Tipsday: Writerly Goodness found on the interwebz, Sept 3-9, 2017

Here are your informal writerly learnings for the first full week of September (!)

K.M. Weiland continues her most common writing mistakes with part 62: head-hopping POV. Helping Writers Become Authors

Colleen M. Story explains how your time personality influences your writing productivity. Writers in the Storm

Susan Spann explains the law (and ethics) of conference blogging. Writers in the Storm

James Scott Bell stops by the Writers Helping Writers coaches’ corner: using the novel journal to make writing breakthroughs.

Vaughn Roycroft is fortified by gratitude. Writer Unboxed

Donald Maass muses on what makes a journey. Writer Unboxed

Here’s the second part of my exploration of The Hero’s Journey on DIY MFA.

Crash Course Mythology – The Hero’s Journey and the Monomyth. They do a really good job of illustrating how some of the stages of The Hero’s Journey are optional, or can be shifted 🙂

 

Leanne Sowul: it’s back to school time at DIY MFA—what do you want to learn?

Kristen Lamb explains why suffering is essential for great fiction.

Jeff Lyons returns to Jami Gold’s blog to bust the rest of the top ten writing myths.

Rachel Chaney is Dan Koboldt’s equine expert for this article: matching horses to use, climate, and characters in fiction.

And then, Judith Tarr contributed in praise of the hard-working fantasy horse to the Tor.com blog. What do these ladies have against Friesians, anyway?

Rebecca Solnit: if I were a man. The Guardian

Isabella Biedenharn: Libba Bray has some thoughts on this all-female Lord of the Flies remake. Entertainment Weekly

What growing up in the sulphur city taught me about beauty. Christine Schrum on the Latitude 46 blog.

Cat Rambo announces that games writers will be eligible for an award in the 2018 Nebulas. Geekwire podcast.

Tor.com presents Ursula K. Le Guin’s introduction to the Library of America’s The Hainish Novels & Stories, volume one.

OMG. Droughtlander’s almost over! Actually, the first ep will have aired by the time I post this. Still. OUTLANDER!

 

Ever think Gandalf was a dick? Well, so does Emily Asher-Perrin: five things Gandalf should have admitted instead of being a jerk. (ROFL-hilarious) Tor.com

So I went to WorldCon in August, eh? This happened. The Tea & Jeopardy live podcast taping with George R.R. (Really Really) Martin!

 

Enjoy, and be well until Thoughty Thursday!

tipsday2016

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The next chapter: August 2016 update

Let me tell you a story 🙂

Dark season

Over the last couple of years, August has been a bad month for me, emotionally speaking.

I’ve been down. Living with depression, if you do it consciously, means that you can see the signs and take action, or not, whatever is most appropriate for your mental health at the time. Trying to barge through rarely works. For me, anyway.

Last year, I was away from home, delivering training, for two and a half weeks in August. I thought London was a lovely city, and I did enjoy myself to the extent I could—I even went shopping (!) and if you know me, you know I hate shopping of any kind with a passion—but it was too far away for me to go home on the weekends, and I had discovered earlier in the year how much more difficult it was for me to write or blog while travelling. So except for curation, I gave over.

Writing on the road isn’t undoable, and I have put on my big girl panties and done it since (I started NaNoWriMo while travelling last year), but, at the time, I was at a low ebb, and sometimes you have to be kind to yourself.

This year, I went to Kansas City for WorldCon and stayed an extra day or so to visit with a friend who’d moved down there several years ago. More on WorldCon in a bit. The bottom line is that health issues and my introvert nature (exacerbated by my emotional low) conspired to rob the trip of some of its joy.

Remembering what had happened last year, I had even planned for the dog-day doldrums. I figured I’d have the first run-through of all my drafted novels done by August (and I did) and that I would need a little break (and I did).

My plan to turn to other projects, though, didn’t work out as well as I’d thought. I worked on some short fiction, made a few submissions (a rejection from one of which was returned within a week), but I never touched the poetry collection or the non-speculative short fiction collection. I just didn’t have the heart.

