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Archive for February, 2008

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Welcome to the February 25, 2008 edition of writers from across the blogosphere. It’s a bit late and there are some repeats from the last carnival (due to an error with the carnival posting–I’ve kept them in so newer submissions weren’t accidently deleted), but it’s also full of new good reads as well. Enjoy!

writing

Terry Dean presents 21 Ideas for Hot Press Releases – Part 1 posted at Integrity Business Blog by Terry Dean.

Richard Lee presents How Controversy Works posted at Richard Lee.

Rebecca Suzanne Dean presents How To Research 5 Times Faster posted at Rebecca Dean.

Sagar presents Take it Back! 100 Tips to Defeat Content Thieves posted at Virtual Hosting.

Stephen Dean presents The Mathematics Of Testing Your Sales Copy. posted at Stephen Dean’s Copywriting And Internet Advertising Blog – Copywriter.

claire presents Writing Contest | Bebo Author posted at Bebo Author, saying, “Writing Contest – free to enter, lots of great prizes. Anyone who enters, sponsors a prize or promotes this contest on their blog receives a link back.”

Bumbeak presents Tips for a new Notebook posted at Quills are Swords.

Carol Bentley presents Getting your thoughts on paper posted at Carol Bentley.

Tiffany Colter presents Lesson Learned and How I got here posted at Writing Career Coach, saying, “This blog discusses how to have success beginning from the first day of this New Year!”

Freddie L. Sirmans, Sr. presents Can The US Prevent A Starvation Crisis? posted at Can The US Prevent A Starvation Crisis.

James Lee presents The Secret Copywriting Technique That Keeps Prospects Riveted to Your Website posted at Online Business Freedom.

Carol Bentley presents How appealing are you posted at Carol Bentley.

The Countess presents Erotic Excerpt – The Party Crasher posted at The Countess.

Allen Crosse presents Three Hours Between the 34th and 35th posted at Cup o’ Poe, saying, “I wrote this when I was standing in a place that I very much didn’t want to be. Please, enjoy my pain.”

Eric Koshinsky presents ESL Writing Activities – Computer Based Editing and Correction Lessons posted at Teachers Call.

Carol Bentley presents Yesterday?s blog-post was completely off-track posted at Carol Bentley.

CG Walters presents Spirit Story…an Old Genre Reawakening posted at Into the Mist, saying, “A path of communication with the subconscious—as opposed to a communication with the conscious mind—is alive, more a communion between the personal subconscious and the Collective Consciousness, possibly awakening or speaking to the personal consciousness a little along the way.”

Tiffany Colter presents Writing Career Coach: A Pleasant surprise and How I got here Part 2 posted at Writing Career Coach, saying, “A pleasant surprise on how to have success beginning from the first day of this New Year!”

Neelakantha presents 50+ Open Courseware Writing Classes from the World’s Leading Universities – College Degree.com posted at college degree.

Steve Osborne presents “Are You Done Yet?” posted at TheWritersBag.com, saying, “Steve Osborne, author of “Writing Tips for the Real World,” is a professional freelance writer and writing instructor with over 20 years of experience.”

Ward Tipton presents Writing in Earnest | The Write Page posted at The Online Writing Resource Center, saying, “While freelance writing is great in many ways, wouldn’t it be nice to have your name on your writing and put the money it earned in your own pocket? I was finally able to get started doing this.”

Carol Bentley presents 4 easy steps to authorship. . . posted at Carol Bentley.

Steve Osborne presents The Well/Good Conundrum posted at TheWritersBag.com, saying, “Steve Osborne is a professional freelance writer and writing instructor with over 20 years experience. His blog teaches writing rules, strategies and techniques in a memorable, easy-to-understand way, spiced with a bit of humor.”

Alfa King presents Degree or experience? posted at Alfa King Memories.

Steve Osborne presents E-Mail Etiquette posted at TheWritersBag.com, saying, “Steve Osborne, author of “Writing Tips for the Real World,” is a professional freelance writer and writing instructor with over 20 years of experience.”

Sagar presents Rookie Mistakes: 15 Blunders New Freelancers Make and How to Avoid Them posted at Bootstrapper.

Alfa King presents Clarity and Brevity Make Good Blogging posted at Alfa King Memories.

