Books behind the bed, by zimpenfish
Creative Commons Share and Share Alike 

What happens if you want one from the bottom?
That's what the Vasoline is for.

Better in full size, about 390 books, about 40% zimpenfish

I am as a fired up about a new freelance writing blog I discovered in my email today, and I was the first time I read "Make A Living Writing," which I did not even know at the time was a top ten writing blog winner from a national contest held by Men with Pens.   Perhaps for best writing blog of 2011 we will see Writer Profits.  Susan Carter, author and blog owner, certainly seems compassionate and committed to seeing freelance writers get decent payment for their work.  If you doubt it, sign up on her blog for your free report on what to charge for your writing services.  This relatively short .pdf book packs a mighty powerful punch, and doesn't leave anything out  that I can think of offhand except I wished she had given editing rates.

 I am telling you, I have only done a handful of press releases for my own support group, but I am once again brushing off my free ebooks on how to write them.  It's remarkable what you can charge for writing a press release, and there really isn't all that much to it.  I can't imagine what they teach in courses on it.  I read one free ebook and was off sending them out to free distributors to the newspapers.

I am now going to make your trip down here worthwhile by sharing some of my best links.  I collect them in address books after learning the hard way, several times, that bookmarks drift away and disappear.  The last free bookmarks system I used went out of business and took my bookmarks with them.  The company offered to let me have some of other people's bookmarks, but fussy me, I wanted my own damn bookmarks back.  Now I write them down in my address books.

I collect links on everything I think is useful, interesting, will come in handy, or I might need down the road.  Here's a sample.  I will set them up as links so you can just click on them:

40,000 free online books.

Top 20 blogs for writers 2010.

Free Books & Articles, World Catalog

Alltop: Blogs By Category

Newsletter-Plain Languge-Everything You Need to Be A More Readable Writer.  Be sure to download "Principles of Readability.pdf"  It's all there--everything you need to know to make sure you are reaching your readers.

Cliche list.  (Hope you don't find any of your old reliables.)

Consumer Action Web site:   Get a free copy of the latest Consumer Action Handbook, invaluable.

Get paid to work as a Digital Journalist.  All the revenue goes in the "money pot" and everyone splits it up. I want to write for them and do photojournalism. No big clips or experience necessary. Just submit.

Mindful, spiritual entrepreneurship that sounds like the real deal.  Subscribe to the Mindful Business Newsletter and get your Free Mindful Business Visioning Toolkit!  It really helps you understand your spiritual/business goals and how they might work together for good.  

Okay, that's all for now.  I want to close by stealing a piece from Garrison's Keillor's "The Writer's Alamanac" for today, June 7, 2011 on Louise Erdrich.   I love how she describes the books, the writing life, and making up children to write about because we all know we can't write about our own.

"It's the birthday of novelist Louise Erdrich (books by this author), born in Little Falls, Minnesota (1954). She grew up in Wahpeton, North Dakota, where her parents taught at the Bureau of Indian Affairs. Her mother was French-Ojibwe, and her father was German; she and her six brothers and sisters were raised in a close, loving family. Instead of watching TV—they didn't own one—the children were encouraged to write and to memorize poems.

She went off to Dartmouth in 1972, the same year the university started admitting women and the first year of its new Native American Studies program. The program's director was Michael Dorris. Years after she graduated, Erdrich was invited back to Dartmouth to read some of her poetry, and she became re-acquainted with Dorris, and they ended up getting married.

She started off as a poet. Her first book was Jacklight (1984), a book of poems based on the thesis she wrote for her master's degree in 1979. She said, "I began to tell stories in the poems and then realized that there was not enough room." So she moved on to fiction. She published her first short story, "The Red Convertible," in 1981, and "Scales" in 1982. Later that year, Dorris convinced her to enter a new fiction writing contest, so in the space of two weeks she wrote "The World's Greatest Fisherman," and she won the $5,000 prize. Two years later, she publishedLove Medicine (1984),a novel made up of 14 interrelated stories.

Love Medicine is populated with characters who live in the fictional town of Argus, North Dakota, or its nearby reservation. There is Marie Lazarre, who starts out life convinced she wants to be a nun—"I was that girl who thought the black hem of her garment would help me rise. Veils of love which was only hate petrified by longing—that was me." And her rival Lulu Lamartine—"Lulu Lamartine was usually controlled as a cat, and got her way through coaxing, cajoling, rubbing against your leg. An old woman who remained infuriatingly pretty, she bent others to her will before they knew what was happening." And Nector Kashpaw, the man who loved Lulu but married Marie anyway: "Here is what I do not understand: how instantly the course of your life can be changed. I only know that I went up the convent hill intending to sell geese and came down the hill with the geese still on my arm. Beside me walked a young girl with a mouth on her like a flophouse, although she was innocent. She grudged me to hold her hand. And yet I would not drop the hand and let her walk alone. Her taste was bitter. I craved the difference after all those years of easy sweetness." After Love Medicine, Louise Erdrich wrote many novels set in the same fictional universe, and Marie, Lulu, and Nector all reappeared, along with others connected to them. Her novels include Tracks (1988), The Last Report on the Miracles at Little No Horse (2001), The Master Butchers Singing Club (2003), The Plague of Doves (2008), and Shadow Tag(2010).

She said, "We have a lot of books in our house. They are our primary decorative motif—books in piles on the coffee table, framed book covers, books sorted into stacks on every available surface, and of course books on shelves along most walls. Besides the visible books, there are the boxes waiting in the wings, the basement books, the garage books, the storage locker books. They are a sort of insulation, soundproofing some walls. They function as furniture, they prop up sagging fixtures and disguised by quilts function as tables. The quantities and types of books are fluid, arriving like hysterical cousins in overnight shipping envelopes only to languish near the overflowing mail bench. Advance Reading Copies collect at beside, to be dutifully examined—to ignore them and read Henry James or Barbara Pym instead becomes a guilty pleasure. I can't imagine home without an overflow of books. The point of books is to have way too many but to always feel you never have enough, or the right one at the right moment, but then sometimes to find you'd longed to fall asleep reading The Aspern Papers, and there it is."

She said, "By having children, I've both sabotaged and saved myself as a writer. [...] With a child you certainly can't be a Bruce Chatwin or a Hemingway, living the adventurer-writer life. No running with the bulls at Pamplona. If you value your relationships with your children, you can't write about them. You have to make up other, less convincing children. There is also one's inclination to be charming instead of presenting a grittier truth about the world. But then, having children has also made me this particular writer. Without my children, I'd have written with less fervor; I wouldn't understand life in the same way. I'd write fewer comic scenes, which are the most challenging. I'd probably have become obsessively self-absorbed, or slacked off. Maybe I'd have become an alcoholic. Many of the writers I love most were alcoholics. I've made my choice, I sometimes think: Wonderful children instead of hard liquor."

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