Deep Editing Power with Margie Lawson, CAC17 Master Class Presenter, Editor, and International Speaker

Have you registered for our #CAC17 Master Class yet?
Margie Lawson will present a full day Master Class on March 30th, the day before the conference. Make sure to plan to come early for this special session and REGISTER NOW.
Enrollment is limited, and seats are starting to fill up.
Margie has presented over a 150 full day master classes in the U.S., Canada, Australia, and New Zealand. Writers credit her innovative deep editing approaches with taking their writing to publication, awards, and bestseller lists.

Margie took time out of her busy schedule (teaching around the world) to write a guest post on some of the topics she will cover in the #CAC17 full day Master Class.

Do you have a question, a comment, or an editing experience to share? Post a comment and you have TWO CHANCES to WIN a lecture packet! 

Scroll down below the related posts, and you’ll see the comments section.

Rhythm and Cadence and Beats, Oh Yes!

By Margie Lawson Editor, International Presenter

Reading a book with flat-lined cadence is like watching a movie on mute.

Most writers know about the power of rhythm and cadence and beats. But most don’t use that power in every sentence.

A compelling cadence is more than varying sentence lengths. More than using ­­­­­standalone words.

A compelling cadence carries power on the page. It propels readers through paragraphs and passages and pages.

Read your work out loud, with feeling, and you’ll hear what beats work well, and what beats are missing.

Many rhetorical devices are cadence-driven. Knowing which rhetorical devices boost cadence, pick up pace, make the read imperative, and 947 more cool things, loads your writing toolbox with super-powered tools.

Check out these cadence-driven examples.

The Ones We Trust, Kimberly Belle, Award-Winning MIRA Author, Multi-Margie-Grad

1. Gabe’s good looks are real and rugged and raw, and now that I’ve seen both brothers up close, I’d choose Gabe over Zach any day.

RD Combo: Polysyndeton (multiple conjunctions, no punctuation) and Alliteration

2. The silence that spins out lasts forever. It’s the kind of silence that wraps around you like a shroud, the kind that turns the air thick and solid, the kind that makes you want to hear the answer as much as you dread it.

Kimberly Belle could have written: The room went silent.

I’m glad she decided to empower that emotionally-loaded scene dynamic.

Rhetorical Devices: Amplification (silence) and anaphora (the kind, the kind, the kind)

3. My heart races and my skin tingles and my blood pressure explodes like a grenade.

Rhetorical Devices: Three visceral responses are powered with polysyndeton (multiple conjunctions, no punctuation) and a simile.

The Blessing of No, Megan Menard, Multi-Margie-Grad

  1. Luke had a machine-gun laugh that fired about every third word.
  1. I picked up a French fry. It was a slender blonde, tall and weepy. I named the fry Tanya and chomped off its head.

Those examples carry interest and power and are perfectly cadenced. The second example uses a metaphor and structural parallelism. It reveals a truth in a humor hit that could make us laugh or cry.

Test of Faith, Christa Allan, Award-Winning Author, Multi-Margie-Grad 

  1. “If. Faith. Can. Come. Live. With Me?” I heaved every word out of my brain and into my mouth. I felt like someone regaining consciousness in an unfamiliar room or house or life.

Christa Allan stylized that dialogue by using a Period. Infused. Sentence. That’s what I named it. Her dialogue cue is amplified, amplified, amplified stellar.
She used an RD combo in the last sentence: polysyndeton and zeugma.

What’s zeugma?

I’ll SHOW not TELL. I know you’ll get it.

My teaching-zeugma sentence:

Margie grabbed her purse, her keys, and her steely resolve.

You got it!

This 2-point version is an example of zeugma too:

Margie grabbed her purse and her steely resolve.

Now you know the rhetorical device zeugma.

  1. This dinner was the Indy 500 version of returning to the track after a pit stop, except that the finish line was Logan, and there was only one first place.

Ah… Metaphors and power words and hope all themed, propelled by a compelling cadence.

Red-Headed Stepchild, Jaye Wells, USA Today Bestseller

Jaye Wells wrote this paragraph when she was in a full day workshop I taught for Dallas Area Romance Authors in 2007. I asked all the participants to write an example of anaphora.

Anaphora — Repeating a word or phrase at the beginning of three or more successive phrases or clauses or sentences. The first three must be in a row.

The paragraph she wrote in class became the first paragraph in the first chapter of Red-Headed Stepchild, her debut Urban Fantasy.

