Showing posts from October, 2011

Who's Sexier? Building My Leading Male Character

His name is Kain.

His father is 1/2 American Indian and 1/2 Russian.  His father met his mother in Vietnam.  That's his heritage.

He grew up in Oklahoma and is an artist and a classic wooden boat racer, comfortable in the out-of-doors, comfortable with himself.  He lives in a beautiful and spacious log cabin on the shores of Grand Lake.  He is a golden god. 

Which of these actors should I model him after?

Daniel Henney

Arjun Rampal

Writing Tips from George Orwell

I love George Orwell. I especially love "1984," but you may be more familiar with "Animal Farm." Anyway you look at it, he was a great writer.  He had strong political views, but also strong views about good writing, so I was thrilled to come across this article, posted on the Gotham Writer's Workshop.

With every sentence, Orwell wrote, he asked himself these questions:

What am I trying to say?What words will express it?What image or idiom will make it clearer?Is this image fresh enough to have an effect?
Click here to read the rest of the story . . . 

Give Your Chracters Horoscope Signs?

I think it would be fun to give my characters horoscope signs, then when I write about a certain day, I'll go out and see who's feeling bitchy, and

My main character is either a Gemini, a Sagittarius, or an Aquarius like me. Maybe I should stick to Aquarius, since I understand what it's like to live as one.

So my horoscope today would be

"You are impulsively affectionate and flirtatious at this time, and you feel quite restless if you are in a stable, predictable relationship that offers little excitement. You may be highly attracted to someone new, simply because of the novelty and possibilities for adventure. Also, your friends or love partner may behave in unexpected ways. Flexibility and open-mindedness in your relationships is called for now."

So now I need to figure out what Kain is, and my other characters, and all kinds of interesting interactions might pop up.  

I think I' going to try this technique in the book I'm working on now.  First to f…

Dot Dot Dot

Yes, I'm an ex-English teacher. I'll admit it. I'm a grammar geek, and a technical writing. Please don't hate me.  I even completed all the coursework (but not the dissertation) for a Ph.D in Rhetoric. Oh yes, I did.

But now that I'm trying to write fiction, I'm learning gobs from real writers. I don't have a clue about their educations.  They are writers, living the writing life, selling books that other people pay to read. I am the student here. Looking at my current manuscript recently, I saw many, many uses of ellipses (defined on Wikipedia as "Ellipsis is the narrative device of omitting a portion of the sequence of events, allowing the reader to fill in the narrative gaps.")  I wondered if I was creating a fiction faux pas,

The "dot dot dot' questions always takes me back to one of my favorite movies (again .. .sorry): Mama Mia

It's the diary she kept the year she was pregnant with me. Sophie! 'July 17th. What a night!&…

Query Letter

I"m not to this point yet.  Way from it.  But when I am, I'm going to need these links, so I'm putting them in my blog for them.  You do know this blog is as much for me to save really cool stuff for myself later as it is to share with you, don't you? 

These links are from the Nelson Literary Agency LLC and describe in detail how to write outstanding pitch paragraphs for query letters.

Pitch Workshop: An IntroductionPitch Workshop Part 1 - Young AdultPitch Workshop Part 2 - Young Adult continuedPitch Workshop Part 3 - Young Adult continuedPitch Workshop Part 4 - Literary FictionPitch Workshop Part 5 - Literary Fiction continuedPitch Workshop Part 6 - HorrorPitch Workshop Part 7 - RomancePitch Workshop Part 8 - Romance continuedPitch Workshop Part 9 - Romance continuedPitch Workshop Part 10 - Romantic SuspensePitch Workshop Part 11 - FantasyThey also post original query letters from some of their clients. Each query letter has commentary posted so you can…

Finding an Agent

I have been trying to find out who publishes Chick Lit today. I'd really like to look at some submission guidelines. I haven't found any yet, but I did find a site where I can find agents who are interested in representing authors of Chick Lit.

I discovered AgentQuery, where you can enter in a fiction or non-fiction genre and search for agents.  Of course, their agencies are also listed, so next I'm going to go out and see what I can find there.

Am I Writing Chick Lit?

Someone, a very nice someone, read the first two (very short) chapters of the book I'm writing. One of the things she said was that what I'm writing doesn't exactly fit into the mold of category romance, but it might be Chick Lit. 

Really?  What exactly is the difference?  I'm on the research trail of Chick Lit!

The first article I read was PopGurls Guide to Writing Chick Lit.

They outline the formula for Chick Lit.  I hope I don't have to fit into it exactly, but in some ways, I do.

My heroine is around thirty. Score one for me.

What about her issues/quirks (she should have three)?
Well, Hadley is currently very upset that her mother just died.She has this old boat to deal with, and she wants to leave this state where she spent her childhood as soon as possible.She's never really been around much traditional marriage, and so hasn't really given that path to happiness much thought (She thinks the Cougar lifestyle is the normal lifestyle).Is that enough?  The tro…

Writing Prompts

Just ran across this tumblr with some cool writing prompts by a writing teacher. I'm not a member of tumblr, but might join just for this.  Pretty cool:

"These are some of the daily writing prompts that I use in class. The prompts and pictures are scraped together from so many sources - forgotten websites, old journals, overheard conversations, the crusty recesses of my hard drive - that attribution is difficult. I've tried where I can, but if you know how any of them should be attributed or have a problem with one of them, please."

I Like This Contest. It pays!

We are now accepting entries for the Writer’s Digest Romance Competition.
Win over $1,000 in cash and prizes and be featured in Writer’s Digest Magazine.
Final Deadline: November 1, 2011

It's only for short stories-- All manuscripts must be 4,000 words or fewer.

Click here for more info.

Writing Contests

One of the reasons I blog is to save cool stuff I find that I might need later.  Hey, it'll all be right here when I need it. Of course, if the same stuff I'm saving happens to be the same stuff you need, I'll share.  Right now, I'm coming across some interesting writing contests I may decide to enter to get my foot in the door as a writer.

The first one is from the Connecticut Chapter of Romance Writers of America

And you don't have to be from Connecticut to win!  Here's a little of the information about the contest, but you can click the link above to find out more about it.

Prizes: The winner in each category will receive $100.Deadline: All entries must be received by the midnight, December 5, 2011.In order to be considered “received,” CTRWA must have confirmed completion of the following:The online entry form has been completed.The cash or PayPal payment has been received, or the check or money order has been sent (verified by post mark).The entry has been rec…