Creative Nonfiction, Digital Marketing

Book release & #GIVEAWAY: As Good as a Feast     

As Good as a Feast is now available on Kindle and in print!
As Good as a Feast: Essays on Enough is now available on Kindle and in print!

I am pleased to announce the release of my latest project, As Good as a Feast: Essays on Enough, which is now available on Kindle and in print! To kick things off, I am hosting a couple of book giveaways that I hope you will all enter.

The first giveaway, which is going on right now, is through Amazon. You can enter here. Please feel free to share this giveaway with all of your reading and writing friends!

NO PURCHASE NECESSARY. This giveaway started March 22, 2016 7:44 PM PDT and ends the earlier of March 29, 2016 11:59 PM PDT or when all prizes have been awarded.

The second giveaway will be through GoodReads, and I will announce that one officially when it becomes available.

I am currently accepting short stories and creative nonfiction essays for my next two anthology projects. For submission guidelines and additional information, please visit the Elderfly Press Submissions page.

Book Giveaways: A How-to

This is the first time that I have done giveaways of actual print edition books, so it has been a learning process. As always, I want to bring my writing readers along with me on this process and share a bit of what I am learning. Continue reading “Book release & #GIVEAWAY: As Good as a Feast     “

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Essays, Writing Prompts

Call for submissions: As Good as a Feast

I am currently seeking submissions for an essay/poetry anthology that I am compiling titled, “As Good as a Feast.” I will be paying for up to ten of the essays that will appear in this collection. Any additional accepted submissions will still be eligible for publication in the anthology. However, there will be no monetary compensation for these.

typewriter

I am currently accepting submissions via eLance through July 25, 2015. If you miss this deadline, you may still submit via the Elderfly Press website through August 30, 2015. However, monetary compensation is available only for those essays submitted via eLance.

Submission Requirements

Fans of Laura Ingalls Wilder’s Little House on the Prairie book series will no doubt be familiar with the expression, “Enough is as good as a feast.” Ma Ingalls often uttered this phrase as a reminder to her children that as long as they had “enough,” they had all they needed. Continue reading “Call for submissions: As Good as a Feast”

Composition I, Essays

Tuesday writing prompt: An illustrative essay

family christmas present opening
My childhood was full of family. That’s me in the middle with the candy cane hanging out of my mouth.

Today, my English Composition I class is learning about the Illustration pattern of essay development. According to aa-essays.com, “An illustrative essay (or exemplification essay) uses examples to show, explain, or prove a point or argument (the essay thesis). The key to a good illustrative essay is to use enough detailed and specific examples to get the point across.”

Writing Prompt

What was your childhood like? Write one explicit thesis statement that sums up your childhood. Then write an illustrative essay that includes either one long illustrative example or three to five shorter illustrative examples to support your claim. Continue reading “Tuesday writing prompt: An illustrative essay”

Composition I, Writing Prompts

Tuesday Writing Prompt: A personal narrative

Shooting an Elephant
Today’s writing prompt was inspired by George Orwell’s personal narrative, “Shooting an Elephant.” (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Today I will be teaching my English Composition I students about the Narrative Essay. For this one, I decided to use a prompt from our textbook, The Longman Writer (8th ed.)

Writing Prompt

“In “Shooting an Elephant,” George Orwell tells about an incident that forced him to act in a manner contrary to his better instincts. Write a narrative about a time you faced a disturbing conflict and ended up doing something you later regretted” (p. 172).

Care to join us? Freewrite on the above topic for a minimum of 10 minutes, then share your freewrite in the comments below. Or, you may decide to use the material you generate to write a narrative essay. If so, you may post your essay on your own blog or website and share a link to your essay in the comments below.

–OR– Why not publish your personal essay? Continue reading “Tuesday Writing Prompt: A personal narrative”

Composition I, Education, Essays, Writing Prompts

Tuesday Writing Prompt: School Lunches

Cover of "Bird by Bird: Some Instructions...
Today’s writing prompt was inspired by Anne Lamott’s Bird by Bird. | Cover via Amazon

Today my English Composition I class is learning about description in preparation for the descriptive essay they will write for next week. Descriptive writing incorporates all five senses:

  1. Sight
  2. Sound
  3. Smell
  4. Taste
  5. Touch/feelings

I like to include “feelings” with number five, as it is often important to describe how something makes you “feel” in addition to how certain elements might “feel” to the touch. Just remember, it is equally essential to “show” how something makes you feel rather than “telling” your reader about it. So, try to avoid using the word, “feel” in your writing.

For today’s activities, I am borrowing a writing prompt from Anne Lamott’s Bird by Bird: Continue reading “Tuesday Writing Prompt: School Lunches”

Composition I, Essays, Writing Prompts

Tuesday writing prompt: Your proudest moment

Educational Resource:  "Writing process"
Educational Resource: “Writing process” (Photo credit: Ken Whytock)

This week in my Composition I class, we are continuing our journey through the steps of the writing process. Last week, we discussed prewriting and choosing a thesis. I asked my students to do a freewrite in which they considered whether pride is a virtue or a vice. Then we worked together to come up with a thesis statement for an essay they will write on the topic of pride.

Today we are moving on to the next two steps in the writing process, which are (according to our textbook) “Supporting the thesis with evidence” and “Organizing the evidence.” We will continue to generate raw material for our pride essay as we work through each step. So, this week’s (and probably next week’s as well) writing prompt will be a continuation of the prompt I gave you last week. Continue reading “Tuesday writing prompt: Your proudest moment”

Composition I, Essays

Tuesday writing prompt: Pride

Day 34 - Essay and Notes
It’s time to write an essay! And no, that’s not me in the picture. It’s just a generic Zemanta image of someone I don’t know. | Day 34 – Essay and Notes (Photo credit: Auntie P)

Hello, all. It’s week two of my Tuesday afternoon English Composition I course. I have promised my students that we would be doing a lot of writing in class this semester, which in turn means I need to come up with some writing prompts for them. Since I’ll be generating writing prompts each week anyway, I figured I may as well share these prompts with you!

Today we begin our discussion on the steps of the writing process by covering prewriting and thesis statements. The plan is to have my students write one essay, step-by-step, over the next couple of weeks while we learn about the steps of the writing process.

With that in mind, today’s writing prompt is designed to get them (and you!) to think about and generate raw material for an essay on the topic of pride. Continue reading “Tuesday writing prompt: Pride”

Education, Essays

Criticism: How to be constructive rather than destructive

English: Students working with a teacher at Al...
How do you provide criticism to a student without destroying his or her sense of self-worth? | English: Students working with a teacher at Albany Senior High School, New Zealand. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

One of the most important – and most difficult – parts of teaching is providing constructive criticism without destroying a students’ belief that he or she is capable of succeeding in school.

I recently started reading Julia Cameron’s The Artist’s Way: A Spiritual Path to Higher Creativity and am working through some of the exercises she presents in her 12-week course. This morning’s task was to write about three old enemies of my creative self-worth.

I’ve been lucky in that I’ve had a lot of encouragement of my writing endeavors throughout most of my life, so it was hard for me to think of three. Then I remembered my high school Rhetoric tea Continue reading “Criticism: How to be constructive rather than destructive”

Education, Essays, Written Communication

Time to write another essay

Day 34 - Essay and Notes
Wanna write an essay with me? What would you write about? (No, that's not me in the picture!) | Day 34 - Essay and Notes (Photo credit: Auntie P)

My Written Communication students are writing a booklet of essays that they will be turning in at the end of this semester, and I’m planning to write a booklet of my own along with them. This week we learned about the descriptive essay in class, so they must write a descriptive essay by our next meeting. The students have been planning their essays for several weeks, but I’m just now thinking of mine. I can’t decide what to write about. I know, I should have made my outline right along with them.

The final booklet of essays will contain essays using each of the following patterns of development: Continue reading “Time to write another essay”

Education, Essays, Written Communication

My Dream Career: A 5-paragraph essay

English: Hands collaborating in co-writing or ...
Could I survive on writing alone? Or would I get too bored? | Image via Wikipedia

Earlier this morning, I wrote a post on teaching the 5-paragraph essay. In that post, I promised to share the essay I wrote for my Written Communication students this week. So, here it is…

My Dream Career

If you could have any job, what would you do? This is a typical first date question, job interview question, or composition class free writing topic, one whose answer may provide a great deal of insight into the life of the respondent. If you were to ask this question of me, my answer would surely provide insight into my psyche simply because the way I would answer is far different than the average American. Continue reading “My Dream Career: A 5-paragraph essay”