How to Become the Author You Want to Be

Bethany Green

This interview will expire in…

  

In this session, you’ll discover:

Bethany shares how authors can get out of their own heads and out of their own way. Discover how feedback can help you write better, and how you can stop worrying about the “rules” or expectations of your story, and just write from your heart.

Session Link:

BethanyGreenWriter.com

Bonus:

Lucky Draw: One Free Picture Book Critique

Comment Below With Your Key Takeaways Or If You Have Questions About The Session.

51 responses

  1. Judy White Avatar
    Judy White

    Thank you so much for taking the time to share your valuable insights!
    Warm Regards~
    ~Judy

    1. Bethany Green Avatar

      Thank YOU for watching, Judy! I’m rooting for you!

      – Bethany

  2. Elizabetgh Higgins Avatar
    Elizabetgh Higgins

    Bethany,
    So much of what you talked about hit home for me, especially about writing for my own inner child and bringing that child out! So powerful. Thank you, Elizabeth

    1. Bethany Green Avatar

      Elizabeth!!

      You are too kind, friend. Write for your inner child; your words will be 100x more powerful when you let go and remember what you were created to do. Good luck!

      – Bethany

  3. Dwight Raatz Avatar

    I really appreciate your honesty and insights. It gives me hope that it’s worth taking the risk to share what I have inside.

    1. Bethany Green Avatar

      Thank you, Dwight! As the great Nora Roberts wrote, “There’s no reward without work, no victory without effort, no battle won without risk.”

      You’ve got this!

      – Bethany

  4. Karan Koelling Avatar
    Karan Koelling

    Thank you. I especially identified with your insights on how to utilize feedback.

  5. Judy Sheer Watters Avatar

    Great advice. I’ve been concerned that I might not be looking at the rules prior to writing. I do understand there are some rules I need to watch for, but I do love writing what’s on my heart. thanks

    1. Bethany Green Avatar

      Judy!

      You’e right, *some* rules are important: correct grammar, keeping with your genre (for instance, you wouldn’t write a gut-ripping, blood-splattering, demonized doll as one of your MCs in your picture book for ages 3-8), and understanding basic social norms. However, getting stuck on all the rest before you even begin writing? Nope! Don’t do it. Write and write and write. THEN think, prioritize, and hone in on the details.

      If writing is on your heart, then I say you get to it! I believe in and am absolutely rooting fo you!

      – Bethany

  6. Victoria Smith Avatar

    I shy away from critique partners or writing friends. I know that I should use this group. At our library, we have a writing group that meets monthly. I’ve never attended. Perhaps, I’ll look into it. I also liked her commment to write for your inner child, whether it’s happy, hurt, or sad. Use it in your writing because there are kids who are hurt or sad. Let them know how to deal with it.

    1. Bethany Green Avatar

      Victoria! Hello!

      Definitely, DEFINITELY go to that writing group. It will change your life and improve your writing!

      And yes, as a writer, your inner-child needs you! 🙂 Good luck!

  7. Jude Ellis Avatar
    Jude Ellis

    I really appreciate your insight on what Editors need from writers. That was most helpful, I must respectfully dis agree about the two spaces after a period. As a Special Education Teacher, many of my students with Learning Disabilities or Visual Disabilities rely on that extra space to cue them to the end of a sentence. Many can’t see or understand that tiny dot but they can note the change in space size. I will use the single space when I have to ( brochures to save space – or when an editor wants it.) but I really HATE it.
    Thanks for an informative session.

    1. Bethany Green Avatar

      Hi, Jude!

      I work in Special Education, too! And as much as I sympathize and understand what you mean about learning/visual disabilities (my students require different types of printed material too, on occasion), my advice was not targeted at a specific audience other than writers sending in their manuscripts to be edited. As an editor, I will correct this mistake each time, which takes up the valuable time necessary to make your manuscript shine! If you are writing a book specific to those with different abilities, then ABSOLUTELY let your editor/publisher know. However, there are no well-published books that adhere to multiple spaces after punctuation in today’s world. I certainly understand your frustration! But even as you and I both typed our comments, we didn’t double-space after punctuation. 🙂 Just an old habit!

      Thank you for bringing this into the light so we could help and further explain. You are a gift!

      Xo, Bethany Green

  8. Jane Baskwill Avatar

    Thank you Bethany for reminding me to tap into my own inner child. It sometimes seems as if I am worrying about writing for everyone else’s child and forget about my own inner one.

