Category Archives: Writing

Join Me May 5 at Arts on the Ridge, Ridgeway, SC

Arts on the Ridge Literary Festival, Century House, Ridgeway, SC

I am super excited. I am a featured author on Saturday, May 5, 2018 at the Arts on the Ridge, Literary Festival at the Century House, 170 S Dogwood Ave in Ridgeway, SC from 10:00 am to 3:00 pm. I’ll do readings from Flip Flap Floodle and Joan’s Elder Care Guide at 10:45 am. I will be able to answer a few questions, too. I hope you’ll stop by if you’re in the area. I’ll have copies of both books for sale. I’ll be happy to autograph them for you. I’d love to see your smiling face. 

11 other authors (bios below) will be there on Saturday to greet you, too. Come join us for a great time. 

Free parking is available in the Cotton Yard.

Ridgeway merchants will be offering show specials throughout the town.

The 12th Annual Arts on the Ridge Art Show & Sale will be held on May 4th and 5th in downtown Ridgeway, SC. This year’s theme “Opening Doors to the Arts and Beauty of Small Town Life” has inspired yarnbombing of 15 downtown objects, a Literary Festival with a gallery of 12 published authors, a juried photography, juried plein air painting and open art show & sale featuring cash prizes.

“We are so wealthy,” explained event Chair, Phyllis Gutierrez. “Our community is so blessed with a treasure chest of talented painters, sculptors, photographers, and artists that it is easy to overlook the large number of published authors that live here among us. This year we are excited to be including and celebrating the literary side of art with a gallery of 12 published authors who will be available for book signings and one-on-one discussions of their craft.”

The St. Stephen’s Art and Fiber Guild will be covering trees, lampposts, benches, road signs, rocking chairs and more with colorful yarn craft in an effort to make a statement regarding how important arts and crafts are to the community.

Friday evening, May 4th from 6 to 8 p.m., visitors are invited to preview the art exhibition and sale and vote for the People’s Choice award. A juried photography show and sale and a juried plein air painting show and sale are on exhibit along with the open art categories both Friday evening and all day on Saturday at the Century House. Vendors featuring hand crafted items will be located on the Century House grounds.

Arts on the Ridge Literary Festival, Century House, Ridgeway, SC

Saturday, May 5 events will kick off at 10:00 a.m. with performances by students from Geiger Elementary School. At 10:20 visitors can enjoy a presentation by Doug and Louise Ruff, members of the Go Forth Ridgeway Chapter of the Institute for Cultural Communication.

The Literary Festival will kick off at 10 a.m. on Saturday with authors scheduled to be on hand from 10 a.m. until 3 p.m. at the Century House. The Authors Gallery includes published authors Johnny Bloodworth, Tim Conroy, Lisa Anne Cullen, Joan Y. Edwards, Mike Long III, James D. McCallister, Beaty Miller, Betty Parker, Tom Poland, Raegan Teller, Marv Ward and Millie West.

The authors will also be public speakers for our “Meet Me On The Porch” feature at these scheduled times: Ward 10:30am, Edwards 10:45am, Conroy 11:00am, Teller 11:15am, Bloodworth 11:30am, Parker 11:45am, Long 12:00 noon, Cullen 12:15pm, West 12:30pm, McCallister 12:45pm, Miller 1:00pm and Poland 1:15pm.

Here are bios of Featured Authors:

JOHNNY BLOODWORTH says, “We Southerners are more a product of our place and time than other aspects of our being. I am a storyteller, and when I tell a story, I need to connect to place and time. My roots are Georgia, but South Carolina is home. My places are Columbia where I grew up and worked, and the Cedar Creek community near Blythewood where my wife Sandra and I have lived for forty-five years. Before writing Gift, my story telling consisted of turning an incident or a joke into a tale about friends or family. Gift added discipline to the creative process.”

TIM CONROY is a former special education teacher, school administrator, and vice president of the South Carolina Autism Society. His poetry, essays, and fiction have been published in literary journals, magazines, and compilations, including Fall Lines, University of Georgia Press, Auntie Bellum, Jasper, Blue Mountain Review, and Marked by Water. In 2017, Muddy Ford Press published his first book of poetry, Theologies of Terrain, edited by Ed Madden, poet laureate of the City of Columbia. A founding board member of the Pat Conroy Literary Center established in his brother’s honor, Conroy lives and writes in Columbia.

LISA ANNE CULLEN is the author or editor of eight children’s books and a member of the Society of Children’s Book Writers and Illustrators. She holds a Master of Fine Arts degree in writing for children and pairs this passion with her love of illustration, art, photography, and screenwriting. Cullen has won awards for her artistic and written works and finds pure joy in connecting with the natural world. Her author-illustrated, picture book folktales Little Orange Honey Hood and Three Wild Pigs are being released through the University of South Carolina Press/Young Palmetto Books spring and fall of 2018.

JOAN Y. EDWARDS is the author/illustrator of folktale Flip Flap Floodle, a happy little duck who never gives up on his song even in Mr. Fox’s belly. She is author of 4RV Publishing’s Joan’s Elder Care Guide. It is full of practical hints and resources to promote healing and make care-giving easier. She has a Master of Arts in Education and is a member of the Society of Children’s Book Writers and Illustrators (SCBWI), and the Charlotte Writers Club. She and her husband, Carl watch humorous mysteries, like Columbo and Monk. They relax at the beach and in the mountains.  Dream! Love! Laugh! Never Give Up!

MCKENDREE R. (Mike) LONG III is a retired soldier with two combat tours and the author of several Western novels: Brodie, Higher Ground, Dog Soldier Moon, and No Good Like It Is. His awards include the Parachutist Badge and the Combat Infantryman’s Badge. He and his wife Mary have two married daughters, four grandchildren, and four great-grands.  He holds a BS in Business Administration and is also a retired financial consultant. He’s a member of Western Writers of America, South Carolina Writers Association, and SERTOMA.

