Focus Friday #3 / Giveaway Winner Announced!

Hey Guys,

I apologize for the sparseness of my posts these days, but life has been throwing me for a loop, as it tends to do. First and foremost, I’m preparing to start a brand new job after 4+ years at the same place. Change is always a little scary, but exciting too, and it seems 2017 is going to be my year of change.

Bring it on.

That being said, I did not forget about the Writer’s Gift Basket Giveaway! The details of the contest were posted here: https://thedailyrejectionblog.com/2017/01/07/new-year-giveaway/

I have to say that I received a lot of really good entries, and that I wish I could give something to everyone. But unfortunately there can only be one winner, and there was one prompt in particular that instantly got me excited to get writing.

The winner is Ellie P, owner of http://crossedeyesanddottedtees.wordpress.com
Her prompt is as follows:

When the angel rang Claret's doorbell, she was immediately annoyed. He's early, Claret thought.

Congratulations, Ellie P! And thank you once again to all my readers, followers, re-bloggers, and contest entrants. You are all very much appreciated, and I look forward to sharing more with you in the future.

My take on her prompt is below the cut (Part One of Two)

CLARET: PART ONE

Continue reading “Focus Friday #3 / Giveaway Winner Announced!”

Inspiration Monday #4

There are two things in the world that are perhaps the most inspiring and fulfilling of all, and those things are volunteer work and travel. Both are good for the soul. Both help shape our world views. Both may toss us in situations that are slightly beyond our comfort zone, but in the best way possible – in the way that enacts change within ourselves. Both provide a channel for finding common ground with people who may not share the same culture or background. They may be in a different class bracket, be years removed from our own age, or of a different religion or orientation, and simple interaction opens our eyes in ways we couldn’t have dreamed possible.

Volunteering at a homeless shelter, for example, is the quickest way to realize that the majority of homeless are not lazy, as is often the perception. Some suffer from disabilities which prevent them from finding quality work. Others are single mothers who are taking college courses to better their chances of establishing a career that can support their children.

Volunteering in a nursing home is the quickest way to realize that the elderly aren’t cranky and boring. On the contrary, most are delighted to have visitors, and many have incredible stories to tell. They just want someone to listen, and it doesn’t take long to realize that the only thing you need to do to make their day is to simply lend an ear.

Whereas volunteer work is more about bringing happiness to others, travel is often the tool that brings the most joy to self. At least this is true in my case. And in life, it’s pretty darn important to make ourselves happy, too. After all, I’m stuck with me for the rest of my life, and being stuck with someone miserable wouldn’t be any fun.

I recently read an article called “Why You Should Spend Your Money on Experiences, Not Things”, and it spoke to me on a profound level. The sentiment of the article is that material objects quickly lose their shine and appeal, whereas your experiences – through avenues such as travel and volunteerism, for starters – provide longer-lasting happiness, because they help shape your identity. They make you who you are. A car doesn’t define you. What you’ve done with your life for the last 30 years, does.

The people you’ve met, the places you’ve seen, the events you witnessed – these are all what make you, you. And the more experiences you collect along the way, the more of a well-rounded person you become. The type of person who can whip out a story to relate to just about anything. A situational jack-of-all-trades, who likely possesses a much more thorough understanding of this crazy world we live in. An understanding which bleeds into all aspects of our lives. Whether it’s through our relationships with others, our view of ourselves, or even through our writing.

My wish for my readers is that this post prompts you to go out and get inspired. Talk to someone you wouldn’t normally interact with, listen to their story. Go somewhere you haven’t been, even if it’s just a new restaurant. Reach beyond your comfort zone. You’ll be surprised at what you find.

Happy Inspiration Monday!

Until Next Time,

JB

Rejection Wednesday #3

You know what’s the best feeling in the world? Seeing this beacon of hope in your inbox, in response to your query letter:

Sounds intriguing! Please send me the first 30 pages and a synopsis as Word document attachments. I look forward to reading your material!

You know what’s the worst feeling? Seeing this follow-up in your inbox a couple weeks later:

Thank you very much for giving me the opportunity to read your submission. I appreciate you considering me for representation of your work. Unfortunately, after careful review, I have decided to pass on this submission.