Orna Ross presents Planning Your Writing posted at WRITING ADVICE & PUBLISHING ADVICE from Font, saying, “Article on the importance of planning for writers”

Jessse Hines presents The Best Writing Advice I Ever Received posted at Vigorous Writing.

Jessse Hines presents Got Writer’s Block? Just Eat that Frog. posted at Vigorous Writing.

blue skelton presents The First Junkie Ninja Monologue posted at This Wasted Monologue, saying, “Scene: Present Day, Hospital Waiting Room – Blue Skelton is reflecting on the imminent birth of his first child.”

ScottG presents Notebook on a Passion: The Writer Begins with the Begiining posted at Notebook on a Passion, saying, “Writers write to influence their readers, their preachers, their auditors, but always, at bottom, to be more themselves.
–Aldous Huxley”

Steve Osborne presents First Things First posted at TheWritersBag.com, saying, “Steve Osborne, author of “Writing Tips for the Real World,” is a professional freelance writer and writing instructor with over 20 years of experience.”

Thursday Bram presents What If? Emergency Planning for Your Writing posted at thursdaybram.com.

GrrlScientist presents Bridge To Opportunity (Reprise) posted at Living the Scientific Life, saying, “This is just a story about the Brooklyn Bridge, as written by a non-native NYCer; me! Includes history of the bridge and Emily Roebling’s remarkable contribution to its completion.”

Vaibhav Gadodia presents Habitually Good » Blog Archive » Writer’s block – what is that? posted at Habitually Good.

GrrlScientist presents Today’s Adventure in The Land of Medicine posted at Living the Scientific Life, saying, “After a day like this, I would be crazy, if I wasn’t crazy already.”

Rebecca Suzanne Dean presents How To Kick Writers? Block posted at Rebecca Dean.

Richard Lee presents How To Write Magnetic Headlines posted at Richard Lee.

Brent Diggs presents Writing Prompts for the Not-So-Prompt posted at The Ominous Comma, saying, “Humor for writers”

publishing

Marcus Hochstadt presents Why Drafting Messages Saves You Time posted at Marcus Hochstadt, saying, “Drafting messages in order to publish them at a later time is a great way to save a bunch of time. You sit down one time, focus on writing, writing, writing, and then you’re done for a couple of days or even weeks.”

Amy Munnell presents Writing Nationally… posted at 3 Questions…and Answers.

reading

Sol Smith presents 20 Great books to get you Reading posted at How to be a Badass Dad.

ivanisko presents A Report from Budapest posted at Bookstore Guide, saying, “Our blog aims to provide a database of all the European independent bookstores selling books in English. We also publish reports from our travels and personal visits of the bookstores included in our guide.”

uncategorized

Michael@TSM presents Travel Writing Contest! Win $150 Cash Prize | Traveling Stories Magazine posted at Traveling Stories Magazine.

old-wizard presents Old-Wizard.com Top 100 Video Games of All Time List / Introduction posted at Old-Wizard.com.

Deborah Dera presents Have you found a niche? posted at The Rhythm of Write, saying, “Not having found a niche is not necessarily a bad thing. There’s no need to limit yourself and your writing.”

Charles H. Green presents Aristotle, Maister, and the Fat Smoker posted at Trust Matters, saying, “The old writers advice is to draw from your own experience. That’s what author David Maister did, starting with the fact that he’d been a fat smoker for almost all his life.”

Carol Bentley presents Death of the long letter posted at Carol Bentley.

Rob Moshe presents Live Your Best Life By Serving Others posted at Rob Schaumer, saying, “This is not necessarily a fitting post for your carnival. Once the project starts, each day I will recognize a fellow blogger that “Helped””

Amy Munnell presents Short Stuff…Say A Lot With A Little posted at 3 Questions…and Answers.

Amy Munnell presents 5 Steps to a Better Interview… posted at 3 Questions…and Answers.

Brandon Rike presents What To Do About BEING FUNNY, OR NOT BEING FUNNY posted at What To Do About.com.

Orna Ross presents Why F-R-E-E-Write? by Orna Ross posted at WRITING ADVICE & PUBLISHING ADVICE from Font, saying, “Scarlett Thomas tells people not to attend writing workshops or do FREE-Writing? Here’s why to ignore her”

Orna Ross presents How to Write Good Fiction: Advice from Kurt Vonnegut posted at WRITING ADVICE & PUBLISHING ADVICE from Font.