JAMES D. McCALLISTER, besides working as a media archivist, newspaper columnist, small business owner and educator, is the author of numerous academic and magazine publications. His fiction efforts are highlighted by a short story collection and four novels including his latest, Dogs of Parsons Hollow (Mind Harvest Press, 2018). Along with a number of awards for short fiction, McCallister’s upcoming novel Dixiana (2019) was a finalist for the Faulkner-Wisdom award. A lifelong South Carolinian, McCallister resides in West Columbia, SC, with his wife Jenn and their beloved brood of cats, muses all.

BEATY MILLER broke the Mennonite tradition of Lancaster, Pennsylvania, and continued her education past eighth grade and graduated from high school—the first to do so in her family. At nineteen years of age, she accepted the position to teach at a parochial school. Later, she resumed a full-time job as a secretary.  After a promotion to the office manager, Miller started classes at Reading Area Community College and earned an Associate Degree to become a registered nurse. She began a twenty-year geriatrics career, ending as a Personal Care Home Administrator. After Miller and her husband relocated to Rock Hill, she wrote her memoir, My Last Name is Grace.

BETTY PARKER is a professional speaker, author, and trainer. In 2006, she started Sharper Development Solutions, Inc., a training and development company specializing in leadership skills training and coaching.  Betty is a regular guest host on WLXC-FM’s “N Touch” community affairs program and is often sought out as a speaker for conferences and events.  She is at work on her next book, Defeating Goliath:  A Lesson in Solving People Problems.  Parker is a Certified Professional in Learning and Performance (CPLP) through the Association for Talent Development and a Certified Professional Coach.

TOM POLAND, a Southern writer, has works appearing in magazines throughout the South. Among his recent books are Classic Carolina Road Trips From Columbia, Georgialina, A Southland, As We Knew It, and Reflections of South Carolina, Vol. II. Swamp Gravy, Georgia’s Official Folk Life Drama, staged his play, Solid Ground. Poland writes a weekly column for newspapers and journals about the South, its people, traditions, lifestyle, and changing culture and speaks to groups across South Carolina and Georgia. He’s the editor of “Shrimp, Collards & Grits,” a Lowcountry lifestyle magazine. His new book, South Carolina Country Roads, will be released April 16, 2018. Tom lives in Columbia, South Carolina.

RAEGAN TELLER is the award-winning author of the Enid Blackwell series. Murder in Madden (Pondhawk Press, 2016) was her debut novel, followed by The Last Sale (2018). Both mystery novels were inspired by real-life cold cases in Columbia, where she lives with her husband and two cats. Teller writes about small town intrigue, family secrets, and tales of murder, and uses fiction to bring closure where there was none in real-life. She is a summa cum laude graduate of Queens University, Charlotte, and a member of Sisters in Crime, South Carolina Writers Association, and Charlotte Writers Club. More info at

MARV WARD, Reverend,” a blues and Americana singer, songwriter, and guitarist, has performed throughout the United States with some of the most well-known musical artists. Listed in An Encyclopedia of South Carolina Jazz and Blues Musicians, Ward writes poetry with the same passion with which he composes his songs. His latest collection “One Lone Minstrel,” represents some earlier work, as well as recent efforts. A native of Lorton, Virginia, Ward lives in Columbia, South Carolina, and has two sons. He previously served in the United States Naval Reserve and has worked in broadcast and educational television throughout North and South Carolina.

MILLIE WEST is a South Carolina history buff who has spent countless hours exploring the rich historical vestiges of her home state. She is the author of two novels, The Cast Net and Catherine’s Cross. In 2018, a second novel in The Cast Net trilogy, Of Sun and Rain will be released. Millie has also written three screenplays, an adaptation of her novel Catherine’s Cross, and Amelia Was Here! Her third screenplay, Dr. Portia, chronicles the life of Dr. Portia Lubchenco, the first female graduate of the NC Medical College. West is an University of South Carolina graduate and resides with her family near Columbia. More info at

I’d love to hear from you. Click comment below and scroll down.


Never Give Up because YOU ARE AWESOME!

Joan Y. Edwards
Copyright © 2018 Joan Y. Edwards


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Joan Y. Edwards
Copyright © 2018 Joan Y. Edwards


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Join 2,659 other followers

Please subscribe now to join over 442 Valued Subscribers and receive entertaining, encouraging posts PLUS 3 free gifts:

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  2. 20 Affirmations for Writers
  3. Ten Time Savers for Writers and Illustrators

Engage Readers with a Lively Long Bio

 “Engage Readers with a Lively Long Bio ” by Joan Y. Edwards
 Engage Readers
I wrote Power Pack Your Short Bio for Agent Queries. I’m sure you may ask, “What about the bio for the back of my book? What about the bio for my website? ” Today I explain ways to engage readers with a lively long bio section on the back of your book known as: About the AuthorWith some books this information is inside the cover, or in a page near the end of the book. It may also be the About the Author page on your website.
Write a draft biography. Brainstorm and list every single detail you can think of that makes you proud to be you. What helped you write your book?

Part A Professional photo of you.

Part B About the Author for Nonfiction

If you wrote a nonfiction book, put appropriate information that helps readers realize that you are definitely qualified to write this book. 
Show credibility:
  • Past Professional, Business, or Work experience 
  • Current Profession or Business (Membership in Professional organizations, like SCBWI, RWA) 
  • Education – List this only if it proves you are qualified to write this book

Part C About the Author for Fiction/Nonfiction

  • Special Recognition, Accomplishments, and Awards (Brag humbly)
  • Publications: Titles of Books, Title of Series, Names of Magazines that published your work 
  • Personal details 
    • Live with husband, wife, children, pets
    • Where you live
    • Hobbies and special interests
    • What you love to do when you’re not working
    • Your favorite charity and why
    • Personal Experiences that make you the best one to write this book (research)
    • Contact information: website, email address, phone number 

Tucker Max gives splendid examples of author bios for the back of the book. I highly recommend that you read it.

Dave Chesson states: “The general consensus on word count is aim for 75 words, but definitely don’t go above 150.” 

If you have a whole page in a book for your bio or you want to give more information about you on your website or blog, here is an idea for formatting your draft.

