Alley to Teach at Ojai Poetry Bootcamp June 30

Is your writing on the flabby side? Do you need a good workout to get your poetry in shape or revitalize your writing practice?

Next Saturday, I will be teaching at the Ojai Writer’s Conference Poetry Bootcamp which runs Saturday, June 30 and  Sunday, July 1.This is the last weekend of a month long series of writing activities, workshops, and events.

You can  attend one or both days–it’s $50 for either Saturday or Sunday or $99 for the whole weekend which is a great deal for 6 hours of workshops from 4 teachers!

Saturday, June 30:

1-3 pm: “Hello, Nature, What Do You Have to Tell Me Today?” with Gwendolyn Alley {Read Bio Here} – Take the lessons learned from Haiku (expressing emotion through observations of nature) and apply them to other forms of writing. Also learn to transform writing (prose) into poetry.

3-5 pm: “Speak Your Heart – Unravel Your Life’s Purpose Through The Mysterious Language Of Your Soul” with akka b. {Read Bio Here} – As part of her Poetry With Purpose series, akka b. introduces poetic tools to help decode and access the specific gift/s we are all born with and ways to implement them in daily life. Akka challenges her students to dive deep into the poetry of the heart, where fragments of personal story and experience are illuminated  profoundly, and practically applied. At the end of the two hour class, participants will have not only a more meaningful understanding of poetry, they will have an original poem – evidence of their renewed relationship to the unique expression of their soul.

Sunday, July 1:

1-3 pm: “If Your Poem Had Footnotes…” with Perie Longo {Read Bio Here} – It has been said in every poem we write is the seed for the next poem. It is also true in each poem there is a place it can deepen by filling in the emotional tension left out in the editing process. Bring one poem (and some copies to share) to examine and discover invisible poems struggling to come from the dark, along with honoring what is already there, making more of it. We will also write a poem/s inspired by your own.

3-5 pm:“Chocolate, Wine and Poetry Tasting Workshop” with Sandra Hunter {Read Bio Here} – Afternoon of eating chocolate, sipping wine and writing sensory-inspired poetry … Organic chocolate from local Chocolatiers (chili chocolate fudge and citrus-infused chocolates) and local Casa Barranca Vineyard wines. Given that this is the last segment of Poetry Bootcamp, enjoy finishing or polishing up poems to share during the Pink Moment Sunset finale gathering.

WordCampSF 2011 Arrives!

WordPress sponsors WordCamps around the world but the granddaddy of them all takes place once a year in San Francisco.

And that event is this weekend August 12-14, 2011!

It’s a lot of fun as you might guess from my WordPress tattoo which earned me a WordPress moleskin journal in 2008!

This year on Friday WordCampSF offered a new users workshop. If you missed this full day of learning how to blog, and you’d like me to tutor you, let me know! I can teach you!

Saturday is for developers and Sunday is for content creators.

It’s all sold out but you can still attend by joining the livestream and following along the conversation and main points on Twitter. Check out the hashtags #wordcampsf and #wcsf. You might also check out @kashaziz suggestion that there’s a crowdsourced collection of slides from #wcsf here – lanyrd.com/2011/wordcamps…. People can sign in with Twitter to add more.

I attended and “live” blogged sessions at WordCampSF in 2008 and 2009 (plus WordCampLA 2009); it’s just worked out for me to go tomorrow for Sunday’s session, so subscribe to this site (and Art Predator!) and you’ll get what to me are the most important highlights.

Here are some of my blog posts from previous WordCamp Sessions as originally posted over at Art Predator. As I review them, I realize how much I’ve learned from going to WordCamp and I’m excited about learning more tomorrow!

WordCampLA 2009

September 12, 2009Live Blogging From WordCamp LA 2009

September 13, 2009Ben Huh: guess some lol cats thought my blog post was a cheezburgr & ate it

September 12, 2009Andrew Warner: Using video instead of relying on text to convey your message

September 12, 2009Jim Turner: Never Fear, Genuine is Here! Or how to pay your mortgage by blogging

September 12, 2009Ben Huh: your best bet is just to google my name

September 12, 2009Failure is Job One: Micah Baldwin says “Go to the SEO panel”

September 12, 2009I’m Shayne: WordPress MU & WP ecommerce

September 12, 2009Live Blogging From WordCamp LA 2009

WordCampSF 2009

WordCampSF 2008

Tuesday Tips: More On “It’s” & “Its” — what about “Its'”?

For last week’s Tuesday Tips, I discussed how to use it’s and its. In an email today from a PR firm, I came across this sentence:

“VOGA Italia hails from Italy, the country best known for producing some of the world’s best wine as well as its’ keen sense of style.”

which reminded me I didn’t even mention the third its’: this one is ALWAYS wrong. Just like hers and his, its is a possessive that doesn’t require an apostrophe. Its’ is not a word.

It is tempting to also question the sentence further (can a country make wine or have style?) but I’m not. At least not today!

Remember if you have copy that needs work, or if you need some coaching for your writing, let me know! I’m happy to help you.

Tuesday Tips: On "It's" & "Its" Here are two wonderful and important concepts from a blog post I was reading and which inspired me to write this morning: Social Networking at it’s very foundation is building relationships with people… Social networking at it’s finest: making friends and helping each other at the same time. Do you know the difference between “it’s” and “its”? Chances are that you don’t. There’s even a Facebook page about it’s and its (that’s where I found the gr … Read More

via The Write Alley

Reading & Workshop Ventura College Monday June 27

On Monday June 27 I will be reading my poetry and discussing my writing process, writing practice and The 3:15 Experiment with two classes of Ventura College writing students. I will be speaking with the first class at 10:50am in Trailer 5 for about an hour; I will meet with the second class at 1:50pm in J-1. I’ll also be selling and signing my new book, Middle of the Night Poems From Daughter to Mother :: Mother to Son (en theos press 2011).

You are welcome to join us! Ventura College is located at 4667 Telegraph Road, Ventura, CA 93003. It costs $1 to park and there are maps around campus to guide you to the classroom.

If you can’t make the reading but want to buy a copy of Middle of the Night Poems From Daughter to Mother :: Mother to Son, it’s available in print and ebook editions at www.entheospress.com and in Ojai at Barts Books, in Camarillo at Mrs Figgs Bookworm and in Ventura at Kama Sutra Closet.

Tuesday Tips: On “It’s” & “Its”

Here are two wonderful and important concepts from a blog post I was reading and which inspired me to write this morning:

Social Networking at it’s very foundation is building relationships with people…

Social networking at it’s finest: making friends and helping each other at the same time.

Do you know the difference between “it’s” and “its”? Chances are that you don’t. There’s even a facebook page about it’s and its (that’s where I found the graphic).

Using it is when you mean its and its when you mean it is ranks up there as the most common mistake I see in online and offline writing. My undergrad college students get it wrong and my graduate students in education got it wrong too.

This is the most common spelling, punctuation or grammar mistake that I find online. And I find at least a few examples of it every day in online publishing. In fact, as I mentioned above, this post itself is inspired by a blog post where “it’s” was used wrong more than once and both times in a headline as shown above.

(The second most common mistake? Using semi-colons–I’ll get to that next!)

Most of the time the writer who uses its/it’s wrong has strong content and writing skills (like in this case), but doesn’t know when to use “it’s” or to use “its”; these writers tend to use one or the other all the time, possibly on the false assumption they’d be correct 50% of the time. (If I was to take this strategy, I’d use “its” not “it’s,” by the way…)

Learning how to use “its” or “it’s” is one of the first orders of business when I am working with someone on writing.

So when do you use “it’s” and when do you use “its”? Continue reading

Jo Diaz Features Women Wine Writers Who Matter

You may or may not know that I started wine blogging back in 2008 on my Art Predator blog and started a wine blog “Wine Predator” a year later. Yes, I am a wine blogger! I receive samples of wine to taste, review, and tweet about and I’ve traveled as a wine blogger to Portugal, Washington State and around California too. This summer, I will be working on a book about winery kids, family, and sustainability, and traveling with my son to visit family owned and operated wineries in Idaho, Washington, Oregon and California.

Just as I view the world as a writer always looking for stories to share, as a wine drinker, I am always thinking about what I’m drinking, where it came from and who produced it, and evaluating how it smells, tastes, feels, and finishes.

Last week, Jo Diaz on her blog “Jo’s Juicy Tales” honored and celebrated several wine bloggers; I am proud and pleased to be included in this list of women bloggers who, as she put it, bring heart, mind, soul and body (that’s me!) to the world of wine writing! Click the link below to enter a world of wine blogging…and wine bloggers!

Jo Diaz Names Wine Predator As A Wine Blogger Who Matters Recently Jo Diaz discussed Steve Heimoff’s column “Beyond Blogging” about  Jeff Lefrevre’s column “How to Become a Wine Wonk” in Forbes. (Did you follow that or did it get too incestuous?) In his column, Jeff recommends several wine sites and wine bloggers worth reading and why. His list of 12 sites includes Joe Roberts aka 1 Wine Dude, Alder Yarrow of Vinography, Tyler Coleman aka Dr. Vino and Steve Heimoff of Steve Heimoff.com, all fine wine bl … Read More

via Wine Predator

Tuesday Tips: Break It Down

Recently I found myself giving similar writing advice to two different people. These two women are both working on BIG projects and finding themselves overwhelmed. They have lots of content that they’re anxious to share with the world but not sure how to go about it.

“Break that big writing project down,” I recommended. “Write part of it. And blog about it along the way.”

This made sense to them and makes sense for their projects too. I had already taught one woman how to blog and to do research and organize it. For her, I suggested taking the parts that are most interesting and immediate and turn them into blog posts making her research immediately available to others online.

For the second person, Continue reading

May 4 Readings & Radio

Today is a busy one! I will be giving a talk about the 3:15 Experiment and giving a reading at Ventura College then run over to give a radio interview about where we’re going on the ArtRide and read some Mother’s Day poetry from my new book, Middle of the Night Poems From Daughter to Mother :: Mother to Son. Then, later in the afternoon, at 4pm I return to Ventura College to hear one of my students read in the library–her writing was selected for the College anthology VC Voices. (Congrats, Caitlin Scoles!)

Here are the details:

MAY 4 8:30am
Ventura College, Telegraph Rd, Ventura CA 93001 *** reading + discussion of 3:15 Experiment *** free + open to the public + LRC classroom (library building downstairs past the computers)

MAY 4 11am
KKZZ 1400AM Radio interview and reading in the 11am hour. Online and Live.

MAY 4 4pm
Ventura College, Telegraph Rd, Ventura CA 93001 *** VC Voices reading *** free + open to the public + LRC (library building in the library second floor)

Read on to read more about the radio program.

Tuesday Tips: Remember Radio! While I may write a lot about using social media tools here on this blog, it’s important to remember to connect and use traditional media like radio, television and print sources as well. I’ve done a lot of radio in the past and it’s lots of fun! Tomorrow Weds. April 20 around 11am I will be featured on a live radio show; you can also listen online to: Radio Buzz Women talk, Men Don’t Listen with Your Hostess S. Lyn Fairly and co-hostess Cynthia … Read More

via The Write Alley