"There is more treasure in books than in all the pirate's loot on Treasure Island." - Walt Disney

Monday, July 8, 2024

28 July Submission Opportunities

1) HG WELLS SHORT STORY COMPETITIONhttps://hgwellscompetition.com/competition-rules-2024/Zero to £10 ENTRY FEE. Deadline July 8, 2024. Competition offers a £500 Senior and £1,000 Junior prize and free publication of all shortlisted entries in a quality, professionally published paperback anthology. Theme: The Fool. The length must be 1,500 to 5,000 words.

2) Seaside Gothic - This UK-based magazine publishes art, fiction, poetry, and nonfiction that meet the criteria of seaside gothic literature (it is led by emotion, not reason, exploring the human experience mentally and spiritually as well as physically; It addresses duality—land and sea, love and hate, the beautiful and the grotesque; It connects to the edge, living on the seaside either literally or figuratively, and has one foot in the water and the other on solid ground). Reading period: 8-14 July 2024Length: Up to 1,000 words. Pay: £0.01/word. Details here.

3) Sine Theta Magazine Annual Writing Contest - Sine Theta Magazine accepts works from people of Sino descent only, regardless of nationality, and the same eligibility requirement applies to this contest. They are accepting works of prose and poetry for their next issue. They have published three prompts on their website, and writers should respond to those prompts directly or indirectly. Out of all the entries submitted for publication in the magazine, they will select one winner for poetry, and another winner for prose, who will receive cash prizes. (Also, “All authors published in sinθ receive a $10 USD honorarium. For the two contest winners, there is an additional $200 USD prize, amounting to a total of $210 USD.”) Value: $150 each for poetry and prose. Deadline: 10 July 2024. Open for: People of Sino descent. Details here.

4) Calendar of Fools: Intergalactic Rejects - This is a fiction anthology. They want “speculative short stories (science fiction, fantasy, dark fantasy, cosmic horror, etc.) that have been rejected from multiple markets.” Please note, the story you submit should have been rejected at least three times. Deadline: 12 July 2024. Length: Up to 5,000 words. Pay: $0.08/word. Details here.

5) Solarpunk Magazine - This is a magazine of solarpunk fiction. The magazine “publishes hopeful short stories and poetry that strive for a utopian ideal, that are set in futures where communities are optimistically struggling to solve or adapt to climate change, to create or maintain a world in which humanity, technology, and nature coexist in harmony rather than in conflict. We also publish solarpunk art as well as nonfiction that explores real world, contemporary topics and their intersection with the solarpunk movement for a better future.” Also, “Any genre of science fiction, interstitial fiction, magic realism, or fantasy has potential as a solarpunk forum—we welcome robots and elves with equal excitement.” The kind of work they want is described on their Moksha submission page, as well as the guidelines page. Also, “In 2024, we are particularly looking for stories between 1,500 and 3,000 words. While our word limit remains 7,500, stories that fall between 1,500 and 3,000 will have a better chance of being selected for at least the first few submission periods in 2024.” Nonfiction is open on an ongoing basis. All the 2024 fiction submission periods are listed on their website. Deadline: 14 July 2024 for fiction. Length: See above. Pay: $0.08/word for fiction; $40/poem; $75/essay or article. Details here (guidelines) and here (Moksha submission portal).

6) Spooky: Halloween - This cozy horror magazine is reading on the Halloween theme, as well as unthemed horror submissions. They have detailed guidelines about the kind of stories they want, including, “Cozy horror. Fun horror. Classy horror. Dare we say, wholesome horror? … perhaps the easiest way to understand what we mean is to read stories by some of the old masters we love: Ray Bradbury, Charles Beaumont, Richard Matheson, Robert Bloch, Roald Dahl. Watch classic episodes of Thriller, The Twilight Zone, and Night Gallery. Read old horror comics. Listen to radio dramas like Suspense, Quiet, Please, and Inner Sanctum Mysteries. … In short, we’re looking to provide a space for a type of storytelling that has largely gone out of style – dark and scary, but playful and approachable with an emphasis on plot.” They also want horror haiku. Deadline: 13 July 2024. Length: Up to 5,000 words (prefer 2,500-3,000 words) for fiction. Pay: $0.01/word. Details here and here(Submissions are also open for PseudoPod, an online and audio horror fiction magazine from the Escape Artists suite of magazines – they want reprints only, of horror stories that have been/will be published in 2024. They pay. The deadline is 31 July 2024. Details here, here, and here.)

