Thursday, July 13, 2017

My New, Improved (and freaking beautiful) Website

As I was posting my last blog over at Women on Writing, it occurred to me that I never promoted my own website on my blog!  Time to fix that.

If you read my other post, you'll see why I waited so long before updating my website.  But, to make a long story short, I paid a student to create my original site because I was busy, tired, and too scared to create one for myself.  At the time, it was a perfect solution.

The problem?  I had no way to update it.  Only he knew how to make changes.  Four years later, I had no access to him.  Once he graduated, we completely lost touch.

My choices were clear:  keep the outdated site with information from four years ago and an unflattering photograph of myself, or wipe the slate clean and attempt to create a new website on my own.  It took some courage, a large serving of wine, and a short prayer to God before I made the leap and told Host Monster to delete all existing content.

I then started my rocky journey with WordPress.

WordPress and I have a love/hate relationship.  I love my final product.  I hated the road to get there. Before using WordPress, I had zero experience creating a website.  Blogger doesn't count, since a two-year-old could figure it out.

I made mistake after mistake.  I tossed four-letter words at the screen.  I stormed into the kitchen to get more wine when I failed to achieve what I wanted.  I spend hours researching how to complete every tiny aspect of the program.  Finally, however, it came together, piece-by-piece.  Each small accomplishment pushed me further, until I was satisfied with the end result.

Personally, I think my website is wonderful.

It showcases my writing, my (super amateur) photography, and my brand as an author.

If you haven't had a peek, please do!  And feel free to leave feedback in the comments!

VISIT MY WEBSITE HERE.

Beth - 1
WordPress' Difficulty - 0
Beth's Courage - 1

Author Websites

It turns out is IS important for authors to have their own, updated websites!  Read my latest post about my struggles to update mine and the stunning end result.  Then, of course, feel free to visit my website!

Even if you aren't an author, having a website is a great way to showcase yourself and your talents.

Read the blog here:  The Need for a Website.

Wednesday, June 14, 2017

Summer Reading

Over at Women on Writing, I discuss the importance of reading - especially in the genre in which we write.

I also admit to nerding out when I discovered our local library has a summer reading program for adults.  I'm six books away from an ice cream cone, courtesy of Chick-fil-A.

Read the post here.

Thursday, June 1, 2017

Hidden Gems - Reading the Quotations Before Reading the Story

New blog post over at WOW!  I talk about why I love reading the quotations authors use at the beginning of their books.  I also share a few of my favorites!

Read it here.


Saturday, May 27, 2017

Naughty Words

Newest Post for The Muffin's Women on Writing:  Read it Here.

I discuss which words to avoid when you are writing.  And no, I'm not talking about your typical four-letter naughty words.  :)


Wednesday, May 17, 2017

Grade Grubbing

Grades.  I've come to loathe the word.

It took ten years of teaching for me to reach this level of hatred for the entire grading concept.  I think my feelings towards grades began to sour a few years ago, but my dislike has now reached epic proportions.

Students are obsessed with grades.  For example, it wasn't until I started teaching that I realized the monumental difference between a 92% and a 93%.  The difference is a tiny little dash (-) at the end of the letter "A" which can rip a student apart and send them spiraling towards failure.  Students will do anything for extra credit - and I mean anything.  They've offered to leave campus and buy me lunch.  They've offered clean my house.  They've called me a dream crusher who has prevented them from getting into college.  They've cried, begged, pleaded and threatened.  All for the tiniest half of a percentage.

They behave - and, as I've come to believe, truly feel - as if that .4% defines them as a person.

So, perhaps you can see why I've started to cringe when I hear the word "grades."  These students are bright and inquisitive.  They are funny, and kind, and intelligent.  They share knowledge with me. They grow as writers over the year.  The surprise me with their resilience and their dedication to their dreams.

They learn so much over the course of 10 months.

Now, there's a word I can get behind.  Students are sent to school to learn, aren't they?  We want them to have enough knowledge to make them productive citizens, to help them lead our country in the future, to give them the fortitude to survive a world which isn't always kind.  School is about learning.  Lately, though, students and parents have largely lost sight of that.

I don't have any solutions to this problem.  I understand the fundamental need for a feedback system and for a way to measure a student's progress.  Maybe the larger issue is the incredible rise in competition over the years.  Students think they have to have a 4.0 or higher with 20 AP classes under their belt in order to get into college.  Either way, based on the trend, I don't see it stopping any time soon.

Until then, I'll continue to resist their offers of food.  And a tall, skim, toffee-nut latte from Starbucks is my favorite.

Beth - 0
Students - 0
Grading System - 1

Friday, May 5, 2017

Writing Hacks: Using a Bulletin Board

My latest blog post is up on The Muffin.  I talk about using a bulletin board to save time when you write.  :)

Check it out HERE.

Saturday, April 22, 2017

Green-Eyed Author Monster

Newest post on Women on Writing!

Check it out here.

(or here:  http://muffin.wow-womenonwriting.com/2017/04/green-eyed-author-monster.html )

Friday, March 31, 2017

To Plow or to Edit?

Here is my latest blog on Women on Writing, where I explore the difference between writing without editing, or stopping to edit along the way.

Check it out here!


Tuesday, December 27, 2016

I'm Blogging for WOW!

I'm proud to announce that I'm one of Women On Writing's newest bloggers for The Muffin.  This is a blog I've followed religiously since they hosted my online book tour a few years ago.

I fully encourage you to follow them.  However, I'll include my posts on this site for you to check out as well.

My first was on NaNoWriMo.  (click to access)

Merry Christmas, and a Happy New Year!

Beth - 1
The Muffin - 1
My pathetic attempts at NaNoWriMo - 0