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2018 Book

Location as Character

June 27 -- Location as Character
[Members ONLY]

Sally Valentine

Location, location, location. You've probably heard picking the right locations for your story can make or break the emotions you want to convey. But have you ever considered just how significant it can be to your story? Some settings matter so much to the plot, they take on a life of their own — and they are just as necessary as the story characters themselves.

TipsMeeting Time: 9AM

LCRW History

LCRW History

On 21 August 1835, The New York Sun published a series of articles about the discovery of life on the moon. These were falsely attributed to a well-known astronomer of the time named Sir John Herschel. The article reported Herschel had made these discoveries and went on to describe, in detail, how the discovery was made. Well, if New York papers can do it, so can we. Here is the completely fictitious and utterly made-up history of LCRW.

Writing Mistakes

The 5 Biggest Fiction Writing Mistakes (& How to Fix Them)

The best fiction writers write like they're in love—and edit like they're in charge. First drafting should be a wild and wonderful ride, full of discovery, dreams and promises. But at some point you have to settle down and make the book really work. You need to approach your manuscript with sober objectivity and knowledge of the craft.

World Wide Web

Web Resources for Writers

Now that we are spending more time at home, chances are you're spending more time surfing the internet. So, how can you find places to help you with your writing? In this article, you'll find places to visit to help you answer these questions as well as a few places that are downright fun to visit. Including finding a place containing Mark Twain's famous editing advice: "Substitute 'damn' every time you're inclined to write 'very'; your editor will delete it and the writing will be just as it should be."


An Author's Childhood Story

Well, we've just had May 4th ... or in some circles Star Wars Day (May the Fourth be With You.) If you're like this auther, it brings back memories. Sometimes a writers journey is from a Galaxy not so far away. Every now and then it's from Pennsylvania (Our neighbor state to the south.)

Phishing Attacks

Danger in the Eworld

Security official have found that spear-phishing attacks, which target a specific organization through linked mail lists (like Google Groups), are becoming more prevalent. Sixty-four percent of list group respondents faced these highly-targeted attacks.


Character Settings

A story's setting carries an enormous weight in fiction because it helps put the reader into your imaginary world. It enables them to travel from their personal experiences to enter your world. Leaving out the setting is like attempting to drive a car with a blindfold on… you can expect the diver to imagine the road… but it won't work out well.

Book Sales

With the coronavirus pandemic, eBook has business boomed

The pandemic has caused an abrupt, massive shift in consumer behavior. Leisurely in-person browsing is on hiatus indefinitely. Although with most physical stores in the United States are closed, book sales overall have been up in April, according to market research company the NPD Group. The bookselling business has changed amidst the stay-at-home orders brought by Covid-19. "The book market has historically performed well during times of economic downturn, and our first six weeks have shown us that there is unlikely to be a catastrophic cliff in demand for books," NPD industry analyst Kristen McLean wrote, noting that book sales grew almost every year during the Great Recession.

Virtual Meetings

Virtual Meetings

Right across the still -cold lake from us (Okay, you might have to go a little to the east) you'll run into Belleville, Ontario. There you'll find the Belleville Public Library Writers' Collective. They've gone virtual.

One on One Meeting

Holding Effective Remote Meetings

Don't forget to test all technology (including camera/video, Wi-Fi, and screen sharing) before the meeting. Use the "Buddy System." Zoom is free. Set up a meeting with one other person in LCRW in advance. That way you can both test out how well your device works before the group meeting starts. Remember Zoom works on smartphones and iPads too!

Polka Dots

Polka-dots Make the Day More Normal

In 1962, DC Comics introduced Polka-Dot Man with irregularly-sized and differently coloured dots. The Venezuelan fashion designer Carolina Herrera also used polka dots on most of her dresses during the late 1980s and early 1990s. Much of the Japanese artist's Yayoi Kusama's work features a polka dot motif. The Polka Dot Door is a Canadian children's television series produced from 1971 to 1993 or…

Rod Serling on Writing

Rod Serling on Writing

"Don't preoccupy yourself, don't fret, don't tear hair, don't pull off your shirt in tatters because you've missed comma, because you have a run-on sentence, because you've split an infinitive." Here are some more words of writing advice from Rod Serling...

Book Reviews

A Guide to Free Reviews

In an increasingly crowded market, it can be difficult to get noticed—and thus, reviewed—on sites like Amazon, Barnes & Noble, or Goodreads. And paid review services can be expensive, adding to the already significant financial strain many encounter when self-publishing a book. So, what's the alternative?


Editors and Editing

The myth of an author sitting quietly in their room and emerging with a completed book is about as big a myth as seeing Bigfoot in your living room. Writing is an arduous skill to master, and even the most gifted writers can use the help of the right kind of editor.


Writing Challenges

One of the most famous writing challenges was between C.L. Moore, A. Merritt, H.P. Lovecraft, Robert E. Howard, and Frank Belknap Long. It was called the Challenge from Beyond. In this writing exercise, the writers each wrote one short section that ended in such a way as to leave the next author in a difficult spot. Robert E. Howard had to write after H. P. Lovecraft. The author of The Call of Cthulhu and Other Dark Tales changed the protagonist into a huge, pale-green, loathsome centipede. What Howard does with this is not only inspiring but pure genius. But I won’t spoil the ending.


Long Live Short Fiction: The New Golden Age of the SFF Novella

Technically a Novella is 17,500 to 39,999 words, or just short of a novel. Once a stepchild of the more popular novel, it is now back in vogue. At least according to Tor Books. But don't believe me, read the article.

Voice Recorder

How to use the Window’s Voice Recorder App

If you need to record audio on your PC, Windows 10 provides you with the Voice Recorder app. It's built in to the Opearting System. Here's how to use it. Voice Recorder is a simple application to record sound, and the only thing you need is a microphone.

Music Lyrics

Why You Can’t Use Song Lyrics in Your Fiction

One of the issues I frequently encounter is the use of song lyrics in fiction. The short is that song lyrics are protected by copyright and you cannot use someone else’s song lyrics without permission from the copyright holder.

Serial Comma

Why Include The Serial Comma?

When we list three, four, or more things in a sentence, (How's that for showing, not telling?) standard English rules allow the last comma in the series (sometimes referred to as the "Oxford comma") to be optional. The writer may elect either to include it or to leave it out.


A review of Word’s F7 key function

A grammar editor is a software facility that highlights errors in a text and suggests correct word choices and fixes misspellings. Most of these owe their existance to the first spell-check system, developed by a group of six linguists from Georgetown University in the late 1970s for the IBM 360 mainframe computer.


How do I add Grammarly for Microsoft Office to Word and Outlook?

Are you are writer? Want to make sure your writing is error-free and easy to read? An online grammar checker and proofreading tool like Grammarly can help avoid embarrassing typos and grammatical errors. You can use it to make sure your book, article or blog post is accurate and easy to read.


Sources of Photos for Commercial Use

Illustrating your book and website articles can be challenging. But using websites where you can find photos that are royalty free for commercial use is very helpful. You can use the photos as they are or use image software to change them into something new.

Writing Contests

Writing Contests 2020

Discover the finest writing contests of 2020 for fiction and non-fiction authors of short stories, poetry, essays and more. Updated weekly, these contests are vetted by Reedsy to weed out the scammers and time-wasters.


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