I’ve been having a great time on the beach retreat! I really HAVE been working. A LOT. So not many photos, but here are a few.
The holidays are around the corner—and I’m posting this now so that, if you’ve got a writer in your life and you choose some of the more time-consuming or ordered gifts on this list, you’ve got time to make or get them before the days arrive.
As a writer, I get showered with lots of wonderful gifts related to my profession. There are always the obvious choices: journals, mugs, pens. If you don’t want to give your friend another journal, mug, or pen? Here are some Read the rest of this entry
A very happy Halloween from our house to yours!
Nathan (my husband) bought me this costume last year, but my day job office was in the middle of moving, so I never got the opportunity to wear it. Better late than never!
If you’ve not chosen your diet-busting treat, I recommend these!
If you’ve not chosen a spooky read, I recommend anything by Poe—but how about something uncommon, like “The Oval Portrait,” which you can find online here: http://xroads.virginia.edu/~Hyper/POE/oval.html
Too excited and need to have a little fun? Here’s the link to the Google Doodle’s Magic Cat Academy from Halloween 2016: https://www.google.com/doodles/halloween-2016
…and here’s the link to Google Doodle’s The Great Ghoul Dual Halloween Game, which they brought back from 2018 for 2022!: https://www.google.com/?gws_rd=ssl
And if you’ve not chosen your scary watch, I recommend episode #8 of del Toro’s Cabinet of Curiosities series, “The Murmuring,” which is a classic ghost story that’s the most unique I’ve seen in a while. That’s on Netflix right now. Don’t have Netflix? Rent yourself The Woman in Black.
My newest short story, “What the Ocean Knows,” has been accepted for publication in Sirens Call eZine Issue 60, Winter 2022! In “What the Ocean Knows”: A grieving Mavis finds comfort in afternoons spent talking to the sea… until the day the sea talks back.
This is a free online ’zine that has loads of good fiction, so I’ll let you know when it’s released and you can download your copy.
In addition, my microfiction, “Sea Legs,” was one of thirteen winners in the 2022 H.P. Lovecraft Film Festival and Cthuluthon Microfiction Contest, and will be published in Lovecraftian Microfiction Volume 8!
In “Sea Legs”: On a North Sea island, Read the rest of this entry
If you love true ghost stories, then Timber Ghost Press’ Out of Time: True Paranormal Encounters is the anthology you want to unwrap every night along with your favorite full-sized Halloween treat! (And if you DO purchase this book, drop me a line through my Contact page or other means. I have a special goody for you!)
My piece, “Floor Song Tango,” opens the collection, and is about the house I grew up in. Outsiders didn’t know what was going on—mostly because our parents had completely brainwashed us into thinking our experiences were products of our imagination (for the record, I think it was brilliant that they did that. I, for one, never would’ve slept. I’m forever grateful). I’m sure they’d even convinced themselves. That said, when it came time to dump the place after Dad’s passing, things ramped up.
While finally coming clean in “Floor Song Tango” relieved me Read the rest of this entry
We had some pretty crazy rain storms out here on the Cape last night, and afterward, there was a rainbow and an amazing sky. My friend and fellow writer Angi and I went up on the roof deck to get a better look, and before our eyes, the rainbow got darker, full-arched, and became a double. I felt the promise of something new and awesome coming into my life!
Later on, in celebration of Angi finishing her novel, we went for a night walk on the beach.
Last night was the night I spend every Cape Cod Writer’s Retreat waiting for: special and magical. There’s always one, and this time, last night was it.
I leave Friday for the annual writer’s retreat at the beach house in Cape Cod with five other talented writers, and I couldn’t be more excited! I’ll be there until 9/23.
While last year was incredible, I have to admit that the focus was mostly on my enjoyment of the great outdoors and getting some rest and social time. This year? The focus will be completely different. I have tons of stuff to catch up on: the Wicked Sick anthology, outstanding 34 Orchard business, website/blog/general writing practical-end catch-up, blog posts, the NEHW classes I’ll be teaching, Bad Apple’s 10th anniversary release, some reading… and some writing. Maybe. My list is pages long. Way more than I can get done in eight days. But I’m going to do my best!
And, with any luck, the weather will be such that I can get some daily beach time in.
Have a great week!
Back to class! I’m thrilled to announce Trisha J. Wooldridge and I will be hosting an online Master Toolbox Series for writers that micro-focuses on specific skills. There’s one session a month and, at $35/each, they’re affordable; you can take just one, multiples, or, if you wish, all of them at a discounted price. They’re also keyed to any skill level. Proceeds support both the New England Horror Writers and 34 Orchard. Details and how to register below.
