The fun of a forum

It’s not that long ago that the word forum had mainly Roman connotations, the open public space where people could meet, discuss and debate; originally it was an open area where markets could be held, and other events. Its modern use as a place for debate arose in the seventeenth century, in the 1680’s. Now it’s used everywhere in every sort of way, from an actual physical place as it originally was, but now shopping complexes or sports arenas, but also as a discussion group separate from a place.  There are actually places with the name of Forum –

  • Forum, Arkansas, USA
  • Blandford Forum, Dorset, England
  • Forum Fulvii, a lost Roman village in Italy
  • Forum Peak and Forum Lake, in Canada,

However, these days, many people think of forums (or fora I guess) as an on-line places where people can ‘meet’ to discuss every sort of thing imaginable.

I became involved in a forum when I was doing a couple of MOOCs (massive open on-line courses) All sorts of discussions arose from various topics, and quite often people became ‘friends’ and either continued in the forum long after the course had finished, or got in contact independently.  The next time for me was doing the November novel-writing challenge – 50,000 words of a new book in thirty days, organised by the National Novel Writing Month.

As you may know, I also have another blog, a writing blog; we are the Moving Dragon Writes, and appear here on WordPress as the Somerset Writers – however, I assure you, Somerset has the most elastic boundaries! The idea of our blog is to share other people’s writing as well as our own. We know quite a lot of people who are great writers but don’t want to have their own blog, but really want to put their stuff out into the world – stories, poems, comical tales, polemics… you name it, we share it! As we have found forums interesting and helpful, we started one of our own… but somehow we didn’t manage to publicise it properly, and sadly we haven’t had many members.

Not wishing to be defeated, I’ve started again – and the Moving Dragon now has a new forum –

http://movingdragonwrites.freeforums.net/

If you want to have a look at our blog, here is a link to that:

https://somersetwriters.wordpress.com

… and if you haven’t yet read any of my novels, here is a link to my e-books and my recently published paperback, Radwinter:

https://www.amazon.co.uk/s/ref=nb_sb_ss_i_1_9?url=search-alias%3Daps&field-keywords=lois+elsden&sprefix=lois+elsd%2Caps%2C142&crid=N3YI6E70NJLD

 

 

More about Moving Dragons

It was just over eight months ago that some writing friends and I got together to try and promote our work, and to share the work of others too. We knew people in writing groups who for various reasons did not have their own blog but wanted to put their writing out in public view. We called ourselves The Moving Dragon Writes, and we started a WordPress blog as a sort of writers’ community blog. It’s called Somerset Writers, because that’s where we are, but it is a notional rather than actual  name, there are no county borders in our group!

Earlier today, I published  a piece about using social media to share and promote and publicise.. This is what I wrote:

One of the driving desires of a writer, as with any artist,  is to get work before an audience, to share what we have produced, to have people read what we have written. I guess we are fortunate these days in living in a world where we can show strangers our stories and poems and other writing and get feedback and comment – and often appreciation!

Social media gives us a wonderful stage on which to parade our characters and scenes. Yes, there can be a dark side to it – but odd things can happen anywhere in real life too – when you sit next to a person on the bus, or get into conversation with someone you don’t know very well in a pub or café, or encounter strange and sometimes downright weird folk in other situations.  We usually can deal with that as part of life, and have strategies and know how to find help – so it is with social media. Yes, there are stories in the press about unfortunate things which have happened from on-line encounters, but there are far more wonderful stories of friendships made, opportunities explored – and for writers and musicians – audiences reached!

We Moving Dragons share our work, and those of friends here on our blog – (and if you have a short story, article, poem, or anything which fits our eclectic group, then please get in touch!) and we also promote it through our Facebook page:

https://www.facebook.com/TheMovingDragonWrites/?ref=bookmarks

and we tweet too –

https://twitter.com/brimdraca

… and here is a link to our WordPress:

https://somersetwriters.wordpress.com

Tales from the Strangled Ferret, euphonic writing, and more from the Moving Dragon

It was the beginning of summer, and three of us writing friends got together to talk about promoting and sharing our work and that of others in our writing groups. It seemed that although I have a blog, many people who are keen writers and poets have nowhere, apart from our little groups, to share and showcase their work. We began to think that having another blog not just for us as individuals but for other people to be able to put our their stories, verse, reviews, travelogues… their writing!

We are based in Somerset so we think of ourselves as Somerset writers, but for a blog, the borders became very elastic – in fact they go on forever! We decided that we should call our blog The Moving Dragon Writes and we invited all the writers we knew to share their work if they would like to. Everything is linked back to people’s own sites, social media pages, Amazon pages if they have them

Since then we have had such fun and had some really fantastic posts! Short stories – some very short and some rather longer, poems, verse and euphonic writing, food blogs, travel blogs, geology  blogs, history, music, book reviews, stories for children, Tales from the Strangled Ferret… it has been amazing!