I journalled, trying to work out what my plan for the rest of the year would look like and trying to find my way back to what is, for me, normal. I also participated in a Nelson Literary Agency workshop on first pages with Angie Hodapp.

Though the initial review of my first five pages wasn’t horrible, I wanted to try something completely different for the revision, see if the advice of the readers would work. It was a spectacular failure, but I learned a lot from the experience.

You really do have to fail to learn, even if it’s painful 🙂

I’m now delving back into Initiate of Stone, working long hand in a notebook. Sometimes you just have to write it out. I find that writing long hand helps give me the time to examine the words and sentences, and get a fresh perspective.

I can now also disclose that I did not succeed with my application to #PitchWars. Reality Bomb was the project I chose for that experience. I didn’t expect to get in this first year of applying, but one pair of mentors, Michael Mammay and Dan Koboldt, was very supportive. They asked for additional materials, a synopsis and first 50 pages.

Our email exchanges in that first week or so were productive and illuminating for me. I now have some great ideas to return to that manuscript with. So, ultimately, #PitchWars was a win.

This brings me to another realization of why this year has been a difficult one for me.

Last year was the year of almost. I got on several long and short lists in contests, had my work set aside for second readings for anthologies, and while it didn’t result in any publications, the nature of the responses was reassuring. I also had a couple of stories accepted into the Sudbury Writers’ Guild anthology, which should be coming out this fall.

This year, with the exception of #PitchWars, has been the year of no. Form rejections all around, whether from querying or from short fiction submissions. Though I have, to some extent, found a way to turn rejection into a positive, when so many pile up, it becomes disheartening.

You begin to question your worth and skill as a writer, to doubt the kind things that have been said about your work (because there are so few of them, relatively speaking, that they must be the flukes, you reason). You begin to look for those opportunities to confirm your negative bias, blow small faux pas into huge incidents. Reasonable lapses in communication become the occasion for self-blame and recrimination.

Fortunately, since my return from Kansas City, I’ve been coming across the most wonderful articles and posts that have given me the encouragement I’ve needed, some of which you’ll see in this week’s curation. Between that, and the long hand work I’ve been doing on IoS, I’m making my way back to the page.

WorldCon

I’d left with the best of intentions and wanted to practice Gabriela Pereira’s method of networking with a number of authors I’d only ever seen online. In the moment, though, I was so nervous, I basically blathered.

I did get to meet and have a couple of nice, brief chats with Mary Robinette Kowal, met Cat Cambo and Foz Meadows at their Literary Beer sessions (informal chats), but otherwise, I just did my usual and took notes in panel discussions.

I was within three feet of George R.R. Martin, but as he was just coming out of the second of two autographing sessions in which fans lined up for the better part of an hour to see him, I just couldn’t bring myself to be that fan. Instead, I smiled, nodded, and moved on without harassing the poor man.

I had gone to the Tor Party with the intention of meeting John Scalzi, but several people seemed to be running interference and by the time I was able to politely make my excuses, Mr. Scalzi was monopolized by other Tor authors and friends. After that, he turned his attention to his beautiful wife and, again, I could not bring myself to interrupt just to say “hi, and thank you for writing wonderful books.”

Maybe it’s because I’m Canadian, or an introvert, or both, but I just couldn’t.

I’m also a total newb and have no clue with regard to what’s appropriate and what’s not in which context.

The Hugo Awards Ceremonies were wonderful, though, and the sad puppies were soundly trounced.

N.K. Jemesin won best novel for The Fifth Season, Nnedi Okorafor won best novella for Binti, Hao Jingfang and Ken Liu (translator) won best novelette for Folding Beijing, and Neil Gaiman (who wasn’t there in person) had a special message for the sad puppies when he won best graphic story for The Sandman: Overture.

Really, you can just go to the Hugo Awards site and check out all the winners. Diversity was the word of the evening.

