Monday, February 28, 2011

Monday, Monday...

I had such a great weekend.  Naturally chocolate was involved but so were friends and family.  Now that it's Monday, it's back to work. 

So, what's on your agenda for the day?  Also, how are you doing goal wise for the year?  On track or a little behind?

Me...I'm writing.  :-)  And while I'm a bit behind on where I wanted to be at this time, I'm planning to catch up.

When you take a break from the writing, check out this excellent post on beginnings and hooking the reader by Kristen Lamb.

Friday, February 25, 2011

Going to a Writer's Conference????

I love writer's conferences.  I really, really do.  There's just something about immersing yourself in craft workshops, getting to know other writers and meeting industry professionals that's almost addictive.  If you've never attended a conference, then I highly recommend you do so.

One of the great things about conferences is the chance to meet an agent or an editor up close and personal, one on one.  However, that can also be one of the most terrifying thing a writer will ever do. 

Kristen Lamb has a great blog post about her agent pitch experience with some tips so your time in the spotlight will go easier.  I found Kristen's blog about a week ago and it's filled with wonderful tips for writes at all stages of their career.  I'm in the process of reading the archives and there's a wealth of info there so y'all check 'em out too.  I love the "Twitter Tuesday" posts!

Kristen is also the author of We Are Not Alone - The Writer's Guide to Social Media.  I've heard lots of good things about this book and have it on my "buy and read ASAP" list.  The president of my writer's group swears by this book.

Remember, you can find some information about writing conferences at Shaw Guides or by googling your state and writer conferences.  

Monday, February 21, 2011

Monday Goals...

Good morning all!  It's the start of another week here and it should be a good one.  And it's time to do a little planning so things get accomplished.  So,  what's on the agenda this week?

What projects do you have that need to be finished?  Got any ideas waiting to be started?  Are you setting any word count goals for this week?

I've got 900 things to do as usual but I'm focusing on just a couple.  The Long Ridge column of course and I'm hoping to get that "snowman" prompt figured out and written.  Tuesday night I plan to attend a new writer's group meeting and I'm looking forward to that.  Then, Wednesday night I'll get to attend my critque group meeting.  The last two times I've tried to go, we'd had to cancel cause of the weather. better half suggested a new project last night that's got my interest.  It's needs a lot more pondering so I'm letting it simmer a bit.

Now, share your upcoming week with us...and let us know how you did last week.

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Link Salad

Thought it was about time for some links.  To get us started heres....

9 Worksheets to help with plot, scenes, characters and revisions.  I love worksheets in general and while I might not use them all, I still like to have 'em around.

Here's another worksheet.  It's a complication worksheet but there are several others on the site.

This link has nothing to do with writing but is still cool.  It's an American Bald Eagle nest cam.  There are three nests but I've only seen eagles in two of them.  And while not much is happening right now, I'm thinking when hatchlings come along it might be really interesting to watch.

Here's 7 Habits of  Serious Writers.  How many of these do you have?

Check out this search engine for writers.  Writer's Knowledge Base  There are thousands of articles on all aspects of writing.  Get prepared to spend some time here. :-)

Author Kristen Lamb has a great blog dealing with social media.  She has some great craft type posts to so browse awhile.  Her book We Are Not Alone - The Writer's Guide to Social Media is on my "gotta have" list.

Remember Q on Star Trek?  He's his performance of Poe's The Raven.  It's excellent!

Monday, February 14, 2011

Happy Valentine's Day

In honor of the holiday I'm going to post some links for all you romance writing folks out there.

Naturally you all know about e-Harlequin.  But, have you really, really, really checked them out?  Especially the forum?  I knew about the writer's guidelines and the free reads but if you spend time in the forum, you'll find contests and even editors taking pitches.  Of course you can chat with others about your favorite authors and other writers about writing but there's just a whole lot of other stuff to explore. 

Also, Romance Divas.  This is a special place to hang out.  You'll find author interviews, book reviews and writing tips on their blog and each month there is an Author of the Month workshop in their forum area.  **The forum area is closed to new members at this time while the owners are upgrading the site but bookmark the page and come back often.**   They also have a chat room so you'll want to check that out too.

The Romance Writer's Association is the big organization for romance writers.  They sponsor contests and local writing chapters along with a really big national convention each year.  Give 'em a look.

Here's a link to some articles about writing romance.  I haven't read them all but I'm sure you'll find something of interest. 

Want to give writing romance a try but not sure how?  Here's a free mini-course to get you started.

Lastly, for more romance writing info check out Romance Fiction Factor.

Have a great day y'all!

Tuesday, February 8, 2011

Time to Generate Some Fun

All work and no play makes Jack and any other writer a dull writer. And that's where this weeks websites come to the rescue. Plus, while playing, there's no telling what ideas may pop up.

First, Seventh Sanctum. ( I love this site and could spend hours there playing with their generators. Actually, I have spent hours there, the time just seems to fly by. At Seventh Sanctum, you'll find dozens of generators for characters, places, names, skills, beings, organizations and much more. For example, clicking on "setting" gets you generators for adventure sites, lost civilizations, outer planes, realms, rooms (which is really cool) and tavern names. Some of the ideas/names generated won't be useable but may spark others. The pirate ship name generator is great too.

If you get stuck, you can always click on "writing" and get quick story ideas, themes or a writing challenge.

Next, Wordle. ( This tool generates word clouds highlighting the words used most in text you provide. One writer I know uses this to come up with ideas by putting in poetry and looking for interesting word combinations or themes. Another use is to find possible titles since the most common, most frequently used words are emphasized. It's an interesting way to see your story. These designs can be printed out and used for whatever you like. Perhaps a t-shirt...

And for some inspiration, create your own newspaper headline at Fodey. ( Enter the name of the newspaper you like, add some text and you're a headliner.

Now, go play. But only for a little while. You've got work to do. :-)


**  Originally published in the Long Ridge Writer's Group Newsletter on Jan. 17, 2011

Monday, February 7, 2011

Monday, Monday...

I have internet at HOME!!!  And I'm so excited.  Now I can get back to posting on a regular basis and chatting with all my friends.  I've really missed you!!!  Thanks for hanging on and waiting for me to return.

So, new week, new goals.  What's everyone got planned?  Novel, short story, contest???  Poetry?

Me...I'm finally getting back to writing on a regular basis.  Other than the weekly column anyway. :-)  I've sent part of novel to new critique group for the upcoming meeting this week and I'm really looking forward to finally being able to take part in live, in person group.

I've a column to write for this week but I know what it's about.  Just have to do the research and put it together.

There's some revising I want to get done plus a new idea I want to finish plotting out.

Now, what about you?  What have you got on the agenda?  Need a prod?  I'll put the iron in the fire and heat it up.  Just let me know. :-)

Sunday, February 6, 2011

And the winners are...

Nanci and Chris Weigand.  I've sent them both emails so hope to hear from them soon.  Ladies, I need your mailing address so I can send out your books.  If I don't hear from them by the end of this month, I'll pick another winner to go along with this month's drawing.

January's books for the drawing were "A Writer's Paris" by Eric Maisel and the WD "Handbook of Article Writing".

Remember, if you follow this blog in February, you'll be entered to win a writing book too.  Not sure which one but it'll be worth it.

Have a great week and thanks for all of you who do follow.