Calling All Writers! A Relief Project?

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Editing for authors: because every writer needs a good editor.

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JennaGlatzer

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Resilience. I like that.

The problem with multiple themes is... how do we describe the book? It needs a very simple explanation-- something people can read and know what the book is about in just a sentence or two.

I keep replaying in my mind that blonde woman who went back to see her house and found absolutely nothing there. She cried for just a second or two, then quickly said something along the lines of, "But we're alive, and material things can be replaced. If I can say that, standing here in 'my house,' anyone can."

Hmm.

How about Stories of Strength?

With any of these titles, I'd take the broadest interpretation, so there could be multiple sections within that theme... let's say we do go with Stories of Strength. We could have sections on...

1. Physical strength: e.g., running a marathon, recovering from a car accident, climbing a mountain.

2. Spiritual strength: Finding faith even when the situation looks grim.

3. Borrowing strength: When a friend helped you through a trying time, when a community came together to help a family, etc.

4. Role models of strength: Stories of people you admire for their resilience.

5. The strength to start over: Stories about building a new life after alcoholism, drug addiction, divorce, death of a loved one, etc.
 
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E.G. Gammon

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Jenna, you truely are the heart of this board. It sounds like a wonderful idea. Once the final theme is settled on (I think Stories of Strength sounds PERFECT), I'll make time to submit something to the project.
 

KTC

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You're a wonderful heart, Jenna. Great idea. I'm in. I love your idea for a breakdown of types of stories of strength too. Seems like that would offer a wide scope for writers. Thanks for doing this.
 

Carole

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JennaGlatzer said:
I keep replaying in my mind that blonde woman who went back to see her house and found absolutely nothing there. She cried for just a second or two, then quickly said something along the lines of, "But we're alive, and material things can be replaced. If I can say that, standing here in 'my house,' anyone can."
Yes! And another...A woman with her son and daughter who lost their home. This woman is determined and she told the reporter that they are down but not out. She had her son shimmy up a tree to hang an American flag over their demolished home in Mississippi.

I love the topic of strength.
 

KTC

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My mind keeps going back to an interview of an air boat driver I saw yesterday on CNN. As the interview was being carried out, an elderly woman started calling out for help from the second story of a partially submerged house. When the boat driver and the interviewer began speaking to her she said, I'm okay, come back for me. There are three women with young children in the house beside me. Take them. I think I may have been overwhelmed by then, but that gesture just blew me away. The woman sounded like the definition of weakness and frailty...yet she was calling out to get help for her young neighbors. It broke my heart.
 

Nicholas S.H.J.M Woodhouse

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I think Ray was spot-on with having multiple themes, because about 50-70 short pieces on one sort of story could be overwhelming for the reader (perhaps not in the good way).
I believe that the 'stories of strength' opens it up rather beautifully, allowing us to have so many different types of story that the reader wouldn't get a feeling of dejavu all the time.
the only problem I can see coming from this is that we may end up with 50 odd stories on 'the strength to start over' and 4 on 'physical strength'. To prevent this rather than cure it we could all put forward the basic plot of what we want to submit and then a committee (sounds a bit fancy-like, but basically I meant JG) would try to weigh things out.
If people had multiple stories they wanted to submit, then they should to give us the best chance of 'balance'.
?
 
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Vanessa

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E.G. Gammon said:
Jenna, you truely are the heart of this board. It sounds like a wonderful idea. Once the final theme is settled on (I think Stories of Strength sounds PERFECT), I'll make time to submit something to the project.

I agree Jenna, I like the various stories of strength.
 

Sara Rachael Hope

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I agree with what Nique has stated above, and I feel major consideration needs to be paid to it, since it's 'right on the mark'!

I am wondering whether it will become something like a 'Chicken Soup' book, and whether those now suffering, will have the ability and/or time and capacity to read it and hopefully benefit from it...
Perhaps if it expresses something like 'All Is Okay' those experiencing disaster now will not feel as though they need to gather more strength (and begin to think and feel as if it's already available-no matter what!).
It's one thing to accept your house has burned and all belongings are gone. It's another to have a child dying in your arms and not have the ability to do anything about it and seeing dead and dis-eased people all around you and rapes occuring. Don't you think?
I wonder how many are illiterate as well as how and where/when it can be distributed...
Perhaps the book can become a silver lining (if you know what I mean!).
 

Nicholas S.H.J.M Woodhouse

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I have with me a copy of the Paul Auster edited True Tales of American Life.

They have split it into several different sections - objects, animals, strangers, families etc.

But what I particularly like is that some stories are very short, such as the chicken, which is only one small paragraph. Others are five to sixe pages. It seems to depend on the story, and what it merits. If one of us puts forward a story that we think would work in 250 words, I think we should be able to, and if one story would work even better with a little more, then why not?
 

Unique

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Sara Rachael Hope said:
I agree with what Nique has stated above, and I feel major consideration needs to be paid to it, since it's 'right on the mark'!

and whether those now suffering, will have the ability and/or time and capacity to read it and hopefully benefit from it...
QUOTE]

It was my impression that the funds from the sale of this book would go to the people of New Orleans, not necessarily the book itself.
 

GPatten

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Shoot to kill order has been given.

Maybe we can sponsor a round or two to help those that were affected by the looters? :mad:

$100.00 for a .308 round, $250.00 for a a few 50 caliber round etc.
 

