Your message. In focus.

Creative Satisfaction: Does Your Book...

Creative Satisfaction: Does Your Book Support Your Heart?

When I speak with potential clients or colleagues interested in writing a book, I often find they have several ideas and don’t know which book to write. I sometimes offer strategic advice with my business hat planted firmly on my head. Which idea aligns with your long-term goals? What topic does your client base ask […]

3 Writing Techniques Nonfiction Autho...

3 Writing Techniques Nonfiction Authors Can Borrow from Poetry

(Welcome to guest blogger Rita Lewis, my editor extraordinaire!) It’s spring! It’s what you’ve all been waiting for… National Poetry Month! I can hear the eyerolling now. Nonfiction writers who want to change the world may find poetry a bit… irrelevant. Rhyme? Compressed language? Alliteration? Poetry can be all that—but so much more. It requires […]

Print vs Digital: Three Strategic Rea...

Print vs Digital: Three Strategic Reasons to Publish Paper Books

I love books. I have shelves and shelves of books in the basement—not to mention assorted “pretty” books on display in the living room and stacks and stacks of to-be-read books in my office. Sometimes I wonder if it would be easier to get rid of them and read everything on Kindle. And then I […]

Revision: You Mean I Don’t Have...

Revision: You Mean I Don’t Have to Get It Right the First Time?

When I first said, “I want to be a writer,” I took oodles of creative writing classes that incorporated “workshopping,” a process in which each student shares a draft and the group critiques it. After all the students had offered feedback, the instructor invariably would say, “I think your story starts on page three; cut […]

Opportunity Cost: What’s the Tr...

Opportunity Cost: What’s the Trade-off for Your Book?

“You have one dollar,” our teacher said. “You can spend it on a comic book or on candy—but not both.” She let us think about our choice. “If you choose candy, you can’t have the comic book. And if you choose the comic book, no candy. Whichever item you don’t choose is your ‘opportunity cost.’” […]

Trouble Getting That First Draft on t...

Trouble Getting That First Draft on the Page? Speak Your Book

When new acquaintances learn that I help business professionals write books, they often remark, “I have so many good ideas, but when I sit down to write, they just don’t come out the way I want them to!” After asking a few questions, I often suggest that instead of writing their initial content, they speak […]

Birthday Reflections on Finding Your ...

Birthday Reflections on Finding Your True Self

My heart broke when I saw the news of Ursula K. Le Guin’s death this week at age 88. As a child I found her fantasy and science fiction writing mysterious and subtle and confusing all at once. Her Earthsea trilogy had the greatest influence on me, and the first in that series, A Wizard […]

The Automatic Table of Contents: Your...

The Automatic Table of Contents: Your Secret Writing Weapon

You start with a writing plan—maybe it’s a mind map, maybe a detailed point-by-point outline, maybe just five key points and a few jotted subpoints. It’s your choice, depending on whether you’re a pantser or a plotter, whether you’re doing self-contained or emergent writing. Now you start writing. As the pages grow (because you are super-committed […]

How to Generate and Organize Ideas wi...

How to Generate and Organize Ideas with Affinity Mapping

So you have an idea for a book. You can see your title and your first paragraph AND NOTHING ELSE. The rest is an uncooperative snarl of shifting concepts that refuse to jump onto the screen and fall into a neat outline so you can begin. Enter affinity mapping, a quick way to brainstorm, categorize, […]

The Most DANGEROUS—and Promising—Time...

The Most DANGEROUS—and Promising—Time of the Year

We now enter the most treacherous time of the year—the time of performance reviews and goalsetting, self-recrimination and unrealistic expectations, flagellation for goals forgotten and determination to try again. It’s a lotta pressure, folks. Regardless of corporate HR schedules, there is something about the season itself—the end of the year, the long dark nights of […]

Find Your Voice to Engage Your Reader...

Find Your Voice to Engage Your Readers

“Find your voice,” writers are often admonished. We think we know what voice is, yet somehow it can be elusive. So let’s consider voice as it concerns your business book. Voice and its value Voice is the unique blend of elements—style, syntax, diction—that gives your writing a certain sensibility. It makes your writing distinct, individual, […]

Lessons from a Poetry Submissions Par...

Lessons from a Poetry Submissions Party

This past Saturday, I spent the afternoon with my writing group submitting poetry to literary magazines. While many of us poets publish at least some work on our personal blogs, literary journals are the best way to increase the visibility of our poems and, of course, to build credentials toward one day publishing a “real” […]

Get In Touch

  Phone: 919.609.2817

  Web: http://clearsightbooks.com/

Keep In Touch!

Subscribe to our mailing list

* indicates required



We promise never to sell or share your information. We hate spam as much as you do.


Blog Posts by Category

Why, yes, I DO have an opinion…

My goal is to offer useful information, not only about the craft of writing but also about the strategy of writing and how to integrate your book into your business plan.

And sometimes I write just to amuse myself...

KEY5 Speaker Podcast

Speakers, check out the KEY5 Speaker Podcast on iTunes. Each episode is 15 minutes chock full of speaking advice.

Yours truly is interviewed in Episode 110.