How Can Our Community Help You?

A live video I recorded earlier this week full of positive ways to ride this thing out

The herd instinct is only a problem if you’re following the wrong herd. 

Let’s see if we can put it to good use. Let’s circle the StoryADay wagons and help each other to write more of the stories that people need to hear—to distract them, to entertain them, to uplift and connect them.

Some things I’ve shared with people over the past few days

  • This is a wonderful time to catch up on your reading. Everyone has a pile of books they’ve been meaning to get to. Turn off the TV and open those books!
  • If you can’t get to a writing group because you need to protect your health, ask other people to turn on the voice memo feature on their phone and record the group discussion for you.
  • If you’re a member of a real-life writing group, ask the organizer to sign up for a free Zoom account. You can get everyone together for 40 minutes at a time under the free account, and chat about writing, or hold your critique meeting, or whatever you usually do.
  • You don’t have to be writing fiction if it doesn’t feel right, just now. Write letters to friends you haven’t seen recently. Write journal entries. Work on a non-fiction project you’ve been meaning to get to. Advocate for a favorite charity or write postcards for a political candidate’s campaign.
  • Use writing prompts to write tiny, throwaway stories that are only intended to amuse and distract yourself.

What other ideas do you have?

What can I do to help you?

  • Do you need an online writing hangouts this week, to keep you from obsessing about the news, or keep you sane while you work from home?
  • Do you need daily SWAGr check-ins at StoryADay.org for the next week, to keep you accountable?
  • Would it be helpful if I put together a bundle of links to the most popular articles on the site, so you can read something that isn’t virus-related?

Is there something else I can do to help you?

Leave a comment and tell me how you’re doing, and what you need. Also, if you’ve found something that helps you, please share that too!

[Write On Wednesday] Pull Readers into Your Story

This month’s theme at StoryADay is “Show, Don’t Tell”, that pesky little piece of writing advice that sounds so easy and will actually take us the whole month to unpack. It’s more than simply ‘showing’. It’s about using all our senses to immerse the reader in a moment, and it come more easily to some writers than others.

Let’s start practicing with today’s prompt. This week we’ll focus on making the setting immersive. Next week will be about showing through dialogue. The week after that we’ll work on when to ‘show’ and when to ‘tell’.

photo of dining room by matt briney on unsplash.com

The Prompt

Your character walks into a room  and sees something/someone they really, really don’t want to see. How do they solve this dilemma?

Tips

Continue reading “[Write On Wednesday] Pull Readers into Your Story”

159 – Talking About Creativity And Mental Health with Gabriela Pereira

episode 159 Gabriela Pt 2As well as running DIYMFA, Gabriela Pereira often speaks at conferences about issues other than the writing craft, including entrepreneurship and mental illness.

Today, we have a frank discussion about Gabriela’s history with mental illness as one part of a very full life that also includes running a business, having a family, and being a creative person.

We also talk a little about writing emotion when you struggle with your own.

(If you need help and live in the US, please text HOME to 741741. In Canada, 686-868, In the UK 85258. In the UK and Ireland, call 116 123. In Australia, call 13 11 14)

SWAGr for March 2020

Welcome to the Serious Writers’ Accountability Group!

Post your goals for this month and let us know how you got on with last month’s goals.

SWAGr logo

Leave a comment below telling us how you got on last month, and what you plan to do next month, then check back in on the first of each month, to see how everyone’s doing.

(It doesn’t have to be fiction. Feel free to use this group to push you in whatever creative direction you need.)

Did you live up to your commitment from last month? Don’t remember what you promised to do? Check out the comments from last month.

And don’t forget to celebrate with/encourage your fellow SWAGr-ers on their progress!

Download your SWAGr Tracking Sheet now, to keep track of your commitments this month

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Examples of Goals Set By SWAGr-ers in previous months

  • Finish first draft of story and write 3 articles for my school paper. – Courtney
  • Write on seven days this month – Clare
  • Extend my reading and to read with a ‘writers eye’- Wendy
  • write 10,000 words – Mary Lou

 So, what will you accomplish this month? Leave your comment below (use the drop-down option to subscribe to the comments and receive lovely, encouraging notifications from fellow StADa SWAGr-ers!)

(Next check-in, 1st of the month. Tell your friends!)

158 – Writing Love & Intimacy with Dr. Lanae St. John

Lanae St. John podcast cover

What are we really talking about when we talk about sex? Join me for a conversation with sexuality educator Dr. Lanae St. John. We talk about how to portray true intimacy on the page (without any weird noises), how to make consent sexy, and where to find a model for your next villain.

LINKS:

The Mamasutra – https://www.themamasutra.net/

Read Me: A Parental Primer For ‘The Talk’ – https://www.amazon.com/Read-Me-Parental-Primer-Talk

Ready to write today, not “some day”?

[Write on Wednesday] Trouble In Paradise

Relationships are tricky – romantic or otherwise – because at the heart of each relationship are two individuals who have expectations, often unspoken, about what they owe to each other.

Photo by Jessica Da Rosa on Unsplash

The Prompt

Write a story in which two close friends, lovers or family members struggle through a difficult moment.

Tips

Continue reading “[Write on Wednesday] Trouble In Paradise”

156 – What To Do When You’re Bored With Your Writing

Sometimes what used to work for us no longer works. 

In this podcast I talk about the benefits and downsides of your writing commitments, I encourage you to scare yourself, and I revisit the subject of habits, and check in to see how you’re getting on.

Also: I preview some coming changes to the podcast

LINKS:

The StoryADay Short Story Framework, in case you want to write a story today but aren’t sure how to get started: https://storyaday.org/framework

The StoryADay 3 Day Challenge, in case you need a little extra accountability and you work best with a curriculum: https://storyaday.org/3DC

 

Ready to write today, not “some day”?

[Writing Prompt] What The Greeks Knew About Love

This year during the Superbowl I noticed an ad that used the different types of love, as defined by the Greeks, to advertise their product. And it reminded me that, for those of us without a classical education, it can be useful to review frameworks like this, that underpin our cultural attitudes whether we know it or not. 

eros statue image
Photo by Thomas Vogel on Unsplash

The Prompt

Write a story combining featuring two different types of love relationships from the list. Notice how they interact, how they cause the characters to act, and where those actions are different and similar.

Types of Love

Continue reading “[Writing Prompt] What The Greeks Knew About Love”

155 – Stop Procrasti-learning and Start Writing

Listening and reading are wonderful things, but what if they are holding you back from writing and finishing stories?

We learn writing by writing. Isn’t it time you stop stalling?

LINKS

“Listening” by Bob DeRosa on Escape Pod: https://stada.me/listening

The 3 Day Challenge: https://stada.me/3dc

 

Ready to write today, not “some day”?