What’s next for the Accokeek Women’s Writing Group?

IMG_5543Exciting changes for our local gathering of dedicated writers! We’re moving to a more collective structure, sharing more retreats, and continuing to build a diverse, passionate and supportive community!

The biggest shift is that we are sharing facilitation! Instead of one person running every meeting, each of us is stepping up to share our skills and passions, and lead the group.

We’ve put a new folder with instructions for leading a meeting, and sign up sheet for leaders, readers and mailing list. So if you want to step up, we’ve made it easy!

The best thing about this change is that each leader offers her strengths and passions, and we’re all learning so much in the process.

lsIf you haven’t joined us at the Accokeek Library, every second Monday of the month, from 1:15 to 3:15, come along! If you’re already a member, sign up to lead and read, and enjoy the new AWWG!

 

 

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OUR EDITING PROMPT FOR THE MAY 8 MEETING

READY TO PLAY? FOR THIS WEEK, as guest facilitator, I CREATED AN EDITING GAME I CALL “BAD WRITING BEGONE!”

Choose one to revise. Each paragraph begins with an inspirational quote from a writer who knows his or her stuff! Revise the paragraph to make it better, based on the quote and the instruction above. Be creative — play — do your thang!

MAKE IT SCARY: “Bad writing is more than a matter of shit syntax and faulty observation; bad writing usually arises from a stubborn refusal to tell stories about what people actually do― to face the fact, let us say, that murderers sometimes help old ladies cross the street.”
Stephen King, On Writing: A Memoir of the Craft

She looked out the window again. There was her neighbor, being weird again. He left a trail of thick liquid as he dragged the garbage bag out to the bin by the road. He looked around before he made a phone call from his cell, and went back into the house.

 MAKE IT FEEL REAL: “True mysticism should not be confused with incompetence in writing which seeks to mystify where there is no mystery but is really only the necessity to fake to cover lack of knowledge or the inability to state clearly. Mysticism implies a mystery and there are many mysteries; but incompetence is not one of them; nor is overwritten journalism made literature by the injection of a false epic quality. Remember this too: all bad writers are in love with the epic.”
Ernest Hemingway, Death in the Afternoon

The afternoon expanded like a drumbeat with fever heat and the rising, rippling waves of mirage-quality distortion that filled the air a few feet above the simmering tarmac. The birds refused to sing; the dogs lay as if dead on porches that offered no shelter from summer. Neighbors peered from frosted windows into the knife-sharp brightness, their air conditioners shrieking with overwork. Indeed, global warming felt as close as an unwelcome lover today.

FIX THE STORY “If a story is no good, being based on Hamlet won’t save it.”
Thomas C. Foster, How to Read Literature Like a Professor: A Lively and Entertaining Guide to Reading Between the Lines

He looked at Dessie and sighed. She was crying and pleading for his love. He hoped she wouldn’t really go drown herself, but what could he do? Life was hard for him, too! He had other things he had to take care of. He had to save the company from his wicked uncle! Really, he was doing it to protect her, anyway! His uncle was so mean! He had to avenge his father’s death before he could get married! There was just too much pressure! She would have to understand!

©2017 Burbank Writing Coaching

Want to find out how writing mentoring works to help your writing shine and get you past writer’s block! Email me to arrange your free 30-minute breakthrough session…

March Prompts & Plans

  • Cheryl Holloway will be your facilitator for the AWWG March meeting, 3/13 at 1:15pm.
  • Be sure to check our official calendar HERE, for who’s Leading and who’s Reading!
  • Send me email if you’d like to Lead or Read!!

2 Prompts for March meeting- follow your Muse!

1. Greening, greenhorn, greenish… 

What do these ‘green’ words evoke for you? Spring sweeping north on a warm wind? Your favorite vista changing from gray to green? The sprouting of perennials? New growth, newbies of all kinds, inexperienced but not for long. Or perhaps getting seasick! How about learning to recycle? Take a green word in a surprising direction, in fiction, non-fiction, poetry or something else.

2. March 14 is World Pi Day!

It’s an irrational number, a number that never ends, and the ratio of diameter to circumference. Take Pi and run with it: remind you of school? A science fiction plot? Someone who bakes delicious pies? Consider wordplay with Pi, or whatever surprising notion can fuel your fiction, non-fiction, poem or play!

most importantly:

HAVE FUN!

 

Aging Gracefully? Who Needs It? Check out this inspiring poem by Moyra Donaldson

Who says we can’t write poems that break open cliches about being a woman!? Well, no one really, no one worth listening to. If you are writing about aging, check out this great poem and be inspired to speak freely, and think out of the box!

