General

The Story in Me

Wednesday, August 1st, 2007

Sometimes, at random times really, I feel a strange feeling in my chest and have to stop what I’m doing. Be I washing dishes, taking a bath, or even writing, the feeling shows no discrimination. It strikes when it will.

The feeling is a strange one. There is hope in there, that I know. However, it’s mixed with even doses of frustration and knowing there’s something just beyond that door if I can figure out how to open it.

Sometimes I feel like there is a story in me. Not just any story, mind you, because I’ve written a few. No, this story is special. This story is more of me than any other story I’ve ever written or will write. This story doesn’t need to make it to being a best seller; this story will satisfy me simply when it is completely written.

Sometimes I feel like there is an epic novel in me. It incorporates all I have been, who I am, and who I will be. My love and hates are there. My fears. My longings. Even the things that bring me shame. And yet, it’s all of these things, the elements of an honest human experience which makes this story great.

There’s a story in my heart that is all of the above. I can feel it. My heart holds it and my hand aches to hold the pen that will finally write until it hurts when the dam finally bursts open. When the words come tumbling through my mind so fast I can barely write fast enough to keep up with the pace.

There’s a story within me that has been patient with me as my life has been writing it. There are great, almost unimaginable gods and universes, and yet there are simple things like the love between to people and enjoying a single flower. It’s the quiet of poetry and the shout of glorious passion.

The words flow through my veins, begging for the sweet freedom of the page. They want to flow out of the pen with the ink, thick like blood and just as important. There’s my life, my cells, my necessity, flowing out onto the page…

If I could only write the story in me.

Little Reminders

Monday, July 30th, 2007

reminders.jpgThe Scribes blog carnival will be posted up this Wednesday. The carnival focuses on almost everything to do with writing. If you didn’t get your posts submitted this time and would still like to get in on the link love and sharing your writing experience, you can still submit your posts at any time for October’s edition.

The Scribe newsletter complete with its new look will also be going out on Wednesday. If you would like to sign up for the newsletter and/or have your work/writing site featured in it, feel free to contact me using the “contact me” button on the right.

Poems in my Head, created by Healthy BPM’s Neelima is still going strong. If you’re looking for a place to get a little bit of everything poetry, check out her blog.

Gillian has extended her contest so more people can have a chance to win the new prizes she’s thrown in: David Kamp’s The United States of Arugula. She has ten copies to give away, so get your story and recipe(s) in while you can.

In case you missed any of the installments, I’ve put up quite a few more publishing opportunities so be sure to check those out and let me know if you get published.

Starting with an interview with erotic writer PG Forte this Friday, August is going to be filled with excellent author interviews including a book by a motivational speaker as well as a fantasy writer.

Also starting in August will be the chapter by chapter discussion of Bird by Bird by Anne Lamott. The first discussion will take place on August 14th, so have your copy and read up to chapter two by then so we can talk about chapter one.

LiteraryMary.com still has a group of people getting together to do a self-paced erotica writing course. For those 18 and older, there is also an erotica section to workshop the pieces you write during the course. Feel free to register and contact me, moderator silver, if you need anything.

Finally, I’d like to mention I’ve been a very happy member of the Aspiring Writers group for some time now, run by the lovely Sara. They have a group blog where you can have your work or an interview of you posted. It’s a very nice group full of interesting people. If you’re looking for a smaller group that will provide writing support, check them out.

Looking for Inspiration?

Thursday, July 26th, 2007

If you’re looking for some strong words and mental images, head over to Global Poverty Monitor and check out Stacey Cole’s Mozambique travel journal (currently on part seven).

Here’s just a piece of what you’ll read:

The nurse didn’t go near her, and I hoped she didn’t have any communicable diseases, so I approached her slowly, knowing that someone would stop me if this were true. I did the same for her, showing her the bracelet and then outing it on her wrist.

Harry Potter

Monday, July 23rd, 2007

harry-potter.jpgYou might be thinking, “Yes! She’s finally posting about Harry Potter!”

Don’t get to excited.