Tracy Coenen presents Sequence Inc. Fraud Files by Tracy Coenen » Blog Archive » My incredible book writing journey posted at FRAUDfiles.

Tracy Coenen presents Got the blogging blues? posted at FRAUDfiles.

articles

JRickG presents You Are No Different than Successful People posted at $5000 and Up.

Phil B. presents Bloggers Love Giving Advice « Phil for Humanity posted at Phil for Humanity, saying, “The Internet, specifically bloggers, has started replacing self help books and television shows, just how the Internet is replacing traditional news media.”

Kenton Newby presents 10 Ways Article Writing Can Stack the Deck in Your Favor posted at KentonNewby.com.

FitBuff presents Power of the Mind – Much Stronger Than Your Biceps! posted at FitBuff.com’s Total Mind and Body Fitness Blog, saying, “If you’re a longtime FitBuff reader, you may remember I’ve personally experienced the power of mind over muscle in one of my workouts when I lifted 50 pounds with my mind!”

DotLobby presents Breaking Bad Habits – 4 Tips to Drop ‘Em All! posted at DotNLP, saying, “Luckily, there isn’t any addiction on Earth that hasn’t been beaten by someone, somewhere. You might just need a little help, so here are 4 tips to stop bad habits, and start some great ones!”

Jay Deragon presents What Do We Expect? posted at A Relationship Economy….. With WHom & What, saying, “The small could actually bury the BIG with the reach of influential conversations, one to one to a million. The power is shifting and the stakes are high. Be careful with what you expect or don’t expect from the social web.

What say you?”

Alex Hansen presents Ayreon – 01011001 posted at RockRoast, saying, “If nobody tells you what music is good and what music is bad, how will you know what you like?”

authors

Raymond Le Blanc presents What You Should Know about Autism Spectrum Disorders posted at Raymond Le Blanc.

blogs

Ask Matt presents Using Stumbleupon To Bring Visitors to Your Blog posted at BlogTactics.com, saying, “Using Stumbleupon to bring visitors to your blog.”

Ask Matt presents Free Traffic Tactic Videos and Understanding that SEO Malarky… | iamUncovered.com posted at BlogTactics.com, saying, “Free Traffic Tactic Videos and Understanding that SEO Malarky…”

Carol Bentley presents Reasons to unsubscribe. . . posted at Carol Bentley, saying, “Reasons to unsubscribe. . .
Sometimes stopping a subscription is the right thing to do.”

HL Grove presents 4 Steps To Creating Quality Content For Your Blog posted at MoneyWeb24.

Brent Diggs presents The Blog Of State Address posted at The Ominous Comma.

Doug Green presents Running Shoe Design Sucks posted at My-Caboodle, saying, “I’m a full time Internet writer living on an island – actually two islands – one North and the other Southern – and this is my own blog-for-the-heck-of-it.”

Alexander Kohl presents Freelance Writers Wanted | Freelance Writing Career posted at Freelance Writing Career.

James Brausch presents Costa Rican Food posted at Costa Rica HQ.

book reviews

GrrlScientist presents Sixty Days And Counting posted at Living the Scientific Life, saying, “by Kim Stanley Robinson, is the third installment of his Eco-political thriller trilogy series about global warming.”

Thomas Sweeney presents There Will Be Blood. posted at Think Soul Matter, saying, “Film Review – There Will Be Blood.”

Brian Terry presents Why Bill Gates is unreasonable posted at Big Selling Website Design.

Shamelle presents Your Inner CEO: Unleash The Executive Within posted at Enhance Life.

GrrlScientist presents The Invisible Cure: Africa, the West, and the Fight Against AIDS posted at Living the Scientific Life, saying, “the book by Helen Epstein, is a clear-eyed look at the African AIDS epidemic and the West’s often misguided attempts to assist in this battle.”

Tali presents The Rise of the Author – More than a Free Marketing Report posted at The Marketer Review, saying, “I’d love to call Mark Joyner the most revolutionary man in our industry, but he’s not just an internet marketer and hasn’t just been one for a long time.
I’d love to call Mark Joyner the most revolutionary man in our industry, but he’s not just an internet marketer and hasn’t just been one for a long time.”

Christina M. Rau presents Turning Poetry Pages posted at Livin’ The Dream (One Loser At A Time), saying, “Three books of poetry. Lots of poems to steal from.”