When I Am Old
by Moyra Donaldson

I’ll have dewlaps and a hump and say what all the time
in a cross voice: on every one of my bony crony fingers
a ring. My lips painted with a slash of bright fuchsia,
I’ll drink margaritas by the tumbler full and if my dealer
dies before I do, I’ll just have to look for younger suppliers.
I can’t imagine not being interested in sex, but if it happens,
so be it, really I could do with a rest, complete hormonelessness.
I may forget who I am and how to find my way home, but be
patient, remember I’ve always been more than a little confused
and never did have much of a sense of direction. If I’m completely
demented, I’m depending on friends: you know who you are.

“When I Am Old” by Moyra Donaldson from Selected Poems. © Liberties Press, 2012.

February Newspost

falling-starsAWWG is such a lively and vital group! Listening to our “News & Goods” each month is inspiring and heartwarming – pat yourselves on the back, dear Writers, and give yourself 5 gold stars, you are shining!

 

Here are some highlights from February’s meeting:

Facilitators Needed!

Due to Patrise’s NEW JOB we will be rotating meeting facilitators. Watch for the email, we need a facilitator for March and April, ASAP!

Lydia’s Revenge now available!

Libby’s first novel Lydia’s Revenge is now available via Amazon, B&N, and other places. For the moment it’s FREE!

Libby recommends the free service from PRONOUN, that helped her format her book, including creating a cover, book layout, even an ISBN! Great for start-up writers. LINK HERE

Yes, You ARE Working:

Carol B. wasn’t sure she was accomplishing much writing, with everything else going on in life. So she printed that past 6 months work. Resulting in a nice bright stack of pages! Sometimes we need to SEE it to believe it. Watch for Carol’s 2nd Storyweaving Playbook coming soon. First one available HERE and HERE

Charles Co. Library hosts local writers!

Georgette and Carrie are among that local writers celebrated at Waldorf West Library, Saturday Feb. 18th from 2-4. Sponsored by the Charles County Arts Alliance, the conference room was packed with authors and readers, and after presentations we had a chance to visit authors’ tables, chat them up and buy books. Congratulations, Carrie and Gee!

Also, Georgette has a play in development, and met with a local writer who recently saw her work come to life on the stage.

Screenplay submitted!

Pat C. submitted her screenplay, “Below the Radar,” to the Maryland Film Office. We look forward to good news soon!

Written Treasure

Clara’s partner Cynthia passed away last year. While going through things Clara discovered a treasure trove of her poems and writings, inspiring her to write more. What a beautiful tribute.

More Newsbits

Cheryl appeared on Deborah’s talk show, discussing love and romance just prior to Valentines Day.

Sarah suggested we consider a writer’s table at the Reisterstown Festival, a 2-day community fest in September.

Melinda recommends the book Red Notice, non fiction that reads like a gripping thriller. A true story of murder, corruption and intrigue involving Russia. Timely!

And that’s just some of the News from AWWG!

Remember you can send me items to post here, and/or you can get positing access for yourself and share writing -related content with us all.

See you in March

Monday the 13th, when Beverly will be our featured writer. We have room for one more, if you’d like to share your ongoing project work for feedback.

 

 

 

Wouldn’t you love to read, write here?

Reblogging for all you book and library lovers: Never before seen images of the oldest Bodleian Library reading room. How I’d love to write there, surrounded by history!  Click through to the article for more images. 

Photograph by DAVID ILIFF. License: CC-BY-SA 3.0 Built in 1487, Duke Humfrey’s Library is the oldest reading room in the Bodleian Library at the University of Oxford. Duke Humfrey’s Library is named after Humphrey of Lancaster, 1st Duke of Gloucester, a younger son of Henry IV of England. He was a connoisseur of literature…

via This Reading Room at the University of Oxford is One of the Oldest in Europe — TwistedSifter

The Power of Love

nature-love-snowyheart-1Our February theme:
How LOVE changes us. 

  • How does the power of love move in your writing?
  • Do you LOVE to write? Do you LOVE your writing?
  • Did someone you LOVE(d) influence your writing?
NEXT MEETING:

Monday February 13

1:15 – 3:15pm, Accokeek Library, 15773 Livingston Road, Accokeek, MD 20607

If you want to write for this month’s prompt

Take a look at LOVE from an unusual viewpoint. How does LOVE moves throughout our lives?
Any genre is acceptable- essay, memoir, fiction, poetry, etc. Submit online or come and read at the meeting Feb. 13.

