wendy {dot} blog

A Renaissance Soul blogging on traveling, books, work, miscellany, and enjoying life.

Writing

“Ever since I was a little kid, I’ve thought there was something noble and mysterious about writing, about the people who could do it well, who could create a little world as if they were little gods or sorcerers.” ~Anne Lamott

Anne nailed it, y’all. Nailed it like she crawled into my head and dragged out my thoughts that she turned into her words there. Here’s to the never-ending process of becoming a little god of our own fictional worlds – the hardships, the thrill, the self-doubt, and the magic.

An A-musing Muse

This might possibly be the best, most entertaining description of a writer’s muse ever. The time to try [something new] is when your muse kicks open your office door, stomps across the floor in her combat boots, blows the piece of her feather boa from where it was stuck to the corner of her mouth, grabs your head by the ears and bellows, “There is this girl who has been […]

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NaNoWriMo 2014 (Or: What am I, crazy?)

I must be crazy, but I’m doing this. What is NaNoWriMo, you may be asking? It’s a commitment—perhaps even a dare—to write at least a novel of at least 50,000 words in 30 days. Find out more here and sign up if you’re game to join me in my craziness. Although I’ve thought of doing NaNo in the past, I chickened out each time—always with good excuses, mind you. This […]

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Art and the Art of Noise

I came across an article in the October issue of Mental Floss (one of my fave magazines) about the role that ambient noise plays in fostering creativity. The article says this: According to a University of Chicago study, moderate noise helps creativity by slowing down the speed at which we process information. The lag keeps us from fixating, prompts abstract thinking, and even provides a healthy dose of mind wandering. […]

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Perversity of Spirit

Talent is the least important thing about a writer, compared to a love of books, which must be deep and abiding.

The only thing a writer really needs is perversity of spirit, the emotional equivalent of a cartoon character’s bouncy springiness, so that after being run over or blown up—or, in the case of the writer, rejected, then rejected some more—the writer is irrationally unfazed by even the most valid criticism and continues with the work of being a writer, magically unharmed.

~Rufi Thorpe on what it takes to be a writer (Poets & Writers, Sept/Oct 2014)

Entitlement

…entitlement is the enemy of artistic progress, which requires patience and gratitude, and above all, humility. You don’t grow as a writer by writing off other people’s efforts. You grow as a writer by respecting the process. This quote comes from “The Problem of Entitlement”, an article by Steve Almond, which was featured in the Sept/Oct issue of Poets & Writers magazine. Although entitlement and snark are close cousins, Almond […]

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Announcing Writing 201: Finding Your Story

Originally posted on The Daily Post:
I’m all for the scissors. I believe more in the scissors than I do in the pencil. — Truman Capote Last month, we hosted Writing 101: Building a Blogging Habit, a write-every-day course over twenty days. Writing 101 focused on building a daily habit, experimenting with different kinds of writing, and engaging with others in the Commons. A finished product — a published post — wasn’t necessarily…

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The beautiful part of writing is that you don’t have to get it right the first time, unlike, say, a brain surgeon. You can always do it better, find the exact word, the apt phrase, the leaping simile. ~ Robert Cormier

This goes well with a bit of advice I came across a few years ago about not seeking perfection in your writing. It went something along the lines of telling yourself that writing is a low-risk activity compared to surgery, rocket science, and other endeavors where life literally hangs in the balance.

Every now and again, it can be liberating to remind yourself that no one ever died because of a horrible piece of writing, no matter how bad it is. 😀

 

Florida Writers Association: Second Annual Nonfiction Mini-Conference June 28

Calling all writers of blogs, promotions, memoirs, biographies, autobiographies, recipe books, how-to’s, articles, speeches, corporate materials, and more. FWA’s second annual Nonfiction Mini-Conference June 28 is a great opportunity to network with other writers and learn the secrets of the nonfiction niche market. The conference will be held in Altamonte Springs (near Orlando). This is FWA’s seventh and last mini-conference for 2014. For more info or to register, visit FWA’s […]

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On Rejection and Acceptance

I wrote a short story some time back (as in almost 2 years ago) as part of an assignment for a writing class I was taking. I knew it needed some polish, but I felt like I spent too much time in it to be objective about it, so I set it aside for a while and worked on some other things. Fast forward a bit and eventually, I came […]

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