Make your long bio two or three paragraphs. Begin with most powerful bit of information about you. Something spectacular to capture the interest of the reader. A hook.

  • Make the first paragraph 3-5 lines. Start with an eye-opening statement…the most powerful bit of information about you and your book(s). Write something spectacular to capture the interest of the reader. A hook.
  • Five to seven lines is a good length for the main paragraph in a bio. You don’t want all paragraphs this long. Vary the length if you’re using more than 3 paragraphs.
  • One to three lines for last paragraph


Below are bios from Amazon, bios from author’s websites, and bios from for you to study.

Four bios of authors on Amazon:

Hoda Kotb author of I’ve Loved You Forever. Amazon author information.

Hoda Kotb is the Daytime Emmy Award, Edward R. Murrow Award, and duPont-Columbia Award-winning Today show co-anchor and Dateline NBCcorrespondent. Hoda is the author of two adult New York Times bestselling books, including Hoda: How I Survived War Zones, Bad Hair, Cancer, and Kathie Lee. Of all her accomplishments, her proudest moment is the adoption of a baby girl, Haley Joy, in February 2017. She lives in New York City with her boyfriend, Joel Schiffman.

James Patterson author of All American Murder, Amazon author information.

James Patterson holds the Guinness World Record for the most #1 New York Times bestsellers. His books have sold more than 350 million copies worldwide. He has donated more than one million books to students and soldiers and has over four hundred Teacher Education Scholarships at twenty-four college and universities. He has also donated millions of dollars to independent bookstores and school libraries.

Sophie Kinsella, Author of Surprise Me. Amazon author information.

Sophie Kinsella is the author of the bestselling Shopaholic series, as well as the novels Can You Keep a Secret?, The Undomestic Goddess, Remember Me?, Twenties Girl, I’ve Got Your Number, Wedding Night, and My Not So Perfect Life. She lives between London and the country.

Danielle Steel, Author of Fall from Grace. Amazon author bio.

Danielle Steel has been hailed as one of the world’s most popular authors, with over 650 million copies of her novels in print. Her many international bestsellers include The Mistress, The Award, Rushing Waters, Magic, Blue, Undercover, Country, Prodigal Son, Pegasus, and other highly acclaimed novels. She is also the author of His Bright Light, the story of her son Nick Traina’s life and death; A Gift of Hope, a memoir of her work with the homeless; Pure Joy, about the dogs she and her family have loved; and the children’s books, Pretty Minnie in Paris and Pretty Minnie in Hollywood.

Book Bio Examples

Book has many examples of Author Biographies. Most of them are short bios, but a few are long.

Bios from Author’s Websites

Most of the following examples of author biographies are too long for the back of the book or for the inside flap of the cover of a book. By studying them you will gain ideas for your author bio. Print them out. If it is too crowded with information, cross out the non-essential parts. Err on the side of brevity and keep the interest of the reader.

Examples of Author Biographies from their websites.

See what you think. Search for your favorite author’s bio. It’ll give you hints as what to include.

  1. A. J. Finn. Curtis Brown Co. UK. “Biography:”
  2. Danielle Steel. “About Danielle.”
  3. Dean Koontz. “About Dean.”
  4. Eric Carle. “Biographical Notes for Eric Carle:”
  5. James Patterson. Website bio. “About James:” 
  6. Janet Evanovich. Book Browse. “Janet Evanovich Author Biography:”
  7. Laura Numeroff. “About Laura:”
  8. Shel Silverstein. “Shel Silverstein:”
  9. Sophie Kinsella. Book Browse. “Sophie Kinsella Author Biography:”
  10. Tomi Adeyemi. “About Tomi Adeyemi:”

I hope this information inspires you and encourages you to enjoy sharing what makes you tick with your audience…your readers. Enjoy being an author. There is no one like you.

Resources about writing your author bio:

  1. Casey McCormick. Literary Rambles. “How To Tips: Author Bio:”
  2. Creative Indie. “Why you need an author bio both inside your book AND on the outside …:”
  3. Dave Chesson.  “How to Write Short and Catchy Author Bios:”
  4. Jane Friedman. “Writing Your Book’s Back-Cover Copy:”
  5. Jessica Bell. “Writing Front and Back Matter for Your Self-Published Book:”
  6. Jessi Rita Hoffman. “How to Write an Author Bio Page:”
  7. Joan Y. Edwards. “Power Pack Your Short Bio for Agent Queries:”
  8. Joel Pierson and Megan Schindele. Author House. “Do’s and Don’ts of Back-Cover Text:”
  9. Neil Patel. “How to Write a Bio:”
  10. Tucker Max. “Write Author Bio:”

Never Give Up
Thank you for reading this blog. If you’ve read her books, Joan would appreciate a book review on Amazon! 
Flip Flap Floodle, Will his song save Flip from Mr. Fox?
Joan’s Elder Care Guide A guide to give caregivers and elders the help they need to never give up.

March into Publication

“March into Publication” by Joan Y. Edwards

Hurray for you! You have a finished manuscript!

Now, you can get ready to submit your manuscript to a publisher or an agent. Here are seven steps I recommend you go through before you submit your manuscript.

Seven Steps Before You Submit Your Manuscript

  1. Write a pitch/logline/summary for your manuscript. 
  2. Get your manuscript critiqued by a critique partner or a critique group, chapter by chapter. If you have the funds, pay a professional editor. Ask for titles of books he has edited in your manuscript’s genre. Make sure you like what he’s done with other books in your genre. Remember that someone who does an outstanding job of editing picture books might not do as well with romance novels.
  3. When you feel that your manuscript is the best you can do at this particular time with the knowledge and skills you have, submit it to a publisher or agent who accepts unsolicited manuscripts.
  4. Find a publisher or agent who accepts unsolicited manuscripts. Read their guidelines.
  5. Write a query or cover letter. If your manuscript is non-fiction, write a proposal, too. 
  6. Follow the submission guidelines for the chosen publisher or agent.

a. Write a query letter (no manuscript included) 
b. Write a cover letter to accompany your manuscript
c. Write a proposal if it’s a nonfiction book.

