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

February Interviews

2/5 Heather Weidner, Glitter, Glam, and Contraband
2/12 Rhys Bowen, Above The Bay of Angels
2/19 Elizabeth Penney, Hems & Homicide
2/26 Annette Dashofy, Under The Radar

Saturday Guest Bloggers:
2/1 Valerie Burns
2/8 Jeannette de Beauvoir
2/15 Kathryn Lane

WWK Bloggers: 2/22 Kait Carson, 1/28 & 1/29 Special Interviews with Agatha Nominees by Paula Gail Benson


WWK is proud of our four Agatha nominees. Kaye George for Best Short Story--not her first time to be nominated, Connie Berry and Grace Topping for Best First Mystery Novel (wish they weren't having to compete against each other), and Annette Dashofy for Best Contemporary Novel--her fifth nomination!

Congratulations to our writers for the following publications:

Look for Kaye George and Margaret S. Hamilton's short stories in the new Mid-Century Murder by Darkhouse Books. Kaye's story is "Life and Death on the Road" and Margaret's story is titled "4BR/3.5BA Contemporary."

Kaye George's first novel in the Vintage Sweets mystery series, Revenge is Sweet, will be released on March 10th. Look for the interview here on March 11.

Grace Topping's second novel in Laura Bishop staging series, Staging Wars, will be released by Henery Press on April 28th. Look for the interview here on April 29th.

Don't miss Shari Randall's "The Queen of Christmas" available on at Amazon. Shari's holiday story for WWK was too long so she published it for our enjoyment. It's available for 99 cents or on Kindle Unlimited for free!

KM Rockwood's "The Society" and "To Die A Free Man; the Story of Joseph Bowers" are included in the BOULD Awards Anthology, which was released on November 19. KM won second place with a cash prize for "The Society." Congratulations, KM! Kaye George's "Meeting on the Funicular" is also in this anthology, which can be bought for 99 cents on Kindle until November 30.

Paula Gail Benson's story "Wisest, Swiftest, Kindest" appears in Love in the Lowcountry an anthology by the Lowcountry Romance Writers available 11/5 in e-book and print format on Amazon. The anthology includes fourteen stories all based in Charleston, South Carolina.

Kaye George's "Grist for the Mill" was published in A Murder of Crows anthology, edited by Sandra Murphy on October 9th.

Shari Randall will be writing again for St. Martin's, perhaps under a pseudonym. We look forward to reading Shari's Ice Cream Shop Mystery series debuting next year. Congratulations, Shari!

Susan Van Kirk's A Death At Tippett Pond was released on June 15th. Read E. B. Davis's interview with Susan.

Warren Bull's Abraham Lincoln: Seldom Told Stories was released. It is available at: GoRead: https://www.goread.com/book/abraham-lincoln-seldom-told-stories or at Amazon: https://tinyurl.com/ydaklx8p


Wednesday, June 27, 2012

My Writing Wish List

Remember when you were a little kid and you'd write out your wish list for your birthday, or to Santa?  You'd agonize over the list, making sure to write the items down in order of importance (or, at least I did).  Then, there was the anticipation over which item(s) would be wrapped and waiting for you on that special day.  And finally, when you got something you really wanted . . . WooHoo!  True elation!

As you grew, there was that awkward time, where you stopped writing those lists out, and the gifts were less and less exciting.  Maybe someone would buy something that you only sort of liked, or maybe you stopped collecting a certain trinket, but the message didn't get passed down to everyone in your gifting circle.  When that started happening to me, people would often just want to give me a gift certificate.

On the one hand, gift certificates (or gift cards) are good, because the receiver can get whatever it is they want.  But it always seemed so impersonal to me, because to give a gift card is like saying "I don't know you well enough to buy what you'd like."  I do have people for whom I buy gift cards, because I don't see them often enough to know what they want or have--and nowadays, we're so connected to shopping on the web, it's more instantaneous that way--but a part of me still twinges inside whenever I buy one.  I once got a gift card from a boyfriend for my birthday.  He and I had been living together for a few years by then, so to get a gift card was one of the final straws that made me realize our relationship was dead; as was his admission that he had won the gift card . . . he hadn't spent ANY money on me for my birthday that year.

Anyway, I've lately come to realize that it gets harder for people to buy me things, the older I get.  I'm making a decent wage at my day job now.  I'm living with my fianc√© (soon to be husband), and we're sharing the bills.  So I have enough money to buy the things that I truly need, or even want on a day to day (or month to month) basis.  However, I still don't want to receive gift cards from people who've known me for years; it still feels impersonal to receive one.