It was a great event, but at the end, I felt like I needed a vacation to get over my vacation 🙂

I returned home with a whopping case of imposter’s syndrome, though. I’d met and seen and learned from all of these authors, many of whom I read and respect. Who am I, with my two publications in what the Science Fiction Writers Association (SFWA) considers “token” markets, to think that I can get a traditional deal in a market that’s more competitive than ever?

When I confided my doubts to Phil, his response was that print publishing was on its way to extinction and why would I want that, anyway? So not what I needed to hear, but I forgave him instantly. Though he is very supportive of me and my creative calling, he, like most non-writers, will never understand what it’s like to be in my neurotic wee skull.

But, as I said, I’m surfacing now. I have no further conventions I’ve committed to (having used up my budget for such things) and the only challenge I’ve set for myself is to get through another revision of IoS and Apprentice of Wind before I tackle the third novel in the series for NaNoWriMo.

I still want to get back to the poetry collection and the non-speculative short fiction collection, but neither is a big priority for me at the moment.

I’m taking my time with the short fiction. Some of my stories are actually the seeds of novels. I have to set those aside in their own project folders for the future, and then get on with revising and submitting what I have. Who knows? I may even surprise myself and write some more new stories. It has been known to happen.

In the meantime, I’ve applied for my winter leave at work and am crossing my fingers.

Persistent payroll issues may affect my application for another leave with income averaging. Until things are sorted out, the powers that be may recommend against such special considerations. I may have to defer again until next year.

It won’t be the worst thing that’s ever happened, but Phil and I are ready to look for another furry dependent. I need the five weeks for acclimatization and training. We’d rather it be sooner than later, but we’ll be patient if we must.

Having a new puppy in the spring would probably be more convenient (she says, mentally willing leave approval).

And then there are the renovations to consider, but that’s another post. Probably several 😉

The month in writing

August was sparse as far as writing goes. Aside from the blog, from which I took a vacation for WorldCon, the only writing I did was to finish off the one short story I was working on.

AugustProgress

6,451 words on the blog and 901 words on the short story. 7,362 altogether. That’s literally all she wrote.

I didn’t revise a thing. Fortunately, because I met or exceeded my revision goals in every other month so far this year, I’m not that far behind.

I didn’t count the minor revisions I did to the stories I submitted, or any of the journalling or long hand writing I did.

Besides, I wasn’t anticipating (until part way through the year) that I’d return to IoS, so I don’t have a column for that on my spreadsheet. I could make one. I have the skill, but I don’t want to take the time to do it now. Yes. I know. Lazy Mellie.

I’m getting my mojo back. The writing’s the thing.

Science fiction is the literature of ideas. It is the great “what if?” that leads us into the future. Fantasy is the literature of (im)possibility. It longingly wonders “If only . . .” and whispers in our dreams. I write both and I think I’m pretty damned lucky.

And that’s it until next month.

I hope you’re all experiencing great creative breakthroughs and are satisfied with what you’ve done. In the end, that’s all that matters.

Be well!

The Next Chapter

Tipsday: Writerly Goodness found on the interwebz, June 19-25, 2016

I have no idea where all this came from. It was a bountiful week for Writerly Goodness.

Julie Glover guest posts on Jami Gold’s blog: four steps to break grammar rules with style.

Anne Janzer guest posts on Jane Friedman’s blog: how to create an internal mindset conducive to writing.

Barbara O’Neal conducts an experiment in fostering creative flow. Writer Unboxed.

When you don’t want to write: Heather Webb on Writer Unboxed.

Joanna Penn discusses how to banish writer’s block with K.M. Weiland. The creative Penn.

How to plot a book: start with the antagonist. K.M. Weiland’s Helping writers become authors. Later in the week: how (not) to write satisfying action scenes. More lessons from the Marvel Universe movies.

Jami Gold wonders why “unlikable” can be a deal breaker for readers.

MJ Bush offers her keen insight into writing the perfect flaw. Writingeekery.

Dave King explores the work of a master for Writer Unboxed: Jaime Lannister and sympathetic monsters.

Kayla Dean explains how to use story archetypes to subvert expectations. DIYMFA.

DIYMFA radio, episode 100: Unleash your storytelling superpower with Gabriela Pereira.

C.S. Lakin takes a look at the first turning point in your novel. Live, write, thrive.

Chris Winkle offers three painless ways to patch plot holes. Mythcreants.

Jamie Raintree delves into the process of overcoming the emotional obstacles to a writing career. Writers in the Storm.

Five good ideas science fiction teaches us to fear. Oren Ashkenazi for Mythcreants.

Katherine Langrish shares some thoughts on writing meaningful fantasy. Tor.com

Women at WorldCon

 

Dan Blank: celebrate the arts where you live. Writer Unboxed.

Janet Reid lists the reasons she rejected 25 queries so you can avoid them. She later confesses: so I didn’t get it right the first time . . .

Sarah Negovetich: it’s not you, it’s really not.

Jonny Gellar’s Ted Talk: What makes a bestseller?

 

This is a weird story from the MFA world. Steven Galloway, chair of UBC’s creative writing program, was fired after an investigation, but under mysterious circumstances. Nobody’s willing to say exactly why. I think anyone reading the articles can infer, but . . . I’ll let y’all judge for yourselves.

Susan Spann explores the legal side of writing for anthologies. Writer Unboxed.

The Active Voice shares the story of Pauline Creeden, who lost her Amazon publishing account through no fault of her own.

Sadness. Lois Duncan died on June 15th at the age of 82. I loved her books. Publishers Weekly.

Jim C. Hines writes about racism and the backlash against black Hermione.

Cory Doctorow revisits Writing the Other, intensely practical advice for representing other cultures in fiction. BoingBoing

The Witch explores America’s essential fear of female power. Dianca Potts for Lenny.

Brainpickings presents Virginia Woolf’s thoughts on the connection between loneliness and creativity.

She-Ra and the fight against the token girl. Maria Teresa Hart for The Atlantic.

Publishers Weekly: Fall 2016 adult announcements in SF, fantasy, and horror.

Indie presses are starting bookstores. Jon Sealy for Literary Hub.

Chemistry explains why old books smell so good. Robin Burkes for Tech Times.

The short film, The Birch, may be creepy, but I think it’s rather heart rending warming 🙂 Rebekah McKendry for BlumHouse.com

James Whitbrook shares Geroge R.R. Martin and Stephen King in conversation: how the fuck to you write so fast? i09. Watch the whole talk. It’s awesome.

Who’s afraid of female Ghostbusters? Dave Itzkoff interviews the cast for The New York Times.

Michael Livingston gets medieval on Game of Thrones’ ‘battle of the bastards.’ Tor.com

Entertainment Weekly shares a sneak peek of the actors who will play Roger and Brianna on Outlander.

Exhausted? I am.

Until Thursday *waves*

Tipsday

Tipsday: Writerly Goodness found on the interwebz, Dec 20-26, 2015

Here’s a little Writerly Goodness for you 🙂 Looks like I really did take a holiday last week. Yay me!

K.M. Weiland talks about coincidences in your fiction and what mistake in means you might be making.

C.S. Lakin calls these stylistic devices. I call them rhetorical figures. I lurves me some rhetoric. I blame the politicians for rhetoric’s pejorative connotation 😦 However you choose to look at them, they’re a lot of fun and can add something special to your writing.

Dan Blank says that creative work is performance. Writer Unboxed.

Why writers need human connection. Jamie Raintree guests on Writers in the Storm.

Chris Winkle shares lessons learned from the awkward writing of The Sword of Truth. Mythcreants.

George R.R. Martin uses it. So does Robert J. Sawyer. Find out why Wordstar is the preferred word processor for these authors.

And speaking of nifty writer tech, here’s Jamie Raintree’s new writing and revision tracker*. This is the spreadsheet that revolutionized my attitude toward my writing. I hope it will do the same for you 🙂

*This year, Jamie’s made the spreadsheet fairly foolproof. You can only enter data into certain cells. So much easier. I’ll still do a little post on how to set it up, but it won’t be as extensive as I thought based on past years.

Before you launch a Patreon for your writing, read this. Nicole Dieker for The Write Life.

Madeleine Monson-Rosen recounts the twelve happy accidents that helped save science fiction. i09.

Now this is my idea of a happy Christmas: Jolabokaflod. NPR.

Hope you had a wondrous holiday.

See you Thursday!

Tipsday

Tipsday: Writerly Goodness found on the interwebz, March 29-April 4, 2015

Does it serve your story? Why killing your darlings is a mark of the mature writer. Roz Morris.

K.M. Weiland asks, What are pinch points and how can they make your story easier to write?

Show what your characters are thinking and feeling like a writer, rather than a director. Katie’s Wednesday vlog.

Ruth Harris shares the ten commandments of productive professional writers.

Here we are at day 29 of Janice Hardy’s online novel revision workshop: Eliminate unnecessary repetition. Though the month is over, you can peruse this lovely series of posts for revision assistance any time you want 🙂

Donald Maass discusses emotional work on Writer Unboxed.

Editor Rachel Starr Thomson guests on C.S. Lakin’s Live, Write, Thrive and writes about weaving in backstory.

Editorial advice: Stop using two spaces after a period. Cult of Pedagogy.

Eight natural phenomena to use in your stories. Mythcreants.

Reading makes us smarter and nicer. Readers are more empathetic. Who knew? Time.

Mary Robinette Kowal played an April Fool’s joke that wasn’t really a joke. She really is going to be working on Sesame Street.

Andrew Pyper is featured in Now.

Silvia Moreno-Garcia and her novel Signal to Noise have gained some high-profile attention. i09.

Culture and conflict on Warpworld: Dr. Robert Runte discusses Canadian vs. American Science Fiction.

J.K. Rowlings’ ten pieces of advice on the lessons of failure (and the commencement speech from which they were taken). The Guardian.

Six John Green Quotes on writing. Authors Publish.

Jack Kerouac’s 31 beliefs about writing. The Write Practice.

This is beautiful and poetic and the total reason I love abandoned places:

Masie Williams will be appearing in the next series of Doctor Who! i09.

The many faces of Tatiana Maslany. The New York Times Magazine. Are you looking forward to the return of Orphan Black?

Outlander and the spanking heard around the world by John Doyle for The Globe and Mail.

Spoilers are coming: George R.R. Martin releases a chapter of the latest Song of Ice and Fire novel. Time.

It was a writerly week!

See you on Thursday 🙂

Tipsday

Tipsday: Writerly Goodness found on the interwebz, Feb 1-7, 2015

Most common writing mistakes, number 38: Irrelevant endings. K.M. Weiland. Helping Writers Become Authors.

Katie helps you create a more compelling backstory in three minutes 🙂

Roz Morris posts about what to do when feedback leads you astray.

Then Roz visited Jane Friedman’s blog to offer tips on how to recognize when backstory is sabotaging your novel.

Chuck Wendig shares the emotional milestones of writing a novel. Don’t think I ever left the sphincter-clenching panic stage 😛

How and why Marie Bilodeau made the leap to full time writer.

How Kameron Hurley hacked her writing process with 10,000 word-a-day marathons. I don’t think I could do this, but I find process to be endlessly fascinating.

Kameron, again, on how we can build a more pragmatic SF&F dialogue.

Why J.J. Marsh doesn’t want your free book.

Open Minds Quarterly answers the question, what makes a writing contest legitimate?

How Harper Lee’s long-lost sequel was found. The Atlantic.

15 thought-provoking SF films that are worth your time. Taste of cinema.

George R.R. Martin explains why The Winds of War isn’t on HarperCollins’ 2015 list (yet). The Daily Dot.

And here is the season 5 trailer for Game of Thrones:

 

I’m putting this in Tipsday because. My favourite song from the Fifth Element soundtrack. I had no idea it could be sung without electronic assistance O.O

 

See you on Thoughty Thursday!

Tipsday

Why is shifting point of view (POV) problematic?

For the second time in as many weeks, a writer friend has suggested a post to me. This time, it was about POV. In a short story I recently critiqued, the POV (third person, past tense) shifted from a mother to her daughter. I recommended either sticking with one POV, or marking the change with more than just textual cues.

My writer friend indicated that she had a film background and asked if the omniscient POV wouldn’t allow her to shift her focus between characters in a scene.

What follows is my response.

A wee caveat: this is based on my own craft learning to date. I’m happy to lay the burden of expertise at the feet of others 🙂


 

First, you should check out CS Lakin’s blog: LiveWriteThrive

You may have to go fairly far back in her archives, but she did a series on writing based on film techniques last year. She turned this into a book, Shoot your novel, which you can find on Amazon.

This might appeal to your filmic aesthetic.

Now, having said that, film techniques aren’t the same as POV in writing. Parallels can be drawn, but really, they’re two different things.

POV in writing is about who’s telling the story. Whomever the story belongs to is generally the POV you use.

Why is a shifting POV problematic?
I’ll let you do a little research on this yourself. So many people have written about it. It’s called “head hopping.”

Here’s a starter from our friend Google: https://www.google.com/search?q=head+hopping&ie=utf-8&oe=utf-8

My recommendations? The Write Practice, Marcy Kennedy (she’s Canadian), the Editor’s Blog (Head-Hopping Gives Readers Whiplash), and The Write Editor (The Difference Between Omniscient POV and Head Hopping). Jami Gold and WriterUnboxed are awesome too.

Go ahead. Check them out. I’ll wait while you scan a few of the articles 🙂

In a visual medium, the POV is omniscient, or at most limited third simulated by a voice over. You can’t really “show” the inner thoughts and feelings of a character on screen. So in film, the POV is the camera’s and by extension, the director, producer, and/or editor may have a hand in influencing the final product.

There is such a thing as an omniscient POV in writing, and it used to be used, but it’s not really popular anymore. Further, it’s hard to do well.

In cinematic terms, omniscient translates to the page as a wide shot, interspersed with close ups on various characters, but it’s all external observation. Visually, you have the zoom or cut to give you a clue as to which character or characters are the focus of the scene.

In writing, you have to do something that simulates the zoom to cue the reader that the focus of the scene is now changing. Otherwise, you could end up confusing your reader (who’s talking now? why do I have to hear from this character? why is this important to the scene/story?).

Readers have changed over the last century. This is primarily due to movies and television (where a complete story is told in 30 minutes, an hour, or two hours), video games (complete action smorgasbord), and the internet (e.g. Twitter: describe your day in 140 characters anyone?). Flash fiction and micro fiction now have journals devoted to them. Books have been written in Tweets.

Readers like shorter forms of fiction because they can read a complete story in a limited period of time (think CommuterLit.com).

If the story isn’t short, then the author must continually hook the reader and keep them interested in the story. Part of this is engaging the reader in the story (what’s at stake?) and the character (why should I care?).

Omniscient POV requires readers to pay attention and do a little more work than they might otherwise be inclined to do. It’s not personal. You don’t stick with any one character long enough for the reader to become invested in that character and you’re observing like a camera, never delving into a character’s thoughts or feelings.

A limited third POV focuses intimately on one character: She ran to his side and thought, Is he dead? Oh, please, no.

Some writers, for example George R. R. Martin in Game of Thrones, shift between characters in the limited third POV, but you will find, generally, that an entire chapter will be from one character’s POV.

If an author changes POV characters in the middle of a chapter, the POV will change when the scene changes (therefore one POV per scene) and there will often be a visual cue such as an extra line between the paragraphs, or a symbol like # or * set off in the middle of its own line. Barbara Kyle, Canadian author of historical thrillers set in the Tudor era, uses this latter technique.

A lot of young adult fiction uses first person POV (I, me, my) because it sinks the reader immediately into the thoughts and feelings of the character. This can either cement the relationship (he’s just like me!) or alienate the reader (why won’t he stop whining?). Most first person narratives stick with one character through the entire story.

