Posted by: Kerry Gans | January 18, 2018

Top Picks Thursday! For Writers & Readers 01-18-2018

Welcome to this week’s Top Picks Thursday! January can’t seem to decide if it’s winter or spring, but we remain consistent and bring you some writerly links for your enjoyment.

Since it is a new year, Shannon A. Thompson discusses setting 2018 writing goals.

Nikki Demarco explores teaching reading by example, while James Tate Hill asks: do audiobooks count as reading?

Matt de la Pena weighs in on why we shouldn’t shield children from darkness in children’s books.

Margot Kinberg examines plagiarism, and Victoria Strauss warns of possible copyright infringement of your books by Internet Archive.


Writers usually have a ton of ideas they want to work on. So how do you decide what your next project should be? Jami Gold tells us to play favorites when deciding what to write next.

Once you decide, make sure you keep in mind these 5 secrets of good storytelling that writers forget all the time from K.M. Weiland.

Julie Carrick Dalton delves into the intricacies of writing a dual timeline novel, while Kathryn Craft shows how to make the best use of historical elements.

Writers hear so much about “voice,” yet often it is an elusive concept. Dawn Field explores how to develop a distinctive voice, and Mary Kole uses writing vocabulary to streamline voice.

There are certain elements in writing that you need to do well of you are going to use them at all. Laurence MacNaughton tells how to write kick-ass action scenes, while James Scott Bell asks: what’s the deal with dreams in fiction?

Characters do the heavy lifting for our stories. Stavros Halvatzis helps us construct compelling characters, Jami Gold advises tapping into strong emotions with memories, Kassan Warrad shows how to avoid the dark lord cliché, Mareth Griffith discusses insider and outsider points of view, and Janice Hardy wonders if your characters have the right flaws.

We cannot get our work up to professional snuff on our own. Alex Fullerton explains what to expect from a book coach, and Dixie Carlton urges us to let go of perfection paralysis and know when good enough is good enough.

We all want to write more efficiently. Joanna Penn demonstrates how to use dictation for a healthier writing life, and Gabriela Periera shares 3 myths that hinder creativity and how to conquer them.

Sonia Simone has 7 ways to bring more artistry to your writing, Tajja Isen finds the value of abandoning a book, and C. Lee McKenzie looks at writing through catastrophe.


Julie Greenbaum brings us the 2018 book manufacturing outlook.

You know that rule not to query two agents at the same agency at the same time? Janet Reid finds the exception to the rule.

Jane Friedman compiles the best book marketing advice from 2017, while Frances Caballo has 10 tips for introverted writers.

Getting word of your book out is the essence of marketing. Sarah Bolme discusses the power of online book communities, David Wogahn explains how to jumpstart book reviews for self-published books, and Anne R. Allen shows us how to make the most of Amazon’s LOOK INSIDE! feature.

Anne R. Allen also tells us why fiction writers should blog, and Frances Caballo explores how to bring social media to your blog with embedded posts.


Check out these 19 books before their movies come out in 2018.

Peruse these 15 covers for Sylvia Plath’s The Bell Jar—in order from most to least sexist.

Tim Weed explores the mystique of writers and their cats.

Read some early reviews of Dashiell Hammett’s The Maltese Falcon, on the anniversary of his death.

An interesting examination of 20 author photos, then and now.>

Sure, pirates talked funny—but they read books, too. See the fragments of a book found in the wreckage of Blackbeard’s flagship.

That’s all for this week’s Top Picks Thursday! Join us next week for more links.


  1. Thank you very much for the kind mention and link.


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