Browse Tag

writing

Launching A New Editing Course!

It’s here!

Content Editing With Netta

Everything you wanted to know about content editing but were afraid to ask!

This e-course is designed to help you, the writer, take your manuscript to the next level by evaluating all the moving parts. Not only will this save you money when hiring a professional editor, it will also teach you how to be a better writer.

Use the link above and receive 15% off the course! 

Three free lessons before you decide to buy!

Sign up for my newsletter and receive 25% off!

time to up your game (2)

Click here to enroll with a 15% discount!

Let’s get started! And someone take these exclamation points away from me before I put out an eyeball!

 

🙂

 

Content Editing With Netta

Yes! Finally!

After months of work, my editing course is now at the final stages and just about ready to be released. I’M SO EXCITED.

Creativity

And let me tell, you creating this course was a lot of fun. It was also brain burning and a labor of love, but what’s fun without a little brain on fire? Heh.

The course, titled CONTENT EDITING WITH NETTA, will be available to the public on Friday, May 29th. But, for newsletter subscribers, tomorrow you will receive a newsletter with all the particulars and a promo code for big savings.

If you’re not a subscriber, why not sign up now? Trust me, I don’t spam and I would never release your email to anyone else. That’s rude.

In the meantime, I’m giving everything a last minute spit and polish. (Not real spit. That’s gross.)

Sign up! Get the scoop! Pass the rum!

🙂

New Editing Course Coming Soon!

Yes, it’s been a while since I’ve blogged. I think I might have run into blogging burnout in addition to being so busy I just haven’t had time. You know how it is.

But with a new year comes new ideas and new opportunities. Warning: BRAIN ON FIRE!

Not my actual brain. Photo courtesy of Morguefile.com
Not my actual brain. Photo courtesy of Morguefile.com

A couple of years ago I presented an editing workshop to some lovely people on Prince Edward Island, Canada. What a magical place! It absolutely oozes creativity, and if you ever get the chance, I highly recommend you visit.

The workshop was well-received, and I thought about really beefing it up and creating an online course for those who don’t live on PEI and might be interested. Well, it took me long enough, but I am hard at work doing just that.

I’m still in the beginning stages, but it looks like in a month or less I’ll have it completed. WOOHOO! That’s a huge thing off my To-Do list, and I’m excited about it!

The course covers self-editing and will take your manuscript from flat to fabulous. It covers everything from plot to passive prose, complete with worksheets and resources. Whether your piece is a novel, novella, or short story, you will find many helpful tips to take your story to the next level.

This doesn’t take the place of a professional edit, but it does get your manuscript into good shape before sending it to a pro. This course is designed to help you become a better writer and to help you save money when hiring an editor.

Keep your eyeballs peeled! I’m going to need Beta testers soon, and if you’re interested, sign up for my newsletter at the top of the page to receive updates as soon as they happen. You don’t want to miss this!

white-pen (2)

What’s Going On

Well, you know. The usual. Busy is BUSY, but that’s nothing unusual for not only me, but most everyone I know. And while busy is good, it can also be frazzling sometimes. Especially when you share space with a judgmental and obnoxious cat who is all up in your business 24/7. Not mentioning any names.

The bitchiest cat face on the planet. Judging. Always judging.

I’m not the most dedicated of bloggers on the planet, that’s for sure. And when I do decide to post, I have ten million ideas but when I open up a blank document, do you think I can find a brain cell? Hell, no. They scatter like rats deserting the Black Pearl sucked into a black, watery vortex. Please tell me I’m not the only one.

Since I’ve wanted to impart some editing tips and tricks for the longest time, I figured the easiest way was to create a monthly newsletter. You can sign up at the top of this page–and it will be information you won’t see posted on the blog. I’ll also include a shout-out to the writers I know who are releasing some outstanding work.

The first newsletter launched January 31st, and included five important editing tips when starting the editing process. On February 28th, the newsletter will continue on this editing journey with what you should look for in your First Read. Tell you what–sign up today and I’ll make sure you get the first five tips, too.

Now to get this feline out of my face so I can work. Wish me luck. Heh.

MeiLin Miranda Reads VISTA BRIDGE At ComicCon!

Yes! It’s true! Here’s our own MeiLin Miranda reading her story based on the Wheel of Fortune card from Allegories of the Tarot

at ComicCon:

What a fabulous job

Two quick things: If you purchase the paperback copy of Allegories you get the KINDLE version FOR FREE. Yes. You do.

AND…the first monthly Word Webber newsletter will be coming out January 31st. Sign up now so you don’t miss anything! Like new releases, some editing tips, and a SPECIAL SURPRISE. Heh.

Go on, now. Go kick Monday in the taco!

 

DON’T GIVE AN UGLY SWEATER! GIFT CERTIFICATES NOW AVAILABLE!

WOW. November was one busy month and it FLEW. Once ALLEGORIES OF THE TAROT released it was one huge blur until the end of the amazing blog tour sponsored by Badass Marketing. And let me tell you, it was BADASS. The contest was a resounding success, and the winners announced here and will be contacted later today with their prizes or arrangements to deliver their prizes.

I have nothing but wonderful things to say about Badass Marketing. They were on top of EVERYTHING which relieved a huge amount of pressure from me. Organized, accessible, friendly, and tons of fun. If you’re looking for a marketing ninja, I can’t recommend this company highly enough.

Allegories of the Tarot was a special project straight from my heart. I wrote about what it meant to me here. It really was one of the best experiences of my life, and I’m thrilled with its reception, although I’m feeling the sadz that’s it’s all over. I loved every minute of putting this together, and I had the best team in the history of teams. Make sure to look up the authors included in this volume of outstanding talent–you will not be disappointed.

Please leave a review if you’ve read Allegories–I’d love to hear your opinion. Reviews and word of mouth is so important to indies, and we appreciate every single review, no matter your opinion. And remember, if you buy the print version, you’ll get the Kindle version for free. A great Christmas present!

***

Speaking of great Christmas presents, it can be quite a conundrum to decide what to give to the writer in your life. I can help you with that. This year, for the first time, I am offering a limited number of gift certificates for editing services.

Manuscript Evaluation: An overall manuscript evaluation is available. A manuscript evaluation includes an assessment of the overall plot, story arc, characterization, and story flow. It does not include line edits, copy edits, or in-line comments. A complete document will be provided with an honest opinion of strengths and weaknesses and where improvements can be made, up to a 50k word count. Additional charges will be assessed for longer material. Normally, this service runs for $250, but for the holiday season only the purchase price is $199. You will be provided with a printable gift certificate to present to your beloved writer.

Three Chapter Evaluation: A three-chapter evaluation includes suggestions on improving the opening chapters to draw in the reader, establishment of character and inciting incident. It does not include line edits, copy edits, or in-line comments. A complete document will be provided with an honest opinion of strengths, weaknesses, and where improvements can be made. For the holiday season, this service is only $50. This also comes with a printable gift certificate to slip into your favorite writer’s stocking.
Both services are in limited number, so get ‘em while you can!
Contact me at annetta(dot)ribken(at)gmail.com for more information and details.
And finally, I just want to remind you that you can keep up with the new releases on my Editing Work page. I try to keep it updated, but if you want great reading, that’s the place to find it.
In the meantime, thanks to everyone for all their support for ALLEGORIES. Go forth and READ ALL THE WORDS!

FEATURING AUTHOR TIMOTHY BRYANT SMITH AND A GIVEAWAY!

allegoriesblogtourbannerGet to know Timothy Bryant Smith, one of the 22 contributors to the recently-released Allegories of the Tarot Anthology (which is already trailblazing its way up the fantasy anthology charts on Amazon!). Timothy wrote his tale, Transformation, based on the Death card.

Get the Allegories of the Tarot Anthology in on AmazonSmashwords,Kobo, and everywhere else e-books are sold. Add the Allegories of the Tarot Anthology to your Goodreads to-read shelf!

About Timothy

timothy-smithTimothy Smith lives in North Carolina where he and his wife split their time between running their restaurant, indulging in creative projects, and spending time with their two dogs. A lifelong student of symbolism and creative expression, Timothy has always enjoyed exploring the eclectic myths and archetypal characters of various religions and their respective cultures throughout history. Inspired in his youth by the insights of Jung, Campbell, and other authors who defined the field of comparative mythologies and their impact on culture and the human condition, Timothy has studied and practiced various systems of divination since his childhood.

This is Timothy’s first contribution to an anthology, but hopefully not his last.

