Frugal Grooveshark Writes Like He’s Unshelved – or – Links!

Today’s links are aimed to make your writing life a bit easier and a bit more fun.

My buddy Bob wrote a guest post this week on Roger Colby’s blog about free tools for the frugal writer. He compiled a great list of resources, so rather than spoil the mystery and tell you what they were, here’s the link so you can find out for yourself.

If you are like me, you like to write (or work, or live) with a bit of music in the background. This link is to a site that provides access to full albums and lots of artists as well as radio stations for your favorite music genre. If you like Pandora, you’ll love Grooveshark, which only asks that you see one ad for every three hours of music, unlike Pandora which puts in an ad every three songs.

Are you fretting that you aren’t going to be the next Shakespeare? Maybe you are! If you haven’t tried out the online tool “I Write Like” yet, do it now. By the way, according to the site, this post so far says I’m the next Arthur Clarke. I could see that.

Lastly, if you love books and humor, you will probably enjoy this web-comic. I stumbled across Unshelved a few years ago, and since working in a bookstore is a lot like working in a library, I found it hilarious. Just don’t spend so long looking at it that you neglect your writing!

How I did this week. Also, fun links!It’s been a little while since I did a report card for myself. So this week, I’m going to give myself a B. I might have done better, but I had to take my laptop in to get fixed, and when it got returned, the keyboard didn’t work. As it happens, the guy who fixed it just forgot to reattach the keyboard cable inside the laptop. Easy fix, but it did mean that I didn’t get to write much on the night I went out to write. I did, however, manage to post everyday on my blog. I even have a new contest going! It is easier than the last one too, so don’t be afraid to try it out.

Thanks for reading!

Why I Sold Half my Facebook Friends to Mere Inklings in the Waiting Room – or – Links

This is Frigg, the reason Friday is called Friday, as in "I'm so friggin glad it's Friday!"

Friday is named for the Norse goddess, Frigg, wife of Odin, step-mother of Thor. Now you’ve learned something you can share with your friends tonight when you go see the  Avengers movie. Just point to Thor and say, “His step-mom is why today is called Friday.”

I like the format of listing interesting links on Fridays for two reasons. One, the internet is a vast and potentially frightening place and it helps to have a guide. Two, it doesn’t require as much time, so I have more time for working on my novel.

That said, here are four links that I think you should click:

Why I Sold Half of my Comic Book Collection by Andrew Rogers | First, the disclaimer, Andrew is in my writers’ group and he’s a good friend of mine. Second, the pitch, this is a good post the helps us evaluate whether we are hoarding things that would be better sold in order to gain things that would be better applied. Be sure to leave him a comment if you visit.

Mere Inkling | This is a site dedicated to the writers’ group, The Inklings, of which C.S. Lewis and J.R.R. Tolkien were members. The blogger, Rob Stroud, does a wonderful job in looking at life through the works of The Inklings. If you enjoy Narnia or Lord of the Rings, check out Rob’s blog.

The (Writer’s) Waiting Room | I stumbled across this blog this week and think it is a must-read for anyone with hopes of getting published. The blog is hosted by Hannah Karena Jones, an assistant editor at Transaction Publishers. She is insightful and encouraging as she guides would-be authors through the publishing process. I particularly enjoyed her post on query letters.

My Facebook Profile | Are we friends on Facebook? If not, we probably should be. Here are a couple reasons why you might want to befriend me: if you are a writer hoping to be published, publishers like to see a big friend list because it says that you aren’t afraid to self-promote and you have a built-in network of people who might buy your book; if you are not a writer, it is still good to have friends; I’m quite nice. All potential stalkers please ignore the above reasons and stop being so weird and stalker-y.

But Josh, how did you do with your writing goals this week?

How I did this week. Also, fun links!Good question, faceless stranger! I did pretty well. Twice in the last week, I set aside a few hours at a time to work on my novel. I feel like the story is coming along nicely (probably about 1/3 of the way there) and my characters even gave me a plot surprise that was pretty good. After posting this week’s book review, I wrote to the author of the book and she wrote back, which was a lovely surprise. And last, but certainly not least, I posted something every weekday, which is my goal. I’m going to give myself and A- for the week.

Thanks for reading this week. If you’ve made it this far into the post, you are probably either related to me or genuinely interested in my blog. Either way, your thoughts matter to me. I would appreciate any feedback or post ideas that you would care to share in the comments below!

Part Time Steampunk Ninja, Julia… Also My Report Card

It’s FriHow I did this week. Also, fun links!day! I had a couple ideas for what I could do with this blog on Fridays. My one thought was to just feature a link to something cool that I found online. The other thought was that I would use the post to hold myself accountable for my week’s writing goals. My last thought was that I should do both.

So, here are 4 places in cyberspace that I think are worth a visit:

1. Part Time Novel – This is Bob Evenhouse’s blog. Bob is in my writers’ group, the Weaklings and is at least partially responsible for the fact that I’m writing as much as I am (my wife accounts for the other portion of responsibility as I take no responsibility for my own actions).

2. Dr. McNinja – It’s a webcomic about a doctor who is also a ninja. Also, there are raptor-riding bandits, a clone of Ben Franklin, a time-traveling astronaut/mayor, and more. If you’ve never read this sort of thing before, it is worth starting at the beginning and working toward the present comics. Trust me.

3. Julia’s Place – I just stumbled across this blog yesterday, but I think it is worth looking into. I love writing exercises, and this place has weekly word challenges. Even if you don’t submit an entry, it’s a good way to challenge yourself and your writing.

4. The Steampunk Forum at Brass Goggles – My current WIP (Work in Progress) has a group of kids who are into Steampunk. Don’t know what I’m talking about? Think Jules Verne, or better yet, click the link. Be sure to visit the Tactile pages to see the things people make.

And as for my week’s writing goals, I didn’t do too bad.

Last Saturday night, I got some good writing done on my WIP at the local Tim Horton’s. Monday night I met up with my writer buddies, Andrew and Bob, and after a few minutes of catch-up, we all got some good writing done. I’ve successfully posted something new on this blog every working day this week.

I’d like to thank my friends who encourage me, my beautiful wife who makes my writing a priority, and anyone reading this because I get disgusting amounts of joy when I see that people are actually clicking into my blog. Thanks.

Come back next week. I’ll be doing my first book giveaway.