All Things Writing

The Craft of Writing


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Getting Started

You know what you want to write about. You just don’t know where to start — you can’t find “your way in.”

This is one of the most common problems for any writer — newbie or not. There are so many ways to tell a story, and so many stories that can be told from a set of facts. Which is the one that is most compelling? Which will hook the audience you’re interested in?

One of the first ways to decide on the way in is to listen to yourself when you tell others about your research. You’ll find that the aspect that “sings” to you is the one you bring up every. single. time. The others? Not so much.

Another way to decide on the way in is to picture yourself speaking to your intended audience. Which parts of what you have to say are the parts that will get them to come and listen to you speak on a rainy fall evening? Some of the info you have is necessary to set the background and to help things make sense, but that can vary with the telling.

None of this is doing it? Sit down and complete this sentence: I’m writing a story about ……………………. When you can finish the sentence in just a few words, you have your narrative thread.

Time to get to work!


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Coaching

I’m launching a series of Coaching videos on UDEMY in the next couple of weeks. This series will take you from picking out your pencil to completing your first draft. I’m excited to get these up and running. I hope you’ll check them out. Meanwhile, if there’s something you really want to know, please put it in the comments and I’ll include it in the video!

~gina


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UDEMY Classes

Graphite pencils in basket isolated on white backgroundMy first online writing classes will be offered on Udemy in February. These classes are intended to get you going with confidence. They will be free overviews of topics of interest to writers who are getting started. The next round of classes will be more geared to those who have the basics down and need more advanced work on craft.  These more advanced classes will not be free, but before you take one of them you will have the opportunity to decide which genre fits you and what you need, before paying for a workshop that just doesn’t do it.

I’m an experienced writing teacher, freelance writer, and published author. My interest are in narrative nonfiction, science fiction, mystery, spy stuff, and children’s fiction. I’m excited to bring you classes about finding your genre, focusing on a niches, finding an agent, writing a book proposal … If it relates to the business of writing, the craft of writing, or the pure joy of putting words to paper, you’ll find a class for you.

There will be more info coming in the next few weeks.

I look forward to working with you!

~gina

 


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Looking Forward to 2019

It’s hard to believe that 2018 is coming to a close. I’m still waiting for my flying car, but there sure have been plenty of other changes in the works.

You’ve asked us for some specific changes in 2019:
1. Online classes
2. More resources
3. Author interviews
4. Critique sessions
5. Discussion on craft

Our answer to all of these is YES! SO – you’ll see some changes on this site. You’ll also see more frequent posts. If you’d like to see something that’s not on the list, please let us know at Savvygina at gmail dot com

I’m looking forward to an exciting new year, but for the rest of this year, I’ll post more often!

~gina


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Writing Narrative Nonfiction 101

STARTS NOVEMBER 12

Please join me for Writing Narrative Nonfiction 101. This class will be held online. The text for the class is Storycraft, by former Oregonian Writing Coach Jack Hart. We’ll have one class plus exercises per chapter, with a wrap-up for additional discussion and questions. The cost of the class will be $250. Please register below.

We’ll have a Google Classroom or Facebook Group for our discussions and resource material. We’ll meet online via Zoom and the meetings will be taped for those who cannot attend in person.

Each meeting will focus on an aspect of writing a piece of narrative nonfiction. There will also be other readings and exercises, to reinforce the concepts and provide you with an opportunity to try it for yourself.

I’m a freelance biotech, health-tech, and sci-tech writer and published author. I look forward to working with you!

~ gina

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REGISTER HERE

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PURCHASE BOOK
   

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Starting on the Freelance Life

So you’re ready to freelance. The only problem is, how to start? Life would be better with a plan! Our free Guide to the Freelance Writing Life. It lays out the things you need to consider and the steps you need to take to optimize your chances of success. Lightning does strike somewhere every day. That doesn’t mean you can expect it to happen when and where you want.

Click here for your copy!

 

 


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Ready for the Freelance Life

It’s pretty appealing. You write all day. You’re your own boss. You can work from anywhere…

The Freelance Life.

When it works well, it’s phenomenal, but it doesn’t work at all without putting some skin in the game up front. Skin in the game as in planning and preparing for the leap to freelance living.

As a writing coach and small business consultant, I’ve worked with scores of wannabe freelancers. The time they’ve taken to plan their entry into the freelance world has paid off handsomely. These writers have a realistic idea of what to expect, a workable plan to get them to where they want to be, and the confidence to hit the ground running.

The next Writing Plan Class starts May 21st. 

 


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How Long is a Short Story

Here’s a terrific post on the length of five short stories each, by seven celebrated short story writers.

You’ll find counts for Gabriel Garcia Marquez, Ray Bradbury, Raymond Carver, Ernest Hemingway, Alice Munro, Flannery O’Connor, and Edgar Allan Poe.

You’ll find counts for A Very Old Man with Enormous Wings, The Handsomest Drowned Man in the World, Eyes of a Blue Dog, One of These Days, Death Constant Beyond Love; A Sound of Thunder, The Pedestrian, The Small Assassin, The Veldt, There Will Come Soft Rains; Cathedral, Why Don’t You Dance, What We Talk About When We Talk About Love, So Much Water So Close To Home, Where I’m Calling From, Hills Like White Elephants, The Short Happy Life of Francis Macomber, A Clean [,] Well-Lighted place, The Snows of Kilimanjaro, Indian Camp; Runaway, The Bear Came Over the Mountain, Family Furnishings, The Moons of Jupiter, Cortes Island; A Good Man is Hard to Find, The life You Save May Be Your Own, Good Country People, Everything That Rises Must Converge, Parker’s Back; The Cask of Amontillado, The Fall of the House of Usher, The Black Cat, The Masque of the Red Death, The Tell-Tale Heart.

The long story short {yes. I crack myself up} The average length is 5,100 words.

What do you think?


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QuickBooks Online Certified ProAdvisor

Hey! I decided to attain the certification for QuickBooks Online – I’ve been certified at various times over the years I’ve been using QuickBooks. If there’s an interest, I’d be happy to do a monthly QBO column. I have an MBA in Finance, have worked as a small business consultant and trainer, worked with start-ups, etc., so I promise I won’t just make stuff up!

Please leave me a comment if that’s of interest to you!

Gina


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Trello to the Rescue

Trello is my newest, hopefully enduring, writing tool. It’s a tool for teams, although I’m finding it very useful for my individual work. Basically, it organizes projects into boards. Looking at a board, you can tell everything you need about your work. The trick is in how you set it up.  Continue reading