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Important April Dates to Celebrate Dance 1

Important April Dates to Celebrate Dance

National Dance Week – April 24-May 3 The dance-related organization became a non-profit institution in 2011. It’s purpose: introduce people to the enjoyment and benefits of dance through community awareness and dance in school. I also encourages continuing education for professionals. International (World) Dance Day – April 29 This day of celebrating dance began in 1982 as an initiative of UNESCO. The purpose: attract people to the world of dance by suggesting they attend performances, classes and lectures  and read magazine and news articles on dance. How can I get involved from near my home? 1. Attend a ballet performance...

Word Play Challenge 1

Word Play Challenge

I was never a good reader as a child, but I’ve always loved words: their sounds and the way their letter combinations can jump around to make different words. I always had trouble with transposing those common primary devils saw-was and help-play. As a new teacher, I learned I was mildly dyslexic. I also learned that confusion included numbers as well. If you ask me to read a long string of numbers I might start anywhere telling you the numbers (of course they’d be out of order) and then writing them down in correct sequence. Strange huh? I’d have never...

One-Sentence Challenge 1

One-Sentence Challenge

Here’s a fun exercise to stretch your mind and use up brain cells. Try writing one l-o-n-g sentence that creates an image or shares a cohesive idea.   One-Sentence Challenge Yesterday I sat waiting for the doorbell to ring which meant my books arrived and I’d hold the early copies in my hands and then rush to the phone to call Linda and share the news that I’d finally completed 84 Ribbons, book one in my trilogy/ writing cycle which started as an overnight idea when I couldn’t sleep so I sat in my living room and let Marta’s story...

Letter Writing Follow-up 1

Letter Writing Follow-up

In January I wrote about  the lost art of letter writing. Since then I’ve received FIVE unexpected letters. Four arrived together as compact 4×6 note cards, one as a full, typed page. All represent the first letters I’d received in a long time (especially since only a handful of friends write holiday letters anymore.). Let me share the essence of their content. My “biggest fan” letter arrived from Canada via Arizona. A young dancer wrote to me telling me how much she enjoyed 84 Ribbons and that she identified with Marta, the main character in the book. Talk about being...

Carol: A Sketchy Character 1

Carol: A Sketchy Character

Character sketches are fun and part of an author’s ‘research’. They may be based on people we know, or they may be total fabrications. Sometimes, we take the best or worst traits of people we know and use them to jump-start our thinking. Then there is CAROL: the character many of you love to hate. Where did she come from and why? CAROL is a natural antagonist, just like some people we know. Life gave her lemons and she decided to squeeze the sourness onto everything and everyone she knows or comes into contact with during Marta’s story in 84...

What’s in a Name? 1

What’s in a Name?

Lots! Character names create images. Not many villains will be named Sissy. Few presidential candidates will use their nicknames, especially if they are Rusty, Dude, Babe or such. The head of the company best not be named Little Man or baby Jane. So how do writers select character names? I use the names that come to me as I develop the character. Often, I choose name that I do not associate with friends, not wanting them to feel badly if their namesake gets into a pickle or does something they’d never do. When I use a common name, it usually...

Fiction Books with Great Descriptions 2

Fiction Books with Great Descriptions

I’m a sucker for a great description. I love the visuals they create for me as well as the way they bring our other senses into play: sound, touch, smell and taste. Check out these novel excerpts. They inspire me when I write my stories. Let me know if you agree. The Invention of Wings by Sue Monk Kidd It was the time of year when migrating crows wheeled across the sky, thunderous flocks that moved like a single veil. (kindle location:  1910 of 5663) The Secret River by Kate Grenville Morning and evening the Government chain gangs clanked and...

The Fading Art of Letter Writing 2

The Fading Art of Letter Writing

How many letters do you receive a year? One? Five? Ten?  Do you remember that people used to sit down and write letters to each other? My favorite were love letters and Christmas letters. Both warmed my heart and made me feel special;. Just the finding of them in my mailbox gave me a happy feeling, much more than an email or a text message. Ah, could be my old school thinking rearing its head again, but a handwritten letter was special. The person sat down, selected the paper they wanted you to read from and wrote, usually in longhand....

Projects 2

Projects

I’ve come to realize that I  always need at least one writing project and one personal project in my life. The writing keeps my mind active. The personal project helps me stay awake during evenings when I’m tired but I don’t want to create a vicious cycle of going to bed early and getting up at 1 AM, etc. If you’ve done that, you know how insidious it can be! This past year my writing projects have been book 2 in Marta’s stories, When the Music Stops, and completing my Education America workbook. Now I’m moving on to book 3,...

Resolutions for 2015 2

Resolutions for 2015

Be it resolved, I will strive to: 1. Write honestly to entertain my readers as well as myself. 2. Read lots of good and great authors to hone my craft. (Ok, maybe a few just for fun books as well!) 3. Share blog ideas that interest me in hopes it will interest my readers. 4. Take critiques and criticism as they are intended: to improve my writing. 5. Remember to take time for visiting with and sharing cups of teas with my friends. 6. Review books I read so those authors receive sought-after feedback. 7. Volunteer in classrooms. 8. Never give up...