What a lovely and productive year it’s been! I’ve so enjoyed getting to meet you, and we’ve had a great mix of live and online events for our 2022 Piedmont Laureate programming.

A great big thank you to our sponsoring organizations: Raleigh Arts, United Arts Council, Durham Arts Council, and Orange County Arts Commission. Without these fabulous groups, the Piedmont Laureate program would not exist. Check out their websites, and if you’re interested in following the Piedmont Laureate program and/or learning more about terrific arts programming in our area, consider signing up for their email newsletters.

Throughout our journey together this year, we’ve explored story beginnings, middles, and endings. We have considered the writing life and what makes a powerful story. We have dug deep into how to revise a manuscript until it shines. We’ve talked about crafting an immersive story world. We’ve strategized about setting writing goals and overcoming the obstacles life puts in our way.

Some highlights from the blog:

We’ve chatted about what makes an effective title: https://piedmontlaureate.org/2022/10/04/tips-for-finding-a-great-title/

We’ve explored different ways to plan your story: https://piedmontlaureate.org/blog/page/2/

We’ve learned about fiction genres: https://piedmontlaureate.org/2022/05/31/fiction-genres-explained/

If you’re working with beta readers, here are some questions to ask them: https://piedmontlaureate.org/2022/07/11/10-questions-to-ask-your-early-readers/

What happens when you hit a wall? I offer some tips here: https://piedmontlaureate.org/2022/06/13/when-you-hit-a-wall/

As I reflect on our year together, I’ve been particularly impressed with your engagement.  You have shown up ready to learn, to write, to be inspired, and to share your wisdom with others. Together we have reached writers embarking on self-publishing and others seeking agent representation toward a traditional publishing deal—and writers from all walks of life with diverse interests and experiences.

Your range is broad, and wow, you have such fascinating ideas for books! We have talked about fantasy novels, mysteries, stories born from real life, romance, young adult, literary fiction, historical fiction, science fiction, children’s fiction, thrillers, suspense, crime fiction, inspirational fiction, short stories, and more.

Your life experiences are unique. Your journey thus far may have been full of ups and downs, twists and turns. And here you are—you have arrived at this present moment. The moment might not be perfect, but you’re here and you’re ready.

You’re a writer. It doesn’t matter if you’ve published or won awards or taken a class. Toss all those “have to’s” or “should haves” or “somedays” to the side for a minute. Say it with me: I’m a writer.

You’re the best person to tell whatever story you want to tell. When you hit a snag or write yourself into a corner or lose your momentum, come back to this guiding principle. What’s the reason you want to tell this story?

Yes, writing can be a tough business. Rejection is part of the game. When you get discouraged, I urge you to keep going. You’re the best person to tell this story. And we need your story.

Let’s stay in touch! Here’s where you can find me: