Writing

  • Most Topular Stories

  • Four tips for setting 2015 writing goals

    onewildword
    Carol Despeaux
    7 Jan 2015 | 6:00 am
    In the process of setting my goals for 2015, I realized how much magic there is in writing them down—and I don’t mean just randomly choosing goals and then giving ourselves a due date. That doesn’t work. The magic comes when we dig deep. Here’s my process in case it helps you: Tip # 1: Brainstorm and write it down First, I grab a legal pad and have one page for each of the following areas of my life: business, writing, health, and hobbies. For each category, I write down the goals I want to have accomplished by the end of 2015. And, if necessary, I break the goals down into different…
  • How one piece of writing can morph into something else

    onewildword
    Carly Sandifer
    29 Jan 2015 | 6:00 am
    A few of my writing friends and I meet up occasionally to read our work and give each other feedback. One day, I read a poem I’d written about an encounter with a woman who had Alzheimer’s. When I finished reading it, one of my friends said, “I really like that character. I want to know more about her. I think you should write a story about her.” I’m not sure why, but when I get a writing idea, I usually know exactly what format it should take: poem, short story, novel, flash fiction. But I realized that one format CAN evolve into something else. It really made…
  • Three Misconceptions About Modern SEO That Confuse Content Marketers

    Copyblogger
    Brian Clark
    26 Feb 2015 | 6:00 am
    What’s the reality of search engine optimization after the Google Hummingbird update? Can someone destroy your business with negative SEO? Did Google kill the concept of AuthorRank when it eliminated the Authorship initiative? For these types of questions, there’s no better person to ask than Danny Sullivan, founder of Search Engine Land and Marketing Land, CMO of Third Door Media (producers of the popular SMX conferences), and a veteran search engine expert of 20 years. Today’s show is just a warmup to Danny’s presentation at Authority Rainmaker 2015, May 13-15 in…
  • The Most Important Part of Storytelling

    Advice to Writers
    JW
    26 Feb 2015 | 9:02 pm
    I think the most important part of storytelling is tension. It's the constant tension of suspense that in a sense mirrors life, because nobody knows what's going to happen three hours from now. RICHARD CONDON
  • Freedom to Read Week

    Word Grrls
    Laura Brown
    7 Feb 2015 | 3:42 pm
    The post Freedom to Read Week appeared first on Word Grrls. February 22-28, 2015 Freedom to Read Week is an annual event that encourages Canadians to think about and reaffirm their commitment to intellectual freedom, which is guaranteed them under the Charter of Rights and Freedoms. Related Posts: Only One Way to Read Don’t Apologize for Reading Writers of Old Books Don’t Have Twitter Accounts Can You Go a Day Without a Cell Phone, or are you Addicted? You are Who you Read The post Freedom to Read Week appeared first on Word Grrls - Writing daily whether I want to or not.
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    Advice to Writers

  • Bring it Back to What You Really Feel

    JW
    1 Mar 2015 | 9:05 pm
    Almost the whole problem of writing poetry is to bring it back to what you really feel, and that takes an awful lot of maneuvering. You may feel the doorknob more strongly than some big personal event, and the doorknob will open into something you can use as your own. ROBERT LOWELL
  • Short Paragraphs

    JW
    28 Feb 2015 | 9:08 pm
    Short paragraphs put air around what you write and make it look inviting, whereas one long chunk of type can discourage the reader from even starting to read. WILLIAM ZINSSER
  • Keep Your Self-Doubt

    JW
    27 Feb 2015 | 9:06 pm
    The writer who loses his self-doubt, who gives way as he grows old to a sudden euphoria, to prolixity, should stop writing immediately: the time has come for him to lay aside his pen. COLETTE
  • The Most Important Part of Storytelling

    JW
    26 Feb 2015 | 9:02 pm
    I think the most important part of storytelling is tension. It's the constant tension of suspense that in a sense mirrors life, because nobody knows what's going to happen three hours from now. RICHARD CONDON
  • No Day Without A Line

    JW
    25 Feb 2015 | 9:03 pm
    It is helpful to write always at the same time of day. Scheduled obligations often raise problems, but an hour or two can almost always be found in the early morning-when the telephone never rings and no one knocks at the door. And it is important that you write something, regardless of quantity, every day. As the Romans put it, Nulla dies sine linea--No day without a line. (They were speaking of lines drawn by artists, but the rule applies as well to the writer.) As a result of all this, the setting almost automatically evokes verbal behavior. No warm-up is needed. A circadian…
 
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    Daily Writing Tips

  • Hungover vs. Hung Over

    Maeve Maddox
    1 Mar 2015 | 8:18 pm
    A reader feels that the adjective to describe the state of experiencing the effects of too much alcohol should be an open compound: I would be really grateful if you would address whether or not the compound noun ‘hangover’ retains its closed form when used as an adjective (‘she was hungover’). I feel irked when it does, and that it should become open (‘she was hung over’) but because I can’t define “hung’ or ‘over’ in the context of suffering from the after-effects of alcohol, I haven’t been able to force my case. A…
  • Worked, Wrought and Overwrought

    Maeve Maddox
    28 Feb 2015 | 8:08 pm
    Judging by comments and emails I receive whenever I write about the verb wreak, some English speakers believe that the past tense of wreak is wrought. That’s not the case. Wrought is an archaic past tense form of the verb work. Work and wreak derive from different Old English verbs: wyrcan (do, make) and wrecan (to avenge). Both work and wreak belong to a class of irregular verbs that have acquired regular -ed endings in modern English. If wreak had remained irregular, its forms would probably look like these: “wreak, wroke, (have) wroken.” The verb work has a modern -ed ending, but the…
  • Woof or Weft?

    Maeve Maddox
    27 Feb 2015 | 8:03 pm
    A reader has a question about the old-fashioned nouns woof and weft: It doesn’t come up often, but it bothers me when it does: a reference to the “warp and woof” of fabric (either physical or metaphorical) instead of “warp and weft.” I recently saw “warp and woof” in The New York Times. One dictionary says “woof (sometimes weft)” — suggesting that “woof” is preferred. Please say it isn’t so. The nouns weft and woof are weaving terms. They derive from the verb to weave. Weaving is the process of crossing threads or…
  • Femme Fatales and Film Noirs

    Maeve Maddox
    26 Feb 2015 | 8:10 pm
    A freelancer who writes about film wants to know how to deal with two French terms used by filmmakers: If I’m dealing with more than one film, is it “femmes fatale” or “femme fatales?” And when it comes to multiple films of film noir, is it “films noir” or “film noirs?” Plus, given that the terms are French, should they be italicized? Note: Readers who are not film buffs may be unfamiliar with these terms as they are used in English. A femme fatale is an attractive and seductive woman. Film noir is a movie genre explained below. The terms…
  • Prepositions to Die With

    Maeve Maddox
    25 Feb 2015 | 8:53 pm
    A reader wonders about prepositions used with the verb to die: Just recently when a prominent politician passed away I saw and heard various reports that he had died – FROM cancer, WITH cancer, and OF cancer. Do you have a view on which may be better? Preposition use is one of the most rapidly changing aspects of traditional English usage. For example, many speakers now say, “excited for” instead of “excited about,” and “alerted of” instead of “alerted to.” No doubt the usual prepositions used after the verb “to die” will suffer similar displacement, but at present,…
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    Grammar Girl Quick and Dirty Tips for Better Writing

  • 456 GG Is Starting a Sentence With So Condescending?

    QuickAndDirtyTips.com
    26 Feb 2015 | 2:00 pm
    Follow Along on the Website When "First" Is Redundant http://j.mp/1wtjhgT Is Starting a Sentence With So Condescending? http://j.mp/1wthqsn Synecdoche http://j.mp/1FAUDua Watch Grammar Girl's TEDx Talk http://j.mp/ggTEDx
  • Announcement

    QuickAndDirtyTips.com
    19 Feb 2015 | 5:15 pm
    There was a death in my family, so I don't have a show this week. I'll be back next week. If you're looking for something new to listen to while I'm away, try one of the other Quick and Dirty Tips podcasts. Some of them are listed here: https://itunes.apple.com/us/podcast/grammar-girl-quick-dirty-tips/id173429229?mt=2
  • 455 GG Why Do We Drive on Parkways and Park on Driveways?

    QuickAndDirtyTips.com
    12 Feb 2015 | 2:00 pm
    Follow along on the website: Dreamed or Dreamt? http://j.mp/1E2oQBF Parkway, Driveway, and Dooryard http://j.mp/1zNdcei Buffalo Buffalo Buffalo http://j.mp/1EbYdtP Watch my TEDx talk: Who Votes for New Words? http://j.mp/ggTEDx
  • 454 GG Splitting Infinitives

    QuickAndDirtyTips.com
    5 Feb 2015 | 11:45 am
    Capitalizing Theories. Splitting Infinitives. Samuel Johnson.
  • 453 GG Less Versus Fewer

    QuickAndDirtyTips.com
    29 Jan 2015 | 11:45 am
    Follow along on the website: Capitalizing Time Periods http://j.mp/1z4W6bX Less Versus Fewer http://j.mp/1yP50d4 Bee's Knees http://j.mp/1DiC0dw ---- Try my iOS game, Grammar Pop http://j.mp/1H5YiSj
 
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    Copyblogger

  • How to Crowd-Publish Your Content Without Asking for Money

    Matthew Turner
    2 Mar 2015 | 6:00 am
    If you read the headline, “Portland Entrepreneur Raises $13 Million by Enticing 62,000 People to Buy His Cooler,” which part fascinates you? How about, “7,000 Hungry Folks Raise $55,000 for Potato Salad Project?” I imagine, if you’re anything like the majority, those large amounts of money stand out. After all, $13 million is a gigantic amount of cash, as is $55,000 for potato salad. But whenever I come across crowdfunding campaigns like these, it is the crowd of people who band together that captures my attention. As a content creator, imagine what you could…
  • Three Misconceptions About Modern SEO That Confuse Content Marketers

    Brian Clark
    26 Feb 2015 | 6:00 am
    What’s the reality of search engine optimization after the Google Hummingbird update? Can someone destroy your business with negative SEO? Did Google kill the concept of AuthorRank when it eliminated the Authorship initiative? For these types of questions, there’s no better person to ask than Danny Sullivan, founder of Search Engine Land and Marketing Land, CMO of Third Door Media (producers of the popular SMX conferences), and a veteran search engine expert of 20 years. Today’s show is just a warmup to Danny’s presentation at Authority Rainmaker 2015, May 13-15 in…
  • A Brief Guide to Fixing Your Old, Neglected, and Broken Content

    Demian Farnworth
    25 Feb 2015 | 6:00 am
    One of the first steps to creating adaptive content is becoming aware of the content you already have. This is why we encourage you to audit your site. But before you dive into a full-blown comprehensive content audit, it might be possible to make your job a little easier by first dealing with all of the expired content. What exactly is expired content? It’s those old sales pages, obsolete product pages, and other outdated content. The pages you’ve forgotten about in your archives that desperately need some attention. You’ll know where some of this content is off the top of…
  • Here’s How to Answer the Most Important Question in Life (and Make a Living from It)

    Demian Farnworth
    24 Feb 2015 | 6:00 am
    Why bother? Each and every morning you and I both wake up and ask ourselves that question. Some mornings we don’t even think about the question, but answer it deliberately by jumping out of bed and bolting for the office. In these cases, we bother because we care deeply about what we do. We feel like we matter. Then there are the other mornings … Mornings where you roll over and eye the clock. The alarm will sound within minutes, but you have no desire to get out of bed. It has been a long week — and it’s only Tuesday. On these days — which may turn into months…
  • Are You Overlooking Any (or All) of These 7 Ways to Build Online Authority with LinkedIn?

    Louisa Chan
    23 Feb 2015 | 6:00 am
    Flash mobs. People are attracted to these spectacles. We drop what we’re doing and gather around to watch, but then we leave. We go back to what we were doing before we were interrupted. No one really knows who orchestrated the performance. The entire experience is short-lived and doesn’t make any profound impact. Now, imagine performing at an opera house, such as the Ellie Caulkins Opera House pictured above — the venue for Authority Rainmaker 2015. An attentive audience becomes fascinated by your performance and applauds you to show their appreciation. You know…
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    onewildword

  • Don’t know what to write about? Write about your obsessions

    Carly Sandifer
    16 Feb 2015 | 10:07 am
    In all the writing classes I teach, this writing lament comes up at least once from a student: “I don’t know where to start.” Maybe they’ve started something and it didn’t pan out. The story didn’t hold their interest. Or they have this need gnawing at them to write, but they haven’t figured out what to write about. Most of us have moments of writer’s freeze. Most of us get stuck at some point because we get into a mindset of being too orderly. But the birth of a story or poem or essay is a messy, disorderly act and imposing too much order in the beginning doesn’t…
  • How one piece of writing can morph into something else

    Carly Sandifer
    29 Jan 2015 | 6:00 am
    A few of my writing friends and I meet up occasionally to read our work and give each other feedback. One day, I read a poem I’d written about an encounter with a woman who had Alzheimer’s. When I finished reading it, one of my friends said, “I really like that character. I want to know more about her. I think you should write a story about her.” I’m not sure why, but when I get a writing idea, I usually know exactly what format it should take: poem, short story, novel, flash fiction. But I realized that one format CAN evolve into something else. It really made…
  • Writing advice from a Tasmanian cave spider, or how to get your creative juices flowing

    Carol Despeaux
    26 Jan 2015 | 6:00 am
    Ok, I lied. This post isn’t really about writing advice from a Tasmanian cave spider—more like life advice. Hang with me for a moment. You’ll see what I mean. After taking nearly a year off from writing poetry, I had an idea to kick start 2015 with the goal of writing two to three new poems a week for the month of January. But I wasn’t feeling very inspired. Some pretty heavy stuff was going on in my life, and I felt drained. Then, a gift arrived in the mail. My blogging partner Carly sent me The Crafty Poet: A Portable Workshop, by Diane Lockward (I hadn’t even mentioned my goal…
  • Are you stymied by a scene? Duck and cover

    Carly Sandifer
    22 Jan 2015 | 6:00 am
    It happens to all of us. You’re working on your manuscript and you get stuck. The writing feels clunky. Something isn’t working. This is when you must duck and cover. “Duck and cover” is the term author Pam Lewis coined to describe her process of jumpstarting her writing when she’s become stuck. “I open a blank page on my computer and ask myself, ‘What’s going on in the scene?’ I close my eyes and watch the characters and hear them.” In her current manuscript, Lewis said she used the technique to figure out what a character was doing in a particular scene. But she…
  • Four tips for setting 2015 writing goals

    Carol Despeaux
    7 Jan 2015 | 6:00 am
    In the process of setting my goals for 2015, I realized how much magic there is in writing them down—and I don’t mean just randomly choosing goals and then giving ourselves a due date. That doesn’t work. The magic comes when we dig deep. Here’s my process in case it helps you: Tip # 1: Brainstorm and write it down First, I grab a legal pad and have one page for each of the following areas of my life: business, writing, health, and hobbies. For each category, I write down the goals I want to have accomplished by the end of 2015. And, if necessary, I break the goals down into different…
 
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    Word Grrls

  • Don’t Apologize for Reading

    Laura Brown
    10 Feb 2015 | 6:38 am
    The post Don’t Apologize for Reading appeared first on Word Grrls. Jade Walker posted a quote I really liked today: “[D]on’t ever apologize to an author for buying something in paperback, or taking it out from a library (that’s what they’re there for. Use your library). Don’t apologize to this author for buying books second hand, or getting them from bookcrossing or borrowing a friend’s copy. ... Read more... Related Posts: Only One Way to Read Writers of Old Books Don’t Have Twitter Accounts What to do with Broken Books International BookCrossing Day – April…
  • Freedom to Read Week

    Laura Brown
    7 Feb 2015 | 3:42 pm
    The post Freedom to Read Week appeared first on Word Grrls. February 22-28, 2015 Freedom to Read Week is an annual event that encourages Canadians to think about and reaffirm their commitment to intellectual freedom, which is guaranteed them under the Charter of Rights and Freedoms. Related Posts: Only One Way to Read Don’t Apologize for Reading Writers of Old Books Don’t Have Twitter Accounts Can You Go a Day Without a Cell Phone, or are you Addicted? You are Who you Read The post Freedom to Read Week appeared first on Word Grrls - Writing daily whether I want to or not.
  • Regifted Candy Hearts

    Laura Brown
    4 Feb 2015 | 10:51 pm
    The post Regifted Candy Hearts appeared first on Word Grrls. I read the Twitter posts for #RejectedCandyHearts again this year. You would think someone could come up with a fresh hashtag this year. So I did… will see where it goes. Possibly nowhere beyond here.   Can you come up with a fresh hashtag for Valentine’s Day? See if your idea can make it on ... Read more... Related Posts: From Twitter #10ThingsAboutMyself My Seven Links Things Not to Say to a Writer The Web Directoress Your Last 5 Words? The post Regifted Candy Hearts appeared first on Word Grrls - Writing daily…
  • But With Imagination

    Laura Brown
    23 Jan 2015 | 6:59 am
    The post But With Imagination appeared first on Word Grrls. The post But With Imagination appeared first on Word Grrls - Writing daily whether I want to or not.
  • Your Last 5 Words?

    Laura Brown
    15 Jan 2015 | 8:07 pm
    The post Your Last 5 Words? appeared first on Word Grrls. What would your last 5 words be for the world and all? See the Twitter hashtag #MyLastWordsIn5Words Related Posts: Lily’s Friday Prediction Regifted Candy Hearts From Twitter #10ThingsAboutMyself Move Words Around Like Pieces of a Puzzle MicroBlogging: Short Notes to the World The post Your Last 5 Words? appeared first on Word Grrls - Writing daily whether I want to or not.
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    Writing Forums

  • Themes in Writing

    2 Mar 2015 | 7:41 am
    In another recent thread here and in other places I traverse, I have seen writers state they dont put much thought into a story's theme. They start with the character and the plot and build from there. I dont really understand this. To me, a theme is the point of the story. To make my... Themes in Writing
  • The Assault on Cytherea and Political BS

    2 Mar 2015 | 7:38 am
    First, a trigger warning: this is a thread regarding the sexual assault on the adult film star, Cytherea, so if you don't want to read about such violence, don't. Moving on: On January 19th, 2015, at around 07:30 on Martin Luther King Day, a group of five teenagers invaded the home of adult... The Assault on Cytherea and Political BS
  • Genreification?

    2 Mar 2015 | 7:34 am
    As a newbie, just curious as to some opinions about where to put a first work... if there are two+ potential genre fits, should I 1. just choose one, and a) let readers figure out the other? or b) let 'em know about the other label? or 2. Post in different places? Thanks!
  • What does your writing file look like?

    2 Mar 2015 | 7:23 am
    And how do you organize/categorize each story. I got woken up early today, figured I'd write and shook my head at my file. 54 documented starts a page or more long in my Directory of Works In Progress, and several I haven't written descriptions for. Heres an example of how I break my Directory... What does your writing file look like?
  • Paulo Coelho Says

    2 Mar 2015 | 7:22 am
    Paulo Coelho says, "There are only four types of stories: lovestory between 2 people, lovestory between 3 people, a struggle for power, and a journey." Yea or nay? Do you think most stories can be organized into one of these categories? Would you add a category?
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    The Purdue OWL News

  • OWL@Purdue YouTube Channel Update for February 19, 2015

    19 Feb 2015 | 7:24 am
    OWL@Purdue YouTube Channel UpdateBy Joshua M. PaizToday, we have exciting news about the OWL@Purdue YouTube channel. We have surpassed 1,000,000 views of our vidcast resources! Launched in during the spring semester of 2011, this channel has become an important part of the Purdue OWL's efforts..
  • Purdue OWL: Professional Writing Resources - Donation Request Letters for February 18, 2015

    18 Feb 2015 | 2:33 pm
    Purdue OWL: Professional Writing Resources - Donation Request LettersBy Joshua M. PaizThe Purdue OWL is pleased to announce the launch of our latest professional writing resource, Writing Donation Requests This resource provides users with a guide to understanding a variety of genre, language, and rhetorical issues that might arise wh..
  • Purdue OWL: Creative Writing Resources - Developing Characters for February 2, 2015

    2 Feb 2015 | 8:39 am
    Purdue OWL: Creative Writing Resources - Developing CharactersBy Joshua M. PaizThe Purdue OWL is pleased to announce the launch of our latest creative writing resource, Writing Characters in Fiction. This resource provides users with a guide to understanding, introducing, and developing characters in fiction writing.  To ..
  • Purdue OWL: Activity and Postmortem Reports for January 15, 2015

    15 Jan 2015 | 1:15 pm
    Purdue OWL: Activity and Postmortem ReportsBy Joshua M. PaizThe Purdue OWL is pleased to announce the launch of our latest professional and technical writing resources, Activity Reports and Postmortem Reports. These resources provides our users with a guide to understanding and drafting these two common workp..
  • Purdue OWL: Understanding Assignment Prompts for December 12, 2014

    12 Dec 2014 | 8:21 am
    Purdue OWL: Understanding Assignment PromptsBy Joshua M. PaizThe Purdue OWL is pleased to announce the launch of our latest resource second language writing resource, Understanding Assignment Prompts. This resource provides our users with a guide to understanding and deconstructing university-level writing pro..
 
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    Charlotte Rains Dixon

  • Inventive Writing Prompt Round-up #31

    Charlotte Dixon
    28 Feb 2015 | 6:56 am
    Here's the latest round-up of posts from my Tumblr blog, where you can find a new post every morning (well, sometimes it's the afternoon).  Happy writing! #212 Two women have been friends for years.  One afternoon, one of them says to the other, “I have something to tell you about myself that you may not believe.” "Of course I’ll believe it, because I know everything about you." The first woman heaved a sigh.  ”You don’t know this. And you may not like me much after I tell you.  Because here’s the truth.” What does she reveal about her backstory? …
  • Gone Rewriting

    Charlotte Dixon
    22 Feb 2015 | 2:07 pm
    I am working on a rewrite of my novel, The Bonne Chance Bakery.  And, of course, the exciting news is that this rewrite is not just for me.  Nope, I am rewriting to the notes from the agent with whom I just signed, Erin Niumata, and one of her readers.   This is all happening fast.  As in, a month ago I hadn't even submitted a query on this novel.  And now I have an agent for it and am working on a rewrite.  This process is interesting, and to all my students and clients, current and former, I say, yes you really do need to expand those descriptions and details! That is one thing…
  • Inventive Writing Prompt Round-up #30

    Charlotte Dixon
    21 Feb 2015 | 7:32 am
    Here's my weekly round-up of writing prompts from my Tumblr blog: #205 The fog wafted and drifted around buildings and through streets, masking and silencing everything in its path.  So it was a shock when it lifted and….. #206 Today is President’s Day in the United States, and lot of people (but not all) have the day off.  What holidays does your main character take?  What does she or he do on those holidays? #207 Waiting….waiting….waiting…Was it worth the wait? Or not? #208  Some people fear spiders, but snakes don’t bother them.  Others are the opposite—they hate…
  • You're a Creative Person, Right?

    Charlotte Dixon
    19 Feb 2015 | 12:41 am
    Creative vs. Non-Creative People In which I attempt to answer the question, is there such a thing as a non-creative person? Years ago, when I was a fledgling writer still getting used to becoming enraptured in the throes of the creative process, I developed a theory: The world was divided into creative and non-creative people. Creative people understood when I said I was in the middle of a chapter and couldn't go to a movie with them (or more likely, watch their child--since I wrote at home, I was that Mom who everyone dumped their kids on). Non-creative people didn't. Creative…
  • Inventive Writing Prompt Round-up #29

    Charlotte Dixon
    14 Feb 2015 | 12:26 pm
    Happy Valentine's Day! Here is the latest round-up of prompts from my Tumblr blog. Write like the wind, people! #198 She landed with a thud.  And when she looked up at where she had come from, it seemed a very long ways to go.  How would she get herself back? #199 "You just have to suck it up and get through it," he said. "But how? Because with ____________ happening, I don’t see how I can __________." Fill in the blanks and use the sentences as the basis of a scene. #200 What is your main character most afraid of? Write a scene with him/her experiencing that…
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    WritersDigest.com

  • New Literary Agent Alert: Stephanie Delman of Sanford J. Greenburger Associates

    Chuck Sambuchino
    1 Mar 2015 | 8:05 pm
    Reminder: New literary agents (with this spotlight featuring Stephanie Delman of Sanford J. Greenburger Associates ) are golden opportunities for new writers because each one is a literary agent who is likely building his or her client list.   About Stephanie: After graduating from Johns Hopkins University with a B.A. in Writing Seminars, Stephanie held editorial positions at a health website and a literary journal, and then happily joined Sanford J. Greenburger Associates in 2012. There, she works for the president, collaborates on foreign rights, and is now building her own list. She…
  • Kristina Marie Darling: Poet Interview

    Robert Lee Brewer
    26 Feb 2015 | 1:36 pm
    Confession: I don’t really keep records on Poetic Asides, but I’m pretty sure Kristina Marie Darling has the record for most poet interviews in PA history. Kristina Marie Darling If this is your first time hearing her name, Kristina Marie Darling is the author of over 20 books, which include Vow, Petrarchan, and Scorched Altar, all available from BlazeVOX Books.  Her writing has been recognized with fellowships from Yaddo, the Ucross Foundation, and the Helene Wurlitzer Foundation, as well as grants from the Kittredge Fund and the Elizabeth George Foundation.  She was recently…
  • Framing Your Memoir: 3 Parameters You Need to Know

    Guest Column
    26 Feb 2015 | 4:00 am
    Joan Didion’s award-winning memoir The Year of Magical Thinking begins, not ends, with death. It is the sudden loss of her husband that launches her into the “year of magical thinking.” The story starts the second her husband’s life ends, and at that very moment the first parameter of the story is (very tragically) set. When attempting to translate a significant portion of your life’s story, it is crucial that you set limits early on and decide which portion of your life will prove to be the most colorful, provocative and representative of the story you wish to tell. If you don’t…
  • Wednesday Poetry Prompts: 299

    Robert Lee Brewer
    25 Feb 2015 | 8:26 pm
    I’ve been a bit careless today. You see, I took the day off (the kids got a snow day today), and I didn’t get my poem-prompt written this morning. However, I’ve still got a solid 30 minutes of writing time left, soooooo… For this week’s prompt, write a careless poem. That’s right, a careless poem. It’s funny; I actually had this prompt planned out weeks in advance. Somehow, I must’ve known life was going imitate art–or vice versa. 2015 Poet’s Market Publish your poetry! Get the most trusted guide to publishing your poetry: the 2015…
  • 5 Surprising Insights About Writing for Money in 2015

    Guest Column
    25 Feb 2015 | 12:42 pm
    Editor’s Note: The following content is provided to Writer’s Digest by a writing community partner. This content is sponsored by American Writers & Artists Inc. www.awaionline.com. Sure, there are lots of ways to make a living as a writer … But, not every path is the same. And, each year, there are new market trends that make some paths easier … and faster … than others. Today I’d like to share a few insights about writing for money in 2015 … including where you’ll find the best clients, where you’ll find the biggest growth opportunities, and what the competition will…
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    The Heart and Craft of Life Writing

  • A Grounding [TAP?] Root of the Tree of Life Writing

    25 Feb 2015 | 9:10 am
    Guest post by Denis Ledoux, founder of The Memoir Network.Just as with so many big projects in life, you’ll benefit by taking a moment to consider why you ought to start—or continue—to write this memoir of yours that is intriguing you and what role you anticipate it will play in your life.I like to think of my thoughts below as one of the roots of the Tree Of Life Writing that needs to be nurtured.You may not know it yet, but your impulse to write is probably solid.In late autumn of 1988, as people were hunkering down for another Maine winter, I was asked to read from my first…
  • To Finish or Bail?

    18 Feb 2015 | 6:01 am
    When do you bail out on a story? That’s not an easy decision for yourself, and even harder when someone asks for  your opinion. A couple of days ago, one of my writing buddies sent me an essay she’d planned to post on her blog, but wasn’t sure about. “Is this too boring? Should I post it?” I knew she’d struggled with that piece and put a lot of heart in it, but after a quick read, my answer was “No. Do not post this. It actually is boring, and here’s why.” Along with my reasons, framed as suggestions future stories and essays, I included the following personal…
  • Happy Blogiversary to Me

    9 Feb 2015 | 2:26 am
    It’s time to stop and celebrate nine years of blogging, 640 posts, (that’s a little over 70 per year), countless thousands of comments, and I have no idea how many hundreds of thousands of viewers from all over the world. But what are statistics among friends? I will point out one small thing derived from those stats: writing steadily, even a relatively small amount (word count average for posts is close t0 700), six times a month will add up to a pile of 650 stories over nine years. Even one story a month will add up to 108 stories in nine years. You can do the math. On the other hand,…
  • Boring or Brilliant?

    29 Jan 2015 | 1:57 pm
    The cliché of watching someone else’s home movies has always been “It’s always just a saddening bore.” What’s surprising is that the farther we find ourselves removed in time and place, the more these old films have the capacity to move us, to entertain us, or simply to remind us of life as it once was. From My Private Italy, Steve McCurdyAsk around and you’re bound to hear this sentiment about boredom expressed with regard to reading life stories written by “ordinary” people, especially strangers. You even hear it expressed by people about their own stories: “My life is so…
  • Writing About Friends

    22 Jan 2015 | 12:48 pm
    Sooner or later most of us want to write stories about people who are or were special to us. These stories may be free-standing tributes, or you may include friends as characters in memoir stories. Some such stories work better than others. In fact, as much as I hate to say this, some can be downright boring, the exact opposite of what we intend. The boring stories are generally limited to an account of things you did together, which makes the story more about your experience than the friend. While it’s perfectly fine to write about shared experiences, it takes more to define a…
 
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    Published and Profitable Writers Tips Blog

  • Ann Handley to share her experiences writing Everybody Writes

    Roger C. Parker
    1 Mar 2015 | 3:14 am
    Get a fresh perspective on writing for results when I interview Ann Handley, author of Everybody Writes: Your Go-To Guide to Creating Ridiculously Good Content. Ann Handley will share writing strategies and tips and how she planned and wrote her bestselling content marketing book on Tuesday, March 10, at 4 PM Eastern. Background Ann is the Chief Content Officer of the Marketing Profs. The Marketing Profs offers real-world education for modern marketers through training, best practices,  research, and other content.  (Select Topics from the menu, or scroll down to the footer for more…
  • Scott Aughtmon Shares His Content Marketing Pivots & Lessons

    Roger C. Parker
    28 Feb 2015 | 11:12 am
    In this interview, Scott Aughtmon shares the Pivots and lessons they taught on his journey to content marketing success. Pivots, a term popularized in a Content Marketing Institute Podcast Series, are career and business turning points. Pivots occur when a challenge appears, an action is taken, and lessons are learned. In the latest Published and Profitable Author Thought Leader interview, Scott Aughtmon discussed the 5 Pivots that changed his career and his business, and the lessons they taught him. Scott’s lessons can help any author or content marketer who wants to: Drive traffic to…
  • Scott Aughtmon’s Tips to Ramp Up Your Blogs and Ebooks

    Roger C. Parker
    23 Feb 2015 | 3:11 am
    If you’re a content marketer, you probably recognized “Ramp up” from Scott Aughtmon’s @RampBusinesses Twitter handle. Scott is a popular contributor to the Content Marketing Institute blog. He prepared one of their most popular, and widely reprinted, infographics, The Content Marketer’s Essential Guide to the 21 Types of Content We Crave. He also wrote 51 Content Marketing Hacks and a two-volume of compilation of lessons from America’s top marketers. Join me when I interview with Scott Aughtmon On Tuesday, February 24, at 4 PM Eastern, I’m…
  • Scott Aughtmon to Share Content Marketing Pivots & Lessons

    Roger C. Parker
    22 Feb 2015 | 3:13 am
    Listen as Scott Aughtmon shares the Pivots, or key turning  points, in his career as a popular content marketing authority. Join me this Tuesday, February 24th, at 4 PM Eastern, when Scott Aughtmon shares lessons he’s learned as an author and guest contributor to blog’s like the Content Marketing Institute Blog. Content marketers may remember Scott’s “evergreen” article and infographic, 21 Types of Content We Crave which attracted over 102 comments! During the past few years, I’ve been following Scott’s developing voice and the content structure of…
  • Turn Your Experiences into Stories for Content Marketing

    Roger C. Parker
    20 Feb 2015 | 3:42 am
    Learn how to turn your experiences into stories for better content marketing using the worksheet found in my latest Content Marketing Institute guest post. For over three years, I’ve been sharing productivity ideas, checklists, templates, tips, and worksheets to help you save time creating an efficient and  sustainable content marketing program. Background My latest article and worksheet were inspired by The Pivot: Marketing Backstories series of weekly podcasts, part of the Content Marketing Institute Podcast Network producedby Pamela Muldoon, Podcast Network Director On each…
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    Writing Forward

  • Grammar Rules: Fewer or Less

    Melissa Donovan
    26 Feb 2015 | 1:00 am
    It’s a battle between words: fewer or less. Are they interchangeable? Do these words have different meanings? How can we use them correctly? Many people don’t realize that these two words do not share the same meaning and therefore cannot be used interchangeably. As a result, both fewer and less are often used incorrectly. The difference in meaning may be subtle, but it’s significant and remarkably easy to remember. Let’s see what Dictionary.com has to say about these two words: fewer: adjective 1. of a smaller number: fewer words and more action. less: adjective 1.
  • Exploring Genres in Creative Nonfiction Writing

    Melissa Donovan
    24 Feb 2015 | 1:00 am
    Creative nonfiction writing is a growing genre! Creative writing includes more than just fiction and poetry. Creative nonfiction is a wide category of creative writing, which includes several genres. Creative nonfiction is a relatively new field; only in recent years have works of creative nonfiction received the kind of attention from critics and readers that fiction and traditional nonfiction have enjoyed for decades. It’s likely that creative nonfiction will continue to gain strength as a dominant force in the world of writing. The world wide web is growing at an astounding rate,…
  • 12 Character Writing Tips for Fiction Writers

    Melissa Donovan
    19 Feb 2015 | 1:00 am
    Character writing tips. Characters are the heart and soul of every story. Almost every great story is about people. Plot, setting, theme, and every other element of fiction is secondary to realistic characters that an audience can connect with on an intellectual or emotional level. There are exceptions, of course. Some readers enjoy plot-driven stories, but they never seem to achieve the massive popularity that stories with rich, layered characters achieve. Why do fans adore Harry Potter and Katniss Everdeen? Because they feel like real people. We connect with characters in fiction for any…
  • Artistically Inspired Journal Prompts

    Melissa Donovan
    17 Feb 2015 | 1:00 am
    Get artistically inspired with these journal prompts. We, the people of the arts, feed off each other. A painter is inspired by a song. A musician is inspired by a novel. A photographer is inspired by a sculpture. So we come full circle by inspiring one another. Journal prompts are a useful tool for getting inspired. When you want to write but find yourself without any ideas, you might think your muse has gone MIA, but ideas abound. You need only look to the arts, where there is a whole world of inspiration waiting to move you (and your pen). Journal Prompts Inspired By the Arts These journal…
  • Writing Resources for Naming Your Characters

    Melissa Donovan
    12 Feb 2015 | 1:00 am
    Have you ever read one of those epic fantasy novels in which the magical characters can gain total control over any living being (or non-living object) simply by discovering its real and true name? I’ve read about ten of those novels. What do you think is more perplexing, the fact that authors continue to use this rule of magic (even though it’s tired and ready to be retired) or the astounding number of unique names that writers come up with for all the characters in these stories? Dubworthy or Dubless? I have been known to spend hours pondering names and wondering how a writer…
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    We Are Change

  • What Children In America Eat At School – Compared To Different Countries

    alecope88
    1 Mar 2015 | 9:41 am
    We Are Change SOURCE: Sonder-Reality Children in America have been limited thanks to the First Lady, Michelle Obama and her Healthy Hunger-Free Kids Act. This has been met with a lot of resistance, mainly from the students themselves! When we compare American food with global school lunches, we see exactly why this is an issue. First we will start with American school food: Now, we move onto global food: So all in all, what do YOU think should be done? Perhaps all school having and maintaining an organic greenhouse for some of their food? Maybe even a little farm? What do you think? Leave…
  • Whitehouse.gov Caught Manipulating And Suppressing Vaccine Petition

    alecope88
    1 Mar 2015 | 8:56 am
    We Are Change SOURCE: Sonder-Reality Natural News has caught Whitehouse.gov manipulating and suppressing a vaccine petition. The website buried the petition deep within the site so it made it more difficult for people to find. Along with this, they actually froze the amount of signatures the petition was actually registering. This has gone on for 36 hours with Natural News keeping track and documenting it. Here is a link to the petition, this is a segment of the petition – this is what the White House does not want to address: No human being should be FORCED to be vaccinated against…
  • Melbourne’s Recycled Soap Is Saving Lives In India

    alecope88
    28 Feb 2015 | 7:20 am
    We Are Change SOURCE: The Age We’ve all done it. Ripped open a packet of soap in a hotel bathroom only to use it a couple of times before checking out and heading home. Few would ever wonder what happens to that barely used bar. Fact is, it ends up in landfill. Millions of tonnes of “waste soap” a year is generated by the hotel industry worldwide. But not for much longer, if the Melbourne-based not-for-profit group Soap Aid gets its way. In the last five months alone Soap Aid has collected more than a tonne of used soap from the city’s hotels. Once this is broken down…
  • Man Wins $250,000 – Plans To Donate

    alecope88
    28 Feb 2015 | 7:16 am
    We Are Change SOURCE: CTV News A Leamington, Ont. lottery winner says he’d decided how to spend his jackpot before he’d even collected the giant cheque: hand the money over to local students. Michael Schlater, 54, won $250,000 on a $10 Instant Cadillac Riches lottery card. Schlater, who says he’s been playing lotteries for nearly 30 years, called his top prize win a huge thrill. “It’s the most I’ve ever won. My wife couldn’t believe it and started crying,” he said, according to a release from Ontario Lottery and Gaming Corporation. Schlater told OLG…
  • Why your smartphone records everything you say to it

    alecope88
    28 Feb 2015 | 7:10 am
    We Are Change SOURCE: The Telegraph After controversy earlier this month over televisions recording owners and sending the clips to third parties, smartphone owners are now discovering that companies like Google, Apple and Microsoft are also recording voice commands and storing them for up to two years. Modern televisions are able to change channels, alter volume or even look up information on films via voice command. But controversy erupted on internet forums earlier this month when it was noticed that the terms and conditions for some such services – invariably skipped over due to their…
 
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    Work-in-Progress

  • More on Prompts!

    26 Feb 2015 | 1:22 pm
    Here's a great post from the Ploughshares blog listing writers' favorite prompts:http://blog.pshares.org/index.php/all-time-favorite-writing-prompts/I like this list because it embraces a range of approaches from my very simple, one-word preference to a more craft-based assignment:"Write a story that takes place over six real-time seconds. -Jeff Bender"
  • Whatever Works, Works: Start Your Own Prompt Group

    25 Feb 2015 | 9:49 am
    I’ve been involved in a writing prompt group for several years, and it’s something I highly recommend, especially for writers who feel busy and stressed out.  While everyone comes to any group with their own reasons and agenda and desires, personally I decided to start this group because I was weary of the critique process (not that I’m opposed to my work being critiqued, but that I was doing a lot of experimenting and I didn’t necessarily want to hear right then why my stories were/weren’t working; I just wanted to keep going).  I was also feeling overwhelmed with reading…
  • C.M. Mayo's Travel Writing Workshop

    23 Feb 2015 | 8:02 am
    My friend C.M. Mayo will be holding a one-day class on travel writing:April 18, 2015 Bethesda MDThe Writer's CenterWriting Workshop in Literary Travel Writing(Saturday, one day only)10 am - 1 pmTake your travel writing to another level: the literary, which is to say, giving the reader the novelistic experience of actually traveling there with you. For both beginning and advanced writers, this workshop covers the techniques from fiction and poetry that you can apply to this specialized form of creative nonfiction for deliciously vivid effects.More information and to register…
  • "Drama, or Melodrama": My Story Is Examined by a Close Eye

    19 Feb 2015 | 9:13 am
    What an honor to see one of my stories go under the microscope on the blog “Why the Writing Works,” which focuses on studying elements of craft in various pieces of writing.  Founded by Converse MFA in fiction graduate Cheryl Russell, it’s a smart site, filled with astute observations about fiction, poetry, and creative nonfiction, and insights that lead into improvements in one’s own writing.Rhonda Browning White, who also received her MFA in fiction from Converse (and, disclaimer, worked with me on her fabulous thesis!), examines my short story “The Circle,” which appeared…
  • My Short Story in The Collagist! Set at a Famous Writers' Conference! So Excited!

    16 Feb 2015 | 2:23 pm
    Oh, wow…I am SO thrilled that this story found a fancy home: “One True Thing” has just been posted in The Collagist, a wonderful online journal.  I worked on this story for more than a year, and it nearly undid me, trying to figure it out and make the whole darn thing come together.  I had thought it was complete and then while walking through downtown Nebraska City, Nebraska, I had a sudden realization of one last component that was  needed, something so crucial that your mouth would drop open in disbelief if I told you what piece was missing until the very, very…
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    About Freelance Writing

  • Author Platforms and Authority Sites – Writer’s Jargon or Necessity?

    Anne Wayman
    26 Feb 2015 | 8:51 am
    There are two terms bandied about in the freelance writing game that are fairly recent and subject to all hype and confusion. They are author platforms and authority sites. Author platform The term,... [[ This is a content summary only. Visit my website for full links, other content, and more! ]]
  • Email Sig – One Simple Marketing Idea Freelance Writers Can Do In 10 Min.

    Anne Wayman
    24 Feb 2015 | 10:58 am
    I’m still surprised at how many emails I get from writers that give me no way to contact them other than by replying to the email.What if I want to call them? Or look at their website?... [[ This is a content summary only. Visit my website for full links, other content, and more! ]]
  • Freelancing Means No Paid Sick Days

    Anne Wayman
    17 Feb 2015 | 9:23 am
    Last wednesday evening I noticed my throat was scratchy. I woke up Thursday morning and knew I was doing nothing for at least a couple of days but take extra good care of myself.. By Saturday morning... [[ This is a content summary only. Visit my website for full links, other content, and more! ]]
  • Secrets You Can Use to Keep Your Writing Resolutions

    Anne Wayman
    10 Feb 2015 | 8:53 am
     By Allison VanNest of Grammarly.com The first month of the new year is over, and as we clutch the remnants of our New Year’s resolutions about our shoulders like tattered shawls, let’s talk about... [[ This is a content summary only. Visit my website for full links, other content, and more! ]]
  • 10 Ways Writers Can Beat Self Promotion Fear And Market Themselves

    Anne Wayman
    5 Feb 2015 | 10:06 am
    Self promotion and marketing are essential if a freelance writer is going to be successful. Yet many freelancers hesitate to market themselves and their writing. Often they simply find other things... [[ This is a content summary only. Visit my website for full links, other content, and more! ]]
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    Bad Language

  • Only the viral survive: does viral content mean marketing success?

