The Merry Writer Podcast: Episode 019 Now Live!

How do you manage your time as a full-time writer? | Ep. 019 with Devon Ellington | The Merry Writer Podcast | RachelPoli.com

The Merry Writer Podcast

The Merry Writer started as a hashtag game on Twitter and Instagram. Hosted by Ari Meghlen and myself, The Merry Writer Podcast is a fun, friendly show about all things writing and bookish. Join us as we ask all the “write” questions.

Episode 019: How do you manage your time as a full-time writer?

In this week’s episode, Ari and I are joined by our friend and fellow author, Devon Ellington, where we discuss time management for full-time writers. Be sure to give it a listen through the YouTube video below or any of the links below.

New episodes are published every Wednesday at 10:00 am EST (2:00 pm BST). Please subscribe to the podcast so you can be notified when a new episode goes live. Also, give each episode a “like” wherever you enjoy tuning in. It’ll help the podcast grow and we’d really appreciate it!

Thanks for listening!

Podbean | Spotify | iTunes | Stitcher | TuneIn | YouTube | PodLink

About Devon Ellington

Devon Ellington | The Merry Writer Podcast | RachelPoli.com

Devon Ellington is a full-time writer who publishes under multiple names in fiction and nonfiction, and is an internationally-produced playwright and radio writer.

Author Website | Blog | Twitter

Let me know your thoughts about the episode in the comments below so we can chat! Please feel free to share this post.

Blog Signature | RachelPoli.com

Podcast | Twitter | Instagram | Pinterest | GoodReads | Double Jump

Goals for August 2020

Happy August! It doesn’t quite feel like the end of summer is around the corner with school starting soon. 2020 has been a mess and I’ve lost track of all time. But we’re that much closer to 2021 and hopefully, it’ll be nicer to us. 

Goals for August 2020 | Creative Writing | Reading | Blogging | RachelPoli.com

Creative Writing

I set up deadlines for all my novels! Yes, yes, I know – I’ve done this before. But it’s legit this time, I promise. (I’ve probably said that before too.)

I have a long list of novels I want to work on. There are a few that are top priority though. Instead of working on a bunch of things at once, I’ve worked it out so that I’m only working on two or three at a time (not necessarily all at once but this is also in case I get burned out from a single project). 

As soon as August first hit, my sister and I made accounts on 4 The Words. This is an online writing program that I’ll talk more about in a later post. (Most likely in September so I can have a full month with the program.)

I’ve been using that program along with Scrivener to work on my novels. At the moment, I’m working hard on my George and Lilah cozy mystery series and my Sunday Morning flash fiction collection series. There are plenty of other books I want to work on but they’ll come once I finally finish George and Lilah. So, with that said, this is what I’ll be working on this month:

  • Edit the first draft of Sunday Morning Coffee
  • Prep the paperback version of Sunday Morning
  • Complete writing the current draft of George Florence and the Perfect Alibi

I’ve already made decent progress in this first week of the month. Here’s to a productive rest of the month!

Reading

My reading has slowed down a bit but I’m still planning on two book reviews a week when I can. I have a list of books I want to get through for August.

I’ve been trying to set aside some time every morning to read for about an hour or so to get myself back into the routine again. So, we’ll see how the month goes.

Everything else

Spilled Ink Press Shop

I don’t know who’s noticed this, but I have a new page on the blog (which you can see at the top) called Spilled Ink Press Shop. Click it and it’ll take you directly to a new website in a new tab.

This is something I’ve been working on for months and months and months. I’m finally getting closer to opening my shop. Yay!

The shop will contain a lot of goodies from printables to physical items for writers and readers alike. Items include notebooks, bookmarks, mugs, writing workbooks, and so much more. I can’t wait to finally show all of you what I’ve been working on!

Spilled Ink Press Shop will hopefully be open by the end of the month. You can head there now and sign up to know when it does. 

Medium

I took a hiatus from writing articles on Medium when the pandemic hit. I’m planning on getting back into writing articles on there for August and beyond. These articles are the same I typically write on my blog, but they’ll just be homed on Medium instead as I move this website into more of an official author space instead of a “blog”.

My username is RAPoli03 over there, so feel free to check out my articles and give me a follow over there.

Happy August!

I hope the month goes well for all of you. September is probably going to be here before we know it. 

What are your goals for the month? Let me know in the comments below. If you enjoyed this post, please share it.

Blog Signature | RachelPoli.com

Patreon | Twitter | Instagram | Pinterest | Goodreads | Double Jump 

Short Story Sunday: “Clock” [311]

Short Story Sunday 311: "Clock" | Creative Writing | Flash Fiction | RachelPoli.com

“It’s stuck at 9:03 am. Can we assume that’s the time of death?” Evelyn, with latex gloves on her hands, tapped the face of the wrist watch with the tip of her finger.

“Maybe, though it also could have already stopped working beforehand.” Michael watched as his partner examined the victim’s wrist from the driver’s seat of the car. “Something doesn’t quite add up though. If that’s when the time of death was, then we would have gotten a call much sooner.”

Evelyn stood up. “What time was it called in?”

“About 10:30 am.”

Evelyn brought her hand up to her mouth. “The caller said they had just heard a car crash into the lake across from their house, right?”

Michael nodded. He looked over his shoulder and pointed to a young woman across the way. “That’s her house over there. She’s standing in the front yard speaking to one of our officers.”

“If the watch stopped because it got submerged in water at 9:03 this morning but the neighbor, who lives directly across the street from the lake, didn’t hear anything crash until 10:30 this morning… I’m confused.” Evelyn shook her head.

“You should be because she not only heard the splash but she saw the car drive into the lake,” Michael clarified. “Supposedly she was in the kitchen pouring herself another cup of coffee when she looked out the window – which is above the kitchen sink right next to the coffee pot – and saw the car drive into the lake.” He pointed behind him to a small window a few feet to the left of the woman’s front door.

Evelyn sighed. “It’s early in the morning on a Friday. I’m not sure if my brain can handle this much inconsistency right now. What are you trying to tell me right now? Do you have suspicions?”

Michael raised his shoulders into a shrug. “If the clock stopped because of the water than that means the victim drove into the lake at about 9:03 this morning. But how can that be if they didn’t drive into the lake until 10:30 this morning? Or so our witness claims.”

“Do you think the witness has any involvement in this?”

“Maybe. Or maybe whoever the real culprit is put on a show for the neighbor so as to create a witness with a false lead.”

Evelyn breathed deeply and let out a long sigh. “We need to figure out who our victim is. Maybe we can ask around and figure out where he was headed and what time he left his house or where ever he was coming from. Maybe that will be a clue to as to what time he should have been driving down this road. Still, I think the watch will be our biggest clue to this case.”

“Unless the watch was already busted before he put it on this morning and that, in a way, is a false lead as well.”

Evelyn narrowed her eyes at her partner. “Why would the victim put on a broken watch before leaving the house?”

“Maybe he didn’t realize it was broken. Maybe he had put on the wrong watch. Maybe the battery died while he was driving in the car,” Michael rattled off a few possibilities.

“Maybe,” Evenlyn joined in with a point of her finger, “he knew the watch was busted and was on his way to the watch shop to get it fixed.”

Michael stared at her with a deadpanned expression.

“It’s a joke, Detective,” Evelyn said with a frustrated sigh. “I know the investigation has barely begun, but my head already hurts.”

“Mine too. We had to skip our morning coffee because of this call. We’ll pick something up when we’re done with this scene.”

“That’s not why my head hurts, but alright. I won’t say no to coffee.”

“Let’s make a list.” Michael pulled out a notepad and clicked his pen open. “We need to figure out who the victim is, where he was coming from and where he was going.”

“Who the neighbor is, check out her kitchen to get her perspective of the incident, and figure out what exactly she saw at 10:30 am. Also, what she was doing at 9:03 am,” Evelyn added.

“We have our work cut out for us this time,” Michael said. He clicked his pen closed.

“Also, the watch. When did it stop and why,” Evelyn stated.

“That may not be a priority just yet.”

“I think it should be the number one priority. The time on the clock and the witness’s statement and call-in to the police don’t add up. If she saw the whole thing happen, then she should have called the police right away,” Evelyn said.

“She did,” Michael nodded. “She saw it happen at 10:30 this morning and called it in right away.”

