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Showing posts from October, 2013

Dress Up Time

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By Kenneth A O'Shaughnessy
Whether you celebrate Halloween or not, it seems like a good day to talk about how you dress up your poems. Do they always “say what you mean, mean what you say”? Or do you use them to get across a different message entirely?
Where you wind up with your poem doesn't have to be intentional. Sometimes heading for a clever twist is a sure way to come off stilted and contrived. I like to be as surprised by where my poems wind up as my readers (hopefully!) will be.

Finding Your Focus For Your Blog

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By Laurie Epps
Edie Melson is my mentor and friend. She has developed a very easy and simple to read text about Social Media. In this blog, we'll talk about her points, chapter by chapter. So you too can create your own blog, and branding as a writer. To follow along, you'll want to purchase her book, Connections: Social Media and Networking Techniques for Writers.

Edie teaches seminars on Social Media throughout the Southeast and the rest of the nation. She's not just an inspiration to me, but to writers throughout the country.

Acrostic Poetry

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By Kenneth A O'Shaughnessy


If you are looking for a challenge, or for inspiration, a fun way to play with words is to try writing an acrostic poem. In an acrostic poem, the first letter of each line is part of a sequence, usually a word or a phrase. A well-known biblical acrostic poem is Psalm 119 (118), in which each stanza has all of it’s lines begin with the same letter of the Hebrew alphabet in order.

Is Blogging Right for You?

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By Laurie Epps

This blog is loosely based on a book authored by my mentor Edie Melson. To purchase the book, click here.

For most, writing a blog seems to be a natural choice for writers, but do you have to start a blog? The answer is no, not really. 

But it's my opinion that you should have some sort of regular online presence. Whether that is on your own blog, or as a columnist for someone else, you should have a regular entry someplace at least twice a month.

How to Write Poetry for Children (And Everyone Else, Too)

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By Kenneth A O'Shaughnessy


A young friend read this poem to me earlier this week, and then she read it over and over. It caused me to consider what makes a poem connect with its readers, even when it is something so simple as this:

My Kitten By Marchette Chute

Kitten, my kitten soft and dear I’m so glad that you are here Sitting together just us two You loving me and me loving you.”

~from Surprises (I Can Read Book 3) Paperbackby Lee Bennett Hopkins

What can we learn about connecting with readers from this simple children’s poem?

Use a Familiar Theme Sitting with a kitten in your lap is a common pleasurable activity for nearly everyone, especially every child. Whether you are writing for children, women, theology buffs, or even men ;-) there is always something common to them that will develop that instant interest in what you have to say. I tend to be guilty of writing from obscure ideas that excite me but mean nothing to other people - the

Picking Your Blogging Platform

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By Laurie Epps

Picking your platform can seem intimidating, and choosing the right one is vital for your blog's success. But you have to take a step back, and remember that you're going to start by taking baby steps. Just by getting a presence on the Internet, you're going to attract a whole new crop of readers.

Your readers will come week after week to hear your voice, and read your thoughts and ideas. This is powerful. That recognition can help you in a variety of ways from working as a living breathing resume, to finding your audience that you wouldn't be able to reach any other way.

Finding Poetry in Prose

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By Kenneth A O'Shaughnessy



One of my favorite authors, Ray Bradbury, primarily known for his short stories, has been called a poet, and actually published several books of poetry. But it is actually his prose 
for which he has been called a poet.

On Blogging

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By Laurie Epps

Writing for an Internet audience is very different than writing a literary paper. How is different? Where do you start if you haven't established an online presence? Do you you even need a blog? What are the essentials?

We'll talk about picking your platform, and writing for an Internet audience. To purchase the book, click on: http://www.amazon.com/Connections-Social-Networking-Techniques-Writers/dp/0984696997

How to Find “That Word”

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By Kenneth A O'Shaughnessy


So you’ve written a few lines that really grabbed you, and you know exactly where your poem is going, but to get there you need a word that rhymes with “bottle” or that starts with the letter V. Suddenly your mind is blanker than the paper you’re staring at. What do you do?
The two best resources I've found so far for finding a word that starts with a specific letter are http://www.scrabblefinder.com/ and http://www.wordbyletter.com/. Both divide the list by word length. Scrabblefinder lists the words in columns, and Word By Letter lists them in blocks - which you prefer will depend on personal viewing preference.