Writer’s Toolbox

Author Q&A

Here we present our exclusive collection of Q&As with a long list of illustrious authors.

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Jen Grisanti

Jen Grisanti

Jen Grisanti is the author of the book Story Line: Finding Gold in Your Life Story.

What is your method for overcoming writer’s block?

My method for overcoming writer's block is to write immediately after I wake up. When I come off of dream state, my mind is totally open. For some reason, it comes pouring out of me then.

What are your favorite or most helpful writing prompts?

  • Write like no one is ever going to read it. Let it all come out from the place of greatest truth.
     
  • Identify your pivotal and universal life moments. Write down the emotions that come from these moments. Add fiction to them and apply your emotional truth to the situations your characters are going through in your story. This is where you'll find your voice.
     
  • When thinking about your characters, think about the wound that drives them and the flaw that gets in the way.
     
  • For the first 3/4 of your story, have your central character respond from their ego with regards to the achievement of the goal. For the last 1/4, have them respond from their spirit.
     
  • Start your story with a powerful dilemma. Have the goal stem from the dilemma. Connect every pivotal point in your story back to the goal.

What is the most valuable advice you received as a young writer?

With regards to writing my first book, the best advice I received was to look at each chapter as a conversation that you would want to have on the topic that is the title of your chapter. This little nugget helped to alleviate all my fear about the process. It just clicked.