Thursday, January 31, 2013

Collection of Writing Tips

I rarely post blogs about the craft of writing because there are plenty of others who do such a fabulous job. However, once in a while, I come across some excellent sites with helpful hints for writers that are interesting and have helped me. Even if you don’t write professionally, there are times when you need to get your point across via the written word.

Here are some I’d like to share:

Monday, January 28, 2013

Recycled Fashion

Add your own style by replacing the buttons.

The concept of recycling items for fashion isn’t new. My grandmother told me about some of the things my great-grandmother did with potato and flour sacks to make them into various garments and accessories.

When I worked as a product information fashion writer for the Home Shopping Network, I saw a wide variety of lines. Most of it was nice but rather conventional. However, one of the designers caught my attention because it was so unusual at the time. They made handbags from colorful candy wrappers.

Since then, I’ve become more aware of taking something old and making it new again. As I get older, I realize that I need to be careful with this, or I might wind up looking like a bag lady. However, most teenagers and early twenty-somethings can get away with almost any recycled look.

Here are some ideas for recycling items for fashion:
  • Replacing buttons on clothing with unique buttons from clothing found at thrift stores and garage sales.
  • Turning the leg of an old pair of jeans into a handbag or tote.
  • Cutting an old T-shirt into strips and making a fringed scarf.
  • Refashioning a pillowcase into a skirt.
  • Replacing an old watchband with ribbon.
  • Designing sweater clips from old jewelry findings.
  • Braiding strips of old T-shirts into headbands.

Thursday, January 24, 2013

Friend's Editing Services

One of the content editors I've worked with in the past, Rachel Overton, is now offering her services to authors. She has years of experience freelancing for publishers, so she knows what they're looking for.

Rachel offers the following services:

  • Partial manuscript evaluation - first 3,000 words
  • Full manuscript evaluation
  • Copy edit
  • Substantive edit
  • Developmental edit
  • Proofreading

If you're interested in finding out more about Rachel's services, please email her at She can answer specific questions and send you a rate sheet based on your needs.

Monday, January 21, 2013

Helpful Organic Tips

I'm always running out of essential household items like window cleaner, shoe polish, and appliance cleaner. YouTube has become my go-to source for making do with things I always have around the house. What's really nice is that none of the alternative products are toxic, so you don't have to worry about children and pets getting into them.

Here are some videos with organic tips that you might decide work better than what you normally use:

Thursday, January 17, 2013

Looking for a New Job?

If you're looking for a new job, January is a good time to start. Freshen up your resume, wardrobe, market knowledge, and interview skills before you dive into the prospect pool.

Here are some articles that might help:
Job Interview Etiquette
7 Handshake Tips
10 Quick and Easy Etiquette Tips
Resume Writing Guide
Job Listings
Job Search and Career Networking
Etiquette of Proper Attire

Things don't always go as planned, so be prepared with these tips:
What to Do After a Job Loss
How to Answer Rude Questions
Employment Discrimination

Monday, January 14, 2013

Happy National Dress Up Your Pet Day!

Today is the day for Fido and Fifi to strut their fluff and show off their fierce and fabulous sense of style. Start out with a stunning collar embellished with sparkling rhinestones to make sure your favorite pet gets the attention he or she craves.

You can find cute outfits for your dog in all price ranges - from super affordable Walmart duds and moderately priced PetEdge attire to luxe fashion at the Posh Puppy Boutique.

Whether you choose to take your dog for a fashionable jaunt through the park or you have a doggie play date with friends, no one will ever accuse you of scrimping on your little four-legged furry friend.

Cat lovers may have a more difficult time getting their favorite felines into a sweater, so you might want to select something at Zazzle that you can wear to show how much you love your little furball.

Thursday, January 10, 2013

New Year's Resolutions

I asked some of my friends to send me their New Year's resolutions, and here they are:

Martha Rogers: I don't really do resolutions because I always broke them by the first of February. Now I set both short and long term goals for myself. Works a lot better for me especially if I write them down and keep the list handy.

