Friday, August 28, 2009

A Great Website If You Write For Children's Magazines

If you want to write for children’s magazines, there is a website that has oodles of information. It is called Kid Magazine Writers and can be found at There is now a link on my blog. This site lists kid’s magazines alphabetically and when you click on them you can learn more about the magazine and usually find submission guidelines or at least contact information.
Under Market Info, you will find a special in-depth report on one of the magazines on their site. A section called Inside Markets lists new kids magazines, and the Dead Zone lists magazines that are no longer functioning.
The Working Day section has a section called Fresh Ideas that is an inspirational writer boost. There is a Technique section with headings like That’s a Fact, Storytellers, Meter Readers (poetry trivia) and Word Wizard.
There is also an archive section where magazine there are two headings: Editors speak and Special Report. You can hear what the editor from a particular magazine has to say or look at an html of a special article.
The Writer’s Digest has deemed Kid Mag Writers as one of the 101 best websites for writers. It’s higher than that on my list. It makes finding magazines that fit what I like to write a much simpler task.

Saturday, August 8, 2009

Writing A Novel Made Easy

You go to all these writing classes and you think, gee, wouldn’t it be great if all this information was condensed into one little book. People, your wish has come true. The brilliant Weston Elliot, with sage advice from her wise side kick, Michelle Jefferies, has put together THE COMPLETE NOVEL WRITING WORKBOOK.
In a nutshell, this workbook is designed to help you write your novel. It begins with a section for world building, or the place where your story takes place. Pages are designated to helping you define your setting. For example, the first page, labeled ‘Your World’ is devoted to helping you define the names of places in your novel. The next page, Topography, helps you define landmarks, weather, and boundaries. . etc. There are pages for Sociology, Government/Military, Religion, Magic, Agriculture, Architecture, Language, Calendar, Technology, History, Education, Fashion and Commerce. Each of these pages asks its own questions to help you narrow down and define your answers. There is even a section for mapping, complete with grid lined pages and a legend with suggested icons of what a tree, river, and farmland area would look like, etc. This layout has been well thought through. All you have to do is fill it in. And there’s more . . .
The next section is devoted to character sketches. A page on point of view helps you define who will be telling your story. Turn the page and the stage is open to you to fill in your entire cast of characters. Several pages are devoted to main characters, then secondary characters, and finally incidental characters. Each of these pages gets you to delve into details that will help you to profile who your character is. What is your characters age, gender, weakness, fear, strength, talent, etc. All this information helps you to build characters that are vivid and full of detail. It helps you know who you are writing about.
In the last section you will be writing out the conflict and resolution of your story. Basically, you will be planning the plot. The importance of a timeline is stressed and a timeline table is provided. Chapter planning is explained and chapter outlines are provided for you to fill in. Thirty chapter outlines are provided, each with their own set of details.
This workbook makes writing a novel a ‘no brainer’ you just sit down and fill in the details. All the mapping out has been done for you ahead of time. Way to go, girls. I’m hooked, or should I say spoiled. Writing a novel will never be the same again.
To get your own copy of THE COMPLETE NOVEL WRITING WORKBOOK look under Blogs I Like to Visit and find Weston Elliot. You can purchase the book directly from her blog using PayPal, or you can contact her.