Posts Tagged ‘true story’

Threat Level Elevated

One of my biggest complaints about VA medical centers is the unsafe feeling I have whenever I am in one. Am I crazy for thinking that here in United States any facility attached to our military should be the safest property in the country?

Weapons not permitted sign

Was Jack Nicolson’s character in A Few Good Men correct when he said, “We live in a world of walls and those walls need to be guarded by men with guns.” He went on to say, “You want me on that wall. You need me on that wall.”

Last week we had another attack on homeland military properties and four Marines and one Navy sailor lost their lives. These are no longer random attacks. The bodies are piling up and before more are added it is time we rethink the decision to unarm our armed services.

For the past nine-years whenever we pull up to the guardhouse at the VA Hospital in Philadelphia more often than not the sign on the post reads ‘Threat Level Elevated.’ There is a guard there who is either smoking, talking on a cell phone or sleeping. The sight would immediately cause me to feel overwhelmingly frightened. These guards aren’t even military which if you ask me is ridiculous. Is our nation that short of MP’s that we have to hire security guards to protect (or not) our armed forces, our veterans and their families?

Threat Level Elevated

Once past the guardhouse the parking garage is dark and unattended.

Inside the building the first thing I notice is the dingy, dirty floors, windows and walls. I don’t want to touch anything. The next thing I notice are homeless people sleeping on garbage bags filled with their belongings. Are they homeless veterans?

You never know who you will be riding in the elevator with. It could be a veteran fighting with his wife, someone having a severe PTSD episode or someone under the influence of something or all of the above.

I was thrilled last week when we pulled up to the guardhouse and were asked for ID, finally!

It lasted only a few days. Last night we drove up to and right past the guardhouse where the guard was sitting inside the house with his eyes on his phone. He never looked up as we drove past. My heart sank and my anxiety rose.

I want to know there is a man or woman on that wall, behind the camera or in the guard house protecting us, all of us.

Marine

What has more impact on our feeling of safety and security and what has more impact on someone with criminal intentions, a sign that says no weapons permitted past this point or a Marine in full uniform with a handgun on his hip?

 

 

 

So Many Publishing Choices…

Writing Wednesday

Typewriter Pink

On Wednesdays I like to share information I picked up on my path to being published, marketing and preparing to be published again. Information that I wish someone would have shared with me, back then.

Publishing Choices

The publishing business has changed so dramatically over the past few years and there doesn’t seem to be any slow- down in sight. It is still so unclear who the winner will be in this evolutionary process and that can cause more than a bit of anxiety for new as well as established authors. The good news is if you want to be published, you have choices…

This is a brief overview of the different Publishing Choices available and the pros and cons for each:

Traditional Publishing

Traditional Publishing is still number one through six in sales, in publications and in best -selling titles, in the world. Those top six companies (not in order) are:

 

Hatchette Book Group

Harper Collins

McMillan

Penguin Group

Random House

Simon and Shuster (name owned by CBS)

books

 

Each of these companies also own dozens of smaller companies known as imprints. An imprint may be used when publishing in a narrow field such as sci-fi or fantasy.

 

How it works:

Traditional publishers in most cases will only work with literary agents. If you want to be traditionally published you will first need an agent.

Submit your query and then if requested submit your finished, professionally edited manuscript to an agent that specializes in your genre.

If they decide to sign you they will have you go through another round of edits

They will try to sell your manuscript to a publisher

They will negotiate a contract on your behalf

They will receive a percentage of your sales

 

Once they have sold your manuscript to a publisher:

You will go through yet another round of editing

A cover will be designed and a title will be decided on

Conceptual editing will be done (styling)

 

The Advantages of Traditional Publishing:

 

They put up the front money for editing, copyrighting, distribution, listing with vendors,   ISBN number, some marketing and advertising. They may even provide an advance.

 

Chances are much better for international sales

 

The big Publishers have connections w/ T.V., radio, Magazines etc…

TV

Your book will be released in Hardcover and then 8 months to a year later it will be re- released in paperback.

 

Prestige and credibility

 

Disadvantages of Traditional Publishing:

Lack of control over everything involving your book including style, title, where it is sold, how it is marketed etc…

 

Earnings- You do not get paid until your advance is paid back (if you received one), royalties tend to be paid at lower percentages than other publishing choices.

