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                    W R I T I N G   W O R L D

A World of Writing Information - For Writers Around the World

                  http://www.writing-world.com

Issue 13:13          13,253 subscribers             July 4, 2013
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IN THIS ISSUE:
=================================================================

THE EDITOR'S DESK: Not for Beginners Only ("It's Not Just About
You"), by Moira Allen 
CRAFTING FABULOUS FICTION: Grammatical Griping, by Victoria
Grossack 
NEWS FROM THE WORLD OF WRITING
WRITING JOBS AND OPPORTUNITIES
FEATURE: 10 Less Explored Types of Food Features, by Aditi Bose 
FREE STUFF FOR WRITERS: Finding the Facts, by Aline Lechaye   
THE WRITE SITES -- Online Resources for Writers
The Author's Bookshelf   
                           
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FROM THE EDITOR'S DESK
=================================================================

Not for Beginners Only...
-------------------------

Recently my friend Debbie Ridpath Ohi asked if I would do an
interview for her.  After we'd wrapped it up she sent me a final
question: "What one piece of advice do you have for aspiring
freelance writers?"

It has taken me months to come up with an answer.  The trick, of
course, is that word "ONE."  I have loads of advice; I have an
entire website full of advice.  But... ONE piece?  And, preferably,
one piece that does not simply repeat what beginners have heard a
thousand times before?  ("Learn your craft; always strive to
improve; understand the trade!")

So I thought I'd turn the question around, and ask whether there is
a specific challenge facing new writers today that was not an issue
back in the semi-dark ages when I got started.  And it seems to me
that there is: Social Media.

Most articles on the topic of "writers" and "social media" extol
the benefits writers can reap from exploiting this new realm of
communication.  But for beginning writers, I believe social media
offers a downside.  It has the potential to reinforce a view that
afflicts many beginners (and many not-so-beginners): The view that
writing is "all about ME."

When we start out as writers, quite often, we are terribly full of
ourselves.  Often, we are embarking upon a journey of
self-exploration.  We are bursting with thoughts, ideas, memories,
and experiences that we consider dazzling and enthralling simply
because they are ours.  Either we imagine that our ideas are so
unique and amazing that the world will be stunned by their
brilliance, or we suppose that we have such a grasp of the plight
of "everyman" that the world cannot help but see itself reflected
in our prose.  Consequently, it is very easy for our writing to
become full of, well, US.

In those ancient days when writers hunched over typewriters and
made carbon copies, this wasn't much of a problem.  One sent one's
brilliant, me-focused poem, story or article to an editor, held
one's breath for roughly six weeks, and got the inevitable form
rejection.  Successful writers were those who eventually figured
out that something wasn't working, took a look around at what WAS
getting published, and adapted accordingly.  And while this system
was certainly a bit rough on beginners, it worked -- because in
those bad old days, the only writing that one could find as an
"example" to guide one's path was writing that was good enough to
be PAID FOR.  Whether you turned to books, magazines, or
newspapers, the only "published media" you could find was work that
readers considered good enough to PAY to read -- and that editors,
consequently, considered good enough to pay to acquire.  

Naturally, this led to plenty of grumbling amongst new and
not-so-new writers who WEREN'T getting paid -- or published. 
Editors and publishers were widely accused of being hostile
gatekeepers, turning away wondrous works by the score in their
crass pursuit of "marketable" material.  If only there were another
way to get one's work to the world, why, then, surely the world
would beat a path to one's door...

Fast forward to the world in which that dream has become a reality
-- and the situation it creates for writers today.  The
"me-focused" affliction still haunts us, but when we look around at
what is "out there," what do we see?  We see a world of "ME."  Now,
granted, there is much that is admirable in the world of social
media.  But for every well written and informative blog, there are
a thousand that have nothing worthwhile to say, and that say it at
great length.  For every inspirational Facebook page, there are
thousands of people posting what they had for breakfast.  For every
meaningful tweet... Well, you get the idea.

For a new writer who is exploring self-expression, it has become
far too easy to assume that the emphasis is on the word "self." 
After all, if so many people are sharing what they had for
breakfast, surely this must mean that somewhere, there's an
audience that cares what YOU had for breakfast, so why not tell
them?

Now, let me be clear: I am not saying that new writers do NOT have
brilliant ideas to share.  In fact, a great many DO.  The problem
lies in determining how to separate one's brilliant ideas from
one's sense of being the person who comes up with those ideas.  It
lies in determining the balance between sharing one's self and
sharing what lies WITHIN one's self.  How do you get what is within
you out into the world, while simultaneously getting yourself out
of what is within you?

If that sounded convoluted, allow me one more old-fashioned
example.  Many years ago, some family friends (call them Mr. and
Mrs. W.) returned from a trip to Europe.  This was before home
computers, the Internet, or Facebook -- so to share such
experiences, people invited other people to their homes, turned out
the lights, and gave SLIDE SHOWS.  (This was legal.  You could
actually do this to someone without being locked up on charges of
cruelty and abuse.)

So Mr. W. got behind the slide projector, and we settled in our
chairs to watch slide after slide of the famous sights of Europe. 
And every slide, whether of a castle or a cathedral or a village
street, had one thing in common: It also included Mrs. W.  Every
single one.  

This is the problem with me-focused writing.  A writer wants to
share something memorable, meaningful, beautiful, inspiring, or
simply useful -- but, inspired by the me-focus of social media,
also wants to share that "this is me sharing it with you."  Instead
of looking at the beautiful thing you want to show me, I end up
looking at YOU showing me the beautiful thing.  

So if there is ONE piece of advice I would offer new writers, it is
this: Get out of the way.  Forget about followers and friends and
"likes" and re-tweets.  What is inside you is bigger than "you." 
The more you cause your readers' attention to focus on YOU, the
more you risk distracting them from the important and wonderful
things you actually have to say.

Instead, look at the media that surrounds you from an old-fashioned
perspective.  Ask yourself if you would PAY to read a particular
blog, or Facebook page, or tweet.  If the answer is NO, then don't
use it as an inspiration for the type of writing that YOU would
like to get paid for.  

Don't get me wrong -- I'm not suggesting that you avoid social
media, either as a writer or a reader.  But it is not the model to
turn to if you want to learn how to write publishable (i.e.,
"saleable") material.  If you yearn to craft stories, poetry,
novels or nonfiction, and get paid for the privilege, learn that
craft from those works that YOU'D be willing to pay for the
privilege of reading.  Social media gives you a wonderful way to
TALK to your audience -- but great writing is what gives you a
chance to BUILD one.


-- Moira Allen, Editor 

This article may be reprinted provided the author's byline, bio and
copyright notice are retained.  (For an author bio and complete
details on reprint terms, please visit 
http://www.writing-world.com/admin1/reprints.shtml)

Link to this article here:
http://www.writing-world.com/coffee/coffee66.shtml
 
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Read by over 1,000 children's book and magazine editors, this
monthly newsletter can be your own personal source of editors'
wants and needs, market tips, and professional insights.  Get a
FREE issue to start. http://www.thechildrenswriter.com/BP715

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COLUMN: CRAFTING FABULOUS FICTION: Grammatical Griping,
By Victoria Grossack 

=================================================================

This column may not appeal to everyone, for I'm going to write
about the grammatical mistakes that annoy me the most. If you're so
good that you don't make these mistakes, you don't need to read
further. And if you make these mistakes all the time, you may be in
the subset that thinks, who cares? All too often I've encountered
"writers" who take the following positions: Grammar doesn't matter.
Punctuation doesn't matter. Spelling doesn't matter. 

I don't agree with these statements, nor do I believe that they are
appropriate attitudes for any writer to take. I'm more forgiving to
those who don't have English as their first language, because I
know how hard it is to write in anything besides your mother
tongue. But for everyone else, good grammar is a requirement, a
sign of professionalism. Therefore, in this column I'm going to
rant and rave about a few of the mistakes that people make with
great frequency. 

Punctuation 
-----------
A few years ago, Lynne Truss's book, "Eats, Shoots and Leaves: The
Zero Tolerance Approach to Punctuation," surprised the publishing
world by climbing high on the bestseller lists. Now, not everyone
may agree with how she punctuates, but the fact that so many people
bought and read this book is a clear indicator that punctuation
matters to many. 

