Lisa's Lair

Hi everyone!

Can you believe 2014 is already over? Have you started thinking about what lies ahead in 2015?

Usually you hear people setting goals for weight-loss, exercise regimens, and career goals, right?

But I’m here to chat about your personal goals for your writing, your craft, and your creativity.

I usually blog about upcoming books and publishing news, but this one is going to be a little different. Are you a writer now? This is for you. Have you been thinking about writing someday, but haven’t really started yet? This is for you. Have you been writing, but rejections and changes in the publishing world have dimmed your passion?

This blog for all of you.

For myself, I decided that 2015 is going to be a year of giving and (hopefully) inspiring other writers, readers, and dreamers. I love teaching. I always have. And while I’ve been teaching writing classes locally, in 2015 I’m also going to be teaching monthly online classes as well. You can find out more about what’s coming next week in January here:

The month long short story class is filling up, so reserve your spot soon! We start first thing Monday January 5th. It’s all through your email so class is open whenever you’re available. Easy peasy! 😀

But what I really want to talk about is the 52 Stories in 52 Weeks writing adventure. This is a challenge I took up after meeting Ray Bradbury for the first time and I credit him completely for reigniting my love and passion for writing. Taking up this challenge changed my life literally. While writing a new short story every week, I also got the idea for the Moon Series and completed MOONLIGHT and HUNTER’S MOON!

So if you’re worried you don’t have time to commit to one short story a week, I’d offer up that by giving yourself this creative outlet, you’ll find you’re more inspired to finish your novels than you ever have been before.

I’ve been getting questions about enrolling in both courses in January and that’s perfectly fine. In the Short Story class you’ll be writing at least 1 new story each week, there is no reason those stories can’t be counted toward your 52 stories in 52 weeks challenge.

I’ve also been asked, what you’ll be “getting” by signing up to take the challenge. This is a great question, because this is a challenge you can certainly take up on your own, but as someone who has done it, here are a few reasons you might want to put some money into this goal.

  1. Accountability – During this challenge, I’ll keep a private google doc running for the year so you can have a visual of how you’re doing as well as your fellow writers. This tiny bit of peer pressure can also act like a “deadline” to keep you honest with yourself and help you carve out that writing time.
  2. Feedback – We’ll be posting the stories in our private yahoogroup so it’s a safe space to try new things and grow as a writer. You’ll receive feedback from me on every story, what worked and what you might consider tweaking. Again, this is meant to inspire you to write another story the following week.
  3. Inspiration – There is a reason that people are more likely to succeed in a supportive group. We all have struggles. It’s easy to give up on your long-term 1 year goal if you’re alone, but in a group we can all cheer each other on and dust each other off when we stumble. This challenge is a writer’s marathon, a creative quest, and we can all get there… Oh yes we can!
  4. Monetary commitment – The cost for this year long adventure is minimal, but it’s enough of a monetary commitment that hopefully you’ll push yourself to “get your money’s worth” and participate. Often people are told to pay the entry fee for a marathon before they ever start training. That “fee” inspires them to work and train rather than keep putting it off.


With all that said, I hope to be cheering on MANY of you this year. January is right around the corner. Make 2015 about your personal commitment to yourself, your writing, and your creative drive. I’m going to leave you with this short essay I wrote after I completed Ray Bradbury’s challenge to write 52 Stories in 52 Weeks…


I was lucky enough to meet Ray a few years ago, and I was struck by his capacity to love. He actually made me weepy when he talked about how deeply he loved writing. You could hear his passion in his voice, and his eyes reflected an infectious joy for storytelling.

Love. Fall in love and stay in love. Write only what you love, and love what you write. The key word is love. You have to get up in the morning and write something you love, something to live for. – Ray Bradbury

At that point I had been so disillusioned with rejections that I found it difficult to write anything new. I asked him what he would recommend to improve my writing. I expected a craft book recommendation, but instead he challenged me, and gave me the best advice I’ve ever received.

Ray told me to write 52 short stories in 52 weeks.

At first, I thought it was a waste of time. I had sold short stories before, and there wasn’t much money in it. Then I realized that making money couldn’t be the motivator.


It was love. Pure love.

  And every week I wrote.

As the year went by and I looked over the mass of stories, I realized what a gift he’d given me. Story after story, filled with new characters and places. I wrote two more novels and over 70 new short stories. His challenge helped make magic for me as a writer.

More importantly, he reminded me why I write.

The answer is simple…



So I hope you’ll take the plunge next week! Dive in with both feet… Or as Ray would say…

I’m looking forward to working with you in 2015! Let’s do this…. J


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Lisa Kessler's books on Goodreads
Moonlight Moonlight (Moon, #1)
reviews: 137
ratings: 660 (avg rating 3.76)

Night Walker Night Walker (Night, #1)
reviews: 177
ratings: 624 (avg rating 3.87)

Beg Me to Slay Beg Me to Slay
reviews: 102
ratings: 228 (avg rating 4.09)

Hunter's Moon Hunter's Moon (Moon, #2)
reviews: 84
ratings: 246 (avg rating 4.16)

Across the Veil Across the Veil
reviews: 61
ratings: 180 (avg rating 3.88)

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