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Will social media kill writers’ diaries?

Will social media kill writers’ diaries? | WordsWordsWords | Scoop.it
Now Facebook and Twitter are business necessities, they may be replacing writers' journals. Is something lost?
Deb Sturgess's insight:

Curated by Deb Sturgess: Do authors who spend time cultivating audiences via social media give up time spent on personal diaries or journals? The demand for authors to create a "platform" in social media, which presumably ensures an audience for their books, forces practical choices. 

 

Unless the author is well-established, with a long career, she must find content for regular social media updates. Daily life is the quick and easy source, robbing the least amount of time from the writer's passion -- writing.

 

In the past, the information may have gone into a personal journal, sometimes edited and published posthumusly. Those journals shed light on the writer's inner life and could be viewed in perspective with published work.

 

Are writers still journaling privately? Their social media updates may replace diaries and journals in writers' routines or in their need to express personal thoughts. Is present knowledge worth sacrificing the long perspective?

 

When readers know details of a writer's life, they may find it harder to put their cherished idols on a pedestal. As the article points out, writers show themselves as people through social media, people not very different from their readers.

 

The fiction of writer as loner, or as glamourous, or as somehow loftier then their readers, is vanishing. The implications may take decades to evaluate.

 

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3 Deadly Mistakes to Avoid When Writing Blog Posts - Entrepreneur

3 Deadly Mistakes to Avoid When Writing Blog Posts - Entrepreneur | WordsWordsWords | Scoop.it
3 Deadly Mistakes to Avoid When Writing Blog Posts
Entrepreneur
I recognize that by writing a blog about how to not write a blog, many of you might be tempted to say, "Yours is the perfect example of how not to do it." But you would be wrong.
Deb Sturgess's insight:

Curated by Deb Sturgess: If you're new to business blogging, this article sums up three of the most important things to avoid when writing blog posts. To seasoned bloggers, these should be part of your DNA by now. 

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Jungle Red Writers: A Few Tips for Formatting Books and E-Books

Jungle Red Writers: A Few Tips for Formatting Books and E-Books | WordsWordsWords | Scoop.it
A Few Tips for Formatting Books and E-Books ... There is also a wide range of publishing sites and services, each with its own advantages and disadvantages, but the most common questions I hear involve formatting.
Deb Sturgess's insight:

I've been looking for clear, step-by-step instructions on formatting for e-books and print-on-demand. Here it is.

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Cathy Bryant Has Written the Worst Sentence of the Year

Cathy Bryant Has Written the Worst Sentence of the Year | WordsWordsWords | Scoop.it

Deb Sturgess: Cathy Bryant has claimed top honors in the Bulwer-Lytton Fiction Contest. The annual contest recognizes the writer of the worst opening to an imaginary novel. Bryant, of Manchester, England, wrote the worst sentence of 2012. 


Read the Bryant's sentence and winners in other categories on The Bulwer-Lytton Fiction Contest site.


Via MediaBistro.com

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All Your Work Should Be Sand Castles

All Your Work Should Be Sand Castles | WordsWordsWords | Scoop.it

Deb Sturgess: I found this post by Hillary Rettig motivational. She takes her inspiration from author John Gardner. Read it and build sand castles.

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Joy Ladin Share "When I Started Living as Myself" in Memoir

Deb Sturgess -- Joy Ladin's memoir, Through the Door of Life, recounts her transition from Jay to Joy as an experience of rebirth. Reviewer and interviewer Sandee Brawarsky, Jewish Week book critic, says, "The story is written in a voice that is poetic, precise, soulful and breathtakingly candid, but possessed of humor, too." 


Ladin says writing the book gave her "a voice of a person I was trying to become before I became that person." Based on Brawarsky's review, you should read Through the Door of Life if you are open to gaining new understanding of of the meaning of gender -- and humanity. 