Just a few questions…

What intrigues you about this particular Tarot card? Aside from the Lovers card, the Death card is (perhaps) one of the most frequently misinterpreted cards in the deck. Death, as an inevitability of living, is such a taboo subject to begin with. The Death card invokes such vivid imagery, sadly, it only serves to confound the neophyte interpreter into thinking an issue of mortality must be at hand. The involuntarily and reflexively dire associations that come with drawing the Death card are, unavoidably, a manifestation and expression of the individual’s fear of dying—as if drawing this card is some sort of harbinger of physical death. This, of course, is completely inaccurate and a repeatedly misused portend of what this card is actually meant to represent. The specter of the Death card (as a harbinger the physical event) is often abused in movies, television, and pop culture. Just as the Lovers card is often falsely portrayed as the dealing with sex, or the Devil card having something to do with the ultimate personification of evil, these types of cursory interpretations have always frustrated me when I see them. The Death card offers a sacred knowledge so very much more profound than what pop culture has attempted to paint it as meaning.

Why did you decide to get roped into this project? I have repeatedly broken a promise to my special friend Annetta Ribken to write something worthy of publishing. This might be my chance to make good on that promise.

Have you ever had dealings with the Tarot before? Yes. I was that weird little kid who had a deck of Tarot cards hidden under his bed instead of Playboy magazines (ok… I had a few of those as well). Divination has fascinated me my entire life and continues to fascinate me to this day. It has always provided me with a special counsel; a conduit of imagery, metaphor, and allusion which allows me to transmogrify unconscious desire into lucid intent.

What other projects do you have planned? I have often wanted to create an in-depth compendium of divination, its systems and the cultures from which they originate, and an interactive experience by which people could learn what real divination can be and mean to the journey we must all go through. Maybe even help reclaim it from the ridicule both science and religion have heaped upon it (having never actually studied it or simply fearing it, respectively). Divination provides an answer that both science and religion have, to date, failed to provide. This project, sadly, remains an infrequently visited folder on the desktop of my life.

How did you decide what to write about? When Annetta asked me to write one of the stories (I was a bit late to the selection of cards) nearly all of them had been picked by other writers.  I was both pleasantly surprised and a bit perplexed the Death card had not yet been picked.  It was one of maybe three or four left to choose from, so I grabbed it as soon as I saw it was available.

I toyed around with writing the story of the Death card as a metanarrative—the personification of Death expressing a narrative about the various takes and misconceptions of what Death is, how it’s perceived, and what it has come to mean to the cultures who fear, avoid, embrace, and worship it.  Sort of a 3000-word Facebook rant by the Grim Reaper as if It had a few minutes of humanity’s time to set them straight on a few things.  I just couldn’t get it right.  The first few drafts sounded too absolutist and didn’t leave much to the questions a reader’s imagination might have—as most metanarratives are wont to do.  I realized it lacked compassion and the ability of the readers to sympathize or immerse themselves in what was being said.  There wasn’t any real plot device or thematic vehicle to what I was writing.  So I choose instead to go back and explore a more approachable story with characters, settings, and dialogue about an event in a young woman’s life that I felt we could all relate to some degree while still getting across the idea that Death isn’t about dying, it’s about transforming in order to continue existing.

How literal did you want to get with your card? That’s problematic with the Death card, as the Death card is not meant to be taken literally.  I really wanted people to see Death the way the Tarot intends for it to be seen and understood—as a transformation from one state to another; a passageway through the cycle or circumstance of existence.  Humanity sees Death as an end of the body, something to be mourned, avoided, feared.  The Tarot intends for the Death card to be seen as a willing rite of passage the soul must make on its way back to the Source.

Is your story a part of something you’ve written about previously? Only in my story’s setting.  I am still developing a novel that is based, at least in part, in Knoxville, Tennessee the same as my allegories story.  I have no idea why this story took me there, it just happened.  I should really go there sometime, I suppose.

Would you like to have written about any other card?  Which card?  Why? I would have loved to write about any (or all) of the other cards.  Fortunately, Annetta has some amazing authors who beat me to it.  This is a really special collection of stories written by some really talented writers.

