insecure writers support group

#IWSG Taking Risks in Writing

Happy spring, northern hemisphere writers! Join us for a monthly venting of our hopes and fears at the IWSG, Alex Cavanaugh’s brainchild.

Thanks to our helpfulco-hosts this month: PK Hrezo, Pat Garcia, SE White, Lisa Buie Collard, and Diane Burton.

April 7th’s question: Are you a risk-taker when writing? Do you try something radically different in style/POV/etc. or add controversial topics to your work?

Sometimes anxiety prevents me from being brave in my personal life, but I have taken some risks in writing. My March release, sports romance Rivals, was the first time I wrote a novel in present tense. I like it! It’s fun! And another risk with Rivals (especially financially, eek) was the creation of my first audiobook. I’ll share more about the wonderful world of audiobooks in May.

As a psychologist, I need to broach uncomfortable topics to be effective, and another way I take risks is to incorporate squirmy themes into my stories. Twin Sacrifice dives into recovering from childhood sexual abuse, and the Blocked trilogy explores falling in love across the political aisle.

One big motivator to take risks: the support of fellow writers! Thank you to Nicki Elson, Ellen Jacobson, Shannon Lawrence, Pat Garcia, Valerie Ullmer, Sheri Hollister, Natalie Aguirre, Alex Cavanaugh, and Diane Wolf (I hope I’m not missing anyone) for your great support.

What risks have YOU taken?

16 thoughts on “#IWSG Taking Risks in Writing”

  1. Congrats on the audiobook. I think it’s good to have stories with the issues you describe. Unfortunately, sexual abuses and other sad issues are a part of life, and it’s good for readers and writers to explore them in books. Thanks so much for the shout out. I really appreciate your support, and like you, I’m here to support other writers.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I can tell you love supporting other authors, Natalie! You do it well. Yes, I appreciate that some readers want to escape life’s pain when they read, and I feel that way too, but it is sometimes healing to explore the darker parts of life in fiction.


  2. I’m looking forward to hearing how the audiobook process went. It’s something I’d love to do for my own books, but the cost . . . yikes!

    You know, I don’t even remember that Rivals was in present tense which means you did a great job of using it! When present tense isn’t done well, it really jumps out at you.

    Congrats on the release!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Hey, Ellen, good thing I have my day job to pay the bills and try something new. Thanks for that feedback and for your lovely review of Rivals! Congrats on YOUR upcoming release! 😀


    1. Hi, Pat! Thank you for co-hosting. I have some promo codes for a free audiobook, and you are welcome to have one if you like. Thank you for the good marketing wishes! Sales have been meh and that doesn’t motivate me to market very well–sort of a vicious circle.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Thank you, Jennifer. I truly appreciate the offer but I’m a member of Audible and have some credits that I haven’t used and will used one of them.
        As for Marketing, hang in there. I know where you’re at. I’m marketing my short story and it’s taking time. I’m in the RRBC Which is an outstanding Book club organization so I have my book in their catalog. They have been fantastic in helping promote my book. I am still in the process of promoting my book. I have just been busy with other commitments that I made to other Writer’s before my book came out. But I don’t want to cancel these commitments. I truly believe my word us my bond. If I don’t fulfill commitments that I have committed myself too, then I will suffer a huge loss that I can never recover. So, don’t lose heart. Hang in there. Also check out the RRBC site. That May be something for you. It is the Rave Reviews Book Club and it is on the Internet. If you have any problems finding it, just let me know.
        Have a great day.
        Shalom aleichem,


  3. Hi Jennifer! I love writing in present tense–feels so much more immediate. I tried going back to past tense with a different story and it was really tough retraining my brain. I think some of us are naturally present tense writers. I’m sure your psychology background comes in very useful when storytelling!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks for co-hosting, PK! Interesting–I haven’t started writing something new after finishing my present-tense novel, but I bet I’ll feel the same way that you have, having difficulty going back to a tense with less of a “now” feel.


  4. Congrats on the new release! And an audiobook – very exciting. I love the premise – a modern day Romeo and Juliet, without the tragedy ending part! I’m looking forward to reading it – it’s already on my Kindle!

    Liked by 1 person

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