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MANIERICHARDS's Photo MANIERICHARDS Posts: 34,292
6/26/09 2:27 P

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Kam are you a writer too?

Tips for Writing welcomes new members. We have changed our logo so people will know we are not only a writing board, but a weight loss one too.
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KAMARIDEN's Photo KAMARIDEN Posts: 163
6/26/09 1:52 P

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Camy- It's so encouraging to hear that other writers are being successful! Congratulations! emoticon

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IF HUNGER IS NOT THE PROBLEM, THEN EATING IS NOT THE SOLUTION!!!


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MANIERICHARDS's Photo MANIERICHARDS Posts: 34,292
6/17/09 2:37 P

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Hay strawberry moon drop down a few and stop in at Tips for Writers. We have two new writers, Hailey just dropped in and Diny did and no more stalling. Lots of info there. Been busy writing and occasionally drop by.

Tips for Writing welcomes new members. We have changed our logo so people will know we are not only a writing board, but a weight loss one too.
Come check out this wonderful group, who are waiting for you with open arms.
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5/20/09 11:15 P

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Has anyone on here ever heard of M. Nourbese Philip?
She's a writer who I'm trying to book for a school speaker, and I really hope to get her!
I love her works, and she has something to do with the University of Windsor (which is near where I live), so she's pretty local.
I'm super excited to talk to her in person, haha.

"Don't tell me the sky's the limit when there are footprints on the moon."






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CAMYTANG's Photo CAMYTANG Posts: 405
5/20/09 8:34 P

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Good for you, Jaime!

Romance with a kick of wasabi
www.camytang.com/


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CD750530 Posts: 5,444
5/20/09 5:43 P

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Jaime, Good for you! I hope you enjoy it as much as I have many of such courses I've taken. Cheers, Michelle

JAIMEKRISTAL's Photo JAIMEKRISTAL Posts: 449
5/20/09 5:06 P

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i just started a creative writing class at my local college


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:¨`·.·΄¨:
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?Jaime-Kristal?
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i think therefore i am, i believe therefore i can!


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CD750530 Posts: 5,444
5/15/09 9:00 P

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Thanks, Camy. Hope your cough clears up quickly. Let's hear it for "bugs begone"!
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CAMYTANG's Photo CAMYTANG Posts: 405
5/15/09 8:51 P

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Michelle, I've been sick, too. Not the flu, but a really bad cough. It's SO hard to write when I'm sick! Take care of yourself!
Camy

Romance with a kick of wasabi
www.camytang.com/


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CD750530 Posts: 5,444
5/15/09 8:47 P

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JMANSUR, Welcome to the group. I suspect you'll find it as terrific as I do.

CAMYTANG, Good for you; you're an inspiration
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I've been working (and working, and not working, and working, and not working) on what I hope will turn out to be a literate mystery. Right now I have had the flu for going on two weeks; so everything looks black.
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Of course, this will pass, and I'll get back on the writing horse.

Hope everyone is doing well and thriving,

Michelle

CAMYTANG's Photo CAMYTANG Posts: 405
5/8/09 8:04 P

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Welcome to the group!

I just finished my manuscript! Woohoo! It's a humorous contemporary romance/women's fiction about a dog trainer. It's scheduled to be published May 2010, but I needed to get the manuscript to my editor a year in advance.

Romance with a kick of wasabi
www.camytang.com/


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EVIE13's Photo EVIE13 Posts: 1,904
5/8/09 1:56 P

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Hey There!
Welcome to the Group!
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I write YA fantasy. Paranormal fantasy. I'm between projects right now. I had a 5 year writing drought (which was a loong time for me, almost killed me). My last project wiped me out. It's not the best story I've ever told, but it's the most well-written.

I have written several other stories, but I would say that I have no finished novels, as nothing is really ready to be published. I tried a lot of different things in my last story just to see if I could do it and to get me going again. It wasn't a huge success, but successful enough to let me know that I'm good enough to kick serious butt when I get back to my niche, which I'm working on doing now. And when I feel up to it, I want to go back to that last one and do it justice.


_./'\._ΈΈ.•€**€•.Έ.•€**€•….*
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/.•*•.\ Έ..•€**€•., .•€**€•.*.*
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NO-DO-OVERS's Photo NO-DO-OVERS Posts: 449
5/8/09 12:52 P

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Hi,

I'm new to this group and I'm excited to meet some other sparkers who write. I've been an editor and copywriter for about 15 years, but over the past 2 I've been trying to freelance. My steady client doesn't have much of a budget anymore, so I haven't been working much. I'm finding myself re-evaluating what I want to write. I've written 2 children's books, but neither has been published yet. Are there any other kid book writers here? Or young adult writers?