As I opened my Google Reader this morning and saw Miss Zoot had uploaded her as-I’m-reading podcasts about the last Harry Potter book, it hit me that Harry Potter is fiction and world famous fiction at that.

I should be blogging about this.

But I don’t. If any of you were wondering why I didn’t get in on the hype, fork out $25 at the mall yesterday for my copy, and haven’t posted a great many posts on it…

One, I haven’t read them all. I read the first two or three of them because a friend of mine in high school declared them to be one of the best book series ever. Two, I don’t like mass anything, pretty much. I tend resist it and do things in my own time. I’ll read the rest of the books. Probably. Eventually.

This isn’t an insult to fans of the book or the author. These are simply my personal feelings.

So forgive this Fiction Scribe for missing this particular wave of news frenzy, talk, etc.

Little Reminders

Monday, July 23rd, 2007

writing-napkin.jpg200 Words is still going. Send me the first 200 words of whatever you’re working on and I’ll post it up with a short critique.

The Scribe monthly newsletter will being going out on August 1st. If you would like to subscribe, would like your work and site/blog featured in the newsletter, or would like to contribute to the newsletter another way, contact me using the “contact me” button under the site description on the right.

If you missed the notice, Saturday Night Exercises has been retired here on Fiction Scribe because I’m now writing on the writing prompts site Write Anyway.

I’m very excited to announce August is going to be filled with author interviews from a variety of genres. Stop by on Fridays to see who is up for interrogation. ;)

I’m still accepting creative spaces submissions. Even if you can’t send a picture along with it, send in a detailed description of your writing space (shorter if accompanied by a picture/pictures) and I’ll post it up on the site.

The Scribes Blog Carnival submission period is almost up for this month. Submit your blog article to the next edition of scribes using the carnival submission form.

There’s still time to enter Gillian’s food story competition. You have until August 1st to submit a food story along with (at least) one recipe.

Read with Me? I’d like to do chapter discussions of the book Bird by Bird by Anne Lamott. If you’re interested in joining the discussions, let me know. It’s only a chapter a week of reading, so it won’t a pinch on anyone.

Older, Wiser?

Thursday, July 19th, 2007

building-blocks.jpgLike some other authors, I sometimes mourn the loss of my childhood. When I was young, there was no such thing as writer’s block. If my G.I. Joe squadron didn’t have a story to tell, I could be guaranteed either my army men or wild animal figures would take up the slack. Sometimes, my G.I. Joes would come over to assist the army men, giving one side a huge advantage (pun intended) as they walked as giants among the little green men.

There’s a lot more to creating a story now because for other people to understand how a world works, a world has to have rules. Back then it didn’t matter that spontaneous super powers good appear and disappear in any of my heroes. The concept is still the same, though. Project your scenes onto your toys and have fun. Forget you’re writing a book for a moment and enjoy the story as much as you did when you were a kid.

If you’re having trouble writing, try going back to your childhood days. Start bringing toys into the bath with you. Keep toys around your writing area so you can grab them whenever the mood or the need strikes and act scenes out. Don’t feel silly; get inspired.

My only regret is many of my toys are now long gone, and toys these days often take out the need to have an imagination.

Also, if you’re looking for cool toys, head over to Toy Bender. He always has awesome toy posts.

Read with Me?

Wednesday, July 18th, 2007

I have a few writing books I need to catch up on reading, and I was wondering if anyone would be interested in a sort of discussion group. We’d go a chapter a week.

I have Bird by Bird, On Writing, Writing Down the Bones… I have others as well, but I’d like to start with one of those, preferably Bird by Bird.

Let me know if you’re interested in discussing. I might anyway, but if there is enough interest, I could pick certain day of the week we can all talk about things on.

Reading Out Loud

Wednesday, July 11th, 2007

lightbulb1.jpgI’ve done a podcast on this subject in the past, but I can’t seem to find the podcast, so another post as regular is on its way.

