Tag Archives: MediaBistro Book Club

Writing Wednesday: Twice a Week

7 Sep

 

One of the hardest things about writing isn’t the actual writing—it’s finding time to write.  Laura Vanderkam asks, “Can You Try Twice Per Week?” on her 168 Hours blog.

Vanderkam cautions against all-or-nothing thinking.  As in, I must write every single day or else I’ll give up.  I’ve heard time and time again, writers preach on the importance of writing every single day.  I always end up feeling defeated.  How can I work full-time, accomplish errands, and still find time to write every day?  Oh, and I rather like having some sort of social life, so how can I do all that and still have a life?  Vanderkam’s approach is refreshing.  She advises on making priorities out of the things we want to do but actually being reasonable about it.  She suggests that, given the 168 hours we have during the week, we can probably find two days during the work week to devote to that priority.

One way to find extra time, she says, is to wake up early.  Ugh.  Not what I wanted to hear.  I’m not a morning person.  But the truth is, by the time I’ve run from work to class to dinner, the last thing I want to do is write at the end of the night.  I haven’t tried waking up early to write, but I may give it a shot.

I first heard Vanderkam speak at MediaBistro’s book club and then went on to read her book, 168 Hours: You Have More Time than You Think.  I’d highly recommend it to … well, everyone.  I hear so many people say they don’t have time for writing or for spending time with their family or for whatever it is they want to do, and this book shows that we actually do have time for a lot of what we want to do – we just have to respect the time we’re given and get the most out of it.

Can you wake up early twice a week to work on your writing?

Writing Wednesday: MediaBistro Book Club’s August ’11 Reading

31 Aug

I’m becoming a regular at MediaBistro Book Club.  It’s one of my favorite reading series, essentially because it’s targeted toward people specifically in book publishing, so I get an opportunity to hear some great literature and chat with fellow book publishing professionals.

Usually when I attend publishing networking events it’s just other editors there, and when I attend readings it’s just bibliophiles and aspiring writers there.   MediaBistro Book Club is one of the rare readings that’s actually geared towards those who work in the publishing industry.

This time around the MediaBistro Book Club was held at the Union Square Lounge, which provided an intimate set-up and good drink specials.  I attended with one of my co-leaders from the Redeemer Writers Group and Burnside Writers Collective’s new fiction editor Mihaela Georgescu, and met some other creative writers, editors, designers, and production editors while mingling.  Here’s a photo of me at the event.

Everyone always talks about how small the industry is, and the more I attend readings and connect with people through social media the more I see this to be the case.  I spied David Goodwillie, whom I heard read at the reading The Shrinks Are Away, chatting it up with MediaBistro Book Club reader Andrew Foster Altschul.  It wouldn’t surprise me at all that they’re friends, given their cultural critiques.

Altschul’s Deus Ex Machina is a scathing look at reality tv.  He’s also the author of Lady Lazarus.

 

 

Nelson Aspen is the Ryan Seacrest of Down Under.  He dished on being an exercise trainer to Princess Diana and meeting the official voice of Fred Flinstone (he even sang the Flinstones theme song!), as he told us about his celebrity cookbook Dinner at Nelson’s.

 

 

Margaret Floyd took the food talk in a more nutritional direction when she talked about her discovery of just how much food influences health and well-being.  She tells all in Eat Naked Now.

 

 

Ben H. Winters claims he never had bedbugs even though he says 1 out of 3 New Yorkers have had them—even though no one will admit to it.  He wrote a whole fright-fest called Bedbugs.

 


After the readings there was a spirited Q&A, where Aspen said he believes self-publishing is the way to go and Winters said he hatched Bedbugs with his publisher, one of my favorite book publishers Quirk Books, and therefore never even had to submit a book proposal.  Interestingly, the fiction writers, Altschul and Winters, knew they wanted to be writers (instead of lawyers, which their parents’ wanted them to be), while the nonfiction writers, Aspen and Floyd, said that getting published was something that happened organically because of their other passions.  I think the lesson for nonfiction writers is that in addition to a desire to write you should have a passion for another subject.

See you at the next reading on November 17?