Hi all,

First and foremost, let’s jump right into last cliches:

Off the Cuff – impromptu.  Comes from the practice of after-dinner speakes making notes for a speech on the cuff of their shirtsleeve at the last minute, obviously as opposed to preparing a speech well beforehand.  Originated in America in 1930s

Take Umbrage – feel slighed; take offense.  Umbrage comes from Latin umbra = shade or shadow; rarely heard today.  1934 Alan Dent used it with a play on words see James Agate, Ego, March 11, 1934; cited in Penguin Dictionary of Modern Quotations.

Think Positive – concentrate on the bright side, on what is constructive and good and ignore the negative.  Comes from Norman Vincent Peale’s, The Power of Positive Thinking (1953).  Numerous psychologists of early 20th century developed idea, but popular after Peale’s book.

Keep the Faith – Carry on, continue with good work.  Phrase common among activists in American Civil Rights struggles of 1960s.  Originally alluded to maintaining one’s religious beliefs, – lost both meanings and more neutral now – used when two friends part.  See Stanley Ellin, The Man from Nowhere (1975).

I’m trying to keep my head above water and write on my blog.  Soon I’ll be receiving hopefully several hundred renewal applications for my Redwood Writers group of 246 members.  Every year, we must renew by June 30th.  I’m offering an early bird raffle with 10 prizes to get all the members to renew.  So processing them all again will keep me busy.
The prizes will be a printer, our club giving them back a renewal fee, and editing of their work.  Several of our members are editors and two who work at www.adaptingsideways.com will edit.  Some lucky winners will receive editing of 10 pages.

When I went to the Spring into Publication workshop, the one thing all of the speakers agreed on was that if you really want to get published anymore, you must have your work edited.  So, having this as a prize is a good incentive.

However, I will try not to let all of those applications coming in stop me from my writing on this blog or my novels.  The blog entry might be short, but I’ll at least point out the last cliches.

On another note: Does anyone know anything about: the Next Big Writers site?  They’re offering the strongest start novel competition, but you have to join to enter.  You have to read and review other writers.  Sounds interesting, but there is a fee.  $7.95/mo, 14.95/qtrly, 49.95/yearly.  If anyone knows anything about it, please let me know.

Well, I hate to cut and run, but expecting daughter for lunch. Having abalone that my husband got Easter weekend.  Enjoy.

Keep Writing,