AWWG 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:
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.
Pat C. submitted her screenplay, “Below the Radar,” to the Maryland Film Office. We look forward to good news soon!
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.
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.
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.
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:
What went well for you and your writing in 2016?
Did you meet the goals you had for the year?
List the writing projects you currently have.
– Review and report on each one.
– Now prioritize them for 2017.
What new project is calling to you? Name it, and place it in your 2017 Priority list.
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.
Set specific goals for the first 2 months of 2017. What will you have accomplished by Feb. 28, 2017?
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!
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.
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?
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.
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.
[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.
Move forward and backward. I go back and edit; I go forward and outline. Rereading and scanning ahead helps me keep #1 in mind.
Ignore word count. I get through the plot first, then I go back and flesh out or cut down as needed.
When I was really little, I wanted to be our first woman president. I always knew I want to be the kind of grownup who makes people’s lives better. And since that’s pretty much the job of the President of the United States, it seemed like a good idea.
But I’ve realized that you don’t have to be very old to start trying to fix the problems you see in the world around you. (I’m 11.) That’s why I created #1000BlackGirlBooks, a book drive to collect stories about young black girls. I wanted to be represented in books and show people that it’s possible to create spaces to be seen and represented.
Hillary Clinton is someone who’s never waited around for someone else to do the hard work. She’s been an organizer and a change-maker for her whole life practically. But people don’t really talk a lot about what she did when she was a kid like me. It turns out she’s…. READ MORE
Time to get ready to write 50,000 words in 30 days. The marathon for first drafts, the inimitable NaNoWriMo. Nano is the writing event that taught me that “I can’t run a marathon, but I can write one!”
National Novel Writing Month (NaNoWriMo) is a fun, seat-of-your-pants approach to creative writing.
On November 1, participants begin working towards the goal of writing a 50,000-word novel by 11:59 PM on November 30.
If you’re not a novelist, non-fiction and other genres are more than welcome to the party.
Last year AWWG had at least 5 participants, and several members used all the inspiration to advance existing projects. You can make it work for you! There will be Write-ins several times a week in various locations, and lots of online encouragement.
WordPress Blogs are popular. Do you have one? Do you need ‘Tips and Ideas’ to make your blog better?
WordPress is the most popular open source Content Management System for good reason. The learning curve is lower than other CMS’s, the back-end, for the most part, is intuitive and easy to use, and the platform is highly extensible with many free and premium plugins available.
WordPress topics – it can be about the software itself, plugins, blogging tips, SEO, analytics and more. Our speakers are regular people and most don’t consider themselves experts; they have a passion for sharing something they’ve learned. Remember, everyone is an expert in something!
A variety of Sponsors—local, national and international
“I’m hoping to show that other girls can do this as well…I used the resources I was given, and I want people to pass that down and use the things they’re given to create more social action projects — and do it just for fun, and not make it feel like a chore.”
Read more about Marley and her project in the Philly Voice, and send books to her project at the address below.
Book donations can be sent to 59 Main St., West Orange, N.J., 07052, Office 322.