  9. Pamela Harrison Avatar
    Pamela Harrison

    Your advice is so helpful. I’m a rule follower which has actually held me back. I love to have permission to let go and just write. I’ve been writing picture books for three years, but unfortunately, I have not found the right critique group for me and there are none close to where I live. I’d love to find a group with members who have been writing and studying for awhile. Thank you for your wonderful tips.

    1. Bethany Green Avatar

      Hi, Pamela!

      So, Marcy Pusey and I run a group called, “The Writer’s Block.” It’s a great group of humans who support each other and discuss ideas. We meet via Zoom once a month and have our own group boards where everyone can interact. I’m positive you’ll meet some great critique partners there!

      Best of luck to you; keep writing!

      – Bethany

  10. Lori Bresnahan Avatar
    Lori Bresnahan

    I think it’s important to look for meaningful feedback, but to also keep in mind that it’s then up to you to decide how to use that feedback. You should take it all into consideration, but ultimately, you are still in the driver’s seat.

  11. JoAnn Avatar
    JoAnn

    I really love the permission around staying true to your values, vision, passion and story. Rules are not what make creativity!

  12. Jo Ann Jeffries Avatar

    I was encouraged by Bethany’s comment about self doubt. I just went thru that with the book I am writing. Now that I’ve re-read it and have put more of me into the writing, I feel a lot better! Thank you for that! Great session.

    1. Bethany Green Avatar

      Jo Ann-

      We are our own worst enemies! Don’t doubt what’s inside you; this world needs to hear what you have to say.

      Good luck!

      – Bethany

  13. Dorie Karl Avatar
    Dorie Karl

    I enjoyed Bethany’s session. She’s enthusiastic, authentic and daring. My biggest takeaways were “Trust your editor” and “Write for your inner child.” I agree that it’s acceptable to write about difficult emotions for children. They know and can process so much more than given credit for in the past.

    1. Bethany Green Avatar

      Thank you, Dorie! I couldn’t agree more. 🙂

      Good luck to you!

      – Bethany

  14. Cynthia V Avatar
    Cynthia V

    Many thanks for your great advice! Very helpful and very much appreciated.

  15. Catheri e Avatar

    Bethany, I enjoyed listening to your honest advice, especially as an editor. I’ve been writing for many years but a publisher recently told me I’m overthinking my writing and desire to be published. I’m also trying to not be distracted by all the offers, SM, and rules in the publishing world. Thank you!

  16. Bea Smith Avatar
    Bea Smith

    Thank you Bethany. I really appreciated what you said about remembering your own inner child and why children’s book were and are, so important to you and the child who will read and identify with your story. Reading became a safe haven for me. I can’t help but believe that reading will be a safe haven for some other child.

    1. Bethany Green Avatar

      Bea,

      Reading was (and in many ways, still is) a safe haven for me, too. Keep going; I believe in you!

      – Bethany

  17. Natalie Lynn Tanner Avatar
    Natalie Lynn Tanner

    BETHANY: WOW! EVERYTHING you said is SERIOUSLY quotable! THANK YOU SO MUCH for ALL the INSPIRATION! I am ALL-FIRED-UP to write NOW! I will DEFINITELY be taking your suggestions–and ESPECIALLY your ENCOURAGEMENT!–to heart! THANK YOU!

    1. Bethany Green Avatar

      Natalie,

      I am so very glad to have helped you! Let me know if there’s anything else that I can do. 🙂 Get to writing!

      – Bethany

  18. Karen Dean Avatar

    Thank you, Bethany, for your encouraging presentation! Letting what’s inside us, come out, is so freeing. My biggest take-a-way is writing from my inner child. I never thought of that before. It makes so much sense and has nothing to do with trends or what others think. When I look back at what I’ve already written, I see how that was already there to a small extent.

  19. donna Alice patton Avatar

    Thank you so much for your encouraging words. I am a published author but I’ve not written anything new in a while. Hearing about writing for your “inner child” has awakened the reason that I wanted to write in the first place. Lots of take away value in this!

    1. Bethany Green Avatar

      Donna, I am SO glad to hear this. Sometimes we get trapped in this world, but wholeheartedly forget that we creatives weren’t meant to be stoic or stagnant within it. I believe in you; get to writing!

      – Bethany

  20. Beth Hanning Avatar
    Beth Hanning

    I loved your comments about writing for your inner child. I’ve never grown up, so I find myself doing this often, but I didn’t really have words to describe it.

  21. Jane Buttery Avatar
    Jane Buttery

    I love going backward; it keeps me young. Thank you for confirming what we have inside us. I am now trying to think of our favourite family member, a black lab called Shelby and what she felt about being a part of our family and friend to Matthew a shy boy at 7 years, who loved her, She died just around his 21st birthday. He spent hours with her and still remembers her first ride in the car whimpering in his arms! She soon loved him, racing in our big garden, learning tricks he taught and loving the water in the lake nearby. I am hoping I can get ‘inside’her now. Matthew has decided to leave the business world and train dogs instead!
    So Thanks for confirming our inner child, in my case over 80 years of memories of our children with animals!

  22. Jane Buttery Avatar

    So Thanks for confirming our inner child, in my case over 80 years of memories of our children with animals in England, Malaysia, and Canada! Thank you for noting books that left us all happy memories, as we remember.

  23. Laurie Barrows Avatar

    Great information thanks! This applies to both writing and illustrating. Especially not following trends.

    1. Bethany Green Avatar

      YES! Following trends can be important at times, but I do not believe in them in ou industry. That’s not what being creative is all about!

      Best of luck to you, and thank you for stopping by!

      – Bethany

  24. Linda Prest Avatar
    Linda Prest

    Great job. Was a typing teacher. Hard to ignore the double space after the period. I know I take criticism too personally, will work harder to overcome. Will work to cultivate people who will give an honest opinion of my pieces.

    Thanks for sharing

  25. Diane Pleasant (MS P) Avatar

    Your passion and wit is very refreshing and helps put your ideas over in a simple way. I do write from my inner child even though that was many, many years ago. My style is not like picture books of this age but that of my own age, so I was released of my guilt and worry by what you said.
    My first book was a wade through the self publishing waters where I learned a lot. The second one was a good bit more difficult. I’m glad you talked about having a critique group and how to listen or not listen to them. That has caused rewriting and ignoring a lot on this second book, but I feel it has all been worth it. Now I’m ready to get this one published.
    Thank you for the time and effort that is obvious you have put into this presentation

    1. Bethany Green Avatar

      Rooting for you, Diane!

      If you need any help, don’t hesitate to reach out. 🙂

      – Bethany

  26. tobias vogelstein Avatar
    tobias vogelstein

    hi Bethany- i am a deaf -blind writer. i wonder if i could collaborate on a young adult book with you.

    1. Bethany Green Avatar

      Hi, Tobias!

      Let’s do it!

      🙂 Bethany

  27. Mark McCraw Avatar

    I am a children’s book writer writing on my eighth book. The advice you gave was outstanding. I appreciate your enthusiasm and knowledge. Keep up the great work! I will definitely put to practice what you said.

    1. Bethany Green Avatar

      Wow! Congratulations, Mark! Keep up the great work, yourself. 🙂

      – Bethany

  28. Laura Lai Avatar

    Thank you for this session and all the advice on how to become the author I want to be. May I still add one insight? With this kind of session and this kind of book mastery that provides tons of useful information – all at once and free. 🙂 Thank you all!

  29. Constance Newbauer Avatar

    Hooray! Thank you so much for the confidence-building and helpful tips!

  30. Karen B McCoy Avatar

    Finally seeing the replay of this and it blew my face right open! You confirmed that not only am I on the right path, that I am doing this for the right reasons and that, most importantly, I can decide my path going forward. I needed this so much! Thank you!!!

    1. Bethany Green Avatar

      Proud of you, girl! Can’t wait to see what you come up with!

  31. Michelle S. Kennedy Avatar

    I am catching up on the webinars. I had a family emergency I was dealing with and just got back into town. Wonderful info from Bethany! It was nice to hear about not writing to trends and breaking the rules. I have been worried about that with my writing since I’m not published yet. Thank you for giving me the courage to stretch myself and not be afraid to step outside of the “writing” box. Not sure if it’s too late to enter or not, but I would LOVE to win feedback from Bethany on one of my manuscripts!!!

    1. Karen Ferreira Avatar
      Karen Ferreira

      Hi Michelle, it’s not too late!

  32. Leia Avatar

    Wow, wonderful blog layout! How lengthy have you ever been running a blog for? You make running a blog look easy. The overall look of your website is wonderful, let alone the content!

    1. Karen Ferreira Avatar
      Karen Ferreira

      Thank you! It’s been a few years, starting with our blog on getyourbookillustrations.com. It’s quite a bit of work! 🙂

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

51 Comments

  1. Bethany,
    So much of what you talked about hit home for me, especially about writing for my own inner child and bringing that child out! So powerful. Thank you, Elizabeth

    1. Elizabeth!!

      You are too kind, friend. Write for your inner child; your words will be 100x more powerful when you let go and remember what you were created to do. Good luck!

