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IWSG & Creativity

  Posted by Jemi , 06 February 2019 · 41 views

The Insecure Writer's Support Group is the brainchild of Alex J. Cavanaugh. He, his clones, minions, friends, and fellow authors make it an amazing event every month.




Purpose: To share and encourage. Writers can express doubts and concerns without fear of appearing foolish or weak. Those who have been through the fire can offer assistance and guidance. It’s a safe haven for insecure writers of all kinds!

And we’re revving up IWSG Day to make it more fun and interactive! Every month, we'll announce a question that members can answer in their IWSG Day post. These questions may prompt you to share advice, insight, a personal experience or story. Include your answer to the question in your IWSG post or let it inspire your post if you are struggling with something to say.

*****
OPTIONAL IWSG Day Question: Besides writing, what other creative outlets do you have?

Music has always been a huge part of my life and I've recently returned to playing the piano (when we inherited a piano after the death of a family member). I hadn't played since I was a young teen and it took a while to get back into the groove. I'll never play without a few stumbles here and there, but it's bringing me lots of joy!

I also doodle around with cartoons. Never was very good with realistic sketching, but I do enjoy cartooning.

Baking and cooking can also be creative. Most of the time, things turn out very well, but the other times keep things interesting! 😀

How about you? Any musicians, artists, crafters, and other creative types out there?

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Angela, Becca & The Emotion Thesaurus 2nd Edition!

  Posted by Jemi , 21 January 2019 · 77 views

Have you ever held onto a secret you've been dying to share, and then finally...you can?

For the last few weeks I've been helping Angela and Becca at Writers Helping Writers keep a BIG secret...what the next book in their thesaurus series will be.

It might seem strange to not tell one's readers what book you're planning to release...unless you happen to write books on Show, Don't Tell like Angela and Becca do! They couldn't resist the opportunity to show, not tell, by waiting for the cover reveal. They even created a *REDACTED* cover for it, which you might have seen floating around.

We're revealing the cover at long last!

*drum roll*

                                         

The next book in the descriptive thesaurus series is 

It's been 7 years since the original Emotion Thesaurus hit the shelves. Many writers have credited this unusual book with transforming their writing. This guide is packed with helpful lists of body language, thoughts, and visceral sensations for 75 different emotions, which makes it easier for writers to convey what characters feel.

Since 2012, many have asked the authors if they would add more emotions, so that's what Angela & Becca have done. This new edition has added 55 more emotions, bringing the total to 130.

There are other new additions to the book and in fact, it's almost doubled in size! I recommend checking out the full list of emotions (and some sample entries) HERE.

And more good news: this book is available for preorder!

You can find it on AmazonKoboApple Books (iTunes), and Indiebound.

One last thing: go grab some free education!

Angela & Becca are giving away a free webinar recording of one of their popular workshops on Emotion, so head over if this is an area of struggle for you. It might really help!





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IWSG & Questions, Questions, Questions!

  Posted by Jemi , 02 January 2019 · 92 views

The Insecure Writer's Support Group is the brainchild of Alex J. Cavanaugh. He, his clones, minions, friends, and fellow authors make it an amazing event every month.




Purpose: To share and encourage. Writers can express doubts and concerns without fear of appearing foolish or weak. Those who have been through the fire can offer assistance and guidance. It’s a safe haven for insecure writers of all kinds!

And we’re revving up IWSG Day to make it more fun and interactive! Every month, we'll announce a question that members can answer in their IWSG Day post. These questions may prompt you to share advice, insight, a personal experience or story. Include your answer to the question in your IWSG post or let it inspire your post if you are struggling with something to say.

***
January 2 question - What are your favorite and least favorite questions people ask you about your writing?

This one is a bit tricky as I haven't told a lot of people in my Real Life that I write.
Being a romance writer and a teacher is a bit of a tricky combination so I've kept those parts of my life separate.