Here are a few quotes from famous writers to help inspire you:

  1. You have more love to give than you could ever know. “Nobody has ever measured, not even poets, how much the heart can hold.” ― Written by Zelda Fitzgerald in her novel, Save Me The Waltz.
  2. Some passions may be impossible to resist.“The only way to get rid of a temptation is to yield to it.” ― Written by Oscar Wilde in his novel The Picture of Dorian Gray.

  3. Love is the greatest gift and the greatest sacrifice.
    “In the flush of love’s light
    we dare be brave,
    And suddenly we see
    that love costs all we are
    and will ever be.
    Yet, it is only love
    which sets us free.”   ― Written by Maya Angelou in her poem, Touched By An Angel.

  4. When real love hits, it shouldn’t make you feel weak. “Don’t ever think I fell for you, or fell over you. I didn’t fall in love, I rose in it.”― Written by Nobel Prize-winning author Toni Morison in her novel, Jazz.

Here’s a few more…

In this chilly weather, I’m reminded that a warm sweater, a bowl of soup, a call from a friend can all say ‘love.’ 

Stronger, Healthier & Less Stressed

Yes, my dear sister writers, the very act of writing gives us all those benefits! We know it feels good, but now there’s research to back it up, and the results are better than expected. Writing about stressful events eases stress-related ailments. Writers heal faster from wounds and surgery, have stronger immune systems, fewer asthma attacks, and sleep better.

What science tell us about people who write:

from Mic.com

The benefits of writing go far beyond building up your vocabulary.

No matter the quality of your prose, the act of writing itself leads to strong physical and mental health benefits, like long-term improvements in mood, stress levels and depressive symptoms. In a 2005 study on the emotional and physical health benefits of expressive writing, researchers found that just 15 to 20 minutes of writing three to five times over the course of the four-month study was enough to make a difference.

Read More…

 

Hallowread!

ADMIN’s NOTE: New member Katie Caliando submitted this review of a fall conference right in our backyard for writers and readers in paranormal, fantasy & horror genres. If you want to write for TWP, get in touch.

Hallowread is a really awesome, yearly”book festival and mini-con for authors and fans of Paranormal, Urban Fantasy, Steampunk, and Horror.” They welcome crossover and fusion genres, as well – like paranormal romance.  Rachel Rawlings, Maryland author of dark urban fantasy, is the creator of this gathering, and head honcho. The website stays up year-round, so you can check out the authors who were there, this year.  The list includes both self-published and traditionally-published authors.

It runs Friday afternoon through Sunday, and is usually held the weekend before Halloween.   Friday and Saturday feature workshops/roundtables, including a book fair with author signings on Saturday afternoon, ghost/paranormal tours and other entertainment on Friday and Saturday evenings, and an author’s tea on Sunday.  The first two years it was in Ellicott City, and this year it was in Havre de Grace (the change in location was made before the flooding). Next year is still TBA.  As far as I know, there’s no limit on how many people can sign up for it, but it hasn’t been very large (less than 100 people, including the various authors).

Everyone is really nice and supportive, and the subjects discussed run the whole gamut, from coming up with ideas, making the paranormal “believable”, gardening vs architecture (another way of saying pantsing vs plotting, taking George R.R. Martin’s terminology for it), and related topics, to getting published, and working on marketing.  This year, there also was a lady from the Maryland State Arts Council, who told us about the still-quite-new grants for writers.  (see www.msac.orgThey give grants to individuals as well as to organizations.

I totally recommend Hallowread. It’s not expensive (this year, an all-event ticket cost about $60), I learned a lot, and I was really inspired.  The first time I went authors at the mini-con really helped me to find the nerve to start putting my writing out there (although I’m still “toe-ing in the shallows!”) .

Oh, and I’m actually Katie or Kathy, whichever you prefer.  I didn’t realize when I named my newly-minted blog “discoveries4writerstoo”on WordPress that that would be my screen-name, too.


Thanks, Katie for the report! We look forward to another great year of AWWG, including more contributions to our blog!

In 1913 Women Marched on Washington

Like they will again on January 21, 2017.

Here’s the link to the Women’s March website. https://www.womensmarch.com/

2017 March co-founder Tamika Mallory noted  “This [event] is pro-women. This is a continuation of a struggle women have been dealing with for a very long time.”

And here are some inspiring photos from the Women’s March of 1913. May they inspire your patriotism!

parade-hedwig-1-994x559

parade-portrait-optimalparade-atlantic-optimal

For more, visit the Washingtonian website