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Whether your summer is busy or relaxed, chances are it brings a shift in activities and schedule. Why not incorporate something to stimulate your writing life?

Poet Jeannine Hall Gailey offers a short list of easy (and fun) ideas for shaking the cobwebs out of your brain this summer: “Five Things You Can Do to Up Your Writer’s Game Over the Summer.”

I’ve already started on number five, making a summer reading list. Hey, if the kids are going to sit around reading, I might as well do the same. Do yourself a favor and make a new habit (one that feeds your writing habit) this summer.

Despite what some people say, head-hopping (shifting POV in a story without appropriate transition) is a fairly common problem in a lot of writing and an issue that every writer needs to pay attention to. Not because I (or anyone else) say so, but because it confuses the reader. I would even argue that a writer who *intends* to confuse the reader ought to be knowledgeable about head-hopping because it could be employed to that end with great effect.

The ever-helpful Jami Gold has posted a concise but comprehensive discussion of POV (Point of View: What Does Your Character Know?) on her blog. The post covers different types of POV (what they look like and how they are used), what can go wrong and suggestions for fixing it, and additional resources. As usual, Jami has done a bang-up job introducing the topic, and if the comments follow their usual pattern, the discussion there will almost be a workshop in itself.

Writing is often described as a solitary activity, which is both true and misleading. Many aspects of the work of writing are best done (for most of us) in solitude, though there are exceptions to every rule. But even the most reclusive of writers needs other people to do her work: editors, agents, publicists, dog walkers, baristas, family members, printers, postal carriers, etc.

Today’s post at Positive Writer highlights some of the most essential members of a writer’s team: Four People You Positively Need in Your Writing Life. It’s a quick read, but if you can’t come up with a name for each category, you owe it to yourself to spend a little time thinking about who you might recruit. Because good writing is most definitely not a solitary activity.

When we participate in a critique session, whether giving or receiving, we want to make the best use of everyone’s limited time as well as provide and come away with the most useful information. We can do both if we keep the essential things in mind.

Writing professional Janie Sullivan has posted a great article about the art of literary critique on her blog, Center for Writing Excellence. The key thing to remember is that a critique is an opinion, rather than an edit. Be sure to read the whole post (which is brief and wonderfully concise) because the devil is in the details, as we all know.

http://www.janiewrites.com/the-art-of-literary-critique/

Chuck Sambuchino, editor of Guide to Literary Agents and Writer’s Digest’s Children’s Writer’s and Illustrator’s Market, will be the featured presenter at a workshop in Louisville on Friday 6 February. Entitled “How to Get Published,” the day-long event will include sessions on publishing options, queries and pitches, critique, and marketing. Agents and editors will be also available to meet with authors throughout the day.

For more information and registration, visit http://kentuckywritingworkshop.com/.

Book coach and publishing expert Peggy DeKay will lead a workshop on self-publishing Saturday, 17 January, from 2:30-4:30 at the Village Branch of the Lexington Public Library. To get more information or make reservations, call 859-246-1607.

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business card graphicThis Saturday, 13 December, two ECWG members will be at book signings in the area, just in time for holiday giving.

Evelyn Christensen will be at the Half Price Books on Tiverton Way (off Nicholasville Road) in Lexington from 2-4 p.m.

Chris Kelder will be┬ábe at the Half Price Books on Sir Barton Way (off Man O’ War at Hamburg) in Lexington from 1-4 p.m.

Take some time on Saturday to stop by one or both of these events and say hello!

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