I'm looking forward to meeting all of you! :-)

"In the end, only 3 things matter: How much you loved, how gently you lived, and how gracefully you let go of things not meant for you." - Buddhist saying



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MANIERICHARDS's Photo MANIERICHARDS Posts: 34,292
4/19/09 11:03 A

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Nam did you know that you can also tax off books that you buy for writing on your income tax too? But you must keep all the rejections to prove you are writing to publishers.

Tips for Writing welcomes new members. We have changed our logo so people will know we are not only a writing board, but a weight loss one too.
Come check out this wonderful group, who are waiting for you with open arms.
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4/19/09 7:16 A

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Very interesting about using the slips for filing taxes if over $400. Thanks for sharing!

MANIERICHARDS's Photo MANIERICHARDS Posts: 34,292
4/18/09 5:04 P

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Rejection slips
by Camey

Writers are familiar with rejection slips. Those form letters editors/publishers sometimes find time to send back in our self-addressed envelopes.

I had my share of those nasty little devils and I know they will never leave me alone. Once in a while they take a vacation and an editor/publisher asks to see my ms.

Beginners have to expect rejection slips. Cry a little, then get over it. You can either throw those rejection slips away or file them, whichever pleases you. But if you are going to become a writer you will need them when you file your income tax, if you do get published.

Once you make over $400.00 you have to file a form with the government. Saving your rejection slips will prove to the government you are serious about writing and it is not just a hobby, if you decide to become self-employed. If you do go this route, you are able to take off expenses for books, stamps, labels, envelopes, stationary, etc. But you need the rejection slips to prove you are sending out those queries, if you are audited.

But for goodness sakes, don’t stop writing because you receive rejection slips. Even the best writers get them. If you think the authors on the top seller list made it on the first try, you are mistaken. They probably have stacks of rejection slips, enough to wallpaper a room. Look how famous the Chicken Soup books are today. Do you think the first query got publication? Well you are wrong. I understand there were 300 rejections before the authors found a publisher. And there are many other stories about rejection slips, even some of the movies. What one publisher likes, another rejects. That is why you have to keep plugging your wares. Then and only then will you go to the mail box one day and find something you did not expect, a check.

When I received my first rejection slip, I stopped writing but a good friend of mine, long since gone, told me to get back to my writing. If I did not listen to him today, I would not be a professional writer. I was bitter because of the rejection slips and I did not want to write anymore. What was the use? Then my local editor looked at one of my clips and saw promise. All I had to do to edit it was put in a few quotes.
I did and saw my byline in print. An exciting moment, when it happens to you, I won’t have to tell you how I felt.

So take some advice from someone who has been there. Don’t let it get you down, instead send 10, 20, even 30 query letters, then write more. Once they are in the mail start another story, article, poem, or whatever you want to write. If you want to get published you should never give up. I didn’t and look at me now.








Tips for Writing welcomes new members. We have changed our logo so people will know we are not only a writing board, but a weight loss one too.
Come check out this wonderful group, who are waiting for you with open arms.
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MANIERICHARDS's Photo MANIERICHARDS Posts: 34,292
4/5/09 10:37 A

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Diny ask some writing questions, some writers may have the same problem. We will try to answer them.

Tips for Writing welcomes new members. We have changed our logo so people will know we are not only a writing board, but a weight loss one too.
Come check out this wonderful group, who are waiting for you with open arms.
www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/groups_i
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MANIERICHARDS's Photo MANIERICHARDS Posts: 34,292
3/20/09 3:23 P

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Jump aboard. I just got first rejection on my Three Wishes, children story. Oh that is to be expected. Not all publishers will publish what you write. If you have questions about writing, post them and if I can't answer someone will. Thanks for posting.

Tips for Writing welcomes new members. We have changed our logo so people will know we are not only a writing board, but a weight loss one too.
Come check out this wonderful group, who are waiting for you with open arms.
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DINY123's Photo DINY123 SparkPoints: (0)
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3/20/09 4:16 A

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Tips fpr writers? sounds interesting newbie here!- kewl site and support team!





http://www.fanstory.com/selectprofilep
or tfolio.jsp?userid=81178













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MANIERICHARDS's Photo MANIERICHARDS Posts: 34,292
3/8/09 8:01 P

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Forgot to mention I am also on as Jan 53l because when I changed servers I forgot the 53l and could not get back on, so I had to come on as Camey. Jan is my pen name. I am also on Tips for writers. I wish more would go on it and give each other advice.