 

The process tends to be impersonal.

 

If the Publisher does not make their initial investment back in two-years they may drop you.

 

The time frame from signing to publication can take up to two-years.

 

Independent Publishing

 

Independent Publishers tend to be smaller companies and can be imprints of a larger company. Most of them operate ‘under one roof’ meaning they have editing, marketing etc…in house.

There are hundreds of Independent Publishing companies with new ones starting every day. Just a few examples in no particular order are:

 

Publishing Genius Press

Akashic Books

Coffee House Press

Black Balloon

A Strange Object (new)

Tin House

Gray Wolf Press

 

Advantages of publishing with an Independent Publisher:

 

They may or may not require you to be represented by an agent

 

Offer better royalties

Dreamstime image id 138166

 

More individual author attention

 

Prestige and credibility

 

Time from signing to publication can be as quick as one year

 

More willing to work with new authors

 

Disadvantages:

 

Less opportunity for international sales. Not impossible but unlikely

 

You will need to do most of the marketing

 

Your book may be released as an e-book prior to paperback release. It may not be released in hardcover.

 

Subsidy, Vanity, Print on Demand and Assisted Self- Publishing Companies

 

This is where the publishing water gets very murky. These companies charge fees for services. Some of them are very good companies that do exactly what they say they will do and some of them are very bad companies. Some of them are extremely choosy over what they accept for publication and others will print anything. If you choose this route for publishing you must research the company. Have any contract looked at by a literary attorney, request author references and order a few books that the company published to check the quality.

These companies may offer different publishing packages ranging in price from $10,000 for complete preparation to release services, $5,000 for less services and $600 or less for assistance with self-publishing such as ISBN number (your books social security number) copyrighting and formatting for Amazon and Barnes & Noble listings.

 

Advantages to these types of Publishing:

 

More control artistically

 

The highest royalties paid

 

A good option for special interest, regional, self-help, speakers, cookbooks and celebrities

 

Quick turnaround time, a year sometimes less.

 

Disadvantages:

Some of these disadvantages are changing, rapidly. The stigma surrounding self -publishing is eroding. To break through these barriers, write a good book and make sure it is professionally edited.

 

Some libraries and book stores, still will not stock these books.

Barnes and Noble

 

Perceived Lack of credibility.

 

Some professional reviewers still will not review these books.

 

Some authors self-publish poorly edited or not edited at all books and it hurts all self-published authors.

 

Again, this is changing rapidly!

 

Companies to avoid at all cost (This list is not complete. Always research, check references and have a literary attorney read any contract.)

 

Author House

Xlibris

Vantage Press

i universe (also known as Writers Club and Writers Showcase)

Trinity

Trident

Publish America now known as America Star

 

Whatever route you choose for publishing, if you write a great story and have it edited professionally, the readers will come! Just like anything worth having in life, you will need to make an investment to get a return.

 

Are you a published author? What Publishing choice did you make and why?

 

Are you a writer hoping to be published? Which publishing choice do you thing would be right for you?

Happy Writing,

Doreen

Quote writing

 

 

 

 

 

How to get your book in a book store…

Writing Wednesday

Typewriter Pink

Wednesday is the day I share what I have learned on my journey from writing to publication, marketing and writing and publishing again. If you have any questions please feel free to leave them in the comments and I will do my best to answer them. If you have any tips please share them with us…

How do you get you and your book in bookstores…

To have a chance at having your book stocked in a book store, your publisher has to be willing to offer your book to them at a wholesale discount price of at least 55% off the cover price. The books must also be returnable to the publisher if they do not sell within the stores allotted time-frame.

Barnes and Noble

Barnes & Noble Bookseller

All print books are ordered and delivered to stores through a book distribution center. The two major distributors are Ingram and Baker & Taylor. If the publisher you are planning to use does not use one or both of these distributors, move on from that publisher.

It is possible to have a CRM (Barnes & Noble) or an Event Coordinator (Independent) to allow you to bring books to the store and have them manually put them into the store’s inventory. This is not something they like to do so you will have to convince them the book has received decent reviews and that you can get people through their door.