Most blogs grow their audience quite slowly, especially as eclectic as we are, but we have been amazed at the  number of views, likes and comments that we have received. We have branched into social media too and have a facebook page and we also tweet regularly.

Have a look and see for yourself:

http://www.somersetwriters.wordpress.com

https://www.facebook.com/TheMovingDragonWrites/

https://twitter.com/brimdraca

 

The Moving Dragon Writes

A couple of months ago, very busy writing months, two friends and I started a writing blog – not just for our own work but for other writers too! Since we all live in Somerset, we called ourselves the Somerset Writers, and the blog is The Moving Dragon Writes. We have been thrilled with the response! We have been able to share some amazing pieces of writing – stories, poems, travel, food, reminiscences, humorous pieces, serious pieces… and many more. Our writers come from all backgrounds, and indeed all ages and places – Somerset has very open boarders! I am reminded of the amazing band Los Super Seven; anyone going to their gigs would see a dozen or more people troop on stage and someone would shout “We may be seven, but we are more!” The Moving Dragons are very much like that!

To see what we have written, and to join us if you would like, here is the link:

https://somersetwriters.wordpress.com

Not content with just our blog, we have reached out on social media, and have a Twitter and Facebook page

https://www.facebook.com/TheMovingDragonWrites/

Twitter is building more slowly, but this is where we are:

https://twitter.com/brimdraca

…and lastly… we have a forum! We like to talk about writing as well as writing!

http://somerset-writers.proboards.com/

Finding new writers

I mentioned a couple of days ago that two friends and I have started a blog to promote and share our work – but not just our work! There are so many people of all ages writing away, all sorts of writing, all sorts of genres and styles. For people who prophesised that the digital age and new technology would turn people into passive drones, how wrong could they be. It seems that people are more creative and imaginative than ever, and using technology has aided and enhanced what they do and produce.

My own handwriting is so terrible, reading anything I’ve written, particularly when I’m really in the flow, is almost impossible, and very frustrating! Also editing work is so much easier, and so much more accurate – I don’t use any on-line tools, but there are plenty to assist writers.

There seem to be writing groups everywhere, in the real world and on-line, and my friends and I belong to two; we also meet regularly to discuss our own work, and from this our blog ‘The Moving Dragon Writes’ was born, which you can find at

http://www.somersetwriters.wordpress.com

I mentioned the other day about how fortunate we’ve been with the writers who have shared their work, and we’re on a mission now to find more, poets, short story writers, novelists, dramatists, writers who defy a pigeon-hole…

Talking of pigeon holes, many years ago, having completed an MA in writing studies I applied to do a PhD and was asked what genre I wrote in… hard to define, and in a moment of truthful stupidity and thinking of a Peanuts cartoon where Charlie Brown is describing what pictures he sees in the clouds, I said ‘I’m a horsey and ducky sort of writer’… I meant I just tell stories without thinking of any particular genre… I didn’t get on the course so I’m not Dr Lois…

So back to us Moving Dragon Writers… we’re on a mission… to find more writers! To share their work! When I first started teaching in the west country, having taught in the north all my teaching life, one of the lads rushed out of class at the end of the lesson saying he was on a ‘phat mission’; it was a piece of youth idiom which I had never come across before, now long out of fashion, but forever more I shall think of a phat mission…

If you want to share your work on our blog – which we will link back to your own blog/site/page/Amazon page etc, just get in touch!

The Moving Dragon Writes

It was in June this year that a couple of writing friend and I decided to start a blog, not just to share our work but to share the work of other writers; we called ourselves the Somerset Writers, because that is where we are from, but actually we are very flexible! We want to promote and share the work of writers of all sorts, writers of novels and short stories, poems and verse; people who write autobiographically or about particular subjects.

Our blog is The Moving Dragon Writes, and we’ve had some marvellous posts with many positive comments, ‘likes’ and shares. We’ve spread into social media too, rather tentatively as we don’t want to be involved in so much other work that we get distracted from our own personal writing.

Here is a post from Richard Kefford:

https://somersetwriters.wordpress.com/2016/08/03/herding-the-iron-yak/

… and here is a poem from John Watts:

https://somersetwriters.wordpress.com/2016/08/02/soldiers-in-corn/

… and here is something from me:

https://somersetwriters.wordpress.com/2016/07/08/across-the-water-meadow/

We really do welcome any writers who want to share their work… get in touch if you do!!

If you’re interested Richard’s work, here is a link to his Amazon page

https://www.amazon.co.uk/s/ref=nb_sb_noss_1?url=search-alias%3Daps&field-keywords=richard+kefford

… and here is a link to mine:

https://www.amazon.co.uk/s/ref=nb_sb_noss_1?url=search-alias%3Daps&field-keywords=lois+elsden&rh=i%3Aaps%2Ck%3Alois+elsden