Writing Forward is Eight Years Old! Let’s Celebrate with a Book Giveaway!

writing-forward-8

Writing Forward is eight years old.

It’s hard to believe Writing Forward is eight years old! Sometimes it feels like I just started this website yesterday. Other times, I feel like it’s been with me forever. One thing is certain: I’m looking forward to many more years of Writing Forward.

Every year around this time, I take a look at this website and think about where we’ve been and where we’re going. Last year, I finally wrapped up the Adventures in Writing series — three books on the craft of creative writing. Now I’m starting on a new series that focuses on the craft of storytelling, and I can’t wait to share it with you. Watch for that early next year.

Writing Forward’s readers have been the driving force behind this website every step of the way. You’ve shared the articles on social media, reviewed the books on websites like Amazon and Goodreads, and participated in the comments by sharing your ideas and experiences from your own writing journeys.

So while it’s Writing Forward’s anniversary, the people who truly deserve celebration and acknowledgment are the writers who have read and supported Writing Forward over these past eight years.

Eight-Year Celebration Giveaway

To celebrate Writing Forward’s eighth anniversary and to honor our readers, I’m throwing a Goodreads Giveaway. The winner will receive a free paperback copy of 10 Core Practices for Better Writing. Check out the details and enter the contest below:

Goodreads Book Giveaway

10 Core Practices for Better Writing by Melissa Donovan

10 Core Practices for Better Writing

by Melissa Donovan

Giveaway ends September 06, 2015.

See the giveaway details
at Goodreads.

Enter Giveaway

Thank You!

Thank you to all the readers and writers who have visited Writing Forward and subscribed, commented, guest posted, and shared its content throughout the years. I’ll continue working to keep Writing Forward going strong for years to come.

As always, keep writing!

The Writer: A Short Film

the writer short film

Still from The Writer, a short film.

Today’s post is a special treat. It’s a short film called The Writer. As you have probably guessed, it’s a about a writer.

There are only a handful of films about writers, but not nearly enough for those of us who labor at the craft of wordplay and storytelling. It’s always exciting when a new film comes out that explores what it means to be a writer.

And that’s exactly what this short film does.




The Writer

A writer imprisoned in a mysterious house has everything he needs; food, drink and affection. Yet, he yearns to escape from the harbored life and venture into the wilderness outside. But there are a few things standing in his way: the other occupants of the house.

This film is a story about overcoming obstacles that hold you back from pursuing your dreams. Fear, self-doubt, distraction and laziness can cripple you, stopping you in your tracks. You can only blame your shortcomings on so many external things, until you realize the biggest obstacle in the way is yourself.

Take a quick break and watch this intriguing short science-fiction film all the way to the final revelation and payoff. Enjoy The Writer!

Credits:

The Writer is produced by Woolly Rhino Productions, directed by Mike Rominski, and written by Mike Rominski and Kellen Berg. It stars Nathan Tymoshuk.

Goodreads Giveaway of 1200 Creative Writing Prompts and a Quick Announcement

creative writing promptsThis week, I’m giving away a free copy of 1200 Creative Writing Prompts, but before I get into the details of the contest, I’d like to share a special announcement with you.

My Debut Novel

A few days ago, I published my debut novel, which is titled Engineered Underground. It’s the first book in my science-fiction Metamorphosis Series.

The book is currently available for Kindle and as a paperback from Amazon, and it will be available in all other bookstores by July.

Plus the Kindle edition is on sale for just 99¢ until this Friday, April 3, 2015.

If you like science fiction, military, mystery, or superhero stories, please check out my book or tell a friend about it.

Now let’s get to the giveaway!

Win a Free Copy of 1200 Creative Writing Prompts

From today through Friday, April 3, I’m hosting a free giveaway on Goodreads for the paperback edition of 1200 Creative Writing Prompts

Goodreads is a social media network for people who love to read. It’s a great way to share and discover books. You can create a list of books you want to read and rate and review books you’ve already read.

