Hi Everyone, and WELCOME to The Writing Fairy website. I'm Dorothea Helms, freelance writer, poet, book author, fiction dabbler, writing instructor, keynote speaker, humorist, wife, mother and slave to my English Bulldog, Margaret. My website is undergoing a facelift, boob lift, liposuction, weight loss program ... wait a minute - those are things I need personally. Sheesh. But my website IS in transition after being neglected for a LONG time. My goal is to inspire writers; my method humour (or humor in the U.S.). Enjoy!

Coaxing closet writers to emerge and make their magic known!

Folks – we have a brand new workshop coming up – Web Writing Wisdom: The who, what where and why of writing for websites. February 19, 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Blue Heron Studio. $75 per person.

The Internet has changed the way we interact with the world and has had a profound effect on writing. Juggling words to appeal to a busy, easily distracted web audience takes skills that differ from writing for print. Successful husband-wife team Dorothea and Rich Helms’ one-day workshop covers both the right- and left-brain basics of writing for the web. Rich is a website creation pioneer, and Dorothea counts web writing among her lucrative freelance streams of income. Whether you are creating your own website or want to write for others, this workshop will get you started on the path to success.

To reserve your spot, visit Blue Heron Books or phone (905) 852-4282 with your Visa or MasterCard ready. Please note that your spot is not secure until payment. Pre-registration is required.

The Internet has changed the way we interact with the world and has had a profound effect on writing.…
BLUEHERONBOOKS.COM

Besides the obvious sex appeal of the Klingon character Worf, the show “Star Trek: The Next Generation” was well worth watching for its fascinating examination of the human condition in settings far from our time on planet Earth. Gene Rodenberry’s genius included addressing controversial topics such as drug addiction in the episode entitled “Symbiosis.” Another episode that sticks with me was “Darmok.” This engaging show involved Picard and his crew trying to communicate with a race whose language is not known to the universal translator. Turns out these aliens speak in metaphor. How about that? They communicate through story.

Recent political events have prompted me to think about the concept of “story” in a new way. As writers, we deal with story every day, whether we are creating a blog, editorial, advertorial, article, short story, poem, novel, how-to book … you get the picture. By sharing experiences, in whatever form, we engage in storytelling, which is at the root of our anthropological heritage. From the time someone first used a stone to carve a stick figure into a cave wall and agreed on specific markings to represent sounds, we have been saying to others, “Hey, look at me, look at this, here’s what happened.” Our greatest hope is that someone else will look at it/read it and say, “Hey, that happened to me, too” or “Wow, that’s terrible” or “Gee, that’s fantastic.”

When events as explosive as the recent U.S. election occur, the sharing of stories has a massive impact on society, before, during and after. Stories are used to persuade, dissuade, move, anger, delight, entertain and even mislead. We have seen a kaleidoscope of these via the media and social media, and with so many unreliable “news” sources out there, it’s difficult to know what to believe. That’s why I prefer to speak with and converse with people who are living the realities created by our politicians. Ironically, I do this through groups on social media, among other avenues.

Stories – previously untold stories – are rising to the top of people’s verbal agendas, and those who were silenced before by intimidation and downright threats are coming together to speak as one voice … to tell their stories so that others understand. The new story is, in fact, an old one, and is an example of how clichés such as “history repeating itself” become clichés. There is so much truth to them that they take on the nature of “ubiquity.” Although frowned upon by literary types, clichés often convey deep truths in just a handful of words.

What fascinates me about the current obsession with the U.S. election is the realization of how different people’s stories can be, depending on which “side” they are on, and even within those sides. We come at all elections carrying our own baggage (cliché intended) from the journeys we are on. The difference is that for far too long, some of us have kept our stories to ourselves because of the humiliation and embarrassment heaped upon us by those who exploit their abilities to intimidate and frighten.  Hopefully, those days are gone (yup, another cliché – live with it). People en masse are saying in their out-loud voices, “I’m here; I’m valid; I’m standing up for what I know is right.” There are those who categorize people by race, religion, gender, sexual preference, etc., and would have you believe that those who are not white males are “other.” The older I get, the more I research and the more I write, the more I realize there is no such thing as “other.” We are all human, and we all have stories that have brought us to today. For some, the tales are tragic and violent; for some, they are joyful and optimistic.

As writers, we must transform our attitudes into the points of view of our characters and even our non-fiction subjects to represent them in an honest way. Right now, it is more important than ever to think about why those who disagree with us about government have come to their points of view. Whichever side you are on, it is worthwhile to listen to what everyone has to say and consider it. Understanding is key, and until understanding becomes ubiquitous, we are looking at history repeating itself forever.

 

 

Hi everyone. My workshop “The Business of Writing” scheduled for November 4, 2016 at Blue Heron Books in Uxbridge has been rescheduled for Saturday, December 3rd. Spend a fun, inspiring day learning how to start and run a writing business. Make money from your passion. Go to BlueHeronBooks.com to register!

Hi all,

Once again, I’ll be teaching a fall creative writing course at Blue Heron Books in Uxbridge, Ontario. It’s called “Writer’s Buffet – a series of mini-workshops” – and it consists of eight standalone 2.5-hour sessions on Tuesday evenings beginning September 27th.

  • A Beginner’s Primer
  • A Short Look at the Short Story
  • Poetic Licence
  • The Magazine Game
  • Present With Pizzazz
  • Speech Writing for Fun and Profit
  • Make Money Being Funny
  • The Business of Writing

For those who are keen on making money as a freelancer, on Saturday, November 5th, I’ll offer my full-day workshop called “The Business of Writing.” Hope to see you at any or all of these classes. To register, call the store at 905-852-4282 or stop by in person.

My twin grandsons are now 6 months old. Pretty soon, I’ll be able to turn to them for computer tech support.