Elaine Flinn

Welcome to ElaineFlinn.com

by on Oct.20, 2010, under Uncategorized

Hello and welcome to ElaineFlinn.com, a fan site dedicated to the life and work of a popular mystery writer. She was best known for her Molly Doyle series, which spanned four books over several years. The heroine is Molly Doyle (formerly Elizabeth Porter), a Manhattan-based dealer in antiques who take on a new identity and moves to the West Coast, only to find herself in the middle of intrigue and murder. The four books penned by Ms. Flinn included Dealing in Murder (2003), Tagged for Murder (2004), Deadly Collection (2005) and Deadly Vintage (2007).

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Anne Lamott’s Bird by Bird

by on Apr.30, 2017, under Uncategorized

Anne Lamott has a new book out called, Hallelujah Anyway: Rediscovering Mercy and was recently interviewed in Salon. This got me to thinking about her non-fiction classic, Bird by Bird, which is a fabulous handbook for writers of all stripes and colors.

Becoming a great writer means writing about everything that occurs to you and around you.

While there’s no secret formula to becoming a good writer, there are a few vital measures.

The very first step is learning stand apart from folks the best way to relax and observe closely.

You know the type of individuals you find standing in the corner in a party, observing everyone? Great writers are a breed that is similar: take notes, and they commonly choose to distance themselves from the group, discovering everything they see.

It’s important compel anything, or not to hurry the process.

Put simply, you need to figure out how to pay attention. Remember to find everything the curious gait the unique way the morning light captures a lover’s profile, of a stranger , how thinking of a childhood memory enables you to feel.

There’s another reason that detecting and noting your world is critical in becoming a good writer. The very best writing is all about carrying the truth; the observations you collect will help you to tell it.

Whether you consider that the observations will make great material isn’t important. Your main task will be to attempt to find the truth in what you determine how you can work with those observations in the story you would like to tell, and ’ve noticed. That way, the truth will find its way into your writing.

Don’t be afraid to draw on past experiences as your main material. For example, take the time to reflect on and write about childhood along with other memories. As a writer, all things considered, you’re lucky enough to look at life by any means you would like to. It’s possible for you to turn over occasions in your memory like fallow earth, digging for the truth that’s buried deep within them.

Taking a vacation into your own memory bank is warranted provided that you make certain to look carefully and write from your personal viewpoint as truthfully as you can. Therefore you are required to analyze your self in the same way you analyze everything.

It’s that the writer has a “voice” – a unique fashion that contains not just the details of a story but also the way that it is told, if there’s one thing critics agree on as it pertains to defining a great writer.

By being honest with the reader about your feelings that are true, the only means you’re able to develop your own voice is.

You can’t discover your real voice without confronting the truths behind them and opening some doors that are psychological.

This principle holds true even when you’re feeling despair or poisonous rage that is deep. The lone way to make sure your voice reflects accept them during the writing process and those emotions would be to face them. You need to do this particularly when you feel something for instance, if your feelings are excessively private or too distressing to analyze closely.

To accept your feelings in them – in other words you need to show up, to be totally conscious of how you feel at just about any specified instant. In the event that your emotions are avoided by you, or should you just think about them without fully entering and being present inside them, you’ll never be true to your voice or yourself.

When you’re present in your feelings, you come to recognize your fact – made of your entire experiences and emotions, both awful and nice – is very much your home. It’s a cozy place to be, and you can be your true self there.

One more matter that all great writers have in common is the fact that they don’t worry about whether they’re great writers!

If you believe with each fiber of your being that you just need to write, only write. With practice and time, you’ll eventually become proficient at it.

Naturally, that doesn’t mean it’ll be easy. You will see hopeless days where you’ll stare in a blank page all night. However there will likewise be days when everything clicks and the words just flow.

The important consideration to keep in mind is that every day has something to offer, if you’re patient and determined enough to see it.

For young writers, this kind of faith is advantageous. If you persist, even though may very well not be a great writer from the start, you could become great one day.

Along the way, you may even develop an actual yearning for the act of writing, the same way that someone might yearn to play with sports or music. By having faith that you’ll become a great writer, of not writing as you consider you can, the discouragement will be replaced by the absolute love of the act itself.

