Sometimes you just have to write a monster… or bake one

Sometimes you just have to write a monster … or bake one.

Did you know I have a story with a monster in it? I have one story where a monster appears. Vague Directions has a shape shifting monster. A hamster. Yes that’s right. A hamster. Sometimes my imagination surprises even me. I was writing and a shape shifting hamster monster appeared and went after the heroine. Sometimes when you are writing, thinking you are writing a certain kind of story something will pop up and insist it be written. This is how I ended up with a monster in the short story.

Writing students will often hear me say, you must write things out of you. If something wants to be written, then you must write it. Otherwise it will nag at you while you are trying to write. So, write those monsters out when they pop up. Get them out an onto the page. Then you can go on and write something else. It is best not to bottle things, monsters especially.

We are celebrating everything monsters this month on my social media. Hence these contests.  I am giving away 13 ebook copies of Vague Directions for Halloween. How do you play to win?

I love cookies and monster cookies especially. The pic above is of the monster brownies I baked last week. I just had to make them. Halloween holiday foods are so much fun and I have two boards on my Pinterest page to collect the pics. Now here is how to win.

WHAT you need to do is ADD Monster Cookie Recipes or Food Recipes in our PINTEREST FOLDER on Author Debra Parmley’s Facebook Page. MY FB AUTHOR PAGE LINK: https://www.facebook.com/debra.parmley.7

We will then ADD them here so that I can keep them and write the book: https://www.pinterest.com/debraparmley/monster-cookies/ & https://www.pinterest.com/debraparmley/monster-foods/

THEN to ENTER our Contest: Email my PA: marandameltonpa@gmail.com using subject line: Vague Directions Ebook. 13 LUCKY Winners will be chosen on November 1st. YOU MUST SAVE RECIPES TO DEBRA’S FACEBOOK FOLDER & EMAIL TO BE CONSIDERED TO WIN. Good luck and we look forward to hearing from you. – Debra Parmley

 

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THE END … IS THE BEGINNING

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“THE END …. IS THE BEGINNING” Writing Workshop with Debra Parmley
Saturday, August 19th, 2017 11 am – 4 pm
(includes an hour for lunch on your own)
At Ervin Hypnosis Center, 2965 Summer Oaks Dr., Ste. 100, Bartlett TN 38134
$65 per person Energy Exchange

Join Amazon Bestselling author Debra Parmley as she demystifies the process toward publishing your book. Set your path, see your path and step forward into your future as an author.

11:00 to 1:00~~

Taking your book from idea to first draft
Finishing your first draft. 
Polishing your first draft to present your best book. Structure and title your book so it resonates with your reader.

One-hour lunch break

2:00 to 4:00~~

Get your book published – which way will you go, traditional or Indie self-published? Choosing your path.
Landing an agent or publishing contract or self-publishing on platforms that pay.
Marketing your book.
Building your brand.

Debra is a writing mentor and is available after the workshop to take appointments to look at your manuscript. Appointments may be scheduled to be in person or on Skype. You will need to provide a hard copy of your manuscript.

Students of Debra’s workshops are invited to join her student newsletter and to follow her writing blog.

http://www.debraparmley.com/

RSVP for this special experience to Madra Little at 901-827-0023 (call or text)

Be the Captain!

I am aiming for that house on the beach and this blog post is spot on. ❤

Red Shoe Life Transformation

“Be the Captain of your destiny, not a prisoner of your wishful thinking!”  What a great quote!  I wish I had thought of it! HA!  Truly, I love this quote.  How much time have I wasted wishing for things.  Oh,  I wished I was… taller, blonder, richer, thinner…. had more sheep, etc.  When my kids were babies, I honestly wished I had some little job where I could be around people and wear cool earrings.  Now that I have that job, I wish that I could spend more time with my kids!  Ridiculous!

Wishing for things is a lot like whining.  It is an expenditure of energy that could be used for something else.  If you are not happy with what you are doing…  change it.  Don’t waste another minute wishing something would happen.  Set your mind to it and make it happen.

For example, perhaps I was wishing that…

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Today I’m Dancing For the Broken

Today I’m Dancing For the Broken – My Seventh Year With Shimmy Mob Memphis

Today, Saturday May 13th marks seven years since I founded Shimmy Mob Memphis. I’m proud of all my dance sisters and the work we’ve done to raise founds for our local domestic violence shelter over the years.

People have often asked me why I signed the city up and took on that job the first year even though I had retired from dancing and was focusing on my books and book signings with little extra time to spare. I usually have a four word answer.

Babies with broken bones.

I do not want to live in a world where babies have broken bones because a malicious adult injured them. That’s simply not acceptable to me. The work I’ve done with Shimmy Mob fights that problem and is just one small way I could help. Can you imagine what would happen if we each did one small thing to help? You can by making a donation when we dance.

There were lots of challenges that first year. In 2011 here in Memphis we had tornados and the river rising. No one wanted to let us dance because a Shimmy Mob/flash mob though organized and not mob like at all was brand new and flash mobs in the past had sometimes led to violence. I often thought of the irony of that as I searched for a place to dance. We ended up dancing downtown on the trolly line with the proper permissions in place as the City came through at the last minute, thanks to Dawn Vinson. Forty five dancers had signed up but because of tornados that day only a fraction of that number made it out to dance. We danced in between tornado sirens and watching for tornados but we got the job done and we raised a thousand dollars that first year even though we received no local news coverage for our event. The photographer for the Commercial Appeal called me as we were driving away. He had just missed us. I thought we had been a small voice that few heard, but even a small voice can help. Even a small voice can speak up. That too is an important part of fighting domestic violence and an important example to set. Later, we were honored by Shimmy Mob International for our efforts.

Honoring Shimmy Mob Memphis in 2011

Since then we have gone on to dance each year to raise funds. Our first year the funds went directly to the YWCA shelter and I took toiletries and diapers which we’d collected to the shelter. At the time I was told it was the only shelter in the tri-state area – which is not enough for a metropolitan area this size. Now here we are in our seventh year and we now collect for The Family Safety Center which is the first place domestic violence victims can go. It is a wonderful place and offers many services.

Things often come full circle, at least they do in my life. Last year I wasn’t able to dance because I’d fractured my talus bone (ankle) in half. (Not domestic violence. Before you jump to any conclusions here. In fact my husband was out of town at the time.) I’d stepped off two steps as if it were one, rolled my ankle and landed on the ankle bone on concrete. I was in a boot for several months. So dancing of course was out. This year I am dancing, though I’m wearing an orthopedic ankle brace and have to put a medicated cream on my foot. It’s nothing anyone would pay to see, I’m slow on the turns and have to modify many things and if the dance were about me or about that I’d sit it out. But it’s not. It’s about dancing with my dance sisters all over the world on the one day a year we come together to raise funds for our local domestic abuse shelters. It’s about dancing for the broken women and children (and yes men too) who cannot dance.

How can you help? Today we are dancing from 5:30 to 7:30 at Overton Square in midtown Memphis, TN and will be taking donations there for the Family Safety Center. We have two Facebook event pages:

Shimmy Mob Dances Today!

Shimmy Mob Dances at Overton Square Tonight!

There will be other appearances throughout the year as our team leader schedules them and you can keep up with us at Shimmy Mob Memphis on Facebook

Calculating Pages and Word Counts

How long is your book? My first book had to meet a 100,000 words goal to be submitted back in 2007. (Picture of me with my first book A Desperate Journey by Monica Parks Photography.) Much has changed since then but figuring your word count has not.

For the length of your book here is a guide to page counts and word counts.

How many pages have you written today? Keep writing!

How close to finishing your book are you? Keep writing!
The industry average is 250 words per page (pages of course vary with more dialog or more narrative)

Pages              Words
50                   12,500
100                 25,000
150                 37,500
200                 50,000
250                 67,500
300                 75,000
320                 80,000
350                 87,500

If you wrote 7 pages a day in 50 days you’d have 50,000 words. You can do it!
How fast do you write? How many pages a day can you get in? This chart may help you to estimate how soon you can be done with your book and reach the goal of your page count for the book.
Now get going! How many pages can you write today?