark.
Deadline: September 1, 2012
Details at
Check out more contests on my blog:

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