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Showing posts from January, 2011

10 Places to Find Blog Inspiration

You spend a good amount of time reading them, but haven't quite got the hang of writing them: Blogs. No matter your subject, blogging can be one way to build that ever-elusive writer platform, or a way to attract and keep clients to your business, writing or otherwise. It can also be an inspiration for longer that book you've wanted to write. So, you get an account, or you open up some space on your website, open a file and...nothing. Deciding what to write in that daily, weekly, or monthly post can drive you batty.  Here are a few places to find ideas.



Why Shifting into Marketing Drives a Writer's Success

I REALLY wanted a car of my own after high school. I had survived borrowing the station wagon equipped with the 8 track player*, and the sturdy, huge, car with the ridiculously spacious backseat**. I wanted something teenage-appropriate that would get me from here to there, and that I didn't have to hand back over to my parents. I socked away savings from my fast-food job, and when I graduated high school, I used the gift money to buy a used '81 Mustang. It was perfect, because it was small and cute and had T-tops--and it cost about $1000. The whole package worked out great for me. I was so happy that I made a decision, and was free to drive as I wished. But there was at least on obstacle I would have to overcome. I needed to learn how to drive a manual transmission.
THE BIG SHIFT
I knew how to drive; I had been "cruising main" for over 2 years by the time I got the Mustang. But those automatic transmission cars had simplified the whole idea of driving for me.
Your…

Diary 2.0

I started keeping a diary very young, but became more inspired to tell the story of my life to those lucky people who would discover my work when I was gone after reading The Diary of Anne Frank. Of course, I was not nearly as precocious, nor did I have the devastating story of Ms. Frank. As a kid, the thing that struck me most about Anne Frank's diary was her ability to share her feelings, safely, in a world that was beyond safe. (I didn't realize more of the true relevance of her words until I was older.) While I felt safe as a child, I sure understood feeling insecure, and I thought if I had a place I could write that and leave it all to the page, I would be stronger once I closed it's previously blank pages.
That's how strongly I felt about my diary writing back then. Because I had felt something powerful in those pages from history, I felt writing my history would somehow create serious thought when read later. I followed Anne's lead and gave my diary a name (h…

Butt in the Chair--Find a Balance for Writing and Health

We are a week into 2011! How is it going with your resolutions, goals, targets--whatever you call the things tied to the beginning of a New Year that keep you motivated? Of course, I am hoping that your word counts are rich and full--an early springtime of Creativity! But what about those other, non-writing goals? Like staying healthy?

Keeping our butts in the chairs, while crucial to our writing, can be detrimental to our "bottom lines." But don't use your love of writing as an excuse to stay unhealthy.* This past holiday season, my husband and I took part in a local contest to see how much weight we could LOSE between December 1 and January 12. I plan to write more about it later in mypersonal blog, but one thing I've learned is that seemingly impossible obstacles can be overcome if your mindset can change. How else can I explain how my husband (a lover of all things chocolate) has spent the season of cookies and fudge chopping fresh veggies for salads and sticking…

Extinguishing Writing Excuses: New Year, New Habits

2011.

It's here. A whole new year. You may be launching straight into your New Year's Resolutions today (or tomorrow, if you need to shake off last night's party) with pretty high expectations of what the New Year will mean for the "New You".
And why not? Starting off the new year with goals is commendable; setting goals and working at achieving them every day is even more valuable.
I'm sure many of you have resolved to improve your writing and/or your writing career in some way. Like other resolutions, there are some common pitfalls that arise when you start the Big, Life-Changing Resolution. Over 15 years ago, I resolved to quit smoking. Over 10 years ago, I actually quit. Thinking back to that time in my life, when I was chained to a habit that didn't serve me well at all, I'm reminded of the similarities of that time with my Writing Excuses.
Success Doesn't Happen Overnight
I tried to quit smoking many times. Each time, I thought it would be…