If you could have the power to divine the future, would you or would you not and why? I believe we all have this ability as long as the information is put into the correct context.  Divination, in my experience, is not really about predicting the future, it’s about becoming conscious of the present, making a choice, and having some insight as to where that choice might take you.  The deepest, powerful, and most lucid moments of personal transformation lies in being honest and aware about where you’re coming from, where you are now, what is influencing you, where your path will lead, and the new situation which will likely unfold from that awareness.  This is not magic or divination per se, rather a basic ritual of self-awareness.

The Tarot cards are tools in the guise of symbols.  Each encapsulates an archetypal area of self-awareness.  Ultimately, though, the hammer, screwdriver, saw blade, and measuring tape are useless in building the abode of Self unless you take the time to understand and accept their appropriate usage and technique.  Or perhaps one could think of the Tarot cards as just one set of musical instruments one might play in orchestrating the symphony of the soul.  These symbols/tools/instruments are just “allegories” of Self and what an honor it has been getting to tell the story of at least one of them!

About Allegories of the Tarot

allegoriestarotcoverOnce upon a time, there was an editor with a fascination for the Tarot. She was struck one day by a crazy idea. “Hey,” she said. “What if twenty-two writers each wrote a story about the twenty-two cards of the Major Arcana of the Tarot and were fashioned into an anthology?”

The idea would not leave her alone.

And thus, the Allegories of the Tarot was born.

Crowdfunded by a campaign on Indiegogo with the help and support of an amazing group of writers, twenty-two stories were crafted around the mysteries of the Tarot. The group includes a Pushcart Prize nominee, a Pulp Ark nominee, a former Bigfoot researcher, a journalist, an award-winning YA author, and a Rhysling Award winner. Professional writers, new talent, and a range of genres boggling the mind: Horror, Speculative Fiction, Bizarro Fiction, Erotica, Mystery, Humor, Paranormal, Epic Fantasy, Literary, Romance, and Historical Fantasy.

What has emerged is an outstanding collection of fiction, unique and mysterious. Stories that will make you cry, make you laugh, and make you think. Stories that make you feel the touch of the Universe.

Dare to step through the portal to shadowy realms and emotional journeys.

Get the book!

Allegories of the Tarot is available in e-book and paperback format on AmazonKobo, and in multiple e-book formats on Smashwords.

Don’t forget to add Allegories of the Tarot to your to-read shelf on Goodreads.

Connect with the Allegories of the Tarot Anthology on its websiteFacebook, and Twitter.

 

LON PRATER-THE MAGICIAN INTERVIEW AND GIVEAWAY

allegoriesblogtourbanner

Get to know Lon Prater, one of the 22 contributors to the recently-released Allegories of the Tarot Anthology (which is already trailblazing its way up the fantasy anthology charts on Amazon!). Lon wrote his tale, The Intern’s Story, based on The Magician card. You can read an excerpt of his story below. 

Get the Allegories of the Tarot Anthology in on AmazonSmashwords,Kobo, and everywhere else e-books are sold. Add the Allegories of the Tarot Anthology to your Goodreads to-read shelf!

About Lon

lon-praterLon Prater has worked in the Reactor Compartments of USS Enterprise, edited the military’s textbook on arms deals, and kept things safe in the produce and laundry industries. He lives, writes, and plays a lot of board games in Pensacola, Florida. Visit lonprater.com to find out more.

Just a few questions…

What intrigues you about this particular Tarot card? I like the idea of transformative knowledge. That having gone through certain stages, the Magician has learned a thing or two about both the divine and the mundane, and he’s been changed by it. Empowered by knowledge, the Magician is equipped to deal with what comes next.

Why did you decide to get roped into this project?  Annetta and I used to be part of a smallish online writers group. I know her talent, her obsession with quality, and her drive. There is no way I would pass up the chance to be a part of a project she believes so strongly in.

Have you ever had dealings with the Tarot before? I have had rune readings done several times by a skilled friend, but I am foggy on whether I’ve had any honest-to-gosh Tarot readings.

What other projects do you have planned? A novel I co-wrote with Josh Rountree, ALAMO RISING, is due to debut at Worldcon San Antonio this year. Having a lot of fun with promotional plans that I’ll be able to talk more about later in the year.

