Wednesday, January 30, 2013

What's the Word Wednesday? - Cast a Spell on Your Writing

Cast a spell on your writing. 
Spelling is very important for writers. Teachers grade you on your spelling, and editors and publishers expect you to know how to spell the words you use in your poems and stories.  It's also much more enjoyable for the reader when things are written correctly.  

Check the words below for spelling errors. Do you know which ones are correct? If not, look them up in a dictionary. Send Storee a note letting her know how you did.  Then write a story or poem using one more of the words.

1. accidently
Correct
Incorrect

2. independance
Correct
Incorrect

3. foreign
Correct
Incorrect

4. paralel
Correct
Incorrect

5. privilege
Correct
Incorrect

Note: Critique said, "I bet they never forget how to spell the ones they look up in the dictionary."

Monday, January 28, 2013

Super Writing Prompt

Write a story including the following information:

Place: The Super Bowl

Quote: Where are all the ballerinas when you need them?

Object: A hot dog.

Friday, January 25, 2013

Thursday, January 24, 2013

Welcome Guest Blogger - Writer Amy Morgan!


Amy Morgan
I started writing poems and short stories when I was ten years old. I’m not known by friends and family for being an outgoing or adventurous person.  In fact, I really like to keep to myself.  But that doesn’t mean that I don’t dream.  In fact, I think because I am kind of quiet, it makes my imagination that much more active.  And it’s one of the main reasons I love to write. 

When I started writing, some of my poems were a little sad and the short stories were about characters living adventures far different from my real life.  I didn’t share what I wrote then and one day my oldest sister found some of the pieces I’d written.  She didn’t like them and told me that it was okay to write, but that I should be writing “happier” stuff.  Unfortunately, that little bit of criticism stayed with me for a very long time and I didn’t start sharing my work with anyone for about twenty years! 
Writing is both a joy and hard work for me.  It doesn’t come easy but now I’ve come to really enjoy sharing what I write.  It’s satisfying to have someone read a piece and be touched by it.   They don’t have to like it, it’s just enough for them to feel something when they read it. 

I’ve written for about forty years now and only recently begun to call myself a “writer”.  That was a mistake but a good lesson learned.  Just writing something doesn’t make a person a writer.  Everyone has had school assignments to write a poem or story.  Most of us have been given the assignment to write an essay about “what I did over summer vacation”.  Those can all be great introductions to writing, but it’s when you write something because you WANT to or feel a NEED to that you are a writer.  It doesn’t matter if it happens when you’re 5 years old or 50 years old.  A writer is the person who goes back and does it again…and again…and again.  It doesn’t matter whether it’s a poem, a diary, a short story or a novel.   So now when people ask, I say I’ve been a writer since I was a young girl!
To me, the beauty of writing is being able to take any subject and make it my own.  Whenever I feel self-doubt about whether my writing is “good enough”, I think of the two most influential people in my life, my mom and my husband, Steve.  Steve’s been my biggest supporter and one of his favorite mantras comes from Yoda:  “Do or do not.  There is no try”.  Many years ago, my mom gave me a plaque with a quote by Henry Van Dyke that reads:  “Use what talents you possess; the woods would be very silent if no birds sang there except those that sang best.”   So that is what helps keep me going – first, to just do it. And second, to believe that I have talent within myself.  And I found out that’s enough! 

Writing prompt:
Who encourages your writing?  Do you encourage yourself?  We all have talent.  Find your song, your talent, by listening to that voice in your head, or that feeling in your heart.  Write about it.  Don’t worry if anyone will like it or not.  Don’t worry about whether you want to share it or not.  It’s enough that you want to write about it.  Do it. Do it today.  Do it for yourself.

About the Author:
Amy Morgan lives on Grand Island, a pork chop shaped island in the middle of the mighty Niagara River, about 10 miles north of Niagara Falls with her husband, Steve.  Around her non-writing full time day job she writes and follows two other passions, reading and cooking.  Her blog, My Writing Corner, is a place to share some of her writing and her writing process as well.  You can check out her published pieces and some of her favorite writing resources on her website, Amy Writes.  Her work has appeared online and in local venues as well as being a contributor in Chicken Soup for the Soul, finding my faith and a feature story for Cats & Kittens magazine. 

Links:
Amy Writes website


 

Wednesday, January 23, 2013

What's the Word Wednesday - A Quiz and Chance to Win a Prize





Fill in the blanks in the following sentences with the correct word.  The first five people to get all correct will receive a free copy of  the award winning book, Storee Wryter Gets a Dog, the story of a young writer who agrees to train her new puppy to be a therapy dog.

