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Writing Through Writer's Block

Andrea Cagan - Tuesday, April 03, 2018
Writing Through Writer's Block

As I started to write my blog this morning, I sat there for a few minutes, contemplating what I wanted to write about. My mind skipped to a load of possible topics but I didn't really want to write about any of them. Last week and the one before that, I knew what I wanted to say before I did it. The words just seemed to flow naturally out of me and it turned out okay. So why was I faltering this week? What was different?  

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Starting a Re-write

Andrea Cagan - Monday, February 26, 2018
Starting a Re-write
I recently picked up a first draft of a book I was writing a while ago and decided to dig in and do another draft. But apparently my manuscript had other ideas. As I read the material through, I knew something was missing. It wasn’t hanging together properly, it didn't sound like me, but I was stumped as to what was wrong and what I should do. Indignation rose up. This story was mine. I had created it, developed the characters, chosen a plot line, worked out the pacing, and now, I couldn’t figure out how to pick up where I left off. I just couldn't get back in there.  

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The Olympic Experience: Failures & Successes

Andrea Cagan - Wednesday, February 21, 2018
The Olympic Experience: Failures & Successes

Two nights ago, a favored ice dancer in the Olympics, Gabriella Papadakis, had a wardrobe malfunction. The fear and upset in her face reminded me of various missteps I made when I was in the ballet. The French couple won the Gold anyway but she’ll never forget the dread of her costume falling off her chest. She called it her worst nightmare. I can relate. 

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Get Smart

Andrea Cagan - Monday, February 05, 2018
Get Smart

It’s 2018 and most of our electronic home and entertainment devises are SMART. At least that’s what they're called. Smart phones, Smart TVs, Smart doorbells, Smart cars that drive themselves. And they’re getting Smarter all the time. We stand in long lines for hours to purchase these devices, we spend a lot of time watching videos online about the latest and greatest Smart devises that will surely change our lives, and we wait impatiently for twenty-four hours for our Smart Amazon Prime purchases to arrive. 

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Do You Take Things Personally?

Andrea Cagan - Monday, January 29, 2018
Do You Take Things Personally?

I’m often under scrutiny when I write. If I’m working on my own pieces, I only have to please myself. But when I ghostwrite and collaborate, I have several people to please: the client whose story I’m telling, the agent who has a habit of sticking his or her nose where it doesn’t belong, and then there’s me.  

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Facing Your Inner Critic

Andrea Cagan - Tuesday, January 23, 2018
Facing Your Inner Critic

I began teaching a writing class about two years ago, giving prompts, reading inspirational pieces, and offering advice about how to maneuver the world of words, sentences, paragraphs, and stories. I felt that I had something to offer since I'd written so many books. But when I began to share my knowledge and experiences as a writer, I never imagined how much my classes would impact my own writing and my understanding of the writing process in general. 

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Do you take things personally?

Andrea Cagan - Tuesday, January 16, 2018
Do you take things personally?

As a professional writer, I’m often under scrutiny when I write. If I’m writing my own pieces, chapters, essays or books, it’s all free form, a thrill when the words start to appear on the blank page. But when I ghostwrite and collaborate, I have several people to please: the client for whom I’m writing the book, the agent who has a bad habit of sticking his nose where it doesn’t belong, and then there’s me.
 

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Creativity Equals Happiness

Andrea Cagan - Tuesday, May 03, 2016
Creativity Equals Happiness

In a world where violence and insane politics seem to reign, I have found that for me, my only true happiness exists with artistic creativity. There seem to be obstacles to wellness, emotional and physical, at every turn. Was it always like this? It's hard to say, but the only way I can feel decent and leave anxiety behind is by involving myself in something creative, which allows me to lose time. 

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Election or Three Ring Circus?

Andrea Cagan - Saturday, January 23, 2016
Election or Three Ring Circus?

I’m not in the habit of writing political blogs but how can anyone overlook what’s going on during this election cycle of 2016? From hideously coifed reality stars to religious fanatics, from failed CEOs to dynasty members, from climate change deniers to the emergence of a new term called “democratic socialist, from racist hypocrites to immigrant haters, have we ever seen anything like it? It sounds more like a three ring circus than a slate of would-be presidents.  

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The Learning Curve

Andrea Cagan - Friday, July 24, 2015
The Learning Curve

The past few months have been filled with so many new twists and turns, it leaves me breathless as I think back. I took on the task of self-publishing my memoir partially to avoid certain miseries like rejection, (I had no interest in facing the kinds of cruel comments and rejections typical of agents and publishers), endless waiting and criticism about what did or did not belong in my book. I figured that this was my memoir and I was the only one qualified to make those choices. Granted, publishers have tough decisions to make, but I often wonder if they put any thought into the fact that there is a human being on the other end of the manuscript they are evaluating and criticizing, choosing and/or tossing aside. 

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