The new Stringing Words

November 27, 2012

A new version of the Stringing Words forum launched today, and I’m both excited about it and a little sad to see the old edition go away soon. The exciting part is the people – especially the fact that my good friend and Co-ML Gale has gotten involved in the community again, and that I’m getting to know my fellow admin Rinelle.

The disappointing part is that it seems like a technical step backward with fewer neat ‘toys’ to play with on the site. None of them are terribly important – the shoutbar of messages that were always visible down the left side of every page, the custom smileys, the nice home page layout that showed the twenty threads that had been updated most recently, whether they were in the same section of the forum or widely scattered.

The new edition is on the domain, (which is part of the family,) and the decisions to move there were mostly on account of money – the old version was on a paid hosted solution registered toĀ  one of the founding admins. She’s been very busy with publishing success lately and hasn’t had much time to keep up with the community, and asked that we make a move so that she doesn’t need to worry about bringing the forum down if she misses a payment. I did volunteer once to take over responsibility for the payments with the old hosting company, but she seemed to think that would be a pain, and I didn’t pursue it any further.

So, that’s where it is. I guess I should focus on moving forward and all the great people who’ve made the move over to the new site, rather than the bells and whistles we’re leaving behind, huh? šŸ˜‰

Insecure Writers Support Group: A Balloon Full of Encouragement

November 2, 2011

Hi there, fellow insecure writers. Sorry I didn’t post for IWSG last month, I lost track with the Campaigner Spotlight, Rule of Three, Six Sentence Sunday, and a few other things.

So, it’s Nano – which can be a crazy, but also very encouraging time to be a writer, because most of the participants have been through this stunt of trying to write a book in 50 days and know how daunting it can be.

I want to share an idea that my ML, Gale, presented at the Hamilton Kick-off party this past Sunday. It’s something that may work if you’ve got a writer’s support group that meets up regularly, or that we could adapt to cyberspace somehow.

Everybody wrote a somewhat generic but encouraging message on a little slip of paper and rolled up the paper. Then, the paper was inserted into a colored balloon, and the balloon blown up. We tossed around the balloons for a little while until they were shuffled thoroughly, and then everybody took a balloon, (of a different color than the one their message was in,) and took it home. The idea is that you pop the balloon and get the message when you most need that little jolt of encouragement from a fellow writer.

I was hoping to leave my balloon until I’m packed for San Francisco, and then thought that I’d pop it because I couldn’t take the balloon on the plane. I tied its ribbon to the bookcase when I got home Sunday evening so that it wouldn’t get trodden on or in the way. But when I went to take a picture of it for this blog post…

I guess there must have been a pinhole leak. But inspiration doesn’t leak out through holes – there’s still inspiration in that balloon, even if there isn’t air any more!

So – if you were preparing a balloon for another writer, what encouraging message would you put in it? Here’s a new one from me, since I don’t want to repeat the one I put in the orange balloon:

You can tell this story. It is the destiny that you were born for.

Send your Inner Editor on a nice November vacation

October 31, 2011

Inspired by my incredible Hamilton ML, Gale, I have decided to go on a new tack with Inner Editor control for this year. I’m sending him off for fun in the sun.

After all, I’ve been working him pretty hard for most of the year. We’ve got most of the details sorted out. After finishing a rewrite and a guest blog post for Chris Eboch this evening, Editor is going to be getting up before me tomorrow, and taking the shuttle over to Pearson to catch his flight. He’s booked for the whole month at some reasonably nice resort in the Bahamas. And because I know that he couldn’t really relax and have fun without some sentences to tinker with, he’s packing lots of my writing – past Nanos, screenplays, short stories, even my old fanfic. But if he tries to call me up and tell me ANYTHING about it, I’ll find a way to make him pay dearly.

This is probably not an approach that everybody could take with their Inner Editors. Many are too wily and competitive to simply go away for Nanowrimo, or at least, they might not go for it THIS year. But my IE and I have been through this before, and I think he’s learned that he can’t derail me during November. We’ll see how it goes, but I’m excited about this idea.

I just hope that the Bahamas Nanowrimo group doesn’t try to send him back because he goes and messes with THEIR masterpieces!

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