Tools of the writing trade need a sharpen? Need to pick up some new ones? No worries! Beginning in September, 2022 and monthly through February, 2023, the New England Horror Writers will present two hour Zoom webinars (which will include exercises and time for Q&A) that delve deep into the specifics of craft and business skills!
Open to the general public and NEHW members, each class will focus on a specific topic. Instructors are Kristi Petersen Schoonover and Trisha J. Wooldridge.
If you’re looking to build some new skills, these micro-focused, affordable classes are the way to go—and yes, we have plans to offer subsequent sessions with different topics every fall-winter going forward!
Here’s the full schedule:
Wednesday, September 28, 2022 – 7—9 pm
Story Openings Blueprint
We’ve only got one sentence to hammer that “you must keep reading me!” message home—and many writers don’t realize that sometimes, a piece getting moved out of slush is dependent on the strength of that one sentence. From do’s and don’ts to mining and can’t-miss criteria, this class gives the blueprint for great openers.
Wednesday, October 12, 2022 – 7—9 pm
Excess Hardware: Wordiness and Filter Phrases
We build stories from words and phrases—but sometimes we use more hardware than necessary to get the job done! This course teaches how to thoroughly inspect the piece to identify extra words and filter phrases and how to remove them for a cleaner reading experience.
Wednesday, November 16, 2022 – 7—9 pm
EnTITLEment: Top-Notch Titles
A title isn’t just a label in My Documents. A good one should tell the editor or reader something about the story—right down to its tone. EnTITLEment provides the tools to nail a top-notch title every time, so that it not only stands out in an editor’s inbox—it pops in a ToC!
Wednesday, December 14 – 7—9pm
The Architecture of the Submissions Process
There’s more to the submissions process than just clicking send. We’ll offer plenty of insider tips on everything from formatting, market searching and close reading of guidelines to cover letters and bios to ensure pieces get considered. We’ll also cover other mechanics like tracking and how to develop structured—but easy—processes that guarantee we don’t inadvertently screw ourselves.
Wednesday, January 25 – 7—9pm
At best, dialogue can say a lot about characters, make them leap off the page, and be incredibly memorable; at worst, it can waterlog the pacing, tell instead of show, turn the story into a boring lecture and quite literally, say nothing. We’ll not only study how to write effective dialogue that makes characters feel organic, we’ll look at formatting, dos and don’ts, and how to make choices about what comes out of people’s mouths.
Wednesday, February 22 – 7—9pm
When it comes to theme, many of us probably didn’t feel like the sharpest tool in the shed that was high school English—but as writers, understanding theme is crucial: it’s the support beam of the story. We’ve got a fool-proof, easy way to identify theme and thematic statement, and we’ll teach its use in building a story that will stand the test of time.
Class materials will be sent to registrants ahead of time via email and are included in the $25 NEHW Member/$35 NON-NEHW Member fees. You can sign up for any combination of classes. Want to buy access to ALL SIX webinars? You can do that too: Member price for all six webinars is $130; Non-member price is $175.
Registration for NEHW Members:
Registration for Non-paid Members:
A little whirlwind tour of my experience at NecronomiCon Providence 2022. Enjoy! There are links at the end of the gallery for anything you might wish to know about further.
What an amazing weekend. See y’all in 2024, NECRO PEEPS!
Here are links to things mentioned in the captions, in case you want to check them out!
How was my time at Necro? I’ll be posting a round-up with some of my favorite pics later this week. Imagine my surprise this morning, though, when an article on NECRONOMICON PROVIDENCE showed up in my news feed. I was reading the article, and I was looking at all the pictures closely to see if I could ID any of my friends or people I knew. I spotted, up in the corner of one picture, this tiny little person that had the same dress as me.
It turned out it WAS me. Don’t you think the back of my neck and my $13 Target backpack look amazing? I just cracked up! Still, it’s kind of cool. What’s extra funny is that this photo was taken on Saturday night, probably at around 7:40 pm. I was getting ready to go to the HWA-RI chapter’s release party for their awesome anthology, WE ARE PROVIDENCE, and I couldn’t find the room the party was in. So I pulled over and looked at my guide to see if I could figure it out.
And that’s the moment the picture was snapped.
I’ve made The New York Times. Maybe not in the way I expected, but achievement unlocked! 🙂
The full article in The New York Times about the con can be read at this link, in case you’re interested: