Who We Are

We are a group of Christian writers who meet semimonthly for W.I.SE. Coffees in Colorado. At the each gathering (a casual coffee at a local Starbucks), we share knowledge, inspiration, fun, and encouragement. We also share rejections and acceptances, and applaud each others’ risk taking and triumphs. We  encourage writers from all over the United States to join us for our informational webinars as soon as they begin. Nonfiction and fiction writers are both welcome.

Our Mission Statement is: Our deepest desire and heartfelt prayer is that every word we pen will inspire others to seek and find His path–His Way.

Please visit our About Page and our Event Page for details of meeting times and locations.

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Active vs. Passive Voice–What We Discovered at Our Last W.I.S.E. Coffee, February 24th., 2015

Don’t use passive voice…
Passive vs. active voice is always good to review. At our last Day Meeting, I shared a blog post by Grammar Girl (Mignon Fogarty) about that very subject.

Active voice is when you have a subject, a verb, then an object in a sentence. “Jerry kicked the can.”

Passive voice puts the object in the subject’s position in the sentence. It fools the brain into thinking that the object is really the subject.

Passive voice is considered weaker than active voice and is often confusing. “The can was kicked by Jerry.” 

“The can was kicked by Jerry,” puts the object, the can, in the subject’s position in the sentence. It takes the brain a nanosecond or two to process that it was Jerry who kicked that can. 

This means that passive voice is harder for the brain to process, and if you have too much of it, you will frustrate the reader.  Give the reader a break! Cut out passive voice unless you have a good reason to use it.

…unless you have a good reason
What are good reasons to use passive voice, you ask?

Well, Grammar Girl discusses it’s use in literary novels. It still isn’t a good idea to overuse passive voice, but a nice sprinkling of it throughout can take a manuscript from plain to fancy. “Theresa was loved by Jonathan, everyone knew. And the entire town was moved by it: moved enough to save the tree they died under on that terrible night.”

Okay, that was sappy–and really, really sad–but you get the idea. People read literary novels for the moving characters and the pretty words. They actually like a slow build in plot and love to chew on prose. Literary novelists are often called “wordsmiths” because their goal is not only to tell a story, but to do so with the most moving words possible.

Passive voice, when used judiciously, inspires.

But remember to only season your writing. Dumping bucketsful of passive voice into your prose can make people sick. Just saying.

And speaking of inspiring…
Grammar Girl doesn’t mention this, but I’ve noticed that BIG speeches–speeches given to Congress, on the steps of the Capitol Building, and on battlefields–are also sprinkled with passive voice.

Why? It’s the same reason writers use it in literary novels–it sounds lofty. Lofty, in turn, inspires. It also effectively makes an impact in people’s minds. It says, “momentous.”

“Battles were fought, lives were lost, but freedoms were won.” See, no subject, but a nice, lofty, parallel sentence that inspires–passively. (In active voice, this sentence would read “People fought battles, men lost their lives, but we won our freedoms.”)

Passive voice slows your writing
This can be good or bad. Do you want to write a slow passage that, perhaps, causes tension? Well, try adding some passive voice. I’ve seen this technique work well.

Again I caution you. Don’t be lazy. Don’t use passive voice like a drunken sailor on leave.

Unless you have a really good reason to go passive, use active voice.

Here is the link to the original Grammar Girl post.

We also talked about style manuals, but I’ll cover that subject on another post.

Our next meeting is March 10, 2015 at 7 p.m. at the Starbucks on Yosemite and Maximus. 

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Next W.I.S.E. Coffee Meeting is March 10th, 2015, 7 p.m.

Oh my cow! We have so much fun sharing our writing lives and all we’re learning about the writing craft!

As usual, during this Night Meeting, Denise will share articles on either promotion or writing craft.

Our W.I.S.E. Coffees are FREE. For this meeting, show up a few minutes before 7 p.m. at the Starbucks on the corner of Maximus and Yosemite by Park Meadows Mall. You’ll need a few minutes to get your snacks and drinks.

Attendees always walk away with notes and excitement about their writing life! Our W.I.S.E. Coffees are inspirational and informative.

Words for the Journey is unique because our group emphasizes discussion and support. After you’ve grabbed your food and beverage, sit down and join us for spunky conversations about the writing craft, life, and world.

AND we will all be sharing our recent writing experiences and learning from each other.

Come and join us for powerful information and support from your fellow writers!

Night Meetings, Second Tuesday of the Month.
7-9 p.m.
Starbucks, Yosemite and Maximus, Lone Tree
9222 Park Meadows Dr., Lone Tree, CO
(303) 799-8061
SEE MAP

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Member Accomplishments, February 2015

This month, February, Krystal Marusin shared that part of her wedding poem was published in 101 Secrets to a Happy Marriage: Real Couples Share the Keys to Their Success. Thomas Nelson publishes this sweet book on advice for a happy marriage.

As we discussed at the last two meetings, anthologies are a strongly viable way to get published, and you can have book signings and boldly call it “my book.” If you have been frustrated in  your publishing path so far, you might try looking in a Writers Market and aiming at a few anthologies. They’re gold!

AND…Zachary Totah announced on Facebook that he started his blog in February! Congratulations Zac! Here is the link.

If you are a member and want me to add you to this post, email WFTJ (Ernie) and give me the particulars of your big accomplishment.

For a refresher on how we define “member,” see this post How Do You Define “Member” of Words for the Journey.