Raymond presents Rich Dad Poor Dad posted at Money Blue Book.

books

James DeLelys presents New Book/Video posted at Author James DeLelys, saying, “Video of new book!”

Amy Munnell presents Things that make you go “Hmmmm”….. posted at 3 Questions…and Answers, saying, “HarperCollins is offering readers the opportunity to “try before you buy” with their “Browse Inside” feature on their website. The company has a number of titles available for readers to read for free on the website, not just sample chapters, but the ENTIRE BOOK.”

Tip Diva presents Top Ten Tips – Building A Personal Library posted at Tip Diva, saying, “Tip Diva loves reading and one day dreams of a house lined with shelves and shelves of books. She’s started to acquire quite a collection of her favorite books, and here’s how you, too, can build your own personal library.”

GrrlScientist presents The Birdbooker Report: Notes on Bird (and Natural History) Books posted at Living the Scientific Life, saying, “Update about natural history books that are either new to the market or will be published soon. [new book news]”

David Cassell presents The Why Behind Select Courses Blog posted at selectcoursesblog.com.

interviews

Cheryl Snell presents Shiva’s Arms: Chariots of Flame posted at FeedBulletin for: financialbullet.

Anne-Marie presents Five questions for Sara Zarr, author of the YA novel Sweethearts posted at My Readable Feast, saying, “Check out Sara’s latest novel, Sweethearts – fantastic!”

Amy Munnell presents An Interview…with screenwriter Michael Lucker posted at 3 Questions…and Answers, saying, “screenwriter Michael Lucker”

Amy Munnell presents An Interview…with humorist Cappy Hall Rearick posted at 3 Questions…and Answers, saying, “Humor columnist Cappy Hall Rearick”

Amy Munnell presents An Interview…with Novelist Julie L. Cannon posted at 3 Questions…and Answers.

Jade Blackwater presents Feature Artist Interview – Lisa D. Kastner posted at Brainripples, saying, “Brainripples shares a Feature Artist Interview with writer Lisa D. Kastner of the Rittenhouse area of Philadelphia, PA. Lisa Kastner writes fiction, and is currently shopping her psychological thriller novel “Jersey Diner”.”

life

DandelionBlog presents A Small Treatise on Happiness posted at Author Suzanne McMinn.

Alex Blackwell presents How Much is Too Much? posted at The Next 45 Years.

Lorace presents Looking to the Future, With a Smile posted at What Not Thought: How To’s and A Lot of Randomness.

Nick at BnG presents The Beernut Gallery – Gridlocked posted at The Beernut Gallery, saying, “An article detailing the joys of a traffic jam.”

cait presents Whats the crisis compadre? posted at cait, saying, “I couldn’t find humor up there…maybe its not so funny anyway…”

Alex Blackwell presents In the Blink of an Eye posted at The Next 45 Years.

philosophy

Thomas Sweeney presents To come into the present… posted at Think Soul Matter.

Pearl presents How the movie Groundhog Day can lead to a happier and more productive life posted at :: Interesting Observations ::.

Untruths presents Science + Religion = Conflict? posted at Untruths, saying, “Are Science and Religion Compatible?”

politics/current events

Kathie Goldsmith presents You know it?s getting ugly in some markets when? posted at Team Reba Real Estate, saying, “Team Reba is a real estate firm with a blog that covers many subject. This post is about the turn in the market and how one agent is being sued as a result of the housing bust.”

santousha presents *Seeking*Serenity*: Waiting on the strike to end and my concerns for Ms. Spears posted at Seeking Serenity.

articles

Bela presents How to Catch a Mouse | House Chronicles posted at House Chronicles.

blogs

Michael Bass presents Hints for writing great blog posts. posted at Debt Prison, saying, “Don’t write junk, anything worth writing is worth writing correctly. Bad articles will leave readers with a negative impression of your site.”

Nick Cobb presents Felonious Ramblings: My First Day In The Joint posted at Felonious Ramblings.

Warren Wong presents The Different Types Of Website Visitors And Their Value posted at Personal Development for INTJs, saying, “An article describing the different types of websites visitors such as search engine, direct, referring, and social bookmarking and the value they bring to your website.”

