Announcing New KP Staff Members

staffannouncementOne side effect of trying to do everything at once is that you can forget to announce the awesome new people you’ve added to the site team. So without further ado, here we are. We’ve recruited three illustrious interns for our writing team—Gabrielle Pollack, Emily Kopf, and Cindy Green—and we are proud as punch to have them with us. You should begin seeing new articles, book reviews, and poems from them this upcoming month.

We’re also excited to belatedly announce Christi Eaton as our new social media manager. Christi’s been running our social media for a while now and has been doing a fantastic job. If you aren’t subscribed to our various social media channels now, here’s your chance. (Facebook, Pinterest, Instagram, Twitter.)

Finally, we’re thrilled to introduce a new web developer to the team. Isaiah Taylor is a rather mysterious fellow, so there’s not much we can say about him, but his expertise will be invaluable to us as we work on updating the site over the coming months.

Read more about our new writing interns below and feel free to wish them a hearty welcome in the comments!

Writing Team Interns

Gabrielle Pollack

Gabrielle PollackGabrielle Pollack currently resides with her family and many cats amidst a small wood she wishes was Narnia. Her interests are varied, and when she isn’t writing or studying, she enjoys karate, archery, introverting, and hanging out on the Kingdom Pen forum. She relishes the cool wind that rushes in before a thunderstorm, the scent of fresh rain, black clouds, and in summary, all things storm. As a lighthearted INFP, she loves horses, spring, strawberries, and sitting on the roof of her house.

She fell in love with stories many years ago and immersed herself in epic books like The Kingdom Series and The Peleg Chronicles, living the adventures and loving the characters. It took her a while to realize she could write epic stories herself, but once she did, she was a lost cause. She never quite recovered her sanity and often rants about good storytelling to innocent bystanders. Gabrielle has written two books since and has a plethora of other ideas swirling inside her brain, waiting to turn into people and worlds. She desires to glorify God through her books, short stories, and blog, and she looks forward to learning more about her trade.

She dreams of traveling the world and wishes to return to the bottom of the Grand Canyon, the heights of the Rocky Mountains, and the sandy shores of the Outer Banks. Gabrielle also wishes to travel to New Zealand and stand upon a rocky perch overlooking a flatland, where she will then quote Lord of the Rings lines in dramatic fashion. Her more realistic goals include becoming a full-time writer and surviving adulthood.

Cindy Green

CindyCindy Green is a Canadian homeschool student who wants to live in a world where rain is colorful and mint chocolate chip ice cream is acceptable for daily consumption. But she is contented to live in one where dogs exist, fireworks are a regular occurrence, and trees are climbable objects (though the winter season is consistently extended in the land of igloos and hockey, she has climbed trees in her snowsuit before, and she will do it again). She began scribbling out fiction and keeping a journal at around age seven, and last she checked, hasn’t stopped. Thinking of writing always goes hand in hand with thinking of a quote that she feels captures part of her existence: “I just want to make beautiful things, even if nobody cares.”

She deems becoming an intern for Kingdom Pen the biggest of deals in regard to her writing accomplishments, surpassing even her excitement upon placing second in a library contest, having a short story accepted in a nationwide collection, and being frequently published on a blog for young authors.

Aside from obsessing over the arrangement of words and fantasizing about maple-syrup-coated beavertails, Cindy enjoys spending time playing piano, looking at pictures of outer space, loudly singing along to music, exploring the dictionary, attempting Highland dancing, and reading. She hopes to someday publish a book of her own, learn to skateboard without getting scraped, and witness the aurora borealis in the Yukon. Most of all, she wants to live her life colorfully and passionately for the glory of a good God and to point to her Creator as the source of all joy.

Emily Kopf

EmilyEmily Kopf has loved books since her mom taught her how, and she reads everything she can get her hands on. After she read Dragons in Our Midst by Bryan Davis at the age of eleven, Emily became obsessed with dragons and fantasy. Now, ten years later, she has invented a few fantasy stories of her own and is determined to make a career for herself in the bookish world. She is studying English Literature in her final year in college, writing scores of book reviews, blogging at Zerina Blossom’s Books, writing epic stories, editing, and helping other authors make a name for themselves.

Emily comes from a creative family, with two self-published authors for uncles. She grew up in the beautiful mountains of the Inland Northwest as the oldest of three kids in a Christian family. She was homeschooled until fifth grade, when she joined a tiny Christian school. Emily loves everything artistic, from singing to macramé to sketching. Most of all, Emily loves Jesus and her family and friends.

Her favorite genres to read and write are fantasy, fairy tales, historical fiction, and sweet romance … or anything clean with a happy ending. A few of Emily’s favorite authors include: Nadine Brandes, Anne Elisabeth Stengl, Bryan Davis, Jane Austen, and J.R.R. Tolkien. Currently she is a book reviewer for Kingdom Pen, so if you want her to review a specific book, send in a suggestion to KP for consideration.

Echoes of Spring

By Moriah Simonowich

In beauty as elegant as a pearl,

Another day crisply unfurls.

Echoes_of_Spring

From God’s treasure house of gems

Come chill March winds,

Echoing the season of spring;

They whirl, twirl, and ring.

Clouds in transparent white wisps

Move about in drifts—

Sails billowing on a sea of blue;

In a sky of clearest hue.

[Read more…]

Are You Helping Your Protagonist Cheat Her Way to Victory?

By Rachel Keller

You’ve written a novel that you love (ironically) beyond words and handed it to beta readers to prepare it for the final editing stage. You’ve aced all the details (characterization, plot, theme, setting). You’re sure this is the novel that will launch you into publishing. Then you receive disturbing feedback from your beta readers:

“I didn’t care about the protagonist.”Are_You_Helping_Your_Protagonist_Cheat_Her_Way_to_Victory

“The protagonist won too easily.”

