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Results 1 - 25 of 236,767
1. Presidential Polar Bear Post Card Project No. 239 - 9.23.16


These two marine mammals would never meet in the wild, but today the Honorable Senator Bill Nelson (FL) became the 37th member of the Senate to sign to a Bill to protect the Arctic Refuge on Alaska's coastal plain. Manatees and polar bears. #wearethearctic

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2. भारत और पाकिस्तान के बीच संबंध

भारत और पाकिस्तान के बीच संबंध में लगातार खटास बढती जा रही है और इसका जीता जागता उदाहरण है न्यूज चैनल जो दिन रात युद्द कराने की फिराक में हैं   भारत और पाकिस्तान के बीच युद्ध भारत और पाकिस्तान के बीच संबंध में बढती खटास के चलते अब  भारत और पाकिस्तान के बीच युद्ध […]

The post भारत और पाकिस्तान के बीच संबंध appeared first on Monica Gupta.

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3. Multiple Points of View

Question: I've been told I'm head-hopping in my contemporary romance manuscript. How do you convey different characters' thoughts, feelings, or reactions

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4. Thoughts on the New TV Season, 2016 Edition

This week has seen the first inklings of the new TV season, as the US networks start trotting out shows in the hopes of success, legitimacy, or even the tiniest bit of attention.  And yet here I am, still talking about some of the shows of summer.  This is partly because, as we've all more or less accepted, network shows just aren't where it's at anymore, and there isn't that much to say about

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5. And Now for Something COMPLETELY Different: A New Way to Record History!

Another message from Deedy. But at least it's not about her OTHER KIND OF WRITING for a change. Love, the Izzy Elves


* * *

As some of you might know, I usually write posts about historical events, historical fiction, and the like about the 17th, 18th, 19th, and 20th centuries. Today I am writing about an exciting new form of recording history in the 21st century to be done by Smock Media Holdings, a film production company based in Venice Beach, CA. This is a company created and run by my sons, Hawk and Nate Jensen.

Hawk is an experienced, award-winning documentary film-maker. He has come up with a groundbreaking idea for recording historical occurrences using VR360 (for an explanation, read the text below).

 To put this into practice, Hawk and his Managing Producer bro, Nate, need some help.

Please click on the following link to watch a video explaining what Hawk and Nate want to accomplish, and to connect to the crowdfunding campaign to make this happen. 
Support this 21st Century History Project!

Thanks!

Dorothea Jensen (Proud Mother)

P.S. Even  a dollar helps!


 

The award-winning documentary filmmakers at Smock Media in Venice Beach, CA are raising $57,500 for a virtual reality project called PRIME OBSERVER®.  Our goal is to build Camerasuits® for our team of zany photojournalist / documentarian / adventurers to capture full 360 degree footage of spectacular cultural and historical moments that place you INSIDE
these events as we experience them.
 
Ever wanted to go back to relive Burning Man or Coachella? Wanted to know what it's really like to be in the middle of a floor fight at a political convention? Wanted to stand between rival protest marches and form your own opinion of what happened? Wanted to surround yourself by all the glitz, glamour and glitterati at Fashion Week but couldn't get on the red carpet?  Prime Observers® Hawk, Ramblin' Tom, Kalia, Ben, Dakota, Nathaniel, Andylee and Abba Austin will put you there.     
 
Virtual reality is a whole new medium to record history.  With over 150 years of combined documentary production experience we know where to place the camera to capture "the moment" but now we ourselves will become that camera inside that moment.  Filmmaking will never be the same.  Come step into the scene with us!

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6. डॉक्टर कैसे बने – मरीजो से किस तरह पेश आएं सीख रहें हैं डाक्टर्स

डॉक्टर कैसे बने पढ कर आपको हैरानी नही हुई होगी क्योकि कोई भी डॉक्टर बन सकता है पर यहां बात अच्छा डॉक्टर कैसे बने की हो रही है अच्छा डॉक्टर बनने का तरीका डॉक्टर कैसे बने – मरीजो से किस तरह पेश आएं सीख रहें हैं डाक्टर्स… यकीनन एक हट कर खबर है … आज अखबार में एक […]

The post डॉक्टर कैसे बने – मरीजो से किस तरह पेश आएं सीख रहें हैं डाक्टर्स appeared first on Monica Gupta.

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7. वोट किसे दे

वोट किसे दे एक यक्ष प्रश्न है क्योकि कहने को सभी मेहनती, ईमानदार, हमारे अपने हैं पर हकीकत से कोसो दूर .. ऐसे मे पहचानना मुश्किल है कि  किसे वोट दिया जाए … कौन है सही उम्मीदवार वोट किसे दे कौन है सही उम्मीदवार … अभी थोडी देर पहले मणि बहुत गुस्से में घर पर […]

The post वोट किसे दे appeared first on Monica Gupta.

