Writing Book Review of the Week: Be a Writing Machine by M.L. Ronn

What prevents us from writing more and writing faster?  Do we lack the time, the motivation, the energy?  Is writer’s block causing bouts of crippling creative anxiety that prevent you from tackling your next story?

Well, M.L. Ronn and his book Be a Writing Machine: Writer Faster and Smarter, Beat Writer’s Block, and Be Prolific is here to save the day!  And let me tell you when this guy says he loves to write, he means it!

Ronn gives you an inside look at his process and how he balances life, work, and writing 6-8 books a year (fiction and non-fiction).  And while some of his methodologies might seem a bit extreme to some, he makes it clear that these are tools and tips that will help you get more writing done.

The book is broken into four main parts that examine different aspects of writer’s block and strategies you can implement to slay this creativity killer.  

These sections include Writer’s Block Part 1: How to Beat It Every Time; Part 2: General Maintenance Strategies to Keep You Motivated; Part 3: Strategies to Combat Lack of Inspiration; and Part 4: Strategies to Combat Fear.  

Each of his strategies is worth testing to see which ones work best for you and your writing goals. 

Creativity issues can be resolved with the right mindset and time management skills.  Ronn delves into these aspects of a writer’s life and how you can improve upon these two areas to increase your writing output and give your mind the freedom to create more efficiently.

This was a great book; I have highlighted and marked up my copy for easy reference.  If you’re struggling with writer’s block, time management, or motivation, I highly recommend Be a Writing Machine by M.L. Ronn.

Check out his website here: https://www.michaellaronn.com

Have you read Be a Writing Machine?  Let me know what strategies from the book you’ve used below!  

Book Review Tuesday: Imaginary Friend by Stephen Chbosky

It takes a special type of book to get me to drop everything when I get home from work and start reading.  Imaginary Friend by Stephen Chbosky was one of these books.  The hardcover version is 705 pages, and I read it in five days.

I was hooked from the first chapter, and was driven by a need to know what would happen next, which is the hallmark of a solid suspense thriller.  Imaginary Friend manages to keep you guessing and leaves you reading until 3 or 4 in the morning, desperately fighting sleep to finish the next chapter.  

It’s on my list of books I want to read again.

Below is the review I wrote after I finished it last year:

Reading this book was an amazing experience. I bought it last year, having no idea what it was about, never reading the dust jacket (expect for a brief skim), and then picking it up off my bookshelf a week ago and diving in. 

And I enjoyed every minute of reading this book.

Chbosky creates a world that envelopes you in its mystery and suspense. Imaginary Friend felt like a Stephen King novel (an author I love!), and I look forward to his next book in this genre.

I 100% won’t buy it and wait almost a year to read it. It’s buy it, read it next time!

If you’re a fan of Stephen King, suspense thrillers with the supernatural twist, and complex stories that deliver, I highly recommend Imaginary Friend.

What did you think of Imaginary Friend?  Leave a comment and let me know!

Check it Out! Early Reviews for Midnight House – Review #3

Below is another early review of Midnight House from Readers’ Favorite.  

Reviewed By Foluso Falaye for Readers’ Favorite

Midnight House by Ian Dawson follows the story of Daniel that started in The Field. Two years after escaping his traumatic time in the field, Daniel decides to be physically prepared for such cases by exercising and taking self-defense classes. Although he still suffers from PTSD due to the experience, he finds it hard to get past it. As everyone around him, including his girlfriend (Amber), is concerned about his well-being, he must find ways to heal completely and stop the nightmares from coming. A new problem arises when his best friend (Kyle) gets invited by his school’s basketball captain (Luke) to partake in the Varsity team’s rituals as Luke has a questionable character. But how questionable is Luke, and can Daniel repay his best friend by saving him if it comes to that? 

Three words: thrilling, suspenseful, and relatable. Midnight House is a perfect book for young adults as it involves several things that they experience, like first kisses, bullying, hazing rituals, building friendship, school sports, jealousy, and more. However, it gets very dark as some brutal fight scenes and plans for murder are portrayed in the plot. This adds to the thrill though; I was genuinely afraid that the protagonists might get killed or fall into the set traps. The story has a broad view, mainly shifting between four main viewpoints: Daniel, Amber, Kyle, and Luke. Prepare for some curse words and some graphic scenes, nothing sexually explicit though. All in all, there are no boring moments in Midnight House as it is very well put together. I would not hesitate to read other books by Ian Dawson.

Check it Out! Early Reviews for Midnight House – Review #2

Below is another early review of Midnight House from Readers’ Favorite.  

Reviewed By Vincent Dublado for Readers’ Favorite

Midnight House is Ian Dawson’s sequel to The Field. Sixteen-year-old Daniel Robinson is still haunted by the horrors of his abduction two years ago, becoming paranoid and experiencing nightmares in between his sleepless nights. Cautious that his family and friends do not find out, he tries to cope and live a normal life. Amber somehow manages to add meaning to his life. On top of that, there is his best friend Kyle, who is invited by varsity basketball captain Luke Darden to take part in an initiation rite to gain a position in the basketball team. But Daniel’s gut feeling tells him there is something more sinister that takes place in those dopey rituals at the Midnight House, and it is up to him to save his best friend from the danger of hazing. 

Midnight House has a great psychological element that you rarely find in young adult fiction. Dawson fleshes out a protagonist burdened by so much mental pressure from dealing with his own demons and protecting those that he cares about. Daniel’s psychological trauma makes this novel gripping and relevant. You get a balanced look at Daniel and Kyle as chapters alternate between their situations. If you put yourself as a character in the story, as one of the important people in Daniel’s life, and finds out that he intends to save his best friend, you cannot help but question if it is paranoia or genuine instinct that is driving him to risk his life. That being said, you should be thankful that you are merely a spectator to the tale. This narrative will challenge your contemporary sensibilities, and that makes this book highly recommended.

Check it Out! Early Reviews for Midnight House – Review #1

Below is the first of three early reviews of Midnight House from Readers’ Favorite.  

Reviewed By Rabia Tanveer for Readers’ Favorite

Midnight House by Ian Dawson continues the journey of Daniel and his best friend Kyle as their friendship and sanity are tested once again. Daniel is now 16 years old and the horrible event of two years ago still haunts him. Insomnia has become a normal part of his life and there is nothing that he can do about it. He knows he needs help, but something is stopping him from asking his family, friends, or even his girlfriend for help. To make matters worse, his friend Kyle seems to have landed himself in a mess. Kyle is invited by the captain of a basketball team to join their Varsity team’s ritual. He is supposed to go to the strange Midnight House and Daniel knows nothing good will come out of that visit. He needs to do something to protect his friend and make sure he is safe. Can they once again defy the odds and come out of a mess victorious? Or is this going to be the end of the road for them?

This is a heart-stopping and exciting story. Ian Dawson gives just the right amount of suspense, drama, and emotions to make sure readers stay in the moment with the characters and do not put the book down. Midnight House is one of those novels that can be enjoyed by people of all ages. Daniel and Kyle make a great team; they have their differences, but they work together to bridge the gap and make sure they communicate. Daniel’s dilemmas act as the perfect background to the story and readers get ample opportunities to immerse themselves in the mystery behind the Midnight House. Everything about this story is perfect. This is a highly recommended novel!