Get Ready for the RSS Winter Writing Festival!!!

The Ruby Slippered Sisterhood’s Second Annual Winter Writing Festival begins in JUST ONE WEEK!!!


Through the bleakest part of winter—January 11, 2012 thru the end of February—the Second Annual Ruby Slippered Sisterhood Winter Writing Festival will be here to keep your creative fires burning, with support, advice, inspiration, frequent writing sprints in our chat room, fun prizes for participants, and as much virtual hot-chocolate (and virtual cookies!!) as you please.

Unlike NaNoWriMo and other writing challenges that (much as we love them!!) have a one-size-fits-all approach, the Ruby Winter Writing Festival is designed for you.

We work with a “point” system, with a goal of earning one point per day. YOU decide on daily goals of your own, with the aim of earning 50 points by February 29, 2012.

Everybody gets one bonus point for stopping by the Ruby blog next Wednesday and making a public commitment to take part in the Festival. Then, for each of the 50 days of the Festival (including January 11), you work to earn an additional point.

Here are some examples of the sorts of things you might define as worth one point (you fill in the variables with the amounts that work for you):

-writing X number of words or pages

-deep revising Y number of pages

-polishing Z number of pages

-freewriting / brainstorming for Q number of minutes/hours

-doing R number of 20-minute writing sprints

-keeping butt in chair and hands on keyboard for S number of hours


For instance, one person might commit to earning points according to the following terms:

-writing 500 words per day  OR

-deep revising 10 pages per day OR

-doing a final polish on 25 pages per day OR

-participating in an hour of writing sprints

Any day that participant meets ANY of those goals, she gets a point.


YOU set the goals that meet your personal writing style and writing needs. If you can’t meet your goal on any particular day, you can certainly double or triple or quadruple your goal on another day to catch up. And if you know ahead of time that you can never work on certain days (say, Saturdays) feel free to add something like “Keep balance in my life by taking Saturday off” to your personal list of ‘ways to earn a point.’ Yes, really, you can get a point for taking a planned day off!! Don’t be shy.

Remember, we all have different life commitments and different approaches to our writing lives, so we all need to set our own goals. All goals are equally worthy. This isn’t a competition, it’s a supportive process for MOVING FORWARD WITH OUR WRITING.

We want the Festival to work for YOU!

Check in on the Ruby blog every Wednesday during the Festival to report your progress. If you reach the end of February with at least 50 points, YOU WIN!!

Because we’re the Rubies, and we like to do things up right (and…okay, because we have the awesome Liz Bemis of we’ll even have a special sister website up and running during the Festival which you can access by going to or by clicking the blue “Ruby Winter Writing Festival” button which will soon appear near the top of the Ruby site.

It’ll be your place to register, keep track of progress, and stop by anytime to use the special chat rooms, brag on that awesome new scene you wrote, or find a sympathetic shoulder to cry on when that gripping Black Moment you had planned is turning out to be a disappointingly dull shade of beige. You’ll probably find some enlivening advice, and you can even pick up some excellent Ruby Winter Writing Festival swag!!

We’ll be posting on both sites throughout the Festival with words of inspiration and support, craft pointers, and bits of wisdom from our own writing lives. We’ll offer participants chances to ask for specific advice on their own plot problems or style snarls, and set up lots of times for writing sprints in the chat room.

At this point, the tentative chat room schedule is as follows (watch the site for more specifics once the Festival opens):

Nightly from 7:30pm – 9:00pm, with 2 nights a week going until midnight
Two to three 12:00am-2:00am sessions/week
Two to three 5:30am – 7:00am sessions/week
Two to three daytime sessions/week
At least three sessions each weekend day spread out over the course of the day.

Everyone who commits to participating on January 11 will be able to download a cool “Ruby Winter Writing Festival Participant” badge, which they can post on their own website or blog.


Plus, everyone who checks in on a Wednesday reporting that they’re on track with earning points will be entered in random drawings for cool prizes, like copies of craft books, copies of books by published Rubies, and (for those who meet their goals!) expert critiques from the Sisters!

If you check in on Wednesday, February 29 and report you’ve WON, you’ll be able to download a “Ruby Winter Writing Festival WINNER” badge to post on your website or blog.

And of course you’ll have the satisfaction of achieving a small boatload of wonderful shiny writing progress (not to mention eternal fame and glory…and cookies!).

What’s not to love?