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Writers on the Rock Conference, February 28th, 2015

I was reminded by a WFTJ member that this conference is coming up this weekend!
For all the details and to register, click here.

Join more than 100 other Front Range Writers for the Writers on the Rock: Conference 2015.

Our theme is “Words Matter.” Whether you write for publication,or simply write letters to your children, your gift is something that needs to be fostered, improved, and encouraged.
If you are a writer motivated by faith, this conference is for you. More than a dozen seminars taught by writers just like you will help with the nuts and bolts of your gift:

* Nurturing the Writer’s Heart
* The Finances of Writing
* Self Publishing
* Self Editing
* How to Integrate Speaking and Writing
* Why an Agent is Right for You
* Interviews That Matter
* The Poet’s Heart
* Market Yourself
* Find the Right Publisher
…. and much more.

The price starts at just $39 and includes lunch. ($55 procrastination rate.)
Whether you have dozens of published works or have never shown your writing to another soul, you’ll find something for you.
Feb 28, 2015. Lakewood, CO.

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Power Words (Hot Words)–What We Discovered at Our Last Night W.I.S.E. Coffee, February 10th

At our last W.I.S.E Coffee, we talked about two blog posts, one being How to Craft Post Titles that Draw Readers Into Your Blog.

The article has eight great tips, but we focused a little bit longer on #6 “Use Power Words.”

“Power Words,” a.k.a. “Hot Words,” are words that motivate readers to act. They bring pizzazz to your titles and cause the reader to want to read your post.

Hot words are rarely used in the body of the post. They are sensational and will make your post sound rather cheesy. BUT, as title words, they are powerful!

Here is MY LIST of  Power Words (a.k.a. Hot Words). The words in all caps are not original to the list, which I got from a blog post. They are words I’ve added from other sources over time:

Absolutely, amazing, approved, attractive, authentic, bargain, BECAUSE, better, big, breakthrough, cash, colossal, complete, confidential, crammed, delivered, direct, discount, discover, discovery, easy, excellent, exciting, exclusive, expert, famous, fascinating, fortune, free, genuine, gift, gigantic, greatest, GROW, guaranteed, helpful, huge, immediately, improved, incredible, informative, instructional, INSTANTLY, interesting, largest, latest, limited, love, lowest, magic, miracle, money, new, noted, odd, OPPORTUNITY, outstanding, personalized, popular, power, powerful, practical, private, professional, profit, profitable, proven, quality, QUICK, rare, reduced, refundable, remarkable, reliable, results, revealed, revolutionary, scarce, scientific, secrets, security, select, sensational, simplified, sizable, SIZZLE, SOAR, special, startling, strange, strong, STUNNING, sturdy, successful, superior, surprise, TANTALIZING, terrific, tested, tremendous, TRICK, ultimate, unconditional, unique, UNCOVERED, unlimited, useful, valuable, WARNING, wealth, you.

If you want to get better at writing titles for your blog posts, keep this list and add to it as you come across other Power Words. They will make a big difference in the ability of your posts to pull in readers.

To see the original post, which has seven more pointers, click here.

You may also be interested in this YouTube, Writing Advertising Headlines Using Thesaurus and Hot Words, which teaches  how to figure out Power Words by using a Thesaurus. Good stuff!

This is the link to the post where I got the original Hot Words List, which also has power phrases.

Our next W.I.S.E. Coffee is February 24th, 2015, at Starbucks. 9:30 a.m. 

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Our Next W.I.S.E. Coffee is Tuesday, February 24th, 9:30 a.m.

Bring a friend!

Attendees always walk away with notes and excitement about their writing life! Our meetings are inspirational and informative!

Our W.I.S.E. Coffees are FREE. For this meeting, show up a few minutes before 9:30 a.m. at the Starbucks in the Barnes and Noble by Park Meadows Mall. You’ll need a few minutes to get your snacks and drinks.

Words for the Journey is unique because our group emphasizes discussion and support. After you’ve grabbed your food, sit down and join us for spunky conversations about the writing craft, life, and world.  As usual, we will all be sharing our recent writing experiences and learning from each other.

As always, Denise will share articles on either promotion or writing craft.

Morning Meetings, Last Tuesday of the Month.
9:30 — 11:30 a.m.
Starbucks at Barnes and Noble Booksellers
8374 S Willow St, Lone Tree, CO 80124
(303) 706-9660
SEE MAP

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Our Next W.I.S.E. Coffee is a Night Meeting, February 10, 7 p.m.

Oh my cow! We have so much fun sharing our writing lives and all we’re learning about the writing craft!

As usual, during this Night Meeting Denise will share articles on either promotion or writing craft.

Our W.I.S.E. Coffees are FREE. For this meeting, show up a few minutes before 7 p.m. at the Starbucks on the corner of Maximus and Yosemite by Park Meadows Mall. You’ll need a few minutes to get your snacks and drinks.

Attendees always walk away with notes and excitement about their writing life! Our W.I.S.E. Coffees are inspirational and informative.

Words for the Journey is unique because our group emphasizes discussion and support. After you’ve grabbed your food and beverage, sit down and join us for spunky conversations about the writing craft, life, and world.

AND we will all be sharing our recent writing experiences and learning from each other.

Come and join us for powerful information and support from your fellow writers!

Night Meetings, Second Tuesday of the Month.
7-9 p.m.
Starbucks, Yosemite and Maximus, Lone Tree
9222 Park Meadows Dr., Lone Tree, CO
(303) 799-8061
SEE MAP

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