Fun Writing Tools 0

Fun Writing Tools

I love to window shop for writing tools, booklets, folders, pens, etc. This is the best time of year since the major stores have big back-to-school sales that will be ending soon. Even if you don’t have students who need materials, I suggest you think of these ‘new’ tools as a way to encourage your entire family to write. Plan ahead. Use the sales to buy birthday or holidays writing tools now and tuck them away for later. Here are a few of the ‘new’ colorful items I’ve seen for 2018. * folders with current movie scenes as covers *...

Blackout Poetry – A Creative Look at a Written Page 0

Blackout Poetry – A Creative Look at a Written Page

All poetry is NOT created equal. Blackout poetry is a modern take on free verse. It requires you to find a newspaper article to enlarge or a page from a printed book that you slice free to use its words in a new way. Below are basic directions and two samples. Look for motivation on Pinterest, then dive in. It’s a challenge as well as a fun activity. Instructions for Blackout Poetry** Scan article or page for anchor words – words that jump out at you or words you know you would like to use in your poem Underline the...

The Great American Read 1

The Great American Read

I hope you are participating in the PBS balloting for America’s favorite books. It’s free! They have assembled 100 popular books from across the world of literature for you to think about and vote for your favorites. In Mid-October they will announce the book with the single most votes. The range of books is immense: Pilgrim’s Progress to 50 Shades of Gray; from Charlotte’s Web to Catch 22. You are encouraged to vote for as many books as you wish every day until the event ends. I’ve followed it since a PBS program introduced each book in June. That program...

Quotes Worth a Look 0

Quotes Worth a Look

When I read, I often find author’s have exquisite sentences. I save them in a special notebook. Here are a few I’ve sincerely appreciated. She maneuvered through the cranky traffic…tempers caught fire as easily as backyards. Kristin Hannah in Magic Hour Perhaps there is a secret homing instinct in books that brings them to their perfect readers. The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Society  bby Mary Ann Shaffer & Anne Barrows As they crossed the street, the moon, at half-phase, spread creamy light over the world, trannsforming the sidewalk to pale ribbons and putting thick shadows beneath the trees… LaVyrle...

Unpublished Snippets from 84 Ribbons – The Pouch of Stones 0

Unpublished Snippets from 84 Ribbons – The Pouch of Stones

When I cleaned out my files, I found several unused story ideas from 84 Ribbons, book one in my ballet trilogy. Here’s one more offering.  The Pouch of Stones Walks by the bay at the end of our long street were always a chance for my dad and me to connect. We’d talk about school, my dancing, his day, our up-coming vacation plans or whatever a young child and her dad had to share. But that ended abruptly when my dad died suddenly from a fall where he worked in the shipyard. After that, the bay became a gray place...

Writing Activities with Kids 1

Writing Activities with Kids

Keep writing activities in front of the kids in your lives to reinforce the skills over the summer break just the same as you do with reading and math. These three skills cross subject matter regardless of the grade they are stepping into in the fall. Here are a few fun, imaginative ideas to pout into your bag of tricks. Design a cereal box complete with cover art, list of ingredients, a game or activity section and a recipe that includes the invented cereal. Provide a journal (any size that will interest ‘your student’). Add a fancy pen and send...

It’s All in Your (My) Head 0

It’s All in Your (My) Head

Each writer is born with a repertory company in his head.   Gore Vidal That feels true to me.  My stories build up in my mind, crowding out everyday thoughts. I think of the mass of characters I’ve invented as real beings. They must be real; they have names, personalities, quirks, and boyfriends as well as moments of joy and disappointment. I talk with friends, including my imaginary characters and come close to sending them birthday cards each year. Then I remember they don’t age; they are perpetually the age I leave them when my books end. Sometimes I wonder what...

Unpublished Snippets from 84 Ribbons -Spam and An Empty Garage 1

Unpublished Snippets from 84 Ribbons -Spam and An Empty Garage

When I cleaned out my files, I found several unused story ideas from 84 Ribbons, book one in my ballet trilogy. Here’s one of them. More to follow this month. Spam and An Empty Garage One of the greatest opportunities in my life came when I was four. I learned to dance. My family didn’t have money for extras, but they found a way to scrape enough together for me to take dance lessons. I think those savings came in the shape of canned Spam which we ate once or twice a week. I hated the clear gooey fat that...

June’s Random Drawing 2

June’s Random Drawing

Congratulations to Nicki Chen, the winner of my random drawing among people who wrote reviews for Tasman-An Innocent Convict’s Struggle for Freedom. Nicki is a PNW historical fiction writer, the author of Tiger Tail Soup. She’s a board member of EPIC Group Writers, an organization that supports writers and authors, participates in a writing group, and is an accomplished visual artist. Thanks, Nicki, for taking the time to write a review of Tasman. I appreciate your kind words. And, as they say, “the VISA card is in the mail.”   Looking ahead: Win a $20 VISA card. Write a review...

Social Media Adventures 0

Social Media Adventures

Remember Win a $20 VISA card. Write a review of Tasman- An Innocent Convict’s Struggle for Freedom. Post it on Amazon, Goodreads, and Facebook and be entered for a random drawing held quarterly in 2018 with the next drawing NEXT week. Details on the door hangers and on www.tasman/