Writing tip for April 22, 2008

Join writing groups. This is very simple, yet very importatnt. You need to create a support group for yourself. Whether online or in your home area, these groups are very helpful in your growth as a writer. A few I suggest:






My Muse Described- a poem

My Muse Described


Fair of hair and soft pale skin

Never know what mood she’s in.

Sparkling eyes and soft full lips

Always leaves me rhyming tips

Filling my soul with words so sweet

No greater friend could you ever meet

Fickle one, who left me here

Abandoned me to drown in fear

We use to share our joys and dreams

You filled my mind with wondrous schemes

Will you ever come again

And write with me my wandering friend?


Candace Clayton


















I would have to say that my favorite genres to read or write would be either Historical, Fantasy, or Romance. I love to read or write Historicals, because I am a complete history nut and love anything remotely connected to history.

My favorite periods in history would be Medieval, The Civil War and World Wars I and II. Some of my favorite books in this genre are: Gone With The Wind, The Pillar Of Fire (Judith Tarr), and Eagle’s Cry (David Nevin). I love to write historical because I enjoy the research and learning involved in the plotting.

Fantasy is another favorite genre of mine because it allows me to escape day-to-day pressures and totally immerse myself in a completely fictionalized world. My favorite fantasy authors are J.R. Tolkien, C.S. Lewis, Piers Anthony and Terry Pratchett. Terry Pratchett’s Disc world Novels are hilarious and an excellent addition to the classic works of Tolkien and Lewis. I enjoy writing fantasy for the same reasons I enjoy reading it. It is good light-hearted fun and removes me from the stress that daily life can bring.

Romance is another genre I enjoy reading. It is not my favorite and I try not to write too much romance, but I like to read a sweet ending story every now and then. My favorite Romance author’s would be Danielle Steel, Catherine Coulter and Victoria Holt.

There are not too many genres that I don’t like or don’t read. I am an avid reader who has been known to read the mustard bottle on the table, simply because it was there. However, my least favorites are Erotica and Science Fiction. I never write these genres, though I have in a moment of desperation, because I have nothing else, read Science Fiction. My husband is a huge Science Fiction fan, so there are always books from that genre in the house.

If I pick up a book in the Erotica genre by accident, I will finish reading it. I just skip over some of the more detailed portions that I do not care to read. I can never start a story and not finish it. I have to know how it ends.

Just as in reading and writing, I usually pick movies in the same genres. I am enthralled by the Showtime series, The Tudors. I also watch the history channel and the discovery channel.

There are many genres and subgenres to choose from today. I have only touched on a few of them. So, what genres do you enjoy?


The Great Agent Search

The Great Agent Search

Permission to forward granted.

May 5-30
The Great Agent Search
Instructor: Jenna Petersen
Cost: $25.00 payable by PayPal
Deadline to Register: April 30th
Go to http://www.pasic. net/classes. html for more info and to register.

Whether they have finished their first manuscript or their tenth, many authors are overwhelmed by the daunting task of searching for an agent. This workshop breaks the agent search down and discusses common issues.

Part One: Who Needs An Agent?
In this section, I discuss the pros and cons to having an agent. I also talk a bit about what most agents do, both for an unpublished client and one who already has a contract to negotiate.

Part Two: How Do I Find An Agent?
This part deals with the actual searching portion of an agent search. I discuss, in detail, several methods of finding an agent, all based on my own experience (from personal agent searches and information garnered for my industry website).

Part Three: How Do I Attract the Attention of a Good Agent?:
We will discuss how to write a good query letter (for an agent or an editor), by breaking down each paragraph in a query. I will provide several examples.

Part Four: What Do I Do Now That I Have An Agent Interested In Me?
This section will help a potential client handle agent interest in a professional manner. It discusses everything from asking the right questions to following their gut when it’s right.

Part Five : What Do I Do Now That I’ve Hired An Agent?
Even after the Agent Search is over, many authors are still lost. So this section deals with what they should expect from most agents and how the relationship between author and agent shifts once they’ve hired someone.

Part Six: What If I Want to Fire My Agent?
This is one of the concepts I get the most questions on. Discusses reasons why you might fire your agent and how to go about doing it so that you don’t burn bridges.

Part Seven: But What If I Don’t WANT An Agent?
A final discussion on how an author can still pursue a romance career without dealing with an agent. Discusses approaching editors on your own and resources available to deal with your own contracts.

About the Instructor:
Jenna Petersen started writing full-time in 1999 when her husband said, “You’re only happy when you’re writing, why don’t you do that?” In 2004, her dream came true when her literary agent called to say she’d just sold two books to Avon.
Her releases include: Scandalous (October 2005), From London With Love (August 2006) and Desire Never Dies (January 2007), Seduction is Forever (October 2007) and the upcoming Lessons from a Courtesan (August 2008). She also writes erotic romance as Jess Michaels, and helped launch the Avon Red line with her novella in Parlor Games. Her next Jess Michaels release is Something Reckless (May 2008). She’s been a Bookscan and Waldenbooks Mass Market bestseller.

