Author Archives: Jen Matera



Jen Matera

in Articles, On Writing

That Book Won’t Write Itself, You Know

That Book Won’t Write Itself, You Know Okay, I’ll admit, this article should be titled “That Article Won’t Write Itself, You Know,” as I sit at my computer and stare at a blank screen, three hundred other things distracting me from actually writing anything at all. Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, pictures from the weekend—they all tease me with their instant entertainment, but none of them are...

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23 Mar 2015
in Articles, Commonly Confused

Commonly Confused: Four Less Common Pairs

Commonly Confused: Four Less Common Pairs I love words. I get a kick out of twisting a sentence around or subtly shifting its meaning with the replacement of one little word. From passive to aggressive or formal to casual, the switch of a noun or verb can make all the difference in your phrase… or sentence… or paragraph. It’s vital, therefore, to ensure you’re always...

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18 Mar 2015
in Recs

Divas Rec: “Ten Top Tips to Instantly Improve Your Writing” by Julie Lawford

Divas Recommend: Ten Top Tips to Instantly Improve Your Writing by Julie Lawford I’m always looking for writing tips. Whether they’re for my personal use or to share with our readers, I like to recommend sites and authors/bloggers who give a fresh perspective and look at things from a new angle. This is why I’m recommending Julie Lawford’s article, Ten Top Tips to Instantly Improve Your...

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05 Mar 2015
in Articles, On Writing

Point of View: Keeping Your Voices Distinct

Point of View: Keeping Your Voices Distinct Most of the authors I know are women, and one of the biggest struggles I see with women authors is writing a realistic male character—or at least making the male protagonist’s voice distinctly different from that of his female counterpart. Too often there is little variation in voice or tone when the point of view changes from female lead...

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23 Feb 2015
in Articles, Commonly Confused

Commonly Confused: Complement and Compliment

Commonly Confused: Complement and Compliment Today’s commonly confused pair is actually not so commonly confused, it just happened to be a pair I saw in something I was working on.  I’m a total word nerd, so I like understanding why we use certain words in one circumstance and certain words in another.  So I researched complement/complementary and compliment/complimentary. According to Merriam-Webster: Complement:  Noun—Something that fills...

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18 Feb 2015
in Recs

Divas Rec: Writing the Back Blurb by Shannon A. Thompson

Divas Recommend: Writing the Back Blurb by Shannon A. Thompson Recently, Diva Lauren wrote this article on how difficult authors find writing blurbs, whether they’re short 75-word synopses for back material or longer 300-word summaries for promotional materials. In it she offered some helpful tips in the form of a list—yes, I love lists!—to help authors organize their information and get that blurb written.  While...

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05 Feb 2015
in Articles, On Writing

Using Everyday Life to Improve Your Story

Using Everyday Life to Improve Your Story If you’ve read any of my writing articles, you know I’m a huge proponent of writing what you know. Often authors try to write about topics, settings, or situations of which they have little or no working knowledge, and this can become shockingly clear within the first few pages. One of the ways to write what you know...

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26 Jan 2015
in Articles, Commonly Confused

Commonly Confused: Wrack and Rack

Commonly Confused: Wrack and Rack In our series on commonly confused terms, we’ve come across some very common terms, but this article focuses on a pair of terms that, while commonly confused, aren’t quite a part of everyday speech. The verbs wrack and rack are both transitive verbs, which means they take a direct object. Both words have noun forms, but here I’m just focusing...

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21 Jan 2015
in Recs

Divas Rec: Caveat Venditor—Top Five Mistakes KILLING Self-Published Authors

Divas Recommend: Caveat Venditor—Top Five Mistakes KILLING Self-Published Authors By Kristen Lamb   It’s a new year, and with a new year comes a new diet, new exercise plan, new resolutions.  So it should come as no surprise that I’m recommending one of my favorite go-to author/bloggers, Kristen Lamb, whose article, Caveat Venditor—Top Five Mistakes KILLING Self-Published Authors, gives a fresh look at some hazards...

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08 Jan 2015
in Recs

Divas Rec: Wikipedia is Not the Bible by Lauren Schmelz

Divas Recommend: Wikipedia is Not the Bible By Lauren Schmelz It was really hard to narrow down my list of favorite articles by Diva Lauren because she writes with a snarky intelligence that I just love. But as a copy editor, one of my responsibilities has historically been verifying research, so this article, Wikipedia is Not the Bible, hit home for me. No, she’s not bashing...

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02 Jan 2015
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