All you need to enter is a (free) Goodreads account. Once you’ve logged in, click “Enter to Win” below for your chance to win a copy of 1200 Creative Writing Prompts.

The contest is open to residents of the United States.

Goodreads Book Giveaway

1200 Creative Writing Prompts by Melissa Donovan

1200 Creative Writing Prompts

by Melissa Donovan

Giveaway ends April 03, 2015.

See the giveaway details
at Goodreads.

Here’s what Amazon reviewers are saying about 1200 Creative Writing Prompts:

“By the first page, I realized that I will probably never have to look elsewhere. I didn’t find myself skipping over them to get to the good prompts…they are ALL good. Well developed. Unique. Interesting. Everything I was looking for.” — Bree Salyer

“I give this book 5 Stars and highly recommend it to all fiction, nonfiction, and poetry writers, aspiring writers, bloggers or journalists. It is very well organized and includes something for everyone…I was amazed at the creative, diverse number of high-quality prompts and ideas. It has become my go-to book when I need inspiration. This book is a must have for any writer.” — Sunny

“I teach Creative Writing to high school students, and bought this to use the prompts for my students. I chose this one because it separates the fiction prompts from the nonfiction ones, and also has poetry prompts…My students like the prompts I’ve given them from this book and have even used the ones I’ve made optional. Nice job, Ms. Donovan.” — Dawn

Writing Forward is Seven Years Old

writing forward turns seven years old

Writing Forward turns seven years old.

When I started Writing Forward seven years ago, I had no idea what to expect. As a writer and internet junkie, a blog seemed like a smart way to pursue two of my greatest passions. I had no idea where the journey would take me.

This website has helped me build a business, become an author, learn about the artistic and business aspects of writing, and most importantly, it has connected me with the writing community. Although at times the journey has been frustrating and exhausting, it has also been enlightening and invigorating.

Writing Forward may be my website, but it wouldn’t be going strong today if it weren’t for the many readers and writers who have subscribed, commented, and shared the content via social media. I’m grateful to everyone who’s been a part of this amazing journey.

Seven-Year Celebration Sale

To celebrate Writing Forward’s seventh anniversary, the Kindle and paperback versions of all my books on writing are currently on sale through the end of the week. Each title is a dollar off the regular price. To purchase a paperback from CreateSpace at the discounted price, use the following discount codes:




101 Creative Writing Exercises: 7ZLPPK54

10 Core Practices for Better Writing: QB68TJBF

1200 Creative Writing Prompts: EQU9H8RW

Adventures in Writing: The Complete Collection (all three titles above in a single volume): RXHRCJFS

Sale ends Friday 9/5/15 at midnight!

Leave a Review, Get a Free Book

Have you already read 101 Creative Writing Exercises? If you’ve read it and would like a free ebook of Adventures in Writing: The Complete Collection, simply leave an honest review of 101 Creative Writing Exercises at any of the sites where the book is sold or on Goodreads. Then use the contact form to send me a link to your review and let me know whether you’d like your free copy of Adventures in Writing: The Complete Collection in Kindle or epub format (or just let me know which device you’re using). This offer is open through September 10, 2014.

Thank You!

Thank you to all the readers and writers who have visited Writing Forward and subscribed, commented, guest posted, and shared its content throughout the years. I’ll continue working to keep Writing Forward going strong for years to come. Keep writing!

Goodreads Giveaway for Adventures in Writing: The Complete Collection

Adventures in Writing The Complete Collection

Adventures in Writing: The Complete Collection.

From today through Friday, June 5, 2014 I’m hosting a free giveaway on Goodreads for the paperback edition of Adventures in Writing: The Complete Collection. 

Goodreads is a social media network for people who love to read. It’s a great way to share and discover books. You can create a list of books you want to read and rate and review books you’ve already read. Plus, there are plenty of special features for authors.

All you need to enter is a (free) Goodreads account. Once you’ve logged in to Goodreads, click “Enter to Win” below for your chance to win a copy of Adventures in Writing: The Complete Collection.

Adventures in Writing: The Complete Collection

Adventures in Writing: The Complete Collection includes all three books in the Adventures in Writing series:

This collection will inspire and motivate you while imparting useful writing tools and techniques. Start your adventure in writing today.

 Enter the Goodreads Giveaway

Goodreads Book Giveaway

Adventures in Writing by Melissa Donovan

Adventures in Writing

by Melissa Donovan

Giveaway ends June 07, 2014.

See the giveaway details
at Goodreads.

Enter to win

Good luck, and keep writing!

*The contest is open to residents of the United States.

Maya Angelou (1928-2014)

Maya Angelou

Maya Angelou (1928-2014).

Maya Angelou was a luminary whose work touched and changed millions of lives, including mine. She was a poet, a storyteller, a scholar, actress, dancer, and activist for social justice.

Her autobiography, I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings (1969), was a groundbreaking, brutally honest, personal account of the Jim Crow South, covering the first sixteen years of her life. The book defied conventions of the time by exposing the harsh truths of racism, abandonment, rape, homelessness, and teen motherhood.

Like a phoenix, Maya Angelou rose from the difficulties of her early years and became an internationally beloved voice and beacon of hope for the disadvantaged and underprivileged. She was a living testament to the power of truth, love, and justice.

She was the first female streetcar driver in San Francisco, toured Europe in a production of Porgy and Bess, was the second poet in American history who was invited to read at a presidential inauguration in 1993, and was the recipient of the highest civilian honor when she received the 2010 Presidential Medal of Freedom. She spoke six languages and received over thirty honorary degrees. Maya Angelou’s life and accomplishments are truly awe-inspiring.

In a statement released on the day of her death, President Obama said:

Today, Michelle and I join millions around the world in remembering one of the brightest lights of our time – a brilliant writer, a fierce friend, and a truly phenomenal woman. Over the course of her remarkable life, Maya was many things – an author, poet, civil rights activist, playwright, actress, director, composer, singer and dancer. But above all, she was a storyteller – and her greatest stories were true.  A childhood of suffering and abuse actually drove her to stop speaking – but the voice she found helped generations of Americans find their rainbow amidst the clouds, and inspired the rest of us to be our best selves…And while Maya’s day may be done, we take comfort in knowing that her song will continue, “flung up to heaven” – and we celebrate the dawn that Maya Angelou helped bring.

Maya’s Work

Maya Angelou

Maya Angelou

Maya Angelou’s poetry is memorable, inspiring, and uplifting. It drives itself into your heart and fixes itself in your mind. I vividly remember the first time I read one of her poems, “Phenomenal Woman.” I promptly printed it out and pinned it to the wall next to my desk. That one poem inspired me to write dozens of my own.

Phenomenal Woman

Pretty women wonder where my secret lies.
I’m not cute or built to suit a fashion model’s size
But when I start to tell them,
They think I’m telling lies.
I say,
It’s in the reach of my arms,
The span of my hips,
The stride of my step,
The curl of my lips.
I’m a woman
Phenomenally.
Phenomenal woman,
That’s me.

I walk into a room
Just as cool as you please,
And to a man,
The fellows stand or
Fall down on their knees.
Then they swarm around me,
A hive of honey bees.
I say,
It’s the fire in my eyes,
And the flash of my teeth,
The swing in my waist,
And the joy in my feet.
I’m a woman
Phenomenally.

Phenomenal woman,
That’s me.

Men themselves have wondered
What they see in me.
They try so much
But they can’t touch
My inner mystery.
When I try to show them,
They say they still can’t see.
I say,
It’s in the arch of my back,
The sun of my smile,
The ride of my breasts,
The grace of my style.
I’m a woman
Phenomenally.
Phenomenal woman,
That’s me.

