coffee klatch noun
–an occasion when people meet socially to talk and drink coffee (Cambridge Dictionary)

Welcome to the Coffee Klatch. Join us each week for conversation and news for the Writer’s Life community and connect on Twitter (@Writers_Life) at #Writers_Life.

Bagels! We always serve a full menu of drinks. Help yourself to coffee, tea, hot chocolate or chai. Today I am serving bagels with all the fixins.

Writer’s Life Happenings

Note – Thanks for your patience this week. I have been more of an auto-poster due to my limited online time. I had personal stuff to attend to this week. Hopefully I can get caught up with reading my friends’ blogs and responding to comments today and through the weekend.

The Writer’s Life Weekly Feature. This week I began a series on Negative Thoughts and what we can do about them in our writing life.  There is so much to share about this topic, my series may continue for much of the summer. This is a very challenging area for many of us and there are no easy answers. But, together we can continue to search and experiment with techniques to lessen our stress load.

Of course we will break for some great parties (I have a wild party planned for July 4th weekend – stay tuned and be ready to “…get out on the highway…).

Creativity-Portal.com. I am now listed among the resources for the Writing Life on Creativity-Portal.com (under Writing Magazines, Blogs and Resources to Inspire Your Writing Life). Stop over and see my entry and check out all the other resources available on this website. They have requested articles from me, so you might see a few on there soon. Never heard of this website? Here is a little info:

Creativity Portal has also been named multiple consecutive years as a Writer’s Digest Best Web Site and has been recommended by Blogger.com and the English Journal, published by the National Council of Teachers of English at Colorado State University for its inspirational writing prompts and tools, instructional how-to articles, humor, and creativity.

Coffee Klatch News

Doing Good in the World

Jim Bronyaur (@jimbronyaur) and the oil spill. Jim has decided to donate money based on the number of comments he gets on his websites, and Jack Roth (@jack_roth) has joined in. This is an amazing way to help out those in need in areas affected by the devastating oil spill.

Jim and Jack, we all know how hard it is to make a living in the writing life, and you are going above and beyond!  Great going you two! Let’s help out and get over to their sites to comment. Jim wrote on his site,

For those who haven’t heard yet, Jim Bronyaur has two projects going to help donate money to those affected by the oil spill.

The first project started June 11,2010 and runs through June 30, 2010. The idea is simple: for every 50 comments left on any of his sites, he will donate $10! NOW, what sites does this include?

Soft Whispers
Jim’s story site
Jim’s updates
Guns n’ Graves (Jim’s serialized story)
Living Lost (stories and music from Jim’s friend, Gage Sloane)
Jack Roth – writer from Nebraska who wants to help
Jack Roth’s serialized poetry site

So there you have it… LOTS of sites and LOTS of stories to read. So please – read and comment!

Boost Your Writing With Contests & Challenges

The theme this month seems to be contests and challenges and more are coming this summer.

New Writer’s Blogfest. Carrie Baile (@PeevishPenman) at The Peevish Penman is asking writers to participate in a blog tour about advice for new writers. Think of your best advice and join . I am joining the tour and writing an article about Dealing With Mind Monkeys –  My Best Advice to New Writers Blogfest: Thursday July 15. (Pssst, if you go to the homepage, you can also read a great article by Cecelia Dominic @RandomOenophile on Procrastination. Many other great articles to explore, too)

Deanna Schrayer (@Deanna Schrayer) at The Other Side of Deanna is announcing her first ever writing contest. Go to her website and check out the details, here are a few:

To celebrate my birthday, (which is on August 16th), The Other Side of Deanna is hosting its first writing contest:

Write a story of 1,000 words or less, using the theme “birthday”. The story can be either fiction or creative nonfiction. Post the story on your blog or website; then post the title and link to your story in the comments on this post sometime between 12:00 AM, July 10th – 11:59 PM, July 24th (est).

Mari Juniper (@marirandomities) at Mari’s Randomities is hosting a wild Zombi Luv Flash Fiction Contest (Isn’t that the coolest graphic EVER?!). Check out all the details over at Mari’s place and join in for some lovely gruesome fun (check out the fun judges!). Here is what Mari said:

All right, if you’ve followed the #ZombieLuv hashtag on Twitter, and if this is not your first visit here at Randomities, you know already a few things, like, there’s a double prize and one of them is having your story published at Flashes in the Dark!

So, if you like zombies, you’re most welcome to participate! If you don’t, why don’t you give it a try?

Judges: Mari Juniper (or zombie-Mari, if you will), Lori Titus (editor of Flashes in the Dark and friend of werewolves), Jim Bronyaur (owner of scary zombies) and Jodi MacArthur (owner zombies and other scary things as well)

Dates: Contest begins on June 20th and runs until midnight July 1oth. (GMT)

Wordcount Challenge. If you are looking for an ongoing challenge to get you writing, Debbie Ridpath Ohi (@Inkyelbows) holds a regular Wordcount Challenge Check. You can choose 250, 500 or 1000 words a day as your challenge. Debbie states,

The goal of this challenge is to help provide goal-oriented inspiration, with flexibility to avoid giving up in frustration. Every Monday, I’ll post a Wordcount Challenge Check-in to see how you’re all doing with your challenges.

Doing It Write Newsletter. Helen Ginger (@MermaidHel) at HelenGinger.com publishes a newsletter, Doing It Write. She talks about hot topics, issues and posts lists of  new contests and events for writers. You can sign up to receive her free newsletter.

Favorite Tweets for Writers. Remember to check out the Favorite Tweets for Writers from this week by Nicole Humphrey Cook (@simplywriting) at It’s All About Writing. Thanks Nicole for mentioning my post from last week, The Writer’s Life: Getting In The Mood.

Coffee Klatch News

Do you have a contest, challenge or publication (print, ebook or online) or interviews you would like to share with our writer’s world? Have you discovered a great resource for writers online? If you have news or announcements for the weekly Coffee Klatch (posted on Thursdays) send a DM on Twitter (@Writers_Life) or email to Coffee@AnneTylerLord.com.

Have another bagel and cream cheese and hang out with us at #WritersLife. Tell us how you are doing this week with your writing, energy levels and creativity.