Tag Archives: using

Pinterest for Writers… and Readers.. and Bloggers…


Pinterest for Writers… and Readers.. and Bloggers….

You gotta take a look at this post if you have even remotely considered how Pinterest could be helpful to you. I adore the author’s suggestions for writers.

Thank you, Jennifer K Blog.

A Series of Thoughts on the Power of the Mind, Part 2


Two psychological laws from a list in Robert Assagioli’s book The Act of Will are:

  • Needs, urges, drives and desires tend to arouse corresponding images, ideas and emotions.
  • Urges, drives, desires and emotions tend to and demand to be expressed.

It’s the demanding to be expressed that struck me. As an author, how do I use that law to good advantage? Then it struck me.

How often have you experienced writer’s block? The phenomenon is a blocking–a failing to express, if you will–of ideas to continue the telling of a story. It is getting so far in your tale, then hitting a wall. Nothing more comes to mind.

The two psychological laws above suggest a solution to writer’s block. However, you, as writer, will have to become an actor. How so?

The next time you are stymied on where to go with your storyline, try this. Stand up and act out the role of each character, one individual at a time, in their actions, feelings, needs, urges (especially urges), and desires as you have written about them up to now. Become the person (obviously, you want to do this in privacy to keep your friends or family from locking you up). Get inside the person and feel the motivation. What are they thinking? Feeling? Smelling, hearing, tasting? Use their body language: stance, posture, expressions, gestures, ticks. Do this for each person in the story line. Be uninhibited. Get into it.

If you truly become the character and incorporate the ideals, zeal, passion of the persona in your role play, then, according to the psychological laws, the urges, drives, desires and emotions of the personage will demand to be expressed. A pathway will open down which to take the story. The character will lead YOU by the hand. Just follow–and write it down!

Stop Thieves from Stealing Your Content


Stop! Thief!

A reader sent me an e-mail with a link to a wonderful blog post with lots of information about stopping thieves from stealing your content.

Before I go any further, let me clarify something. If a blogger uses a selection — not wholesale copying of the entire work — from another blog AND attributes ownership to the rightful author AND is using the selection for educational purposes, it falls under Fair Use.  That’s the way I roll here — I tell you where the information comes from and tell you how it may help you as an author.

That said,  blogger “Between Naps on the Porch” (BNP) talks about nefarious sorts lifting multiple posts from BNP, stealing text and photos without any attribution, and re-blogging the entire content on a commercial site owned by the thief. BNP slowed the theft using several techniques:

  • watermarking original photographs
  • using plug-ins to attach messages that travel with content
  • asking readers to report content theft
  • including back-links to previous posts
  • checking the site statistics
  • hiring a programmer to write code to make it hard to steal things

and more. Go to the following BNP linked site to learn more about how to stop content thieves from stealing from you. It’s a long, detailed read that is worth your time.

http://betweennapsontheporch.net/stop-scrapers-from-stealing-your-content/

Rampage Writing–Taking a Stand for Your Opinion


Warning–Adult language

The lesson today came about after reading Damantigui’s Blog. He is a world traveler–both business and pleasure. He is seasoned in life, culture, and observation. When one is seasoned, one is unafraid to share criticism. Damantigui doesn’t suffer fools lightly.

In a moment, I am posting an excerpt from a recent rampage on Damantigui’s Blog.

First, let’s discuss where rampage writing is useful: on the Op Ed page of the newspaper (dwindling market?), in political speech writing (seasonal work and hard to get?), in dialogue (movie and television scripts, books, plays–better) and, finally, on the soapbox (think of the public square of today: the blog or jokes for comedians. Ahhh, now we’re getting somewhere).

Rampage writing is persuasion on steroids. It’s purpose is to modify the views of the reader by hyperbole, education and/or intimidation. Humor helps. When slapping someone, it helps if you can get them laughing about it.

Enter Damantigui, aided by George Carlin.

The following example of rampaging is extracted from his November 8 post titled “Truth Teller.” In it, he(via George Carlin) challenges the necessity of the Save the Earth movement, among others.

