Don’t forget the great NaNoWriMo Debate! Ongoing ’till October 30th! Are you “for” or “against” it? Click on image for the original post to comment!
She'd been locked in the house for months as the undead raged outside Famished and dehydrated she stared out the bedroom window and spied the pair again For days, these cats roamed out on the limbs of the enormous hardwood tree as she wondered how they're surviving the apocalypse Today, she decided to find out and proceeded to climb out the second floor slim windowpane As she dangled on the limb, she glanced below There her momma stood, gaping up to her daughter mouth opened and gnawing as if ravenous with flesh-thirsting hunger She scrambled up on the branch and glanced towards the tree's core A small hollowed hole revealed the bloody mass of flesh and bone and it was then she realized what a grave mistake she'd made
Real love I’m undeserving of
as torment and abuse
are all I’m able to offer
Such a sweet angelic soul
I allowed fear and envy
Now standing at his final
pain, regret, tears fill my core
Darkness now my only
life ever fleeting
can’t come soon enough
for this black-hearted bitch
Over at my other site, Only the Lonely Press, I started a new video series called, Dead Poets Society, where I will take a poem of a given poet (long since passed on) and create a video for it. This one above is one of my favorite Robert Frost’s poems.
Below is a bit of a morbid poem written by Emily Dickinson which I absolutely love.
I plan to create more videos for this particular series in the near future.
Do you have any (short) poems by your favorite poets to suggest? If I like it (a lot), I may just create a video for it!
There’s currently an open debate about NaNoWriMo (aka National Novel Writing Month). Click on the image below to read about it:
There’s one post live discussing and debating about NaNoWriMo by Katherine Karch!
Want to add your opinion to this debate? Follow the instruction above and we look forward to reading about it!
The other day I posted a poll (both here and on Twitter) asking which part of the writing process was the most difficult.
Here are the results.
Writing the story 21%
Coming up w/ idea 7%
Coming up w/ idea 11%
Writing the story 11%
Overwhelmingly, marketing seems to be the most difficult for writers. The reasons? There could be many.
One could be that the writer is an introvert, and finds the social media intimidating. And speaking of social media, there are thousands and thousands of writers and authors on them trying to get their books and stories out in the world. With all that noise, how does one writer or author find a way to stand out and be noticed?
What’s even more frustrating is that it doesn’t matter if you’re traditional or self-published, you’re still expected to do most of the marketing.
How does one even start?
Here’s an article I found that offered some insights: Marketing Your Books
According to these results, coming up with a story idea doesn’t seems to be that big of an issue for most writers. I suppose what could be problematic is choosing which idea to use. Which one will readers want to read? Which one will I want to write a book-length manuscript, and not get bored half-way through?
For me personally, at this point in my writing career, the editing/revision is the most difficult part. It’s like trying to get a donkey to do something it really doesn’t want to do. Yeah, I can be that kind of a donkey.
Take part in a debate and voice your opinion as a writer!
Click on link below to enter your post:
Post your post’s link in the comment section below (same rule applies-one with the most likes, wins).
This means that fall’s foliage is at its’ peak, and the sugar beet harvest is in full swing up here in the Red River Valley of North Dakota.
I woke up this morning to the ground covered in a thin layer of frost. Even had to turn on the heat briefly. With the warm air blowing through the vents, I counted at least four of my ten indoor cats huddled on top of them.
Darn, should have snapped a pic.
October is also the month to prepare for NaNoWriMo (aka National Novel Writing Month) so I’m taking a month-long course with Beth and Ezra Barany to help me plan a novel idea I have.
Like I said in a previous post, I have little problem with finishing short pieces, but a book-length? It IS like running a marathon (I’ve ran 5-ks in the past so I can only imagine what 20-plus miles would be like!) where I almost always fizzle out by the middle, and that’s it.
I either lose interest, or life gets in the way, or writer’s block sets it.
Excuses won’t get the book written.
I need to really look at why I’m not finishing.
Am I meant to be just a short story writer?
I’m unable to accept that.
I may never be a prolific novelist like Stephen King or Nora Roberts, and that’s okay. I just believe that I have at least one book in me that I must write. And this what’s been driving me to try again and again.
A quote by Maya Angelou keeps haunting me:
Now that I’m middle-aged, I have this growing fear of dying before I’m able to complete the kind of writing I was meant to do.
It’s a horrible feeling.
One that’s growing worse by the day.
The only one book-length manuscript I managed came during the 2008 NaNoWriMo, and that’s because of my curiosity to see if I could actually write at least 50,000 words.
Since then, all my attempts to write another book have failed.
I think it may be because those stories were not meaningful to me. They were just stories that I had a vague interest in, but as I laid down word after word, I lost interest.
I find that I can’t devote hours and days to something I have no real passion for. Life is just too short.
In my heart, I’ve always wanted to write a story that revolved around fatherhood and daughters. This desire…no, need have grown exponentially since my Daddy’s death in September 2014.
