Mill Park Publishing of Eagle, Idaho was created in 2003 by author Elaine Ambrose.
The company facilitates fee-based book publication and marketing for local authors
and organizes writer's retreats.

Tuesday, 29 March 2011 22:35

Elaine's Top Five Tips for Writers

Written by Elaine Ambrose

1. Write what you know. I couldn’t write well about a vegetarian, Socialist, nuclear physicist who sleeps with his/her dog and listens to rap music. Can’t do it. But, I thoroughly enjoyed writing Menopause Sucks because I’ve been there and it does! And, I laughed every time I wrote a sentence such as, “Let me tell you why you sneeze, fart, and wet your pants at the same time.” And, my fingers literally flew over the keyboard as I wrote about hairy toes, night sweats, and recommended sex toys. Yes, write what you know!

2. Take advantage of, no… exploit, the serendipity of your life.· Develop fascinating characters modeled after your belching piano teacher, or your uncle who refuses to discuss his war wounds but smashes beer cans against his forehead, or the passenger in the airplane seat next to you who laughs in her sleep, or your child who cries when the Disneyland Nightlight Parade stops. You are surrounded by writing prompts.

3. Read your work out loud. You will discover sentences, paragraphs and even pages that no one will understand or ever read again. You’ll find that preposition lounging at the end of a sentence that screams: I’M A HORRIBLE WRITER! READ NO FURTHER!

4. Believe that all the words tumbling around in your brain MUST get out or you will explode! Yes, you hear voices, but it’s your characters demanding that you set them free. If you’re fiddling with non-fiction, then quick, spew forth those creative ideas on napkins, notebooks, old envelopes, typewriters (I still have some), and even a computer. Write. Write. Write. You’ve read plenty of crap that others have written, which is proof that your work will be OK.

5. Continue to read and learn. Emulate your favorite authors. Janet Evanovich makes me howl with laughter and want to read more. On the other hand, Elizabeth Gilbert causes me to wish I were a vegetarian, Socialist, nuclear physicist who sleeps with my dog and listens to rap music. Get a grip, woman! Part Two of this comment is to encourage you to attend writing workshops, join literary groups, go on writing retreats, mingle with other authors, and find a space to write. And, say out loud every day, “I am a writer.”

Elaine Ambrose is the author of six books, the co-author of two books, and the owner of Mill Park Publishing. She organizes the annual “Write by the River” Writer’s Retreat in Garden Valley and enjoys being a carnivorous, capitalistic writer who has no pets and listens to jazz.

Monday, 07 March 2011 21:55

Mill Park Publishing – A Brief History

Written by Elaine Ambrose

After my children grew up to become wonderful adults, I decided to leave Boise and move to the mountains to write.  In 1996, I built a cabin on the east shore of Payette Lake in McCall.  The location was over the former site of a lumber mill, and near the house was a small area called Mill Park.  (That’s a clue.)

I loved to sit on my deck and watch weddings at the park and hear the laughter from the playground.  And, walking through the park was the shortest distance to Bistro 45 Wine Bar.  Life was grand for those first few years.  Then the winters seem to get longer, and the snow piled up six feet high on my roof, and I feared that I was turning into the female version of Jack Nicholson’s character in The Shining.  I would sit at my computer trying to write when all I could imagine was an ax smashing through the door.  It was time to save my sanity.

In the winter of 2003, I decided to create a publishing company – something I could do without leaving my home but that would still require brain activity.  What to call my company?  I was gazing out the window at the frozen lake and saw a brave little sign peeking out of the snow:  Mill Park.  That’s when Mill Park Publishing was born.

I wrote and published two books in 2003 and one in 2004.  Through these books and by attending writer’s conferences in McCall, I was able to sign with an agent who helped me get a national contract to write Menopause Sucks for Adams Media. I moved back to Eagle in 2006, leaving Mill Park but not the company.  Mill Park Publishing is still going strong – Daily Erotica and Gracie were published in 2010, and The Backyard Chicken Fight and Mother Knows Best appeared in 2011. The company also organizes an annual writer’s retreat in Garden Valley.

Mill Park Publishing has been a grand adventure in turning words into books.  And, that’s so much better than turning me into a hermit.

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