As the tide of rejection letters continues to roll in, I thought I’d share a few tips for everyone like me who is currently in the novel querying stage. These are sites that have helped me immeasurably to keep track of all my non-progress:

Continue reading “Rejection Wednesday #3”

New Year Giveaway

Hey Guys!

Just want to let you know that I appreciate each and every one of my readers. To show you just how much, I’d like to share something with you on this Share it Saturday…. A giveaway! What we have here is a pretty sweet writer’s gift basket that was assembled thanks to ample holiday generosity.

The $100 value gift basket includes a “Writer’s Block” notebook, a “Writer Emergency” card pack, an “I write, what’s your superpower?” mug, and a USB color-changing “book” light (it’s made of wood and opens and closes like a real book).

Since my posts have been slightly more sparse thanks to a hectic start to the new year, I’m looking to my readers for inspiration. So, to win the gift basket, the rules are simple:

  1. Be a follower of The Daily Rejection.
  2. Send me a 1-2 sentence story prompt by Friday, January 20th. Anything at all that you’d like to see me write a short story about. ONLY IDEAS THAT YOU DON’T MIND PARTING WITH. (This is just meant to be a fun little exercise). You can use my contact form at https://thedailyrejectionblog.com/contact/

I’ll post my interpretation of the prompt by the following Focus Friday, January 27th, and announce the winner. Not at all a requirement, but I would greatly appreciate it if you would help spread the word.

Good luck, and happy prompting!

JB

Inspiration Monday #3

Hope everyone had a safe and happy new year! Which brings me to the most obvious of obvious Inspiration Monday posts.

The new year.

In particular, a celebration of the fact that 2016 is over.

Not because 2016 was the worst year of my life. I had many positive things happen. New experiences, good times with great friends, kept my job and my health, learned some harsh life lessons, grew a little. But man, was it ever a rollercoaster. A sea of ups and downs that at times nearly blindsided me with emotional whiplash. And it seemed as though the world was going crazy around me. Many close to me suffered, as well as many more people I didn’t know. The deadliest mass shooting happened practically in my backyard. A particularly vicious election occurred, quite possibly the most divisive I remember, stuff that tore apart family dinners, ruined friendships, caused riots in the streets. Then there were police shootings. Genocides. Syria. A whole slew of childhood icons dying left and right. And that’s just to name a few things.

You’ve seen the headlines, the memes. The tweets. I think we’re all on the same page about 2016 being… well, 2016, a year that certainly deserves it’s own place in history. If recorded history were a high school yearbook, and each year a student, 2016 would be voted “Most likely to f*** everything up”. In fact, it should be alloted a space in the dictionary. 2016 (adj) meaning: crazy, ridiculous, messed up. “Hey man, you seen that guy choke on stage? Total 2016 fail right there.” Works as a verb too. “Hey dude, try not to 2016 that, alright? Just bought it.”

Continue reading “Inspiration Monday #3”

Try It Tuesday #3

I suppose this Try It Tuesday could also pass for a Focus Friday, but in actuality, it’s a form of writing that I never ever do.

Yes, folks. I am trying my hand at poetry.

Now, I was always more of a prose girl. Thus, not being much of a poetry aficionado, I don’t necessarily know what good poetry looks like, or how to even properly punctuate the sucker. Aside from Robert Frost, I can’t really quote many poets. To me, a “good” poem is a rhyming one, which makes me a terrible barometer of a poem’s true value. But I believe everyone deserves a shot at art in all its forms, so why not me? Gotta start somewhere, right?

I hope you enjoy my Try It Tuesday poetry experiment. Heck, maybe you’ll find some meaning in my humble little attempt. Maybe not. But regardless, here it is in all its flawed glory. And you know what? I’m glad I tried it.

OK, admittedly, I’m more nervous to share this with you than anything I’ve written so far. But here goes nothing.

Continue reading “Try It Tuesday #3”

Inspiration Monday #2

For this inspiration Monday, I’d like to talk about when our creative inspiration tends to strike the hardest. Or perhaps more importantly, where.

One thing I’ve learned is that as a writer, or any type of creative person, I’m often convinced that our ideas are conspiring to kill us. I mean, it’s practically full on, CSI: Creativity, up in my brain.

Think about the evidence.
Continue reading “Inspiration Monday #2”