“I’ve always felt that my ‘style’—the careful projection onto paper of who I think I am—was my only marketable asset, the only possession that might set me apart from other writers.” ---William Zinsser

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Monday, October 22, 2012

Change is Good - Look at What We're Doing at Word Lovers

Thursday, November 1, through Sunday, November 4, 2012 

“Writing will fill your heart if you let it.  It will fill your pages and help to fill your life.”
–Julia Cameron
Claudia Taller, Retreat Leader and Guide
Betsy Muller, Energy and Marketing Guru
Deanna Adams, Writing Coach
Mary Bodnar, Hostess

12PM              Arrive at Lakeside early ($50 extra)
8PM                Evening Circle Up in the Sacred Circle


8:30AM           Breakfast Served
12PM              Arrive at Lakeside for the weekend
6PM                Welcoming Dinner prepared by Claudia
                        Writing Warm-Up Exercises
                       An Inspirational Talk from Betsy
8PM                Evening Circle Up in the Sacred Circle                 


8:30AM           Breakfast Served
9:30 AM          Poetic Medicine workshop
11:00AM         The Art of Storytelling workshop
12:30PM         Lunch served
  2:00PM         Marketing Yourself and Your Work workshop
3:30PM         Building Great Sentences workshop
  5:00PM         Afternoon Circle Up in the Sacred Circle
  6:30PM         Optional Pizza Party with Wine Tasting ($20 extra)


  8:30AM         Breakfast Served
  9:30AM         Critique Session led by Claudia
                        One-on-One Coaching Sessions with Deanna
 11:30AM        Weekend Circle Up Celebration

Monday, September 10, 2012

Wineries Tour - September 8

We had a great time on our wineries tour this past Saturday.  Paul and I led fourteen people to four wineries in Lorain and Erie counties, starting with one of the wineries closest to our home:  Klingshirn Winery in Avon Lake. When we arrived, third-generation winemaker Lee Klingshirn was waiting to take us on tour, starting with his vineyards.  We learned everything we could possibly want to know about growing grapes and making wine from Lee, and the lesson continued.  Adam Cawrse at Paper Moon and David Benzing at Vermilion Valley gave us tour-talks, and when we arrived at Matus, Bob Matus took us out back so we could watch them crush the grapes.  We drank wines ranging in color from an almost clear Reflections of Lake Erie white blend to a neon-red dDornfelder. We enjoyed French hybrid wines at Klingshirn, discovered how a new winery makes great wine from California grapes in Ohio, experimented with European viniferas we never heard of, and sipped native labruscas like Niagara and Concord.  The sun came out after a dreary start, which lifted our spirits.  At the end of the tour, everyone said they were looking forward to the next one. Paul and I are too. We'll keep you posted.

Sunday, September 9, 2012

Creativity - The Yogic Tradition

Yoga Journal 2007 Daily Om on Creativity:  The truth is, you are not too old, and if you have time to pick up a pen, you have time to make a doodle or write a haiku. Recognize that the obstacles you find before you have arisen from a place of fear and that they will wane in power every time you do something creative. Each creative act takes you deeper into a realm of beauty and magic, a realm that you have every right to return to and reclaim.

Saturday, September 1, 2012

Word Lovers - Come to Lakeside the First Weekend in November

Igniting Possibilities announces the Fall 2012 Word Lovers Weekend. Come early on Thursday evening or Friday to work on your writing projects and find time throughout the weekend to commune with the muse. Claudia Taller will lead workshops on John Fox’s Poetic Medicine and University of Iowa Brooks Landen’s video “Building Great Sentences.” Betsy Muller will inspire us to follow our muse and show us how to have fun and get more done. From the first sentence to the last, keep readers riveted to the page with techniques shared by Deanna Adams, who will guide us on how to create memorable fictional characters or make real-life ones come alive with dialogue and sensory connection.


It will be a busy weekend at the Idlewyld Bed and Breakfast, but you can join or not join the group at any time. Lakeside is a great place for walking, watching sunsets, seeing a starlit night sky, and relaxing. Stress falls away the minute you enter Lakeside, which provides the scene and background against which we will create, rejuvenate, and connect with our writing, our muse, and each other. Make Lakeside your weekend escape to get some work done in the company of other writers.

Come to Lakeside on Thursday for time to write and stay through Sunday at noon. The retreat officially begins on Friday evening.  Weekend Fees are $89/Saturday, $129/weekend without room, $229/weekend for shared room, and $319/weekend for private room. SIGN UP AND PAY IN FULL BY SEPTEMBER 15 AND SAVE $30 IF YOU’RE STAYING AT THE IDLEWYLD. Rooms are assigned on a first-come, first-serve basis. Hold your spot with a $50 nonrefundable deposit, balance due one month prior to the event. Non-writing guests can stay with a participant by paying $39 for weekend food. Add Thursday night to your stay for an additional $50. Cancellations after October 15 are subject to refund penalties. Reserve your space by contacting Claudia Taller at claudia.taller@yahoo.com.

Sunday, March 11, 2012

Word Lovers will Rev You Up!



Friday, June 8, through Sunday, June 10, 2012 

Igniting Possibilities announces the Spring 2012 Word Lovers Retreat. Writers are encouraged to bring their works-in-progress to refine their writing. Once again, we convene at the Idlewyld Bed and Breakfast, a historic home just blocks from Lake Erie. Come early on Friday to work hard, then join the group on Friday evening to get feedback on your concept, title, and jacket-cover presentation. Les Roberts (http://lesroberts.com/) will be the writer-in-residence and will be available for individual critique sessions for a $30 fee.

Saturday's schedule begins with Debbie Alferio (http://www.freewebs.com/debsbooks/), who will lead a program on characterization. Writer Kelly Ferjutz (http://bookmechanic.wordpress.com/) will lead a workshop on scenes and bringing the reader into the story. At the end of the day, Les will then bring us to focus on plot and dialogue. You will want your manuscripts handy to mark them up throughout the day. Above all, remember it’s your weekend--you can choose to sit out any programming that gets in the way of the muse.

The rest of the weekend is yours, for writing, star gazing, porch rocking, and street walking!  While the weekend will focus on elements of fiction, some may prefer to work on non-fiction and take what they need from the fiction workshops. Make Lakeside your weekend escape to get some work done in the company of other writers. You can set your own pace for writing, taking clues from the muse.

Weekend Fees are $120.  Registration is limited to twenty participants. Rooms are available at the rates charged by the Idlewyld (http://idlewyldbb.com). Reserve your space by contacting Claudia Taller at claudia.taller@yahoo.com or at 440-554-6406.

Friday, February 3, 2012

Word Lovers Retreat - June 8-10, 2012

The spring retreat will be a project-based weekend at which everyone should bring writing in progress to work on throughout the weekend. We will begin on Friday evening by explaining our projects in jacket-cover format, as if you're trying to sell the book to a publisher, and the group will give you feedback on the concept, title, and presentation. While the weekend will focus on elements of fiction, some may prefer to work on non-fiction or fiction collections.

Les Roberts will be the writer-in-residence and will be available for individual critique sessions for a $30 fee. Saturday's tentative schedule begins with Debbie Alferio's talk on characterization. Kelly Ferjutz will lead a workshop on scenes and bringing the reader into the story. Les will then bring us to focus on plot and dialogue. The rest of the weekend is yours, for writing!

Reserve your space at the Idlewyld by sending a $50 check to Claudia Taller, 26408 Chapel Hill Drive, North Olmsted, Ohio 44070.  Indicate which room you would like at the inn (http://idlewyldbb.com/) when you send your deposit. Space is limited.

Sunday, January 29, 2012

Eat, Pray, Love and Find Your God Connection 2012

We will take Gilbert’s Eat Pray Love a bit further this year while sticking the heart of her story. We’ll start with a feast, continue with some prayer, and end with love. The food will be good, and some of it will be prepared by you. The prayer will include some of the concepts in Sue Monk Kidd’s When the Heart Waits because we sometimes need to be quiet and wait for our lives to unfold, like the butterfly emerging from its cocoon. Immerse yourself in love of self, others, and God with poetry and music and art.

This is my way of uniting my church home with my friends from the fall Sharing Our Gifts weekend in Lakeside. The way we come together to share our gifts each year is remarkable, and just being able to do that is a gift. We all have God-given gifts, and it's our job to embrace them.

The cost for the afternoon is $30 and includes lunch. Please send a check for $30 to 26408 Chapel Hill Drive, North Olmsted, Ohio 44070 to help me pay for the upfront costs. We’ll gather from 12-4PM on February 18. Updates on programming will follow.

A Winding Road - Writing

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My book, "Ohio's Lake Erie Wineries," an Arcadia production, explores the history of island and lakeshore wineries from the mid-1800s through today. I write travel, memoir, profiles, book reviews, local interest articles, and fiction. My writing is always of discovery--whether it's journaling, book reviewing, letter writing, or sharing an experience of life. I have written two novels and am working on a third novel and a memoir. I am passionate about sharing what life has to offer with others. "The Artist's Way" by Julia Cameron woke me up to a sense of possibility--life is too short not be enjoyed by living deeply and well. I created Igniting Possibilities, a conduit for creativity workshops and events, in the hope of guiding others to realize their full potential. The Word Lover's Retreats at Lakeside, Ohio's Chautauqua community, help writers find their voice and direction.