    Katelyn Piontek
    26 Feb 2015 | 12:30 am
    Every marketer carries a deep, dark secret: the desire to go viral. That one moment when your brand manages to cut through all the noise on the internet. Ok, maybe it’s not deep and dark, but creating content which spreads around the globe certainly feels like it would be a marketing triumph. Why is viral the end game? Companies that succeed in making viral content, namely videos, have not only increased awareness for their brand, but a few have seen a dramatic boost in sales numbers like in the case of: The Dollar Shave Club gaining 12,000 subscribers after a viral ad Blendtec boosting…
  • Essential business grammar lesson six: how to choose the correct verb tenses

    Clare Dodd
    24 Feb 2015 | 12:15 am
    Sell is a verb. It describes an action most companies would like to complete. We sell for a living, one way or another, whether the customer is purchasing an item or a service. This word can be very dynamic. And, depending on its tense, can communicate different things. You might think you know present, past and future, but it’s a little more complicated than that. There are four different verb tenses within each of those categories, and each means something slightly different. Present tense: now Simple present: I sell iPods. This indicates the action is happening now but may not be…
  • 40 essential rules of client management (collected over 10 years)

    Matthew Stibbe
    19 Feb 2015 | 12:45 am
    For the last decade, I’ve been compiling a list of ‘rules’ for client management based on very personal, subjective reactions to things that happened to me, mainly in the business world. I was partly inspired by NASA’s 100 rules for project managers. I always meant it to be very personal and some of the rules relate to very specific things that happened to me. But I realised that with proper scrubbing it might be interesting for you too. Don’t email or call anyone if you’re feeling angry. If in doubt, brew up or go for a walk. You don’t have to do things you don’t want…
  • We’re hiring Articulate graduate marketing interns

    Matthew Stibbe
    18 Feb 2015 | 12:00 am
    Articulate is a fast-growing inbound marketing agency working in the technology sector. We’re looking for one or more awesome graduate interns to join the company. We’re offering: Real-world experience and responsibility for client work Regular mentoring and training opportunities A chance to work with big-name clients such as Microsoft and Symantec The possibility to apply for a permanent position A stipend of £1,000 a month Typical assignments: Researching and writing articles for client blogs and our own Writing case studies, white papers and web copy Promoting our content and…
  • Essential business grammar lesson five: phrases and clauses

    Clare Dodd
    17 Feb 2015 | 1:15 am
    If it’s not a subject, predicate or object, then what is it? In order to fully understand grammar, you must understand all parts of a sentence. Sentences are made of phrases and clauses, such as modifiers, prepositions, adjectives, adverbs and conjunctions, which add information and context to a sentence. Phrases Recall that even the simplest sentence has a subject and a verb. I work. When you add more information, you form a phrase. I work every weekday from nine to five. The phrase ‘every weekday from nine to five’ is called a phrase because it has a noun (weekday),…
 
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    Ben Crowder

  • Out of mind

    Ben
    28 Feb 2015 | 9:20 pm
    I spend a lot of time in my head. Whether in reading or planning projects or daydreaming or using my computer or phone, I spend a significant part of my waking hours with my attention turned either inward or screenward. One thing I’ve noticed of late is that I often feel like my mind is getting detached from my body and from reality, and I think this head-living is at the root of it. Not good. (It’s not good because when I’m in detached mode, it feels like I’m just in a dream and nothing has any consequence, which is not a safe way to live.) I’m still figuring…
  • Greek and Latin vocab lists

    Ben
    25 Feb 2015 | 7:58 am
    This is cool: Haverford College has created a tool called Bridge that creates Latin or Greek vocab lists from texts and textbooks. For example, I was able to start with the vocab from Moreland and Fleischer’s Latin: An Intensive Course (the text we used in my first Latin course in college) and then limit it to just nouns and verbs. You can export to Excel/TSV as well. Pretty neat.
  • Revivifying the blog and the Twitter

    Ben
    22 Feb 2015 | 9:39 pm
    Somewhere along the way, blogging and tweeting got less fun for me. Not sure exactly why (I’ll try to guess at some of the reasons in a minute), and maybe I’m romanticizing the past, but it does seem like there used to be a playfulness and life to it all (“it all” meaning my blog and my Twitter) that slowly withered away to a safe but boring old age. Maybe it’s because I started caring too much about what other people think or what they might say in return. The good news is that in my cranky old age, I don’t care as much anymore. (I think I worried too much…
  • The Circle Book paperback edition

    Ben
    9 Feb 2015 | 8:43 pm
    I’m pleased to announce that the paperback edition of The Circle Book is now available on Amazon for $7: CreateSpace requires a minimum of 24 pages for this type of book, so I added four new illustrations along with some draw-your-own pages at the end.
  • On mental frames and faith

    Ben
    8 Feb 2015 | 9:05 pm
    I’ve been thinking a lot the past few weeks about mental frames, ever since reading Greg Hamblin’s post about John Dehlin. The more I study about Joseph Smith and the Book of Mormon, the more clearly I see that there’s persuasive evidence on both sides, each convincing enough that evidential analysis alone results in a draw. It thus becomes a matter of faith: I must make a decision, entering a mental frame of either belief or doubt. If I choose doubt, I decide that the positive evidences must be wrong or misinterpreted; if I choose belief, I decide that the negative…
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    Write to Done

  • How to Publish a Book: My 1,000-Day Journey

    Rajesh Setty
    27 Feb 2015 | 12:08 am
    In life, lots of things are relative.What looks hard seems super-easy compared to something harder.Writing is hard.But it is easy when compared to what it takes to go from “writing” to “getting your writing done.”If I’d known it would take 1,000 days for my first book to be published, I probably would have given up. I’m glad I didn’t.Here’s how it happened.This story took place between 1980-1983. We lived in a small town called Madikeri in the state of Karnataka in India.The Hunger to ReadLike all kids my age, I was fascinated with stories. For me, it bordered on…
  • Win Prizes of over 20K in the Freeditorial Long- Short Story Contest on WTD (Free Entry)

    Mary Jaksch
    24 Feb 2015 | 12:32 am
    If you want to win big with your writing, and need some strong motivation to write, here’s your chance.Our new Freeditorial Long-Short Fiction Story Contest on Write to Done carries a first prize of $15,000, a second prize of $5,000 and a third prize of $2,000.Worth writing for, right?And the best news, entry to the contest is free. Totally free!Not only is registration free, you’ll even receive a useful report when you register: 10 Vital Self-Editing Tips.Click here to register. (You can then submit your story at any time.)Everyone who registers for the contests receives a FAQ…
  • Conversational Writing: 10 Tips by Leo Babauta

    Leo Babauta
    20 Feb 2015 | 10:25 am
    Note by the Editor-in-Chief: This post was written by Leo Babauta of Zen Habits when we first started this blog. It offers the clearest instructions on how to write conversationally. That’s why we decided to republish it.Writing, when properly managed, is but a different name for conversation. – Laurence SterneWhile I don’t claim to be the world’s greatest writer, one of my strengths as a writer is the ability to write in a fairly conversational style.I might not write like everyone talks, but I write like I talk, and I think it creates a more welcoming style of…
  • Writing Prompts: What Story Does This Picture Tell? [Scene Stealers]

    Mary Jaksch
    14 Feb 2015 | 7:15 pm
    What story does this picture conjure up in your mind?Can you come up with a mini-story of not more than 350 words?In case you’re not familiar with Writing Prompts here’s how it works:We set the sceneYou steal it, make it your own, andShare your creation in the comments section of this post Now for the ground rules:Your story must be 350 words or less.Your work must be original and not previously published.WTD provides an encouraging and safe environment for writers to grow and learn from each other. We’d love you to comment on other people’s submissions in a friendly and…
  • 7 Barriers to Writing You Can Leap Over Today

    Bryan Collins
    9 Feb 2015 | 11:02 pm
    It wasn’t supposed to be like this.When you aspired to become a writer, you imagined crafting pages of immaculate prose, publishing work that gets better with each read, and your peers telling each other, “Now there’s talent!”Instead, when you try to write, you feel paralyzed.You don’t know if what you’re saying makes sense, and every moment you spend with your work is a struggle.What you eventually produce takes longer than you planned, and it fills you with a sense of disappointment.Don’t worry.Here are seven barriers to writing every writer needs to…
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    Lisa Romeo Writes

  • Friday Fridge Clean-Out: Links for Writers -- February 20, 2015 Edition

    20 Feb 2015 | 5:30 am
    > Ann Hood--novelist, memoirist, essayist, editor, teacher--talks about her latest novel, her start as a writer, process, and much more, in an interview at The Writer. She was one of my MFA mentors, and I continue to learn from her, always.> If you're here, you're a reader. Maybe you'd like to up your reading tally for the year? Check out the 50 Book Pledge (or 75, 100, 150, 200).> The New York Times Sunday Magazine has been "re-launched" (and redesigned, re-imagined) in print and online. Except for those (like me) who are upset at the loss of the Lives column as a…
  • Guest Blogger Sandra Hurtes on How a Writer Stays Committed With No Promise of Success

    17 Feb 2015 | 5:30 am
    This blog, which I've been publishing for eight years, continues to bring me into contact with many wonderful writers. Sometimes a single email exchange grows into a week-long or month-long (or longer) conversation; often, I invite that writer to contribute a guest post. That's more or less how I found Sandra Hurtes, who emailed me after reading an interview here with Sue William Silverman, one of her "writing heroes." Sandra is an adjunct assistant professor at CUNY and also studies watercolor painting.Please welcome Sandra Hurtes.   When Poets & Writers began its “Why We Write”…
  • Friday Fridge Clean-Out: Links for Writers -- February 6, 2015 Edition

    6 Feb 2015 | 11:59 am
    > Prolific writer Jordan Rosenfeld, in a video hangout with Estelle Erasmus talks about how she churns out so many essays that get published in so many, many places. Worth the 14 minutes!> Is being "sponsored" (meaning more or less not having to earn a paycheck) the brass ring for writers struggling to find/make/take enough time to seriously pursue their projects? Start at the Brevity blog with this post, and then follow the links back to the original Salon post that got the conversation started, and sideways to a number of responses, both yay and nay.> Interested…
  • Guest Blogger Laraine Herring on The Baby Story Monkey

    26 Jan 2015 | 5:30 am
     I'm pleased to present another guest post (her third!) from someone I respect a great deal. Not only do I enjoy reading and learning from her work, but since we first corresponded about four years ago, Laraine Herring has provided me with inspiration and motivation, excellent advice, insightful critical feedback on my memoir manuscript, many laughs; plus the gift of reading and offering feedback on one of her novel manuscripts. (I'm certain I got the better end of the deal on that one!) I've watched with admiration as she's further shaped and defined an already full writing life that…
  • Friday Fridge Clean-Out: Links for Writers -- January 23, 2015 Edition

    23 Jan 2015 | 5:59 am
    > "Like Pushing an Elephant Into a Volkswagon" seems such an apt title for this round-table discussion at The Morning News, with writers talking about how they fit in the writing around day jobs, family obligations, more.  > Ever wonder if you can get new life from an already-published article, essay, blog post? Here are "16 Sites That Accept Previously Published Writing".> What writers don't like lists of new ideas or smarter ways to further their art, craft, and business? Brooke Warner gives us 52 ideas of things to try in 2015. I've decided on at least a half-dozen…
 
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    Will Write For Food

  • 17 Useful Links for Food Bloggers and Writers

    diannejacob
    24 Feb 2015 | 3:45 pm
    I adore links that teach me how to be better at what I do. Sometimes people send them to me, and sometimes I discover them online. I cull through dozens to find the best information for food writers. As a result, these kinds of lists are some of my most popular posts. This particular list came [...] [[ This is a content summary only. Visit my website for full links, other content, and more! ]]
  • Are Sponsored Press Trips Worth Your While?

    diannejacob
    18 Feb 2015 | 8:30 am
    A guest post by Pam Mandel “Oh, I want to go on press trips!” I hear this frequently from newer bloggers. I get it. It’s so appealing to have someone else pick up the tab for your hotel, your meals, entrances fees, all the stuff of travel. When you’re writing for your own blog, there’s [...] [[ This is a content summary only. Visit my website for full links, other content, and more! ]]
  • 5 Foolproof Ways to Thrive as a Writer

    diannejacob
    10 Feb 2015 | 11:30 am
    Don’t you love the word “thrive?” It’s not about just getting through the day, making lists, or driving yourself to do more more more. It’s about a healthy, beaming, happy you, satisfied with your life and filled with gratitude. Doesn’t that sound incredible? Who doesn’t want to be that kind of person? As writers, we need [...] [[ This is a content summary only. Visit my website for full links, other content, and more! ]]
  • Join Me in Turkey for a Food Photography and Writing Workshop, October 2015

    diannejacob
    3 Feb 2015 | 10:02 am
    They popped the question over lunch, about a year ago. Freelance food writer Robyn Eckhardt of the blog Eating Asia, and professional food photographer David Hagerman brought up this event at Cafe Rouge in Berkeley, CA. We had met to celebrate their book deal for a Turkish cookbook (I coached Robyn on the book proposal), which sold to Rux Martin. What did I think, [...] [[ This is a content summary only. Visit my website for full links, other content, and more! ]]
  • Local Food Writers Dis Dallas Restaurant Critic

    diannejacob
    27 Jan 2015 | 11:23 am
    Have you heard about the hard time restaurant critic Leslie Brenner has been getting in Dallas? I didn’t know about it until I read this article in the Washington Post, which said at least 10 Dallas restaurants planned to ban the Dallas Morning News critic, refusing to take her money. They also planned to refuse interviews, stop allowing photographers, and even [...] [[ This is a content summary only. Visit my website for full links, other content, and more! ]]
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    Fiction Notes

  • A Big Storytelling DON’T: Messing with Timelines

    Darcy Pattison
    23 Feb 2015 | 1:45 pm
    The Aliens Inc, Chapter Book Series Try Book 1 for Free Writers should respect timelines. Ten years ago, I taught writing at a university and the world-wide-web was just coming online and theories of hypertext fiction were bouncing around. One popular theme of these stories was that the timeline didn’t matter. Imagine a central event and going out from that, like spokes in a wheel were the other story events. The theories said that non-linear stories were possible; translated, that means a story’s timeline didn’t matter. Since then, we’ve seen stories that mess with the timeline with…
  • 5 Amazingly Simple Ways to Transform Quiet Scenes into Exciting Scenes

    Darcy Pattison
    16 Feb 2015 | 4:45 pm
    The Aliens Inc, Chapter Book Series Try Book 1 for Free Today, I worked on a difficult scene. It wasn’t a big action-packed scene; those are easy. Instead, it was a transition scene that moved the story along a week and had the potential to lose the reader with it’s lack of tension. Donald Maass, in his Writing the Breakout Novel Workbook, repeats this signature mantra, “Tension on every page.” He points out three types of scenes that can be a trap for the lazy writer: Tea time or any time people eat together; transporting characters from one spot to another; and…
  • Author v. Them: When to Revise for Critiquers

    Darcy Pattison
    10 Feb 2015 | 2:22 am
    The Aliens Inc, Chapter Book Series Try Book 1 for Free I am scared to work on my WIP story right now. Why? Because someone I respect read the story and said that it’s working well, but I think I need to make one change–a pretty big one–to make it even stronger. But Critiquer said it was great, as is. If I mess with it, will it – well, mess it up? Or will messing with it make it stronger like I suspect? The Role of Critiques: Clearing up Confusion This leaves me with a major question about the role of critiques. Basically, I get critiques to check how well I’m…
  • Pacing: Space out the Tense Moments

    Darcy Pattison
    9 Feb 2015 | 2:28 am
    The Aliens Inc, Chapter Book Series Try Book 1 for Free Tension on every page is the mantra for fiction writers. But what if your tension is spread unevenly throughout the story? That may be fine, because stories need a natural rhythm, an ebb and flow of action, thoughts, dialogue and reflection (inner dialogue). Some scenes may be crammed with small actions, while others pace steadily through the setting. Sometimes, though, I find that I’ve packed a scene with too many MAJOR revelations or actions, creating a top-heavy scene; that scene is usually matched by another scene that lacks…
  • I Want a Dog by Darcy Pattison

    Darcy Pattison
    8 Feb 2015 | 2:53 am
    The Aliens Inc, Chapter Book Series Try Book 1 for Free Today launches two new books for me. How the Stories Started. For years, I’ve taught writing. I teach everything from kindergarteners to advanced novelist, gifted-and-talented kids to reluctant writers. I’ve developed techniques for helping people write stronger and they usually involve either revising or prewriting. In schools, it’s hard to get kids to revise; they see it as torture to copy out a perfectly good essay again. Too often, it’s an exercise in handwriting instead of real revision. So, I started…
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    WritersDigest.com » There Are No Rules Blog by the Editors of Writer’s Digest

  • Are You a Born Storyteller?

    Jessica Strawser
    24 Feb 2015 | 11:07 am
    I had a dear friend who had a gift for telling stories about her day. She’d launch into one, and suddenly everyone around her would hush up and lean in, knowing that whatever followed would be pure entertainment. A story of encountering a deer on the highway would involve interludes from the deer’s point of view. Strangers who factored into her tales would get nicknames and imagined backstories of their own. She could make even the most mundane parts of her day—and everyone else’s—seem interesting. She didn’t aspire to be a writer, but she was a born storyteller. Why All…
  • Dorothy Parker’s Lessons in Self-Doubt

    Adrienne Crezo
    24 Feb 2015 | 7:11 am
    BY ELLEN MEISTER When my adult writing students confess their struggles with self-doubt, they usually look panicked. I can’t possibly be a real writer, their eyes seem to say. I’m just never sure what I’m doing is right. That’s when I explain that self-doubt is the fuel that drives us forward. Show me a writer with unshakable confidence, I tell them, and I’ll show you a lousy writer. No one proves this more than Dorothy Parker. Though arguably the greatest literary wit of the twentieth century, she battled those demons of doubt every day. In 1956, when interviewed by Paris Review…
  • How to Find and Keep a Literary Agent — Agent One-on-One Boot Camp (With Critiques) Starts March 25

    Chuck Sambuchino
    23 Feb 2015 | 6:53 pm
    How do you hook an agent right away, keep them hooked, and make the most of your new publishing relationship? In this Boot Camp starting March 23, 2015, “How to Find and Keep a Literary Agent,” you’ll learn how to get a literary agent’s attention through a great submission, and also how to navigate the process of working successfully with an agent. You’ll also work with an agent online (the instructing agents are from Sandra Dijkstra Literary) to review and refine your all-important query letter and the first 5 pages of your novel. As always, seats in the boot…
  • Take Your Writing Further: How to Get the Most Out of Writing Exercises

    Cris Freese
    17 Feb 2015 | 10:42 am
    The following is a guest post from one of WD’s bloggers from our NaNoWriMo project, EJ Runyon. In this post, EJ describes the importance of moving past using writing exercises and learning how to turn the exercises into usable content for your work-in-progress. Using an exercise should only be the first of several steps in beginning your writing process, particularly as a beginner. Novice writers spend a lot of time reading blogs and other websites that offer exercises, story starters and prompts to try out writing skills. Write a list your antagonist will use shopping. What would an…
  • 4 Marks of Good Writing

    Rachel Scheller
    11 Feb 2015 | 8:58 am
    How can you tell if a piece of writing is strong? Whether you’re editing for a publishing company, working as a freelancer, or self-editing, correctly assessing the quality of the work is imperative. In this excerpt from The Editor’s Companion, Steve Dunham discusses four marks of good writing and how you can recognize them in every piece you review. 1. Good Content Communication, even in writing, requires two people. Every time a writer begins putting words together for publication, one fact should always be foremost: The writing is (at least partly) for the benefit of someone…
 
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    The Truth About Lies

  • #496

    1 Mar 2015 | 3:30 am
    PunksThe bass playerpicks from the hip, stands splay-legged, clings to his phallic guitar. Street-erotic, the lead singerfalls on the microphone, holds it like a woman, leers lupine at the audience. You can't sing – scream. You can't dance –don't dance: bounce up and down. On the crest of a new wavetheir day is marked by the tide. 24 September 1978    I was a seventeen-year-old civil servant when punk arrived late in 1976 and I know this sounds terrible to say considering how young I was but I was already too old-fashioned, too established to embrace the punk lifestyle except in…
  • #497

    25 Feb 2015 | 4:00 am
    Time IITime is a dog which haunts you –         is a wolf which stalks you –         hangs, like guilt, round your neck         dragging you down to the grave. Like Light it allows you         to perceive only a little –         lays bare Man's mortality. 16 October 1978   This poem has never been published before. Light appears in many of my poems, thirty of my adult poems (i.e.
  • A Killer in Profile

    22 Feb 2015 | 5:00 am
    “Good old-fashioned police work, Bob,” Collison said with heavily overdone enthusiasm. “Nothing like it.” – Ash Larton, A Killer in Profile I’ve read virtually no crime fiction apart from William McIlvanney’s Laidlaw trilogy and then only because McIlvanney wrote them; had he written a spy novel and an office romance I’d’ve read them, too. I have, however, watched (depending on how you think about these things) a laudable or lamentable amount of crime shows on television from Dixon of Dock Green on: shows featuring grizzled detectives; novices; cowboys and buddies; DS’s,…
  • #511

    18 Feb 2015 | 4:00 am
    DriverDriver shifts into top and acceleratesas if time were dying on a fast fuse. The lightsof the approaching cars areblurs in the night. Blurs passing blurs in the night. Worlds of horizonspass under their wheels. 30 April 1979    I’ve never regarded myself as much of a nature poet. Whereas I was inspired by the poems of Larkin and Owen we studied at school those by Ted Hughes that were included in the syllabus did little for me. The poems we ended up covering were, I have since discovered, all from Lupercal bar one, ‘The Jaguar’ which is from his first collection, The Hawk…
  • #517

    15 Feb 2015 | 5:00 am
    W.C.After entering the cubiclethe door is bolted. Unbuckling my jeansI lower them past my knees. There was no curtain or grill –somehow I thought there might be. In silence I sitdoling out dispensations and penancesto the shaky biro on the wall. 24 July 1979    I wasn’t raised a Catholic and so I’ve never sat in a confessional and yet I can’t pretend that it’s not something that fascinates me. As usual my memory fails me but it will’ve been about this time that I first read Robert Silverberg’s 1971 novel A Time of Changes set on an alien planet where the use of the…
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    Kari J. Wolfe

  • Pardon Our Dust!

    admin
    23 Feb 2015 | 4:26 am
    It’s definitely been one of those few years. After not having much to say over a whole bunch of years, I’m finally in the stages of preparing my website to say a whole lot of things. For right now, though, this site is under construction — I’ve got to put a few finishing touches on it and then I’ll reveal it all. Seriously, sit back, enjoy the ride and I’m excited to show you what’s coming up next. The post Pardon Our Dust! appeared first on Kari J. Wolfe.
  • Blah

    admin
    21 Feb 2015 | 10:28 pm
    The post Blah appeared first on Kari J. Wolfe.
  • SK Revisited: THE SHINING by Stephen King — NOT the Movie by Stanley Kubrick

    admin
    14 Dec 2014 | 6:15 pm
    It’s been a LONG time since I first read THE SHINING. So long and so many books ago that I simply don’t remember when it was, I just remember reading it. And like thousands — probably millions — of other people, I’ve seen Stanley Kubrick’s movie far, far more than I probably should have. Because of that movie, Jack Torrance will forever be Jack Nicholson. Shelley Duvall will forever be Wendy Torrance. And the kid from the movie will always be Danny Torrance. Scatman Crothers is Dick Halloran, of course, as well. However, after reading the novel and being…
  • SK Revisited: Problems Between ‘Salem’s Lot and Me

    admin
    2 Dec 2014 | 5:03 pm
    So, ok, I’ve said I’m going to reread all of the Stephen King books along with Richard Chizmar of Cemetery Dance. He’s currently on THE SHINING whereas I am still stuck on ‘SALEM’S LOT. Oh, well, so I’m behind. I think that’s the story of my life sometimes. However it’s not been for lack of trying. I’ve been trying to sit down and just read ‘SALEM’S LOT… and I’m having a lot of problems doing it. I find that it has way too many characters in the first few sections for me to keep up with. In the prologue,…
  • SK Revisited: CARRIE by Stephen King, a Review — UPDATED

    admin
    8 Nov 2014 | 9:59 am
    Carrie was a much better book than I remembered. I think when I read it the first time years ago, I was much more of a plot-driven reader. Meaning I missed a lot of the characterization in the book beyond Carrie White and her mother Margaret. I also was mostly sympathetic empathetic* with Carrie, but then, King wants us to be. It’s not so much that she’s this uncontrollable evil monster, but that she’s a normal teenage girl, for all intents and purposes, only with a mother who neglects to tell her about things she needs to know about. Her mother wants to hold her back, to…
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    Flogging the Quill

  • Flogometer for Christopher—are you compelled to turn the page?

    Ray Rhamey
    27 Feb 2015 | 11:54 am
    Submissions Wanted... If you’d like a fresh look at your opening chapter or prologue, please email your submission to me re the directions at the bottom of this post. The Flogometer challenge: can you craft a first page that compels me to turn to the next page? Caveat: Please keep in mind that this is entirely subjective. Note: all the Flogometer posts are here. What's a first page in publishingland? In a properly formatted novel manuscript (double-spaced, 1-inch margins, 12-point type, etc.) there should be about 16 or 17 lines on the first page (first pages of chapters/prologues start…
  • Flogometer for Anikó—are you compelled to turn the page?

    Ray Rhamey
    25 Feb 2015 | 9:34 am
    Submissions Wanted... If you’d like a fresh look at your opening chapter or prologue, please email your submission to me re the directions at the bottom of this post. The Flogometer challenge: can you craft a first page that compels me to turn to the next page? Caveat: Please keep in mind that this is entirely subjective. Note: all the Flogometer posts are here. What's a first page in publishingland? In a properly formatted novel manuscript (double-spaced, 1-inch margins, 12-point type, etc.) there should be about 16 or 17 lines on the first page (first pages of chapters/prologues start…
  • What makes a story “high-concept?”

    Ray Rhamey
    23 Feb 2015 | 9:45 am
    In an article titled Write Better: The 7 Qualities of High-Concept Stories, Jeff Lyons, a story editor, outlines the aspects that help a story fit the notion of “high-concept” whether for film or a book. The qualities he lists are: High level of entertainment value High degree of originality Born from a “what if” question Highly visual Clear emotional focus Inclusion of some truly unique element Mass audience appeal Check out what he means with each of these things here. For what it’s worth. Ray Tweet © 2015 Ray Rhamey
  • Flogometer for Joe—are you compelled to turn the page?

    Ray Rhamey
    20 Feb 2015 | 9:06 am
    Submissions Wanted. Only one in the queue for next week. If you’d like a fresh look at your opening chapter or prologue, please email your submission to me re the directions at the bottom of this post. The Flogometer challenge: can you craft a first page that compels me to turn to the next page? Caveat: Please keep in mind that this is entirely subjective. Note: all the Flogometer posts are here. What's a first page in publishingland? In a properly formatted novel manuscript (double-spaced, 1-inch margins, 12-point type, etc.) there should be about 16 or 17 lines on the first page…
  • Flogometer for Christine—are you compelled to turn the page?

    Ray Rhamey
    18 Feb 2015 | 12:44 pm
    Submissions Wanted. . If you’d like a fresh look at your opening chapter or prologue, please email your submission to me re the directions at the bottom of this post. The Flogometer challenge: can you craft a first page that compels me to turn to the next page? Caveat: Please keep in mind that this is entirely subjective. Note: all the Flogometer posts are here. What's a first page in publishingland? In a properly formatted novel manuscript (double-spaced, 1-inch margins, 12-point type, etc.) there should be about 16 or 17 lines on the first page (first pages of chapters/prologues start…
 
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    Fritinancy

  • Bodies at Rest

    Nancy Friedman
    27 Feb 2015 | 7:43 am
    I recently heard about a consulting gig with a San Jose creative agency. The firm does strong work in branding and web design, and it has a dynamic website. But one thing made me hesitate. The agency’s name. WebEnertiaIf there’s a name less likely to inspire, to motivate, to rally … well, I can’t think of it right now. My brain’s inert. Oh, I can speculate about how they arrived at “WebEnertia” in 1999, when the agency was founded. E- because that was the cool prefix back then for all things digital. Inertia because someone discovered in a dictionary or remembered from Physics…
  • On the Visual Thesaurus: Why Do So Many Brand Names End in -ly?

    Nancy Friedman
    26 Feb 2015 | 7:06 am
    My latest column for the Visual Thesaurus is about an ongoing fascination of mine: company and product names that end in -ly. Over the last several years I’ve pinned 256 examples of such names on a Pinterest board, from Adaptly and Amazely to Yarrly and Zaarly. But I’m not content with pointing in alarm; I want to know how and why one little suffix has assumed so much power—and, not for nothing, how it came to be a marker both for adjectives (friendly, lonely, writerly) and for adverbs (frankly, strikingly, immediately). No paywall this time! Here’s an excerpt to whet your appetite:…
  • Word of the Week: Gyges Effect

    Nancy Friedman
    23 Feb 2015 | 6:53 am
    Gyges effect: The way in which the Internet “can encourage a disinhibition people simply would not experience face to face.” (Claire Hardaker, The Guardian, August 3, 2013) Gyges is often Anglicized to “JAHY-eez” (source: Dictionary.com) or “JAHY-jeez.” The Gyges effect takes its name from a story related in Plato’s Republic about the Ring of Gyges, which bestowed the power of invisibility on the wearer. Gyges was a historical king of Lydia, but the story centers on a mythical shepherd said to be Gyges’ ancestor; in the tale, the shepherd uses the cloak of invisibility to…
  • Cadillacs Mixed Message

    Nancy Friedman
    20 Feb 2015 | 7:16 am
    Cadillac a whipped underdog? That’s what I infer from the automaker’s new “Dare Greatly” campaign, from Publicis, which will kick off during Sunday’s Academy Awards broadcast. I caught the teaser ad at a Berkeley movie theater before a screening of the Best Foreign Film nominee Timbuktu, which is about the violent clash between cattle herders and religious extremists in Mali. (The dissonance between ad and movie was so thick it would have taken a cleaver to slice it. But I digress.) Here’s the spot: The script isn’t credited, but it’s lifted from “Citizenship in a…
  • February Linkfest

    Nancy Friedman
    17 Feb 2015 | 12:21 pm
    The Seattle Seahawks lost the Super Bowl to the New England Patriots. Maybe they’d have fared better under one of the other names nominated in a 1975 naming contest, including the Rainbeams, the Lumberjacks, and the Needlers. (Mental Floss) “Check the trademark early on,” “Avoid focus groups,” and other good advice about naming from professional name developers. (Communication Arts) A Krispy Kreme UK store withdrew a Facebook ad promoting “KKK Wednesdays” (Krispy Kreme Klub Wednesdays) “after users pointed out that KKK is also an abbreviation for the Klu Klux Klan.” (The…
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    Inkygirl: An Illustrated Guide For Writers

  • Three Questions with Henry Herz: Office Sushi, Advice For Aspiring Writers/Illustrators, and Monster Goose Nursery Rhymes

    Debbie Ridpath Ohi
    2 Mar 2015 | 5:26 am
    Henry Herz writes fantasy and science fiction for children with his two sons, and his first traditionally published picture book, Monster Goose Nursery Rhymes, launched from Pelican Publishing earlier this year. He is a SCBWI member and hosts a kidlit blog. You can find out more about Henry and his books: Birchtreepub.com - Blog - Kidlit Creature Week -Facebook - Twitter Synopsis of Monster Goose Nursery Rhymes: Enter an enchanted land of mythical creatures where manticores reign and ogres roar. With a unique twist on traditional…
  • Comic: Taking Punctuation Personally

    Debbie Ridpath Ohi
    23 Feb 2015 | 6:35 pm
  • Comic: Snowman Writer

    Debbie Ridpath Ohi
    18 Feb 2015 | 5:03 am
  • Three Questions with Henry Herz: Office Sushi, Advice For Aspiring Writers and Illustrators, and Monster Goose Nursery Rhymes

    Debbie Ridpath Ohi
    13 Feb 2015 | 4:34 pm
    Henry Herz writes fantasy and science fiction for children with his two sons, and his first traditionally published picture book, Monster Goose Nursery Rhymes, launched from Pelican Publishing earlier this year. He is a SCBWI member and hosts a kidlit blog. You can find out more about Henry and his books: Birchtreepub.com - Blog - Kidlit Creature Week - Facebook - Twitter Synopsis of Monster Goose Nursery Rhymes: Enter an enchanted land of mythical creatures where manticores reign and ogres roar. With a unique twist on traditional rhymes, Monster Goose Nursery Rhymes presents a darker…
  • Photos from my NYC trip (includes #NY15SCBWI pics)

    Debbie Ridpath Ohi
    13 Feb 2015 | 9:14 am
    Simon & Schuster meeting about my illustrations in SEA MONKEY AND BOB (author: Aaron Reynolds) I had SUCH AN AMAZING TIME IN NEW YORK! Huge thanks to the SCBWI Winter Conference organizers, volunteers and faculty for a fantastic event. Eventually, when I get more free time (hahahah), I hope to post some highlights. The next couple of weeks are going to be superbusy for me so for now, I'm sharing some of the photos I took with my iPhone during my trip. Please don't ask me to send you individual photos; I lack the time right now -- I've posted the highest res versions I have on Flickr. Feel…
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    Self-Publishing Review

  • Review: Sucker by Mark Lingane ★★★★★

    Cate Baum
    2 Mar 2015 | 3:58 am
    Author Mark Lingane is back with a brilliantlt humorous mashup fantasy-sci-fi-Noir, “Sucker.” Private eye Van H. Avram is your typical Mickey Spillane throwback, just about getting away with doing his job in some kind of chaotic way. But all that changes when a mysterious “skinny blond” corpse is dumped on his doorstep, opening a door ...
  • Review: Rainbow Gardens by James Malone ★★★★

    Naka Jackson
    2 Mar 2015 | 1:01 am
    Rainbow Gardens, a fantasy novel set in WWII mixing troll lore with gory action and a dreamy tale of redemption and forgiveness in this epic story from debut writer James Malone. The trolls, imagining themselves The Descendants of Cain, are searching for the truth about their origins, searching for their redeemer to come and save ...
  • An Interview With Reedsy Co-Founder Ricardo Fayet

    Cate Baum
    26 Feb 2015 | 6:59 am
    Ricardo Fayet and his business partner Emmanuel Nataf launched Reedsy, a curated network of book services for independent authors, in 2014. SPR caught up with Ricardo for a chat about Reedsy and the exciting opportunites the site offers for self-publishers. Can you tell us what Reedsy is, in a nutshell? Reedsy is a curated network ...
  • House Divided by Peter G Pollack

    Cate Baum
    25 Feb 2015 | 8:58 am
    Peter G Pollack’s new international political thriller centers around Courtney, a student who decides to join the Students for Palestinian Justice (SPJ) group on her university campus, and her retired CIA father Leonard’s reaction to her decision. But when Courtney becomes a target for a planned bombing assignment hitting Jewish organizations, it’s up to Leonard ...
  • An Interview With Romantic Suspense Author A.M.Madden

    Cate Baum
    25 Feb 2015 | 7:42 am
    A.M. Madden is the author of  Stone Walls, as well as several other romance/romantic suspense books that have been a big hit with readers worldwide.  Tell us something about your book. The basics: what’s it about? Stone Walls is my first stand alone in the romantic suspense category. It’s about a New York City cop who ...
 
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    WritersWeekly.com - Freelance Writing Ezine

  • BookLocker - Your Book Deserves the Best

    26 Feb 2015 | 9:00 am
    According to attorney Mark Levine, author of The Fine Print, BookLocker is one of the top-rated POD publishers in the industry.
  • Paying Markets And Jobs For February 26th

    26 Feb 2015 | 9:00 am
    New markets and freelance writing jobs.
  • Whispers And Warnings For February 26th

    26 Feb 2015 | 9:00 am
    I CAN'T BELIEVE THEY THOUGHT THEY COULD GET AWAY WITH THIS... Fifty Shades of Grey Publishing Partner Wins Lawsuit "Today's verdict confirmed that Jennifer Pedroza was a partner in The Writer's Coffee Shop. The jury determined that fraud had been committed by Ms. Amanda Hayward and TWCS Operations Proprietary when they induced Ms. Pedroza into a Service Agreement, and also deprived her of her share of one of the most successful book deals in history." I'LL BE KEEPING MY EYE ON THIS ONE James Risen And Houghton Mifflin Sued Over Libel Of NSA/CIA Whistleblower "Risen and the publisher were put…
  • Success Story For February 26th

    26 Feb 2015 | 9:00 am
    We're Out Of Success Stories! Have a Freelance Success Story to share? We pay $40 on acceptance, non-exclusive electronic rights only. Success stories run around 300 words but we're very flexible. Our guidelines are here: http://writersweekly.com/misc/guidelines.php See archived success stories HERE.
  • Website Publishing Article Without My Permission

    26 Feb 2015 | 9:00 am
    I came across a website that has published one of my articles on their website without my permission or my knowledge. What should I do?
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    Writing Forward

  • Grammar Rules: Fewer or Less

    Melissa Donovan
    26 Feb 2015 | 1:00 am
    It’s a battle between words: fewer or less. Are they interchangeable? Do these words have different meanings? How can we use them correctly? Many people don’t realize that these two words do not share the same meaning and therefore cannot be used interchangeably. As a result, both fewer and less are often used incorrectly. The difference in meaning may be subtle, but it’s significant and remarkably easy to remember. Let’s see what Dictionary.com has to say about these two words: fewer: adjective 1. of a smaller number: fewer words and more action. less: adjective 1.
  • Exploring Genres in Creative Nonfiction Writing

    Melissa Donovan
    24 Feb 2015 | 1:00 am
    Creative nonfiction writing is a growing genre! Creative writing includes more than just fiction and poetry. Creative nonfiction is a wide category of creative writing, which includes several genres. Creative nonfiction is a relatively new field; only in recent years have works of creative nonfiction received the kind of attention from critics and readers that fiction and traditional nonfiction have enjoyed for decades. It’s likely that creative nonfiction will continue to gain strength as a dominant force in the world of writing. The world wide web is growing at an astounding rate,…
  • 12 Character Writing Tips for Fiction Writers

    Melissa Donovan
    19 Feb 2015 | 1:00 am
    Character writing tips. Characters are the heart and soul of every story. Almost every great story is about people. Plot, setting, theme, and every other element of fiction is secondary to realistic characters that an audience can connect with on an intellectual or emotional level. There are exceptions, of course. Some readers enjoy plot-driven stories, but they never seem to achieve the massive popularity that stories with rich, layered characters achieve. Why do fans adore Harry Potter and Katniss Everdeen? Because they feel like real people. We connect with characters in fiction for any…
  • Artistically Inspired Journal Prompts

    Melissa Donovan
    17 Feb 2015 | 1:00 am
    Get artistically inspired with these journal prompts. We, the people of the arts, feed off each other. A painter is inspired by a song. A musician is inspired by a novel. A photographer is inspired by a sculpture. So we come full circle by inspiring one another. Journal prompts are a useful tool for getting inspired. When you want to write but find yourself without any ideas, you might think your muse has gone MIA, but ideas abound. You need only look to the arts, where there is a whole world of inspiration waiting to move you (and your pen). Journal Prompts Inspired By the Arts These journal…
  • Writing Resources for Naming Your Characters

    Melissa Donovan
    12 Feb 2015 | 1:00 am
    Have you ever read one of those epic fantasy novels in which the magical characters can gain total control over any living being (or non-living object) simply by discovering its real and true name? I’ve read about ten of those novels. What do you think is more perplexing, the fact that authors continue to use this rule of magic (even though it’s tired and ready to be retired) or the astounding number of unique names that writers come up with for all the characters in these stories? Dubworthy or Dubless? I have been known to spend hours pondering names and wondering how a writer…
 
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    Mysterious Matters: Mystery Publishing Demystified

  • Let's Hear It for the Girls

    Agatho
    21 Feb 2015 | 11:33 am
    Let's talk about the hugest of the huge best-sellers of recent years and what they have in common. Above are the three ubiquitous books that the world has embraced--selling zillions of copies, spawning films, receiving thousands of reader reviews on Amazon and Goodreads... All are mystery/thrillers, of course. But what I find most interesting is the fact that all have the word GIRL in their title. Now, there was a time not too long ago that I wouldn't have dared call any woman a "girl." Having a wife and two daughters, and sharing their experiences, I came to understand…
  • Name a 500-Page Book...

    Agatho
    5 Feb 2015 | 7:49 pm
    This all started with Donna Tartt's The Goldfinch. My wife read it and said what everyone else is saying, "What a magnificent book, but 200 pages too long." That brings me to the question of the day: Can anyone name a 500+ page book that is NOT at least 100-200 pages too long? I read and liked Kate Atkinson's LIFE AFTER LIFE.  But 100 pages too long. I read and liked Ken Follett's PILLARS OF THE EARTH. But 200 pages too long. So ... if you can name a 500-page book that sustains your interest for 500 pages, please hit the comment button and share the author and title.
  • Exploring B The Supernatural Enhancements

    Agatho
    26 Jan 2015 | 8:39 pm
    I was feeling despair during a recent trip to Barnes & Noble.  First, I was upset that I was being made to pay full price for a hardcover. Barnes & Noble: I want to support you. I really do. And I ended up buying the book I wanted. But when I got home, I checked Amazon -- and the price was $10 lower. Yes, a full $10.  I work in publishing, for God's sake -- I'm not a rich man. That 10 bucks means something to me. I have a vested interest in this business, and I want bookstores to stay in business and thrive. Couldn't you have given me a token 10% off or something? You…
  • Rebecca: Could It Get Published Today?

    Agatho
    29 Nov 2014 | 6:30 pm
    Note: There are spoilers in this post. Aaargh. My wife did it to me again. She has a penchant for deciding to read a classic (or older) work and leaving it on her nightstand. I see it there and tell myself, "I'll read just the first few pages," and before I know it, I've read the whole thing while my own book languishes (and Mrs. Agatho smugly comments on her excellent taste in fiction). Last week Daphne du Maurier's Rebecca showed up on that nightstand. A rather large book, I thought, turning it over in my hands. Nice cover art. Let's just see what comes after…
  • What Happens When Dumb People Read Your Book?

    Agatho
    11 Nov 2014 | 3:58 pm
    The question I am asking myself this week is: How much do I really take readers' IQ's into account when signing and then publishing a book? The truth is, I do, quite a bit. The average IQ is 100, and that's the level I aim for. Of course, I want the book to be well-written, with a good plot and great characters. But even though my own tastes run to the avant-garde, I rarely sign up such titles. Many, many times I've thought, "Wow, I like this. But people won't get it. It's too challenging, too demanding. That's what literary fiction is for."…
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    Punctuality Rules!

