My thoughts on writing tips found online and in published works (with some random thoughts thrown into the mix).

Saturday, June 30, 2012


Haha that's so true!

I think this quote is the most relevant to my life, and I have always tried to live by it. If you are always scared of what other people will think, then you will never get anywhere. You will be stuck wondering "what if" and standing still instead of moving forward.

The best piece of advice I could ever give someone is to "Just Do It," to borrow from Nike. Do you think no one will like your novel? Well, you'll never know if you don't send it out to possible publishers! Do you think your character might be too unusual? Try it anyway! Want to experiment with a new form of writing that you have no experience with? Are you worried you might "fail"? Well, there is no such thing as failure. Any chances you take will ultimately give you something to learn from. Even if you don't get the result you want, you can still improve from that point and move upward and onward. If you don't try, you will never know if that particular activity could have been your new passion.

Wednesday, June 27, 2012

Time to get Back on Track

Due to my great-grandma's recent passing, I have let my concentration and drive drift. While I am still in mourning, and I'm sure I will be for quite a while, I realize that it is time to turn back to my work. I am going to hit the books and hit them hard. I have to make up for lost time, and I plan to do that.

I have also lost the focus on my blog. I want this blog to help writers, editors, and others in the publishing industry to learn how to work together and how to be the best in their craft. Lately, I have been posting more random things and stuff about myself. While I love getting to know my readers, and I hope you all enjoy learning more about the woman behind the blog, I need to get back to mission.

So, in conclusion:
The writing world, you have my full attention. Let's get back to business!

Monday, June 25, 2012

R.I.P. Gramy

This past Tuesday, the 19th of June, I was informed that my great-grandmother had passed away. She was 87 years old. To me, she had always seemed invincible and immortal, like she hadn't aged a day since I was born.

Around the time of my very first Christmas, my great-grandmother was fighting breast cancer. She told my mother that she wanted to give up and just die in her sleep. My mother sat me down on her hospital bed and asked if she wanted to see me grow up, see me go to prom, see me graduate from high school, and see me get married. When Gramy said yes, my mom told her that she had to keep fighting, then. And she did. She beat cancer and went on to see me go to prom and graduate from high school and, though she didn't get to see them, she heard about my college graduation and my engagement.

The news of her passing has hit me hard. It seems like just a few days ago we were sitting at her tiny dining room table, playing Go Fish, and betting quarters on who would win. In reality, it has been a few years since I saw her last. She began to lose her memories and, when I went to visit her, she became frustrated because she wanted to remember me but couldn't. In respect for her feelings and her blood pressure, I stopped visiting. At times, I feel guilty about this, but deep down I know it was the right decision to make.

I still cry every day for her. I miss her so much and, though I know she is not in pain anymore and she's happy now, I wish she was still here. I long for the Gramy that enjoyed getting embarrassing gifts for Christmas and took her black mutt, Midnight, for a walk several times a day. I want to sit with her and listen to her old country records on the turntable. I want to hear her laugh again.

Though I am still struggling with her death, I am very glad that I had the opportunity to know her. Many people don't ever get to meet their great-grandmothers, let alone have fond memories of 20+ years together to look back on. She taught me to be kind to others and to never give up, no matter what odds are working against you. She kept our family close and, thanks to that, my cousin and I were able to lean on each other at the funeral. She was an amazing woman, and I will always be grateful that I had the privilege of calling her my Gramy.

Tuesday, June 19, 2012

Book Signing and Author Recruitment Event!

On this Friday, June 22, 2012, Grit City Publications will be attending the "In Your Write Mind" book signing and author recruitment event at Seton Hill University in Greensburg, PA. If you are in the area, stop by and take a look!

Article here:,_Issue_6_RELEASED_2.html

Monday, June 18, 2012


Within the past week, my fellow editor at Grit City Publication decided to bow out. She didn't have the time to commit to GCP anymore, and I respect her decision and will miss her greatly. After learning this news, however, I suddenly felt a weight fall on my shoulders as I became the sole editor with the company.

Thankfully, the creator of GCP came to the rescue. He had been chatting with two other editors that were interested in joining our team and was already in the process of bringing them into the fold. Soon, we should have three editors in total for Grit City Publications. What a relief! One of these editors has already reached out to talk to me, and he seems extremely enthusiastic, passionate, and intelligent. I think he will do great in this new position and am excited to be working alongside him. I haven't had the opportunity to talk to the other editor yet, so I can't say much about him, but I trust the creator of GCP.

Besides taking away some of my anxiety, these additions to the team are a good sign for the company. It means that we are growing and emotobooks are starting to catch on. We are receiving more submissions than just two editors could handle, which is great! Hopefully this trend continues and we will soon be at our short-term goal of ten editors, with enough work to spread around!

Until then, I am still very excited about the future of the Emotobooks Revolution.

