Good morning, dear writers!
Another week has gone by, and we’re nearly at the end of February; but we get one extra day in the month because it’s a leap year this year. I love the idea that every four years we have to adjust our modern day calendar in order to realign our human measurement of time with the astronomical “clock” that measures the Earth’s rotation around the sun. There is something humbling about having to reorder our time reality around the much more “real” time of Nature and the Universe.
This week’s links include a few that might help you “leap” ahead in your writing. I hope you get the chance to explore the ones that catch your eye, and I would love to hear in the comments about any other links, books, etc. that you have found shareworthy this week.
Until next time, happy writing & happy reading!
Books I’m Reading:
I am not yet done with this book, but I just couldn’t wait to share it. I’m on a bit of a “craft kick” lately – immersing myself in books on the writing and story craft with a focus on story structure and mythical archetypes. Joseph Campbell is, of course, the grandfather of the modern interpretations of ancient “rules of story” and the “hero’s journey,” but – though I have much respect for him and his work – his book, The Hero with a Thousand Faces, is not an easy or (to be blunt) enjoyable read. Happily, somewhere along the way, I came across Christopher Vogler’s book, The Writer’s Journey. While equally as weighty as Campbell’s tome, The Writer’s Journey is more accessible. Vogler’s experience as a Hollywood story consultant working with studios like Disney, Fox, and Paramount puts a contemporary spin on how Vogler explains and illustrates the universal concepts presented in Campbell’s more classical text.
If you are interested in how stories work, this book is a must for your writer’s library. Before buying it, I borrowed a copy from the library; but it took me only a few minutes perusing the pages to realize that I had to have my own copy. I’m marking up the pages (in pencil, of course!) as I read and have no doubt that this will be a reference that I return to again and again.
In addition to the vast wealth of knowledge and insight to be found in this book, I must also comment on the aesthetic beauty of the presentation. Each chapter is preceded by a tarot card-like illustration that appeals to my magical/mystical side. I couldn’t recommend it more highly.
My Favorite Blog Reads for the Week:
- Let’s Address a Common Misunderstanding About Author Websites by @JaneFriedman
- 10 Books That Will Change How You Think About Fairy Tales by @charliejane
- Practical Ways to Handle the Passage of Time in Fiction by @aliventures
- Pinterest for Authors: A Beginner’s Guide by @kikimojo
- Reading to Improve Your Writing by @KAMcCleary
- How to Turn Your Concept Into a Story by Chris Winkle
- The world’s greatest storyteller infographic via @raconteur
- How Creativity Works: Neil Gaiman on Where Ideas Come From via @brainpicker
- A Former Book Publicist’s Advice to Traditionally Published Authors by @Andrea_Dunlop
- 34 Reasons to Stop Writing Forever by @NathanielTower
- Social Media Best Practices To Save 17.5 Hours Per Week by @devinberglund
- 28 Resources, Tools and Tips for Self-Publishing Your Next Book by @marisoldahl
- How To Save Time Writing For Your Blog by @garrett_moon
Sundry Links and Articles:
Although I don’t usually listen to music while I write because I’m too easily distracted (and, truth be told, want to get up and dance and/or sing), I have recently become addicted to a new Pandora station based on the indie artist Lindsey Stirling.
Lindsey is a classically trained violinist who developed her musical skills into a creation that is all her own – a dancing dubstep powerhouse who tells epic stories via her music and the accompanying videos and worldwide performances. Here’s a little taste:
Impressive, right? And I adore her sense of story and fantasy. (There are loads of other beautifully produced videos on her website.)
I created a Pandora station based on Lindsey and am really enjoying the energy of the music that I’m discovering as a result. Most of it is instrumental (so, no pesky lyrics to compete with the words in my head), and though I am often dancing in my seat (no lie), I find that the cinematic feel of the music inspires me to keep my butt in the chair and my fingers flying over the keyboard.
If dubstep doesn’t turn out to be your thing, you may want to explore some of the other musical accompaniment for writers in this post: Listening to Music While You Write – Yes or No? (Plus Listening Resources).
Finally, a quote for the week:
Here’s to leaping into your writing life in your own unique way. Until next time – happy writing & happy reading!
Jamie Lee Wallace Hi. I’m Jamie. I am a content marketer and branding consultant, columnist, sometime feature writer, prolific blogger, and aspiring fiction writer. I’m a mom, a student of equestrian and aerial arts (not at the same time), and a nature lover. I believe in small kindnesses, daily chocolate, and happy endings. Introduce yourself on Facebook, twitter, Instagram, or Pinterest. I don’t bite … usually.