Then you have the experimental authors who will mix third and first person POVs. Deborah Harkness does this in A Discovery of Witches. Diana Gabaldon did it first, however, in her Outlander series. The protagonist is written in first person and all other POV characters are written in third.

Hardly anyone can write well in the second person POV (you look in the closet and find a boy huddling in the corner). It has been done, but it requires a deft hand and mind. If any form is going to use second person POV, it’s likely a short, flash, or micro fiction story.

This gets even more complicated when you add tenses to your POV. Past and present are the usual choices. I can’t think of a novel written in the future tense in any POV. Again shorter forms may take the pressure of future tense but it feels awkward to read no matter what.

For short fiction, I’d recommend figuring out whose story you’re telling and sticking with that character throughout. If you lose the reader, they’ll put your story down.

If that reader is an editor or a contest judge, your chances of publication may be shot.

I’m just saying 🙂


 

Was this post helpful to anyone else? Please let me know in the comments. Also, as I mentioned last week, if you have any burning writing questions, I’ll be happy to do my best to answer them. Or refer you to the experts who answer them better than I ever could 😀

And that’s a wrap for this weekend!

Muse-inks

Tipsday: Writerly Goodness found on the interwebz, Aug 24-30, 2014

The impact character: Why every character arc needs one, by K.M. Weiland.

Then Katie moves on to Elizabeth Spann Craig’s blog to write about how you can use backstory to keep readers reading.

Katie’s Wednesday vlog on creating marvellous characters with minimal effort. Last week, she was a little rough on The Monuments Men. See why she loves John Ford’s She Wore a Yellow Ribbon.

Roz Morris explores how Jose Saramago crafted his novel Blindness in a deliberate way and what that might mean for you as a writer.

Dan Blank posted this bit of awesome on Writer Unboxed.

Later in the week, John Vorhaus wrote about how to feel good and fail big.

Chase Jarvis shares twelve secrets for unlocking your most creative work.

Part two of Mona Alvarado Frazier’s lessons learned from the Writer’s Digest Conference: Fifteen strategies to use before you publish.

Agent Carly Watters show you how you can show an agent you’re a career author.

Jami Gold shares her new worksheet: The business plan for writers. Stop that groaning. You know you need one.

A great find this week: The heroine’s journey part one and part two from Flutiebear on Tumblr.

Mythcreants share five rules for retelling old stories. Thinking of a fairy tale retelling?

Gemma Hawdon went away for a five week vacation . . . and didn’t write a word. Find out what she discovered: Are you a ‘true’ writer, or a happy writer?

In his self-effacing and irreverent style, Chuck Wendig shares his thoughts on the writer and depression.

The psychology of writing and the cognitive science of the perfect daily routine on Brainpickings.

What if white characters were described like characters of colour in novels? Buzzfeed books.

The full George R.R. Martin and Robin Hobb discussion video from Fantasy Faction.

Jeff Goins interviews Margaret Roach on how she navigated the maze to become a full-time writer. Podcast.

The creative teacher librarian, Maaja Wentz, interviews Jennifer Lott.

 

Edge interviews Jonathan Gottschall on how we live our lives in stories.

Flavorwire presents ten stunning writing studios.

From The Atlantic’s archives: The childhood homes of twenty famous authors.

And now, a little writer tech for you. ALLi shares how writers can use voice recognition software for more than just writing.

What the internet of things means for the indie author. Ebook Bargains UK Blog.

Aaaaand . . . we’re done. For this week.

See you on Thoughty Thursday!

Tipsday

Tipsday: Writerly Goodness found on the interwebz, Aug 17-23, 2014

I really tried to get used to the new WordPress editor, but I finally had to give in and activate Classic Mode (Dum-ta-de-dah!). It’s so much easier to apply tags in the classic editor.

Let’s start with some publishing news. From Publishers Weekly, no less. What copyright changes mean for Canadian publishers.

Here’s K.M. Weiland’s weekly podcast/post: Can a character’s arc be a subplot?

Here’s her guest post on the Writer’s Alley on what weather can do for your story.

Then Katie wandered over to the Wordserve Water Cooler to discuss how to make a walk-on character memorable (but not too memorable).

Here’s Katie’s workshops & webinars page if you want to get moar of the good stuff.

And her weekly vlog on how to tighten your tale by streamlining your symbolism.

Anne R. Allen rounds up the usual suspects for her post on five protagonists readers hate.

Roz Morris examines how to write a character with an addiction.

Angela Ackerman guest posted on The Insecure Writers Support Group about how to deepen your conflict by forcing your hero to embrace the grey of morality.

Jan O’Hara considers cadence and its power to affect the reader in this post on Writer Unboxed. I started off as a poet. Believe me, people can tell 😉

Dave King shares his love of bafflgab on Writer Unboxed.

Painting vs. Dramatizing: How to make a scene, on Janice Hardy’s Fiction University.

How one writer kept a productivity streak going for 373 days. Jamie Todd Rubin on 99u.

Jami Gold has some fun discovering how writing changes our brains. Brain science rules 😀

I do a little conference reportage, but today I get to feature Mona Alvarado Frazier’s post about the lessons she learned at the Writer’s Digest Conference. Part two will be coming up next week, if you’re interested.

Lev Grossman writes about finding his voice in fantasy. The New York Times.

Buzzfeed presents the epic writing tips of George R. R. Martin and Robin Hobb.

I was shocked to discover that William Gibson’s Neuromancer is 30 years old. Egad. The Guardian.

25 pieces of life advice from literature, presented by Flavorwire.

A little writer tech for you here. Bookbaby blog posted about proofreading software. Interesting . . .

And that’s the load for this week.

See you on Thoughty Thursday with researchy, inspirational stuff.

Let me know if any of this curation tweaks your muse, will you? I’d love to know how things are going 🙂

Tipsday

Tipsday: Writerly Goodness found on the Interwebz May 4-17, 2014

Yes, you read that date correctly. It’s a double shot of Tipsday this week (since I missed out on last week).

A writer friend actually called me the queen of curation this past week 🙂 I think that title belongs to Elizabeth Spann Craig, but I was duly flattered, nonetheless.

Part 12 and Part 13 of K.M. Weiland’s Creating Stunning Character Arcs series.

Lisa Cron’s TEDx lecture, Wired for Story:

 

I would have posted Lisa Cron’s Writer Unboxed: What kindergarten got (and still gets) really, really wrong, but WU is having some technical difficulties right now. I’ll try to keep it in mind for next week. It’s an excellent post. Heart Lisa Cron.

A little more brain science for you here. Frank Bruni encourages kids to read, kids, read.

Anne Ursu examines the phenomenon of ‘Greenlit.’ Contemporary realism in MG and YA.

Jami Gold asks the question, when should we skip a scene in our stories? And she answers it too, clever lady.

Janice Hardy makes a case for prologues: not as evil as you think.

Victoria Mixon’s three things you should know about exposition and telling.

6 tips to modernize your prose for the 21st century reader from Anne R. Allen’s blog. This one generated a few comments. Who should be more accommodating, the writer or the reader?

Roz Morris’s tips for using Amazons keywords and categories intelligently.

Joanna Penn interviews Jane Friedman on money, writing, and life.

Publishing industry news: Pay equity and gender parity are still issues. Why Jill Abramson was fired.

Carly Watters offers 5 easy steps for formatting your next query.

Laura Pepper Wu write a guest post for Catherine Ryan Howard about 11 inspiring quotes from the world’s best writers.

10 more inspiring quotes from the Procrastiwriter.

And even more inspirational quotes from Jane Friedman:

 

George Saunders on the power of kindness, animated, from Brainpickings.

You may remember I posted the Rolling Stone interview with George R.R. Martin a couple of weeks ago. Well, here are the “outtakes.”

And, I know it’s been everywhere, but I love this clip about George R.R. Martin’s secret weapon.

See you all on Thoughty Thursday!

Tipsday