     7. Submit according to the guidelines of the chosen publisher or agent

a. Snail Mail – U.S. Postal Service
b. Email
c. Submission form on website

Good luck! Please leave a comment. I love hearing from you!


Never Give Up

Thank you to everyone who has bought a copy of one of my books. I appreciate your confidence and support. May many good things happen to you because of your kindness to me. 
Flip Flap Floodle, Will this little duck’s song save him from Mr. Fox?
Joan’s Elder Care Guide A guide to help caregivers and elders never give up

Joan Y. Edwards
Copyright © 2018 Joan Y. Edwards


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Join 2,659 other followers

Please subscribe now to join over 442 Valued Subscribers and receive entertaining, encouraging posts PLUS 3 free gifts:

  1. Never Give Up image
  2. 20 Affirmations for Writers
  3. Ten Time Savers for Writers and Illustrators

Power Pack Your Short Bio for Agent Queries

Power Pack Your Short Bio

“Power Pack Your Short Bio for Agent Queries” by Joan Y. Edwards

Sandra Warren, one of my loyal followers asked me to write a blog about what to put in the bio section of a query letter to a literary agent. It could also be used for the bio inside a cover letter to an editor. 

Heather Hummel at Huffington Post advises you to read your bio aloud after you write them. Wonderful advice.

Chuck Sambuchino says a bio is more important for a non-fiction work.

Editors and Agents want to know your personal credentials. Why are you qualified to write this book? Give facts to support the sentence: I am the best person to write this book.

Make your 3 sentence bio sound professional. Write it in the first person. Use only three or four sentences. Cover the three power areas listed below: 


1.Personal Interest and Experience

I am the best person to write this book.

Tell why you wrote this book. Tell about your personal interests and experience in this particular field related to the subject of the manuscript or article you are submitting.

Your book is about biking: Tell about your interest in biking and places you biked. Don’t tell about where you’ve traveled by boat or by airplane. It’s not related to biking.

If your book is about a certain community, tell how you know about this community. If you lived there, mention that.


I qualify to write this book because I have expert skills and knowledge in this subject that I attained through extensive research, experience, education, or occupation. 

In his book Outliers, Malcolm Gladwell says that it takes about 10,000 hours of practice to achieve mastery in a particular field…to become an expert. If you study for 8 hours each day, your 10,000 hours would be up in 1,250 days or about 3.5 years. So I believe if you study a subject for 3.5 years, you probably know a great deal about it.

Explain your skills and knowledge of the subject of your  manuscript. Tell your main job, training, education, degree, published article, short story, or novel related to the subject.

If it’s about business marketing, mentioning a Master’s Degree in Business is a great idea.

If your book is about teaching and you’ve never taught or taken classes, why would people want to read what you’ve written?

3. Formal Awards and Other Achievements

 The best reason I qualify to write this book.

Showcase your formal achievements related to the subject of your manuscript. If  you have many achievements, highlight your best accomplishment.

Ginny Wiehardt gives samples from published and unpublished writers.  Nancy, a university instructor helped students improve  their 3 sentence bios in her class. I found these helpful. 

I found 18 resources to help you study the short bio to include to power pack your bio in your query to a prospective agent.

If you put the subject of your book and your draft 3 sentence bio, I’ll be glad to give you ideas to improve your bio in my reply. Other readers may give you their opinions, too, if you like.


  1. Ann R. Allen. “How to Write and Author Bio When You Don’t Feel Like an Author Yet:”
  2. Ben Carter. “Can 10,000 Hours of Practice Make You an Expert?”
  3. Ben Sobieck.  “What Should a Short Bio Contain?”
  4. Chuck Sambuchino. Writers Digest. “What Should You Write in the Bio Paragraph in a Query Letter?”
  5. Chuck Sambuchino. “What to Write in the “Bio” Section Of Your Query Letter”
  6. Fiction Desk. “Ten Tips for Writing an Author Bio:”
  7. Ginny Wiehardt. “Samples of Short Bios for a Cover Letter (Literary Journal) – The Balance:” 
  8. Heather Hummel. “10 Tips on How to Write a Bio:”
  9. Joan Y. Edwards.”Components of a Good Query Letter:”
  10. Joan Y. Edwards. “Why Not? Write a Query Letter or Cover Letter. Go Ahead.”
  11. Joan Y. Edwards. “Will Your Query Letter Sell Your Manuscript?”
  12. Loolwa Khazzoom. “4 Steps to Writing a Professional Bio That Gets You Noticed:”
  13. Peter Economy. “3 Simple Steps to Becoming an Expert in Anything:”
  14. “Post Your 3 Sentence Bio Here:”
  15. QQAdmin1. Writers Digest. “What Should You Include in Your Bio for Agents?” 
  16. Scott Berkum. “How to Write a Good Bio:”
  17. Writers Relief Staff. “The Dos And Don’ts of Writing Your Author Bio: Query Letter And Cover Letter Tips:”
  18. Writers Relief Staff. “5 Tips on Writing an Amazing Author Bio If You’re Not Well-Published:”


Never Give Up

Please check out Joan’s books:
Flip Flap Floodle, Will this little duck’s song save him from Mr. Fox?
Joan’s Elder Care Guide A guide to help caregivers and elders never give up

Joan Y. Edwards
Copyright © 2018 Joan Y. Edwards


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Join 2,659 other followers

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  1. Never Give Up image
  2. 20 Affirmations for Writers
  3. Ten Time Savers for Writers and Illustrators
















Celebrate 500,000 Views with Me

“Celebrate 500,000 Views with Me” by Joan Y. Edwards


On Thursday, February 16, 2018 the number of views for my Never Give Up blog reached 500,000 views! I am very excited! Throwing confetti in the air. Thank you to each and every one of you who made this possible! 
This is the 680th post. The day with the highest number of views was September 30, 2014 with 960 views. It has 343 subscribers and 6,855 comments. 
Top Blog Posts

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“Let’s Face It – English Is a Crazy Language” by Richard Lederer 1,000


While writing the blog, I’ve gone to conferences, presented workshops at conferences, presented workshops for my critique group, wrote Joan’s Elder Care Guide,  and in 2016 4RV Publishing published Joan’s Elder Care Guide: Empowering You and Your Elder to Survive. I’ve also dealt with life. I’ve found that writing this blog gives me stability even when my world seems unstable, when life enters in with challenges. When I’m down, I try to write something to calm myself and hope that it resonates to help you, my readers, too. When you leave comments, you put a lot of joy into my heart and help me survive the little things and the big things in my life. Thank you very much for that.


Together, we’ll continue to survive. When we look at the picture in the future, our writing’s improved, our stories are published, our illustrations are great and delightful. Keep that picture in your mind. Keep on going. You’ll get there. I’ll get there. We’ll get there.


bicycling-003 from gif org
Keep on Going! You’ll Get There! 



Thank you to everyone who read this post. A special thanks to the following people who left comments on this blog before midnight February 24, 2018!

  1. Flight up (Joan Reid) 
  2. Stepmom Shawn  (Shawn Simon)
  3. Sharon Willett
  4. Maureen Crites
  5. Linda Andersen
  6. bmadole (Brenda Madole)
  7. Samantha Bell
  8. Sandra Warren
  9. Kathleen Burkinshaw (asked not to be included in the drawing)
  10. Carol Baldwin (asked not to be included in the drawing)

I asked to choose 3 numbers between 1 and 8. 

Random chose 4, 1, and 5. Therefore, Congratulations! Maureen Crites, Joan Reid, and Linda Andersen. You won a choice of a free paperback copy of either Flip Flap Floodle or Joan’s Elder Care GuidePlease send me your choice of books and your snail mailing address to me at Also, tell me the person for whom you would like them autographed.




Never Give Up
Joan Y. Edwards
Copyright © 2018 Joan Y. Edwards


Enter your email address to follow this blog and receive notifications of new posts by email.

Join 2,659 other followers

Please subscribe now to join over 443 Valued Subscribers and receive entertaining, encouraging posts PLUS 3 free gifts:

  1. Never Give Up image
  2. 20 Affirmations for Writers
  3. Ten Time Savers for Writers and Illustrators

30 Memorable Last Lines

“30 Memorable Last Lines” by Joan Y. Edwards

Copyright 2018 Joan Y. Edwards
As writers you’ve heard many times, “Have a good hook. Have an opening that hooks the reader into staying for the whole show. In other words, have an opener that gets readers to keep reading your book until the very end.


Today I’d like to focus on the last words of your book, the message you want to resonate in the hearts of your readers for a really long time. The one you want them to keep hearing over and over. I’ve put the spotlight on the last lines of books and a few movies. Film makers choose many books to make into movies.


You want your readers to define the closing a good one…a satisfactory conclusion. And even more than that, you want the last words of your book to resonate in the ears and hearts of your readers for their lifetime. You want them to be memorable. They will be memorable if they are meaningful to your readers.


I found many links online to what others believe are the most memorable last lines of books and movies. I shared them in the resources section below.


It seems difficult to fathom anyone being able to read every book or to see all movies. However, if you’re like me, you love to read and you love to watch good movies. You read the books or watch the movies that meet a need of yours. You have your opinions about the books you’ve read or movies you’ve seen. 


I believe that like the beginning of books, the closing of books can also hook readers. I listed stories I’ve read or would like to read because of the impact, the closing had on me.  Some are serious and others are humorous, but all are meaningful to me. These closing lines hooked me. 


Please share your favorite last lines of books or movies with me.


30 Memorable Last Lines

  1. “The creatures outside looked from pig to man, and from man to pig, and from pig to man again; but already it was impossible to say which was which.” –George Orwell, Animal Farm (1945)
  2. “It was a fine cry—loud and long—but it had no bottom and it had no top, just circles and circles of sorrow.” –Toni Morrison, Sula (1973)
  3. “But I reckon I got to light out for the Territory ahead of the rest, because Aunt Sally she’s going to adopt me and civilize me and I can’t stand it. I been there before.”  –Mark Twain, The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn (1885)
  4. “Maybe I will go to Paris. Who knows? But I’ll sure as hell never go back to Texas again.” –James Crumley, The Final Country (2001)
  5. “Lastly, she pictured to herself how this same little sister of hers would, in the after-time, be herself a grown woman; and how she would keep, through all her riper years, the simple and loving heart of her childhood; and how she would gather about her other little children, and make their eyes bright and eager with many a strange tale, perhaps even with the dream of Wonderland of long ago; and how she would feel with all their simple sorrows, and find a pleasure in all their simple joys, remembering her own child-life, and the happy summer days. –Lewis Carroll, Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland (1865)
  6. “P.S. Sorry I forgot to give you the mayonnaise.”
    –Richard Brautigan, Trout Fishing in America (1967)
  7. “Columbus too thought he was a flop, probably, when they sent him back in chains. Which didn’t prove there was no America.” –Saul Bellow, The Adventures of Augie March (1953)
  8. “We shall never be again as we were!” –Henry James, The Wings of the Dove (1902)
  9. “Tell me how free I am.” –Richard Powers, Prisoner’s Dilemma (1988)
  10. “But wherever they go, and whatever happens to them on the way, in that enchanted place on the top of the Forest, a little boy and his Bear will always be playing.” – A. A. Milne, The House at Pooh Corner (1928)
  11. “Don’t ever tell anybody anything. If you do, you start missing everybody.” – J.D. Salinger, The Catcher in the Rye (1951)
  12. I taker her hand, squeezing it tightly, and we walk on. -Monika Schröder  My Brothers Shadow (2011)
  13. “But I knew that Catherine had kissed me because she trusted me, and that made me happy then but now I am sad because by the time my eyes close each night I suspect that as usual I have been fooling myself, that she, too, is in her grave.” –William T. Vollmann, You Bright and Risen Angels (1987)
  14. “Vaya con Dios, my darklin’, and remember: vote early and vote often, don’t take any wooden nickels, and”—by now I was rolling about helplessly on the spare room floor, scrunched up around my throbbing pain and bawling like a baby— “always leave ’em laughin’ as you say good-bye!” –Robert Coover, The Public Burning (1977)
  15. “I never saw any of them again—except the cops. No way has yet been invented to say goodbye to them. –Raymond Chandler, The Long Goodbye (1953)
  16. “He heard the ring of steel against steel as a far door clanged shut. –Richard Wright, Native Son (1940)
  17. “I ran with the wind blowing in my face, and a smile as wide as the valley of Panjsher on my lips. I ran.” – Khaled Hosseini, The Kite Runner (2003)
  18. Jerry: “But don’t you understand, Osgood? Oh… I’m a man!”
    Osgood Fielding: “Well, nobody’s perfect.” – Some Like It Hot Film adapted by director Billy Wilder and comedy writer, I.A.L. Diamond from Fanfare of Love, a story by Michael Logan.
  19. “I’m so glad to be at home again” – L. Frank Baum, The Wonderful Wizard of Oz (1900)
  20. Jim: “Where you headed, cowboy?”
    Bart: “Nowhere special.”
    Jim: “Nowhere special? I always wanted to go there.”
    Bart: “Come on.” -Mel Brooks, Andrew Bergman, Richard Pryor, Norman Steinberg, and Al Uger, and was based on Andrew Bergman’s story and draft, Blazing Saddles.
  21. “But the miracle of it all is, when push comes to shove, we can be just as tough as hickory. It mostly burns at first. After a while it starts to feel better.” -Joyce Moyer Hostetter,  Blue
  22. E.T.: “I’ll be right here.” – Steven Spielberg, E.T. the Extraterrestrial
  23. Louis: “Looking good, Billy Ray!”
    Billy Ray: “Feeling good, Louis!” – 
    Timothy HarrisHerschel Weingrod,  Trading Places
  24. “But the sky was bright, and he somehow felt he was headed in the right direction.” – E.B. White, Stuart Little (1934)
  25. “Tomorrow, I’ll think of some way to get him back. After all, tomorrow is another day.” – Margaret Mitchell, Gone With The Wind (1936)
  26. “And so, as Tiny Tim observed, God bless Us, Every One!” – Charles Dickens, A Christmas Carol (1843)
  27. “A LAST NOTE FROM YOUR NARRATOR. I am haunted by humans.”- Markus Zusak, The Book Thief (2006)
  28. “The scar had not pained Harry for nineteen years. All was well.” –  J.K. Rowling, Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows. 
  29. “But that is the beginning of a new story—the story of the gradual renewal of a man, the story of his gradual regeneration, of his passing from one world into another, of his initiation into a new unknown life. That might be the subject of a new story, but our present story is ended.” –Fyodor Dostoyevsky, Crime and Punishment (1866; trans. Constance Garnett)
  30. “From here on in I rag nobody.” –Mark Harris, Bang the Drum Slowly (1956)


Sometimes Surprise Makes You Laugh

“Sometimes Surprise Makes You Laugh” by Joan Y. Edwards

Sometimes Surprise Makes You Laugh
Copyright 2018 Joan Y. Edwards

A Canadian couple decided to go to Florida to thaw out during a particularly icy winter. They planned to stay at the same hotel where they spent their honeymoon twenty years earlier.

Because of hectic schedules, the husband left on Thursday, and his wife was going to join him on Friday. When the husband checked into the hotel on Thursday, he sent an email to his wife. However, he left out a letter in her email address.

So when a widow came home after her husband’s funeral in Houston and checked her latest email, she screamed and fainted. Her son rushed into the room. He found his mother on the floor, and saw this note on her computer screen:

To: My Loving Wife
Subject: I’ve Arrived

I’ve just arrived and checked in. Everything is ready for your arrival tomorrow. Looking forward to seeing you then!

P.S. Sure is hot down here!


I hope this story surprised you and made you laugh!

My friend, Jim Connell, used to tell me jokes when his wife, Betty and I met at a local restaurant to eat. Before Mother died, she joined us. Each time we met, I asked Jim to tell me this joke. I wrote this post in his memory. I know Jim is telling God and his angels stories to make them laugh up there in heaven. Thanks, Jim Connell for sharing the gift of laughter with my Mother and me.



Never Give Up

Please check out my books:
Flip Flap Floodle, Will this little duck’s song save him from Mr. Fox?
Joan’s Elder Care Guide A guide to help caregivers and elders never give up

Joan Y. Edwards
Copyright © 2018 Joan Y. Edwards


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Is Three Sentences a Charm for #Dialogue?

Dialogue makes stories come to life. Readers hear the characters say the words in their minds Readers visualize their actions acting out their emotions.

Put a balance of dialogue, action, and narrative in your novel or screenplay.

Does your dialogue do all of the following?

  1. Establish character and reveal aspects of character not otherwise seen 
  2. Provide information like exposition and particulars of past events
  3. Drive action of plot forward
  4. Set the mood and tone
  5. Create subtext (Subtext is content underneath the spoken dialogue. Subtext is the unspoken thoughts and motives of characters—what they really think and believe.)
Go with your gut feeling about your particular work. Check it against these questions:
  1. Is it part of a set up/pay off?
  2. Would it be hazardous if you left out a word or sentence or would deleting a word or sentence make your story stronger? 
  3. Is this the right place in the story for a particular sentence?
  4. Would the information in this sentence be better in the text than the dialogue?
  5. Would it be better if a different character spoke certain words?
  6. Do the sentences have enough meat in them? Are they too short or too long?
  7. If 3 sentences don’t tell enough, add one sentence at a time.
  8. If you’ve got 10 sentences in a piece of dialogue, cut out unnecessary words. Make the speech natural. Cut unnecessary sentences. 

Is there such a thing as too much dialogue in a novel or screenplay?  Or not enough? How do you get the Goldilocks amount of dialogue in your novel or screenplay?

William H. Coles said, “Great dialogue in literary fiction serves multiple functions but never detracts from story progress or purpose.”

