V.E.D.August 1

It’s August, so I’m making videos every day this week.

Links Mentioned In Video:

Click to see Kenzie’s VEDA video.

Click for more information about Writers’ Hangouts (every Wednesday at 9pm EST) — leave a link to your Google + profile in the comments to be added to the WH circle, and you’ll get the invitation directly from me every Wednesday night.

Click to visit the Camp NaNoWriMo website, and you should sign up. Really, you should. I’m CeruleanNotion on Camp NaNo, if you can figure out how to find me. I can never seem to find other people on the Camp site.

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Writers’ Hangout Scheduled

I am happy to announce the schedule for Writers’ Hangouts in August:

  • Wednesday, August 1 — 9 PM EST & 12 AM EST
  • Wednesday, August 8 — 9 PM EST
  • Wednesday, August 15 — 9 PM EST
  • Wednesday, August 22 — 9 PM EST
  • Wednesday, August 29 — 9 PM EST

We have decided to do the video chats on Wednesday nights again this summer because it worked out so well last summer, and because it’s a night that works for both Justine and I. The first of August happens to be a Wednesday, so we get to do the big launch on the same day the Camp launches! How fun is that? Because it’s the first night, and because we want to be available for anyone in any time zone, we’re having an initial start time of 9 PM EST, and we’ll have a second Hangout beginning at midnight EST. The other Wednesdays, the log in time will be locked in at 9 PM EST but after the first night it becomes clearer when we do writing times and break times, and as long as you butt in during a break time, I don’t mind if you join later than 9 PM EST. (If you want to join later, be sure to just tweet me and I can let you know when it’s a break time.)

A few things to remember / know about Writers’ Hangout:  we use the Google + Hangout feature, which does require a working webcam and microphone. You can opt out of having your webcam on and display a static picture to the group*, but you must be able to voice chat. Because this is a voicechat feature, you must use headphones. We don’t need to hear the echo of everyone out of your speakers. To be included in the invite list for this event, you must add me on Google + AND tell me you’re part of this so that I add you to the correct Google + circle on my end.

The log in time is set to 9 PM EST, and that means the first WRITE session will start promptly at 9:20 PM EST. That gives you twenty minutes to log in and introduce yourself / say hello and prepare for the WRITE session. For now, that’s all you need to know. When you log into the Hangout, Justine and I will brief everyone at the same time on the timed plan for the evening.
I really hope to see so many of you there in August! We’ve had a lot of fun and success with this event in that past, and a few times I think we pushed the limits of how many people can being in a Google + Hangout. I have high hopes that this feature has improved since last summer (and it was great last summer!), so that we’ll be able to do even more writing with everyone!

* I think. It’s been a year since either Justine or I have used a Google + Hangout, and we’re going to be testing it out before this event launches, but before you could freeze frame a static picture instead of using your webcam. Sometimes, web cams freak out for people, so this was a usable option.

Writers’ Hangout 2.0

Last summer, a writing friend Justine and I started using the Hangout feature on Google + to organize what is now known as the Writers’ Hangout. Every Wednesday and some Saturdays, we invited anyone on Twitter with a Google + account to come write with us.  It was some of the most fun and productive writing time I had last year, and even on those nights where my page count didn’t shoot up, I had at least had a night commiserating with other writers.

Here’s the thing, for me: I like writing with the writers I’ve met online, and I like the closeness & proximity of writing with someone in person.

The Writers’ Hangout on Google + let’s Justine and I recreate this in person writer meet-up as much as possible, and we get to write with all the wonderful writers we’ve met onlineIn a Google + Hangout, if you don’t know, you have video and audio — it’s so much fun to see and hear my writing friends for a few hours a week.

Here’s how Writers’ Hangout works: on a set night at a set time, you log into Google + and you join the Writers’ Hangout that Justine & I will be hanging out in. Then, you turn on your webcam (if you don’t have video, you can use a static picture), you put your head phones in, and we all chit-chat for about 20 minutes while everyone gets through this step. Then, we do time set writing sessions — as a group, we’ll pick how long we want to focus on any given night. Usual timed writes range from 15 minutes to 45 minutes. We take a 10 minute break to relax, chat, seek any advice we need, and occasionally watch a YouTube video together. Then, we write again, break again, write again… you get the idea. You can stay as long or as short as you want; the Hangout lasts as long as you want it to.

In August, Writers’ Hangout will be making a comeback for the month. The tentative plan is to have a video chat on a week night, and a standard text chat on a weekend day. So today, I have two questions for you.

First, would you be interested in joining Writers’ Hangouts with us in August?

If yes, please say so in the comment, and then find me here on Google + to add me to a circle; be sure to tell me that you want to join Writers’ Hangout so I add you to the proper circle on my end! (Or, if you don’t want to do any work, post the link to your Google + page in my comments, and I’ll add you to the right circle.)

Second, what week night (and weekend day) and what start time would work best for you?

This is about creating an online writing community you can use, and while ultimately Justine & I will have to pick a time that also fits into our schedules, I do want input from anyone interested in joining.  (A thing to consider when offering up a time — west coasters are behind the rest of us, so make sure you try for at time that doesn’t put them in the middle of dinner or still at work.)

I hope some of you are interested in Writers’ Hangout in August! It’s been a blast in the past. If you want personal testimonies about that, I’m sure I can direct you to the right Twitter account (I promise, I won’t just steer you towards Justine!). So, leave your answers in the comments. Leave questions if you’ve got ’em. Spread the word about the Writers’ Hangout. For the most up-to-date information on Writers’ Hangout, it’s best to follow me  (@baileykelsey) and follow Justine (@Fickle_Muse) on Twitter.