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Deeanne Gist has rocketed up the bestseller lists and captured readers everywhere with her original, fun historical novels. She has received four RITA nominations, two consecutive Christy Awards and rave reviews her books.

With three-quarters of a million trade books sold, her awards include National Readers’ Choice, Book Buyers’ Best, Golden Quill, Books-A-Million Pick of the Month, Romantic Times Pick of the Month, Award of Excellence, and Laurel Wreath.

In today’s show, Deeanne shares her inspiring story of overcoming rejection and becoming a bestselling traditionally published author.

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Here are a few of the ideas and tips Deeanne shares in this interview:

  • How joining Romance Writers of America (RWA) and attending industry events and educational lectures transformed her career and helped her master the craft of writing.
  • Why Deeanne listened to every single educational cassette she could get her hands on from RWA on writing, publishing and marketing for authors.
  • How Deeanne landed her first agent in 1997 but didn’t get her first book deal until 8 years later.
  • What “Head Hopping” is and why you should never do it in your writing!
  • How to convey character’s emotions and feelings through body language (Hint: read books on body language to learn more on this important tool for communicating in your writing and personal life!)
  • What a “Motivation Reaction Unit” is and how to ensure that you provide your characters’ motivations before they act, NOT after (and why this is so important to keeping your readers happy and engaged in your book).
  • What a Critique Group is, how to find one or form your own, and how to nurture these powerful relationships for creating longterm success.
  • Why you should never make the same mistake trice in your writing.
  • How to never mix up your characters’ eye color or other features again!
  • Why Deeanne uses actors like Jude Law and Sandra Bullock as inspiration for some of her characters to help her visualize them when writing.
  • How to study and research for your books.
  • Deeanne’s powerful and effective writing process that allows her to create a masterful novel every year.

Deeanne uses a circa binder for plotting and planning her books. Each binder has six sections:

  • Characters – including bios, photos, background info, and more.
  • Plotting
  • Research – including documents and important ideas and information gleamed from copious research.
  • Setting
  • Publicity
  • Notes

Recommended Resources for Writers

Deeanne highly recommends the following books for writers:

Techniques of the Selling Writer by Dwight V. Swain

The Writers Journey by Christopher Vogler on archetypes and plot structure.

Anything by Michael Hague on plotting.

Deeanne’s 11th book Tiffany Girls comes out May 5, 2015 at IWantHerBook.com

Join Deeanne on her blog, on FacebookPinterest, and on her YouTube channel.

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