  • Coming Soon: Splinters of Light

    --Deb
    8 Feb 2015 | 2:52 pm
    I need to tell you about my friend Rachael Herron’s new book, Splinters of Light. (And yes, full disclosure, I do consider her a friend, even though I’ve only met her in person once.) Anyway–I’m digressing. She’s got a new book coming out, Splinters of Light, and in an effort to promote it, she’s offering all kinds of incentive for pre-ordering it. I haven’t read this specific book yet, but I’ve been reading her books since her first (How to Knit a Love Song) came out in 2010 and her writing keeps getting better and better. Her most recent, Pack…
  • Review: The English Tenses

    --Deb
    27 Oct 2014 | 6:34 am
    No, no. This isn’t a grammar-filled post to explain all the intricacies of verb tenses in the English language. How could it be? English is complicated and it would take an entire book to explain it all–far more space than a single blog post. Which is exactly the point, because I’m here to tell you about just such a book. Title: The English Tenses: Practical Grammar Guide Author: Phil Williams Publisher: English Lessons Brighton, 2014 Published in the UK, this book addresses a problem for people learning English as a second language–how to recognize and use the…
  • Raise Your Hand If…

    --Deb
    13 Oct 2014 | 3:31 pm
    Okay, raise your hands if you .. … Wish you had more time to write. … Wish you were a better writer. … Wish you could get other people to read your writing. … Wish writing came more easily. … Wish you had more ideas. … Wish you had time to blog about solutions to these problems. … Wish you had solutions to these problems. And … isn’t this what freelancers are FOR? To help out with problems like these?
  • I’m Guesting at the Whine Seller

    --Deb
    1 Oct 2014 | 4:07 pm
    If you didn’t see it, I’ve got a guest post up at The Whine Seller. The Importance of Saying What You Mean: aka The Difference a Writer Can Make.
  • I Salute You

    --Deb
    23 Sep 2014 | 11:32 am
    Here’s a question for you: When you write an email, do you include a salutation? You know, the “Dear John,” or even something as simple as a person’s name at the top. I was reading an old blog post on Linda Formicelli’s excellent Renegade Writers site the other day that was discussing whether or not to use an editor’s first name when sending a query letter. This made me realize that, most of the time, I don’t bother starting my emails with names at all. I usually just jump right into the meat of the message. I addressed this back in 2008, when I…
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    Nicola Furlong » Blog

  • Possibilities Nominated for International Portuguese Music Awards

    nfurlong
    28 Feb 2015 | 8:55 am
    WONDERFUL news. Glynne Turner and her song co-writing partner Diane Pancel have a song twice nominated for the International Portuguese Music Awards. The song, Possibilities (sung by Diane), is one of four nominated for Pop Song of the Year and Song of the Year! This’s friggin’ amazing, but about time the pair received recognition. To see the awards/nominations lists, and to hear the song (link below: scroll down to bottom for Pop & Song of the Year), click on image for Diane Pancel. The International Portuguese Music Awards (IPMA), recognizes outstanding achievement in the…
  • I Love Poppies Acrylic Textured Art by Nicola Furlong

    nfurlong
    21 Feb 2015 | 10:10 am
    Oh, poppies are my fav flower. I grow orange, salmon and white Orientals, red Shirleys, golden Californias and beautiful blue Himalyans. So, not surprising that I choose them as the subject for this textured painting. I’ve sculpted the colourful poppies into a thick layer of joint compound laid on reclaimed cedar fence planks and loaded with brilliant pink and blue colour scheme. This painting is in high relief, with bold crinkly petals and nodding blossom heads. Enjoy! The post I Love Poppies Acrylic Textured Art by Nicola Furlong appeared first on Nicola Furlong.
  • Do You Know a Psychopath?

    nfurlong
    11 Feb 2015 | 12:42 pm
    During some research for a thriller novel concept, I stumbled across The Wisdom of Psychopaths, What Saints, Spies and Serial Killers Can Teach Us About Success by Kevin Dutton. It’s a fascinating read, slightly humbling and frankly, shocking. You see, Dr. Dutton says not every psychopath is a serial killer. If fact, most psychopaths aren’t wicked or crazy, but they are all charming, ruthless and live without fear or shame. Does that sound like someone you know? See the rest of my post on the Oak Tree Press blog today. Bet you somebody close will come to mind! The post Do You Know a…
  • Nicola Furlong Guest Posting – The Barn Door Book Loft

    nfurlong
    5 Feb 2015 | 12:16 pm
    Am very fortunate to be guest blogging today about my psychological thriller A HEMORRHAGING OF SOULS, on the great book site The Barn Door Book Loft. A Hemorrhaging of Souls – Nicola Furlong Have a boo and discover the origin of the novel’s title and learn which character was the most fun for me to create. I’ll be giving away one signed copy, so just leave a comment and email address to be entered in the giveaway! The post Nicola Furlong Guest Posting – The Barn Door Book Loft appeared first on Nicola Furlong.
  • I love Poppies, textured acrylic painting

    nfurlong
    30 Jan 2015 | 7:17 pm
    Poppies are my ab fab flower. Love the colours, crinkled textures and nodding seed heads. Sculpted some pink ones against a summer sky, using joint compound, bold acrylic colours and reclaimed cedar plank canvas. Can’t wait for the real things in early May!     The post I love Poppies, textured acrylic painting appeared first on Nicola Furlong.
 
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    Sean McManus's Writing blog

  • See you at the Raspberry Pi 3rd Birthday Party!

    Sean McManus
    26 Feb 2015 | 9:36 am
    I'm looking forward to this weekend's birthday party for the Raspberry Pi in its home town of Cambridge. The programme of events looks incredible, with talks, workshops, marketplace stalls, discussion areas, a Robot Wars style obstacle course, and show and tell tables, plus a party in the evening. It's going to be amazing. On the Saturday, I'll be helping to run a Scratch hackathon where we'll
  • Wild Mood Swings has been relaunched

    Sean McManus
    12 Feb 2015 | 6:42 am
    When I launched my first home page way back in the late nineties, one of the features was a game called Wild Mood Swings. In it, you choose your mood from a pulldown menu, and it takes you to a site appropriate for that mood. Sometimes, the destination will reinforce and reflect the mood, and other times it will attempt to reverse it. I later spun the site off into its own website, and it was
  • What's changed in the Raspberry Pi 2 and the new Raspberry Pi desktop?

    Sean McManus
    8 Feb 2015 | 1:16 am
    There was much excitement this week as the Raspberry Pi Foundation released the Raspberry Pi 2 Model B, boasting 1GB of memory and a four-core processor. The box for the Pi 2s sold by Element14 proudly declares that the new Pi is six times faster than the previous Model B, although I've heard that for some highly optimised applications performance could exceed that. I got a Pibow case to go with
  • Raspberry Pi at BETT 2015

    Sean McManus
    23 Jan 2015 | 10:01 am
    I've just got back from Bett 2015, and thought I'd write a short blog post to share some of the things I saw there today. My first observation is that it was great to see the Raspberry Pi having such a strong presence there this year, thanks to the support of CPC. Last time I was at BETT was in 2013, when there was only space to have one demo station. This year, there were a couple of tables set
  • Discover Mathematica on the Raspberry Pi

    Sean McManus
    22 Jan 2015 | 3:47 am
    As part of the updated second edition of Raspberry Pi For Dummies, my co-author Mike Cook has written a great introduction to Mathematica, a maths-based application that's capable of creating some great mathematical art, among other things. Usually, Mathematica costs about $2,500, but there's a free version on your Raspberry Pi, so this highly exclusive software is now available for everyone to
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    Emerging Writers Studio

  • How to Turn Setbacks Into Progress

    Nanci Panuccio
    4 Feb 2015 | 6:28 am
    quimby via Compfigh Your novel was turned down by a publisher. You just received a form rejection letter – the worst kind-  from an agent. Or maybe the feedback from your workshop flattened you to the point of paralysis. You thought your story was so much closer. Setbacks can crush us. And cause even the most resilient writers to believe they lack the requisite talent to write anything worth publishing. But talent has little to do with success. And failure gets a bad rap. Mind The Gap There’s a gap between your vision – what Ira Glass calls your “good taste”…
  • Writing Success Redefined

    Nanci Panuccio
    19 Jan 2015 | 3:11 am
    How do you measure your success as a writer? Is it by how much money you earn from your writing? Is it the publishing contract? Nailing an agent? Sure, those are external markers of success. But what does success as a writer mean to you? Years ago, when I began writing in earnest, a dancer friend and I had an interesting debate. She asked me how a writer could consider oneself successful if he or she didn’t write a bestseller that sold millions of dollars. My friend was a wealthy widow in her early fifties who spent her days pursuing passions full tilt. In addition to ballet, she…
  • Writing to Draw Readers in Emotionally

    Nanci Panuccio
    17 Dec 2014 | 10:06 am
    Pedro Ribeiro Simõe Flannery O’Connor once said that, as writers, we can’t create emotion with emotion. We need to provide it with a body, to “create a world with weight and extension.” Love on its own, for example, is too broad and abstract for the reader to feel. If we write about something as ethereal as love without anchoring it in the physical world, we won’t connect emotionally to our reader. That’s because emotion exists beneath abstraction and explanation. It lives in the breathing world of the real, a tactile world we create when we selectively give…
  • 7 Ways to Write Better (That Have Nothing to Do With Writing)

    Nanci Panuccio
    30 Nov 2014 | 5:11 am
    When it comes to unleashing our best, most potent writing, it’s not only about the hours we have, it’s the quality of mind and body we bring to those hours. There’s the skill of writing and then there’s our physiological, mental and emotional state. Ultimately, you can’t separate them. Here are some ways to improve your writing that have nothing to do with writing. 1. Commit to Joy At some point on our road to adulthood, we buy into this idea that fun and pleasure is frivolous, non-productive, even fiscally irresponsible. Too often we don’t give ourselves…
  • Going From Stupid to Cool

    Nanci Panuccio
    15 Nov 2014 | 5:06 am
    Maurice via Compfight In February of last year, I attended a weekend west coast swing dance intensive with dancer, choreographer, teacher extraordinaire, Robert Royston. The weekend was ultra light on footwork and dance patterns and high on technique; the physics of movement, partner dynamics and connection, how to spin from a low to high center of gravity, musicality, and a multitude of other technical issues. The techniques were subtle, but new and awkward for most of us, including the most advanced dancers. On the last day of the intensive, as we were wrapping up, Robert said something to…
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    Mike Fook Books - Ebooks | Fiction Thrillers

  • What Does RISK Feel Like?

    MikeFook
    8 Feb 2015 | 6:52 pm
    Reading some other blogs this morning and came up with this gem from Shane Labs who heard from his “mentor” on RISK… You have to take risks that are going to make you feel like you’ve just jumped out of an airplane. Naked. And you’re falling so fast your balls are slapping you in the face. Any questions?
  • God is Love?

    MikeFook
    4 Feb 2015 | 5:19 am
    I look at me. What am I? I’m ruled by a drive inside – the very basic, the MOST basic drive, that is pleasure and pain. I move toward pleasure. I avoid pain. Everything I do is governed by this. Nothing falls outside it. I look at everyone else. Same thing. I look at the animal kingdom – same thing. The pleasure pain principle makes us what? Selfish. It makes us look out for ourselves first. Our own pleasures, our own avoiding pain, puts us at odds not only with those around us – with animals and plants around us- which we care little for… but it puts us at odds…
  • My Sister’s New Piece – Published

    MikeFook
    26 Jan 2015 | 3:35 pm
    My sister, Laura Lovic-Lindsay just had a short (flash fiction) published at FiresideFiction.com and I love it. Maybe you will too. It is every bit as odd as I expected from her. She is really the queen of weird stories! Shoelace
  • 2015 – What Is Ahead?

    MikeFook
    28 Dec 2014 | 8:03 pm
    What will YOU be doing in 2015? Same ol? Maybe you’ll be holed up in a tent in the middle of the Alaskan wilderness writing code. Who knows? Maybe you will. © 2014 Matt Hosford at Flickr. Fook is defunct. Vern Lovic, step up to the stage. This is your life… I’ve been working my ass numb for the past few days on my new ALL IN project for 2015. What am I up to? Creating Training Tutorials for SWIFT – Apple’s next generation of code to write applications for iOS (iPhone, iPad, iPod). Released in June 2014, this is a major step toward bringing high level coding…
  • Coding iPhone Apps vs. Writing Books

    MikeFook
    23 Dec 2014 | 6:37 pm
    I’ve considered writing code since 1997. Will 2015 be the year I run with it? Copyright © 2014 Aaron Tait at Flickr. Just a quick comparison here. I’ve been considering three things for 2015. I need to go ALL IN on something. I’m too scatter-minded to focus on one project. I need to change that for 2015. My goal is to focus primarily, entirely, on one activity for the year. Choices: coding iPhone apps writing books Youtube videos If I could figure out how to crank up my Youtube channel from twenty-two million views to six-hundred million, I’d get started TODAY. Making…
 
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    About that Writing thing.

  • On that Grind.

    Shannon Barber
    26 Feb 2015 | 6:25 pm
    Okay. Seriously I am on that grind this week. I’ve been writing like hell. I’m trying really hard to figure out how to balance all the things I want to do and make a little bit of cash in the process. Shit is fuckin hard y’all. In other news I am plowing my way through a superb reading list. I’ll have some new reviews up soon. Um whoa so this happened. Aside from being in excellent company it really touches me that my sort of off the cuff I want to write something today post made sense. Over the years I’ve come from skipping meals to buy Poets & Writers or to…
  • Yeah Write #202 Entry- Junky

    Shannon Barber
    24 Feb 2015 | 2:46 pm
      Junky by Shannon Barber How can I remember his snake’s name and not his? His snake was named Percival the Pirate. I remember his pale skin and terrible dye jobs. His long fingers and scratchy junkie voice. I loved him the way you love the dog that shits on your floor then cuddles you when you cry. When he was blue, I pounded on him and slapped his face screaming promises of retribution and butt sex until I hit his heart hard enough to get him going again. I remember his terror, his voice broken like a child whispering into their mother’s ear at midnight, ragged words for…
  • A New thing and some other things.

    Shannon Barber
    19 Feb 2015 | 5:54 pm
    First thing my last  comment on my now infamous Paris Review Post is up as the featured essay in Literary Orphans. The title is a nod to 2pac. This song in case you don’t know it. What else? I’m working on some new non fiction. An attempt at humor about sex work. My failed career as a foot fetish ho. Also in the pipeline some queer flash fiction, some more non fiction this time about my relationship with Western Beauty Ideals and how I came to reject them outright. Shit even some poetry. Speaking of poetry I have a new one up at Ink Node.  I’m still working on my freelance…
  • Yeah Write #201- Lady Dozens.

    Shannon Barber
    17 Feb 2015 | 4:10 pm
    Those girls are dangerous. That is my first thought when I see them, the three of them looking hot and talking shit about everyone else that walks by. I need friends, I want those friends. I know what to do. Breathe deep, start walking. As I pass one of the girls snickers, “Oh booboo I see them ashy ass ankles.” The other girls giggle and I stop and tip my sunglasses down with a fingertip. I look her up and down and smile. “Babygirl, who stole them edges?” The rest of the girls erupt in laughter, howling and clapping. One of them points at me, nodding. “That’s my bitch right…
  • On Lovecraft, horror, holy shit racism and writin thangs.

    Shannon Barber
    12 Feb 2015 | 8:28 pm
    I first read a Lovecraft story more than twenty years ago as a young teenager. I cut my reading novels teeth on horror and discovering Lovecraft was like finding a new home. Except, I couldn’t really be home because Lovecraft was racist as fuck. Like holy fuckballs even when I was a “colorblind” young teen in a  super white environment and friends told me it was racist, holy fuck he was SO FUCKING RACIST…ahem. At that age I was way better at compartmentalizing the racism and just kind of hunching my shoulders and getting through it because I fell in pure love with the…
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    Writing from the Twelfth House

  • Is “ordinary” kindness becoming a casualty of our technological age?

    Anne Whitaker
    27 Feb 2015 | 1:49 pm
    I arrived at the bus stop, cold and in a hurry, as usual – just as the bus I wanted was leaving. “So typical!”I muttered crossly to myself, settling down to wait for the next one with an ill grace. A tall, lean, youngish woman with long, rather straggly hair, wearing a dark coloured jacket, jeans and a pair of Wellington boots arrived at the stop. I thought she looked rather strained and tired. Speaks for itself… To help pass the time, I outlined my theory of bus catching to her. If you couldn’t care less about catching a bus, two will pass you going in your…
  • 26 Feb 2015 | 11:03 am

    Anne Whitaker
    26 Feb 2015 | 11:03 am
    Here is the latest post on my other blog: http://astrologyquestionsandanswers.com/2015/02/26/some-thoughts-on-the-astrological-houses-placidus-equal-or-what/ Astrological HousesFiled under: Uncategorized
  • Are you a Betsy Bug? Aunt Elner will cheer you up!

    Anne Whitaker
    23 Feb 2015 | 9:41 am
    Today I feel weary…weary of our unstable climate with – in the West of Scotland – its apparently increasing emphasis on cold and wet. A couple of weeks ago, it was bright and Springlike around here. The snowdrops looked perky and cheery, you got the feeling the crocuses would be poking through at any moment. Well, they have poked through, but they are probably regretting it already… Don’t know about you, but when I catch myself heading for self-pity, I deliver  a few quick slaps around the head, count a few blessings – then look for a philosophical quote…
  • Fencing with fundamentalism: does anyone have THE ANSWER?

    Anne Whitaker
    15 Feb 2015 | 12:53 pm
    I have always asked questions. However, I have equally had an innate dislike of anyone providing me with THE ANSWER, having always sensed – and the unfolding of life, experience and much reading has affirmed this – that there are many answers. Mere humans are in no position to determine which, if any, are correct. This persistent orientation has probably assisted me in having a complex and colourful life; it has also had its serious downside. Life is much easier and simpler if you believe THE ANSWER is out there somewhere, and feel gratitude when someone convincing provides it. I was…
  • Spring!!…and divine discontent…

    Anne Whitaker
    7 Feb 2015 | 3:45 am
    It’s NEARLY spring where we are! I stepped out of our front door this Thursday morning to a brilliantly clear, slightly frosty day, and had a vivid image of Mole from the children’s classic by Kenneth Grahame, doing his spring cleaning…”Spring was moving in the air above and in the earth below and around him, penetrating his dark and lowly little house with its spirit of divine discontent and longing…” The Wind in the Willows I am expecting divine discontent and longing to set in any minute now. In the meantime, here are some cityscapes captured whilst…
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    Working Writers

  • Are You Ready for an Editor?

    Guest Post
    2 Mar 2015 | 4:39 am
      Sometimes it’s hard to finish your project, isn’t it? Even to know when to put down that pen or click that last period on the keyboard. At some point you have to let go of that first draft. Whether you’re planning to self-publish, pay a company, or seek representation or a publisher of your […]
  • New Books Released This Week: March 2, 2015

    Cherie
    2 Mar 2015 | 4:05 am
    Here are new books released just this week. Have you read any of these? Let us know what you thought.
  • Where’s the Poet? by John Keats

    Cherie
    28 Feb 2015 | 4:17 am
    Start your Saturday off right (write?!) by reading some poetry. Here’s a good one from John Keats. Where’s the Poet? Show him! show him, Muses nine! that I may know him! ‘Tis the man, who with a man Is an equal, be he King, Or poorest of the beggar-clan, Or any other wonderous thing A […]
  • Author Book Talks: Watch for These Signals As You Speak

    Guest Post
    27 Feb 2015 | 6:12 am
    Professional speakers are on alert and scan the crowd constantly, looking for clues. If things aren’t going well, these speakers modify their talk on the spot. I’m giving talks and workshops related to my newly released book. Experience has taught me to watch for these things. Monitor body language. Chances are a person who is […]
  • How to Boost Your Book with Amazon’s Pre-Order

    Guest Post
    26 Feb 2015 | 7:01 am
    I was excited to see that Amazon now allows pre-orders for KDP authors (Kindle Direct Publishing), which essentially levels the playing field even more between traditionally published authors and those who have self-published through KDP. In a minute, I’ll take you through the steps to get your book into pre-order but first let’s look at […]
 
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    Sara Dobie Bauer's Blog

  • 9 Best shows on Netflix right now

    saradobiebauer
    27 Feb 2015 | 8:17 am
    Funny: when you fall ill with some mystery virus that keeps you restrained to the couch (or even the floor, depending on how far I have to walk), you find time to watch some TV. When I say TV, I mean Netflix. I’m not suggesting the following nine programs are critically acclaimed or that they’ll soon be winning Golden Globes, but shut up, these are my favorites and NEVER QUESTION A SICK PERSON. 1. Salem Witches! Sexy witches!! Takes place in the heat of the Salem witch trials, and it’s one of those shows where you’re not sure if you like the good guys or bad guys more.
  • Benedict Cumberbatch gets married: What do I deserve?

    saradobiebauer
    17 Feb 2015 | 9:11 am
    When news broke Saturday morning that my “boyfriend” Benedict Cumberbatch was having a secret wedding on the Isle of Wight in England, I texted people as if I was the one getting married. Then, I scoured the internet and waited for some sneak peaks of the ceremony. Imagine my disappointment when there were none. Believe me when I say I quite literally know what’s happening in this man’s life before he does. I have never, ever delved so deeply into celebrity worship in my life. This is due to the aforementioned internet: sites like Facebook, Twitter, and the most…
  • The Art of Love

    saradobiebauer
    9 Feb 2015 | 8:55 am
    Saturday, I MC’ed an event for Gina’s Team called “The Art of Love” at Cup O’ Karma in Mesa. It was a fundraiser where we featured musicians, spoken word poets, roses, hand-painted coffee mugs, and inmate art. Even I sang a couple sets. Needless to say, I was terrified. Let’s face it: generalized anxiety disorder feels like heartburn in your brain. I’d already give myself permission to consume a vodka martini post-event, but first, I had to make it through the event. Once things got rolling, I found a rhythm, assisted greatly by the likes of emotive piano player Nate Rosswog,…
  • On subjectivity in art (or why being an artist can suck)

    saradobiebauer
    26 Jan 2015 | 11:46 am
    Last Monday, I received five rejection letters for five different short stories. Did that hurt? Worse than a bikini wax. Last Monday was the kind of day where all I felt capable of doing was banging my head against my desk until, thankfully, I lost consciousness and woke up Tuesday. Thursday, I got two different emails. The first came at 10:02 AM from the Maricopa Community Colleges District Writing Competition to inform me: “We received the judges’ results, and we are proud to share that you were selected as the 2nd Place Winner in the Essay category! Congratulations!” At 10:25 AM, I…
  • Little girl, you are my light

    saradobiebauer
    22 Jan 2015 | 7:48 am
    Yesterday, I participated in the Gina’s Team monthly road trip to Mingus Mountain Academy in Prescott, a safe haven for troubled girls. The girls know me by now. I’m the depressed poet who sings. I didn’t do much speaking yesterday, but apparently, it was enough, as I admitted to over a hundred girls that I almost didn’t make the trip because my depression had me slugging through the mud of early morning life. Before I left, a small, spindly girl with pink hair came up and handed me a note. She said, “I want you to have this.” In her note, she told me of…
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    Elizabeth Spann Craig

  • Use Attitude When Introducing Characters

    Elizabeth Spann Craig
    1 Mar 2015 | 9:02 pm
    by Jodie Renner, editor and author  @JodieRennerEd To celebrate the release of her third writing guide, Captivate Your Readers, Jodie has priced it at 99 cents for today only and will also be giving away 4 electronic copies – your choice of mobi (for Kindle), ePub (for other e-readers), or PDF – of this book, in exchange for an honest review by the end of March. Enter to win in the comments below. A sure sign of a fiction writer who’s still learning his/her craft is when a character comes on the scene for the first time and the writer stops the story to describe the character from…
  • Twitterific Writing Links

    Elizabeth Spann Craig
    28 Feb 2015 | 9:02 pm
    by Elizabeth S. Craig, @elizabethscraig Twitterific writing links are fed into the Writer’s Knowledge Base search engine (developed by writer and software engineer Mike Fleming) which has over 30,000 free articles on writing related topics. It’s the search engine for writers. Agent @Janet_Reid on strategy for a second book:  http://ow.ly/JrwhL The Art of ARC-ing:  http://ow.ly/JrsOs @MarcyKate Calendars, Timelines, and Collages: Mapping the Imaginary:  http://ow.ly/JrwhM from Hannah Gerson @The_Millions 8 Tips From Literary Agents About How to Get Published:  http://ow.ly/JrteH…
  • The Impact of Free Promos

    Elizabeth Spann Craig
    26 Feb 2015 | 9:01 pm
    By Elizabeth S. Craig, @elizabethscraig I had to answer a questionnaire for self-publishers recently and several of the questions stumped me.  I have a feeling that this isn’t a good thing. One of the questions was ‘How many books have you sold (not given away)?’  I had absolutely no idea.  And this information is not exactly as easy to come by as you might think.  There is no way on your KDP dashboard to find lifetime sales. I also had no idea how many books, total, I’d given away. Another question was ‘What is your strongest selling title?  How many units have you…
  • Thoughts on Being a Hybrid Writer

    Elizabeth Spann Craig
    25 Feb 2015 | 4:29 am
    by Elizabeth S. Craig, @elizabethscraig   What’s it like being a hybrid writer (someone who both publishes traditionally and self-publishes)? Today I’m at the Insecure Writer’s Support Group  listing pros and cons of being a hybrid writer and tips for making it work.  Hope you’ll pop over and join me. The post Thoughts on Being a Hybrid Writer appeared first on Elizabeth Spann Craig.
  • Randomizing Revision

    Elizabeth Spann Craig
    22 Feb 2015 | 9:01 pm
    by Leslie Budewitz, @LeslieBudewitz  I take a methodical approach to revision. As I work on the draft, I start a list of “Revision Notes”—facts to check, inconsistencies to iron out, name changes to clean up. When the draft is complete I print it out and punch it into a fat, three-ring binder. I make an outline, adding to the Revision Notes as I go, with some comments organized by chapter and some by topic. (“Jen or Jenn?;” “Deepen Pepper’s doubts about investigating;” “Kristen lecture Pepper about getting involved with Tag twice? Earlier is better.”) Then I start the…
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    Polon

  • The persuasive power of stories

    9 Feb 2015 | 1:00 am
    The video that Stanford University social psychologist Jennifer Aaker made for the 2013 Future of Storytelling conference is well worth a look. In it she explains why stories are so persuasive: they're more memorable, they make more of an impact, and they create a personal connection. Stories are more memorable In some ways, it's obvious that stories are more memorable. After all, how did you learn learn the colours of the rainbow as a child? I was told a story: Richard of York gave battle in vain. The mnemonic reminded me of of the initial letter of each colour. But the grown-up world likes…
  • Four fantastic stories about language

    29 Jan 2015 | 1:00 am
    1. Robots can create their own 'spoken' language. NPR reports that researchers in Australia have made robots dubbed lingodroids that can create their own spoken language of sorts. The robots talk to each other in beeps to understand the relationship between locations in room. It's not quite R2D2 but it's still pretty impressive. 2. Language could shape your view of the world. Do you know which way is south from where you're reading this right now? An aboriginal Australian would – because their language has no words for left and right, only words for compass points. It seems the language you…
  • Beware of homophones

    21 Jan 2015 | 4:00 pm
    You're is short for you are but your means belonging to you They're is short for they are but their means belonging to them We're means we are but were is the past tense of be If you mean 'more than is required' or 'in addition', then it's too not to Whose refers to things that belong to people and who's means 'who is' Its means 'belonging to it', whereas it's means 'it is' (or, informally, it has). Chambers dictionary notes that confusion between its and it's is the most common mistake in the English language. And no matter how good your grasp of grammar, it's very easy for the wrong its to…
  • See you in 2015

    18 Dec 2014 | 4:00 pm
    And just in case our clients get bored of pulling crackers, eating turkey and drinking sherry during the two weeks we're away, we’ve sent them a Christmas card that doubles as a wordy puzzle. Can you find all the festive phrases? Have a lovely Christmas and a happy New Year, whatever you’ve got planned. We’ll be back in 2015.
  • Six tips for better proofreading

    20 Nov 2014 | 4:00 pm
    1. Are you sitting comfortably? Proofreading is a task that takes concentration. So make sure you’re in an environment in which you can concentrate – even if it’s just for short bursts. If you work in an open-plan office, can you make use of a quiet meeting room or even get some noise-cancelling headphones? 2. Print it out, read it out Now, we don’t advocate wasting paper. But proofreading is much easier to do in print than it is on screen. So while you’re getting the hang of it, print things out to check them. As you get better you can do more on screen. Reading…
 
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    Litopia All Shows

  • The Bar Stool Preachers – Live

    Litopia
    1 Mar 2015 | 10:05 am
    They won our coveted track of the year award on our last show, and now the Bar Stool Preachers are playing live in the Hungry & Hunted studio. The hot young Brighton band are as bracing as a 6am plunge in the English Channel. Influenced by 2-Tone and streetpunk, the Preachers are in the vanguard of the new south coast sound that is as passionate as it is authentic and melodic. A proper alternative to mainstream pop pap. Other great bands this edition include Alan McGee’s new signing Alias Kid who are latest of Manchester’s swaggering terrace pop likely lads. Will they follow Oasis…
  • Hadrian's Memoirs – Marguerite Yourcenar

    Litopia
    20 Feb 2015 | 4:02 am
    At the end of his days, sitting in his villa outside Rome, the Emperor Hadrian writes a long letter to his adopted son, and next great leader of Rome, Marcus Aurelius. In Hadrian’s world, thoughts duel with power, ideas with reality, books with life. Aurelius often gets praise as the first philosopher king, but in this telling it’s Hadrian who is as much thinker as conqueror. Marguerite Yourcenar’s towering intellect and faultless prose bring Second Century Rome to life. Yeah, it’s good. Photo: FraserElliot >>> Download the mp3 file Subscribe in iTunes >>> From…
  • The Litopia After Dark Xmas Family Murder Show!

    Litopia Writers Colony
    13 Feb 2015 | 4:10 am
    At Last – The Litopia After Dark Xmas Family Murder Show is here!  Yeah – it’s a tad late, folks (or early, for next Xmas).  But hardcore Yule like this is worth waiting for. This is the show that puts Fifty Shades in the shade.  That makes your office Xmas party look sophisticated.  That cracks your Xmas nuts and then asks damn fool questions about Ants. There is no mercy; for Agent Cox is the quizmaster.  And you are his prey. Don’t miss this unique chance to relive precious childhood Xmas trauma! Thrill as our panelists succumb to Stockholm syndrome –…
  • What Would Boo Radley Do?

    Litopia Writers Colony
    6 Feb 2015 | 12:59 pm
    Another terrific Debriefer, full of insider poop from the pub biz and informed speculation about everything else! Harper Lee to Publish Sophomore Novel Taylor Swift Owns 1989 'American Idol' Winner Files Bold Legal Claim to Escape 'Oppressive' Contracts South Florida Man Seeks Trademark on Slogan 'Je Suis Charlie' Sold-out Charlie Hebdo issue coming to Barnes and Noble My GRAVITY lawsuit and how it affects every writer who sells to Hollywood - Tess Gerritsen Warner Bros. Knocks Down Best-Selling Author Tess Gerritsen's $10 Million Lawsuit Over 'Gravity' Hotfile Agrees to Settle Piracy Lawsuit…
  • Attack of the Tax Resistors

    Litopia Writers Colony
    5 Feb 2015 | 5:52 am
    When US and UK forces invaded Iraq in 2003, millions of people took to the streets to protes – to little effect. The bombs of Shock and Awe kept falling. By some estimates the civilian death toll stands at over 150,000. Like many people, tonight’s guest David Gross had a crisis of conscience. And yet unlike many people, he’s done something about it. He’s stopped paying taxes. Not by tax avoidance, but by lowering his income below the tax threshold - and by using as many loopholes as he can find within the law. You know, just like all our much-loved multi-national corporations do!
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    The Write One Blog -

  • Word Count? How Long Should My Book Be?

    Stefanie Newell
    12 Feb 2015 | 12:30 pm
    View On YouTube | Subscribe to our YouTube Channel Word Count? How Long Should My Book Be? If you are currently working on your manuscript, you’ve probably wondered how long your book should be or what the ... The post Word Count? How Long Should My Book Be? appeared first on The Write One Blog - .
  • Pen Names – 7 Reasons Why You May Need One!

    Stefanie Newell
    2 Feb 2015 | 8:02 am
    View On YouTube | Subscribe to our YouTube Channel Pen Names – 7 Reasons Why You May Need One! Pen names are useful for both fiction and non-fiction writers. There are several reasons why an author may ... The post Pen Names – 7 Reasons Why You May Need One! appeared first on The Write One Blog - .
  • Amazon Book Descriptions That Will Convert Into Sales!

    Stefanie Newell
    22 Jan 2015 | 8:34 am
    View On YouTube | Subscribe to our YouTube Channel Amazon Book Descriptions – Best Practices And Tips Besides your book cover and title, your Amazon book description is one of the most important factors that determines whether ... The post Amazon Book Descriptions That Will Convert Into Sales! appeared first on The Write One Blog - .
  • eBooks vs Print Books – Which makes more sense?

    Stefanie Newell
    5 Jan 2015 | 8:24 am
    View On YouTube | Subscribe to our YouTube Channel If you are new to publishing you’re probably weighing the option between  eBooks vs print books. There is no right or wrong answer where this is concerned. ... The post eBooks vs Print Books – Which makes more sense? appeared first on The Write One Blog - .
  • Amazon Author Central – Visibility On Amazon Author Page

    Stefanie Newell
    29 Dec 2014 | 7:36 am
    View On YouTube | Subscribe to our YouTube Channel   The Basics of Amazon Author Central Amazon Author Central is probably one of the most overlooked assets available for writers. If you have at least one book available on Amazon, ... The post Amazon Author Central – Visibility On Amazon Author Page appeared first on The Write One Blog - .
 
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    Blogito Ergo Sum

  • Fixing Boxing

    James Kiester
    19 Feb 2015 | 2:03 pm
    -Long term readers know that my favorite sport to watch is boxing.  When everything goes according to Hoyle, or rather Marquess of Queensberry, boxing is man versus man, and the better man wins.  There's no blaming the wide receiver, point guard, or pitcher.  If Fighter A wins,  Fighter A wins.  If Fighter A loses, Fighter A loses.  Of course, this ideal doesn't take "sloppy" judging and officiating into account, but that's a problem of execution, not design.  Nevertheless, when everyone executes their role correctly/honestly, boxing is an exciting sport to…
  • The Big Questions

    James Kiester
    11 Feb 2015 | 3:01 pm
    -Subject: Faith/Science Comparison | Source: Lani Kai Akers' Facebook Feed |This morning a friend of mine posted this cartoon on Facebook.  It's a humorous attempt to point out the fallacy of religious thought and promote the value of scientific thought.  The graphic got me thinking about the age old debate.  Rigid scientists tend to label the devout as being ignorant and superstitious, while some religious zealots think of scientists as heretics.I've wrestled with the question of science versus faith for years, decades even.  After much reflection, I don't think it has to…
  • Beaverton oh Beaverton

    James Kiester
    30 Jan 2015 | 6:29 pm
    - When people think of poetry they typically think of soul stirring dramatic pieces by Frost, Poe, or Shakespeare.  However, poetry can also be tongue in cheek and silly.  In that vein, I rewrote Glen Campbell’s “Galveston” to fit my hometown, Beaverton.  Enjoy.-Subject: Interior of the Cedar Hills Crossing mall (formerly Beaverton Mall) | Date: 07/277/2011 | Photographer: Steve Morgan | This file is licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 3.0 Unported license.Beaverton oh Beaverton,I still hear your cool winds blowing,I still see her dark eyes…
  • 50 Years Gone - Tomorrow Looms

    James Kiester
    15 Jan 2015 | 2:22 pm
    -Isaiah 56: 12 ~ “Come,” they say, “let me get wine; let us fill ourselves with strong drink; and tomorrow will be like this day, great beyond measure.”I came across this verse during my daily reading today, and it struck me.  At first glance,  it looks like the author is advocating drunken partying.  However, it’s actually about hope for the future.  The verse is basically saying, relax and enjoy the day, tomorrow will be just as great as today.This is an attitude I’ve been lacking lately.  Fifty years ago, our country was in the middle of racial…
  • I May Be A Lazy Liberal

    James Kiester
    4 Jan 2015 | 3:08 pm
    -The other night, I ordered pizza for my nephews; 7 years old, 5 years old, and a year old; who were spending the night.  On Papa John's site, customers can order pizza and post said order on Facebook.  The post serves no logical purpose whatsoever, other than to broadcast one's tastes to one's friends.On a lark, I posted, "I just ordered a cheese pizza for the boys, bacon pizza for the uncle, and pepperoni for grandma," along with Papa John's logo.Within minutes, my friend, and liberal activist, Farrah responded with the comment, "Too bad their CEO is such a douche nozzle, I loved…
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    Stories To Tell Books

  • Bringing It All Together

    Sarah Hoggatt
    28 Feb 2015 | 4:57 am
    I’d been looking forward to the project all afternoon. Once my work was finished for the day, I closed my laptop and pulled out my manuscript. Splayed out on the living room floor, I was delighted to finally have the time and mental space to take all the poems and put them in order. In short, I wanted to see what this book looked like as a whole. Up to this point, the book has been a collection of individual poems. Though I knew the point I wanted to drive home in the end, I had little sense of the story arc as a whole. I didn’t know the beginning or the middle or how one section…
  • Think Twice Before Publishing in an E-Book Format Only

    Biff Barnes
    25 Feb 2015 | 7:31 am
    You have just completed the manuscript for your book. You are ready to publish and, after reviewing your options, you have decided that you will publish in e-book version only. After all e-books are the wave of the future, especially among younger readers who have grown up online. Courtesy of Martouf on Wikipedia Before you go ahead you should check out the Washington Post’s recent report that “wired millennials still prefer the printed word.” Despite the explosive growth of e-books and readers over the last decade, the Post reported that, “Textbook makers, bookstore…
  • Genealogy Surprises

    Sarah Hoggatt
    22 Feb 2015 | 11:42 am
    I searched for my grandfather’s name on a whim. While designing books about other people’s family history, I had started to wonder about my own. Growing up, I was told little to nothing about my family heritage. Only as an adult did I learn about my great-grandparents. My grandma’s dad ran a carnival in a mall for a time and her mom immigrated to the United States from England; she is the one I’m named after. Their pictures now sit a on a bookshelf in my home along with a card she wrote shortly after my birth. My grandpa’s dad was an evangelistic preacher and…
  • RootsTech 2015: What Technology Can’t Do For a Family History Writer

    Biff Barnes
    11 Feb 2015 | 9:51 pm
    We’re at RootsTech, the annual Salt Lake City extravaganza which melds the latest technological bells and whistles with genealogy and family history. It’s a wonderful event. Stories To Tell founder Nancy Barnes will be presenting two computer lab sessions on restoring historical photographs with Adobe PhotoShop. We picked up some good ideas for better ways to help authors from the Innovators’ Summit today. But, at the moment, I’m thinking about what technology can’t do for the family historian. Courtesy of Mbaina on Wikipedia under Creative Commons   The…
  • What Is This Book About?

    Sarah Hoggatt
    9 Feb 2015 | 6:58 am
    (This is the ninth article in a series by Stories To Tell editor/designer Sarah Hoggatt recounting her experiences in publishing her poetry and nonfiction.) When I started writing this book, Finding Love’s Way,  I did it without knowing where I was going. I wrote about whatever caught my attention or the words and thoughts I needed to get out. I let myself go without concerning myself about where it would end up. It’s much like starting a journey without planning where you’ll go but taking one step at a time. Some may call this poor planning and they may be right. But…
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    ProofreadNOW.com Blog

  • 10 Tips for Better Business Writing (Part 2)

    Terri Porter
    25 Feb 2015 | 3:00 am
    In last week’s post, we discussed the first three tips relating to how to make the content of your business writing better: 1. Know the purpose of the piece and make it clear up front. 2. Write in plain English. 3. Use active voice. Below we provide the remaining three tips related to improving content, and in Part 3 we’ll tell you how to fine-tune what you’ve written.
  • 10 Tips for Better Business Writing (Part 1)

    Terri Porter
    18 Feb 2015 | 3:00 am
    Excellent advice abounds for how to be a better writer in specific fields: public relations/marketing, law, medicine, technology, etc. Despite the nuances specific to those disciplines, certain rules for good business writing apply across the board. Our tips aren’t all-inclusive, but if you follow these guidelines, you’ll improve your business writing exponentially. We discuss the first six tips, relating to content, today and in Part 2 next week. The third week in Part 3 we'll talk about how to fine-tune what you’ve written.
  • Be Active Not Passive

    11 Feb 2015 | 1:30 am
    “You are loved.” Writing that in a valentine to your beloved instead of “I love you” likely will have a similar effect as giving a bouquet of roses with petals that are curling and turning brown — the thought may be there, but the desired effect loses some of its impact. That’s what can happen with passive voice. Who is actually doing the action becomes hazy. Sometimes you want or need the subject to be ambiguous or want to emphasize the object, in which case passive constructions make sense.
  • Similar but Different: Choosing the Right Word

    Terri Porter
    4 Feb 2015 | 3:00 am
    This note accompanied a recent job submitted to ProofreadNOW.com: “Please check for any blaring errors.” And this excerpt appeared in another job: “Two witnesses must be present when you sign your advanced directive.” Encountering a word that’s similar to the one that belongs but isn’t quite right is like stepping on a slippery object while walking in a murky lake — you know you’re not on solid ground but aren’t sure why. Sometimes the answer is obvious, as in the first example, in which “blaring” (a loud and unpleasant sound) should be “glaring” (obvious or…
  • Rescue Your Writing from Redundancy

    Terri Porter
    28 Jan 2015 | 3:00 am
    The new year is an absolutely perfect time to make new beginnings in many areas, including your writing. In the same way you might clear out and unclutter your house or apartment, you can rid your writing of redundancies, tautologies and pleonasms — those repetitive words and phrases that include but are not limited to extra words that say the same thing (e.g., begin anew, free gift), words used with acronyms that are part of the acronym (e.g., PIN number, UPC code) and superlatives used for emphasis (e.g., absolutely perfect). The end result will be a positive improvement in your writing,…
 
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    James Shelley

  • You and Your Particles

    James Shelley
    2 Mar 2015 | 5:30 am
    Democritus (ca. 460 BCE to ca. 370 BCE) was among the earliest Greek philosophers to propose this scenario: if you divide something into smaller and smaller parts, and keep dividing them, eventually you would end up with their “base” material, an inseparable unit of matter. What, exactly, is this base material? Democritus gave this hypothetical substance a name: atomos (or, in English, atoms). Literally translated, it means uncut or indivisible. In 1897, British physicist J.J. Thomson made a remarkable discovery. When he shot cathode rays through an electric field he noted that…
  • Liking People

    James Shelley
    28 Feb 2015 | 9:43 am
    If you stop liking people when they do things you do not like, eventually you will not like anyone.
  • Divisive Punditry

    James Shelley
    26 Feb 2015 | 6:15 am
    Divisive punditry is a very effective way to get your name out there (not to mention your ideas). The higher the premium is for our attention, the more incentive there is for employing polarizing tactics as a means of gaining our notice. This leads an interesting, hypothetical equation in the broader context of knowledge inflation: the more competition there is for public attention, the greater the payoff becomes for being more outlandish, brash, and belligerent than everyone else. If this true, the more knowledge we generate as a society, the more (relatively) ignorant we may need to sound…
  • The Question of Self-Efficacy

    James Shelley
    19 Feb 2015 | 11:50 am
    Podcast episode: Albert Bandura described self-efficacy as a person’s ability to believe in their own ability to succeed. How is this different from believing that the secret for getting what you want is simply wishing for it hard enough? Is what we believe about our skills as important as our skills themselves?
  • Optimism Bias: Why Other People are Idiots

    James Shelley
    17 Feb 2015 | 5:30 am
    You are in your car and you see someone else using their phone while driving. What an idiot, you think to yourself. They should know better. Of course, you have probably talked on the phone while driving before, too. So, if you are the average person, you would then quickly explain that the situation was somehow different when you did it. Likely, you would use one of the following excuses: it was an actual emergency when you used your phone, or the crisis warranted the risk; or, probably, you are a remarkable multitasker, better than the average driver. This is optimism bias, and most of us…
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    Florida Writers Conference Blog

  • You’re Invited

    Mary Ann de Stefano
    16 Feb 2015 | 4:45 am
    We’ve moved, and we invite you to come along with us. Blog posts now appear on the main Florida Writers Association website. Visit us at floridawriters.net and sign up for updates  and continue to enjoy all our great writing prompts and articles about writing and the writing life delivered to your email inbox. Don’t miss out! C’mon along!   […]
  • The Ultimate Way to Spend Valentine’s Day

    jamiewauthor
    8 Feb 2015 | 3:00 am
    By Shannon Bell As writers, we spend our free time in front of the computer, furiously typing away on our next big story. Or we stare into oblivion trying to get our characters to speak to us. Isn’t it about time we take a break from all of this? Florida Writers Association has the ultimate […]
  • How do you write a book?

    jamiewauthor
    6 Feb 2015 | 3:00 am
    By CP Bialois Hello everyone! As authors, we get asked all sorts of questions ranging from, “Where do you get your ideas?” to the ever popular, “What do you really do?” Those are questions I’m ready for as well as a boatload of others, but then a friend threw me a cure ball. He asked, […]
  • Exercise Wednesday: Hello darkness my old friend

    Chris Hamilton
    4 Feb 2015 | 3:00 am
    Imagine, if you will, darkness. Not the typical darkness of nighttime in your bedroom, where the light still invades through the blinds, leaving a series of parallelograms across the floor and the bed. Not a darkness where the clock tells you it’s 3:02 and if you want to get more than a tiny bit of […]
  • Front Matter Matters

    Mary Ann de Stefano
    2 Feb 2015 | 5:00 am
    In publishing lingo, a book usually contains three major sections: front matter (also called preliminary matter or “prelims” for short), the text, and back matter (or end matter).   There are long-standing conventions for content, sequence, and numbering within each section. The Chicago Manual of Style (CMOS), now in its 16th edition, is the industry source […]
 
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    Productive Writers

  • What I Love Most About Costa Rica

    John Soares
    23 Feb 2015 | 6:29 am
    I recently returned from a five-week vacation in Costa Rica. I can happily report that I’m tanned, rested, and ready to get back to freelance writing and blogging. Why Costa Rica? For starters, it has a great combination of natural beauty, friendly people, modern infrastructure, and a reasonably efficient economy and government. Also, I wanted […]Related Posts:Why I Am Taking a Short Blogging BreakWhy Freelance Writers Often Miss DeadlinesWhy I Am a Freelance WriterWhy Writers Need Free Time Alone19 Successful Freelance Writers Share Their Top Goals for 2014
  • Why I Am Taking a Short Blogging Break

    John Soares
    5 Jan 2015 | 6:29 am
    I’m going to Costa Rica for 5 weeks. That’s why! And it’s going to be a true vacation: no work and very little time on the Internet. My only connection to the wider world will be through my Kindle Fire HD 7, and that’s only when I’m around a wireless connection AND I feel there […]Related Posts:What I Love Most About Costa RicaComprehensive Guide to Setting Freelance Writing GoalsHow Freelance Writers Calculate Their Hourly RatesWhy Freelance Writers Often Miss Deadlines8 Time Management Techniques for Successful Writers
  • Download My Podcasts About Writing Textbook Supplements

    John Soares
    22 Dec 2014 | 7:10 am
    Writing supplemental materials for college textbooks has been my main freelance writing niche for over twenty years. I love the intellectual stimulation, plus I’ve made a decent income that has allowed me to live wherever I want, including three years on Kauai in the Hawaiian Islands. This post shares two podcasts… My Interview with the Text and Academic […]Related Posts:Why I Am a Freelance WriterFour Reasons Why Freelance Writers Should SpecializeDoes Your Freelance Writing Niche Have Busy Seasons?Successful Freelance Writers Do These Small Things EarlyHow I Chose My…
  • How the Internet Can Hurt Your Freelance Writing Career

    John Soares
    10 Dec 2014 | 6:29 am
    As a freelance writer and a human being, productivity and happiness are top priorities for me, and I was already aware of the negative effects of the Internet on my own cognitive processes and ability to feel fully alive when I read The Shallows: What the Internet is Doing to Our Brains in the summer of 2010. […]Related Posts:Why I Don’t Have a SmartphoneWhy You Need Much More Time OfflineThe Top 27 Ways to Boost Your Writing WillpowerWhy Multitasking Makes You a Less Productive WriterHow Content Shock Hurts Freelance Writers
  • How to Coauthor a Book

    John Soares
    18 Nov 2014 | 6:29 am
    Collaborating with a coauthor on a book or other writing project is often an excellent idea; however, it can also lead to major problems. I’ll examine the benefits of coauthoring first before moving on to point out the potential perils. 3 Reasons Why You Should Coauthor The Coauthor Has Expertise or Knowledge You Don’t This is […]Related Posts:Profitable Freelance Writing for NonprofitsHow I Chose My Freelance Writing NichesMy Nightmare Freelance Writing ClientThe Best Way to Bid a Freelance ProjectMy 11 Questions About Publishing Ebooks on Amazon’s Kindle
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    Mike Fook Books - Ebooks | Fiction Thrillers

  • What Does RISK Feel Like?

