Recently, one of my life coaching clients was struggling with negative thoughts. As we spoke, he realized that he kept connecting his current struggles to his past, to old issues he hasn’t worked through.
“He who doesn’t look ahead, remains behind.”
We concluded that although his history and his upbringing are a huge part of who he is today, they do not determine his future. What determines his future are the choices he makes today. What he chooses to think about, do in action, and the words he speaks shape his future.
The choices we make todaywill shape our future lives as authors.
Many of us have painful writing histories. We've received multiple rejections, failed to find an agent or publisher, been shredded by an editor we hired, or humiliated in a critique group. How we've handled those experiences have shaped us into the writers we’ve become.
You have the choice to use the rejections, the shredding, and the humiliations as valuable learning experiences that move you closer to your goal. They are like science experiments. You know better what you want when you learn what doesn't work.
Think back about what you've learned from your past experiences.
Now--more importantly--choose to do some things differently. Choose actions that will propel you forward to become a better writer today.
Just as my client had to choose to stop looking back and using those experiences as excuses for not moving ahead, you as a writer need to focus on what choices you can make today to shape and spark your future, rather than dwelling on what isn't working or using the past as an excuse to not move forward.
“Unless you try to do something beyond what you have already mastered,
you will never grow.”
No, we’re not talking about an
eclipse of the sun.
We’re discussing the ellipsis, the use of three evenly spaced dots (ellipsis points) to indicate that words have been omitted from a quote.
Here’s how it works: “No man is an island … therefore never send to know for whom the bell tolls; it tolls for thee.”
John Dunne said a lot more in that poem, but this gets us right to the point. Always insert a space between letters and the dots in a mid-quote ellipsis—at both ends.
A Word About Punctuation
A period appears at the end of a complete sentence. If an omission of words follows this complete sentence, threeellipsis points are added right after the punctuation, making (in the case of the period) four evenly space dots in a row ( . . . . ). Any other type of punctuation (commas, semi-colons, question marks or exclamation points) may precede or follow the three, but not the four, dots.
See CMS: Ellipses, Paragraphs 13.48 and 13.51.
About Next Week’s Column
The three-dot symbol known as “ellipsis points” is really a fast change artist. In the blink of an eye, the three dots can transform themselves into “suspension points.” Suspension points are identical twins to ellipsis points, but they serve a very different purpose. This is an important distinction for any writer who inserts dialogue into his work. Visit us next week for the rest of the story!
Each week, our Merry Grammarian will share one pithy grammar or style rule based on The Chicago Manual of Style, the Bible of the book publishing industry, and other sources. Learn each week’s rule and gain confidence that your manuscript won’t be rejected because of sloppy word usage or style.
“Who wants to become a writer? And why? Because it’s the answer to everything. . . . It’s the streaming reason for living. To note, to pin down, to build up, to create, to be astonished at nothing, to cherish the oddities, to let nothing go down the drain, to make something, to make a great flower out of life, even if it’s a cactus.”
Meet a Village Writer - Shiva Shanti
Shiva Shanti has been a Village Writer almost as long as we have been a village. He has taken workshops and is a regular at Writers' Night Out, where he
has taught us some interesting things about the power of sound.
He's also a key member in a memoir writing circle, where he is developing a memoir from his careerexperiences in helping to shape the sound of rock and roll.
The Village Writing School will be participating in this year's
Fri Aug. 28 & Sat Aug. 29
Located in Downtown Rogers
near the Train Depot
The festival features live music, delicious food and ice-cold beverages, along with arts and crafts, carnival rides, children’s activities and a 5K walk/run.
If you would like to sign up to take a turn at our booth in front of Trolley Line Books, email Alison. And be sure to stop by our table and say hello!
Representatives from Turpentine Creek and other nonprofits learned Mike McIntyre's POWER Proposal system for funding proposals. The Village Writing School's Development Team attended and we're excited to implement Mike's approach.
October 8 -10
The Village Writing School will be well represented on October 8-10 at the Ozark Creative Writers Conference.
Alison Taylor-Brownand Tom Eaton, our Maumelle Associate Director,
The MISSION of the Village Writing School is to foster a vibrant literary community in Arkansas and
to provide resources for ALL writers who seek to improve their craft.
Become a FRIEND of the Village Writing School
Donate as Little as $10 per Month
WE GROW THROUGH YOUR SUPPORT
THANK YOU TO OUR 2015 FRIENDS: David Auernheimer, Tandy Belt, Wendy and David Carlisle, Jean Elderwind,Crow Evans, Alice French, Valerie Fondetti, Linda Harrison-Gracia, John & Nancy Grosella, Gary Guinn,Nancy Harris, Kate Lacy, Shirley Lamberson, Gail Larimer, Judith McCartan, Richard Schoe, Shiva Shanti, Greg Sherar, Cris Senseman, Judith Ulch, Brent Wendling
The Village Writing School is a 501c3 organization.
You are receiving this email because you asked to be kept informed about writing workshops and coming events.
Publisher: Alison Taylor-Brown
Editors: Alice French & Jessie Rex