If you are interested in blogging or want to promote your book, please contact E. B. Davis at writerswhokill@gmail.com

Our September Author Interviews--9/6 Kathleen Valenti, 9/13 David Burnsworth, 9/20 Jeri Westerson, 9/27 Frances Brody. Please join us in welcoming these authors to WWK.

September Saturday Guest Bloggers: 9/2--Anne Bannon, 9/9 WWK Bloggers, 9/16 Margaret S. Hamilton, 9/23 Kait Carson, and on 9/30 Trixie Stiletto.

“May 16, 2017 – The Women’s Fiction Writers Association (WFWA) today announced the finalists of the second annual Star Award, given to authors of published women’s fiction. Six finalists were chosen in two categories, General and Outstanding Debut. The winners of the Star Award will be announced at the WFWA Retreat in Albuquerque, New Mexico on September 23, 2017.” In the general category, WWK’s Carla Damron was one of three finalist for her novel, The Stone Necklace. Go to Carladamron.com for more information. Congratulations, Carla!

Congratulations to our writers for the following publications:

Warren Bull's new Lincoln mystery, Abraham Lincoln In Court & Campaign has been released. Look for the Kindle version on February 3.

Shari Randall's "Pets" will be included in Chesapeake Crimes: Fur, Feathers, and Felonies anthology, which will be published in 2018. In the same anthology "Rasputin," KM Rockwood's short story, will also be published. Her short story "Goldie" will be published in the Busted anthology, which will be released by Level Best Books on April 25th.

In addition, our prolific KM will have the following shorts published as well: "Sight Unseen" in Fish Out of Water, Guppie (SinC) anthology, just released, and "Making Tracks" in Passport to Murder, Bouchercon anthology, October 2017.

Margaret S. Hamilton's short story, "Once a Kappa" was published as a finalist in the Southern Writer's Magazine annual short story contest issue. Mysterical-E published her "Double Crust Corpse" in the Fall 2016 issue. "Baby Killer" will appear in the 2017 solar eclipse anthology Day of the Dark to be published this summer prior to the eclipse in August.

James M. Jackson's 4th book in the Seamus McCree series, Doubtful Relations, is now available. His novella "Low Tide at Tybee" appears February 7 as part of Lowcountry Crimes: Four Novellas, which is available for order.

Thursday, June 3, 2010

Organic Doesn’t Have To Mean Manure

Let what happens in your story emerge organically from the characters or the story itself. I’ve read that in books on writing and I’ve heard it in writing classes. Like Aphrodite rising from the sea, hands over strategic body parts, coasting to the shore on a half shell, that’s what the advice brings to my mind. As a nurse, I’ve learned much about organs, what’s organic and what’s chemical. None of that knowledge correlates with story parts. I can see a relationship between what’s humanly organic and organic food or gardening.

After my husband died, I moved into a condominium because I didn’t want the hassle of dealing with a house and garden as well as two teenagers and a job as a nurse manager on a neuroscience unit. I didn’t realize how much I missed a garden until my guests had to move aside houseplants so they could see each other or sit down.

Once my kids were independent, I moved into a new house with a naked garden. I had all the furniture I needed plus town water and sewage so I concentrated on the yard. I traveled from garden center to garden center checking out shrubs and trees. Once I had the bones of the garden in place, though still small, I focused on beauty, on filling space to please the eye and nose.

Everything tempted me. Forget a design in blue and white, or red and green, or even matching size and texture. I dug, planted, watered, and fertilized ending up with a mixture of New England wild flowers and an English cottage garden. This year, I’m branching out into fruit trees, brambles, and vegetables.

Until now, all the spade work, weeding, and maintenance were done by me. I know what the soil looks like two feet down, and where the sand and stone layers start. I can tell which plants will emerge from dormancy first, too fast often and be bitten by late frosts. I’ve seen where the sun shines ten hours a day during the summer. It took me six years of a hands-on approach to learn the nature of my yard. I’m sure I’ll still be surprised if I follow through and transplant evergreen shrubs planted in too stiff a row during my first autumn here.

I don’t use Scotts 4 step approach. My goal is not a weed free lawn. I like buttercups and clover. Grass is the mat that sets off the rest of my plants. I favor compost that comes from the Maine coast and a mulch of salt marsh hay smelling of the sea. Wind gusts felled local trees but the salt marsh hay remained in place over the strawberries and raspberries.

Could this learning that comes through the hands, from the senses, and from the touch of wind and sun on the skin be like the understanding I need to make plot points rise organically from within my story? It took me a long time to know how to work with the soil and climate I have. I think I’d be very lucky for everything in my story to work organically in the first draft. Incidentally, most nurses will say, there comes a time in their careers when they no longer need to rely on what they learned in school. Without having to think about it, they draw on years of experience to understand what a patient is trying to tell them. More experienced writers and editors know what I had to chew over and digest to grasp.


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