blogs / writers

We’re Back!

TA helloAnd just in time. Write Anything has barely shut its doors and already I’m off-balance, like getting over the tips of my skis or being stuck in a kindergarten classroom all day. You can only say WTF so many times a day before you decide to start drinking. But I don’t drink.

I could get used to it–not writing fiction–but why would I want to?

Don’t get me wrong–I’m still writing, in fact, over eight hours a day. When I’m not doing my day job–teaching–I’m writing columns and reviews and articles and blogs and lesson plans, but what I get little chance to do is

write creatively.

My novel–a techno thriller–is with an agent and I’m afraid to start the sequel because if–WHEN–a publisher arrives, they will make changes and I don’t want my head into a different plot. So I am writing everything BUT creatively.

Thanks to the Universe, I now have Today’s Writer.

A little more about me since we’re going to spend some time together. I’m a techie geek (if you have computer questions, drop by my blog, Ask a Tech Teacher. Last year, I had almost a million visitors and still answered every question sent my way). I write columns and blogs and reviews for Cisco, Amazon. TeachHub, and a few others and my published tech books are doing quite nicely. I am a (proud) geek. It provides order, rigor, expectations. I like those.

But I like variety, too, so on Today’s Author, I’ll be contrary, argumentative, sometimes disorganized, maybe analytic and likely opinionated. Writing is my escape. I can lose hours–literally–sitting at the computer. I start with tons of time and end up rushing to finish the last bits before I have to shut down for the night. Does that happen to you? Does a character drag you away, monopolize your consciousness until their world seems more real than yours? Yes, I see it in your eyes. You have the bug, too. It is a firewall against boredom in the world. As you research to understand your character, her/his motivations, needs, goals, do you find yourself always wanting more? And when that topic pops up in the real world, you are an expert on it. Right?

That’s because you are a writer. And that explains it all.

Welcome to my world. I look forward to seeing yours.

Jacqui Murray is the author of the popular Building a Midshipman, the story of her daughter’s journey from high school to United States Naval Academy. She is webmaster for six blogs, an Amazon Vine Voice book reviewer, a columnist for Examiner.comEditorial Review Board member for Journal for Computing TeachersCisco guest blog,Technology in Education featured blogger, IMS tech expert, and a bi-weekly contributor to Write Anything. In her free time, she is  editor of a K-6 technology curriculumK-8 keyboard curriculum, creator of two technology training books for middle school and six ebooks on technology in education. Currently, she’s editing a thriller that should be out to publishers next summer. Contact Jacqui at her writing office or her tech lab, Ask a Tech Teacher.


11 thoughts on “We’re Back!

  1. Creative writing is also my obsession. The outlines and research, chapters and revisions. Finally the finished story which always turns out not to be finished and gets finished again – and again – and again. I try to be creative in all those applications. I’d love the words “The End” to actually mean what they say. (Maybe I should end my stories with “Hiccup.”) I try to be creative in everything I write: critiques of other writer’s works, emails to friends, even lesson plans. It keeps the creative pulse pumping even when it’s not focused on the WIP. I will someday get back to my other muse, painting, but right now it’s writing.
    So, on two other counts: Is Today’s Writer the same as Today’s Author? Is it the reincarnation of Write Anything? Is it your new creative gig? I’m going to saunter around the web and see if I can find it.
    And, while you don’t drink, and neither do I, you also don’t say WTF, and I do, sadly too often. ; )
    Best wishes on your new venture, Jacqui. You’ll be great. And I see your spirit is lifted.
    Shari *: )


      • I’ve been noting and admiring all your new art. I’m impressed that your skills extend to other media. (Not about your creativity though, just your art skills!)

        And funny you should point out your new caution about using images that might be copyrighted. In the same vein, I ultimately decided to eliminate all the poetry from the story I submitted to ABNA. I’d always known that some of it was not in public domain but when I finally did the research to determine what was in PD, I found that some of the very oldest work had been purchased by other companies and is again copyrighted. In other words, the original estates no longer are owned or benefit the original
        writers, but are filling wallets of people who have simply bought the intellectual property.

        Was absolutely heartbreaking to take out the verses. I had a great time doing the research to find perfect pieces for each chapter.It was woven into the story and much of it fit beautifully.

        Copyright lawsuit is a huge industry today. Lots of money crossing the surface of the planet and very little to the originators of the work. Attorneys gleeful.

        But I can’t beat the system even when I think it’s dirty.

        So yes, you did a good job. I suspect I’ll have to learn to do the same. The piece for this article reminds me of Claes Oldenburg’s whimsy. What do you think of that?!


      • Smart move. Maybe connect with a poet who would like his work promoted in your book.

        I know I’m falling far short of what I used to present with images. For a fact. I used to get quite a few hits through the images on my blogs. Now, not so many. Probably at least 150 less a day just from images. But, I’m legal.


      • I had song lyrics in my book, but at the end I decided to use only songs in public domain. But, one song had really inspired me. I’d learned it at a music festival from a friend of the person who wrote it. All I had was a name and a city. In the end I cut it and wrote my own song, and felt kinda stupid for not having written my own in the first place.
        Feels good to do it that way.


      • That’s how I feel about creating my own artwork. Yes, I’m no pro, but I don’t risk a lawsuit for a free blog and it’s fun to create.

        I too had one artwork I really wanted to use, contacted the creator, went back and forth to get the permission, and he finally stopped answering my emails. I don’t get it–I offered to pay him!


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