Friday, November 28, 2014

Setting the Mood

As we head full-steam ahead into this holiday season,
here's a gift from your iWN Board:


Tuesday, November 18, 2014

Research--Get Your Facts Straight

Jenny Moore
You’re writing a contemporary, so you don’t need to research, right?

WRONG!

While your characters live in basically the same world you do, there’s still plenty to learn—unless you are actually writing about a person who lives in your town, has your same job, and enjoys the same hobbies as you do. In that case, just x-out of this right now and get back to your MS.

But, for those of us who are not writing about people just like us living in our town, there’s plenty we need to know.

First of all, setting. I love maps and travel guides. Most states will send you a packet with all sorts of information. Those are super cool, lots of pictures. Of course Google maps, and an almanac—you want to know what the weather is like. And does it get dark early in the winter? Things like that add depth to your story and make the reader feel like they are one step deeper inside. That’s what we want, right?

And find movies shot in the location you’re writing about. That gives you a whole lot of setting ideas and helps you picture it, especially if it’s somewhere you’ve never been. Coffee table books, post cards, and of course Google images.

Next up: culture

This is tricky. You can’t just learn a culture. But you can find out bits and pieces of what people there are like, and that will not only make you look like an expert on the region, it will help with your character development.

I like history books for this. Both fiction and non-fiction.  History of a place tells why the people there act the way they do now.

And what better way to learn about a culture than its stories?

And now for:  Language

It doesn’t matter where you are in the world, every region has its own distinct way of speaking. Even twenty miles away from your house, you can find something unique about how people talk. So, learn about it. I’m not saying you have to be fluent in a new language, but an accent, a unique speech pattern, even a few words from your character’s native tongue makes them more interesting. And who doesn’t like reading slang from somewhere new? It’s fun and can help make your story richer.

Keep your eyes open, you’ll find facts and interesting tidbits that can add to your story in the funniest places. I found this article in an airplane magazine about Irish surfers. Did you know they surf in Ireland?

I didn’t. But a character in my Irish book would definitely know.

Any time I go to a museum or some sort of historical place, I get the souvenir guides. They don’t cost much, and there are tons of things to remember. Plus, again pictures.

And last of all: Don’t be afraid to ask.

 Something I’ve learned is people love talking about themselves, their job, their family, their hometown. Just get up the nerve to ask.

I wrote a book about a girl that grew up on a cattle ranch and so I asked someone I knew about it, and he took me to his ranch when they were branding—it was an entirely new world to me, one that I can write into my story with details of smell, (bad) sounds, sights that I wouldn’t have ever known without experiencing it for myself.


So, get out into the trenches, writers!  Don’t be afraid to get dirty, and of course take lots of notes, you never know when you’ll need them.

Tuesday, November 11, 2014

Veterans Day

by Donna K. Weaver

If our country is worth dying for in time of war
let us resolve that it is truly worth living for in time of peace. 
~Hamilton Fish

On this Veterans Day, I invite you to visit my personal blog to see my thoughts on this holiday and to check out some suggestions I have for honoring and supporting our troops. 

We can all do something.

Click here

Tuesday, November 4, 2014

Ready. . . Set. . . Retreat!

The spring retreat will be held
 March 26-29th in Heber, Utah

How to sign up for this retreat: 
FYI: there are only 20 spots. All meals are included AND there will be mini-workshops on Building Your Presence as an Author and Marketing during the retreat so that if you choose to go to all the workshops, you will have all the tools you need to Brand yourself, and your books for your target audience.  See pics of the awesome accommodations for the retreat here. Sign ups open on Saturday, November 8th at 8am MST. NO EARLIER.

1. Pick which bed type/price you would like (see below)

2. Send an email to iWriteNetwork@gmail.com with your first and second (if you have one) preference.

3. We will send you a confirmation email and a link to pay-through Paypal- (you may choose to split your payment into three and send one third immediately, the second on third on Jan. 15th and the last third on Feb. 15th. You must pay in full by Feb. 15th.)  We must have your payment within one hour of receiving your confirmation email or your spot will be given to the next person in line.

NO REFUNDS-thank you. (you can, however transfer your bed to someone else if you discover you are unable to attend)

The bed options:  (if you are planning to choose a queen or a king bed, you might want to find someone to be your roomie if you care who is in the bed with you.)

**Anything not highlighted is available
***Anything highlighted in red is reserved/paid for

Bedroom 7: 1 King with bathroom                    2 spots for $275 each

Bedroom 6: 3 bunk beds            3 lower bunks @ $175 each
                                                       One, Two, Three
                                                    3 upper bunks @ $150 each
                                                       One, Two, Th
ree


Bedroom 5: Queen and a Bunk   2 spots in the queen @  $200
                                                 One, Two,
                                                       1 upper bunk @ $150
                                                       1 lower bunk @ $175

Bedroom 4: 2 Queens          4 spots @ $225

                                                       One, Two, Three, Four

Bedroom 3: 1 Queen           2 spots @ $225 each
                                                          One, Two

Bedroom 2: 1 Queen                           2 spots at $225 each
                                                         One, Two,


Bedroom 1: 1 Queen                          2 spots at $225 each
                                                                One, Two  
                                                                  

We are So excited to have you join us!!!
Have question? 

Email us-
iWritenetwork@gmail.com