I do have a few Real Life Buddies who know. They tend to be great with their questions and mostly just ask, "How's your writing going?"

It's a good question, but a difficult one to explain to those who don't write. I tend to say I'm making progress, but am not quite ready to put my work out there. Yet.

My least favourite question is actually ANY question about my writing. Because I talk about it so rarely, I don't have answers ready. I'm not prepared and I tend to stumble and stammer. As I get closer to publishing my work, I know I'll have to practice!

How about you? How do you handle those tough questions thrown your way?

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For 2019

  Posted by Jemi , 31 December 2018 · 122 views

We face 2019
with heavy hearts
from a devastating loss 
of a loved one
in the final days of 2018

a year that took
3 from our little family

a year full of
sadness and horrors
in the wide world
beyond our little corner

but a year
also full of
love
hope
family
success
joy
happiness
and those small
moments that make
life
so very worthwhile

Let 2019
be filled with those
magical
moments of good
moments of quiet joy
and silly fun

Let 2019 be the year
you find wonders
and simple pleasures
and possibilities

For that's where you make
magic


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WEP Challenge - By Candlelight

  Posted by Jemi , 10 December 2018 · 115 views

Dylan wiped his hands on his new jeans. Maybe he should change into more comfortable ones. Or dress slacks. A tie. He should wear a tie.
No. Too stuffy and he’d never be able to swallow. Or breathe.
Okay. No tie. Stick with the jeans.
Deep breath. If he couldn’t get it together, he’d sweat right through the shirt he'd chosen.
Calm.
His sister was all about yoga and meditation. She’d know how to set the stage and not panic. She’d know how he should dress too. But if he called her for advice, he’d never hear the end of it.
He was doing this solo.
And he was doing it right.
The timer on his cell beeped. Ten minutes. Only ten minutes. Screw calm, he had things to do.
A peek in the oven showed the lasagna bubbling away. Another few minutes and he’d pull it out to rest. Salad was prepped and ready to toss. Garlic bread set to go in as the pasta came out.
He’d set the dining nook and hidden the little box behind the plants on the ledge so he could pull it out at the right time.
At the thought, another wave of sweat rolled down his forehead. He used a tea towel to wipe it away then looked in horror at it. He hadn’t done laundry. Were there any clean ones left?
With a sigh, Dylan swiped the ruined cloth over his neck and wished it wouldn’t be totally disgusting to use it on his arm pits as well.
He’d burned three of his ten minutes. Dylan grabbed the barbecue lighter from the drawer and headed back to the dining nook. It took three tries but he got it working and he slowly walked around the room, lighting the candles he’d clustered. Apparently the effect was better when candles were set in odd numbers, so he had groups of three and five. Seven had looked more like a pyre than a romantic setting, so he’d scrapped that.
The buzzer nearly had him jumping out of his skin. With a sigh at his nerves, Dylan tossed the tea towel and the lighter, then moved to the door to press the button. “H-Hello.” He thunked his head against the wall over the stammer. He couldn’t be lame. Not tonight.
“It’s me.”
Dylan nodded, then groaned and pressed the buzzer. “Come on up.”
“See you in a minute.” The smile reached through the speaker, bringing one of his own. Everything about that voice soothed him right down to his soul.
Dylan unlocked the apartment door. He started back to the kitchen then decided he’d rather meet the elevator than check on the pasta one more time. He walked down the hall and leaned back against the wall to wait. After a moment, he shoved off, not wanting to look too casual. He straightened, then loosened his knees. Not uptight either. Hands in pockets. Yeah. That would work.
He was driving himself way past crazy.
The elevator dinged and in only an eternity the doors swooshed open. “Hey you.”
“Hey yourself, handsome.”
The kiss soothed any remaining nerves. This was right. All the way right.
“Is something burning?”
Dylan whipped around to see smoke snaking out of his apartment just as a smoke alarm split the night.
They raced to the door but the smoke was thicker and a peek showed flames from where he’d tossed the tea towel too close to one group of candles. Talk about a pyre. The sprinkler system kicked on but the flames didn’t seem to care.
When he started into the room, Marc tapped his arm. “Be careful. I’ll call 911.”
Dylan grabbed the fire extinguisher from under the sink and aimed it at the flames. It didn’t take long to kill the fire, but the mess was unbelievable. His shoulders sagged and he swore. “Tonight was supposed to be… I planned everything… Damn it, I was going to propose!” Well, that wasn’t the romantic speech he’d planned.
Marc’s eyes widened as he finished the call and shoved his phone in his pocket then joined Dylan while neighbours gathered in the hallway.
A small smile kicked up the corner of Marc’s mouth. Without breaking eye contact, he reached into his jacket pocket and pulled out a small box. “In a few decades, it’ll make a fabulous story to tell the grandkids.”

