About

My name is Jonathan Ball.

Photo by Michael Sanders

I am an award-winning author of several books of fiction, nonfiction, and poetry. I have also written screenplays, humour columns, and journalism.

I hold a PhD in creative writing and literature, and use an analytical approach to show serious writers new ways to write, edit, and work so they can create innovative art that stands taller than the crowd.

I also host the podcast Writing the Wrong Way.

On that podcast, and this website, I share my own creative work, interview other artists, and offer resources to help my fellow writers.

If you are a serious writer who is willing to put in the work, I will help you experiment to develop your craft, edit to improve your art, and become more efficient and productive.

My Best Page

Every week, I email out the best new page I wrote, along with a story about how I wrote it. I share resources I used, techniques you could try, and other behind-the-scenes information and writing advice.

If you want to receive my best page every week, along with some free ebook resources, sign up below!

My Podcast

Writing the Wrong Way is the perfect podcast for serious writers who want to stand out in a crowded industry by becoming more productive while taking more artistic risks. 

I interview writers, screenwriters, musicians, filmmakers, and other artist-entrepreneurs, going deep on various topics related to writing, editing, screenwriting for film and television, comics and graphic novels, games and multimedia writing, humour, horror, and any other topic you can imagine.

Episodes range from interviews and panel discussions to solo shows where I break down complex concepts into practical approaches.

Subscribe: iTunes | Stitcher | GooglePlay | SoundCloud

Photo by Michael Sanders / Design by S.M. Beiko

My Approach

The writers I meet, whether emerging or established, have the same three problems. As a result, I have three areas of focus as a mentor to other writers. I work to solve three core problems writers face:

1. They struggle to stand out in an overcrowded marketplace and make an impression on readers.

Their work might be good, but it is too much like everyone else’s work, and so they feel like they are competing with other writers for the attention of a dwindling audience.

This causes them to isolate themselves and their work, fearing that others will steal their ideas or draw their small audience away, which makes the whole situation worse.

At the same time, these writers often hit a wall with their skills and don’t know how to break through. Their new work sounds like their old work, and their old work didn’t have the impact they imagined. 

The solution to these problems is to EXPERIMENT with new forms and styles to revitalize your craft and your art.

Some writers never reach this point of having to worry about separating themselves from the crowd, because they never finish anything in the first place. Sometimes, writers suffer from the second problem:

2. They have finished a project — or at least they think they’ve finished — but it feels unfinished.

So they can’t stop tinkering with it. They’re deep in an editing process but it seems so confusing. They have lost track of which draft they’re on, and they can’t tell if they are making the work better or worse.

They feel like an outside editor is necessary, but at the same time they feel like they should know how to do this work themselves.

They are lost in the woods of revision without a map to guide them.

The solution to this problem is to approach EDITING from a structural standpoint and follow a rigorous method that will transform your writing with clear, predictable results.

Sometimes writers don't have the problem of finishing, but the problem of starting, or making real progress. Sometimes the will is not lacking, but the way is unclear. Those writers suffer from a third problem:

3. They sit down to work — or rather they struggle to sit down to work — and they don’t know what to do.

They work so hard to carve out the time to write, but then when they finally find they time they don’t get anything done.

They either feel stuck, with writer’s block, or they have too many ideas and are so unfocused that they can’t get anything finished.

They feel like they are on a hamster wheel where they are working every free moment but still aren’t making progress.

The solution is to be EFFICIENT in your work and create systems that drive you to be more productive with less anxiety.

This site contains many free resources, but you may also want to learn more about my services.

My Writing

Over the years, I have written feature film screenplays, television scripts for a true crime series, a humour column called “Haiku Horoscopes,” thousands of pieces of nonfiction, fiction, poetry, and journalism.

I review books for the Winnipeg Free Press and other venues, including a column rounding up the best four poetry books I read each month, and am the co-creator of the #95books challenge. 

I teach university courses on literature, film, and writing in Winnipeg. 

Additionally, I am the author of seven books:

Connect on Social Media

This is my online home and the best way to contact me is through email: jonathan@jonathanball.com. However, I am also online at: 

Don't forget to stay in touch!

If you want to receive my best page every week, along with some free ebook resources, sign up below!