Author’s Corner: Creative Ideas

So, Where Do Creative Ideas Come From? The answer might surprise you. In Paul McCartney’s biography, he shared this secret: “… John often had just the first verse, which was always enough. It was the direction … the signpost … the inspiration for the whole song. I hate the word, but it was the template.” In other words, The Beatles, the most successful rock band in history, used a template to create blockbuster songs. They’re not the only ones. For instance, Agatha Christie, one of the … [Read more...]

Author’s Corner: Branding for an Indie Author

Branding for an Indie Author Many authors mistakenly assume building a personal brand comes naturally, or that it’s simply unnecessary (my fans will know me through my work). I have to admit those thoughts went through my own mind when I started this journey. It was very much like believing “Build it and they will come.” Sadly, with my marketing background, I should’ve known better those assumptions were false. For people to follow you and your work, they need to know some very important … [Read more...]

Author’s Corner: Why it’s Hard to be an Indie Writer

Why It’s Hard to be an Indie Writer The journey of an indie writer can be a perilous one. It’s not a trip for the faint of heart … at least not if you expect to make a living at it. The number of indie writers who’ve made it big can be counted on one hand. It was only a few years ago The New York Times even deigned to include indies on their best-seller list. From the sheer volume today, you’d expect readers and traditional media are both rushing to wrap their arms around indie authors and … [Read more...]

Author’s Corner: What is an Allusion?

What is an Allusion? I talked in my last column about allusions in dialogue being one of the questions I get quite often. An allusion is a reference within your work to another work: a book, a film, a piece of artwork, a known quotation, or even a real event. They’re often used to summarize complex ideas in one quick, powerful image, getting your point across without lengthy paragraphs of description. Think of it as a kind of shorthand that provides greater meaning to what you’re … [Read more...]

Author’s Corner: What’s the Best Way to Write?

I get many questions about the best way to write. I always answer that by admonishing the asker to read, read, read. I can never say that enough. The best way to learn how to write is to read … anything and everything. Read every time you’re waiting somewhere … when you’re sitting in the doctor’s office … when you’re trying to fall asleep. Immerse your brain in words all day long. The variety will give your own work more depth. Read things you like repeatedly. The second time through, try … [Read more...]

Author’s Corner: Questions and Answers

Q & A with R.L. Herron I thought I would try to answer some of the many questions I get about writing. With your permission, I’ll get right into it. What’s your typical writing day like? I try to write at least 1,000 words a day, but life has a funny way of telling you what you need to do at any given moment. It often doesn’t include writing at all. How do you plan your writing? I’m not the kind of writer who starts with an outline, if that’s what you mean. I know there are … [Read more...]

Welcome to the Author’s Corner

Author’s Corner Introduction By R.L. Herron Ask anyone who is retired if they’d like to go back to their youth, and some would jump at the chance. However, I think most would emphatically decline … and a few might actually shudder. Why? Despite our glorification of it, youth is often a time full of worries: school; career; relationships; money; kids. A period with no idea of who we are, or what we really want in life. Most of the time we’re winging it, doing our best to … [Read more...]

Rochester Media Sponsors Writing Contest

Rochester Media is a sponsor of the annual Rochester Writers’ Conference and the writing contest associated with the event. Currently, two contests run per year. The 2014 summer writing contest had four categories with cash prizes for first, second and third places. Each category had a different judge from the local writing community. To acquire the best results, the judges could only see the title and body of the work they were reading. They did not know who wrote and entered the piece. … [Read more...]

Record Numbers at the 2012 Rochester Writers Conference

Success, Five Years in a Row The 2012 Rochester Writers’ Conference has had more attendees every year since it began in 2008. Originally held at Rochester College, organizers moved the event to Oakland University in 2010. Attendees, presenters and volunteers made up the 100 plus writers networking at the one-day conference on October 20th. “I really enjoyed it all,” states Vicki Wilke, returning attendee, “I learned a lot from Lisa Howard, the keynote (Stan Williams), Christine Rhein and … [Read more...]