Tipsday: Writerly Goodness found on the interwebz, Sept 9-15, 2018

Another awesome week of informal writerly learnings.

Rochelle Deans covers for K.M. Weiland while she’s on hiatus: three tips for writing a story that’s better than its flaws. Helping Writers Become Authors

Jenny Hansen wonders, have you lost touch with your inner avid reader? Writers in the Storm

Julie Glover suggests four easy edits to make your story flow better. Writers in the Storm

David Corbett is gearing up for getting out: the conference experience. Writer Unboxed

Jami Gold drops by Writers Helping Writers to apply lessons from TV to chapter hooks: and … action!

Over on her own blog, Jami wonders, what do you want to write that you haven’t yet?

Kristen Lamb discusses time as a literary device: flashbacks vs. non-linear structure.

Laurence MacNaughton offers five tips for writing group success. Fiction University

Kristen Lamb helps you decipher the log line: can you pitch your entire story in one sentence?

Ellen Brock offers a two-part series on writing a query letter. Here’s part one:

 

And part two:

 

Here’s my latest DIY MFA column: world building with the celestial objects of our Solar System.

On episode 217 of DIY MFA Radio, Gabriela Pereira interviews Yang Huang: write dangerously. Later in the week, Gabriela presents the opposite is possible theory of character development. DIY MFA

Chuck Wendig says, you gotta trust in the process. Terribleminds

Jim C. Hines explains what to do when you’re called out on something problematic

Chris Winkle explains why English needs singular they. Then, Oren Ashkenazi discusses six pieces of misunderstood storytelling advice. Mythcreants

So looking forward to Outlander season 4.

 

Be well until Thursday, when you can visit again to pick up some thoughty 😉

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Thoughty Thursday: Things that made me go hmmmm on the interwebz, Sept 2-8, 2018

The thoughty is a little more substantial this week.

Jim C. Hines considers all that “pro-life” encompasses, or what it should.

Darius Foroux says, the purpose of life is not happiness, but usefulness. Medium

Emily J. Smith: the art of being completely alone. Medium

Christopher D. Connors lists the ten qualities of an emotionally intelligent person. Medium

Brian Handwerk reveals that the benefits of probiotics might not be so clear cut. The Smithsonian Magazine

Sarah Chodosh explains how much your food waste harms the environment. Popular Science

Jane C. Hu goes inside the all-female trek to the north pole. Wired

New Evidence of Water on Jupiter! SciShow Space

 

Eric Mack celebrates NASA’s 60th anniversary: all about the space agency’s past, present, and future. CNet

True Facts: Bobbit Worm and Polychaete Pals – Ze Frank

 

I hope something in this modest curation got your mental corn popping.

Until next Tipsday, be well, be kind, and stay strong. The world needs your stories!

thoughtythursday2016

Tipsday: Writerly Goodness found on the interwebz, Sept 2-8, 2018

It’s been a tasty week for informal writerly learnings 🙂

Donna Galanti explains how to build suspense: meet your readers in the middle and they will come. Writers in the Storm

It’s been a while, but Fae Rowan is back with part three of her series on five conflict-making choices your characters can make. Writers in the Storm

Anna Elliott: heartbeats. Writer Unboxed

Kathryn Magendie is letting go of the negative dark cycle. Writer Unboxed

Greer Macallister offers 25 truths about the work of writing. Writer Unboxed

Therese Walsh: that time Jane Friedman’s advice saved my novel. Writer Unboxed

Donald Maass has some suggestions in case you’re feeling stuck. Stories don’t get stuck; only writers do. Writer Unboxed

Related: Kristen Lamb wonders if your story is stuck and offers five reasons your novel is breaking down.

And another perspective: sometimes it’s okay to quit the thing you’re writing. Sometimes you have to quit writing a thing. As long as you don’t quit writing all the things. Chuck Wendig @Terribleminds.

Rachael Stephen: Solve any writing problem (with brainstorming!)

 

Then, she argues that you have to define your theme before you write (and dares you to fight her):

 

If you have sloppy writing habits, K.M. Weiland shares four strategies to deal with it. Helping Writers Become Authors

Merilyn Simonds drops by Jane Friedman’s blog: how long should it take to write a book?

James Scott Bell takes his turn in the Writers Helping Writers coaching corner: where’s your edge?

Leanne Sowul shares seven lessons learned from tracking her time. DIY MFA

Sera Fiana recommends five self-care tips to improve your writing process. DIY MFA

Jami Gold: what does it mean to write layered characters? Later in the week, she reflects on how goals, needs, and false beliefs create character conflict.

Ellen Brock shows you how to plot your novel fast.

 

Fay Onyx examines five common harmful representations of disability. Mythcreants

And that was Tipsday.

Come back for your weekly dose of Thoughty on Thursday!

Until then, be well, my writerly friends.

tipsday2016

Thoughty Thursday: Things that made me go hmmmm on the interwebz, Aug 26-Sept 1, 2018

Just a bit of thoughty again, but I hope it’s enough to get your mental corn popping.