Bob Younce presents Setting posted at Writing My First Novel.

articles

Michel Fortin presents Give Your Joint-Venture Offer An Extra Punch | The Michel Fortin Blog posted at The Michel Fortin Blog.

book reviews

GrrlScientist presents Speciation in Birds posted at Living the Scientific Life, saying, “by Trevor Price, is a wonderful review of the literature that reveals the process and nature of speciation in birds.”

GrrlScientist presents Attenborough in Paradise posted at Living the Scientific Life, saying, “A remarkable set of adventures to the South Pacific islands and beyond on DVD as David Attenborough pursues his most deeply burning passions. [educational DVD review]”

Peter Jones presents The Hunter Becomes the Hunted: New Mystery Keeps You Reading posted at Great New Books that Are a Must Read.

books

James DeLelys presents Am I the Only One? posted at Author James DeLelys, saying, “Prelude to a new book.”

Sarah presents Eugenides and Saunders read from My Mistress’s Sparrow Is Dead posted at SARAHSPY.

interviews

Marilyn Terrell presents The Inn at Little Washington Celebrates 30 Years posted at Intelligent Travel, saying, “Susan O’Keefe interviews the celebrated chef-innkeeper at the Inn at Little Washington, Patrick O’Connell, as his inn and restaurant turn 30.”

life

Madeleine Begun Kane presents One Car Guaranty I?d Gladly Forgo posted at Mad Kane’s Humor Blog.

Alex Blackwell presents And a Side Order of Positive Attitude, Too Please posted at The Next 45 Years.

Justin Duval presents www.DarkGrin.com – mind TRIP posted at The Dark Grin, saying, “Philosophical creative writing piece.”

Joshua Wagner presents Getting Your Ducks in a Row posted at Total Possibility.

Joshua Wagner presents Love and Fear posted at Total Possibility.

Alex Blackwell presents Feel the Music in You posted at The Next 45 Years, saying, “While allowing my heart to hear the words to the song, it occurred to me that I did indeed own my life. Regret and shame were just pieces of garbage I had been carrying around long enough. But there was still plenty of time and there was still plenty of hope and fight left in me.”

philosophy

Akemi presents Belief can Change the Course of Life posted at Gratitude Magic.

Samuel Bryson presents The Philosophy of Happiness – Accepting Yourself posted at Total Wellbeing.

Scholars & Rogues presents A human thinking trap (and how to avoid it) posted at Scholars and Rogues, saying, “Thank you for your consideration.”

politics/current events

Meggie Pace presents Craft Research: Craft 2.0 posted at Earthly Paradise, saying, “The arts and crafts movement is experiencing an incredible revival on the web. This article discusses the movement’s origins and future.”

Heidi Whitaker presents Viral Blogging: What is the Price of Profiting from the Politics of Bigotry and Hate? posted at Work from Home Choices, saying, “This article discusses how political blogs are stirring up hatred and bigotry.”

Cheryl presents Cop a plea: to criminal stupidity posted at Glob-a-log, saying, “Dimwitted cops and criminals”

That concludes this edition. Submit your blog article to the next edition of
writers from across the blogosphere
using our
carnival submission form.
Past posts and future hosts can be found on our

blog carnival index page
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Technorati tags:

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You get a detail wrong and someone’s going to kill you on it.

With reasonable confidence I can write about the LAPD and the Riverside Police Dept. because 1) I live in Metro Hell, 2) I used to work in the prosecutor’s office (so when you ask whether cops are tatted and pierced…yes if they’re in vice or narc it’s allowed and you wouldn’t believe how they show up to hearings), 3) I have relatives in the RPD and 4) big, metropolitan police departments put everything on-line.

You want to know what the beats are? There are “car maps” and the numbers for which patrol vehicles are assigned. Renovations at the new substation, they’ve blogged it. Google sucks the images in and spits them out by the truckload. You can subscribe to RSS feeds of their departmental press releases. The variations of the 10/11 code and the radio frequencies they use are all posted somewhere.

However, that kind of research only gets you information that is actually on the web. If no one has bothered to upload it, you can’t find it. Me, being me….I’ve decided to set my next cowboy/cop combo in Garfield County Utah. I need the Sherriff’s uniform. The ONLY pic I can find is from an officer down memorial….and he’s in the casual polo and chino’s combo.

My GoggleFu is useless in this case.

Now that may actually be the standard issue for Garfield County, but I don’t know. I do know what the badge looks like – there are forums for badge collectors out there and they have pictures. I mean, I go there every year, but I’ve yet to actually see a sheriff (it’s that big, wide open and rural) No website. The elected official doesn’t even have his picture anywhere. I thought all politicos wanted their picture in the public eye.