Big Blue Marble Book Store

Big Blue Marble Book Store Mount Airy, Pa.

If you have an agent or a publicist they will most likely ask you for a list of place’s you would like to have a book signing or a reading.  Chances are they have a business relationship with the event coordinators for those stores and will have a better chance at booking you than you will have on your own. If you don’t have an agent or publicist, don’t give up. Follow the stores on social media, share their events and most importantly attend other author’s events at the stores and get to know the employees.

Once you have an event scheduled you will need to do your best to get customers through the door. Social media alone will not work. You also cannot count on foot traffic in the store. Once people realize you are selling something they will go the other way. You need to be creative to get them in front of your table. I use chocolate and promotional items like book markers, pens and notebooks.

Chocolate is the reason

Print postcards and ask the book store to keep them on the counter, mail them to everyone on your address list and ask other stores if you can pin one on their bulletin board.

Print flyers, do an e-mail blast, send press releases (see PR post,) post the event on the calendars of every local newspaper and magazine (online and in print if available,) write a blog post, social media posts  and place a small add in your local newspaper.

Once the promoting is done it is time to completely stress out over what to wear, just kidding (no I’m not!)

Other suggestions for book signing/reading locations:

  • Libraries
  • Gift shops
  • Book Fairs
  • Holiday Fairs
  • Charity Events
  • Book Clubs

Did you know that if you go into a library and donate paperback books it is possible (highly likely) they will be thrown in the trash can? Libraries prefer hardcover books. Like bookstores they also use their own major distributors to order books.  Ask the librarian what their policy is before leaving books. You would be better off donating books to Hospice facilities and homeless shelters if they will take them.

Happy Writing,

Doreen

I will be at the Big Blue Marble Book Store on August 1,2015-/551CarpenterLane/Philadelphia/19119/ Time 7:00pm. There will be lots of chocolate and cupcakes. For more info:

https://www.facebook.com/events/1608653506076683/

 

 

 

It’s Wednesday I must be Insecure…

The first Wednesday of every month is officially

Insecure Writer’s Support Group day #IWSG

IWSG badge

Post your thoughts on your own blog. Talk about your writing doubts and the fears you have or have conquered. Discuss your struggles and triumphs. Offer a word of encouragement for others who are struggling. Visit others in the group and connect with your fellow writer – aim for a dozen new people each time.

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!

To join us, sign up here:

http://www.insecurewriterssupportgroup.com/p/iwsg-sign-up.html

Visit our Facebook Page here:

https://www.facebook.com/groups/IWSG13

Let’s rock the neurotic writing world!

It is also Writing Wednesday

Typewriter Pink

Writing Wednesday is the day I like to share what I have learned on my journey from writing to publishing to marketing my first book and then doing it again. The type of information I wish someone would have shared with me, back then.

Summer Writing Slow Down

I am officially fighting the summer writing slow down. Of course it would hit me when I have a final draft deadline for my 3rd book on August 1st, my second book being released in September and numerous freelance projects that are due in July. Yikes.

There is no good excuse for me not sitting down to write because I am on medical leave from my day job.

The only thing I have to blame is the summer. I want to sit by the water with my husband, walk through the park, play with my grandchildren and take naps.

Florida Does Beach Feet

I’ve been sleeping in and it feels so good but it must stop. I’m writing it and saying it out loud. I will be in my chair writing from 6am-10am. No social media, no e-mail, no phones, just piling up the word count. I think I can make it work if I give myself some time each day to enjoy being outside or taking a nap.

Writing is hard

I can do this, right?

Do you neglect your blog and your writing once the thermostat heats up? If I didn’t have these deadlines I would allow myself to slow down for a few weeks. How about you?