Tips for Writing welcomes new members. We have changed our logo so people will know we are not only a writing board, but a weight loss one too.
Come check out this wonderful group, who are waiting for you with open arms.
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MANIERICHARDS's Photo MANIERICHARDS Posts: 34,292
3/8/09 7:59 P

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Hi...I remember those days well. When I was l0 I was trying out for singing at Community Auditions and after two tries I had to step down as I got stage fright. Later in life I sang in a club with a band.
It is the same for writing. I would have no problem interviewing but when it came to writing it up I was always wondering if it was good enough for the editor, but it always got published. I guess it is like stage fright. Recently I was at the senior center and a nurse was talking about cholesterol, well I wrote an article on it so I was well informed, so when she spoke of something that was not right I spoke up and she asked me if I would like to conduct the class. So I stepped right up and talked and she was surprised at how much I knew. Growing up I was shy but I am far from it now. LOL

Tips for Writing welcomes new members. We have changed our logo so people will know we are not only a writing board, but a weight loss one too.
Come check out this wonderful group, who are waiting for you with open arms.
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CD750530 Posts: 5,444
3/8/09 7:46 P

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CAMEY,

I had to laugh at myself when I read your post. I didn't have trouble reading out loud in class, but about half way through the semester the instructor told us the class would be doing a reading in the auditorium open to all the faculty and students--AND it was part of our grade. I was terrified of getting up in front of so many people, but I did it, quivering voice and all.

Later I started teaching adults and quickly got over my fear of speaking in front of groups. Now put me front of a hundred people, and I enjoy it--ONCE I start. I'm always nervous a few minutes before I begin speaking. And, no, I don't picture the audience naked--I'm sure most of you have read about that old trick that's supposed to help you get over your fear.

Hope everyone had a great weekend, even those of us who had to "fall back."

Cheers,
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MANIERICHARDS's Photo MANIERICHARDS Posts: 34,292
3/8/09 7:06 P

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Strawberry Moon I remember creative writing class too and it was a lot of fun. Some did not want to get up and read what they wrote for fear it wasn't good, others just jumped up there and I remember some were torn apart.

Tips for Writing welcomes new members. We have changed our logo so people will know we are not only a writing board, but a weight loss one too.
Come check out this wonderful group, who are waiting for you with open arms.
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ZZYYGGY's Photo ZZYYGGY SparkPoints: (0)
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2/24/09 8:57 A

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Anyone is welcome to start a thread on such projects, and develop ideas. I'm open to any kind of new ideas to keep this team going, and if you do post a thread I can put a sticky on it to keep it on top for awhile. Just go ahead and put your ideas out there. This is a team for everyone.

Mary

Live each day like there was no tomorrow.

Keep swimming, just keep swimming -- Dory Finding Nemo

If you follow your dreams the facts won't count--Chicken Soup for the Soul

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CD750530 Posts: 5,444
2/23/09 10:03 P

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CL,

Eons ago, in graduate school at a party for my creative writing seminar, we went around the room and each spoke the next sentence in a story. It was pretty hilarious--of course we had had some "creative writing" punch--the professor had us each bring whatever beverage we liked, then it was all poured into a huge punch bowl--champagne, beer, red and white wine, liqueurs, lemonade, and so on. Of course we were all young enough in those days to handle such a witch's brew.

Last year some time, I started a thread for a group mystery story on which each of us would post the next plot movement. It was great but slowly dwindled down to no one. A group-written story is fun, if anyone is interested in doing it for whatever genre one likes.

Cheers,
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CAMYTANG's Photo CAMYTANG Posts: 405
2/23/09 6:31 P

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I tend to work on only one manuscript at a time, because I tend to put so much plotting into each book that plotting a short story takes almost as much time as a novel. So once I'm into a short story or a novel, I don't come out until it's done.

But I also know I'm an anomaly. I have friends who work on several manuscripts at once, and they work on whatever strikes their fancy that day, or they switch manuscripts if they have writer's block on one.

Camy

Romance with a kick of wasabi
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RESOLUTE-SKY's Photo RESOLUTE-SKY Posts: 48
2/23/09 3:29 P

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Out of curiosity, does anyone work on more than one form at a time, ie. short story, novel, or play? If so, how did you decide how much time to spend to each? Did you find it difficult to go back and forth between storylines? I realize it's different for everyone, so I'm looking forward to hearing varied answers.

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CRAZY_CAROLLYNN's Photo CRAZY_CAROLLYNN SparkPoints: (0)
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2/23/09 10:20 A

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I love the idea of a murder mystery as a group exercise in its own thread. I would like to see many such projects too, not just who done it's but for a Sci Fi Triumph or a comming of age or various different exercises. ONE at a time, of course, but I think such a thing is a marvelous idea!!

