Tag Archives: networking

Writing Hub -Books, Writing, Tips & more…


writing-hub

Writing:

My escape on a writing retreat from 18th – 22nd May was absolutely fabulous. Surrounded by fresh spring greenery, bird song, blue skies, fellow writers and delicious food (cooked for us!) what more could a writer need? The photos above give only a glimpse of my time there. I particularly love the A frame cabin – wouldn’t that be a perfect place to have to write in?

Strawberry Creek Lodge may only be an hour or so away from home but it is a different world away from the normal reality of life. This enabled myself and my fellow writers to indulge in the written word, discuss plots, formats and support each other. With an open or closed door policy we could shut ourselves away to write or be open to conversation and walks through the woods and along the creek. The lodge is a magical place where ‘real’ life disappears allowing your creative muse to flourish. 

I did manage to achieve my writing goals at the retreat so that was an added bonus.

  • Final revisions to The Twesome Loop final word count 75,007.
  • Wrote new YA story Bubble the Gruggle word count 8306.
  • Began revisions on The Giving Thief 70,394 word count.

With my writing goals attained I can immerse myself in the ghost writing project and hopefully have the revised draft to my client by the end of May.

Have you been on a writing retreat?

What benefit did you gain?

Did you achieve your writing goals?

Books:

Her Fearful Symmentry by Audrey Niffenegger- I completed this book while on my writing retreat. The ending had a great twist to it and I found the characters to be intriguing all through the narrative. The story contains complicated relationships, past loves, new loves, strange addictions, cemetery walks, and ghosts. 

Symmentry

Reincarnation by Suzanne Weyn – I began this book at the retreat. It has a unique format and is good research for my novel, The Twesome Loop.

2507213

Writing Tips

Make it your business to understand grammar and language. Do you know a noun from a verb, a predicate from a preposition? Do you understand tense and verb agreement? You should.

My tip: Find a way to escape ‘normal life’ be it a road trip, a mini break at a hotel, or a weekend getaway – it doesn’t have to be far away to achieve the tranquility to write.

Upcoming Writing Events- Add Yours for your Location…


eventsThis week I do not have any events to attend, (I know a complete shock!), however I will be working hard to finalize freelance projects in anticipation of the writing retreat I will be attending from Thursday. I feel like a little kid waiting for the escape of school term and the long expanse of the summer.

At our retreat we do not set course work or discussion topics, however I do set a prompt, which can be ignored or completed. It is for light relief rather than as an exercise. As for retreat rules we only have a few.

  1. Respect other writers privacy. If their door is closed do not enter, however if it is open then visitors are allowed.
  2. Meals should be taken together not only because they are delicious but it is a time to connect, discuss and refresh mind and body.
  3. Remember to take breaks – whether a walk with a companion or alone, change your writing/reading location or to have a discussion.
  4. Set your own writing goals for the retreat.
  5. After supper gather to relay progress, connect and relax.

creek-sign

Have you been on a retreat?

What rules did they have (if any)?

What benefit did you derive from it?

Local events:

shady

owl nest

Upcoming Writing Events- Add Yours for your Location…


events

I just have to share a few photos of the Authors for Indies event I attended on Saturday at the Sherwood Park Bookworm. We had a great time sharing our books, sharing experiences of the writing life with a new writer and talking everything books. Fellow authors Eva Blaskovic, Beth Rowe and Marty Chan joined me for the day. I even got to read from Ockleberries to the Rescue, which was fun!

AFI 2017

 

 

 

davdavIMG_3238IMG_3237

On Monday I have an evening hosted by our local library, Books, Bites & Bubbly.  Looking forward to it.

books bites bubbly

Tuesday will be my writers group, the Writers Foundation of Strathcona County’s monthly sharing meeting. We share our current work for constructive critique, discussions and writing exercises and fellowship.

Writers Foundation Strathcona County

What are you up to this week?

Other locations:

The 1000 Islands Writers Festival runs May 5–7 in Gananoque, ON, featuring Cathy-Marie Buchanan, Iain Reid, Lindy Mechefske, Marni Jackson, and others.

reading by the river

The next-best thing to a new lit fest is a new lit fest that’s coming back for its second year. After an incredible debut in 2016, The Festival of Literary Diversity returns to Brampton, ON, running May 4–7 with another stellar lineup.

fold

Vancouver Island’s Children’s Book Festival is scheduled for May 6 in Nanaimo, BC, featuring (as usual) some of Canada’s best children’s authors.

Bookfest-2017web

Upcoming Writing Events- Add Yours for your Location…


events

My main event for this week is on Saturday, which is my writing group’s 8th annual conference. It is always a incredible day of words, writers, writing, networking and meeting new authors.