How did you decide what to write about? As I considered the list of cards which were still available, and reviewed their meanings, I got a flash of insight about a story I had been working on a few weeks earlier. The story didn’t work for me at the time because I didn’t know what it was about. But seeing The Magician’s element of connecting the spiritual and material worlds in order to create a new life, I instantly realized what my story was really about, and then set to redrafting it.

How literal did you want to get with your card? I didn’t really want to go for literal. The card itself is a metaphor, and taking metaphor too literally seems to cause enough problems in the world as it is, without me adding to it.

Is your story a part of something you’ve written about previously? I have actually written one other story about photographing fairies, a long time past. It wasn’t very good and I should never have let the publisher have it, but I was desperate for the feeling of having sold a story, so… Now the little zine it appeared in is long-defunct, and that story will never ever (ever ever) see the light of day again.

Would you like to have written about any other card? Which card? Why? No. Once I read the descriptions of the Magician and had that flash of insight about “The Intern’s Story” there was no chance of wanting to go with another card. It was a tense little wait when I requested it from Annetta, hoping no one else had beat me to it!

If you could have the power to divine the future, would you or would you not and why? I would love to. But with my luck it would be some terribly limited and useless divination, like I’d only be able to tell whether Hart of Dixie would get better again, or how long before men wearing jeggings becomes a capital offense.

An excerpt from The Intern’s Story

Hansom Haddix nudged the antique pickup’s three-on-the-tree column shifter back into third. The transmission shrieked like a circular saw cutting through knotty wood. The big truck shuddered, but somehow kept right on zooming down the red clay Georgia road. We were on a mission, the infamous white-haired photographer and I.

I just didn’t know what it was.

Read the rest of The Intern’s Story in the Allegories of the Tarot Anthology!

About Allegories of the Tarot

allegoriestarotcoverOnce upon a time, there was an editor with a fascination for the Tarot. She was struck one day by a crazy idea. “Hey,” she said. “What if twenty-two writers each wrote a story about the twenty-two cards of the Major Arcana of the Tarot and were fashioned into an anthology?”

The idea would not leave her alone.

And thus, the Allegories of the Tarot was born.

Crowdfunded by a campaign on Indiegogo with the help and support of an amazing group of writers, twenty-two stories were crafted around the mysteries of the Tarot. The group includes a Pushcart Prize nominee, a Pulp Ark nominee, a former Bigfoot researcher, a journalist, an award-winning YA author, and a Rhysling Award winner. Professional writers, new talent, and a range of genres boggling the mind: Horror, Speculative Fiction, Bizarro Fiction, Erotica, Mystery, Humor, Paranormal, Epic Fantasy, Literary, Romance, and Historical Fantasy.

What has emerged is an outstanding collection of fiction, unique and mysterious. Stories that will make you cry, make you laugh, and make you think. Stories that make you feel the touch of the Universe.

Dare to step through the portal to shadowy realms and emotional journeys.

Get the book!

Allegories of the Tarot is available in e-book and paperback format on AmazonKobo, and in multiple e-book formats on Smashwords.

Don’t forget to add Allegories of the Tarot to your to-read shelf on Goodreads.

Connect with the Allegories of the Tarot Anthology on its websiteFacebook, and Twitter.

 

RELEASING TODAY: THE ALLEGORIES OF THE TAROT ANTHOLOGY!

allegoriesblogtourbannerGet the Allegories of the Tarot Anthology in on Amazon and Smashwords.
Add the Allegories of the Tarot Anthology to your Goodreads to-read shelf!

Swing by the Allegories of the Tarot Facebook page and enter the release-day giveaway of a custom Tarot box–complete with Tarot deck!

allegoriestarotcover(1)Who hasn’t been fascinated by the mysterious Tarot, writer and reader alike? For centuries, fortune-telling by the Tarot has caught many an imagination, but nothing like what will be presented here.

22 cards… each an individual splinter of the human psyche.

22 writers… honing each splinter into a story of triumph and decay, arrogance and humility.

Stories of the brightest lights and the darkest corners of the weirdest minds.

22 cross-genre worlds.

22 portals into the Universal.

Only one way to get there.

Come with us. Cross the portals. The Universal awaits.

About the book

Once upon a time, there was an editor with a fascination for the Tarot. She was struck one day by a crazy idea. “Hey,” she said. “What if twenty-two writers each wrote a story about the twenty-two cards of the Major Arcana of the Tarot and these stories were fashioned into an anthology?”