Happy Writing,

Doreen

Fall Schedule  is filling up. I hope to see you…

 August 1, 2015-Blue Marble Book Store/551 Carpenter Lane/Philadelphia/19119/ Time-TBD/Panel

September 3, 2015– I will be facilitating a workshop at the 2015 Power Conference/ ‘Books Are The New Business Cards’ Registration info coming soon…

The 2015 Power Conference

The Power Conference will take place Thursday, September 3 at the Montgomery County, Maryland Conference Center/North Bethesda Marriott (near White Flint Metro).  The Power Conference is an annual business development conference for women in business in the greater Washington, DC area, that includes over 40 business workshops led by professionals/experts, a tradeshow with 90+ exhibitors, a Booksellers Cafe for women authors, an inspirational keynote lunch, and a  presentation of the annual StartRight! Business Plan Competition winners.  More than 800 people attend this conference.  

September 16, 2015– Boscov’s/1067 Baltimore Pike/Media/19063/ 6-8p.m./Author Panel

September 21,2015-Ridley Township Library/100 E. Mac Dade Blvd./

Folsom/19033 Social Media Workshop/ 6-8pm

 

 

 

 

 

 

Writing Wednesday…Post PWC

Writing Wednesday

Typewriter Pink

Wednesday is the day I share what I have learned on my journey from writing to publication, marketing and writing and publishing again. If you have any questions please feel free to leave them in the comments and I will do my best to answer them. If you have any tips please share them with us in the comments…

Post Philadelphia Writers Conference

I hadn’t attended the Philadelphia Writers Conference for a few years because my schedule and life got in the way. This year I was determined to make it and I am so glad I did.

No matter where you are in your writing career, a beginner or a best- selling author I believe there is something we can all learn by networking with other writers.

The Philadelphia Writers’ Conference represents a broad range of writing categories, including fiction, nonfiction, and poetry, as well as editing and public relations.

The annual June conference attracts conferees from most of the United States as well as a few from Canada, although the core of attendance is still from the Tri-State area.

The conference was held at the Wyndham Philadelphia. I decided to stay in the hotel this year to get the complete conference experience. I was a bit disappointed that so many writers chose not to stay in the hotel.

Our room was beautiful but I have to say the service at the front desk and of the hotel in general was horrible. The restaurant was atrocious. We ordered lunch, only salads and after an hour and ten minutes we had still not received them and in fact they never arrived. We attended our afternoon workshops hungry.

I shared a room with Toni McCloe, a friend from the Lower Bucks Creative Explorers writing group. Toni is the author of Rude Awakening. (A powerful story with Philadelphia roots.)

We checked into our room at 8:30 Friday morning, dropped our suitcases off in the room and hurried down to the lobby to meet fabulous friends, Kelly Deeny, Helene Cohen Bludman and Cathy Sikorski.

PWC Friends

The opening speaker was Sara Shepard. Her bestselling young adult series, Pretty Little Liars, is loosely based on her experiences growing up on Philadelphia’s Main Line. The book series has also inspired the ABC Family television series of the same name.

author sara shepard book cover

 

In a more informal session later that day Sara shared some tips on protecting ourselves and our work should we be lucky enough to have interest from film or TV producers.

author sara shepard 2

The workshop that I got the most out of was short story writing facilitated by Fran Wilde. I signed up for this workshop because I needed some inspiration to get some of the shorter stories I have rolling around in my head on to paper, before I forget what those ideas are.

Fran Wilde writes science fiction and fantasy.   She’s taught writing and digital media at two colleges, a high school for the creative arts, and a long-distance program for young writers.

Her first novel, Updraft will be published by Tor in September 2015.

I also signed up for a Free Verse workshop. Ken Pobo teaches courses in literature and creative writing at Widener University, where he has won the prestigious Lindback Award for teaching. The award was well deserved he was very inspiring and his workshop sessions went SO fast. I used to love writing poetry. The last poem I wrote was for a memorial service for my brother who was murdered in a road rage attack. Since then I haven’t been able to write poetry. I needed inspiration to try again and for me the class was a success. Ken and other attendees have inspired me to try again.

Apples to Writers, a sort of writing prompt game was hosted by the brand new PWC Board President, Jim Knipp. Jim is the author of over a dozen short stories and several novels. I was so nervous to participate but it turned out to be a lot of fun. How could it not be, Jim is fabulous!

