Alltop in Decay

Alltop – Top Writing News.

Addendum: Before you read this post know that Alltop fixed the broken and doubled links. I don’t know who in particular did it but I’m very glad they did!

alltop in decay

Looking at Alltop, the Writing section which my site is a part of, is sad. I was so pleased and proud to be one of the sites asked to join originally. But, now that is tarnished as Alltop seems to be yet another website which has been sold and left to fall into linkrot.

On this Writing category page there are three sites which obviously are no longer active. Two are the same site, a double listing, even. No one seems to be looking, fixing or caring what happens to Alltop.

I’m sad to see another site crumble in the dust of making a buck.

I don’t blame site owners. If you put all of that into getting a site off the ground and were successful you might play with your laurels a bit and then be happy to take a great offer. Money enough to let you sit on your laurels and not have to work so hard again, if ever.

I know, in part, why people buy a site which has gotten big and I can understand that they don’t have the stamina or passion or whatever to keep it from falling apart. But, why do some of them deliberately buy a site and then abandon it?

It happens far too often.

I like photographing abandoned houses because they are sad, lonely and maybe I wonder about the story behind them too – the mystery. It doesn’t seem the same with abandoned sites. They fall apart in the wrong way. There is no romance to it, just decay.

Writers Needed for Christmas in Canada

EXCITING NEWS FOR WRITERS!
From Janet Matthews

Canadian Co-author of
Chicken Soup for the Canadian Soul

We need your stories for a brand new Canadian title…

Chicken Soup for the Soul
Christmas in Canada!

101 Stories about the Joy and Wonder of the Holidays, Canadian Style!

I’m very excited to let you, as writers, know about this great opportunity to get published. I’m hoping you will forward it to your members, include it in your newsletter, and/or post it on your website. Here’s why:
In October we released O Canada The Wonders of Winter,and the publisher was so pleased they’ve asked us to create another Canadian title for Christmas 2014! We received submissions from writers across Canada that belong to groups like this, and many of them were published!

We need true, dramatic stories, 1200 words or less, that take place at Christmas time in Canada. (Yes, you get paid!) Here are just some examples of topics:
• Festivals of lights, Hanukkah, Boxing Day, New Year’s and other holiday traditions and events that come with a great story
• Creches, passion plays and church events
• The fun – or challenges – of winter weather at Christmas
• Adapting your celebration when the weather gets in the way (like the 2013 ice storms – we KNOW there are some great stories out there – do you have one?)
• The tree… and other decorating traditions
• Love and Romance at Christmas
• Acts of kindness and generosity – in the true spirit of Christmas
• Hockey!…and all winter sports at Christmas
• Family ties and reunions, children, and friends old and new
• Heroes in our midst – at Christmas
• Neighbours and Community, and Christmas in Canada for new Canadians
• Animals at Christmas
• Family lore – those stories you tell over and over again!
• Christmas in the north – First Nation stories

Our publication date is October 2014, so the deadline for stories is May 30th.
For full writers guidelines and how to submit your story, visit my website, www.janetmatthews.ca or www.canadiansoul.com.

I wish you great success, and I really hope to hear from you!

Love to you,
Janet Matthews
Co-author of
Chicken Soup for the Canadian Soul &
Chicken Soup for the Soul O Canada
The Wonders of Winter
janet@janetmatthews.ca
PS: One more thing. It would be so great if you could pass this message along to your friends and family and other writers…who may have a story! EVERY bit of help is really appreciated!

Trust Your Wings

From Twitter:

@jenniegarth: A bird sitting on a tree is never afraid of the branch breaking because her trust is not on the branch but on her own wings.

I don’t follow Jennie Garth (the US actress) so it was just chance that I read her Twitter post after watching Holidaze (an Xmas romance) on TV last night. I love the quote. I haven’t looked for it to see where it originated.

Paranormal and Urban Fantasy Authors I Have Liked

This post is a place to share the books and authors I really have enjoyed. I follow most of these writers on Twitter as well. I like to see how their writing routine works – when they’re actually writing and not just talking to hopeful writers. I also hear about what they are working on and what’s coming next in the series. Plus, they announce contests on Twitter and their websites too.

My favourite books in the paranormal/ urban fantasy genre have humour along with vampires, dragons, werewolves, witches, ghosts, and all the rest. The humour brings a story and especially a character, to life for me. Without humour they seem kind of flat on the page. Even a villain can have a wicked sense of humour.

I don’t like a lot of sex either. It just gets boring pretty fast. I write my own erotica and romance so it could be I’m just taking it for granted or smothered in the stuff when it comes to reading it. When it comes to sex in books I usually skip it. If a book has a lot of sex scenes and I’m turning a page, then another page and still another couple of pages after that, I lose interest. Too much mucking around with sex and the action and the storyline suffer for it.

