"Fill your paper with the breathings of your heart." ~ William Wordsworth

The Writing Life Too

And if you're reading this, it means you're not writing.

Monday, March 17, 2014

All good things must come to an end

Dear readers and followers,

As you  might haven noted, not much has been going on here in the past six weeks.  I’ve come to the sad conclusion that I cannot keep blogging at this lovely space that I’ve been occupying since 2004. The reason: time.Or, more precisely,  the lack thereof.  I now coordinate 3 writing conferences, each which requires its own website, host my site www.jessicamorrell.com, work at my thriving editing business, care for a four-bedroom home and garden, give time to a relationship and my darling granddaughters, and need more hours to work on my own writing and fill my own well of creativity.

For awhile when I was blogging here I started posts by describing the morning sky. I’m a at-your-desk-first-thing kind of writer and the sky never failed to inspire me. Problem was, since I lived in Portland I needed to come up with a lot of variations on the word grey. Chalk. Steel. Brooding.  Dusty. Sooty. Lackluster. It was a great lesson in noticing and turned me into even more of a skywatcher than I was before, taught me to stretch for new descriptions. In fact, this blog was a great experience all around. But writing is often about change and with climate changes we don’t see as many grey mornings. However, a lot of changes have happened in my life in the past 10 years, many which I'm deeply grateful for. 

I wrote this blog through heartbreaks and happiness, book deals and pain. I kept blogging after a head injury that left me in bad shape, struggling to with spelling, memory, analysis and impulsivity. I wrote about my habit of long walks at dusk; I interviewed authors; I gathered quotes and snippets of inspiration; and wrote longer pieces also meant to inspire.

Please follow me over to my home on the web.

You'll find articles, interviews, updates on my schedule and conferences, lovely quotes and insights, and some of my regular features like Quick Take, which I love writing, by the way. I’m also on facebook and Twitter and around Portland and the Northwest at writing events.

As always, thank you for reading, thanks for sharing your beautiful lives. Keep writing, keep dreaming, have heart. 

Tuesday, January 28, 2014

A BIG thanks

A big thanks to everyone who took part in Making it in Changing Times on Saturday. This means all the writers who took time for themselves along with Karen Karbo, Sage Cohen, C. Morgan Kennedy and Therese Patrick. Great day, great writers, sun swashbuckling in through the windows. Good coffee and homemade cookies and laughter added to the mix.  
We'll be back next January with more inspiration and innovation.
Keep writing, keep dreaming,have heart

Wednesday, January 22, 2014

Love what you do and do what you love. Don't listen to anyone else who tells you not to do it. You do what you want, what you love. Imagination should be the center of your life.

 - Ray Bradbury

Tuesday, January 21, 2014

Poetry call for submissions

Please consider submitting (and please share this widely — the call is open to all poets, not just those in Washington state).
Help Wanted: The Poetry of Work
Work – or the lack of it – shapes our personalities, our days, and our health. For some, it defines our status. Floating Bridge Review #7 seeks poems concerned with the interplay of labor and identity: first jobs, lay-offs, job hunting, unemployment, hard labor, happy hour, housework, sex work, volunteer work, retirement, the multiple and never-ending labors of parenthood.
Submission guidelines:
  • E-mail up to three previously unpublished poems as a single Microsoft Word document or single PDF file.
  • Put FBR7 SUBMISSION in the subject line of your e-mail and be sure to include your mailing address.
  • Send to floatingbridgepress (at) yahoo (dot com).  No cover letter needed, but please include a brief bio.

Monday, January 20, 2014

Still time to register for Making it in Changing Times

It's me again. The Pacific Northwest has been experiencing another streak of sunny, glorious weather. In the past week I could swear there was a hint of spring in the air and my allergy symptoms seem to bear this out. And I'm fascinated how the shade of blue in the winter sky is so much less intense than in the summer sky.  Lovely, subtle color.

The other good news is that there is still time to register for Making it in Changing Times coming up this Saturday on the 25th. Perfect way to jumpstart your career and writing practice. Jammed with practical information you can immediately put to use. You can find more information here 

Did I mention it's a mere $99 and that includes a Continental breakfast and lunch?

Karen Karbo as our keynote, Sage Cohen, Rhonda Hughes of Hawthorne Books (don't you want to know why she started a publishing company?) C. Morgan Kennedy and Therese Patrick of Author Marketing 101. Talk about a brain trust. And I'll be talking about Secrets & Lies and 10 Techniques for Great Beginnings. Actually, I don't think that's quite the name of the workshop, but you get the idea. It's Monday morning. I had a lovely, lovely weekend at the coast and got to speak to the Pacific University MFA students. Then there was the endless sky and briny sea air.....and the salt water taffy and seafood (a bit too much I'm afraid)...well, I'm just not quite back to my usual state....my heart is still near the Pacific.

Seriously, join us on Saturday.

Friday, January 17, 2014

2014 Amazon Breakthrough Novel Award

Announcing the 2014 Amazon Breakthrough Novel Award

We'll start accepting entries on February 16, 2014. Visit CreateSpace to learn more.

The Seventh Amazon Breakthrough Novel Award Contest is right around the corner. You won’t want to miss this opportunity to win a publishing contract with Amazon Publishing.
One Grand Prize winner will receive a publishing contract with a $50,000 advance, and four First Prize winners will each receive a publishing contract with an advance of $15,000. Visit the Prizes page for the full list of prizes and details.
The categories include five popular genres: General Fiction, Romance, Mystery/Thriller, Science Fiction/Fantasy/Horror and Young Adult Fiction. For complete eligibility details, view the Official Contest Rules, or read details on how to enter. Visit CreateSpace to learn more.

Preparing Your Entry

1) Prepare a strong Pitch. More than a summary, your Pitch should highlight your concept, protagonist, setting, and writing style—all the elements that make your story unique. View sample Pitches from past entrants.
2) Select the genre that best fits your book: General Fiction, Romance, Mystery/Thriller, Science Fiction/Fantasy/Horror, or Young Adult.
3) Stay within the word count limits—Pitch, up to 300 words; Excerpt, 3,000 to 5,000 words; Manuscript, 50,000 to 125,000 words.
4) Remove all identifying information from your Pitch, Excerpt, and Manuscript, including: your name and/or pen name, author bio/resume, and any awards received for your book.  
5) Submit all materials in English.
6) For complete entry requirements, view the Official Contest Rules.
7) Create an account with CreateSpace (if you haven’t already).