Another way that faith is a must to writing is that writers have to believe in their own position – whatever they’re writing about. In the event that you don’t believe in your words, nobody will.

How do you generate such belief? Make an effort to understand life, also to care about it, as greatly as possible. That entails additionally taking a long, hard look in not only the huge, dramatic occasions and the banalities of life.

Write about everything that’s important to you. Only then do you want to have the ability to seek out the appropriate words to describe it and feel connected together with your story.

To become a great writer, create a daily writing routine.

A common assumption about all artists, and writers, is they work only when inspiration strikes.

Yet all great writers follow a strict routine. If you want to become a better writer, you should do the same.

Why? Because routine means discipline, and discipline means success.
First, find a location to write and go there every single day, even if you’re not consistently productive.

Go to your own location to write around exactly the same time every day. Using this method, you ensure your unconscious mind is ready when you arrive to submit.

You could feel just a little weary and maybe won’t be able to do any writing in the slightest, when you first create this process.

The theory behind the routine would be to make writing a daily habit. Though there’ll be times when you fight to write, your routine will train your creative energies to kick in in the correct time every day.

Nonetheless, even routine and discipline won’t always make you a great writer. Remember: there’s just no secret formula to writing.

Yet it’s critical to comprehend precisely how important obligation is always to your work. Devotion, along with discipline and routine, is vital to your success as a writer.

The author declares that no secret was passed down through her family to aid her to write well. She was given no password that allowed her to crack the code” of writing that was great.

Rather, by thinking about every one of the good writers she knew, the author came to see they were all unbelievably dedicated to their own work and disciplined about their routine.

Writing is extremely similar to meditation: so you can hear your internal voice, you have to quiet your mind. Creating a daily routine, and sticking to it religiously, makes this potential.

Up to now, you’ve seen what it requires to turn into a great writer.

Don’t be afraid of shitty first drafts.

Many people believe that good writing springs fully formed from the writer’s imagination. You’ll understand this isn’t true if you’ve ever written even a college paper: nobody composes an elegant first draft.

All books that are good are the outcome of a series of increasingly good variations, ” starting with the roughest formulation of one’s ideas – or, as the author calls it, the “shitty first draft

Even the most experienced writer can find it difficult to accept how lousy their writing is at this phase. It’s important that all writers not only accept the shitty first draft as merely a point of departure, but also embrace this phase of the method.

The shitty first draft is the best chance for one to let your imagination wander and play with ideas.

Don’t believe your writing at this phase – only write. Thinking might be counterproductive, frustrating one to the point which you may even give up and blocking your creativity.

Instead, enjoy it! The very first draft is where you could get filthy, rolling in your mud, freed by the information that you could clean up the mess after. No one can judge you by your first draft, so just put it to use to drop whatever you have onto the webpage.

Once you’ve made that shitty first draft, you can begin to edit: the procedure for refining its focus developing your section and improving the writing.

Look at the second draft as the “up” draft, because you’re fixing UPWARD it. Think as the “dental” draft of the 3rd draft, since it involves poking and prodding at the writing in exactly the same manner that the dentist examines your mouth, assessing the condition of every single tooth.

An excellent way to think of the entire procedure is to envision you’re observing a narrative reveal itself through successive drafts, like observing a Polaroid picture slowly develop.

Get to know your characters well

Every good story has characters that are memorable, and every aspiring writer would like to understand the way to create them. So how can you create unforgettable characters?

To produce great characters, you have to really get to know them. Then, once you understand them, your job as a writer will be to bring them to life.


Every character, like every individual that is actual, possesses an acre that is emotional. Consider it as a space where everything that makes up your style – your adores – grows or develops, hates, desires and wants.

In your narrative, it’s important to get a feeling of every character’s acre that is psychological. Ask yourself: What is my character growing on his acre? What exactly is blooming, what is perishing? What condition is the acreage in?

Then take a look that is comprehensive: What are your characters doing? What goes on to them?

You can’t be too protective of your characters. You need to let bad things happen to them. Should they behave flawlessly and live an existence that is ideal, your narrative will be flat and typical – like regular life.

One way to do that is to model a character’s style on someone as this may give your character a “true voice, you know in actual life.” As readers – we want to consider that fictional characters are telling us the truth this is essential because –.

