February 19

Birthdays: Andre Breton (1896), Kay Boyle (1902), Louis Slobodkin (1903), Maurice O’Sullivan (1904), Carson McCullers (1917), Ross Thomas (1926), Terry Carr (1937), Homer Hickman (1943),  Patricia O’Conner (1949), Amy Tan (1952), Siri Hustvedt (1955), Helen Fielding (1958), Laurell K. Hamilton (1963), Jonathan Lethern (1964), Jeff Kinney (1971), Marissa Meyer (1984),

Quote: “It’s a very daunting thing to think you’re going to sit down and write a whole book out of thin air, but you have to work, even when you’re not inspired.” – Laurell K. Hamilton

Tip: Your best characters will rise from personal experience. Dredge up everything bad – or good – that ever happened to you and let your characters experience it.

Jumpstart: Write a scene using: I found out something about my grandfather, whom I adored until then. Or: How could my grandmother…?