Monday, December 6, 2010

Rebel Tales magazine

Need a great writers' checklist to see if your story is up to snuff?

Editor Holly Lisle also has great videos describing what she expects from each acceptable genre. If you have any questions about the various shades of spec fic, check out her definitions.

Monday, September 13, 2010

My new writer's buddy... this nifty little gadget on Geoff Porter's page.

The writer's buddy converts standard manuscript format to web format and back again. It's a boon to writers like me who submit work to a wide variety of markets.

I HATE deleting tabs and I zone out when I'm stuck tapping down arrows and ENTER keys. With this converter, you paste your work in one window, hit the button, and yippee! It's covereted.

Thank you, Geoff, for sharing this splendiforous link.

Wednesday, August 25, 2010

Cover Yourself, For Pete's Sake!

Today, while checking out some new markets, I got distracted with all the pretty links.

One such link is tremendously share worthy.

Thank you, Fantastique Unfettered, for leading me to GrĂ¡ Linnaea's page and this fantastic article on writing cover letters.


Thursday, April 22, 2010


Poetry. It's one of my favorite distractions.

I began writing poetry as a means to distract myself from writing novels. Eventually, I began to explore traditional forms such as villanelle and sestina and my heart stuck fast to those powerful rhyme sequences.

In a recent competition heald by the Abilene Writers Guild, two of my entries placed well--my villanelle "Fleet Winged Fate" was honorably mentioned and my sestina "Six Words For Edgar" (a tribute to my dear Poe) was originally announced as second place winner, although a subsequent follow-up from the contest coordinator actually contained the news it had, in fact, won first place. (She even sent me a shiny blue ribbon for it.)

At any rate, my faith in traditional poetic forms had been greatly rewarded and I find myself getting distracted once more.

Sestinas are poems with a strict form: They use six stanzas of six lines each and end with a tercet. They center about the repetitive use of six words, which are used as the ending word of each line in a specific sequence. Those same six words appear in the final tercet, two words to each line.

The order of the end-word use is a non-negotiable pattern (although the ending tercet offers more flexibility.) Assigning the numbers one through six to the key words, the pattern is 123456, 615243, 364125, 532614, 451362, and 246531. My first sestina took longer to get the words in order than it did to write the lines.

That leads me to this wonderful aid in formulating sestinas. Basically, plug in your end words and the sestina creator will spit out your template. Headache eliminated.

Well, reduced, anyways. You still have iambic pentameter with which to contend. =)

Friday, March 12, 2010

Short Story Writing Links

A collection of useful links...

Wednesday, February 17, 2010

Hey, I got an idea...

There are probably a ton of other things I should be doing instead of blogging.

I mean, the laundry cries out from the bedroom (and when laundry cries out it usually means it's on the verge of developing intelligence and making plans to attack its human oppressors.) The list of I KEEP FORGETTING TO DO THIS gets longer everyday. Not only that, I've got story that needs written. Gah! Why aren't I doing any of it?

The blogs. It's all their fault.

I don't spent a lot of time writing them but I do read them. A lot. I don't even go looking for them. I come across these great links in newsletters and (yes, I admit) other blogs and I happily trip from site to site and the next thing I know, an hour zooms by.

Give up the blogs, then, you say? Surely, you jest. I don't read blogs just for entertainment or to get publishing tips and insights or to keep up with people and authors I like. I don't read them just for research or for market leads or for upcoming events and news.

I read them for *all* those reasons. Blogs are indispensible sources of information and I can't imagine being a writer today without them.

My trouble is, I am forever coming across a stellar article. I print it out, promising to frame it or tuck it inside some binder I never got around to actually preparing to use for the task. It's a keeper, I say. Then I promptly lose it.

My solution: I'll repost my favorites here. Then they will be findable and linkable and all sorts of accessible.

Got a favorite that deserves to make the Wall of I Need To Keep This Article? (I am working on a snappier name, fear not.) Send the link and I will post. I'd also love to hear about your most favorite blogs, too. What makes them so important? Why can't you stop reading them? And what poor chores do you end up ignoring for the sake of blogging? (The chores are the real victims here.)

The inaugural article comes via link from Tara Dykens, a writer I met on Facebook and whom I've had the pleasure of "attending" online Pennwriters classes with. This being a celebratory moment, join me in toasting Tara. Kevlar and Buspar to ya, baby. Thanks for the link!

Camy Tang has a fantastic blog. She's a chick lit writer who offers inexpensive critique services for synopses and manuscripts. She also has a blog loaded with articles--perfect for a writer's toolbox.

The Deep Point of View article came up during our dialog class at