Which is why I'm a big fan of Amazon's Wish List feature.  It makes it easy for me to compile a bunch of things that I want and then be able to send the list off to friends/family who might be in the market to buy me a present for occasions like Birthday, Christmas, or Just 'Cuz (my favorite gift-giving season).  With Amazon expanding their items more and more, I can "wish" for anything from books and movies, to clothing, to tools, and whatnot.  When I get something as a gift, I can go into the list and delete it easily; making room for something new that catches my eye.

Well, today I'm creating a Wish List for the things I want, from an author perspective.  Some are things I can only give myself, and others are things you readers might have answers for.  If you do have an answer, I'm hoping you'll give it to me as sort of a Birthday present . . . since my birthday was at the beginning of this month.

This list is in no particular order of importance.
  1. More time to write.
  2. Online grammar classes, so I can learn this stuff without having to finger through multiple manuals.
  3. More discipline, so I can make better use of the time I DO have for writing.
  4. Grammar classes in a mortar and brick building.  I'd LOVE to get college credit for something like this.
  5. A critique group in my neck of the woods, so we can meet in person.
  6. A grammar and punctuation cheat sheet - one page of easy-to-read pointers.
  7. A dedicated area for my writing.
I'm seeing a definite pattern here . . . but seriously, if any of you know where I can find a grammar/punctuation one-sheet, I'd really appreciate it if you'd pass the info along . . .


E. B. Davis said...

I can identify with most of your wish list items, Alyx. Here's a link that may be of help: http://www.grammarbook.com/grammar/cnt_gram.asp.

I do take exception to one of your items: In-person critique groups for me haven't worked. Too many personalities get involved, politics can develop and your words seem to get lost in the fray. I found most of the time spent was to socialize rather than work.

Good luck on getting the rest.

Alyx Morgan said...

Thanks for the link, EB! I've already signed up for the newsletter.

Thank you, also, for your comments on in-person critique groups. I'll have to keep an eye out for that.

Warren Bull said...

If I were making a list I would have an in-person critique group and an in-house computer repair guru. I also want a software instructor for the various word programs to find something that does want to change my margins randomly.

Jim Jackson said...

Unlike EB, I had a great experience with an in-person critique group. I suspect the difference is that it was run by folks who had good critiquing rules and made sure everyone followed them.

For your one-sheet grammar tips, I suggest you create one yourself. My guess is that most of the rules of grammar you have already internalized. When you find something you are messing up, add it to your personalized cheat sheet.

After a bit, you'll have all of your "favorite" grammar issues in one place.

I have an equivalent sheet for my writing foibles: all the things I need to check in my self-edit.

~ Jim

Linda Rodriguez said...

EB, I've had great luck with in in-person critique group, but we're all professional writers, writing to pay the bills. It's our day job, so we have to take it seriously. We're friends and we socialize together, but never during critique sessions. So far, this group's been functioning well for over six years.

Alyx Morgan said...

My fiance has the same issues with Word, Warren. I've never had problems with formatting in that software, so I can't empathise, sorry.

Alyx Morgan said...

I'm glad to know you've had success with in-person critique groups, Jim & Linda. It gives me hope that I can find one; I just have to make sure they treat it as professionally as yours have.

Thanks for the advice on creating my own cheat-sheet, Jim. That's probably what I'll end up doing, by compiling what I can find from grammar sites.

Gloria Alden said...

My in-person critique group only has one person I turn to for actual critiquing. Our once a month meeting is to share something we've read and make some comments about it. Because we are limited to 10 minutes, I can never read anything from my WIP. Also, a chapter a month would lose its continuity.

My Wish List would include more time and like Warren, a computer guru accessible when I need him/her and free or cheap. :-)

Maddy said...

I'm in two different critique groups, one meets monthly and the other fortnightly. Both are great for different reasons, but they both stick to a set of rules which makes the sessions run smoothly and efficiently. Maybe you could put an add up on Craig's list to find critique members - start on-line first for safety reasons. Otherwise I seem to remember Becky Levine drawing up a list of people wanting to join groups by area - her book on critique groups is pretty darned good too.

Alyx Morgan said...

Sorry to hear your critique group isn't as helpful as you probably hoped at first, Gloria. Maybe you & I should take Maddy's suggestion to heart about trying to make our own critique groups through Craigslist.

Good luck with yours, Gloria! And thanks for the suggestion, Maddy. :)