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Poetry exchange

flying bookAttention poets: Poetry Super Highway is once again sponsoring a world-wide poetry exchange. Sign up to send someone a book of your poetry, and someone else in the exchange will send a book of poetry to you.

For complete information and to register, visit
http://poetrysuperhighway.com/psh/great_poetry_exchange/

 

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announcement-smallThe new year brings with it new opportunities for writing, publishing, and networking. Here are a few that have shown up in the ECWG in-box:

Call for personal essays
Word limit: 750
Deadline: 17 Feb. 2018
Description: Kentucky and North Caroline writers are invited to contribute to a collection of essays to be printed in spring 2018. Publication will coincide with the 250th anniversary of an event in the life of Daniel Boone. Selected essays will resonate with the theme of making do/bearing up/overcoming adversity and should be about true-life experiences of the writer or someone the writer knows personally.
Cost: $6 reading fee per submission
Information: http://www.danielboonefootsteps.com/in-the-classroom

Writing conference
Date: Saturday 24 Mar. 2018
Deadline: early registration 20 Mar. 2018
Description: 7th annual conference sponsored by Women Who Write. Open to all genders and genres. Program includes workshops, publishing panel, personal writing time, book fair, and optional pitch session with a literary agent. Keynote address by George Ella Lyon.
Location: New Albany IN
Cost: $55-80 (includes breakfast, lunch, and optional pitch session)
Information: http://womenwhowrite.com

The Writers’ Workshop of Asheville NC is seeking entries for their 27th annual Memoirs Contest. Submission deadline is November 30, 2017. For more information on entries, guidelines, and awards, visit their website:

http://www.twwoa.org

MemoirsFlyer2

libra scalesToday we are balanced at the very center of October, with fifteen days before us and fifteen days behind. (What a perfectly Libra thing to say!) That means you still have more than two weeks to prepare for NaNoWriMo – National Novel Writing Month (also known as November).

Lexington has almost 3,000 writers signed up to participate so far. Check out the Lexington page on the NaNoWriMo site to find out about meetings, parties, and write-ins scheduled throughout the month: https://nanowrimo.org/regions/usa-kentucky-lexington. (If you’re not from Lexington, click on the Regions link at the NaNoWriMo site to find your own local WriMo tribe.)

no-dumping-safety-sign-pv13-500x500Whether you write long or short forms, one of the trickiest things about fiction (and some non-fiction) is conveying background information. Too little information loses the reader through confusion; too much loses the reader through sidetracking (or boredom).

Once again, Jami Gold comes through with some concrete suggestions (complete with examples) for finding the difficult balance between “Huh?” and “TMI!” The technique discussed in her July 4 blog post has to do with point of view, which is brilliant because readers experience stories through the characters. Even a story with an omniscient narrator connects with readers via the characters.

So take some notes and tuck them away for the next time you’re revising or beta-reading. As helpful as it is to know what’s wrong, it’s even more helpful to have an idea about how to make it better.

The three Rs

Recycle001With Earth Day looming, it’s only fitting that Maja Todorovic of Business in Rhyme should remind us of the Three Rs of Writing:

Reduce: Take an old draft or something that doesn’t quite work; cut out all the stuff you don’t like; make something new out of what remains.

Reuse: Take old books, magazines, junk mail, grocery receipts – anything with words; cut or tear out words or phrases that strike you; arrange them into a poem, a paragraph, an outline, whatever.

Recycle: Find something you wrote a long time ago, when you were in a different state of mind; turn prose into poetry (or vice versa), rewrite it in a different voice, change 1st person to 3rd (or vice versa), revise the bejeezus out of it – use your old work to inspire something new.

(Reminder: There are still ten days left in National/Global Poetry Writing Month. It’s not too late to get your poetry on!)

Small-Blue-RGB-National-Poetry-Month-LogoHave you ever wondered why April is National Poetry Month in the U.S. (and other places as well)? Perhaps because both Geoffrey Chaucer and T.S. Eliot open epic poems with references to the month: “Whan that Aprille with his shoores soote” (Canterbury Tales) and “April is the cruellest month” (The Waste Land). Or perhaps because many English-speaking children learn this simplest of rhymes almost as soon as they can speak: “April showers bring May flowers.”

April is also National Poetry Writing Month, or NaPoWriMo. If you want some writing inspiration, any number of sites offer daily prompts:

(These work just as well for other types of writing, if poetry isn’t your thing.)

Whatever writing you do this month, take time to appreciate the poetry that already surrounds you in song lyrics, in mnemonic devices (30 days hath September…), in the everyday speech of your community.

Happy Poetry Month!