“Devil in Disguise” takes 2nd in the 83rd Annual Writer’s Digest Writing Competition

11584-WDAN-AWI’m overjoyed to announce I am a winner!  Although I’ve been writing for many years, I’ve only entered two contests.  Ever.   So this win is a gigantic deal to me.  I’m ecstatic, and completely shocked!  I welcome you to check out my winning entry Devil in Disguise.  It’s a scary one, and it is far from perfect… but please enjoy!

Thanks for reading!

- sld

29 Short Stories You Need to Read [NOW] :: BuzzFeed Books

BuzzFeed thinks you should read these in your 20s.  I say you should read them right now.

BuzzFeed thinks you should read these in your 20s. I say you should read them right now.

I’m working on more short stories these days, so today’s post from BuzzFeed Books arrived at an opportune moment.  I can’t wait to start reading.  What do you think:  any stories you would add to their list?

Read 29 Short Stories You Need to Read in Your 20s via BuzzFeed Books.

- sld

To Win We Must Lose—Sacrifice, Boundaries & Reaching Our Dreams


Found this Kristen Lamb blog entry today, and it is in the same vein as my earlier post… if you’re not following her already, I recommend doing so.


Originally posted on Kristen Lamb's Blog:

Image via "Fight Club"

Quote via “Fight Club”

This post is not a Plate of Cupcake Lessons. It’s a Bowl of Spinach and Kale Lessons. These lessons/habits are probably going to feel very un-fun for a while, but they’re essential for any kind of success. So many want to make success more palatable with sugar-coating and sprinkles. We live in a world of “effort-free, guilt-free, payment-plan options that require no work or pain on our part.”

And like P.T. Barnum once said, There’s a sucker born every minute. 

First, we need to define a few key ideas before we dig in.

What is Our Definition of Success?

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Before we can apply any “lessons” we have to accept a castor oil spoon of TRUTH. If we don’t make our own decision, we’ve still made a decision by abdicating making our own decision. If we don’t define success or happiness or what’s important, we leave a…

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Getting It On (Your First Draft, That Is) :: A Collection of Helpful Articles

kids-struggling-to-writeWhile I’ve been slogging away at my first draft and asking you fine people for advice on how to GET ON WITH IT, FOR CRYING OUT LOUD, I’ve stumbled across a few helpful articles to remind me of the important things regarding first drafts.  Thought I would share with you… hope you can find some reassurance here.

Fruitless First Draft Struggles by Dan J. Fiore

Zest + Small Things = Great Writing by Elizabeth Sims

How to Tell if the First Draft of Your Novel Just Isn’t Worth Salvaging by Charlie Jane Anders


- sld




Call Me Ishmael :: Paste Magazine

Photo credit:  pastemagazine.com

Photo credit: pastemagazine.com

What a crazy cool idea… This guy, Logan Smalley, asks people to leave him voicemails about awesome books they’ve read, and he picks the best ones to feature on his YouTube channel…  their stories are great.  (And I freaking love the fact that Smalley is quoted saying, “Introverts secretly run the world.”  Love!)  Check it out!  Now!

Call Me Ishmael :: Paste Magazine


Why Are Zombies Consuming Our Culture?


Reblogging this article by Kristen Lamb, because it is awesome. Read it. Insightful and funny!

Originally posted on Kristen Lamb's Blog:

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This poster for sale HERE .

Eh, it’s Friday, so we’re going to have a little fun debate. ZOMBIES. I never actively intended the undead to be part of my author brand, but strangely? It fits. Just take one glance at an author trying to make deadline (hmmm, word choice?) or someone who’s been through Revision Hell? The term “Walking Dead” fits. These poor souls shamble around moaning. They wear stained clothes, coffee mug in hand and have that creepy thousand-yard stare.

Don’t shoot! Well, unless it’s a tranquilizer gun because that is the only way many writers in these stages are going to get any sleep.

Jokes aside, why have zombies invaded pop culture?

The Spawn and Zombies

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It started out kinda cute. It was Halloween and Spawn was three. But first, a tad of backstory so y’all have context.

When Spawn was slightly less than two, he began…

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