Tuesday, April 7, 2015

Story Chasers: A Twelve-Step Program for Not Becoming a Successful Writer by DiAnn Mills

DiAnn Mills
We fiction writers chase our stories like toddlers on a sugar-high. I’m one of them. I can dream and plan and plot all day long. Yet sometimes I get sidetracked.

For writers who have a problem staying on task, I’m offering a twelve-step program called Story Chasers (SC). If any of these descriptors fit you, consider your career choice. Creating story may not be for you.
  1. Pacifier Writers
    A pacifier is used to keep a baby from crying. In the instance of a writer, it’s whining about the publishing industry instead of doing the work.

  2. Paint Writers
    Don’t paint your world with illusions such as, “My mom says I’m the best writer in the state. I don’t need feedback.” If you want a realistic edit, ask someone other than a relative.

  3. Passionless Writers
    If a writer’s passion is not for her story, then a reader won’t be enthusiastic about it either. Develop ideas that keep you excited.

  4. Peacock Writers

    Ouch. Pride stops us from success. It also brands us as unteachable. A humble writer learns the craft and develops marketing skills.

  5. Peanut Writers
    George Washington Carver discovered 325 uses for the peanut. A peanut writer is one who writes everything from T-shirt sayings to theology books. Varied interests are commendable, but find a writing niche and stick with it.

  6. Perspiration Writers
    Some writers don’t like to sweat. Writing is a contact sport: our minds engaged with our hearts and fingers. Sweat. It’s good for the soul.

  7. Pickle Writers

    Pickle writers don’t want the challenge of discovery, research, or unpredictable happenings. They also don’t sell their work.

  8. Plumber Writers
    Plumber writers flush all their work down the toilet and never seek publication. Need I say more?

  9. Plywood Writers
    Plywood is flexible, inexpensive, easy to work with and reusable. But it’s very hard to bend perpendicular to the grain. A plywood writer is one who refuses to accept constructive criticism or changes within the industry.

  10. Popcorn Writers
    Popcorn writers are those who jump from one frying pan to another. They submit, are rejected, and submit again without looking at ways to improve their manuscript.

  11. Potato Writers
    Some writers don’t want to write for free. Small potatoes grow into big ones, and those nonpaying manuscripts build a resume.

  12. Piranha writers

    Some writers like to swim through swift waters with published writers, but they have one excuse after another not to work. They never make deadlines. Piranha writers set themselves up to be devoured by the sharks who are swimming upstream.

If you’ve discovered a characteristic that slides you into a Story Chaser, now’s the time to change bad habits and begin the next bestseller.
About the Author
DiAnn Mills is a bestselling author who believes her readers should expect an adventure. She combines unforgettable characters with unpredictable plots to create action-packed, suspense-filled novels.

Her titles have appeared on the CBA and ECPA bestseller lists; won two Christy Awards; and been finalists for the RITA, Daphne Du Maurier, Inspirational Readers’ Choice, and Carol award contests. Library Journal presented her with a Best Books 2014: Genre Fiction award in the Christian Fiction category for Firewall.

DiAnn is a founding board member of the American Christian Fiction Writers; the 2015 president of the Romance Writers of America’s Faith, Hope, & Love chapter; a member of Advanced Writers and Speakers Association, and International Thriller Writers. She speaks to various groups and teaches writing workshops around the country. She and her husband live in sunny Houston, Texas.

DiAnn is very active online and would love to connect with readers on any of the social media platforms listed at www.diannmills.com.

Double Cross
Double Cross
by DiAnn Mills

FBI Agent Laurel Evertson’s investigation into a scam targeting the elderly takes an unexpected twist when key evidence leads her to Morton Wilmington, a felon she arrested five years ago on her first undercover assignment. That case has haunted her since, and though she’s vowed to forget Wilmington—and what she sacrificed to put him away—he is now her best lead.

Houston Police Officer Daniel Hilton fears his grandparents may be the scammer’s next targets, and he’ll do anything to protect his family—even force interagency cooperation. But he’s quickly drawn to Laurel’s empathy and zeal and agrees to follow her lead . . . even if it means teaming up with a felon.

As the unlikely trio uncovers evidence suggesting the scam is more extensive and deadly than they imagined, both Laurel and Daniel find themselves in the crosshairs of a killer. Together they must decide if they can trust Wilmington’s claims of redemption, or if he’s leading them straight into a double cross.


  1. Fun post, DiAnn! Love your 12 "P" analogies, especially #6, "Perspiration Writers." When it comes to physical exercise, I absolutely do NOT like to sweat. I've done my share of sweating through finishing those manuscripts, though!

  2. Wisdom sprinkled with humor. Love this fun post. Thanks, DiAnn!

  3. Thanks Myra and Dawn, we have to laugh at ourselves!

  4. DiAnn - wonderful post. I love those 12P's. I'll refrain from admitting where I see myself and work on making changes.

  5. LOL I'm right there with you!

  6. This is so funny and yet inspiring. Thank you for this insightful post. The pictures you drew will stay with me! So helpful!


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