Focusing on short stories for a bit has done wonders to help me economize my words and write with more clarityRead More
I’ve got a piece on Jay Lake’s blog that is in the final 5 of his flash fiction contest following the voting of Jay’s panel of esteemed judges. I’m thrilled to have made the cut. It’s for the story After the Golden Times, although in the Jay Lake poll it’s untitled (and you can read it from the poll).
Now the poll is open to readers to check out. Get on over there, check out the entries and cast your vote. Ideally you’ll enjoy mine above all others, but do what you must. I’ve enjoyed reading them all.
For what it’s worth, I had the option to post it on my blog and send the link as my entry OR post directly in the comments of Jay’s photo prompt post. I chose the latter and now realize I should have chosen the former if for no other reason than maybe driving a little more traffic to my blog. Live and learn.
Jay Lake Link Salad (Every Day)
Teresa Frohock’s Lunchtime Links (Weekly)
Bibliophile Stalker’s Links and Plugs (Every Day)
Pimp My Novel’s Friday Links (Uh, Fridays)
Shack’s Sunday Wash-Up (Yeah, you guessed it, Sundays)
It’s a little like drinking from a fire hose, isn’t it.
I’m a pretty linear thinker. I’m also content to read books and watch movies and let the plot unfold without a whole lot of guessing about what’s going to happen. As a writer, this doesn’t serve me well.
But I forge ahead anyway, looking for ways to sift through the mound of cliches clogging up perfectly good brain space in the hopes I’ll see something new. By continuing to write, I hope become more adept at this game.
Sometimes though, I need a little more. So I research. I know it’s a time tested avoidance method that keeps me from writing, but I do it anyway.
I ran across this article at Suite101.com related to plot twists. At the very least it’s a place to start. Jennifer Jensen offers some helpful tips and links to get the ball rolling. Just reading the article got the wheels spinning. I’ve never been a big brainstormer (or barnstormer for that matter) but it’s one of those techniques that pops up again and again in various writing books, articles and blogs. All right. I’ll do it. Anything to avoid ending up like this:
I subscribe to a number of helpful blogs for writers and blogs by writers (Check out the blog roll to the right). I can barely keep up with all the posts, especially the link salad posts, which I love. I rely on these posts to provide a synopsis of the current goings on in the writing world because I’m not going to search on Google to find out. Part of me wishes I could provide something so useful, but I have to remind myself that I blog to be part of the online writing community and learn more about writing. My hope is that somebody will benefit from my posts relating some of my experiences as a fledgling writer. I like to throw in posts about what I’m reading, though I’m no book reviewer.
The conventional wisdom on the internets is that you must have a blog if you want to be part of the conversation–and that’s true to a point–and that your blog should contain information that’s useful and demonstrates your expertise in some way (especially if you are marketing–no one wants to buy from some shlub that doesn’t know what he’s talking about). It’s a good conventional wisdom, because, after all, we are selling ourselves in some way. Along with my hope that anyone reading this blog will find it enjoyable, I also hope that, somewhere down the line, an agent will ask, “Do you have a blog?” and I’ll say, “Why yes, yes I do.”
Lastly, I find that blogging allows me to do some more writing to better hone my skills. I tend toward the verbose, so I try to use my blogging as an exercise in economy a la Strunk and White.
Why do you blog?
If you are interested how to fine tune your blog, here are a few great resources I used in my former life:
Hubspot.com – The HubSpot Inbound Internet Marketing blog covers all of inbound marketing – SEO, Blogging, Social Media, Landing Pages, Lead Generation and Analytics.
seomoz.org – SEOmoz serves as a hub for search marketers worldwide, providing education, tools, resources and paid services to help every SEO to be the best they can be.
WordPress – Yeah, I’m pimping my blog host because I like it.