Our Love — Hate for Citations

I appreciate reading a source which is properly cited. It lets me know where the material originated.

Often the citation gives me information about the validity of what I am reading.

Authors should be given credit for their work via proper citations.


Students are often intimidated by the requirement of citations for their papers.

Here are some helpful sources:

The MLA format:

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See more at: http://www.anselm.edu/Library/Research-Help/Research-Tutorials/Understanding-Citations.htm


Remember that not all material needs to be cited.

The Purdue OWL is a great resource:

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There are several citation machines online that will help you out, but always double check. They are not fool-proof!

Here’s one:

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Also, this for this one you can simply type in the book’s ISBN number.

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Today’s Assignment: Do your citations!

Creative Writing with a Friend

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(“Snoopy and Woodstock” by Charles M. Schulz)


A fun creative writing exercise:

1. One author writes a beginning prompt. (This could be a teacher, of course.)

2. The second author writes the sentence or paragraph that follows.

3. The first author then adds something more.

4. Following this pattern–a story is built.


This may not result in a remarkable end-product, but the exercise will illuminate different writing techniques.

Today’s Assignment: Write with a partner.

A Little Alliteration is Always Allowed


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—————————————————————————————–(Mary Mueller)


Alliteration is often found in children’s tongue twisters:

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Alliteration is also found in writing for adults:

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Alliteration can also be used in prose.

“Harry Potter’s appearance did not endear him to the neighbours, who were the sort of people who thought scruffiness ought to be punishable by law, but as he had hidden himself behind a large hydrangea bush this evening he was quite invisible to passers-by.”
—–Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix, J. K. Rowling _______________(Buzzle)


Today’s Assignment: Use alliteration in your creative writing.

Creating Subtext

Subtext can add an interesting dimension to any work of fiction.

Brandi Reissenweber (of the Gotham Writers) offers this explanation:


“In dialogue, what is subtext?

Subtext is the meaning beneath the dialogue; what the speaker really means, even though he’s not saying it directly. As humans, we often don’t articulate our thoughts exactly. We’re thinking on our feet as we talk, processing other stimuli, like body language, and struggling with our own concerns and emotions as well as those of the listener. In fiction, this kind of miscommunication can add authenticity, create dramatic tension, and even reveal deeper truths.”


Even a simple children’s book offers meaningful subtext.

Look at this delightful example:

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The subtext is a message which many readers can appreciate and understand:


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This is the link to several fun Stellaluna printables:



Watch as Pamela Reed reads this delightful story:


Today’s Assignment:

Establish subtext in your writing project today.

The Cook’s Trinity


The “Trinity” means different things to different people. It means one thing to a pastor, another to a cook.

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(photocredit: culicurious)

The chopped vegetable base is found in recipes from around the world.

A mirepoix (/mɪərˈpwɑː/ meer-PWAH; French pronunciation: ​[miʁˈpwa]) is a mixture of chopped onions, carrots, and celery (either common pascal celery or celeriac). (Traditionally: 2 parts onions, 1 part carrots & 1 part celery.)[1] Mirepoix, raw, roasted or sautéed with butter or olive oil, is the flavor base for a wide variety of dishes, such as stocks, soups, stews and sauces.

Similar flavor bases include the Italian soffritto, the Spanish sofrito, from Portuguese-speaking nations refogado (braised onions, garlic and tomato), the German Suppengrün (leeks, carrots and celeriac), the Polish włoszczyzna (leeks, carrots, celery root and parsley root), the U.S. Cajun and Creole holy trinity (onions, celery and bell peppers), the French duxelles (onions, shallots, mushrooms, sauteed in butter), and the Costa Rican olores (onions, celery, bell pepper and garlic).


Butterflies are Free


It’s time to think butterflies!

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Look at this site for great butterfly information and images:



There is a butterfly mobile for sale here:



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If you have a bit of garden you may want to plant a butterfly bush.

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Today’s Assignment: Include butterflies in your creative efforts today.



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Storytelling, Technology, and Teaching

Just as a great meal relies upon great ingredients,

a successful classroom relies upon a great teacher.

While technology may be altering how students are being taught,

the successful classroom still relies upon the teacher’s skill.

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answers this important question:

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Read more of this article:



Today’s Assignment: Watch this short video entitled “The Medium is the Message” which reflects Marshall McLuhan’s observations:


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You can read more about teacher Albert Robertson at:



For a look at technology and how it has influenced storytelling at the cinema, watch this official trailer of the movie:

“Tomorrowland” (Britt Robertson and George Clooney)



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Research for Your Fiction Project


Today’s Book recommendation is:

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Bly quotes Tom Wolfe who said:

“Young writers are constantly told, “Write about what you know.” There is nothing

wrong with that rule as a starting point, but it seems to get quickly magnified into an

unspoken maxim:

The only valid experience is personal experience . . . Dickens, Dostoyevsky,

Balzac, Zola, and Sinclair Lewis assumed that the novelist had to go beyond his

personal experience and head out into society as a reporter.” (Bly 9)


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Today’s Assignment:

Plan a field trip to research some aspect of your novel.