How To Animate A World: Fiction Writing Class

My Fiction writing class is going well. We’re at the 5th assignment mark , where we are  instructed to write a 400 word dialogue between three characters who are put in a conversation where they don’t know what’s happening. I’m also looking forward to starting the FutureLearn Writing Class on Monday.

If you’re interested in this class, go to http://www.open.ac.uk/choose/ou/open-content or visit their Facebook page at https:.www.facebook.com/theopenuniversity .

I thought this video might stir the juices of creatives who want to become the next Stephen King or somewhere there abouts :)

This week, the class is “How To Animate a World” and it’s about creating character and dialogue. We’re learning from some of the best established authors out here. For this assignment, two moderators said something that resonated with me.  Margot Livesey, author of seven novels and one short story collection reminds us that dialogue in fiction is more than ‘showing not telling;’ it’s showing what can’t be told.”

Mahsa Mohebal , author of 4 works of fiction tells writers that it’s very important to be a writer for yourself-not for your friends.

Hmm, I suppose I should start drafting those character dialogues, because I’m plain tired of having my short stories rejected.

What are you doing to enhance your professional development ?

Blind Author Pens YA Novel To Bring Awareness

Donna W. Hill is legally blind from Retinitis Pigmentosa, a degenerative eye disease. The author, journalist, songwriter and civil rights activist and I recently connected on LinkedIn. She informed me about the continued struggles of blind Americans to gain acceptance and opportunity.

Donna’s mission for penning her YA Novel is to shed light on how children and adults with disabilities are perceived and treated by America’s sighted people.

Pageflex Persona [document: PRS0000040_00009] “Clara, in your work with the Authentic Woman Networks, are you aware of the many challenges facing people with vision loss and other disabilities? Of all of these challenges, the hardest to break through have been the beliefs held by the general public.” Donna W. Hill

The Heart of Applebutter Hill  is a  about a 14-year-old blind student named Abigail, along with her trusted seeing eye dog, Curly Conner and her best friend, Baggy Britches, find themselves caught up in a summer of tackling school bullies, sorting out secrets and uncovering an age-old mystery that spells danger for Abigail and her friends.

Part adventure, part mystery and a well paced read, Donna W. Hill will use proceeds from the sale of  her novel to provide Braille books for blind students. I’ve posted a few places The Heart of Applebutter Hill is available for purchase :
http://www.amazon.com/books/dp/1483948226

https://www.createspace.com/4000964

accessible versions are available for Readers with print handicaps
Bookshare: http://www.bookshare.org/browse/book/639304
Do your part to raise awareness.  And as always, “treat yourself special.”

 

 

 

 

 

Depaul University Workshops & Classes

Happy Friday all! Today, my focus is on the writing assignment for my fiction writing class at Iowa University. I have not prepared a post for today:) but, you know how important it is to stay relevant with our writings and so for all creatives living in the Illinois area, I have been given permission to pass along information about upcoming free workshops offered by the Depaul University’s Hay Project.

 

downloaddepaul

They offer great online classes as well. I took their 10 week Coaching & Leadership class in 2011, earning a certification for my efforts. I actually learned insights about leadership on what makes a great leader. Here are the links and contact information. I hope you take full advantage.

Leading Effective Teams – Part II

Wednesday, October 14, 2014   6:00 – 8:00 pm

 

Hire Hard, Manage Easy

Tuesday, October 28, 2014    3:00 – 5:00 pm

 

To register for workshops: Click Here

 

Location: Daley Building, 14 E. Jackson, 16th Floor

 

Please visit our Website to let us know if we can be of any other assistance in leadership development for you or your team:

http://leadership.depaul.edu/leadership-skills-training.html

Thanks so much. Hope you enjoy Autumn!

Best wishes,

Pat

Patricia M. Bombard, BVM, D.Min.

Director: Vincent on Leadership: The Hay Project

Adjunct Faculty: School of Public Service

Office: Suite 1600, 14 E. Jackson Blvd.

Mail Address: 1 E. Jackson Blvd.