I love all writers and have very few favorites. Stephen Fried is one of my favorites so I was thrilled that he was the keynote speaker for Saturday’s Awards Banquet. Stephen is an award-winning investigative journalist and essayist, and an adjunct professor at Columbia University’s graduate school of journalism. He is the author of the highly praised books Thing of Beauty: The Tragedy of Supermodel Gia, Bitter Pills: Inside the Hazardous World of Legal Drugs, The New Rabbi, and Husbandry: Sex, Love & Dirty Laundry—Inside the Minds of Married Men.

author stephen fried

Stephen’s best-known magazine article is “Cradle to Grave,” his investigation into the deaths of all ten children of Marie and Arthur Noe, which led police to reopen the 30-year-old Philadelphia case as a murder investigation. The day after the story was released to authorities, the Noes were taken in for questioning and Marie Noe confessed, and later pleaded guilty to multiple charges of murder. For his role in the case, Fried received a medal—he became the first journalist ever to receive the Medal of Honor from the Vidocq Society, the elite international group of criminologists, pathologists and police investigators.

Fried’s wife, Diane Ayres is a fiction writer and the author of Other Girls. He shared some funny stories with us on what it is like to be a nonfiction writer living with a fiction writer.

I am a fan because Stephen writes about mental health, crime and the pharmaceutical industry and that is what I write and like his writing has done I can only hope that my work will one day make a difference the way his has.

Author Stephen Fried Cover

Another exciting but extremely nerve wracking event was the opportunity to pitch a literary agent. I have no idea why I let my friends talk me into it but I did and it went well. Do I have a new agent? Stay tuned, more on that experience later.

I also had the pleasure of meeting Ayesha Hamid, editor of Philadelphia Stories. I am looking forward to submitting an essay to them later this month.

Philadelphia Stories

Finally, I had the pleasure of meeting Facebook friend, Kerry Gans who is also fabulous as well as several other social media friends. I just love meeting people that I feel like I already know, in real life.

The conference was a great experience and I got out of it exactly what I needed which was the inspiration to go home and write like crazy.

Happy Writing,

Doreen

 

Media Kits for writers…

Writing Wednesday

Typewriter Pink

Wednesday is the day I share what I have learned on my journey from writing to publication, marketing and writing and publishing again. If you have any questions please feel free to leave them in the comments and I will do my best to answer them. If you have any tips please share them with us…

Media Kits

Once you become a published author you have no idea who may be stalking visiting your website. If a member of the media visits looking for information on you and/ or your book what will they find? This information will help them decide to call you for an interview or not. Professional bloggers should have media kits too.

Does your site appear professional?

Do you have up to date blog posts and current information?

Is the site easy to navigate? Is information easy to find?

Do you have an easily accessible media kit?

Media kit photo

 

Sadly my answer to most of those questions is no. With a new book coming out late summer/ early fall I need to update my media kit and my site as soon as possible.

Your media kit should be easy to find on your website and should include:

2 author bios. 1 long and 1 short (200 words or less)

Include several current and professionally done author photos, (350 dpi.) All of the photos do not all have to be headshots.

radio

If you have any early reviews include a few lines from the best ones.

Any writing or blog awards

Sample interview questions and answers (3 or 4)

Links to podcasts of TV or radio interviews you have done. If you don’t have any, have a friend interview you and create a video.

Press Club Comcast 2

A press release

Complete contact information for you, your agent, publicist and/ or your publisher

It took you months or maybe even years to write your book. It is a good idea to spend at least a few days working on your media kit and also a good idea to have your editor look it over.

Happy writing,

Doreen

 

 

 

Writing Conferences…

A-to-Z ROAD TRIP

Writing Wednesday

Typewriter Pink

Wednesday is the day I share what I have learned on my journey from writing to publication, marketing and writing and publishing again. If you have any questions please feel free to leave them in the comments and I will do my best to answer them. If you have any tips please share them with us in the comment section.

 

Preparing for a Writers Conference

As writers one of the best investments we can make in our business/career is to attend as many conferences and workshops as we can afford. To get the most out of our investment we need to be prepared.

Have you followed all of the presenters, agents, the event itself and other attendees on social media? Learn as much as you can about each of them. You might be able to pick up a conversation starter that can break the ice. They might even remember something witty that you tweeted.

