Links I Love: Week of June 17th

you-are-the-bees-knees1. The No-Stress Way to Create Your Story’s Logline – Logline? What the heck is a logline? I was clueless until a few months ago, when I learned that authors are expected to condense the essence of their book – their 50K, 70K, 90K opus of love – down to a single sentence in order to be able to pitch it to agents, editors, readers – anybody, really. Say WHAT? (My current logline draft reads: “A bookstore owner must choose between fantasy and reality after discovering the men she’s dating are fictional characters she’d created years ago.” Perhaps I need to read the article again?)

2. The 400 Year Old Color Chart – Good to know I’m not the only one obsessed with colors. And shades of colors. My husband just rolls his eyes when I start talking to him about reds under-laced with blue versus yellow. He thinks there’s just red. I’ll have to show him this.

3. The Numbering of Houses in Regency England – Thank goodness pizza delivery wasn’t an option. It would have been much harder to find the correct address for that Regency gaming hell (although I supposed its reputation probably preceded it).

4. Classifying Your Book: How to Research & Target Literary Agents – I post this one for your benefit, but also for mine. I’m still trying to figure out if my book works best for marketing if it’s seen as a paranormal romance, or as a chick lit book with elements of magic. Guess I have some reading to do!

5. Six Things Writers Can Learn From Elvis – Thankya Thankya Verra Much! People who know me in real life know my husband and I have 50s Elvis posters plastered across our basement wall in homage to how we met. Now it turns out The King can help writers, too?? Mercy!

6. 33 British Slang Words You’ll Want to Start Using Regularly Because They’re Awesome – Brilliant! I’m chuffed to know I’ll soon be passing as a native Brit. Or an American obsessed with Britain, at least. Bob’s your uncle!

7. How To Tell If You Are in a Jane Austen Novel – Just in case, like me, you occasionally confuse fiction with reality, this handy list will help you discern if, perhaps, this time, for realz, you are stuck in a Jane Austen novel. Although I have to say, I once took a walk with a cad, but I’m pretty sure that was in 1993.


Links I Love: Week of May 12th

libraryIt’s a little of this, a little of that, and a whole lot of numbered lists in this week’s round-up of my favorite links that have caught my eye recently. What do you think?

1. Looking for porn? Earth porn, that is (what kind of girl do you think I am?!). Check out these stunning photos.

2. I’m a newbie to the Londontopia site, but I’m already in love. Each week they post numerous links on a variety of great topics. Here you can learn 10 random facts about Covent Garden!

3. 20 Curious Victorian Words and Sayings – I love language. And words. Especially weird words. Check these out, and let me know which is your favorite. I’m fond of Newgate Knockers, myself. (The word, not the facial hair to which it refers.)

4. 40 Maps That Explain the Middle East – Yes, I’m a Western Civ girl at heart. But that doesn’t mean I’m not interested and shouldn’t know anything about other parts of the world, especially since the history of the middle east so heavily impacted the history of the European west.

5. 10 Biggest “White Girl” Problems in Literature – Bwah ha ha! Hilarious list proving that that #selfie girl hasn’t cornered the market on drama or absurdity.

6. The Most Spectacular Libraries in the World – Which do you most want to visit? These are stunning!

7. What Happened to the Harlequin Romance? – Intriguing and thought-provoking article on the history of Harlequin, and how the age of digital book publishing is forcing it to change.



Links I Love: Week of April 23rd

The Basket of Cherries, by E.W. Gill, 1828

1. Fantasy Worldbuilding Questions – I’m taking a class on writing Regency romance via the Beau Monde chapter of the RWA, and instructor Judith Laik passed along this link of questions/issues to consider as you build your world in whatever kind of story you are writing.

2. Regency Skeleton Suits (No, Not Halloween Costumes) – It’s fascinating to me to consider how people have dressed throughout different time periods. Here’s a nice summation of the kinds of clothing little boys wore, and how graduating from dresses to skeleton suits (“breeching”) was often a big deal for a boy and his family.

3. Can Thoughts and Intentions Alter the Physical World? – As the comments on this link show, there’s a wide variety of reactions to this “rice experiment.” Some absolutely believe in it, others call it bunk. But hey, we humans aren’t rice, and it makes perfect sense to me that speaking kind, loving words to each other (AND OURSELVES) will result in a buoyant, happy spirit. Speaking negatively only produces more black. Decide for yourselves.

4. The Missing Tudors: Black People in 16th Century England – I admit when I notice non-Caucasians in early art, it catches my eye, in part because it seems so rare. This article reveals how interwoven black people (and presumably people of other ‘races’) were in Tudor society, a fact that often is overlooked in modern representations of the period.

5. The Definite Stereotype Map of Britain and Ireland – Hey, I didn’t make it. But it did evoke some chuckles. What do you think?

6. The Snowflake Method for Designing a Novel – Several members of my beloved Shenandoah Valley Writers swear by this method for crafting a novel. I fully intend to give it a try, but meanwhile I’m sharing it with you. Have you tried this method? What do you think?


Links I Love: Week of April 20, 2014

p7p1. 11 Grammatical Words and Terms That Sound Dirty – Language-isms mixed with raunchy innuendos? Sign me up! (You’ll never think of conjugate in the same way again.)

2. The Official Ranking of Jane Austen’s 14 Leading Men – Do you agree? Whom do you think should be in the top spot? I don’t know if this is the order I would have chosen, but it does make me itch to read / watch Jane Austen’s stories again.

3. 14 Words That Are Their Own Opposites – More word fun! Does it get any better than this?

4. Jane Austen and the Art of Letter-Writing – There’s never enough Austen, right? Here’s a great look at Austen’s letter writing and how it sheds insight into her character – even though only a small portion of the letters she wrote survive.

5. Writing Numbers in Fiction – Do you know when to write a number out rather than just using number characters? Now you will. I can tell you I’m forty-two years old, but sometimes it feels like 1,000. (Apparently the rules enumerated here don’t apply to blog post titles, as evidenced by the ones mentioned above.)

6. 10 Words to Cut From Your Writing – They’ve got really quite amazing stuff here. Literally. Do you agree with their selections? Which would you add?

7. Black Death NOT Spread by Rat Fleas? – Say what? In truth, whether spread by fleas or airborne, the plague was horrific – but so, apparently, was the state of life for many 14th century Londoners.

Links I Love: Week of March 27th, 2014

Tunnel of Love, Ukraine Image credits: Oleg Gordienko
Tunnel of Love, Ukraine
Image credits: Oleg Gordienko

Oops. I’ve been, um, collecting links but, er, haven’t exactly found the time to share them (because I’ve actually been working on hard on book stuff!). I’m sure you’re devastated. To make up for it, I’ll try to offer 7 exceptionally good ones.

1. 18th-century London Paintings Meet Google Street View – Pretty much exactly what the title says – and these images are awesome. Check them out!

2. Time-Traveling Celebrities – I’ve decided John Mayer bears a striking resemblance to Lord Byron. What I didn’t know was he’s not the only celebrity who clearly moonlights as a time-traveler. Check out these other twins separated by centuries.

3. Why We Can’t Get Enough Fairy Tales – It’s true. I love them, too.

4. 25 Most Brutal Torture Techniques Ever Devised – I never promised they’d be uplifting links. But these can be useful to know for writing, right?

5. 8 Health Benefits of Kissing – I’m all for this!

6. 22 Unbelievable Places – A stunning visual feast. Make them full-screen and sit back and savor.

7. Why Sugar Makes Us Feel So Good – As I sit here munching on my umpteenth piece of chocolate, this somehow seemed appropriate. Although I prefer kissing.