Archive | June 2011

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Conquer Your Inner Pessimist

While traveling recently, I ducked inside a colorful gift shop and spotted this quote on a notecard: “What would you attempt if you knew you could not fail?” ~Dr. Robert H.  Schuller Wow. Super invincibility. Can you imagine? I’ve posted before about the “crazies,” a condition writers endure that often has us questioning our abilities […]

Translation Please! Speaking Writerese

A friend recently confessed to writing a book and needing some help learning what he must do to get it published. “You’ll need to write a synopsis and a query and if you want to go the traditional route, you’ll need to start researching agents,” I said. He looked at me for a moment and […]

Weekend Assignment: Best Day Ever

What makes a day great? It depends on whose day it is, I suppose. My best day ever includes a road trip, a live performance of Quidam in Cirque du Soleil’s Grand Chapiteau , and watching a loved one getting picked to perform on stage. Awesomeness. Your best day might involve wrestling crocodiles, singing karaoke, […]

Reading Like a Writer

Writing has ruined reading for me. I still enjoy reading, but now I read like a writer. What does it mean to read like a writer? It means reading to learn, analyzing the author’s word choices, analogies, and metaphors. It means taking the time to look beyond and beneath the ideas with a weird sort […]

Submit, Submit, Submit for June 2011

It’s time once again to share new market links. Click to go to the guidelines for each publication. Disclaimer: I post these links as a way of sharing the market information I find as I am working. This does not mean I endorse them. Please research all markets before submitting any material. Mental Floss is […]

Weekend Assignment: Borrowed Words

This weekend, let’s write using another author’s words for inspiration. I love this bit of advice: “Cherish your solitude. Take trains by yourself to places you have never been. Sleep alone under the stars. Learn how to drive a stick shift. Go so far away that you stop being afraid of not coming back. Say […]

Is It Legit? A quick tip to avoid writing scams

Is that writing market/agent/contest legitimate? It’s a question you should ask before you submit any of your hard work. But how can you find out? One quick search can save you headache and heartache. Before you submit, click over to your favorite search engine and type the name of the market/agent/contest in quotations and add […]

The Query Cycle

Think back to elementary school science. Remember the water cycle? Water condenses in the air to form clouds. Clouds grow too saturated to hold the water and it falls to the ground as rain. Heat from the sun evaporates the water, and it floats into the air where it forms new clouds and the cycle […]

Weekend Assignment: Focus Pocus

Focus. Every nonfiction piece needs it, whether you are writing a how-to article, or an essay about hot air balloons. But sometimes when you’re writing, the piece wants to wander. One train of thought branches off into another, and another, and so on. Soon, you may find yourself hopelessly off on a tangent and way […]

Discoveries: Language Is a Virus

Language Is a Virus I’m always on the lookout for sites to help writers generate ideas, express creativity and stoke the writing fires. Today’s discovery is an all-in-one site filled with games, prompts, generators, experiments… the list goes on. Proceed with caution, or take a handy ball of string to help you find your way […]