A Slice of Orange


Writer’s Word

July 11, 2007 by in category Archives tagged as
by Jenny Hansen

Keeping Your Hands on the Keyboard

Are you ever typing so quickly that you are afraid to let your hands leave the keyboard? Do you have times when new ideas are coming and you don’t want to stop to pick up your mouse to format?

You have choices. We talked about creating templates in last month’s column. This month I want to share with you the keyboard shortcuts that are available to you in Microsoft Word…some of them even work all over Microsoft Office.

Hit the CTRL key at the same time that you hit the letters on the keyboard to do these shortcuts (ex: Ctrl + A).

* The letters with this symbol next to it work throughout Microsoft Office.

Other Word Shortcuts.

I hope you’ll share with me whether these tricks help save you time. If there are terms like “hanging indent” that don’t make any sense to you, just use the F1 function key to look it up in Word and get an example (think party invitations where the “Where” is on the left side and there all the information about “where” is lined up about an inch to the right).
I’m just back from my honeymoon in the Pacific Northwest and am so sorry to have missed the deadline…you’ll have these when you return from the National Conference! Until next time…
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President’s Message

July 7, 2007 by in category Archives tagged as


by OCC Co-President Sandy Novy-Chvostal

Opportunity–Creativity–Community. OCC embodies them all.

Opportunity, in all areas of your writing life, is something all OCC Boards work hard to provide. Creativity comes from within. Community, however, can only be achieved by reaching out and connecting with your fellow members.

The perfect opportunity to do so with both new and old, local and long-distance members, is at National Conference. Once again OCC will be hosting a Hospitality Suite and once again Michelle Thorne — past RWA Bookseller of the year, past OCC president and longtime member — will be serving as our Conference Coordinator and Suite Hostess.

Our scheduled Suite Events include the Book Buyers Best Awards, celebrated with a Chocolate and Champagne Party on Wednesday night. We will also be hosting the first annual Presidents’ Tea on Thursday, and a “Salon” following the RITA/ Golden Heart Awards Ceremony. (For dates and times, please see page 4).

If you are a published member and will be signing at the literary event, please contact Michelle at agreatreadoccrwa@aol.com to be included in any plans concerning that activity.

This year, Michelle is also planning to capture as many OCC members as possible in “Postcard Podcasts” to be used up on our website throughout the year. So check in with Michelle at the Suite to participate in that project.

And most of all, don’t hesitate to use the Suite to sit down and relax, to put your feet up in between lectures and take the time to chat with your fellow writers. Writing is basically a solitary profession, but even so, you don’t always need to go it alone.

Happy Writing,


Sandy Novy-Chvostal (aka Sandra Paul) has a degree in journalism, but prefers to write from the heart. She is married to her high school sweetheart and they have three children, three cats, and one overgrown “puppy.” Her 2006 Silhouette Romance DOMESTICATING LUC is a finalist in this year’s RITA Awards.

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July 4, 2007 by in category Archives tagged as

with Gina Black

Maybe I should title retitle my monthly column CyberTrek because once again I’m sending you all out into the internet, mice in hand. It’s the easiest way to travel. No standing in line. No exorbitant fares. No nasty airplane food. And lots and lots of good info.

Everybody got their coffee? Good. Let’s go.

First stop: Claire Delacroix’s post on Surviving the Copy/Line Edit
Claire is a member of one of my online groups (and fellow knitter extraordinaire) who blogs often on Very Useful Subjects. This is one of them.

Second stop: Diana Peterfreund’s post (on The Knight Agency blog) about Writing a Series
Diana’s own blog is a daily stop for me. She doesn’t shy away from controversy, so things can get lively–which I like. She also does an excellent job of explaining this business. Check out her posts on Primer Part one and Primer Part Two (Glossary). Excellent information and advice, as always.

Third stop: Agent Jessica Faust blogs about the Bad Agent
The Bookends, LLC blog has been up and running for a bit over a year now and it’s well worth spending some time digging through the archives. Recently, Jessica did a series of Query Critiques (1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10. wrap-up, and follow-up).

Fourth stop: Ever wonder who reps who?
Querytracker.net purports to have the answer and so far–from what I know–they seem to have it right. There’s also a system of tracking queries built into the site that I haven’t looked in to, but I know some people who have and they like it. Even without that function, when querying an agent you really need to know at least some of who their other clients are.

Just a note, if you stop by someone’s blog and you enjoy the entry, leave a comment. If you really enjoy the entry, buy their book. 😉

That’s it for this month. I hope you enjoyed the ride!

Somehow, Gina manages to work some writing time in around her internet adventures. In addition to posting here, she blogs on The Gina Channel, Romancing the Skein, and Title Wave.

And yes, her computer screen really has burned itself into her glasses.

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Winners of “My Last First Date”

June 28, 2007 by in category Last First Date tagged as

OCC member and USA Today Bestselling author Susan Mallery is proud to announce the winners of “My Last First Date” contest.

First Place:

The Zone by Jenny Hansen

Second Place:

Better Late Than Never by Gillian Doyle

Third Place:

Next Time, You Pick the Movie by Tanya Hanson

First place winner, Jenny Hansen, will receive a signed copy of Susan’s June release, HER LAST FIRST DATE, and a Starbucks gift card.

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Pop Culture Report: San Diego Comic Con

June 26, 2007 by in category Archives tagged as

by Sara Black

For those of you looking for a cool blast of Pop Culture this hot summer there is no better place to overdose than at the San Diego Comic Convention.

Don’t let the name fool you, there will be a lot more than comics filling up the ample space of the San Diego Convention Center. Marvel Comics, Dark Horse, DC Comics and all their friends will be there, but so will the Sci-Fi Channel, cast and producers from Heroes, Nintendo, Laurell K. Hamilton and so many more.

Besides the endless booths of enticing comics, art and toys there are the panels and presentations. Upstairs small rooms show animation all day to exhausted convention goers, larger rooms offer anything from workshops on sculpting to discussions with artists, and in the largest rooms big studios share what they’ve got up their sleeves and put on panels with the stars.

All that is a ton of fun, but my favorite part of the comic convention is the small and independent press area. This is the best place to meet artists and writers (often they are both) and talk about their craft.

I always stop by Lark Pien’s booth for her adorable Long Tail Kitty Comics, and she remembers me every year. Top Shelf usually has several authors there, my favorite is James Kochalka and his meditative American Elf series. Last year he even had comics drawn by his three year old son. Dumbrella is a collective of artists who besides writing comics have an impressive line of T-shirts.

The comic con runs from Thursday, July 26th to Sunday the 29th. Typically Saturday is the busiest day and the wide aisles look like the Los Angeles freeway during rush hour. For this reason I recommend, if possible, you go on Thursday or Friday. Saturday can have some of the best panels and presentations however, and Sunday is the best day to bring kids. Best to come early to find parking somewhere near the convention center.

Sara Black has a degree in Cinema/Television from USC. She watches far too much television, eats way too much sushi and is always writing a romance novel. For someone who religiously stays out of the mainstream, she knows an awful lot about Pop Culture. This is the fourth in a series of posts on the subject.

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