Category Archives: Noir

Writing Seminars in the Greater Washington, DC and Baltimore Areas


Writing & Publishing Events: Sign Up Now!
Fall 2013
Lauren Carr Schedule of Events
Courses, Workshops & Conferences to Fit Any Schedule

Dear Fay,

This is the greatest time to be a writer.
The good news: Technology has turned the publishing industry on it’s ear so that any  writer who is serious about being a published author can get their book  out into the hands of readers.
The bad news: Poorly written books that are sloppily published are leaving uninformed authors confused and down heartened where their books don’t sell, or worse, reviewers rip their beloved books apart.
There is more to writing a book and publishing it than typing it up and uploading files to an online publisher. It takes more to becoming a best-selling author than getting a feature in the local newspaper and setting up a table at the local bookstore.
Unfortunately, most writers don’t know how or where to go to get the information they need to become successful authors.
Now is your chance to be informed. Over the course of the next several weeks and through the fall, I will be appearing at numerous workshops and conferences on writing, publishing, or both. Some will be during the day, others in the evening, and even a few weekends. Cost vary as well.
So, if you are a budding writer, or even a published author who wants to learn how to succeed in today’s literary arena, check out this schedule and sign up today!
Sincerely,
Lauren Carr Best-Selling Author and Publisher

Creatures, Crime & Creativity Conference: Friday-Sunday, 9/13-15
Meet Acorn Books Authors Lauren Carr, Cindy McDonald, and Fay Moore at the C3!
The conference is scheduled for September 13, 14 and 15 of 2013 in the  Hunt Valley Inn in Baltimore. It will present three days of panels and  workshops of interest to both writers and fans.

Everyone who attends the C3 conference will receive an anthology, published by Acorn Books, which is exclusive only for conference attendees. This anthology is filled with stories written by attending authors, including Lauren Carr and Fay Moore, whose debut novel will be released in September. There is still time to register to meet authors of mystery, suspense, thrillers, paranormal, and other creatures!

From Writers to Published Authors Conference: Saturday, 10/5. 8:45 am-5:00 pm
First Annual Conference in Charles Town, WV

The From Writers to Published Authors Conference offers writers the opportunity to learn the ins and outs of writing and publishing directly from those who have gone before them. At this first annual event, authors and publishers will gather together to spend the day helping new writers to reach their goal of not only publishing their books, but doing it right.
Click here to view the list of authors, illustrators, and publishers attending.
Click here to view the panels scheduled for the day.
Visit Acorn Book Services Website for more information. Click Here to download brochure.
Date: Saturday, October 5, 2013
8:45 am-5:00 pm
Place: Oakland Church
  70 Oakland Terrace
  Charles Town, WV
Cost: $60 (early registration) $75 After Sep 23

10-Plus Most Common Mistakes Made By New Writers: 4-Week Course Starting Tues, 9/3
10 Plus Most Common MistakesJefferson County Adult & Community Education   Does your book suffer from Good-Parent Syndrome? Do you know what your crutch word is?  Lauren Carr will discuss all of these topics, and other writing errors that can negatively impact your book’s success, during her four-hour presentation entitled: 10+ Most Common Mistakes Made By New Writers (Grammar and Punctuation Are Not On the List).

Dates: Tuesdays, 9/3-9/24. 6:00-8:00 pm
Place: Charles Town Middle School
Cost: $35
Contact Judy Slusher, Facilitator, Adult & Community Education, Jefferson County Schools at 304-728-9237 to register or for more information.

Speaking Engagement: National Novel Writing Month: Mon., 9/16: 6:30 pm
National Novel Writing MonthWriting a Novel: You Can Do ItIn preparation for the 2013 National Novel Writing Month (November), Havre de Grace Library, in Havre de Grace, Maryland is offering 4 sessions to help writers get started. Lauren Carr is scheduled to appear at this first session to help new writers in this introduction, which will  offer tips, planning, and much more. Sign up for a single session or all four sessions scheduled. Visit the Havre de Grace Library website for more information.

Date: Monday, 9/16. 6:30 pm
Place: Havre de Grace Library, 120 N Union Ave  Havre de Grace, MD 21078. (410) 939-6700
Tuition $50 for Four Weeks. Pre-registration required.

