The ‘Reality’ of Writing: How Reality TV Can Improve Your Books – Episode 2

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by Toni Gallagher

Andy Cohen with Toni’s Book!

Have you ever wondered why you sometimes can’t turn off a reality show? Sure, they have colorful cast members and outrageous premises, but producers need to craft every episode, scene by scene, to hold a viewer’s interest. So what does it really take to create scenes that satisfy?

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Just Do It! Enter the 2022 SCBWI-L.A. Writers Day Contest

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by Brenda Scott Royce

Why do we enter writing contests? Prizes are awfully nice, and hearing your name announced as the winner is a definite thrill. But perhaps even more motivating is the validation that comes with recognition of your work. There’s nothing like learning that the speck of an idea you plucked from thin air and coaxed into shape over weeks, months, or maybe even years, actually has wings and can fly. 

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Comedy Writing Tips for Authors from a Stand Up Comedian and Animation Screenwriter

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by Jorjeana Marie

I sat next to a somewhat distracted woman on an airplane recently. As she was settling, she asked me why I too was headed into the desert. 

For comedy. 

“In the desert?” 

Yeah. Everyone needs to laugh right now. 

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Write for Kite Tales!

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Have a topic you’d like to share with your fellow kidlit community? Want to share your process and inspire other writers or illustrators? Or maybe you have a list of incredible authors you’d like to interview but no idea where you can publish it? Let Kite Tales be your outlet for creative community and discussion!

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Publicity & Marketing: A Case Study – Part 6

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by R.S. Mellette

So was it worth it? Hiring a publicist. Spending $20,000 to promote Kiya And The Morian Treasure, from a traditional publisher that’s no bigger than a self-published author? Let’s look at the numbers. 

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The ‘Reality’ of Writing: How Reality TV Can Improve Your Books – For Real!

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by Toni Gallagher

Reality TV might be a guilty pleasure for many, but believe it or not, there are storytelling secrets in those wild, dramatic, and silly shows that can truly improve your writing. How do I know? 

Well, I had two middle grade novels published by Random House while I worked as an Executive Producer on The Real Housewives of Beverly Hills! And after working for almost 30 (gulp) years in the business, I have seen how the rules of reality TV can punch up a story in need. Hopefully, the things I’ve learned can help you too.

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Getting the Most Out of Critique: The Art of Listening

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This weekend on June 12th, SCBWI-L.A. will be hosting its annual Critique Day which is open to all members of SCBWI. Creatives from all over the tri-regions (and beyond) will have the opportunity to share their work with each other in a safe and structured environment. It is one of the best places to get started when taking those first steps into honing your craft without having to fully commit to a class or pay for a workshop. This event is always free to our members. (Registration for this year’s event is now closed, however, so be sure to check back on the regional page for next time!)

But we’re here to talk about getting the most out of that critique. For first timers it can be nerve-racking just having someone else read your work, but for the seasoned pro it might be a testing ground for an experimental piece. Both need open and honest feedback about the work, but with only a few minutes to read and talk about each piece, how can we best make use of that time?

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When the Writing (or Drawing) Gets Tough: How to Plow Through the Block

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You may have heard about writer’s block, or have gotten stuck mid-way through a story or a sketch. Maybe you’ve redrawn the same scene multiple times only to have to throw away the paper after you’ve erased right through it. These times can be tough, and it’s hard to pick up that pencil and keep going. But that’s what you’ve got to do.

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Publicity & Marketing: A Case Study – Part 5

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by R.S. Mellette

Me and Dad

This blog-umentary started out as an analysis of hiring a PR firm for a small-press book, and I promise we’ll get back to that, but to assess that value for the month of April I have to fill you in on some personal backstory. 

You might want to get a tissue.

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