Trish Perry: I'm hopeful I can make time for 30 minutes of exercise each day. My schedule is insane, but I want so much to keep healthy!

Lena Nelson Dooley: I haven't done New Year's resolutions for years. Several years ago, one of my best friends, who is a missionary, and I have asked God for his word or phrase for the new year. So many times the words we have received are the same or similar. I received a strange word for 2013. Butterfly. It will be a butterfly year for me with me emerging from my chrysalis. I believe it means He will bring change and a renewal in my life.

Kathi Macias: I don’t normally make resolutions, but I am promising myself to make a more concerted effort to reign my life into some sort of manageable pace. Right now I’m spending more time than usual seeking God about what that looks like and how to realistically make it happen.

Cherie Burbach: My one New Year's Resolution is always: never make resolutions. LOL I do, however, have some professional goals that I try and accomplish. This year it will be getting my fiction work together, finishing up two ebook projects, and doing more art work. 

Sandie Bricker: I'm not normally a resolution maker. I usually just journal on New Year's Eve about the things I'd like to accomplish in the coming year. However, this year is very different. I actually have made one! Ready? ... I have resolved to surrender. In 2013, I'm going to spend more time being Mary, and less time being Martha. I'm going to rest at the feet of Jesus, surrender my crazies to His throne, and allow Him to simply work in and through me.

And now here's mine: I resolve to focus on what's really important and stop worrying about things I can't control. 

Monday, January 7, 2013

Character Interview from Last Chance for Justice

Another Bloomfield novel, this one by Kathi Macias, is currently available for preorder: Last Chance for Justice.

Interview with Lynn Myers, one of the characters in her Bloomfield book : 
    How long have you lived in Bloomfield? I was actually born and raised here but left when I got married. I’ve been home to visit a few times through the years, but then my husband died and my daughter was off at Bible college and I felt at loose ends. That’s when I received the news that my only sibling, Myron, had died. He left me his entire estate—including the huge old house right next to the Bloomfield cemetery. I had to return to Bloomfield then to settle the estate; thankfully my daughter, Rachel, who had just graduated and had some spare time on her hands, came with me.
    What keeps you here? I tell myself I’m here just long enough to get things taken care of with Myron’s estate, but something keeps drawing me to consider staying longer.
    Are you in the garden club? My mother was very active in the garden club, but I left town before getting involved. I have a brown thumb and can’t imagine myself joining the group, but still…
    What do you grow in your garden? Low maintenance plants—even those have to fight for their lives.
    Do you have any gardening tips you'd like to share? Sure. Don’t ever leave your plants with me to care for, or you’ll be buying new ones!

***One final point: I have a Facebook page (my daughter’s suggestion). Please come by and “friend” me! I feel a bit lonely over there.
Author bio: 
Kathi Macias is a multi-award winning writer who has authored nearly 40 books and ghostwritten several others. A former newspaper columnist and string reporter, Kathi has taught creative and business writing in various venues and has been a guest on many radio and television programs. Kathi is a popular speaker at churches, women’s clubs and retreats, and writers’ conferences. She won the 2008 Member of the Year award from AWSA (Advanced Writers and Speakers Association) and was the 2011 Author of the Year from Her novel set in China, Red Ink, was named Golden Scrolls 2011 Novel of the Year and was also a Carol Award Finalist; her October 2012 release, Unexpected Christmas Hero, was named 2012 Book of the Year by Kathi “Easy Writer” Macias lives in Homeland, CA, with her husband.

Thursday, January 3, 2013

Happy National Festival of Sleep Day!

Now that the holidays are over, chances are you're exhausted, so National Festival of Sleep Day is a welcome celebration. 

Find some time to kick back and catch a few ZZs. Just try not to do it at work. You don't need to anger your boss or coworkers.

I also want to give my dad, Jeff Tisdale, a happy birthday shout-out! This is a major birthday that I'm thankful to be able to celebrate with him.