Now you understand
Just why my head’s not bowed.
I don’t shout or jump about
Or have to talk real loud.
When you see me passing,
It ought to make you proud.
I say,
It’s in the click of my heels,
The bend of my hair,
the palm of my hand,
The need for my care.
’Cause I’m a woman
Phenomenally.
Phenomenal woman,
That’s me.

(Source)

Caged Bird

A free bird leaps
on the back of the wind
and floats downstream
till the current ends
and dips his wing
in the orange sun rays
and dares to claim the sky.

But a bird that stalks
down his narrow cage
can seldom see through
his bars of rage
his wings are clipped and
his feet are tied
so he opens his throat to sing.

The caged bird sings
with a fearful trill
of things unknown
but longed for still
and his tune is heard
on the distant hill
for the caged bird
sings of freedom.

The free bird thinks of another breeze
and the trade winds soft through the sighing trees
and the fat worms waiting on a dawn bright lawn
and he names the sky his own

But a caged bird stands on the grave of dreams
his shadow shouts on a nightmare scream
his wings are clipped and his feet are tied
so he opens his throat to sing.

The caged bird sings
with a fearful trill
of things unknown
but longed for still
and his tune is heard
on the distant hill
for the caged bird
sings of freedom.

(Source)

Still I Rise

Remembering Maya Angelou

Poetry Foundation, Maya Angelou’s bio

Ms. Magazine, “Remembering Maya Angelou.”

“I’ve learned that people will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel.” — Maya Angelou

Maya Angelou made me feel strong, capable, and empowered, and I will never forget the way her work and spirit touched and strengthened my writing and my life. I will always remember her as the phenomenal human being that she was, and I am comforted by the thought that her work will speak to generations to come.

Adventures in Writing: The Complete Collection is Now Available on Amazon at $5.99 for a Limited Time

Adventures in Writing The Complete CollectionA few months ago, I published the third and final book in my Adventures in Writing series. Today, I’m excited to announce the release of Adventures in Writing: The Complete Collection. This collection includes all three books in the series:

Adventures in Writing

The Adventures in Writing series is designed to guide writers on a journey toward becoming more prolific and skilled in the craft of writing and to make that journey enjoyable and challenging.

The books covers various forms of writing: freewriting, journaling, memoir, fiction, poetry, article writing, and blogging. The sections that deal with fiction include a range of genres: literary, suspense, thriller, mystery, science fiction, fantasy, horror, romance, historical, humor, satire, children’s, and young adult.

Ideal for new and experienced writers alike, Adventures in Writing: The Complete Collection will enlighten, inspire, and motivate you with fresh ideas and proven writing techniques.

Adventures in Writing: The Complete Collection is on Sale for Just One Week

The book is now available at Smashwords and Amazon. Get the ebook for just $5.99 (that’s three books for the price of two) and get the paperback for $17.95. Prices go up in one week, so get your copy today.

Amazon
Kindle

101 Creative Writing Exercises Kindle
Amazon Paperback
101 Creative Writing Exercises Amazon Paperback

Smashwords

101 Creative Writing Exercises Smashwords

Adventures in Writing: The Complete Collection is coming soon to iBooks, Barnes & Noble, and Kobo.

1200 Creative Writing Prompts: Kindle and Paperback Editions on Sale Starting at 99¢

creative writing prompts

1200 Creative Writing Prompts is on sale!

From now through Friday, 3/14/14, 1200 Creative Writing Prompts is on sale.

Get the Kindle edition for just 99¢ through Amazon, or pick up the paperback edition at 15% off through CreateSpace with the discount code 7ZLPPK54.

About 1200 Creative Writing Prompts

1200 Creative Writing Prompts is packed with prompts that will inspire and motivate you to write. The book features three sections: fiction, poetry, and creative nonfiction. The fiction section includes prompts from every genre imaginable: literary, suspense, thriller, mystery, science fiction, fantasy, horror, romance, historical, humor, satire, children’s, and young adult.

Writing prompts are perfect for those times when you’re feeling unmotivated or aren’t sure what to write. They’re also ideal for maintaining regular writing practice. So what are you waiting for? Get your copy of 1200 Creative Writing Prompts now!

Have You Read It?

Have you already read 1200 Creative Writing Prompts? Did you enjoy it? If so, I’d really appreciate a review on Goodreads, Amazon, or any other online bookseller’s website. Positive reviews are immensely helpful for authors, and they help other readers (in this case, writers) find interesting and useful books.

Get your copy today:

Remember, the sale ends on Friday, 3/14.

 

Click here and use discount code 7ZLPPK54 to get the paperback from CreateSpace

 

or click the button below to get the Kindle edition for 99¢

1200 Creative Writing Prompts Kindle

Goodreads Giveaway: Win a Paperback Edition of 1200 Creative Writing Prompts

creative writing prompts1200 Creative Writing Prompts has received its first review, and it’s five stars!

“It didn’t take long for this book to blow me away. Right from the start, I was reading through the fiction prompts and I wanted to work on the ideas I saw presented. As someone who writes fiction, I felt like I discovered gold here…The ideas suggested in the prompts are very creative and will get your creative juices flowing…If you’re looking for help in getting ideas for things to write about, then this book should be just the thing to help you out. It’s great!”

Thanks for the glowing review, Buddy Gott!

Be sure to check out Buddy’s Writing Show on YouTube. I was recently a guest on the show. Buddy and I discussed writing tips and best practices. You can check that out here.

I’m also getting lots of positive feedback about the book on social media and via email. People are writing poems and stories inspired by the prompts in this book! If you’ve already picked up a copy and loved it, please consider leaving a review at Goodreads or any of the online bookseller’s websites. Reviews are instrumental in helping authors reach more readers.

Win a Free Copy of 1200 Creative Writing Prompts

From today through Friday, February 7, 2014 I’m hosting a free giveaway on Goodreads for the paperback edition of 1200 Creative Writing Prompts. 




Goodreads is a social media network for people who love to read. It’s a great way to share and discover books. You can create a list of books you want to read and rate and review books you’ve already read. Plus, there are plenty of special features for authors.

Click here to learn more about 1200 Creative Writing Prompts

All you need to enter is a (free) Goodreads account. Once you’ve logged in, click “Enter to Win” below for your chance to win a copy of 1200 Creative Writing Prompts.

The contest is open to residents of the United States.

Goodreads Book Giveaway

1200 Creative Writing Prompts by Melissa Donovan

1200 Creative Writing Prompts

by Melissa Donovan

Giveaway ends February 07, 2014.

See the giveaway details
at Goodreads.

Enter to win

 

Good luck, and keep writing!

1200 Creative Writing Prompts is Now Available on Amazon!

creative writing prompts

I’m thrilled to announce that the final book in the Adventures in Writing series is now available on Amazon in paperback and for the Kindle.

About the Book

1200 Creative Writing Prompts is packed with prompts that will inspire you to write fiction, poetry, and creative nonfiction:

  • 500 fiction prompts cover a range of genres: literary, suspense, thriller, mystery, science fiction, fantasy, horror, romance, historical, humor, satire, children’s, and young adult.
  • 400 poetry prompts inspire you with subjects, images, and word lists.
  • 300 creative nonfiction prompts for writing memoir, personal essays, journaling, and exploring your writing goals and habits.

That’s it. The book is simple and straightforward. It’s designed to do one thing: inspire and motivate you to write.

1200 Creative Writing Prompts

1200 Creative Writing Prompts is now available at Amazon, and it will be coming soon to other online bookstores, including Smashwords, Sony, Barnes & Noble, Kobo, and Apple’s iBooks. I’ll make an announcement here on the blog as soon as the book is available everywhere.

Amazon Kindle
1200 Creative Writing Prompts Kindle
Amazon Paperback
1200 Creative Writing Prompts Paperback