Saturday, August 28, 2010

Zen Habits: a brief guide to life

‘A few strong instincts and a few plain rules suffice us.’ ~Ralph Waldo Emerson
Post written by Leo Babauta. Follow me on twitter or identica.
Life can be ridiculously complicated, if you let it. I suggest we simplify.
Thich Nhat Hanh’s quote, which I’ve stolen as this site’s subtitle, is the shortest guide to life you’ll ever need:
“Smile, breath, and go slowly.”
If you live your life by those five words, you’ll do pretty well. For those who need a little more guidance, I’ve distilled the lessons I’ve learned (so far) into a few guidelines, or reminders, really.
And as always, these rules are meant to be broken. Life wouldn’t be any fun if they weren’t.

the brief guide

less TV, more reading
less shopping, more outdoors
less clutter, more space
less rush, more slowness
less consuming, more creating
less junk, more real food
less busywork, more impact
less driving, more walking
less noise, more solitude
less focus on the future, more on the present
less work, more play
less worry, more smiles

If you liked this guide, please bookmark it on Delicious or share on Twitter. Thanks, my friends.

Sunday, August 8, 2010

Tighten Your Prose Workshop

***** Permission to Forward Granted *****
RWA® Online Chapter presents:

PRUNE YOUR PROSE! Ten Tips to Tighten Your Fiction Writing
Instructor: Linnea Sinclair
August 16th – 29th, 2010
Registration Period: August 2-15, 2010
Fee: $15 Non-Chapter members. RWAOL Chapter #136 members; free.
Payment method: PAYPAL is recommended!

It’s safe and fast! Check and money orders also accepted.
Registration: http://www. rwaonlinechapter .org/campus.htm (without the spaces)

NOTE: -Use your real First and Last Name & Choose Pay Option.
ONLY Chapter #136 members choose the Chapter Member option button.
For more information:

CLASS DESCRIPTION: As the saying goes, “Close only counts in…hand grenades.” Don’t let your manuscript bomb because of easily overlooked errors, or for lack of sophistication and polish. Learn how to make every chapter count, every scene earn its keep, every main character memorable. Award-winning Bantam Random House author Linnea Sinclair will take you though ten tips (and more!) that will make your story shine, move it out of the slush pile, onto an editor’s desk so that—when on the shelves—it can garner reviews that note: A must-read, by an author who never disappoints!

Attendees should bring sample pages of their work-in-progress (including their first page) and be prepared to share and improve!

BIO: Winner of the prestigious national book award, the RITA, science fiction romance author Linnea Sinclair has become a name synonymous for high-action, emotionally intense, character-driven novels. Reviewers note that Sinclair's novels "have the wow-factor in spades," earning her accolades from both the science fiction and romance communities. Sinclair's current releases are GAMES OF COMMAND (PEARL Award winner and RITA finalist), THE DOWN HOME ZOMBIE BLUES (PEARL Award Honorable Mention), SHADES OF DARK, HOPE’S FOLLY and REBELS & LOVERS.
A former news reporter and retired private detective, Sinclair resides in Naples, Florida (winters) and Columbus, Ohio (summers) along with her husband, Robert Bernadino, and their two thoroughly spoiled cats. Readers can find her perched on the third barstool from the left in her Intergalactic Bar and Grille at

FORMAT: Course is conducted via online discussion (bulletin) board on the RWA® Online website. Non-chapter members MUST complete both the workshop registration AND the discussion board login registration for access. Instructions for login are presented after the registration pages (or to return to the login instructions, go to http://www.rwaonline...strationTY.htm. The workshop is available for up to one week after the end date and a downloadable archive of the workshop will be available the week following the workshop.

***** Permission To Forward Granted *****


Ever need to take a vacation after your vacation? I'm finally starting to feel human again, after being as sick as I've been in two years.

Wow. Nationals kicked my immune system's hiney to the curb.

I am supremely thankful I didn't have to immediately jump back into the day job and had time to sleep and lay on the couch and recoup. Recharge the batteries. Read all those amazing new authors I picked up at the book signings (I love finding new authors!) have you been welcoming in August? Isn't being sick during summer the worst? Reading any new gems? Feeling the "back to school" excitement of a "new" year?

Tuesday, August 3, 2010

It Takes An Army!

Yeah, I know---it takes a village. I'm just thinking about all those volunteers during the RWA convention, and let me tell ya what--army is a better term. These people are organized, on time, in formation, and expecting those around them to pick up the slack and do the same. (Especially the pitch not get between those women and their line-ups. You're not fifteen minutes early for your scheduled time? Fagettaboudit!)

Getting the book written is very much the same. You can only coddle yourself for so long; then it's down to brass tacks and results, baby! Where the heck are those pages you promised yourself? So what if the day job's a time suck and your research is grueling? Get in there and get it done, so you can sell that bad boy (really, I hope he's a bad boy...I have such a soft spot for a rebel...). Then the small army it will take to sell your book can hop to it; the copy editors, the cover artists, the contract wizards. The tiny little bunch of bound pages isn't making to the shelves without a lot of hard working folks wrapping up their piece of the puzzle.

RWA great news #1:  I heard so many people asking about Westerns and American set historicals. Don't believe me? Hey, go check out Pub Rants here. I consider this under the "Thank Heavens and It's about Time" category.