***
This story is part of the WEP challenge. Hope you'll check out the rest of the entries for the twin themes of Ribbons & Candles! There's still time to sign up as entries don't close until December 20th!

WEP CHALLENGE FOR DECEMBER - RIBBONS AND CANDLES





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IWSG & My Writing Space

  Posted by Jemi , 05 December 2018 · 89 views

The Insecure Writer's Support Group is the brainchild of Alex J. Cavanaugh. He, his clones, minions, friends, and fellow authors make it an amazing event every month.




Purpose: To share and encourage. Writers can express doubts and concerns without fear of appearing foolish or weak. Those who have been through the fire can offer assistance and guidance. It’s a safe haven for insecure writers of all kinds!

And we’re revving up IWSG Day to make it more fun and interactive! Every month, we'll announce a question that members can answer in their IWSG Day post. These questions may prompt you to share advice, insight, a personal experience or story. Include your answer to the question in your IWSG post or let it inspire your post if you are struggling with something to say.

***

December 5th Question: What are five objects we'd find in your writing space?
  • Laptop (obviously!)
  • Mug of Chai tea - resting on a mug warmer
  • My R2D2 USB key sitting beside my BB8 Pez dispenser
  • A LotR map on the wall
  • Framed quotes of the 1st lines of my favourite books as well as my 1st published story (Until Release in Tick Tock: A Stitch In Crime)

How about you - what fun things are in your writing (or reading!) space? 




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IWSG & Creativity

  Posted by Jemi , 07 November 2018 · 124 views

The Insecure Writer's Support Group is the brainchild of Alex J. Cavanaugh. He, his clones, minions, friends, and fellow authors make it an amazing event every month.




Purpose: To share and encourage. Writers can express doubts and concerns without fear of appearing foolish or weak. Those who have been through the fire can offer assistance and guidance. It’s a safe haven for insecure writers of all kinds!

And we’re revving up IWSG Day to make it more fun and interactive! Every month, we'll announce a question that members can answer in their IWSG Day post. These questions may prompt you to share advice, insight, a personal experience or story. Include your answer to the question in your IWSG post or let it inspire your post if you are struggling with something to say.

***
Question: How has your creativity in life evolved since you began writing?

Interesting question - I had to think about this one!

As a kid I always played with stories and told them in my head. I used to create Star Trek episodes when I struggled with sleep. However, I never wrote down even a single word of those stories.

I started writing a novel (another Star Trek story - TNG this time) for fun when my kids were little. It was a blast to pour words onto the computer. From then on, my stories took on more substance and, after another decade or so, began to demand to be written out.

I think the act of writing (and the process of learning that there is SO MUCH MORE to a story than writing it out) has definitely triggered more creativity.

The stories that keep me awake at night now are the ones waiting to be written, not the ones I'm currently writing.

Because of this, I think I will always have at least another story waiting to be written. Currently there are 4 or 5 wrestling for dominance, so I don't think I'll ever have to worry about lack of ideas to write!

