How exciting is it to host Angela Ackerman and Becca Puglisi on the blog today? I, like many, many writers, keep their Thesaurus series within arm’s reach. The Occupation Thesaurus is their latest. Welcome Angela and Becca!

Author Names: Angela Ackerman & Becca Puglisi

Book Title: The Occupation Thesaurus: A Writer’s Guide to Jobs, Vocations, and Careers

Book Genre: Writing Guide

Release Date: July 20th, 2020

Publisher: Jadd Publishing

Authors, please introduce yourselves and tell us a little bit about your books that help writers.

Hi everyone! Becca and I are an author duo that are basically attached at the hip, and the miles between us don’t matter. Becca resides with her family in Florida, USA and I (Angela!) live in Alberta Canada. We’ve known one another for about 15 years, written eight writing guides together, co-founded Writers helping Writers and One Stop for Writers…and yet we’ve only met in person four times!

What was the spark behind your latest, The Occupation Thesaurus?

The spark behind The Occupation Thesaurus is that we are on a mission to help writers strengthen their storytelling by thinking more carefully about every piece of description they include in a book. If more of the details we use are doing more than just paint a picture for readers, we give our stories depth. This depth is what stands out to readers and it will bring them back book after book. A character’s job is one of those details that sometimes writers give little thought to, and yet it is stocked with hidden power. It can be used to characterize, amplify theme, deploy conflict, and provide a natural environment for character arc transformation…and that’s just the tip of the iceberg.

How much time and research goes into each book in the Thesaurus series?

This really varies, depending on the subject. For occupations, an entry might take anywhere from an hour to an hour and a half to research. Other topics that tie deeper into psychology like emotions, personality traits and emotional wounds, can take much longer. And this is just to draft them, not refine them, of course.   

From your perspectives as both writers and writing coaches, what’s the hardest thing about writing? And what do you love most about it?

I think the hardest thing is probably learning to have patience because there’s a learning curve. The more you grow your knowledge of storytelling the more you see all the moving pieces and realize there’s still so much more to know and master. We’ll never master it all, but learning itself is a lifelong gift, I think. This ties to the best thing about writing, which is being able to use that knowledge in creative ways, and to live the lives of others through our characters. We experience new worlds, challenges and perspectives through our writing, and have an incredible opportunity to connect with readers, sharing our own beliefs, insights, and ideas. What an amazing job we all have!

Any new projects in the works?

After this book launch, sleep is my main project, lol. Some time off. After that, onward to the next book (not sure which it will be just yet), and we are always building more tools and resources at our One Stop for Writers site.

Where can readers find you (website, blog, social media, etc.)?

Becca and I love writers, and love connecting. Our main hubs are Writers Helping Writers ® (a helpful blog that supplies help with all things writing and especially description) and One Stop for Writers ®, a portal to resources and tools that turn writers into powerful storytellers. (One Stop has a free trial, if you’d like to know more.)

A few more places to find us:

Twitter @beccapuglisi

Twitter @AngelaAckerman

Twitter @OneStop4Writers

Becca’s Facebook

Angela’s Facebook

Angela’s Instagram (writers_helping_writers_angela)

Thanks so much for all the great questions!

Thank you, Angela and Becca! The Occupational Thesaurus is available NOW.

What if you could fast-track the reader’s understanding of a character without chunky paragraphs of description that kill the story’s pace? And what if you could use a common element of daily life to explore story goals, relationships, themes, and even the character’s internal growth? You can. It’s time to activate the power of your character’s occupation.

Whether a character loves or hates what they do, a job can reveal many things about them, including their priorities, beliefs, desires, and needs. The Occupation Thesaurus will show you how a career choice can characterize, drive the plot, infuse scenes with conflict, and get readers on the character’s side through the relatable pressures, responsibilities, and stakes inherent with work.