Monthly Archives: July 2014

Three Things Thursday

Hmmm. Today I’m feeling sorta happy. (That’s a change!) I got up earlier than normal and the weather was cool with a promise of maybe a little rain. Not winter rain. Summer rain!

I’ve been writing.

And reading.

And spending time with my girls.

My ex is getting remarried in a few days.

I was approached to do a fun writing job.

And I’m tutoring two terrific kids in writing.

I’m not teaching in the fall.

Plus I have serious writing goals planned for myself.

Which brings me to the novel I am working on. I think I’m about 40 pages from being done. This has been such a fun book to write.

So there.

We have a new month before us. What are YOUR plans?


Cheryl Van Eck

I gave up half a night’s sleep to read Laurie Halse Anderson’s new book, The Impossible Knife of Memory.
And it was totally worth it. The thing is, every time I pick up a new Laurie Halse Anderson book I think, “This is it. Nothing can ever top this book.” Then she goes and writes another one and proves me wrong.
She somehow manages to weave together voice, plot, and description effortlessly. Most writers have either great writing or great plots, but she manages both without even batting an eye.
Above all is her talent for voice. I don’t relate to her characters because they sound, think, or act like me. The opposite, actually. Too many characters fall into the trap of trying to be like horoscopes, vague enough to sound like they could belong to just about anyone. This works, to an extent. We all love to find a character that thinks like we do.
But her characters are different. They are true to themselves and no one else. They are alive. And while you read, you are them. You transform from your comfortable surroundings into someone broken, and you find the strength to save yourself.
Bottom line: Read it! Now!
Brenda Bensch
Pantser or Plotter ? ? ?
I’ve always considered myself a Pantser.  In fact, I’ve been fairly devoted to it.  But right now, with a book of 211 pages that isn’t quite finished, I’m reconsidering.  Having been lost in the Muddled Middles, as I am wont to be, I’m taking a look at the 211 pages and analyzing what on them.  And, more importantly, what’s not.  It’s actually pretty fascinating: I’ve found too much inaction, thinking, considering, dreaming, and not enough gripping moments.  I’ve found too much in one or another character’s head, and not enough interaction with other characters.  I’ve found some characters who came in too late, others who were too “present” at the wrong moments.
So, Pantsers, just because we don’t write an outline, draw a map, use 5,000 Post-Its to show all our carefully chosen stepping stones, doesn’t mean we can’t go back and analyze what we do have at (or toward) the end.  We know some of the elements needed for a rip-snortin’ story.  Take a careful, a thorough look at what we have.  Mine for gold.  Find the buried treasure, and be sure it’s there, even though it may need a little polishing up!


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Kyra Leigh, Queen Bee

Time is ticking.
I’m not sure why, but I feel like I’m on a deadline.
Like I have to get something finished before certain things happen.
Maybe it’s my move.
Maybe my big trip to Florida.
Maybe it’s just my brain.
I’ve started working an hour a day on writing. I would like to bring that back up to two hours, but it’s been a hectic couple of weeks.
But I have to keep writing.
And I HAVE to keep reading.
It makes me a better writer. Makes me feel more inspired.
Now I just have to beat this clock. The life clock maybe? I don’t know.
But I gotta get my ass in gear.
I’m a writer. I should take it more seriously.
All my girlfriends tell me that they often fantasize about “a hot guy with great abs falling in love with me”
“A guy who is smart enough to carry on a conversation”
I fantasize about getting an awesome agent, and selling my books. I think about it every day.
Not that I don’t want a guy with great abs…. I just think I would rather have a book.
But that’s nerdy me.
And it’s something I can make happen

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The Giant Waterbug

Here is a figure of speech quiz:

Define the following

1. Metonymy

2. Synecdoche

3. Personification

4. Metaphor

5. Simile

6. Hyperbole


8. Pun

Do you use these in your writing? Does it come naturally? Or not so much?

Now read this.

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Some Days

are harder than others.

Today is one of those sad days because of past events.

And I have something wrong with me. I have a hard time crying when I am alone and need to. I want to cry, but cannot.

Why does your character cry?

Or why do they feel stopped up?

What are the hard parts of your character’s life?

Past the surface, what are the things that make her ache?

And how will you, the author, help them through it? Or will the character always mourn?

Today, I’m thinking of those who have loved and lost, for those who have lost someone they won’t see until the next life, and for those who have lost hope.

You are in my heart.


Filed under CLW, Depression