Quote of the Week

Quote of the week: “If there's a book that you want to read, but it hasn't been written yet, then you must write it.” - Toni Morrison

Thursday, December 30, 2010

Finding Your Writing Style and Voice

Style and voice, as a writer you hear about these two things all the time, usually within the same breath. Some wonder if they are in fact the same thing, but they aren’t. Each is separate from the other, but both rely on each other to make a story great. It’s a marriage of two separate elements that when brought together make your writing sparkle.

 So what is style and voice exactly? Some may be confused about the difference between these two important story elements. I found a great exert posted by illuminara written by T.J Scott entitled Style vs. Voice- A Guide. It breaks both down and makes them more understandable. I found it very helpful. Also, if you don’t already have a copy of The Elements of Style by: William Strunk Jr. It goes over the proper presentation and style of writing. I will attempt to explain below.

Writing Tips for the New Year

In the last few months, I have dedicated a portion of my time to reading more about writing and looking at different things I can do to be a better writer. The following are things I found that have made a big impression on me on my journey of discovery, and wanted to share them with any who might share the same love of writing that I do. Enjoy!

Read, read, read
Reading is the fastest and best way for a writer to become better at his or her craft. I once heard somewhere that a truly avid writer is always in the middle of reading a book and will never be caught saying, “Um… well, I’m between books right now.” Read everything and anything, but mostly read books that are written by writers for writers. Below are a list of books that I have recently acquired that I have found to be treasure troves of information. 

Sunday, November 21, 2010

I'm Thankful For...

Yesterday was our writer's meeting. We decided to do a pot luck dinner and talk about the blessings and curses of being a writer. The spread we had was delicious and the company even better. It's so great to have the opportunity to be apart of such a wonderful team. I'm blessed and especially thankful for my family of writers.

The best part is being able to have people to talk to who know what you are going through. It's like a support group for writers. Every now and again we throw out lifelines to those who feel as if they are drowning and sometimes I find myself a precipitant of those lines. Mostly it's a chance to make friends with like-mined individuals as well as have intelligent adult conversation (hard to come by when you're a stay a home mom).

So I'm thankful for my support group of writer's (you know who you are). ;)

Saturday, November 20, 2010

The Excuse

Yeah, it's that guilty pleasure that we indulge in way too often called the excuse. It's another way to procrastinate and to tell ourselves it's alright to put something off. I'm exceptionally guilty of this particular offense. If there is an excuse in the book, I've used it and this couldn't be more true than with my writing.

We discussed the issue of 'painful writing' today at my writer's meeting. Some people don't seem to have this problem, but for the rest of us out there who do... well you know what I'm talking about. It's sitting at the laptop and feeling it building as soon as you fire the device up. The worst of it hits full force as soon as the document file opens up. Black and white text stares back mocking you, but you suddenly remember something you forgot to do that just has to be done right that moment, so what do you do? That's right, you jump up to go do it real quick and then conveniently forget that you'd actually intended to get some writing done that day. Yeah, you feel smug because you got so much accomplished for the day, except for the one thing that you really want to do... to write.

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Writing Contests

Writing is something I enjoy immensely, but feel I still have a a lot to learn about it. For this reason, I am always trying to find new ways to challenge myself in this area. So I have setup goals to make this happen. One part of my goals is to learn to do better in reaching deadlines, and what better way to accomplish this than to participate in writing contests.

Sunday, November 14, 2010


It's a word most people associate with religion and Santa Clause, but there is another side of it as well. Until recently I did not understand the power behind that word. It took a movie (Kung Fu Panda), of all things, to see it as something else I could apply to serious problem (writer's block) I was having. I guess I was never open to consider the possibilities and depth of that single word until I was ready. What am I talking about? Belief in oneself.

Saturday, November 13, 2010

Trials of Writing

Anyone who has tried their hand at writing, even casually, knows the triumphs and heartaches of the art. It is a thing of beauty as well as a source of great frustration, but staying the course always ends with victory (even if in the heat of the moment it doesn't seem that way). It takes a combination of determination, spiritual guidance, belief in yourself, love of the art, love of words, understanding, thick skin and magic intuition to carve out a story worth telling.

There are times when the frustration I feel for not getting the words right becomes so powerful that it consumes my every waking moment. It throws my world off balance until the moment I discover the insight I need to keep moving forward. It's a painful war but one I battle bravely, because to not to would mean utter failure. I enjoy the challenge as I offer my hand to fellow soldiers in an attempt to compel myself forward into the darkness, and with luck we all will emerge on the other side better than what we had once been.