Three weeks ago, I saw a particular news article that gave birth to a story idea for such a book. In taking the above course, I’m working to develop this idea, flesh out the plot/subplots as well as create my two main characters. I plan to use NaNoWriMo as a jump-start to write as many words as I can, but the goal isn’t to win, but to ultimately have a finished first draft by the end of the year.
I believe I have found the reason and motivation to drive me to be successful this time.
Stay tuned for more later.
This month’s question: “Have you ever slipped any of your personal information into your characters, either by accident or on purpose?”
Hmm, an intriguing question posed by IWSG. “Personal” could mean just about anything in my mind so I’d have to answer this honestly with a YES.
Many of my main characters have pieces of me injected in them which make the stories I write personal and meaningful to me. They entice me to finish each story so not to leave them incomplete which borders tragic in my mind.
The characters may have some of my physical attributes, but mostly I inject events and emotions that I’ve experienced in hope to make the stories more dramatic and real to the reader.
Granted, majority of the stories I write are short so it’s relatively easy to finish. Writing a book-length story is a different matter in that I’ve yet to complete a full first draft since 2008 (my first and only full draft from NaNoWriMo which still sits on my hard-drive). However, this year I hope to change that. I will post more about this later this week.
What about you? How much of yourself do you include in your writing?
I once lived in an old house
haunted by a formless shadow
Mom died as she gave birth to Tye
my two-year old babbling brother
I don’t blame anyone for her death
but I do of that depth-less darkness
that devoured Daddy
Annalisa Parent, teaching extraordinaire and editor of Chair & Pen: Musings on Writing and the Writing Life, has come out with a new book called, Storytelling for Pantsers: How to Write and Revise Your Novel Without an Outline.
If you’re someone who tends to write on “the fly,” but always seems to have a problem either finishing or figuring out where the story’s going, this book is for you.
Annalisa, a Pantser herself, understands how other fellow Pantsers tend to lose their way when they write a book because of the unorganized fashion of their creativity. This book aims to help them–you— find your way through the “muddle” quicker.
By finding the patterns (or theme) in the story, and then build upon them.
This book is not your typical how-to-write book. The instructions and examples are not in your usual cut-and-dry and formal format. This is nothing like an ordinary book about writing. Did I say that Annalisa is a teaching extraordinaire? Well, she proves it in this gem. Her presentations throughout the book are personable, easy to grasp, and her witty sense of humor and uncanny culture references make for a truly enjoyable learning experience.
Annalisa believes in taking the whole writer in account and not just about providing knowledge. For the first part of the book, she turns her attention solely to the writer.
Knowing and accepting yourself for who you are as a writer is half the battle in your journey to becoming a published author. She talks about brains, and how Pantsers are who they are because of the way their brains are wired. She talks about how we tend to limit ourselves by giving in to our fears, and how the wrong kinds of feedback could damage our future as writers indefinitely. Annalisa shows us how to turn all of this around. How to manage the fears and find the right kind of feedback needed to move our writing forward instead of backward.
Annalisa firmly believes that having the right mindset coupled with positive support could mean the difference between having a publishable or an unpublishable book.
The focus of the second half of the book is on the writing craft as she breaks down various parts such as character development, plot structure, conflict, setting, pacing…all geared for Pantsers. She provides tips and exercises on how to take what you have and improve upon them rather than change everything. Annalisa is a firm believer in NOT interrupting the creative flow as you create your story; but to take what you have created later on and make them better, interweaving them together so they become connected as part of one seamless story.
Annalisa truly understands you as the writer, and takes a holistic approach to helping you reach your goal-having a complete and publishable book. This book is unique and a joy to read. You learn more about yourself as a writer, gain the confidence needed to move forward while enjoying the journey.
The other day I posted a poll that asked a question on whether you believed life imitated art, or art imitated life. If you like to voice your opinion, here’s the poll.
Oscar Wilde believed that-
But, I believe Fyodor Dostoevsky hit closer to the truth –
Here’s what Aristotle had to say about this:
What are your thoughts and opinion?
Bunnies of assorted colors
scampered around the child
in attempt to lead her
from the horde of flesh eaters
*Another poem I wrote for #StorySaturday. This week’s prompt was bunnies. And of course, I couldn’t write anything cozy or cuddly 😉
What if there was no internet? Whether it crashed due to an electromagnetic storm, or a massive meteor shower took out most of the satellites…and the internet is now GONE.
As a writer, how would you function? How would you go about sending out your stories to the world?
Would you still keep writing?
So many completely rely on technology (namely internet) to get things done, and to communicate with others. Would we be able to revert back to the “old” ways of doing things?
“The oceans” was the prompt for this week’s #StorySaturday (Twitter). I wrote this micro-story kind of as a memoir of my personal experiences with water, and how it impacted me.
I grew up around water
in the High Peaks of the Adirondacks
the river ran wild
its’ roars beat within me like a hammer
Then came the ocean of the Outer Banks
its rolling waves on the sandy shore
calm the racing of that heart
and created a sense of peace
I’ve never experienced
Now I live in the open expanse of the plains
where the ocean is only a memory
but a memory that I can revisit
for as long as this heart beats