      – Bethany

    1. Thank you, Dwight! As the great Nora Roberts wrote, “There’s no reward without work, no victory without effort, no battle won without risk.”

      You’ve got this!

      – Bethany

  2. Great advice. I’ve been concerned that I might not be looking at the rules prior to writing. I do understand there are some rules I need to watch for, but I do love writing what’s on my heart. thanks

    1. Judy!

      You’e right, *some* rules are important: correct grammar, keeping with your genre (for instance, you wouldn’t write a gut-ripping, blood-splattering, demonized doll as one of your MCs in your picture book for ages 3-8), and understanding basic social norms. However, getting stuck on all the rest before you even begin writing? Nope! Don’t do it. Write and write and write. THEN think, prioritize, and hone in on the details.

      If writing is on your heart, then I say you get to it! I believe in and am absolutely rooting fo you!

      – Bethany

  3. I shy away from critique partners or writing friends. I know that I should use this group. At our library, we have a writing group that meets monthly. I’ve never attended. Perhaps, I’ll look into it. I also liked her commment to write for your inner child, whether it’s happy, hurt, or sad. Use it in your writing because there are kids who are hurt or sad. Let them know how to deal with it.

    1. Victoria! Hello!

      Definitely, DEFINITELY go to that writing group. It will change your life and improve your writing!

      And yes, as a writer, your inner-child needs you! 🙂 Good luck!

  4. I really appreciate your insight on what Editors need from writers. That was most helpful, I must respectfully dis agree about the two spaces after a period. As a Special Education Teacher, many of my students with Learning Disabilities or Visual Disabilities rely on that extra space to cue them to the end of a sentence. Many can’t see or understand that tiny dot but they can note the change in space size. I will use the single space when I have to ( brochures to save space – or when an editor wants it.) but I really HATE it.
    Thanks for an informative session.

    1. Hi, Jude!

      I work in Special Education, too! And as much as I sympathize and understand what you mean about learning/visual disabilities (my students require different types of printed material too, on occasion), my advice was not targeted at a specific audience other than writers sending in their manuscripts to be edited. As an editor, I will correct this mistake each time, which takes up the valuable time necessary to make your manuscript shine! If you are writing a book specific to those with different abilities, then ABSOLUTELY let your editor/publisher know. However, there are no well-published books that adhere to multiple spaces after punctuation in today’s world. I certainly understand your frustration! But even as you and I both typed our comments, we didn’t double-space after punctuation. 🙂 Just an old habit!

      Thank you for bringing this into the light so we could help and further explain. You are a gift!

      Xo, Bethany Green

  5. Thank you Bethany for reminding me to tap into my own inner child. It sometimes seems as if I am worrying about writing for everyone else’s child and forget about my own inner one.

  6. Your advice is so helpful. I’m a rule follower which has actually held me back. I love to have permission to let go and just write. I’ve been writing picture books for three years, but unfortunately, I have not found the right critique group for me and there are none close to where I live. I’d love to find a group with members who have been writing and studying for awhile. Thank you for your wonderful tips.

    1. Hi, Pamela!

      So, Marcy Pusey and I run a group called, “The Writer’s Block.” It’s a great group of humans who support each other and discuss ideas. We meet via Zoom once a month and have our own group boards where everyone can interact. I’m positive you’ll meet some great critique partners there!

      Best of luck to you; keep writing!

      – Bethany

  7. I think it’s important to look for meaningful feedback, but to also keep in mind that it’s then up to you to decide how to use that feedback. You should take it all into consideration, but ultimately, you are still in the driver’s seat.

  8. I really love the permission around staying true to your values, vision, passion and story. Rules are not what make creativity!

  9. I was encouraged by Bethany’s comment about self doubt. I just went thru that with the book I am writing. Now that I’ve re-read it and have put more of me into the writing, I feel a lot better! Thank you for that! Great session.

  10. I enjoyed Bethany’s session. She’s enthusiastic, authentic and daring. My biggest takeaways were “Trust your editor” and “Write for your inner child.” I agree that it’s acceptable to write about difficult emotions for children. They know and can process so much more than given credit for in the past.

  11. Bethany, I enjoyed listening to your honest advice, especially as an editor. I’ve been writing for many years but a publisher recently told me I’m overthinking my writing and desire to be published. I’m also trying to not be distracted by all the offers, SM, and rules in the publishing world. Thank you!