    MikeFook
    8 Feb 2015 | 6:52 pm
    Reading some other blogs this morning and came up with this gem from Shane Labs who heard from his “mentor” on RISK… You have to take risks that are going to make you feel like you’ve just jumped out of an airplane. Naked. And you’re falling so fast your balls are slapping you in the face. Any questions?
  • God is Love?

    MikeFook
    4 Feb 2015 | 5:19 am
    I look at me. What am I? I’m ruled by a drive inside – the very basic, the MOST basic drive, that is pleasure and pain. I move toward pleasure. I avoid pain. Everything I do is governed by this. Nothing falls outside it. I look at everyone else. Same thing. I look at the animal kingdom – same thing. The pleasure pain principle makes us what? Selfish. It makes us look out for ourselves first. Our own pleasures, our own avoiding pain, puts us at odds not only with those around us – with animals and plants around us- which we care little for… but it puts us at odds…
  • My Sister’s New Piece – Published

    MikeFook
    26 Jan 2015 | 3:35 pm
    My sister, Laura Lovic-Lindsay just had a short (flash fiction) published at FiresideFiction.com and I love it. Maybe you will too. It is every bit as odd as I expected from her. She is really the queen of weird stories! Shoelace
  • 2015 – What Is Ahead?

    MikeFook
    28 Dec 2014 | 8:03 pm
    What will YOU be doing in 2015? Same ol? Maybe you’ll be holed up in a tent in the middle of the Alaskan wilderness writing code. Who knows? Maybe you will. © 2014 Matt Hosford at Flickr. Fook is defunct. Vern Lovic, step up to the stage. This is your life… I’ve been working my ass numb for the past few days on my new ALL IN project for 2015. What am I up to? Creating Training Tutorials for SWIFT – Apple’s next generation of code to write applications for iOS (iPhone, iPad, iPod). Released in June 2014, this is a major step toward bringing high level coding…
  • Coding iPhone Apps vs. Writing Books

    MikeFook
    23 Dec 2014 | 6:37 pm
    I’ve considered writing code since 1997. Will 2015 be the year I run with it? Copyright © 2014 Aaron Tait at Flickr. Just a quick comparison here. I’ve been considering three things for 2015. I need to go ALL IN on something. I’m too scatter-minded to focus on one project. I need to change that for 2015. My goal is to focus primarily, entirely, on one activity for the year. Choices: coding iPhone apps writing books Youtube videos If I could figure out how to crank up my Youtube channel from twenty-two million views to six-hundred million, I’d get started TODAY. Making…
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    P R Z E K O P

  • Under Major Construction!

    26 Feb 2015 | 6:39 am
    This site is under construction. Come back soon to see all the changes, including a new name!
  • Farewell Aberration Nation: 2007 - 2014

    28 Sep 2014 | 8:02 pm
    Aberration Nation is no longer an active blog.My first post was published on 17 Nov 2007, and the blog ran until January 2014.  I began writing the blog a month or so before I began painting after having focused my creative efforts on writing for as long as I could recall.Aberration Nation chronicles my expanding thoughts as I transitioned from a creative focus on writing to painting, and the emotional impact that transition had on my perception of myself and others. The blog also served as an avenue for me to interview many people who have overcome hardships of…
  • What Erich Fromm Would Think of Please Love Me

    6 Jan 2014 | 6:20 am
    “Love is the only sane and satisfactory answer to the problem of human existence.” ― Erich Fromm Guest blogger, Lisa Bonet, whose focus is mental health, compares the psychological aspects of my book, Please Love Me, with Erich Fromm's classic, international bestseller, The Art of Loving. The Art of Loving launched a movement with its powerful insight. Per Lisa, "If you are begging for reality in reading, read these two together for balancing opinions."A Combination to Shatter Your Heart “Please Love Me” by Penelope Przekop is a tale of overcoming child abuse to continue into rocky…
  • Please Love Me: A Review

    21 Dec 2013 | 1:09 pm
    "The best part of PLEASE LOVE ME is its honesty."Freelance writer, Lisa Bonet, recently read my novel, PLEASE LOVE ME, and kindly sent me the following review. Lisa's professional focus is on creativity and mental health.Lisa states at the end of this review that the book does not have a happy ending. While that may be correct in many ways, the ending portrays a more mature and empowered Peyton leaving behind the people, emotions, and life that have not worked for her. This is, in fact, the start of a new beginning, although one suspects the journey may be a long one. That is an honest ending…
  • Finding Natural Audience: Marc Zegans

    20 Nov 2013 | 7:24 pm
    I love art. I love words. I do not love marketing. If my passion were to be the world's greatest marketing strategist, I would have majored in marketing. Or perhaps I would have gone into sales. It's probably a Captain Obvious statement, but these days the question of 'who's got talent' has gone by the wayside in favor of 'who's got marketing skills'.Well, that feels like crap to me, and I'm tired of it. A lot of creatives agree. We seem to be labeled dumb by some of those who embrace the conundrum. I know I’m not dumb. I can’t speak for everyone else. I just don't…
 
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    Whispered Writings

  • We are moving!

    Anon
    8 Feb 2015 | 4:25 am
    Whispered Writings posts will become a part of the Call an Editor website. Once the migration is complete, this blog will be removed. Thanks for following! I hope that you move with us once the site is complete. I will post more information closer to time.Filed under: Writing tips
  • To Freelance Clients Everywhere

    Anon
    10 Sep 2014 | 3:41 pm
    Your payment may be my grocery money for the week.
  • (786) 607-0603…or how to ruin every chance you had of ever doing business with me

    Anon
    6 Aug 2014 | 8:26 am
    Yesterday afternoon I received a call stating that this company was verifying my information that I had recently posted on an online directory. Although the woman on the phone barely spoke English, I tried to go through the routine...then the sales pitch began. I was not interested and ended the call. If it had ended there, everything would have been fine. But it didn't.
  • Three Times Lucky by Sheila Turnage

    Anon
    17 Jan 2014 | 3:09 pm
        The novel is sold separately. Print  Kindle  Filed under: Writing tips Tagged: education, fiction, K-12, K12, language arts, Sheila Turnage, teacher resources, teaching, Three Times Lucky
  • Welcome to Self Publishing 101

    Anon
    17 Jan 2014 | 2:18 pm
    Originally posted on Moondust and Madness:      Self-publishing my life story literally changed my life! For the past 15 years, I’ve been a freelance reporter for a monthly newspaper. As a journalist, I cover heartbreaking stories all time and get many exclusives. People often voice surprise at how empathetic and easy I am…
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    Write It Sideways

  • The Duolingo Guide to Writing Productivity

    Suzannah Windsor Freeman
    25 Feb 2015 | 6:42 am
    Advertise here with BSAOne thing I love about Canada is the opportunity for my children to receive a free bilingual education through the French Immersion program available at many public schools. Some say, “You’ll never use French unless you want to work for the government or be a French teacher,” but actually, I’m not worried about whether my kids use their French in any practical way. What compels me most about a bilingual education is this: learning in another language teaches you more than just the subject matter you’re studying. A successful French…
  • Literary Journal Seeks “Features Editor” & “Fiction Director”

    Suzannah Windsor Freeman
    16 Jan 2015 | 4:23 am
    Advertise here with BSAUPDATE: Please note that the fiction director position has now been filled.  Many of you know I’m the managing editor of an online literary magazine that has taken off quite nicely over the past couple of years. Well, our team at Compose Journal has a couple of exciting opportunities available at the moment: we’re looking for a features editor and a fiction director. Before we tell you more about the positions, we want you to know that people have been saying some pretty nice things about us and our work. Things like . . . “There’s a new…
  • I Dumped My S.M.A.R.T. Writing Goals, and This Is What Happened

    Suzannah Windsor Freeman
    12 Jan 2015 | 8:22 pm
    Advertise here with BSAIt’s a new year: a good time for change, for adopting new writing habits, for setting goals. Haven’t we heard, probably for decades now, that the best way to get things done is to set S.M.A.R.T. (Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Realistic, Timely) goals, and write them down? My husband is one of those business-y types who loves to rib me about this. Me: “There’s this writing course I wouldn’t mind taking at some point.” My husband: “Have you written that down?” Me: “You keep saying that. Please stop saying…
  • Your Free Trial of The Author Accelerator Book-Coaching Program

    Suzannah Windsor Freeman
    11 Nov 2014 | 9:33 am
    Advertise here with BSA I’m so excited today to be able to share with you this 30-minute video session with book coach Jennie Nash, and to be part of a special offer she’s extending to readers of Write It Sideways: a free week’s trial of her new book-coaching program, Author Accelerator. Jennie and I first connected years ago when I reviewed one of her novels, and for the last couple of years we’ve worked together on the masthead at Compose: A Journal of Simply Good Writing. I even had the pleasure of having Jennie as my editor for a couple of interviews I conducted…
  • 7 Tension-Building Tips for Writing Action Scenes

    Guest Contributor
    3 Nov 2014 | 7:43 am
    Advertise here with BSAToday’s post is written by Joan C. Curtis. She’s the author of four business books and a new mystery, The Clock Strikes Midnight The best writers know how to create action scenes that cause readers to fly through the pages, dying to know what happens next. As a reader, I lose myself in the action and forget to notice how the author had me spellbound. I savor the moment until I’ve turned the very last page. As a writer, I wonder how that author did it. How did he or she create such effective action? For some writers creating action scenes comes easy. For…
 
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    Words on a page

  • Podcasting to improve your writing

    Scott Nesbitt
    2 Mar 2015 | 6:50 am
    One of the stereotypes that surrounds writers is that if you put a microphone in front of them, they clam up. Or, they speak in long, rambling, disjointed sentences. That’s not entirely true. I’ve met a number of writers who are very adept speakers. Even so, there’s a lot any writer can learn from speaking. […] Related posts: A pair of useful Android apps for recording interviews Reading what you write out loud Asking why?
  • A few links for the end of the week

    Scott Nesbitt
    27 Feb 2015 | 6:40 am
    Why a conversational writing style is important Freelance writer? Here are 4 reasons why you should specialize John McPhee on developing a structure for your writing 10 tips for better business writing Don’t fall into these bad writing habits Related posts: A few links for the end of the week A few links for the end of the week A few links for the end of the week
  • Think visually

    Scott Nesbitt
    25 Feb 2015 | 7:05 am
    How many times have you heard people say that you need to tell a story with whatever you’re writing? Chances are, more than a couple. While I don’t believe that everything needs to tell a story, stories can help make your writing more interesting and more relevant. But stories alone often aren’t enough. If you […] Related posts: Focus on writing first Too much, or too little? 5 reasons to learn the basics of screenwriting
  • Headings are a guidepost

    Scott Nesbitt
    23 Feb 2015 | 7:23 am
    Whether you’re writing a few hundred words or several thousand, headings can be a good friend. Headings help readers by offering them logical breaks. Headings give readers an an idea of what’s coming up. Headings allow readers to pick and choose what want to read — in some cases, such as 10 best posts, not […] Related posts: Tips for rapid writing Plan your writing, the analog way How long or how short?
  • A few links for the end of the week

    Scott Nesbitt
    20 Feb 2015 | 7:00 am
    How to write to draw readers in emotionally What you need to know to write a book now Mistakes you’re making as a blogger, and how to correct them Why blogging is great for helping build your personal brand and career The best way to make a living as a writer Related posts: A few links for the end of the week A few links for the end of the week A few links for the end of the week
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    Mike Salsbury's Blog

  • Writing in Public - Year 1, Month 3, Days 23-28

    Michael Salsbury
    1 Mar 2015 | 7:56 am
    My adoption of Dean Wesley Smith's Writing in Public challenge continues.Monday I wrote a post for How to Write Fiction on unreliable narrators (798 words), a journal entry (982 words), and a list of possible events that could happen in ASL story "The Ark" that I've been brainstorming (581 words).  That worked out to 2,361 words for the day.  While waiting on Windows 10 to install, I wrote  6 opening lines, 4 of which turned into paragraphs (238 words).Tuesday I wrote in the journal (1,337 words).  I did something that's supposed to be good for you, and…
  • Free-form Brainstorming for the Novelist

    Michael Salsbury
    24 Feb 2015 | 7:10 pm
    For a science-fiction story I'm creating, I ran low on ideas that fit the plot I.  I knew there wasn't enough to sustain a novel (the goal), although I believed there could be.  I needed more material.I happened to start reading K.M. Weiland's Outlining Your Novel Workbook soon after.  Early in the book, she suggests while brainstorming your story you should look at every "what if" question that pops into your head.  You don't censor yourself or worry about whether the ideas apply to the story you are telling.  Just get into "the zone" and take down all the ideas…
  • Writing in Public - Year 1, Month 3, Days 16-22

    Michael Salsbury
    22 Feb 2015 | 8:00 pm
    My adoption of Dean Wesley Smith's Writing in Public challenge continues.On Monday, I listened to most of a recording of Christopher Vogler's Using Myth to Power Your Story.  Although I've heard that material before, something about it sunk in more this time around.  I was even inspired to write an intro that kicks off a story I've been brainstorming (1,923 words).  Wrote in the journal, too (754 words).Tuesday I finished listening to Chris Vogler's workshop.  During my lunch hour, late in the day, I tried putting the ASL story (tentatively called "The Ark") into…
  • Writing in Public - Year 1, Month 3, Days 9-15

    Michael Salsbury
    16 Feb 2015 | 3:16 pm
    My adoption of Dean Wesley Smith's Writing in Public challenge continues.After posting my weekly numbers on Sunday, I wrote a 1,075 word article for Columbus Beer Scene about the Dayton AleFeast event.On Monday, I continued with 750words.com and got 776 words in.  During my lunch hour, I spent time reading Tim Ferriss' blog (source of some quotes below). I spent the rest of the time trying to work out the ASL story using Snowflake Pro.  I find that I'm really starting to understand story development in a way that has eluded me until now.  While writing…
  • What the Universe Wants Me to Know - This Week

    Michael Salsbury
    9 Feb 2015 | 8:36 pm
    Many years ago, I began to see evidence that the universe speaks to us through seemingly random events linking together.  Sometimes, this means a series of events that deposits you in the right place at the right time.  Other times, it’s the same message being beamed at you from several sources.  Today I experienced that second kind.Here are the places I found the message in the past week or two:The Disney animated film Big Hero 6The story of how novelist John Grisham found time to write his first few books while working long hours as a lawyer, from a book on novel…
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    From Meredith Allard

  • How Do You Handle Negative Book Reviews? You Trust, That’s What You Do.

    Meredith Allard
    13 Feb 2015 | 2:54 pm
    Like everything else with writing and publishing, there are a lot of opinions about how to handle negative book reviews. Here’s one from Digital Book World, one from Write to Done, and my personal favorite from Joe Konrath. I love Konrath’s advice of just ignore them. In my case, I don’t read them at all. You read that correctly. I don’t read negative reviews of my books. I don’t argue with anyone’s right to dislike my work, and I don’t argue with anyone’s right to share their dislike. I certainly don’t like every book I read. As an author, I have the right to choose what…
  • Baking Time: Giving Your Story Time to Breathe

    Meredith Allard
    29 Jan 2015 | 6:07 pm
    When the indie author revolution started several years ago, there was a lot of advice about how authors must do things in order to be successful. One piece of sage advice still making the rounds is how authors must write and publish books as fast as they can—story-time assembly line writing, if you will. The rationale behind this is simple: the more books you have to sell, the more money you’ll make. Makes sense, right? As a result, I felt bad about myself for not writing faster. I kept hearing about these authors who write, edit, and publish a book every few months, sometimes every few…
  • Wherever You Go, Go With All Your Heart

    Meredith Allard
    6 Jan 2015 | 6:26 pm
    I’ve been following Catherine Ryan Howard’s blog Catherine, Caffeinated for a few years now, and I love her insights into indie publishing, her sarcastic sense of humor, and I freely admit that I share her love for all things caffeine. Recently, Catherine posted an article about how the hardest thing about a decision is making it. In her post, Catherine talks about her long-time desire to attend Trinity College in Dublin, and how, finally, at the last minute she applied, and how, finally, she’s attending the university she dreamed about. I nodded as I read Catherine’s post because I…
  • God Bless Us, Every One

    Meredith Allard
    24 Dec 2014 | 3:03 pm
    The Christmas display at the Bellagio Hotel in Las Vegas. Just a quick note to wish everyone a wonderful Christmas and a very, very happy 2015. I’ve noticed a lot of new followers to this blog recently, and for some reason the Loving Husband Trilogy has been selling well even though I am currently doing exactly zero things to promote it. Thank you to the Loving Husband Trilogy fans who make my day every day with your e-mails, messages, tweets, and comments on this site. Thank you to everyone who has taken the time to check out this blog, comment, and even follow along on this crazy…
 
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    Game On! Crafting Believable Conflict

  • 5 Tips for Defining Characters

    Diana Hurwitz
    27 Feb 2015 | 6:26 am
    In addition to describing a character's phyical appearance, the words you use to describe the character reveal a lot about how he or she feels about herself and others.1. A situation can cause Dick to view Sally in a different light. He might have a negative opinion of her at first and change his mind later. You can illustrate the shift in Dick’s opinion of Sally through description.First impression: The chick stalked into the conference room, wearing a tight gray dress that crackled like stiff paper. Her pale hair was cinched in a tight bun that made her skin look too tight. She met…
  • Character Descriptions

    Diana Hurwitz
    18 Feb 2015 | 9:05 am
    Creative character descriptions are hard to master.There are long debates about how much character description is enough and how much is too much. Some readers want to know hair and eye color, height and weight, etc. Some want to fill in their own details.Not enough detail and you have talking heads. Too much detail and you turn some readers off.The choice is yours. Write what you enjoy reading.Either way, you have to define your character in a way that makes the reader care what happens to him.An important consideration when describing characters is the viewpoint lens filtering the…
  • Subliminal Messages in Romance

    Diana Hurwitz
    11 Feb 2015 | 9:01 am
    I received the following email from a post on the BRP blog about five romantic memes that need to die.  I will provide a link at the end of this post.“Dear Ms. Hurwitz, Thanks so much for your 2/4/15 post on the Blood Red Pencil. My genre is contemporary romance and while I’ve tried to avoid the 5 syndromes that you’ve listed below, I’m jealous. For some authors those exact syndromes actually worked. And have brought major successes. My question, why do they work for some authors and not for others? Trying not to whine, B."This is a rather long response, but I feel it is an…
  • Bad Romance

    Diana Hurwitz
    5 Feb 2015 | 7:22 am
    Today, I am over at the Blood Red Pencil discussing romantic memes that need to be laid to rest. http://bloodredpencil.blogspot.com/2015/02/bad-romance.html
  • No Stakes, No Tension

    Diana Hurwitz
    30 Jan 2015 | 7:23 am
    A few recent much-hyped books reminded me of the importance of story stakes. Every story has an overall story problem with stakes:Good versus Evil.Win versus lose.Love versus loss.The protagonist will gain or lose something by solving or failing to solve this overall story imbalance.In a Mystery, if the sleuth fails to solve the crime, the criminal will be free to strike again.In a Thriller, if the protagonist fails to stop the threat, people die or a mega-corporation takes over the world.In a Romance, if the man loses the girl of his dreams, he will go back to feeling lonely and…
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    Raquel Byrnes

  • Corralling Creativity for Cohesion

    Raquel Byrnes
    18 Feb 2015 | 9:40 am
    I've written about my "Cool Stuff That Never Happens" notebook where I keep all the strange scenarios that pop into my head when I should be doing something responsible. Its a creative boosting device I picked up years ago at a writing workshop.  If you're interested in the whole explanation including my reason behind "Killer Geisha's with Knife Fans," then take a look at the original post here.So anyway, this notebook I have is chock full of the most outlandish plot twist, fight scenarios, and action sequence ideas I've ever had...and it keeps growing.  I don't edit my thoughts in…
  • Situational Blindness or a Dufus?

    Raquel Byrnes
    4 Feb 2015 | 2:23 pm
    Heading into the weeks before Valentine's Day, I am working on the romantic arc in my WIP only to get stuck before the sparks even begin to smolder.Its always difficult, in the midst of tumult, to quiet your heart and mind long enough to see what is right in front of you. That sort of situational blindness has happened to me before in real life and I can totally understand how it can happen in the extreme situations of a fantasy novel.The problem is...Writing it in such a way that the heroine or hero do not appear to be clueless dufuses (yes, thats a word) that frustrate the reader with their…
  • Some Holiday Fun...

    Raquel Byrnes
    21 Dec 2014 | 1:15 pm
    So excited for Christmas this year! Shopping done. Cards sent. Presents wrapped...mostly.   I don't even have to cook! We're going to have family on Christmas Day and that always means lots of love and hugs so color me happy!Just thought I'd share a couple of fun things for you to peruse during your sleepy holiday vacation.The first is the always entertaining, Age of Steam blog. Where they have crazy pictures and videos of a favorite Victorian Holiday pastime...bed races!  So fun!The second is a heads up for anyone interested in getting free review books. The publisher of my…
  • Building and Feeling; What is Lacking Post NaNo?

    Raquel Byrnes
    11 Dec 2014 | 9:58 pm
    So it is two weeks post NaNoWriMo and I am still reeling from the whole thing. I had my students participate and am floored at how many met and exceeded their writing goals. A couple hit 50K without breaking a sweat. My hat is off to them!We're now entering the editing phase and one of the things I'm finding is that in the daze and craze of writing as much as you can...some things fall through the cracks.  Its evident in my students' work and also in my own.The two biggest deficits are world building and character development...So the kids and I all wrote either fantasy or science…
  • Book of Ivy Blog Tour!

    Raquel Byrnes
    19 Nov 2014 | 4:00 am
    The Book of Ivy (The Book of Ivy #1)by Amy Engel Release Date: 11/04/14Entangled TeenSummary from Goodreads:After a brutal nuclear war, the United States was left decimated. A small group of survivors eventually banded together, but only after more conflict over which family would govern the new nation. The Westfalls lost. Fifty years later, peace and control are maintained by marrying the daughters of the losing side to the sons of the winning group in a yearly ritual.This year, it is my turn.My name is Ivy Westfall, and my mission is simple: to kill the president’s son—my…
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    Grant Writing Confidential

  • Standard At-Risk Youth or Ex-Offender Empowerment Program: Improve Lives Through “X!”

    Jake Seliger
    22 Feb 2015 | 3:46 pm
    A standard pitch for at-risk youth empowerment grant proposals is simple: We’ll give youth access to X, and through their love of or learning about X they’ll become better students / scholars / workers / people. “X” can be any number of things: To name a few of the projects we’ve worked on over the years, X can be horseback riding, chess, job skills, academic skills, computer programming, music, outdoor activities, art, photography, or sports. Existing organizations of various sizes attempt to improve lives through X; one of the oldest approaches are police…
  • When All Else Fails, Use Common Sense In Writing Proposals and Developing Budgets

    Isaac Seliger
    15 Feb 2015 | 3:31 pm
    As we’ve written before, it’s important to carefully follow RFP directions when writing any proposal. Still, many RFPs are poorly written, repetitive, and often contradictory. If one finds a significant issue in the RFP, the only recourse is to contact the Program Officer listed in the RFP and ask for clarification in writing. If you get a response at all, it’s likely to be along the lines of “read the RFP.” While this becomes pretty frustrating pretty fast, stay cool and use common sense in writing your proposal narrative and developing the budget. Let’s…
  • Shorter Deadlines Are Sometimes Better for Organizations and Grant Writers

    Jake Seliger
    8 Feb 2015 | 4:47 pm
    It seems intuitive that having more time to complete a task would result in a better final product. But in grant writing—and other fields—that’s sometimes not the case. The reason is simple: more time sometimes allows organizations to edit their proposals into oblivion or let everyone contribute their “ideas,” no matter poorly conceived or how poorly the ideas fit the proposal. We’ve been emphasizing these issues a lot recently, in posts like “On the Importance of Internal Consistency in Grant Proposals” and “The Curse of Knowledge in the Proposal…
  • On the Importance of Internal Consistency in Grant Proposals

    Isaac Seliger
    1 Feb 2015 | 11:58 am
    As we’ve written about before, grant writing, like most artistic pursuits, is essentially a solitary endeavor. No matter how many preliminary group-think planning meetings or discussions occur, eventually one person will face a blank monitor and contemplate an often cryptic, convoluted RFP.* As a consequence of being written by a single person, most proposal first drafts are fairly internally consistent. A grant writer is unlikely to call the person in charge of the proposed initiative, “Program Director” in one section and “Project Director” in another, or…
  • Links: Demography, Arrests Records, Books as Art, the Fate of Marriage, and More!

    Jake Seliger
    25 Jan 2015 | 3:45 pm
    * “Demography Is Rewriting Our Economic Destiny,” an under-appreciated and significant issue; this can be read profitably in tandem with Bryan Caplan’s Selfish Reasons to Have More Kids: Why Being a Great Parent is Less Work and More Fun Than You Think. * “Decades-long Arrest Wave Vexes Employers: Companies Struggle to Navigate Patchwork of Rules That Either Encourage or Deter Hiring Americans With Criminal Records;” if a third of Americans have arrest records something is seriously wrong with our society. Articles like this also explain the many prisoner…
 
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    Emerging Writers Studio

  • How to Turn Setbacks Into Progress

    Nanci Panuccio
    4 Feb 2015 | 6:28 am
    quimby via Compfigh Your novel was turned down by a publisher. You just received a form rejection letter – the worst kind-  from an agent. Or maybe the feedback from your workshop flattened you to the point of paralysis. You thought your story was so much closer. Setbacks can crush us. And cause even the most resilient writers to believe they lack the requisite talent to write anything worth publishing. But talent has little to do with success. And failure gets a bad rap. Mind The Gap There’s a gap between your vision – what Ira Glass calls your “good taste”…
  • Writing Success Redefined

    Nanci Panuccio
    19 Jan 2015 | 3:11 am
    How do you measure your success as a writer? Is it by how much money you earn from your writing? Is it the publishing contract? Nailing an agent? Sure, those are external markers of success. But what does success as a writer mean to you? Years ago, when I began writing in earnest, a dancer friend and I had an interesting debate. She asked me how a writer could consider oneself successful if he or she didn’t write a bestseller that sold millions of dollars. My friend was a wealthy widow in her early fifties who spent her days pursuing passions full tilt. In addition to ballet, she…
  • Writing to Draw Readers in Emotionally

    Nanci Panuccio
    17 Dec 2014 | 10:06 am
    Pedro Ribeiro Simõe Flannery O’Connor once said that, as writers, we can’t create emotion with emotion. We need to provide it with a body, to “create a world with weight and extension.” Love on its own, for example, is too broad and abstract for the reader to feel. If we write about something as ethereal as love without anchoring it in the physical world, we won’t connect emotionally to our reader. That’s because emotion exists beneath abstraction and explanation. It lives in the breathing world of the real, a tactile world we create when we selectively give…
  • 7 Ways to Write Better (That Have Nothing to Do With Writing)

    Nanci Panuccio
    30 Nov 2014 | 5:11 am
    When it comes to unleashing our best, most potent writing, it’s not only about the hours we have, it’s the quality of mind and body we bring to those hours. There’s the skill of writing and then there’s our physiological, mental and emotional state. Ultimately, you can’t separate them. Here are some ways to improve your writing that have nothing to do with writing. 1. Commit to Joy At some point on our road to adulthood, we buy into this idea that fun and pleasure is frivolous, non-productive, even fiscally irresponsible. Too often we don’t give ourselves…
  • Going From Stupid to Cool

    Nanci Panuccio
    15 Nov 2014 | 5:06 am
    Maurice via Compfight In February of last year, I attended a weekend west coast swing dance intensive with dancer, choreographer, teacher extraordinaire, Robert Royston. The weekend was ultra light on footwork and dance patterns and high on technique; the physics of movement, partner dynamics and connection, how to spin from a low to high center of gravity, musicality, and a multitude of other technical issues. The techniques were subtle, but new and awkward for most of us, including the most advanced dancers. On the last day of the intensive, as we were wrapping up, Robert said something to…
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    Literary Agents Advice

  • Big Publishing and Me (16): Some further reflections

    Harry
    24 Feb 2015 | 2:34 am
    I’m Harry Bingham. I’ve never previously written in detail about my adventures in the land of publishing, but here it is: the full story. I hope it’s of interest. These blog posts are timed to coincide with the release of … Continue reading →
  • Big Publishing and Me (15): Reflections, reflections

    Harry
    21 Feb 2015 | 6:17 am
    I’m Harry Bingham. I’ve never previously written in detail about my adventures in the land of publishing, but here it is: the full story. I hope it’s of interest. These blog posts are timed to coincide with the release of … Continue reading →
  • Big Publishing and Me (14): Tilting at windmills

    Harry
    18 Feb 2015 | 4:48 am
    I’m Harry Bingham. I’ve never previously written in detail about my adventures in the land of publishing, but here it is: the full story. I hope it’s of interest. These blog posts are timed to coincide with the release of … Continue reading →
  • And we’re live for another year – Criminal Lines 2015 is officially… open!!

    WW Office
    17 Feb 2015 | 4:39 am
    Criminal Lines 2015 Dust off your pens laptops murder weapons… Criminal Lines is back for 2015!   Last year AM Heath in association with The Writers’ Workshop launched Criminal Lines, a crime-writing prize open to unagented, debut authors, born or … Continue reading →
  • SHARP OBJECTS & CURIOUS PLACES: WHERE DO NOVELS COME FROM? A guest post from author Claire Dyer

    WW Office
    16 Feb 2015 | 7:11 am
    Claire Dyer’s poetry collection, Eleven Rooms, is published by Two Rivers Press. Her novels The Moment and The Perfect Affair and her short story, Falling for Gatsby, are published by Quercus. She has an MA in Creative Writing from Royal … Continue reading →
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    The Vandal

  • Is Self Publishing Only For Americans?

    Derek Haines
    28 Feb 2015 | 5:00 am
    Self published authors, who have the misfortune to reside outside the US know all too well of the handicaps and barriers that they have to accept, or break down along the route to getting their books self published and promoted. There are issues such as extremely high shipping costs, and excessively long delivery times for POD books and higher minimum royalty payments that are only payable by check to non US accounts, and not electronically as they are for US accounts.Even when they overcome issues such as these, further hurdles and worse, firmly closed doors await them along the way in…
  • A Head For Science Fiction

    Derek Haines
    26 Feb 2015 | 5:00 am
    When reality exits the pages of a book or falls from the silver screen, and lobs into the lap of reality, somehow the magic of science fiction is lost. Especially when it is over my breakfast.In a severe blow to fantasy, an Italian doctor from Turin, Sergio Canavero, is in the midst of making plans to conduct the world’s first head transplant within two years. As I read the article in The Guardian (of course), over my bowl of Fruit Loops, my disappointment was replaced by a head full of crazy ideas. Yes, my head that is.The first that hit was a mental image of The Rocky Horror Picture…
  • Damning Self Published Authors Is Gutless

    Derek Haines
    24 Feb 2015 | 5:00 am
    I am an author! Me too, me too, me too and me too!It’s all seems to to going crazy, doesn’t it? Everyone it would appear is an author today.However, as an long time proponent and supporter of self publishing, I have to say that I love all this craziness. Yes, one can argue that there are too many books and not enough readers and that self publishing has stuffed up what was a very lucrative closed business for six, or is it five now, huge publishers. Yes there are a lot of crappy books being published, by both self publishers and traditional publishers I might add, but hey,…
  • A Bad Apple After Steve Jobs

    Derek Haines
    20 Feb 2015 | 5:00 am
    It was a sad day for me, as it was for millions I suppose when Steve Jobs passed away. However, that was some years ago now, and I think I am well over my grieving.It may be connected, but think I am also over wantonly donating my credit card limit to Apple too.After years of being an Apple freak, Apple aficionado and Apple devotee, I have recently completed my first whole 365 day year, totally free of an Apple purchase for the first time in quite a number of years. Not even a set of ear buds.So why have I changed from being a mega-paying disciple to a parsimonious dissident? Because,…
  • Doing It The Wrong Way

    Derek Haines
    18 Feb 2015 | 5:48 am
    No matter how well you research, prepare and plan, there is still no guarantee of success. Similarly however, when you do everything the wrong way, there is no absolute guarantee of failure.I only draw your attention to these two points because I am presently in the process of evaluating two of my blogs: one of which was planned with breathtaking meticulousness, and this one, which simply came into existence a long time ago, and well, has just meandered its way through the years, doing everything that is considered wrong by blogging gurus.Anyone who reads this blog will know that it has no…
 
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    Indie Author News

  • Featured Indie Book: Very Twisted Things (Ilsa Madden-Mills)

    Alan Kealey
    2 Mar 2015 | 4:30 am
    Featured Indie Book on Indie Author News: New Adult Romance / Contemporary Romance Very Twisted Things by Ilsa Madden-Mills. Very Twisted Things is a standalone Briarcrest Academy book. A sassy...
  • Indie Author Interview: Ben Miller

    Alan Kealey
    1 Mar 2015 | 10:00 pm
    Indie Author Interview with Ben Miller - Author of the Mystery / Thriller A Bustle in the Hedgerow. Ben Miller was born in Franklin, Pennsylvania. Since completing residency training in Pediatrics,...
  • Tips to Evolve as Author and to Find More Readers

    Alan Kealey
    28 Feb 2015 | 10:00 pm
    The game has changed, and so must you. We’re well into 2015 and the year is booming with new authors and books. Already my schedule is filled with authors pushing out manuscripts and setting...
  • Featured Indie Book: Untamed (Ciana Stone)

    Alan Kealey
    27 Feb 2015 | 10:00 pm
    Featured Indie Book on Indie Author News: Contemporary Romance Untamed by Ciana Stone. Untamed is a three book set of romance tales with paranormal elements that follow the life and love of three...
  • New Indie Book Release: The Green Line Divide - Romance, Travel, and Turmoils (Z Vally)

    Alan Kealey
    26 Feb 2015 | 10:00 pm
    New Indie Book Release: The Green Line Divide - Romance, Travel, and Turmoils - Z Vally Romantic Comedy (195 pages - January 2015) The Green Line Divide encounters readers with people from various...
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    Author Alden

  • Read "Item Not As Described" in Kasma Magazine

    J.W. Alden
    17 Feb 2015 | 7:17 am
    In 2013, I sold Item Not As Described to UFO Publishing for the second entry in their Unidentified Funny Objects anthology series. This was my first short story sale at pro rates, and as such, it will always hold a special place in my heart. So I'm happy to report that it's now been reprinted by Kasma Magazine.Item Not As Described is a humorous fantasy story. The basic premise is: if an online auction site like Ebay existed in an epic fantasy world, what would the customer support emails look like? Read the story here (for free) to find out. And check out that…
  • Read "Möbius" in Nature's Futures

    J.W. Alden
    12 Nov 2014 | 12:00 pm
    The latest issue of Nature is out, and if you turn to the "Futures" page, you'll find a story of mine called Möbius. You can also read it for free online, along with all the other science fiction stories in the Futures series. As a science enthusiast, I'm thrilled to have my work featured in one of the most respected science journals in the world. Getting into Nature's Futures has been a goal for a long time.Normally with these heads up posts, I like to write a little about the story behind the story. This time, however, I was invited to write a guest post about Möbius on the Futures…
  • Read "The Dragon Weeps" in Sorcerous Signals (and Mystic Signals)

    J.W. Alden
    10 Nov 2014 | 7:06 am
    The Dragon Weeps is one of the first short stories I ever cobbled together when I started taking this writing thing seriously. Looking back now, it seems so long ago. When I think back to those fabled days of yore (aka 2012), I think, "Man . . . a baby wrote that." I'm such a different writer now. My entire process has changed, from the way I approach ideas, to the way I shape the stories themselves. What a difference two years makes.But The Dragon Weeps has a special place in my heart. It was my first real attempt at fantasy, and it ended up spawning an entire world that I still like to…
  • An Overdue Update (on Writing, LonCon, and Life)

    J.W. Alden
    6 Nov 2014 | 10:03 am
    When I transitioned my blog away from weekly "content" style updates in favor of a more traditional author site, I knew this would mean posting less. I did not, however, anticipate leaving the poor thing in a lurch for months at a time! I can't believe my last update was in July (not counting Beth Cato's visit in my last post).I'm afraid I can't fall back on the old "nothing has been going on, so I had nothing to write about" excuse, either. This has been a very eventful year for me. Monumental, even. So with this post, I'm going to attempt to cover some of the major happenings in my life…
  • 5 Surprises As a Debut Novelist (A Guest Post by Beth Cato)

    J.W. Alden
    3 Sep 2014 | 6:00 am
    This morning's post comes from the awesome Beth Cato, whose debut novel The Clockwork Dagger comes out on September 16th. Everyone go buy it!Beth hails from Hanford, California, but currently writes and bakes cookies in a lair west of Phoenix, Arizona. She shares the household with a hockey-loving husband, a number-obsessed son, and a cat the size of a canned ham.Beth's short fiction can be found in Orson Scott Card's InterGalactic Medicine Show, Beneath Ceaseless Skies, and many other magazines. The Clockwork Dagger is her first novel. The sequel, The Clockwork Crown, will be…
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    Kathleen H. Wheeler

  • Julianne Moore for best actress Oscar 2015!

    Kathleen H. Wheeler
    22 Feb 2015 | 12:57 pm
    Will Julianne Moore win best actress at Academy Awards tonight, February 22, 2015? I just saw the movie Still Alice last night. I’d been patiently waiting for it to reach my central Illinois city. The film finally made it just in the nick of time – the same weekend of the Academy Awards 2015. I’m left haunted by the performance of Julianne Moore as Alice, and I’m keeping my fingers crossed she finally wins her Oscar for what I’d consider a worthy and heartbreaking portrait of an early-onset Alzheimer’s victim. I’m so grateful for this movie and…
  • Book review: Alzheimer’s Daughter by Jean Lee

    Kathleen H. Wheeler
    16 Feb 2015 | 12:19 pm
    An Alzheimer’s disease memoir and love story Alzheimer’s Daughter by Jean Lee is a triple threat memoir with an unthinkable premise. One parent diagnosed with Alzheimer’s disease is a crisis, two parents diagnosed with Alzheimer’s is a disaster. Dual diagnoses and decline at the exact same time is a tragedy of epic proportions. Alzheimer’s Daughter follows adult sisters, Rosie and Annette, as they discover and manage the progressing cognitive impairments of their aging parents. Ed and Ibby Church are a loving couple in their eighties who’ve been married for over sixty years.
  • Goodbye to Colin Firth as perfect Mr. Darcy

    Kathleen H. Wheeler
    15 Feb 2015 | 11:29 am
    I’ve always held up Colin Firth’s portrayal of Mr. Darcy in the 1995 BBC miniseries adaptation of Pride and Prejudice as the gold standard, but no longer after seeing the movie Kingsman: The Secret Service this weekend. I knew the movie contained violence, and for the most part I enjoyed the movie anyway because Firth’s character Harry Hart’s actions were for the greater good. But that changed with the massacre in the church, which went too far in my opinion. His murderous rampage in that scene was difficult to watch. I closed my eyes towards the end because I just couldn’t stomach…
  • Valentine’s Day Blues

    Kathleen H. Wheeler
    14 Feb 2015 | 10:14 am
    Valentine’s Day Blues The icy grip of winter chokes the prospect of spring. Even Valentine’s Day can’t convince me to like the month of February. The post Valentine’s Day Blues appeared first on Kathleen H. Wheeler.
  • Book excerpt: screwed-up family relationships

    Kathleen H. Wheeler
    3 Feb 2015 | 5:43 pm
    Brought to Their Senses, Chapter 2: screwed-up family relationships “We haven’t even figured out where to start, and we’re already at each others’ throats,” said Tom, his voice trailing off as he looked out the window into the harbor. Elizabeth ran her hands through her hair and leaned back in her chair. “You know, we’re not like these other families,” she said with a nod to the diners around them, “privileged and perfect in their blue blazers and obnoxious jewelry. And we’re never gonna sail off into the sunset.” “Yeah, I know, I don’t expect a miracle. But we…
 
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    The Book Deal: A Publishing Blog for Writers and Book People

  • Lessons from a great book jacket designer

    Alan Rinzler
    24 Feb 2015 | 5:14 pm
    The bright yellow cover of The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo by Stieg Larsson is instantly recognizable. The Wall Street Journal called the jacket, designed by Peter Mendelsund, one of the most iconic in contemporary fiction in the U.S. Mendelsund, Associate Art Director at Knopf, now has his own new book, Cover, published by powerHouse Books. It’s a fascinating inside look at the process that goes into creating a memorable book jacket, including the opportunity to see dozens of discarded comps. Authors line up now for Mendelsund to create their covers, but his very first assignment as a cub…
  • Wouldn’t you love an agent like this one?