Every now and then, you’ll come to a scene that just doesn’t seem to be coming out right, no matter how many times and ways you write it. The words don’t seem to be quite right in your mind. You’ve tried changing this verb, that noun, and so on, but nothing seems to work.

Try reading it out loud.

I think a lot of writers forget (or some younger writers don’t know) the author’s origins in the oral storytelling art form. We didn’t always have our computers, typewriters, or even charcoal sticks on a large cave wall. Once upon a time, we learned and told stories by word of mouth.

Imagine, for a moment, telling the story of the fall of Troy - in its original form - without having ever read it. You would have learned by hearing it dozens of times over. When you knew it well enough, you might have thrown in your own twist and continued the tradition of oral storytelling.

Reading your work out loud will not only help you fix your writing if you tend to write with “elitist” English (which is fine if you’re writing for the New York Times or a medical journal), but it can help your writing to sound more human as well as helping your dialogue to sound realistic.

Have some fun and invite your friends over for a ’script reading’. Print off a few copies of your manuscript or just the scenes you want to test out, assign each person a part, and sit back to take notes as your friends act out your stories.

It’ll be fun. Trust me. Plus you’ll be getting work done and having a good time at the same time.

I Want Your Books!

Wednesday, July 11th, 2007

I believe one of the true joys in life is when one of your writer friends gets published. Self-published or otherwise, when someone I know has a book, article, short story, poem, etc out there, I want a copy.

Preferably signed. ;)

If you’re going on a virtual book tour (like Sandi Kahn Shelton did) or would like me to review your book, I’d love to do so. I’ll put up a review of your book as well as a short interview with you.

Contact me using the “Contact Me” button to the right.

Weekly Writing Challenge

Sunday, July 8th, 2007

writing-outdoors.jpgWell, all in all, completing the challenge this week was certainly a lot harder than I thought it would be. I didn’t complete it every day, but it was a good exercise.

I’m having a lot more problems with my current novel than I would have ever anticipated, but I have these weekly challenges to thank for forcing me to face them now instead weeks (or months, given my stubborn procrastination habits) from now.

How did your projects go? I know many of the people who participated didn’t get a page in every day for various reasons. How much writing did you get done?

This week I’m going to be easier on you with the challenge. You can write as much or as little as you want (more than a sentence would be nice though). You can write for as much time or as little time as you want. Those factors are up to you.

My challenge for week three is: write in a different space every day.

Before you get worried, yes this can mean you write in a different room of your house every day. We don’t all have time to get out and about. However, if you can, try to get out and write at the library, your favorite café, the park, on the train… Every day this week, try out a place other than where you normally write.

I’m partial to my usual writing spots like many of you no doubt are, but a new spot can be a good thing. It can either renew your love for your tried and true spot(s), or you could find a new spot full of inspiration.

Unconscious Mutterings

Sunday, July 8th, 2007

I say … and you think … ?

1. Happen ::
2. Terribly ::
3. History ::
4. Master ::
5. Petrified ::
6. Moan ::
7. Attack ::
8. Picture ::
9. Students ::
10. Potter ::

Courtesy of LunaNina

Writing Software

Wednesday, June 27th, 2007

This is a post to just touch on the subject. Do you use writing software? Why or why not? If so, what program(s) do you recommend?

Spice of Life

Thursday, June 21st, 2007

book-stack.jpgIt’s amazing how much you can get done not writing when you are supposed to be writing. Doing laundry becomes a pleasure when avoiding that deadline that’s only seven hours away. What you can see of your neighbors through the window suddenly becomes the most riveting display of drama and action you have ever seen when there is a scene in your novel you’re not looking forward to writing.

Working on one project and one project only can be an admirable thing - be it only working on your one professional blog or working on your one novel. However, not coming up for air, so to say, can leave you drowning in boredom and lack of inspiration. Spreading yourself too thin is the other side of the spectrum, but a little variety in your writing projects could be just the thing to help you get more done and keep you on track.

Like seeing the same person day in and day out, no matter how much you like him or her, you tend to get sick of him or her. The person need not do anything other than always be there.

