What Makes a “Real” Writer?

Insight into what all writers face for their chosen field. We should not have to feel the need to ever apologise for the career we have chosen. Yay Kristen Lamb for nailing it so well!

Kristen Lamb's Blog

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I’m finally home from speaking in Pennsylvania. Was honored to keynote for The Write Stuff Conference and super sad to leave. I get so attached to the writers and miss them when I have to go. Their passion, imagination and enthusiasm never fails to inspire me. I’d keep them and collect them in my basement except apparently this is called “taking hostages” and is “illegal” *rolls eyes*

…that, and I don’t have a basement.

I never prepare a speech. I’ve tried. But I am too ADD and end up ignoring/forgetting everything I prepared, so why not save time? Also, I present quite often and never want attendees to feel like they will hear the same things from me. Every class, every presentation is new. I love listening to those around me so my content fits better because it’s custom made.

This said, when I arrived in Pennsylvania, I had no…

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My drivel on Fifty Shades of Grey


The Verdict on the filmshutterstock_244969798

If you haven’t read the books – don’t watch it.


I didn’t feel the film conveyed the severity of how damaged Christian Grey really is (from a psychological perspective). It only ads to the uninformed viewer who sits in this film without knowing the magnitude of what makes up Mr Grey, that they will allude that in his lifestyle of BDSM it is okay;

  • to be controlling
  • to punish a woman for not listening
  • to use the lifestyle of a dominant to met out violent abuse when displeased and with a belt.

The message it sends is far more divergent than what you would get from understanding more about the character from the book. In other words in Christian Grey’s lifestyle it is okay;

  • to use control for pleasure
  • to use punishment as pleasure
  • use the lifestyle of a dominant to create pleasure for both the giver and the receiver.

50 Shades has been a hot topic since it hit the shelves. We continue to bring it up and continue to obsess over what it is saying and what it is not saying.

I am constantly amused by people slamming something they haven’t read, and refuse to read, but go off on a wild tangent when the book is brought up in conversation. In academia you would be stuck down by a lightening bolt if you made an assumption without having read and digested the necessary material that supports your argument whether for or against.

For all that it is, 50 Shades has become a monumental topic and continues to be a point of interest.


Because human beings are curious animals and E. L. James has brought them one step closer to that curiosity in a topic that was taboo. Whether we the academics or literati agree with its style is of no consequence to the wider readership. Heaven knows that James wasn’t writing it as a Nobel Prize Winner.

My Summary of the Whole Never Ending Hoo-hah!

The story itself is a basic boy meets girl, boy has issues, girl wants to fix him and yadda, yadda, yadda. It is typical, it is predictable. What it is not is rocket science so stop trying to analyse it as if it were.

What I do not consent to is the mix messages that may be concocted from younger women and men that do not have the sexual or emotional experience, where they think it is okay for a dominant man in a relationship to punish his partner when he is displeased with the actions of the said person. Let’s get one thing straight – IT IS NEVER OKAY TO BE VIOLENT OR HAVE VIOLENT TENDENCIES TOWARDS A PERSON YOU ARE INTIMATE WITH OR ANYONE FOR THAT FACT!! ABUSE IS ABUSE and you can’t flower it up in BDSM lifestyle and say that it is sex. It’s not.

The Film 

I would like to wrap up and say that it was well directed and within its parameters in regards to viewable cinematic allowance but in all honesty many people will come to this film and get a different message and that is where the damage truly lies.

As a reader of the books the film was satisfying.






Five Things to Remember at a Romance Writers Conference.

Imagine that you are an expensive bottle of Christian Dior or Channel. Be bold, be that brand. Don’t settle for less.Author perfume

Things for smooth sailing;

1. Comfortable shoes – There’s a lot of walking and standing involved. Wear comfortable shoes, your feet will thank you later. Trust me. And comfortable doesn’t mean wearing your joggers or flip-flops.

2. Comfortable clothes – Dress is primarily smart casual or corporate. Make sure you feel comfortable there’s nothing worse that walking around all day in something that feels too tight. Bring an extra jacket or cardigan. Sitting for hours in air-conditioning can leave you feeling chilled.

3. Time out – Go for a walk if you feel you’ve been bamboozled by the hype of activity. The buzz of hundreds of women can be overwhelming on it’s own, let alone the full days of workshops. If you need a break or some ‘you time’, don’t hesitate – take it.

4. Drinking – (1) If you do drink alcohol…know your limit. Be responsible.  (2) Make sure you stay hydrated throughout the day, drink plenty of water.

5. Business Cards – Keep some in your bag. It’s an easier way of exchanging info with new friends. Have one on the ready for when you are pitching to an editor or agent, they may ask for one.

I will add one more thing here – Enjoy it!! Conference is such an inspiring place to be and everyone is supportive and friendly. Make the most of it and above all smile and be happy.

P.s. Be warned…the Aussie gals like hugs.