Just for emphasis, punctuating properly is not simply a matter of
having a clean manuscript to impress intellectual prigs.
Punctuation helps you convey the meaning that you want to convey --
instead of something else entirely. This is seen in the very title
of the book by Lynne Truss, which is from an incorrectly punctuated
definition of a panda. The correctly punctuated version would be
Eats Shoots & Leaves (implying that our panda is a vegetarian)
instead of Eats, Shoots & Leaves (implying that our panda is a
gunslinger in some Western). 

But let's move on to actual examples. The most common mistakes --
or at least, the one that bugs me most -- concern apostrophes.
Apostrophes (') are those funny little marks that look like commas
but are placed above as opposed to below the letters in sentences.
And the most frequent mistake that people make with respect to
apostrophes is confusing its and it's. 

It's can be re-written as It is or It has. 
Its is a possessive. 

Here are a couple of examples in which these words are used
correctly: 

It's time to go. (It is time to go.) 
It's raining. (It is raining.) 
The car's speedometer was broken. Its radio didn't work, either. 

Apostrophes are used improperly, too, in the creation of plurals.
If you're making plurals, you probably don't need apostrophes (one
exception is letters, such as when minding p's and q's). However,
in general, if you're writing about more than one boy, you should
write boys. Look closely! No apostrophe! Nevertheless, many
"writers" insert apostrophes determinedly into their plurals,
despite being told repeatedly to cease and desist. 

The other main case requiring apostrophes is the possessive. If you
want to indicate that the bike belongs to the boy, you write: the
boy's bike. If you want to indicate that bikes belong to several
boys, you write: the boys' bikes. 

And here we see, at last, the source of the confusion. Apostrophes
are necessary when creating possessives for nouns. However,
apostrophes are not used when creating possessives for most
pronouns. Its, his, hers, theirs, whose, ours -- these are all
pronouns, all indicating some degree of possession, and none of
them use apostrophes. It's unfair, even illogical, but that's how
it is. 

Of course, there is plenty more to punctuation than mastering the
apostrophe, and you would do well to understand the proper use of
periods and commas, colons and semi-colons, dashes and hyphens, and
the other little marks that help to convey meaning.

Spelling 
--------
Good spelling is another fundamental for the writer. One
misspelling that irks me is ALOT (it should be a lot -- and given
how hard my word processor tries to correct this it is amazing how
frequently ALOT appears in others' writing). Another gripe: many
people use LOOSE when they mean LOSE. If you lose something, that
means that you can't find it; if your pants are loose, that means
you're dieting successfully. DEFINATELY is DEFINITELY not a word,
yet it pops up everywhere! Perhaps the saddest, though, is GRAMMER
-- which should be spelled GRAMMAR -- for the latter spelling is
what will help you find what you need. 

Admittedly, spelling in English is not easy. Say the following
words aloud: though, tough, bough, cough, through, dough. Even
though they all end in OUGH, they don't sound alike. 

Words that sound alike are the cause of many misspellings (these
words are known as homophones). My favorite example is when a woman
wrote wonton (a type of Chinese cracker) when she actually meant
wanton (used to describe a lusty wench). These sorts of mistakes
may bring smiles to the faces of your readers -- but they're the
kind of smiles that you don't like, because your readers are
laughing at you instead of with you -- and so care is needed. In
fact, you need to be especially careful because spellcheckers can't
catch these mistakes. 

Here are a few instances in which the wrong word is often used: 

COULD OF (wrong) instead of COULD HAVE (right) -- or COULD'VE if
you want to have the same sound as could of

AFFECT instead of EFFECT (I'm not going to explain; please visit
your dictionaries) 

ACCEPT and EXCEPT (again, visit your dictionaries) 

ADVISE (a verb) and ADVICE (a noun) 

THAN and THEN. THAN is usually used as a comparative; for example,
"He is older THAN his sister." THEN is used to indicate what
follows, either in logic or in time: "If all the Weasleys have red
hair, THEN Ron Weasley has red hair" and "First we went to dinner,
THEN we went to the movies." 

Again, there are plenty of websites with more information on the
matter. If you search for "common spelling errors" you will find
plenty -- you may even find the ones that you make! 

