New Poetry: Naked
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Good news. One of my poems was just published over at Red Fez. It's called Naked and you can read it by clicking here. Honest feedback is welcome. Thanks for reading! 🙂
A Finished Outline!
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Last post I gave Kristen Lamb kudos for introducing me to James Scott Bell's LOCK system. Applying the LOCK system to my seed idea gave me the confidence to dedicate months of hard work to my seed idea. (Who wants to spend months on a rough draft only to fizzle out at 50K words and realize your original idea was...well cr@p?) Today I'm going to give Kristen more kudos for her blog post Structure Part 8 - Balancing the Scenes that Make Up Your Novel. Here's what she says: All scenes need conflict. Conflict is the fuel that powers the...
Gaining Confidence
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World Wide Web = system of interlinked hypertext documents accessed via the Internet Isn't it neat when those interlinked documents lead you somewhere interesting, and not only that help you shave untold hours off a potentially grueling task? I ended up at an informative blog the other day thanks to a few clicks. (See Mike Duran's blog post titled One Reason Your Blog Sucks, Kristin Lamb's comment.) After hopping over to Kristen's website, I clicked on her blog and found a wealth of valuable information for new writers. I owe her a kudos because her knowledge sharing allowed me to...
Finding Conflict
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Without conflict there is no story. Both new and seasoned writers hear this at the beginning of many a writing workshop. A story where everyone gets along is no story, but merely a sequence of words. It may be a painstakingly crafted sequence but it's unlikely to engage and propel a reader forward. In From Roots to Snowflakes I touched on Randy Ingermanson's snowflake method and shared how I applied it to my current work in progress. His is a 10 step process. I got stuck on Step 2, which is: Take another hour and expand that sentence to a...
The Science in Martyred
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This week in his blog post titled Can Christian Theology and Science Fiction Coexist? Mike Duran stated: There is a potential incongruity between Christian theology and speculative fiction. Christian theology articulates the known. Speculative fiction probes the unknown. My response was the following: “Speculative fiction probes the unknown.” Yes…and no. Since I’m a big fan of dystopia I’ll add that one of the big things speculative fiction does is provide warnings. “What will the world look like if…” My novel answers that question on several levels. For instance, I seek to answer the question, “What will the world look like...
From Roots to Snowflakes
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I have a page full of characters. I know their birth dates and their names. Now I need to make them interesting. Ack! (She runs screaming.) I should note here that I am no expert. (Heh heh. Did I need to "note" that? Really?) I have one novel under my belt. It isn't published, but it's finished. Problem is, it took far too long to finish. That said, as a newbie novelist, I'm relying mostly on intuition. When intuition says, "You're stuck", I turn and walk (or run) in another direction. This time, I ran to Randy Ingermanson's snowflake method....
Branching Out
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Last week I shared my main character's family tree in all its scribbled glory. If you'll notice, there's an asterisk on the bottom left and next to it the list: ages names short backstory on each As I sat staring at my "finished" family tree, I decided at minimum I wanted to know each character's age, their name, and at least one uniquely identifying characteristic or life experience. Time to scribble on another fresh sheet of paper. (See below.) On the far left of the page, I wrote how the character is related to my main character. The "(m)" means...
Forming the Roots
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As I mentioned at the end of my last post, I ran out of steam as I was filling in my "beat sheets" because my story idea didn’t include enough conflict and I had no idea who my characters were or where they lived. Rather than stare at a blank sheet of paper, I flipped to another blank sheet, wrote my main character's name at the top of it, and started sketching out her family tree. A person's personality, temperament, quirks, and habits are most strongly influenced by their parents. I can't get to know my character without knowing her...
Growing a Novel
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Since I'm done growing a baby, I thought I'd move on to growing a novel, cultivated specifically for the little munchkin. (Who knows, maybe it will fund his college? Pipe dream?) I also thought it might be neat if I shared the process in my blog. That way, if I actually produce a novel, I (and others) can go back later to review and hone the process. I should mention, in the spirit of NaNoWriMo which I had to skip out on because of said munchkin, this is also an experiment in how quickly I can bust out a novel....
Welcome Noah!
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Baby is here! Needless to say, this blog is on maternity leave. Will return after the dust clears.
Post-ACFW Conference Thoughts
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Ugh. That has nothing to do with the conference. It's just how I feel in general. Five more weeks of this pregnancy to go. Uncomfortable. Back hurts. Little tiny pummeling feet. Heartburn. Makes it hard to think about anything, much less something that happened three days ago. I'm writing this post as I go, by the way. Rewinding my brain. Here we go. I attended the American Christian Fiction Writer's conference on Saturday. It did not disappoint. Up at 5:30 am. (Unheard of lately, so I was obviously motivated to go.) One hour drive into downtown. Voila, a hotel full...
Pre-ACFW annual conference thoughts
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The American Christian Fiction Writer's annual conference is coming up this weekend in Indianapolis. I plan to attend on Saturday. As a first-time attendee I'm included on the "first timers" email thread/forum. It's been interesting to hear people's perspectives and to learn their motivations for attending. It's also made me consider my own motivations. I should say I'm pregnant and therefore tapering some medicine which may affect my mood. (Yeah, I'll put it that way.) So, I might be a little grumpy. And emotionally detached. And cynical. And jaded. When I saw the cost of attending the entire conference, I...