I don’t think there’s one answer. I think dialogue is weighed against the personality and needs of a character in his/her particular situation. When a character is frightened, he might talk your ears off or he might be so quiet, you wonder if he’s passed out.

But there are people who tell you that three is the magic number to measure the use of sentences in your dialogue. They say that you need to justify using more than three sentences at one time.  

A film producer told me I had too many sentences in the dialogue of my screenplay. He said that you can justify more dialogue in novels or in stage plays, but not in screenplays. So I did research to find out what was an acceptable amount of dialogue.
Listen to the dialogue of your favorite film. Count the number of sentences whenever the protagonist (main character) speaks for 15 minutes. Then count the number of sentences the antagonist or another character speaks. What did you discover? You may find the results surprising. I did.
I looked at three different screenplays and it seems they stuck to the 3 sentences per time a character speaks. Sometimes a character on the Royal Staff  in Victoria and Abdul screenplay spoke more than 3 sentences, but it didn’t seem like there were more than 5 at one time. Their sentences tended to be longer but usually stayed in the three sentence realm.
Decide for yourself. Don’t take my word for it. Check the dialogue of characters in your manuscripts. See how many sentences your characters utter at a time. 
If your characters have a lot to say, perhaps you can break it down into different speeches. 
I’ll leave you with a few quotes and 33 different resources about dialogue.

Tinzen Gyatso, the 14th Dalai Lama says, “Dialogue is the most effective way of resolving conflict.”

Stephen King says, “It is dialogue that gives your cast their voices, and is crucial in defining their characters.”

Alfred Hitchcock said: “When we tell a story in cinema, we should resort to dialogue only when it’s impossible to do otherwise.”

Alfred Hitchcock said, “What is drama but life with the dull bits cut out.”


  1. Beth Hill. The Editor’s Blog. “Too Much Dialogue–Characters Talk Too Much:”
  2. Brian A. Klems. “The 7 Tools of Dialogue:”
  3. Cris Freese. “Keep it Simple: Keys to Realistic Dialogue (Part I):”
  4. Cris Freese. “Keep it Simple: Keys to Realistic Dialogue (Part II):”
  5. Deb Dorchak. “Getting to Know You: Character Dialogue:”
  6. Diana Urban. “43 Words You Should Cut From Your Writing Immediately:”
  7. Erin. Daily Writing Tips. “Dialogue Dos and Don’ts:”
  8. Gabriela Pereira. “Nine NO’s of Dialogue:”
  9. Ginny Wiehardt. “Tips on Writing Dialogue:”
  10. Ginny Wiehardt. “Top Tips for Writing Dialogue:”
  11. Gloria Kempton. Writer’s Digest. “How to Balance Action, Narrative, and Dialogue in Your Novel:”…/how-to-balance-action-narrative-and-dialogue-in-your-nov
  12. Gotham Writers. “In Dialogue, What is subtext?”
  13. The “Top 10: The Best Dialogue in Crime Fiction:”
  14. Harvey. Novel Writing Help. “9 Rules For Writing Dialogue:”
  15. Irwin H. Blacker. “The Elements of Screenwriting:”
  16. Joan Y. Edwards. “What Is the Purpose of Dialogue in Your Story?”
  17. Joan Y. Edwards. “Whose Talking? Can You Tell by Your Dialogue?” Who’s Talking? Can You Tell by the Dialogue?
  18. Joanna Guidoccio. “How Much Dialogue Is Too Much?”
  19. Joanna Penn. “9 Easily Preventable Mistakes Writers Make with Dialogue:”
  20. John August. “How to Write Dialogue:”
  21. Karen Sullivan, Gary Schumer, and Kate Alexander. Ideas for the Animated Short: Finding and Building Stories. Published by Focal Press, Elsevier Inc, 2008. ISBN: 978-0-240-80860-4, page 166-168.
  22. Karen Sullivan, Gary Schumer, and Kate Alexander. “The Purpose of Dialogue:”
  23. Kira McFadden. “Ask the Editor: Is it okay to use sentence fragments in my writing? How much is too much?”
  24. Laurel Dewey, Visual Thesaurus. “Writing Methods: The Power of  Dialogue:”
  25. Maeve Maddox. “How Much Dialogue Is Too Much:”
  26. Meredith Borders. “Top 10 Authors Who Write Great Dialogue:”
  27. Novel Writing “9 Rules for Writing Dialogue:”
  28. Screenwriters University. “20 Common Sense Script Rules in No Particular Order:”
  29. “Script Format: Dialogue:”
  30. “Subtext: The Full Wiki:”
  31. What a “13 Movie Dialogue Rules to Write Great Dialogues (part 2):”
  32. Word Counter Blog. “How Many Words in a Paragraph?”
  33. William H. Coles. “Dialogue:”

Results of Giveaway:

I am grateful for the following people who left a comment before midnight, Friday, January 26, 2018.

1. Melanie Robertson-King
2. Dr. Bob Rich
3. Linda Garfield
4. Gretchen Griffith
5. Sandra Warren
6. Violette Early
7. Lisa Anne Cullen
8. Sheri Levy
9. Cat Michaels

Carol Baldwin left a comment but didn’t want to be included because she won a book last time. Thanks, Carol. chose number 4. Therefore, Congratulations, Gretchen Griffith. You won a paperback copy of Sophie Kinsella’s I’ve Got Your Number. I hope you enjoy it. Please send your snail mail address to me at so I can start this book’s journey to you!

COMMENT (Click here and scroll way down)

Never Give Up

Please check out my books:
Flip Flap Floodle, Will this little duck’s song save him from Mr. Fox?
Joan’s Elder Care Guide A guide to help caregivers and elders never give up

Joan Y. Edwards
Copyright © 2018 Joan Y. Edwards


Enter your email address to follow this blog and receive notifications of new posts by email.

Join 2,659 other followers

Please subscribe now to join over 439 Valued Subscribers and receive entertaining, encouraging posts PLUS 3 free gifts:

  1. Never Give Up image
  2. 20 Affirmations for Writers
  3. Ten Time Savers for Writers and Illustrators

#Hashtags Bring Traffic

hashtags bring traffic
#Hashtags Bring Traffic Copyright Joan Y. Edwards 2018

“#Hashtags Bring Traffic” by Joan Y. Edwards

When you write a blog post, it has an area where you put keywords, buzzwords, topics in your post.