Bring plenty of business cards, pens and a notebook. When someone hands you a business card jot a note on the back of it, something to help you remember who the person was.  Do not bring written pitches to hand out.

pen and box

Prepare your pitch. Can you describe your manuscript in two to three sentences? Describe yourself and your book in ninety-seconds? This is the single most important thing you can do for yourself. Prepare that pitch and practice, practice, practice.

Dress appropriately. Agents and editors are professionals and they are looking for professional writers. You don’t have to suit up but I would say wear your best business casual.

Workshops Kara and Emily

Don’t monopolize an agents time. Everyone is there to meet them. They will not remember you favorably if you are a conversation hog. They want to meet everyone. Keep the ninety-second rule in mind and practice!

No matter where you are in your writing process there is always something to learn. Take the time to listen.

Relax, smile, socialize, make new writer friends and have fun!

Quote writer quote about haters

Who is going to the Philadelphia Writer’s Conference?

http://pwcwriters.org/why-the-philadelphia-writers-conference/2015-workshops-and-events/

I hope to see you there!

Happy Writing,

Doreen

The Stranger in My Recliner has a cover. It’s almost a real book!

Sophie Book Cover

 

 

 

Finally…

Friday Fragments are bits and pieces of your week that are usually brief; too short for a stand-alone post, but too good to discard. Collect humorous observations, “Heard” items, other small gems and put them together in a Friday Fragments post. Then leave a link to your Friday Fragments post and link back to our host Mrs. 4444 at Half-Past Kissin’ Time.

Friday Fragments Summer logo

It’s not too late to join in on the fun and we would love to have you!

Finally! The weather is a perfect 72 degrees, this morning. It feels like spring.

My granddaughter, Adriana Jean is 6-years-old today. She has brought so much joy and fun into our family. Six is so grown-up but she will always be the baby in her family. Her big brother Dominic will be 13 in two-weeks and her sister Allyson will be 20 in September. OMGoodness I am going to have a 20-year-old granddaughter, yikes!

Adriana Lost tooth

She lost her first baby tooth and was thrilled to find dollars under her pillow. I like her tooth fairy. Mine left a nickel and a pack of Trident.

I finally received the mock-up of the book cover for The Stranger in My Recliner. It is growing on me. Now I am anxiously waiting on the release date. I cannot wait to share Sophie’s story with everyone. What do you think of the cover?

Sophie Book Cover

What is going on in Texas? I have been praying for my friends and relatives who are dealing with flooding and no power and it is still raining. My uncle who lives in Texas had a 20-pound-racoon fall through his roof at 4:00 this morning. I hope his week gets better, he needs some sun.

Two weeks from today is finally the start of the Philadelphia Writer’s Conference. I haven’t attended for a few years now so I am really looking forward to listening and learning but most importantly I am looking forward to hanging out with some of my favorite writers. So excited!

And one week after that is finally our annual family beach vacation.

Of course I am hoping, finally for some kind of good news from the surgeon I am seeing on Tuesday about my pelvic congestion. I am praying for a non-invasive fix. I don’t want to miss the conference or the beach. Please think good thoughts for me.

TV has been pretty boring this week. I have new guilty pleasures. Married-The First Year-ended last week and one of the couples said they won’t be backL. ‘Arranged’ is a strange one but I am fascinated by the craziness and Married at First Sight has me hooked too. I am really rooting for these couples. These two are ending next week but Sunday is finally the season premiere of Halt and Catch Fire. This show kind of picks up where, Mad Men left off. It took a couple of episodes to get hooked but I love it now.

Halt and Catch Fire 1

I am finally, back to working on book #3, The Father’s Pain. This one may be my last nonfiction for awhile. I am looking forward to making some stuff upJ

This weekend will finally be quiet for us.  We need to rest-up. What are you up to?

Have a blessed weekend,

Doreen

Quote live each day the best

Social writers? hmmm…

Writing Wednesday

Typewriter Pink

Writing/Critique Groups  and  Writing Classes/Workshops

A good writing and or critique group can be such a good resource for writers no matter where they are in their writing process. These groups are the best place to receive constructive, honest criticism from people who expect the same in return.