“But the watch stopped at 9:03 this morning. What if the witness saw a fake killing for the purpose of creating a witness?”

“I gave you that idea, remember. I don’t know how plausible that is though.”

“I think,” Evelyn suggested, “we should search this whole lake and look for another car.”

Michael sighed. He clicked his pen open again and wrote that down. “If it would make you feel better. I guess we should cover all our bases. But again, I don’t think we need to. A proper autopsy on the victim will tell us the time of death.”

“It may not be accurate though.”

“It’s something.”

Evelyn squatted down beside the victim again. Her hand hung out of the driver’s side with the car door wide open. With her gloves still on, she took the watch off his wrist.

“What are you doing?” Michael asked.

Evelyn stood, prying the back of the watch open. She smiled, turning the watch around for her partner to see. “No battery.”

Michael groaned. “Great. Now we definitely have a homicide on our hands.”

I hope you enjoyed the story. Let me know your thoughts in the comments below. Please feel free to share this post.

Blog Signature | RachelPoli.com

Podcast | Twitter | Instagram | Pinterest | GoodReads | Double Jump

The Anatomy of Prose by Sacha Black [Book Review]

This post contains affiliate links which means I earn a small commission should you buy from these links at no extra cost to you. Thank you for your support.

I bought an eBook copy of the book through Amazon. The decision to review and all opinions are my own.

Title: The Anatomy of Prose: 12 Steps to Sensational Sentences
Author: Sacha Black
Genre: Nonfiction, Writing Reference

Series: Better Writers (Book 7)
Publisher: Atlas Black Publishing
Publication Date: May 29, 2020

Seeing as this a nonfiction, writing craft book, my review format is a little different. There are no characters and no plot but there is a whole lot of writing style.

Within these pages, the author goes in depth on the craft of writing better sentences, thus better scenes within your novels. She discusses anything and everything from basic sentence structure, description, dialogue, word usage, and more.

The Anatomy of Prose packs a punch and has a lot of useful information without bombarding you. It’s easy to read and the author has a humorous, conversational tone. At the end of each section is a bulleted summary list of takeaways from the section allowing you to easily go back and search for something to need to look up.

If I were still in college, this would be a great textbook for a creative writing class. There are topics that you learn in elementary school, such as the meaning and use of personification, which is touched upon in this book but it goes much deeper than a dry explanation with dull examples.

This is the third book in the Better Writers series (not including the workbooks) and I think it’s the best one yet.

The Anatomy of Prose: 12 Steps to Sensational Sentences by Sacha Black

Conclusion

Informative
Easy to Comprehend
Writing Style

Overall

There’s always something new to learn when it comes to creative writing. Even looking over what you already know once in a while is useful. The Anatomy of Prose does both well.

5

Have you read this book? Let me know your thoughts on it in the comments below. If you enjoyed this post, please share it around. Also, you can take a look at more Book Reviews here.

Blog Signature | RachelPoli.com

Patreon | Twitter | Instagram | Pinterest | Goodreads | Double Jump

The Merry Writer Podcast: Episode 018 Now Live!

Do You Use Writing Prompts? | Ep. 018 | The Merry Writer Podcast | RachelPoli.com

The Merry Writer Podcast

The Merry Writer started as a hashtag game on Twitter and Instagram. Hosted by Ari Meghlen and myself, The Merry Writer Podcast is a fun, friendly show about all things writing and bookish. Join us as we ask all the “write” questions.

Episode 018: Do you use writing prompts?

In this week’s episode, Ari and I discuss our thoughts on creative writing prompts and how they can boost your writing. Be sure to give it a listen through the YouTube video below or any of the links below.

New episodes are published every Wednesday at 10:00 am EST (2:00 pm BST). Please subscribe to the podcast so you can be notified when a new episode goes live. Also, give each episode a “like” wherever you enjoy tuning in. It’ll help the podcast grow and we’d really appreciate it!

Thanks for listening!

Podbean | Spotify | iTunes | Stitcher | TuneIn | YouTube | PodLink

What are your thoughts on this episode? Let me know in the comments below so we can chat! Please feel free to share this post.

Blog Signature | RachelPoli.com

Podcast | Twitter | Instagram | Pinterest | GoodReads | Double Jump