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Top 10 Resources
January, 2008

Free Writing Resources!

Top 10: Romance
Validating the vile St. Valentine
By  Char Milbrett

ith Sarah White moving on in her writing career, IN welcomes Char Milbrett, our new Top 10 Resources columnist. The southern Minnesota writer, gardener and mother is a big fan of Erma Bombeck ó while admitting much of  Bombeck's humor probably isn't funny to anyone but her, Milbrett assures she'll "work that out" in the coming months. She's also working out on a recipe cookbook and will one day invite people from the world over to add their recipes to Char's International Friends Cookbook.

For the top 10 Resources for this month, I am picking the theme of romance, for obvious reasons. February comes in with a groundhog predicting spring and becomes the month young menís hearts turn to thoughts of love. Ah, Romance... here we can venture onto, melt or break the ice.

FabJob: Become A Romance Writer
Helpful resources to improve your writing skills in the following areas: character, plot, Romance writing style, grammar and creativity. As a romance writer you can have a profitable career that lets you work at home, writing stories that touch people's hearts.

The Passionate Pen
This site is dedicated to romance and the romance industry. Here you will find book reviews, agent information, and publishing resources in an easy to access format.

Robin's Nest Romance Writers' Web Sites
Romance writers resources featuring writing workshops, articles and links to websites for writers.

Charlotte Dillon's Resources For Romance Writers
Sample query letter and synopsis for romance writers with hints on writing both, information on manuscript preparation, character building, contests and prompts, along with a list of books and links to further resources for writers.

Romance Writers of America
An association that advances the professional interests of published and aspiring romance writers through networking and advocacy: Spend some time perusing their site where you will find links to author websites, romance, industry and so much more.

Romance Central
Workshops, articles, open submissions and information for romance writers. Includes message board, news, reviews, and a web ring.

Romance Notes
Romance writing resources to help you learn how to become a romance writer and write a novel. Find out how to publish
your first romance book.

Gotham Writing Classes
Romance author Leigh Michaels teaches how to write romance novels. Teaching more than 6,000 students a year, Gotham is the leading creative writing school in New York City and the United States.

Writing On The Web
Romance novel writing tips from some of the world's most successful writers of Harlequin romance books.

Romance Fiction Factor
The online magazine for Romance writers. Every month features tips on writing better romance fiction, articles on improving your romance writing craft, writing a romance novel and getting published, promoting and marketing your fiction and much more!

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Char Milbrett is an Independent Researcher, online since 2000, providing writers and business professionals with information needed to complete projects, novels, assignments, essays, articles or any other type of undertaking requiring up-to-date facts and materials. Need help locating hard to find information? Email:

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Top 10 Resources
IN This Issue
Top 10: On Hiatus
Top 10: Knock, Knock
Top 10: Perspective
Top 10: History
Top 10: Writer's Slump
Top 10: Moth Mentality
Top 10: Outlandish
Top 10: Illusion
Top 10: Appreciation
Top 10 : Fear

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Bald Ego
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Writerís Block
The path to inspiration starts
Upon the trails weíve known;
Each writerís block is not a rock,
But just a stepping stone.

Poetry Is Not
Penned to the page
Waiting for us to admire.
It is only a lonely thought
Caught by tears on fire.

Silent Echoes
A quiet rhyme upon a page
Is what a poet gives;
Some gentle words whispered in trust
To see if memory lives.

Bard From Deadlines
What makes a poem finally work
Is not the time it takes;
Itís how the poet used the muse
To prophet from mistakes.

Be Mused
The art and craft of poetry
Are not so far apart;
The craft comes from the cunning,
The rest comes from the heart.

Fine Vintage
Donít plant your poem on the page
As though youíre hanging drapes;
Itís shape and flow should come and grow
Like wild summer grapes.

Getting It Write
Writers write what they know best,
Their passions, fears, and dreams;
Writers rarely write about
What other call their ďthemes.Ē

Double Vision
A writerís life is paradox,
Itís more than what it seems;
We write of our reality,
The one inside our dreams.

The echo of a promise,
The thunder of a sigh,
The music of a memory,
A child asking why.

Letter Perfect
Twenty six symbols arranged on a page
Can send a soul to heaven or torment it with rage,
Can free a fragile world or hold it in its net--
The power and the magic of the mighty alphabet.

The Write of Passage
The jump from writing just for fun
To getting paid for it
Begins when you first realize
You know youíll never quit.

It is not the magic of his wings
That sets us free from our bond.
It is the muse within ourselves
That lets our words lift us beyond.

Photo Poet
Consider your mind the darkroom,
Consider your life the lens,
Consider your eye the camera
On whose focus the poem depends.

Rising Moon
A poem is a rising moon
Shining on the sea,
An afterglow of all we know,
Of all we hope to be.

Star Light
Writing a poem,
Reaching a star,
In making good art
We find who we are.

Spider Web
A poem is a spider web
Spun with words of wonder,
Woven lace held in place
By whispers made of thunder.

The final draft upon the screen,
At last my poemís through;
A verse of only four short lines--
I rewrote twenty-two!

Read All Of Charles Ghigna's Poetry at

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Our Disclaimer Is Based Upon McIntyre's First Law: "Under the right circumstances, anything I tell you may be wrong."