Tag Archives: writing teachers

Writing Prompt for the classroom

…or your room!

Your new Roommate!

My young writers’ group gets a kick out of this prompt*:

Fortunately, Unfortunately

They must start the first sentence of their story with the word Fortunately……. and the second sentence with Unfortunately….

Here are a few examples:

Fortunately, a large box was waiting for me on my porch when I got home from school.

Unfortunately, it contained a dozen wild spider monkeys who would now be living with me!

Fortunately, I made it to class on time.

Unfortunately, I was still wearing my pajama pants!

Fortunately, I won a $100,000 !

Unfortunatley, I am only allowed to spend it on diapers and beef jerky!

What silly or crazy stories can you come up with using Fortunately, Unfortunately? I may give a prize for the goofiest comment!

*This prompt shared by my writing buddy and fellow creative writing teacher, Stephanie. Check out her Young Writers’ Studio!


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Filed under teaching, Uncategorized, writers, Writing prompts, Young Adults

-able Minded

 Scott Ginsberg, AKA The Nametag Guy, has a theory on the universe. Sounds heavy, huh? It is and it isn’t. Having a theory on the universe can be quite simple really: decide what it is and make it so. Ginsberg has many ideas on creating and implementing a mindset – specifically when it comes to business success. Writing is a business. Creating for a profit is a business, and you’d be wise to have the same attitude.

Ginsberg invited his readers to come up with their own “theory on the universe” as it relates to increasing profitability. Profitability can mean more money coming in than going out, but I think it can also mean more creativity, ideas and spirit coming in than going out. Don’t expend more than you’re taking in from the world.

So, my theory is “Inspirationable.” Inspirationable means being an inspiration to others, and myself as well as being open to receive inspiration. Always.

The title of my blog states this attitude: Writers Inspired, which I try to make my daily motto: Inspire and Be Inspired…

  • As a writer…I aim to inspire my readers to think bigger, bolder and well, differently than they’re used to thinking. Profit: that all-time rush of “connecting” with the world outside myself


  • As a writer…I also absorb inspiration from books, music, nature, movies, others, and myself through daily observations. Profit: Creative well fills; soul soars!


  • As a teacher…I hope my lessons, casual workshop formats and open dialogue with my students inspire creativity and passion for writing and reading Profit: Creating the next literary greats from these nimble young minds, plus my workshops fill quickly * throws confetti *


  • As a student…I devour books, blogs, videos and classes to open my mind to deeper thinking and ways to utilize this new inspiration in my writing. Profit: my craft improves, my writing rings clear and my stories, articles and books get sold!


  • As a mom…my boys inspire me daily: to go with the flow, laugh at gross stuff, see people as they truly are – not who they pretend to be Profit: in tune with my inner child reminding me to be my authentic self, which kind of helps in the business of creating and communicating ; )


How Inspirationable are you? Maybe you have some other –able theory on the universe. Share!

To learn more about Scott Ginsberg and his latest book: -able, check out his site. I guarantee you’ll be inspired.


Be Bold! Be Brave! Be Inspired! Hit SUBSCRIBE at the top of the page and watch the magic unfold…


Filed under Advice, Believe, books, Inspiration

Thankful Thursday – Share your gratitude

“Feeling gratitude and not expressing it is like wrapping a present and not giving it.” 

~ William Arthur Ward 

It’s been a while since I’ve publically expressed my thanks for the many people, events and just little blessings that make me who I am.

So, thanks goes out to:

All of my faithful subscribers – you are the reason I strive to write valuable, insightful posts

Readers passing through – looking at my visits per day brings a smile to my writers’ soul

Inspiring comments – making connections is the TRUE reason I write and the comments you leave give me that sense of community

My gal pals of WPSS you know who you are: superwomen who encourage, kick butt and share this wild journey of writing while mothering. Love each of you and can’t wait till we meet in October!!

My amazing young writing students – you inspire me EVERY. SINGLE. DAY. Your ideas and stories fill me with that bubbling passion for the craft of writing – and teaching! Keep rockin’ out those words…

Fellow writing teachers – we share that strong bond of hope – hoping to reach one more student, reel one more in to the sea of storyland.  I gain strength knowing there are more of us out there, each with our own net. Please tell me how I can give back to you!