Chicago, IL 60604-2287

Phone: 312-362-5522

Tweet: @Lead4Good

Project Information:

http://leadership.depaul.edu 

A Conversation With Chicago Author Evelyn Cogdell

Happy Friday, all!  Please join me in welcoming Evelyn Cogdell to Clara54’s writers blog.

I’ve known you for a while now, Evelyn, but please  share a bit about yourself for our readers.

Publicity Photo - 2006&2007-1

E:  I am Evelyn (aka Eve) Cogdell, a Freelance Writer/Poet, and the self-published Author of 5 books: a Poetry Chapbook (5th Story Reflections); a Short Story collection (Matters of the Heart); a Cookbook (Auntie Eve’s Favorite Dishes); and 2 Novels (Cashmere & Silk, A Love Story and Cashmere & Silk–Two, A Tapestry). Additionally, I have contributed to 2 Anthologies: This Mother’s Daughter and Wisdom of Our Mothers.”

My articles have covered such diverse topics as: religion; politics; health; science; sports; fashion; beauty; recipes; art; music; celebrities; and relationships. I have been featured in newspapers, magazines and e zines. Various venues where I have appeared include: The Black Expo; The Black Women’s Expo; African-American Images; Woodson Regional Library; Avalon Branch Library; Whitney M. Young, Jr. Library; Books Ink; Barnes & Noble and Trinity United Church of Christ.”

C: Interesting! You write in several genres: poetry, romance, food and interviews. Is there something I’m missing, and which genre is your favorite and why?

E: Good question! I don’t really have a favorite, but if I must pick one, I believe I would have to say ‘the interview’ gives me the most satisfaction. Finding out about other people and discovering what makes them tick is a real ‘turn-on’ for me. Basically, I like to write about whatever will uplift and entertain people, as well as enlighten them about the facts of life. In addition to the genres you mentioned, I also write short skits.

C: Do you have a specific writing routine?

E: Actually, I don’t, except for the fact that sometimes on a sleepless night, I might create a ‘new’ poem in my head and get up and write it down. When an idea strikes me I write about it. Also, for the past several years I have purposed to schedule a self-published book release every 5 years.”

C: What do you love about writing?

E: For me, writing is very therapeutic. It gives me the opportunity to express my innermost thoughts and feelings. Writing releases such pent-up emotions as passion, humor, anger and fear. Also, writing gives me the opportunity to communicate with other people by connecting with them on a much deeper level than just mere conversation. Finally, writing is a way of sharing myself with the world.”

C: Excellent, I like the way you think! So, what are you working on now?

E: Currently, I am in the process of publishing book number 6, titled, The Essence of Romance, a collection of articles centered around male/female relationships. Essence is a practical guide to love and romance for today’s couples and singles, and features my first collaboration with another Writer/Poet. The book’s contents are sure to delight and enlighten the average adult, both young and old, alike. Essence is scheduled for release in early 2015.

C: What direction do you see your writing going in the next 5 years?

E: Another good question! Well, as previously stated, I strive to write and self-publish a book every 5 years, so by that time I hope to schedule the release of a ‘new’ book. This book will probably be a book of religious or ‘thought-provoking’ poetry or perhaps another cookbook. As you mentioned, I like to write in different genres; I just love the element of surprise! In other words, I like to surprise people by not writing in the same ‘vein’ all the time; I like to ‘mix it up’, so to speak. We will see what God and Jesus have to say about my next book. It’s all in their hands!”

Bio:

Evelyn (aka Eve) Cogdell, a Freelance Writer/Poet, and the self-published Author of 5 books: a Poetry Chapbook; a Short Story collection; a Cookbook; and 2 Novels. Additionally, she contributed to 2 Anthologies: This Mother’s Daughter and Wisdom’s of Our Mothers.

Evelyn articles have covered such diverse topics as: religion; politics; health; science; sports; fashion; beauty; recipes; art; music; celebrities; and relationships. She’s been featured in newspapers, magazines and ezines. and various venues, such as The Black Expo; The Black Women’s Expo; African-American Images; Woodson Regional Library; Avalon Branch Library; Whitney M. Young, Jr. Library; Books Ink; Barnes & Noble and Trinity United Church of Christ.

