Saturday, October 27, 2012

Attention Garden Writers and Garden Bloggers: Time to Write That E-book

This month is National Novel Writing Month, also known as NaNoWriMo. For those of you who have never heard of it, it's an online challenge for writers to complete 50,000 words from November 1st to November 30th. Writers challenge themselves to do it and complete it. 

Here's the cool thing for garden writers and bloggers. You can write non-fiction and participate as a rogue.  Lots of non-fiction writers do this annual self-challenge. You could write 1666 word posts each day for your blog, or, and this is my choice, write one or two gardening e-books, the e-books you've always wanted to write but kept putting it off. Don't be shy. Time's a wasting, so do have a look at the NaNoWriMo site, sign up and do some prep work to be ready to start writing on Thursday, November 1st, 2012. 

I completed NaNoWriMo for fiction in 2007, but I'm going in as a rogue this time and writing two e-books. It was liberating to finish something back then, so I'm looking forward to this one with a view to getting my first gardening e-books out there. 

Will you join me in this challenge?

If you're nervous about how to write an e-book, just write. Forget the technicalities for now. Concern yourself only with words. Don't go back and forth to edit. That's December work. Your goal is to get a first draft written and you can do it. It's less than 1700 words per day on your favorite topics. It does help to be organized in advance, have some idea of what you're going for, lay out chapters, titles, research books/links etc., to make the writing go smoother

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If you want to learn more about writing an e-book, I'm affiliated with Angela England's e-book 30 Days to Make and Sell a Fabulous Ebook.  It's $11.99 and worth every penny.

Angela's second e-book earned her five figures, so it's absolutely possible to create more income as a garden writer. Her e-book will show you how. Angela is a writer-friend and she's also the owner of Untrained Housewife. Her blog Angela England has lots of tips for bloggers.  

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Do join me. My NaNoWriMo ID is LorraineS if you feel you need a little push/support mid-way. We can all help each other reach our goals. 

So whaddaya say? You in?  



Thursday, October 18, 2012

Removable Leaf Pens for Spring Mulching

In most urban gardens, leaves are bagged in the fall to be picked up by the township or county. But those leaves have value to the gardener. The leaves of a single oak tree in the garden can offer a rich organic mulch for the flower beds each spring. If you are prone to raking your leaves into the flower beds in the fall, you may still have a lot of excess leaves to be bagged up. The leaves that are already on the flower beds will break down over the winter and you may feel the need to purchase mulch for the following growing season. Save yourselves some money.

Wednesday, October 17, 2012

Roses: Pruning Times in Cold Climates

Constance Spry .. My Garden
Some rose gardeners in northern or colder climates prune their roses in late fall. This could have a negative effect on the plants. If the roses aren't completely dormant, small tender shoots could form and be damaged by winter winds and snow storms. Pruning in fall will result in more winter die-back than if left alone until spring.

If the roses have long canes, simply secure them to a trellis, arbor, fence, or wall with garden ties to avoid damage as they flap around in the wind.

The best time to prune roses in USDA garden zones 6 or lower is in the early spring, just as the plants come out of dormancy. Many gardeners time their rose pruning with the early spring blooming of tulips, serviceberry, magnolia, or forsythia.

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