  12. Thank you Bethany. I really appreciated what you said about remembering your own inner child and why children’s book were and are, so important to you and the child who will read and identify with your story. Reading became a safe haven for me. I can’t help but believe that reading will be a safe haven for some other child.

  13. BETHANY: WOW! EVERYTHING you said is SERIOUSLY quotable! THANK YOU SO MUCH for ALL the INSPIRATION! I am ALL-FIRED-UP to write NOW! I will DEFINITELY be taking your suggestions–and ESPECIALLY your ENCOURAGEMENT!–to heart! THANK YOU!

  14. Thank you, Bethany, for your encouraging presentation! Letting what’s inside us, come out, is so freeing. My biggest take-a-way is writing from my inner child. I never thought of that before. It makes so much sense and has nothing to do with trends or what others think. When I look back at what I’ve already written, I see how that was already there to a small extent.

  15. Thank you so much for your encouraging words. I am a published author but I’ve not written anything new in a while. Hearing about writing for your “inner child” has awakened the reason that I wanted to write in the first place. Lots of take away value in this!

    1. Donna, I am SO glad to hear this. Sometimes we get trapped in this world, but wholeheartedly forget that we creatives weren’t meant to be stoic or stagnant within it. I believe in you; get to writing!

      – Bethany

  16. I loved your comments about writing for your inner child. I’ve never grown up, so I find myself doing this often, but I didn’t really have words to describe it.

  17. I love going backward; it keeps me young. Thank you for confirming what we have inside us. I am now trying to think of our favourite family member, a black lab called Shelby and what she felt about being a part of our family and friend to Matthew a shy boy at 7 years, who loved her, She died just around his 21st birthday. He spent hours with her and still remembers her first ride in the car whimpering in his arms! She soon loved him, racing in our big garden, learning tricks he taught and loving the water in the lake nearby. I am hoping I can get ‘inside’her now. Matthew has decided to leave the business world and train dogs instead!
    So Thanks for confirming our inner child, in my case over 80 years of memories of our children with animals!

  18. So Thanks for confirming our inner child, in my case over 80 years of memories of our children with animals in England, Malaysia, and Canada! Thank you for noting books that left us all happy memories, as we remember.

    1. YES! Following trends can be important at times, but I do not believe in them in ou industry. That’s not what being creative is all about!

      Best of luck to you, and thank you for stopping by!

      – Bethany

  19. Great job. Was a typing teacher. Hard to ignore the double space after the period. I know I take criticism too personally, will work harder to overcome. Will work to cultivate people who will give an honest opinion of my pieces.

    Thanks for sharing

  20. Your passion and wit is very refreshing and helps put your ideas over in a simple way. I do write from my inner child even though that was many, many years ago. My style is not like picture books of this age but that of my own age, so I was released of my guilt and worry by what you said.
    My first book was a wade through the self publishing waters where I learned a lot. The second one was a good bit more difficult. I’m glad you talked about having a critique group and how to listen or not listen to them. That has caused rewriting and ignoring a lot on this second book, but I feel it has all been worth it. Now I’m ready to get this one published.
    Thank you for the time and effort that is obvious you have put into this presentation

  21. hi Bethany- i am a deaf -blind writer. i wonder if i could collaborate on a young adult book with you.

  22. I am a children’s book writer writing on my eighth book. The advice you gave was outstanding. I appreciate your enthusiasm and knowledge. Keep up the great work! I will definitely put to practice what you said.

  23. Thank you for this session and all the advice on how to become the author I want to be. May I still add one insight? With this kind of session and this kind of book mastery that provides tons of useful information – all at once and free. 🙂 Thank you all!

  24. Finally seeing the replay of this and it blew my face right open! You confirmed that not only am I on the right path, that I am doing this for the right reasons and that, most importantly, I can decide my path going forward. I needed this so much! Thank you!!!

  25. I am catching up on the webinars. I had a family emergency I was dealing with and just got back into town. Wonderful info from Bethany! It was nice to hear about not writing to trends and breaking the rules. I have been worried about that with my writing since I’m not published yet. Thank you for giving me the courage to stretch myself and not be afraid to step outside of the “writing” box. Not sure if it’s too late to enter or not, but I would LOVE to win feedback from Bethany on one of my manuscripts!!!

  26. Wow, wonderful blog layout! How lengthy have you ever been running a blog for? You make running a blog look easy. The overall look of your website is wonderful, let alone the content!

    1. Thank you! It’s been a few years, starting with our blog on getyourbookillustrations.com. It’s quite a bit of work! 🙂

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *