Tag Archives: writing

Wednesday Words #138 (8/16/2017)

Welcome to Wednesday Words!  Every Wednesday I will post some sort of prompt for a flash fiction piece.  The prompt will go live just after midnight Eastern time.

The prompt might be a picture, or it might be a list of things to include in a story, or maybe a phrase or a question or something from a “news of the weird” type thing, or a… who knows?

After that, it’s up to you.  But if you do use the prompt to write a bit of flash fiction (say, 500 words or so) I’d love to see what you came up with, so comment below with a link to where it is on your blog (or on WattPad or wherever).

(And a pingback to the post here where you found the prompt would be appreciated but isn’t necessary.)

Oh, and this isn’t a contest or anything.  It’s just a (hopefully) fun thing for all concerned.

And, hey, if it inspires more than 500 or so words, run with it!

This week’s prompt:

 

(Click for larger image.)

(Found on FaceBook.)

And, as always, I’d love to see what you come up with!

 

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Free to Write

Well, I did it.  I had two Swap Bot packets that had to go out today and I took them to the post office this morning.  The next ones I’ve signed up for don’t have to be mailed until next Monday, so I have time to clean up my mess from this last batch (one thing about writing, it’s not nearly as messy as other crafts!) and to take my time working on the next ones (an artist trading card and a pair of bookmarks).

And maybe even be able to focus on writing.

Actual writing, as in putting words on paper (or in a Word doc).  My mind is always on writing, and it’s been working overtime these last few days. Unfortunately, it hasn’t been focusing on the story that it needs to focus on. In fact, it’s not even thinking about any of the more pressing writing projects in my life.

Nope.

Instead, it’s been fixated on when a character should first put in an appearance in Sea Witch (working title only), arguing over having her show up first in the hospital or the court room.

Not very productive.

But it’s Monday, and one of the writing groups I’m on Face Book always has a post on Monday to set your goal for the week. So mine is to finish that blasted scene I’m trying to add to Onyx Sun.

Next week it’s going to be a follow up scene to this one – one that will segue into another already written extra scene that I need to work into the story.

So.

Weekly goal.  No word count, just… write the scene. Finish it. Even if it’s just bare bones, finish it. It can be fleshed out later.

Oh, and make an ATC.

 

 

 

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Wednesday Words #137 (8/9/2017)

Welcome to Wednesday Words!  Every Wednesday I will post some sort of prompt for a flash fiction piece.  The prompt will go live just after midnight Eastern time.

The prompt might be a picture, or it might be a list of things to include in a story, or maybe a phrase or a question or something from a “news of the weird” type thing, or a… who knows?

After that, it’s up to you.  But if you do use the prompt to write a bit of flash fiction (say, 500 words or so) I’d love to see what you came up with, so comment below with a link to where it is on your blog (or on WattPad or wherever).

(And a pingback to the post here where you found the prompt would be appreciated but isn’t necessary.)

Oh, and this isn’t a contest or anything.  It’s just a (hopefully) fun thing for all concerned.

And, hey, if it inspires more than 500 or so words, run with it!

This week’s prompt:

a hedge
a jar
a ribbon

And, as always, I’d love to see what you come up with!

 

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Wednesday Words #132 (8/2/2017)

Welcome to Wednesday Words!  Every Wednesday I will post some sort of prompt for a flash fiction piece.  The prompt will go live just after midnight Eastern time.

The prompt might be a picture, or it might be a list of things to include in a story, or maybe a phrase or a question or something from a “news of the weird” type thing, or a… who knows?

After that, it’s up to you.  But if you do use the prompt to write a bit of flash fiction (say, 500 words or so) I’d love to see what you came up with, so comment below with a link to where it is on your blog (or on WattPad or wherever).

(And a pingback to the post here where you found the prompt would be appreciated but isn’t necessary.)

Oh, and this isn’t a contest or anything.  It’s just a (hopefully) fun thing for all concerned.

And, hey, if it inspires more than 500 or so words, run with it!

This week’s prompt:

setting: a festival (food booths, crafts, craft demonstrations, etc)
character: a loner
lost and found

And, as always, I’d love to see what you come up with!

 

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Wednesday Words #132 (7/26/2017)

Welcome to Wednesday Words!  Every Wednesday I will post some sort of prompt for a flash fiction piece.  The prompt will go live just after midnight Eastern time.

The prompt might be a picture, or it might be a list of things to include in a story, or maybe a phrase or a question or something from a “news of the weird” type thing, or a… who knows?

After that, it’s up to you.  But if you do use the prompt to write a bit of flash fiction (say, 500 words or so) I’d love to see what you came up with, so comment below with a link to where it is on your blog (or on WattPad or wherever).

(And a pingback to the post here where you found the prompt would be appreciated but isn’t necessary.)

Oh, and this isn’t a contest or anything.  It’s just a (hopefully) fun thing for all concerned.

And, hey, if it inspires more than 500 or so words, run with it!

This week’s prompt:

 

(Click for larger image.)

(Found on FaceBook.)

And, as always, I’d love to see what you come up with!

 

2 Comments

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Read Like a Writer

You see it all the time in advice to writers: read. And read some more. And then read some more. In short, if you aren’t writing, you should be reading.  The idea behind it is that you can learn your craft by reading what other, supposedly better, writers have done. The problem is, the good writers make everything flow so seamlessly that you don’t notice what they’re doing or how they do it.

I had an English professor in college who would always tell us to “read like a writer.”  I never really understood what he meant.

Until recently.

Recently, I’ve been doing a lot of reading, thanks to the Kindle app on my phone. And a lot of what I’ve been reading has been… eye opening, to say the least.

A story in one anthology I’ve read said was by a “best selling author” but it was so full of grammatical errors (especially sentence fragments) that I nearly gave up on it. (It had some other issues too, but that was the most glaring.)

Now, granted, sentence fragments can be used properly but these just… weren’t. All through reading it I kept wondering who edited the story – and the anthology it was in. (Mostly so I never hired them – in case I ever got enough money to hire an editor, that is.)

And there was another story that I really learned a lot from. It had way more telling than showing, and that “telling” read like it had been written by a second grader.

Then there were really awkward scene breaks. (As in: an empty line, a row of asterisks, another empty line then the same scene continued. Why????)

And stilted dialogue. I think maybe it was written with an emphasis on word count because there were few contractions anywhere (except for a fairly consistent use of “you’re” instead of “your.”)  You know that advice about reading your dialogue out loud to yourself?  Well, now I know why they say to do that.

It also just had too much going on. There were too many characters that just showed up with no background or information, just a name, and a few chapters later you discovered that this one was that one’s sister, and, oh, yeah, this other one is also a sister.

Now, maybe this book was part of a series, and the readers were expected to know who was related to whom, who was whose mate, etc, but for someone coming in cold there were just too many characters.

Granted, in the Academy of the Accord series, I do have a lot of characters, but I’m being careful to introduce them – and to reintroduce them in later books. I also remind my readers about which warrior is bonded with which wizard, not just when re-introducing them, but once or twice later in the book too.

Overkill?

Maybe. But I’d rather slip in an unneeded reminder here and there than frustrate and confuse (and therefore lose) my readers.

A few other random thoughts.

Sex scenes are fine.  But when it seems that that’s all the characters do then it gets old and dull and I tend to skip them. (I’m wondering if I should go back through Sanguine and delete some of mine, except the ones in there serve a purpose – they show the developing relationship between the Kaen and Gregor. The ones I’m talking about are just… there. Gratuitous sex. Sometimes while there are pressing issues that need dealt with. (It reminds me of the scene in The Sound of Music where they’re running from the Nazis and stop to sing.)

Also, could adult characters please act like adults and not teenagers with their first crush?  Or two year olds throwing a tantrum?  Seriously! Never in my life have I wanted to smack some sense into so many characters in such a short amount of time.

Oh, and see that exclamation point up there? Please don’t use them when describing action.  One really intense scene was utterly destroyed because of an exclamation point. (Or, as another English prof used to tell us, “Don’t tell me how to feel.”)

So, yes. Read. Read a lot.  Read everything. You’ll learn from reading the good writers.  You’ll learn more from reading the bad stuff.

 

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Wednesday Words #134 (7/19/2017)

Welcome to Wednesday Words!  Every Wednesday I will post some sort of prompt for a flash fiction piece.  The prompt will go live just after midnight Eastern time.

The prompt might be a picture, or it might be a list of things to include in a story, or maybe a phrase or a question or something from a “news of the weird” type thing, or a… who knows?

After that, it’s up to you.  But if you do use the prompt to write a bit of flash fiction (say, 500 words or so) I’d love to see what you came up with, so comment below with a link to where it is on your blog (or on WattPad or wherever).

(And a pingback to the post here where you found the prompt would be appreciated but isn’t necessary.)

Oh, and this isn’t a contest or anything.  It’s just a (hopefully) fun thing for all concerned.

And, hey, if it inspires more than 500 or so words, run with it!

This week’s prompt:

a hole in the ground
a wizard
a cloud

And, as always, I’d love to see what you come up with!

 

2 Comments

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Wednesday Words #133(7/12/2017)

Welcome to Wednesday Words!  Every Wednesday I will post some sort of prompt for a flash fiction piece.  The prompt will go live just after midnight Eastern time.

The prompt might be a picture, or it might be a list of things to include in a story, or maybe a phrase or a question or something from a “news of the weird” type thing, or a… who knows?

After that, it’s up to you.  But if you do use the prompt to write a bit of flash fiction (say, 500 words or so) I’d love to see what you came up with, so comment below with a link to where it is on your blog (or on WattPad or wherever).

(And a pingback to the post here where you found the prompt would be appreciated but isn’t necessary.)

Oh, and this isn’t a contest or anything.  It’s just a (hopefully) fun thing for all concerned.

And, hey, if it inspires more than 500 or so words, run with it!

This week’s prompt:

 

(Click for larger image.)

(Found on FaceBook.)

And, as always, I’d love to see what you come up with!

 

2 Comments

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Increasing Count

I spent most of yesterday in a car getting lost on a road trip to Ohio.  (I don’t know what Google Maps was tripping on when it gave me directions but it sure wasn’t PA and OH roads, that’s for sure.)

So word count didn’t go up, but body count did.

No, I didn’t kill my roommate.

Nope.

We were taking the dogs to a pound in Ohio. (We live in Western Pennsylvania.)

And, no, we weren’t dropping our dogs off there. Jazzy and Riley came from a shelter and have a forever home with us.

Nope, we were going there to meet Laverne and Shirley.

They are 10 year old sisters that I learned about via a boxer rescue group on Face Book (Boxer Rescue of America).   They were surrendered by their elderly owner because she was no longer able to care for them. Laverne is the fawn (on the right) and Shirley is the brindle.

The meet and greet went very well. None of the dogs showed any sign of aggression – not one hackle was raised, no flattened ears, no growls or snarls or baring of teeth, not even a guarded look. A lot of sniffing and going about their business. No cowering in submission from anyone, either.

So, we’re going to back on Saturday (sans dogs) to bring them home with us. (Laverne and Shirley are getting some blood work done this week.)

That’s going to give us four wiggle butts.  Two humans = four hands. Four dogs = one for each hand.

(My roommate wasn’t too sure about adding to the family, but Shirley kissed up to her and now has her wrapped around her little cigar butt tail. Literally kissed up to her.  She did the “Boxer Lean” and slobbered big wet sloppy kisses all over her face and Sue said, “They have to come home.”)

Anyhow, since I’m about nine thousand words behind where I need to be today, and since I’m probably losing most if not all of Saturday (and the days that follow as I help the two new additions settle into their new home) I had really better get myself focused on increasing word count.

And I will.

Right after supper.

 

 

 

 

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Wednesday Words #132 (7/5/2017)

Welcome to Wednesday Words!  Every Wednesday I will post some sort of prompt for a flash fiction piece.  The prompt will go live just after midnight Eastern time.

The prompt might be a picture, or it might be a list of things to include in a story, or maybe a phrase or a question or something from a “news of the weird” type thing, or a… who knows?

After that, it’s up to you.  But if you do use the prompt to write a bit of flash fiction (say, 500 words or so) I’d love to see what you came up with, so comment below with a link to where it is on your blog (or on WattPad or wherever).

(And a pingback to the post here where you found the prompt would be appreciated but isn’t necessary.)

Oh, and this isn’t a contest or anything.  It’s just a (hopefully) fun thing for all concerned.

And, hey, if it inspires more than 500 or so words, run with it!

This week’s prompt:

lightning bugs (fireflies)
the smell of food cooking
an otter

And, as always, I’d love to see what you come up with!

 

1 Comment

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