Monthly Archives: September 2008

From the chaise: A few cool sites

I made it out to an old timey crafts fair in nearby Greenbrier today but otherwise I have spent the rest of it on my favorite chaise, pumping myself full of honey, vitamin C (6,000 mg and counting) and Ricola 9 (ya gotta click on this just to hear the Swiss guy yodel it)and trying not to get the cold that is coming on and that has been haunting my workplace for weeks.

Just a few new sites I’ve discovered:

www.Authonomy.com

Out of Harper Collins, London, in an effort to sideswipe the slush pile, authors can upload their work to be voted on by readers and advanced to a real editor’s desk. Pretty cool stuff.

www.urbanfonts.com

No doubt Monda has known about this for years but I only just discovered it. Tons of free cool fonts. Give it a try.

Mslexia
The website of the British magazine for women who write. Why doesn’t the US have one of these, I ask you? Those Brits thinking of everything, including:

www.literaturetraining.comThe first stop shop for writers and all those involved in creating or supporting new writing and literature in the UK and a great place for US writers to muck about as well. My favorite part of the site is here look around and click on the guide on the bottom of the right side of the page for a nifty guide you can do to look at where you are and where you want to be. The website is a lot more formal than it looks, the guide is all emoto-feely a’la Julia Cameron and Carol Loyd and is worth a look. I might download it for some of my upper level students.

I recently learned that there is actually a reason why weather is worse on the weekend, something about all those factories and cars puffing pollutants into the air Monday through Friday that mess with the atmosphere and Mother Nature. What I want to know is why I always get sick on the weekends and vacations.

Bye y’all.
SV

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Knowing Pains: Women Writers Unite for Breast Cancer

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I am privileged to be part of Knowing Pains: Women on Love, Sex and Work in our 40’s an anthology edited by Molly Rosen that debuted this weekend at a launch party at Cafe Cacao in Berkeley, CA. The great thing about it is that all of the writers who contributed, 32 total, gave up all fees and royalties so that 100% of the book’s profits will go to breast cancer research!

As the story goes, editor Molly Rosen was entering into her forties and, like most literary women do, casting about for some sort of books that might guide her way, essays and nonfiction about the experience. Only she couldn’t find any–because no books had been published on the subject. Go-getter that she is, she knew the only way to remedy that situation was to put together her own anthology. So she did.

Click on the title above to check out the website for this great book, including quotes from several of the essays. My essay is titled “The Imaginary Nursery,” and deals with the forties as a time when, for many of us, our baby rearing days are disappearing in the rear view mirror. It’s hard to say goodbye–but don’t worry, it’s not a sad piece, bittersweet maybe, but not sad. You can also order the book at the site, as well as on Amazon (where it’s number one in the breast cancer subcategory) Barnes and Noble and most online sites.

Few of us have not been affected by breast cancer. My aunt died of it, my mother-in-law is a survivor. This is a great way to raise money for the cause and enjoy some reading pleasure at the same time.

Bye y’all,
SV
PS Apologies for intermittent posting; I can no longer post from my computer at work which is hitching my getalong a bit. I just have to figure out a new schedule and I’ll be back in business.

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And another great thing about. . .

The tiny acer aspire. . .after herding the kids, the husband and the cats into the bathroom, during a tornado warning I can grab the Acer, fully charged for 2 hours, and sit on the toilet obsessing over the radar at KARK.com until the warning expires.

Here’s hoping the rest of Ike turns out to be just rain, rain, rain.  But I can’t complain, really.  We have family in Houston we’re waiting to hear from.

Bye y’all.

SV

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More Websites to Check out!

I’m still catching up from the whirlwind Pennsylvania wedding tour, wherein we fly out in Hurricane Gustav, experience Tropical Storm Hanna in all our wedding finery but without an umbrella (hey, the bride had one and she looked stunning, which is of course, all that matters) and then fly home in blissfully clear skies. But I digress. . .until I get my act together and recover my middle-aged-self from all the festivities, here are some great new links that writers or anyone with writerly inclinations should check out:

Luminotes
A place to store all your writing bits-n-bobs digitally–can it get better than this! Check it out.

50 Great Websites for Writers
Some old standbys, some new sites–another link worth investigating.

Click away!
Bye y’all
SV
PS I’d fix the italics problem, but I’m too tired. Sorry.

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A couple of tips and then some

A nod to Amy and her online magazine Inspired Ideas as well as her blog, InspireCo.. She’s on my blogroll, but clicking here will bring you to instructions on making altered composition books (heads up, Monda!). Amy’s blog is truly one of my fav’s; I get a little rush anytime my bloglines feed show there’s a new post.

Another tip, this time for writers: check out Writer’s Weekly–looks like a great source of info for freelancers and the like. I just subscribed to their email newsletter.

Stopped at a yard sale on impulse while erranding on Saturday and came home with a 1954 Necchi sewing machine that I am assured, as the seller was a woman from my church, still works beautifully and was her mother’s. I took the risk because I’d heard that Italian sewing machines last forever. It came in a beautiful blond wood cabinet that looks like an end table when not in use and the best part, was only $15 (down from $25–never underestimate church connections). Now if I can just learn how to sew again, which I have not done since I was 15. All I want to be able to do is straight seams for crafts and such–nothing too complicated. Here’s a picture of a similar machine on ebay.

It’s been a busy weekend. We’re heading to Pennsylvania on Wednesday for a family wedding–any prayers for enough of a break from Gustav rain to get out of the Little Rock Airport at 6 am Wednesday, would be welcomed. Flying in torrential rain and who knows what else. Whee. Can’t wait.

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