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8. In Memory: Lois Duncan

By Cynthia Leitich Smith
for Cynsations

Author Lois Duncan, died in June while Cynsations was on summer hiatus.

Lois Duncan Obituary: Bestselling author of fiction for young adults, including the thriller I Know What You Did Last Summer by Julia Eccleshare from The Guardian. Peek: "She was born Lois Duncan Steinmetz in Philadelphia, and grew up in Sarasota, Florida. Lois wanted to be a writer from childhood, and submitted her first typed manuscript to Ladies’ Home Journal when she was 10."

Obituary: Lois Duncan by Shannon Maughan from Publishers Weekly. Peek: "After attending Duke University for a year... She entered her YA project Debutante Hill in Dodd, Mead & Company’s Seventeenth Summer Literary Contest and earned the grand prize: $1000 and a book contract."

Lois Duncan, 82, Dies; Author Knew What You Did Last Summer by Daniel E. Slotnik from The New York Times. Peek: "Though her books had their share of violence, Ms. Duncan said she was 'utterly horrified' when she saw the [1997] film adaptation of “I Know What You Did Last Summer,” which...turned her novel, about a group of teenagers desperately trying to conceal an accidental killing, into a horror tale in which the same teenagers are systematically dispatched by their hook-wielding victim." Note: To clarify, I heard Lois speak about this at an SCBWI conference. It wasn't the violence per se but rather the way it was trivialized for cheap thrills. Her novel had a strong moral center that was absent from its film adaptation.

I Know What I Read That Summer by Carmen Maria Machado from The New Yorker. Peek: "Her prose is unfussy and clean. She centered her books on young women, and her writing considers themes that have come to obsess me as an adult: gendered violence, psychological manipulation, the vulnerability of outsiders."

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9. Minding Your Manners

#storybuildingblocks,@diana_hurwitz,#writingtips,#fiction,#screenplay
www.dianahurwitz.com
I give credit to an article in Parents magazine for inspiring this one. Are etiquette and chivalry truly dead? In your story world, you decide. 

Tweet: Mores and manners change with the times, but everyone has a set of rules. #writingtips

From knights in clanging armor, to Victorian parlors, to the craziness of Hollywood, every story world has a set of rules for how people are supposed to behave and whether or not your characters choose to.

How comfortable Dick is in terms of asking for something depends on his personality type and whether he likes the person he is asking. The polite way to ask is, "Please may I ...". If Dick says, "Please taking a running leap off a short pier," the game is on.

How comfortable Dick is in terms of receiving things also depends on his personality type and whether or not he wants the item received. 


Thank you's when used appropriately, are the oil that makes life run a little smoother. An insincere thank you can mask anger when Dick would really like to let those rude words fly and can't. "Why thank you! However did you come up with such a creative solution to our current predicament ...Sweetie." If he says, "Thank you for not breathing," the game is on.

When a character interrupts a conversation, even to tell Dick that Timmy is in the well, he is being rude.


How often do your characters interrupt each other? Is it well meant, deliberately intrusive or because the situation requires it? Is it timed to deflect an important or revealing conversation?

Cell phones are rampant. Forcing the people around him to listen to Dick's conversation is rude. Listening in on other people's conversations is considered rude. This can also have unforeseen consequences. People aren't careful when they talk on their phones in public. They aren't careful when dining with their friends in restaurants. Clues can be dropped, sensitive information revealed and a person's true colors exposed.

"It's better to ask permission than forgiveness" is a current favorite. But is it? Sometimes Dick should ask permission, like before he raids someone else's refrigerator. He'll pass on asking permission if he is raiding their safe. Taking something innocent without permission may seem harmless, but may push the wrong button. How does Dick feel about having something taken without permission? Is he amused or furious?

Jane should keep negative opinions to herself. Or between her and her friends and out of earshot of other people. In which case, they can discuss freely and at length over their favorite beverage. Refer to the previous "there's no privacy while dining" scenario. This is especially true when commenting on other people's physical characteristics, clothing, possessions and children. It isn't considered acceptable to offer an insult as a compliment: "My, those tattoos are so colorful." Or "It must have taken hours to do that to your hair." Southern women are queens of the insult/compliment smashup. "Well, bless her heart, isn't she precious? It must have taken a month of Sundays to come up with that outfit."

Jane should take a hostess gift to someone's house when invited for dinner and thank them for having her over and for the good time she had. If Jane is lying through her teeth, you have conflict. If she takes them a present intended to insult, the game is on. Is she thanks them for the most riveting evening she's ever had, the insult might fly right over her host's head.

Sally was taught to knock before entering. This could avert a potential disaster if her husband is in bed with someone else. If she is doing something she doesn't want anyone to know about, locking the door would be a great idea. If Sally never locks a door and suddenly decides to lock the door, there is conflict. Locking the bathroom door could mean the child/person knocking better be bleeding, the house on fire or someone dying. If not, the game is on.

When making a phone call, Dick should introduce himself and ask for whoever he wishes to speak to. With the advent of caller ID this is going out of fashion. The conflict occurs when Dick doesn't bother to ascertain who he is talking to before he speaks. It also occurs when Dick answers someone else's phone, particularly if he pretends to be that person. Wrong numbers and misunderstandings are rife in these situations.

What are your story world rules about profanity? It is considered bad manners to use foul language in public, particularly if sensitive little ears are around to hear them. There are still factions of society insulted by words that other factions of society use as versatile adjective/noun/verbs. Profanity is generally considered crass in business and social functions. If Dick does so, how much trouble will he be in? Is Jane offended by profanity or does she swear like a sailor?

Dick should never call other people names or make fun of them. Until they are out of earshot and can't hear him or retaliate. Unless he intentionally wants to start a fight. Even good natured teasing can be taken the wrong way.

Jane should sit through a play, assembly, lecture or business meeting quietly and pretend she is interested even if she is bored silly. What happens if she doesn't? We've all been in boring business meetings, school music programs or dance programs that - other than our little darling's five seconds of fame - bore us to tears. You may be at a lecture or a workshop. This is where the cell phone issue comes in. The light from the screen is distracting. Jane may be bored, but the parent/participant sitting next to her might not. What happens if Jane is forced to sit there? What happens if she breaks free? What happens if she breaks out her Blackberry?

Sally should cover her mouth when she coughs or sneezes. These days it's an act of terror to spread germs in a public place or airplane.

If he sees someone struggling, Dick should offer to help. This is lovely if an elderly person is struggling with their groceries, a mom with a stroller, or someone drops something and doesn't notice. These situations can be hilarious or deadly. What could a little act of kindness lead to? What could Dick gain by pretending to be helpful? There's the old joke about the boy scout who helped the old lady across the street only to find she was headed the opposite direction. Good intentions rarely go unpunished.

When someone asks a favor, Jane should do it without grumbling, unless the favor is inappropriate. Favors can be dangerous. If Jane asks a favor, she should preface it with, "Would you mind." If she follows that up with "Would you mind sodding off?" the game is on.


For more on crafting conflict to create tension, pick up a copy of Story Building Blocks II: Crafting Believable Conflict available in paperback and E-book.

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10. A normal Friday at Uni...??

Friday wrapped up our first week back to Uni in absolute chaotic style. The morning began on the east side of town at the Minto House on Chambers Street. I haven't figured out the best path between Minto House and my studio in the Evolution House yet - although the southern-most path goes by the Brazilian Crepe Stand, Tupiniquim, one of my fave places to eat lunch in Edinburgh, so I imagine I'll be going that direction a lot. And it's flatter - that's a big deal here. Direct paths aren't always the best paths to take in this city as you can end up going UP and DOWN and UP!

Anyhow, MFA 2nd-year students (MFA2s) have Context (the academic/writerly portion of our studies) in a tighter setting than last year's lecture theatre. I know almost everybody in my group now, and we'll get loads done on our dissertations, which occur this semester. (In the UK you write a dissertation for your Masters and a Thesis for your PhD - it's opposite in the states.) My theme is "Comparing and Contrasting the US Caldecott and UK Greenaway Award-winning Picture Books to Identify Trends, Similarities and Differences Between the US and UK Markets." Wish me luck!
     After our Context meeting, I had a meeting with my personal tutor back at the main Art building. My tutor works in Fashion Design, which gave me all sorts of fun ideas for my Exit Show, which will happen this coming May.
     I then had my one-on-one with Jonathan Gibbs, head of our illustration department. He was extremely helpful guiding my direction for the upcoming semester.
     Then it was back to the Minto House for our breakout groups - called Seminar. (In the future, I'll use this in-between gap time to go to the main campus library and write.)
     Then back again to Evolution House for our semester kick-off project called EIEIO. All illustration students - undergrads and postgrads were broken into groups and given a nursery rhyme to dramatize in some creative way (leaving the audience to guess which nursery rhyme you had). My group was assigned "The Little Nut Tree." I wasn't familiar with this one, but apparently it was a political satire based on Catherine of Aragon, who originally married Henry VIII's brother Arthur, who proved to be infertile, so she became the first wife of King Henry VIII and Queen of England. Ironically, there were two Americans in my group. Our third member (English) came up with the idea to adapt the tale to American politics. This is what happened as a result:
We reworded the poem a bit. Instead of giving a golden pear and a silver nutmeg to the princess, as the rhyme states, the "prince" now gave a golden elephant and silver donkey to the "princess." OMG.
     The whole point of the project is to become familiar with the studio spaces and make friends, and that certainly happened! Turns out Harriet plays guitar. We went to lunch the other day at Hula Juice bar, then stopped by Red Dog music and jammed on their guitars for a bit - FUN!
     But my day wasn't over yet!
     Blackwell's Books hosted an amazing event that pretty much every kidlit fan in Edinburgh attended - An Evening with Oliver Jeffers, Sam Winston & Eoin Colfer (CLICK HERE to read more about it). Of course, that meant heading back over to Chambers Street again - seriously! A bunch of us met up at Revolution Bar to grab a snack before-hand, then head to the event hosted by our illustrious and dear Vivian French.
Hazel Terry did a nice write up of the event - CLICK HERE to read. I was pretty tired, must admit. Needless to say, when I finally got home, I went straight to bed!

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11. Presidential Polar Bear Post Card Project No. 238 - 9.22.16


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12. Writing about topics I don't know too well...

Hi! I'm John (big fan of your page!), and I have a question that has been haunting me for a while and will not let me begin ANY book I try to write.

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13. निकला


हर एक शब्द उसका तीर सा निकला,  
फूलों का वो हार, ज़ंज़ीर सा निकला 

वक़्त का खेल होता है बहुत निराला. 
कमज़ोर था जो, शमशीर सा निकला, 

ग़लतफहमी का तोहफा देने चला था,
खुशियों का पिटारा फकीर सा निकला  

समझा कहाँ उसने, दिल का अफ़साना,
दावा वो पत्थर की लकीर सा निकला 

तड़पने के बाद भी, गले से लगाया, 
                दोस्त वो मेरा 'साथी', पीर सा निकला || Dr. DV ||

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14. Juncture Notes 07: coming soon

We're still in a bit of a farm-induced haze here at Juncture. Missing those writers we came to know on that slice of Central Pennsylvania earth. Imagining those stories flowing forward.

Our next issue of Juncture Notes will feature the scenes from and lessons of that workshop, as well thoughts on a new bestselling memoir. We'll send it out to our list in a day or so. If you'd like to be on that list, just sign up here. Juncture Notes, which combines Bill's art with my memoir obsession, is free.

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15. Large Book Advances

Even if you're one of the very few who gets a six-figure book deal, you might want to keep your day job.  


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16. Hummingbird Farewell

The feeder's full; the hummingbirds
Have likely flown away
To find a better climate
For their wintering foray.

I've read that they fly solo,
Not like others, in a swarm,
To Mexico or Panama
In search of someplace warm.

I wonder how they fare in flight,
Their frenzied wings a'blur
And what they do if storms or winds
Or hurricanes occur.

I'll take my feeder down and dump
The sugar water out 
And hope next summer once again
I'll see them flit about.




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17. The Top 25 Publishers for New Authors

