5 Ways to Optimize Your Writing Even When You’re Not Writing

Makena Beach photo by Cindy Fazzi

Hitting the beach can be good for your writing. (Makena Beach, Maui, July 2014. Photo by Cindy Fazzi.)

Many successful authors—from Ernest Hemingway to Khaled Hosseini—have imparted the same advice: Write every day. But when summer or Christmas rolls around, even the most diligent writer has to take a break for a few days or weeks. If you feel guilty and resentful when you’re not writing, learn how to optimize your downtime. Read the full post »

New Writing Contest: Write About Love!

Maui Seashell photo by Nina Fazzi

Submit a story about something you love and cherish. (Photo by Nina Fazzi, 2014.)

It’s the peak of summer, but Good Housekeeping magazine wants you to write about the stuff that Valentine’s Day is made of. Enter your nonfiction story about your first love or a crush or the one who got away and win some cash prize, plus possible publication. Read the full post »

Debut Author Elise Cyr’s Biggest Publishing Lesson: Be Your Own Advocate

siegeoftheheart_elisecyrAs a teenager, Elise Cyr wrote a story about a girl, her horse, and their desperate escape from a powerful warlock. It wasn’t your typical adolescent musing. It became the basis of Cyr’s debut novel, “Siege of the Heart,” recently published by Lyrical Press. Read the full post »

Publishing: What Do Mergers and Acquisitions Mean for Writers?

The impact of publishing consolidation on writers and readers remains to be seen. (Maui Friends of the Library bookstore; Kahului, Maui; July 2014. Photo by Cindy Fazzi.)

The impact of publishing consolidation on writers and readers remains to be seen. (Maui Friends of the Library; Kahului, Maui; July 2014. Photo by Cindy Fazzi.)

A report by Publishers Weekly shows increased consolidation in the publishing industry, with 26 mergers and acquisitions occurring within the first six months of 2014. The report says improving economic conditions led to more deals. What does it mean for writers? Read the full post »

Are You a Literary Snob? 6 Signs to Watch For

A literary snob, like a driver on a road with no sight distance, has a narrow view. (Photo by Cindy Fazzi. Makena, Maui, July 2014.)

The literary snob, like a driver on a road with no sight distance, has a narrow view. (Photo by Cindy Fazzi. Makena, Maui, July 2014.)

Is reading literature a form of snobbery? Literature has always been associated with the upper class because traditionally only rich people have access to it. They are also more likely to have the education necessary to appreciate literature. But in this day and age of global communication, when you don’t have to be able to read or understand a single word of French to appreciate Proust, is it still snobbish to read “Remembrance of Things Past?” Read the full post »

Author Cate Masters Wants to Empower Women to “Follow Their Bliss”

Goddess-Awakened-MEDCate Masters not just writes, but concocts stories. Her books combine magic, mayhem, and romance. She writes fantasy, historical, contemporary, and speculative fiction. Read the full post »

Multigenre Author Aubrie Dionne’s Advice to Writers: Keep Writing

Aubrie Dionne-Minstrel's Serenade CoverWhether in music or writing, Aubrie Dionne’s patience and persistence have paid off. She encourages aspiring authors to develop the same qualities. “Keep writing. It took me four books to get an agent. What if I’d quit after book 3?” she said. Read the full post »

The “Short and Sweet” Read: Top 8 Novellas

Canoes on Maui Beach 2014

Hit the beach with a novella. (Photo by Vincent Fazzi. Kihei, Maui, July 2014.)

It’s torrid outside. It’s time for a summer fling—make that a literary summer fling. I’m talking about reading something short and sweet: a novella. It’s longer and more satisfying than a short story, without the “commitment” required by a novel. Read the full post »

Lake Bell’s “In a World…” is an Exuberant Exposé of Cutthroat Voice-Over Industry

Film Review: “In a World…,” directed by Lake Bell, 2013

“In a World…” showcases Lake Bell’s refreshing talent and unique sensibility.


“In a World” puts a spotlight on the cutthroat voice-over industry the way “Black Swan” exposed the brutally competitive world of ballet. But the former is exuberant while the latter is grim. Read the full post »

The World’s 10 Biggest Publishers

"Stars" original art by NIna Fazzi

Educational publishing companies were the biggest money makers last year.

To paraphrase a famous Mark Twain quote, the reports of the publishing industry’s death are greatly exaggerated. Despite its ups and downs in recent years, the industry’s 10 biggest companies raked in over $40 billion last year. Read the full post »

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