I just read a very thoughtful article by Jacob Sullum on the Reason Online website. The article is entitled, Latter-Day Taint: Who will rescue the children of Yearning for Zion Ranch from their rescuers? The author articulated some of the concerns I’ve felt ever since I heard the news of our government taking all the children away from the parents of this religious group. And it’s not because I like to watch Big Love on HBO. I was encouraged that so many lawyers perceived there was a problem and offered their services to the group for free. Regardless of whether one agrees with the group’s practices, polygamy does have a Biblical precedent. However, if you believe Big Brother Government can do no wrong or that the Church of Big Government has a right to determine societal mores, then you probably shouldn’t bother reading the article because you won’t like it. Here’s the link: http://www.reason.com/news/show/126240.html
Young Author’s Event:
In just a few minutes, I’ll be driving to Alexandria, Louisiana to speak and perform music for the winners of the Northeast Louisiana Young Authors’ Contest. Entries are judged at the school level in grades K-8 (regular ed. & special ed.) and in three categories – poetry, fiction, and non-fiction. This year the district is honoring 77 district winners at a reception. I want to encourage young authors of any age. That’s why part of my program always involve telling them how to write and submit and answering any questions they have about writing. Here is some advice I’d give any young author today.
A. You must write every day. The first rule of writing is to sit your butt down and write. The 2nd rule is edit your work. (This must be done constantly and ruthlessly)
B. Read voraciously. Good writers are good readers. You be the bookworm, the one who finds a corner during recess and reads or writes in your little notebook/journal.
C. Build your library and network. Develop your people skills. Read the biographies of writers you admire. You’ll get ideas and inspiration.
D. Enter every contest you can. The right contest can be a good break for your career. There are hundreds of contests that award money, prizes and publication. You have a much better chance of publication by entering contests than you would by blindly sending it into the slush pile of a publishing company or agent.
I’m going to start collecting place names with “Pittman.” Here is the first one that a friend just sent me.