Work in Progress

My website and blog are being consolidated and transferred to WordPress. When all the adjustments and changes are made, you will find both by clicking on the link above.

One of Nature's Lovely Creations

One of Nature’s Lovely Creations

Amanda Hagarty is helping me with the transition.  I’ll keep you posted.  She is now working on transferring my subscribers to the new site.

I am excited.  I face challenges in the learning curve while  giving the site the look and feel I want to portray.  Hooray that the blog and website  will all be in one web location.

And who knows?  Maybe I’ll post interesting things more often.

Happy spring, everyone.  I’m waving and smiling.

Stopping by for a visit

Tulip Fields in Skagit County, Washington State

I’m dreaming of spring.  Did have some lovely sunshine after the brief snow shower this morning.  I’m just stopping by to wave at you all, and ask for comments on any changes on the blog appearance or blog roll additions.  Wana711 and others, please email me if you are not on the blogroll list and would like to be included. Suggestions and comments are welcome.  Hope you’ve all had a great day, and will glide along through Wednesday and on into the weekend.  Or … you could just enjoy each moment …  See you soon!

Social Networking for Writers: To Do or Not To Do

B&B Whidbey Island Writer's Conference

Unpublished writers, would Social Networking work for you? Browse the pros and cons below:

  • Folks must budget time if they decide to network on line.  I budget an average of three hours a day, checking email loops, writing and reading emails, blogs, facebook, twitter an LinkedIn.
  • No budget constraints? Hire a professional to set up the website and the blog, etc.  The rest of us must learn as we go.
  • 1st turning point suggest we get the learning curve out of the way before one is known and published.  The fear factor diminishes when we know no one but family is paying attention.
  • We can learn to make posts crisp, interesting or helpful, not dallying with readers’ time.
  • Why did I start ahead of the game?  Knowledge of how my mind works. My left-brain has one track, and that track needs repetition, using more time.  Stress freezes my brain cells, and when my manuscript is picked up by an agent or publisher, I’ll avoid the learning curve angst.  Published networking friends taught me pressure builds once published, as one marketing strategy is a network platform.
  • Ancient Whispers by Marie-Claude Bourque

    Knight of Passion by Margaret Mallory

  • The clear message in an email discussion on the GSRWA loop by Marie-Claude Bourque and Margaret Mallory? Creativity and time redirects away from our manuscripts to social networking.
  • Whatever the decision, realize social networking cuts into writing time, and for some, dampens creativity.
  • Weigh the time pressures and alternate zones for creativity.  Techies breeze through social networking, learning to link efficiently.  In a former post on this blog, a pointed to a link ‘how to blog on wordpress for non techies.’ I suggest blog first, then graduate to a website if you must.
  • Agents admit that if two equal manuscripts in the same genre sit before them, and they must choose only one, the writer with a network wins.  Consider the odds. Perhaps not likely. But a great story?  I wager they’ll wait, and deal.
  • Social networking bumps your name up on the Google search. Something to consider when deciding when to choose a pen name.  A writer wastes a lot of name recognition exposure, waiting to switch names.  If you do comment or write blogs or have a website, Google yourself.  You might be surprised. You’ll reap great motivation to make the first sentence count because it may appear on Google.
  • One last thought? Would I have reaped the same level of motivation, inspiration, support, encouragement, resources, & education, without social networking?  No.
  • Would my passion for writing have continued to grow without social networking?  Maybe not. We’ll never know.
  • Celtic Legends Surrounding Halloween


    'Tis the Season

    As a member of the Celtic Hearts, a chapter of RWA, I have access to their member blogs.  One such blog covers Celtic Legends surrounding Halloween.  Always curious about Samhain, (and how to pronounce it) I welcomed the articles surrounding this festival and other legends behind traditions at this time of year.  Click on the link and Enjoy!


    GSRWA Meeting & lecture by Bob Mayer

    One hundred and twelve mile drive to attend a meeting with fellow members of the Greater Seattle Romance Writers of America on Sat. morning.  The learning curve continues under the teaching from Bob Mayer, a multi-published author, owner of an up and coming on-line publishing company, and presenter extraordinaire of workshops to assist writers in honing the art of story. Check out his blog about the future of publishing.

