Free Resources from Author Jill Williamson

Once you get hooked on writing, it's funny how the world shrinks. The publishing arena is relatively small, and you're likely to bump into the same people on a regular basis.

Several years ago I despaired of finding an "in-person" critique group (now I'm a member of four!). I discovered a group of young adult writers online, and joined the group for a year. That's when I met Jill Williamson. She's an amazing critiquer, and I learned so much from her and the rest of the group. I was a total newbie, yet each of them were kind and helpful. And then she co-wrote a study guide with a friend from my small town. Small world indeed.

Back then, Jill was running two books through the group. I joined in on the very tail end of critiquing her book By Darkness Hid, which went on to receive a Christy Award, and is followed by two more books in the series. The other book is just now being released, and is titled Replication. It's waiting on my Kindle (it's a hardship to share my Kindle with my husband--he always grabs it first!).

I love Williamson's website. When I develop a 'real' one, I'll be using a few things I've learned from her site. But today, I'm highlighting a three-part series Williamson wrote on brainstorming new stories. Here are the posts:

Part One-Brainstorming a story before you write: coming up with a great premise.

Part Two-From premise to characters: developing your characters and their motivation.

Part Three-It's time to plot: the what and where of plot points.

Yesterday, we were discussing how to connect with readers in a personal way. Reading Williamson's blog, it's evident that she does this well by corresponding, using social media, and school visits. Want to add a few ideas of your own?


  1. I LOVE the first line of this post - so true! Thanks for sharing these links. Part Two is what is calling me right now!

  2. I love reading about how other people approach plotting. I snag ideas from all over and put them together.


  3. I'm going to check out her website and those links. Plus, I love looking at new websites. I have "dreams" of a real one one day too.

  4. You and I can dream together, Stacy!


  5. Hi, Debbie! I didn't know you are friends with Mary! How fun. I'd love to meet her someday. And it is a small world, indeed.

    Thanks for sharing my blog posts. I always have fun teaching that workshop, in schools, especially. Though most teens always want to write a story about zombies lately. I always find this strange.

    I was glad to have no zombie premises suggested in the NextGen workshop. Ha ha.

    Thanks for your support, Debbie. I really appreciate it. :-)

    I'm actually having my website redone over the next few weeks. In January, it will be new! I'm really excited about it.

    Have a lovely Christmas!


  6. Maybe one of these days you'll get to Colorado! Can't wait to see your new website--I'll have more to take notes on. Have a great Christmas yourself!




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