http://www.authorspublish.com/the-top-25-publishers-for-new-authors/

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18. Sumatra: Brain Fever

I chalk it up to heat-induced temporary insanity. It could happen to any Canadian crossing the equator. I had a strong desire to make my way to Germany, dye my hair orange and drum for a punk band which specialized in industrial music. The desire passed as the bus followed the road through the lush jungle vegetation past rice paddies and wilted looking livestock. When I thought about summoning enough energy to listen, I was convinced I could hear the plants grow in the humidity. The whole island was a hothouse. The single minded bus driver seemed to be the only one expending energy as he missed pedestrians, livestock and other vehicles, leaned on the horn. We were used to the danger by now. A sort of fatalistic resignation takes over on breakneck bus rides through the countryside of Sumatra. It was too hot to care. We had left the craziness and heroin of Penang behind. The sweat dripped off of our noses. Everyone on the bus, even the natives, had a worn out, washed out look. We were travelling from Medan, where the ferry from Penang had taken us, down the spine of Sumatra to Lake Toba, thence to Padang, about halfway down the island, on the coast. In Padang we spent hours at the consulate waiting to get our visas renewed because it was cheaper there than in Bali. Of a dozen uniformed clerks, two were reading, the rest inspected the Western girls or stared into space, a paper clip twisting in their fingers. When they did stir to attend the sweating crowd of travellers they wanted to first see proof that you had a return ticket. It’s the only legal way to enter Indonesia. It didn’t matter that we’d entered days before at Medan. The passports and applications lay in a pile on a desk. They didn’t have to worry about an overwhelming influx of immigrants heading south since the island of Java is the most thickly populated place on earth, but it was one way for the government to get money from travellers. A Japanese girl told Joyce that she had tonsilitis and that they didn’t have toilet paper even in hospitals in Padang. Seventy-five cents for dormitory beds at the local hostel. Officially marrying before getting to Asia saves a lot of problems. Single women are targets. At Lake Toba, we recovered from the bus ride during which it was too hot to sleep. The soaking heat deprived us of every traveller’s last resort, the final escape from the tedium and discomfort ... sleep, oblivion. There, time stood still, then went backward. We had landed in a timeless, primitive existence. Surrounded by the jungle and jungle sounds. Old men wailed their night songs in the dark. It sounded like a Tarzan movie. Wild boar lived in the jungle, endangered humans occasionally, provided meat and tusks more often. Snakes and mongooses and their spirits were part of the diet and the mythology. Ancient Sumatran devils caused poor sleep, restless dreams. All the dwellings had horned roofs which intruded, then dominated. A reminder that no matter what it was like in the outside world, this was here and now. This primitive existence was the present. Reality. No luxuries, no concrete, no advanced plumbing or electricity. Rats made nests in the roof so when you woke up into the flickering darkness from a dream of ancient enemy skins hanging by the fire, you could hear them running along the rafters over your head. You could see their shadows on the thatched roof when the candle light caught them. Sleep again became a refuge along with a short prayer for the balance of rats. We finally boarded a freighter, in Padang, the cheapest way to travel from Sumatra to Java. The beginning of our sea voyage was normal. We watched the port, then the island of Sumatra fade into the distance behind us and with it, the confusion and brain fever. Deck space, a place to sleep beneath the canvas strung across the deck for protection from the sun and rain, was what we paid for. Two big, deeply tanned Aussies who were obviously used to the sea and travelling by sea, probably lived by the sea, told us they had accompanied fishermen from an island near Bali on an early morning trip. They witnessed, then tried, the eating of the raw hearts of the fish they caught. They found it to be a life giving experience with aphrodisiac powers. Meals were cooked in the tiny galley below deck; a green vegetable which had obviously been boiled, over a bed of rice, on a tin plate. Tasteless but necessary to settle the queasy stomachs everyone felt The sea looked calm enough. But a rhythmic sway began to get to everyone. Coconut oil smoke made it worse. Even the regular crew and the Aussies were hit by sea sickness. They laughed and made wise cracks between spews. The rest of us weren’t so lighthearted about it. Soon there were travellers and crew members staggering to the rail to vomit over the side. The unwary ones stood downwind from others puking over the side near the front, got splashed. One grain of rice, well soaked in the stomach’s digestive juices, inadvertently snorted while vomiting, causes untold misery in the nasal passage and a long lasting, unpleasant reminder of how sick you really were. Finally, that particular movement of the ship passed and so did the seasickness. The travellers and crew wobbled about unsteadily for a while, then settled down. No one offered the travellers rice after that. Our diet became the fruit we had brought on board with us. We settled down on the deck, tried to sleep through the hot days and windy nights. Serge from France, tanned dark brown, curly hair down past his shoulders, wispy goatee, regained his happy smile as he recovered from the seasickness. He wore a sarong like a native, always carried a flute attached to his backpack. Everyone commiserated with him when we found out he was on his way back to France to fulfill his military obligations. He had been drafted. These were his last few days of freedom. He had made his choice. He was tempted to keep travelling, but he knew that eventually he’d want to return to France. The army was one step above jail. He couldn’t go back on the run. He was a proud Frenchman, but that had nothing to do with the government’s army. His ideas and life were far from conformity, uniformity, the military. One night, in a Tull like performance, he started playing. Under the canvas, starry night above, the sea breeze blowing his hair in time with the tempo of his song, Serge captivated everyone. All the travellers stopped talking or sat up to look and listen, even some crew members, smoking by the dark rail, paid attention. He started in the familiar pose which we had all adopted... leaning, laying back against our packs and bedrolls, then he seemed to find something as he played the first few, hesitant notes. He stood up, still playing. His flute came alive. His song gained and lost volume and speed as he breathed life into it. It wasn’t recorded, probably forgotten even by Serge, a few days later. There was the soft soughing of the ship as it made its way through the water, the sea breeze in the wires, occasionally something would flap in the southern night wind. The notes of Serge’s flute seemed to linger and then be snatched away by the other sounds. His eyes closed, Serge stood and played to the night, to his humble companions, listened to the sounds around him and echoed them. He didn’t stand on one leg, but he carried us all away as he talked to the wind in its own language. Selamat Jalan...Good Journey. A fitting Indonesian goodbye to Sumatra. Then someone told us that we were passing Krakatau which erupted in 1883 killing thousands of people. It was just a lump on the horizon from the deck of the ship. A famous volcano which the world knew about because of the tragedy. Later that day, we landed in Djakarta.

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19. Chalk Lessons

How do you feel about failure?
This summer, we made chalk paint with cornstarch, food coloring, and water. 
Summery delight!
See our driveway canvas?
 Little did we know that a thunderstorm brewed two hours away.
All our chalky wonders washed away overnight.

It's that resonance of art and failure that makes us strong, right?

Do you ever wonder if we can learn as much from our flops
- our sloppy first drafts, our rejections, our imperfections -
as from our neat and tidy successes? 

I have this thing. This fear of ruining a brand new notebook or sketchbook. 
I figure if I'm constantly working at something, then naturally, I'll keep improving. 
And when I look at my old notebooks stuffed with terrible first drafts and awkward brainstorms, 
I get panicky. What if this first page represents who I am through that entire notebook or sketchbook? Can't it at least start out perfect?
Talk about writer's block, eh?
So, I solved it. 

It's my secret to hurdling the fear of failure. (in a notebook.)

I just skip the first page. 

Then I'm set. I have a one-page cushion keeping me from a first-page flop. 
(Really, it means that the second page becomes the first page, but shhh.)

But really, don't we gain something in being brave with each feeble offering of ourselves?
In truth, even if I jump right into the first page of a notebook and ink it up with a scratchy failure, 
actually my "failure" teaches me something, and that becomes growth.
And if that's true, then maybe "failure" isn't so much of a failure. 
Maybe the effort of trying something stretches and grows our skills. 
And actually, that is beauty right there: being brave.
So, go out and be brave, my friends!
Ruin some second pages.
Scribble your heart out.
Make sloppy chalk paint that gets rained on overnight.
Get all muddy and splash around in those glorious flops.

Chalky books!


Journey by Aaron Becker
Quest by Aaron BeckerChalk by Bill Thomson
Art & Max by David Wiesner
The Dot by Peter H. Reynolds
Harold's Purple Crayon by Crockett Johnson

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20. Show, Don't Tell

We've all heard the advice to show, don't tell, but how do you do that?

https://nerdychickswrite.com/2016/07/26/brushing-up-on-show-dont-tell-by-marciecolleen1/

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21. Say Cheese! Original watercolor made to order

Cheese, cheese, makes you sneeze
Hang it on your washing line
Rub it on your knees

Original Art (and poem) by me!
Special Offer £24.99 Post Free
Pen and Ink and Watercolour
Size is 6" x 4" in 10" x 8" White Mount
Will be created especially for you. Each one will differ slightly.
Use the Paypal button below to purchase!

original children's illustration for sale
Original Art. £24.99 Post Free





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22. रक्तदान का महत्व – आईए नया जीवन दें

रक्तदान महादान है और स्वैच्छिक रुप से किया रक्तदान सबसे अच्छा दान है रक्तदान का महत्व समझते हुए हमें रक्तदान जरुर करना चाहिए क्योकि रक्त किसी फैक्ट्री में नही बनता और एक नेक कार्य करने का सबसे बेहतर तरीका है रक्तदान करना रक्तदान करना मानो किसी को नया जन्म देना आज का दिन रक्तदान के […]

The post रक्तदान का महत्व – आईए नया जीवन दें appeared first on Monica Gupta.

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23. Halloween Decorations

The wooden skull and pumpkins
Dangle neatly by the door.
The ghost and owl made of felt
Add much to the decor.

The cat and witch are wishing all
A Happy Halloween
And soon a jack-o-lantern will
Give credence to the scene.

The skeleton quite jauntily
Holds court while on his perch.
The scary part was finding them
From last year - what a search!

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24. Close to the Bone: KA

Hi, folks, I've been writing a series all about  a time in my twenties when I was part of religious cult. Last week I wrote a heart-breaking story from my past about G and his sad demise. This is my version of the Valley of Dry Bones from the Book of Ezekiel. I'm calling it Close to the Bone. This is the final in the series.

Toward the end of the dark days of the cult, I was failing around for purpose. A teacher from college, Dr. Van Riper, ran into me at the supermarket and demanded to know why I had three children instead of writing books for children. I had no answer. She'd told me what to do, and I'd ignored her.

 I was slowly waking up in these days. God's chosen people were now looking like a bunch of uneducated country folk, plus a bunch of kids that had choked on embracing the future after college. That's when I saw the ad in the newspaper about some group called SCBWI.

Fellow-shipping outside the church was forbidden in manipulative, oblique way, but this was business so I figured God would give me a pass. I remember heading to that first meeting and feeling so welcome. There were 8 or 9 women and they were so gracious and kind.  I remember the first conversation  in a long time without having to say praise the Lord or how God was directing me every third word.  I also remember KA. She was a real author and the leader of the SCBWI group. Her first picture book had come out but she talked to me like I was a colleague. Bam, I was in the inner circle.