    The networking and sharing between the members often continues after the meeting with a shared lunch at a local restaurant.  Each time I make the trip to a meeting, I am rewarded by getting to know the members a little better each time, and always picking up some new writing tips.  There are some changes rapidly heading our way in publishing.

    Have a great weekend, all.

    Writer’s Conferences

    Mount Baker WA

    Labor Day 2010 is history and two writer’s conferences are on the horizon.  Three weeks until the Emerald City Writer’s Conference in Bellevue WA, and in the last week of October, the Surrey International Writer’s Conferences.

    The anticipation builds as each day draws closer and the lists for preparation are building.   The conferences work better for me if I do some preparation beforehand, and one of those preps is to decide what I expect and want to get out of the expense, and the time spent.

    I outline a daytimer type of calendar page for each day of the conference, with the workshops I wish to attend marked, 1st & 2nd choice, and a ‘maybe’ marked for taking a needed recovery break if it becomes necessary.  I look forward to contacts with writers and other professionals involved in this business.

    Have a great week, all.

    Writing Style Sheets/Punctuation & Formats

    Yesterday, writing took a back seat to a task that filled in the blanks regarding some issues of punctuation, grammar and style for writing.  Instinctively, during reading or writing, the words either sounded correct, or not, but the grammar and punctuation of my school days did not resurface to explain why.

    Once I climbed aboard the good ship 1st Turning Point, education began firing into my brain from the patient but powerful hands of the captains, Jacquie Rogers and Ann Charles.

    One of the first requests from 1st Turning Point Captains came in the form of a question, “Are you familiar with style sheets?”

    My answer? “No, but I am willing to learn.” Uh oh!

    The journey began–walking through several huge style sheets from the web, picking out what might be useful. When I couldn’t find the answers in those behemoth style sheets, I climbed into two books that had heretofore been shelf decorations in my office … Grammatically Correct by Anne Stilman, and The Elements of Style, 4th Edition, by Strunk & White.

    There is much teamwork by the crew still to be done, to shorten it for practical use as a tool by writers who are scheduled to submit articles on self promotion (500 to 1000 words) on the 1st Turning Point website.  When the style sheet can be held up to the light and is flawless (smile) I will share the URL with you, or put it up on my web page for you to check and see if it is something you could use to answer possible niggling questions, for example, “Now where do I put the period … inside the quotation marks or outside?”

    Feel free to comment on any errors or omissions in this article! It takes a while for things to sink in. Go ahead, ‘make my day’ … teach me something!

    Wishing you all a week in which you can enable calm … take a few deep breaths and stop for a moment … to feel, or to think of, or to take a quick look at  something beautiful …  while Christmas and Hanukkah, or other spiritual celebrations add to the work load of the writer.

    The path to getting published

    The Greater Seattle Romance Writers of America  held their monthly meeting Saturday at Seatac, just a little south of Seattle.   The speaker Anthea Lawson, published writer who co-writes with her husband, shared great advice … a good review for experienced writers and necessary know-how for new writers seeking publication.

    In addition to what Andrea taught us, for thosewriters who are published, or are getting closer to being published, 1st Turning Point is a web site that contains a wealth of information regarding steps to take before a book is published.  Once the contract is signed to buy your book for publication, the revision of your current book and the writing of your next book, will be your priority.  It is very important to have methods in place beforehand to promote yourself and your work as an writer. Check out 1st Turning Point … this site can prepare and guide writers to be proactive in their career path.  An agent shared with me that she perks up her ears when she learns that a network is already in place for a prospective client.

    My personal soap box for new writers is to encourage membership in RWA, Romance Writers’ of America.  Next, find a local chapter.  Editors and Agents working with writers outside the Romance genre comment that RWA has something to offer writers of all genres. The Romance novels of today include historical, mystery, thriller, YA, Paranormal, Fantasy, erotica, contemporary, Women’s Fiction, Comedy, and Science Fiction, sweet fiction, and spiritual.

    Marion (Life is a treasure hunt)

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