Tosca Lee

Tosca Lee

My number one rule of writing is always to write as though no one will ever read it. Because it allows you to be as bold and audacious and set aside the fear that so often plagues writers.

‘Queen of psychological twists’ Tosca Lee is the New York Times bestselling author of eleven novels. She tells us how it took six years for her first novel to be published, why it’s important not to hang your entire identity on writing and how she plots her high-octane thrillers.

Jamie Mason

Jamie Mason

I fell into banking as an adult and I used to try to make my business memos interesting and funny out of sympathy for the poor bankers and customers and vendors who had to read them. Sometimes people would say, “Jamie, you write the best memos. You should be a writer.” And yet, it still didn’t occur to me to actually try it until I was in my thirties. 

Suspense author Jamie Mason writes ‘whydunnits’ filled with normal people finding themselves in dangerous, extraordinary situations. She tells us about her ongoing fight to be a more disciplined writer and the evolution of her outlining process. 

Natalie Lakosil, Literary Agent

Natalie Lakosil, Literary Agent

I represent authors who do both traditional publishing and self-publishing, and most of them are looking to move into traditional publishing because the pace and demand of a successful self-publishing platform takes its toll after a while. But, some authors thrive on it! It’s a personal decision based on the goals and needs of each author.

 Natalie Lakosil has been a literary agent for over 10 years. Now with the Bradford Literary Agency, we catch up with her to talk about what she looks for in a query, what to expect when you sign on with a traditional publisher and when you should begin querying your book.

Angie Kim

Angie Kim

I’m a horrible procrastinator. I have the worst time starting new chapters or scenes, and I just force myself to sit in front of my blank screen and just type whatever I need to in order to get started.

Angie Kim had four careers prior to becoming an author. Family medical issues prompted her to begin writing in her forties, leading to the release of her award-winning debut novel. We catch up to talk about the value of short stories, finding a literary agent that champions your work and pushing through procrastination.

Natasha Deen

Natasha Deen

Breathe, enjoy it. You’re chasing a dream and whether you’re in the valley or the mountaintop, being a dream chaser makes you the luckiest person in the world.

Natasha Deen’s confession? She didn’t grow up wanting to be a writer. Writing is the hardest thing she has ever done but she loves it because writing means creating stories, and stories change the world. We chat to hear about the five questions she asks to outline her books and how she balances self-care with a productive writing schedule.

Libby Kirsch

Libby Kirsch

I don’t really believe in writer’s block—writing is a job just like any other. Your dentist doesn’t decide she can’t fill your cavity today because she’s “blocked”. She does the job, and so must you!

Emmy award-winning journalist Libby Kirsch turned to writing mysteries after the birth of her third child. We catch with her to talk about her 5 am writing routine, treating deadlines with respect and how she outlines her work.

Jill Orr

Jill Orr

Good writing reflects clear thinking. If you’re struggling with how to write something, it’s almost always because you are not sure of what you’re trying to say.

Jill Orr was a thirty-something mother with two young children when she began writing fiction. She was looking for a creative outlet but doubted that she could write a book. That was eight years ago and this month she finishes her sixth novel. We talk to her about finding your niche, how pantsing works for her and the value of in-person events.

Mattias Edvardsson

Mattias Edvardsson

I have learnt to sit down and write, anytime and anywhere. It’s an important lesson: I see too many writers who wait for inspiration instead of just sitting down writing. You can always rewrite and improve a story. You can’t do that with a blank page.

Swedish thriller author Mattias Edvardsson began writing in secret, never attending a writing class until his debut novel was published. Now with his fourth novel reaching the top of the charts in Sweden and being released internationally, he talks to us about prioritizing writing and creating your own writing rules.

Ali Novak

Ali Novak

Stop worrying about grammar and spelling and finding the perfect synonym. That’s what editing is for. Allow yourself to write badly the first time around. Nobody writes a best-selling, awarding-winning novel on the first try.

Contemporary YA author Ali Novak began early. She wrote her debut novel at the age of 15, publishing it on the Wattpad platform. She shares with us her tips for silencing your inner editor, her morning writing routine and why she doesn’t read book reviews.

Bre Hall

Bre Hall

I’ve trained my body to need writing the way it needs oxygen, so the knot in my stomach and the burning sensation to set fingers to keys is motivation enough. Is it healthy? Probably not.

YA author Bre Hall made me laugh out loud with her ‘grandma’ stories. She assured me that tales of her wild gun-toting grandmother’s unconventional life and horrendous driving are all she needs to relieve a case of writer’s block. We also covered the benefits of slowing down your book launch to build up anticipation, developing immunity to rejection and changing from a plotting outliner to a pantser.

