Retiring my Old HubPages Profile

Laura is secretly handling the Canadian World Domination plot. It’s all very polite and litter free but for the odd moose rampage.

Laura is an eccentric and reclusive ASCII artist. In her spare time she is a freelance writer, running several blogs and social media type sites. She calls herself an Earth Witch (or a Pagan atheist) when no one in particular is listening.

Laura disappears for hours, even days on urban and rural explorations. She travels with the wrong shoes and the right Ontario road map, looking for ruined buildings and abandoned farm houses.

Laura collects postcards, stones, old Canadian coins, bone china bouquets, hand drawn maps, dust bunnies, books about writing, dragons (real ones) and assorted oddities to which she won’t confess. She likes to crochet, embroider, crazy quilt and sew. Her Grandmother used to say, “Once Laura sews on a button it never comes off again.”

“Adorable, in a wicked, modest way that only the ego-maniacal can pull off.” – Says Gracie (friend and fellow web writer).

“This girl writes like other people breathe.” Comment from a regular reader.

Canadian freewriting niche blogger. Online since 1996.

This profile was written by Laura who thinks no one should have to type their own name this many times in a row.

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http://thatgrrl.hubpages.com/hubs/latest?rss

Just seemed like time for a change. Not even sure what I will do with two accounts on the same site. I would have stuck to just one but with the merge from Squidoo we all had to start fresh, new accounts on HubPages.

Individual Bloggers Need Their Own Niche

Top 5 Ways to Master Online Content

1. Optimize, Not Compromise

Content farms are so obsessed with Search Engine Optimization (SEO) that they prioritize search terms within content over logical narrative. Worry less about how Google indexes, and focus on delivering great information about potential keywords.

5. Find Your Niche

Being an expert at one thing is better than being knowledgeable on many things. Do research on a specific area of interest. Find what is under-represented and fill the void.

via Too long. Didn’t read. – The Writer.

I think finding your niche (actually, creating your niche) is the real way for individual writers online these days. We can’t compete with the amount of general content on the content farm sites. Even as a writer on one of the content farm sites we seldom stand out enough to make enough money. So, the key is to stand out on your own in some way. Find your niche, something you can sustain, and then get into promoting it so people will begin to find you out here in the vast online wilderness.

Toponymy

Toponymy is, by definition, the place names of a particular region and the study of those place names. It is derived, in fact, from the two Greek words topos – meaning place and onoma – meaning name. A toponymist will look at not only the surface meaning of the name in question, but also at the history of the area.

via h2g2 – Canadian Toponymy.

Toponymy is a new word to me. I like the idea behind it. What writer doesn’t love words and word lore and history?

Who’re is Not a Word

This was a word sent out in a newsletter by a writer, for writers: who’re.

I had to look twice. I thought it was whore for a spilt second. But that didn’t use the punctuation and it made no sense in the sentence.

Who’re, on the other hand, is not a word. Not a real word. It is a mangled word which should be who are. I don’t think even who are was used right. But, it was better than who’re.

Which sounds to you?:

Who are you?

OR

Who are coming?

Who are reading?

Who are writing?

etc.

I do not promise to be a great or perfect writer, especially when it comes to grammar. But, I try to keep up the standards as I have risen to thus far. Meaning, I try not to sink any lower than I already am. Lets all try to do the same, if not better.

Why Do they Keep Saying Blogging is Dead?

Blogging isn’t dead. Blogging is publishing and publishing online is just beginning to evolve.Where can you take your own site once you get started? Never think you are stuck in one direction or theme or can not change your point of view or your voice as a writer online. If you have gone as far as you want to, take another direction and talk about something that works for you as you have evolved now. The web (Internet) is developing – there is no need for it to stagnate or die.

via Blogging Is Dead (Again) | Six Pixels of Separation – Marketing and Communications Blog – By Mitch Joel at Twist Image.

Micro Fiction: Horror

MicroHorror.

micro horror

What’s this all about?

The mission of MicroHorror.com is to be the Web’s premier free repository for horror microfiction. We went live on May 7, 2006. Come and enjoy the stories, and if you’re a writer, we invite you to contribute.

What is microfiction?

Microfiction is also referred to as flash fiction or short-short stories. The general goal of a microfiction author is to tell a story, set a mood or depict a scene in as few words as possible. There is no official limit on how long a story can be before it no longer qualifies, but on MicroHorror.com, you will find no stories longer than 666 words.

What’s so special about horror microfiction?

Unfortunately, this is a question that can only be answered by an opinion. As for me, I’m a horror fan just like I assume you to be. I like to be scared and disturbed by what I read. I also love short-short stories, and love the emotional impact that can be crammed into a few well chosen words. Horror, I’ve come to believe, is particularly well suited to the microfiction form, and the best horror microfiction can be as brief and shocking as a punch to the stomach.

What are the guidelines for submitting stories?

There are three main rules for submissions: Stories need to be in the horror genre, they need to be under 666 words, and most importantly, they need to be written by you.

Working as a Writer

“I enjoyed work, I really did. I began to realise how simple life could be if one had a regular routine to follow and fixed hours and a fixed salary and very little original thinking to do. The life of a writer is absolute hell compared with the life of a business man. The writer has to force himself to work. He has to make his own hours and if he doesn’t go to his desk at all there is nobody to scold him. If his is a writer of fiction he lives in a world of fear. Each new day demands new ideas and he can never be sure whether he is going to come up with them or not. Two hours of writing fiction leaves this particular writer absolutely drained. For those two hours he has been miles away, he has been somewhere else, in a different place with totally different people, and the effort of swimming back into normal surroundings is very great. It is almost a shock. The writer walks out of his workroom in a daze. … A person is a fool to become a writer. His only compensation is absolute freedom. He has no master except his own soul, and that, I am sure, is why he does it.” – Roald Dahl

Stop Wasting Your Time… on Titles that Don’t Say Enough

Are you losing potential readers because you don’t post enough information when you try to lure them into your posts?

We read so many leading titles that have promise and then don’t deliver. As writers, we need to give people enough information that they can connect to something we have written about and want to read more. Skipping details might bring curiosity but if the connection is lacking, or not there at all, it just won’t work.

Last night on Twitter I read a Twitter post promoting an article. It sparked my interest but, there wasn’t enough information to make me actually want to click it. In trying to catch my attention the writer was trying to be mysterious and (I guess) provoke my curiousity. It did, but not enough for me to open another window on my web browser.

So I posted back to her on Twitter for more detail. She replied back and said I’d have to click/ read the article to find out.

But, the fact is that I don’t have to. Not at all.


The fact is that her article is just one more in the pack. I didn’t click the link and read it. If she had said it was about surviving cancer, or surviving a plane crash, or surviving a two-year-old temper tantrum… one of those would have been that bit of extra information that would have given me enough reason to read her article. By choosing to keep the mystery she lost my interest.

Even more importantly, I didn’t connect to her article. I didn’t feel it applied to me enough that I needed to read it. That bit of missing information made all the difference.