The same goes for your writing. Going back to the same world, same characters, for so many days in a row might be a joy for you, but if you’re like me and a lot of other writers, you’ll get bored. Maybe even annoyed.

Working through those moments is part of being a writer, but they don’t have to occur so often if you have multiple projects.

If you’re getting annoyed, bored, or even angry with your novel, how about writing a few articles on other subjects you like? If you have a personal blog, do that for a while before getting back to what was frustrating you. If your writing means blogging, try signing up for or starting more blogs on different subjects. If you already have multiple blogs, look around at other blogs and volunteer to guest post for other blogs.

By keeping an alternatives open - alternatives that will only further your name and not waste your time, mind you - you’ll be able to combat boredom by always having something useful on hand to do.

Conflux 4

Wednesday, June 20th, 2007
conflux.jpg

Could someone please pass me a napkin because I do believe I’m drooling.

Let me introduce you to Conflux, the writer’s conference I’m hoping very much to attend this September.

I’ve never been to a mjor writing conference before, so I am a bit nervous, but I’m more excited about getting to meet other writers as well as have a certain lady throw chocolate at me.

There are a lot of fantastic workshops I’m looking forward to going to if this opportunity comes through including “Magic for Our Changing Time” and “eMarketing for Authors”. There’s also a Regency banquet I’m hoping to get to, but I have to actually get in the conference before I start thinking about that.

Kaaron Warren, who has guest blogged here will be there. Also, Gillian Polack will be there and teaching a workshop on writing magic.

If those names don’t excite you about the event like me, then try Garth Nix, author of Sabriel, Lirael, Abhorsen, The Seventh Tower books, and more.

So be crossing your fingers (and more) for me because I can promise you I’ll write all kinds of posts about it if I get to go.

Brunch with Gillian - Part Two

Thursday, June 14th, 2007

cup1.jpg

As I mentioned yesterday, this past Sunday I had the honor of having brunch with Dr. Gillian Polack of Food History who was in Melbourne for a writer’s convention.

Yesterday I talked about meeting with Gillian with regards to networking and getting your name out there as a way to become known in the writing community. Today I’ll talk about the non-networking benefits of meeting other writers.

Mr. Scribe calls it cross-fertilization, I’ve heard it called everything from idea exchange to filling up the inspiration tank…

As could only be expected, our conversation came to the subject of Gillian’s books. I sat there, fascinated as she talked about the hidden messages she put in her work that you would know if you knew well enough. She talked about fun and creative ways to kills characters, drawing on an old folk story about the cheating wife of a man who killed her lover.

The husband punishes both the lover and the wife, ironically giving her what she most desired in a form which destroys her and her lover. Forced by her husband to eat her lover’s heart unknowingly, the wife becomes the victim of a secret, transgressive and violent act.

- Themes and Motifs

I was thrilled as she recounted the tale to me because I hadn’t heard it for ages. She went on to talk about how she had used the story to her own end, and I responded with tales of killing my own characters.

A gruesome conversation to passersby, but thrilling for me. There’s nothing quite like talking to another writer face-to-face, especially a writer who is passionate about his/her writing.

Her talking about how she killed her characters got me thinking about different alternatives to how to kill my characters - which I’ll be doing a bit of in the novel I’m working on. The conversation also encouraged me to start looking into something I hadn’t looked into in a long time - folk tales.

This exchange of ideas, cross-fertilization, is probably one of the best, fastest ways to get inspired that you could possibly think of. I’m not saying you should copy your fellow writers, but feed off their passion, take their tips and tricks to heart, and make all of it your own.

Personally, I haven’t been quite so enthused about killing a character in a long time. ;) Use it or lose it, right?

About Fiction Scribe

Is your spelling less than stupendous? Has getting published gone from possibility to problem? Are you alienating your readers with alliteration? Here at Fiction Scribe you can find what you need for prompts, publishing opportunities and advice, fun wordplay, and more. Use Fiction Scribe for the encouragement you love, the information you want, and pointing out the mistakes writers make that you need. Fiction Scribe: Your source for everything writing.

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