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!

 

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.’ 

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!

Crow About Your 2016 Progress – Plan for Success in 2017

It’s the Year of the Rooster!

What will you be crowing about by this time next year??

Last Tuesday 12/27 we had a wonderful mini-retreat day at Lyn Scott’s waterfront house “Ducks.” It was such a balmy day that several of us wrote outside on the deck, listening to the ducks and swans enjoying their day splashing about.

We shared our plans and dreams for the new year of writing ahead, and created a talisman that would be a symbol of our commitment to our work.

Plan for Success in 2017

Just because you weren’t there doesn’t mean you can’t share in the process. Here are the questions we asked and answered in our Year Ahead retreat day:

  1. What went well for you and your writing in 2016?
  2. Did you meet the goals you had for the year?
  3. List the writing projects you currently have.
    – Review and report on each one.
    – Now prioritize them for 2017.
  4. What new project is calling to you? Name it, and place it in your 2017 Priority list.
  5. Choose an object – something to keep in your pocket or on your desk, and didicate it to your writing goals for 2017. Hold it in your hands, see your work accomplished! Then keep it as your touchstone to remind you of your goals.
  6. Set specific goals for the first 2 months of 2017. What will you have accomplished by Feb. 28, 2017?
  7. Make an Artist’s Date* with yourself that feeds your creativity.  The Artist’s Date is assigned play, you are wooing your Muse. Click the link to learn more.

There you have it! I recommend you post your answers to your own blog, or submit it here to share with your community.

AWWG will host another Retreat Day in early March, and we’ll see how it’s going! Meanwhile, pick up your pen, stretch your typing fingers and happy writing!

 

 

December Meeting Monday

discoveryourinnerMonday December 12, 2017
1:15 – 3:15pm
ACCOKEEK LIBRARY
15773 Livingston Road
Accokeek, MD 20607

How’s that Holiday spirit holding up?

Forget all about the hectic Christmas season! Come and hang with your AWWG peeps and get revved up for winter writing.

  • Arrive on time for a warm-up prompt to get your words flowing
  • Applaud our NaNoWriMo writers
  • Come & share your News & Goods
  • Don’t forget to bring books, flyers & cards for our Resource table

We’ll discuss our winter writing schedules, a local post-holiday retreat day, and our January party, so don’t miss it!

NEWS BLAST!

Cheryl Holloway featured on Internet radio show The Gospel Truth, hosted by our own Deborah Parker on E-Life Radio!

  • When: Sunday, December 11, 2016
  • Listen in at: www.ELifeMedia.net
  • Time: Approx 2:15 – 2:45 (Eastern Time)
  • Call in Number:  (301) 455-5934 

 

Writers, we Hold the Tools of Change

What It Means To Be A Writer In The Time Of Trump

Huffington Post publishes thoughts from 18 writers on the work ahead.

 

Aftermath: Sixteen Writers
on Trump’s America

from the New Yorker magazine.

 

“This is precisely the time that artists go to work.There is no time for despair, no place for self-pity, no need for silence, no room for fear. We speak, we write, we do language. That is how civilizations heal.”

~Toni Morrison

ToniMorrison
More concrete resources: take action on what you feel strongly about – Slate has a great list HERE

how_liberals_can_channel_their_post_election_anxiety_into_action

November is fast disappearing!

nano-logoDear NaNo writers!

We have a write-in planned at Lyn’s house, “Ducks,” from noon-6pm. RSVP to Lyn HERE for directions. Also, one more Monday night Write-in at the Library, 6:30-closing, 11/28.

Here are some tips from the latest Pep Talk, this one from Maggie Steifvater of the Raven Boys series.

  1. Know my project. I need to know what I want that final project to look like. Where it sits on the shelf, why I’m writing it, how it will make the reader feel. Then I ask myself with each chapter: does this belong in the book I said I was writing?

  2. Never sit at my computer without knowing what I’m going to write. If I’m stuck, I need to stimulate my physical body so my mind can play: drive, walk, shower.

  3. Unwind each day with thirty minutes of reading something that feels like what I’m trying to make, to remind myself how others accomplished it.

  4. [brackets]. If I know I need a beat but can’t quite get the details yet, I place brackets around the words [fight here] or [scene], so that I know I can go back and fix it later.

  5. Move forward and backward. I go back and edit; I go forward and outline. Rereading and scanning ahead helps me keep #1 in mind.

  6. Ignore word count. I get through the plot first, then I go back and flesh out or cut down as needed.

From NaNoWriMo Pep Talks by well-known NaNo authors 

November 14th Meeting: Publishing Presentation

WHAT:   AWWG Meeting
WHEN:  Monday November 14
1:15 – 3:15om
WHERE: Accokeek Library

So, You’re Ready to Push to Publish?

poetrybusinessmanagerSpecial Guest writer and publisher Elliott BatTzedek joins us for our November meeting with a terrific program to help you get your work out there!

In this hands-on workshop you’ll learn all about the world of poetry magazines, journals, and online publications, including:

  • how to find journals that are a good match for your work,
  • how to sign up for online submission services
  • how to prepare your work for submission
  • how to avoid wasting money on unnecessary submission fees

Elliott will share professional strategies and practical tools for submission that are applicable to most genres.

Bring anyone who might be interested.
We’re asking for $10 donation for our speaker. 

See you there!

AWWG October Meeting 10/10

Our October Meeting is Monday the 10th. The Library is indeed open, and we’ll gather for our usual informative and entertaining event.

Monday October 10, 1:15 – 3:15 at the Accokeek Library, 15773 Livingston Road, Accokeek, MD 20607

Prompt? Has anybody seen a Prompt?

Did I give you all a prompt last time? Memory is NOT serving me at this moment! So, if you are in need of a prompt, try one of these:

  • Firelight and Shadow
  • I closed my eyes, drifted towards sleep, and then I saw….
  • Stepping up the creaking step, she pushed the key into the rusty lock. [then what?]

Come prepared to read, share your triumphs and struggles, and move forward in your writing life. Bring like-minded friends!

See you next week.