How about you? Do you stories keep you up at night too?

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WEP Challenge News!

  Posted by Jemi , 31 October 2018 · 178 views

Fun news!

My story for the Deja Vu/Voodoo  in the WEP (Write - Edit - Publish) challenge took 2nd place in the contest!

Congrats to Kalpana for the first place story - which is seriously awesome & made me wonder about the apps I've downloaded!!



Thanks to the organizers for the honour - there were so many terrific stories. I'm thrilled Jonah made an impact :)

Between this and my Until Release story in Tick Tock: A Stitch in Crime, I've definitely become a fan of writing shorter fiction! Who knew????



The next WEP challenge will be in December - Ribbons & Candles. I hope you'll join in!

Thanks again to the fabulous WEP team!

How about you? Do you enjoy writing or reading flash fiction?

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WEP - Deja Vu

  Posted by Jemi , 17 October 2018 · 157 views

The results weren’t good enough.

Again.

Jonah’s research and planning had been thorough. Now, he’d have to reanalyze his data to figure out where it had all gone sideways. No matter how careful and methodical he was, he just couldn’t emulate the results of that first trial.

Disappointment seeped into his bones until Jonah wanted to weep. His premise was sound, the research was solid, his planning meticulous. He needed to figure out how to extrapolate that research into reality. Nothing counted except results.

With a sigh, Jonah pulled out his cell phone to document the current mess. He’d gone into this knowing that it would take multiple trials before he found consistent success, but that first lucky hit had made each subsequent failure more difficult.

Which variable was he missing? Was it in the timing, the speed, the angles?

Jonah took photos from all directions looking for anything that would show him the way out of this deja vu cycle of failure.

A scrap of noise had Jonah jolting up from the pavement. He’d gotten so caught up in the failure, he’d lost track of his surroundings. Moving out of the light, Jonah gathered his nerves along with his knives. He needed to get home, analyze his mistake, and prepare so he could continue his work.

As he eased away from the circle of light, Jonah caught glimpses of where he’d erred and where he’d succeeded. The body lay perfectly centred in the pool of blood, but the wounds weren’t symmetrical. The facial expression showed a moment of confusion, not fear.

Jonah took one last picture.

Next time it would be perfect.

Next time.

***

This is my first time participating in the WEP challenge. Hope you'll check out the rest of the entries for the twin themes of Deja Vu & Voodoo!



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IWSG & Life's Craziness

  Posted by Jemi , 03 October 2018 · 206 views

The Insecure Writer's Support Group is the brainchild of Alex J. Cavanaugh. He, his clones, minions, friends, and fellow authors make it an amazing event every month.



Purpose: To share and encourage. Writers can express doubts and concerns without fear of appearing foolish or weak. Those who have been through the fire can offer assistance and guidance. It’s a safe haven for insecure writers of all kinds!

And we’re revving up IWSG Day to make it more fun and interactive! Every month, we'll announce a question that members can answer in their IWSG Day post. These questions may prompt you to share advice, insight, a personal experience or story. Include your answer to the question in your IWSG post or let it inspire your post if you are struggling with something to say.

***

October 3 question - How do major life events affect your writing? Has writing ever helped you through something?

Wow - timely question!

As many of you know, I've got a family member recovering from some major injuries. Events like my loved one's accident and subsequent recovery require a lot of time outside of our regular schedules. As we all know, time is a valuable and coveted commodity. Like many of us, I don't have enough of it and the current situation gives me less time for writing.

When I don't have regular writing time, my groove gets a little bumpy and my confidence drops. To get back into my groove, I end up needing to reread my WIP. More time required, but it does work.

On the flip side, writing most definitely helps me through all parts of life. It's a fabulous way to relieve stress and work through situations.

Despite all the ups and downs that life throws along our paths, I know I'll continue to write.

How about you? Does writing help you cope and relieve some stress? (Except when it's causing you stress!! 😄)

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