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CC and Me -- by Arlene Webb


Blog Post

Non-Copyright © April 2013 by Arlene Webb

No rights reserved. Any part of this may be reproduced or transmitted in any form without permission in writing. The characters and events portrayed in this post are not fictional. Any similarity to real persons, living or dead or not sure, is intended with much gratitude and they’ll know who they are.

Cover Art © 2011 by Greg Elsborg

(Son of renown author, Barbara Elsborg)


June, 2006 was a fantastic month. That’s when someone on Critters (another writer site) told me, Arlene Webb, about CC.  Within a year, I had a star beside my name, a buddy list, and private queues for a series I’d been working on since 2004.

For me, CC isn’t just about honing the craft of writing, although I bear testament to how fantastic the site is with thousands of crits given and received. I’ve made friends that know me better than anyone else and those friends are still teaching me how to write.

One of the best moments of my life was when I told a crit partner online I had an acceptance at a small e-publisher, and a moment later the phone rang at the flower shop I work at, and a delightful voice with a British accent reached across the ocean. The walls between cyberspace and not-cyberspace crashed down, and my world expanded even wider.

Because of CC, I seen authors that I shared worlds with hit the NY Times bestseller list, have everything they’ve submitted become published with small and large publishers, and confided thousands of personal words, telling of every up and down, on a private pad hosted by CC. Since January, 2007, four of us used the paragraph a day function to bounce ideas, fine tune blurbs, shriek with happiness, vent, and most of all share our love of writing reaching the equivalent of 9, 115K novels.

So, the gist of this ramble is to thank CC for introducing me to forever friends, to hundreds of people who taught me the craft by entrusting their stories to me and providing a learning-growing platform that works so wonderfully. Currently, thanks to CC, I’m mutli-published with MuseitUp and Decadent Publishing.

I went indie with the series that obsessed me for a decade and brought me to CC. Indie allowed me to control how quickly 4 books released (within a year). Thanks to the encouragement of CC crit-partners, I defied the standard norm for writing a series and published 450K, broken into 4 books, and meant to be read in progression.

Here’s the blurb for the beginning of the saga many on CC helped me polish one agonizing word at a time:

Splintered Energy is an Earth-based science fiction/suspense/romance novel, the first in a four book series and not a stand-alone story. Book 2, The R Word, picks up where Splintered Energy leaves off. House of Seven, book 3, leads to book 4, Under Color, the final in the series.

Waves of pure energy are quite happy hanging in the cosmos, traveling at the speed of light to brighten up the sky--until dawn breaks. Literally.

When sentient light fractures, it zaps into human bodies and becomes trapped. Without any memories to guide them, a handful of confused beings whose skin tones are now specific colors, struggle to understand humanity while it's quite clear they shouldn't be in this world. The few humans clued in to Earth's invasion don't flutter, but are drawn to their fiery fate with hearts wide open as they fight to survive.

California. A widower's twelve-year-old son is rather young to bring home a woman, especially a collapsed green beauty too frightened to open her eyes.
Arizona. A divorcee blinks hard, but the gorgeous red guy stepping in front of her car is still red. She swerves to avoid hitting him and ends up in the ditch. When she comes around, she wonders which layer of hell she's fallen into.
Ohio. A teen also fears he's dealing with the demonic, but no matter how dangerous things become, he's determined to stand by a man with inhumanly blue eyes.


Thank you, CC, for hosting me today and for help with every deleted, revised, stored and published word I’ve attached my name to as author. Sincerely, Arlene

Posted by Arlene Webb 13 May 2013 at 08:41
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Responses to this blog

Purplek 13 May 2013 at 18:45  
I agree with you about CC, it's great! Congrats on your success!
Aspiration 13 May 2013 at 20:52  
Arlene, I couldn't agree more that CritiqueCircle is a fabulous site/tool/workshop/inspiration for writers. As one of the four who contributed to those "equivalent of nine 115K novels" on CC, I learned much as well as had a place to ask questions, vent frustrations and share successes. It was such a great experience seeing my IPs (Indispensable Peers) evolved from talented writers to published authors...and watching your colorful epic grow wings and fly on its own.

Though I'm still in the pre-published ranks as of now, I think I owe the credit for Golden Heart finals on three different manuscripts—and landing an agent—to what I learned here on CC. There is no better writers' site for learning the craft and the peerships and friendships I've made here will last a lifetime.
Cheeno 15 May 2013 at 13:57  
Good for you, Arlene. It's great that you are flying so high with your work. We all owe such a lot to Planet C.C and its word-loving natives.
Lylawicked 19 May 2013 at 08:50  
That's amazing! I joined Critique Circle a few weeks ago but have yet to give any Critiques or post anything for Critique. That's not to say it wont happen. College is just consuming my time. I plan to post, and critique during the summer. I can't wait to be more involved with the writing community here at CC. This post has definitely been an inspiration that hopefully will help guide me on my desired success of completing my book over the summer, or at least, polishing parts of it and getting closer to having it done, if nothing else.
Flick 22 May 2013 at 11:51  
Lovely, Arlene and yes, I have that British accent and it was lovely to talk to you and even better SEE you not so long ago. So to all those newbies on CC and maybe some oldies too, make good use of this site. You might outgrow it eventually, but it will help you make that journey to publication!

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