Grammar 
-------
Nit-picky readers will note that so far I have only complained
about punctuation and spelling and not about grammar -- which,
according to the Merriam-Webster online dictionary's first
definition, is about "the study of the classes of words... their
functions and relations in the sentence." These readers may point
out that I have not yet justified the title of this column,
"Grammatical Griping." Another set of readers may contend that this
is splitting hairs, for surely correct punctuation and spelling are
fundamental to good grammar? Besides, if you look at websites
devoted to grammar, there will be sections on punctuation and
spelling. 

Still, it's important to remember that writers have to master more
than punctuation and spelling. However, here are a couple of
irritating and all-too-frequently-made grammatical mistakes: 

        The box of apples are open. 

In the sentence above, the subject noun and the verb don't "agree"
-- that is to say, the subject (box) is in the singular and the
verb (are) is in the plural. This is true even though the word
apples is closer in the sentence to the verb. A correct version of
the sentence is: 

        The box of apples is open. 

For more on this topic, search for "Subject Verb Agreement." 

Another irritant concerns the improper use of pronouns: 

        Harry and me went to the store. 

In this example, the writer is using the wrong pronoun (me) in the
subject of the sentence. The word me should only be used as a
direct or indirect object. A correct version of the sentence is: 

        Harry and I went to the store. 

Also, a word of warning: although you may be comfortable using the
common, everyday pronouns, if you're writing historical fiction,
you may want to review the proper usage of pronouns such as thou,
thee, thy and thine. 

A third improper instance, adjective instead of adverb: 

        I write good. 

Here the writer is using an adjective (good) when an adverb is
needed. A correct version of the sentence is: 

        I write well. 

There are plenty of other grammatical mistakes made by writers.
Creative typos know no bounds, and there are many ways to
incorrectly arrange words within a sentence. What is the best way
to rid your work of these problems? The first requirement is to
know what you should be doing. You will turn up a huge number of
resources if you search on the word "grammar" -- make sure you
spell it correctly! 

The second requirement is to proof your work, again and again. Even
if you know what you're doing, errors can creep in -- especially if
you have revised and edited your work. 

Moving On
---------
Although this article gives the impression that I'm hard-nosed and
strict in my approach to grammar, I'm well aware that the English
language is changing. There are a several instances in which
old-fashioned grammar dictates that a sentence should be written
one way -- and yet, more and more, people are writing these
sentences in another way, sometimes for very good reasons. So in
the next column, "Grammatical Groping," we'll take a look at these
areas where the use of language is evolving. 

>>--------------------------------------------------<<

Victoria Grossack studied Creative Writing and English Literature
at Dartmouth College, and has published stories and articles in
publications such as Contingencies, Women's World and I Love Cats.
Victoria is co-author with Alice Underwood of the Tapestry of
Bronze series (Jocasta; Children of Tantalus; The Road to Thebes;
Arrow of Artemis), based on Greek myths and set in the late Bronze
Age. On her own she has written The Highbury Murders, in which she
did her best to channel the spirits and styles of Jane Austen and
Agatha Christie. Besides all this, Victoria is married with kids,
and (though American) spends much of her time in Europe. Her
hobbies include gardening, hiking, bird-watching and tutoring
mathematics. Visit her website at http://www.tapestryofbronze.com,
or contact her at tapestry (at) tapestryofbronze (dot) com.
Copyright 2013 Victoria Grossack. A version of this article
appeared in Fiction Fix.  

This article may not be reprinted or posted without the written
permission of the author.

Link to this article here:
http://www.writing-world.com/victoria/crafting23.shtml
Want to learn more about crafting fabulous fiction? Victoria now
offers one-on-one writing classes; find out more at
http://www.tapestryofbronze.com/VictoriasWritingClasses.html.

