Are Writers Addicted to Suffering? 4 Chicago Pros Say Yes, But…

My teenage son and I were watching the movie La La Land and the ending made him sad. It brought up memories of his first heartbreak, which happened in the not-so-distant past. I wished I could comfort him or tell him that someday those feelings will be transformed into painless memories.

But the truth is I don’t believe heartbreaks ever completely leave us.


How to Write 3 Weekly Blogs in Just 30 Minutes

Do you work with clients? If you’re a service provider, or healthcare practitioner, therapist, real estate agent, or anyone who works one-on-one with a variety of people, this blog is for you.

You have an opportunity to powerfully connect with your clients by simply sharing your interactions.

Maybe you have a weekly newsletter or a blog already up and running. You likely have a website and an email database. So how often are you communicating with your fans or followers or potential clients?


The Most Important Hallmark of a Good Writer

Sometimes, like it or not, you have to practice what you preach.

In a writing class I’m teaching, we talk about finding inspiration. My advice to anyone struggling to find a story is always to tune into what’s happening right here, right now, in front of you. I like to say that we don’t find the story, the story finds us.

So when the time came to face the blank page today and decide on a topic, I had to take a mental inventory of my week. How have I spent my time? What have I been thinking or talking about?

Then came the groan. Oh no….not that.


The Dirty Little Secret About Being a Writer

I’m not proud of the fact that there are unwashed dishes in my sink, a pile of unfolded laundry on my bed, or a family of dust bunnies under my dresser. But I’m writing. And when my writing time increases, my usually high cleaning standards take a dramatic fall.


3 Common Blogging Myths That Are Hurting You

You’ve learned a thing or two in this lifetime. Maybe you know the secret to making the perfect souffle. Or how to be a stepparent to kids who refuse to say your name. Or maybe you want people to know how prayer has changed your life. Whatever it is, there is some message that you feel called to share in a blog.


How to Keep Writing When Life Throws You Curveballs

Whew! What a roller coaster 2016 has been. From the World Series to the presidential election, I’ve had my share of late nights, nail biting, close calls, celebration, and despair.

During Game 7, in the bottom of the third inning, Carlos Santana crushed a curveball to right for a single, bringing Coco Crisp home and tying the game for the Cubs. And millions of hearts pounded.


5 Reasons Journaling Can Save Your Life

This week I’ve been preparing to talk to health care practitioners at a nursing event about the benefits of journaling. I wanted to share the same information here, most of which is gleaned from a wonderful book called “Writing Down Your Soul,” by Janet Conner.

Why is journaling such a valuable activity?


What Is Your Writing Style? Take My Quiz.

Writing is hard. There’s no point softening that sentence with qualifiers. It’s just hard.

James Joyce said, “Writing in English is the most ingenious torture ever devised for sins committed in previous lives.” Elizabeth Gilbert says that 90% of her writing life consists of nothing more than unglamorous, disciplined labor. “I work like a farmer,” she says, “and that’s how it gets done.”

Take this quiz to discover how what your learning style is and how it affects your writing. Once you know your style, you can use it to your advantage to make writing easier.


Why Plagiarism Makes You a Better Writer

Pssst. I’m going to urge you to steal the ideas in this blog. Because I did.

But before the blog police come busting in my door and drag me in front of the court of ideas where I’ll have my misused words thrown in my face and—

Wait, this is starting to sound like a dystopian novel when it’s supposed to be a blog.

Here’s the truth:


Writing Tip #15 : Use Active Rather Then Passive Voice

This week my client Katie and I had fun diving into this distinction and found that it’s not so easy to explain active vs. passive voice. To clarify, I turned to Grammar Girl, who says, “In an active sentence, the subject is doing the action. In passive voice, the target of the action gets promoted to the subject position.”