But these are details that must be answered. What style hat? Smokey? Brimmed standard police hat? Ball cap? Those all convey different messages. What type of vehicles do they use, colors and paint jobs? What’s their service weapon?

This is the particular hell of writing cop stories, or frankly any story with a specialized profession. You MUST get the details right. Somebody will know and will call you on it.

I’ve seen this in books I’ve read where someone has tried to describe a trial process. There are some things that are jurisdictional, vary from local to local. But the rules of evidence are pretty consistent. They may be common law in one state and codified in another but every state has some form of Hearsay doctrine. The order of trial is ALWAYS the same. It will kick me out of a story if I see these issues fudged.

It comes in play in all sorts of stories. Does a particular rodeo venue allow for Hotshots (and if you’re doing a rodeo story you better know what a Hotshot is). Would a former Army Ranger use the same slang designations as a former Marine? How do you lift a fingerprint? Does a jurisdiction use an actual forensic pathologist as a coroner or is it the local funeral director? When do roses start to bloom in Massachusetts? Are there different types of cactus in New Mexico and Arizona?

The devil is in the details and you’ve got to watch for him.

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Hillary or Obama?

What’s your take? We are faced in this country with 2 “firsts” in this election. The first woman president and the first black president possibility. And, it appears that the country is really wrestling with these two choices.

Personally, I’m backing Hillary. Not just because she is a woman. Here are my reasons:

She is smart. Dare I say, smarter than Bill Clinton and that is really something.

She has been investigated almost the entire 8 years that she was first lady. There are no more surprises. She’s been though it, and we all know her skeletons.

She has a passion to straighten out health care. She tried to overhaul the healthcare industry in 93, but the Washington cronies weren’t about to have a first lady tackle such a “Presidential” task.

She comes with a built in advisor, former president Bill Clinton. Our country is in such disarray, she is going to need all the resources available to her.

She has pledged to take away corporate america’s tax incentives if they ship jobs overseas.

It took a Clinton to clean up Bush Sr’s mess and it will take a Clinton to clean up after Jr’s mess.

During the Clinton years, we had a paid off debt with a surplus of funds to boot. People were employed, the stock market was booming and people weren’t worried about losing their home.

I’m not sure about Obama. The press is reluctant to expose his skeletons. I’m not sure why…the probing questions just aren’t there like they were for Hillary. He’s a talented orator to be sure, but I just have a nagging feeling there is more to the story than he lets on. Yet, he is doing the traditional politics crap that they all do. Yet, he isn’t called on it. Why?
Either way….do the right thing and vote for your choice.

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MARYLAND WRITERS’ ASSOCIATION PRESS RELEASE
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

CONTACT: Eric D. Goodman, MWA Public Relations Director

DATE: January 28, 2008

EMAIL: edgewriter@gmail.com

BEST WAY TO KEEP YOUR LITERARY RESOLUTIONS

Each year, countless writers make resolutions about their writing goals. This is the year you’ll publish that short story, write that novel, or at least put pen in hand and write a few pages each day.

And in May, where will you be? Here’s a great way to keep your writerly resolutions in check.

Register yourself now to attend the 20th annual Maryland Writers Association on Saturday, May 3, 2008 from 7:30 a.m. to 6:30 p.m. at the Maritime Institute in Linthicum.

Keynote speaker Thomas F. Monteleone is but one of many professional, successful writers planning to spend the day helping you reach your own writing goals.

Join local experts and established writers at the 20th annual Maryland Writers’ Association’s conference. You’ll have the opportunity to hone your craft in sessions led by established authors, instructors, and experts. Whether you’re a beginner or a pro, there’s plenty for you at the conference. Come explore the many worlds of writing.

To register, or for more information, visit the conference website.

http://www.marylandwriters.org/conferences.html

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I have seen so many authors do virtual booksignings as well as “physical” bookstore signings only to be followed up with book trailers, blogging, digging, delicioso-ing, podcast interviews and other networking sites.

My question is this: What works for YOU? Did the booktrailer spark interest? Was it having people post comments on your blog? Did booksignings boost your sales at all?

I guess I’m wondering, What is the next big thing? The reason why I ask is because I was checking my sales in the U.K. for one of my books and they were KILLER! And, I haven’t done anything special to promote the book there….

C’mon Authors….Do Tell!

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It’s 8:45 p.m. and the Maryland polls aren’t closed yet. A judge ordered an extension due to the bad weather.

So far, with 61% of the votes counted in Virgina, Obama is ahead. I will be very surprised if he doesn’t win Maryland as well.

Yesterday, I attended the Stand for Change Rally with Barack Obama at the 1st Mariner Arena. Over 15,000 people packed the space to capacity–young and old, various races and ethnic groups, women and men. The crowd was excited, and from the second Obama walked on stage, there wasn’t a boring moment. Not only did he connect with the audience, he outlined clear plans for the future and showed that he, too, is realistic about–and prepared for–the challenges ahead.

H. Clinton is now in Texas, where she hopes to re-energize her campaign after back-to-back losses and the firing/stepping down of her campaign manager. But Hillary is expected to win Texas and Ohio.

(CNN now reports that Barack is now ahead in the delegate count by 2–1170 to 1168.)

McCain is likely to win the GOP vote in Maryland and is projected as the winner in Virgina. But Huckabee is closer in the polls than almost anyone expected . . .

Exciting!

See where they stand on the issues:

http://www.ontheissues.org/Hillary_Clinton.htm

http://www.ontheissues.org/Barack_Obama.htm

http://www.ontheissues.org/John_McCain.htm

http://www.ontheissues.org/Mike_Huckabee.htm

http://www.ontheissues.org/Ron_Paul.htm

###
Nancy O. Greene
http://www.portraits.bravehost.com

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chaosoforion.jpg
(Chaos at the Heart of Orion – NASA)

Welcome to the first edition of a carnival of speculative fiction! If you would like to submit to the carnival, click on the carnival submit link at the bottom. Enjoy!

books

Joana presents Sundays with Vlad by Paul Bibeau posted at The Symposium.

Peter Jones presents The Hunter Becomes the Hunted: New Mystery Keeps You Reading posted at Great New Books that Are a Must Read.

GrrlScientist presents Sixty Days And Counting posted at Living the Scientific Life, saying, “by Kim Stanley Robinson, is the third installment of his Eco-political thriller trilogy series about global warming.”

fantasy

CG Walters presents Searching (for a Soul Mate) posted at Into the Mist, saying, “No longer confined to material experience, Katerina crossed into the dimly lit room, invisible to its inhabitants. She had never visited this world before, never laid eyes on this person, yet Katerina’s bond to the lean, gray-haired man seated at the wooden table was so intense and immediate that she barely managed to suppress the impulse to reach out and embrace him.”

Justin Duval presents www.DarkGrin.com – mind TRIP posted at The Dark Grin, saying, “Imagine after 40 years, you had a chance to ‘do it all over again’ would you? Would it matter?”

movies

blue skelton presents Animated Terminator to be Released posted at Blue Skelton Publications, saying, “An Animated Terminator is being released in 2009 and I have posted an early teaser for the series.”

science fiction

M. Cruz presents The Secret History Of The Golden Horde – Worldbeater by MJ Cruz | NOIRLECROI.COM posted at NOIRLECROI.COM, saying, “Just starting work on a new short story and would love some feedback and constructive criticsm!”

Avant News presents Italy Pins Stability Hopes on Medfly posted at Avant News, saying, “Some speculative sci-fi political satire”

writing

Justin Duval presents www.DarkGrin.com – mind TRIP posted at The Dark Grin, saying, “Creative writing entry on the wild choices of life!”

Sol Smith presents Fictional Publications, Issue Number Four posted at Fictional Publications.

science fiction

Peter Jones presents Science Fiction Thriller: New Standard Set for Genre posted at Great New Books that Are a Must Read.

writing

mike mallowe presents Intersection posted at Mykey03’s Weblog, saying, “Thank you for reading. I am new and any feedback is warmly welcome.”

That concludes this edition. Submit your blog article to the next edition of
a carnival of speculative fiction
using our
carnival submission form.
Past posts and future hosts can be found on our

blog carnival index page
.

Technorati tags:

, .

Read Full Post »

I was surfing the net a couple of days ago and found where “The First Ever Writer’s Cruise” was being offered! Of course, this particular cruise has already taken place, but it looks like more are to come! Check it out. Another fringe benefit of being a writer! So get your laptops and sun screen and sit by the pool while drinking a strawberry daquiri! Time to finish up your book!