I can not tell you  how much KA's leadership meant to me. I tried to keep secret from the church my fraternizing with the world.  KA was a Unitarian. That was something I was supposed to fear. Of course, by now, I understood that I was supposed to fear everything, and it was sort of ridiculous and tiring. KA believed in me as a creative person. She never let me feel like I was a little off with my long dresses and three kids in three years. She accepted me just as I was. It was the most Christian thing I'd ever experienced.

I remember being invited to another SCBWI member's house called DC. I had friends outside the church for the first time in almost eight years.  I was hanging out with a group of women, totally normal women with varied backgrounds. It was sort of dizzying. I was supposed to have left the world behind but now I sneaking back into it. Oh, and the big problem? I loved it.

SCBWI became an island of normal in my life. Like Phoenix, I was rising from my ashes. KA tried to convince me to go to Los Angeles for the annual conference. I chickened out but her encouragement planted a seed in me.  KA convinced me to volunteer for events, write letters to editors, and even submit my drawings to the SCBWI Bulletin.  My first credit was as an illustrator in the Bulletin.  I was so proud. I was engaged in the pursuit of liberty.  I had expressed myself.  I made $50.  It was mind-blowing.

When Tim and I decided to move away the place we had known such tragedy, KA continued to encourage me until I left town.  I have no idea if she had any idea of how lost I was, and how much I needed help to become a normal person again.  She never said anything when the sorry story of my entire life was reported in the local newspaper. KA encouraged me creatively, commenting on my work and giving me suggestions, and once she sent me a card stating there would be a day when she said she knew me when.  She bridged the way for me to absolutely normal. I turned into the funky person I had been before all the religious nonsense.  I came to my senses.

Well, this is end of these posts and also time for big news. My blog is moving over to Niume.com.  I hope you consider following me an my content there.  You will receive updates of posts if you follow me on Facebook, Twitter, or tumbler.

One of those early drawings. I sent to the Bulletin on a notepad paper, a big no-no. Sm bought them anyway.




A quote for your pocket:

My people, I am going to open your graves and bring you up from them; I will bring you back to the land of Israel.13 Then you, my people, will know that I am the Lord, when I open your graves and bring you up from them. 14 I will put my Spirit in you and you will live, and I will settle you in your own land. Then you will know that I the Lord have spoken, and I have done it, declares the Lord.

Ezekiel 37: 12b-14

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25. Cynsational News & Resources

By Cynthia Leitich Smith
for Cynsations

Author Interview: Guadalupe García McCall: Remembering What Has Endured, What Has Been Lost by Justin Barisich from BookPage. Peek: "It takes a lot of courage to let the world see your heart, to lay it down on the ground in front of the enemy and say, 'This is it. This who I am. This is what I’ve got,' and that is what Dulceña does."

How to Find and Reach Influencers to Help Promote Your Work by Angela Ackerman from Jane Friedman. Peek: "Because if you truly appreciate what they do, you will naturally want to help them further succeed. And while of course you hope they’ll return the favor, that’s not your endgame. Creating a relationship is."

Seven Surprising Facts About Creativity, According to Science by John Paul Titlow from Fast Company. Peek: "In the face of a major loss, our brains often explore new creative outlets as part of the 'rebuilding' process of our lives, especially as our perspectives, priorities, and ways of thinking about things shift around. " Note: the observation about teachers at the end of the post does not apply to me.

Ten Tips for Video-Chat School Visits from Christine Kohler. Peek: "Although my stress-level skyrocketed that morning when my PC’s operating system corrupted, I thought other authors might benefit by what I did in pre-planning to ensure 'the show must go on,' and on schedule."

Children's Literature as a Vehicle for Peace by Summer Edward from Medium. Peek: "Is social justice an elite weapon to be wielded in the hands of a few acclaimed activists or is it a human imperative to which each individual is called?"

Series Beginnings by Mary Kole from Kidlit.com. Peek: "By providing this context but weaving it into the first few chapters of the story, you will be welcoming your existing readers back into the story while simultaneously giving new readers a chance to catch up. All without info-dumping."

Interview: Dean Gloster on Dessert First by Adi Rule from VCFA Launchpad. Peek: "...with all the intensity of residency, my constantly emailing documents to myself to print out in the library, and my mostly using my VCFA email address, I actually missed the message from the editor saying they were buying my book...."

No One Gets a Pass When It Comes to Writing Multicultural Books from Grace Lin. Peek: "I get a fair amount of flack for portraying light-skinned Asians or Asians in the stereotypical haircut of heavy bangs."

What I Leaned About Publishing an #OwnVoices Book with a Latinx Heroine by Valerie Tejeda from Bustle. Peek: "I've learned a lot about what it means to be an #OwnVoices author — the good, the bad, the ugly — but here are a few things that have stuck out to me the most..."

Four Ways "Stranger Things" Gets Middle Grade Right by Mary E. Cronin from Project Mayhem. Peek: "Kids are the stars of this show, and middle grade writers can draw much inspiration from it. Here are four ways that the creators of 'Stranger Things' totally nail middle grade...."

Give Your Characters Roots by Dave King from Writer Unboxed. Peek: "Growing up in Mordor gives you a very different outlook on life than growing up in New England."

What's In a (Character's) Name? by Olga Kuno from Becca Puglisi from Writers Helping Writers. Peek: "Coming up with just the right name can be daunting. I’d like to share some ideas on how to simplify the process."

Winnie The Pooh Makes Friends with a Penguin to Mark Anniversary by Alison Flood from The Guardian. Peek: "Sibley, who was asked to write a new Pooh story to mark this year’s anniversary, said that the photo of the author and his son with the penguin toy came to mind while he was 'pondering what other toys Christopher Robin might have owned but which were never written about'."

Native American Contemporary YA Novel
We Are Still Here: An Interview with Debbie Reese from NCTE. Peek: "I wish that teachers would do all they could to push against that monolithic 'primitive' and 'uncivilized' depiction that is so pervasive and damaging to our youth, but all youth, too, who play and learn alongside our children."

Why I Write About the Immigrant Experience by Reyna Grande from CBC Diversity. Peek: "I read and I read, though I’d always felt a void—a yearning, a missing piece that I desperately wanted to find. What I wanted most of all: to not feel invisible."

How to Write a Latinx Character & Other Questions by Yamile Saied Méndez from The Che Boricuas= A Puerto Rican + An Argentine + 5 cute kids. Peek: "...this list isn't all inclusive. I just wanted to show all the aspects in which culture affects a person. The ways in which it will affect your character. The reader will notice if the only thing the writer did was slap a Spanish-sounding name and dark skin on a character."

Black Girl Magic: Black Girlhood, Imaginations and Activism by Dhonielle Clayton from We Need Diverse Books. Peek: "I hope a new generation of black girls can cling tight to the novels of the ladies below and start to find themselves in interesting and dynamic new media. I know that if I had had even a few of these books and role models, the teenage me wouldn’t have felt so invisible."

Share Your Voice by Dan Blank from Writer Unboxed. Peek: "A voice without action, is silence. In that silence is the potential where you could be connecting with people who will be moved by your stories."

Cynsational Awards

The 2016 Kirkus Prize Finalists: "Winners in the three categories will receive $50,000 each, making the Kirkus Prize one of the richest annual literary awards in the world."

Little, Brown Launches New Award for Illustrators by Sally Lodge from Publishers Weekly. Peek: "Caldecott Medalist and five-time Caldecott Honor artist Jerry Pinkney will act as a judge and the inaugural artist mentor for the first annual Little, Brown Emerging Artist Award, recognizing new illustration talent and encouraging the development of high-quality picture books that resonate with readers of diverse backgrounds."

Ann Bausum
Children's Book Author Ann Bausum Wins 2017 Nonfiction Award from the Children's Book Guild of Washington, D.C. Peek: "In recognition of her 14 nonfiction books and the way her work has enriched the minds of our children and the life of our nation, Bausum has been selected to receive the 2017 Children's Book Guild Nonfiction Award. The award is presented annually to an author for a body of work that has contributed significantly to the quality of nonfiction for children."

Congratulations to Don Tate, recipient of the Illumine Award for children's literature from the Austin Public Library Friends Foundation!

Reminder: The deadline for the Lee & Low New Voices Award is Sept. 30.

This Week at Cynsations



More Personally

My heart is heavy this week, Cynsational readers. I was saddened to hear of the death of Dr. Ernie Bond of Salisbury University. He was a tremendous educator, and I am grateful to him for his support of inclusive children's-YA literature. Moreover, the eighteen-year-old daughter of a high school friend and classmate has taken her own life "after a long battle with PTSD, depression and anxiety." Please continue to support teachers, support teens and consider donating to the Lane Marrs Memorial Fund.

The Link of the Week: Perceptions of Diversity in Book Reviews by Malinda Lo from Diversity in YA. Peek: "...it is basically common knowledge among minority authors that including more than one minority identity in a book is a huge risk for your career. In the real world, plenty of individuals deal with more than one minority identity at the same time, every day." See also Kick off Bisexual Awareness Week with 12 2016 YA Books by Dahlia Adler from Barnes & Noble.

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