Good Morning Wordsmith Laners, and welcome to another week of wordy, girly wonderland here at Wordsmith Lane. Here is my monday mix of style, smarts and savoir-faire for the week ahead:
1. Of the mags that tickly my fancy, Shop Til You Drop, Marie-Claire, Vogue and Yen have all been released over the past week, though I’m going to admit that Vogue and Yen are my picks of the four.
2. Get your travel savoir-faire in check with the fabulous Ciao Bella Travel Kits, pretty red tins of miniature products that keep you looking great and stylish without weighing your bags down or occupying room that might be better left to shopping. Available in ‘Face Mask’ (with eight shots of nine grams) and ‘Hair + Face’ (with four shots each of cleanser, toner and moisturiser and one hydrating mask shot), they are the perfect addition for that glamorous getaway. For more Ciao Bella goodies, check out their website
3. On the topic of getaways, the lovely Catherine Manuell Collection will be hitting Myer stores nationally this month, making it a hell of a lot easier to get our hands on her girly range of travel gear – including classic collector trolley sets, medium suitcases, self-handle laptop cases, and for this season only, the laptop wheely. To have a peek at her collection, visit www.catherinemanuelldesign.com
4. My DVD of choice this week is none other than 17 Again, which hits video stores on September 17th. I must admit that although I did not watch it for Zac Efron, he was a mighty good perve. I actually loved the movie for the tale behind it though, and found it to be quite funny. Must also confess that I wished I could return to my 17 year old self, and do things like ask my crush out or stop being such a goody-two-shoes.
5. Aspiring to be the next big investigative journo? You can’t go by ‘Release the Hounds’ by Christine Fogg (Allen & Unwin). This has been a monumentally beneficial addition to my bookshelf, and has proved to be a great help when researching a lot of my big features. It covers everything from sourcing documents, finding contacts, sifting through databases (and what ones to sift through at that), doing the legal bits and more.
6. Have been getting a few emails about when you should follow up on a story. I tend to do this about two to three weeks after I send it off, and I send it as a forward so that the original pitch is still in the email, in case the ed never got to it. You never know. That said, following up is not usually successful for me – I guess if the story really stands out, they’ll email straight after they’ve read it.
7. Don’t forget to tune in this afternoon for an interview with the lovely Sarah Hannah Fisher – Wordsmith Lane loyal, and aspiring writer! I figure it’s good to have interviews with a mix of people in the game, no matter what stage they are at. Sadly, I will be on Wordsmith Lane hiatus for the rest of the week, as I’ll be heading down to Canberra until Sunday for a youth leadership forum. It’s going to be so weird not being able to do work for the rest of the week, but at least I have email on my phone. I have a pretty big week and weekend with the conference though, so I will probably be buggered by the time monday rolls around! That said, I want you all to use your non-Wordsmith Lane reading time wisely – by furthering yourself with a little writing task, no matter how teeny. Have a great week xx
Hey hey Wordsmith Laners,
So sorry but Interview will be post-poned till Monday this week. I am stuck at a temping job that goes for hours (have been doing 11 hour days all this week) and won’t be able to format it until the weekend.
Have a fab weekend though, and don’t forget to tune in on Monday xx
Heart & Craft, by Valerie Parv (Allen & Unwin) $24.95
There is no doubt that romance writing is one of the biggest forms of writing around. It’s earned itself a genre in a genre (take a bow Mills and Boon) and many a best-selling author (take a bow Danielle Steele) and, suffice to say, it’s also earned itself a cult following.
In light of this, there are many writers, who fascinated by love and strife and devotion, would love to (pardon the pun) venture into the art of romance writing. And now, despite all the competition out there, it might not be too hard, especially when you have the likes of Heart & Craft guiding you through.
The book, which sets to help you ‘turn your writing dreams into reality’ is a compilation of advice and secrets about the craft courtesy of a team of best-selling writers, including Lillian Darcy, Robyn Donald, Helen Bianchin, Meredith Webber, Elizabeth Rolls, Daphne Clair, Jenny Adams and more.
It covers all facets of romance too – the historical to the cultured to the risque, and provides the tips you need to get it published. It also looks at:
- the key commandments to romance writing
- Opportunities in erotic romance
- ways to melt an editors heart
- packing an emotional punch with your writing
- creating characters
- writing through dialogue
- thickening a plot and developing conflict
- marketing your book
- life as a writer.
Edited by Australia’s Queen of Romance Fiction Valerie Parv, who has 60 titles to her name and has sold 25 million copies internationally, the book’s various scope and advice could be beneficial to general fiction writers just as much as it will to the most romantic of wordsmiths. And when it comes from a woman who is the founding member of Romance Writers of Australia Foundation and someone with an award for romance writing named in her honour, you know it’s going to be a good thing worth loving.
Hey y’all! Considering Motivation Marketplace for this week was all about loving our mates because they’re oh-so-great, I figured I could exercise my right to support mine in an open space.
Especially because some wordsmith laner mates out there have been getting a hell of a lot more creative than I! Said freinds have put together an amazing collection of live acts on Friday 9th October at the Gaelic on Sydney’s Devonshire St.
See below poster and please support some amazing local bands in what promises to be a great night. Aussie talent rocks, and those who support it do too!
I always complain that I hardly get any work done at home. I still live with my parents and three siblings, and a few them have not gotten around to the fact that when my door is closed between the hours of 9am and 5pm (bar my 1pm lunch break and my two mini-breaks) I am actually doing work. Or trying to get work done. That poses a little bit of a problem for me. My bedroom is my office space, so, as my mother describes it, it often looks like a $2 shop strewn with books to read and review, magazines to reference, folders with files and past work in, business cards, stationary, bits of paper and a dictionary and thesaurus. My bedroom is also my study space too, which means there’s usually 20 library books laying about as well, and when you add this to general bedroom objects, it does look kind of cluttered and serve many a purpose.
But recently, I discovered that my university had set aside a special research centre for its research students in my faculty. Under the library, and accessible via special swipe access, the centre features lockers for my many books and uni thinfs, desks (complete with computers), couches and a common room area, photocopier, paper and supplies, and a little kitchenette. I was in student heaven, and it was the kind of space I had been craving for for so long. Ok, so I had to share it, but considering eve ryone else was quite and proactive, it was not going to hinder my concentration at all.
See, the thing is, writing can often be very difficult if you don’t have the opportunity or time to collect and write your thoughts – which is why it is very important that you have a room to do it in. Considering this is often the home, I thought I’d run through a few different tips for creating that perfect working space. Of course, these would be even better if there was a spare room you would work out of, but you could still utilise them for the bedroom/study if need be.
- Consider the type of work you wil be doing and the equipment you will need. Make sure the room has enough plugs for a computer/printer (if necessary) as well as a phone line and internet line
- Invest in reliable furniture. Ikea is good for bits and pieces that are inexpensive and perfect for small spaces. Basically, you ought to ensure that you have a desk, and chair to work on, and that they are tailored to your comfort as well as ergonomic use (see www.ergoblog.com and www.ergonomics.about.com for tips)
- Make sure you have all necessary files, books and magazines on hand, and that they are filed away from the access of others, and in a manner that will be easily acessed for you. You wouldnt want to spend hours searching for a document that could have taken you minutes to find had you filed it correctly
- Keep stationary around
- Consider things like noise and how much it could disturb you based on your chosen location. If you like to work with music in the background, keep your music player about
- Also, keep your eyes in check and prevent headaches by paying strict attention to lighting
- No body wants a boring workspace. Work near a window or surround yourself with inspirational knick knacks and photos. I jazz mine up with pretty cards, bookmarks with motivational quotes on them, coloured ribbon, pictures of family and friends and places I’d like to visit, postcards and more
- Keep things you use regularly nearby, in a bowl or something, for those moments when you’re mulling over a setence. I keep handcreams and the eye gel I am supposed to apply in the morning. Silly, but it works in my favour
- Take a walk every hour, to stretch your legs. Make a phone call or send an email every now and again, to keep up the social interaction you’d otherwise get in an office
- Protect it. Install anti-virus software on your computer, back everything up, and keep it closed to unauthorised personnel. This is where your livelihood resides, and you wouldnt want your little cousin Louisa bringing it down with the push of a button (based on personal experience)
- Keep it clean and tidy. Take pride in your space and it will take care of you.
- Try to keep it impressed. You’re more likely to get work done if you’re up, dressed and at it like you would be in a normal job. You’re likely to be more productive when you’re appropriately dressed, washed, well-fed and ready to face the day.
- Treat it like an office. Get in, get your work done and try not to get too distracted. You are your own boss, and good bosses are tough when they need to be.
Hope this makes you all the more productive! Don’t forget to comment if you have any tips of your own.