Tag Archives: SF Writers’ Grotto

Darkness & Light

Lent has officially ended. Today is Good Friday, the second of the three days (Triduum) leading up to Easter Sunday.  Today — or rather, tonight, at sundown — marks the start of  Passover.  I’ve been thinking today about story, without which we wouldn’t commemorate either event.  I’ve also been thinking, this Lent, about trust, about giving up my often desperate grip on control in my own stories.   I’ve been praying, I guess, about letting go.  Today, too, I am struck by the Triduum’s embrace of sorrow and agony, and how those dark places open us up.  Story does that too, … Continue reading

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Formula One?

Before beginning the post itself, I’m happy to report that my piece on agreeing to disagree on matters of faith is in the July/August issue of Spirituality & Health, hot off the presses!  As I write this, the piece isn’t yet online, but I hope it shows up there soon.  Otherwise, you can look for it the old-fashioned print way. Here’s the post: Saved cats. Two pillars. Four themes. Three juggling balls. Eight points. A snowflake. No, it’s not a found poem, though it could be.  What these six items have in common? They’re all formulas for story structure.  I … Continue reading

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Branding

Yesterday over lunch at the Grotto, where I’m subletting office space, another writer (also finishing up her novel) and I got on the topic of branding.  You know, the “author brand.”  I resisted the first time I heard the phrase, but have come to see its helpfulness.  You’ve heard of the elevator speech?  The one where you describe your concept or idea in a limited amount of time—from seven seconds to three minutes—to garner interest from that busy person with whom you’re sharing a metaphoric or actual elevator ride.  The author brand is part of the elevator speech repertory—those succinct, … Continue reading

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Out of the Faith Closet

When I started blogging, a little more than a year ago, I did so as an exploration of social media as a tool to reach my readers, to “build my brand” as a writer.  I was curious about (and a little intimidated by) the opportunities and challenges of blogging.  I had never logged onto Facebook or Twitter, and all my Friends were people I’d met and talked to in person. I’d also always thought writing a regular column (aka blog) would be fun. So I signed up for Meghan Ward’s social-media class at the S.F. Writers’ Grotto.  If I could … Continue reading

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How do you keep writing when you don’t have time?

When I started this blog, last spring, while taking Meghan Ward’s Social Media Madness for Writers class at the Grotto – which I highly recommend to any Bay Area writer mystified by the demands and protocol of social media – I vowed to keep to it regularly.  Habit, discipline, building a readership – all that good stuff relies on consistency.  OK to take a break for a vacation or such, Meghan advised, just let your readers know. I sat down this morning to let my readers know that this morning, I won’t be posting because I need to work on … Continue reading

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