Reading that book had a peculiar _______________ on Evelyn.
affect
effect

 _________ going to help me with this?
Whose
Who's
I'm afraid she's going to _____________ her grandmother's wedding band.
loose
lose

 My mother has been _______________ in bed all morning.
lieing
 laying
 lying

It's usually hotter __________ this in July.
than
then

Submit your answers as comments to this post.

Your writing prompt as part of this week's What's the Word Wednesday is to use one of the sentences from the quiz as the opening line of a story.

Thursday, January 17, 2013

Online Writing Workshop for Kids and Teens

INSTRUCTOR: Bobbi Carducci
Open to beginning writers of all ages
DATE: February 4 - March 25, 2013
LIMITED CLASS SIZE:
Enroll Now Fee: $45.00 per student payable via Paypal or check. (Fee must be received prior to the start of the workshop)
How Does it Work? Students will log on to a specified Yahoo group to attend classes. Workshop materials are posted by the instructor once a week. Students post their responses on the workshop site or send them directly to the instructor at any time during the day or night via an email address that will be provided on the first day of the workshop. Parents will have access to workshop materials at all times and may assist their child to access the lessons.
Instructor: Bobbi Carducci - Published Author, Writing Instructor, Young Voices Foundation Director. More information about Bobbi and her writing can be found at www.communityvoicemedia.com

To enroll click here: http://www.youngvoicesfoundation.org/onlinewritingworkshop.html
Course Schedule:
Session 1 - February 4, 2013
I want to write but how do I get started. (Where do you get your ideas?)
Session 2 - February 11, 2013
I have an idea. What's next? (Figuring out what happens when and who does it.)
Session 3 - February 18, 2013
Where are we? (Using time and location to set the mood.)
Session 4 - February 25, 2013
How many characters do I need and who are they?
Session 5 - March 4, 2013
Let's talk about it. (Who says what and how and why they say it is important.)
Session 6 - March 11, 2013
Help! I'm stuck. What to do when your story stalls.
Session 7 - March 18, 2013
Is it over yet? (How to write a good ending.)
Session 8 - March 25, 2013
Know your craft. (The importance of grammar, spelling, punctuation.)
This workshop is intended for beginning writers actively seeking to improve their craft. Participants will be encouraged to share portions of their work in progress with the instructor and the group on the message board.  To enroll click here http://www.youngvoicesfoundation.org/onlinewritingworkshop.html
Comments and suggestions will be monitored by the instructor before being posted to ensure they are polite and constructive in nature.

Wednesday, January 16, 2013

What's the Word Wednesday - Mary, Marry, Merry

Mary - A female given name. It was most likely originally an Egyptian name, perhaps derived in part from mry "beloved" or mr "love".

Marry - To enter into marriage. Definition of marriage: marriage is a social and legal contract between two individuals that unites their lives legally, economically, and emotionally.

Merry - Happy, joyful and light-hearted.


Write a story that includes one or more of today's words

Mary was delighted when John asked her to marry him. Six months later everyone had a merry time at the wedding.

Note: Due to do a glitch blogger is working to repair  bloggers are unable upload pictures from their files to the blog. I hope the problem will be fixed soon.

Teachers (including homeschool) contact me for a free ecopy of Storee Wryter gets a Dog -

Eight-year-old Storee hopes to be a bestselling author some day. Every evening before she goes to bed she looks back on her activities of the day in search of inspiration for her next story.

In this book, young readers are invited to share Storee Wryter’s adventure as she teaches her new puppy how to sit and stay and walk on leash without pulling. Also sharing in the fun is Storree’s cat, Critique, who is convinced that cats are smarter than dogs and isn’t shy about proving it.

When Storee’s neighbor, Kyria, suggests that ADDIE be trained as a therapy dog, the whole family gets involved in making a very important decision.
Will Storee have time to take on this added responsibility? She’s already busy with school, soccer practice, dance lessons, and her writing. And what about the cost? What if they adopt the puppy and she’s not suited to be a therapy dog?

The answer to these questions and more are answered in a story that kids enjoy reading again and again and parents find informative and inspiring. Included in this 60 page, five chapter book are writing prompts inviting kids to explore their own creativity and a code they can use to download the audio book at no additional cost.


Friday, January 11, 2013

Thursday, January 10, 2013

Welcome Guest Blogger Susan Meier!

