3/31/09

Resources... What would we do without them?



This past weekend I attended the KYRW Spring Into Writing workshop, sponsored by my local RWA chapter, Kentucky Romance Writers. It was a fantastic event, full of camaraderie and information that helped fire my creativity and inspire me to get back into the “swing” of writing. Our morning session, with the fabulous Alicia Rasley, dealt with characterization, and how knowing our characters inside and out can help us define our story. In the afternoon, my good friend and fantastic author, Teresa Reasor, treated us to a session on “StoryBoarding”, a system of visual organization that can help keep your story on track and balanced. Maddie James, another talented Kentucky author discussed the art of writing dialogue that both “fits” and also “sparkles”. The differences between e-publishing and print publishing were outlined by our very own Anya Bast, who has been successful in both forms of publishing. Leigh Collett, CEO of Resplendence Publishing discussed market trends and also gave us some “dos and don’ts” to consider when submitting for publication.
Yesterday, my mailman was very good to me. I received my May/June issue of “Writer’s Digest” and my April issue of “Romance Writer’s Report”. As it happens, it seems I hit the mother lode of “good stuff” in these magazines. I found articles that detailed the qualities of successful writers, crafting a sexy hero without relying strictly on looks, a list of great websites for writers, sources from which to draw strong characters, a guide to social networking for an author, how to form a good online marketing plan, as well as an interview with two wildly successful authors from two very different genres of fiction. WOW!
After the first read-through of the two magazines and a reflection on the workshops I enjoyed over the weekend, I tried to remember what it was like BEFORE I knew all of this. Before I made connections both online and in person with fellow writers who had advice and knowledge to share with me. Before I knew there were professional organizations full of people who wanted to help me “learn the ropes” and become a better writer.
And you know what? I can’t really remember much.
The “community” I’ve become a part of because of my love of writing and my desire to write and write well have so influenced who I am as a writer. The amount of “stuff” I’ve learned is staggering and invaluable. The friendships I have made are some of the strongest I’ve ever had.
The resources available to writers are legion. If you are a writer, or even just an avid reader, I would encourage you to find an organization, or maybe several organizations, of like-minded people who can help you and receive help from you. The relationships you create will change you and enhance your life in immeasurable ways.
I’m so grateful for the way I’ve been changed, as a writer and as a person, by the people and groups I’ve met along this journey.

7 comments:

  1. Ditto here, Amy. I can't imagine going back to complete writing isolation like I had years ago. Great post!

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  2. Well said, Amy! The booksigning and workshops were great, and I'm thankful to have been a participant.

    I was recently contacted by a young man who is just starting out on his journey as a writer. I think the best piece of advice I gave him was to find a writers' organization he could be part of. The people I've met through RWA and KYRW have made all the difference to me.

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  3. Amy,

    Great blog.

    I'm in total agreement with you. The wealth of knowledge one picks up after joining RWA and various local chapters is immeasurable (along with a few other available resources).

    I too have grown so much, and I consider myself blessed to be a part of the wonderful circle we've found at KYRW. And as for Teresa -- I think she's becoming detrimental to my peace of mind!! (LOL) Don't know what I'd do without her...

    Tracy

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  4. Oops...didn't mean to post as "The Pink Ladies."

    I didn't realize which name I was signed in under. Oh well... ;-)

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  5. Amy:
    I totally agree. I went for years with just an occassional meeting with KYRW. Now, I've got a wealth of resources that I depend on. And a group of writer friends I think of as family. You being one of them.
    Write on,
    Teresa R.

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  6. You are so on track, Amy. I do not know what I would do without my writing peeps! They are the best resource I know ('cause they pick me up when I stumble through this writing world oh-so-many times...)

    Thanks for being one of my peeps! :)

    maddie

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  7. Hiya Amy! I've been meaning to post since you first gave your blog addy on FB ages ago. I assure you that I have been lurking and truly enjoy your blog. I'm so glad that there are people out there who love to write because I sure love to read! :)

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