Failure- a stone on a path not the last one called success.
Planless gaol=a wish
Faithless dream=fleeting & amiss.
Progress-little to do with speed-much to do with direction.
Wiser to replace with better choices than to deny human nature-small smarter choice substitutions.
Purposely choose your thoughts-what you believe-you achieve-Be careful what you think
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WRITEON58's Photo WRITEON58 Posts: 90
2/22/09 7:29 P

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I think that is a wonderful idea!! I know I have been working on some longer writings throughout my freelance career, and the notion of switching off and trying other genres is always refreshing. In the long run it has been my experience that all my writing improves by not limiting what I work on.
Sometimes I even surprise myself!
Good luck with those submissions.

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CD750530 Posts: 5,444
2/22/09 7:16 P

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I do write some non-fiction, memoirs in essay form. And I have published similar pieces plus food and wine articles in the past. I think I'm going to try to set mini-goals to send some of these out, which will encourage me along the long path to the end of my novel, and sometimes I find taking a little break from the novel--NOT from writing--allows me to return to it with fresh eyes.

Peace and blessings,
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MANIERICHARDS's Photo MANIERICHARDS Posts: 34,292
2/22/09 4:01 P

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My clips are non fiction except for some short children stories published. I used to go out and interview. One was about a woman who only had 4 months to live with cancer. It was a heartbreaking story to write, but today she is still alive even after another bout with cancer in the lung. You never know when your turn comes. It is up to God.

Tips for Writing welcomes new members. We have changed our logo so people will know we are not only a writing board, but a weight loss one too.
Come check out this wonderful group, who are waiting for you with open arms.
www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/groups_i
ndividual.asp?gid=37762
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2/21/09 2:16 A

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ZZYYGGY, Developing this mystery as a group exercise could be fun, but perhaps we should move it to it's own thread, because I know not everyone is interested in suspense novels.

I'll be meditating on your questions. More tomorrow.

Hope everyone has just the best weekend.

Cheers,
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2/20/09 8:53 P

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Okay so how is he murdered, and with what, and where do we leave all the clues. How many characters, and will it be at a hotel, conference?

Mary

Live each day like there was no tomorrow.

Keep swimming, just keep swimming -- Dory Finding Nemo

If you follow your dreams the facts won't count--Chicken Soup for the Soul

team leader:Vermont Sparkers: Yes we can

team leader: SP's Social Team for Team Leaders, and CT Members

40 somethings with 50-99 pounds to lose

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WRITEON58's Photo WRITEON58 Posts: 90
2/20/09 3:45 P

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Always good when we can keep one another updated! One thing about the non-fiction, it will pay the bills! LOL
Now that I am working from home, mainly on our own website right now, I am looking forward to getting back to both more reading and more writing.
Have a good day.

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MANIERICHARDS's Photo MANIERICHARDS Posts: 34,292
2/20/09 3:40 P

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Writeon58 I also write non fiction, along with children stories and novels. I go by Grandma Mimi witht he children stories and Jan Richards with the novels. Non Fiction I use my real name. I think writing non fiction is easy because you interview someone and then you compose. But fiction requires you to be able to tell a story for 60,ooo to 80,000 words before a publisher will look at it. This happened to me on Memories of the Past as it is only 6l,000 and he wanted 80,000 before I could send it to him.

Tips for Writing welcomes new members. We have changed our logo so people will know we are not only a writing board, but a weight loss one too.
Come check out this wonderful group, who are waiting for you with open arms.
www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/groups_i
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MANIERICHARDS's Photo MANIERICHARDS Posts: 34,292
2/20/09 3:36 P

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Check out Tips for writers where I have been putting information out for writers and trying to help them with their questions.

Tips for Writing welcomes new members. We have changed our logo so people will know we are not only a writing board, but a weight loss one too.
Come check out this wonderful group, who are waiting for you with open arms.
www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/groups_i
ndividual.asp?gid=37762
MassacussetsUSAFreelancewriter/author Freelancewriter/authorliveinMassachusettsUsA


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MANIERICHARDS's Photo MANIERICHARDS Posts: 34,292
2/20/09 3:34 P

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Thanks for the info. I haven't been with them for years, but I did get a lot of books from them in the beginning of my writing career. If you go to the internet and put in poems by Jan Richards, my pen name, you will see The Good Lord Giveth, click on that. Once it comes up on the left you will see biography of me, books, poems, stories, when I was on auththorsden.com. There are only a few of my things there. Click on whatever and look to the right. You might have to stroll down to read them.

