Calliope Writing

-Reblogged- Write Edit Write: A Private Facebook Group for Writers and Readers

Fellow writer and blogger Kurt Brindley has set up a private Facebook group for all things writing! If you’re interested, either visit his post and request an invite, or let me know you want in and I’ll get an invite sent.

Write on!



So, I’m creating a private Facebook group for writers and readers who are interested in the discussion of all things related to the process and business of writing.

This will be somewhat an extension of what I do with the Newsletter Love subscribers, but on a much more intimate and informal level. The newsletter process is a bit too formal and segmented and involving to really achieve what I would like to achieve, which is: to network, make connections, and improve our abilities and chances for success as writers.

As much as I hate to admit it, Facebook provides a much better environment to achieve this objective.

Like we’ve done with the newsletter, we can do poetry and flash fiction challenges there as well, with the goal of getting the best of the group’s writing onto my blog and out via the newsletter (is there irony to be found there?)

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Dig Those Tunes and Inspire Those Words

music quote 1

I don’t think any writer could deny the impact music can have on his or her work.

The Romance with Music Begins…

In high school, I wrote a novel (don’t get excited–it wasn’t a New York Times bestseller), and I always had a certain type of music playing while I wrote it.

A sampling:

What can I say? It was the ’90s, and The Crow was the best movie of all time (and, arguably, still is). And the book I wrote involved devils, angels, romance, and hell. I may have been sixteen, but I was convinced I had the soul of a much older and wiser woman.

Oh, teenagers.

…And the Love for Music Continues…

In college, I wrote a semi-autobiographical story and incorporated music throughout the text. You’ll see what I mean best by reading the opening paragraph:

Elton John’s “Rocket Man” is screaming in my ears, and while Elton ponders raising children on Mars, I consider a more dire issue. I’m having an affair with my drug dealer. Or, more accurately, the drugs he provides.

Did I say it was autobiographical? Kidding. Totally kidding.

Anyway, here’s a sampling of the music featured in my never-seeing-the-light-of-day story:

…And My Affair with Music Obviously Continues…

Now, I have a ridiculous amount of music I turn to when I write, and it goes beyond The Crow soundtrack and Elton John.

Music Post Question

I’m so glad you asked.

Here are a few playlists I turn to when getting ready to face the dreaded blank Word document. I hope you find a few songs you love–and that get you writing.

music quote 2

Tired of Talking Music?

Fine! Here’s some cool stuff I’ve come across over the past couple of weeks:

  • Someone has breathed fun into the dictionary and thesaurus with visuwords. Only visit if you’re ready to spend precious time playing around.
  • Writing the first draft is often the most difficult part of creating a finished work. Thankfully, Lara from write, edit, repeat has some tips on how to get it done like a boss.
  • “I love to read books, but I could never be a writer,” you say? WRONG! Daniel A. Roberts talks about the process of turning from reader into writer on A Writer’s Path.
  • The Kardashians threw a Great Gatsby-themed party. And they don’t seem to know why that’s silly. (I hope this is the only time I mention the word Kardashian on this blog.)
  • Having a hard time getting published? Buzzfeed has an informative guide on how to get your story or poem in a literary magazine. I’ll let you know if their advice works.
  • These major publishers are accepting unsolicited manuscripts (What what???).
  • Finally, check out “23 Ways to Uncover Your Inner Creative Badass” by Glory Begin. Good, good stuff.

Have any go-to artists or albums that you put on when it’s time to put pen to paper? Share them below–I’m always looking for killer music.

Exciting News – Double-Time!
August 29, 2015, 9:12 pm
Filed under: Resources, Updates | Tags: , , , , , , ,

What a wonderful Saturday. At least, I hope yours has been wonderful.

Awesome News!

man yelling the news

This is me (if I were a man) spreading the news via the most effective and reliable method possible.

I have some awesome news for you all. Drum roll?

I’ve created a RESOURCES PAGE! As the clever name implies, this page lists a number of resource for writers, as well as a list of my favorite books (which I think you should read and immediately tell me how brilliant they are).

Feel free (and encouraged) to leave a comment on this post or the resources page itself if there’s anything you want to add to the list, or if you have some recommended reads for me!

And now for another snippet of news…

My First Guest Blogger!

Exciting stuff – an upcoming post will be written by my very first guest blogger. Shana Swain, mother of two and foodie galore, loves books. Do I really need to tell you more? She likes books. So obviously she’s awesome.

Source: Reddit user ihazahapee

Source: Reddit user ihazahapee

If you didn’t sing along, I’m not sure we can be friends.

Shana likes big books, and she also cannot lie about it, and her post will touch on the importance of reading to children. Stay tuned for that next week.

In the meantime, I’m now looking for the best “I like big books and I cannot lie” thing (yes, thing, because I don’t care if it’s a necklace or a pair of underwear). Bonus points to whoever can find the most bizarre ILBB&ICL thing. BIG bonus points.

Questioning Your Grammar? Bookmark These Helpful Resources
May 27, 2015, 1:45 pm
Filed under: Grammar, Resources | Tags: , ,

Writing and stuck with a grammatical situation you aren’t sure how to handle? There are plenty of helpful resources (other than me, of course!) you can turn to so you can elevate your article, blog post, manuscript, etc., to Grammatically Awesome status.

grammarGrammar Resources to Bookmark ASAP

Grammar Girl – Over on, the sassy Grammar Girl doles out language rules using examples and shortcuts to make sure the rule is ingrained into your mind. If looking for the answer to a specific question, use the site’s search function to find what you need.

Dr. Grammar – Dr. Grammar has a great list of common grammar/language mistakes on the site’s Frequently Asked Questions page.

Pain in the English – Who doesn’t love a good play on words? This site is very simple to navigate, and the search function makes it easy for you to see all posts related to your grammatical issue.

Grammar Bytes – Isn’t that shark the cutest? If you haven’t clicked on the link to the left, go ahead and see that awesome shark I’m talking about. With some seriously clean web design, this site provides tons of grammar tips and tricks you can search or just browse through.

Style Guide in Use?

A final consideration before implementing any rules found on the above resources: Are you writing or editing according to a particular style guide, such as Chicago or AP? If you’re not dealing with a house style guide but are following a universal style guide and your grammar question is pretty specific, use your style’s manual to address your inquiry first. If you can’t find the answer, then check out the above resources.

Here are resources for the most common style guides:

The Chicago Manual of Style – Typically, manuscript-length pieces–that aren’t academic or scientific–are edited to adhere to this style.

Associated Press Stylebook – AP style is used primarily for journalistic content.

Purdue OWL’s MLA Style Guide – A great alternative to the print style guide of this, the Modern Language Association style.

Other Reference Books You Should Have

The Elements of Style – This is a great book that I strongly encourage you to check out and then follow the rules included. However, for trickier sentences or grammar issues, you’ll likely need to access one of the above resources.

The Merriam-Webster Dictionary – Because…duh. You won’t always have access to the Internet so you can double-check a spelling.

What are some of your favorite writing resources to access when you’re stuck with a grammar question?

Community Manager of StoryMash
March 22, 2010, 9:12 pm
Filed under: Resources | Tags: ,

One of my favorite jobs is working as the community manager of StoryMash (click to visit the site). It’s a wonderful place for writers of all ages, genders, and backgrounds to gather and discuss their techniques and experiences.

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