This Week’s SWO Live Chat: Blogs & Blogging

As frequent readers of this blog may know, I am the coordinator of Shenandoah Writers—a “real-life” writing/critique group located in Harrisonburg, Va.—and Shenandoah Writers Online—a writing community open to writers of all genres and levels, currently with upwards of 50 members located all over the U.S. and one in Australia (we’re basically global 🙂 ).

This Tuesday, June 29, from 9-10 P.M. EST, I will be hosting our monthly SWO live chat on Shenandoah Writers Online.*  Our chats sometimes run over, if we feel so inclined, but the “official” time for this event is from 9-10 P.M.

This month’s topic: Blogs & Blogging

Come with your questions and/or expertise in this exploding area of social media.

Since last month’s chat, the Grou.ps network seems to have fixed some bugs and added some new features to the chat function—like chatting within the group, conducting private chats between yourself and another member & going “online” and “offline” in terms of chatting).  I’m hoping that means it won’t stick as much as it did last time.

Even if you can only stop by for a few minutes, it’d be good to have you poke your head in and say hello.**

*For more information about SWO, click on “Shenandoah Writers” in “Categories” in the right-hand side bar.

**You must be a member of SWO to participate in the chat.  Not a member yet?  E-mail me or click here to get started.

In the Blogosphere: 12/21-12/25

“In the Blogosphere” is a weekly series, which lists links to writing-related blogs I’ve stumbled upon throughout a given week.  Most posts will be from that week, but if I find some “oldies but goodies,” I’ll throw those up here as well.

I never find as much time to read blogs as I want, but here are a few posts that struck me this week.

RESOURCES

Upstart Crow Literary founder Michael Stearns lists 20 things the editors of Little, Brown Books for Young Readers say make for a good children’s story.  Stearns says these qualities might not be true of *every* good story—but he believes they are true of the *best* stories.  And, um, he’s a literary agent, so I’m thinking he knows a thing or two about the subject?

Here, Rob Reinalda of Ragan Communications offers advice on how to add some sizzle to your writing: use clichés.  Wha?  Reinalda is talking about foreign idioms, and in the post, he plugs Jag Bhalla’s book, I’m Not Hanging Noodles on Your Ears (and Other Intriguing Idioms from Around the World).  Being the language nerd that I am, I wish I had heard of this book about a week earlier so I could have added it to my Christmas list—sounds interesting!

A Yiddish insult: "Onions should grow from your navel." Well, I never!!!

Writer’s Relief talks critique partners: why they’re helpful, how to find them, and what to look for in one.

Super hilarious and super awesome young adult author Maureen Johnson gives the gift of a free e-book—her latest, Suite Scarlett–(from now through Jan. 15) on her blog.  Don’t miss your chance to get your hands on it!

Over at Writer Unboxed, Writer’s Digest‘s (F+W Media) Jane Friedman discusses what makes her tic in terms of Web sites and blogs.

NOT A BLOG

I stumbled upon the first of this seven-part YouTube series on the aforementioned Jane Friedman‘s blog, There Are No Rules, but it was so hilarious—and helpful—I wanted to post the links to all the videos.

Mike of Red Letter Media, a filmmaker, videographer, editor, and video blogger, reviews Star Wars: Episode 1 – The Phantom Menace.  Each video is about 10 minutes long, and as I mentioned, there are seven of them, but they are chockfull of not only cracks at George Lucas but also tips on storytelling—from character development to plot.

Oh gawd.

He’s got a pretty sick sense of humor, which my husband and I found to be pretty entertaining; but if you are easily offended, this might not be the video series for you.