New on Our Blog for Writers and Willamette Writers

Turn Bad Writing Days into Good Ones

Turn Bad Writing Days into Good Ones

The November 7th meeting of Willamette Writers brought William Kenower, teacher of the Fearless Writing Series, to the Old Church to share his perspectives for building up a strong writing life while keeping the topics that interest and engage us forefront in our minds. One of the things I enjoyed so much about Kenower’s presentation was his offering of insightful reminders about why we do what we do and where we should place our focus. Here they are for you as well: Understand the questions you should be asking: What do I want to say How do I say it Success [i.e. publication] can’t be your goal; you do it because you’re interested. A book is an opportunity to have…

C. Lill Ahrens’ Tighty Writey Game

C. Lill Ahrens Tightens Writing

by C. Lill Ahrens The old saying, “Can’t see the forest for the trees” can be a metaphor for wordy writing. Too many extra words obscure the view of your story. In contrast to “cutting,” (the deletion of an entire subplot, minor character, etc.), “tightening” is a delicate and complex process. Its goal is to convey your story information (visual imagery, backstory, action etc.) with fewer words and greater clarity.  Tight writing is not a style, it’s what successful writers have in common.  Tight writing is strong writing. I invented my Tighty Writey Game to reduce a 2,000 word story to a contest’s 1,500 word limit. The game made the tightening process fun. It also worked: The story won first…

Author Marketing – Notes from WW Portland Meeting with Tex Thompson

The June 6th Willamette Writers meeting was a wonderful time to be in community with one of my very favorite presenters from last year’s conference, Tex Thompson. The presentation focused on how writers can promote and market themselves, a topic that has become more and more important as the entire publishing landscape shifts into an entirely different geography (think west of I-5 after “the big one,” that’s what’s going on here). From start to finish, writers have to be more aware than ever about what it is they’re writing, who it appeals to, why, and how this work can get to that audience. Teams of marketing agents no longer do all the work to promote your book; more and more…

Why Characters Do What They Do – Notes from WW Portland Meeting with Jessica Morrell

Jessica Morrell Meeting Notes 2017 04 Willamette Writers PDX

This contributed piece brings notes from Willamette Writers Portland’s April 4th, 2017 Meeting with author and editor Jessica Morrell by member Amy Foster Myer. Enjoy! Having seen Jessica Morell present at the 2016 Willamette Writers Conference, I can tell you she is an amazing presenter who provides an absolute wealth of information in a speck of time. She is truly a gift to the writing community and an exemplar of what I believe it means to be a good literary citizen. To decide for yourself, just check out her blog. Since Jessica’s presentations are bursting with information, I will present here only the highlights from the meeting. Why Is the Character in Your Story? All characters must have a reason for…

Willamette Writers Member News

Member News: The Ramadan Drummer

A child is wounded, a teenage girl goes missing… Randolph Splitter’s new novel, The Ramadan Drummer, a literary mystery about clashing values and the search for connection in a multicultural world, has just been published by Pandamoon Publishing. About Randolph Splitter Splitter graduated from Hamilton College, earned a Ph.D. in English from the University of California,…

Member News: World Premiere of Trans-Formation

Poster for TRANS-formation

World Premiere play about transgender Christine Jorgensen Who was George/Christine Jorgensen? In 1947, after leaving the military, Georgestepped onto a ship and headed to Copenhagen to begin the process of transitioning from male to female. Of course there were others before George to do this; Lili Elbe is well known and documented in the movie…

Join Willamette Writers Meetings and Workshops Near You

Salem: “Critique Groups – The Good, the Bad and the Ugly” with Elizabyth Harrington

February 22 @ 6:30 pm - 8:30 pm
Salem Public Library, 585 Liberty St SE
Salem, OR 97301 United States
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On Thursday, February 22nd from 6:30-8:30 p.m. (talk begins at 7 p.m.), Elizabyth Harrington will present to our chapter at the Salem Public Library (Anderson Room B), 585 Liberty St SE.   “Critique Groups – The Good, the Bad and the Ugly”  As a serious (or not so serious) writers, we know the benefits of a…

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Cynthia Whitcomb’s Screenwriting Class

February 24

From Idea to Completed Script Six Saturdays 9:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. Feb. 24, March 3, 10, 17, 24 and 31 Register here. Includes structure, scene cards, storyboards, set ups, payoffs, subplots, character development, research, format, dialogue, hiding exposition, buttoning scenes, how to write great openings, great endings, big moments. How to make ‘em laugh and…

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Corvallis: Writing and Illustrating a Children’s Picture Book with Rob Broder

February 26 @ 6:30 pm - 8:30 pm
Corvallis First Presbyterian Church, Dennis Hall, 114 SW 8th St.
Corvallis, OR 97333 United States
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Join us on Monday, February 26, 2018, 6:30-8:30 PM, at the First Presbyterian Church in Corvallis, (Allison Room, use 9th Street parking entrance) for a presentation about by Rob Broder. Writing and Illustrating a Children’s Picture Book from Idea to Submission-Ready In this talk, Rob Broder will take us through the process of creating a book for the booming…

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Eugene: “How to Destroy Your Novel in 10 Easy Steps” with Valerie Brooks

March 1 @ 6:30 pm - 9:00 pm
Tsunami Books, Eugene, 2585 Willamette St.
Eugene, OR 97405
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“How to Destroy Your Novel in 10 Easy Steps: Why good writing goes bad” Presented by Valerie Brooks at Mid-Valley Chapter of the Willamette Writers March 1, 2018, 7:3—8 pm social hour, 8 pm presentation Tsunami Books 2585 Willamette St, Eugene, OR 97405 On March 1st, Valerie Brooks, will present: “How to Destroy Your Novel…

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Successful Self Publishing- Patricia Marshall

Saturday, March 3, 2018 Central Point City Hall Council Chambers, 140 S. Third Street, Central Point “Six Steps to successful Self Publishing” 10:00 a.m. - 12:00 p.m.   Free to members, $10.00 visitors Whether you are undertaking all the publishing tasks yourself or engaging professional help, this talk will increase your understanding of the book-making process,…

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Portland: Author Susan Hill Long

March 6 @ 6:30 pm - 8:30 pm
The Old Church, Portland, 1422 SW 11th
Portland, OR 97201
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On March 6th (doors at 6:30), author Susan Hill Long will be joining the Portland Chapter. About Susan Hill Long Susan Hill Long is a children's book author. Her recent books include THE MAGIC MIRROR: CONCERNING A LONELY PRINCESS, A FOUNDLING GIRL, A SCHEMING KING, AND A PICKPOCKET SQUIRREL (available May 10, 2016), and middle…

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