Writing classes and workshops are also good resources. The business of publishing is evolving rapidly so no matter where you are in your writing, classes and or workshops are a good place to keep up to date with those changes. They are also a safe place to receive honest feedback and advice from like minded people.

If your family is like mine it has members that love and are proud of everything you do and members that are critical of everything you do. It is much wiser to get feedback for your writing from other writers.

Writing is such a solitary process. For most of us it can be extremely difficult to step out of our safe writing caves and share our work with others but it is a necessary process and so worth it if we want to be the best writer’s we can be.

On- line writing groups and workshops are good for education and inspiration but in -real -life groups are the best place to socialize and are invaluable when it comes to promotion.

Members of a good group or class will keep you educated and motivated.

Where do you find these classes and groups? Most community colleges offer a variety of writing, publishing and marketing classes. In local newspapers you might be able to find a workshop.

Workshop photo 2

Writing groups can be found by doing a Google search of your town and writing group. You can also find groups on the Meet-Up sight.

You may have to visit a few groups before you find one that fits. I suggest giving the group a chance by visiting two or three times before making a decision.

If you can’t find a group that seems to be a perfect fit for you, start one!

Quote writers soul

I belong to two-writing groups. One group meets every Wednesday at a, Panera Bread. It’s an- hour drive for me but I love the group so the drive is worth it. I am so grateful to, Kelly the facilitator of the group. She is a talented writer and blogger and a friend. The members of the group are so positive and supportive and that is because of Kelly’s leadership.

Do you belong to a group? Have you taken any classes or attended a workshop recently? What did you take-away from them?

Happy writing,

Doreen

For a little inspiration, visit:

http://kellydeeny.com/2015/05/23/petals-of-appreciation-campaign-memorial-day/

 

 

 

 

 

 

Girlfriends, Showers and Horses…

Friday Fragments are bits and pieces of your week that are usually brief; too short for a stand-alone post, but too good to discard. Collect humorous observations, “Heard” items, other small gems and put them together in a Friday Fragments post. Then leave a link to your Friday Fragments post and link back to our host Mrs. 4444 at Half-Past Kissin’ Time.

Friday Fragments new logo

It’s not too late to join in on the fun and we would love to have you!

Just when I started to have a glimmer of hope that my Phillies might be turning a corner and starting to click because they won six games in a row they went and lost two games. It’s a bit too early to be looking forward to the Eagles and Tim Tebow so maybe tonight…

Phillies ball

Did you watch the Madmen finale? It took me until the next morning to get it. I think it was because I was so sad to see it end.

We started to watch Halt and Catch Fire and by the 3rd episode we were hooked. The 2nd season starts next week, can’t wait.

https://youtu.be/qJN2JN3_N_4

The past few years I have volunteered to wrap up the gift baskets for fun charity event, The Girlfriend Gala. It is an annual celebration of our girlfriends and a fundraiser. The host of the Happy Hour Radio Show, author, speaker and friend, Annmarie Kelly founded the annual celebration several years ago. When I first attended the event I was brand new to this county and only barely knew two people at the event. This year I knew almost everyone and still met four amazing women that I hope will become good friends before next year. Do you have an event in your area that celebrates girlfriends?

Gift Bags for Gala Gift Baskets for Gala

This year’s benefactor was the Phil*Hanna Fund, which was started by another friend, Pam Mariani. The fund was started to memorialize Pam’s mother Philomena and her birth mother, Hanna. The fund is a semi-annual scholarship for a non-traditional nursing student at Delaware County Community College.

The comedy portion of the event was provided by elder attorney, brand new author, speaker and friend the hysterical Cathy Sikorski. If you are looking for something different, (and very funny for a change) to read check out Cathy’s book, Showering with Nana.

http://www.amazon.com/Showering-With-Nana-Confessions-Caregiver/dp/0692440410

Author Cathy Sikorski Cover

What a difference a few years can make. I was so homesick and lonely and here I am blessed with the best girlfriends a woman could ask for.

This weekend I am going to attend the Devon Horse Show for the first-time as an adult with the most fabulous girlfriends. Yikes, I really need a hat. What do you have planned for this holiday weekend?

Have a fabulous and blessed weekend,

Doreen

 

 

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