writing Category

How to Appropriate by Not Really Trying: An Author’s Guide to Writing Socially Marginalized Communities in Romance

I hate to start a post with a dictionary definition, but this topic needs every card laid out on the table. Let’s begin with the beginning. Appropriation is the act of using something that doesn’t belong to you as if it does. Authors do this hourly. It’s practically our job: we’re professional pretenders. In my published career […]

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Navigating Fear and Instinct

Today’s been a damn weird day, and every last second of it has been me bouncing like a BB between fear and instinct. There are deeper layers than simply this, but today I was coming to Jesus on my novel due end of October hopefully end of November absolutely, and I was also accepting while […]

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The Struggle That Makes the Art

If there’s a frequently asked question I get which isn’t a variation on “How can a girl write boy sex?” it’s a riff on “How can I be successful as a writer?” I think I get the question a lot because I’m clearly mid-list, doing well but not even in the same zip code as […]

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BREAKING NEWS: Media Still Sexist In Reporting of Romance Industry

I write gay romance novels. That statement contains three concepts: I write fiction. I write romantic stories. I write gay male protagonists. It is often assumed by my readership and my heterosexual peers that the greatest “shocker” in that list is that I’m a married female in the Midwest writing gay fiction. But the sad […]

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A PSA on how, when, and why to contact an author, or at least this one

A decade ago I sat with NYT bestselling authors at an RWA function, several of them friends, and one of them leaned over, held my hand and said, “Honey, treasure this time you’re not published. It’ll never be this quiet and easy once you start making your mark.” Another author from this same crew in […]

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PSA: Authors, Write Books, Not War

On Facebook this morning, my husband linked to an article at The Daily Dot about the dangers of blogging/posting at work. Before I even clicked the link to read the post, I laughed bitterly and thought, “Yeah, if only my maxim could be that simple.” Because as an author, whether I talk about writing/publishing or not, […]

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Death By Promotion: Getting Real About the Costs to Authors and Readers in the Current Marketing Environment

My name is Heidi Cullinan, and I’m here to write stories and publish books. I’m not here to market. I’ll do a little of that because one must, because there is no cultural bulletin board right now my books can exist at, especially not mine as I’m a bit niche and still largely in my […]

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Lighthouses: Who I’m Writing For

I’m writing this blog post as a running start as I finalize the last drafts of Sleigh Ride, Book 2 in the Minnesota Christmas series. It’s due in a week, and its completion comes on the heels of turning in Fever Pitch, which I’d wanted completed by December 1 and turned in January 10, only five days before […]

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My Last 1400 Words of NaNo

Next year if I do NaNoWriMo, I’m not doing it officially, which bums me out to say, but it’s the conclusion I’ve come to. I skipped last year because I’d already learned this, but I thought this year I’d be able to get a book done I absolutely had to get done. Then came the […]

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If You Build It, They Don’t Necessarily Come: The Heaven and Hell of Marketing a Book

Warning: this post is long and all about publishing. Possibly boring, do not feel bad if you skip or bail. I have this thing I do where I troll online booksellers, the NYT list, the USA Today list, and every goddamn list there is out there to follow. I watch Bookscan (nearly useless for me […]

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