Tips for Writing welcomes new members. We have changed our logo so people will know we are not only a writing board, but a weight loss one too.
Come check out this wonderful group, who are waiting for you with open arms.
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WRITEON58's Photo WRITEON58 Posts: 90
2/19/09 10:15 P

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Camy13,

Have not visited the Fiction Writer's thread before. I mainly write non-fiction. So just saw your message from a couple of days ago.
Wanted to be sure you knew that Writer's Digest Book Club was dismantled and switched to F+W Publications Bookstore some months ago...6 months to a year ago to the best of my recollection.


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JAN531's Photo JAN531 Posts: 496
2/19/09 3:25 P

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I am not a writer nor reader of mysteries. Once in a blue moon I might run across one I like. I am into romance and that is mostly what I write. Finding time to write is a problem. A few minutes ago I was searching children publishers for my Open Window, as I write children books too. A lot have disappeared.
Good books are the writers market for a list of publishers, and another is the one on novels. At the moment I don't remember the name.

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CRAZY_CAROLLYNN's Photo CRAZY_CAROLLYNN SparkPoints: (0)
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2/18/09 8:56 P

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I cant say that I am all that fond of murder mysteries in general. I like the suspense...the on the edginess, I like being scared and left in the dark. But I don't really like the puzzle so much...Id rather be kept in the dark the whole time with a twist that couldnt ever be predicted.
I also like putting myself into the mind of the murderer, understanding how and why they could be compelled do such horrible things...and although I hope I would never find myself in agreement with such, I enjoy feeling empathy for people so drastically different than I am, even if I cant forgive it. Or forcing the villan into being the hero or visa-versa. I like learning something in the process....to better change myself from being a (fictitious or otherwise) potential victim. lol
But I dont like mysteries where the reader is all knowing waiting to see if the protagonist figures it out in the nick of time...or the only suspence is who all gets killed in the process. I much rather prefer BEING the protagonist or BEING the villan as the protagonist, identifying with either or even both.

Failure- a stone on a path not the last one called success.
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Progress-little to do with speed-much to do with direction.
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2/18/09 4:13 P

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I am going to get supper. LOL

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So it will be a bit like Murder on the Orient Express--no single individual does the murder but the group works together. Who does the actual killing(s) and how? Could the husband be set up to save a damsel in distress, then get killed trying to. At first the police think the damsel was the target and the husband just in the wrong place at the wrong time.

Where should we go from here?

Happy Wednesday to all,
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The mistress is angry and wants revenge. The business partner need money and sees the mistress is angry so he follows her outside, into the lobby, where he talks to her and tells her of his plan. She likes the idea of revenge so the wife can not get the husband back, so she is game. She is angry at her lover because he hasn't asked for a divorce yet. She fears he will not leave his wife. She would like to include her in the plan too.
The business partner likes the idea that his business partner would disappear and be pronounced dead, then he can get the money for his gambling debts. They agree to meet to put there plan in action.

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The wife's lover and agent who wants to marry her is at the conference. Her dope-addict son from a previous marriage flies in to beg her for money, but her husband puts his foot down. The husband's mistress causes a drunken scene at the banquet, saying that if she can't have him, no one can. He and his business partner have key man insurance, and the business partner desperately needs money to cover huge gambling debts with a man who collects or else. Who done it and how?

Edited by: CD750530 at: 2/17/2009 (18:34)
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have we got a story thread going here lol. If he's murdered in Florida got watch out for CSI Miami team lol.

Mary

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How about her husband goes with her and is murdered there. I'm writing a mystery. :-)

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Now, there is a story in the making. A writer flies south to get away from the winter and meets her husband at a writer's convention.

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If south means anywhere warm I'll go to lol. I've gotten some work done today. If I do some writing before I get on to Spark people I do get quite a bit done.

Mary

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2/16/09 5:38 P

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I'd love to be somewhere warmer right now. It's cold and rainy.

I'm working on a proposal for a new romantic suspense novel. I'd love to get another chapter done today if I can. Anyone else want to join me in a writing challenge?

Camy

Romance with a kick of wasabi
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Maybe they're too busy writing, although my image of writers flying south amuses me. I need to join them--not in the flying but in the writing. :-)



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2/16/09 4:29 P

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What happened to all the writers? Did they go south for the winter?

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Subscribe to Writer digest book club and get a selection of books you might want to read on writing.
I have donated a lot of my books to the senior center, who sell them for a few bucks to help the center. They also have a writing course there. Need anymore help let me know.

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Thanks Camy and Mary, I will look into the book.

;-)

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Wiser to replace with better choices than to deny human nature-small smarter choice substitutions.
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I have a hard time with Characters too unless they really speak to me. Plotting takes some time to, but sometimes that's the fun.

Mary

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2/14/09 5:01 A

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Carollynn, sounds like you just need more story structure. A really good book is PLOT AND STRUCTURE by James Scott Bell (published by Writer's Digest books). If you've already got engaging characters, the battle's half won. Most people have problems with characterization, but it seems to come naturally to you!
Camy

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www.camytang.com/


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I can write something that others like to read, they say the visual is there, the emotional, the character understandable and clearly defined....but I have a hard time with the story climbing or progressing into something more. The characters fall apart because I lose what to do with them, what they may want or need and how to get them going after it.

Funny how it seems that the same issue is my real problem in my own life. LOL

Failure- a stone on a path not the last one called success.
Planless gaol=a wish
Faithless dream=fleeting & amiss.
Progress-little to do with speed-much to do with direction.
Wiser to replace with better choices than to deny human nature-small smarter choice substitutions.
Purposely choose your thoughts-what you believe-you achieve-Be careful what you think
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What i do now is buy a bunch of disc (floppies) and I save my work on it, that way I have a back up copy.
You have to always remember to save because if a storm comes and puts your computer out you could lose stuff, especially if you are working on it. So save every so often while typing.

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I lost an entire story once. Handwritten. My first novel attempt, 75 front and back pages. I got mad at it, ripped it in half, and threw it in a corner. Never saw it again. I'm sure it was terrible, but it would have been nice to have it taped up on my shelf with my other "just for show" novels. I can't even remember what it was about now, so it couldn't have been anything revolutionary. I'm sure I was sad at the time, but I'm definately okay now.

Don't be too hard on yourself. Rewriting the chapter might make it even better than it was before!


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it happened to me often when I had my old computer. Even when I saved I would lose stuff, but it is fun to rewrite things and get a different perspective. I have several shelved novels I need to pull out and get back on.

Mary

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Keep swimming, just keep swimming -- Dory Finding Nemo

If you follow your dreams the facts won't count--Chicken Soup for the Soul

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CD750530 Posts: 5,444
1/28/09 10:45 A

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LOSINGITFORGOOD,

I empathize with your situation! That only happened to me once when I first learned how to use a computer. Somehow I didn't manage to save a chapter, but gods were kindly; I did have a print out of it, I learned my lesson, though, and save, save, save.

Even though I'm sure having to rewrite your pages is dispiriting, perhaps it will stimulate new ideas.

Best of luck,
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1/28/09 9:19 A

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err I live in a cold climate and sometimes wish i could move somewhere else. Okay onto to why I am writing. I am writing a book. However I found it after misplacing it. But pages are missing for a chapter so I have to remember what I wrote and rewrite it again that ever happen to anyone emoticon

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I rather fancifully believe that I now live in the most incredible part of Canada (on Vancouver Island), but know there are many such places. I grew up in northern British Columbia (lovely scenery, far too cold for my liking most of the year), and moved to the coast (Vancouver) in 1975. Met my husband there in 1978 (he was in law school, I was going to college and working; we were living in an old house that had been rennovated to create 6 suites, mine was next door to his and my cat kept going out my window and into his suite through his open window...and that led to our first rather conflicted encounter -- he 'hated' cats).

In 1980, we moved to the Comox Valley which was where my husband grew up (we're about half way up the island, about 80 miles north of being almost directly 'across the water' from the city of Vancouver). I love it here. We have incredible scenery -- water, mountains, lush green fields and forests -- and most of any services we might desire (if not, the cities are not too far away). It's a 20 minute flight to Vancouver, or a 4 hour drive/ferry ride, and just a 2 1/2 to 3 hour journey to Victoria.

Newfoundland, Nunavit, and the Northwest Territories (what's with the "N's"??) are the only provinces we haven't visited in Canada. Most are lovely, but I'm still very partial to where I've ended up. Ours is a remarkably rich cultural community as well. The whole 'package' is a significant part of the joy in my life.

/gem

It is our sameness that draws us together. It is our differences that help us grow. It is respect that makes this possible.




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12/12/08 12:52 P

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DF,

Great vacations--not to mention memories. Clever to hide a book behind a book. I did the old flashlight trick--reading with one under the bed covers after Mom said lights out.

I got the impression you live in Canada but now am not sure. When I was around five we lived in St. John's, Newfoundland. May father was stationed there with the then U. S. Army Air Corps. I recall picking wild blueberries in the hills and also eating my first sardine sandwich during a picnic. (I was a weird kid--I loved anchovies when I was three!) Wouldn't you know I would have food memories.

I get to the Phoenix area a couple of times a year. My folks live in Surprise (near Sun City). And, should you get to the Bay Area and you have time, let me know. We could get together for lunch or something. I've met two Sparkers in person and had great times. I'm scheduled to have lunch with another next Friday.

Happy weekend to all,

Michelle
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12/12/08 3:10 A

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Thanks, Michelle. There's a good group here, and much I appreciate in all your contributions as well!

It's a wonderful journey across Canada, though I must admit that I've only done it twice (west coast to east and back) in my life. The first time I was 12 years old and was seeing everything with fresh eyes (it was also the first time my family had been on a holiday together), and an eagerness to meet my grandmother in New Brunswick added to the excitement. The second trip was what my husband, sons and I called our "Millennium Tour".

At practically the last minute we decided that we would travel across the country to mark the year 2000. With two weeks to prepare for a journey that we needed to fully accomplish within six weeks, we found an old (1974!) tent trailer at a garage sale, and off we went. It was an almost magical journey full of good laughs and some good adventures. Our boys are 8 years apart so it's always been a bit of a challenge to find something that appeals to both of them at the same time. When we left, our youngest had just started reading the first Harry Potter book...by the time we reached Halifax we purchased the third at a mall there. It didn't start out quite so promising, for Harry Potter was far 'beneath' any interest from our eldest son who made snide remarks about it to the youngest on what seemed a constant basis. However, one day Dan fell asleep in the back of the van and dropped the Einstein biography he was (purportedly) reading. Our youngest started laughing and pointed out that 'behind' the biography was the first Harry Potter book and that was what Dan was actually reading. By the time we reached Halifax we had all finished books 1 and 2 so, after buying book 3, every night on our return trip to the West coast, before we turned out the lights in the tent, we took turns reading the chapter(s) out loud. The boys have grown somewhat reticent to travel with parents now, and that was our last major family trip together but certainly one of the best.

Banff is a lovely place, but quite 'touristy' I think. However, I must say that I've done quite a bit of travel through both Canada and the US and there are so many places that I've enjoyed (even Nebraska, and I couldn't for the life of me figure out prior to my first -- of eight -- trips there why the training facility I was attending was based in Nebraska!).

We've been to San Francisco at least half a dozen times, actually just drove straight through last year heading back from Phoenix with a deadline for getting home, but a few years back did spend a full week there with the boys.

I do love travel, though also like getting home!

/gem

It is our sameness that draws us together. It is our differences that help us grow. It is respect that makes this possible.




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12/12/08 2:17 A

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DF, I do so enjoy your posts; I am glad you're in my life. Cheers, Michelle

P.S. One of my best vacations ever was taking the train across Canada from the east to the west, with a few days stop in Banf.

Edited by: CD750530 at: 12/12/2008 (02:18)
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I can't imagine how doing either for an extended period of time wouldn't affect the brain in some manner, but can't recall having come across anything definitive in that regard. Since different activities activate and stimulate different parts of the brain, it's probably reasonable to conclude that there's a kind of atrophy that occurs in some areas that are under-utilized. Scientific American publishes a periodical entitled "Mind", I think it's bi-monthly, and I do find it quite interesting and 'user-friendly' (i.e., I don't get too lost in the science which, for me, is not at all a strength).

I do appreciate where you're coming from Michelle. I too use and enjoy many facets of the new technologies, and agree entirely about judicious use. I chuckle to myself thinking that how such use is defined certainly seems to be indicative of the 'generation gap' of the early 21st century!

If I've accomplished anything in some 51+ years it's to have earned the reputation for being an 'information junkie'. My husband is similarly inclined and I'm not exaggerating when I say that we have accumulated so many volumes we truly have run out of space. The visual that popped to mind on your 'running out of walls for bookcases' remark rings all too true, but it sounds like you're at least a few steps ahead of us on reigning things in.

Recently I have started to (somewhat begrudgingly) part with titles that I haven't read for some years and, at the time of contemplating their future and my almost desperate need for space, I thought I wasn't likely to ever read them again. My primary motivation was having new titles pile up that had nowhere to be shelved so they'd be on chairs, tables, and in some cases even on the floor beside my desk and beside my bed. I've posted the ones that are being culled to Freecycle and have been quite happy to see them find homes where they're wanted. I think I need to create a rule for myself -- nothing more comes in unless a corresponding number go out!

/gem



It is our sameness that draws us together. It is our differences that help us grow. It is respect that makes this possible.




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12/11/08 5:30 P

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One thing I have read (although I'm a skeptic and don't believe everything I read!) is that constant staring at a screen--television or computer--does effect one's brain negatively. Does anyone know anything definitive about that?

DF, I hope your son gets over his new aversion to books! Of course, I have to laugh at myself for my preference for books instead of the new technology. I'll bet when stories were first written down, someone complained that would pretty much be the end of the oral tradition.

Don't get me wrong; I do use and enjoy my computer and the internet--along with other modern conveniences. I just want to use them judiciously.

