March 28, 2016

Tales of Title Woes (Part III)

So, some of you may have seen on social media that I was struggling with a real (not placeholder) title for the next book in the Mending Heartstrings world. This led to a conversation of title formulas with a friend. (You know, how books in the same world will have similar formulas for the title, or sometimes use the same word in all titles.) He is against formulaic titles and made a comment about them feeling uncreative, and how Shakespeare never did that. Now my gut instinct was "fair point." Except...

Shakespeare often used the main character's (or characters') names, like in all the histories (Richard II & III, Henry IV-VIII, Edward III, etc.), in many tragedies (King Lear, Macbeth, Othello, Julius Caesar, etc.), and in character pairs (Antony & Cleopatra, Romeo & Juliet, Troilus & Cressida).

But there's more! Shakespeare also used a formula for many comedies:

The Merry Wives of Windsor
The Merchant of Venice
The Taming of the Shrew
The Comedy of Errors
Two Gentlemen of Verona (okay, slightly different)

Why am I pointing this out? Because, originally I had defended the formula choice as a means of signaling to readers that stories are in the same world/series—in other words to some extent, a contemporary marketing choice. But it seems that this is in fact not at all a contemporary trend, though possibly it is about marketing.

What do you think? Was Shakespeare signaling to his audiences what to expect, or did he—like many contemporary writers—simply hate coming up with titles?

March 21, 2016

Hitting Pause

Can you believe it's the end of March 2016?? I know, I know—it's March 21st, and technically that's not the end. But it definitely feels like it is. And my mom asked me about December plans today, which didn't help my sense of "where has this year gone already???"

It can be rough, catching everything on the first go-round through. Things always slip through the cracks (just me?)—especially the little bits of fun, since we're so busy worrying about the big important things. So, I decided to hit pause and remind you of a couple things you might have missed: 

The new Scripting Change anthology, Breaking Free, released last week. The anthology includes a new flash fiction piece by me, but more importantly 100% of its proceeds go to support the survivors of domestic violence. Can you spare a couple dollars for this great cause?

The Little Things Blog Hop—with over 100 participants & giveaways both big and small—is currently going on. So take some time for the little things, and go enter to win!

The I Heart Geeks anthology also released recently, including my story "The Whedonite" and an awesome story by my friend Kristyn F. Brunson!

And as a bonus, for those of you in the US, a new Goodreads giveaway will be starting Wednesday for print copies of Mending Heartstrings! Starting March 23rd, enter on Goodreads or below:

Goodreads Book Giveaway

Mending Heartstrings by Aria Glazki

Mending Heartstrings

by Aria Glazki

Giveaway ends April 04, 2016.

See the giveaway details
at Goodreads.

Enter Giveaway

March 16, 2016

All About the Little Things (Blog Hop)

"It's the little things in life." For many, easier said than done, right? Remembering to be mindful of the little good things to counterbalance all the little (and not so little) bad things that happen, day in and day out, can be difficult. Or at first even impossible. 

I read once that we're actually wired to remember the bad more—that negative experiences stand out more vividly in our minds in order to protect us. Basically, remembering that a berry tastes good (positive memory) is great, but it isn't going to save your life. Remembering that fire=burning yourself=ow (painful/negative memory) will prevent you from repeating the mistake of sticking your finger in the fire. So apparently, we're supposed to remember the bad things more easily, to help us avoid making the same mistake in the future, and in a biological sense, save our lives.

Now the issue of whether remembering a mistake helps us avoid it, especially when it comes to murkier situations than fire=hot, can be a whole series of posts on its own. Today, however, we're here to talk about the little things. Those small moments that nevertheless manage to stand out, and make us happy. 

March 14, 2016

New Scripting Change Anthology: Breaking Free

Scripting Change's newest anthology, Breaking Free, is releasing tomorrow! This time, Scripting Change chose to focus on the important and all too pervasive issue of domestic violence, with the theme: Survive, Recover, Rebuild.

The collection includes a mix of heartbreaking and uplifting pieces, all eloquently addressing the experience of domestic violence from a variety of points of view. 

100% of Scripting Change's proceeds from this (and every!) project are donated. The recipient organization for this anthology is REACH, based in Massachusetts. REACH provides both support to those affected by domestic violence and education to communities, promoting healthy relationships and raising awareness of domestic violence and its signs.

Breaking Free is available through:

Smashwords — Set your own price!
Amazon: US | UK | CAN | AUS

And don't forget to add it on Goodreads!

March 7, 2016

Guest Post: The Secret Behind Successful Writing

The exact meaning of secret is itself a secret, lost even to most dictionaries found on the web (which is why you should stick with older, clunkier dictionaries, even if they don’t define words such as “LOL” and “TTYL”).

But I finally managed to find the one I was looking for in the Cambridge online Dictionary:
    Secret: noun The ​particular ​knowledge and ​skills ​needed to do something very well. (Source)

Most people don’t think of (or even know) that definition, and they tend to look for the other, more widely accepted definition: A ​piece of ​information that is only ​known by one ​person or a few ​people and should not be told to ​others (same source as above).