Susan Meier is the author of 50 books for Harlequin and Silhouette and one of Guideposts' Grace Chapel Inn series books, The Kindness of Strangers. Her books have been finalists in RWA Chapter contests and National Reader's Choice Awards and have been nominated for Romantic Times Reviewer’s Choice awards, including her December 2011 release KISSES ON HER CHRISTMAS LIST. She is a recipient of several Cataromance.com Reviewer's Choice Awards.

 Susan loves to teach as much as she loves to write and is a popular speaker at RWA chapter conferences. Can This Manuscript Be Saved? and Journey Steps, No Frills Guide to Plotting! are her most requested workshops. Her article “How to Write a Category Romance” appeared in 2003 Writer’s Digest Novel and Short Story Markets.  Susan also gives online workshops for various groups and her articles regularly appear in RWA chapter newsletters. In 2012 she debuted four new online workshops, Let Conflict Tell Your Story for You, Conflict and the Category Romance, Sweet Romances: Moving the Relationship Forward Without Sex and Self-Editing.

Her popular Monday morning blog, Dear Writers, http://susanmeier.blogspot.com/ weekly writing lessons taken from her experiences with submissions, revisions and successes.

 Good morning, everyone!

As you can see, I’ve been a fairly busy writer! I’m also a writer who can boast that she’s earned her living from writing. One of the reasons is that I chose a genre which sells very well: Romance. Women are voracious readers and lots like romance novels. So I’ve been happily employed for twenty-five years.

But I wasn’t always published, and back in the day before ebooks it wasn’t easy to get published. So let me take you back to the beginning of my story.

I knew I wanted to write from the time I was old enough to hold a pencil. J But I lived in a poor, rural community in the Appalachian Mountains. Men weren’t encouraged to go to college but to work in the coal mines. So you can imagine a woman certainly was not encouraged to develop any talent she might have.

I ended up doing what everyone expected I would do. I married a steelworker and began a family. But one month before my thirtieth birthday I awoke incredibly depressed. I wasn’t doing anything I wanted to do with my life and I felt as if my soul was being suffocated.

My husband said, “So what did you want to do with your life?”

I said, “Write.”

And he said, “So write.”

In that moment, I realized that we are all the masters of our own destinies. I didn’t have to aim for superstardom or even publication. All I had to do was buy a typewriter and some paper and write. Thirty years later, I’m not just published, but I’ve provided my share of the income for twenty-five years through my books. I’ve traveled all over the United States talking about my journey and helping others who want to write to live their dreams. I’ve lived a blessed life! J

I think the problem most of us encounter when we try to live our dreams is that we always connect it to money. The poetry of your soul doesn’t respond to dollar signs. That doesn’t mean that you won’t someday make a living from your writing…but don’t start out to be rich. Begin your journey with something you want to tell the world.

I always believed love made the world go around and I write about that every day. I’m enthralled by how finding the right mate can (and does) change a person’s life.

What do you want to say?
That’s what you need to write about. In fact, take a minute right now and write a page or two about the theme or life truth you’d like the opportunity to explore in a book or blog or essay. Really let
yourself go. Don’t think about who might read it or what they might think. Just write the truth that comes out of you.

Wednesday, January 9, 2013

What's the Word Wednesady - Bald -Balled-Bawled


bald, balled, bawled

bald (BAWLD) (adjective)

1. No hair on the head; hairless, smooth: "When he became bald, he bought a toupee."
2. Lacking a natural or usual covering; bare, without cover, treeless, denuded, barren: "The mountain is bald above the tree line."
3. Open, bare, undisguised: "That is a bald lie!"

balled (BAWLD) (verb)

1. To form something into a round shape: "I stood up quickly and balled the letter in my hands and threw it in the trash."
2. To have created a state of confusion or of getting things in a tangle or a mess: "Because the overseer did not check all the details before giving the order, the workers balled up the project."

bawled (BAWLD) (verb)

1. Past tense of bawl (cried loudly); cried, wailed, wept: "The nursery was full of babies who bawled for long periods."
2. Cried out noisily; shouted, bellowed, yelled: "The captain bawled for the sergeant to come immediately."
3. Said loudly; shouted by using a very loud voice: "The manager shouted, 'Come in here, now!' and the salesman was bawled out for showing up late."

Mike was so upset by the letter from the doctor confirming that he was going bald that he bawled out loud and then balled the letter up and threw it into the trash.