July 2 calendar page

30 Days of Small, Sustainable Changes

Lisa Rivero motivation, practice 5 Comments

Thirty days hath September… All the rest have 31. That leaves 30 days left in July, the perfect opportunity to think about this short TED Talk by Matt Cutts urging us to make “small, sustainable changes” 30 days at a time: [youtube=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JnfBXjWm7hc] What can we do for the rest of the month? Write for ten minutes (longhand, on an e-tablet, …

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Deliberate Practice: Plain and Fancy Words

Lisa Rivero practice, writing, writing habits, writing tips 10 Comments

It is more fun to talk with someone who doesn’t use long, difficult words but rather short, easy words like “What about lunch?” ~ Winnie the Pooh One of my favorite books when I was in high school wasn’t a novel or a biography or even a narrative of any kind: It was a well-thumbed red paperback of Roget’s Thesaurus. …

Deliberate Practice: Willa Cather’s Tantalizing Opening Paragraphs

Lisa Rivero practice, writing 6 Comments

Jane asked in a comment to a recent post about deliberate practice, “As a beginning writer, may I request, when you have time, a post listing techniques to be addressed?” Scott H. Young has written an excellent piece on Ericsson’s research and the idea of writing practice for mastery: Getting Good: How I’m Trying To Be a Better Writer. He …

How will you close in on your 10,000 hours today?

Lisa Rivero motivation, practice, writing 7 Comments

“The people at the top don’t work just harder, or even much harder than everyone else. They work much, much harder.” ~ Malcolm Gladwell In Outliers: The Story of Success, Malcolm Gladwell discusses research by K. Anders Ericsson suggesting that expertise and success are far from being just about talent. They are built slowly, from deliberate practice: roughly 10,000 hours …

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I Heart Blogs (and writing prompts)

Lisa Rivero blogs & blogging, practice, prompts 13 Comments

A couple of blogs to pass along this morning. First, in honor of the first full day of spring,Victoria at liv2write2day has posted a spring writing prompt for poetry or flash fiction. Her own poem in celebration of spring will be certain to awaken your seasonal passions. Also, anyone who loves travel and world cultures and slice-of-life photography should head …