Nicole Blades

Nicole Blades

Storytelling has always intrigued me. It’s at the core of being a human being. It’s what makes us, us. Through it, we can learn about ourselves, about the world and our place in it.

Nicole Blades is a juggler of time. She is a novelist, speaker and journalist of over 20 years, not to mention being a mother, podcaster and most-recently personal trainer. We talk to her about her top tips for starting a podcast, becoming comfortable with self-promotion and what to do when life gets in the way of your writing.

Julia Phillips

Julia Phillips

What you publish has got to be more compelling to readers than a TV show, a night out with friends, or a nap. Why should someone choose your writing over everything else in their lives?

Julia Phillips wishes her daily writing routine consisted of waking up early, writing thousands of words before breakfast and spending the rest of the day exercising and drinking green juice. The reality, the Brooklyn-based author informs us, is somewhat different. She sits down with WildMind Creative to discuss career success as a measure of self-worth, enjoyable book marketing methods and seeing your fellow writers as colleagues rather than competitors.

J. L. Willow

J. L. Willow

It's really easy to compare numbers (number of likes, comments and reviews) and equate that to how good you are as a writer. But the fact is that everyone is at their own point in their writing journey and it takes time to become successful.

Thriller author J. L. Willow on how she avoids comparison syndrome, music as the backbone of a productive writing routine and forming genuine connections with the writing community.

Erika Gardner

Erika Gardner

Whatever book marketing method you are passionate about is the one that will be most successful. Why? Because you’ll follow through, you’ll work at it, and you’ll enjoy yourself.

Fantasy author Erika Gardner has always been a storyteller seeking to find magic in the mundane. We talk to her about evocative soundtracks, why you should polish your work to perfection prior to submission and the value of taking a break.

Amy E. Reichert

Amy E. Reichert

The only way out is through. When deadlines are looming and I don’t know how to fix a problem, the only way to overcome is to keep working until it’s fixed. Eventually, a solution will arise.

In 2010 Amy E. Reichert entered NaNoWriMo and begun to write for the first time. During that month she discovered a passion for storytelling that hasn’t left her since. The life-long Wisconsinite now writes feel-good novels that celebrate the food and people of her state. We catch up with her to chat about comfort fiction, creating a skeleton draft and how Buffy the Vampire Slayer encouraged her to keep going.

Natasha Tynes

Natasha Tynes

It’s not too late to start writing your first novel. By the time my debut novel will be published, I will be almost 43. If you have ever had that dream of writing a book, do it. Don’t put it aside. Start writing now.

Jordanian-American author Natasha Tynes worked as a journalist in the Middle East for over a decade before writing her first fiction novel. We chat to her about how she stopped thinking about writing and begun actually doing it, the unusual way she found her publisher and why she doesn’t believe in writers’ block.

Karen Katchur

Karen Katchur

I thought, I want to do that. I want to write stories that evoke emotions in readers. I know this sounds oversimplified, but after that, I just sat down and started writing. I think storytelling has always been inside me. I just didn’t know I wanted to write down the stories I told myself in my head. 

Karen Kutcher knows a thing or two about perseverance. It took her four novels and eight years to land an agent. It was another two years of waiting before she was able to hold her first published book in her hands. We chat to her about her writing routine (with thinking time scheduled in), the ongoing juggle of family life and how Oprah inspired her to start writing.

Jennifer DiGiovanni

Jennifer DiGiovanni

You need to celebrate the small wins, like an agent request or personalized feedback from an editor, because that really carries you through the constant rejection. 

YA author Jennifer DiGiovanni thrives on a challenge; from taking up a new hobby (under the guise of book research), to running a small business and co-writing a book with a friend. We talk to her about finding the best time of day to write, seeking out writing mentors and her ‘soft’ approach to book marketing.  

Karma Brown

Karma Brown

If you want to be a writer, then be a writer…Write every day (even if it’s only 100 words), read every day, and focus on the big goals.

Marketing director Karma Brown thought making the leap from copywriting to novel writing would be relatively simple. It turned out to be much harder than she thought and it wasn’t until her forties that she became a published author. Now working on her fourth fiction novel, with a non-fiction book also in the works, she chats to us about early morning writing, her three-step strategy for staying motivated and crying over scenes in Starbucks.  

Patricia Nelson (Marsal Lyon Literary Agency)

Patricia Nelson (Marsal Lyon Literary Agency)

Not only does a debut need to be well-written, it also needs to have a stand-out premise that will entice readers to try a new author and the visibility and promotion to get it on people’s radars in the first place.

Patricia Nelson was always a voracious reader and went to graduate school to be an English professor before realizing her dream job was to become a literary agent. In this insightful interview she fills us in on what authors can do to stand out in a crowded market, her advice for authors seeking representation and when it’s the best time for authors to begin querying.