I’m welcoming Sophie Moss to the blog today. Sophie is the author of The Selkie Spell and The Selkie Enchantress (Seal Island Trilogy) and is sharing her experience of signing up to a writing festival for a boost of inspiration!
Want to Have More Fun Writing? Join A Writing Festival!
by Sophie Moss
Thank you so much for hosting me on your blog today, Terri. Congratulations on the amazing success of your debut novel! I released the second story of my Seal Island Trilogy, The Selkie Enchantress, in August. To celebrate, I’d like to offer a tip for writers on how to stay fresh and motivated. Many of us have families and full-time jobs. It’s challenging finding time to write around a whirlwind of daily activities. But I’ve stumbled across an incredibly useful tool in the past year to help fuel the motivation and keep the words flowing onto the page.
In January, I spotted the Ruby-Slippered Sisterhood Winter Writing Festival advertised on Twitter. This particular festival brought over 200 romance writers together to support and motivate each other over a two month period. This festival was unique in that participants earned points by meeting personal goals instead of signing onto a collective goal like writing a book in a month. I find this type of writing festival more appealing because meeting a personal goal is more manageable and you feel a sense of satisfaction as you make real progress each day.
But the most ingenious part of the festival was the ‘writing sprints.’ Three to four times a day, a moderator opened the ‘sprint chat room’ where a dozen writers would come together to spend the next two hours doing intensive twenty-minute intervals of sprint-writing. In between sprints, we would bounce ideas off each other, ask for help if we were stuck on a plot point or struggling with a difficult character. I was amazed by how much I wrote every time I committed to one of these sprint sessions, and it was a lot of fun because I made friends while doing it!
Of course, you don’t have to be a romance writer to join a writing festival. There are plenty of festivals to choose from, including National Novel Writing Month (NaNoWriMo) which kicks off each year in November. This writing challenge has been around for over ten years and brings hundreds of thousands of participants together with a single goal-to draft a 50,000-word manuscript in one month. This type of challenge is fantastic for a writer who needs the motivation to complete a first draft. It’s more about quantity than quality, but many writers prefer to sprint to the finish and start the process of editing, rather than painstakingly crafting each sentence to perfection in the initial draft.
Every writer is different and some may prefer to toil away in solitude. But for those of us who are more social, it’s a lot more fun to write with friends. And it’s a lot more likely we’ll get our butts in the chair if our friends are doing it at the same time!
What about you? Have you participated in a writing festival? What was your experience like?
About Sophie Moss
Sophie Moss writes modern-day Irish fairy tales. Her stories are full of magic, mystery, and romance. She is a member of Romance Writers of America and Celtic Hearts Romance Writers. When she’s not writing, she’s tending her rose garden. She has a strange knack for finding four-leaf clovers and writes best while sipping a Guinness.
About The Selkie Enchantress (Seal Island Trilogy, Book 2)
In this modern-day fairy tale romance, Irish islander, Caitlin Conner, has been in love with professor of Irish folklore, Liam O’Sullivan, for as long as she can remember. But just when he’s starting to look at her as more than a friend, a mysterious woman arrives on Seal Island and captures his heart. As Caitlin discovers the truth behind the woman’s lies, she realizes Liam is trapped in a dangerous enchantment and the only way to break the spell is to uncover a secret Irish fairy tale that has remained hidden for hundreds of years. But when the petals of a white rose grown in winter start to fall, the legend is set in motion. And Caitlin must find a way to change the ending before the last petal falls.
I've been doing NaNoWriMo every year since I first joined in 2009. I'm the ML for my region, and the get-togethers are a lot if fun. :)