7) BURLINGTON CONTEMPORARY ART WRITING PRIZE https://contemporary.burlington.org.uk/writing_prizeNO ENTRY FEE NOTED. Deadline July 15, 2024. The winner of the Prize receives £1,000, their review is published on Burlington Contemporary and they have the opportunity to publish a review of a future contemporary art exhibition in The Burlington Magazine. Entrants must have published no more than six pieces of writing in print or online prior to their submission. There is no age limit for applicants. To enter the prize, entrants should submit one unpublished review of a contemporary art exhibition. The review must be between 800 and 1,000 words in length and accompanied by up to three low-resolution images

8) Black Cat Publishing: Black Cat Tales - This is a fiction and poetry anthology. “A black cat approaches, do you eagerly cross its path, or run in the opposite direction? From the superstitious to the unlucky, from a witch’s familiar to a soul stealing grave robber, black cats have captured our imagination and remain solidly in the realm of the dark. Dazzle us with your best black cat story or poem. A black cat or a clowder of black cats must be featured predominantly in your story and not simply set decoration.” Regarding genre, they say, “horror, dark fantasy, sci-fi, erotica, weird westerns, cyberpunk, steampunk…we’re open to all but prefer dark fiction.” Deadline: 15 July 2024. Length: 500 – 3,500 words for story, max 25 lines for poetry. Pay: $50 for fiction, $25 for poetry. Details here.

9) The Helen Schaible International Sonnet Contest - For this contest, they have two categories: a traditional sonnet, which can be Shakespearean or Petrarchan, and a modern sonnet. Poets can enter work in one or both categories (see guidelines). Value: $50, $30, $20. Deadline: 15 July 2024Open for: All poets. Details here.

10) Escape Artists: Cast of Wonders – Young Writers Issue - Cast of Wonders is a Young Adult podcast and online speculative fiction (fantasy, science fiction, horror) magazine, and they’ll open mid-month for submissions for their young writers issue, when they will only accept submissions from young writers. They also accept reprints and translations. Their submission portal will open for fiction during the reading period. They have detailed guidelines, please read them carefully. Reading period: 15-31 July 2024 (see their schedule here). Length: Up to 6,000 words. Pay: $0.08/word for original fiction. Details here and here.

11) Essential Dreams Press: Storyteller: A Tanith Lee Tribute Anthology - This fiction anthology will open around mid-month for submissions and has two submission windows; one for underrepresented writers, and another for all writers. “STORYTELLER: A Tanith Lee Tribute Anthology is a celebration of Lee’s influence in speculative fiction. Not only did Tanith Lee write nearly 90 novels, but she also wrote hundreds of short stories in and across a wide range of genres including fairy tales, science fiction, horror, fantasy, erotica, gothic, historical fiction, and the weird. Her work has inspired generations of writers and has influenced some of the greatest authors working in speculative fiction today.” And, “STORYTELLER is seeking original, unpublished stories  under the umbrella of genre, including but not limited to science fiction, fantasy, horror, YA, romance, and any of their many subgenres. … As part of their submission, you will be required to provide two short statements: 1) how Tanith Lee inspired or influenced your own writing practice and 2) why you submitted this particular story for our Tanith Lee tribute anthology i.e., what makes it a perfect fit.” They have two reading periods; call #1, July 16-22, is open to underrepresented writers only; “We will only be accepting stories from underrepresented and historically marginalized voices including BIPOC, LGBTQAI+, disabled, and neurodiverse writers.”; and call #2, during July 23-29, 2024, will be open to all writers. Reading periods: See above. Length: 2,000-5,000 words. Pay: $0.10/word. Details here.

