I fancy myself a writer.

Latest

National Poetry Month Collaborative Twitter Poem

Poetry

Poetry (Photo credit: V. H. Hammer)

Well, here we are. It’s April 1st, and once again time to celebrate National Poetry Month. I haven’t really been writing much poetry lately, so I thought it might be fun to do a collaborative Twitter poem challenge.

For this challenge, I am going to give you a one-word prompt/Twitter handle. Next, you come up with a poem – either one short poem that will fit into one 140-character Tweet, or a longer poem that you can split up, posting one verse per Tweet – and share it on Twitter using the provided hashtag. I am starting the challenge here today, and then I would love it if some of you would volunteer to host one or a few additional prompts on your blogs throughout the month of April. Read the rest of this page »

Another “damn rape poem”

I came across this on tumblr this morning and had to share.

“The Rape Poem to End all Rape Poems” by the Rutgers University slam team:

Read the rest of this page »

How to write a book one blog post at a time

Let's Pretend

Parts of Jenny Lawson’s book, “Let’s Pretend this Never Happened” first appeared on her blog. | Photo credit: artbybernadette

The prospect of writing an entire book can be daunting. It’s a lot of work and can take a LOT of time to complete. All the while, you might find yourself wondering if you are good enough or if anyone will ever want to read it. One way to combat this anxiety is to write your book one blog post at a time.

Whether you write serialized fiction (like blogger/author Amanda Martin’s Two-Hundred Steps Home) or creative non-fiction (like The Bloggess’s Let’s Pretend this Never Happened – A Mostly True Memoir,) you can write the first draft of your book-length manuscript one blog post at a time.

There are many benefits to writing a book this way. Check out my list below and then feel free to add your own ideas in the comments at the bottom of this page. Read the rest of this page »

My PenMonkey Evaluation: Six Questions

REVENGE OF THE PENMONKEY: Wallpaper #2

REVENGE OF THE PENMONKEY: Wallpaper #2 (Photo credit: curious_spider)

Today I am participating in the TerribleMinds PenMonkey Evaluation. Here are the answers to my writing survey questions:

  1. What’s your greatest strength/skill in terms of writing/storytelling? –> Dialog. The voices make me do it.
  2. What’s your greatest weakness in writing/storytelling? What gives you the most trouble? –> Description. I touched on that just a couple of days ago here
  3. How many books or other projects have you actually finished? What did you do with them? –> Well, that’s a bit personal, isn’t it? Okay. Well. Finished? Can I count my one completed first draft that I’m still revising? I have several other first drafts that I’m still plugging away on, but that’s it as far as actually “finishing” a book. Unless you count my book of amateurish poems I slapped up on Kindle a while back. As far as other projects go, my blogs are doing awesome. Besides this one winning an actual award (as opposed to a Liebster or something like that,) I have been steadily gathering new readers each week. Read the rest of this page »

Leaving: A writing prompt from The Write Practice

Panther, a toilet-using cat, photographed in S...

If only my cats would use the toilet while I’m gone! | Panther, a toilet-using cat, photographed in San Francisco on 22 August 2005. He is ten years old and has been using the toilet since the age of six months. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

This morning I decided to write a brief “Leaving” essay in response to a writing prompt from The Write Practice:

My ex-mother-in-law would leave town for the weekend, stumbling out of her house with an armload of disorganization, oblivious to the pile of stinking, half-washed dishes sitting in cold, slimy dishwater in her kitchen. She would walk away from the overflowing garbage as though she expected cleaning elves to take care of it while she was away.

She used to ask me to water her plants while she was gone, and I always wondered if she expected me to morph into a cleaning elf in her absence. Um, yeah. I didn’t. I just avoided the kitchen, filling a pitcher with water from the bathtub, and watered her flowers as fast as I could so I could escape the stench as quickly as possible. Read the rest of this page »

Describe something in ten different ways

Child Art Aged 2.5 Smiley Face with Writing Un...

Sometimes, I think my descriptive writing looks a little like this. | Child Art Aged 2.5 Smiley Face with Writing Underneath (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

The Chuck Wendig/TerribleMinds writing exercise for today is to describe one thing in ten different ways. I decided I needed to attempt this one since description is NOT my strong suit. I chose to describe description:

Writing description, for me, 1) is like pulling teeth. Yes, cliché is often my go-to strategy. Don’t most of our brains take the path of least resistance most of the time? It’s 2) like a traffic jam when I’m already late (HA!)

Okay, now that I’m done dating myself, let’s proceed, shall we?

Writing description 3) is hard for me. Once in a great while, 4) it pours out of me as though someone has turned on the rusty description faucet in my head, full-blast, if only for a few minutes. Read the rest of this page »

Books are full of treasures

A dollar bill bookmark I found in a library book

I found this hundred dollar bill bookmark in a library book last night.

I love it when people leave surprises in library books. Last night, I opened a recently checked-out library book and found this cute little hundred dollar bill bookmark that someone had left in its middle. Did someone leave it there on accident, or was it a gift? I wonder how many treasures I have accidentally left in my library books when I’ve returned them?

Once in a while, I will purposely leave a real dollar bill in a book before I return it. Imagine the look on the next reader’s face when she finds money in her library book! I think that moment of excitement you feel when you find money, even if it’s only a dollar, is worth so much more than the dollar itself. I don’t mind investing in someone else’s moment of happiness once in a while. Read the rest of this page »

Keep That Smile: The Booker Wright Story

"Finding Booker's Place" aired on Dateline NBC

“Finding Booker’s Place” aired on Dateline NBC July 15, 2012.

This afternoon, I had the opportunity to attend a presentation titled, Keep that Smile: The Booker Wright Story at Moraine Park Technical College in West Bend, Wisconsin. The presentation was conducted by Booker Wright’s granddaughter, writer and filmmaker Yvette Johnson.

Booker Wright was an African-American waiter who worked in a white-only restaurant in Greenwood, Mississippi in the early 1960’s. In 1965, he appeared in a short NBC television documentary titled, Mississippi: A Self Portrait: Read the rest of this page »

Be kind to the help

MCL-ETYCB Single Suite Hotel Room

Do you ever walk into a hotel room and wonder if those are really clean sheets on the bed? | MCL-ETYCB Single Suite Hotel Room (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

This morning, I came across this article begging attendees at the upcoming AWP (Association of Writers and Writing Programs) Conference in Seattle not to be “assholes” to the help while they’re in town. The article specifically focuses on the hotel housekeepers who will be cleaning up after AWP guests throughout the conference. As a former hotel housekeeper myself, I have a few points that I would like to add.

I worked at a small hotel right after high school. I was paid minimum wage, and like one of the housekeepers mentioned in the article, I had only a few minutes to turn over each room. It didn’t matter how big the room was or how badly it might have been trashed. If the room wasn’t completed within the allotted number of minutes, the hotel docked my pay. Which meant there were days when I did this disgusting, back-breaking work for LESS than minimum wage. Needless to say, I only lasted one summer before rushing to a cushy job down the block at Wal-Mart. Some of these workers don’t have that option. Read the rest of this page »

What’s the worst writing advice you’ve ever received?

Writer's Block 1

What’s the worst thing someone could say to you when you’re suffering from writer’s block? | Writer’s Block 1 (Photo credit: NathanGunter)

As writers, we know how rare it is for our friends and relatives to really “get” what we do and why we do it. We know they love us and want to support us, but sometimes they make thoughtless comments that make us want to wring their necks. I recently asked my online writer’s group what was the worst “advice” they have received from well-meaning friends and family members. Here are some of the responses I received:

Follow

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 622 other followers

%d bloggers like this: