Sunday, December 30, 2012
Sunday, December 23, 2012
Sunday, December 16, 2012
Tuesday, December 11, 2012
Sunday, December 2, 2012
Sunday, November 25, 2012
Sunday, November 18, 2012
Sunday, November 11, 2012
Sunday, November 4, 2012
- · Promising me a rose garden about selling my script to production companies like ABC Entertainment and HBO Films. (Apologies to Lynn Anderson)
- · Giving me dirty laundry such as double-dealing about what you can do for me, discussing important ideas without telling me. (Sorry about that Don Henley)
- · Telling me lies, sweet little lies to keep me on your roster, such as “I have a contact at NBC.” “Let me schedule lunch with some heavyweights so they can take a look, too.” (Forgive me Fleetwood Mac).
Sunday, October 28, 2012
|Dean and sister, Sharon|
Sunday, October 14, 2012
Sunday, October 7, 2012
How to Write People: One Socially Inept Writer’s Hopeless and Sisyphean Struggle to Capture the Complexities of Human Social Behavior in Prose, Part II
Wednesday, October 3, 2012
Tuesday, September 25, 2012
Sunday, September 9, 2012
By Bonnie Stanard
Way back in 2008, the Columbia II workshop took a moment during its meeting to write down advice we would give a person beginning to write. At that time, the Richland County Public Library had declined our request to reserve their large conference room, and we had begun a search for another place to hold our meetings (which is another story).
In giving advice, many of us took the opportunity to remind ourselves of things we already know but too often forget. My notes from that meeting include platitudes we’ve heard before but may be worth repeating.
1. Believe in the importance of your writing.
If you’re like me, you have often felt like you’re the only person in the world who cares about your writing. Discouragement is often subtle. Your well-meaning spouse tells you how to better spend your time. You get into an argument over space in your house for a desk. You can buy a new DVD player, but the budget can’t afford a writers conference.
To your friends and family, “writing” is never a good excuse. Your mother-in-law is offended if you write instead of visit. Your friends think you’re dodging them. Your neighbor suggests you’re a hermit. It’s a hard battle, and what makes it harder is that the fight is against people you love. And in the end, when you insist on your time to write, you’re made to feel selfish, as if you’re the problem.
2. Get feedback from folks who will give honest thoughts.
It’s hard to underestimate the benefit of a well-run workshop. People who write will approach your work dispassionately and are likely to give honest appraisals, since they have nothing to gain or lose. We get false readings from spouses and friends, who give us well-meaning comments that won’t offend us.
3. Spend more time with people who write and value writing.
I’ve found that as a subject of conversation, writing can’t compete with USC’s football team, golf, the latest way to cook a casserole, or where to go for a good hamburger. Not that I’m interested exclusively in writing, but the average person seems to have zero interest. Fortunately, I now have several good writer friends and I value their company.
4. Read current works in the genre in which you like to write.
If you’re a good painter, you know other painters and what they’re doing; a good banker knows other banks and what they’re charging; a good doctor knows other doctors and their treatments. A good writer knows what other writers are doing.
5. Write, write and then rewrite – every day, if possible.
We’re all busy. We hardly have time to eat or gas-up the car, so how can we find time to write? Write while waiting in line at the post office. Scribble while eating a sandwich. Spend your vacation alone with your computer. Give up cooking, gardening, and/or shopping. Let your spouse go to Waffle House for supper. Put the kids to bed with peanut butter sandwiches. Read number one again. Your writing is important.
6. Balance new writing projects with sending out submissions—both are vital.
I resent spending time with submissions, especially since 99% of them will be rejected. But as we’ve said in workshop, it’s really hard to get published if you don’t make submissions. On a positive note, making submissions is getting easier. Many journals are in the process of switching to online submissions managers.
Of all these suggestions, the most important one to me is the first one. When I lived in
Sunday, September 2, 2012
By Ginny Padgett
2012 SCWW Conference – October 19-21 –
It’s that time of year again. School is back in session, football returns to fan-filled stadia and South Carolina Writers’ Workshop holds its annual conference.
Here’s the latest conference news. The early-bird registration rate ended yesterday (September 1), but if you register by September 15 and email me at firstname.lastname@example.org and tell me you saw this blog, I will extend the $50.00 discount. Additionally, I’ll extend the deadline for purchasing a manuscript critique to September 15.
Registration remains open until October 17; however, you’ll pay full price and only pitch and query-letter critique appointments remain for sale.
I hope you’ll join us for the conference. It’s an excellent opportunity to network with other writers and industry professionals, hone your craft, expand your knowledge of publishing trends…and who knows, come away with a book deal! It’s going to be a great weekend for writers in
Take a look at the weekend activities that will mark the 22nd SCWW Conference. (See http://columbiawritersworkshop.blogspot.com/search/label/Ginny%20Padgett) You can go to www.myscww.org/conference/ for all the information, including links to registering for the conference and making your Hilton reservations.
Tuesday, August 28, 2012
Eggs, Milk and a Keyboard: Ingredients Needed To Write for a Food Review
By Kimberly Johnson
I’ll admit it…I’m a foodie. I watch the culinary shows (even, The Chew). I download the instructional videos. I will spend my next-to-last-dollar on a cookbook.
Last Sunday, I perused the aisles of a local mega bookstore and ooh’d and ah’d over Lidia and Ming. And just before I got hungry, I forked over the cash for Jamie’s Kitchen (Jamie Oliver) and Paula Deen’s Southern Cooking Bible.
At home, my kitchen turned into a full production set that would rival the one on Food Network. I tried out Paula’s Tomato Pie recipe. The ingredients were simple: four tomatoes, basil leaves, mozzarella, cheddar cheese, and mayonnaise, to name a few. The tools of the trade were modest: a deep dish pan, a grater and the oven. In Paula’s original recipe, she combined grated mozzarella, cheddar cheese and mayonnaise. I substituted plain yogurt for the mayonnaise. The result was a tasty treat that I may fix for brunch. Suddenly, I realized that I am good at cooking, eating and writing. But, I wasn’t sure about selling my two cents to an audience. So I hopped on the Internet to discover ways to write a cookbook review.
The experts offered this advice for the beginner reviewer:
#1: Select two or three recipes from your favorite cookbook and sample them. This way, you can get a feel on the author’s cooking style to write a comprehensive assessment. I cheated. I tried just one: Not Yo’ Mama’s Banana Pudding from Paula’s Just Desserts book.
#2: Explain why the book is unique. That’s what Garrett McCord (blogger with Food Blog Alliance) does with his entries. “For example, how does the author explain the use of ingredients in baking better than other authors? By setting the author and subject apart from the overcrowded world of food literature you detail their importance.”
#2: Discuss the author’s flair, presentation and photo arrangement. Let the reader discover the best (or worse) part of the book and don’t give away too much information.
#3: Identify the format. Be sure to include the title, author, and the general theme of the cookbook. Comment on the quality of the photos.
#4: Summarize your impression of the recipes and cooking style of the author. Set a rating system.
Writing a cookbook review seems like hard work. I’m going put my keyboard and taste buds to the grindstone. And hopefully, I can get someone else to spend his or her next-to-last-dollar on Paula Deen.