Currently, Evelyn is in the process of publishing book number 6, titled, The Essence of Romance, a collection of articles centered around male/female relationships. “Essence” is a practical guide to love and romance for today’s couples and singles, and feature articles written by Writer/Poet, Clara Freeman.

The book’s contents are sure to delight and enlighten the average adult, both young and old, alike.  ESSENCE  is scheduled for release in early 2015.

 

I’m excited to work with Evelyn on her new book. It was such an honor. I will post updates to The Essence of Romance, pending dates of publication and purchase information.

Have a great weekend and as always “Treat yourself special”

How Writers Write Fiction-Class

889438793_fd82906b05 FICTION

YAY! Class is in session! Happy Friday, fellow creatives. I hope everyone ‘treat themselves special’ this weekend and show some love to yourself and to others on a daily basis. I started my online fiction writing class today offered by the Writing University in Iowa. I was excited and judging by the comments and tweets of other writers, I wasn’t the only one:) We got to complete our profiles, view two introductory videos from moderators/instructors who each gave us tips on improving our writing. We also got to comment on our writer’s forum.

I misplaced and totally forgot my original password and had to request a new one before I could sign into the class, but all’s well that ends well. Writers were encouraged to introduce themselves and share their reasons for taking the class.

I took a creative writing class years ago, so I was eager to try a fiction writing class and immediately connected with Liz, who told me that she, like me, have been writing for years and wanted to get published more instead of rejected! The class listened to “Tips That Can Improve Your Writing Life” from the instructors; many that were common sense, but the ones that resonated with me the most are:

“You have to turn your soul around, make writing the priority of your life.”

“The best way to learn is by experience.”

There were about 20 tips total from the moderators who have authored books and other forms of writings, but they were tips we’ve already come to know as seasoned writers. My reason for taking this class is to share views about the writing process with other writers, get more of my short stories “published” instead of “declined.” And also to give me the added motivation I need to continue work on my memoir.

Why do you take writing classes?

A Free Fiction Writing Class

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Happy Friday, creatives! You know you’re never too old to learn new skills. So, it doesn’t matter if you’re a newbie wanting to increase your creative reach or a seasoned pro looking to hone skills you already have, why not take advantage of free online classes offered in your genre?

As a “life long learner” I try to take advantage of every opportunity that can enhance my multi-genre writing career. :)

Free University of Iowa classes start Monday Sept 29th and ends November 10th. Go here to register http://writingcareer.com/post/95209514146/free-online-how-writers-write-fiction-workshop

Have a happy weekend and “treat yourself special.”

Rejection/Reflections

accept reject keys

Happy Friday, creatives! I’m curious, how do you handle rejection, criticism and even rude comments about your work? As a recent recipient of two out of three, in recent weeks, I’d say I’m not down for the count and I will continue to soldier on.

Writers and authors know the deal, but in that moment of rejection, we are bruised human beings because those words of rejection sting our creative efforts. We are professionals and know rejections are not personal. Criticisms, on the other hand, can be questionable. Snide comments of your work is best served by ignoring the haters.

In a March interview with author and blogging guru, Joe Bunting over at The Write Practice Blog, I asked, “How do you handle criticism?” His answer was, “I grieve then get back to writing.”

I think that timeless response should serve as a reminder to all of us that it’s the work that matters, so just keep writing to publication. The more we write the better we become in this competitive arena.

As a multi-genre writer, I’ve found some gems in those rejections and have used them along the way to acceptance. Here’s what two editors in different genres had to say about some of my recent works

On a personal story essay:

”As you know, rejections are never easy—for you the writer, or for us, the editors. But as you also know, they are part of what being a writer is about.”

On a Poetry Chapbook Competition:
Although your work did not make the final cut, I want you to know that it was strongly
considered, and that you were a semi-finalist in this year’s contest.

Can you see why writers just keep writing?

How do you handle rejection/criticism/rude comments? Please share!

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