Tag Archives: writers

Yoga Break 4 Writers: Give Your Neck a Break

Leaning towards the computer screen, consistently looking down as we type on a laptop, and tensing up as we type can all cause neck pain. Here are some poses we can do right at our desk, frequently during the hour to keep our necks limber and reduce neck strain.

Deep, Calming Breathing

Still your mind and think only about your breathing. You want to stretch, awaken, and alleviate stress and the pain. Breathe in and out through your nose (not your mouth). Take a deep breath in: slowly fill the chest with air, imagining that you are pulling in joy, love, peace, and light. Deeply and completely exhale the breath: you will actually use your abdominal muscles to push the breath out, imagining that you are expelling all toxins, stress, and tension. Keep taking those breaths until you feel yourself relax.

Neck Rolls

After about three to five minutes, add head movements to your breathing:

When you inhale, lift your face to the ceiling, and when you are ready to exhale, slowly put your chin to chest. Do this movement 3 times each way for a total of 6. Don’t rush.

 

On your last exhale, with your chin to your chest,  roll your head around until your right ear is above your red shoulders (make sure your shoulders are down and not hunched up near your ear). You will feel a stretch in your neck and as your neck is stretching, extend your left hand out to your side with your fingers tinted on the mat. Take a couple of deep breaths, and then roll your head to the left side, so that your left ear is over your left shoulder. Note: As you roll your head from side to side, roll it in the front of your body with your chin to your chest. This movement is an exhale. You can alternate back and forth from each side.

When you are ready, do an entire slow neck roll, matching your breathing to your movement. Inhale when your face and head are up and exhale when your face and head are down.

Blogalicious Conference 2009: Informative and Inspiring

by Trina Love Abram

BlogaliciousSiteBadgeHave you ever taken a class, heard a sermon, gotten some wise advice, or attended an event that totally changed your outlook or your life? I have, and the latest life-changing event that I attended was the Blogalicious Weekend Conference here in Midtown Atlanta at the W Hotel.

A consortium of women bloggers crowded the second floor of the swank W Hotel in Midtown Atlanta this weekend. An array of races in varying hues bustled excitedly from room to room soaking up the meals of blogging knowledge that this conference served up on a sparkling silver platter.

The event founders cleverly call themselves the Three Justices, three savvy, smart, and gracious young women with a passion for blogging and social media and helping others fulfill their dreams of successful blogging. Justice Fergie, Justice Joesie, and Justice Ny provided a wealth of information using some of the best bloggers in the business as the conduit. It was phenomenal. The Justices are all attorneys,  mothers, and wives. Between the three of them they have seven kids, hence the special theme of the conference, which was blogging women of color. Most of the speakers were mothers who passionately split their time blogging, wearing their Supermom capes, and being wives.

I started blogging about three months ago. At The Leisure Living Blog, I write about my biggest passion, blooming prosperous souls mentally, physically, emotionally, and financially through Yoga, cognizant positivity, and spiritual inspiration. The Writing Land is a more personal blog about my non-fiction, creative, and technical writing journey, goals, setbacks, and accomplishments. With being such a novice blogger, the conference was like a huge gift box with tons of prizes stuffed inside. Every layer that I unwrapped contained an even better prize than the previous layer. The sessions that I enjoyed were: Upgrade You, Taking Your Blog to the Next Level, Style Online & The Multicultural Blogger, The Art of Small Business Blogging, and Secrets of a Successful Blog. Mama Niri, Cordiva from SheGeeks, Frugalista, and Xochitl Gonzalez from Always a Blogs Maid are some of the blogger panelist that I got to meet and enjoy at the conference.

With the assurance that you will attend the 2010 conference, which will be in sunny Miami, I want to share some tips that I learned at the conference:

  1. Be passionate and authentic in your writing. Every speaker stressed the importance of being honest, transparent, and enjoying what you blog about.
  2. Do your research. Check your facts.
  3. Be consistent. Make a schedule and post regularly so that your readers know when to expect new information.
  4. Share. Link to and refer readers to other blogs. There is enough fame and fortune on the information highway for us all.
  5. Comment. Leave comments on other people’s blogs. You want comments on your blog, so reciprocate. Pay it forward.
  6. Set goals for where you want your blog to go. Use your own personal definition of success to track your progress.
  7. Use Social Networking Tools and Media, for example, Twitter and Facebook, widgets and plug-ins.
  8. Write Right. Grammar and spelling errors can be distracting, which will detract from your intended meaning. Use correct grammar and spell check.
  9. Develop your own brand and design that represents you, your blog, and subject matter.
  10. Be creative. Don’t mimic others; instead, use others as examples, and build your own blogging landscape and presence.
  11. Find your own voice. It’s more work to pretend, so just be you. Have your own sound.
  12. Know who your audience is and know what they seek. Then speak to them when you write.
  13. Keep abreast of the technology that is available to bloggers.