We’re going away. Pack your shit, folks. We’re going away. And we won’t leave much of a trace, either. Thank God for that. Maybe a little styrofoam. Maybe. A little styrofoam. The planet will be here and we’ll be long gone. Just another failed mutation. Just another closed-end biological mistake. An evolutionary cul-de-sac. The planet will shake us off like a bad case of fleas. A surface nuisance.
You wanna know how the planet is doing? Ask those people at Pompeii, who are frozen into position from volcanic ash, “How the planet’s doing?”  You wanna know if the planet’s all right, ask those people in Mexico City or Armenia or a hundred other places buried under thousands of tons of earthquake rubble, if they feel like a threat to the planet this week. Or how about those people in Kilowaia, Hawaii, who built their homes right next to an active volcano, and then wonder why they have lava in the living room.
The planet will be here for a long, long —LONG— time after we’re gone, and it will heal itself; it will cleanse itself, because that’s what it does. It’s a self-correcting system. The air and the water will recover; the earth will be renewed; and, if it’s true that plastic is not degradable, well, the planet will simply incorporate plastic into a new paradigm: the Earth plus plastic!  The Earth doesn’t share our prejudice towards plastic. Plastic came out of the Earth. The Earth probably sees plastic as just another one of its children.
Could be the only reason the Earth allowed us to be spawned from it in the first place. It wanted plastic for itself. Didn’t know how to make it. Needed us. Could be the answer to our age-old philosophical question, “Why are we here?”  “Plastic! Assholes.”

http://damantigui.wordpress.com/2012/11/08/truth-teller-en/

More Cover Design AND Video Marketing Ideas for Your Book


Today I found the blog of “Ink Slinger in Inner Space” Karen Gadient. She is both author and  graphic designer. A single post on her blog stimulated this entry.  Karen designed the cover jacket for a recently released science fiction book.

Stimulating Thought Number One: Here’s another source for an illustrator for either cover design or for the innards of a picture book. Mark this post for future reference. Karen has a portfolio tab on her blog. I loved the quality and detail of her art. The art on the book cover shows another dimension to her style–her diversity–since the cover is completely different from the illustrations in her portfolio.

Link: http://karengadient.com/2012/11/02/debris-dreams-the-kickstarter-book-trailer/

Stimulating Thought Number Two: Karen provides a link to the young author’s promotional video trailer for his book. What?! Promotional video??? I thought video trailers were solely for hyping movies or rock albums. What do I know? Not much, evidently. Now young authors are using YouTube and such to distribute promotional videos touting their books. Brilliant. Free Advertising. And if you are clever or creative enough, you sell books!

Stimulating Thought Number Three: An author can ask for money for marketing from the public. Karen introduced me to Kickstarter, a web site devoted to connecting artists of all sorts with persons interested in funding the arts. Indie authors needn’t starve to promote a quality project. But I’ll write more about Kickstarter in a future post.

Wow, Karen! All those great ideas from a single post! Thank you!

Elements of Building Suspense


YouTube channel EmpoweringWriters has several videos instructing children in the basic elements of writing. Below is an example of the videos. The one below is less than ten minutes long. It’s about building suspense. (If you home school, this YouTube channel may give you ideas for lesson plans on writing.)

Summary: Use language to cue the reader that something is going to happen. The teacher calls the device “red flag words.”

Give It to Your Subconscious Mind


A reader posed a problem she is struggling with. She outlined a new story she is writing, but she is unhappy with its beginning. She questions whether it gets to the action quickly enough to hook her reader.

Without even thinking, I said to her, “Give it to your subconscious mind to solve the problem.”

Weird, you may think. However, I have found that when I am stuck, if I leave the problem alone and allow my subconscious mind to work on it, my mind will eventually present me with a solution that works well. It often is an approach I wouldn’t normally consider, but it ties together all the loose ends with a nice flourish.

Wouldn’t we save ourselves a lot of angst if we simply said to our brains, “Chew on this and get back to me with a solution.” Then we could turn our energies to something positive and constructive, rather than exhaust ourselves by fretting.

The sole requirement to make this plan work is patience. If you have patience, fine. You have no problem. If you are like me — short on patience — using the technique will help you develop some.