Decide on your personal terms for earning points, and join us back here on January 11 to get started!! And spread the word on your loops, Facebook, and personal websites! The more the merrier!!

35 responses to “Get Ready for the RSS Winter Writing Festival!!!”

  1. Eve says:

    I had fun last year – can’t wait for this year’s 🙂

  2. It was a productive time for me. I can’t wait for it to start.

  3. Kim Law says:

    Woohoo…here comes the Winter Writing Festival. I can’t wait!!!!

  4. Hope Ramsay says:

    Ah, just in time. I have a new book I need to start. 🙂

  5. Dara says:

    I loved taking part last year even though I didn’t quite finish. But the chat sessions and word sprints were so much fun! I really got a lot done on my book then.

    I plan to take part this year again too, although now I have to work around my little guy’s schedule. 🙂

  6. Elisa Beatty says:

    Woo-hoo!!! It’s gonna be great!

  7. Tamara Hogan says:

    I LOVE doing writing sprints in the chat room! A lot of productivity, and a lot of fun!

  8. Can’t rave about this festival enough – last year was fabulous! This year’s should get me through at least 2/3 of my WIP.

  9. Tia Ramirez says:

    So excited for this year! Last year was great, and this year has potential to be even better.

  10. Sounds like a fun way to meet my goals for this year! I’ve never done this before but I’m in! Can’t wait to work with all of you 🙂

  11. liz talley says:

    I’ve been waiting for this like it’s Christmas. I wrote a little over 50,000 words last year – it was awesome for my productivity! Nothing like making that committment publicly and then having people with you on the journey….I can never do NaNO because it is SO not the right time of the year to buckle down. But Jan-Feb? Works!

    Looking forward to seeing you all in the chatrooms and seeing what goals we can reach together!

    • Elisa Beatty says:

      50,000 words…that’s so cool!

      But of course it only takes 1000 words a day for the length of the Festival to get there!

      Last year, I kept my goals very modest and made 500 words a day worth a point, but this year I’m going to amp it up a little. Not sure if I’ll go for 750 or 1000…. (I can always exceed my goals, right?)

  12. Liz Selvig says:

    I had a great time last year too, so I’m planning to join again. Thank you, Rubies, for all your fantastic support ideas — this is a real winner of an activity!

  13. Excited for the new Writing Festival to begin! Perfect timing for a new project, too. The sprints, productivity and camaraderie are priceless. Tons of fun, to boot!

  14. Yay, can’t wait! I NEED the motivation. I’m ready to rock the RSSWWF!

  15. Christmas is coming down this weekend. The office is getting cleaned. I’m SOOOOO stoked!

  16. WooHOOOO! I can’t wait for the sprints — they helped me SOOOOO much last year.

  17. Rita Henuber says:

    Zowie! So much fun to see all these names returning from last year.

  18. hobgoblinn says:

    I’m in. Will also spread the word to the Wrimos of my Kentucky::Elsewhere region. Thanks for doing this.

    Will be trying to finish the story from Nano– got the wordcount, but was nowhere near finished with draft 0 by the end of the month.

  19. laurie kellogg says:

    I need this!

  20. Kate Parker says:

    I have a story ready to start pitching by the 11th, so I’ll be on to the next one which is so rough I may get splinters. I am ready for this and really excited!

  21. Addison Fox says:

    I am so excited the Winter Writing Festival is back! And so excited to see some familiar names and some new ones.

    Looking forward to sprinting with all of you!!!


  22. I’ve been so looking forward to this! Yay! Can’t wait to get started. I may even try some sprints this year!

  23. Elise Hayes says:

    I am IN!! Can’t wait! Last year I didn’t make the 50 points, but this year I think I’ve got a better shot at it (and just trying last year made it my most productive winter, ever). Very cool.

  24. Gabrielle says:

    Sounds fabulous! It’s summer here, but I sooooo need some incentive.

  25. Connie Cox says:

    Just what I need when I need it! Count me in!

  26. Sarah Head says:

    I definitely want to take advantage of this offer. Great idea.

  27. I had already vowed to myself to re-start the editing/revising next week, so this is PERFECT. With help from the Rubies, I’ll knock out that final polish … I’ve even been exercising to procrastinate!

  28. Jena Lang says:

    This was a great help to me last year. I can’t wait to start earning points next week.

  29. Sarah/Sally says:

    Can’t wait! I REALLY need this!

  30. Emily Allen says:

    Had fun last year. Want to do it again, but can’t remember my login info. should I just start over?


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