Abigail Jones: this is the suicide story you’re not hearing. Cosmopolitan

Dina Sachan says, stop pushing your sadness away; negative emotions can be good for you. Fast Company

Kate Knibbs: What’s your type? The Myers-Briggs test and the rise of the personality quiz. The Ringer

98.6 degrees is a normal body temperature, right? Not quite. Michele Cohen Marill for Wired.

Bryan Nelson reports on the giant deep-sea coral reef discovered off the South Carolina coast. Mother Nature News

Bianca Bosker delves into the nastiest feud in science. That is: what really killed the dinosaurs? The Atlantic/Medium

Waffles, the sidecar dog. The vid with her and friend, Biscuit, is only on Facebook, so this will have to do for now.

 

Be well, be kind, and stay strong. The world needs your stories!

thoughtythursday2016

Tipsday: Writerly Goodness found on the interwebz, Aug 26-Sept 1, 2018

Ah, September. Did you have to come so soon? Now we say our fond farewells to summer and get back to work and school. Shore yourself up with some informal writerly learnings.

Shannon Baker and Jess Lourey want you to write what you fear: why, how, and a lifesaving bonus tip. Writer Unboxed

Julia Munroe Martin: confessions of a weary writer. Speaks to me in many ways. I, too, will never give up. Writer Unboxed

Jo Eberhardt explores writing, politics, and the fuzzy grey line between. In the end, all writing is political. Writer Unboxed

K.M. Weiland shares five ways to use the enneagram to write better characters. Helping Writers Become Authors

Piper Bayard says, hacking isn’t just for thrillers anymore. Writers in the Storm

Laurie Schnebly Campbell: plot, character, and … what? Writers in the Storm

Roz Morris takes us on a virtual tour of her writing space. The rescued desk—where do you write? Nail Your Novel

Chuck Wendig explains why writing a series (especially as a new author) is really goddamned hard. Terribleminds

Sara Letourneau shares three ways of revising (or avoiding) preachy themes. DIY MFA

Damon Suede stops by Fiction University to talk about comp lit: claiming your place on the shelf.

Lizzie Shane drops by Jami Gold’s blog: how important is talent?

Chris Winkle wants you to account for character identification. Mythcreants

Oren Ashkenazi: five ways gods and the afterlife change a fantasy setting. Mythcreants

And that was tipsday for this week. Come back on Thursday for your weekly done of thoughty.

Be well until then!

tipsday2016

The next chapter: August 2018 update

Greetings, my writerly peeps!

I won’t say it again. I will not. If you’ve read the last few next chapter updates, you know what I’m resisting writing.

It’s still true, but I think that by this time, it goes without saying.

On to the writing progress report.

AugProgress

Once more, I fell short of my modest 5k writing goal on my current work in progress, Playing with Fire. I did write 3,828 words, or 77% of my goal, but I had some competing priorities that made it both necessary and the best I could do given the circumstances.

One of those priorities was a quick run-through of Marushka, as I broke the monolithic manuscript into chapters for posting online. I’ve just finished this task and will be writing up some further notes for me new critique group. In the process I bumped the word count for the draft up by about a thousand words. Draft 2.5 (‘cause this wasn’t really a true revision in any sense of the word) is now just shy of 78k words and I’m sure I’ll be able to take it into the 80-90k range once I have my critique notes.

So, technically, I revised 65,196 words of my 60k-word goal, or 100%

I also sacrificed some personal reading time to do an initial reading of the draft of another writer in the group. As one does in a critique group 🙂 Critiques were initially due by the end of August, but an extension has been granted. I have the time to so a second reading (at least) and put together some juicy notes.

August saw the recurrence of the due date for my DIY MFA column, which should be out on the 11th. It’s another big one, 1,632 words worth, and 163% of my goal.

Finally, I published 3,235 words on this blog in August, or 116% of my 2,800-word goal.

Overall, it’s been a good month with more hits than misses.

In September, I’ve set myself what I hope to be my final 5,000-word goal on PwF. I shouldn’t need that many words to finish off the draft (yes, I’m that close—so close I can taste it, as my mom would say) but I’ve given myself the “space” in case I need it.

Then, I’m going to organize my novel notes into a true series “bible” and begin outlining the final book in the Ascension series, Tamisashki, for NaNoWriMo 2018.

I’ll get to work on my critique and possibly take on another.

My next DIY MFA due date isn’t until October and so, because this won’t be a writing-heavy month, I’ve decided to take on a couple of learning opportunities, just for shits and giggles.

The first of these is the NaNoWriMo/Wesleyan prep course, offered through Coursera. The cost is nominal, and I get to see what Wesleyan offers.

The second is that I’m formally participating in Rachael Stephen’s Prep-tober this year (are we seeing the theme here?).

Writing is and always has been my happy place and that’s where I’m “spending” my creative energies.

Other aspects of my life are still in strange limbo-land, but there is hope/an ending in sight.