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Visual Novelist Turns Game Writer

Visual Novelist Turns Game Writer | WordsWordsWords | Scoop.it

Deb Sturgess -- Christine Love's writing career fascinates me. It has placed her in an genre-transcending role in the interactive video gaming world. Mike Rose of Gamasutra.com and IndieGames.com calls her "one of the few developers who can command words to do her bidding in a video game format.


When asked to introduce her games, she says, "I make games with lots of words in them." I want to play her games! (My idea of a video game is usually Scrabble on my iPad.)


Love talks to Rose about her process for developing interactive stories and designing video games from them. The insight into this unique writer's creative process makes this interview worth reading.


Love wrote Digital: A Love Story as an interactive novel. Then friends convinced her it was a game, so she wrote the code and gave it away. She charges for the two video games she has written since then.



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Five Ways to Get Your Editor to Kill You

Five Ways to Get Your Editor to Kill You | WordsWordsWords | Scoop.it

Deb Sturgess -- Do you feel down because your writing project is not going well? Is your editor driving you crazy? In Five Ways to Get Your Editor to Kill You, Logophilius shares five ways to provoke your editor to murder you and how to expect the end to come in each case.


Logophilius wraps serious advice in humor. You'll smile, maybe giggle, and go back over your work before you send it to your editor.


Maybe you'll revise it two or three times, just to be safe.

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Gifted writers on UHV faculty team up for new creative writing program

Gifted writers on UHV faculty team up for new creative writing program | WordsWordsWords | Scoop.it

Deb Sturgess -- Looking for a Creative Writing program taught by award-winning writers? University of Houston - Victoria introduces it starting line-up of instructors for their new Creative Writing Program

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William Hertling's Thoughtstream: Notes from Line Editing vs. Copy Editing at Westercon

William Hertling's Thoughtstream: Notes from Line Editing vs. Copy Editing at Westercon | WordsWordsWords | Scoop.it

Deb Sturgess -- In traditional publishing, the publisher usually pays for multiple stages of editing. If you are self-published or plan to be, you must hire your own editors. Yes, that is a plural, editors, because you need different kinds of editing at various stages of writing.


Hertling explains some kinds of editing in Notes from Line Editing vs. Copy Editing at Westercon. His notes refer mainly to the difference between story editing and line editing. 


Unfortunately, his notes needed some editing before publication. 

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Editing “I Died Once” & Rewriting/Editing “Chess With Agatha”

Editing “I Died Once” & Rewriting/Editing “Chess With Agatha” | WordsWordsWords | Scoop.it

Deb Sturgess -- James Mahoney, I gave you about five seconds to Show Me that Your Approach to Capitalization might have A Point. After that, you simply irritated me. Hire an editor with your Kickstarter Project funds designated for hiring an editor. It would be more honest than passing the money on to your sister. She may own an English book. That does not make her an editor. You need an editor.

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Why We Need Big, Bold Science Fiction

Why We Need Big, Bold Science Fiction | WordsWordsWords | Scoop.it
Sci-Fi used to be about bold engineering, and so was America. PM's Glenn Harlan Reynolds says that's the spirit we need to recapture. No more depressing dystopias—give us sci-fi that inspires people to dream big.


Are we dreaming too small or are writers' imaginations unable to see beyond the wonders of our current technologies? 


What say you? ~Deb Sturgess

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‘The Second Shelf,’ Cont.

‘The Second Shelf,’ Cont. | WordsWordsWords | Scoop.it
Readers respond to Meg Wolitzer’s recent essay about the cultural reception given to fiction written by women.


Be sure to read Wolizter's essay, The Second Shelf, from the NYT Sunday Book Review, March 30, 2012.


Marjorie Pryse wonders whether the second-class status of women's fiction begins with first reviewers or with literary scholars who stick with "canonical" writers. Women are among the writers marginalized.


Pryse suggests a reasonable analogy: "Imagine a biology that canonized mammals and marginalized microbes — or that rejected discoveries of new plants or animals on the grounds that including them in the taxonomy would require removing other species from the genus?"