This year to celebrate Canada’s 150 – we have made the theme Canada – no surprise there! The sessions will be all things Canadian and a fun interactive workshop will be the first session to set the mood. It is a full day (separate sessions can be booked if preferred) testing your writing skills, learning and embracing the written word.

I am presenting one of three short workshops in the first hour but my main presentation is later in the day. My workshop will be creating a Canadian character. I have worked hard to make the session interesting, informative but also fun! Wish me luck.

Conference logo 2017

If you can come on Saturday there is still time to register – here is the link: http://wfscsherwoodpark.com/node/3090

Other events:

Edmonton Poetry Festival- April 16–23. Here is the schedule link: http://www.edmontonpoetryfestival.com/schedule/

In Picton, ON, and the surrounding area, the Prince Edward County Writers Festival takes place April 20–22, featuring Steve Burrows, Joy Fielding, Wallace Edwards, Merilyn Simonds, Zoe Whittall, and others.

Frye Festival, Greater Moncton, NB –  April 22 to 29 Authors including Riel Nason, Jennifer McGrath, and this is the link: http://www.frye.ca/index.php/en/festival-frye/auteurs-2017

Remember to add your local events

Upcoming Writing Events- Add Yours for your Location…


events

This week I have two events. Firstly, tonight I will attend a meeting of the Diversity Committee, who are co-hosting an event with one of my other organizations I volunteer with, the Arts & Culture Council. The event is a celebration of Canada’s 150 but also to bring the artistic and cultural diversity of our locality to the public. There has been a hive of activity to bring together numerous groups and individuals for this event and it is logistically demanding. Luckily with so many volunteers assisting in this venture the workload has been spread, making it easier to cope with. We are on countdown to 11th June for Heritage Day of Strathcona County.

Heritage Day 2017

My next event is on Tuesday, which is the regular meeting of my writing group, the Writers Foundation of Strathcona County. I always look forward to these meetings not only because it is fun to exercise a writing prompt, I create and hear the responses but to share my work and get valuable feedback as well as network. There are a few core people that never miss the meeting but lots of ‘new’ and ‘irregular’ visitors as well so we never know how many people to expect. Sometimes it is five other times nineteen. It makes the evening a lot of fun.

Writeres Foundation of Strathcona County

Do you attend a regular writing group?

What format does it take?

Other events:

From April 5–9, over a dozen Canadian writers will gather for the ImagiNation Festival at the Morrin Cultural Centre in Quebec City, QC.

The 18th Annual North Shore Writers Festival happens April 7–8 at North Vancouver City Library in North Vancouver, BC.
Book Cover GritLit

The fantastic gritLIT Readers and Writers Festival takes place April 7–10 in Hamilton, ON; the lineup is yet to be announced.  UPDATE HERE: http://www.gritlit.ca/

Upcoming Writing Events- Add Yours for your Location…


events

It is my writers group sharing meeting on Tuesday. This is a monthly meeting where we share our stories and receive constructive critique. Later there are discussions on plot, characters, publishing and many other subjects. We occasionally have special guests and presentations on particular topics. No matter which meeting you attend, it is always inspiring and great to network.

http://www.wfscsherwoodpark.com/  We welcome local & virtual members – any age, any stage of their writing career.

Writers Foundation Strathcona County

Other events:

Funding Your Book Research Panel Discussion
Wed, 8 February, 14:00 – 15:00
Humanities Lounge, HC-429
igali@ualberta.ca
Acquisitions Editor Peter Midgley participates in a panel discussion about the labours involved in book research and
writing.
This is a popular annual event and Sold Out! WGA 2017 Banff Retreat: February 3 – 12, 2017, Banff Centre for Arts and Creativity. A self-guided retreat is a great opportunity to connect with fellow writers and enjoy uninterrupted writing time at The Banff Centre, the world’s largest arts and creativity incubator. Writers at any stage of their career or writing project are welcome to join in.
Why not add your local events underneath?