“I couldn’t help feeling more drawn to the side character or villain.”

Your momentum slows as you read their comments again and again. What happened? Your character suffered greatly! She dragged herself to the end! You spent considerable time developing her story. How can they dislike her? What did you do wrong?

I had this experience on the flip side as the reader. Excited to delve into a new book, energized and intrigued by the plot. Yet, I repeatedly slammed the book down in frustration. [Read more…]

KP Book Review: Waterfall

By KayleighAnne E. Stanton

What if our time collided with another? What would happen to our world? Who would we become?

See the answers unfold in Waterfall, book one of the River of Time series.

Every summer, sisters Gabi and Lia have reluctantly traveled to the beautiful country of Italy with their parents, who seem to care more about archeology than their daughters. After the death of their father, the girls stumble across Etruscan ruins their parents have long been hunting for. One hot, dusty day the sisters sneak off to examine the tomb, artifacts, and strange handprints no one can explain.KP_Book_Review_Waterfall

When the girls touch the handprints, they are pulled into a whirlwind that sweeps them into fourteenth-century Italy, where life is difficult. The sisters get separated, and Gabi searches desperately for Lia—and a way to return home. [Read more…]

Vain

By D.G. Snapper

There once was a man from Vain

His life was focused on gain

He worked for his wants

It pleased him just once

And his countenance was blank as a pane

Vain

There once was a girl from Vain

Her escape came only from feign

She laughed and she tried

Only it was a lie

All she did went down the drain

[Read more…]

Waiting for the Words to Come

 By Bethany Vela

Lost in thought, lost in mind,

Trapped in a page of written lines.

Can’t break free;

Would I even want to?

Waiting_for_the_Words_to_Come

I have a story to tell,

Let me tell it to you.

The night is late; I cannot sleep.

I will not dream, I will not eat. [Read more…]

Announcing KP’s First Free Writing Course!

FREE_Writing_CourseDo you aspire to write a novel but have no idea where to start?

Do you wish to learn the basic techniques of storytelling?

If so, you’re in luck, because today we’re excited to announce the release of our first writing course.

And we’re letting you all take it for FREE.

In Jumpstart Your Novel: The New Writer’s Guide to Storycraft, author and forum moderator Daeus Lamb outlines the fundamental principles of storytelling and explains what beginning writers need to know to super-boost their writing. He’ll be covering:

  • The seven main points of story structure
  • How to create awesome characters
  • The building blocks of theme
  • How to choose the best POV for your story
  • How to accelerate your growth as a writer
  • …and more

If you’re a beginning writer who needs to drill down the basic techniques of writing, this course will help you jumpstart your growth—and you don’t have to pay a dime! And if you’re already an experienced author, but you have friends who are newbies, this is the perfect resource to introduce them to fiction writing.

Do you want to propel your novel from concept to reality?

Watch the video below to learn more about the course, then click this link to sign up!

Love and Time

By Elri Voigt

Gazing over her subjects, Time watches

Waiting for the next victim to be subject to her iron rule

None can escape it, like a goddess

She waits, immortal and cruel

To laugh as mankind tries to outrun her, and fails

Love_and_Time

Two pairs of eyes meet

Two hearts skip a beat

Two souls believe

In a destiny

Two hands join together

[Read more…]

Three Things to Do When You Realize Your Plot Is Cliché

By Jamie Dougall

A brilliant new plot enters your mind. It charms you with sweeping intrigue, fascinating characters, and a premise that cannot be ignored. You immediately start writing, but eventually you realize the story is cliché. All your creative juices die, and you pound your head on your keyboard, wondering why you thought it was a clever idea. The characters are plastic Barbies and G.I. Joes who take three hundred pages to reenact your favorite movie. The ending is predictable. It’s an utter disaster.Three_Things_to_Do_When_You_Realize_Your_Plot_Is_Cliche

Maybe you are being a bit melodramatic. It’s not all that terrible, yet the cliché is present, blurring your scenes into predictable goop. How will you ever fix it?

Clichés are unacceptable because they are repetitive—similar characters playing out similar situations until the plot line becomes insipid. It’s like several people feeding you their own version of spaghetti. Every. Single. Day. You get sick of it, and the next time someone claims their recipe really is different, you’re unimpressed. It doesn’t matter if this sauce has a smidgen of brown sugar. Or the villain only looks like an evil hag. Or the protagonist’s name is not Rapunzel, but Genevieve d’Beauchene. Not only is that a mouthful, it doesn’t conceal the clichéd plot. And we are so done with that flavor.

So how do you spice up a story that tastes too much like bland spaghetti? Read on, and I’ll cover three techniques that may pull your plot out of yesterday’s clichés and to the forefront of originality. [Read more…]

How to Keep Yourself Organized While Writing

By LaToya Gay

As a writer, it’s possible (and maybe even likely) that you aren’t very organized when it comes to your craft. We’ve all experienced inspiration at the most inopportune moments. We can sit for hours staring at a blank screen or page with nary a clue how to proceed with our stories. Then, out of nowhere, inspiration strikes while we’re driving, taking a shower, or walking the dog. It seems to happen anywhere except in a convenient place to write.How_to_Keep_Yourself_Organized_While_Writing

When the muse strikes, we tend to scribble haphazardly on whatever is within reach, whether a dinner napkin, a random piece of mail, or the back of our hands. Although we don’t doubt the utter brilliance of our idea, it’s easy to put the note aside and forget about it, confident that it won’t get lost since we’ve written it down. [Read more…]