My Weekly Update – It’s a New Day

I’ve been playing with my weekly line up and trying to create at schedule to include at least three weekly post consistently.  May still need a few more weeks to get organized, but I have some fun stuff planned for the future.

Flash 500

Flash 500 Cover

Nicole Pyles and Carrie K. Sorensen created this anthology based on their Wednesday Writer’s Blog Hop.  I took part in a few weeks and am happy to have four of my flash fiction pieces chosen for the anthology.  The blog hop happens every Wednesday and is a great way to get in some creative writing practice.  It also gave me a chance to try my hand at a few different genres.  Click on the cover to download the book for free and you can find my stories in the following weeks:

                        • Week of 5/9/2012
                        • Week of 5/16/2012
                        • Week of 5/23/2012
                        • Week of 6/6/2012

Post to Ponder

How to Use Your Logline, Tagline and Pitch to Create a Stronger Story by Marcy Kennedy a guest post on Jenny Hansen’s blog – I meet Jenny at #DFWcon and she was awesome.

How Does the Editing Process Work? by Tristi Pinkston, Editor – Interesting to hear how its done by a professional.

Jennifer Represents – cool agent blog (cool blog written by an agent) with great information.

Query Tip: Do Your Research by Ava Jae –

How to Write a Killer Pitch by Marcy Kennedy – Can you guess where I am at in this writing process?

Coolest Things – My chance to share with you some things I thought are pretty cool this week.

Iron Man 3 is finally available for our viewing and quoting pleasure. I loved it. I mentioned before Tony Stark is my favorite movie character of all times and he doesn’t disappoint. More on Tuesday when Sydney Quotes the Movies – Iron Man 3

Tiger Woods won The Player’s Championship yesterday.  His forth win this season.  He’s back.

Next Week’s Schedule
Tuesday – Sydney Quotes the Movies – Iron Man 3 – see the many sides of Tony Stark
Wednesday – Progressive Book Club – How to Write Good
Friday – Best & Worst Remake Blogfest

P – Progressive Book Club

a-to-z-letters-pThe End of Your Life Book Club by Will Schwalbe – I read this book in Dallas. That’s work with my A to Z theme, right?

First of all, if you haven’t heard of the Progressive Book Club, check out what a our book club host ML Swift created.

I really loved this book.  It was simple, sad, hopeful and beautiful. I got so much out of it.


Life Lessons

“As in many book clubs, our conversations bounced around between the character’s lives and our own.”
“Still, one thing I learned from Mom is this: Reading isn’t the opposite of doing: it’s the opposite of dying.”
“It’s much easier to follow your bliss when you have enough money to pay the rent.”
“They help us talk. But they also give us something we all can talk about when we don’t want to talk about ourselves.”

Writing Lessons

Have a great first line.
Tell a story and involve the read in the lives of the character.

To Read List for 2014

  1. On Chesil Beach by Ian McEwan
  2. Appointment in Samarra by John O’Hara
  3. The Savage Detectives by Roberto Bolano
  4. Man Gone Down by Michael Thomas
  5. Marjorie Morningstar by Herman Wouk
  6. Couples by John Updike
  7. Gilead by Marilynne Robinson
  8. Traveling Mercies: Some Thoughts on Faith by Anne Lamont
  9. March by Geraldine Brooks
  10. Brat Farrar by Josephine Tey
  11. Continental Drift by Russell Banks
  12. The Price of Salt by Patricia Highsmith
  13. Olive Kitteridge by Elizabeth Strout
  14. Suite Francaise by Irene Nemirovsky
  15. The Bite of the Mango by Mariatu Kamara
  16. The Elegance of the Hedgehog by Muriel Barbery
  17. The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo by Stieg Larsson
  18. Big Machine by Victor LaValle

And, I saw myself in this book:

This is exactly how I feel about London:  “I think it was the first place she really felt like an adult.”

This is exactly how I thought about the movie Auntie Mame: “It rekindled in her the fantasy of being Auntie Mame, the women who took her nephew on a glorious trip around the world and taught him that “life is a banquet and most poor suckers are starving to death.”

BTW, if you haven’t seen Auntie Mame, check it out (the Rosalind Russell version). 

This is the exact reason why I need to get over my insecurities and start telling people I am a writer:  “Never make assumptions about people. You never know who can and will want to help you until you ask.”

The book made me feel good about myself. Like the author, I to spend a significant portion of my life watching reality television and that is in no way disrespectful to my creativity:  “Part of curating, collecting and appreciating was editing – mom never had much patience for junk or for crassness and less so now that she knew her time was limited.  I, on the other hand, continue to waste a significant portion of my live watching reality television, learning about the lives of dubious celebrities and consuming cultural garbage with the feigned irony and faux populism that’s a hallmark of my generation and the ones that immediately follow.”

The book was about a mother dying of cancer, a son who tries to deal with it the best way he knows how and the time they spent together reading amazing books. And, if that’s all you got out of it, you missed the point. Great book.