In other news, here are some Torvi pictures:

And my attempts at sunrise/sunset/moon pictures:

I’m no professional and all I’ve used here was the camera in my cell phone, but I thought I captured some lovely moments.

And that’s it for this month’s next chapter update.

Until the next time I blog, be well, be kind, and stay strong. The world needs your stories!

The Next Chapter

Thoughty Thursday: Things that made me go hmmmm on the interwebz, Aug 19-25, 2018

Just a little thoughty this week.

Alexandra Hansen: is it possible to catch up on sleep? Yes and no. Quartzy

What if solar energy was as easy as pressing “print”? PBS Reinventors

 

Mary Halton interviews Farah Alibay: when flying to Mars is your day job. BBC

Green Porno: the mantis with Isabella Rossellini (!)

 

True facts about the aye aye. Ze Frank

 

Hope something in this odd mix popped your mental corn.

Be well until the weekend and my next chapter update for August.

thoughtythursday2016

Tipsday: Writerly Goodness found on the interwebz, Aug 19-25, 2018

It’s the last week of August (!) Where did the summer go? Ah well, console yourself with some informal writing learnings.

K.M. Weiland offers three thoughts on what to do about writer’s jealousy. Helping Writers Become Authors

Julianna Baggott: the every-novel-is-wildly-different guide to revision. Favourite bit – “Here’s a hard truth: Each novel teaches the writer how to write it.” Writer Unboxed

Barbara O’Neal uncovers the mysteries of creativity and meditation. Writer Unboxed

Sara Letourneau expounds on the art of writing out of sequence. Writers Helping Writers

Three videos from Ellen Brock. First: how to write chapter openings

 

How to write chapter endings

 

And … how to use chapter titles

 

Cait Reynolds offers a field guide to the North American beta reader. Kristen Lamb

Jami Gold gives us a reminder to enjoy the journey. Later in the week, she applies writing lessons to life.

Chuck Wendig: originality is overrated in authorland. Terribleminds

Janice Hardy says, a well-written novel can still stink. Fiction University

And here are two videos from Jenna Moreci. First, her top ten writing mistakes.

 

And then, her top ten pieces of writing advice.

 

Dave Lerner lists five reasons not to write a persecution flip story. Mythcreants

Movie Mama watches The Princess Bride for the first time. Funny or Die

 

Be well until Thursday.

tipsday2016

Thoughty Thursday: Things that made me go hmmmm on the interwebz, Aug 12-18, 2018

Thoughty Thursday is more video than not, this week. Still, let’s see if we can’t get your mental corn popping.

Annakeara Stinson says, hacks for overthinking aren’t as complex as you think. Elite Daily

Rob Harvilla eulogizes Aretha Franklin, a pop star who could make you see God. The Ringer

Chasing asteroids: dual missions sniff out clues to the solar system’s past. Eva Botkin-Kowacki for the Christian Science Monitor.

Tilly the river otter teaches her kit, Mo, how to swim. Oregon Zoo

 

Liz Langley wonders how jellyfish rule the seas … without brains. National Geographic

This dog LURVES the new ball-popper 🙂

 

True facts about the land snail. Ze Frank

 

And true facts about the mantis.

 

I hope you were edutained 🙂

Until next tipsday, be well, be kind, and stay strong. The world needs your stories!

thoughtythursday2016

Tipsday: Writerly Goodness found on the interwebz, Aug 12-18, 2018

Ah! It’s Tuesday again. You know what that means. Another batch of informal writerly learnings. Here’s tipsday!

K.M. Weiland explains how to market your book when you hate marketing. Helping Writers Become Authors

Roz Morris leads a quiet rebellion against three pieces of conventional marketing wisdom. Nail Your Novel

Kathleen McCleary explains why the books we read when we’re young stick with us forever. Writer Unboxed

Vaughn Roycroft: finding my voice. So easy. So Hard. Writer Unboxed

September C. Fawkes is crafting a “body language voice.” Writers Helping Writers

Colleen M. Story tells us why writers need confidence and gives us five ways to boost ours. Writers in the Storm

Margie Lawson sets writing craft to the side in her latest Writers in the Storm post: are you riding the horse, or is the horse riding you?

Jenny Hansen wants you to focus on your story’s DNA. Writers in the Storm

Pamela Taylor writes about the perils of linguistic anachronisms. DIY MFA

Gabriela Pereira presents strong female protagonists from Thrillerfest 2018. DIY MFA

Jacquelin Cangro lists five ways to develop your close reading skills. DIY MFA

Jami Gold invites you to go beyond the limits of visual cues.

Chris Winkle shares some lessons from the hyped writing of Dawn of Wonder. Then, Oren Ashkenazi lists five stories that don’t understand power and privilege. Mythcreants

“In search of doors.” V.E. Schwab’s 2018 J.R.R. Tolkien Lecture on Fantasy Literature. Tor.com

Thanks for dropping by. I hope you got something you needed to progress in your creative endeavors.

Come back on Thursday for some thoughty 🙂

Be well until then!

tipsday2016