Wednesday, August 3, 2011

Reading, Free Writing, and Writing Ops

It is mid-afternoon and officially 102, but they are warning us the air feels like 113. I am not going out to make my own judgement! At 7:00 am this morning it was already very warm. For the first time I passed on a pot of tea. Started deck time with ice water and finally made iced tea. I have been worthless this day!

But I have to think "writing" and it can't be put off any longer. Next week is Writers' Guild and I need to plan a program. I also need to get reminder out very soon. So what will we do? Last month one thing I brought up was the usefulness of Free Writing after reading about Riff Writing in Elizabeth Lyon's book Manuscript Makeover. The group was lukewarm on Free Writing. They either did not know about it or felt it useless. Almost any book on writing or creativity urges writers to free write, journal, or do some kind of aimless penning of words to see where it goes. I am thinking, like it or not, we might take five minutes next week and practice some Free Writing. Do any of you writers do something like this at your meetings.

I'll admit that I have not been writing myself. One would think that all this cooped up time in the heat would be good for writing, but my mind hasn't seen it that way. Instead I have kicked back and read novels for fun. I did The Scent of Rain and Lightning by Nancy Pickard which was a quick and engrossing read. I love Pickard's mysteries because they are set in Kansas and have characters with interesting relationships.  I followed that one with Ann Weisgarber's The Personal History of Rachel Dupree, a novel set in South Dakota Badlands of 1917. This novel is built around a drought and the hardships of homesteading this area. Also a fast read it takes you quietly up to a whammy ending, one that makes women cheer!

I have found a few writing ops so I need to put my thinking cap on soon. I will share them below.

Greenwoman Magazine is a new garden writing magazine and we're looking for imaginative work in the areas of fiction, nonfiction, poetry, art and comics. We love new perspectives and original voices–funny, sad, smart, bawdy, angry, contemplative, weird, joyous, sexy, but most importantly, the work must be compelling. We're looking for writing that gets to the heart and intellect that underlies the pursuit of a gardening life. Writing that pushes the boundaries of garden writing and that reflects what is going on in the garden in 21st century America.

About half of our content is personal stories, art and fiction, and the other half is features. Each issue includes one or more articles on 21st century trends in gardening and environment awareness and a biography of an individual whose contribution in plant sciences, agriculture, gardening, or food knowledge has been not just notable, but significant. Each issue will also have an interview with a writer or artist who uses the garden as a central theme in their work.
(It helps to read an issue of the magazine to get a good idea of what we are after. An online version of our first issue is available at our website, for $3.95.)

Submission Guidelines: All pieces should be under 2,000 words. I will consider longer pieces, but this is a small publication (about 64-80 pages), so the chances of having a longer work accepted diminish with length. Up to six poems may be submitted at a time. Please query first on all article ideas. If you contact us through regular mail, please do not send originals of your artwork or writing. Send good copies only, along with a self-addressed stamped envelope for my reply if you send it physically. Our mailing address is P. O. Box 6587, Colorado Springs, CO 80934-6587. Artwork and submissions cannot be returned without proper postage. Artwork should be black and white only and I’m looking for artists who are skilled at drawing both plants and people.

Submissions may also be sent via email (sandra(at) or (sandra(at)
(replace (at) with @ in sending e-mail), but only if they are in the body of the email. We will not open attachments.

Payment: As a brand new self-funded venture, the current compensation for stories is six copies of the magazine in which your piece appears and $50 per accepted submission. I hope that with Issue #3 I will be able to offer more.

Missouri Poetry Society has Summer Contest ending Sept 1. For full information please go to their site at


Lebanon Poetry Society has an annual contest closing Dec 2.

Provide 2 copies of each poem with name and category of the poem on both in left corner. Put name and address o ONE in the right corner.

Each poem submitted should be 36 lines or less.

$3 per entry. Checks to Velvet Fackeldey.

Enclose SASE.

Prizes at $25-15-10.

Mail to: Nancy LaChance
              14940 Highway 64
               Lebanon, Mo 65536


Linda O'Connell said...

Thank you!!!!

spobin said...

Hey nice post, thanks. I've started doing 15 minutes of free writing each morning at and I highly recommend it.

irishoma said...

Hi Claudia,
Stay cool in this hot weather.
Thanks for the poetry links.