Have you read it? 

My Weekly Update – Writing Assignments Accumulate

Writing Assignments

In my quests for finding employment, I applied to a writing network and was accepted.   My first assignment is due on Friday. So, hyped about this. In addition, I have a guest post to complete by Friday and two chapters of edits due on Monday.

And, to top it all off,  I sign up for a Short Story Contest, which is due on Friday. This is where I need your help.  The contest sets heats and everyone in my heat for this first round has to write in the same genre and use the same character.  I thought is would be a great challenge until I saw the genre.  I have to write a fantasy story.  I don’t have anything against fantasy, I just don’t read it and don’t know much about the genre.  It’s not the same as science fiction, right?

Huge favor – share with me your favorite Fantasy writers? I need a point of reference.  

Do you have Ten Minutes? 

Harry Widdifield, formerly know as Sevestian Winters (check out his guest post on my blog a couple of months ago, brilliant) has penned a new blog and a new journey in life as the Teller of Ten Minute Tales.  His goal is to write a short story a day.  He currently has two volumes for sale. I suggest you pick them up.  Great stuff and you can read a story in 10 minutes.  Who doesn’t have 10 minutes.

Have you read Harry’s short stories? What do you think?

Post to Ponder

PBC’s Successful Launch by M.L. Swift – I am so proud of my book club.
How to Push Past the Bullshit and Write that G-ddamn Novel:  A Very Simple No-F–kery Writing Plan to Get Shit Down by Chuck Wendig – Sometimes you just need some one to break it down for you.
You are Uncomaparable by MarcyKate Connolly – This goes along with my favorite quote from Bird by Bird,  “Jealousy is the business of comparing my insides to other people’s outsides.” It’s not worth it, so stop doing it.
What Came First:  The Scene or The Word? by Mike Reverb – I struggle with this as well. I see the scene in my head like a movie, but can’t seem to capture the same visuals and drama when I put it down on paper.
Things Every Writer Should Have by Nicole Pyles – another message about not comparing ourselves to other along with other great tips.
New Followers
Jay Finn
Jim Allen
Super Dull Boy
Tuan Ho
Tazein Mirza Saad
Elizabeth Hein
Next Week’s Schedule
Tuesday – Tattoo Tuesday
Wednesday – His Allue, Her Passion Blog Tour
Thursday – Back to the Future Bloghop
Friday – Stardust Summer Blog Tour

My Weekly Update – Books and Movies

“Better to have a little experience and a lot of imagination than vice versa.”The Daily Writer

The Hobbit

hobbitpostersI try not to see the movie until I have read the book. So, I spent the week reading the book and then I saw the movie. I wish someone had told me I didn’t need to read the whole thing, the movie covers only 1/3 of the book.  It was a good read. The movie, on the other hand, didn’t really start until Gollum made an appearance. It was all visually beautiful, but it didn’t move until two hours in.

I was pleased to discover that my favorite part of the book was also my favorite scene in the movie; The riddle contest between Bilbo Baggins and Gollum in the Troll Kingdom.  Both book and movie version were laugh out loud funny.  Come back later this week and read my SQM post on The Hobbit.

I also saw Skyfalls.  I went to the movies with my parents and then at dinner learned their first date was a James Bond movie.  How romantic.  My mom informed me that my dad had taken 2 other girls to see the movie, as well.  But, she married him anyway.

What movies have you seen lately?  Did you see The Hobbit?  What did you think? 

Post to Review

Fess Up Friday:  I Like Wearing Old Lady Shoes by Cynthia at Read is the New Black – Have you found your niche when it comes to writing?
What Writing Step Are You Afraid Of?  by Jami Gold – I am afraid of Writing Query Letters, but I think my reasons are off base, how about you?
17 Signs You’re Actually, gasp, an ADULT by Paul Angone at All Groan Up – I am living #3 right now. But, I haven’t seen it in 5 years.
Appreciating Art by Tasha Seegmiller – Have you ever taken a scene from your favorite piece of art and wrote a scene? I wrote a scene that took place in Van Gogh’s Iris in a Field. It turned out pretty good. Give it a try.
New Followers
Vanessa Wester Writer
Young Hungry and Restless
Shannon Thompson
M.L. Swift
Ciucela . . . 
John Lucas Hargis

Next Weeks Highlights

mlswift.blogspot.comJanuary 16th is the first meeting of the Progressive Book Club.  An online book club hosted by M.L. Swift.  Click on the badge for more information.



sylmion.blogspot.comMy First Book: Announces The Word Master Challenge.  Every month, Misha will present a theme.  This month’s Theme:


In less than 300 words, I want to see your idea of the WORST beginning you can possibly write. The funnier and more creative you are, the better. To make it easier for me, you have the WHOLE of January to enter, but you must please enter the SPECIFIC entry link into the linky list below. For information, click on the badge.

Both events will occur every month and you can join anytime.