Today is a sad day for me. For the last three months or so, the girls and I have loved a doggie for another family until they left for Oregon.
Her name is Phoebe and she left today. I miss her.
It wasn’t until the hit and run murder of my other favorite dog that I realized I could use animals as characters in books.
Thelma, in Signed, Skye Harper, is based on Violet, out doggie who died several years ago.
Now I will need a little pup like Phoebe to be a character in a novel. And I’m gonna flesh out a dog in the book I’m writing with Ann Dee and fashion her after this dog I miss terribly.
What about you? How do you make animal characters lovable and human?
May is National Short Story Month. Who knew? Brian Klems, of The Writer’s Dig for The Writers Market online, was saying that while we’re all learning to write more well-defined characters with more “layers”, more complex plots, scenes with heightened tension, and so on, today’s readers are drawn to writing which takes less space, less time, yet still offers great entertainment. Short stories, novellas, short installments of longer works, flash fiction all are celebrating what readers really seem to want.
This made me feel like I should drag out a short story I wrote some time ago, polish it up and send it off. This very act in and of itself might inspire me to write a follow up — I’ve always believed there was more to Tristan’s story than met the eye.
How about you? Have you a short something that might be publishable in today’s fast-paced world? Would it fit easily on someone’s eReader? Telephone? In someone’s pocket on one of these smaller devices?
Give yourself a break, and the idea a shot . . . why not?
For some reason, my subplots never make it into the first draft. My first drafts are about as simplistic as it’s possible to be without being an outline. They often weigh in at about 20,000 words. Almost no description, heavy on dialogue, more telling than I’d ever want to admit to.
So while everyone else is scrambling to cut scenes and words and characters, I’m working on First Draft Part 2: The Other Half of the Story. It’s not a second draft, because I’m not correcting anything I’ve written. Instead, I’m trying to weave in a second and third storyline, matching up all the arcs, and making sure I’m not just combining two completely different novels.
What are some of your strange writing habits?