    Alan Rinzler
    3 Jan 2015 | 8:17 pm
    Kimberley Cameron is a great example of how one innovative agent is dealing with the stonewalling risk-averse attitude these days of many mainstream commercial book publishers. “Traditional publishers are rejecting so many quality books we’re submitting, by both debut authors and those with a solid track record of successful titles,” Kimberly told me recently. “We’re convinced these books have a market, so we started a new in-house imprint called Reputation books, with the tag Books we stand behind. We’re publishing new titles and rights-reverted backlist books, and…
  • Women mystery writers break out of the shadows

    Alan Rinzler
    13 Nov 2014 | 6:44 pm
    The tired old stereotype of a mystery writer as some hard-boiled noir guy with a cigarette in one hand and a tumbler full of whiskey in the other is obsolete. Over. Done. Make way for Sisters in Crime, a nationwide organization of women mystery writers who are achieving commercial and literary success. Ever since Sara Paretsky’s debut novel Indemnity Only in 1982, a steady flow of increasingly popular women mystery writers has emerged, including Patricia Cornwall with her Scarpetta series, Sue Grafton’s Kinsey Millhane Alphabet series, and many others. For the love of mysteries I’ve…
  • Eavesdropping for story ideas and other tips from a veteran novelist

    Alan Rinzler
    6 Oct 2014 | 11:20 am
    Today we have some sage advice for writers from a proven practitioner of the art and craft of literary commerce who’s had a successful career as a writer for more than 50 years. Warren Adler has published more than 32 novels and short story collections, including The War of the Roses, which was made into the devastatingly funny movie starring Michael Douglas and Kathleen Turner. That story grew out of an overheard conversation, incidentally. More on that below. Adler studied writing at the New School with fellow students Mario Puzzo and William Styron. Here’s Warren: I’ve spent my whole…
  • How authors support their writing dreams

    Alan Rinzler
    11 Jun 2014 | 10:53 pm
    A few aspiring authors get to stay home and write all day. Think of them as the 1%. The rest need to worry about putting food on the table before they can focus on their literary dreams. Even the most successful writers I’ve edited, past and present, took whatever work they could find along the way. Claude Brown was a mailman in 1964 when I discovered his monumental manuscript for Manchild in the Promised Land overflowing a sagging cardboard box under my desk at Macmillan where I had just landed a job as a junior editor. Claude introduced me to his friend Toni Morrison, a young textbook…
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    Jane Friedman

  • Do You Love Your Publisher? An Author Survey

    Jane Friedman
    2 Mar 2015 | 2:00 am
    Are you a traditionally published author? Then please keep reading. In partnership with Harry Bingham of Agent Hunter in the UK, we’re launching a survey of traditionally published authors, regardless of whether or not they have also self-published. Our goal is to see how traditionally published authors are feeling about the choices now available. We aim to be unbiased; we’re not looking for strongly positive or strongly negative responses. As much as possible, we want to get responses from those who have recently worked with traditional publishers, and derive a truthful…
  • Imitation Is Part of Being a Writer

    Jane Friedman
    1 Mar 2015 | 2:00 am
    Zeynep Ozakat I recently read an essay by Theo Nestor, describing how you need a nut graf in a personal essay. She offers a wonderful example of how this can be done, then advises writers to copy the format: “It is perfectly okay … The content will be very much your own.” Similarly, in a recent essay for Glimmer Train, Zeynep Ozakat says: Imitation is part of being a writer. Just like babies who learn to smile by imitating adults, we must have the humility to learn from the greats through mimicry. She closes by quoting Picasso, “Learn the rules like a pro, so you can…
  • Could You Benefit From a Website Redesign?

    Chris Jane
    27 Feb 2015 | 2:00 am
    by Aurélien Bellanger Today’s interview is by contributing writer Chris Jane (@chrismjane), who does every-other-Wednesday interviews for the 5 On series. Anyone who pays any attention to my Facebook feed knows that I’m more than a little happy with my newly revised website. I didn’t understand why, at first. After all, the previous (and free) template I’d been using did what it was supposed to do: it provided pages and a menu. It was clean and it was simple. What more could it need? As I discovered, it needed a feeling. What I hadn’t thought about when…
  • Book Marketing Must Center (Mostly) on the Author: Q&A with Scott Berkun

    Jane Friedman
    26 Feb 2015 | 2:00 am
    Today I’m delighted to feature an interview with full-time author and speaker Scott Berkun (@berkun). I first met Scott at the 2014 World Domination Summit, where he was a featured speaker. He’s dynamic, insightful, and—in the eyes of many writers—living the dream. I asked Scott if he would answer a few questions about his experiences with book marketing and promotion, because over his career, he’s worked with a few traditional publishers and self-published his work. Some of the biggest questions in the author community right now focus on the author’s…
  • 5On: Kathleen M. Rodgers

    Chris Jane
    25 Feb 2015 | 2:00 am
    In this 5On interview, author Kathleen M. Rodgers discusses her approach to writing and reading, her self-promotion philosophy, and why she won’t self-publish. She also shares a personal writing and publishing history that might serve as powerful encouragement to others to never give up. Kathleen M. Rodgers is a former frequent contributor to Family Circle Magazine and Military Times. Her work has also appeared in anthologies published by McGraw-Hill, University of Nebraska Press/Potomac Books, Health Communications, Inc., AMG Publishers, and Press 53. She is the author of the…
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    Writer Beware

  • Crescent Moon Press, Musa Publishing Close Their Doors

    27 Feb 2015 | 10:22 am
    Posted by Victoria Strauss for Writer Beware   Crescent Moon Press has announced that it is closing. From a mass email sent out to authors late last month:On March 31st  at 11:59 pm, Crescent Moon Press will release all author [sic] from contracts.  All rights will revert back to authors for their manuscripts. If your contract expires prior to March 31st, it will not be renewed. Final royalty payments will be issued as well as any necessary documents as soon as they become available. Please be patient as we work to close out our business affairs.Artwork will remain…
  • New Life For Old Books (Mine!)

    24 Feb 2015 | 11:06 am
    Posted by Victoria StraussOne of the greatest things about the digital revolution is the opportunities it has created to give new life to old books. Years ago, books rarely came back into circulation once they were taken off the market--but the proliferation of digital self-publishing options, as well as the rise of digital publishers specializing in reprints, has changed all that. I've written nine novels, but until recently, only four were "in print" and available. Today, I'm thrilled to announce that four of my backlist books are being re-released as ebooks by Open Road Media. This brings…
  • Editing Clauses in Publishing Contracts: How to Protect Yourself

    12 Feb 2015 | 9:16 am
    Posted by Victoria Strauss for Writer BewareEditing clauses are one of those publishing contract areas where there should be a balance between the publisher's interests and the writer's.Publishers need a certain amount of latitude to edit a manuscript to prepare it for publication. They also need to have the right of final approval--they don't want to be forced to publish a manuscript that the author can't or won't revise to their satisfaction.Writers, on the other hand, need assurance that they will be a partner in the editing process, and that their work won't be changed in major ways…
  • SFWA Opens to Self-Published Authors; Magazine of Fantasy and Science Fiction Makes Contract Changes

    5 Feb 2015 | 9:14 am
    Posted by Victoria Strauss for Writer BewareI have two pieces of SFWA-related news to share today.-----------------Members of the Science Fiction and Fantasy Writers of America (SFWA) have voted to open membership to self-published and small press authors. From the official statement:Specific details will be posted at sfwa.org by the first of March, but the basic standards are $3,000 for novel, or a total of 10,000 words of short fiction paid at 6 cents a word for Active membership. A single story of at least 1,000 words paid at 6 cents a word will be required for Associate membership.
  • Who's Running Your Writers' Group? Why You Should Be Careful

    2 Feb 2015 | 10:01 am
    Posted by Victoria Strauss for Writer BewareJoining a writers' group can be a terrific way to get feedback and support, and to make new friends. But what if that group isn't all it seems? An alert Writer Beware reader drew my attention to what seems like a growing phenomenon: writers' groups sponsored by pay-to-play publishers.A few examples--all from Meetup.com, where there are likely many more:Onion Custard Publishing's Author Clinic is "looking to support authors who want to develop their ideas." Onion Custard also offers a suite of services for authors--all at a cost. The Roswell…
 
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    TVWriter.Com

  • Peggy Bechko: Creating a Flat, Two-Dimensional Villain

    TVWriter™
    2 Mar 2015 | 3:25 am
    by Peggy Bechko Seriously. Here’s how to do it. Because there may be times when you actually want to create a ‘cardboard’ villain, one who is ‘hilariously’ even one-dimensional. There are times… On the other hand you might want to go 180 degree turn and actually create a villain who has some moxie, some real reasons for villainous behavior. Either way, read on. Now some writers create antagonists who are cool as a cucumber all the time. In victory or defeat (at least the minor ones that come before the big crash) he or she is basically emotionless. The most the movie watcher or…
  • Hank Isaac’s LILAC Wins 3 IndieFEST Awards!

    TVWriter™
    2 Mar 2015 | 3:15 am
    Kudos to frequent TVWriter™ contributor for making a very big score! He’ll be back on the site later this week with more about the making of this selfsame LILAC. Who loves ya, baby?
  • Why Writers Are Better Off Than Most Other Peeps

    TVWriter™
    2 Mar 2015 | 3:10 am
    Writers kick ass! Absolutely! We always knew it cuz, writers. But now there’s proof: by Vandita Believe it or not, just 15 to 20 minutes of writing once a month is enough to make you physically and mentally strong. A study on the emotional and physical health benefits of express writing has found that there is a considerable amount of improvement in mood, stress levels and depressive symptoms in people who love to write. Those who write about traumatic, stressful or emotional events spend less time in the hospital, have lower blood pressure and better liver functionality. According to…
  • The Writers Guild of America, West’s Take on Net Neutrality

    TVWriter™
    1 Mar 2015 | 3:10 am
  • Edgar Allan Poe – Demon Hunter

    TVWriter™
    1 Mar 2015 | 3:05 am
    Aw, c’mon, think about it. Swirl that concept around in your brain for awhile. Then add Idris Elba to the equation and think again. Idris isn’t starring, but he is producing – a project that was first devised back in the 1970s. If that isn’t inspiring enough for even the most impatient unproduced writer, what is? Not Edgar Allen Poe but a genuinely cool guy! by Victoria McNally Once upon a midnight dreary, Elba pondered, weak and weary, over many a quaint and curious volume of forgotten lore—and then he found an old book about Edgar Allan Poe doing battle with the…
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    Everyone's Blog Posts - Our Salon

  • States Move to Ban Makeup Application While Driving

    Con Chapman
    2 Mar 2015 | 5:00 am
    LEOMINSTER, Mass.  Cheryl Lynne Pettrucelli is running late for work, and so she has shifted into high gear in her efforts to make herself look presentable by the time she reaches her employer, Micro-Precision Tools.  “It’s ten to nine, so it’s gonna be close,” she says, as she swerves to avoid an angry driver who passes her on the left. “Put down the lipstick and drive!” the man yells at her.  “Blow it out your boxer shorts, dingle-berry!” she shouts back at him, and continues to apply the extensive facial makeup she feels is essential to her job as a receptionist. …
  • Penis Ennui -- Why Hebrews Circumcised, Why Some Would Ban It [& 5 latest podcasts]

    Jonathan Wolfman
    2 Mar 2015 | 3:30 am
             This was originally published at www.doesthismakesense.com in 2012.      I am the only person I know to have fainted at a brit milah, the ceremonial religious cutting of an eight-day-old Jewish boy’s foreskin. I was among colleagues from Akiba Hebrew Academy just west of Philadelphia, at the home of my friend, Rabbi Steve Stroiman and his wife, Lucy. We were standing, facing living room windows on a very bright and crisp fall, mid-1970s morning; their newborn, Danny was held high in one hand by the mohel as he, Steve, and Lucy chanted a prayer. As the mohel raised his…
  • Heaven and Hell Pt 15: Fire with Fire, the Anti-Pope James I, Murakami & Kafka on the Shore

    JMac1949 Today
    1 Mar 2015 | 6:30 pm
    http://quoteimg.com/happy-birthday-william-s-burroughs/ Fire with Fire…:  “I will tell you exactly my next little project, you Ponce,” said Burroughs, “Thanks to your lovely wife and that heroic dose of alchemy - which is some excellent shit by the way - I have had a revelation: We will meet fire with fire,” standing on one foot, he quietly said, “What is hateful to you do not do to your neighbor.  That is the whole Torah.  The rest is commentary.  It is so simple, so sweet and it’s tax-exempt!  And the bat shit crazy religious psychos shall be undone by their own paranoid…
  • Quixote Bronson, Savior of Neglected Suburban Housewives

    Con Chapman
    1 Mar 2015 | 8:16 am
    It is Saturday night in the suburbs west of Boston–no better place to view man’s inhumanity to woman. As my partner Pancho Sanza and I drift wearily from one upscale restaurant to another, we see on the looks of the husbands indifference bordering on cruelty as an endless parade of wives drones on about window treatments, children’s grades, spats with girlfriends; the very warp and woof of their existence, but matters inspiring only apathy in their spouses. “So then Marie says–hey, don’t look at the fish when I’m talking to you!” I–I who have been so unlucky in love with my…
  • When Religion Kills Babies

    Jonathan Wolfman
    1 Mar 2015 | 6:00 am
         Religious communal practices bringing actual or potential harm to children, sacred text-based or no, narrowly or widely performed, must have no legal support, must be condemned and criminalized by civil authority. Our courts do not condone parents of seriously ill children praying-away known communicable/lethal disease in lieu of proper medical intervention. Nor should religion or cultural tradition confer legal cover for any medically unsupportable act done to a child. We agree that law will not support parents withholding a child from needed cancer treatment in favor of…
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    The Web Writer Spotlight - Shining the light for passionate digital writers and entrepreneurs.

  • Geoff Dyer’s 10 Unusual Tips for Writers

    Staff Writers
    1 Mar 2015 | 10:45 pm
    Geoff Dyer has been described as "one of our greatest living critics, not of the arts but of life itself, and one of our most original writers" by acclaimed journalist Kathryn Schulz of the New York Magazine. The British-born writer is the author of four novels and seven books of non-fiction that have won him a number of literary awards, including, GQ Writer of the Year Award (2009), National Book Critics Circle Award (2011) for Otherwise Known as the Human Condition, and Windham–Campbell Literature Prize (2015). In the fall semester of 2012, Dyer was a Visiting Professor at the University…
  • Why You Should Stay Patient and Positive When Doing Business Online

    David K. William
    23 Feb 2015 | 12:31 pm
    “Two things define you. Your patience when you have nothing, and your attitude when you have everything.”  The Internet boasts many success stories from spectacular successes by digital entrepreneurs like Evan Williams to equally inspiring successes by young writers like Adora Lily SvitakAdora, at only 17 years old (born October 15, 1997), has published three books and transformed her writing success into speaking, teaching and advocacy success. She’s spoken at the prestigious TED conference and been featured on major media outlets, including Good Morning America and CNN. She’s also…
  • The Different Types of People You See at Coffee Shops [Infographic]

    Staff Writers
    13 Feb 2015 | 4:56 am
    With comfy chairs, air conditioning, smell of espresso in the air, potpourried restrooms and free Wi-Fi, coffee shops are often an answer to many people’s prayers. If, for example, you are a freelance blogger, startup founder or entrepreneur who just wants a place to get some work done or meet someone away from the home office, a coffee shop is a good place to go. However, to avoid carpal tunnel related issues and so you don’t get all up in people’s faces, we wouldn’t recommend working out of coffee shops all day every day. That’s despite the fact that working from coffee shops is a…
  • 10 Powerful Lessons from Twyla Tharp’s “The Creative Habit”

    Staff Writers
    3 Feb 2015 | 9:28 am
    What makes someone creative? How does one face that empty page or empty stage and create something where nothing existed before? These are critical questions every artist grapples with daily. Even if you don’t consider yourself an artist or creative person per se, each one of us faces similar dilemmas on a daily basis. What will I cook that is fresh and appetizing? How will I make my presentation the best it can be and lock that lucrative deal? How can I make my e-mails more persuasive? These too are creative pursuits, and they all require creative output. Twyla Tharp, one of America’s…
  • How to Free Your Mind from Money Worries

    David K. William
    25 Jan 2015 | 12:40 pm
    “Money was never a big motivation for me, except as a way to keep score. The real excitement is playing the game.” - Billionaire Donald Trump Everybody worries about money sometimes. As writers, freelancers and online entrepreneurs, money is one of our biggest worry. Many of us are just breaking free from the 9-5 job and barely surviving financially. Others are seasoned freelancers facing a dry spell with no or very low pay. While worrying about our situation is a normal reaction, worrying usually solves nothing. Worry stems from fear. It is the act of thinking about the unknown in a way…
 
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    Angie’s Diary

  • Pandora is Eating me

    tucsonmike
    1 Mar 2015 | 9:05 am
    Angie’s Diary Angie’s Diary - eMagazine I object in the most strenuous manner to Pandora eating me! Pandora is Eating me tucsonmike
  • The Opera House – People and a Penny

    Nancy Duci Denofio
    28 Feb 2015 | 9:10 am
    Angie’s Diary Angie’s Diary - eMagazine Hand me something from one hundred or two hundred years ago, and my heart flutters like you gave me a diamond. History is the route to my imagination, a path to a creative spark of energy that explodes – as if I lived during a time I can only dream about. I was given a […] The Opera House – People and a Penny Nancy Duci Denofio
  • Advertising over the Years

    Nancy Duci Denofio
    26 Feb 2015 | 9:24 am
    Angie’s Diary Angie’s Diary - eMagazine First came the radio - people gathered around a large piece of furniture to listen to the news, and then Advertising over the Years Nancy Duci Denofio
  • Ice and Fire

    Maya Kavita
    25 Feb 2015 | 9:20 am
    Angie’s Diary Angie’s Diary - eMagazine Even under the best of conditions, complaining about the weather is a national past-time in Canada Ice and Fire Maya Kavita
  • An Art Within

    MistyAllen
    25 Feb 2015 | 9:00 am
    Angie’s Diary Angie’s Diary - eMagazine Etches on a tree for eternity to see, Clearly written lovers names. Would two hearts sustain the test of time? An Art Within MistyAllen
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    ProofreadNOW.com Blog

  • 10 Tips for Better Business Writing (Part 2)

    Terri Porter
    25 Feb 2015 | 3:00 am
    In last week’s post, we discussed the first three tips relating to how to make the content of your business writing better: 1. Know the purpose of the piece and make it clear up front. 2. Write in plain English. 3. Use active voice. Below we provide the remaining three tips related to improving content, and in Part 3 we’ll tell you how to fine-tune what you’ve written.
  • 10 Tips for Better Business Writing (Part 1)

    Terri Porter
    18 Feb 2015 | 3:00 am
    Excellent advice abounds for how to be a better writer in specific fields: public relations/marketing, law, medicine, technology, etc. Despite the nuances specific to those disciplines, certain rules for good business writing apply across the board. Our tips aren’t all-inclusive, but if you follow these guidelines, you’ll improve your business writing exponentially. We discuss the first six tips, relating to content, today and in Part 2 next week. The third week in Part 3 we'll talk about how to fine-tune what you’ve written.
  • Be Active Not Passive

    11 Feb 2015 | 1:30 am
    “You are loved.” Writing that in a valentine to your beloved instead of “I love you” likely will have a similar effect as giving a bouquet of roses with petals that are curling and turning brown — the thought may be there, but the desired effect loses some of its impact. That’s what can happen with passive voice. Who is actually doing the action becomes hazy. Sometimes you want or need the subject to be ambiguous or want to emphasize the object, in which case passive constructions make sense.
  • Similar but Different: Choosing the Right Word

    Terri Porter
    4 Feb 2015 | 3:00 am
    This note accompanied a recent job submitted to ProofreadNOW.com: “Please check for any blaring errors.” And this excerpt appeared in another job: “Two witnesses must be present when you sign your advanced directive.” Encountering a word that’s similar to the one that belongs but isn’t quite right is like stepping on a slippery object while walking in a murky lake — you know you’re not on solid ground but aren’t sure why. Sometimes the answer is obvious, as in the first example, in which “blaring” (a loud and unpleasant sound) should be “glaring” (obvious or…
  • Rescue Your Writing from Redundancy

    Terri Porter
    28 Jan 2015 | 3:00 am
    The new year is an absolutely perfect time to make new beginnings in many areas, including your writing. In the same way you might clear out and unclutter your house or apartment, you can rid your writing of redundancies, tautologies and pleonasms — those repetitive words and phrases that include but are not limited to extra words that say the same thing (e.g., begin anew, free gift), words used with acronyms that are part of the acronym (e.g., PIN number, UPC code) and superlatives used for emphasis (e.g., absolutely perfect). The end result will be a positive improvement in your writing,…
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    Positive Writer

  • 5 Ways to Start Living an Awesome Life Worth Writing About

    Guest Post
    1 Mar 2015 | 12:20 am
    Note: This is a guest post by Susan Shain (@Susan_Shain), she is a travel blogger and freelance writer who contributes to The Write Life, a website that helps writers make a living from their craft. You can sign up for their newsletter here. The best writing usually comes from personal experience. Doesn’t it? So then, how do you live an AWESOME life worth writing about? As a travel blogger, I constantly ask myself this question. And no matter what type of writing you do, I bet you’ve asked yourself the same thing? Here are five ways to live a life worth writing about: 1. Put…
  • 3 Super Easy Tricks to Empower Your Writing

    Marcy McKay
    23 Feb 2015 | 12:26 am
    I made an important realization recently. I couldn’t seem to focus when I tried to write. I felt anxious and worried, while my thoughts and my stomach whirled together… But, this made no sense. The New Year has been great for me so far writing wise. Thanks to this Positive Writer post, The Agony of Early Drafts – Should You Keep Writing, I may have found a top-notch editor to work with me on publishing my debut novel. I led a 10-day creativity challenge for my community which was hugely successful. Life was good, so why was I struggling to get one word onto the page? I…
  • This is the Most Important Goal (ever) for Writers!

    Bryan Hutchinson
    17 Feb 2015 | 1:39 am
    I have a specific goal this year. It’s the most important goal I have ever set for myself as a writer, as an entrepreneur, and, quite honestly, as a person. And if I may be so bold, I think, maybe, just maybe, it could be the most important goal you set for yourself, too. Then again, you might think I’ve gone and lost my mind. Several years ago I wrote a short, humorous eBook about living life with ADHD titled, “10 Things I Hate about ADHD” and I gave it away for free. It was a laugh-at-myself sort of book and a lot of people thought it was kind of funny. Over 100,000 people…
  • The Bulletproof Guide to Free Writing (And 10 Tips for Getting Started)

    Guest Post
    11 Feb 2015 | 11:58 pm
    Note: This is a guest post by Bryan Collins. Bryan is a writing coach on a mission to teach people how to become writers. He will also help you finish what you started with his book A Handbook for the Productive Writer. Get your exclusive free samples today. I’m stuck. This isn’t any good. I can’t think of an idea. Almost every practicing writer faces these negative thoughts at one stage or another. If you’re struggling with writer’s block, if your internal editor is holding you back, or if your current writing project is troublesome, there is a solution. It’s called free…
  • Writing Contest: How Writing Has Positively Influenced YOUR Life

    Bryan Hutchinson
    1 Feb 2015 | 9:13 am
    It’s that time again. Time for a new writing contest… It’s easy to enter. All you have to do is write an essay (blog post) about how writing has positively influenced your life (in some way). This contest will run from 1 Feb 2015 until 1 June 2015. The prizes are: 1st $95.00 Amazon gift card 2nd $50.00 Amazon gift card 3rd $25.00 Amazon gift card Share your story in an inspiring way. I’m not looking for technically perfect stories. I am looking for real stories that I believe will inspire others to either continue writing, reignite one’s passion for writing, or to take…
 
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    A Little Class

  • Dear Parents,

    WestyC1
    8 Feb 2015 | 1:27 pm
    I am not your child’s friend.  I do not care if they like me.  This is not a popularity contest for me,  it is your child’s education. I am not going to pretend your child’s work is exemplary, when it is actually sub-standard.  I demand, and expect, nothing but the very best effort from your child.  Helping your child is not synonymous with giving them the answers, so please explain to them that they will be expected to do their own work in my class. I do not condone laziness or irresponsibility; make sure they have a good breakfast and pack their backpacks with all the necessary…
  • Disruptions

    WestyC1
    15 May 2013 | 8:02 am
    Read full article here.   I’ve been saying it for years, “It is a privilege to be in my classroom.  Those who don’t want to be here, or interfere with the learning of others, are welcome to leave.”  Not a very popular statement, I know.  I don’t care.  I have a job to do, and those who get in my way, and the way of my students, can seek their educational guidance elsewhere.  Unpopular?  Maybe.  Honest?  Definitely. Teachers are often stuck in a frustrating situation when it comes to disruptive students; remove them at the time of their disruption,…
  • The Dilemma of Standardized Testing

    WestyC1
    14 May 2013 | 7:18 am
    Read full article here. As a teacher, I stress relentlessly about standardized testing.  Did I prepare my students well enough?  What are the consequences, both personal and professional, of students continually not meeting standards?  When did the gap between learning and performance become so vast? Generally, when school districts adopt a standardized test, there is a certain degree of disparity between what the test measures, and what the district curriculum dictates be taught.  When this happens, teachers are faced with a very difficult choice; teach the curriculum and hope that any…
  • Close the Void

    WestyC1
    8 May 2013 | 8:25 am
    In an educational environment riddled with assessments and standards to be met, students are often left stranded in the void that separates teaching and learning.  Our job, as teachers, is to facilitate learning.  How do we do that?  How do we bring the outlying extremes of the void closer together?  We have to start with student connections. Teachers need to make connections with their students; build relationships. I see the teacher-student relationship take on many forms, and over the years, I have created my own set of categories  when looking at teachers and their interactions with…
  • Interest

    WestyC1
    8 Apr 2013 | 10:11 am
     Two months, really, two months?  Yes, it has been two months.  I’m not proud of it; I’m actually a  bit embarrassed.  I was on a roll, posting several days a week, working on my book, reading, learning, feeling motivated; then it just stopped.  No explanations, no reasons, no excuses.  Nothing.  I have toyed with the idea that it could be depression or loneliness, maybe even just plain boredom, but none of those panned out for me.  All I can attest my laziness to is this: disinterest. Ever have one of those days where you just don’t feel like doing anything?  Now,…
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    Christian Writer | Christian Writing | Christian Books

  • Interview: Kerry Nietz, Author, Amish Vampires in Space

    admin
    10 Feb 2015 | 9:58 am
    When I mentioned that I wanted to write a book someday, [the elderly author] said “Start early, you might get published before you die.” I took that as motivation. It wasn’t long after that that I started calling myself a writer instead of a programmer. The post Interview: Kerry Nietz, Author, Amish Vampires in Space appeared first on Christian Writer | Christian Writing | Christian Books.
  • What I Wish I’d Known Before I Started Writing

    admin
    24 Jan 2015 | 7:51 am
    I consider this one the most important of all: surround yourself with honest, encouraging and insightful people who really do understand your chosen genre The post What I Wish I’d Known Before I Started Writing appeared first on Christian Writer | Christian Writing | Christian Books.
  • Devotionals for Christian Writers

    admin
    26 Dec 2014 | 12:29 am
    Take your writing to the next level with these inspiring devotionals for writers - emailed directly into your inbox. The post Devotionals for Christian Writers appeared first on Christian Writer | Christian Writing | Christian Books.
  • The Christian Writer’s Guide

    admin
    23 Nov 2014 | 11:54 am
    It's time to write the book you've always wanted to write - with help from the Christian Writer's Guide! The post The Christian Writer’s Guide appeared first on Christian Writer | Christian Writing | Christian Books.
  • How to Promote Your eBook: Lessons from the Trenches

    admin
    17 Nov 2014 | 9:49 am
    In which I share my experience of how NOT to do a free ebook promotion. The post How to Promote Your eBook: Lessons from the Trenches appeared first on Christian Writer | Christian Writing | Christian Books.
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    Now Novel

  • Rediscovering the joy of writing

    Jordan
    1 Mar 2015 | 11:44 pm
    Writing is almost always a labour of love, but sometimes that love falters. When you begin to forget what you ever enjoyed about writing in the first place, it’s still possible to restore a sense of joy to your work. With the long solitary hours required, writing can be lonely. In addition, it may look strange to people who are not writers. It isn’t very dynamic, so people you live with may just see you vanishing into a room from time to time and staggering out looking exhilarated or discouraged or simply lost in your own thoughts. It’s hard to keep family and friends updated on…
  • Getting better all the time: simple ways to hone your craft

    Jordan
    25 Feb 2015 | 12:21 am
    Writers may sometimes feel overwhelmed by the many aspects of fiction they must attend to when learning to write. As you hone your craft, aspects such as dialogue, character development, structure and more will come naturally to you. There are many things you can do to continually hone your writing craft. It is often said that writers are always writing even when doing other things or that everything you encounter can be material for your writing. These statements can be largely true if you begin to look at little ways to keep flexing the writing muscles. With some practice, you can learn to…
  • 88 quotes to help you finish your novel

    Jordan
    19 Feb 2015 | 11:18 pm
    View the SlideShare version of this post: Writing a novel through the Now Novel system makes it easy to structure your work and keep track of where you are in telling your story, yet even seasoned writers might feel stuck at one or another stage of the writing process. To spur you on in turning your novel idea into an ideal novel, we’ve compiled a selection of 88 quotes to help you finish your novel; quotes that apply to the sequential stages of the novel-writing process. The initial idea for a novel Before you write the first word down, before your characters come alive on the page,…
  • But what if my writing sucks?

    Jordan
    15 Feb 2015 | 10:41 pm
    “What if my writing sucks?” is a question nearly all writers ask themselves from time to time. The good news is that the answer doesn’t matter nearly as much as you think. That’s good news because if you are a beginning writer, it may be difficult to answer—and if you are asking this question, most likely, you are a beginning writer. It’s not that more experienced writers don’t suffer crises of confidence too; it’s simply that those crises tend to take different forms. Early on, before you’ve had any or very much feedback, it’s much more common…
  • How to keep motivated after the first draft

    Jordan
    9 Feb 2015 | 2:06 am
    Some writers struggle through first drafts and thrive on revisions, but for those who don’t, staying motivated after the first draft can present a real roadblock in finishing a novel. However, there are a number of strategies you can use to maintain your motivation and keep going even when that motivation lags. Many writers experience one of two emotions on finishing a first draft. They may feel exhilarated, or they may feel empty. Some writers may feel a combination of these two things. However, the end result may be the same. When it comes to thoughts of revising, they may find their…
 
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    thebloggingwriter

  • A Sketch

    Derek Rizzo
    3 Feb 2015 | 6:37 pm
    Tagged: art, drawing, dreans, future, Happiness, Life, lifestyle, money, sketch, Soul
  • A Sonnet?

    Derek Rizzo
    30 Jan 2015 | 2:27 pm
    I am trying on a new style of poetry. I should say that it is new to me but quite old in its original form and, that form is the Sonnet. I guess there’s nothing else to say so with hope, away we go!   I love you more than I see you capable of. I empty my soul; sharing all I am, freely. You share, what you share, unequally. She adores me, but it is not love.   I know I am heart and soul: caught! I feel like you are only lightly tied A balloon held by a child wide-eyed. Perhaps there is a lesson to be taught?   I know my love, you will come to see That a happy, loving…
  • Do You Hear The Whales?

    Derek Rizzo
    15 Jan 2015 | 11:29 am
    Listen carefully, Do you hear them sing, Beneath the sea? Do you hear The voices raised in song, Echoing on the shore? Do you hear nature, Joining in chorus? Their pleas for help, As the song ascends to the heavens, Ask yourself.., Do you hear the whales? Tagged: author, Earth, environment, Inspiration, Life, lifestyle, nature, ocean, Online Writing, Poem, poems, poet, poetry, Reading, sea, shore, Thebloggingwriter, whales, writing, writing. author
  • Flowing

    Derek Rizzo
    16 Dec 2014 | 9:55 am
    Flowing lazily, through a hazy day, Flowing languidly, in a detached way Flowing beautifully Through the waves of life. Flowing smoothly on the edge of a knife. Flow with me Flow slowly, confidently, Through life, Ever-green.   Tagged: day, evergreen, flow, flowing, hazy, lazy, Life, literature, living, love, Online Writing, Poem, poems, poet, poetry, Reading, Soul, writing, writing. author
  • The Traveler

    Derek Rizzo
    3 Dec 2014 | 6:18 pm
    Out here, on the road traveling, alone. Wondering silently, who’s waiting?   Those who love me, wait silently, for my return.   I’m tired of the dusty road. Want warmth and home, out here traveling, silently I roam.   Sing the song, play the game, do my work with aplomb; Oh I can’t wait to be home.   There my shelter lies. There my heart lives and dies. There you lie, waiting, Loving.   Soon I will be there. Lying beside you; Loving. Tagged: Happiness, Home, Life, lonely, love, Online Writing, Poem, poems, poet, poetry, Soul, The Traveler,…
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    The Red Ink

  • 5 Ways to Become a Better Writer

    Grammar Chic, Inc.
    25 Feb 2015 | 12:12 pm
    As a writer, you might sometimes feel like you’re on top of the world—like you’ve just authored something that’s genuinely good, worth being proud of. Most days, you’re probably going to feel a lot less confident, a lot less secure. The writing life exists between those two extremes, and so long as you don’t spend too much time at either end of the spectrum, you’ll likely be alright. No matter how good you think you are—or how bad—there’s always room for improvement, always an opportunity to get better. Whether you’re working on a full book manuscript or simply some…
  • Does Your Visual Marketing Reflect Your Brand?

    Grammar Chic, Inc.
    23 Feb 2015 | 9:19 am
    If you spend much time at all reading articles about content marketing, then you probably know how important visual marketing is. In an increasingly photo-dominated digital landscape, one in which Instagram and Pinterest gain in prestige every day and Facebook and Twitter keep pushing pics to the fore, it’s important that your brand engages users not just with meaningful text, but also with well-chosen imagery. But what exactly does that mean for your marketing efforts? If you think it means you can just slap together some funny memes or vaguely on-topic infographics—a few cat pictures…
  • Three Ways to Keep Your Marketing E-mails Short

    Grammar Chic, Inc.
    18 Feb 2015 | 8:31 am
    Let’s start this one with a hypothetical. Imagine it’s a Tuesday morning, around 11:45. You’re in your office, just preparing to head to the car to go meet a client for lunch. As you walk out the door you flip to your phone to check your e-mail. You have a couple of new messages, and both of them are for e-mail lists you’ve signed up for. We’ll call them the e-mail lists for Company A and Company B. Company A has sent you an exhaustive missive that details everything about their new line of products—eight products in total, with a full paragraph of information on each one of them.
  • Essential Traits for Highly Successful Bloggers

    Grammar Chic, Inc.
    16 Feb 2015 | 10:13 am
    Business owners, do you ever wonder if you truly have what it takes to develop a successful blog—one that garners traffic and increases conversions for your company website? It’s only natural to wonder and perhaps even to doubt; throughout literary history, great authors have struggled with questions about their own worthiness, and while business blogging is different from writing War and Peace, the same principle applies. Today, we want to offer some reassurance: First, know that all businesses are capable of developing effective business blogs; there’s no topic too boring, no industry…
  • Job Interview Taboo: Words You Should Never Say

    Grammar Chic, Inc.
    13 Feb 2015 | 11:17 am
    Do you struggle to know what to say during a job interview? Maybe it would be helpful to take a counter approach: To think about the things you really shouldn’t say during an interview. There are certain words, phrases, and topics of conversation that immediately convey a negative impression and can derail your interview progress before you really have a chance. Our list is certainly not exhaustive, but perhaps it can help you think more constructively and strategically about how to present yourself in an interview! One-Word Answers—Especially “No” First, remember that the point of a…
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    Writing By The Seat of My Pants

  • What To Do When Someone Pirates Your Ebook

    Rachel Rueben
    22 Feb 2015 | 2:00 am
    Pirate Daddy by Paurian via Flickr In the past couple of months, I’ve noticed an uptick in book pirating complaints from indie authors.  Unfortunately, I don’t think this trend is going  to subside anytime soon.  Why, you ask? Because according to Author Earnings, self-published books make up almost 33% of all ebooks sold on Amazon. So if we indies command a piece of the market that large, we also share the attention of book pirates. This is a problem many authors are going to have to face soon or later, so let’s educate ourselves on the various ways our work can be stolen and…
  • Should Indie Authors Use Social Media Services To Promote Books? Part 3

    Rachel Rueben
    25 Jan 2015 | 2:00 am
    By Olarte.Ollie via Flickr I was going to post this separately but since it’s relevant to the other two articles on social media services, I’m extending this series. Today, I want to discuss how to research and analyze social media marketing services. Don’t worry, I won’t get too technical. This is important if you want to discern which marketing strategies have a real chance of working for you. As I learned while writing this series, information isn’t always readily available. Sometimes, you will have to dig for what you need to know. But you’re a writer, and already used to that…
  • Should Indie Authors Use Social Media Services To Promote Books? Part 2

    Rachel Rueben
    18 Jan 2015 | 2:30 am
    By Martin Gysler via Flickr Last week, I discussed social media services and today, I’ll talk about services geared specifically  towards authors.  Since social media is becoming more and more of a pay to play kind of environment, many authors are either abandoning their accounts, or moving on to other sites.  This is a mistake.  Social media is still useful, I talked about it before in, “How to Approach & Pitch Social Media Influencers.” However, for those who simply lack social grace, there are services which will retweet/like your posts, hold Twitter discussions, and…
  • Should Indie Authors Use Social Media Services to Promote Books? Part 1

    Rachel Rueben
    11 Jan 2015 | 2:00 am
    Social Media Garden by J&TPlaman via Flickr Several years back a few websites popped up promising to help people grow their social media accounts and even make them look popular by liking or retweeting them. Immediately, celebrities everywhere became their biggest clients by paying for fake fans, retweets and even comments, I talked about it a while back on Writer’s Weekly. Most people, myself included, considered it to be nothing more than useless vanity metrics. Anyone who knows a little about online marketing understands how easy it is to manipulate metrics. Sadly, not everyone…
  • Lessons Learned in 2014

    Rachel Rueben
    28 Dec 2014 | 2:30 am
    By Rob Shenk via Filckr It’s almost 2015, and like most people, I’m wondering where the heck did all the time go? Luckily, I had a pretty productive year, I finished one book and published another. I also made more friends and learned more about the publishing industry.  Yes, after years in the business, I’m still learning new things. Here are just a few of the bigger lessons I discovered this year in 2014… Book Marketing has to be taken to Another Level Last month, an author sent a lamb chop into space to promote his book: Meatspace. He recorded the whole thing on Youtube and so…
 
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    Derailed Thoughts

  • Fedelta Parte: 14: Escondido (Hide & Seek)

    Rachel Rueben
    10 Feb 2015 | 1:45 pm
    Originally posted on Cereal Authors:*Warning Language* New York Penn Station: Photo by Glenn Beltz via Flickr Not wanting to let go, Fiona, held on to her daughter Cassandra as they embraced on the stoop. “Come back home, you hear me?” she said still hanging on. “Got it ma,” Cassie answered, as she let go…
  • Conduct Unbecoming by Dellani Oakes

    Rachel Rueben
    3 Oct 2014 | 3:00 am
    Romance and suspense, who would’ve thought those worlds would go so good together?  I had never even heard of the term romance suspense until I was given “The Ninja Tattoo” and Immediately I was hooked.  Over 15 years ago, I just stopped reading romance because the genre had become too formulaic.  You were either in […]
  • We’re Doing It Again! The Fantastic Blog Hop Returns But Different.

    Rachel Rueben
    14 Aug 2014 | 2:00 am
    The Fantastic Blog Hop is here again, but this time bigger and better than ever!
  • Fedelta Parte 12: Hangman

    Rachel Rueben
    6 Aug 2014 | 12:18 pm
    Originally posted on Cereal Authors:By mhlradio via Flickr Amato went to the rendezvous point at the 52nd street junk yard to meet New York’s infamous investigative reporter, Javier Marín. It was an unusual cool June morning but Amato wasn’t the least bit nervous in fact, he was determined to get this done. Feeling the…
  • Fedelta Parte 11: The No Tell Motel

    Rachel Rueben
    11 Jul 2014 | 3:35 pm
    Originally posted on Cereal Authors:By Jason B. via Flickr Nervously Amato looked out of his window, before answering the door. He wasn’t safe as long as his heart was still beating. They wouldn’t quit until he and Cassie were dead which made his situation dire. It was just the manager wanting his money. Quickly…
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    Creative Genius 101

  • 5 Query Letter Hooks to Grab Your Editor’s Attention by Brian Scott

    Brian Scott
    7 Feb 2015 | 9:12 am
    Every line of a query letter is crucial, but the hook is the first part of the query that an editor will read, making it the most important. Most readers tend to move on to something more interesting if the first few lines of an article don't grab their attention. It only makes sense—and is plainly obvious--that an editor won't finish your query letter if you fail to grab his or her attention
  • Freelance Blogging as a Part-Time or Full-Time Job by Brian Scott

    Brian Scott
    9 Jan 2015 | 10:33 am
    Blogging is a continually expanding profession that offers lots of freelance possibilities. However, be careful about what clients want you to blog and how much they are willing to pay you. Many aspiring freelance bloggers end up working full-time for part-time pay or working part-time for little pay. If you're planning to offer blogging services, don't agree to write a 500-word post for
  • Freelance Copywriting as a Part-Time or Full-Time Job by Brian Scott

    Brian Scott
    9 Dec 2014 | 11:12 am
    The term "copy" simply denotes "information that a client wants written and published." A client may contract you to create copy for print or digital media, such as for a magazine, a website, a brochure, a DVD, or a sales letter. Because copy comes in all forms and for all industries, the variety is seemingly limitless. All writing needs "somebody" to write it. In industries where
  • Top 10 Most Embarrassing Spelling Mistakes Made by Popular Politicians by Brian Scott

    Brian Scott
    24 Sep 2014 | 7:22 am
    For politicians churning out multitudes of sound bites, press releases and Tweets in our 24-hour news cycle, the probability of making a spelling or grammar mistake is high. Some are inconsequential, others are laughable, and a few are downright embarrassing. Take a look at these famous flubs from the last few campaign cycles. 1. The Obama Campaign's "Congrssional Budget Office"—In a video
  • How to Pitch Story Ideas to Online Magazine Editors Without Annoying Them by Brian Scott

    Brian Scott
    25 Aug 2014 | 3:27 pm
    With more people working part-time and looking to supplement their income with freelance work, it's important for creative-types to learn how to pitch, communicate, and correspond with editors the right way, especially if they dream of becoming full-time freelance writers. A difficult but essential writing rule I had to learn as a budding freelance writer was to communicate and interact
 
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    Jeremy Porter

  • How one organization rebranded, changed its name, and achieved greater clarity

    Jeremy Porter
    10 Feb 2015 | 5:25 am
    Rebranding can be a long, fraught process. This is how one organization rebranded, what they managed to achieve, and what they learned. Credit: Justice Connect Justice Connect is a non-profit legal organization based in Melbourne, Australia. Justice Connect recently relaunched with a new brand and a new name. I interviewed Justice Connect CEO, Fiona McLeay, to see how the rebrand has helped their work and what they learned. This is an edited version of that interview. Jeremy: What does Justice Connect do? Fiona McLeay: It provides access to justice, through the pro bono legal services of…
  • The press release no-one could read (and how to fix it)

    Jeremy Porter
    3 Feb 2015 | 12:58 pm
    Writing must be readable. This press release is filled with management-speak that says nothing. The fix: shorter sentences, simpler language. Edited press release Every now and then I see writing so bad, I recoil. Last week UN Women launched a new campaign and the press release was a jargon-filled, meaningless, management-speak mess. “Galvanize momentum”? Check. “Instruments of change”? Check. “Interventions for scalability”? Check. Just how bad is it? Whenever I write I check how “readable” my writing is. I ran the first paragraph of the…
  • What’s the difference between branding and marketing?

    Jeremy Porter
    20 Jan 2015 | 4:37 pm
    What can we learn from Apple Nike, and Virgin? We can see the difference between branding and marketing, and why we need both. It’s only a few weeks into the New Year and I’ve found myself answering this question a few times: what’s the difference between branding and marketing? There’s a simple distinction I make. Branding is strategic and constant. Marketing is tactical and temporary. A brand strategy should determine the marketing strategy. Branding: Apple, Nike, Virgin Three of the world’s most loved brands are clear about what they will always do. Apple will always…
  • Write visually and inspire action using Monroe’s Motivated Sequence

    Jeremy Porter
    15 Jan 2015 | 11:35 am
    Monroe’s Motivated Sequence is a persuasive speaking format. It’s a variation on the problem-solution format that is visual and inspires action. Monroe’s Motivated Sequence Sometimes we write intuitively. We all use persuasive tricks whether we know we’re doing it or not. Monroe’s Motivated Sequence is something you may be using in your speeches, presentations, and stories and you may not even know it. Monroe’s Motivated Sequence Alan Monroe, a professor at Purdue University, created MMS in the 1930s. He said, Although individuals may vary to some extent,…
  • My five favorite articles of 2014

    Jeremy Porter
    16 Dec 2014 | 8:23 am
    These five articles are my favorites published this year. A mix of persuasion, narrative, messaging, purpose and language. Rather than publish the typical end of year “most popular” article list, I thought I’d share my five favorite articles of 2014. Here they are in no order. Know the three modes of persuasion I never thought I’d read Aristotle, but after reading The Political Speechwriter’s Companion I picked up Aristotle’s Rhetoric. In this article I describe Aristotle’s three modes of persuasion: ethos, pathos, logos. I think every…
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    copywritercollective.com

  • Going with the flow – copywriting that gets your reader from start to finish

    Kathy Lawrence
    2 Mar 2015 | 12:25 am
    I’ve not been on a copywriting course. I don’t read every single tips and tricks article that gets published around my area of expertise. My success stems from three things: – Getting an understanding of what the reader needs – Always keeping in mind what I want the reader to do as the result of reading what I’ve writing – An instinct for making words work These tips comes from my instinct. They just make sense. 1. Tell a story. Story-telling for brands is high profile right now. But everything we write about our company and our products and services should tell a…
  • Writer’s block: copywriters behind bars

    Karen Goldfarb
    27 Feb 2015 | 12:13 am
    There are plenty of journalists who’ve done jail time for something admirable, like risking their lives to get the story in a hostile locale. These jailbird copywriters aren’t those guys. Gary Halbert Lovingly referred to as the Prince of Print, Godfather of Copy and the Alpha Shitweasel, Gary Halbert was a successful and experienced copywriter, arguably among the best in the world. He earned huge sums through his copywriting, book sales and stock picking services, including the popular fee-based Gary Halbert Letter. For some debatable reason, Gary had a bad habit of collecting money…
  • Stupid Marketing Strategies

    Allan Dib
    25 Feb 2015 | 11:47 pm
    Much of the time we spend here is devoted to discussing strategies for rapid business growth through marketing. However I’ve found it’s just as important to learn from mistakes as it is to follow good advice. In this article I’ll outline three of the most common marketing blunders made by small and medium sized businesses. These “stupid” marketing strategies have killed many small businesses. Left unchecked, they could kill yours. Stupid Marketing Strategy #1 – Not Tracking Advertising Return On Investment (ROI) John Wanamaker, one of the marketing greats, famously said: Half the…
  • Struggling With Your Website Copywriting? Try The Iceberg Theory

    Brett Tudor
    25 Feb 2015 | 12:03 am
    Copywriting is hard work for anybody other than a copywriter. Add website architecture into the equation and you end up losing 3 things: time, money and sleep. Fortunately there is a solution that will help you. Ernest Hemingway, one of the world’s most famous writers, came up with it. It helped him write brilliant short stories in the early to mid-20th century. It’s called the Iceberg Theory (or Principle). You won’t need to be a literary genius to use it. The Iceberg Theory will guide your website copywriting and save you time. It might even save you money. This is because you will…
  • An Honest Guide to Freelance Copywriter Rates

    Ryan Law
    23 Feb 2015 | 11:58 pm
    Freelance copywriter rates are often shrouded in mystery.  With a confusing selection of hourly, day and project rates available, it can be difficult to understand the billing process – let alone work out the value of copywriting, and it’s return on investment. In a bid to increase the industry’s transparency, I’ve explored the common types of freelance copywriter rates. I’ve laid out the pros and cons of each type of rate, and I’ve included a few estimations of the prices you can expect to pay for a freelance copywriter. I’ve broken-down how most freelance copywriter rates are…
 
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    The Write Practice

  • 10 Lessons Dr. Seuss Can Teach Writers

    Joe Bunting
    27 Feb 2015 | 11:57 am
    by Joe BuntingIn the spring of 1925, a Dartmouth College senior named Theodor Geisel was caught drinking, a serious offense during prohibition. As punishment, he was forced out of his role as editor-in-chief of Dartmouth’s humor magazine, Jack-O-Lantern. That didn’t stop Geisel from writing, though. He submitted humor stories under a variety of pen names: L. Pasteur, L. Burbank, and, the one he would one day become famous for, Seuss.  It wasn’t until two years later that he bequeathed his pen name with an advanced degree, becoming Dr. Seuss. (He wasn’t actually a…
  • A Weird Way to Beat Writer’s Block

    Marcy McKay
    26 Feb 2015 | 8:48 am
    by Marcy McKayI recently visited with a new writer over coffee. She confessed, almost embarrassed, “I’ve written on and off for years. Well, sort of…but, now I’m really trying to get serious about my novel, except I keep quitting. It’s really frustrating. How do you ummm,” she looked away, then back at me again, “How do you fight writer’s block?” That’s a great question, and the answer is… You can’t fight it. That’s the bad news. The good news is you can still achieve success on the page. You can still write…
  • Cat Talk with Steven Pressfield, Author of “Do The Work”

    Pooh Hodges
    25 Feb 2015 | 7:43 am
    by Pooh HodgesSteven Pressfield, a dear friend, wrote a short manifesto, Do The Work.  The title of the book actually answers so many questions. It is Do The Work, not Read About The Work, or Tell Your Cat About The Work, or Think About The Work.  Do The Work, is written as though Steven Pressfield is your personal coach. Mr.Pressfield, or Mr. Steve, will help you from your beginning idea to the end of your project, when you finally ship. And this book is not just for humans and cats who are writers. Do The Work is for anyone who wants to fight resistance: to lose weight, start a…
  • The Philosophy of Villains

    Liz Bureman
    24 Feb 2015 | 7:12 am
    by Liz BuremanDepending on the fictional work, villains have different philosophies on the relationship between good and evil. Some villains are aware of the fact that heroes are willing to go to great lengths to ensure that the forces of good and justice prevail. Others can’t comprehend the idea of a hero sacrificing themselves for the sake of the greater good. Photo by JD Hancock (Creative Commons). Adapted by The Write Practice Villain Philosophy #1: Self-Preservation and Individuality Many villains tend to believe that humanity should function in a way that encourages…
  • If You Had a Platform Like the Oscars, What Would You Say?

    Monica M. Clark
    23 Feb 2015 | 12:02 pm
    by Monica M. ClarkDid you watch the Oscars last night? I did. And before that I watched a documentary on the history of the Oscars on Netflix. So it’s safe to say I listened to a lot of Oscar speeches yesterday.   We all know about the music that subtly ushers winners off stage when they talk too much, but if you think about it, Oscar winners are given a minute to give a speech about anything AND to have millions and millions of people listen. Oscar speeches are powerful. Examples of Great Oscar Speeches Some winners, like John Legend and Julianne Moore, use the Oscar platform to…
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    Lauren Sapala

  • Lauren Sapala on Hiatus

    Lauren Sapala
    9 Feb 2015 | 4:31 pm
    Hi Readers, I’m on maternity leave until the end of April 2015. I won’t be posting or working as a writing coach during that time, but will be excited to see everyone again soon. In the meantime, please browse my Archives for writing inspiration.
  • The Reason I Never Found a Writing Group that Fit, until I Started My Own

    Lauren Sapala
    22 Jan 2015 | 10:02 am
    I joined my first writing program in San Francisco in 2006 and it was great. But—it was just that, a writing program geared toward including a lot of members. The structure was based on a community numbering around 50 different writers. I got a lot of work done in the program (started and finished my first novel), but I didn’t make the close friends I was hoping to find there. This was to be expected. It was a big program with new writers coming and going all the time. At any given meeting there might be 20 writers sitting around a huge conference table all diligently concentrating on…
  • The Real Secrets I Learned from My First Writing Program

    Lauren Sapala
    15 Jan 2015 | 10:19 am
    In 2006 I was living in San Francisco, working at a private detective agency, and thinking about picking up writing again. I had moved to San Francisco in 2004 and I had quit drinking in 2005. For the past couple of years I had felt lost and confused. I didn’t really know what to do with myself if alcohol wasn’t going to be a major part of my life. I’d used it for a long time to numb myself and block my emotions—especially those emotions I felt around writing. But working for a private detective exposed me to a goldmine of stories. Our surveillance guys sent me reports every day and…
  • Why I Stopped Writing for Seven Years

    Lauren Sapala
    8 Jan 2015 | 9:55 am
    During my senior year of college I took my last creative writing class. At the end of the semester I met with my professor for a final conference on my progress. At that time she told me that she recommended I pursue something else. I wasn’t cut out for writing, she said. Really? I asked. I was half shocked that it could be that easy to kill all of my hopes and dreams in ten seconds, and half already resigned to the fact that she was probably right. Couldn’t I get any better? I asked. You know…with practice? No, she said. I don’t think so. That was in the spring of 2000 and I didn’t…
  • Why I Never Got an MFA

    Lauren Sapala
    29 Dec 2014 | 9:35 am
    Growing up, I loved writing and books. Storytelling in any form was one of my great passions. So when I got to college I was super excited to take creative writing classes. But my first creative writing class was far more disappointing than I expected. Our professor gave us different essays to read by prize-winning authors and then spelled out a bunch of rules that we should all follow if we wanted to be good writers. Realism was important, he said. For example, if we included a can of soda in our story we should make sure the can was 12 oz. just like a real can of soda would be. My heart…
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    Stories and Stuff

  • When a Hurricane of Clichés Equals a Great Movie

    harmamae
    7 Feb 2015 | 8:51 am
    Today, I’m going to talk about Casablanca. If you want to know more about why I care about Casablanca, check out my previous post, ‘Writing Reality – Or Escaping It‘. “Thus Casablanca is not just one film. It is many films, an anthology… And this is the reason it works, in spite of aesthetic theories and theories of film making…Two clichés make us laugh. A hundred clichés move us. For we sense dimly that the clichés are talking among themselves, and celebrating a reunion.” - Umberto Eco (Travels in Hyperreality, and “Casablanca, or, The Clichés are Having a…
  • In Jane Austen, Nice Guys Finish First

    harmamae
    3 Feb 2015 | 12:53 pm
    Girls go for the bad guys, they say, and nice guys finish last. If so, then Jane Austen has achieved an amazing feat of literature by creating nice guys you want to cheer for. Nice guys many females claim they’d like to date. Nice guys who aren’t boring, but actually readable. I realized this while reading several people online insist Frank Churchill and Henry Crawford are far more interesting than their romantic rivals (the nice guys who actually get the girl, in other words) – George Knightley and Edmund Bertram. This is craziness, of course. You’d have to be pretty…
  • Writing Reality – Or Escaping It

    harmamae
    16 Jan 2015 | 3:30 pm
    A quick thought for today: Writers write what’s real. They try to connect with some reality in the readers’ experience, and inspire emotions that complement the work they write. They try to represent the world as it truly is. That is one theory of writing’s purpose, anyway. The problem is, reality really bites. I wanted to improve as a writer this year. I gritted my teeth and tried to dredge up something of reality – bad experiences as well as good (though I’d be the first to admit my own real problems may barely phase anyone else.) I wrote down some stuff that for me was…
  • Join Mark Zuckerberg’s Book Club, Rediscover Why Books Matter

    harmamae
    8 Jan 2015 | 11:25 am
    Mark Zuckerberg is starting a book club. A Facebook book club, which seems appropriate, considering he is Mark Zuckerberg. BUT he said one very insightful thing that should give everyone hope for millenials – we aren’t necessarily shallow, visual-obsessed youngsters with short attention spans. At least, maybe not if we join Mark’s book club. Here’s what he said: “Books allow you to fully explore a topic and immerse yourself in a deeper way than most media today. I’m looking forward to shifting more of my media diet towards reading books.” The thing…
  • Must-Reads at Stories and Stuff in 2014

    harmamae
    29 Dec 2014 | 12:53 pm
    By Ken Whytock, licensed under CC-BY-NC 2.0 I started this blog in 2009 – wow, that’s a lot of blogging! This year was definitely less active for me in the posting department, as I’ve had a lot going on (see Paris, and my Job and Apartment update). However, I refuse to neglect this blog! I love to debate the joy of stories with you all – as both a writer and a reader. Stories need to be not just heard, but chewed over and hashed out between us all before they solidly enter the age-long human conversation. Let’s soldier on with this! So this blog will not die any time soon, though I…
 
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    Milo James Fowler

  • Another One Bites the Dust

    1 Mar 2015 | 6:00 am
    The publishing industry has been in a state of flux for years now. Bookstores are closing. Amazon is ever-expanding, becoming a publishing entity itself. But are people even reading books anymore?  Yes they are: now more than ever. They read in print and on screens (phones, tablets, phablets, e-readers). And with thousands of writers publishing their work both traditionally and independently
  • The Power of an Encouraging Rejection

    22 Feb 2015 | 6:00 am
    I've been scoring some good rejections lately. Oxymoron? Maybe. They're encouraging, but they can also lead to frustration levels the likes of which only Taz or Animal can relate to. So close! Yet so far. Because a no is still a no, regardless of how it's worded: "I was glad to see something new from you--but I'm going to pass on it. It's nicely written and I enjoyed reading it, but overall
  • Wastelands 2 is Now Available...for Pre-Order

    15 Feb 2015 | 5:00 am
    There have been more than a few highlights from the past five years of writing and submitting my short stories, novellas, novels, and poems, but this one definitely takes the cake.  I still can't believe one of my tales is sharing a table of contents with the likes of Orson Scott Card, Hugh Howey, Paolo Bacigalupi, David Brin, George R. R. Martin, Cory Doctorow, and Nancy Kress. It's too
  • Resurrection of the Hornet @ Saturday Night Reader

    8 Feb 2015 | 5:00 am
    Captain Max Sinclair’s tiny ship trembled, creaking as it jerked like a spider’s prey caught in a web. Tugging at its portside: a massive black hole that had yawned open without warning like a ravenous maw. Yanking at its starboard side: the tractor beam of a stout freighter, pulling with all the power of its reverse thrusters—but not due to any humanitarian concerns on the part of the
  • Future City Blues - Cover Reveal

    1 Feb 2015 | 6:00 am
    Introducing Future City Blues - available SOON. Includes: Doppelganger's Curse by Milo James Fowler  A woman stalked by her double. A detective in over his head. In a city where the cops are on a mobster's payroll, private investigator Charlie Madison stands in the gap. When a wealthy young socialite asks him to help her catch a threatening stalker, he takes the case. But things aren't
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    Write Line Blog - Free Expressions Seminars and Literary Services

  • Friday Roundup 2.27.15

    Lorin
    27 Feb 2015 | 5:56 pm
    Enjoy the weekend!Literary Agent Sound Off: Query Letter BasicsWho’s the Greatest Unreliable Narrator in Literature?Forget Oscar Fashion, We Want These Dresses Made From Books!Becoming a Student of Your Own Creative ProcessSomatic Yoga for Seniors and Writers
  • Friday Roundup 2.20.2015

    Lorin
    20 Feb 2015 | 12:34 pm
    Have a great weekend, folks!How “Strong Female Characters” Still End Up Weak And Powerless (Or, “Do They Pass The Action Figure Test?”)Take Your Writing Further: How to Get the Most Out of Writing Exercises8 Literary Party Themes To Throw A Bookish-ly Fun Bash, Because Punctuation Means It's Time To RageWhat Ira Glass Explains In 1-Minute Will Change Your Life Forever. Seriously.The Unlikable Female Character: Thoughts on Middle Grade Literature
  • Picture Prompt #16

    Lorin
    16 Feb 2015 | 5:59 pm
    The Picture Prompt concept is simple yet challenging, so get those fingers ready! This prompt can be done with any photo you find interesting, but preferably one you haven’t had a long time to study. It’s a fun exercise for a writing group as well, especially if everyone reads his/her piece to the group.Ready?Here’s the prompt: In just thirty minutes, write a complete story based on the photo below. Photo CreditWhen you’re finished, come back and share your experience in the comments. (Or even your story!)Did you like this exercise? What was the most challenging part…
  • Friday Roundup 2.13.15

    Lorin
    13 Feb 2015 | 6:47 pm
    Have an awesome weekend! Opposite Habits of Famous Writers: INFOGRAPHIC14 Must-Haves For The Perfect Booklovers’ Night In4 Marks of Good WritingFour Reasons Your Query Might Be RejectedWriter Productivity Tip: How To Increase Your Daily Word Count
  • Prompt-A-Palooza #54

    Lorin
    9 Feb 2015 | 12:16 pm
    Have an amazing week!After the last of it crumbled to dust...They thought the rain would stop...Once beautiful...Rainbows in every oil slick...The mirror reflected candlelight...Dread like a heavy overcoat...Sunshine burned through the canopy...
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    Copywriter Collective

  • 9.00 o’clock, Prague.

    Copywriter Collective
    24 Feb 2015 | 10:12 am
    The shy sun makes its short appearance in this Tuesday cloudy morning. “I quit coffee a while ago” João says while enjoying his morning black tea. “Things change” he argues, “we’re on constant evolution”. João is Copywriter Collective’s most recent slogan competition winner with the entry you have our word, a beautifully executed word play that solidly evokes the idea of promise and expresses – almost from a literal point of view – what CC’s clients expect and will be provided with: words. And isn’t that what brands and businesses need from copywriting –…
  • Copywriting slogan competition shortlist

    Jack
    4 Dec 2014 | 3:41 am
    Back in February we ran a slogan competition to come up with a world-beating slogan for Copywriter Collective. We received all the entries in the Spring but it has taken us a long time to get everything together and decide on a shortlist. Our apologies. We’ve just been too busy working for clients. Copywriter Collective supplies international creative copywriters to companies and advertising agencies around the world. So we need a line that communicates the expansive service we offer. Here is the shortlist (Perhaps inevitably, often more than one person has suggested the same slogan):…
  • Desk for rent in Amsterdam

    Jack
    25 Sep 2014 | 6:53 am
    We have a desk for rent in Amsterdam. It’s slap bang in the middle of town on the Rokin opposite the torture museum, which you can pop into during your lunch break for a bit of light relief. The office is small with three rooms and a large meeting room that you’re also free to use. Most importantly for writers and creatives, it’s quiet, so you can work in peace. Plus, it has all the amenities like a stella coffee machine, printer and a nice plant. This desk is much nicer than the one we have for rent. We just put this one here because it is more eye-catching. Look at…
  • Dream teams, now you can hire creative + copywriter teams from Copywriter Collective

    Copywriter Collective
    16 May 2014 | 6:08 am
    Sometimes you need more than just copy or just art direction. You need the full package: a whole creative team. That’s why Copywriter Collective is now offering just that. We’ve invited some incredibly talented creative dream teams to come and join us, and they’re available to work for you right now. Check out what they can do below, and get in touch to see how a little creative teamwork could transform your marketing effort. WHY HIRE CREATIVE TEAMS THROUGH US? Worry-free hiring.  We don’t just take on anyone at Copywriter Collective. The teams we represent have been thoroughly…
  • Is a copywriter the missing link in your marketing chain?

    The Collective
    8 Apr 2014 | 9:55 pm
    Hire a copywriter on a monthly basis: Save money and get better results No company would hire an accountant on an ad hoc basis, or get a different one every month to do their accounts. So why should it be different with copywriting? If you regularly need a freelance writer, subscribing to a set number of hours each month can bring a lot of major benefits to your company. Better value for money By guaranteeing the copywriter a certain number of hours each month, we can offer you a discount on the regular freelance rates. So you get the same top copy for significantly less per hour. More…
 
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    Words & Music

  • Karma Police

    2 Mar 2015 | 5:29 am
    I always thought Karma Police was a great name for a song and Radiohead live up to the name with their tune. There are three sections to the song, each made up of straightforward yet interesting chord progressions. The lyrics are funny, biting, challenging and fluid, like the music they accompany.The song was originally released in 1997 on Radiohead's third album, OK Computer. It reached the Top Ten in the UK and came close in the US, climbing to 14 on the Hot Modern Rock Tracks chart.Karma police arrest this manHe talks in mathsHe buzzes like a fridgeHe's like a detuned radioKarma police…
  • Workingman

    23 Feb 2015 | 4:57 am
    Garcia/HunterSo I got a job.I'm officially moving back from the takers column to the makers. I'm going back to being a Workingman.45 years ago this month the Grateful Dead went into the Pacific High recording studio in San Francisco and recorded 8 songs that they released under the title Workingman's Dead. Every song on it was written by Jerry Garcia and/or Robert Hunter.Hunter/GarciaGarcia/Hunter rank with Lennon/McCartney, Jagger/Richards, and John/Taupin as one of the great songwriting teams of rock music. It was announced last week that they will join those others in the Songwriters Hall…
  • I'm A Little Bit Socially Awkward

    16 Feb 2015 | 5:29 am
    I’ve always been a little bit socially awkward but it’s only been the last couple of years that it’s made me, for want of a better word, a dick. It used to make me more accommodating but now it makes me less. It used to lead me to avoid confrontation but now it’s the thing that makes my old, easy-going ways so hard to recapture.It’s not that long ago that I was legally classified as happy-go-lucky. It takes practice to achieve that state of mind but it’s worth the effort. You should’ve seen me. I put strangers at ease with my laid-back attitude. My friends were excited to see…
  • Thank You for the Madness, Jack

    13 Feb 2015 | 4:46 am
    Thank you for the madness, JackAnd for putting it into wordsFor simultaneous loneliness and ecstasyThat’s a tricky wire to walkYou must have seen the plummet looming from a long way offMaybe even childhoodYou must have seen a lot of things that most of us cannotThank you for the sounds of your ideasFor the creaking in your bonesFor the massive abdominal hemorrhageFor scratching one ankle with one toeFor thinkingAnd tryingAnd caringAnd crying And pukingAnd losingFor standing on your head in an upside-down world and keeping your eyes wide open
  • The Six (or Seven) Step Program for Becoming an Artist

    11 Feb 2015 | 5:52 am
    Christmas TreeWinter is not the most productive time of year. There’s a lot of sleeping going on (which is to be expected when the sun sets at 4:00), and eating and drinking, but not a lot of working. Between holidays and snow days and sick days who can get anything useful done anyway? It’s a good time of year to stay at home and putter.            Everyone putters in their own way. The main thing is to not strain yourself. No heavy lifting (and, if you must, be sure to bend your knees). Stay away from open flame and open windows and…
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    Write Kids' Books!

  • Is your kids’ book blah or blechhhh? These 10 FREE font pairings add a professional touch.

    Jennifer Tzivia MacLeod
    2 Mar 2015 | 4:52 am
    Picture a mom, surfing Amazon one morning.  Maybe she’ll buy your picture book?  It’s perfect for her kids.  The cover sure looks promising, she thinks.  She clicks on it to Look Inside.  She skips through a couple of pages, and suddenly, she’s shaking her head.  Something’s clued her in.  She’s figured out that your book is self-published and she suddenly has no desire to read any further. What went wrong??? Readers don’t usually know exactly what’s turned them off about a self-published book.  But a lot of the time, badly-chosen fonts…
  • Does your children’s book have series potential? Use this 3-step checklist to find out!

    Jennifer Tzivia MacLeod
    26 Feb 2015 | 12:16 am
    So your book is doing great.  You wrote it, released it, it looks terrific.  You’ve got a few reviews under your belt.  And now… it’s time for your next book. Should you make it a brand-new story?  Or should you write a “sequel” – spin off a series that somehow picks up where your last book left off? Series books are proven winners in lots of ways:  26 of Amazon’s 100 Children’s Books to Read in a Lifetime (that’s over 1/4 of the best kids’ books of all time) are series books.  Kids love them, teachers love them, librarians love them. …
  • Why picking the right age category for your book is so important (and how not to mess it up). GUEST POST by Laurisa White Reyes

    Jennifer Tzivia MacLeod
    16 Feb 2015 | 1:00 am
    If you are as avid a reader as I am, you are probably familiar with the terms Middle Grade, Young Adult, and Adult fiction. Recently, a new category has popped up: New Adult. What exactly determines if a book fits into one category or another? This may not be important for people who just want to read good books, (Who cares if the protagonist is sixteen or thirty-six as long as it’s a great read!) but understanding the difference is vital when you are writing books and marketing them. Middle Grade Books Let’s start with Middle Grade. This category is for younger readers, generally between…
  • Does it take crude and rude to get a kids book published? GUEST POST by Nikki Aksamit

    Jennifer Tzivia MacLeod
    14 Feb 2015 | 12:16 pm
    How is it that a children's book series about a flatulating dog is in every library, every bookstore in the U.S., but one that explains difficult subjects such as death, cancer and bullying to young kids may never be read, or reach a bookstore shelf?   Why does a series about a boy and his garbage eating pet fly scream out in all its Technicolor glory from the shelf of the "my first reader section" at my local library, but books that give young kids clear answers to their tough questions sit unpublished on the author's hard drive? Are we shielding our kids? Do we think young kids should…
  • Best of the Kids-Book Writing Online this week: Feb 13, 2015

    Jennifer Tzivia MacLeod
    12 Feb 2015 | 5:26 am
    An occasional roundup of Required Reading for kids’-book writers and illustrators: 1.  On books that do more harm than good You may not have heard about the book Melanie’s Marvelous Measles (I hadn’t), but you’ve probably heard that measles is on the rise in kids in a few places around the world.  Readers, parents, and now scientists are weighing in on the kind of science we’re teaching our kids from books, as science writer Dean Burnett says: …it seems you don’t actually have to be accurate in order to get a book published. The recent measles outbreak in the US…
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    Technical Writing ToolBox

  • STC Webinar Recording- Higher Education in Technical Communication

    Gurpreet Singh
    15 Feb 2015 | 10:36 am
    I recently conducted a webinar on Higher Education in Technical Communication for STC India Management SIG. You can view the Youtube video recording of the session on this blog post. I would love to hear your feedback regarding this session. Is it exciting? Is it boring? Would you like to attend my next webinar? Please leave […]
  • Webinar – Higher Education in Technical Communication

    Gurpreet Singh
    20 Jan 2015 | 11:14 am
    I am conducting a webinar titled “Higher Education in Technical Communication”  for STC India Management SIG. Please register if you are interested in learning more about higher education opportunities in technical writing. Registration link: http://www.stc-india.org/events/webinar-jan-31-2015-higher-education-in-technical-communication/ Filed under: Presentation, STC, Toronto Tagged: Education, Technical communication, Technical writing
  • Youtube Webinar Recording- API Documentation

    Gurpreet Singh
    13 Oct 2014 | 4:44 pm
    I recently conducted a webinar on API documentation for STC India Management SIG. You can view the Youtube video recording of the session on this blog post. I would love to hear your feedback regarding this session. Is it exciting? Is it boring? Would you like to attend my next webinar? Please leave a comment […]
  • Webinar on API Documentation for STC India Management SIG

    Gurpreet Singh
    25 Sep 2014 | 11:32 am
    I am conducting a webinar on API documentation for STC India Management SIG. Please register if you are interested in learning more API documentation. Registration link: http://www.stc-india.org/events/webinar-api-documentation/ Filed under: Elements of Technical Writing Tagged: Application Programming Interface, careercast, Communication, Management SIG, stc
  • Top 10 Best Jobs in 2013

    Gurpreet Singh
    14 Mar 2014 | 1:09 pm
    In my last blog post, I talked about the 60th best job in 2013- Technical Writing. But what about the top 10 best jobs in 2013? Comcast released a list of top 200 different jobs in the U.S based on five criteria: physical demands, work environment, income, stress and hiring outlook. The data for this report […]
 
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    Writeaholic Inspiration

  • No One Can Do My Writing Challenge

    Ruth Barringham
    25 Feb 2015 | 4:53 pm
    No long ago I set up a writing challenge.I called it The 12 Month Writing Challenge.The idea is that you download the writing challenge, and follow it through for one whole year.And by the time you've finished you'll have earned a minimum $36,000 from your writing.Sounds simple, doesn't it?So why is it that no one can do it?I've lost count of the number of people who've downloaded a copy over the last few years, yet not one of them has ever got back to me and said, "Hey, guess what? I've finished the challenge!"Instead all I ever hear are stories of how people have started the challenge, but…
  • Do You Have to Write Books to Make Money From Writing

    Ruth Barringham
    24 Feb 2015 | 7:12 pm
    So the question is, if you want to make money from your writing, do you have to write books?And the simple answer is, no.Naturally, being able to write and publish your own books is really helpful, but there are many people all over the world making money from their writing and they've never written a book in their life and they don't intend to.For example, journalists make their living from writing, but they're not book authors.Likewise, there are many other ways to earn money as a writer without writing a book.I used to work exclusively as a freelance writer when I first started writing. I…
  • Why Writers Are Lazy

    Ruth Barringham
    23 Feb 2015 | 8:57 pm
    Are writers lazy?No.But you'd be forgiven for thinking that they are.Why?Because being a writer means sitting down for a while, writing, and then finishing for the day.From the outside it looks like doing nothing.But a writer's brain is always active. Probably more active than most people's.There are also those who give writers a bad name.These are people who say they're writers, but they never write. They aren't writers at all but they tell others that they are.And because non-writers don't understand what it takes to be a successful writer, they think that all writers are lazy.Being a…
  • increase Your Creativity In Just a Few Minutes a Day

    Ruth Barringham
    17 Feb 2015 | 7:32 pm
    Sometimes if can seem difficult to be creative all the time and to constantly be coming up with new ideas of what to work on next.But I’ve discovered a way to boost my creativity on a daily basis and it’s so easy I wish I’d started doing it years ago.As a writer I read a lot, and recently I’ve been reading about meditation and all the amazing studies about how it’s benefiting so many people.So I downloaded a free app called Insight Timer onto my iPhone and set it for 10 minutes.Now, every morning, before I begin work for the day, I start the timer and sit for 10 minutes with my eyes…
  • Amazon Deals This Week Only - Plus Free Ebooks From Amazon

    Ruth Barringham
    8 Feb 2015 | 2:15 pm
    As you are probably aware, next Saturday is Valentine's Day.Personally it's not a day I celebrate at all (I love my husband every day and I don't have to give him a gift or card to prove it) but I know most people do.Amazon also knows that most people celebrate Valentine's Day and they are offering 2 really great special offers for those who are romantically inclined on the 14th February every year.This year they are offering 50 romance Kindle ebooks for only $2 each. So if you want to snuggle up with a good romantic story, this is a great opportunity.Also they are offering a discount on…
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    Assignment Help

  • Texting Tribulations: What Texting does to your Spine?

    admin
    2 Mar 2015 | 4:55 am
    Spine problems are widely misunderstood by doctors and patients alike. Doctors often do not agree on the causes of the spine problems, while patients often fail to comprehend the medical complications arising out of spine related disorders. Spinal discs are round in shape and flat on top, firmly attached to the vertebrae above and below them. They are pliant and act as shock absorbers but like other bones in the body, they are often susceptible to problems arising out of bad posturing and degeneration due to aging. The Study A new study by Kenneth K. Hansraj, chief of spine surgery at New…
  • Best Way to Write an MBA Assignment

    admin
    26 Feb 2015 | 12:55 am
    MBAs may be good at analyzing spreadsheets and reading financial statements but when it comes to writing lengthy MBA assignments, they tend to feel nervous and anxious about the task. It is true that writing classes are not core requirements for business courses. But business school like University of St. Thomas' Opus College of Business encourages students to take writing and communication courses during their first year. The school's writing-communication lab professors help students to improve their writing skills and coach them on everything from how to write a case study analysis…
  • 6 Ways to Manage Assignments in your MBA First Semester

    admin
    25 Feb 2015 | 4:09 am
    MBA or Masters in Business Administration is a post-graduation degree course undertaken by graduate students in order to expertise in the field of business management. MBA program encompasses various aspects of business by exploring the topics throughout the course. The MBA course module includes accounting, finance, operations management, marketing, human resources, quality management, strategic management, analytical studies etc. Purpose of the course  The main purpose of the MBA course is summarized below Help the students to gain insight knowledge on the management functions…
  • How to Write the Introduction for an Assignment?

    admin
    24 Feb 2015 | 2:11 am
    Some would say introduction is a guidebook, some would characterize it as the context list of a magazine and some would define it as a map of the assignment. Whatever you call it, the function of the introduction remains the same. It must reflect the purpose of writing the assignment, consist of the important terms and signify the findings of the assignment. It requires too many criteria to make it perfect. This is why students start to feel annoyed while composing an assignment introduction. You may have countered the same situation, gaping at a computer screen and nothing worth coming out…
  • How to Formulate a PhD Admission Essay

    admin
    20 Feb 2015 | 2:32 am
    Admission essay is a document written by applicants presenting their personal statement while applying to graduate schools, college or university. Admission essay is the mandatory criteria for the selection processes held in college or university admission programs. In addition to it, admission essays range from specific to broader sense of a topic or personal information of the applicant. Eligibility criteria for PhD admission The candidate is formally admitted to the doctorate program on the fulfillment of the below mentioned criteria: The applicant must have two years of Master degree (or…
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    The Writer's Life eMagazine

  • Dear Reader: Guest Jennifer H. Westall, author of Healing Ruby

    1 Mar 2015 | 9:00 pm
    Jennifer Westall dives into Christian characters to explore her own questions of faith. Inspired by the life of her grandmother, Healing Ruby (2014) is the first in the Healing Ruby series, which delves into the mysteries of faith healing. She’s also the author of Love’s Providence (2012), a contemporary Christian romance that navigates the minefield of dating and temptation. She resides in southwest Texas with her husband and two boys, where she homeschools by day and writes by night, thus explaining those pesky bags under her eyes. For More InformationVisit Jennifer H. Westall’s…
  • Interview with Krystal Lawrence, author of 'Risen II: The Progeny'

    1 Mar 2015 | 9:00 pm
    Krystal Lawrence was born and raised in Southern California, where she was a child actress. In her late teens and early twenties she redirected her creative energy into radio, and hosted a successful talk show in Las Vegasfor many years. She is the author of two previous books and numerous short stories. She now lives in Seattlewhere she is working on her fourth novel, PHONE CALL FROM HELL. Her latest book is the horror/suspense, Risen II. For More InformationVisit Krystal Lawrence’s website.Connect with Krystal on Facebook and Twitter.Find out more about Krystal at Goodreads.About the…
  • In the Spotlight: Wintergarden by T.M. Wallace

    1 Mar 2015 | 9:00 pm
    Title: WintergardenAuthor: T.M. WallacePublisher: Brownridge PublishingPages: 220Genre: YA/Children’s FantasyFormat: Paperback/KindleAddyson Marten must travel a magical labyrinth to its center in order to reach her friend Connor and free him from the witch of the Median Realms. Both Connor and Addy must learn to use their own magical abilities to fight the growing evil in the Human and Fairy worlds.Wintergarden is the sequel to the Award-Winning book “Under a Fairy Moon,” (Gelett Burgess Children’s Book Awards—Fantasy, 2012, Canadian Christian Writing Awards—Young Adult,…
  • Interview with Tamara D. Taylor, author of 'Believers: Truth in Deception'

    1 Mar 2015 | 9:00 pm
    Tamara D. Taylor was born and raised in the East Bay of California until she moved to Omaha, Nebraska to attend Creighton University. Today, Tamara still resides in Nebraska where she and her husband, John, are raising their five young children.A life long lover of all forms of the written word, Tamara is an avid reader, and has been writing short stories and poetry since elementary school. After watching her son struggle with succeeding in school, she decided to finally write the novel she had been thinking about for years in an effort to show her son that no dream is too big to…
  • Rendezvous in Baghdad by Ben Sheldon Book Feature - Win a $25 Amazon Gift Card!

    27 Feb 2015 | 4:45 am
    Title: Rendezvous in BaghdadAuthor: Ben SheldonPublisher: iUniversePages: 208Genre: ThrillerFormat: Ebook Purchase at AMAZON As throngs of humanity pack Rome’s St. Peter’s Square, all await the news from the Sistine Chapel as to who will be the next Pope. But no one is more anxious than Iraqi American Sami Yusuf, for he and one of the papal candidates share a well-kept secret. When it is finally announced that Cardinal Paul Rogan has been elected Pope, Sami knows the one thing about Father Rogan that no one in the crowd does-he is a humble shepherd who molests his unsuspecting…
 
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    Wylie's Writing Tips

  • Writing in the right direction

    Ann Wylie
    28 Feb 2015 | 10:12 pm
    Create written communication guidelinesEver wish you had a reference tool you could hand off to new team members to answer the question, “How do we write around here?”Write it right Writing guidelines get your writers and reviewers on the same page — literally.How about a resource you could use to show serial offenders how to fix label headlines, passive voice or leads that are more likely to get readers to take a nap than to take action?Wouldn’t you love to present a document that helps you tell your approvers, “While I personally would love to press…
  • Get a writing workout with Wylie

    Ann Wylie
    28 Feb 2015 | 10:11 pm
    Edit, write & repeat at Catch Your Readers in ChicagoIn the crunch of writing headlines and meeting deadlines, it sometimes seems as if there’s not enough time to pause and reflect on how you’re doing.But at Catch Your Readers, a two-day Master Class on April 21-22 in Chicago, you’ll get a chance to write, edit and rewrite; get and give feedback; and leave with a totally rewritten piece. In the process, you’ll:Master the techniques you learn in the workshop by applying them immediatelyGain valuable insights on your work from your peers and meLearn to analyze and…
  • Why be creative?

    Ann Wylie
    28 Feb 2015 | 10:10 pm
    Interesting copy helps readers learnIn the early 19th century, German philosopher Johann Friedrich Herbart said that interest leads to understanding, learning and memory — and even inspires readers to learn more.Up, up and away! Creative copy elevates understanding, learning, memory and learning.For nearly 200 years, researchers, philosophers and communicators have seen the link between interest and learning.One of those researchers is Suzanne Hidi, associate member at the Ontario Institute for Studies in Education’s Centre for Applied Cognitive Science. In “Interest and Its…
  • Stop it with the ing-ing

    Ann Wylie
    28 Feb 2015 | 10:09 pm
    Present participle heads may be worse than labelsBarney Kilgore, the legendary editor of The Wall Street Journal, once wrote: “If I see ‘upcoming’ slip in[to] the paper again, I’ll be downcoming and someone will be outgoing.”Hanging around Stop ing-ing your headlines headlines. Image by Trent StrohmI’m with Barney: Stop ing-ing. Especially in headlines.Now, to be fair, Kilgore’s comment refers to gerunds: verbs that get turned into nouns with the addition of an “-ing,” as in “Writing is fun.”What I’m talking about are…
  • Create more short pages

    Ann Wylie
    28 Feb 2015 | 10:08 pm
    Fewer long pages are less effectiveThink index cards, not toilet paper: Websites with many short pages — as opposed to those with fewer longer pages — work better.Usability experts John Morkes and Jakob Nielsen studied Web visitors’ performance with two versions of a website:One site contained three pages with 4,500 words.The other contained eight pages with 2,500 words.The eight-page, more concise site was:Easier to understandMore memorableFaster to readMore satisfyingBottom line: Break your copy into meaningful chunks, and create a page for each chunk.Next steps: Catch…
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    Woelf Dietrich

  • New Feature: Wallpaper Wednesday (Working Title)

    Woelf Dietrich
    26 Feb 2015 | 1:32 am
    This is a strange post. I posted to Facebook earlier today on impulse a screenshot of my latest wallpaper titled, “Today’s wallpaper. Because I get bored easily”. Here it is: I have dozens of folders with hundreds of wallpapers ranging from abstract to retro to fantasy. I haven’t changed my desktop’s for a while, but […]
  • My New Writing Instrument and a Wandering Muse Visits

    Woelf Dietrich
    25 Feb 2015 | 12:23 am
    You’ve probably noticed my posts have become less frequent this last week or so. You see, the thing is,  I’ve run into some devastating computer troubles. My old Vista-ripped-out-and-replaced-by-Ubuntu HP laptop died a couple of weeks ago, which was fine because I rarely used it (I’ve explained why in an earlier post). I predominately write, read […]
  • #Art of Fantasy 7: Boris Vallejo

    Woelf Dietrich
    23 Feb 2015 | 12:45 am
    Something different today. Or maybe not so different. I first saw Boris Vallejo’s art on the covers of my Tarzan books. I was in my early teens, I think–maybe younger, and those covers sold the books for me. I loved the smooth, clean lines Valejo used in his action scenes. He made it look so […]
  • Musings on the Nature of a Muse

    Woelf Dietrich
    18 Feb 2015 | 2:48 pm
    I have something out of left field for you today. A satyrical look at acceptance and rejection and the whimsical muse whose attention you can never hold long enough before she wanders off to her next lover. I’m reblogging an article from Prose Before Ho Hos called The Manly Art of Acceptance and Rejection, written by author Jessica West, […]
  • Very Inspiring Blogger Award

    Woelf Dietrich
    17 Feb 2015 | 8:56 pm
    I’ve been nominated for the Very Inspiring Blogger Award by Fia Essen. I feel truly honored and I thank her. Unfortunately, my workload is rather heavy at the moment with various deadlines looming and I won’t be able to participate in any meaningful way. As such, it would be unfair of me to accept the […]
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    The Proof Angel

  • How to avoid boring your reader

    The Proof Angel
    2 Mar 2015 | 2:15 am
    Life is too short to read things just for the sake of it. If people don’t read what you have written, then the effort you put in was a waste of time, unless it was entirely for your own benefit. People read because they need information, or want to be entertained. If you can do both, that is ideal, but if you fail to do either, you will be ignored. The key is to put yourself in your reader’s shoes, & think about whether they need that point, that sentence, or that extra word. That is a nice simple thing to remember, but it is harder to apply when you are focussing on writing…
  • Creating a pop up book shop

    The Proof Angel
    1 Mar 2015 | 1:50 am
    Pop up shops and cafés are common these days in our towns and cities. I’ve not seen a pop up book shop yet, but there isn’t really any reason why it couldn’t work. If you think it is worth a try, this post will tell you more. Visit my websites via the links at the top of this page.Filed under: Resources for authors Tagged: pop up book shop
  • 12 posts about the writing process

    The Proof Angel
    28 Feb 2015 | 1:36 am
    Today’s post is a collection of links: How to create memorable characters. One simple thing to become more productive as a writer. 3 reasons you should use Scrivener for your book. Five ways to make good writing great. Wait a minute while I procrastinate. Six provocative ways to become a ‘Real’ writer. Writing when no one is listening. 10 secrets to write better stories. The REAL secret to writing a bestseller. What writing a horrible first draft reveals about you. What to do about your first draft. Discover the healing power of writing your own story. Visit my websites via the…
  • Britain’s silliest place names

    The Proof Angel
    27 Feb 2015 | 2:36 am
    I like these maps. They show detail of 9 areas of the UK, only marking the places with odd names. Some of them are very odd. Nice to know that they haven’t succumbed to the temptation to re-brand! Visit my websites via the links at the top of this page.Filed under: Bits & bobs Tagged: place names
  • How book sculptures work

    The Proof Angel
    26 Feb 2015 | 1:36 am
    Have you ever wondered how book sculptures are made? Find out how here. I had a go last summer. Mine looked nothing like these! Visit my websites via the links at the top of this page.Filed under: Bits & bobs Tagged: book sculpture
 
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    eBooks India

  • Why Getting a Free ISBN Might Be a Good Thing

    Hiten Vyas
    1 Mar 2015 | 10:09 am
    In Good e-Reader, some interesting statistics were reported recently. A graphical representation indicated that up to 30% of ebooks sold in the United States are untracked. Why? Because they are self-published and do not have an International Standard Book Number (ISBN). An ISBN acts as a unique identifier for your book as it enters the book distribution system. If a book doesn’t have an ISBN, tracking sales of it becomes impossible. The major benefit of having an ISBN for your book is that it makes it eligible for listing in brick and mortar book stores. Ordering and distribution of books…
  • Will eBooks Surpass Print? Not if the Price Issue Continues

    Hiten Vyas
    1 Mar 2015 | 6:29 am
    Earlier in the year, John Sarkar and Kim Arora reported in the Times of India that ebooks were yet to take off in terms of sales. They also highlighted an issue across India, of some online stores listing ebook and print versions of the same book with little difference in price between the two formats. It is true that ebooks are still at an early stage in India. However, online retail stores have been selling ebooks in India for some time now. Flipkart started doing so in 2012 and Infibeam even before this. As someone who has been listing my own ebooks for sale in India since 2012, I’m…
  • 5 Common Writing Myths

    Georgina Roy
    27 Feb 2015 | 10:59 am
    Writing myths are the so-called universal truths about writing, followed by the words “every writer should know.” If there is anything universal about them, it’s the damage they cause to your creative process and your determination that put your thoughts on the blank page before you. Some of them can be discouraging and quite deadly – in the sense that they will literally stop you from pursuing your dream of writing. 1. Writers are born Especially good writers – they were born that way, and all the rest of us are just common mortals with delusions of grandeur. Another myth is that…
  • 5 Things Writers Can Learn From the Cricket World Cup

    Kavitha
    27 Feb 2015 | 10:53 am
    The Cricket World Cup is in full swing and any cricket fan will definitely be watching all the interesting matches. But there are a lot of things that writers can learn from the World Cup as well! Read on to learn more. 1. Perseverance pays The Afghanistan cricket team has only one word for it: perseverance. From a war-torn country with complete lack of facilities, here is a team that qualified for the World Cup. This in itself is a huge achievement. Similarly, writers need to focus on their goal, and take baby steps to get there. Success will not come overnight, but if you persist, you will…
  • 3 Different Types of Character Arcs and How You Can Use Them in Your Stories

    Smitha Abraham
    26 Feb 2015 | 11:05 am
    An arc is something that is arced or curved. Similarly, in a writer’s parlance, a character arc refers to the idea that a character must undergo some kind of a change in his/her journey of life; characters must grow, learn, evolve and change as the plot progresses. In other words, readers expect their characters to be in a better position than where they started. For example, if a character is poor, we expect him to become richer, or if a character is a villain we expect him to go in jail. These expectations may or may not be fulfilled. Character arcs are visible in movies too and are not…
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    StoryShelter

  • An Adorable Homemade Valentine’s Gift

    Kerri Lowe
    13 Feb 2015 | 2:19 am
    This week, in honor of Valentine’s Day we asked What is the best gift you ever received? What is the story behind it?  If you’re looking for an adorable homemade Valentine’s gift, then look no further than the inspiration from this story by Alex Wagman.   Check out how other people answered this question on […] The post An Adorable Homemade Valentine’s Gift appeared first on StoryShelter.
  • Severe Weather Alert!

    Kerri Lowe
    31 Jan 2015 | 7:16 am
    This week we asked “Have you and your family ever experienced a severe weather event? If so, what happened?” We heard about hurricanes, tornadoes, and blizzards, but couldn’t quite believe the amount of snow (upwards of 6 feet!) that Jim Barker wrote about! Read Jim’s full story here! Jim won a $25 Amazon gift card […] The post Severe Weather Alert! appeared first on StoryShelter.
  • Do You Believe In Love At First Sight?

    Kerri Lowe
    23 Jan 2015 | 3:16 am
    This week we asked Do you believe in love at first sight or the idea of soul mates? We loved Chelle Stuart’s response that mixed some practical attraction knowledge with the mystical part of soul mates being in the plan of the universe…  Check out all the other responses on StoryShelter and add your own! Don’t […] The post Do You Believe In Love At First Sight? appeared first on StoryShelter.
  • How I Got My Childhood Nickname

    Kerri Lowe
    16 Jan 2015 | 3:17 am
    This week on StoryShelter we asked Did you have a childhood nickname? If so, how did you get it? Almost everyone has a semi-embarrassing childhood nickname in their past and our favorite story this week was from Patrick Gregerson, king of the playground curse words. Read his PG-13 (inside joke, you’ll see!) story below! Click to […] The post How I Got My Childhood Nickname appeared first on StoryShelter.
  • Never Will I Ever…

    Kerri Lowe
    9 Jan 2015 | 5:34 am
    …Work for someone again! That’s what this week’s Question of the Week winner Angela Caito says about starting her own freelance writing business after breaking away from a destructive marriage and starting over in a new state with her kids. She’s even written a couple books (which we know a lot of you StoryShelterers aspire […] The post Never Will I Ever… appeared first on StoryShelter.
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    WritingThoughts

  • What Is Scannable Content and How to Write It If You Publish Online

    Laura Spencer
    27 Feb 2015 | 11:20 am
    ©Laura Spencer Do your posts and articles look like college term papers? If they do, you’re making a big mistake (and your web traffic probably shows it). Not writing scannable content just may be the number one rookie writer mistake new writers make. Don’t worry. If you’re making this mistake, you’re not alone. I made it myself years ago when I transitioned from technical writing to web writing. Learning how to make your articles and posts scannable is not difficult. In this post, I share ten elements that will help make your online posts and articles more scannable.
  • Why You Should Get Out of Your Pajamas and Out of Your House Today

    Laura Spencer
    20 Feb 2015 | 8:50 am
    ©iStock.com/erikreisAhh, the freelance writer. Bleary eyed, day after day he or she sits at home staring at the computer, clad only in a pair of scruffy (and somewhat smelly) pajamas. Alone. If the freelancer is a guy, it’s been at least a week since he shaved. And of course, a female freelancer wears no makeup. That is the stereotype anyway. Everyone knows that freelance writers rarely leave home and have poor personal hygiene, right? If truth be told, there have been days when I’ve worked in my pajamas. But I don’t do that often, do you know why? I’ve found that I…
  • What Is the Difference Between an Article and a Blog Post? (Revisited)

    Laura Spencer
    13 Feb 2015 | 9:30 am
    ©iStock.com/marekuliasz Do you write articles, blog posts, or both? Many writers and their clients don’t know how to answer this question. That’s because the line between an article and a blog post has become blurry over the past decade. Some online publications started as blogs and some publish blog posts and articles side by side. No wonder there’s such confusion. If writers and publishers don’t fully understand the difference between the two, imagine the confusion in the mind of the average consumer. As writers, we need to understand which type of piece we are…
  • 10 Freelance Writing Money Traps and How to Avoid Them

    Laura Spencer
    6 Feb 2015 | 9:15 am
    ©iStock.com/ziquiu What causes a freelance writer to go out of business? There are many answers to that question, but money problems are high on the list. Lots of freelance writers struggle with their finances. Freelancing is different than working for an employer. Those differences take many freelancers by surprise. They can lead to some unpleasant financial situations. I call those unpleasant financial surprises money traps. A freelancer experiencing financial difficulty can feel trapped. In this post, I share ten common freelance writing money traps and explain how freelance writers can…
  • What Freelance Writers Must Know About Ghostwriting

    Laura Spencer
    30 Jan 2015 | 9:05 am
    ©iStock.com/Bob_Eastman There’s a growing demand for writers who can produce high quality ghost-written pieces. Ghostwriters create anything from corporate blog posts to personal memoirs, and more. As you consider various writing projects, you will probably eventually be offered a ghostwriting project. You may wonder. “Is ghostwriting for me?” In this post I’ll explore that question. In particular, I’ll take a look at ghostwriting as it pertains to blogging and business writing (since that’s where I have the most experience). What we discuss should be…
 
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    Angelique Voisen

  • New Release: Wrecking Havoc (Havoc's Crew 3)

    Angel Voisen
    2 Mar 2015 | 12:00 am
    Publisher: Evernight PublishingCover Artist: Jay AheerBuy Links: Evernight PublishingBlurb: During the course of his long life as an immortal wizard, Havoc has seen it all, done it all. Getting rid of an old enemy is a small price to pay to protect those he loves, and his family is the only reason he still hasn’t gone to the grave. Havoc knew Gale never viewed him as a father figure like his brothers. He knows what Gale wants, but Havoc refuses to give in. Gale doesn’t know about his bloody past, or the monster he used to be. When old sins and buried ghosts begin to resurface, he…
  • Book Blitz: Behind the Blindfold by Natalie Wrye

    Angel Voisen
    2 Mar 2015 | 12:00 am
    Title: Behind The Blindfold: Uncovered Vol IIAuthor: Natalie E. WryeGenre: New AdultRelease Date: February 28, 2015Book Tour: March 2-6 and March 9-13thSynopsis(2nd & Final Installment)Saturday Blake has uncovered one of Mark Rich's biggest secrets.Betrayed, frightened and hurt, she tries to move on, believing that the game is over, but she is sorely mistaken. There's another player in this game...and they won't play by any rules.And Mark's not done with her yet...TeasersBuy LinksVolume 1SynopsisA flash of green eyes, and then…he was gone.Mysterious, secluded, powerful, seductive. Mark…
  • TRR 4th Anniversary Party #TRRparty + Updates and Wrecking Havoc Cover Reveal

    Angel Voisen
    1 Mar 2015 | 12:00 am
    Events: The Romance Reviews 4th Anniversary PartyThe Romance Reviews is turning 4 this March! The event has over 350 participating authors (including me :)My book giveaway: Cinder and Char) and 350 prizes to be won. Do check out their site, join in the festivities and most of all, have fun: http://www.theromancereviews.com/event.phpUpdates, Upcoming Releases and Wrecking HavocDue to some real life commitments, it’s been a while since I’ve mentioned any updates, so I’m chiming in today to what’s new and what’s coming this exciting month of March. To start with, I have a gorgeous new…
  • An Addictive Sexy Saturday #MMS 81

    Angel Voisen
    28 Feb 2015 | 12:00 am
    Welcome to the 81st Week of My Sexy SaturdayThis week's theme is My Sexy Addiction, so I'm posting a 7-sentence snippet from Johnny's Toy Soldier, my recent MM contemporary short story from Evernigtht Publishing. In this scene, Johnny realizes he isn’t capable of quenching his growing addiction and desire for Josh, his deceased brother’s ex. TeaserThe mention of Eli inevitably summoned weeks of pent-up shame and apprehension between us. After I kissed him the second time and he almost left, the tension between us only spiraled. Often, when I lay in bed, I kept thinking there was only…
  • Guest Post: In Search of the DNA of Romance by Chantal Verlaine

    Angel Voisen
    27 Feb 2015 | 12:00 am
    Today, I'm happy to have Author Chantal Verlaine on my blog. Welcome, Chantal! Chantal is here today to talk about the DNA of Romance and her book Miami Steam, which is currently on sale over at Amazon. In Search of the DNA of Romance FictionBy Chantal VerlaineWhy are we so hooked on romance? I’ve often pondered this conundrum. Before we even crack open the cover of a romance novel, we know the plot setup, who the main characters are going to be, and of course, the ending is a given, yet we still keep turning the pages and buying romance more than any other type of fiction. The enduring…
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    GARTLER WRITING STUDIO

  • THE ELUSIVE MUSE: Journaling your way to writing

    Beatriz
    26 Feb 2015 | 11:42 am
    Journal writing is an art unto itself.  But how often do we actively use art in our journals?  We writers are passionate about our journals and notebooks, those sacred spaces where some of our best ideas manifest.  So it makes sense to rig our journals so that they inspire us as much as possible. And what’s more inspiring than art?  Let’s look at some ways we can fuse art with journal writing in order to cultivate inspiration and creativity. The Art JournalArtists keep journals just like writers do. But instead of filling their journals with words, artists fill…
  • THE ELUSIVE MUSE: Journaling for writers

    Beatriz
    13 Jan 2015 | 9:10 am
         There are days when writing ideas, stories, essays, poems, are nowhere to be found. That does not mean we have to go a day without writing.  The more we write, the better our writing becomes. That’s a fact.  Practice breeds proficiency.       Commitment sets successful writers apart from unsuccessful writers.  When we are committed to the work, our chances for success increase exponentially. And one of the easiest and most creative ways to commit to our own writing and produce better writing over time is to keep a writing journal. …
  • THE ELUSIVE MUSE: Journaling for writers

    Beatriz
    15 Dec 2014 | 11:39 am
    Here are 5 journal ideas for creative writers:1) People-watch. The people around you can become fictional characters or the subjects of poems. You can go beyond mere reporting and write what you imagine as well. What do you think that woman's name might be? Where do you think she lives? Is she having an affair with that man, or are they just business partners? What is she thinking right now? What is she hiding in that big purse? Any of this can be the beginning of a story or poem. 2) Listen. Eavesdrop in restaurants, in stores. Listen to your own family and friends -- really…
  • THE ELUSIVE MUSE: Journaling your way to writing

    Beatriz
    3 Nov 2014 | 9:56 am
         Journal prompts are a great way to kick off a writing session when you’re feeling uninspired.  We all have days when writing ideas are nowhere to be found, but that doesn’t mean you have to go a day without writing.  In fact, on those days when my muse is being elusive, I like to either work through some writing exercises to stretch and strengthen my writing muscles–or I evaluate my writing goals.  Often, this means I spend time making notes about my writing goals to see how far I've come as well as where I’m going and how much work…
  • ANOTHER READING; this time with video

    Beatriz
    27 Oct 2014 | 10:26 am
    Chicago Calling
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    Kindle Me This

  • Top 7 Tips for Busy Self Publishers

    Elizabeth Yetter
    24 Feb 2015 | 4:36 am
    1. Never Expect Instant Success When self publishing books, never expect instant sales and instant success. Instant anything is rare in the publishing world. Instead, plan for a slow build up to success. As you publish more books under your name or under a pen name, your books will begin to gain visibility and better […]Continue reading...
  • Get Motivated and Start Writing a Book Right Now

    Elizabeth Yetter
    23 Feb 2015 | 10:11 am
    Do you have a story that is begging to be written, but you just can’t seem to find the time or motivation to get it started? Here are some great motivators for you to test out and get on your way to getting those words onto paper. 1. Offer Yourself a Reward Offering yourself little […]Continue reading...
  • 10 Ways to Put Yourself in the Mood to Write

    Elizabeth Yetter
    19 Feb 2015 | 5:02 pm
    There will be days when you can’t sit down fast enough to begin writing and days where the last place you want to be is in your seat. Here are some great ways to put yourself in the mood to write any day, at any time. 1. Music Set the mood for your novel with […]Continue reading...
  • Here’s How to Get Started Writing a Book in 7 Steps

    Elizabeth Yetter
    18 Feb 2015 | 3:59 pm
    1. Create a Workspace (or clean up the one you have) It doesn’t matter if you plan on doing the bulk of your writing in the library or in your bed, you should have a designated workspace in your home, apartment, or room. A basic desk and a comfortable chair are the two main ingredients […]Continue reading...
  • How to Become a Writer in Your Free Time

    Elizabeth Yetter
    17 Feb 2015 | 2:43 pm
    Would you like to try your hand at becoming a writer? Too scared to quit your regular job and jump into full-time writing with both feet? I don’t blame you. When you first decide to try your hand at being a writer, it can be a scary jump into the unknown. The best solution to […]Continue reading...
 
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    All Indie Writers

  • Weekend Reading: Character Development for Writers

    Jennifer Mattern
    1 Mar 2015 | 1:52 pm
    Our weekend reading collection is coming a bit late this week. But better late than never, right? This week's posts and resources are for authors trying to develop new characters for their fiction. We'll kick things off with a checklist-style post to help you get to know your new characters, then get character development advice from Virginia Woolf, and finally we'll look at one particular character type writers sometimes struggle with. Enjoy! 5 Point Checklist to Help Writers Get to Know Their Characters Thoroughly By Jody Hedlund at jodyhedlund.blogspot.com There is no shortage of…
  • Reader Question: When Should Indie Authors Publish a Second Book?

    Jennifer Mattern
    26 Feb 2015 | 3:18 pm
    Last week, a question from Sunayna Prasad came in about building a fan base and how it affects series publishing. Basically, she wanted to know if she should publish the second book in her new series right away, or if she should wait until she has more fans or readers of the first. Here's her question: "I am writing a sequel to my published book. It didn't sell a lot, but it got a lot of positive reviews, all from strangers. How many fans should I have (whether they bought the book or I gave it away for free) before I publish my sequel. I sold somewhere around 53 copies since a year and a…
  • 15 Ways to Repurpose Your Content – Get the Full Report

    Jennifer Mattern
    25 Feb 2015 | 6:00 am
    Earlier this week I shared 15 ways you can repurpose your blog content to reach a broader audience and make your archives continue to work for you. And, as mentioned in that post, I planned to repurpose it as a short report, going into more detail about each idea presented. That report is now available for newsletter subscribers. If you'd like a copy you can subscribe today and you'll be sent the download link when you confirm your subscription. You'll also receive my other free report -- 21 Blog Post Ideas to Promote Your Fiction. These are just the beginning in my new All Indie Writers…
  • Quick Tip: Make Sure Your Author Blog Reaches the Right Readers

    Jennifer Mattern
    24 Feb 2015 | 4:52 am
    Your author blog can be an important, and effective, book marketing tool. But I've seen countless authors complain that blogging isn't worth their time, only to discover that they're going about it in the wrong way. One of the biggest issues I've seen is that authors aren't targeting the right readers with their blogs. And if you don't reach the right audience, it should be no surprise that your blog isn't leading to more book sales. So here's this week's quick tip for indie authors: Make sure your author blog reaches the right readers. If you get that part wrong, precious little else about…
  • Get More Out of Your Blog by Repurposing Blog Content

    Jennifer Mattern
    23 Feb 2015 | 9:18 am
    Recently you might have noticed that I've been adding audio versions to some All Indie Writers blog posts. One example is "Gamification: Make Freelance Writing More Fun." Not only can new visitors read the original post, but they can choose to listen if that's what they prefer. And now they have another option: a condensed version in a SlideShare presentation. Why would you want to create multiple versions of your blog content like this? You probably have a wealth of information already available on your blog. Your blog probably reaches brand new visitors every day -- people who haven't read…
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    Denise Drespling

  • BookTube Video: Odd Thomas by Dean Koontz

    Denise Drespling
    1 Mar 2015 | 4:42 am
    Straight out of the bottom of my TBR, it’s Odd Thomas by Dean Koontz. View the other books I read for this challenge. Have you read it yet? Original article: BookTube Video: Odd Thomas by Dean Koontz©2015 Denise Drespling. All Rights Reserved.
  • 6 Reasons to Turn Up the Silence in Your Writing Life

    Denise Drespling
    27 Feb 2015 | 5:00 am
    photo from Flickr via Creative Commons from Patrik Theander Life is loud. And because of the loudness in our lives and minds, it’s often difficult to find the time for silence. When was the last time you sat, on purpose, in quiet for any length of time? Silence is important and powerful. We need to find this stillness not only in our writing lives, but also within the words we create. 1. Ideas come in silence It never fails that if I struggle to come up with a good idea, it’s because too many things are clogging up my brain. To do lists, work projects, blog posts, laundry. Even…
  • BookTube Video: The Epic Reads Book Tag

    Denise Drespling
    26 Feb 2015 | 8:47 am
    All the epicness of the books! Here is my Epic Reads tag video, in which I discuss said epicness. Original article: BookTube Video: The Epic Reads Book Tag©2015 Denise Drespling. All Rights Reserved.
  • Tuesday Talks: Should YouTubers Disable Comments?

    Denise Drespling
    24 Feb 2015 | 10:44 am
    What happens when things get heated on the comment board? Should YouTubers ever disable comments on their videos? Here are my thoughts: Would you ever disable comments? Original article: Tuesday Talks: Should YouTubers Disable Comments?©2015 Denise Drespling. All Rights Reserved.
  • BookTube Video: The Pitch Perfect Book Tag

    Denise Drespling
    21 Feb 2015 | 11:36 am
    Book tag based on the movie Pitch Perfect. Tag created by Sara Ella. See which books I picked! Original article: BookTube Video: The Pitch Perfect Book Tag©2015 Denise Drespling. All Rights Reserved.
 
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    A Writer's Journey | A Writer's Journey

  • Self-Published Book Awards

    Nat Russo
    18 Feb 2015 | 4:54 pm
    The post Self-Published Book Awards appeared first on A Writer's Journey. Based on the email I received this morning from Writer’s Digest, it’s that time of year again. No, I’m not talking about Christmas! I’m talking about the time of year to decide whether you’re entering the annual Writer’s Digest Self-Published Book Awards. I want to offer my perspective, since I participated in the 2014 award cycle. Frankly, I was rather disappointed with the result last year, and it wound up being a $100 (USD) experiment I won’t repeat. Full disclosure: I…
  • Violence Vs. Sex In American Culture

    Nat Russo
    7 Feb 2015 | 5:57 pm
    The post Violence Vs. Sex In American Culture appeared first on A Writer's Journey. I hope you don’t mind me taking an uncharacteristic journey into self-indulgence for a moment. This will be short, I promise. The title of the article is probably far more lofty than it deserves. Earlier this evening on Facebook, I spotted the following image: This rustled my jimmies enough to share the image on my page with a bit of a rant. I know many of you will disagree with what I said, and that’s ok! No, really! It’s ok! Here’s the original text of my rant. I’d love to…
  • As You Know, Bob…

    Nat Russo
    25 Jan 2015 | 12:19 pm
    The post As You Know, Bob… appeared first on A Writer's Journey. Psst. Yeah you. I’ve talked to Bob, and you’re pissing him off. He thinks you’re a pretentious know-it-all, and people are leaving the cocktail party in droves. They didn’t come here to listen to the same old stories. Oh bloody hell. That literary agent just walked out. You have any idea how hard it was to get her here in the first place?! Wait. You look confused. Ok, I’ll back up. If you’re a new writer, it’s possible you have absolutely no idea what I’m going on…
  • So You Want To Start A Blog

    Nat Russo
    7 Dec 2014 | 10:45 am
    The post So You Want To Start A Blog appeared first on A Writer's Journey. You know you want to. You’ve considered doing it for a while now, but something always stops you. Maybe you’ve already done it once or twice, but it didn’t feel right, so you swore you’d never do it again. It made you feel uncomfortable. Or worse, it turned you into a slave and you couldn’t handle it. All your friends do it, and they look at you funny when you say “I’m not judging, but I just don’t get it.” You’re tempted, but a trusted friend,…
  • Review: Quirky Claus by Sebastian White

    Nat Russo
    2 Nov 2014 | 8:56 am
    The post Review: Quirky Claus by Sebastian White appeared first on A Writer's Journey. I’m not going to lie. My first reaction whenever a writer asks me to read and review his/her book is usually “I don’t wanna do this…I don’t wanna do this…I don’t wanna do this!” And I really need to get my attitude in check, because I’ve been blessed, lately, with a slew of awesome independently-published books. Quirky Claus is one such book. It’s not often that I’m delighted while reading a book I’m reviewing, but delighted…
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    terribleminds: chuck wendig

  • Whatcha Reading?

    terribleminds
    1 Mar 2015 | 9:01 pm
    Once in a while, I like to poke my head in and ask: So, whatcha reading? Like, right now. What is it? Is it good? Should we be reading it? (My own update: I just finished reading Peter Clines’ The Fold, which is a twisty little sci-fi thriller about a group who creates a teleportation technology based on folding reality — and, duh, it doesn’t go so well. It was really good! Also just polished off Delilah Dawson’s Wake of Vultures, which is so good it’ll make you hate her because it’s too good. Weird Westy fantasy stuff, different from but in line with…
  • An Open Letter To That Ex-MFA Creative Writing Teacher Dude

    terribleminds
    1 Mar 2015 | 10:36 am
    “It it the — flame! Flames, flames on the side of my face, breathing, breathless–“ (Alternate title: Things I Can Say About That Article Written By That Creative Writing Ex-MFA Teacher Guy Now That I’ve Read It And Gotten So Angry It’s Like My Urethra Is Filled With Bees.) Okay, fine, go read the article. I’ll wait here. *checks watch* Ah, there you are. I see you’re trembling with barely-concealed rage. Good on you. I will now whittle down this very bad, very poisonous article — I say “poisonous” because it does a very good…
  • Flash Fiction Challenge: The Four-Part Story (Final Part)

    terribleminds
    27 Feb 2015 | 10:27 am
    Aaaaand, FINAL ROUND. Go, visit the page for Part Three of this challenge. Once again we return to the four-part story you’re all choatically cumulatively writing. Your task is to go to the comments of that link above, find the third part of a continued story, and then continue it by writing the fourth and final part of that story. Meaning: it’s time to write the ending. You have another 1000 words to do this. Make sure to identify which story you are continuing and who the writer was. Do not continue your own story. Definitely do end this story — you’re writing…
  • Marion Grace Woolley: Five Things I Learned Writing Those Rosy Hours At Mazandaran

    terribleminds
    26 Feb 2015 | 3:54 am
    It begins with a rumour, an exciting whisper — anything to break the tedium of the harem for Afsar, the Shah’s eldest daughter. A trader knows of a wondrous circus. Traveling with it is a man with a face so vile it would make a hangman faint, but a voice as sweet as an angel’s kiss. He is a master of illusion and stealth. A masked performer, known only as Vachon.  On her birthday, the Shah gifts Afsar the circus. She is captivated by Vachon, and they are swiftly bound together by a heady web of fascination, jealousy, and murder. Those Rosy Hours at Mazandaran gives life to the…
  • Dave White: Five Things I Learned Writing Not Even Past

    terribleminds
    26 Feb 2015 | 3:45 am
    Finally, Jackson Donne has it figured out. After leaving the private investigation business, he’s looking toward the future — and getting married to Kate Ellison. Donne is focused on living the good life — planning the wedding, finishing college, and anticipating a Hawaiian honeymoon — until he receives an anonymous email with a link and an old picture of him on the police force. Once Donne clicks the link, nothing else in his life matters. Donne sees a live-stream of the one thing he never expected. Six years ago, his fiancée, Jeanne Baker died in a car accident with a drunk…
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    Creative Writing Prompts for Writers

  • Chilling #6

    Missy
    13 Feb 2015 | 7:46 am
    A man is walking down the street when he notices a shadow hunkered down in the bushes of a house. **What does the man do?** The post Chilling #6 appeared first on Creative Writing Prompts for Writers.
  • Horror #6

    Missy
    12 Feb 2015 | 7:38 am
    In the car in front of you on the highway, there’s a noticeable sway to the back tire that has you worried for the driver’s safety. You speed up to overtake the driver with the intent on waving him or her to the side of the road, but what you see scares you. What do you see when you pull up beside the driver? What do you do next?** The post Horror #6 appeared first on Creative Writing Prompts for Writers.
  • Mystery #6

    Missy
    11 Feb 2015 | 7:35 am
    A man pulls his car into the driveway. There’s a stranger’s car in his parking spot and his wife’s car is missing. Whose car is it? Where is the man’s wife? The post Mystery #6 appeared first on Creative Writing Prompts for Writers.
  • Criminal #5

    Missy
    10 Feb 2015 | 7:34 am
    You’ve witnessed a crime and been placed in the Witness Protection Program in another city. After six months, you’ve started to relax until one day, you see someone from your past. Who is it? What happens next? The post Criminal #5 appeared first on Creative Writing Prompts for Writers.
  • Dystopian #4

    Missy
    11 Dec 2014 | 7:24 am
    After years of the government watching every move of its citizens, they’ve finally come up with a program to secretly insert microchips in newborn’s feet to track them electronically. A group of rebels finds out about the chips. **Talk about how the rebels find out about the electronic devices. How do they try to educate the public about the government’s activities?** The post Dystopian #4 appeared first on Creative Writing Prompts for Writers.
 
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    SenaTechno

  • How to Choose Software to Meet Your Needs

    Nurdin Budi M.
    1 Mar 2015 | 8:42 pm
    How to select the software to meet your needs - this time with the increasing demand and the amount of competition all are required to have a powerful tool and can be used as something that helps you in many ways.You can certainly find a variety of software available in the market. However, with the increasing number of software available in fact it may make you confused to select it.What should you do to find out the best and match you? Below are some tips for choosing the software to fit your needs at a price that is saving:1.FeaturesIn the market, there are several software available at…
  • Optimizing AdSense with The Large Size Picture

    Nurdin Budi M.
    28 Feb 2015 | 11:18 pm
    There are many ways to optimize revenue from Adsense. Some may use the quick way, but it certainly had a greater risk. If you do that, you should consider the impact that you will get it later.To get a good idea you need the user group, or link wheel. In addition, other matrix is also needed to support it. For example, how many times your page appear in some time and also how much of which is derived from the many visitors every time, it is to figure out whether you are using an effective manner or not.Once you have set up the user in a group, then make sure to convey this information…
  • Advertise on Facebook? What Should?

    Nurdin Budi M.
    27 Feb 2015 | 9:33 pm
    During this time you may see and plenty to read articles that say that advertising on Facebook is a great way to market your products online. It was true, but there is one thing you should know about the ad through Facebook.Facts about advertising on Facebook, we can first free ad on Facebook but the range is not too large, and secondly we can ad on Facebook with to pay amount of money to them, and it is guaranteed to expand your advertising reach. But that part of the problem is we have to pay some money in a certain time as long as we still want to remain in promoting advertisements by…
  • Tips for Choosing and Using Registry Cleaner

    Nurdin Budi M.
    27 Feb 2015 | 8:49 am
    Are you having problems with your PC? If you have to use a PC long enough, sooner or later you will run into problems. One of the most common PC problems to do with the registry.The registry is an integral part of your operating system. This is where your computer keeps a record of installed programs, open certain files, and other details. To put it simply, your registry is your computer's private secretary. Without your secretary, you will be confused as to which key locker that is or how to find the address of a particular customer.When your PC is having problems registry, your computer can…
  • Secrets to Get $ 100,000 from Google AdSense

    Nurdin Budi M.
    26 Feb 2015 | 10:02 am
    When we began to have health problems that make our work a real job, then the book should find a way to make money with ease. Although there are some many programs that can be done, then we can choose AdSense. Google has established a large company for many years, and we know whether there are people who would be a legitimate company to be able to pay us.Therefore, of course, we must find ways to build a website and make money on the internet. Perhaps we can imagine, is not easy to create a website for people who have never experienced. However, if we keep on trying to find a way, we can…
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    Writing...Just because!

  • My journey to publication with Traveling Left of Center and Other Stories

    Anne OConnell
    22 Feb 2015 | 7:22 am
    Today I'm pleased to welcome author Nancy Christie as part of her 'Birthday Blog Tour' for her new collection of stories recently published by Pixel Hall Press. Here is her personal story of perseverance and commitment to her passion for writing. When I think about how I went from writing individual stories to having eighteen pieces published as Traveling Left of Center and Other Stories it is less a case of going right, left or straight ahead and more like the Beatles’ song: “The Long and Winding Road.”And it has been a long and winding road—long, because I started writing…
  • Writing Groups and Collaboration

    Anne OConnell
    1 Feb 2015 | 6:30 pm
    As I've shared before, my life is not complete or balanced unless I have the opportunity on a regular basis to meet with and share 'the writing life' with fellow scribes. The writers' group that has formed... no, actually it's not just formed, it's come alive, for me in Phuket gives me something to look forward to every month. Many of the members have become true friends as well. You know, the kind that will stay with you for a lifetime!I know this is the case with this group, especially since we are bound together by a wonderful collaborative project that finally culminated last month (Happy…
  • Finding Your Writers' Voice

    Anne OConnell
    21 Nov 2014 | 5:08 pm
    I've just finished leading a writing retreat in beautiful Phuket Thailand and am buzzing from the high that hanging out with fellow authors always leaves. On day one we talked about the start of the journey towards finding your author voice. As we opened with an exercise where participants interviewed and introduced each other, one writer introduced another by saying, "Her inner artist is very protective of her own blank canvass." It was the beginning of the shedding of egos, the recognition that to be a writer you have to say 'I'm a writer!' very loud and very clear and... then just get down…
  • Author Interview with Sophia Bar-Lev - Pasta, Poppy Fields & Pearls

    Anne OConnell
    11 Sep 2014 | 7:24 pm
    It gives me great pleasure today to interview another one of my new author friends who I met on D'vorah Lansky's Book Marketing Boot Camp Facebook page. What an amazing group of dynamic authors, many of whom are now on virtual book tours. Sophia Bar-Lev is the author of Pasta, Poppy Fields and Pearls and she and I are doing interview swaps today so make sure you pop by her blog and read my interview with her as well.So... Sophia, please tell us a little bit about your book and what it's about.Pasta Poppy Fields and Pearls is a 'Boomer Fiction' novel featuring four very different women from…
  • The Wrap-up Paralysis

    Anne OConnell
    7 Sep 2014 | 10:31 pm
    I’ve been trying to write the closing scene of my next novel for months. I’ve been talking about it in my writers’ group ad nausea, setting and breaking deadlines weekly and agonizing over it in my sleep. I’m a master procrastinator so I put it off by going back and doing the first edit and then the second edit for which I’m using AutoCrit for the first time. In my mind I was making progress! It wasn’t until today, while I was answering questions for an author interview that will post this weekend on a fellow indie author’s blog, that it finally hit me. One of the questions…
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    Be A Better Blogger

  • Be Memorable: Why I Wrote An 8,000-Word Blog Post (and Why You Should Do Something Just As Crazy)

    Kevin Duncan
    19 Feb 2015 | 8:40 am
    In the time it takes you to read this sentence, Gwyneth Paltrow will have done something pretentious, Taylor Swift will have broken up with another boyfriend, and 21 new blogs will have been created. You see, supposedly, a new blog is being created somewhere in the world every half second. Every half second. How can you succeed as a blogger when approximately 172,800 new blogs are created each and every day? How can you compete? How can you get noticed? Exclusive Blog Post Bonus: Want a PDF checklist for “Be Memorable: Why I Wrote An 8,000-Word Blog Post (and Why You Should Do…
  • Everything You Need to Know About Evergreen Content

    Luke Jordan
    12 Feb 2015 | 9:00 am
    Note from Kevin: This post is written by Be A Better Blogger reader and friend Luke Jordan of Intergeek. Luke writes about SEO, but with a twist. He aims to present information to readers in a style and format in which they’re unaccustomed. So, obviously, he’s a blogger after my own heart. When you’re finished, be sure to leave him a comment! I am so tired. Do you ever have those days where nothing seems to go your way? Today was the mother of all ‘nothing-is-going-my-way’ days. I was late for work after waiting round for a repair man to come and take a look at my…
  • What The Super Bowl Can Teach Us About Blogging

    Kevin Duncan
    6 Feb 2015 | 9:25 am
    Life lessons can be found in a myriad of places if you open your eyes and let yourself see. Who among us hasn’t learned a valuable insight while reading a good book? Or during a Sunday sermon at church? Or after watching a neighbor rake the leaves in his yard and hearing him shout, “Ouch…I have blisters on my hands…I should have worn gloves”? Blogging lessons can be found everywhere, too. You can find them in the lives of authors and world leaders. You can find them in random posts you stumble upon. You can even find them in sporting events. When I watched last…
  • 6 Blog Design Tips To Ensure Readers Don’t Pull Their Hair Out

    Kevin Duncan
    29 Jan 2015 | 8:59 am
    People often say they don’t know art, but they know what they like. Blogs are similar when it comes to design. People may not be able to quantify what makes a good design, but they sure as heck can tell you what they do and don’t like when they see it. There are minimalist blogs on the web with barely any color. Some see them and think they’re beautiful. Some look at them and are bored to tears. Some people like bright colors, while others like neutral. Some people like giant logos, while others don’t like anything that pushes content down the page. Some people…
  • How To Blog Through Personal Tragedy

    Kevin Duncan
    22 Jan 2015 | 6:15 am
    We all know it’s inevitable. And yet, it catches each and every one of us by surprise. Tears. Heartache. Sorrow. Sometimes, it’s the loss of a loved one. Sometimes it’s losing a job. Sometimes it’s a random tragedy that hits you on a nondescript Thursday afternoon. It doesn’t matter if we are prepared for it or if it blindsides us, because you can’t prepare your heart. It’s going to feel what it’s going to feel. And, eventually, it happens to all of us. Tears. Heartache. Sorrow. To Blog Or Not To Blog If you’re a blogger dealing with…
 
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    Cristy Burne

  • HeARTlines, diving for treasure, and digging up dinosaurs

    cristyburne
    19 Feb 2015 | 4:53 am
    How’s 2015 treating you? I’m loving it! I’ve just finished reading The Luminaries, which is AMAZING and totally worth the months of dedicated reading it took me to finish. I’m also: – writing a fast, funny chapter novel (at least my children think it’s funny), – preparing for the 2015 heARTlines festival of children’s literature and […]
  • Takeshita Demons fan art: nukekubi nightmares!

    cristyburne
    9 Feb 2015 | 12:29 am
    How’s your 2015 shaping up? Invented anything crazy yet? I’m writing a manuscript with my five-year-old, which is quite an entertaining process. He has some off-the-wall ideas, which is just what I need for this book! If you’re feeling creative, why not give yourself ten minutes to play on paper. Maybe try drawing something crazy-fun, like these awesome […]
  • 2015: Finish your book or eat grilled crickets

    cristyburne
    13 Jan 2015 | 10:29 pm
    You read it here first: This year I am finally going to finish that book. You know. The one I’ve been writing for THREE YEARS!! It should never have taken this long. I have all the excuses, and it has been a fabulous learning journey, but at the end of the year day, it’s time to […]
  • Diverse books to read in 2015

    cristyburne
    7 Jan 2015 | 12:21 am
    What’s on your reading list for 2015? Any books featuring diverse characters? Julie M. Fiedler recently contacted me about the Frances Lincoln Diverse Voices Children’s Book Award and prepared a fabulous presentation on the award, which is for diversity in children’s fiction, and was won by Takeshita Demons in 2009. Diverse books to read in 2015 In […]
  • New Year’s declutter uncovers Santa’s work

    cristyburne
    1 Jan 2015 | 6:34 am
    There’s nothing I like more than making lists to mark the start of a New Year, and 2015 is no different. One of my New Year’s Resolutions is to clear out the Piles of Important Things, to leave more space for thinking and writing and creating New Important Things. And while clearing, I found this: It’s […]
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    Leave the Frigging Marshmallows

  • Write Your Novel Now! Week 1 Activities

    1 Mar 2015 | 4:30 am
    Alright. It's Sunday and we're starting the 13 week novel. Three months and we'll all have a draft. Let's get moving...Kill it in 13 weeks. Image: Vaguely Artistic on Flickr.For this week:It may look like a lot on this page, but it's really not. It's more about getting yourself ready for the writing life and starting the writing. I'm doing all this along with you.Feel free to add comments on these activities (so that I can take them into consideration for revisions of this process) or post sections that you write.1. Determine a writing routine Figure out what you need to be a productive…
  • Write Your Novel Draft Now! Are You Ready?

    26 Feb 2015 | 6:09 pm
    Deadline LoomsDeadlines. Blergh. Image: Bora Bora on Flickr.I've been working on this damned novel for long enough and I've got the deadline for finishing the rough draft set for the beginning of June.Because I prefer the rewrite.Because I come from literary land where we were entirely unconcerned with plot and I have always struggled with it.Because I like fully immersing myself in a scene and imagining every little detail and making artful sentences that are their own story.But you know what? A novel isn't so much about sentences, not like short stories.Novels are more about scenes and…
  • What is a Writer's Voice?

    28 Jan 2015 | 1:14 pm
              It takes a great deal of experience to become natural.                                                                        —Willa CatherAs a writer, I want to be able to write anything, from any point of view, with varying voices. So why do I worry about myvoice if I must immerse myself in my characters'voices?Speaking loudly doesn't ensure your voice will be…
  • Are you a messy writer?

    15 Jan 2015 | 3:37 pm
    How I start a novel: ...or this one, at least.Some people are planners. They plan out every plot point. They plan all the arcs. They study formulas and beat sheets and structures and I don't know what. Then they get all over me for not knowing every single mark that my characters are supposed to hit.Other people totally poo-poo the planning process. I've had people on various forums snidely tell me to Have fun planning because the rest of us are writing. (Or making troll-like comments on forums?)Nature's model of the process of writing a novel. Image courtesy of Heber Farnsworth on…
  • What question is your novel asking?

    2 Jan 2015 | 11:42 am
    Story Questions vs. Plot QuestionsI ran across Karyne Norton's blog the other day. Karyne is a young adult fantasy writer. She hasn't tried pitching any of her books to agents and has not self-published. She wants the book she does that with to be good and understands that writing a book is a learning process. I respect this. (It might feel familiar to me.) In one of her posts on outlining, she asked, "What is the question of your novel?"It's easier to answer when you know what the question is.This was exciting because it was something that I had my novel group focus on when we…
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    The International Freelancer

  • The 9 Types of Query Letters (And When To Use Them)

    Mridu Khullar Relph
    17 Feb 2015 | 6:28 am
    There are no “rules” to this, just guidelines, so remember to always do a gut check. You’re a smart, intelligent professional (you are, I promise), so trust that you do know what is best when you’re communicating with someone. Here are the the different types of query letters and why they work in different situations. The post The 9 Types of Query Letters (And When To Use Them) appeared first on The International Freelancer.
  • A Day in the Life of a Working Writer

    Mridu Khullar Relph
    6 Feb 2015 | 1:55 am
    We’ve been talking about writing routines and finding the time to write lately on this blog and I’ve received several questions of the “how do you manage to get it all done?” variety, so I wanted to continue this conversation by giving you a glimpse into my writing day. The post A Day in the Life of a Working Writer appeared first on The International Freelancer.
  • What To Do When You Feel Like You’re Losing Your Shit

    Mridu Khullar Relph
    3 Feb 2015 | 12:55 am
    I don’t have to tell you what that feels like. You’ve been there. You’ve binged and ignored paying work for the thrill of finishing that novel. You’ve gone query-crazy and forgotten to note that scheduling deadlines for four feature articles in one week is the domain of the mad. You’ve spent days hooked on social media only to resurface and find that all that time you were saying you were working, you actually weren’t. So what do you do when you’re overwhelmed, underpaid, or going through an inevitable I-hate-freelancing stage? Try the following. The post What To Do When You…
  • Why It’s So Important to Have Time to Think (and How to Find It)

    Mridu Khullar Relph
    30 Jan 2015 | 12:28 am
    Here’s the thing. You can’t think of big pictures without actually having the time and the space to step back. You need to do this without clients calling you every three seconds, without the to-do lists that weigh heavy on your shoulders, and if you can afford it, a retreat might actually be the best way to do it. We couldn’t afford a retreat this year in time or money, but I found a few other ways to disconnect from everything and take the time to think about the overall scope of my business and my career. Here are a few. The post Why It’s So Important to Have Time to Think (and How…
  • How to Stay at the Top of Your Game

    Mridu Khullar Relph
    27 Jan 2015 | 12:28 am
    My biggest strength—and therefore, my biggest flaw—is that I’m a perfectionist. If I’m doing something, even if it’s a blog post or a small freebie for promotional purposes, I’m going to make sure that it’s something I’m proud of putting my name on. I don’t take shortcuts and I don’t like people who do. This means that I’m overworked and overwhelmed a lot, but it also means that I, at least in my own head, feel that I’m kickass. (It’s also why I’ve learned to say No to a lot of things.) But there’s a limit to how kickass you can be if you’re constantly…
 
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    My CMS

  • green milk

    philip2020
    17 Feb 2015 | 12:34 am
    Funny comedy fun fun. Green Milk London Comedy is the freshest dairy based comedy night to hit the city since, well, forever. A joint venture inspired by the collective love of stand up, basements and booze, these guys are attempting... Continue Reading → The post green milk appeared first on My CMS.
  • MECOPP

    Philip Likos-Corbett
    6 Sep 2014 | 1:23 pm
    An animated short film script I wrote for Edinburgh-based charity MECOPP who specialise in helping those from South Asian communities get the support they need from the local council. Translated into four different languages, the brief was to write the... Continue Reading → The post MECOPP appeared first on My CMS.
  • the lost art of being alone

    Philip Likos-Corbett
    27 Jul 2014 | 5:00 am
    Tea bag in the cup, the kettle pops. In goes the water, piping hot droplets trickling down the spout and onto the floor. You shift your toes to avoid the scalding heat, place the kettle back in position and vacantly stare into the cupboard... Continue Reading → The post the lost art of being alone appeared first on My CMS.
  • is david lynch a douche?