Twitter – I know this is silly, but Twitter has brought me mass info, contacts and camaraderie and I love having all of those at my fingertips!

My family – who encourages me, inspires me, makes me crazy yet keeps me grounded. All I do is for you : )

What are you thankful for today? Post it on your blog or comment here, but don’t keep the gift of thankfulness to yourself ; )


Filed under Believe, emotion, Inspiration, Little Things

What I learned this week

Double-Friday Feature!

Each week I post what I learned in writing, teaching, marketing and life! Because last week got away from me, today is Double Feature Friday!


  • Guess what? I can write in the midst of my kids! This week, pressed to get some words, any words, on the page, I took my laptop into my boys’ room and sat at Sam’s art table. While he rummaged through a Tupperware of craft beads, picking out the heart-shapes for me, I wrote a very rough draft of a guest post on teaching young writers. I also answered, with many misspellings and fragmented sentences, a 10-question interview for another author’s blog. Yes, it was frustrating having my thoughts interrupted after every other word, but I have some good raw material to revise later. So, no excuses for you mamas and papas (and that means pet-owners, too!) Go here for more tips on prioritizing your writing time.
  • Another great tip I probably mentioned before but actually used this week was the on-line egg timer. Curse you Twitter and Facebook and other realms of the internet distraction world. Now I can time my time writing: 30 minutes to craft interview questions for an author blog tour: go! 20 minutes to write a press release for my young writers summer studio: go! Try it, you’ll like it! (Mikey did!) Go here for tips on breaking bad writing habits!


  • The age group I teach creative writing to is middle grade.  Where are these young writers? Twitter, not likely. Bloggy land, maybe. Facebook, bingo!  So, I created a Facebook group to target the ages I’m trying to reach. Come on over and join the discussions! Here are instructions to create your own Facebook group. While there, become a “fan” of UpWrite Press – they give away free business-writing books!
  • Also searching for my young writer market, I came across some cool young adult and teen blogs:  BloggingYA, Blackeyedsusans and teen fiction cafe. Check them out, share the love!
  • As a writing teacher, I’m feeling pressured (from myself) to become more familiar with The Classics. So, this week, I’m reading The Sound and the Furyby William Faulker (via audiobook, which is the best invention since sliced bread!)


  • I’m a huge advocate for being involved in my community within my platform.  Hence, I’ve been keeping in contact with the coordinator of a local youth enrichment program, FRoG (Friends of the Gifted and Talented). My efforts paid off when an announcement on my young writing studio was sent via email newsletter to the entire mailing list of FRoG, which I understand spans multiple local school districts. In one week, I had about 8 emails from inquisitive parents, followed up with 5 newly registered students! Get out there and CONNECT! Here’s a site offering Free advertising of your upcoming events
  • Here is a great article on how writers should (and should not) use social medias!
  • Want to get more exposure on Twitter, but don’t want to fall in a manhole by texting and Tweeting on the street? Click here to find out how to bulk-write and then schedule your Tweets.
  • And, last but not least, here is the link to the free ebook, Work At Home Marketing That Doesn’t Suck,by Tina McAllister. Some handy little gems in there!


  • Most of the day’s stresses are melted by watching a few episodes of Seinfield and enjoying a sweet treat at night!
  • Be friendly and social: you never know who you’ll bump into, say, in the grocery store parking lot or waiting to rent a movie. I’ve bumped into several of my students’ parents just being out and about in the neighborhood.
  • Play! This week feeling frazzled and sluggish by deadlines and eating unhealthy, I snapped my laptop closed, grabbed the boys and their bikes and went riding. They rode, I walked/ran to catch up. We found a steeply sloped sidewalk and rode back and forth, then spun in circles in the grassy field and collapsed on the ground in giggles. Felt fantastic!

So…what did you learn this week?


Filed under Advice, Believe, books, Education, Perseverance, Platform/Marketing, Rest