Get Past that Writer’s Block!

AWWG member and novelist Cheryl Holloway is holding a writing workshop Saturday August 23 in LaPlata, MD, devoted to defeating writers block.

Who among us isn’t stymied now and then, or more often, when facing that blank page! Here’s a chance to get together with your sister writers and get some new tools to blast through:

Check out Cheryl Holloway’s writers workshop – click here for more info!


August Meeting Monday 8/11

Time for the August meeting, already!

Accokeek Women’s Writing Group
Monday, August 11, 2014

1:15 – 3:00 pm at the Accokeek Branch Library conference room

15773 Livingston Rd, Accokeek, MD 20607

Come and join us to meet your writing sisters! We take on challenges, explore the writing process, share our progress, and support each other along the way. Writers can read get feedback on their projects

Stuck? 5 things to try:

Ideas for when you when can’t step away from your problem

© marc johns serious drawings

Illustrator Marc Johns likes to go for a walk or do dishes to relax his mind, but when that’s not possible and he needs to push through a creative block, he tries one of five things:

  1. Instead of coming up with one solution, come up with 20.
  2. Shorten your deadline to 10 minutes from now.
  3. Put away all digital devices.
  4. Use different materials, like chalk, crayon, paper and pen. (if you type, write longhand; or vice-versa)
  5. Pretend you are a pastry chef or a pilot or a hot dog vendor (you get the idea). How do these people look at the world?

Source: Breakthrough! 90 proven strategies to overcome creative block & spark your imagination, Alex Cornell, editor.

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The Stake Reading Club: On the first line of The Girl in the Road


An interesting way to think about reading a book — and a great writer’s prompt for your own experiment! Read and write on….

Originally posted on The Stake:


As first lines go, The Girl in the Road’s is a good one: “The world begins anew, starting now.”

A few random thoughts on these six words:

1. The statement is Meena’s—but my first thought is that this could be the first line of any number of books. Perhaps all books. What is a novel, after all, but the creation of a world? It’s said that fiction must reflect reality, but most writers, I think, know better: language creates its own reality. “Call me Ishmael,” “It is a truth universally acknowledged,” “A screaming comes across the sky,” “Mrs. Dalloway said she would buy the flowers herself”—these words call worlds into being, worlds that don’t exist until writers and readers conspire to create them.

2. The notion of world is especially fraught in science fiction, however. Fans frequently speak of “worldbuilding” as a thing distinct from character and plot: “Great story but the worldbuilding could have…

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Reference Books for Writers

At yesterday’s meeting Valerie brought her battered Houghton-Mifflin style guide, much-loved since college. While we were doing an editing exercise, several people asked for it. There is nothing like a familiar resource when you’re trying to solve a problem.

So build your reference shelf with the tools that help you write. Technical help, like dictionaries, thesaurii and style guides, inspiration from beloved writers, sources of publishers, challenges, exercises that will keep you motivated.

Kay had a great idea: she asked for a good dictionary for a gift – so much more useful than another gadget.

Here are some of my recommendations. Please leave more suggestions in the comments!


On Writing Well: The Classic Guide to Writing Nonfiction by William Zinsser

100 Ways to Improve Your Writing  by Gary Provost

Self Editing for Fiction Writers: How to Edit Yourself Into Print by Renni Browne & Dave King

The Plot Whisperer: Secrets of Story Structure Any Writer Can Master by Martha Alderson

The 3 A.M. Epiphany: Uncommon Writing Exercises that Transform Your Fiction


On Writing: A  Memoir of the Craft  by Stephen King

Bird by Bird: Some Instructions on Writing and Life

Writing Down the Bones: Freeing the Writer Within by Natalie Goldberg


The Elements of Style 



How to Support an Author’s New Book: 11 Ideas For You


I loved these suggestions! Quite a few of them hadn’t occurred to me. We have some published authors among us. Get to work, girls, and support your colleagues!

Originally posted on Writers In The Storm Blog:

By Chuck Sambuchino

large_5595133805My Writer’s Digest coworker, Brian A. Klems, recently geared up for the release of his first book — a humorous guide for fathers called OH BOY, YOU’RE HAVING A GIRL: A DAD’S SURVIVAL GUIDE TO RAISING DAUGHTERS (Adams Media). On top of that, my coworker Robert Brewer (editor of Writer’s Market) recently got a publishing deal for a book of his poetry.

So I find myself as a cheerleader for my writing buddies — trying to do what I can to help as their 2013 release dates approach. I help in two ways: 1) I use my own experience of writing & publishing books to share advice on what they can expect and plan for; and 2) I simply do whatever little things I can that help in any way.

This last part brings up an important point: Anyone can support an author’s…

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