Literature can expand to include new works from new, different voices, just scientific discoveries expand our understanding of the natural world. ~Deb Sturgess

 


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The 100 Best Sci-Fi Stories by Women Writers (Read 20 for Free ...

The 100 Best Sci-Fi Stories by Women Writers (Read 20 for Free ... | WordsWordsWords | Scoop.it
Since 2009, the organization VIDA: Women in the Literary Arts has sought to bring balance to the representation of female authors in the literary world. As.
Deb Sturgess's insight:

Curated by Deb Sturgess: Men dominate the Science Fiction genre. VIDA's list proves that women have sci-fi chops, too. 

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Learning to learn: finding motivation with a think board

Learning to learn: finding motivation with a think board | WordsWordsWords | Scoop.it
Editor's Note: This is a guest post for the #learningtolearn series. Finding and collecting inspiration from unexpected places is an integral part of staying motivated and expanding the scope of your knowledge.
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The Power of Words

Wonderful and highly inspirational video. Reminds us all to strive for authentic and purposeful communication. So choose your words wisely. They are extremely powerful.

Deb Sturgess's insight:

Help comes in the form of a writer. She donates more than money. She gives the power to attract more donors, indefinitely.

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RIP: Helen Gurley Brown, publishing maverick and 'Sex and the Single Girl' author, dead at 90

RIP: Helen Gurley Brown, publishing maverick and 'Sex and the Single Girl' author, dead at 90 | WordsWordsWords | Scoop.it

Deb Sturgess: Helen Gurley Brown shocked America with her autogiographical "Sex and the Single Girl" (which I read secretly during high school). She resusitated "Cosmopolitan" magazine, turning it into the "top-selling magazine for young women in the world" (and providing topics for endless late-night girl talks).


Before that, she worked her way from secretary in an ad agency to "the highest-paid female copywriter on the West Coast" in the late 1950s. Film rights to "Sex and the Single Girl" set a new record for a non-fiction book.


An ambitious woman writer and editor before it was common or even widely accepted, she provided inspiration for women to follow their passions in writing and in life.  Gurley Brown died at age 90 after a brief hospitalization.

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Writing Contest Warning Signs to Watch For

Writing Contest Warning Signs to Watch For | WordsWordsWords | Scoop.it

Deb Sturgess: A guest post by C. Hope Clark via Victoria Strauss on Writer Beware sets useful guidelines for evaluating writing contests before entering. Following them could save you cash, time and future income.


Don't despair! Legitimate writing competions with fair entry fees, quailty entries and judging and honest, worthwhile rewards exist. Writers should learm the warning signs of suspicious contests to distinguish good from bad.


In summary:

  1. Be wary of first-time contests. Much depends on the management of a contest. Research the reputation of the person or organization running the competition.
  2. Look for a human contact for a contest. Generic emails and mailbox-only addresses warrant a closer look at the About Us page. Don't hesitate to email that generic address and see what response you get, if any.
  3. A high entry fee, especially one that is out of proportion to the prize, should wave red flags. FundsforWriters.com, Clark's website, closely scrutinizes contests for which the entry fee is over five percent of the first prize. They refuse to list contests if entry fees are over ten percent. If the prize is publication only, be extremely wary. Your entry fee may simply be financing the publisher's operation.
  4. Research past winners. Google them, look at their work, and their success, or lack of it. Did they ever receive their prizes?
  5. Be wary of giving away all rights to your work. One-time or first rights gives the publisher reasonable opportunity to benefit from publishing and publicizing a writer's work. Know what you are giving up in exchange for entry.
  6. Ask who the judges are. Contests with pretigious judges tend to earn writers more prestige. Judges, however, are not always publicized. If contest sponsors avoid responding to requests for the judges' identities, think twice about entering.
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Self-Help Author Covey Dies at 79

Stephen R. Covey, author of "The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People" died July 17 of complications from injuries suffered in a bicycle accident. He was 79. 


