Friday, January 30, 2015

2015 Michigan Writing Events

Connect with other writers, workshop your material, improve your technique and simply delve a little deeper into the writing life with these 2015 Writing Events in Michigan.

A Rally of Writers (Lansing Writer's Conference): April 2015

Rochester Writer's Spring Conference: April 2015

Interlochen Writer's Retreat: June 2015

Bear River Writer's Retreat: June 2015

Glen Lake Writer's Retreat: June 2015

8th Annual Rochester Writer's Conference: October 2015

You cannot hope to sweep someone else away by the force of your writing until it has been done to you.
Stephen King

Wednesday, June 11, 2014

Make a Living as a Freelance Writer

Making a career out of freelance writing is a labor of love. Many writers aspire to one day support themselves entirely with writing, but instead discover that they must work at the local coffee shop or spend their most productive hours answering phones to make ends meet. I get it. I've been there and still regularly occupy that space. Life is a dynamic process and freelance writing is especially thus. It's ever changing.One month, you might have five clients that you're working with and the next, you're checking your email every hour, hoping for a small editing gig. What I've learned more than anything else in the freelance business is that I am responsible for my business. If I'm not generating it, there won't be any.

My partner in crime is a musician and he is a great example of how to be successful in the freelance business. Every day, he works to create his business. He goes to jam sessions to network with other musicians, he regularly stops by music studios to offer his services as a music teacher and he composes almost every single night. I'm often envious of his amazing focus and determination in his chosen field of creativity.

If you're struggling to make writing your full time career, consider some of the tips and resources below to help jump start your June business.

Advice for Freelancers 

  • Talk About Your Business: I recently started a new editing project for an attorney. She called me because she knew that I was a freelancer and she couldn't find anyone in her area that she trusted with confidential documents. Her business came as a result of conversations that I'd had with her more than two years ago. The more you tell people about what you do, the more likely your name is going to come up when someone needs writing or editing services. So allow the modesty to fall away for a bit and tell everyone that you meet for a week that you offer writing and editing or other freelance services, pass out business cards and remind your friends and family that any clients they send your way are greatly appreciated. 
  • Practice What You Preach: I must admit that I often fail in this capacity. When I work with clients, I spend a lot of time optimizing their content, building a social media platform and finding ways to make their business relevant on the internet. Why do I do this? Because that's how their future clients and customers will find them. This is equally, if not more so, important for a freelance writer. Utilize the internet to find new clients and to let people know that you exist. I recommend Facebook, Flickr, Twitter, LinkedIn, Pinterest, Instagram and any other sites that can advertise your area of expertise. 
  • Do Stellar Work: Every client is a connection to future clients. When you create content that someone loves or optimize a website so that your client's business improves, other people will hear about it. It's an overused statement that actions speak louder than words, but it's extremely relevant in the freelance business. You can talk a great game, but if you provide mediocre service, you will lose a lot of word-of-mouth business. 
Writer's Resources

  • MediaBistro: This is a great site for connecting with other writers, finding freelance jobs and finding informative articles about writing, publishing and more. 
  • NAIWE National Association of Independent Writers and Editors: Though this organization is not free, it is still a great resource for writers. As a member of NAIWE, you receieve a hosted WordPress blog that appears in the associations blogroll in addition to professional level support. 
  • All Indie Writers: Freelance writing jobs, writer's forum and writer's markets. 
  • Writer's Market Directory: An online directory of paying writer's markets. 

Friday, May 30, 2014

Writing Jobs for May 30th, 2014

Writing Jobs in Michigan 

Reporter for Sports Magazine and Website: Ann Arbor

Social Media and Marketing Intern: Ann Arbor

Outreach Librarian and Curator: Ann Arbor

English 1 Adjunct Faculty: Big Rapids

Digital Marketing Specialist: Detroit

Creative Director: Detroit

Copywriter: Detroit

Student Writer for M-Times: Flint

Copy Writer Marketing Assistant: Grandville

Copy Writer: Kalamazoo

Temporary Multimedia Journalist: Southfield

Digital Journalist: Traverse City

Marketing Admin. Assistant: Ypsilanti

Telecommute - Online Writing Jobs

Freelance Writing Position

Transcriptionists Wanted

Illicit Magazine Seeks Freelance Writers

Freelance Web Content Writer

Gardening and Interior Design Blogger

Douglas Coupland

Wednesday, May 21, 2014

Looking for Some Whimsical Fantasy?

I have posted several times about my good friend, Jon Kitson, who has found success publishing short stories over the last two years. You will soon be able to read one such story in both print and ebook format in a new anthology set for release on July 22nd. Please check out the details for FAE below....