In addition to these tips, the speakers provided us with tons of technology and software suggestions to help us take our blogs to the next level, streamline the process of updating content in multiple places (single sourcing), and get site statistics.

BlogaliciousFreeGifts

We received an array of gifts from the conference sponsors. Even the table centerpieces at breakfast, brunch, and dinner were composed of free gift elements that the sponsors encouraged us to take. These women did a wonderful job.

Blogalicious was informative, but it was also inspiring. The dedication and determination of the experienced bloggers was impermeable. The speakers’ transparent stories about where they were then and where they are now lent validity and plausibility to the thoughts and dreams I’d had about blogging and being an Infoprenuer. They all had the attitude that “If I can do it, You can too…and here’s what you need to do to get started.” Inspiring! In her Keynote speech, Karen Walrond encouraged us to “make our different beautiful.” She chronicled her blogging experience and gave us tips that’ll keep us from stumbling on our own journey. Author Denene Millner‘s took us through her personal journey, reminding us that divine intervention is present at every turn. 

Already I’ve updated the design on my blog site, created a brand, set a posting schedule, and started a Twitter account. I was so pumped when I got home, that what I could immediately do, I did.

I really enjoyed meeting the other bloggers, networking, making connections, and hearing success stories. I didn’t meet not one person that wasn’t eager to learn or eager to teach. It was spectacular. We swapped knowledge, stories, and smiles. And that’s what it is all about, exchanging information and bringing along others as you climb. I want to thank the Justices for the best conference that I’ve attended in the last couple of years. The entire conference was deftly structured, organized, professional, and fun. I welcomed the contagious kinetic energy coursing in every room. The Food was delicious. The staff was gracious. The information was priceless. The inspiration is long lasting. Keep your online ears to the screen for information about Blogalicious 2010 in sunny Miami, Florida. You don’t want to miss it.

Resources:

Blogalicious Weekend 2009 Official Web site

YouTube Videos from Anandaleeke

The Three Justices’ site, Mama Law

Full listing of  Agenda, Bloggers and their We and Sessions

Full listing of Sponsors

© 2009 KaTrina Love Abram

Writing Tips from Various Authors

writingpicWriters on Writing

“The commonest of all, the bread of writing, is vocabulary.” ~Stephen King

 

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“A one sentence paragraph feels like a punch, and no one wants to get punched. Overused, it can be an annoying tic, a lazy writer’s attempt to compel us to pay attention or to inject energy and life into a narrative, of falsely inflating the importance of sentences that our eye might skip over entirely if they were placed, more quietly and modestly, inside a longer paragraph.

The one-sentence paragraph should be used sparingly, if at all. But it does have its uses. If a writer is going to draw attention to the stand-alone sentence, the sentence had better be worth it. That is, the sentence should have enough content–enough resonance–to justify this slightly unusual, attention-grabbing device.” ~Francine Prose

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“You’ve got to love libraries. You’ve got to love books. You’ve got to love poetry. You’ve got to love everything about literature. Then, you can pick the one thing you love most and write about it.” ~ Ray Bradbury

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“Every page was once a blank page, just as every word that appears on it now was not always there, but instead reflects the final result of countless large and small deliberations. All the elements of good writing depend on the writer’s skill in choosing one word instead of another. And what grabs and keeps our interest has everything to do with choices.”
~Francine Prose

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“Write is a Verb” ~Bill O’Hanlon

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“Sit down with the least expectation of yourself; say, ‘I am free to write the worst junk in the world.’ You have to give yourself the space to write a lot without a destination.” ~Natalie Goldberg

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“The worse you make it for the characters the better it is for the reader.” ~Jerry Cleaver

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“It is 99% perspiration and 1% inspiration. If you write only when excited or motivated, you’ll never finish. You have to write even when it’s the last thing you want to do. Just put something down.” ~Bob Mayer

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“I just wrote until the books were finished, regardless of my fears, my flaws, my laziness, my procrastination, and other unhelpful feelings and thoughts” ~Bill O’Hanlon

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“Ive learned a few simple, basic principles over the years. First, you must complete the book, start to finish, to have a shot at selling it. In other words: sit your butt in the chair and write. Second, writing the first draft is only the beginning. The real magic happens when you mix and fold key elements into the basic story. Those textures and flavors will make your book stand out to the agent/editor/reader and make her want to keep turning the pages to see what happens next.” ~Cherry Adair