His book combined self-help and business management theory in a highly readable form. It is ubiquitous in the business world, selling over 20 million copies in 40 languages. The book led to the development of a leadership training and consulting company and several other books based on the same principles.

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Liberating the Writer Within

Liberating the Writer Within | WordsWordsWords | Scoop.it

Deb Sturgess -- If only I could find a personal trainer for writing, I'd get much more done. I do it for others, but no one kicks me in the backside when I need it. Marina DelVecchio ltalks about five excuses writers often use to avoid writing:

  1. Confidence
  2. Time
  3. Procrastination
  4. Accountability
  5. Motivation


DelVecchio frees you write by telling you how to fight your impulse to give excuses. Turn around and get ready for a boot in the pants.

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By All Means Paint! Curse You Writer’s Block! 

By All Means Paint! Curse You Writer’s Block!  | WordsWordsWords | Scoop.it

Deb Sturgess -- If you've ever wondered whether "real" writers get writer's block, here's your proof: One author's rant on the conflict between need/desire to write and ability to write.


He begins with a quote from Vincent Van Gogh. “If you hear a voice within you say, ‘You cannot paint,’ then by all means paint, and that voice will be silenced."

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One Last Hit: Use Evil Editor Classics as Inspired Writing Prompts

One Last Hit: Use Evil Editor Classics as Inspired Writing Prompts | WordsWordsWords | Scoop.it

Deb Sturgess -- More writing practice, so you don't have to bother thinking of fresh prompts. Evil Editor presents six scenarios on the theme One Last Hit. Choose one and give it a plot. You could also do one per day and have one week of prompts. Yes, I know there are seven days in a week -- give yourself a day off.

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Applause for Copy Editing—Should You DIY or Hire Out? Part 1 — Fresh Rag

Applause for Copy Editing—Should You DIY or Hire Out? Part 1 — Fresh Rag | WordsWordsWords | Scoop.it

This guest post is written by Michele Truty, professional editor, blogger and co-founder of VidaVeganCon, a conference dedicated to vegan cuisine and lifestyle.  Part 1: Self-Editing Who needs copy editors?


Deb Sturgess -- Your audience publishes on paper, but your advice should be taken by anyone who writes for any medium. 


My favorite points:

  • "Calloused Eyes." The reason writers need someone else to read their work, aka "fresh eyes." I'd add it's essential for those fresh eyes to know what to look for.
  • "Print it Out." When I skip printing out something for another editing pass, I almost always find an error after publication online. I've been editing other people's writing for 30 years. I know you're right.
  • "Consistency is King." I frequently get questions on grammar, punctuation and usage. I always ask which style guide the questioner uses. Then, I recommend choosing a style guide that fits their industry or they tend to mostly follow anyway. 
  • "Know the Rules So You Can Break the Rules!" When I taught writing, I told my students they could never convince me a sentence fragment was intended for effect when it was in a sea of sentence fragments.
  • Resources. A writer can never have too many.
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Literary Manager Ken Atchity Discusses ePublishing & What It Means for Writers | www.WritersBreak.com

Literary Manager Ken Atchity Discusses ePublishing & What It Means for Writers | www.WritersBreak.com | WordsWordsWords | Scoop.it

Atchity says "today’s novelists are living on a new frontier, and are free to seize opportunity where they find it—and take their fate into their own hands. They are no longer enslaved by a publishing paradigm that never made good business sense. In short, go Internet, young novelist!"


He advocates high artistic standards, professionalism and commercial intelligence. I infer he means quality writing and editing, and thorough understanding of audience. Unfortunately, those are missing in many e-books I've read.


Hire an editor. A good one. ~Deb Sturgess

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The Agony of Writing

The Agony of Writing | WordsWordsWords | Scoop.it
The author of Lots of Candles, Plenty of Cake discusses the ways to keep writing.


Aspiring authors and students writers often wrongly believe that successful (read "published" or "famous") find writing easy and fun. Anna Quindlen does them, and the rest of us, a favor by sharing "The Agony of Writing." ~Deb Sturgess

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