Archive | June 2012

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B&B News

Today marks the second birthday of Brainstorms & Bylines. I’ve always considered B&B to be a work in progress, and looking back at my beginning post I realize just how much things have changed over the past two years. Now it’s time for another change. (Repeat after me: “change is good.” You! Yes, you in the […]

Weekend Assignment: Pockets of Time

Before you jump to the wrong conclusion, this week’s writing activity has nothing to do with pocket watches or time travel. Instead, it’s based on one of the 6 Practical Time Management Strategies for Freelancers and Solos by Jason Womack over at the International Freelancers Academy. My freelance schedule sometimes runs me down, then reverses […]

Sick Daze: Health Insurance and Freelance Writing

Trying to keep up with the health insurance trends at the moment can be frustrating, but going without insurance can be downright frightening. Lately, I’ve been doing some investigation of my own, and though I wish I could say I’ve found the Holy Grail in affordable health insurance for us writers, sadly, that is not […]

Four Ways Your Writing Niche Is Holding You Back

We’ve all heard the fiction-writing advice: “Write what you know.” In the world of nonfiction, this same advice is repackaged as “Create a writing niche.” It’s solid advice, yet, writing exclusively in your niche has drawbacks. Here are four ways yours may be keeping you from moving forward. 1. It encourages you to stagnate. Think swampy […]

Weekend Assignment: Emotions in Motion

Emotions have run rampant at my house in the last week. Disappointment over a cancelled trip, worry about multiple family matters, sorrow for friends suffering a loss, and quiet contentment after a day well spent have made me think about how large a role emotions play in everyday life — and in all the ways […]

Writing Prompts

I love writing prompts. Those random little tidbits can inspire me for days. While I’ve posted about the prompts I tweet daily (you are following me on twitter, right?), I know that prompts are not one size fits all. On any given day, what inspires me may trigger nothing more than a “meh” from you. […]

Submit, Submit, Submit: Writing Markets June 2012

It’s time for another issue of writing markets. I hope you find something useful. Disclaimer: Bear in mind that I am sharing these links not endorsing them. While I’ve checked out these sites, always read the complete guidelines before submitting anything AND always do your homework. Yes! Magazine‘s tagline is “Powerful ideas, practical actions.” The stories […]

Weekend Assignment: Begin with a Market

Happy Friday, writing friends! Lately, I’ve been looking at the calls for submissions for a number of anthologies. A funny thing happens almost every single time. I’ll read the theme of the anthology and immediately think: I could write something about that! Of course, many times the second thought that pops into my head is: […]

Writing Discoveries: How to Plot by the Numbers (Manuscript Length)

How long is a book supposed to be? If you said, “However long it takes to tell the story,” you would be right. Sort of. Obviously, you need enough words to tell the story in a way that serves your plot and leaves readers satisfied. But… You knew there was a but, right? Editors, agents, […]

Weekend Assignment: The Hunnicutt Project

“The concrete is better than the abstract. The detail is better than the commonplace. The sensual is better than the intellectual. The visual is better than the mental.” Ellen Hunnicutt (Author of Suite for Calliope) This is one of my favorite writing quotes pertaining to “Show Don’t Tell.” For this weekend, let’s put Ms. Hunnicutt’s […]