Posts Tagged ‘publishing’

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The Destination or the Journey

May 2, 2015

Last month I embarked on an epic, spring break road trip with my husband and four teens: three of our own and one extra because we’re insane. After a staggering 1700 miles, the kids declared that we’d finally reached our destination—the Pacific Ocean.

I disagreed.

In my mind, we wouldn’t reach our destination until we pulled back into our driveway in Colorado. The road trip was just that: a trip on the road. There was no destination, I said. It was all a destination. No surprise; the kids rolled their eyes. For them, the beach was it. Sounding somewhat Taoist or like a guest on Oprah’s Soul Sunday show, I insisted that everything we’d done on the trip had been part of the journey and that we needed to live in the present to truly appreciate the adventure. Again, more eye-rolling.

Given we had another 1700 miles to go, I had lots of time to ponder this idea of mine, and eventually, I wound it back to my writing.

What is the destination for a writer? Is it to make money? To get published? Send a message? Leave a stamp on the world? Waste time? Perhaps it is all of the above, but I realize that like a road trip, every part of the writing process is part of the whole. To focus on one piece is to miss the rest.

I wouldn’t have skipped the Grand Canyon, where crazy tourists fed squirrels and told their kids that icebergs created the canyon. I wouldn’t have wanted my kids to forego the dinner at the Mormon diner in Utah or miss the opportunity to get lost in slot canyons. I wanted them to see the Mexican border, drink milkshakes while listening to Buddy Holly on Route 66, and witness the Vegas hoopla. If we’d jumped directly to the Pacific, they’d have missed rich and tacky parts of our country. They would have missed the details.

Epic road trips are exactly like the writing process, and as writers, we must experience every stop along the way.

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WRITEONCON

August 12, 2014

If you write for kids and teens and want to take your writing to a new level—check out WriteOnCon: a fantastic FREE on-line conference, held every August. Did I say free? Yes, indeedy.

Loads of authors, agents, and editors participate in the conference, and if you register (for free); you can participate in interactive sessions. If time is an issue, download interviews, articles, and read transcripts from panel discussions on your own time. This is why we LOVE the internet!

Writing conferences play an important role for a serious writer. If you’re not able to attend a conference in person, check out what’s online. Besides offering valuable information about the industry, WriteOnCon offers networking opportunities and new ideas.

This year’s  on-line (free) conference is August 26-27.

You don’t have anything to lose by checking it out. Remember– it’s free! Free, free, free, I tell you!

Website: www.writeoncon.com

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Platform

March 2, 2013

 

If you’ve attended a writer’s conference, you’ve no doubt heard the word, platform, tossed around like popcorn at a movie theater.

So, what is a platform?

In short, a platform is your resume. It is a concise and powerful stand about you. What makes you worthy of writing this particular book? In addition to a list of accomplishments and credentials, a platform can include passion. Why gives you the drive to write this book?

It’s best to include your platform in the last paragraph of your query. However, be careful that your platform does not include too much information. For example, do not mention the fact that you are a parent and your kids loved your book, or that your mother thought it would become the next Newberry. On the other hand, if you are writing a story about animals and happen to be a vet, that would be worth mentioning. If you volunteer at a zoo, include that information as well. If you’ve won a contest or been published, certainly include those credentials.

How are you an expert in this topic or genre and what writing experience do you have? Answer that, and you’ll have your platform.

 

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Quotes 10

December 12, 2012

A great deal of talent is lost to the world for want of a little courage. –Sidney Smith

I don’t pretend we have all the answers. But the questions are certainly worth thinking about. –Arthur C. Clarke

All that we are is the result of what we have thought. The mind is everything. What we think, we become. –Buddha

 

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Character Sketch 103

November 30, 2012

Tips to Know your Character

-Download a character sketch

-Interview your character

-Create questions/details not included in your character sketch and answer them (what’s their favorite ice-cream, what did they have for breakfast)

-Write a letter to your character

-Pretend you are the character and write your resume

-Pretend you are the character and write a letter to your mom

-Pretend you are the character and write a letter to your girlfriend/boyfriend

-If your character could invent something, what would it be?

-Who would your character want to meet (one living and one dead person)

-Jot details that you know but the reader might not

 

Make your character unique!

 

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Character Sketch 102

November 18, 2012

Last blog I provided a character sketch to help you develop your characters. This time, I’m putting a different spin on it. Besides the basics, like what a person is wearing or where they live, most character sketches ask questions about what a character likes, wants, and hopes. In this character sketch, think dark. What would your character never do? Then, think about what would happen if they did it. Right there, you have yourself a scene full of emotion and tension.

Here’s a start…

Where would your character refuse to live?

What would your character never eat?

What would they never wear?

What political party would they not support?

What magazine would they not pick up at the airport?

What kind of doctor would they refuse to see?

What ride at an amusement park would they not get on?

How would they react if they did any of these things? Ready, set, write!

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Character Sketch 101

November 8, 2012

From time to time, I blog about character development. I believe it is so crucial to writing, that I’m devoting the next three blogs to help create interesting characters.

Details about a character are important. Sometimes, authors get stuck. It can be a challenge developing details that don’t have to do with clothing and hair color. Character sketches provide questions to help writers think deeply about their darlings.

Below is one of my character sketches, but don’t limit yourself. Google a few more options and really think about what makes your characters tick. Remember, not all of it needs to be added to your work. As long as you know your character inside and out, that’s all that matters.

Character Sketch 

Carrie Brown-Wolf

carrie@carriebrownwolf.com

Name:

Age:

Gender:

Siblings:

Parents:

Children:

Pets:

Married? To Whom?

Ethnicity?

Religion?

Where do they live?

Favorite:

-color

-ice-cream

-breakfast

-person

-animal

-number

-state

-sport

-flavor of toothpaste

-soup

-ride at an amusement park

-candy

-room

What makes them sad?

What can make them angry?

What emotion do they almost never show? Why?

What scares them?