The Paranormal and Urban Fantasy Writers I have Liked (So Far)

Reader Groups

Read Some Reviews and Find New Writers to Try

Selling Manuscripts

Originally posted to SuiteU, part of Suite101. SuiteU is being removed from the site. I wanted to save the ecourses so this resource would not disappear.

Selling Manuscripts

By Dawn Whitmire

Introduction

You’ve just finished your manuscript or maybe you have the finish line in sight. Are you wondering what next? In between editing your book and preparing the query letter to your targeted agent or editor, there’s a step you must take….writing the synopsis.

If you’re like I was a few years back, your face is wrinkling right now and the dread is settling in. What if I were to tell you it didn’t have to be that way? What if I could show you a quick, precise way to write your synopsis and make it as enjoyable as writing the manuscript? What if I could make you look forward to your book’s ending just so you could get to the synopsis? Or maybe even help you to write the synopsis as you wrote the book.

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E-Publishing

This was originally part of the Suite101 University ecourses. They are all being taken down from the site, sometime soon. I have preserved some because they are worth keeping. It seems a shame to lose something which has value and had so much effort put into it’s creation.

E-Publishing

By Dawn Whitmire

Introduction

“Catch the Wave — Become an E- Publisher”

Anyone with a computer will tell you e-commerce and e-publishing are definite waves of the future. More and more e-publishers are popping up over the Internet and it’s not surprising others want a piece of this pie. If you’ve thought about becoming an e-publisher, this course is for you. However, let’s be frank. This is not an easy job where you’ll make quick money overnight. E-publishing takes investment of your time and knowledge. You have to be willing to learn that which you do not know and to find someone who can teach you. If you’re reviewing this course introduction, the thought has crossed your mind or maybe you know someone who is interested in venturing into the wide world of e-publishing. Can we show you how? Absolutely. Can we make you a success? Absolutely … not. That will be up to you. Your success will depend upon your devotion to your task and your drive to succeed. We can give you the steps to take; we cannot infuse you with determination.

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Writers Can Learn from Romance Readers

The ABCs of Romance: The Duke of Slut, Mary Sue, TSTL, and More!.

Mary Sue/Gary Stu: A critical term reserved for badly-written protagonists who are too perfect—they are simply good at everything, everyone except the Bad Guys loves them, and they have no discernable character flaws. Mary Sues are generally disliked because, since they have no problems of their own, the conflicts they confront tend to be contrived. As well, with no flaws or quirks, many of them are simply not interesting.

Which of these have you done when writing fictional characters? I think I’m holding back on writing longer fiction cause I am horrified that my characters, so carefully developed, will be labeled as any one of these. Mary Sue/ Gary Stu being the one I fear the most!

Still, forewarned is… forewarned. This is a good list. Writers beware!

Happy Bubbles for Romance Writers

via What every romance writer needs – Writers Write.
These are my top picks from the “ten things every romance writer needs to stay ensconced in that iridescent, happy bubble of handsome heroes and happily-ever-after”.

2. Stock phrases. Keep a list of stock phrases pinned up at your writing desk. ‘There was a maddening arrogance about the man’, ‘His tongue sent shivers of desire racing through her.’ Not great writing, but they’ll help you when you’re stuck.

4. Secret crush. Nothing keeps us in the romantic mood like a little celebrity crush. It could be the weather guy on e.tv, George Clooney or even Johnny Bravo – as long as we can have a guilty little pleasure whenever we see them.

6. Something sensuous. You need to feel like you’re something special when you’re writing. Spray your favourite perfume on your wrists, write your sex scene in a candle-lit bath, or wrap a cashmere wrap around your shoulders.

10. Sense of humour. Writing romance novels requires as much work as any other novel, but never forget that you’re dealing with fantasy and fairy tales and Ferraris into the sunset. Keep your tongue in cheek. Keep some levity.

Writing Erotica

I can’t find Linda Orlando (she originally posted this as a course on Suite101). The link with her name comes up broken, 404. I think I talked to her once, when she was starting the topic there. At the time I was in flux with Suite101, either leaving or thinking of returning. In the end I left it behind. I might have talked to Linda more if I had stayed. But… that’s how it goes.

I don’t have permission to post this, but it was a freely given erotica writing course on the site. I’d like to see the content kept available. All my original content written for Suite101 has disappeared into some mysterious abyss and I never made a cent for any of it. Not getting paid bothers me less than the fact that everything I wrote is gone. I seem to be silly about keeping a copy of what I write. I don’t start keeping copies until it’s all about to disappear, if I get the early warning. That doesn’t always happen. Beware ye writers!

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