"Meet Robin Goodfellow as you’ve never seen him before, watch damsels in distress rescue themselves, get swept away with the selkies and enjoy tales of hobs, green men, pixies and phookas. One thing is for certain, these are not your grandmother’s fairy tales. Fairies have been both mischievous and malignant creatures throughout history. They’ve dwelt in forests, collected teeth or crafted shoes. Fae is full of stories that honor that rich history while exploring new and interesting takes on the fair folk from castles to computer technologies and modern midwifing, the Old World to Indianapolis. Fae covers a vast swath of the fairy story spectrum, making the old new and exploring lush settings with beautiful prose and complex characters. Enjoy the familiar feeling of a good old-fashioned fairy tale alongside urban fantasy and horror with a fae twist."

With an introduction by Sara Cleto and Brittany Warman, and new stories from Sidney Blaylock Jr.Amanda BlockKari CastorBeth CatoLiz ColterRhonda EikampLor GrahamAlexis A. HunterL.S. Johnson,Jon Arthur KitsonAdria LaycraftLauren LiebowitzChristine MorganShannon PhillipsSara PulsLaura VanArendonk Baugh, andKristina Wojtaszek.

Fae will be available in trade paperback and ebook via,,, and other online retailers, and for wholesale through Ingram. You can also find Fae on Goodreads.

You can visit the Goodreads giveaway here:

Happy Reading!

Monday, May 19, 2014

Rest, Retreat and Write: Michigan Summer Writer's Retreats and Workshops

It's really easy to allow writing to be a solitary activity. Though solitude might be helpful for the act of writing, it can become destructive to the creative process. Hours logged in frustrated silence as we create and kill our characters, research until our brains bleed and secretly fear that no one will ever value our work, begins to take a heavy toll after a while. Creativity calls for sustenance and writer's retreats are fodder for even the most blocked mind. Retreats are a forum for collaboration, inspiration and renewal. What better way to truly enjoy our beautiful state of Michigan than to connect with other writers and breathe life back into your process? 

Bear River Writer's Conference: May 29-June 2nd, 2014

Summer Writing Classes by Holly Wren Spaulding (Poetry, Creative Writing, Mixed Media): June and July 2014

Peninsula Writers Summer Retreat at Glen Lake: June 2014 

Interlochen Academy for the Arts Writer's Retreat: June 16-19, 2014

Ann Arbor Book Festival 2014 Writer's Conference: June 21st, 2014

Inkstains Youth Writing Camp at Eastern Michigan: July 7-11

Keweenaw Writer's Workshops: July 19-20

In Harmony: A Grand Rapids Area Prose and Poetry Workshop by Ludington Writers: July 20th, 2014

“Not a wasted word. This has been a main point to my 

literary thinking all my life.”

—Hunter S. Thompson

Sunday, May 18, 2014

Write or Die: Writing Contests for the Summer of 2014

I have a wonderful friend who has begun to write seriously during the past few years, I've written about him on this blog previously. Two years ago, he didn't even believe that it was possible that he could finish a short story, let alone see it published. Now he's publishing a story almost every other month and even getting paid for some of them. When we first started talking regularly, he found it inspiring that I'd published a book and this inspiration, in part, propelled him to start writing. These days, he is the inspiration for me and the truth is that his secret is very simple. He writes. He writes stories, edits and submits them and he does something nearly every day. We writers love to lament our many reasons for not putting the pen to the page, but give yourself permission to drop the excuses, find a space of stillness today and just write...

Pressgang Prize: Deadline 5/30/14

Cloudbank Poetry and Flash Fiction Contest: Deadline 5/31/14

Creative Nonfiction The Memoir Issue: Deadline 5/31/14

American Short Fiction Short Story Contest: Deadline 6/1/14

Split Lip Magazine Chapbook Contest Deadline 6/1/14

2014 New American Fiction Prize: Deadline 6/15/14

Pulp Literature Magpie Award for Poetry: Deadline 6/15/14

Jewish Literary Journal Competition for Fiction, Poetry and Creative Nonfiction: Deadline 6/15/14

Vallum Magazine Award for Poetry: Deadline 6/15/14

Lucille Clifton Poetry Prize: Deadline 6/15/14

Literary Juice Flash Fiction Contest: Deadline 6/30/14

Bacopa Literary Review: Deadline 6/30/14

Blue Lyra Review Contest for Nonfiction and Long Poem: Deadline 6/30/14

Matrix LitPop Awards: Deadline 7/1/14

The Rattle Poetry Prize: Deadline 7/15/14

Fairy Tale Review Prose and Poetry Contest: Deadline 7/15/14

Stone Canoe Journal Annual Prize: Deadline 7/31/14

Blue Earth Review Flash Fiction Contest: Deadline 8/1/14

The Geist Tobacco Lit Writing Contest: Deadline 9/1/14

I didn't start out writing to give children hope, but I'm glad some of them found it.
-Beverly Cleary