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NEWS FROM THE WORLD OF WRITING
=================================================================

ALA Attracts Authors to its Ebooks Campaign
--------------------------------------------
The American Library Association (ALA) has announced the launch of
"Authors for Library Ebooks," a new initiative that asks authors to
stand with libraries in their quest for equitable access to
e-books. Bestselling authors Cory Doctorow, Ursula K. Le Guin and
Jodi Picoult are helping kick off the campaign. "The heart of the
issue is that access to authors' works through libraries is being
restricted -- hurting discovery, reading choice, literacy and the
simple love of reading," said ALA President Maureen Sullivan. "Many
e-books are still not available to most libraries at any price. Of
those we can buy, the library frequently pays 150-500 percent more
than the consumer price, forcing libraries to purchase fewer copies
for library readers."  Speaking of her involvement Jodi Picoult
said: "Whether it's a digital file or a paper copy, I want readers
to find my books -- and all books -- in their libraries! I stand
with libraries -- and I invite other authors to join me in the
campaign for library e-books for all."
For more on this story visit: 
http://www.ala.org/transforminglibraries/a4le

15 Year Old Lands Book Deal for Memoir
--------------------------------------
I know, I know, what do they know at 15?  Well, it seems to Penguin
Imprint Dutton Children's Books that a memoir by a 15-year-old can
be very informative.  The teenager in question, Maya Van Wagenen,
has secured the deal for a YA memoir called "Popular: Vintage
Wisdom for the Modern Geek." For more on this intriguing story
visit: http://tinyurl.com/wworld15memoir

Many Authors Earn more from Amazon than from Royalties
------------------------------------------------------
This startling revelation was made as part of an ongoing campaign
in the UK by independent bookstores to get authors to link to them
on their webpages and in publicity material. Speaking to the
Bookseller as to why she uses the Amazon affiliate scheme, Author
Diana Kimpton wrote: "because I have to split the royalty on my
picture books with the illustrator, I actually earn more from the
Amazon commission on a sale than I do from the publisher." For more
on this story visit:
http://tinyurl.com/wworldamazonroyalties

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Writing Jobs and Opportunities
=================================================================

Flash Fiction and Poetry Wanted by Chantepleure Press
-----------------------------------------------------
Chantepleure Press are seeking 20-30 page flash fiction and poetry
manuscripts for their next Chapbook. The submission period ends on
August 1.  Previously published work is accepted.  For more
information visit the website.  Please note the deadline is August
1, they just haven't updated their website, as you will see if you
read the comments. 
http://chantepleurepress.wordpress.com/

HEART Open to Submissions
-------------------------
Heart - Human Equity through Art, seeks unpublished, artistically
crafted, powerful poems, stories, essays, photos, visual art and
music that challenge the status quo, fight discrimination and
promote social justice by tackling hard issues of gender, race,
class, sex, etc.  They are currently unable to pay, but hope to do
so in the future. To learn more about HEART online and how to
submit visit: http://heartjournalonline.com/submit/

Rattle Magazine Seeks Love Poems and Essays
-------------------------------------------
Rattle Magazine is open to submissions all year round for poetry
and essays but it also runs several tribute issues.  In Spring 2014
it will be publishing a Love issue and is now seeking love poems
and personal essays on love for that issue. The deadline for
submitting is October 15.  Payment is a one-year subscription to
the magazine, plus all submissions are automatically considered for
an annual $500 prize.  For more information visit: 
http://www.rattle.com/poetry/submissions/calls/

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FEATURE:  10 Less Explored Types of Food Features

=================================================================
By Aditi Bose

When I began writing my blog, I used to love writing about
innovative recipes and reviewing restaurants that I visited. I used
to think that was all there was to 'food features.' Then I
discovered a whole new world. So for all of you who are planning to
begin or already write food related features here are some uncommon
avenues that might interest you. 

Food and Travel
-----------------
Publications like thecultureist.com and bootsnall.com accept
features that deal with food in the context of travel. While the
former pays $30 for a 1200-word article, the latter pays $50 for a
4000-5000 word feature. Travel-related food articles could include
topics like the local cuisines of various countries, popular
roadside eateries, food eaten during various festivals, how a
staple food is cooked differently in different countries using
different ingredients, etc. 

On the other hand, winemag.com is keen on receiving travel-related
features with a maximum word limit of 800 that discuss different
wineries and restaurants.  This publication places a special
emphasis on statistics and quotes, wine-tasting rooms and museums,
and wine customs around the world. 

