Here you will find everything to do with writing, whether it is my writing or what I'm learning from reading books on writing.  Reading, vocabulary, and grammar are the tools of the trade. The very best people to learn from are the ones who are seasoned writers who teach writing. You would be wise to enlist them as your mentors, as I have.

So your best friend just published her first novel. And even though you have been writing 'all your life' and she just took it up oh, about a year ago, her book was purchased by a big-time publisher and all of your books are stashed away in a drawer.

Although Roger Ebert slammed 'Authors Anonymous', I enjoyed it mostly because it accentuates the absurdity of people whose egos are blown out of proportion to the reality of their success as writers. It shows how writing and publishing a book can be a crapshoot; maybe your book will be a success and you'll make a ton of money, maybe it won't. Does it matter if you are intelligent? No. Does it matter if you have a degree in English? No. Does it matter if you have credentials as a writer up the wazoo? No. It is all just a roll of the dice; maybe you'll get seven, maybe you'll get snake eyes, or maybe you'll get a two and a three.

If you are a true writer, you care about language because this is the main tool you use to develop your craft. And you really need to keep developing it so that you become a better writer.

When I was painting full-time, that was my goal, to become a better painter. I have occasionally held art classes in my studio. I naively thought that all the people who came to my studio for lessons wanted the lessons for the same reasons that I took lessons and read art books; to become the best I could be at my craft. I quickly realized that this was not the case. Someone even brought an outline of an image that she apparently received from a former teacher that she traced and then painted. It was kind of like completing a paint-by-number. That was what she was looking for from me. So what did I do? I gave her a piece of yupo paper (a glossy, synthetic, wipe-off-if-you-don't-like-it piece of paper) that allows you to be free and experiment. She hated it and never came back. I was not the teacher for her. And I learned my lesson. Not everyone wants to be the best they can be, some are content with being just OK. But that's another story.

I just attended the New England Authors Book Expo in Danvers, MA. It was a wonderful event that was supported by writers from many New England states including MA, NH, CT, and ME. I was impressed by many of them and I now have a lifetime supply of bookmarks.

The creativity that each of us has to offer always amazes me. There were themes such as vampires and witches. And levels of interest that range from pre-schoolers and middle graders, to young adult and beyond. As to a recurring theme that I noticed, we would all love to duplicate the success that Stephanie Myers has enjoyed. There was even one author who had a 7 book series in the making, emulating J.K. Rowling, I'm guessing. And there were also most likely one-time writers whose goal is to honor a parent or loved one with their book.

Why We Write edited by Meredith Maran is the book I just finished reading. As a writer, it was very interesting to me and I enjoyed it immensely. Although I've heard of the majority of the writers that were interviewed for the book, there were several that I had never heard of nor had I ever read anything by them. I have now added most of them to my short list of authors that I want to read.