Bringing characters to life also means enabling dialogue and plot to emerge from them. To get this done you have to understand them. From this understanding, your plot and dialogue will grow naturally.

Contemplate how your characters would speak to every other in a variety of settings – like on a train or at the mall. With challenging situations for them, come up, and envision how they would respond.

Understand that dialogue can reveal more about a character than the usual long description. This doesn’t refer merely to what characters say, but also how they say it – their tempo, diction and talking style.

Finally, to create dialogue that is good, read it to check how realistic it seems and pay attention to how real people speak. Listen closely – What differentiates how that they speak?

Pay attention to create the feeling of your narrative.

If you’ve ever been engrossed in a novel, you realize how important details are to storytelling. Because details make a narrative more actual and believable, a writer uses details to bring a reader “inside” her storyline.

One detail that is important is the narrative’s setting. A setting that is good can bring your story to life, making the universe of your characters more three-dimensional.

As a writer, you’ve got the capability to tailor any setting to fit characters and your story.

For example, a forest setting in which a crime occurs will definitely be depicted using darker details than the usual bright, more black, verdant woods in which a happy family has an afternoon picnic.

The character’s relationship along with his space can illuminate particular sides of his style. For instance, if your character spends his days idly wandering through his tremendous house, this might indicate he’s a wealthy man.

Great details can make themselves known at any time, so a great writer keeps her eyes open and carries a notebook at all times to jot down details that will come in handy when writing.

But just what kind of details? Then you could make your character’s that is loaded ramblings that are solitary actual.

Attending to details can help form the construction of your narrative. Frequently, when a writer needs to check that plot or his story flows well, he’ll write a plot treatment – a detailed list of all that takes place in each chapter of the publication.

Any missing details or illogical bits of your narrative will end up clear to you when you create a treatment.

Shitty first drafts, memorable characters and graphic details can enable you to write nicely. When you hit against an obstacle, but what occurs?

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Anniversary of To Kill a Mockingbird

by on Jul.11, 2016, under Uncategorized

Literary historians take note: July 11 is the anniversary of the publication of To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee. It was published on this day in 1960 by J.B. Lippincott. The novel followed the story of young Scout Finch who comes of age in the backdrop of a small Alabama town during the Great Depression. It quickly became a bestseller and was also awarded the Pulitzer Prize a year later, in 1961. This novel was Harper Lee’s only published work for over 50 years, until the novel’s sequel, Go Set a Watchman, was published in 2015.

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World War II

by on Sep.10, 2014, under Uncategorized

World War II

By all accounts, World War II was the defining event of the 20th Century. Spanning several years from the late 1930’s through the mid-1940’s, it altered the geopolitical landscape and defined an entire generation. It’s legacy lives on through countless books, movies, stories and even video games. The recent mobile game from Supercell called Boom Beach is loosely based on World War II weapons and background.

I’ve always known the basics of World War II (Germany invaded Poland, the Allies rallied to stop them, it took a while for the US to enter the war, Japan bombed Pearl Harbor, the US dropped the atom bomb on Japan, etc.) but there really was so much more nuance and detail to everything that took place in that time period.

So when I stumbled across World War II: The Definitive Visual History, I was intrigued. This book from DK Publishing, devotes 360 pages spread across nine chronological chapters to virtually all aspects of the war. It is richly illustrated, as most DK books are, and uses timelines and cross-referencing to link everything together. It’s a great read and makes an ideal coffee table book for anyone interested in that period in history.


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Taking Care of Baby

by on Apr.16, 2014, under Uncategorized

A friend is expecting a baby and asked if I had any sage wisdom on baby care. I realized I didn’t, beyond the general common-sense advice that’s been handed down from mothers to daughters for thousands of years. Well, that and a recommendation to check out the Dr. Spock book from the library. Not as many parents read that as much as they used to, but it’s such good advice.

Here’s some other advice I pulled down from articles on the Web. Can’t vouch for it since it’s not mine.

Baby care does not require to be stressful for parents. Provided that you understand a few distinct tips and tricks, you’ll find that caring for a baby is rather easy. A couple of items that you would need to know to take care of an infant is the way to sooth them, and how to feed them, how to get them to sleep. You’ll not have a nerve-racking time caring for your child, should you take some time to look for tips that are available for new parents.

If you’re thinking about breastfeeding, then you should speak with a nurse at the hospital. They have nurses there that specialize in this task, and you may have the capacity to make sure that you do it right. In the event you get home along with your infant and find that you’re experiencing problems with breastfeeding, you always have the option to call the hospital to inquire any questions that you may have.

You should ensure that you just learn how to alter your baby’s nappies. You will be doing this action frequently, and it is vital that you know the best way to do it. Before you begin shifting your baby’s diaper, you should make sure that you have everything that you will desire. This suggests that you need to get a fresh diaper, some balm or powder, plus some baby wipes.

You should make certain you know the correct steps that you would need to take to be able to bathe your infant. You’ll have to ensure that you have all that you will want before you put your child in the water. It’s never safe that you leave your child alone in the water. You should also check to be sure that the water is the proper temperature.

Remember that when you plan on bathing your infant, you’re going to be utilizing a baby tub rather than the one which is in your own bathroom. The reason being you really do not desire to place your child in water which will be overly deep. It is a good enough idea for you to ensure that the chamber is warm before you begin bathing your baby.
You will want to start out washing your infant from his / her head, and work your path right down to his or her toes. In case your baby is an infant, then you should make sure that you just follow a medical facility’s instructions on taking care of the navel until it’s treated.

You ought to know that there are many important bits of information that you should be aware of before you bring your child home from the hospital. Not merely will you need to have a notion about how to look after an infant, but you should make certain that you just get as many details as you can about looking after a newborn.

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History of April Fools Day

by on Mar.25, 2014, under Uncategorized

April Fools’ Day, sometimes called All Fools’ Day, is one of the most light-hearted days of the full year. Its sources are uncertain. Some see it as a party associated with the change of the times of year, but others believe it originates in the adoption of a new calendar.

New Year’s Day Moves and Changes

Ancient cultures, including those of the Romans and Hindus, celebrated New Year’s Day on or about April 1.

In 1582, Pope Gregory XIII ordered a new calendar (the Gregorian Calendar) to change the old Julian Calendar. The new calendar called for New Year’s Day to be celebrated Jan. 1. That year, France adopted the reformed calendar and shifted New Year’s day-to Jan. 1. According to a well-known explanation, a lot of people either refused to just accept the new date, or failed to learn about it, and continued to observe New Year’s Day on April 1. Other people began to make fun of those traditionalists, sending them on “fool’s errands” or attempting to deceive them into believing something false. Eventually, the practice spread throughout Europe.

Difficulties With This Explanation

There are at least two issues with this particular explanation. The foremost is that it does not fully account for the spread of April Fools’ Day to other European countries. The Gregorian calendar was not embraced by England until 1752, for example, but April Fools’ Day was already well established there by that time. The 2nd is that we’ve no direct historical proof for this particular explanation, only conjecture, and that conjecture appears to have now been made more lately.

Constantine and Kugel He clarified the practice started through the reign of Constantine, when a bunch of court jesters and dingbats told the Roman emperor that they could do a much better job of working the empire. Constantine, amused, let a jester named Kugel to be king for just one day. Kugel passed an edict calling for absurdity on that day, and the custom became an annual occasion.

“In a way,” described Prof. Boskin, “it was quite a serious day. In those times idiots were really wise men. It was the character of jesters to place things in outlook with humor.”

This explanation was brought to the public’s curiosity in an Associated Press article printed by many newspapers in 1983. There was just one catch: Boskin made the unit up. It took a couple of weeks for the Associated Press to comprehend they’d been victims of an April Fools’ joke themselves.

Spring Fever

It is worth noting that a variety of cultures have had days of foolishness around the beginning of April, give or consider several weeks. The Romans had a fest named Hilaria on March 2 5, rejoicing in the resurrection of Attis. Maybe there’s something concerning the time of year, with its turn from winter to spring, that gives itself to lighthearted celebrations.

Observances Throughout the World

April Fools’ Day is observed through the Western world. Practices include sending someone on a “fool’s errand,” looking for points that don’t exist; playing pranks; and striving to get folks to believe ridiculous things.

French kids sometimes tape a picture of a fish around the back part of the schoolmates, hollering “Poisson d’Avril” when the joke is discovered.