12) Strive Publishing & Free Spirit Publishing: Black Voices in Children’s Literature - This is a contest for US-based Black writers. They want children’s stories by and about Black people. “Eligible entries will include original children’s books for ages 0–4 (50–125 words) or for ages 4–8 (300–800 words) featuring authentic, realistic Black characters and culture and focusing on one or more of the following topics: character development, self-esteem, identity, diversity, getting along with others, engaging with family and community, or other topics related to positive childhood development. Religious and fantasy themes will not be considered.” Value: $1,000, $500, $250. Deadline: 22 July 2024. Open for: Black writers in the US. Details here and here(Their Submittable page also has details of other calls.)

13) Dead Fish Books: Madame, Don’t Forget Your Sword - This is a fiction anthology. “This anthology is dedicated to all the minions, sidekicks, and henchpeople: the ones responsible for getting the takeout, picking up the kids, and making sure that the evil plan actually works. The ones dedicated to showing how the monster works before the hero comes to save the day! Give them their spotlight: What drama happens when you work HR for a mad scientist? What happens if the sidekicks unionize? What if the red shirts accidentally don’t die?” Deadline: 30 July 2024Length: 2,000-6,000 words. Pay: $5 + royalties. Details here.

14) Obsidian Butterfly: Atlas of the Deep Ones - This is a fiction, nonfiction, and poetry anthology. “The stories we are looking for are all about Deep Ones–H.P. Lovecraft’s creations as seen in “Shadow Over Innsmouth.” … We want stories that are truly about Deep Ones: Deep One pirates willing to raid some truly unusual ships, beach bums sharing a smoke with a new friend. How do you handle the call to the sea when you live in Kansas? How did encounters with Romans, Vikings, and rum runners play out? Maybe they were the Sea People leading to the Bronze Age Collapse. Did they sink the White Ship that messed up English Royal succession? Or what or a more distant, perhaps primordial past? The “non-fiction” should be articles about aspects of Deep One culture, biology, history and everything in-between. Nothing from New England (Innsmouth) or South Pacific seas unless you give us a time period we haven’t seen before. Dive deep and grasp the Weird.” Deadline: 30 July 2024. Length: 500-6,000 words for fiction, 500-1,000 words for nonfiction, up to 2 pages for poetry. Pay: $25 for fiction, $15 for nonfiction and poetry. Details here.

15) Zoetic Press: Non-Binary Review – False Memories - They want poetry, fiction, essays, translations, and art. They’re reading on the False Memories theme. Please remember, they accept submissions until a cap is reached, or the deadline, whichever comes first. All submissions must have a clear relationship to the theme. Apart from the theme, they are also accepting submissions for Dear Horace Greely and Heartbeats: Visual Verse sections; they also offer feedback to 4 POC poets every month. On the False Memories theme, they say, “False memories first came to public consciousness in the 1980s when a group of pre-schoolers at a California preschool were coached by well-meaning social workers and police investigators into “remembering” Satanic abuse that never happened. The fallout from that episode wasn’t just the persecution of an innocent family, but a nationwide mass delusion now known as “the Satanic Panic,” where authorities were warning the public about supposed widespread satanic cults committing heinous acts of abuse. Not a single one of these warnings were founded in fact, and it is now known that a large number of them were propaganda. But false memories aren’t always bad. There is a common phenomenon wherein people hear stories of their early childhoods so often that those stories turn into “memories.” It is common in dreams to have “memories” of things that happened to the dream self, but not to the real self. Or a person might believe that they took their regular medication, brought in the garbage bins, or picked up the mail when they haven’t. We’re looking for weird and wonderful stories of not just the memories themselves, but of their production, their repercussions, their wider meanings. We’re looking for false memories that might have changed history, that led to remarkable discoveries, that impacted lives.” They do not want works on recovered memory. They would also like to avoid stories centering abuse, trauma, and violence. Deadline: 31 July 2024, or until filled. Length: Up to 3,000 words for prose; up to 3 pages for poetry. Pay: $0.01/word for prose, $10 for poetry. Details here and here(They’re also accepting submissions for the Ritual theme with a later deadline, and for other sections for which there is no deadline – see their Submittable for details.)

