Real advice for real writers (and those who want to become one)

The Journey of a Writer: From Charleston to Denver and Home Again

For anyone who has embarked on a career and life as a ‘real writer,' you know there is no "one and only" journey for us all. Whether we begin writing immediately upon graduation in our youth, or later in life after retirement and the grandchildren have come along, each writer's journey is as unique as an individual snowflake.

No two are the same, yet they all have the potential to dazzle.

Although I am not yet at retirement age, I didn't begin writing until after I had started a family, after I'd decided that the corporate sales world was definitely not for me and after I tapped into that long-buried-yet-ever-present dream of becoming a true writer.

I have a Master's degree, but I did not earn an MFA. I wrote press releases here and there, but I do not have years of magazine submissions behind me. And nor did I have the confidence to believe that I could create stories people would want to read.

Unlike the beautiful, icy white features of the snowflake, I was as green as green as green could be.

Thank goodness, I've come a long way in the past six years since I started my journey. I've read every book on writing I could find. I've attended seminars and conferences and workshops. I've been open to criticism of my work and offered to help other writers by editing their own.

I've read. I've written. I've grown, oh my!

It wasn't until recently that my writing life blossomed into its own, through a magical trip to a writer's immersion class that's held high up on a mountain just an hour outside of Denver, Colorado.

Margie Lawson is a writing-teacher-extraordinaire who has helped hundreds (perhaps thousands!) of writers with their craft and propelled dozens into the coveted land of NYT (New York Times) Bestseller stardom.

Her teaching is unique. Her style is unparalleled. And her gift of creating fresh writing that readers will remember is unlike any teaching I've experienced before.

From alliteration to epizeuxis to conduplicatio, she introduces rhetorical devices that will forever change how a writer sees their work. She created mantras such as "cadence conquers content," that help your sentences dance over the page, the words barely touching as they flow. (And of the twenty rhetorical devices she teaches, I snuck in five of them in this blog alone!)

My writing has already undergone changes of color and feel and style for which I am forever grateful. If you are a writer and recognize that your writing needs to jump, pop, and leap to the next level, I would highly recommend Margie Lawson.

You can learn more about her and her classes - taught at her home in Denver and on cruise ships and around the world - at!

You can also check out pictures from my recent Immersion Class, aptly named The Wonder Writers, on our group's Facebook page at

The number rule to being a writer is always to keep writing, but the number two rule should be to make sure you are writing well!

How has your writing journey been and what have you learned that's helped propelled your craft over the years?

Crystal Cole spent 20 years in executive sales before opting to leave the corporate world to pursue her dream of becoming a writer. Flash forward six years later, and she has written three novels – Falling Through Trees, This Side of Perfect, and The Days of Not So Long Ago. Her latest work-in-progress manuscript is titled The Upended Life of Magnolia Clementine.

"I saw and experienced the challenges that self-published authors face when it comes to marketing their work. My hope with IBU is that indie authors will get their books read and discovered and reviewed!"


#WritersLife #goodhabits #charleston

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