Unlock the Muse – April 25, 2018

It’s the last week of April. My Camp project has been of mixed success so far. I am currently caught up on my word goal. I’ve reached ‘the end’ on one of the two stories I am working on this month. On the flip side of that, I have often found myself struggling to find time for writing around soccer practices, soccer games, school concerts and so on. And when I do find time, I waste a lot of it on Twitter and Goodreads. But I am having fun, and that is, after all, what Camp should be, isn’t it?

Here is your writing prompt for this week:

Go to your local mall and buy some postcards of your city. Use the postcards as stationary to drop a brief “hello” to friends.

This seems the perfect prompt for Camp month. If you’re Camping, send a post card from camp and let others know what you’re up to this month and how you’re doing on your writing goals.

While I haven’t exhausted the wisdom contained in the little book, Writing Down the Bones, by Natalie Goldberg, I have decided that I’ve shared enough. The problem is, I haven’t started reading another writing craft book.

So instead, let’s take a look at the writer’s reference shelf. Every trade has its specific tools designed to help get the job done right. As a writer, that means reference books. There are a few most writers consider essentials: a good dictionary, thesaurus and a “what to name the baby” book. Right?

Then, if you’re like me, you have a few (or a few dozen!) other specialty reference books and writing craft books. Some of the more unique titles on my reference shelf:

Creating Characters Kids Will Love, by Elaine M. Alphin
Medieval Wordbook, by Madeleine Cosman
Wicked Words, by Hugh Rawson
Word Dance: The Language of Native American Culture, by Carl Waldman
The Complete Fantasy Reference, by Andrew I. Porter
Editing Fact and Fiction, by Irene Gunther & Leslie T. Sharpe

What’s on your shelf?

In honor of Camp NaNoWriMo, April 2018 coming to a close this week, here’s my “post card” from Camp with a quote from NaNoWriMo’s founder:


Happy writing!

Please consider sharing your response to the writing exercise. Got a question? Just ask! Put it in the comments below, or send your question by email here:

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