Do you have too many emails?

How many new emails did you get today?

Nuvola-like mail internet
(Photo credit: Wikipedia)

100, 200, more?

Do you subscribe to more blogs and newsletters than you can read?   Me too.

Let’s not forget the time we spend checking Twitter, and Facebook, which leads to cute videos (I mean educational videos) or photos.

I’ve started applying the one in, one out system. It’s something I used with my kids to keep them from accumulating tons of junk. Sound familiar?

You can try my system.

  • One in – One out.

If I subscribe to a new blog or newsletter I must unsubscribe to one.

If I save an email, I delete an old saved email. (You know the emails with the little colored stars, check marks or whatever by them)

  • What tricks do you use to find quality over quantity?
  • How do you purge your inbox?

I may have to begin a new system soon: One in – Two out.

Sigh, still have too many unread emails.

Share your secrets to a clean inbox in the comments section.  

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Keep that first thrill alive

You love, obsess, and write. With a little luck, a lot of sweat, blood and tears, maybe, just maybe, others will read and love your precious manuscript too.

I love to write. My husband loves the game of golf. Writing and golf have nothing in common, unless you take a peak at the inbox on our computers. As any crazy person does, we both obsess over ways to improve our craft. The result, our cup runneth over in the form of more information than either of us can process.

The running joke around our house is, did you delete or read?

This got me to thinking how these “tips” seem to run in trends, following the same subject. Which leads me delete more than I read. I mean, how many emails can I read on comma splices. See my point? Then came my ah-ha moment. Why do I pick one particular email, click open to a blog and read amid a sea of others on the same subject? What makes it different?

It’s the author’s tag or hook line.

Now I can see all y’all seasoned writers shaking your heads. Big deal you’re thinking. Everyone knows about tag lines. You like me have read everything there is to know concerning how to hook the reader. But sometimes we all need reminders. Tag lines are important for our blogs, books and emails.

Tag lines, and first lines matter. Hell, firsts of everything matter. Think of all the firsts your and the weight of importance they held your life. Your first love, kiss, date, dance, job, sex, car, roller coaster, high dive, beer, well you get the idea.

Firsts are important and my ah-ha moment came in realizing that first encounters with my readers must, be a good first for them. No make that a great first for them. Not sure my writing can compete with sex and beer, but I’m gonna try to step up my game and keep the thrill alive. I can’t think of anything scarier than putting myself out there to publish or perish. Yikes!

Here are some links to a few tips I opened. Enjoy, I did.

Choose Wise Guides

Put Passion in Your Writing 

Danger of Premature Editing

Just the Right Word

Use a Magazine to Improve

Should You Enter Contests?

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Getting Creative

Summer is almost over but you’d never know it here in Texas. The heat is still in the triple digits and I have the summer blues. My brain feels like it’s been cooked and turned to molasses. I must not be alone. Seems as if every other email today was regarding a must read book on how to get back to your writing muse. Well I’ve too many books, too little time now and did I mention it’s too damn hot.

Me, I’m all into short cuts. Easier the better. Now don’t go writing to me how nothing worthwhile in life is easy… Did I mention how hot it is here in Dallas?

Now where was I? Oh yeah. While I was reading yet another email, about another great book, I wondered if there might be an easier way to achieve the same results. Oh dear me, see my mind is mush. That was a terrible sentence. Anyway… the book this blogger ask me to consider was a book of prompts. So as my daughter is so fond of saying, I Googled it. And voila! I found quite a few.

But I’m not going to bombard you with them, it’s too damn hot. Here are a couple I liked and I found to be fun. Check them out. Creativity Games.net http://creativitygames.net/creative-writing-prompts, or http://stiobhard.tripod.com/html/javascript/words/writing_prompt_generator.html. Of course you could just Google Writing Prompt Generator and find a different one to your liking.

Here is the four word prompt I used from Creativity Games.net and the results. Have fun and find your Muse.

  • barrel
  • pyjamas
  • clown
  • decay

I slipped a coat on over my pyjamas and went outside. Some clown had left the barn door open. At the opening I wrinkled my nose at the stench of decay. No one had mucked the stalls in days. The smell grew worse as I neared a large barrel at the back of the barn.

Do it For Pleasure

My novel stalled over the summer, but then I remembered why I’d started this book. It began as a project for my granddaughters. A recent conversation with one of them prompted me to get off my procrastinating duff and get busy. I’d allowed myself to be sidelined by many of the blogs and self-help articles on how to write, sell and publish.

 My Inbox filled to overflowing, reading one after another, soon I’m sucked in, and the day is gone. Now don’t get me wrong, nine out of ten are terrific and worth reading if that’s how I wished to spend my time, but I’ve got a novel to write.
Since that day things have been progressing much better. I’m still not moving at lightening speed but after the holidays, I plan on no excuses.
After the events in Connecticut yesterday, I’m reminded once more how precious time is and if I’m to finish my novel before my grandkids have kids of their own, I will keep my goal in sight. So, I’ll do my best to remember the only accolades I want or need for this book are the ones coming from five adoring fans who think I’m great no matter how many copies I’ll sell. They are my target audience.
Should anyone else enjoy the words I put between the first page and last, well that’ll be icing on the cake. Now I’ve some writing to do for the love of some young readers and the pure pleasure of writing.
Stay motivated.
          Jean
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