One word of advice while writing 'food and travel' features: It is
always better to write about a place that you have really visited
instead of one where you've simply gathered a lot of information
from the Internet or magazines. Only when such stories have been
infused with a host of genuine details will they really come alive.
For example, one writer might write, 'we were served chicken on a
plate,' while another writes, 'we were served chicken on a brass
plate that was placed on a marble table' -- which do you suppose
the editor will buy? The details in the second example paint a
picture in the minds of the readers that help them to get a feel of
the place.

History of Food
---------------
Sites like gastronomica.org, thefoodiebugle.com, and winemag.com
seek features that deal with the history of food. This could
include articles that talk about the origin of a particular type of
dish or cuisine, or articles describing the entire process involved
before a food or drink arrives on the dinner table -- from the farm
to the machines that process it, to the way it is cooked.  For
example, consider writing about an exotic wine that's produced in a
secluded vineyard that only you are aware of, or the stories behind
wine labels. Eatingwell.com also has readers who are interested in
knowing about the origins of food and accepts articles on that
topic at the rate of $1 per word. 

A word of advice if you plan to become a 'food historian:' Go
beyond chronologically tracking the origin of a food and find the
'tidbits' that will make your article more interesting.  For
example, if you are writing about salt, you could mention that at
one time salt was so valuable that it was used to pay salaries --
hence the word.

Uses of Food
------------
Sites like gastronomica.org and eatingwell.com welcome articles
that talk about the various uses of a particular food item, such as
the uses of spices like turmeric or herbs like the holy basil.
While writing such features, one important thing to keep in mind is
that a food can be often used for edible and non-edible purposes.
So when choosing an ingredient that you wish to write about, do
thorough research to find out about ALL the uses that it might
have. 

The more common the ingredient and the more uncommon its, uses the
more catchy your manuscript will be. For example, you might point
out that ketchup removes tarnish, turmeric prevents cold and cough,
oats alleviate acne, and popcorn can be used as a Christmas tree
decoration.

Small Food Businesses
---------------------
Thefoodiebugle.com encourages articles that review new
entrepreneurs who are serving healthy and fresh home-cooked food,
those that conduct cookery schools, vineyard owners who hold wine
tasting events, artisans who create exquisite crockery and
glassware, and so forth.

Thecultureist.com and winemag.com accept reviews of cookery/wine
tasting books and interviews with food and wine authors as well.
Make sure that these interviews ask poignant questions and don't
sound like an ordinary news report. 

Eatingwell.com also encourages features that highlight the work of
an individual who is promoting values like education on nutrition,
environment, animal welfare, healthy eating within the community,
etc. The more unique the topic, the greater the chances of
acceptance.

Since this type of article relies on an individual and his story,
don't hesitate to put a few difficult questions to your subject. It
is these tough questions that will open new avenues of discussion
for you and thereby create an excellent story. However, always keep
your tone polite and respectful.

Food Laws and News
------------------
Thefoodiebugle.com accepts essays of around 2000 words that examine
food-related laws and legislation, issues that small rural farmers
and food producers face, middlemen issues, animal rearing, and so
forth. Winemag.com accepts features about the latest news from the
wine regions of the world, especially on controversies and new
innovations. 

Eatingwell.com accepts similar features. However, for this
publication, when you are writing on various facts and figures and
interpreting the labels on food packets, it's best to keep the tone
journalistic in nature.

Food Trends
-----------
Sites like boiseweekly.com and winemag.com accept 900-word features
related to seasonal food trends. The more unusual and
non-traditional the topic, the better the chances of it being
accepted. In fact, the latter is open to receiving articles that
talk of "weird food," such as a feature about lesser-known
aphrodisiacs like the durian fruit or the genitals of a tiger.
Eatingwell.com has a section for 350-word articles dealing with
seasonal trends in food and seasonal eating practices.  

Yankeemagazine.com covers the states of Connecticut, Massachusetts,
Maine, New Hampshire, Rhode Island, and Vermont, and accepts 'food
trend' features relating to these regions. Deepsouthmag.com,
headquartered in Louisiana, accepts features related to food that
reflect Southern charm. 

One thing to bear in mind while writing a feature on trends is that
describing a trend is not enough. You will need to research the
statistics, stories and reasons behind the trend. For example, if
you have decided to write on 'going healthy by consuming organic
food,' try exploring which farms grow it, which restaurants are
serving it, why it is healthier, how people have benefited, and so
on.

Food Poetry
-----------
Alimentumjournal.com and gastronomica.org accept food poetry. For a
food poem to strike the right chord, describe things like the
taste, colour and flavours of a dish. Adding a picture of the dish
or ingredient that you are writing about adds a helpful extra touch
The former even considers songs and artwork for their site. 

While writing food poetry, do keep in mind the length limits.
Usually these are mentioned in the submission guidelines. For
example, cultureword.org.uk accepts poems of no more than 60 lines,
while the maximum length for greendove.net is 50 (poems for this
publication should address foods local to Bloomington).

Food and Fun
------------
Gastronomica.org and winemag.com accept food-related cartoons,
quizzes, puzzles and games. Similarly, eatingwell.com has a section
titled Food I.Q., where they accept 300-word articles on new
food-related research presented in a true-false or multiple choice
quiz format.

Food and Kids
-------------
Most websites related to children, like metroparent.com and
mothering.com, accept features that deal with food issues relating
to infants, toddlers and even teenagers. Some of the topics that
these sites cover include:

* Innovative recipes for infants
* Food allergies
* Ways to feed a fussy toddler 
* Healthy eating and childhood obesity
* Teaching your kid to cook
* Kid's party recipes
* Food and weight gain

For all these, once you have chosen a broad topic that you wish to
write for, ask yourself what that one thing is that you would like
to know or read about, and write on that. Often, you will find that
it is a topic that either you have had a lot of experience on and
wish to share with others, or a topic on which information is not
readily available online or even in parenting books.

While writing, use words that are simple rather than a local
jargon, and illustrate methods that are easy to follow. Aim for
crisp writing with bullet points. This is because most of the time
the readers of such features will be mothers who have little time
to spare and are looking for an answer to a particular query. 

Food Photography
----------------
Sites like gastronomica.org, thefoodiebugle.com and winemag.com
accept food photographs. If you plan to submit photos to these
sites or others, here are a few tips on food photography.

* Choose a subject that has hasn't been photographed as much. For
example: custard apple instead of apple.
* Make sure that the food is well lit. Often the best pictures are
taken if you place it near a window where there is plenty of
natural light.
* Don't clutter the area with too many things, and pay attention to
the dish that will hold the food. Keep in mind contrasting colours
and shapes.
* Shoot the pictures from the level of the food rather than from a
bird's eye view above it.
* For pictures of raw vegetables and fruits, brushing a little oil
over it adds a shine to it.
* For cooked food, especially things like rice, sizzlers, etc., 
capturing the steam coming out of the food is important. Placing a
vaporizer that's used for colds behind the food utensil is one
trick to achieve this.

So here are ten new avenues that you can explore if you are
interested in writing about food. While I have mentioned a few
sites where such features can be submitted, keep in mind that
hundreds of magazines accept food features even if that isn't their
primary topic.  If you already have a relationship with a
particular magazine or website, go ahead and pitch a food-related
topic and see what happens!


>>--------------------------------------------------<<

Aditi Bose, an Economics graduate and an MBA in marketing, has over
8 years of experience in the research and talent search industry.
Currently she freelances with a number of Indian and U.S. websites
and specializes in articles related to parenting, food and travel.
Her work has appeared on sites like Indusladies, Rediff, Getahead
and Bootsnall. 

Copyright Aditi Bose 2013

Link to this article here: 
http://www.writing-world.com/freelance/foodfeatures.shtml
 
For more advice on writing about food, read these articles from our
archive: 
http://writing-world.com/dawn/cooking.shtml 
http://writing-world.com/freelance/food.shtml  
 
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FREE STUFF FOR WRITERS: Finding the Facts

=================================================================
By Aline Lechaye

A lot of people who don't write think that "writing" is all about
fantasy and imagination. For these people, the word "writer" calls
to mind an image of someone sitting at a desk, staring dreamily out
of a window, perhaps occasionally jotting down a word or two when
inspiration strikes. 

