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Benefits of a Book Club

Joining a book club is one of the most effective ways to understand what readers really desire and expect from a novelist. Though, as writers, we often feel guilty for taking time away from our writing. The easiest way to solve this is to make yourself accountable by joining a book club and committing to being an active participant.

I’m a novelist who writes sapphic blended romance novels. I noticed a major improvement in my own writing when I joined my book club.

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You’ll gain much as a book club member.

You’ll gain a three dimensional perspective on what is most important in a book. Some of the greatest benefits and writing lessons I’ve learned have come directly from my book club meetings.

Join a Book Club to Read More

To be a better writer, read more. Writers have doled out this advice to aspiring novelists forever. A well-read writer is someone who is better equipped to churn out words that matter to a story. The more writers read, the more they will understand the subtle nuances that get readers turning pages. So, get your reading glasses ready, and hone your skills in other areas.

Join a Book Club to Read Stuff You Never Would’ve Read

You’ll read the good and the bad. Everyone has a different opinion on what creates that urge to flip to the next page when their eyes are tired but their curiosity says full steam ahead. You’ll be exposed to books that will take you on journeys you never imagined traveling. You’ll read outside your comfort zone, reach higher into the nebulous world of fantasy perhaps, the intoxicating rush of a heated romance, and turn onto the fast lane of action. This will widen your perspective and grant you a front-row seat to a whole new world of literature.

Join a Book Club to Gain Insight into the Minds of Readers

We’ve all said at one point, “Gosh I’d love to be a fly on the wall right about now.” Well, as a writer, there is no greater gift of insight than that of gaining access to the inner workings of the reader’s mind as she pours over words crafted by a fellow novelist. To understand what readers think about characters, motives, themes, plots, is to understand what makes a great book a great book. What better clarity can a writer possess?

A book club sits you on center stage in front of your readers. The view is spectacular and eye-opening.

Wishing you all the best,

Suzie Carr, novelist

P.S. Let’s keep the conversation flowing… has joining a book club helped you become a better writer?

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The Beauty in Silence

There is a beauty in silence. One of the best gifts we can give ourselves is a few moments each day to be still and listen to our hearts.

comfort zone

Get Out of The Comfort Zone

As a novelist, I’m always interested to learn what motivates people to go beyond their comfort zone to that place where real growth happens. When creating characters, I enjoy learning lessons through them. What makes them act the way they do? Why do they care so deeply for certain things? How did they become so cynical, so happy or so fearful?

A Comfort Zone Can Steal the Magic

comfort zone

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We’re all driven by different things. Our past experiences shape the way we view the world and the way we interact with others. We all come equipped with driving forces that dig deep and push us towards or pull us away from defining moments. Getting stuck in a comfort zone robs us of defining moments.

How do I get out of my comfort zone?

I’m driven by the word CAN’T. When someone tells me I can’t do something, I do it double-time. The catalyst for this motivation to jump out of the comfort zone digs deep.

When I was in kindergarten and sitting in a circle for story time, a girl bullied me. Each time I’d raise my hand to answer a question, she’d hit me. After several grueling rounds of this, I stopped raising my hand and eventually lost all confidence to speak to anyone but my best friend, Todd, and my immediate family members. For two years, I spoke only to them. Talk about getting stuck in a ‘comfort zone’ that was anything but comfortable!

Bribed with adventures and treats that would make any well-adjusted child leap for joy, I turned my back on any hope of being a ‘normal’ kid. Then one day, my best friend begged me to speak to his mother because that was the only way I could go to his baseball game. For three hours, I stood next to his mom as she watched soap operas and waited patiently for me to whisper something, anything, in her ear.

Todd begged and cried for me to brave up and say something. By the end of the third hour, my best friend knelt down exhausted and said to me, “I knew you couldn’t do it.” This little action switched something in me so powerful that I managed to whisper ‘yes’ into his mom’s ear.

I haven’t been able to stop talking since.

Fast forward to high school English class. To graduate, I needed to present my book report to the class. I refused, deathly afraid of public speaking. My English teacher allowed me to present it to him after school.

When I finished, he told me, “You won’t succeed in a professional setting, so get used to working harder instead of smarter. That little insult sparked an inferno inside of me, and I marched off to college shortly after and majored in public speaking, and graduated Summa Cum Laude.

Whenever someone tells me I can’t accomplish something, I accomplish the S*#T out of it!

That is my fuel. What’s yours? What gets you out of your comfort zone?

Wishing you all the best,

Suzie Carr, novelist

P.S. Are you an aspiring writer? Check out my free Writer’s Insights Video Series on tips to help get you started. Hopefully it’ll help you get out of your comfort zone!