If you would like to read up about emotobooks, check out:

If you want to check out our catalogue, click here:

If you would like to send in your own story, read the submission guidelines here:

Thursday, June 14, 2012

Writing Prompt

Today, as a writing prompt, I want you to go to Google Images and type in "unusual ____" (insert word of your choice). Then, I want you to write a story about whatever that comes up that interests you. For example, if you type in "unusual flower", these images come up:


For example, the last flower reminds me of a sand dollar. You could write a story about the extraordinary events that turned a sand dollar into a flower. For the blue spiky one, you could write a story about the dangers of touching it and any poisons it may emit. For the top one, you would write about falling inside it and getting lost in a different world, similar to Alice in Wonderland.

Good luck, and have a great day!

Wednesday, June 6, 2012


Tomorrow, my sister graduates from high school. My little sister, my baby sister, the youngest one in the family. I can't believe she is 18 and getting ready to go off to college. I am so worried about her, because I remember all the stupid decisions I made when I was first out on my own on a college campus. I got in with a party crowd and did rather poorly my first few semesters. Eventually, I learned from my mistakes and graduated from college with a 3.8 GPA, but I don't want her to have to go through that. She has been there for me through a lot of my idiotic spells, so my greatest wish is that she will learn from my mistakes. I want her to cherish all of her years in college, instead of regretting some of them. I want her to learn everything she can and become brilliant in her profession. I want her to stay away from drugs, alcohol, and late-night parties. I want her to study and be a good student. I want her to pass with flying colors and stand out.

I know that she says she never wants to make the same mistakes that I did, but once she is away from our parents on that campus, I am afraid that the temptation will start calling her. I am afraid that she will not be able to resist the call from friends to go out on the town, to go to strange houses and do stupid things, to take random trips in the middle of the night to unknown places. I want her to be safe and to make the best of this learning experience. But, most of all, I want her to have it better than I did.

Tuesday, June 5, 2012

A Fun Weekend

I apologize for the sporadic posts these past few days. My retail job was short-handed in my old position (customer service manager), so I spent the past three days doing that plus my current position (deli department manager). That means I spent 13+ hours on the clock every day, not counting the hour-long lunch period required each day. While I was happy to help, especially considering the overtime I will be receiving, I am still very glad to have a day off today. I was so exhausted by the end of my shift yesterday rolled around!

While it was a definitely unique experience, I have learned that I have a limit. By the third day, I easily became emotional and, near the end, I become irritable and cranky. I did learn some other important things, though. I already knew how much a deserved "thank you" can mean to someone, but this reinforced it, when my co-manager let me know how much he appreciated the extra effort I was putting in. It made it all worth it in that moment, especially because I look up to him, not only because he's my boss but because I genuinely strive to do well at my job each and every day. Also, my direct supervisor, an assistant manager, proved that he had my back and watches out for me. It's nice to know that I have the support I need and that I can trust my superiors.

Anyway, I guess I just wanted to pass along this information to help out any other bosses or future bosses that may be reading this. When you have people that you are in charge of them, make sure you show your appreciation when they go above and beyond the call of duty. You don't have to praise them for every single little thing, but make sure they know that their hard work is noticed. A little bit of positive reinforcement goes a long way. Also, it is important to keep in mind that you were in their shoes at one point and remember how it felt to be there. That way, you can identify where they are coming from and you can show them that they are not alone, that you are in the proverbial trenches with them, and they can count on you to help them when they need it.

Sunday, June 3, 2012

A Delicious Recipe

One of the keys to writing great stories, novels, poems, blog posts, or anything, really, is to write about something you love. Find something that you have a passion for and make it the focus of your writing or find a way to include it in a creative way. This is a great example of how to do just that. By combining a love of cooking and/or eating, the person who made this image was able to create something unique that would stick in the minds of others. What other ways can you come up with to mash up your favorite activities with writing?

Saturday, June 2, 2012

Make a List

If you are ever stressing out about something, it's a good time to make a list. Lists can make you realize that you have more together than you thought you did, or that you know more than you knew. It can also make you aware of how thankful you should be for what you have, instead of focusing on what you don't have.

The other night, I was starting to freak out a bit because I had so much to do for the wedding. Our location finally got nailed down, so now it's time to seek out a reception location and locate some vendors. This means a lot of time and a lot of meetings. It's a big project to find someone who will work with your ideas and who fits your vision! It just seemed like a lot of work that needed done in a very small time frame. Especially since my fiance is on night shift for another two weeks, then on day shift for a month, so we would need to get everything done before he switched back to nights. I was really getting hyper about it.

Then, I started to think of all the friends I have enlisted for various tasks. Two of the girls I work with are going to do the cake, those two plus another have volunteered for general baked goods, another one is willing to do the flowers, another one is jumping to be my photographer, my sister is excellent with Photoshop and wants to do all the stationary, etc. Once I started making this mental list, I realized how much I really do have worked out. While there are still some vendors that I need to interview, there is not nearly as much as I thought. It helped me relax and made me grateful for all the resourceful, creative, and generous people in my life.

This was just an example, but think about the ramifications. What could making a list do for you? What are you tense about that could be eased by writing a list? Take a minute to write down all your options, resources, and possibilities, and take a breather!

Friday, June 1, 2012

Editing Vs. Proofreading

(Sorry about the size, but the only other size I could get it was too tiny to read).

proofreading vs editing infographic