Monday, July 30, 2012

For Writers: Club 100

I first heard about Club 100 through Beth Pattillo's website; Pattillo runs a Yahoo Group to encourage writers who decide to take the Club 100 challenge. Created by Avis Hester, Club 100 has writers commit to writing a minimum of 100 words for 100 days. For writers with challenging schedules, and for those who just can't commit to an enormous challenge such as NaNoWriMo, Club 100 provides a low-pressure way to immerse oneself in writing.

Douglas Cootey has issued a 100 Words a Day Challenge, and you can find badges like the one below at his website. Like Cootey, I find the whole NaNoWriMo overwhelming; as an educator, I dislike that it falls during the busiest part of the semester, when I'm usually buried under piles of student essays. Selfishly, I often wish they would move the entire challenge to the summertime, when I have a break from grading demands. For now, I'm happy that writers such as Pattillo, Cootey, and Debbie Ohi (see my post on her word count challenge below) provide alternatives for writers.

Monday, July 16, 2012

Florida Roses

Aside from writing, reading, researching, taking tea with friends, drawing, and crocheting, I also enjoy gardening and find it a very relaxing activity. In that spirit, I wanted to share some of my favorite images from my little garden.

I find it soothing to work with my roses, as prickly as they may be, and to watch them thrive in the south Florida weather.

I hope you find pleasure in these images and have a beautiful day!

Monday, July 9, 2012

Historical Novel Society

After following them on Twitter and visiting the website a number of times, I decided to join the Historical Novel Society (HNS) today. I like that HNS appeals to both writers and readers, and they have a wealth of resources available on their website. Some of my favorite historical authors include Sharon Kay Penman, Philippa Gregory, Karen Harper, Diane Haeger, Kate Quinn, and Margaret George, along with a number of historical romance authors, such as Loretta Chase, Julia Quinn, and Elizabeth Hoyt, and I look forward to joining a community of like-minded readers and writers.

What I like most about HNS:

  1. Extensive reviews:  HNS provides over 3200 reviews, and I like how they provide a list of exemplary books, known as Editors' Choice books. Finally, I commend HNS for including books from indie publishers; the publishing landscape has changed dramatically over the last 5 years, and authors now publish through a variety of venues.
  2. Historical guides: HNS provides guides to different eras of historical fiction and also provides a useful definition of the genre of historical fiction. I especially enjoyed the guides on King Arthur and on the Knights Templar.
  3. HNS Conference: HNS will hold its 5th North American Conference in St. Petersburg, FL, from June 21, 2013 to June 23, 2013. I looked at Jeri Westerson's commentary on the 2011 conference, which included readings by well-known authors and a fashion show, and decided I had to attend the next one.
As I participate with HNS over the next year, I will provide more updates. One more thing I like about HNS: they are incredibly efficient! I just registered an hour ago, and they already have my profile posted on the HNS page. Very impressive!