Digging graves is hell on a manicure, but I was taught good vampires clean up after every meal. So I ignored the chipped onyx polish. I ignored the dirt caked under my nails. I ignored my palms, rubbed raw and blistering. And when a snapping twig announced David’s arrival, I ignored him too.

Deep Edit Analysis:

Anaphora: I ignored, I ignored, I ignored, I ignored

Three Humor Hits:

    • Digging graves is hell on a manicure
    • good vampires clean up after every meal
    • I ignored him too

Power Words — Words that carry psychological power: graves, hell, vampires, clean up, ignored, ignored, dirt, ignored, raw, blistering, arrival, ignored him

What does the reader learn in those 53 words?

1. She’s digging a grave. We can infer she killed someone.
2. She’s a vampire.
3. She gets manicures.
4. She’s Goth.
5. She’s been digging that grave for a while.

She’s not concerned about David catching her digging a grave.

In that one short, opening paragraph, Jaye Wells deepened characterization, shared a strong and fun voice, and made the reader want to read more. That’s smart writing. The kind that impresses agents and editors and readers and reviewers.

Every example in this blog carries a compelling cadence. That pleasing cadence speaks to the reader’s subconscious. Cadence has the same impact on the reader that a movie sound track has on a viewer.

Read the first sentence of this blog OUT LOUD:

            Reading a book with flat-lined cadence is like watching a movie on mute.

Do you hear those perfect beats?

I could have written:

            It is critical to pay attention to cadence.

No cadence-driven power.

Deep Editing Caveat:  Most of the examples I shared in this blog were amplified. I’m not suggesting that every sentence should be powered up, or made special in some way. That would be gagifying. 

Not a word. But it carries the punch I wanted to share.

We need plain writing. Writing that does its job without any amplification.

We need fun, quirky, deep, stylistic, and tug-your-heart writing too.

I teach writers how to add psychological power to their writing in hundreds of ways. No hype. No hyperbole. I’m just sharing what I do.

I’m a psychologist-turned-editor. I used my psychological expertise to analyze more passages and chapters than most people read in ten lifetimes. I developed deep editing techniques that help writers add power to each paragraph.

I teach writers how to empower emotions.

How to avoid clichés and clichéd phrasing.

How to write fresh faces and voices and visceral responses.

How to use advanced stimulus-response patterns.

How to use my Four Levels of Powering Up Emotion. How to have the right emotional intensity in the right place.

How to create emotional authenticity on the page. How a character can act in an out-of-character way, and get the reader to buy it.

How to use six rhetorical devices to finesse backstory. Succinct, unskimmable, beautifully cadenced backstory.

How to use my 20 Point Checklist for Openings, my 15 Point Checklist for Endings, my 12 Visceral Rules for Fiction Writers, my 10 Gems for Not Writing Your Mama’s Character Descriptions, and more.

How to deep edit analyze your scenes. I developed The EDITS System so writers can see what’s working, what’s not working, and what’s missing.

I created seven online courses for writers:

  1. Empowering Characters’ Emotions
  2. Deep Editing, Rhetorical Devices, and More
  3. Writing Body Language and Dialogue Cues Like a Psychologist
  4. Defeat Self-Defeating Behaviors
  5. A Deep Editing Guide to Make Your Openings Pop
  6. Visceral Rules: Beyond Hammering Hearts
  7. Fab 30: Advanced Deep Editing, A Master Class

The first four classes each have 250+ pages of lectures. The next three classes have 180 – 230 pages of lectures.

I used to teach college. Graduate level psychology courses. I back up every teaching point with plenty of examples from a variety of genres.

I shared a few of the twenty rhetorical devices I teach fiction writers here. I’ll cover all twenty in about 75 minutes in my full day master class. Some, like polysyndeton (…photographed and bagged and carried away…, The Last Breath, Kimberly Belle) may be new to you, but they’re easy to learn, and use. Handouts help.

I’m looking forward to having fun in my Master Class on March 30. Join me, and you’ll leave with deep editing tips and techniques that will add power to your WIP.

About Margie

Margie Lawson —editor, and international presenter – teaches writers how to use her psychologically-based editing systems and deep editing techniques to create page-turners.

Margie has presented over a hundred fifty full day master classes in the U.S., Canada, Australia, and New Zealand. Writers credit her innovative deep editing approaches with taking their writing to publication, awards, and bestseller lists.

Margie developed seven online courses she teaches through Lawson Writer’s Academy on her website. LWA has over 30 instructors and offers five courses most months.

Margie also teaches fifteen 5-day Immersion Master Classes a year. Enrollment is limited to seven. In 2017 she’s teaching Immersions in Atlanta, Denver, Dallas, Amarillo, Calgary, Washington D.C., and in Melbourne, Sydney, Brisbane, Coffs Harbour, Canberra, and Hobart, Australia.

What’s the Buzz? 

Randy Ingermanson, Ph. D., award-winning author of Writing Fiction for Dummies:

In the twenty years I’ve been writing fiction, two teachers have astounded me with their insights and taught me something radically new: Dwight Swain and Margie Lawson. Margie taught me new ways to empower my writing.

Melanie Milburne, USA Today Bestseller

I had 40 books published before I met Margie Lawson. It wasn’t until I started using her deep editing techniques that I won several writing awards. I have a library of how-to books, but none top Margie’s expertise.

Laura Drake, RITA Winner, The Sweet Spot

When I took my first Margie Lawson class, the paradigm shift I experienced was more like an earthquake — I saw everything differently. I took more of her classes and I got a three book deal with Grand Central. A few months later I got a contract for a fourth book. Several months after that, I got contracted for three more books! I sold seven books in fifteen months—before my first book was released. I have Margie to thank for teaching me how to deep edit to get power on every page.

Allison Brennan, NYT Bestseller:

Margie Lawson, a brilliant psychologist, teaches a class on editing that, ahem, truly tested me. She uses color-coding to dissect writing in order to empower your stories. I learned from Margie how to fix my prose. I think about her editing system and techniques, ways to add power, finding the emotional key of the scene. I use her lessons to add power to my writing.

Romily Bernard, RITA Winner, Find Me

Your classes (both online and at the Georgia writing conference) changed my life!! My YA debut sold in a three-book, pre-empt to Harper Collins. Phoebe was so very complimentary about the way I render emotion and tension on the page and I know I have you to thank!

Alex Ratcliff, Daphne Finalist

Margie’s online courses and Immersion Master Class have strapped me into a skill-building machine for writers. With her help, in one year I moved from a can’t-write-a-fresh-line beginner to a Daphne finalist. Wow!

Karin Tabke, Bestselling author

I had so many epiphany moments Saturday my head was twitching. It’s still twitching! I wish I had attended Margie’s Empowering Characters’ Emotions master class earlier. My writing is stronger, more vivid, more emotional. The effects of the workshop were immediate. I highly recommend if you have the opportunity to take Margie’s workshop in person, do it.

Colleen Coble, CEO of ACFW and Bestselling author

“The workshop I went to last month was the best I’ve ever been to, bar none. And I’ve been to plenty. Margie’s workshop was so awesome, I’m going over my notes from what she taught before I start my next book. She’s a genius, pure and simple.”

Elizabeth Essex, RITA Finalist, The Danger of Desire

I’ve attended one of Margie’s all-day seminars, taken all her online classes; attended her workshops at RWA conferences, flown to Colorado to attend her four-day Immersion class, and hosted an Immersion class in Dallas. Margie taught me to challenge and push myself to make the hard changes from the first page of a manuscript until the very last. Working with Margie, you’ll have the tools to make every single word count.

Comment Contest Details

Post a comment and you have TWO CHANCES to WIN a lecture packet!

You’ll win the lectures (250+ pages) from one of Margie Lawson’s online courses listed here:

  1. Empowering Characters’ Emotions
  1. Deep Editing, Rhetorical Devices, and More
  1. Writing Body Language and Dialogue Cues Like a Psychologist

The drawings will be Sunday, Feb. 5th, 8:00 PM Mountain Time.  

Drawing reschedule due to SUPERBOWL! Time extended until Thursday, Feb. 9, 2017 at 6 p.m. PST.

The winners names will be posted here.

See you on the blog!

KEEP SCROLLING DOWN UNTIL YOU GET TO THE COMMENTS SECTION ON THIS PAGE (the place to leave your comments for Margie’s  contest).  

All smiles…………….Margie

2017-02-10T14:05:13+00:00By |


  1. Jennifer Mueller February 3, 2017 at 8:19 am - Reply

    Not good when reading this, I realized I need to use these far more. Time to rework it seems.

    • Amanda June Hagarty February 3, 2017 at 11:09 am - Reply

      I know right?

      • Margie Lawson February 7, 2017 at 6:43 pm - Reply

        Hey Amanda —

        I cyber-know you! Can’t wait to get to know you smile-to-smile.

    • Margie Lawson February 7, 2017 at 6:41 pm - Reply

      Hello Jennifer —

      Thanks for being the first to post! Glad my blog was enlightening. Happy editing!

      Hope I get to meet you at the conference.

      • Sara Stamey February 9, 2017 at 1:03 pm - Reply

        Hi, I can’t find a new box to leave a comment and enter the contest, so I’ll try here. Your article is intriguing, and I’d like to learn more. BTW, as a teacher/editor myself, I am compelled to point out that you used “it’s” contraction when it should have been “its” possessive. 🙂

  2. Belle Ami Author February 3, 2017 at 2:57 pm - Reply

    What an amazing post. Margie’s developed empowering tools for authors, whether they are beginners or multi-published savants. So much to learn, so excited to experience the power of Margie Lawson.

    • Margie Lawson February 7, 2017 at 6:45 pm - Reply

      Hello Belle Ami —

      Thank you, thank you.

      I loved working with you!

  3. Lisa Voisin February 3, 2017 at 3:59 pm - Reply

    Thanks so much for this post! It’s really helpful, especially as I approach my first round of rewrites!

    • Margie Lawson February 7, 2017 at 6:51 pm - Reply

      Hello Lisa —

      Glad my blog was helpful. Keep in mind I shared a few bites of one dish from my deep editing techniques smorgasbord that runs from San Francisco to NYC. Maybe a touch of hyperbole. 🙂

  4. gmadi1 February 3, 2017 at 4:25 pm - Reply

    This article is such a great affirmation for me when my critique group has a differing opinion than I do about my not-by-the-rules writing style. Thank you so much!

    • Margie Lawson February 6, 2017 at 4:15 pm - Reply

      Hello gmadi!

      Listen to critiques, but trust your cadence ear.

      This blog is a miniscule slice of what I teach. Hope you can attend the Master Class and learn more, more, more!

  5. Val Kennedy February 3, 2017 at 4:32 pm - Reply

    Amazing ways to amp up the power in my WIP. Thank you Margie! On to the highlighters. Color my pages pretty and get rid of the solid blue. Or green. Or yellow. But especially pink. Never a whole page of pink.

    • Margie Lawson February 6, 2017 at 4:12 pm - Reply

      Hello Val —

      I’m not analyzing scenes with my EDITS System at this Master Class. But you already know it well. Come learn some other deep editing techniques, including how to add power to your openings, endings, and turning points!

  6. Robert L. Slater February 3, 2017 at 5:47 pm - Reply

    Cool. That opening line seems like two lines of short-footed iambic pentameter. Or is it Iambic quadramtere [?] with a feminine ending? Or do I know just enough to make me dangerous to my own writing? 😉

    • Margie Lawson February 6, 2017 at 4:05 pm - Reply

      Robert —

      Love lambic quadrameter. Could be limbic amigdalameter. 🙂

      Hope I get to work with you in the Master Class!

  7. nancy February 4, 2017 at 6:33 am - Reply

    i have have taken many online classes with Maggie and her group. Each one is focused and WIP-changing. You don’t want to miss this masterclass!

  8. nancy February 4, 2017 at 6:38 am - Reply

    I have taken many online classes with Margie and her group. They are focused and WIP-changing. Now she will be here in person. I can’t wait. I hope everyone will sign up for her masterclass in deep editing. It is deep.

    • Margie Lawson February 6, 2017 at 3:59 pm - Reply

      Hello Nancy!

      Thank you, thank you!

      Love the way you described what I teach. Focused and WIP-changing. Perfect!

      You know I developed most of the deep editing tips and techniques and systems I teach. And you know writers can use them to add power to their WIP.

      See you on March 30th!

  9. Jes Stone February 4, 2017 at 7:20 am - Reply

    As with all things “Chanticleer” this post inspired, educated, and entertained. I can’t wait to meet Margie in person at the conference in March!

    • Margie Lawson February 6, 2017 at 3:51 pm - Reply

      Jes —

      You’re inspired, educated, and entertained. Yes! My top three teaching/presenting goals!

      I’m excited about getting to know all things Chanticleer at the conference. Can’t wait to meet you at my Master Class!

  10. Preslaysa Williams February 6, 2017 at 7:46 pm - Reply

    Love these examples, Margie!! Rhythm and cadence are high level writing techniques! Hopefully, I can get better at them the more I write. Hugs!!!

    • Margie Lawson February 7, 2017 at 6:53 pm - Reply

      Hello Preslaysa —

      Keep reading your work out loud. You’ll train your cadence ear.

      Thanks for chiming in!

  11. Kelly Collins February 6, 2017 at 8:04 pm - Reply

    I’ve taken Margie’s immersion class twice because it’s that good. She helps you take your work to a whole new level with her attention to the finer details like rhythm, cadence, and the use of rhetorical devices. Once you Margie-ize your work you’ll see the difference between writing good and writing NYT worthy.

    • Rayn Ellis February 6, 2017 at 11:26 pm - Reply

      I completely agree! That’s why I’ve done Margie’s Immersion class 4 times! I take my writing deeper every time I go.

    • Margie Lawson February 7, 2017 at 7:11 pm - Reply

      Hello Kelly —

      You know I dig deep. And you’re definitely making your writing NYT worthy!

  12. Carol Despeaux Fawcett February 6, 2017 at 8:22 pm - Reply

    I found Margie after earning my MFA in creative writing. Her online courses and Immersion Classes brought my writing to an entirely new and better level. My only regret is that I didn’t discover her years sooner! Her teachings have spilled over into other areas of my life too—my poetry is better, my business communications are more clear, and even my speaking abilities have improved! Thank you, Margie!

    • Margie Lawson February 7, 2017 at 7:23 pm - Reply

      Hello Carol —

      So cool that you’ve used some of my deep editing techniques in multiple areas of your life. Smart, smart, smart! 🙂

      I’m excited about your book of poetry coming out this year. Kudos to you!

  13. kctansley February 6, 2017 at 8:42 pm - Reply

    Fantastic examples of cadence and powerful sentences. I can’t help looking for these things in every book I read too. Thanks for teaching me how to find them and appreciate them!

    • Margie Lawson February 7, 2017 at 7:37 pm - Reply

      Hello K. C. Tansley —

      Ah — I’m always highlighting and annotating, or sticky-tabbing. Most of my Margie-Grad print books have hundreds of sticky tabs, and each tab marks an example I could use that carries a WOW factor.

      Hope I get to chat with you at the conference!

  14. Rayn Ellis February 6, 2017 at 11:22 pm - Reply

    Margie and her teachings were the best thing I ever did for my writing career! Not only did she turn me into a writer, she’s the best cheerleader a writer could have! Don’t miss the chance to take her Master Class!!

    • Margie Lawson February 7, 2017 at 7:38 pm - Reply

      Hugs to Golden Heart Finalist Rayn Ellis!

      Thank you, thank you! So fun that I get to see you in Washington this year!

  15. Liv Rancourt February 6, 2017 at 11:44 pm - Reply

    Of all the writing teachers I’ve studied with, Margie has had the most influence on my work. Her master class is great, and if you can get into one of her immersion sessions, they’re totally worth it.

    • Margie Lawson February 7, 2017 at 7:43 pm - Reply

      Hello Liv —

      I’m honored. Truly.

      So glad we got to have dinner after the Write on the Sound Conference!

  16. Tammy Euliano February 7, 2017 at 6:39 am - Reply

    Great review, Margie! I’ve met my writing partners through Margie’s Immersion classes and couldn’t be more grateful for all the fun learning and my new best buddies.

    • Margie Lawson February 8, 2017 at 12:34 pm - Reply

      Tammy —

      So true! Margie-grads playing and working together. The best times and the best writing!

  17. Mona Enderli February 7, 2017 at 6:59 am - Reply

    My OCD side simply loves cadence. The rhythm and flow soothes the angsty writer (and reader) in me.

    Surprisingly (or maybe not), something new seems to penetrate my thick skull every time I attend Margie’s Immersion class. I just finished my third one and, yep, the light bulb came on again. 🙂

    • Margie Lawson February 8, 2017 at 12:38 pm - Reply

      Hello Mona!

      Lightbulbs? I saw spotlights!

      It’s always fabulous working with you.

      • Mona Enderli February 8, 2017 at 1:37 pm - Reply

        Awww…. You’re sweet to say that.

  18. Becca February 7, 2017 at 7:24 am - Reply

    Margie’s EDITS system is a go-to for me. I don’t know what I would do if I hadn’t discovered Margie’s classes! Love the system.

    • Margie Lawson February 8, 2017 at 12:42 pm - Reply

      Hello Becca!

      You love the scene analytics from the EDITS System. Me too!

      I’m glad you found me, so I could find you. You’re a talented author and a talented instructor. Love that you teach for Lawson Writer’s Academy. Your WRITE BETTER FASTER class is a hit!

  19. Judith Starkston February 7, 2017 at 8:52 am - Reply

    I’ve taken Margie’s immersion class and found it the best boost to my writing of all the very many writing workshops over the years. She gives you concrete tools to lift your writing into the totally engaging side. She works through enough examples and models that I have no trouble applying what I learned to my own writing–you go through a lot of internalizing of the new skills while you’re in the class. Her handouts and lectures are super clear and great reference works that I keep near by. When a scene isn’t working, I can find a way to get it going by reviewing what I learned and finding the right solution in one of her sets of lecture notes. Definitely worth studying with Margie.

    • Margie Lawson February 8, 2017 at 12:52 pm - Reply

      Hello Judith!

      Thank you soooo much for sharing, and for being so clear. Clarity rules!

      I loved working with you, and getting to know you. Can’t wait to see you again.

  20. Riley Darkes February 7, 2017 at 9:42 am - Reply

    One of my writer pals told me how her writing really changed after working with Margie. So I signed up, and I’m now a 2 time immersion grad – going on 3 times this year! Margie’s teachings opened up my eyes to an entire new world of analysis. I see things in other people’s writing – and my own! – that I’d never seen before. Margie is my go-to for workshops now. ❤

    • Margie Lawson February 8, 2017 at 12:56 pm - Reply

      Hello Riley —

      I’m excited that I get to work with you again. Always great to see you, and your characters!

  21. Claire McEwen February 7, 2017 at 9:47 am - Reply

    Margie’s immersion class changed my writing! She has so many great ideas… I can’t wait to work with her again. I use my ‘Margie notes’ constantly. Before I write, to remind me of what I should be doing, and during revision and editing too. What I’ve learned from her has pushed my writing to a new level.

    • Margie Lawson February 8, 2017 at 2:03 pm - Reply

      Claire —

      I love your stories and your writing! Reviewers love your books too!

      Can’t wait to work with you and Kelly!

  22. Annalis February 7, 2017 at 11:05 am - Reply

    Excellent lesson! Great reminder of what we should be addressing.

    • Margie Lawson February 8, 2017 at 2:04 pm - Reply

      Annalis —

      Thank you. Glad the blog resonated with you.

      Hope to see you in the Master Class!

  23. Kimberly Kessler February 7, 2017 at 11:17 am - Reply

    Thank you for this Margie. Every time I read your teaching materials I am re-inspired to write fresh. And it’s so liberating! Learning from you has helped me find my own voice and the voice of my characters, allowing me to connect with readers on a deeper level–which is what we all want! So grateful to have found you.

    • Margie Lawson February 8, 2017 at 2:17 pm - Reply

      Hello Kim!

      So glad you review my handouts — and you’re re-inspired to write fresh. No cliched faces and voices and visceral responses for you!

      Thanks so much for sharing.

  24. Krystal Shannan February 7, 2017 at 11:57 am - Reply

    Fabulous examples. Margie is phenomenal and you won’t find a better teacher. Taking her online classes and spending time with her in an immersion changed the way I look at editing. I have an entire notebook I refer to from notes and handouts after each and every manuscript is finished. There are so many things to say and it would still never be enough to describe what a difference Margie makes in an author’s life.

    • Margie Lawson February 8, 2017 at 7:49 pm - Reply

      Krystal —

      Ah… Thank you!

      You’re smart to use all those deep editing handouts and notes and checklists with every manuscript. I’m impressed!

  25. Bruce Edwards February 7, 2017 at 12:10 pm - Reply

    Thanks to Margie and her introduction to rhetorical devices, I got a three book deal, from my supercharged writing. Margie is the extra edge it takes to stand out in the publishing world and sell your manuscript. I’ve been to two of her Immersion seminars and plan to attend more!

    • Margie Lawson February 8, 2017 at 7:56 pm - Reply

      Hello Bruce —

      I’m still excited about your three-book deal. You deserve that success!

      Glad I get to work with you in another Immersion class.

  26. Brynn Spears February 7, 2017 at 2:59 pm - Reply

    I’ve been fortunate to work with Margie online and in person. Both experiences elevated the quality of my writing by teaching me how to craft better sentences, better paragraphs, and better stories. Thanks, Margie 🙂

    • Margie Lawson February 8, 2017 at 8:08 pm - Reply

      Hello Brynn!

      I love working with you, and you know I love your writing. It’s so strong. It’s impress agents and editors and reviewers strong. Write faster. Deep edit faster. Query sooner!

      Thanks for posting!

  27. Christine February 7, 2017 at 4:22 pm - Reply

    I’ve only had one weekend with Margie and while we had a study-crammed, highlighted-colorfully, chapter-rewrite, fun-filled, eye-opening experience, I feel like I’ve only scratched the surface of self editing my material in order to become a New York Times bestseller. And by the way, after learning Margie’s technique of editing, I warn that you wil never ever read a story the same way again. Awesome experience and I need to do it again. Hugs to Margie!

    • Margie Lawson February 8, 2017 at 8:14 pm - Reply

      Christine —

      Keep deep editing. You’re on your way to becoming a bestseller!

      Thanks for dropping by the blog and posting.

  28. Mary Sutton February 7, 2017 at 4:44 pm - Reply

    The cadence jumps off the page and flows to your soul. Thanks Margie! You always have insightful posts.

    • Margie Lawson February 9, 2017 at 10:45 am - Reply

      Hello Mary S —

      Love your style!

      Structural Parallelism — jumps off the page and flows to your soul.

      Your writing always flows to my soul. 😉

  29. Fae Rowen February 7, 2017 at 4:57 pm - Reply

    Take advantage of your time with Margie! I’m lucky to have attended my first Immersion at Margie’s Colorado mountaintop home a few years ago with Laura Drake. Last October I returned for a second Immersion class. Amazing new material and a refresher for concepts that were beyond my comprehension the first time. Margie has the ability to help you infuse your writing with “fresh” language and ideas.

    -Fae Rowen, Writers in the Storm

    • Margie Lawson February 9, 2017 at 10:49 am - Reply

      Hello Fae!

      We met a few years ago, May, 2011. 🙂 Always fabulous to work with you.

      Thank you for dropping by and sharing!

  30. Lisa Heartman February 7, 2017 at 7:29 pm - Reply

    Anyone that’s on the fence about taking this class, JUMP! Don’t think about it. Scroll back up and click on the register now button. I’ve had the pleasure of attending two Immersion classes with Margie and several online courses, and they were wonderful. Margie not only teaches her lessons in a succinct way, but gives real world examples by the truck loads (cliché alert) so you can see them in action. I don’t really know how she packs so much amazing content into one “ah-ha” inspired day. She has the most spunk and stamina that I’ve ever encountered in a teacher. Maybe it’s all that fresh Colorado air she gets. Maybe it’s all the travel. Whatever it is, she’s worth it. Attend the class, take the notes, practice what Margie teaches. You’ll be glad you did, and so will your readers. Wish I could be there to join you.

    • Margie Lawson February 9, 2017 at 10:50 am - Reply

      Hello Lisa H!

      Your words gave me a little hit of visceral.

      Thank you, thank you for chiming in.

      I wish you could join us too!

    • jloakley February 17, 2017 at 9:19 pm - Reply

      Is it OK to quote you, Lisa?

  31. Melissa Borg February 8, 2017 at 6:29 am - Reply

    Margie great examples on how to punch up the pacing & interest of the reader. Your teaching really does enhance a writer’s voice.

    • Margie Lawson February 9, 2017 at 10:53 am - Reply

      Melissa —

      You’re right. I teach writers how to punch up pacing and add power, and my techniques honor a writer’s voice. You can see it in your writing!

      Great to see you here!

  32. Marnie Culver February 8, 2017 at 9:06 am - Reply

    Taking Margie’s master class started my path to publication. Her teaching style makes you think about writing in new and wonderful ways. I often refer back to the loads of helpful handouts she provides. I jumped at the chance to take her immersion class and the manuscript we worked on that week is now under contract!

    • Margie Lawson February 9, 2017 at 10:55 am - Reply

      Hello Marnie —

      I’m CHEERING! Kudos on your first contract!

      Your story and your writing will WOW readers. I’m so proud of you.

