Friday Filler: A Pep Talk From Lemony Snicket

This is courtesy of the good folks at National Novel Writing Month. For those of you who hit your word-count goal, read no further. For those of you who didn’t quite make it (such as yours truly), well, you’re that many more words ahead of where you were on Oct. 31. But we can all use this pep talk from Lemony Snicket. Enjoy!

— Cyndi Hughes

Lemony Snicket, one afflicted author

Dear Cohort:

Struggling with your novel? Paralyzed by the fear that it’s nowhere near good enough? Feeling caught in a trap of your own devising? You should probably give up.For one thing, writing is a dying form. One reads of this every day. Every magazine and newspaper, every hardcover and Continue reading


Friday Filler: Nov. 12 Edition

This week we seem to be bigger on resources than anything else, so here goes!

National Novel Writing Month: For those of you who are obsessed with carving out writing time and counting words for NaNoWriMo (count me in on that!), take a laugh break with Fake NaNoWriMo Tips on Twitter (@FakeNNWMTips). My current favorites:

  • “Only NaNoWriMo Premium Subscribers may count “the” and “a” as words. Upgrade your membership today!”
  • “If you put a gun in the first half of your book, it should go off in the second half. Or turn out to be a vampire gun.”

Save the Words: If you love words, this one’s for you! NPR did a great piece this week, “Website Helps Rescue Obscure Words.” Give it a listen, the go to Save the Words and adopt a word (better yet, pick a word and work it into your next book or Continue reading

Friday Filler: Oct. 29 Edition

Okay, here’s our usual Friday round-up of publishing news, contests, resources, etc. But first: I just signed up for National Novel Writing Month, and I want to invite all WLT members to join me in writing at least one page a day for the month of November. We’ll be hosting member write-ins throughout Texas — if you’re interested in hosting or finding a write-in, sign up on the Writers’ League Facebook page!

Tip of the Week

This one comes from Reel Social Media’s Weston Norton, who was our featured guest at the Oct. 21 Third Thursday program. We all know that videos posted on YouTube and then linked to your website or blog can be huge traffic drivers. But Weston pointed Continue reading

Guilty as Charged: Cyndi’s Writing Confession

Okay, remember how I SWORE I was committing to my writing practice in conjunction with National Novel Writing Month? Well, here’s my confession about the best intentions:

  • Nov. 1 & 2: Texas Book Festival (for me, it’s nonstop from Friday through Sunday night)
  • Nov. 3 & 4: Let’s see, what was happening on those two days? Oh, that’s right, our national obsession finally culminated! (Note: I did post a blog entry on my personal blog about waiting for the election results)
  • Nov. 5-8: The nastiest bout of creeping crud took over and knocked me down big time! I even had a temperature of 100.5 the night I was supposed to host my first write-in.

So, gulp, I’m here to ‘fess up and admit I’ve blown the first week of NaNoWriMo. But here’s the beautiful thing about writing: You can always just sit down and WRITE again. Just take it one day at a time. Today, I worked on my query letter and wrote two blog entries.

Now that I’m back at it, I’d like to invite any of you Austin NaNoers and WLT members who could use an hour or two of writing time to join use this Thursday, Nov. 13, for these League-hosted write-ins:

For those of you who aren’t in Austin, write wherever you are during those times. And please let us know how it’s going!

Write on!

National Novel Writing Month Is Coming!

If you can’t seem to get around to writing that book you’ve always wanted to write, consider signing up for National Novel Writing Month in November. I’m going to do it (gulp — commitment!), and what could be more fun than doing it with fellow Leaguers!

Although NaNoWriMo’s basic idea is to write a draft (note my emphasis!) of a 175-page (50,000-word) novel by midnight, November 30, I’m taking a slightly different approach. I’ve started two books, and my main block is setting aside time to write on them; I tend to fill up my time with everything else rather than those two projects. So I’m looking at NaNoWriMo as more of an impetus to work on my books than the traditional model of start-to-finish in the thirty days of November.

Even if you don’t have a novel itching to get out, think about committing to daily writing in November. That alone would be good for anyone working on a nonfiction book, revising a longer work, writing essays or short fiction, or even writing a book proposal.

The Writers’ League will be hosting several events in conjunction with NaNoWriMo, so stay tuned (and we might just have a prize for League members who make it to November 30!).

Meanwhile, get ready to WRITE!

Sign up for NaNoWriMo here; for more info, check out the NaNoWriMo FAQs.

Posted by Cyndi