16) October Nights Press: GabaGhoul – A Mafia Horror Anthology - This is a fiction anthology. “This anthology will merge the thrills and chills of horror with the dark underworld and dealings of the mafia. A hitman haunted by past contracts? A boss who dabbles in the dark arts? A ghastly horror lurking in the shadows that chills the most hardened capo to the bone? There are so many themes to explore and organized crime groups from around the world. We are accepting stories from all horror sub-genres. Slow burn, splatter, erotica, extreme, etc are all welcomed so long as they marry horror with the mafia.” Stories should be at least 3,000 words, and payment is capped at 5,000 words. Please see their note about contributor copies to international writers. Deadline: 31 July 2024. Length: See above Pay: $0.03/word. Details here.

17) Bannister Press: Other – the 2024 fantasy short story anthology - Bannister Press specializes in supernatural and fantasy stories loved by adults and young adults. For this fiction anthology, they only want submissions from writers who identify as women. “We are seeking international short story submissions by writers who identify as women for an anthology with a focus on what it means to be on the outside looking in, or comfortably or uncomfortably out of step with the world(s) at large, and with a fantasy element (either subtle or writ large). The story can be visually focused, or character/narrative focused, as long as it leaves the reader thinking about the story long after closing the book. We don’t want a lesson, we want an experience that makes us come alive. Humour is fine as long as it’s not about the mic drop.” Deadline: 31 July 2024 (extended). Length: Up to 3,500 words. Pay: $0.08/word. Details here.

18) Black Beacon Books: The Third Black Beacon Book of Mystery - This is a fiction anthology, the third in the series. “The idea of this anthology series is to make each volume more gripping, more memorable, and more mysterious than the last. We’re looking for short stories with an unforgettable protagonist and a clever puzzle to solve.” They will also accept reprints for this anthology. Deadline: 31 July 2024. Length: 3,000-9,000 words. Pay: $25 for original stories. Details here (scroll down) and here(They’re also open for submissions on the Steampunk Sleuths theme; that anthology has a later deadline.)

19) WolfSinger Publications: Cowboy Up - This is a fiction anthology; they want stories around the Rodeo. “They can be in any genre as long as the sport of Rodeo is a key part of the story. Stories must revolve around the sport, the riders or the animal athletes involved in Rodeo and while being realistic to the sport must also portray it in a favorable light. We do hope to receive stories that cover all of the events in Rodeo: Bareback Riding, Saddle Bronc Riding, Bull Riding, Tie-Down Roping, Steer Wresting, Team Roping, Steer Roping, Barrel Racing and Ladies Breakaway Roping. Stories can also feature Bull Fighters, Barrel Men, Pick Up Men, the medical teams (human and veterinarian) – or anyone involved in the sport. … Break the story-writing rules if you want. If you use a tried-and-true plotline, twist it in an original and interesting way. Original stories are preferred. Query for reprints.” And, 75% of all proceeds from this anthology will be donated to an organization that provides help to injured riders and their families. Deadline: 31 July 2024. Length: Up to 7,500 words. Pay: $20. Details here.

20) Mysterion: Christian speculative fiction - They want science fiction, fantasy and horror stories that engage meaningfully with Christian themes, characters or cosmology. The stories need not teach a moral, or be close to an approved theological position, or be pro-Christian. They are especially interested in stories that show Christians from cultures beyond those of the United States, Canada, and Western Europe. They also accept translations and reprints. They have two annual reading periods for fiction, January and July. Deadline: 31 July 2024. Length: Up to 9,000 words. Pay: $0.08/word. Details here.

