Meet the Publishers! this Thursday!

It’s that time again, folks. Can you believe this is the fourth year? This Thursday, March 15th, at 6:00 PM, a panel of publishers will address your questions, followed by an opportunity to visit and view their products. Learn about different types of publishing: traditional, hybrid, vanity press, and self-publishing.

This year, there will be two publishers from Arkansas, two from Oklahoma, and two self-publishers. There will also be swag bags containing helpful information for your publishing needs.

As always, this free, informative event is sponsored by Designing the World with Words and Tulsa Area Children’s Book Writers. For more information, please visit the event website at http://www.jespiddlin.com/publishers-2018 or contact Renee’ at meet-the-publishers@jespiddlin.com

For those who don’t know, I resigned from 4RV Publishing in January. After four and a half years with the company, it was time for a change, I suppose. We took on a lot of extra medical bills last year, due to my husband’s heart attack and having both his carotid arteries cleaned out. I needed more freelance editing jobs to help us out. I am a firm believer that everything happens the way it does for a reason. So, this is part of my forward momentum. I have been very pleased at how fast new jobs have come in. Thank you for your trust and support.

Not too long ago, I pitched and submitted a children’s picture book to a publishing company in Arkansas. I was offered a contract and I’ll have more info on that next time I write.

This year, I won’t be offering as many workshops, but I will be available for mobile workshops and as a speaker for writing-related events. Find my full conference schedule and become one of my Conference Stalkers at https://reneelaviness.com/events.

Are you planning to submit your story to a publisher, soon? Have you put it through a critique group to get their input? What about a beta reader or an editor? Here is a little help. Click here to download my two-page Story Checks file and use it to tighten and polish your story before you submit it. Good luck with all your contest and book submissions, this year!

Don’t forget to drop in at 6pm, this Thursday… (Click to visit website.)MeetPublishers-2018-BusCardAd2-mini

 

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A Movie Review?

I’m soon to write another post here, but I left this on my Facebook page and decided to share on my website, as well. I seldom ever write any kind of a review, but I have waited for so long to see this movie.

I went to a friend’s house on Wednesday, and we watched The Man Who Invented Christmas. Here is my review of that movie.

Knowing this was supposed to be a portrayal of potentially real events gave me the hunger to see what Charles Dickens did in his writing (or how someone else perceived it) that I might learn from.

If you are not a writer, this is a great movie, because it shows very much how intense a writing project can get, especially when you are under pressure. We find our phrases, words, circumstances, and people in everyday life. Sometimes, a complete stranger has a look that sparks an entire story. When we get so absorbed the rest of the world needs to just leave us alone, we never mean any negativity to those we love. Well, we really do mean, “Leave me alone!” or, “I don’t have time, right now!” but usually, that’s only temporary, as the movie points out. It does occasionally happen, though. It’s just that we get so connected with our characters. We have to get connected to see every little quirk and interpretation that make our characters who they are. We have to see, feel, and convey these things to convince our readers the characters are real. And, we need to stay in the story until it is complete. Even stopping to sleep or go to the bathroom is a huge and unwelcome interruption.

If you are a writer, this movie has a fantastic manner of bringing those scenes and actions we see in our heads into his life, very much like the ones that play through our heads as we feverishly write what we are seeing. It also shows how we often like to enjoy life, probably a bit too much, at times. It serves as a good reminder to pay closer attention to our attitudes when we get to that intense place with our stories. If you’re a serious writer–especially if you’re a pantser–you know exactly what I’m talking about.

The main character is charming, fun to watch, full of entertaining pockets of personality. I love the different faces he makes throughout the movie.

The little snippets of info at the beginning and end of the movie are very helpful in understanding the full weight of Charles’ position.

I enjoyed the story within a story, how the writer(s) gave him his own demons to conquer as he drove himself to the end of the story he was writing, and how HIS main character played into helping him conquer those demons.

I loved the message Charles wanted to convey with A Christmas Carol. I, too, believe he achieved his purpose.

The one thing I liked least was the purple lipstick he wore. I realize it helped emphasize his facial shifts that were so cute, but the color was maybe a touch too noticeable. However, when he is portrayed as a child, you know it’s him, thanks to that ugly lipstick.

Another thing I did not like was studying over this in a political manner. I didn’t like how the story line might be used politically (in today’s twisted views), so I abandoned those thoughts early on.

Overall, I really enjoyed the movie. It wasn’t the most outstanding I’ve ever seen, and it could have been much more intense, but I still felt connected because I’ve written in a similar manner and found my inner beast can be almost as ugly as his may have been. I’m certain none of my works have been quite as earth-shaking as Charles Dickens’ masterpieces, but I’m thrilled to know that what he went through was very much like what I go through as a writer. It’s nice to feel such a connection to someone who made such an impact in our world.

If you watch this movie, I’d suggest making your atmosphere as theater-like as possible, so you can focus all your energy in the story line. Today’s world creates way too many interruptions. For that reason, I believe the theater is where this movie would be best viewed.

And, there is the question of whether to allow a child to view the movie. As many others have said, I believe children should be at least 8 to 10 years old and have recently seen and understand the movie A Christmas Carol, or even better, have the story read to them and discussed with them, so they can understand the events of this movie.

I plan to watch this movie again–very soon–with my wonderful, writer husband. I’d love to gain his insight and interpretations.

If you saw this movie, please tell me what you thought of it. I’m curious to learn the views of others.