A few years ago, I stopped buying every book I thought I wanted to read--I was running out of walls for bookcases. I now buy only reference books and books I know I'll want to read again. If I'm not certain, I get it out of the library first, then decide.

Edited by: CD750530 at: 12/11/2008 (17:34)
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I think I understand where you're coming from Michelle; books have been a huge part of my life too, and I'm reminded of how much so when I start wondering just where I'm going to find room for more (because, it seems, I'm forever gathering). I think I'm being compelled to let it be, though it's difficult; my eldest son recently told me that he did not want us to give him any books for Christmas. No books for Christmas!?!!?? He's always enjoyed books for Christmas, always lost himself in books for hours on end through the holidays (and, in doing so, made his mother smile). Something changed when he said, "I can find anything I want on the internet anyway." I think I've been quietly mourning this shift, but am hopeful he understands when he does indeed receive another book this Christmas because I had already purchased one thinking, "Oh, Dan will love this!"

Have a terrific Thursday, everyone -- the weekend is nearly upon us!

/gem

It is our sameness that draws us together. It is our differences that help us grow. It is respect that makes this possible.




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12/11/08 2:12 P

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I do believe our way of "thinking" does vary from individual to individual. I once knew a musician who thought in notes. Still, I believe words play a large part in thinking for many of us. In the interest of full disclosure, I do admit this is my opinion based on personal experience. I have not read much on the subject.

And, of course, technology is changing so much about thinking, learning, and life in general. I plead to being a book person and will die one--guess my age is showing! LOL

Cheers to all,
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12/11/08 8:39 A

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I definitely agree on the downfall of language in general. I'm guilty of it myself, but one thing that sticks out to me, was when I worked retail a year (maybe 2 by this point) ago, and I was having a conversation with my boss (around 30-35 y.o.) and another employee (high school age). I was talking like I normally do, but the high schooler stopped me about every 3rd or 4th sentance to explain some of the "big" words I used (I wish I could remember them now... they weren't that complex... ones I would use in normal conversation). My boss used that as a reason why the high schooler should go to college... or read a book (thank god my boss caught on, or we would've had issues).

But critical thinking in college is an interesting topic to me. I went to a small, private college based in the catholic tradition (it wasn't a catholic college, just, really, named after a Saint). It was astounding to see the differences between thinking in the majors. I was a political science major, and we had a class called "Political Theory" based on the writings of Plato, Hobbes, Locke, etc. It was insanely intense. We later realized that it was our major's "weed out" class... the classes got harder (just not as intense) as we went on, but if you couldn't make it through that one, you probably wouldn't make it through the major. I'm not trying to pat myself on the back here - but I would say that my major had some incredibly intelligent people in it, and we were trained to think critically (we were reading things that most students didn't encounter under they hit the Masters level). I remember that some of the other majors that people went to after realizing Poli Sci wasn't for them, and it just astounded me that they weren't teaching on the same level of thought. I was at a college that focused on learning and thinking, but my goodness, some of them desperately needed to actively use their brain (I'm still AMAZED that some people were able to graduate...)

~Jessica~


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...or on "meh"! It drove me crazy hearing my son say this in response to everything. I guess I'm out of touch for just a few weeks ago I saw an announcement that it had been officially added to the Miriam-Webster dictionary (or it may have been Collins) -- in any event, it seems it's achieved sufficient commom usage to warrant such status.

You have me wondering about 'thinking in language', Michelle. I tend to do so more often than not, but wonder if that's the case for all or most people? I've heard that some think in a more visual sense, similar to how some people are more likely to learn aurally while others are more likely to do so visually. I've been interested in reading about developments in neuroscience, though I don't understand the biology particularly well. What intrigues me is what researchers are learning about how we process information, how we learn, etc. from the scientific side of things, and in the process it seems there is emerging evidence that supports a lot of what has, until now, been mostly psychological theory.

From the writing perspective, I suspect these varying ways of thinking, learning, understanding all play into what types of work appeal to different audiences.

/gem



It is our sameness that draws us together. It is our differences that help us grow. It is respect that makes this possible.




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CD750530 Posts: 5,444
12/10/08 1:47 P

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A related subject--the dwindling of vocabulary. I believe language is a living thing that does and should change over time. However, having said that, I find we are losing words and using meaningless fillers, such as "wow." For many people the response to "My father died last night" and "I just got a new BMW" would be "Wow." And don't get me started on "you know" and "like."

We think in language primarily, and if we don't have a good command of language, I don't know how we can think clearly.

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Edited by: CD750530 at: 12/10/2008 (13:49)
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7/5/2019 7:39:29 PM



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