In addition, she has run The Passionate Pen since 1999. This popular site for aspiring authors gets nearly 200,000 hits per month and contains information on literary agents, publishing houses, articles about writing and the industry, links and Jenna’s Diary toward and beyond publication. You can find her at http://www.passionatepen. com and at http://www.jennapetersen. com.
Deadline to Register: April 30th
Go to http://www.pasic. net/classes. html for more info and to register.

Why I write

Why I Write:


I sit here looking at the title to this essay and ponder. Why do I write? Do I write for the enlightenment of others? Do I write because I have something of supreme importance to share with the world? Perhaps, I write so that other’s may understand the wonderfulness that is me.

Heck, no, I write because I must! I have a confession to make: I love words. Long words, short words, popular words, new words and old words. I love them all. I even read the dictionary to learn new words. So, why do I write? I write to make use of all the glorious words I have harbored in my mind.

You see, the downfall of my love affair with words, is that they fill up my mind and threaten to flow out my mouth at odd times. Unfortunately, most people do not talk the way I write, so they do not always appreciate the flexing of my mental muscles as much as I enjoy it.

In consequence, I must write. I need an outlet for the cornucopia of words floating around in my head and nothing soothes my mind like putting pen to paper. More recently, this has turned to putting fingers to keyboard, but the outcome is the same.

The advent of the blogging community has only increased my love of the written word. I find myself starting new blogs and joining so many online writers’ communities that I have barely left myself any time for writing. I spend more time reading and answering emails, than I actually do writing. A pitfall I must learn to watch out for in future.

So, in essence, I write because I must. Whether someone else reads it or not doesn’t matter. I just enjoy putting the words together to form someting new!

Key to divorce success for children: Developing a friendship with your ex-spouse

Key to divorce success for children: Developing a friendship with your ex-spouse:           

Unfortunately, the lack of friendship was a big factor in my divorce. My first marriage was filled with cliché reasons that led to our divorce. We married way to young. We married because I was pregnant. We came from very different backgrounds. I was raised in a very conservative home and he was raised in a very liberal home.

I am not saying we couldn’t have made it work. We could have, if we had been friends before we became lovers.  However, after ten years of marriage and two children, we could no longer pretend that everything was okay. We divorced.

Our divorce was very difficult for us, but it was even more so for our children. For many years after the divorce, we were unable to get past our hurt and anger and become friends. Eventually, though, we got to the point were we no longer argued every time we talked. Now, we are becoming friends.

I think that it has a lot to do with the fact that I actually forgave him. When I had forgiven him, then I was able to forgive myself. Forgiveness is one of the most important steps faced by ex-spouses after a divorce.

 Children need their parents to be strong and united, even if they are divorced or remarried. Raising healthy, happy, well-adjusted children is very difficult. Even for parents in a marriage with a strong foundation. We all have to learn to forgive and forget the past. After you have gotten a divorce, you should learn to focus on the future and your children are that future.

I know it takes time, but as my grandmother used to say, “Time heals all wounds.” She was a very wise woman. I focused on this as my motto and it helped me through all those dark days surrounding the collapse of my first marriage. Now, I am happily married to a wonderful man. My ex-husband is engaged to be married later this year. We are able to speak to each other and even spend time together at our children’s birthday parties. Without all the drama that defined our marriage to each other.

Life is not all roses, but it sure smells sweet.

Word of the Day Wednesday April 2, 2008

deus ex machina \DAY-uhs-eks-MAH-kuh-nuh; -nah; -MAK-uh-nuh\, noun:
1. In ancient Greek and Roman drama, a god introduced by means of a crane to unravel and resolve the plot.
2. Any active agent who appears unexpectedly to solve an apparently insoluble difficulty.

In times of affluence and peace, with technology that always seems to arrive like a deus ex machina to solve any problem, it becomes easy to believe that life is perfectible.
— Stephanie Gutmann, The Kinder, Gentler Military

But we also need the possibility of cataclysm, so that, when situations seem hopeless, and beyond the power of any natural force to amend, we may still anticipate salvation from a messiah, a conquering hero, a deus ex machina, or some other agent with power to fracture the unsupportable and institute the unobtainable.
— Stephen Jay Gould, Questioning the Millennium

Deus ex machina is New Latin for “god from the machine”; it is a translation of the Greek theos ek mekhanes.

Trivia: The dramatic device dates from the 5th century BC and is especially associated with Euripides, one of the greatest classical tragedians.

Dictionary.com Entry and Pronunciation for deus ex machina