  33. Crystal Klimavicz February 8, 2017 at 11:52 am - Reply

    I cannot say enough about Margie’s teachings. I met her at last year’s (WFWA) Women’s Fiction Writer Association’s conference (my first ever writer’s conference) and I was blown away by what I learned in such a short amount of time. I left that event feeling rejuvenated as both a writer and a person, and I can’t wait to work with Margie again!

    • Margie Lawson February 9, 2017 at 10:57 am - Reply

      Hello Crystal K!

      I had such fun getting to know you at the Women’s Fiction Writer’s Association’s conference in Albuquerque last year. Fabulous conference. Thanks so much for chiming in!

  34. La-Tessa February 9, 2017 at 7:19 am - Reply

    Margie’s workshops have been, HANDS DOWN, the best investment I’ve made to my writing career. Her ideas and concepts speak to me and has made me a much better writer.


    • Margie Lawson February 9, 2017 at 10:58 am - Reply

      Hello La-Tessa!

      Ah… Thank you for your kind words. I appreciate you. Hope I get to see you somewhere this year!

  35. Angie Ballard February 9, 2017 at 7:52 am - Reply

    Margie’s classes are truly the Gold Standard by which I judge other classes. She has made a huge impact on my writing!

    • Margie Lawson February 9, 2017 at 11:01 am - Reply

      Hello Angie —

      You’re suh-weet! Thanks for dropping by the blog. I appreciate your words.

  36. Barbara Conly February 9, 2017 at 12:27 pm - Reply

    I attended two of Margie’s day-long intensive workshops held at my local RWA chapter over the years, and was blown away by her astute, clear teaching style. I FINALLY got the chance to help host her for a local Immersion program last year. Margie’s EDITS system provides a method of analyzing your own work in order to hone the emotional arc for the story and create the best possible reader experience.

    • Margie Lawson February 9, 2017 at 5:43 pm - Reply

      Hello Barbara —

      I remember meeting you the first time I presented a full day workshop for your San Jose group. Years ago!

      Thanks for posting!

  37. Sara Stamey February 9, 2017 at 1:05 pm - Reply

    Okay, now I found the right box, so I’ll repeat my comment I put at the bottom: Your article is intriguing, and I’d like to learn more. I look forward to meeting you at CAC17! BTW, as a teacher/editor myself, I am compelled to point out that you used “it’s” contraction when it should have been “its” possessive. 🙂

    • Margie Lawson February 9, 2017 at 5:38 pm - Reply

      Sara —

      Yikes! Can’t believe that apostrophe slipped in there. Thanks so much for letting me know. I’ll ask Amanda to kill it.

      Glad I’ll get to meet you at the conference!

      • Sara Stamey February 10, 2017 at 10:31 am - Reply

        Hope I wasn’t being a jerk — we all slip up! See you there.

        • Margie Lawson February 10, 2017 at 10:48 am - Reply

          Sara —

          Absolutely not. I want to know when I slip up.

          No worries!

          • Amanda June Hagarty February 10, 2017 at 2:07 pm


  38. Margie Lawson February 9, 2017 at 6:21 pm - Reply


    A big THANK YOU to Kiffer Brown and Amanda Hagarty for coordinating and setting up the blog.

    I appreciate all the comments. So fun to see posts from people I know, as well as from people I’ll get to know at CAC17.

    I clicked over to RANDOM.ORG, and let the random generator select the names of our two winners.

    The winners are: JES STONE and K. C. TANSLEY!

    They each win a lecture packet from one of my online courses.

    If they haven’t taken any of my courses, I’ll send them the lectures from the first of my BIG THREE courses: Empowering Characters’ Emotions.

    I’m looking forward to my Deep Editing Power Master Class on March 30th!

    Hope to see many of you there!

    • Jes Stone February 22, 2017 at 10:36 am - Reply

      Hi Margie –

      I was thrilled to learn that I won a lecture packet for one of your online courses. Wooo hooo! I’ll meet you next month–enrolled in the Deep Editing Power Master Class on March 30th.

      How can I start reading / working with the course packet, Empowering Characters’ Emotions. Can’t wait!


  39. Frances Howard-Snyder February 16, 2017 at 11:05 am - Reply

    Just signed up for the class on March 30. Looking forward to it.

  40. jloakley February 17, 2017 at 9:18 pm - Reply

    Looking forward the class. Have a WIP in mind that could use some input.

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