21) FIYAH: Spacefaring Aunties - FIYAH is a speculative fiction magazine that only takes submissions from Black people of the African Diaspora. They want submissions on the ‘Spacefaring Aunties’ theme. “It’s time to explore the adventures of bold, fearless women who defy societal expectations and embark on daring space voyages. From thrilling space operas to quiet character studies, we want to see Aunties who are scientists, engineers, pilots, and leaders guiding their crews through uncharted territory. What Kerine is looking for: Women-led stories, not as sidekicks but fleshed-out protagonists. SHOW how cool these Aunties are through their actions. Quiet moments on a spaceship are good but make enough tension to highlight the bravery of these women. A wide spectrum of women- queer, disabled, etc. – without feeding into the “Strong Black Woman ™” tropes that often dehumanize and stifle characters.” They also want speculative poetry. Deadline: 31 July 2024. Length: 2,000-7,000 words for short stories and novelettes up to 15,000 words; up to 1,000 words for poetry. Pay: $0.08/word for fiction, $50 for poetry. Details here.

22) New Myths: The Janus Gates - New Myths publishes speculative fiction of every kind, and they like each issue to have a balance of works: science fiction and fantasy, dark and light, serious and humorous, hard and soft science fiction, and longer and shorter works. They also publish reviews. They’re also reading submissions for ‘The Janus Gates’ anthology. “Besides looking back into the past and forward into the future, Janus was also the original gatekeeper, the first god to open the portal between gods and men, the god who guarded every new beginning and ending, every transformation, the god you prayed to every morning before you could speak to any other. A Roman peasant stepping through the Janus Gate in Rome in the spring was transformed into a soldier marching off to conquer the world. The Roman soldier stepping out of the Janus Gate in the fall became the peaceful farmer again. Who better to inspire our next NewMyths anthology centering around portals, thresholds, transformations–the future and past worlds of our dreams and myths?” Their reading periods are January-February and June-July. Deadline: 31 July 2024. Length: Up to 10,000 words. Pay: $0.03/word. Details here, here (scroll down to ‘Anthology News’), and here.

23) Flash Frog - They want flash fiction of up to 1,000 words that is “Small. Brightly Colored. Deadly to the Touch.” They accept general submissions year-round, with some exceptions. In July, they will accept ghost story submissions only. Deadline: 31 July 2024 for ghost story submissions. Length: Up to 1,000 words. Pay: $25. Details here.

24) Four Palaces Publishing: Solastalgia - This is a creative nonfiction contest; the essays will be published in an anthology. “Is change a sparkling jewel of fate or an unnecessary diversion in what was already a good thing? We’re interested in creative nonfiction essays on change over time with an environmental lens, particularly dealing with the concept of solastalgia—”the homesickness you have when you are still at home.” How has the environment progressed around you, and how is it causing existential distress to your community? What’s happened to your hometown that you only visit twice a year? Have you noticed how your body reacts to the pollen in the spring, when you’ve never noticed it at all? We love to see a rainbow at the end of the storm, but we’re also perfectly fine watching the gray skies from our window. Let’s see how your places have changed. As opposed to nostalgia—the melancholia or homesickness experienced by individuals when separated from a loved home—solastalgia is the distress that is produced by environmental change impacting on people while they are directly connected to their home environment.” And, “We prefer mainstream literature, though don’t be afraid to send in something experimental—Leslie Jamison’s “The Empathy Exams” is a great reference.” The winning essay gets $1,000 and mentorship in either craft or professional development, and other writers selected for the anthology get $100. Value: $1,000; $100 for other selected essays. Deadline: 31 July 2024. Length: 2,000-6,000 words. Details here and here.

25) Speculative Literature Foundation: Two grants - They will be open for two grants in July; writers can apply for one or both grants. — The Diverse Writers grant is to support new and emerging writers of speculative fiction from underrepresented groups, including writers of color, disabled, women or working-class writers. — The Diverse Worlds grant is for work that best represents a diverse world, irrespective of the writer’s background. Writers may apply for one or both grants. The project must be a proposed book-length work of speculative fiction (novels, short story collections). Non-fiction, poetry, picture books, and editorial projects are not eligible. See their schedule for other grants, with later submission periods.Value: Two grants of $500 each. Deadline: 31 July 2024. Open for: Underrepresented writers for Diverse Writers; and writers whose work represents a diverse world for Diverse Worlds. Details here (grant details) and here (schedule for all their grants).

