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My Passion's Pen

Helping to polish what your passion pens.

Character development is mostly unseen

I spend a lot of my editing energy helping my clients refine their characters. And in my own writing I can never know too much about my characters. But readers don’t need (or want) everything about the inner and outer lives of our characters presented like a stenographer’s notes. It’s my belief that character is revealed through action on the page, but the motivation for that behavior is all off-screen. And motivation is the pulse of a story. That’s what keeps us turning the page.

We’ve all seen the iceberg analogy, and it’s one of the most universally true writing axioms: 80-90% of the story is behind the scenes and, in my opinion mostly embedded in characterization. Characters, though, are their own icebergs.

Image from Seopresspr.com

Screenwriting guru Scott Myers explains here: “Screenwriting Tip: Character Work as Iceberg.” https://link.medium.com/9ufJeoRdRS

Happy writing!

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Why writing is EXACTLY like running, except for the part about words

The Red Pen of Doom

Most of the folks who follow this silly blog are creative types–novelists, editors, journalists, photographers and other brilliant, beautiful people.

So let’s talk about creativity.

Are the arts a habit? Or does the muse randomly descend upon your noggin, so long as you make the right sacrifices and entreaties?

Though my love for the muse is strong, I’m making the case for habit.

All the way.

Because writing–and other creative work–is a hell of a lot like running. Here’s why.

1) The more you do it, the easier it gets

You can take classes about writing (or running), read books, watch videos and listen to experts.

In the end, though, there’s no substitute to getting off your duff and doing it.

And the more you write, or run, the easier it gets.

The first time you run a mile, or write something Serious, it’s painful.

Sometimes so painful that you question…

View original post 1,086 more words

How to create genuinely unique character voices

“FLASH SALE: 50% Off ProWritingAid for the next 48 hours!”

I’ve been a causal user of ProWritingAid for quite a while and find the editor helpful. Although no editor (AI or human) is perfect, ProWritingAid’s suggested edits are parsed out by category so writers can focus on one element at a time. And that, in my opinion, makes edits less intimidating. They’ve made some updates to the program, but I haven’t played with most of the new features yet.

Now that school is back in session, why not grab a lifetime license. It’s a good investment even for causal users like myself. The linked article has a coupon code.

“FLASH SALE: 50% Off ProWritingAid for the next 48 hours!” @sandfarnia https://writingcooperative.com/flash-sale-50-off-prowritingaid-for-the-next-48-hours-b5dff403bf00

One man’s love letter to romance authors and readers

The Red Pen of Doom

Listen: romance novels don’t get enough respect.

Not for the amazing army of authors. Not for the editors and literary agents.

And not for the millions of loyal readers.

That should change. Here’s why:

1) The world needs books more than ever

If you care about ideas and words, you should care about books.

Newspapers and magazines are below books on the food chain of ideas and insights. I say this as a former journalist who bleeds newsprint if you cut me.

Only books give a writer enough space and time to truly dive deep into a topic.

Every library is an arsenal of liberty and each book is a foot soldier in the war against ignorance, apathy and hate.

We need books more than ever, with propaganda, misinformation and tyrants—or wannabe tyrants—one the rise around the world.

Books matter. When it comes to ideas, they are irreplaceable.

Oh, television and movies…

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“Ways To Write (Part 2): The Pomodoro Technique”

6 Tips for Finishing Your First Draft | A Well Told Story

Tackling a first draft can be a serious challenge! Here are six tips to help you power through and finish your draft–and maybe even have some fun too!

Source: 6 Tips for Finishing Your First Draft | A Well Told Story

“Ways To Write (Part 4): Writing Weekend”

The First Book: Six Lessons from a Debut Author

Here are my favorite of the 6:

TIP #4: FEELINGS SCHMEELINGS!

Your work ethic should have nothing to do with how you feel, or whatever else is going on in your life. Feelings come and go. Situations change. You work ethic, however, is a constant because it is an attitude. A good work ethic is one that commits you to a realistic routine suited to your goals and situation. …

TIP #5: WAITING TIME IS WASTED TIME

Don’t have time to write? Waiting for inspiration – or an ideal situation? Well, as the saying goes, time is not something that you have – it’s something that you make. Likewise, situations don’t write – people do. …

TIP #6: CONFIDENCE IS A VERB

Like time, confidence is not necessarily something that you have. To avoid crippling self-doubt, pretend confidence is a verb – something that you do. Understand that confidence doesn’t come from self-regard (that’s arrogance). It comes from showing yourself what you’re capable of by trying things. Hence the age-old advice: ‘Fake it till you make it.’ …

Try again. Fail again. Fail better. –Worstward Ho by Samuel Beckett

Read all of the tips here:

https://www.aerogrammestudio.com/2018/06/12/the-first-book-six-lessons-from-a-debut-author/

Louise Meriwether First Book Prize— Feminist Press

SUBMISSION WINDOW CLOSES JUNE 30, 2018

There is just a couple of days left to enter, so put this contest on your calendar to be ready to submit next year.

This one is for women of color and nonbinary people of color who haven’t yet published a book.

Check it out!

https://www.feministpress.org/louise-meriwether-first-book-prize/

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