Authors in Bathrobes:  How to be a Successful Author Without Getting Dressed: 4-Week Course Starting  Thurs, 10/10
Authors in Bathrobes Berkeley County Arts Council: Berkeley Art WorksEvery writer dreams of big book events in book stores with lines going out the door. Unfortunately, for 95% percent of published authors, this is not a reality. It is not uncommon to have a book event and have no one show up. Today’s technology has made it possible for authors to gain a following, and make money with very little overhead and without getting dressed.In this course, author and publisher Lauren Carr will discuss how writers can now walk through the doors that have opened to not only write and publish their own books, but how to do it successfully-without getting dressed!

Dates: Thursdays, 10/10-10/31. 9:30-11:30 am
Place: Berkeley Art Works, 116 North Queen Street, Martinsburg, WV – 304-620-7277 web: artworks.berkeleyartswv.org email berkeleyartswv@gmail.com
Tuition $50 for Four Weeks. Pre-registration required.

Authors in Bathrobes:  How to be a Successful Author Without Getting Dressed Writing  & Publishing Workshop: Sat. 11/2: 9:30 am-4:30 pm: FREE
Authors in Bathrobes Washington County Free Library: Central Location
9:30 am-12:30 am: Book Writing: 10+ Most Common Mistakes Made By New Writers

 Does your book suffer from Good-Parent Syndrome? Do you know what your crutch word is?  Lauren will discuss all of these topics, and other writing errors that can negatively impact your book’s success, during her four-hour presentation entitled: 10+ Most Common Mistakes Made By New Writers (Grammar and Punctuation Are Not On the List).

1:30 pm-4:30 am: Book Publishing: Authors in Bathrobes: How to Be a Successful Author Without Getting Dressed

Every writer dreams of big book events in book stores with lines going out the door. Unfortunately, for 95% percent of published authors, this is not a reality. It is not uncommon to have a book event and have no one show up. Today’s technology has made it possible for authors to gain a following, and make money with very little overhead and without getting dressed.

In these two presentations, author and publisher Lauren Carr will discuss how writers can now walk through the doors that have opened to not only write and publish their own books, but how to do it successfully-without getting dressed!

Date: Saturday, 11/2. 9:30 am-4:30 pm
Place: Washington County Free Library, Central Location 100 South Potomac Street, Hagerstown  MD 21740 Phone: 301.739.3250 For more information about this and other Washington County Free Library events, Phone: 301.739.3250 or email Pat Wishard at pwishard@washcolibrary.org. Visit http://www.washcolibrary.org/index.asp for more information.

Acorn Book Services                 415 Moonridge Lane
Harpers Ferry, West Virginia  25425
If you’re a budding writer, or even published author who wants to learn more about being successful in today’s publishing arena, then come out out. Take note of the deadlines and which courses you need to register for.
I look forward to seeing your there!
FOR MORE INFORMATION ON ANY OF THESE EVENTS, CONTACT acorn.book.services@comcast.net

First, an Apology, Then an Announcement


Hi, sweet people. I owe you an apology. During August, I have been swamped and inattentive to you, to your comments, and more. Sadly, I remain under water with obligations and medical care until sometime in October. I want you to understand why I am behaving badly and not getting back to you when you write. Very soon, I promise to make it up to you and get back on top of things again.

I want to announce that I have started a Facebook page. Oh, heart, don’t fail me now. I swore I would never go on Facebook or any other similar strictly social network. Well, it seems that Facebook has evolved into more and so have I.

Since I am only, I don’t know, a millennium behind everyone else on the planet and haven’t a clue what I am doing, please be patient with me as the Facebook page evolves.

Finally I want to remind everyone who is interested in the FROM WRITERS TO PUBLISHED AUTHORS CONFERENCE on October 5, to get your registration in. The price of $60 for 6 sessions will rise to $75 in September. Why pay a penalty for procrastination? Be proactive and save $$$. Remember, lunch is included in the admission.

Click here to register:

Email acornbookservices@gmail.com or phone 304-285-8205 for more information.

You may read about the conference at http://acornbookservices.com/Writer_to_Published_Author.html

or see the brochure about the conference below.

WRITERS TO PUBLISHED AUTHORS BROCHURE USE THIS

Future or Fiction


The story opens. A man sits in a lavishly furnished home office.

He is obsessing again. Outside his window, Fall is throwing dying leaves to the ground. Dust to dust. The scene is an in-his-face reminder of his own mortality, a mortality he will shed tomorrow in exchange for immortality. Tomorrow he will join the others. He will no longer be human. He will become nonbiological.

If futurist Ray Kursweil is correct, the man’s choice, described above, is our future. Lest you think becoming Borg is fiction limited to Star Trek episodes, know this. There are those who believe that this morphing of man into machine is the factual future. Influential people support Kursweil’s vision.