26) Sisters in Crime: Pride Award for Emerging LGBTQIA+ Crime Writers - This is a grant for an emerging writer in the LGBTQIA+ community. It is for an unpublished work of crime fiction, aimed at readers from children’s chapter books through adults. This may be a short story or first chapter(s) of a manuscript in-progress of 2,500 to 5,000 words. An unpublished writer is preferred, but writers with publication of not more than 10 pieces of short fiction and/or up to 2 self-published or traditionally published books are also eligible. Also, winners and any runners-ups who wish to maintain their anonymity, may do so, or they may choose to select a pen name for announcements. Please note, you have to register/log in to access the submission portal. Value: $2,000. Deadline: 31 July 2024 (see the submission dates on their Facebook page). Open for: Unpublished/emerging LGBTQIA+ writers (see guidelines). Details here. (See all of Sisters in Crime grants/awards here.)

27) Singapore Unbound Awards: Singapore and Other Literatures - These awards are for the best undergraduate critical essays on Singapore and Other Literatures. “For the purpose of these awards, Singapore literature is defined as literature written in English from 1965 onwards by a Singaporean citizen, permanent resident, or anyone with a strong personal and literary association with Singapore. The author does not have to be residing in Singapore nor to have maintained their citizenship. The work(s) discussed may be in any of the literary genres, including but not limited to poetry, fiction, literary non-fiction, drama, and graphic novels.” Value: S250 each for three essayists. Open for: Undergraduate writers. Deadline: 31 July 2024. Details here. (See Singapore Unbound’s submission calls here.)

28) Hachette UK: The Future Bookshelf – The Robinson New Voices Award - This is an opportunity for unagented, unpublished, underrepresented writers in the UK, for a popular psychology book. “Hachette UK’s The Future Bookshelf is running the New Voices Award Prize for its second year to help discover unpublished psychology writers from Black, Asian, mixed heritage and multiple ethnic backgrounds, as well as those who are disabled, gender diverse, part of the LGBTQIA+ community or from cultural or religious minorities. … The winner will receive an offer to publish with Robinson including an advance against royalties of at least £5000”. And, judging will be on the originality of the thesis or concept, the logic and credibility of the argument, the rigour of the research, the clarity and accessibility of the writing, the relevance of the topic to general and/or non-academic readers, and the usefulness of the advice. Value: £5,000 advance, feedback, mentoring, meeting with a literary agent, and more. Deadline: 31 July 2024. Open for: UK-based unpublished and underrepresented writers (see guidelines). Details here. (See all of The Future Bookshelf’s opportunities, including for LGBTQ+ writers, here.)

Wednesday, July 3, 2024

IWSG: Writing Software, Apps, and Tools

It’s time for another group posting of the Insecure Writer’s Support Group! founded by Alex J. Cavanaugh. Time to release our fears to the world – or offer encouragement to those who are feeling neurotic. If you’d like to join us, click on the tab above and sign up. We post the first Wednesday of every month. Your words might be the encouragement someone needs. You can also join us on twitter using the hashtag #IWSG, or on the Facebook page.

Now, IWSG hosts have changed up the format in an effort to make it more fun and interactive. Every month, they will announce a question that members can answer in their IWSG Day post. These questions may prompt you to share advice, insight, a personal experience or story. Include your answer to the question in your IWSG post or let it inspire your post if you are struggling with something to say. 

Don’t forget to visit others that day to see their answers. Want to join, or learn more? Visit our - Sign-up List.


JULY 3 QUESTION - 
What are your favorite writing processing (e.g. Word, Scrivener, yWriter, Dabble), writing apps, software, and tools? Why do you recommend them? And which one is your all-time favorite that you cannot live without and use daily or at least whenever you write?

MY ANSWER - The only software I use consistently is Microsoft Word - both at work and at home - and google docs for work alone. I don't really use any writing apps.

What about you? What are your favorite writing processing (e.g. Word, Scrivener, yWriter, Dabble), writing apps, software, and tools? Why do you recommend them? And which one is your all-time favorite that you cannot live without and use daily or at least whenever you write?

Monday, June 24, 2024

Our Independence Day!

Independence Day is a federal holiday in the United States commemorating the Declaration of Independence of the United States, on July 4, 1776.

This next week, and Thursday specifically, the United States of America celebrates our Independence Day.

This picture to the left is my dad at 18. We have a family full of men who have served in various branches of the military.

Some time ago, I shared a post about the history of our national anthem if you'd like to check that out here: https://writinginwonderland.blogspot.com/2023/06/national-flag-day-and-star-spangled.html

Thank you to all of the men and women who have served, or are currently serving, our country in ANY way. You are appreciated more than you know.

I'm spending some time celebrating with family and friends. I hope you are all able to do the same.

Are you reading any great books this week?

Monday, June 17, 2024

Adding to Our Literary Travels

This is the time of year that my family starts planning and taking trips. We all enjoy traveling, the sun, and being together.

Of course, I usually try to work in a few literary stops along the way. Anything from where an author stayed or lived, to towns or building mentioned in favorite stories are options on my list. Our travels usually inspire my own writing as well. We haven't decided for sure what we are doing this summer yet, although several options have been shared.

However, we did make a trip to Orlando in March to visit Disney and Universal. One of our stops at Disney Springs included a visit to an Irish Pub: Raglan Road. This is a table-service restaurant that serves Irish fare in a festive atmosphere. The restaurant has been a mainstay, and one of the most popular locations in Disney Springs, since opening there in 2005. Yet few know its name actually comes from a poem by Irish author Patrick Kavanagh. Here is a link to that wonderful poem: "On Raglan Road". The poem also refers to the "Queen of Hearts" which I found interesting.

Monday, June 10, 2024

National Flag Day and "The Star - Spangled Banner"

In the United States, Flag Day is celebrated on June 14th to commemorate the adoption of the flag of the United States of America on June 14, 1777 by resolution of the Second Continental Congress. This is also the day the United States Army celebrates its birthday. 

On September 14, 1814, Francis Scott Key penned a poem which was later set to music and in 1931 became America's national anthem, "The Star - Spangled Banner." The poem originally titled, "The Defence of Fort M'Henry," was written after Key witnessed the Maryland fort being bombarded by the British during the war of 1812. The sight of those "broad stripes and bright stars" inspired thousands. If you've never heard the story before, try the video below. 



Have you ever heard this story before? Do you know the words to this poem/song? Can you think of any other piece of writing that has influenced thousands?

Wednesday, June 5, 2024

IWSG: Services Needed - Writers Need Each Other

It’s time for another group posting of the Insecure Writer’s Support Group! founded by Alex J. Cavanaugh. Time to release our fears to the world – or offer encouragement to those who are feeling neurotic. If you’d like to join us, click on the tab above and sign up. We post the first Wednesday of every month. Your words might be the encouragement someone needs. You can also join us on twitter using the hashtag #IWSG, or on the Facebook page.

Now, IWSG hosts have changed up the format in an effort to make it more fun and interactive. Every month, they will announce a question that members can answer in their IWSG Day post. These questions may prompt you to share advice, insight, a personal experience or story. Include your answer to the question in your IWSG post or let it inspire your post if you are struggling with something to say. 

Don’t forget to visit others that day to see their answers. Want to join, or learn more? Visit our - Sign-up List.


JUNE 5 QUESTION - 
In this constantly evolving industry, what kind of offering/service do you think the IWSG should consider offering to members?

MY ANSWER - There are so many things IWSG members have been good about offering that I would love to see continued or brought back. First, I wish we still offered the annual anthology contest. This was great motivation to work both individually and as a group. This contest often inspired ideas, creativity, editing, design, layout, marketing, blogging, education, and fun. This was a great way to cheer each other on, even when we were not personally participating or selected for an issue. Secondly, the IWSG readers group disappeared. It would be nice if we could bring this back, but highlighting books of members so we could share marketing and reviews. We did this some, but it would be nice to return to it. While I was not able to participate in everything both of these opportunities afforded, it was nice to know they were there and to jump in to support when able. While many of us still offer recommendations, words of support, cheerleading, etc. it does not appear to happen on the same scale as when both of these options were available.

What about you? In this constantly evolving industry, what kind of offering/service do you think the IWSG should consider offering to members?