    Philip Likos-Corbett
    27 Jul 2014 | 2:44 am
    As we finally arrive at the eleven year, ten month anniversary of Mulholland Drive’s release at the Cannes film festival, I felt we should take some time out to discuss the controversial director who created the film. There will be no prizes... Continue Reading → The post is david lynch a douche? appeared first on My CMS.
  • the minesweeper collective

    Philip Likos-Corbett
    26 Jul 2014 | 4:53 am
    There’s a sickly sweet scent of artistic desperation that permeates the air as I examine a work of art next to a toilet door. The clinical whiff of urinal cakes does wonders to invigorate the senses and open the mind to new highs. Or lows... Continue Reading → The post the minesweeper collective appeared first on My CMS.
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    Email Marketing Tips

  • The One Trick You Need To Secure Your Site & Boost Google Rankings

    Monica Montesa
    27 Feb 2015 | 10:28 am
    If a higher ranking in Google search is what your heart desires, there’s another trick to appeasing the Google gods: Securing your website using HTTPS. While you should continue including SEO-friendly keywords, tags and other ranking signals on your website and within your branded content, having a secure site that protects the data of your customers is a huge plus. Not only does this make you look good in the eyes of Google, it makes you appear more trustworthy to prospects and customers on your site as well. Also, it’ll help you stand out from the competition — only 32.8 percent…
  • Sending Ham, Not Spam: Using Email Best Practices For a Better Campaign

    Sam Hollis
    26 Feb 2015 | 8:00 am
    Managing an email campaign is easier said than done. Sure, using an email service provider definitely makes it easier to create and send emails to subscribers. But there are a number of different things you have to do to ensure you’re delivering emails people love. If you don’t, you could end up sending out the most dreaded email message of them all: Spam. *Cue the spooky music* If you stick to email best practices, however, you can be more confident that you’re sending emails people want to check out. And when that happens, you’ll be well on your way to growing and maintaining an…
  • Grow Your List With AWeber + Wishpond

    Olivia Dello Buono
    24 Feb 2015 | 10:08 am
    We all know that landing pages, pop ups and promotions are a great way to collect and engage new leads on your website (and to quote the Notorious B.I.G., “ If you don’t know, now you know”). So what if there was a platform that let you execute all of the above in one successful, optimized marketing campaign without extensive coding or design skills? Enter Wishpond, the aptly-named software that is the answer to every time-crunched marketer’s prayers. How It Works The premise is simple: Wishpond brings you the tools you need to run your digital business all in one place. From Facebook…
  • Writing Confirmation And Welcome Emails People Love

    Monica Montesa
    20 Feb 2015 | 8:00 am
    With a fresh cup of coffee by your side and your fully-charged computer in front of you, you place your fingertips on the keyboard. It’s time to write your first email. After a 15-minute cycle of typing, deleting and staring at a blank email template, however, you find that you can’t seem to gather the right words. What in the world should you write? Writing Your First Emails Whether you have a lot to say and don’t know where to start, or you’re just dealing with the worst writer’s block ever, it’s no surprise that content is one of the biggest hurdles for…
  • Your Field Guide to Designing Mobile Friendly Emails

    Olivia Dello Buono
    18 Feb 2015 | 7:00 am
    Today, more than half of emails are opened on a mobile device… yet less than half of marketers are designing with mobile in mind. In fact, 75 percent of readers are likely to delete a message for not being mobile friendly. Crazy, right? Fortunately, we’ve got you covered with these tips and tricks to make your email designs mobile friendly. Like did you know that white space helps to increase the readability of your content? Or that the size, weight and color of your text all help to influence what readers focus on first? From color palettes to visual hierarchy, here are the elements…
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    Robin Writes

  • Prep Monday—Zipping Along

    Robin Tidwell
    2 Mar 2015 | 4:00 am
    So here’s the revised plan: SEE the property. In person. Thanks to all this flippin’ snow, we have yet to make the drive down there. Go to the seller’s auction in a couple weeks. There was some nice stuff in the midst of all the junk. Close. You know, do all the paperwork and hand […]
  • Fan Friday—Books on the Shelves

    Robin Tidwell
    27 Feb 2015 | 4:00 am
    A few weeks ago, I listed some of my favorite authors; while their books are tucked here and there on my shelves, I thought you might want to know what else is lurking around the office—and living room. Looking straight out across my desk, I have two bookcases. They’re practically antiques: cheap, put-it-together-yourself from a discount […]
  • Writer Wednesday—Short List

    Robin Tidwell
    25 Feb 2015 | 4:00 am
    Yeah, kind of in a galaxy far, far away. It sure seems like it! So a long, long time ago—three years this month, actually—I’d just come off a long-time writing gig for non-fiction, Internet only (okay, mostly) and had started writing my first novel, REDUCED. I had author friends, thanks to the bookstore, and writer […]
  • Prep Monday—It Finally Happened!

    Robin Tidwell
    23 Feb 2015 | 4:00 am
    All the papers are signed, the closing date is set, all the details worked out for possession, etc. And I’m a mess. You know how it is when you have SO MUCH to do? Me, I just kind of shut down. Random thoughts fly through my head at odd moments, and when I have a […]
 
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    Karavansara

  • Between the desert and the deep blue sea

    Davide Mana
    1 Mar 2015 | 3:06 pm
    I’m going through the final push on the first draft of my new novel, a science fiction work that has gone under the working title of Matter/Energy, and later under the tentative title of Nothing Exists Alone. It’s a big, sprawling hard SF story, which touches upon politics, and environmental sciences, while telling basically a (hopefully!) thrilling adventure yarn. It connects closely with my passion for oceanography, and takes place almost entirely beneath the sea. And during the weekend I went back to Frank Herbert’s Dune, because I needed to fine tune my writing1 –…
  • Indiana Jones and the Search for the Lost Idol

    Davide Mana
    28 Feb 2015 | 3:17 pm
    A short movie tribute to Indiana Jones. Can there be any better way to start a Sunday? This is Fran Casanova’s Indiana Jones and the Search for the Lost Idol, and is an impressive, fun, atmospheric short feature, true to the spirit of the original series, shot in Tenerife, Canary Islands. Enjoy!
  • The politics of dancing

    Davide Mana
    27 Feb 2015 | 3:25 pm
    And so the old story popped up again – the fact that certain genres and certain types of stories have an innate ideological color. Stuff like, basically, “sword & sorcery is right wing literature“1. I find the notion scary enough when expressed by people that usually do not read the genres they are politically or ideologically tagging. The thing becomes absolutely creepy when it’s writers that say stuff like that. Is fantasy really intrinsically ‘fascist‘, horror ‘misogynistic’, science fiction ‘libertarian’ (whatever that…
  • Writing Prompt – A Good Book

    Davide Mana
    26 Feb 2015 | 3:11 pm
    Art by Dan Craig The degree of detail on this painting is absolutely wonderful – you can actually imaginethe whole world in which this scene is taking place. So the question is – what is she reading?
  • Other People’s Pulps – Emilio Salgari

    Davide Mana
    24 Feb 2015 | 10:50 pm
    Emilio Salgari, the famous Italian writer of “Sandokan”. (Photo credit: Wikipedia) Last night I thought about Emilio Salgari. For my generation – and for three generations before mine – Salgari was the name of adventure well before Indiana Jones started plying his trade. At the turn of the last century, Salgari was stranded in Turin, former capital of Italy but hardly the most cosmopolitan city in the world. Trapped in a rather anonymous office job as a clerk, Salgari dreamed up exotic adventures and put them to paper. Back when I was a kid I did not like Salgari very…
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    No Categories

  • 19 Feb 2015 | 10:33 pm

    Dylan Kinnett
    19 Feb 2015 | 10:33 pm
  • I’m the proud owner of this rare William S. Burroughs book :)

    Dylan Kinnett
    3 Feb 2015 | 3:29 pm
    I’m the proud owner of this rare William S. Burroughs book
  • For fighting fire with fire.

    Dylan Kinnett
    23 Jan 2015 | 1:12 pm
    For fighting fire with fire.
  • Submission Strategy Review

    Dylan Kinnett
    8 Jan 2015 | 8:12 pm
    A recent post by Becky Tuch on the Review Review has some good advice for writers. Wouldn’t it be nice if, in addition to all the amazing work editors do with reading submissions, contacting writers, designing issues, balancing budgets and so on, they also had x-ray vision and could see through the walls of your home and inside your desk and know at once all the great work that’s hidden there? And would then call you up and ask you to submit it? And would even put that submission into the mail for you? But they don’t. They won’t. It’s up to you to get your work…
  • Litblog Roundup at the End of 2014

    Dylan Kinnett
    20 Dec 2014 | 11:13 am
    For the final Litblog Roundup of 2014, I have an exciting announcement to make. The Litblog Roundup is moving to a new home. Starting in 2015, it will appear as a regular feature, or “beat” on a new website devoted to literary conversation called Real Pants. I’m excited to be a contributor to this new project, along with writers Leesa Cross-Smith, Elisa Gabbert, Justin Taylor, Amber Sparks and view more, as well as a handful of HTMLGiant alums: Kristen Iskandrian, Mike Young, and Mark Cugini among them. The site will launch in Janurary at realpants.com and you can follow on…
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    Agent Hunter

  • Do You Love Your Publisher? A survey

    Harry Bingham
    2 Mar 2015 | 3:59 am
    Authors need publishers – but our experiences of the publishing process can be quite mixed. What’s more, it’s oddly rare for publishers to ask authors, at the end of a particular publishing journey, “How did you find us? What did we do well? What could we have done better?” In my own (17 year, 15+ [...]
  • Hunting agents, Getting book deals

    Harry Bingham
    18 Feb 2015 | 4:14 am
    A guest post from Liz Monument – who found her agent through Agent Hunter. Read more at: www.lizmonument.com   Like most novelists, I’ve been writing since childhood. And like most novelists, it took several drafts of several novels before I reached a publishable standard. My ‘first’ novel is actually the seventh [...]
  • Meet the Agents: An Interview with Alice Lutyens

    Harry Bingham
    11 Feb 2015 | 3:58 am
    This is an interview with literary agent, Alice Lutyens. Alice has worked at Curtis Brown since 2003, fresh from completing her English degree at Edinburgh University. She is the Audio Manager responsible for handling all the sales of their titles to independent audio publishers. She also has her own list of authors, varying from zesty [...]
  • When literary agents screw up: 7 ways that things can go wrong

    Harry Bingham
    11 Feb 2015 | 12:00 am
    We like agents. Like and respect them. Their job is exceptionally demanding: nearly all reading work is done outside of office hours and since agents read a LOT that means they’re working late pretty much every night. And they take risks. When an agent takes on a new writer, they’re committing upfront to a lot [...]
  • Meet the Agents: An Interview with Juliet Pickering

    Harry Bingham
    4 Feb 2015 | 7:15 am
    This is an interview with literary agent, Juliet Pickering. Juliet joined Blake Friedmann in 2013 and her list includes Costa, Commonwealth, Orwell Prize, Sky Arts and Guardian First Book shortlisted authors. Her twitter page is here, the Blake Friedmann agency page is here and of course, her Agent Hunter page.   Q. [...]
 
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    Long Tail Writing

  • Avoid the Writing Glamour With These 7 Steps

    James Livingood
    27 Feb 2015 | 1:08 pm
    Writing is far from the glamour most people connect to the profession. Most people have this idea that you expand upon a unique idea to build a story. After a person hits a specific length, they can simply post online […] The post Avoid the Writing Glamour With These 7 Steps appeared first on Long Tail Writing.
  • 5 Steps to Tame the Writer’s Guilt Monster

    James Livingood
    12 Feb 2015 | 2:24 pm
    Building a life writing requires finding some balance. Many writers are bitten by the guilt monster. They may feel they write too much or too little. Finding balance means not spending a bunch of time thinking about writing. In addition, this means […] The post 5 Steps to Tame the Writer’s Guilt Monster appeared first on Long Tail Writing.
  • Full Time Misc Man: aka Writer

    James Livingood
    29 Jan 2015 | 12:22 pm
    There is a famous quote that a writer lives many lives. In today’s digital economy, this verbiage has never been more true. Beyond the typical writer, I also have to edit, market, build, and keep an eye on publishing details. Those […] The post Full Time Misc Man: aka Writer appeared first on Long Tail Writing.
  • First book, First day, new author! Think Like a Skinny Person (Lite)

    James Livingood
    16 Dec 2014 | 12:50 pm
    This 99c Kindle is my first book, so I am hoping it does well. In this book I discuss some of the tips that helped me lose 75lbs. Those tips came from skinny people around me. This all started with […] The post First book, First day, new author! Think Like a Skinny Person (Lite) appeared first on Long Tail Writing.
  • Social Media Pain

    James Livingood
    2 Dec 2014 | 4:14 pm
        Social media is a major pain. Everyone appears to tout how important social media is, and all the major accounts prove it. 3,000 followers, hundred likes, fan of this and of that. However, when looking into conversion ratio, […] The post Social Media Pain appeared first on Long Tail Writing.
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    rrhicks

  • Why I Am Editing Out So Many References to Chairs in the Hanlin Novels … And What That Has to Say About the Criminal Justice System

    rolandrhicks
    20 Feb 2015 | 12:58 pm
    I was reading, rereading, editing, and re-editing The Falcon – the second volume of the Hanlin series – when something finally hit me, something that I think I was dimly aware of while editing The Ceremony of Innocence but never quite put my finger on. I was cutting out an inordinate number of references to chairs. And […]
  • Sorry, Virginia, There’s No Such Thing as President’s Day

    rolandrhicks
    16 Feb 2015 | 7:15 am
    Yup, there’s no such holiday as President’s Day – at least officially. It’s just Congress’ way of making Washington’s birthday fit a three day weekend.(Really – see Section 6103(a) of Title 5 of the United States Code). Washington’s birthday was a major holiday in the U.S. long before the Civil War, it was formalized as a Federal […]
  • We’ll Take it From You … (More Bullies)

    rolandrhicks
    5 Feb 2015 | 5:02 pm
    The first time it was used on me I was shirtless, bleeding profusely from a split-open cheek, pissed beyond measure, and standing in front of a lieutenant who was proving to be every bit as  psychotic as his reputation claimed he was. He had narrow little ferret eyes, sharp nose, and a severe boot camp-like buzz […]
  • Stalag 17, Rikers Island, and Bill de Blasio

    rolandrhicks
    19 Jan 2015 | 6:34 am
    Originally posted on Forlorn Hope Publishing:This photo was published last week in the midst of the NY Times expose of all things Rikers Island, right around the time it was announced that Rikers would make extensive changes to its solitary confinement practices – in 2016. The disaster that is Rikers fits my month long…
  • A Tale of Two Paintings and The Falcon Cover

    rolandrhicks
    17 Jan 2015 | 4:57 pm
    The Falcon, as a few readers guessed before seeing the cover, is George B. McClellan. The falcon cannot hear the falconer, so the poem goes, and it certainly describes McClellan and various and sundry parts of the federal government through 1862. I had two choices for a cover portrait of McClellan and his horse – a […]
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    The Art of Writing - Home

  • Jeff Bridges: Sleeping Tapes

    Austin Miller
    4 Feb 2015 | 9:46 pm
    Sometimes it feels like we're lost in Borge's Babylonian Library--where art is a never ending copy of itself throughout the ages. But sometimes something just fresh enough makes us forget where we are, and for a moment we feel as if there's a virgin form of artwork. Behold--Jeff Bridge's Sleeping Tapes.The Sleeping Tapes are a sort of guided meditation into the realm of the unconscious. They are designed to be listened to as you lay in bed trying to go to sleep. Bridges uses a combination of stream of conscious commentary and sounds he records from nature. In the end they are best understood…
  • Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas

    Austin Miller
    26 Jan 2015 | 10:34 pm
    Image sourced from Flickr It's been a long time since I've read something so provocative that it pervades my thoughts weeks after consuming it. Like one of Thompson's infamous chemical binges--I've been treated to a dose of Gonzo Journalism that seems to flare up and grab me by the throat without warning. What is this groovy substance and where can I find more of it? As I searched for the answers to this question my Amazon wish list began to overflow with tomes of New Journalism by writers such as Thompson and Wolfe. But time? Where to find the time!? Perhaps what is most…
  • Black Science: Nitty, gritty, and far from...

    Austin Miller
    26 Nov 2014 | 1:26 pm
    Image sourced from comiclist.com Black ScienceAuthored by Rick Remender (creator/writer of Fear Agent and Deadly Class), Black Science is a refreshingly twisted take on the ever common literary theme of time travel. It's been a long time since I've read any science fiction that has cojones and puts just as much emphasis on its characters as it does the science and action of the narrative.The protagonist Grant Mcckay is a bit of an antihero, on one hand he is the genius charismatic leader of a band of anarchist scientists, on the other hand he's a self centered *insert expletive* who has no…
  • Smart Contracts: A Step Towards Dystopia or Utopia?

    Austin Miller
    21 Nov 2014 | 11:45 am
    image from occupycorporatism.com It's not often I take the time to blog about non "literary" types of writing. However, after listening to Karl Schroeder's claim (author of Lockstep) on Wired's A Geek's Guide to the Galaxy podcast, that the future of contract law (and other legal fields) would be in the hands of the internet and even potentially in the hands of A.I..--my interest was undoubtedly peaked. First off, what are Smart Contracts?For those of you who are not accustomed with current legal and technological trends, which is probably many of us (sorry to…
  • Lucky Peach Magazine: What you Don't Know Might Kill you

    Austin Miller
    11 Nov 2014 | 7:16 pm
    Image from I just Read About That Why David Chang's (owner of Momofuku) quarterly journal is a much appreciated dose of amphetamine for food journalism.By Austin MillerBob Dylan famously stated "He not busy being born is busy dying" in his 1964 song "It's Alright, Ma (I'm Only Bleeding)." The same could be said for the state of journalism on many fronts—including food journalism. So whether the food "journalist" you have been following are lacking critical insight or you find yourself in a literary slump—let me help you connect with something that will help you get busy "being born" once…
 
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    M.C. Simon Writes

  • Do You Lack Time?

    M.C. Simon
    1 Mar 2015 | 3:56 pm
    Art: The climber of the spiral clock – Antoine Mansour We are living in a busy world. Our lives are filled with lots of important things to be done. Some we accomplish while others we don’t. Why don’t we complete… Read the rest
  • GRATITUDE JOURNAL

    M.C. Simon
    28 Feb 2015 | 7:56 pm
    GO DIRECTLY TO MY GRATITUDE JOURNAL   Why do I have a Gratitude Journal? One day I read Oprah Winfrey’s Gratitude Journal. I was impressed… Oprah has written in her gratitude journal for sixteen years every single day… WOW… she… Read the rest
  • AWAKENING

    M.C. Simon
    27 Feb 2015 | 12:24 pm
    Art: Jennifer B AWAKENING By Alexandru Cosmin   The story begins when, sitting on the coach… I closed my eyes, thinking of the profound positiveness, talking in my thoughts, tying the words together, guiding them on a road connected to… Read the rest
  • Women are the Best!

    M.C. Simon
    26 Feb 2015 | 5:03 pm
    Women are the Best! A police officer pulled over a car driven by a woman. “Good morning,” he says. “Good morning. What happened?” the woman asks. “I got you on radar and you were speeding. License and proof of insurance,… Read the rest
  • The SHOCKING Truth About Happiness

    M.C. Simon
    25 Feb 2015 | 2:06 pm
    THE SHOCKING TRUTH ABOUT HAPPINESS… RECIPE FOR FINDING HAPPINESS IN A TRAGEDY To dive into the depth of this subject, or even slightly touch upon its surface… we need to be sure that we’re speaking the same language. So… let… Read the rest
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    Powerful Views

  • Just look at me Smile

    Karan Gandhi
    3 Feb 2015 | 6:26 am
    The trials & tribulations The never ending inflation The tension the worry Amidst the flurry! The sickness, this disease The cough & the sneeze Where shall I flee? To set myself free! O, what shall I do? In this world untrue O, where shall I go? For life to bestow! They said, just smile Try it for a while Just say ‘Cheese’ And you’ll find all your keys! Does it work, I enquired Is it really required? I was in depression Asked irrelevant questions! But try, I must Lest life turn to rust Let’s give it a shot To untie this knot. I arose and smiled Squealed like a child I…
  • Let Life Take Over…

    Karan Gandhi
    15 Jan 2015 | 11:30 pm
    The pressures this trauma The anxiety and the drama, The fast local trains Humongous traffic in by-lanes. Where should I run To get a glimpse of the sun, Where must I flee For fresh air to breathe! At the sea shore My heart I pour, My legs you caress You speak to my stress. A tinge of white and blue Kissing the golden hue, Be it morning or night What a pretty sight! Come touch the sea It’s glory you must see, Come and surrender Feel the breeze tender. Within the wet sands In natures hands, Come, look at the grace Let nature embrace. Far from the towers The political powers, Distant from the…
  • Beautiful Blue Eyes

    Karan Gandhi
    5 Jan 2015 | 10:59 pm
    Beautiful blue eyes Looking to the skies Seeking relief I am done with grief! Masked in blue jeans Driving to lush greens Time to ponder I will not wander. Be still my soul While I am sole Blessings of the world Come to me twirled. Time to introspect Back in retrospect Thank the creation For this incarnation. In moments spare I’ll continue to stare The universe profound With miracles abound. Nothing to complain Or swear in vain Give thanks and be wise Through my blue eyes!Filed under: Photoliscious, Poet In Me Tagged: blue, eyes, Photography, poetry
  • Neon Dreams

    Karan Gandhi
    2 Jan 2015 | 11:17 pm
    New strengths and fresh thoughts emanate in a New Year. I am pleased to introduce a novel and innovative section to this blog – called “Guest Articles” at the advent of 2015. These articles would be contributed/ written by fellow bloggers from the Blogosphere. I am glad to present the first post in this category ‘Neon Dreams’ written by a dear friend, Biswadarshan Mohanty. Biswadarshan is a freelance writer based in Dubai. He writes fiction, poetry and travel narratives. He derives his inspiration from his travel experiences.   Neon Dreams Dreams shattered, it mattered…
  • Heartfelt wishes to my most cherished…

    Karan Gandhi
    22 Dec 2014 | 7:56 am
      Dearest Ronak and Madhu,   To begin with, a quote from the Bible:   Love is patient. Love is kind. Love does not envy. Love does not boast. Love is not proud. Love is not rude. Love is not self-seeking. Love is not easily angered. Love keeps no record of wrongs. Love does not delight in evil. Love rejoices with the truth. Love always protects. Love always trusts. Love always hopes. Love always perseveres. Love never fails.   -1 Corinthians 13: 4-8       Am sure both of you know that you’ll mean the world to me. This blog post is just to reiterate that my…
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    InkCrafts

  • A Simple Guide to Writing Irresistible Query Letters

    Sania Lali
    12 Feb 2015 | 3:18 am
    Admit it. You’ve seen other people’s guest posts and articles published on high authority sites and thought: “One day, that will be me.” After all, you’re a great writer. You can write awesome articles. But for some reason, your query letter never gets a response. You’ve always wondered what it takes to get your pitch [...] The post A Simple Guide to Writing Irresistible Query Letters appeared first on InkCrafts.
  • How to Start a Profitable Blog in 6 Easy Steps

    Sania Lali
    22 Jan 2015 | 1:46 am
    You know, most people take blogging as a joke, right? They think it’s just a hobby or a fad. If you try to tell them you can make money blogging, they just nod skeptically and say, “Sure, give it a try.” It’s not that these people don’t want you to chase your dreams. They do. [...] The post How to Start a Profitable Blog in 6 Easy Steps appeared first on InkCrafts.
  • Are You Making these 7 Job Application Mistakes?

    Sania Lali
    12 Jan 2015 | 1:38 am
    Let’s face it. Nobody wants to go through hundreds of resumes when hiring. It’s a tedious and time consuming job and most hiring managers want to get it over with as soon as possible. That’s why most resumes end up in the garbage after just a glance. In this post, I’ going to discuss some [...] The post Are You Making these 7 Job Application Mistakes? appeared first on InkCrafts.
  • 3 Ways Your Writing Skills Can Make You Rich in 2015

    Sania Lali
    5 Jan 2015 | 2:29 am
    How many of you have resolved to dedicate more time to writing in 2015? I definitely have. And when writing is your profession like it is mine, more writing means more money. So if you’re planning to use your writing talents to earn money in 2015, you’ve come to the right place. In this post, I’m going [...] The post 3 Ways Your Writing Skills Can Make You Rich in 2015 appeared first on InkCrafts.
  • 6 Easy Steps to Break Into Freelance Writing With No Experience

    Sania Lali
    18 Dec 2014 | 3:34 am
    Do you want to make money online with your writing skills but don’t know where to start? If yes, this post is just for you. Over the past couple of weeks, a lot of people have asked me how to find freelance writing jobs online without any experience. In response to your questions, I decided to write a post to [...] The post 6 Easy Steps to Break Into Freelance Writing With No Experience appeared first on InkCrafts.
 
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    Write to Done

  • How to Publish a Book: My 1,000-Day Journey

    Rajesh Setty
    27 Feb 2015 | 12:08 am
    In life, lots of things are relative.What looks hard seems super-easy compared to something harder.Writing is hard.But it is easy when compared to what it takes to go from “writing” to “getting your writing done.”If I’d known it would take 1,000 days for my first book to be published, I probably would have given up. I’m glad I didn’t.Here’s how it happened.This story took place between 1980-1983. We lived in a small town called Madikeri in the state of Karnataka in India.The Hunger to ReadLike all kids my age, I was fascinated with stories. For me, it bordered on…
  • Win Prizes of over 20K in the Freeditorial Long- Short Story Contest on WTD (Free Entry)

    Mary Jaksch
    24 Feb 2015 | 12:32 am
    If you want to win big with your writing, and need some strong motivation to write, here’s your chance.Our new Freeditorial Long-Short Fiction Story Contest on Write to Done carries a first prize of $15,000, a second prize of $5,000 and a third prize of $2,000.Worth writing for, right?And the best news, entry to the contest is free. Totally free!Not only is registration free, you’ll even receive a useful report when you register: 10 Vital Self-Editing Tips.Click here to register. (You can then submit your story at any time.)Everyone who registers for the contests receives a FAQ…
  • Conversational Writing: 10 Tips by Leo Babauta

    Leo Babauta
    20 Feb 2015 | 10:25 am
    Note by the Editor-in-Chief: This post was written by Leo Babauta of Zen Habits when we first started this blog. It offers the clearest instructions on how to write conversationally. That’s why we decided to republish it.Writing, when properly managed, is but a different name for conversation. – Laurence SterneWhile I don’t claim to be the world’s greatest writer, one of my strengths as a writer is the ability to write in a fairly conversational style.I might not write like everyone talks, but I write like I talk, and I think it creates a more welcoming style of…
  • Writing Prompts: What Story Does This Picture Tell? [Scene Stealers]

    Mary Jaksch
    14 Feb 2015 | 7:15 pm
    What story does this picture conjure up in your mind?Can you come up with a mini-story of not more than 350 words?In case you’re not familiar with Writing Prompts here’s how it works:We set the sceneYou steal it, make it your own, andShare your creation in the comments section of this post Now for the ground rules:Your story must be 350 words or less.Your work must be original and not previously published.WTD provides an encouraging and safe environment for writers to grow and learn from each other. We’d love you to comment on other people’s submissions in a friendly and…
  • 7 Barriers to Writing You Can Leap Over Today

    Bryan Collins
    9 Feb 2015 | 11:02 pm
    It wasn’t supposed to be like this.When you aspired to become a writer, you imagined crafting pages of immaculate prose, publishing work that gets better with each read, and your peers telling each other, “Now there’s talent!”Instead, when you try to write, you feel paralyzed.You don’t know if what you’re saying makes sense, and every moment you spend with your work is a struggle.What you eventually produce takes longer than you planned, and it fills you with a sense of disappointment.Don’t worry.Here are seven barriers to writing every writer needs to…
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    joelmarkharris

  • The One Thing More Important Than Skill Or Knowledge

    26 Feb 2015 | 11:00 am
      In 1995, the year Toy Story was released, Pixar pulled off a brilliant putsch. It was orchestrated by Steve Jobs who planned everything brilliantly.   Pixar had a 3 picture deal with Disney but Jobs, knowing that if Toy Story was successful, Disney would want to prevent the upstart company from becoming a serious competitor. They would do this by keeping Pixar under their thumb, subservient to them.   Jobs, of course, didn’t want to play second fiddle to anyone. He wanted Pixar to have freedom
  • 3 Reasons Everyone Can Pronounce Schwarzenegger

    19 Feb 2015 | 11:59 am
    Arnold Schwarzenegger is best known for his action films in 8o’s and 90’s, but there is a lot more to him than just muscle. Son of a policeman, Arnold grew up in the small town of Thal in Austria.    He remembers growing up without much money. To go to the bathroom he had to go to an outhouse in the back yard. Despite these hardships, he was better off than the average family that depended on the surrounding farms for survival.   Despite his humble beginnings, Arnold managed to become a
  • 3 Ways You Should Think Like An Astronaut

    12 Feb 2015 | 10:40 am
      A few years ago in Windsor Ontario the organizers of an airshow tried to get Elton John to do a little promotion for the airshow. Elton John was in the city playing a consort at the same time   Chris Hadfield, the first Canadian astronaut to space walk and to command the International Space Station, was taking part in the airshow at the time. He figured it was unlikely that an international celebrity would interrupt his show just to promote a regional airshow.   But Hadfield, who is perhaps
  • Create Procedures Not Work

    5 Feb 2015 | 8:24 pm
      World War Two ended and a young man who had served as an ambulance driver in France returned home to the United States. He drifted through jobs, one after the other, becoming among other things a paper clip salesman, a pianist, a jazz musician, a disc jockey, and a milkshake machine salesman.   Somewhere along the way, this man discovered the secret to building a multi-billion, international company.   The secret?   He created a procedure to do everything, right down to the smallest detail,
  • 3 Reasons Why You Need to be a Good Storyteller even if You're Not a Writer

    29 Jan 2015 | 5:51 pm
    People like to be entertained.   Stories have been around for as long as humans could talk. In fact the first cave painting is thought to be 27,000 years old.   Today, most people either watch television, read books or go to movies because they want a good story. People make sense of the world around them through stories. All the major religions are communicated through stories.     We can relate to each other through storytelling. But what most people don’t realize that you need to be a good
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    Text and Academic Authors Association Blog

  • 2015 TAA textbook award winners announced

    TAA
    24 Feb 2015 | 11:44 am
    The Text and Academic Authors Association has announced its 2015 textbook award winners. Thirteen awards were given in three different award categories. One textbook was awarded a 2015 William Holmes McGuffey Longevity Award (“McGuffey”), seven textbooks were awarded 2015 Textbook Excellence Awards (“Texty”), and five textbooks were awarded 2015 Most Promising New Textbook Awards. The McGuffey recognizes textbooks and learning materials whose excellence has been demonstrated over time, the Texty recognizes excellence in current textbook and learning materials…
  • 8 Reasons why academics should be on social media

    Libby Becker
    24 Feb 2015 | 7:00 am
    Did you start a blog or Twitter account and post a couple of things before deciding you didn’t want to keep up with it anymore? Or, maybe you are still on the fence whether you should take the time to create a blog or Twitter account? Either way, more and more academics are getting involved on social media and seeing the rewards. There are more reasons than I’ve listed below for you, but these are what I think are most important. So here you go, 8 reasons why academics should be on social media (in no particular order): Enhance your research Openly blogging and tweeting about your…
  • TAA members share what they love about their membership

    TAA
    23 Feb 2015 | 7:16 am
    A big thank you to everyone who has responded to our “I am a TAA member because…” campaign. Keep them coming! “TAA has ‘tons’ of resources available for a VERY reasonable cost. The website is GREAT. The TAA members and staff have been very willing to provide workable suggestions to help me solve several issues that I’ve faced in my continuing efforts to publish my first book.” — Bill (William) H. Koenecke, Ph.D. “Being an author of a textbook is like a long, solitary journey. It’s nice to be joined on that journey by others who…
  • Creating balance through writing and nature

    Cassie Premo Steele, Ph.D.
    19 Feb 2015 | 9:21 am
    As a writing coach who works with academics, one of the stumbling blocks my clients come up against at a certain point in their career is what I call “path block.” This usually happens, ironically, after a big success: finishing the dissertation, getting a new job, or having a book published. I understand this block and I have experienced it myself. Nature even gave me a literal experience of this block one day many years ago when I was walking in the woods behind my house and the briars and brambles around me stopped me in my tracks. I thought to myself, “It would be so much easier if…
  • The most useful textbook & academic writing posts of the week: February 20, 2015

    Libby Becker
    19 Feb 2015 | 9:18 am
    Another chilly week here in Wisconsin, and more snow for the east coast—both great excuses to stay in and write. Did you accomplish your writing goals this week? What about your writing resolutions? Have you stayed on track or have you veered off onto a side road where the going is slow? It’s never to late to get back on the main road; to get back on track with your writing and keep working towards your goals. One of my favorite quotes is one that pertains to all aspects of life and that’s why I’m sharing it with you this week: “If you’re tired of starting over, stop giving up.”…
 
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    Edit911 Editing Service

  • 5 Keys to Writing a Great Press Release

    Edit911
    18 Feb 2015 | 6:44 pm
    Whether you’re an entrepreneur, business leader, non-profit organizer, community activist, inventor, or author, at some point you’ll need to write a press release. A Press Release is the perfect tool that lets the outside world communicate with those who distribute news. A well-written press release is an effective tool that contributes to your promotional success.It’s important to remember that your press release will be edited or changed somewhat. A press release in and of itself is not news–rather, it carries news. Your goal in sending a press release is to gain…
  • 9 Funniest Lines in Movie History

    Edit911
    12 Feb 2015 | 8:47 am
    OK, I’m not including lines that are funny just because they are delivered so well, such as “He’s kinda funny lookin’” (Fargo, 1996), “Are you horny, baby?” (Austin Powers, 1997), and “Freeze, gopher!” (Caddyshack, 1980).The choices below are delivered well, but they’re also well-written with a great setup and perfect payoff with just the right choice of words. To keep from having lines from the same films, or types of films, I’ve offered the best of nine different types of humor.9. Hyperbole, Zoolander (2001)This parody often feels all too real when it comes to the…
  • Improve Your Writing with a Little Fan Fiction

    Edit911
    10 Feb 2015 | 2:10 pm
    Fan-written fiction (fanfic) means taking a story someone else wrote and making your own version of it without requiring permission or seeking profit. It’s usually done by amateurs, though some pros go at it too. While you can argue it’s been going on informally since the beginning of storytelling, modern fanfic is mostly posted on the Internet.And, lately, fanfic is finally getting some respect as a sort of underground writing movement. It’s sedition against the corporate ownership of stories. It’s personal expression gone wild. It’s exploration of modern culture motivated by…
  • Have dinner with best-selling author Tim Ferriss

    Edit911
    6 Feb 2015 | 12:37 pm
    Tim Ferriss is an American author, entrepreneur, angel investor, and public speaker. Author of The 4-Hour Workweek, which was a No. 1 New York Times bestseller, a No. 1 Wall Street Journal bestseller, and a USA Today bestseller.In 2010, he followed up with The 4-Hour Body, which was another No. 1 New York Timesbestseller.Ferriss is an angel investor or an advisor to Facebook, Twitter, StumbleUpon, Evernote, and Uber, among other companies.For a chance to have dinner with him, just promote his latest podcast (an incredible interview with Arnold Schwarzenegger) via any means you choose.In the…
  • 10 Wise Steps in Writing a Dissertation

    Edit911
    5 Feb 2015 | 7:08 pm
    Step 1Ask your department chair if you can skip the dissertation and get a Ph.D. solely on the strength of your winning personality.Okay, so it’s never worked before. It’s still worth a shot, isn’t it? Think positive!Or, if not your winning personality, some previous work, work experience, body of work—anything at all!Okay, so that rarely works either—but it does and has worked for some people, depending on the strength of that previous work.Step 2Make a plan and stick to it!Plan to spend more time finding a manageable dissertation topic than researching that topic, and more time…
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    Words Petrified

  • Parting and Pain

    Fatima Ahmed
    16 Feb 2015 | 11:16 am
    It’s the way you look at me Without words you say it all That sweet smile playing upon your lips, It says let’s dance now. I look back at you I realise it’s you whom I want In the light of the dim moon We paint memories sweet and mourn, The sadness of our parting The pain of our love Knowing that you’re mine and I can’t be yours, It hurts. -Fatima Ahmed Follow Words Petrified on WordPress.com The post Parting and Pain appeared first on Words Petrified.
  • Peace and Unrest

    Fatima Ahmed
    10 Feb 2015 | 8:44 am
    The city sleeps The  moon shining through Calming the unrest I feel without you -Fatima Ahmed Follow Words Petrified on WordPress.com The post Peace and Unrest appeared first on Words Petrified.
  • Love, War, and Adolescence – Part 1

    Ehsan Elahi
    6 Feb 2015 | 10:53 am
    “What do you mean she can’t be found? Unless you want your flesh to be served in kebabs to the dozens clamoring for food outside the palace gates every morning, you will bring me word of her before the last ray of light takes it leave,” he told his manservant in a very quiet voice – yet that tone made the blood of even the bravest of men run cold. The manservant, scared witless, scuttled out of the royal chambers in all haste; he couldn’t help but be amazed by the fact that the tyrant that was his master was but a boy of 15 summers. Born in one of the ruling families of the…
  • The Meeting

    Fatima Ahmed
    5 Feb 2015 | 9:22 am
    She walked the long road, the frigid winter winds hugging her, a light spring in her step. He had said he would meet her near the shoe shop. It was a quaint little blue shop, crammed between two big ones, one selling women’s purses and the other cheap pashmina shawls. She reached the shop they had decided to meet at, just like the last three times, right on time. He was late; she wondered why. Careful, not a hint of worry or annoyance showing on her face, she started to observe the people around her. Everyone was all bundled up in shawls, hats, coats, and gloves- for down the mall road in…
  • Born and Bred for Politics

    Ehsan Elahi
    4 Feb 2015 | 1:08 pm
    Essentially human nature, “politics”, over time, has come to be construed differently altogether- aggrandized or defamed, depending on how one looks at it. And yet, unbeknownst to us, each of us is born and bred to be a politician. Stow away your preconceptions for a moment. Think of party politics, in the same sense as politics has come to be regarded. The flimsy alliances, the many faces each person in power puts up, the enduring legacies, and of course, the flipside; the despair, the utter helplessness, the delusion that one is making their own decisions. Now scale it all down to an…
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    NELSON LOWHIM... WRITER'S MUSE

  • Future Narratives. Guest post by Ausar English

    nlo
    25 Feb 2015 | 1:32 pm
    I recently returned to New York City and met up with a friend in a cafe on the penumbra of Union Square. It was after New Years, and the air felt brittle and tired. The friend, Ausar, joined me to discuss our fiction works in progress and the conversation moved to the current state of the narrative. It seems something of a cliche to think that the state of the prose is under attack, or that it is (will?) undergoing some great changes due to technology (people still read, it's what they're reading that's changing). Nevertheless we discussed this, discussed the myriad of ways that technology…
  • On the existence of ghosts

    nlo
    13 Feb 2015 | 12:41 pm
    Follow my blog with BloglovinOnce upon a time I stopped smiling, dear readers. A time when my innocence was robbed. Let me tell you what happened. It’s a horrible thing when a human loses his/her previous underpinnings for their belief-system. Me? I never believed in ghosts before. Sure, I heard the stories, but I didn’t trust what others said about what they saw. I placed them in the same category as those who were abducted by UFOs, or those who believe in conspiracy theories of the kind that had no evidence and had assumed some rich cabal was behind every act of violence in the world.
  • Adding Context to Debate (revisited)

    nlo
    9 Feb 2015 | 4:34 pm
    I was wrong once, and now I try to never repeat that mistake. All the buzz in the news about ISIS and how vile they are, have had me entangled in a few debates. Usually, since I’m not pro-government propaganda, I’m accused of being on ISIS’ side and of changing the subject. That brings me to the topic of wanting to, or needing to, adding context to vs obfuscating a debate. The human mind can only hold a few ideas at any one time. When we debate (orally, but this applies to the textual internet as well) it usually helps to focus on the subject at hand, as time constraints don’t…
  • Why I write. The Struggle knows not the logic of morals.

    nlo
    5 Feb 2015 | 8:32 pm
    As I sit here and listen to rain scratching my window, out here in the North West of our country, I find myself thinking on Iraq. A funny thing, the mind, how it works, for this region of the country, geographically speaking, and certainly weather-wise, is about as far from Iraq as can be. Must be that the news, with all its talk of Islamic extremists is again filtering through my mind no matter what happens. There have been a lot of veteran reactions to what has happened in Iraq, to include veteran stories (the more famous ones, I suppose) about their deployments there. Well, I'm not…
  • On Debates and Context (updated)

    nlo
    3 Feb 2015 | 3:45 pm
    The most recent news on ISIS and their barbaric ways (apparently some odd effort to mimic aspects of bombing itself?), seems to have everyone in a fury. What to make of this group and what seems to be their nihilistic ways, or perhaps their self-defeating ways? Are they truly that despicable? Is it merely a role of propaganda to make them seem this bad? George Packer over at the New Yorker seems to have one take: that it is a death cult bent on some sort of purification. In other words, a rabid dog that needs to be put down.Indeed, it must. I've never said otherwise. In many ways, it's much…
 
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    judith gaines

  • Time Stand Still

    Judith Gaines
    12 Feb 2015 | 4:54 pm
    “Freeze this moment a little bit longer. Make each impression a little bit stronger.” ~ Rush I love traveling and any place I visit is open game as a story setting. The tricky part is holding onto the details that once positioned into your story bring it to life for readers. Studies show that when you […]
  • DIY Book Marketing – Editorial Calendars

    Judith Gaines
    7 Feb 2015 | 2:41 pm
    Calendars have been around for thousands of years. We’ve used them since before kindergarten to track holidays and count birthdays, then graduated to day planners and mobile phones with pop-up reminders. We have no excuse for not knowing the day of the week and month and what we need to do. Calendars help us make order out […]
  • Content Curation

    Judith Gaines
    13 Jan 2015 | 5:32 am
    DIY Book Marketing Now that you’ve gotten to know your audience by looking at their interests in your Twitter Analytics and chatting via social media, it’s time to give the relationship more value. This is where curating content to share is a win-win proposition. Blogs and social media posts demand a lot of content and if you […]
  • 5 Common Mistakes Editors Make

    Judith Gaines
    7 Jan 2015 | 7:44 pm
    Originally posted on Cuaderno Inedito:[Note: This piece was originally published on Matador, where I was managing editor and lead faculty member of the travel writing course. Over the next few months, I’ll dust off some other articles from my Matador days that I’ll be updating and republishing here.] ** A FEW WEEKS back, I…
  • Finding Your Audience

    Judith Gaines
    1 Jan 2015 | 5:03 pm
    DIY Book Marketing Once you’ve published your novel, and perhaps setup a blog and started tweeting, how do you know who you’re reaching? How do you know if the content you publish is drawing them to your books and creating sales? Without becoming a digital guru, you can discover a lot about your fans. Knowing […]
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