In my blog posts, I may put as few as three keywords.  They say you shouldn’t use more than 15 keywords. Your keywords probably fit into categories. However, you would usually designate one or two keywords to use with hashtags. For this post, I made only one hashtag. Here are the keywords: #hashtags, keywords, marketing, where to put hashtags, and more traffic. You can find them listed at the end of this blog post.

Twitter uses the number symbol beside a word to denote it as the keyword in a Twitter feed (post). Other social media show these hashtags, too.

In your future blog, Facebook, Instagram, Pinterest, Tumblr, and Twitter posts you might want to add the hashtag symbol to one or two of the most important keywords. It may lead more traffic your way.

Andrew Hutchinson explains that TrackMaven did a study of 65,000 posts on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram and found that Tweets using more than two hashtags see a significant drop in engagement whereas Instagram seems to handle  more words with hashtags.

Maddy Osman says that whenever a user adds a hashtag to a post, it’s indexed by the social network and becomes searchable by other users. Once someone clicks on that hashtag, it takes them to a page listing all posts with that same hashtag. If a keyword picks up enough followers, it may become “trending.”

The following three websites will help you find relevant hashtags for the main topics or categories in your posts. You can check different hashtags to see if others are already following it:

  1. Hashtag Creator

Where to Put Your Hashtags in Social Media

Where do you add Hashtags in Instagram?

  1. On Instagram, upload picture or video.
  2. Choose to add a filter, then type # followed by text or emoji in the Caption field (example: #flower)
  3. If you want to add a hashtag to a post you’ve already uploaded, edit the caption or include your hashtag in a comment on your photo.
Where do you add Hashtags on Facebook?
  1. On Facebook, add a hashtag to the end of your post. To make a hashtag, write (the number sign – sometimes called the pound sign) along with a topic or phrase and add it to the end of your post. It makes it a clickable link to other posts from you and your friends on Facebook. For example: I just saw the cutest puppy! #dogs
  2. You can check the search bar on Facebook to see if a particular hashtag word has other posts on this subject. For example:

Where do you add Hashtags on Twitter?

  1. On Twitter, put the hashtags at the end of your Tweet.
  2. On Twitter, hashtags do not count toward your 140 character limit.

My suggestion:

  1. Use only one hashtag in a title on a blog.
  2. Use only 1 or 2 Hashtags for Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, Pinterest, Tumblr, and other social media.
  3. If you use more than one word in your hashtag, capitalize each word. #chocolate #ChocolateCake
  4. Highlight only the main topic with your hashtags so you don’t disappoint readers with very little content on a subject you hashtagged.

Resources for You:

  1. Allison M. Wood. Art of Crafts. “How to Use Hashtags to Drive More Traffic to Your Website:”
  2. Amy Masson. “Use Hashtags When Sharing Your Blog Posts to Gain More Traffic:”
  3. Andrew Hutchinson. “Social Networks New Report Looks Opitmal Hashtag Use Twitter, Instagram, and Facebook:
  4. Boot Camp Digital. “What Is a Hashtag:”
  5. Evan LePage.”The Do’s and Don’ts of How to Use Hashtags:”
  6. Facebook Help. “How Do I Add Hashtags to Facebook?
  7. Hashtag Creator – Put in a sentence or a phrase and it puts hashtags on each word. Then you can copy and paste it into message, letter, or blog post:
  8. Hashtagify.
  9. Instagram help. “Where Do You Add Hashtags to Instagram:”
  10. Kevin Lee. “A Scientific Guide to Hashtags Which Ones Work When and How Many:”
  11. Krista Stevens. “Better Tagging:”
  12. Maddy Osman.How to Use Hashtags on Every Social Media Network:”
  13. “The Benefits to Adding Hashtags to Your Twitter Bio:”
  14. Penny Sanseveri. “Drive More Traffic Using Hashtags:” 
  16. Scott Ayres. “How to Use Hashtags on Facebook:”
  17. Social Media Worldwide. “Hashtags Explained: What They Are And How To Use Them For Marketing:”
  18. Taylor Loren. “Ultimate Guide to Using Instagram Hashtags:”
  19. Vanessa Doctor. “What Never to Do with Hashtags:”
  20. Wikihow. How to Use Hashtags with Twitter:”

Thank you to the two people left comments on this blog before midnight Wednesday, January 17, 2018.

  1. Sarah Swan
  2. Carol Federlin Baldwin chose number two therefore, Carol Baldwin won the paperback copy of Children’s Writer’s Word Book (1992) by Alijandra Mogilner. Congratulations, Carol. Please send me your snail mail address and I will mail it to you. I appreciate your reading my blog and leaving a comment.  You make me smile.

Comment (Click here and Scroll to the Bottom)

Flip Flap Floodle, Will this little duck’s song save him from Mr. Fox?
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Joan Y. Edwards
Copyright © 2018 Joan Y. Edwards


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Reblog “Improve Your Novel by Writing a Screenplay (Plus Contest Opportunity)” by Jocelyn Rish

While most authors who make it to the movie-making stage do not get to adapt their novel into the official script, you should still experiment with screenwriting. It’s a great writing exercise and can improve your skills in many ways.

I first tried screenwriting about ten years ago due to a fun online contest. I ended up loving the format. I also noticed improvements in my “regular” writing, so I kept dabbling in it. Amazingly, two of my short scripts won grants to make them into movies: Saying Goodbye and High Heels & Hoodoo. While they weren’t grand Hollywood productions, I did get to dress up for red carpet photo shoots and watch my story on the big screen. Not gonna lie, there were tears.

But as incredible as those experiences were, the true benefit to writing screenplays has been the improvements to my writing. So what kind of improvements am I talking about?

To read more please go to Jocelyn Rish’s blog on Adventures in YA Publishing:

Uplifting, Encouraging, Motivating, and Educational

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