The Novel: To Query or Not to Query

As this entry posts to my blog, I am wrapping up my third year at the Rocky Mountain Fiction Writers retreat. This is a wonderful annual event held at a Franciscan Retreat Center in Colorado Springs. The center is in the perfect location, easily accessible from Boulder but far enough that I really do feel like … Continue reading The Novel: To Query or Not to Query

Human vs. Mouse

After a year and a half haitus, I returned to the storytelling stage last November. The theme of the night was "Fire." https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DJB4lyyx2Sw I won second place with this story, which means I'll be performing in the season finale on March 3 at 7pm in Boulder's Dairy Arts Center. Come out to see me, all … Continue reading Human vs. Mouse

The Novel: Half A Novel And Proud of It

I'm back from an intense month of novel writing. How did I do on the distraction front? I only logged in to Facebook three times, and each time was for a specific purpose, such as updating my notification settings to stop getting text messages from Facebook about photos my friends were posting. They were trying … Continue reading The Novel: Half A Novel And Proud of It

Say What? Edition 8: When Native Speakers Sound Like They Aren’t

My roommate my first year in Russia told me that English was an easy language to start speaking and make yourself decently understood but near impossible to master because of all the idioms, nuance, unexpected pronunciations, and multiple ways of saying everything. No matter how long you speak it, you're always going to encounter something … Continue reading Say What? Edition 8: When Native Speakers Sound Like They Aren’t

Say What? Edition 7: More Than Words

No, this post is not an ode to that old Extreme song, although it's still a great one! The post is a little bit about "code switching," I started hearing about everywhere a few years ago. Code switching refers to the verbal portion of the many personas we all have. The words we choose, the way … Continue reading Say What? Edition 7: More Than Words

Say What? Edition 6: Where Are All the Words?

Auxiliary verbs are falling out of favor. Particularly, to be. I've seen or heard all of the following lately: My car needs washed. My shoes need repaired. This couch needs gone this weekend. When did this form of speaking start? Does this sound normal to you? I'm itching to put to be in all of these sentences. And … Continue reading Say What? Edition 6: Where Are All the Words?

You’ve Got Skills

And so do I. Our skills aren't they same, but they are equally valuable. This is what I'd like people I work with to understand. Part of being a technical writer or editor means being invisible and vastly underappreciated. We don't get a byline or an author credit anywhere. People often toss our creations aside, … Continue reading You’ve Got Skills

Kill Your Illogical Darlings

Whenever you feel an impulse to perpetrate a piece of exceptionally fine writing, obey it—whole-heartedly—and delete it before sending your manuscript to press. Murder your darlings. - Arthur Quiller-Couch If you've taken a few writing classes, you've undoubtedly heard this piece of advice. I heard it many, many times, but didn't really grasp its application until … Continue reading Kill Your Illogical Darlings