Posts Tagged ‘reblog’

MJ Bush collected 99 great little pieces of advice on strong characters — including a PDF download of all of them! Some of my favorites:

“Let’s face it, characters are the bedrock of your fiction. Plot is just a series of actions that happen in a sequence, and without someone to either perpetrate or suffer the consequences of those actions, you have no one for your reader to root for, or wish bad things on.” Icy Sedgwick

For someone as focused on action and plot as I am, I need to be reminded of this.

“Great fiction is fueled by bad decisions and human weakness.” Kristen Lamb

Augh! Bad decisions and weakness. I write characters who are generally strong and get thrown into situations that even they can’t handle.

Oh, who am I kidding. I have trouble writing bad decisions and weakness in characters because I have a hard time tolerating them in life, period. I’m used to looking at them as things to be fought through and overcome. I need to let being “only human” into my writing.

For every important moment, your character needs to react. First viscerally, then emotionally, then physically and finally, intellectually. Often a writer will show a character reacting with deep thought about a situation, when their first natural reactions are missing.” CS Larkin

Good point! We react with our gut first, even if we don’t realize it.

“A character is what he does, yes — but even more, a character is what he means to do.” Orson Scott Card

And the drama of the story is dealing with what happens when he or she doesn’t get their way.

“The thing I do at the beginning is a “voice journal,” a free form doc that is the character speaking to me. I just work on it until I start to hear different from my own, or the other characters.” James Scott Bell

Ooh! I need to do this for Risha, king Ro, and some other characters.

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Nigh(t)

Posted: September 21, 2014 by writingsprint in Poetry
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I loved this poem by Fredrik Kayser. Have you ever felt like you were living in the moment just before your life changed?

Fredrik Kayser

Last night it almost happened again,
I am on the verge,
I’ve almost rediscovered how,
To see with my eyes closed.

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Have you heard of the New York #Writers #Workshop ?

Posted: September 19, 2014 by writingsprint in Writing
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I enjoyed this interview with Tim Tomlinson at Damyanti’s Daily (w)rite. I used to consider going back to grad school to get an MFA, but while I figured it would benefit my writing, I didn’t think the financial commitment would be worth it, except maybe for preparing me to be a creative writing professor.

The Hunt

Posted: April 22, 2014 by writingsprint in Science fiction, Uncategorized
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Here’s a dark piece from Candice Coates about a mother and daughter… sort of.

I came for the soup...

The doorbell rang a third time and Eloise picked up her pace as she rushed to greet whoever it was who was calling so early in the morning.  The heel of her shoe caught on a sang in

the rug and she stumbled forward. Catching herself she yelled at the door. “Coming! Just one moment!” Her brow creased. Where in the world was Margaret?! As soon as she reached the door, Margaret was at her side.

Eloise gave her an exasperated glare as she hissed at her, “Where have you been?!”

Margaret pointed towards the back office. “Its Wednesday. The hun–”

Eloise cut her off. “I know what day it is! You are supposed to get the door!”

“Yes ma’am.”

“What in the world am I paying you for?!” The maid curtseyed and reached for the doorknob. Eloise shooed her away before painting on a calm face and pulling the…

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Tornado

Posted: April 8, 2014 by writingsprint in Poetry
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Part twelve of “Cloud Studies,” a sonnet sequence, by Christine Klocek-Lim.

Lenticularis

Posted: April 7, 2014 by writingsprint in Poetry
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Part eleven of “Cloud Studies,” a sonnet sequence, by Christine Klocek-Lim.

Nimbostratus

Posted: April 5, 2014 by writingsprint in Poetry
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Part nine of “Cloud Studies,” a sonnet sequence, by Christine Klocek-Lim.

Noctilucent Clouds

Posted: April 4, 2014 by writingsprint in Poetry
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Part eight of “Cloud Studies,” a sonnet sequence, by Christine Klocek-Lim.

What Counts

Posted: April 4, 2014 by writingsprint in Writing
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Another great story by Mads. I love the personal, unexpected side of these things. Being a werewolf or a vampire isn’t just about running around in the street or the woods, silver bullets and stakes. There are families and real life to deal with.

Sharing: Six Words You Should Say Today

Posted: September 18, 2013 by writingsprint in Essay
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My wife sent this to me, and I loved it so much I had to share it with all of you. This is the opening to an article that Rachel Macy Stafford, certified special education teacher and author, wrote for the Huffington Post. I didn’t feel comfortable copying the whole thing — I’m sure the copyright police would be giving me a call — but I hope this piques your interest and you check it out.

Six Words You Should Say Today

Very rarely does one sentence have immediate impact on me.

Very rarely does one sentence change the way I interact with my family.

But this one did. It was not from Henry Thoreau or some renowned child psychologist. It was invaluable feedback from children themselves. And if I’ve learned anything on my Hands Free journey, it is that children are the true experts when it comes to grasping what really matters in life.

Here are the words that changed it all:

“… college athletes were asked what their parents said that made them feel great, that amplified their joy during and after a ballgame. Their overwhelming response: ‘I love to watch you play.'”

The life-changing sentence came at the beginning of an article entitled, “What Makes a Nightmare Sports Parent and What Makes a Great One,” which described powerful insights gathered over three decades by Bruce E. Brown and Rob Miller of Proactive Coaching LLC. Although I finished reading the entire piece, my eyes went back and searched for that one particular sentence — the one that said, “I love to watch you play.”

I read the sentence exactly five times. Then I tried to remember the past conversations I had with my kids at the conclusion of their extracurricular activities. Upon completion of a swim meet, a music recital, a school musical, or even a Sunday afternoon soccer game, had I ever said, “I love to watch you play?”

Go to the link and read the rest. The article has a great message for all of us.