Obviously, nothing could be further from the truth. A big chunk of
writing definitely involves putting the thoughts inside your head
onto a piece of paper or a computer screen, but no matter what
you're writing, be it fiction or non-fiction, there will inevitably
come a time when imagination stops and you need to do research.
Readers nowadays aren't just satisfied with writing that is clear
and concise and free of grammatical errors; they want the writing
to be accurate as well. 

In case you didn't already know, Writing World's sister site
Mostly-Victorian (http://www.mostly-victorian.com/) has tons of
articles on pretty much everything anyone could ever want to know
about life in Victorian England, from etiquette to fashion to
recipes -- fascinating reading in and of itself, even for those who
aren't writing anything to do with this period. 

The Art of Manliness (http://www.artofmanliness.com) is more of a
blog rather than a website. Posts contain interesting historical
facts, life advice, and cool tips. Many of the practical how-to
articles come with helpful videos or funny cartoons. Don't let the
lofty title of this site put you off: while it's true that The Art
of Manliness is geared more toward a male audience, female readers
should find plenty to interest them as well. If you've ever
wondered how to tie a tie, how to win a fight, or how to start a
fire when there aren't any matches around, this is the site for
you. 

The Mapping America project on the New York Times website (
http://projects.nytimes.com/census/2010/explorer) is an interactive
map of America that shows you the demographics of every city in
America, based on sample data from the years of 2005 to 2009. Maps
are divided into four categories: Race and Ethnicity, Income,
Housing and Families, and Education. There is also a search feature
that allows you to search maps by zip codes or addresses. 

Sometimes you see something cool in a movie - for example, someone
using a handgun to shoot the lock off of a door--and you think,
"Hey, that looks cool. I'll put that in my book". And then you
start wondering, "Is that really possible? Did they do that with
special effects? Will I get irate letters from my readers telling
me that this is all wrong?" Don't worry; you don't have to carry
out experiments yourself to know whether or not those cool movie
scenes are true. Discovery Channel has a show called MythBusters
where they reenact cool scenes in movies or try to disprove facts
that most people believe to be true. The show's website (
http://dsc.discovery.com/tv-shows/mythbusters) contains articles
and videos of myths that the show has "busted". (They seem to love
anything to do with big crashes and explosions, so if you need a
cliffhanger scene for your book, this is a great place to start
looking!)

>>--------------------------------------------------<<

Copyright Aline Lechaye 2013
 
Aline Lechaye is a translator, writer, and writing tutor who
resides in Asia. She can be reached at alinelechaye at gmail.com

This article may not be reprinted without the written permission 
of the author. 

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THE WRITE SITES
=================================================================

Will Write for Food
-------------------
Dianne Jacob is a famous food writer and one who is willing to help
other food writers, whatever stage they are at in their career. 
She offers advice on her blog and publishes a quarterly newsletter
that addresses issues facing food writers.   
http://www.diannej.com/FoodWriting.shtml

CooknScribble.com
-----------------
This is a site that offers training and mentoring to all
food-writers. The blog is full of interesting posts as well as the
odd food writing prompt, and also has a list of handy sites for
food writers. 
http://www.cooknscribble.com/

Writing on Reddit
-----------------
I stumbled across this site completely by accident and then spent
half an hour browsing posts.  There is a lot of good stuff on this
reddit forum including a post from a self-published author on how
he sold 8000 books in one year.  Worth a browse. 
http://www.reddit.com/r/writing

*****************************************************************

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AUTHOR'S BOOKSHELF: Books by Our Readers
=================================================================

First Draft in 30 Days, by Karen Wiesner

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Writing the Fiction Series, by Karen Wiesner

I Love My Doctor, But... by Lawrence Gold

I Have to Get It Off My Chest - I Have to Tell My Truth, 
by Inguna Brazil 

Find these and more great books at
http://www.writing-world.com/books/index.shtml

Have you just had a book published?  If so, let our readers know: 
just click on the link below to list your book.
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Writing World is a publication of Writing-World.com
http://www.writing-world.com

Readers are welcome to forward this newsletter by e-mail IN ITS
ENTIRETY.  This newsletter may not be reposted or republished in
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Editor and Publisher: MOIRA ALLEN (editors"at"writing-world.com) 

Newsletter Editor: DAWN COPEMAN (editorial"at"writing-world.com) 

Copyright 2013 Moira Allen








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