Monday, July 21, 2014

Wordcraft -- Promises to keep, not enough sleep

I planned to write about Dallas native Lawrence Wright’s return here to talk about the latest of his wonderful books, Going Clear: Scientology, Hollywood & the Prison of Belief. Instead, I went home after lunch with my daughter and her family, took a nap, and missed the whole thing.

The lapse isn’t all bad. It gives me the latitude to write about some things that haven’t fit into the schedule, including a chance to keep readers updated on my writer’s resolutions for 2014 (“Resolutions for writers, in brief,” December 30, 2013.)

Resolution number one was to urge writers to get a library card, because we can’t write without reading. I already have a Dallas Public Library card, but as of this week I’m proud to say my grandchildren now have their own library cards from the Richardson, Texas, public library. Admittedly, they got the cards because they wanted to play math games simultaneously on the library’s computers instead of having to take turns like they do on their family computer. But a library card is a library card.

Resolution number two was to read, read, read. As of today, I’ve logged forty-four books read. The last an audio book of Mignon Fogarty’s Grammar Girl series. I finished it at 11:22 p.m. Saturday, which may partly explain my need for a nap. I hope you’ll also notice improvements in my grammar!

Resolution number three was to keep a record of milestones. So here goes. This is the 552nd post on this blog, with 34,710 page views, not including my own. Thanks to all of you readers for around the globe for checking in! I’ve submitted fifteen short stories in 2014, had four acceptances, with four stories still pending response from editors. Yes, that still leaves a lot of rejections. But today’s rejection may be, with more polishing, tomorrow’s acceptance. I’ve also sent twelve queries to agents about my novel. I’ll include them all as milestones, although a rejection from one agency landed in my inbox while I was still typing the next query. (Ouch!)


Other things that need to be said, but don’t fit the regular format:

The deadline for the young authors short story contest for this fall’s FenCon XI science fiction/fantasy convention has been extended to September 20. This contest is for writers in grades 3-12. There’s no entry fee, and winners can receive cash prizes as well as publication. For details, see

Also for young writers, the Kids’ Zine Camp offered through the Dallas Writer’s Garret, July 28-August 2 gives tween and teen authors ages 10 - 19 the chance to create their own online magazine. See for information.

The Pandora’s Box Poetry Showcase in Fair Park is scheduled for tonight, July 21, at 8 p.m., in the Margot Jones Theatre in 1121 First Avenue. I’ve heard poets at the Writer’s Garret workshops rave about performances in this intimate theater. See “July Edition: Pandora’s Box Poetry Showcase” on Facebook for details.

And finally (for now), there’s book review life after the Rejebian series ends this month. Rejebian’s sibling series, Authors LIVE!, resumes August 6, with John Dean’s The Nixon Defense: What He Knew and When He Knew It. For details, see

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