Ray Kuzweil is the best person I know at predicting the future of artificial intelligence. His intriguing new book envisions a future in which information technologies have advanced so far and fast that they enable humanity to transcend its biological limitations—transforming our lives in ways we can’t yet imagine.”

–Bill Gates

Does this prompt your inner storyteller? If a choice such as this were a reality, what would the future look like? What would your family look like? Your relationships? Your work? Your home and world? Who would have this option open to him or her?

Would the earth’s environment have to change to accommodate your new nonbiological form? Is the moist air corrosive and, therefore threatening, to you? Which is more vital to your survival: water or oil? Would a population of biological entities have to be maintained? If so, for what purpose?

Happy imagining.

 

Who Stole Your Domain Name?


My sister sent me a heartbreaking story of foreign intrigue and corporate theft. No, it wasn’t a fictional thriller. It was fact. Someone stole a popular, profitable domain name right out from under the owner’s nose. Not only did the thief steal one domain from the hapless owner, the burglar stole four!

Do you own your own domain name (your URL for your web site)? If so, perhaps you should read this:

http://www.anglotopia.net/site-news/site-news-how-anglotopias-domains-were-stolen-and-how-we-got-them-back-a-strange-tale-of-the-modern-internet/?utm_source=Anglotopia.net+Weekly+Newsletter&utm_campaign=e73bcfeda3-Anglotopia_Donations4_4_2013&utm_medium=email

Finding Unique Murder Weapons


Although it is twisted, I like killing people–in stories that is. Not in real life! So, as a killer on paper, I am always looking for the next best murder weapon. This week I found one: Visine. Yes, the eye wash–the one that “gets the red out” of your eyes. Who knew?

According to webzine The Inquisitr:

Tetrahydrozoline, an ingredient found in Visine and other eye drops, can cause quite a few problems if it is ingested. Included in  the symptoms are vomiting, blurred vision, rapid heartbeat, and difficulty  breathing. The chemical can also cause tremors and seizures.

It’s a readily available weapon. It’s probably in my victim’s medicine cabinet. If not, my murderer can find it on any superstore shelf with the other health products.  There’s an irony in the product placement–health products–isn’t there? You can bet you’ll see Visine make an appearance in a future story of mine.

Watch for it (pun fully intended).

Vocabulary for Science Fiction or Fantasy Novels


In science fiction and fantasy, there is normally a cornerstone culture, central to the story, that is malevolent. It is oppressive of its citizenry, setting the stage for the rise of a hero, an avenger of the people.

There are two words to describe such a culture:

  • cacotopia
  • dystopia

Both words define a world that is the opposite of Utopia, or paradise: a world of deprivation, horror and exploitation. Usually the people are enslaved, if not physically, then through economics or some psychological method. Or earth changes, like  global coastal events caused by meteor strikes or the aftermath of world wars, have disrupted normal society and destroyed convenience systems, such as the electrical grid or banking. Whatever the cause, the new world order is a system that grinds those under its bonds to grist.

Now that your imagination is twisting, turning, leaping and bounding with images, get writing!

Just Kill ‘Em


A friend of mine writes murder mysteries. She has found a positive way to channel negative energy connected to a particular person: she turns the person she is angry with into a character in a book. Then she kills them. End of story. End of her frustration.

I found that tactic hilarious. I didn’t think it would work for me. Then, I had a fight.

After I had strong words with a person, I felt badly. My head ached, and I was sick to my stomach. I realized I needed to change my response to this negative stimulation. I pulled out my laptop and began working on a story as a way to get my mind off things. The adrenaline increase from the argument was rerouted to my creative brain. Before I knew it, that re-channeled energy helped me produce 1,000 new written words.

I liked the outcome of that choice. My body appreciated my turning away from the gut-churning negative emotions to the zen-inducing creative thoughts. I am certain my blood pressure dropped several points while writing.

So there you have it. Redirect your anger or angst. Get writing. Lower your blood pressure. And, if need be, kill the bugger!

Ghost Stories


Ghost stories have been popular as long as stories have been told. In today’s pop culture, ghost stories sell. Readers of haunted tales are DEVOTED!

Want to try your hand at a spooky mystery?

I’ll give you a hand by providing a list of ghost names–yes, there is a list and it contains male, female and unisex (???) names and meanings.

http://www.20000-names.com/ghost_names_spirit_names.htm