Lost Words Applied to Our Writing Conference…


Back to BasicsMy writing group held their annual writing conference this past Saturday. It was an excellent event (as always) and gave the attendees an opportunity to learn specific skills, brush up on others and enjoy a day networking with known and new writers.

blateration n 1656 -1864
chatter; babbling
I’ve had just about enough of your garrulous blateration, you clod!

brabeum n 1675 -1675
reward or prize
Without some brabeum, the students will have no incentive to work harder.

casitive adj 1652 -1652
having grammatical cases
The casitive nature of Finnish and Hungarian makes them difficult to learn.

celeberrimous adj 1768 -1768
very or most highly celebrated
Her celeberrimous accomplishments were lauded by her colleagues.

hirquitalliency n 1652 -1652
strength of voice
The wrestler’s hirquitalliency compensated for his lack of strength and talent.

interfation n 1656 -1658
act of interrupting another while speaking
His boorish interfations were ill-received at the academic lecture.

ipsographic adj 1817 -1817
self-recording
He used the CD burner primarily for ipsographic purposes.

noscible adj 1654 -1654
knowable; well-known
It is noscible that no amount of training can make up for experience in the field.

patration n 1656 -1656
perfection or completion of something
The patration of my dissertation will be an occasion for great merriment.

portmantologist n 1887 -1934
one who studies or coins portmanteau words
Rather than being a portmantologist, why not use perfectly good existing words?

quaeritate v 1657 -1657
to question; to inquire
If I might quaeritate, why are we headed in the wrong direction on the trail?

solennial adj 1623 -1656
occurring once a year; annual
Welcome to our solennial celebration of the birth of our illustrious institution.

Please visit the source of these Lost words http://phrontistery.info/clw.html

I used these words to describe the conference:

Our solennial Writers Foundation of Strathcona County conference this year, centered around the basics of writing. Our noscible presenters, Barbie-Jo Smith, Judy Schultz, Janice MacDonald and Linda J Pedley shared their expertise on a diverse number of subjects. They also gave us several exercises to perform. These included a blateration and interfation exercise, where in groups of three – one person wrote on a particular subject while the other two talked on another subject across them. It was a lesson in patration and concentration.
Other techniques for casitive, hirquitalliency, and portmantologist gave the participants the opportunity to quaeritate their processes and redefine how they write. One such technique is a ipsographic exercise to ‘hear’ your words. This allows a writer to identify if the words relay their story as they propose. Each session ended with brabeum draws of books.

Writers Foundation Strathcona County

An invitation -50 over 50 Bloggers…


over 50 bloggers wanted

Bloggers age 50 and older wanted

Hello Followers,

I would like to invite you to join in with this ’50 over 50′ blog project. It sounds like fun and will connect us with even more people in the blogging world.

Click on the link and sign up.

Expand your horizons, connect and support.

 

Apologies…I was Cultivating Freelance Clients and Learning Small Business Yesterday!


Firstly may I apologize for not posting yesterday? I did post on Saturday a short horror story, The Keys, which I hoped would be enjoyed by all.

So the reason I was absent yesterday? I attended a local business symposium, which was informative, enlightening and a great networking opportunity. Hosted in conjunction with Small Business Week, the symposium covered digital marketing, succession planning and recruitment. Here is the agenda if you are interested.
2015_small_business_symposium_agenda

business

The panelists were informed, erudite and forthcoming with their own experiences, which gave the audience a real connection. Questions were answered with honest problem solving remarks.

Although I have started a business plan several times, it has never been completed. After this event I vow to complete my plan. It is a vital element in succeeding.

I have three freelance leads from yesterday, so a great day all round.

Do you attend local business events?

What was your experience?

A Themed Piece of Prose…


As I mentioned on Friday, tomorrow is my writing group’s Christmas party – it is an opportunity to share our current projects, reflect on the past year and reconnect with members who have been away. Part of the celebration is for everyone to read a seasonally themed piece of prose or poem. There are always a variety of interpretations to this prompt, which makes for an interesting evening. My submission this year is:

gift-wrapped-box

The Box

It sat under the Christmas tree tantalizing me

Its shiny wrapping paper and bright gold bow

Perfectly folded corners and sealed up tight

On the label written in script my name

 

As I pass, my eyes fix

Under the decorated Christmas tree

Its lights twinkle and baubles dangle

The box reflected a hundred times

 

When alone I sit beside the box

Smoothing its surface and guessing

The gold ribbon fastened tight

No tears or gaps through which to peek

 

Carefully I pick up the box

Giving it a gentle shake

There is no rattle or jangle

No noise to give a clue

 

The days pass slowly

My impatience grows

When will I be able to open the box

And find out what it holds?

 

Christmas morning arrives

My excitement wakes me at dawn

I creep down the stairs

To find the box gleaming

 

At last the family assembles

I burst with excitement

As the box is handed to me

I feel its weight again and gasp

 

With shaking hands I unwrap

The paper and bow discarded

A cardboard box revealed

No clue given still

 

Prizing open the flaps

Tissue paper rustles

Underneath my Christmas, wish

A perfect treasure for me to keep

 

Prompt logo

Why not share your Christmas themed poem or prose here?