Does anyone else think the past two months have flown by? They have on my end. Life offline was especially busy in mid / late September, so all I remember of August now was that it was quiet and calm. (Unless I’m missing something! *lol*) This also means that while I’ve found time to write blog posts lately, it’s been a challenge to stay on top of comments or friends’ blogs. Hopefully this is only temporary, and I apologize for any delays in responding or returning the favor.
So, what are some of the fun events and “little things” that have brought me joy recently? I’ll share them below the jump. And as always, I love hearing what you’ve been up to and what’s been making you happy as well. So feel free to share that in your comments. 🙂
I’m having a hard time finding the right word to describe this past spring. “Rollercoaster” would be… appropriate, but exaggerated? April was turbulent in terms of stress and emotions, and the beginning of May was busy mostly because of vacation. But for the most part, May and June were much calmer. And regardless of what was going on, I continued making progress on different creative projects… except for one.
Yeah. Unfortunately I lost some momentum (and confidence) with Draft #1 of my new manuscript. But I shouldn’t focus so much on the one hiccup, because the highlights (including a certain cookbook that is now out in the world!!) were fantastic. In fact, let’s kick off this post with…
(NOTE: Due to this week’s DIY MFA post, the weekly blog post will go live on Thursday, December 15th.)
Do you believe in destiny, or a higher power conspiring to help make things happen? Or are you convinced that our lives are what they are because of our choices? Sometimes it’s hard to tell whether fate or free will plays the greater role. This mystery, however, hasn’t prevented writers from exploring it through story.
Today I’m tackling “fate versus free will” for my Theme: A Story’s Soul column at DIY MFA. Using Paulo Coelho’s The Alchemist and Erin Morgenstern’s The Night Circus as examples, we’ll discover the common elements that both books use to examine this enigmatic theme and brainstorm ideas of how we can write our own stories on an age-old debate. (See the link after the jump.) Continue reading
Happy New Year, everyone! I hope you had a enjoyable and safe end to your 2015; and would like to wish you the best in health, love, and creativity for 2016.
Also, I know I keep thanking you, the readers, for helping to make this blog what it has become… But, honestly, YOU deserve so much of the credit. Thank you for commenting on each post, sharing your thoughts and ideas, and sharing the links on your own blogs and on social media. Most importantly, thank you for your enthusiasm, encouragement, and thoughtful feedback. You put a smile on my face every day I’m here. 🙂
I used last year’s Happy New Year post to sort of “wrap up” the 2014 highlights for the blog and for me personally, and to look ahead to 2015. Since I was happy with the final product, I’ll do the same again for this year’s:
I may be done with literary conferences for the year, but not with literary events in general. Two are on my radar for this fall, and I thought I’d spread the word in case anyone lives near or is planning to be in the Boston area soon. Plus, both events are free! So there’s no need to worry about the cost of admission. 🙂 Continue reading
I’ve been ITCHING to share this with you for the past few months. However, I wanted to wait until everything was in order before I said anything. Now, all the necessary reservations have been made, and I’m thrilled to tell you that I’ll be in New York City this July and August for the 2015 Writer’s Digest Conference!
Sponsored by one of the most renowned writing resources on the planet, the Writer’s Digest Conference is designed to offer a balanced education in both the craft of writing and the business of being a writer, all in an encouraging, inspiring environment. In addition to a schedule chock full of sessions that range in topic from promotion and author platforms to genre studies, there will also be book signings, keynote addresses, and exhibit tables. And for an additional fee, attendees can participate in the Pitch Slam, where writers can pitch their stories to preferred agents or editors in person and receive feedback.
I’ve said before that I want to visit the literary conference circuit whenever I can now that I’m taking my novel-writing more seriously. Writer’s Digest seems like the perfect opportunity to branch out to events outside of my local area (Greater Boston) without traveling too far. Plus, look at the schedule! It’s almost impossible to not fill your entire day with sessions because of how promising they sound. I’m especially looking forward to the Breaking In panel, where first-time novels will share their experiences; Hallie Ephron’s “Setting: More Than Creating a Sense of Place”; Rebecca McClanahan’s “Word Painting: The Fine Art of Writing Descriptively”: and N.K. Jemisin’s “Growing Your Iceberg: Crafting a Secondary World That Feels Ancient.” Yes, N.K. Jemisin the fantasy writer. I haven’t read her novels yet, but so many people have recommended them to me that I CANNOT pass up this session. 😀
The other reason why I’m attending is to root on my DIY MFA bosses Gabriela Pereira and Bess Cozby, who will be presenting at Writer’s Digest this year. Which reminds me: If you’re considering going to this year’s conference, DIY MFA is offering a special coupon code that will give you $25 dollars off the registration. Anyone who uses this code will also be invited to a special meet-up that Gabriela is planning. (And yes, I hope to be there, too!) Click here to access the coupon code.
Anyone else planning to attend this year’s Writer’s Digest Conference? If you’ve attended it in years past, what did you think of it? Let me know by commenting on this post. I’d love to meet up with you if you’re going!
It’s been over a year since I attended my last literary conference. Which is hard to believe, because I love those kinds of events. They’re such fantastic opportunities to learn about writing and the publishing industry, discover authors whose books you haven’t read before, and network with other writers, bloggers, etc. And earlier this year, I decided that if I truly want to take my writing career seriously, I should invest my time and money wisely in conferences and other events I’m able to attend.
So, I’m thrilled about finally going to Muse and the Marketplace this year! Coordinated by the non-for-profit writing organization Grub Street, this three-day conference in Boston, MA offers lectures, guided writing sessions, and discussion forums about writing, publishing, book promotion, and networking with agents, editors, and other writers. It also offers the Manuscript Mart (where agents or editors review the beginning of your manuscript), Shop Talk Lunch (where you dine and socialize with your choice of Muse presenters and attendees), keynote addresses, book signings, open mics, and much more.
Muse and the Marketplace 2015 (also known as #Muse15, which you can follow on Twitter) will be held on Friday, May 1st through Sunday, May 3rd. I’m only planning to attend on Friday – but I’m fidgeting with excitement for it!
By the way, did you notice that I said #Muse15 is my first conference of the year? There’s a second one that I’m planning to attend over the summer. More on that at a later date. 😉
Anyone else planning to attend the Friday events for Muse and the Marketplace? If you’ve attended it in years past, what did you think of it? Let me know by commenting on this post.
Attending local literary events has become one of my favorite ways of pursuing and nurturing my writing passion. I’ve gone to the Boston Book Festival every year since its inception in 2009, and also to the AWP Conference in Boston this past March. These have all been immensely enjoyable learning experiences that convince me to return the following year. So, for this reason, I finally made plans to go to the 2013 Massachusetts Poetry Festival. This year’s edition was held in Salem, Massachusetts from Friday, May 3 through Sunday, May 5. I was only able to go on Saturday, but what a nourishing – and gorgeous! – day it turned out to be. Continue reading
So I braved the wind and the rain on Saturday to go to the first annual Boston Book Festival. It was an all-day event held at and around Copley Square, with exhibits, lectures, readings, free food, and interactive events for people who write or enjoy poetry, fiction, and nonfiction. Oh, and there were plenty for kids to do, too.
So below is a report of my “field trip,” complete with photos. Pardon my photography – I’m not the best, but I try!