Monday, May 22, 2017

Death of a Blog

I'm dressed in a black, somber mood. Well, no, not really.

For this is not a somber occasion. I am stepping away from my blog, at least for now, and stepping toward writing more stories and experiencing more adventures.  

Over the years, I've interviewed some amazing people. I'll treasure those moments for always. I've also enjoyed sharing my experiences, my life, with all of you.

But in life, priorities change, and time is a precious commodity. I love writing, and working to perfect my skills. And adventures restore my energies, fuel my imagination. 

May all of you follow your heart, your dreams, and live the life you truly desire.

Love and best wishes to all,

P.S. Find me on Twitter:  @jeannecurtin
                              Instagram:  jeannecurtin 
                              YouTube: Allen and Jeanne Adventures.

Thursday, April 6, 2017

Hightlights Foundation Workshop: Writing Off the Page

March 26 -29, 2017
(L to R): Kekla Magoon, Laurie Calkhoven, Nicole Valentine

Driving to the Highlights Foundation barn felt like driving home. It is now a familiar place. One where I know the magic and love of books resides. It’s a safe place where strangers transform into friends, where everyone receives encouragement and knowledge. 

Writing Off the Page was my third workshop at the barn. Though each experience is different, all have been beneficial to my writing journey. And oh, the food. It’s both nutritious and delicious, much like the knowledge gained.

The description of the workshop is what caught my attention. I wanted to learn creative techniques to carve out my characters, to breathe more life into them, to make them real. I wanted to learn how to pump more heart into my stories. To push my creativity to new limits. I was not disappointed. 

And to make this memory even more heart-warming, several writers in the group made major breakthroughs during our stay. If you’ve never been to a Highlights Foundation workshop, check out their offerings. They’re an investment in your children’s book writing and/or illustrating career.

 Previous Highlights Foundation workshops I've attended are: Picture Books & All that Jazz and Perfecting the Picture Book Text

From the Highlights Foundation web site:  
Writing Off the Page

In this workshop, you will develop new creative strategies to help bring your stories to life:

*Think about your writing from different angles, drawing inspiration from other disciplines (theater, graphic design, visual art) to deepen your characters and create more vibrant landscapes in which to immerse them.

*Practice new ways to get into your characters’ heads. Through meditation, journaling, arts and crafts, and creative projects, you will be pulled out from behind the keyboard to immerse yourself more fully in the worlds of your stories.

*Consider story structure and explore visual and tactile tools for outlining, organizing, and reorganizing your story.

Thursday, March 2, 2017

3 Entries for Vivian Kirkfield's 50 Precious Words Writing Challenge

Many thanks to Author Vivian Kirkfield for celebrating Dr. Seuss's birthday, March 2, with a #50PreciousWords Writing Challenge. 

I had so much fun creating one story, I kept going and created three. 

“Treasure! And it’s all mine.”
Kaida tucks the gem under her scale and soars through the sky.
But she hears another dragon far below cry, “One gem shy.”
So Kaida shares her gem. Draconia shares his ice cream.
Together, they share a most delicious treasure of all … friendship.

“Ho hum. I am so dull.”
“Take a spin with me. I’m all the buzz.”
And so Pencil met Sharpener.
Together they created ideas, art, and became best friends.
When Pencil hit a breaking point, Sharpener was there.
And Pencil shared Sharpener’s daily grind.
Until Pencil’s life ended short.

Trussst me. I’m not going to bite you.
But you’re a snake. And snakes eat rats.
True. But I sssaid I wouldn’t bite you.
Promise you won’t bite me?
Ok. You seem like a nice, honest snake.
I am. GULP. I ssswallow my food whole.

  1. Write a story appropriate for kids ages 12 or under, using only 50 words…they can all be different words, or you can use some of them over and over…just as long as the total word count of the story is 50 or less.
  2. It can be prose, rhyme, free verse, silly or serious…whatever works for you.
  3. Title is not included in the word count.
  4. No illustration notes please.
  5. Between March 2nd and March 6th, post your story on your blog if you have one and want to and put the link in the comments of this post. Or copy and paste the entire story in the comments of this post. I ask for the link so that people will visit each other and find new friends in the kid lit community. Please make sure you put your name in the post. If you have any trouble at all posting the link or the story, please email me and I will be happy to do it for you:
  6. Deadline for posting the story or the link in the comments is Monday, March 6, at 11:59pm.
  7. Winners will be announced in a special blog post on Thursday, March 9.
  8. Winners? Of course, there will be winners…and prizes, too!