Find out more here.
**********************
Taryn Simpson is a fulltime freelance writer with 10 books to her credit, numerous articles, writer for MyParkinsonsinfo.com and more. Her latest work is nominated for a Pulitzer Prize, to be announced April 7, 2008. Wish me luck! http://www.Taryn-Simpson.blogspot.com

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I’ve been thinking a lot about investing.

Not about money. Hearing words like rollover and portfolio and 401k options make my eyes glaze over, much like when people attempt to explain how the Bears did so well last year only to supersuck at the Superbowl.

Congratulations, by the way, to all you New Yorkers. I’m not bitter.

No, I’ve been thinking about investments in term of time. I just finished a game which I thought I was going to win (and I was proud too, because I had done the whole thing without cheating. Well, okay, maybe just a little. But it was a hint, I swear.) but just as I got to the end, I realized I didn’t have all the items I needed. I couldn’t go forward without it, and the game wouldn’t let me go back to retrieve that missing item. So I was stuck, literally. Oh sure, I can go back and play the game again, but you know what? After all that time I put into it, I just didn’t have the energy to play it again. But it’s my nature to not give up, so I’m going to wait a couple of days before trying again, just so I can have the satisfaction of winning.

Writing is like that, sometimes. We get ideas for stories that we absolutely have to put down. We work on our novels, writing, revising, editing, re-editing, re-revising, spell-checking, giving it to our readers, ripping out endings, writing up new ones, re-sending it our readers, re-re-re-editing, re-re-re-revising, until we get the stories as perfect as we can get it.

And then, we get so sick of the story, we sit on it for a while.

It’s not like giving up. It’s always good to put away something for a bit so you can look at it through new eyes. But here’s another way to consider it…you’re giving the story a chance to work for you. Think on it–while you concentrate on something else, your story is sitting on the back of your mind. Percolating. Getting stronger. Gaining more interest, so to speak. It’s up to you to decide when to pull the story out again to work on it. Pull it out too soon, and you lose the benefit of the passage of time. Leave it for too long–and you’ll actually lose interest (haha…maybe I do have a little handle on money-making after all) and the story sits in the drawer, never able to earn its full potential.

The investment analogy can also be carried over to when the story is done and gets sent out to markets. Even with long response times or form rejection letters, every story that you submitted is working for you, bringing in more interest (of an editor)–and if it doesn’t, you send it to the next market. Sometimes, if you’re lucky, an editor will tell you why the story is rejected, which will help you make the story stronger, and over time, actually does capture the interest of someone who wants it.

That’s what I like about writing. It’s not like those get-quick-rich schemes that promises lots of money with a minimum of effort. You have to work hard at it, and it takes time. Lots of time. But the effort is worth it, in many cases. You get a return of–at the minimum, the satisfaction of writing a story. At the maximum, it gets published.

Over the past couple of months, I sold three short stories, all of which will be published within the next couple of months. Which is wild, considering that I haven’t written a thing since November–I’ve been concentrating on getting my house ready to sell. But it’s nice to know that even when I’m unable to write, the stories I have floating around various markets are still working for me.

That’s the type of investment that makes it all worthwhile.

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Jason WalkerThis post isn’t directly about writing. But, it is about life. And, to me anyway, that makes this post about writing.

Remember my friend, Jason Walker? Yep, he is the co-author of “Missing My Body” and he and his family are in DIRE need of a Full Size, Wheelchair Equipped Van. As you may remember, Jason has Duchenne’s Muscular Dystrophy and I do believe he is the oldest living MD patient if I’m not mistaken.

Anyway, as you can imagine, living with this horrible disease is very costly and in order to transport Jason anywhere, his family must have a van.

So here is my plea: IF ANYONE KNOWS OF A VAN DEALERSHIP THAT WILL DONATE A FULL SIZED, WHEELCHAIR EQUIPPED VAN, PLEASE LET ME KNOW.You can contact me at TSIM681157@aol.com.
Any help you can provide would be appreciated.
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Taryn Simpson is a fulltime freelance author. Her latest work (The Mango Tree Cafe, Loi Kroh Road) has been nominated (yes, nominated) for a Pulitzer Prize. Be sure to check out her presskit: http://www.Taryn-Simpson.blogspot.com

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