Saturday, May 8, 2010

Inspiration L.A. Banks style

Every writer will tell you that a writing conference or workshop with a serious full-time author will inspire all of us who are struggling to move from unpublished to published, and energize those who are published but perhaps "only" ebook writers or writers who haven't even hit mid-list. Yeah, it can be a brutal business.

So, to spend the day with the gracious and humorous L.A. Banks (and have a fantastic dinner with her last night) can indeed inspire.

She, like her friend Jonathan Maberry, has an incredible energy about her. They share a philosophy which feels so right for anyone in any field: Stay true to yourself and stay positive. Whatever energy you expend into this universe, send positive vibes. Never jinx a project with your own negative thoughts.

Some highlights of the day:
  • Ask yourself questions about your work. How is it different? What are the hot trends of the marketplace and how does my book fit? Can my project fill a void in an underserved market? What current movies are similar to my project?
  • Find new communities to expose to your work. Have your writing group and/or critique group help you brainstorm marketing opportunities? How can multimedia trends serve you?
  • Work conferences to find new communities and to have face time with agents and editors.
  • If you're not sure what regional dialogue sounds like, call the local Wal*Mart.
  • Don't underestimate the sense of smell.
  • What is not said is as important as what is said.
  • All classic stories follow the model laid out in Joseph Campbell's The Hero with a Thousand Faces.


  1. Disclaimer - Leslie and Jonathan are among my best friends and fellow members of the Philly Liars Club.

    But there's a reason I roll with these two amazing authors, and you nailed it; their positive energy, optimism, and sheer drive are forces of nature, and just being around them is an inspiration on so many levels.

    I was hanging out with Leslie on Thursday night at the Moonstone Arts Center, listening to her tell the story of a mother of five writing her first novel - her story - and I while it was funny and tragic and inspirational, it made two things crystal clear to me: NOTHING stops a writer from writing, and no matter what obstacles you have to overcome along the way - sometimes over and over and over again - opening your heart to The Light is the only way to fly high.

  2. Angel, thanks sooo much! It was such a pleasure hanging out with you ladies at Apollo--OMG it was simply divine :) The great food, great laughs, and then the following day to meet the rest of the group (that had a couple of guys, too)... I've been telling all my fellow Liars Club buddies how wonderful you all were. Thank you for inviting me to the Pocono-Lehigh Valley Writer's Conference. You all are an awesome group and really supportive of each other--how cool is that!