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by on Mar.14, 2014, under Uncategorized

What do you think of when you hear about Yoga meditation? Are you currently a bit confused in regards to the whole procedure for Yoga meditation? Let’s appear at among the several types of Yoga meditation along with the benefits of daily practice.

There are several types of Yoga meditation, but these are similar to branches on a tree, resulting in the exact same trunk. When you attend a Yoga course, you may well be guided by your Yoga instructor, through meditation, in a range of ways, but you’ll usually develop a popular method of Yoga meditation.

The Mind is Everything

Remember that a calm and peaceful mind is everything. Source: YogaSimple.net

Most likely, your favourite method will likely function as the form of Yoga meditation, which delivers you the most success. You can’t compel yourself to meditate. Usually, a state-of Yoga meditation will happen through centered observance and non-effort.

Breath knowledge meditation is the first technique, which I educate to beginning meditation students, and also to pupils of Yoga. A beginner Yoga pupil understand the deeper advantages of meditation and can easily comprehend the concepts of breath awareness.

Pulling the back, in to the straightest line possible, is the primary goal, because poor spinal alignment is counter productive to meditation, and isn’t helpful for suitable respiration. Many start Yoga pupils may have trouble sitting direct, without a back rest. Some cultures have no trouble sitting on the floor, while others sit in seats, or on furniture, which provides them off the flooring; and these Yoga students are accustomed to back support.

If a Yoga student is sitting on the floor, within an uncomfortable position, they may be unable to concentrate on anything greater than suffering. Thus, contemplate using chairs as a Yoga meditation theatrical prop. If you use a chair with a back, and lumbar help, that is ideal for seated Yoga meditation.

There is also another Yoga meditation pose where seats become a helpful Yoga theatrical prop. Lay down in your Yoga mat, along with your toes facing the seat. Subsequently place your lower legs on the seat of the chair. You will need to change your system, to ensure the lower legs are parallel to the ground, the upper legs are perpendicular to the flooring, as well as the back is level.

Now you’ve settled in, simply take a moment to find your breath, without looking to alter, force, or lengthen your respiration cycle. Most Yoga pupils will attempt to control their breath, but the key of Yogic breath consciousness meditation is non- attempt and observance.

Take some time to discover your breath, without attempt or judgment; this will allow you to filter out aware ideas about your breath, sounds, or your next task. When you have put the distractions of existence aside, you will observe the cycle of your breath expands.

This is just the beginning of the many rewards you may reap from Yoga meditation. The Yoga meditation systems you learn from your local Yoga studio will reduce anxiety, quiet your head, and potentially decrease your blood-pressure. A life with less stress, and worry, is really worth the time necessary to practice Yoga meditation.

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Looking for Inspiration

by on Dec.30, 2013, under Uncategorized

Inspiration comes in many forms. Sometimes from books you read, other times from television, chats with friends, or even some solitary meditation. One of my favorite ways to get inspired is to take a nice long walk down the beach or into town. Sometimes a stroll does good. Of course, you can also find inspiration online and Facebook, Twitter and other social media sites seem to be a never-ending stream of inspirational tales, stories and quotes. One of my favorite places to find thoughtful quotes and inspiring stories is Inspiratopia. There are many great and notable quotes, several amazing anecdotes and even some jaw-dropping videos. Take a look and get inspired!

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by on Apr.13, 2012, under Uncategorized

Pottermore, as many people have already learned, is J.K. Rowling’s answer to fans who have been desperately looking for more of Harry Potter. Not merely content with seven books and eight movies, Harry Potter fans are insatiable for more adventures. And why not? It’s a wonderful set of stories from an amazing author.

I suppose fans were disappointed when Pottermore went into limited beta and never really came out. There are a lot of Pottermore fan sites and even Pottermore cheats sites out there to help players in beta navigate the world. But the web site is still in beta and hasn’t yet come out for the public.

The site itself is more of an immersive reading experience than a game. Players progress through the original storyline of The Philosopher’s Stone in more or less chapter order. The site is divided into chapters that closely map the novel, and players perform actions in “moments” or scenes from each chapter. When Pottermore does come out, it’s sure to be a hit with Harry Potter fans everywhere, who have been clamoring for more.

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