Archive for September, 2010

Zoetrope: All-Story

One of the best ways to practice great writing is to write a short story.  Keeping a story confined within 5-8,000 words offers an opportunity to develop characters and dialogue that does not ramble.  Short stories can also be developed into a much more involved story.   It will unknowingly make your writing tighter.  The Zoetrope contest, deadline is October 1st, not only gives prize money and publication but it also opens up the door to be considered by prominent literary agencies.  Visit for details  LA Carlson


Set a Standard

Remember not so very long ago when we lived in a world where it meant something to have a standard? Something established as a model or example. The recent dust-up over Sesame Street and Katy Perry is a good example.  While Perry is has some obvious things going for her; Sesame Street has long been known as an endearing children’s program with a specific standard.  I was happy to see they weren’t afraid to invoke their standard.  Good taste never goes out of style.  Apply a set standard to your own writing.  Don’t become flustered when you receive a rejection, always respond in good taste and move on.  Define your standard for your writing world and stay true to it.  Your audience will appreciate it.  LA Carlson

Art Intrigue

Robert K. Wittman’s book PRICELESS is the true story of how he went undercover to rescue the world’s stolen treasures.  He is the founder of the FBI Art Crime Team.  It makes reference to a famous family in Minnesota and the very popular show Antiques Roadshow.  Great Read.  LA Carlson

National Alzheimer’s Day

Please read and give back.  LA Carlson

Subject Line: It’s Time for a Breakthrough

Dear friends,

Alzheimer’s disease steals the future from millions of Americans. It robs spouses of their companions and children of their parents and grandparents; it erodes the health and financial resources of caregivers.

I just signed a petition calling on Congress to make Alzheimer’s disease a national priority. Will you add your voice?

Your signature will be delivered to Congress on September 21, 2010 World Alzheimer’s Day.

Together, we can make Alzheimer’s a national priority.

Secure your time to write

It’s difficult some days isn’t it?  There’s the distractions of email, the cell phone, laundry, the dog, the kids and the  15 other things that need to be done.  Make your space only about writing and have inspiring objects near by.  I must have classical music in my headphone when I write.  Turn off the phone, select a certain time to check email and get the daily routines finished.  Sit down and write every day and you’ll be glad you did.

LA Carlson

Do the research

I had previously written about the need for self-promotion.  I mentioned a website (Vistaprint) I hadn’t done very much research on and discovered many complaints about them.  I forget the golden rule:  If it sounds too good to be true it is and you get what you pay for.”  As a writer I’m not experienced with creating websites, obtaining business cards, and registering a domain name.  Here’s what I’ve learned; ask for free samples when available(123Print) will send samples, find a registry that is reputable (1&1, Dotster) and will register your domain with ICANN-The Internet Corporation for Internet Names and Numbers.  It’s important that you own your domain name because you may need to transfer it at some point.   Read everything about the company and their products.  Lastly, figure out what your brand is about, don’t deviate and proceed confidently with a direction.    LA Carlson


The word “Imagine” sits atop my desk.  It’s in large black letters and has a 3D like quality.  When I received it as a gift I was unsure of where I could put it and one of my kids had placed it there one day.    It seems to be proper even though it’s another thing I have to dust!   I’m also an information junkie and when I read about another writer who gets published I go back to what inspires and that is imagination.  One of my favorite quotes is from Albert Einstein; “Logic will get you from point A to B, but imagination will get you everywhere else.

LA Carlson