Most people dream of winning the lottery, finding the perfect partner and writing the Great American Novel.
The latter rarely happens. We all lead busy lives, and not everyone has the tools to bring our inner stories to life.
That’s where Faith K. Moore comes in.
The veteran scribe’s new project, The Story Club, hopes to turn our creative musings into something more. She opened up to HiT about the venture, how the web makes us all better writers and why she briefly took a knee on her own writing career.
HiT You’re a busy mom, an author and an entrepreneur … what made you decide to launch The Story Club?
Faith Moore: As an editor, I get to read the stories people have in their hearts — the ones they are just dying to tell. And I get to help them bring those stories to life.
I love my job. The more I read those stories, and connect with people via social media about the stories they love, the more I realize that this need to connect through stories is universal.
So I wanted to create a place where we could do that: connect with each other about the stories we love. And I wanted, too, for it to be a place where people who want to tell stories could learn how to do that better.
So The Story Club has a community — on Locals — for writers, readers, and story enthusiasts to connect and it has lessons — taught by me — to improve your writing craft. And you can find my editing services there as well. It’s a one stop shop for all your story needs!
HiT: Often the best business ideas stem from addressing your customers’ pain points … was that part of the reasoning behind The Story Club?
Moore: Yes! Lots and lots of people want to write a novel, but many of them don’t have any support or resources to help them realize their story’s full potential. Over the years I’ve started to track trends in the kinds of things that all writers find tricky when crafting their stories.
Seamlessly inserting character descriptions into a story, building suspense, world building, things like that. And I suddenly realized that I can help with those things in a more universal way by creating writing courses geared toward solving some of the most common issues I see in my clients’ work.
I’m so excited about these writing courses because I absolutely love teaching (I taught elementary school for nearly 10 years) and I think there’s a dearth of concrete advice on how to craft stories.
The lessons come with writing prompts and personalized feedback so that writers can hone their craft and improve. And, as opposed to the editing services I provide (which are also part of the offerings at The Story Club), you don’t have to have a novel you’re working on to get something out of them. These lessons are for anyone even remotely interested in writing stories.
HiT: Our digital age has its pluses and minuses, but connecting with fellow writers online can be very helpful in many ways. Can you share any anecdotes about connecting with folks online in ways that helped them, you … or both?
Moore: Nearly all my editing clients come to me through social media. So, in a sense, all the writers I’ve worked with have come into my life because of the ways we are all now connected online.
I’ve also had wonderful conversations on Twitter with aspiring writers about the stories they hope to tell and how to make them even better. I’ve connected with people I never would have met over the stories we love. And that’s the whole point: stories are universal.
It’s okay to break the rules, you just have to know you’re doing it.
We all have that one story — or maybe lots of stories — we just can’t let go of. And the internet is so great because there’s someone out there who feels the same way you do about the stories you love and now you can find them. And I hope to make that even easier with The Story Club.
HiT: I suspect we care more deeply about stories today than in the past, whether it’s obsessing over a just-canceled TV show or waiting for the next George R.R. Martin novel to drop … why do you think we’ve become so attached to stories in the modern era?
Moore: I don’t actually think this is a new phenomenon. Charles Dickens’s New York fans stormed the harbor, waiting for the British ship that would deliver the final installment of “The Old Curiosity Shop,” desperate to learn if Nell had survived. They were waiting for the final installment of “The Old Curiosity Shop” just as eagerly as we waited for the final episode of “Game of Thrones.”
What has changed, though, is how much media there is now. And how connected we all are to each other via the internet. It doesn’t matter, anymore, how obscure the story is that you love, there’s someone else out there who loves it, too. And I want to help you find them.
HiT: What are some common mistakes neophyte novelists make, and what are some of the most common questions you’re asked about writing?
Moore: I think the biggest mistake first-time novelists make is to not spend time on the prep work. I’m a huge believer in outlining. If you don’t know all the beats of your story, there is a pretty big likelihood it won’t make sense.
Similarly, if you don’t know who your characters are, or you haven’t done the research you need to do, your story won’t feel believable. And, even more broadly, if you haven’t read a lot (and I mean a lot) in the genre you’re writing in — including the originators of that genre — you won’t know what’s already been done, or what rules you’re breaking.
It’s okay to break the rules, you just have to know you’re doing it.
Don’t forget: Subscribe @OnLocals to become a Story Club VIP! It’s only $2 a month for July. So far I’ve blogged about sexy vampires, given a controversial writing tip & we’re talking about “plotters” vs. “pantsers” & having a grand old time. Join us!https://t.co/oSJTiGQvMv
— Faith Moore (@FaithKMoore) July 3, 2021
Most people, I think, are looking for concrete answers to some of the most elusive aspects of writing. In essence, people want to know how to write well. How do I describe my characters without stopping the action? How do I make people want to keep reading? How do I make this seem believable?
And there aren’t a lot of concrete answers out there because it’s something people tend to know how to do but not how to explain. Which is where my writing lessons come in.
My hope is that, if you take the entire course, you’ll be well on your way to getting concrete answers to those elusive questions.
HiT: What other writing projects are you working on … and what are some long-term dream projects you have that you may be sneaking up on at the moment?
Moore: My own writing has been on hold for a bit. I had a baby in December and was pretty sick during my pregnancy so I took a break for a little while. But the baby is here and I’ve had a few essays published in the last couple months, but mostly I’ve been focused on editing and building The Story Club.
A dream project? Oh, you know, the same dream as everyone else: to publish a novel.