Paint

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Count me in Jenna. Just let me know what, when and how. I like the Strength theme, also Disaster Preparedness. I came to work thinking what can I do? Found this site. My answer. I'm ready, just say the word!

God bless them all and keep them safe!
Paint
 

ChunkyC

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I too like Stories of Strength as an overall theme. Under that umbrella, we can have a wide range of tales, both fact and fiction. I get the feeling that once we get the 'go' from Jenna, we'll get plenty of material to choose from and will be able to put together a very broad and balanced book.

Beyond that will be the effort to sell it. I'm thinking I can approach the local bookstores in my area about at least advertising its existence and how people can order it. Since I write a column in my local papers, I have a certain visibility in the area communities and I'll use that as much as I can to get the word out. I'll speak to my editor as well and see what the papers are willing to do. Any of the rest of us who are something of a known quantity in our communities could do something similar.
 

clintl

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I'm in, whatever the theme turns out to be.
 

maestrowork

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Whatever we do, we should do it quickly.

So, get moving and write now... while Jenna finalizes the details.
 

E.G. Gammon

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Hey! I know the owner of a popular weekly newspaper from Oakland, Maryland who would probably let me write a small article, promoting the book and its cause, if I asked him to. He's printed a September 11th flag I designed and a poem I wrote about my father's Cancer, before, so I'm pretty sure he would help us promote the book once it's all finished. I'll have to email him to get things going...

[EDIT: I plan to write my short story about the loss of a father, the effect it has on a family, and the struggle the family goes through to heal. I just thought I would throw that out there, so we all can have a variety of stories written for the book.]
 
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Christine N.

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Hey Jenna,
I don't usually do stories like that. My head is pounding (allergies) so nothing pops into my head. But I'll gladly donate copyediting services.

If I come up with something I'll submit.

They got me today - I saw a story of a man who stayed behind with his family, to protect his restaurant. He was afraid his wife and eight year old daughter were going to be raped. That's horrid, but it's happening (yeah, I thought of Snake Plissken too). Anyway, he tried for days to siphon gas from cars and find a battery. Finally a cop gave him one of his guns and told them "Run. As fast and as far as you can - run for your lives."
For the first time since this started, I cried.

I'll put out links too.. I'm on a couple of boards, and my personal website. If you want, I'll even take copies to the book fair I'm going to on Oct. 1. They'll still need money by then.

Let me know what I can do.
 

JennaGlatzer

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OKAY! Here's the official call for submissions. Please do spread the word!

Call for Submissions: Stories of Strength

Those who’ve been affected by Hurricane Katrina will need our help for years to come. This is one way writers can help in an ongoing way.

Stories of Strength will be an anthology of essays, poems, and stories produced by the members of AbsoluteWrite.com, with 100% of the proceeds to be donated to the Red Cross for disaster relief. It will be released in paperback by Lulu, with a possible e-book version as well.

Writers are asked to participate by donating work to this anthology.

Reprints and simultaneous submissions are fine. Please do not submit more than two pieces.

The stories are meant to be uplifting. They may be humorous, dramatic, or inspirational; they may be nonfiction or fiction. Please avoid expletives—this is a PG-rated book.

Possible sections include:

1. Physical strength: e.g., running a marathon, recovering from a car accident, climbing a mountain.

2. Strength of spirit: Finding faith even when the situation looks grim.

3. Borrowing strength: When a friend helped you through a trying time, when a community came together to help a family, etc.

4. Role models of strength: Stories of people you admire for their resilience.

5. The strength to start over: Stories about building a new life after alcoholism, drug addiction, divorce, death of a loved one, etc.


We would also appreciate tips sheets related to emergency preparations for natural disasters.

-What to do in case of a fire
-What to do in case of a hurricane
-What belongs in an emergency kit
-Etc.

It’s okay if your idea doesn’t fit neatly into one of these sections.

We prefer submissions to be a maximum of 1200 words, but this is not a hard cut-off. (We will absolutely not accept anything beyond 2000 words.) Shorter stories and poems are welcomed.

You retain the rights to your work; all we require is one-time anthology rights.

Please send your work in the body of an e-mail to (Ms.) Macallister Stone at macallisterstone @ yahoo.com and be sure to put the word STRENGTH in the subject line.

You may also include a short (35 words or fewer) bio with your submission.

The deadline is not firm and will depend on the volume of submissions, but we’d like to receive submissions by Friday, September 16th.

To follow the progress of this project, please visit http://absolutewrite.com/forums/showthread.php?t=18397 .

Thank you,
Jenna Glatzer
Editor-in-chief
AbsoluteWrite.com
 
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WriteRead

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Okay, I start pianoing on the keyboard! I intend to submit a poem and a story, but that may change according to what I may feel the right pieces are. Sept. the 15th is my deadline.

It goes w/o saying that I'll spread the word in whatever possible way.

Dan
 

JennaGlatzer

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We've already received our first two submissions. :Clap:

I just registered the domain www.storiesofstrength.com on E.G. Gammon's suggestion, and for now it'll point to a page on my site where I have the call for submissions. Later, I'll probably just have it point straight to Lulu's page, but that'll be a handy address to use!
 

ChunkyC

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The marching orders are in, gang. I know you'll all do AW proud.

PS -- you guys write fast!!
 

Cabria

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Jenna,

This is a wonderful gesture. I write a lot of inspirational type prose for BMA so I will work on writing some new poems to submit to this project in aid of the cause.

Deb :)
 
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