The idea would not leave her alone.

And thus, the Allegories of the Tarot was born.

Crowdfunded by a campaign on Indiegogo with the help and support of an amazing group of writers, twenty-two stories were crafted around the mysteries of the Tarot. The group includes a Pushcart Prize nominee, a Pulp Ark nominee, a former Bigfoot researcher, a journalist, an award-winning YA author, and a Rhysling Award winner. Professional writers, new talent, and a range of genres boggling the mind: Horror, Speculative Fiction, Bizarro Fiction, Erotica, Mystery, Humor, Paranormal, Epic Fantasy, Literary, Romance, and Historical Fantasy.

What has emerged is an outstanding collection of fiction, unique and mysterious. Stories that will make you cry, make you laugh, and make you think. Stories that make you feel the touch of the Universe.

Dare to step through the portal to shadowy realms and emotional journeys.

Early readers have fallen in love with the Allegories of the Tarot

“Allegories of the Tarot Anthology is a magical book. Magic that will keep you turning the pages. There are muses, demons,  psychics, evil,and more! I shivered, I laughed and I even cried. Magic, I tell you. Magic.“-Julie Affleck

“Reviewing an anthology is slightly more difficult than discussing a book or comic because the tone varies from author to author. However, Allegories somehow flowed together as a well-matched whole. The project ended up feeling like several beads strung together to form a beautiful necklace that were more amazing for being paired together.” -Jodi Scaife

“All twenty-two stories in this volume are, in a word, superb. I found myself scouring the Internet as I read it; every story made me want to go find more work by its author. The ultimate compliment I can give Allegories is to say that when I finished it, I thought how I envy those who haven’t read it yet.” -Lisa Millraney

Get the book!

Allegories of the Tarot is available in e-book and paperback format on Amazon, and in multiple e-book formats on Smashwords. Buy the print version on Amazon and get the e-version for FREE!

Don’t forget to add Allegories of the Tarot to your to-read shelf on Goodreads.

Connect with the Allegories of the Tarot Anthology on its websiteFacebook, and Twitter.

WHAT’S KEEPING ME BUSY

Where to start? I feel like I’m stuffing my double-digit body in a size two pair of spandex shorts. There’s stuff bubbling out everywhere.

You’re welcome for the image. Heh.

1. WORK. Lots and lots of work. I knew September would be busy, but I didn’t figure on being this busy. I’m not complaining because I love my job, but holy batballs. October is beginning to look mighty busy as well, so the keyword here is PACING.Note to self: Purchasing additional day planners or calendars does NOT add days to the month.

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This is a bat. I have no idea if it has balls or not, and I’m not close enough to find out.

2. We are fast approaching the final stages of ALLEGORIES OF THE TAROT and I am beside myself with JOY. This project has been a dream come true, and to finally see it come to fruition is nothing short of amazing. As we gear up, plans are underway for prizes, surprises, and much merriment. If you’re interested in joining in the fun, Badass Marketing is looking for participants in a month-long blog tour. You can sign up HERE. Come and cavort with us!

3. In more ALLEGORIES news, we are THRILLED to announce a story from the awesome MeiLin Miranda will appear. I’m so stoked this worked out! It means all the pieces are in place and I have my “A” team. COLOR ME HAPPY!

4. Something that helps me keep less busy is a website I found some time ago. I fell in love with it as soon as I saw it, because I realized immediately how valuable it was. It’sAbout Me, and if you don’t have a presence there yet, I highly recommend you get your hiney over there and take ten precious minutes to set it up. The interface is easy-peasy to navigate, and once you set it, you can forget it. It updates changes immediately; lists all your pertinent links where people can find you, and provides a peek into your personality. I love it because it is easy, it’s another way to network, and you can include the link anywhere without having to dig for all your links when needed. It’s like a business card for the Interwebz, and best of all…IT COSTS NOTHING.

You’re welcome. Feel free to hook up with me there.

5. New fiction: yeah, yeah. Both CHAINS and the next adventure of Sally Mae are at the halfway point, and I’m also working on a new project which may or may not fly. What can I say? There are only so many hours in the day.

On that note, I have to bounce, because daylight’s burning and I gots stuff to do.

Tell me what kind of trouble you’re stirring up!

<3