Tuesday, May 26, 2015

A Call for Help

by Donna K. Weaver

Sometimes, as writers and authors, we have opportunities to give voice to social causes. We have connections with people--both in person and online--that we can use to help bring attention to an issue.

That's what this post is about today.

In my day job, my office is a passport acceptance facility. As part of the oath we give people, there's reference to something the federal government calls "sex tourism." I'd never heard of it and eventually had to look it up.

The Cambridge Dictionary defines it as (bolding is mine):
the act of travelling to another country
for the purpose of paying to have sex, especially with children

Um ...

Then I saw on the evening news a report about Operation Underground Railroad and I actually heard the term sex tourism on TV. Not long after that, I read a magazine article that also talked about the work of this organization.

Since hearing about this situation, I haven't been able to the plight of these children out of my mind. Now that I knew about it, I couldn't just sit around and do nothing.

I'm proud to say that I'm now an Abolitionist.

And I'm not alone.

Laura Johnston and I have worked with other authors, including many members of the iWriteNetwork family, to host a campaign to raise money to help fund a rescue mission. The idea was to invite authors to donate books as rewards for people who donate to O.U.R.

This is when Authors United Against Child Slavery was born.

 Give freedom. Get a book
  • Donate $20 to receive a free book from a participating author (book prizes selected at random).
  • Donors of $40 or more will receive two free books, a series, or a bundle (selected at random as well). 
Operation Underground Railroad, working with the Elizabeth Smart Foundation, is a project of Child Rescue Association of North America, a nonprofit organization. Therefore, all donations are tax deductible. 
The response has been amazing! Hundreds of books have been donated. 

Now we need to find homes for all of those books.
Can you help spread the word?

Donate to O.U.R.: Authors United Against Child Slavery Campaign Page
Sign Up Form for Authors and book bloggers who wish to help


Tuesday, May 12, 2015


The fall Retreat will be held
 September 17-20 in Draper, UT!

Theme: Harry Potter

How to sign up for this retreat: 
FYI: All meals are included AND there will be mini-workshops on
Nonsense Incantations (Brainstorming),
Transfiguration Spells (Story Beats),
Using the Room of Requirement (Things hidden in plain sight),
Amortentia and other Love Potions (Romance…),
Divination (marketing)
Defense Against the Dark Arts (All about villains).  

See pics of the awesome accommodations for the retreat under the retreat tab.

Sign ups open Saturday, May 16th at 8am, Mountain time zone. NO EARLIER.
Yes, that is the second day of LDStorymakers—Plan ahead to send your email at 8. Have your Paypal account accessible to pay too.

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. Include if you want 1 payment or 3 payments. Give me the email address you use for Paypal.

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 payment on June 15th and the last payment on July 15th. You must pay in full by July 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 - sorry & thank you. (You can, however, transfer your bed to someone else if you discover you are unable to attend.)

Bed Options and Rates:  (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.

BR #1 (The Man Cave We currently have 4 other men signed up already--but each is sharing a room with his wife.)

Full over Full, 1 spot each bed $190 top, $200 bottom  $190   $200
twin trundle spot $160
Full over Full, 1 spot each bed $190 top, $200 bottom  $190   $200

BR #2
King bed 2 spots $240 each    $240    $240

BR #3
Queen bed with private bath, 2 spots, $250 each  $250  $250

BR #4
King with bathroom 2 spots $275 each  $275  $275

BR #5
Full over Full, 1 spot each bed $190 top, $200 bottom  $190   $200
Twin trundle, 1 spot $160
Twin top bunk 1 spot, $150
Twin bottom bunk 1 spot, $175

BR #6
King bed 2 spots $240 each    $240  $240

BR #7
Full over Full, 1 spot each bed $190 top, $200 bottom  $190   $200
Twin trundle, 1 spot $160
Full over Full, 1 spot each bed $190 top, $200 bottom  $190   $200

BR #8
Queen bed with, 2 spots, $225 each  $225  $225

BR #9
Twin top bunk 1 spot, $150
Twin bottom bunk 1 spot, $175
Full over Full, 1 spot each bed $190 top, $200 bottom  $190   $200
Twin trundle, 1 spot $160
We are so exited to have you join us!! Have Questions? Email us at


Tuesday, May 5, 2015

What's Your Process?

Every writer has their own process when it comes to writing. Some outline down to the very scene before they write one word of story. They know what their characters look like, what their middle names are, and what color of underwear they prefer. (Okay, maybe not their underwear. But they do know a lot about their characters.Other writers sit down with just a glimmer of an idea, maybe a shred of a conversation, and start hammering it out without a clue as to where they're going. Of course, there are many other processes that can range anywhere along that spectrum.

So what's the right way? How should we approach our writing?

The answer is simple - whatever way works best for you.

I have a friend - we'll call her Karen Hoover, because that's her name - who creates booklets about each of her projects. She finds pictures of people who resemble her characters, she makes maps of her towns, and she outlines each scene. This takes her a little while, but then when she gets to the writing, she can knock out ten thousand words a day because she knows exactly where she's going.

Then I have another friend. Okay, I give - it's me.  I usually start out with a kernel of an idea, and I'll sit down and just start writing. At the bottom of my document, as I discover what they are, I keep a list of things I will need to go back and add later. I also keep a list of ideas for future scenes. I'm essentially plotting as I go, and then on the second draft, I'll go through and make sure it all makes sense.

Karen's system works for Karen. My system works for me. And you most likely have a system that works for you.

So whenever you hear someone talk about how you "should" be writing, take a moment to think about it - would that method really work for you? If not, don't worry about it. Whatever allows you to be the most productive is what you should be doing. Just as your craft is unique to you, so is your method of arriving at a completed project. Don't let anyone mess up your groove.