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Messages: Writers Seek Your Input
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FINDING

PERFECT PHRASES TO PERSOALIZE MY GREETING CARDS

dinshaw
7 months, 11 days ago
no comments

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FINDING RIGHT WORDS

PHRWSES

dinshaw
7 months, 11 days ago
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NaNoWriMo

Anybody else planning on participating in NaNo this year? It starts in less than a week, and I still have no idea what I am going to write about. Suggestions welcome.

Donna
3 years ago
1 comment

Recent comments:[write a comment]
(2 years ago)I tried NaNo two years ago. I simply did not realise how much time it would take up. Eventually after 10,000 my heroine was left stranded on a sandy beach with her friends sailing out to sea and the baddies coming over the dunes. It was well worth the effort as I learned that I could actually get things out of my head onto paper, Good luck with it this year. Janet
JanetJo
Creative writing courses...please share your experiences!

Has anyone attended a creative writing school?
How was your experience?

carolindia
4 years ago
2 comments

Recent comments:[write a comment]
(4 years ago)I attended a high school for the arts, where I majored in Creative Writing all four years. It truly changed my life, and I owe most of my writing abilities to that school. The others who want to learn as well surround you everyday--encouraging, critiquing, understanding your frustrations, and celebrating your triumphs. Before I went to school for it, I thought writing is a completely solitary activity. It can be, and giving critiques has taught me how to critique myself when no one else is around. But overall I would crazy without feedback and companionship in my writing. A writing school gives you that. I plan to go for my master's in Creative Writing for this reason. BUT be warned. The only way a school for writing works that well is if all students are on the same writing level. If you are the best writer in the class hands down, you will never grow. It will only be frustrating. That's why I can't minor in it for my undergraduate degree now. You will know you're in a program with writers on your level if you have to go through some sort of application process for that program. If just anyone is accepted, it will not be as effective.
Rebecca N. McKinnon
(4 years ago)No, I haven't.
Shirlee
Tropes & literary devices you've had enough of

Those that generate irrepressible yawns or extreme reluctance to proceed with reading, and examples ?
Yet maybe a few classical or particularly skillfull works got it right, or you read them at that sweet spot when you were just the perfect audience even if that's no longer the case ?

Aude
4 years ago
2 comments

Recent comments:[write a comment]
(4 years ago)Aude, I agree with you regarding characters that reach utopia and slay the dragons and get the girl. It seems we all want them to do that, however. My last novel was a tear jerker and I'm still having problems finding an agent. It seems they are looking for "happily ever after" as well. Shirlee
Shirlee
(4 years ago)My own worst offender is "perfectly ordinary (and boring) dude(tte) somehow enters/gets sent to fantasy world where they end up having uncanny importance, royal blood, and maybe a truckload of magical powers too". It was fun one or twice in Alice in Wonderland or The Neverending story, beyond that it just got old lightning fast. I don't need such obvious "It could have been you" crutches to feel closer to a character. I don't need to identify with a character to enjoy a book. They *yawn* did it, and it was just one of several problems *yawn* : • S. Donaldson : Chronicles of Thomas Covenant, Mordant's Need • Guy Gavriel Kay : I'm lucky I didn't read the Fionavar tapestry first, because that's probably the last thing I'd have ever read from him, missing on the perfectly fine Tigana and Mosaic of Sarantium. But the Tapestry... random american student in Fantasyland + Lord of the Rings ripoff... bleh. • The fairly recent Dark Lord / Falconfar by Ed Greenwood. I admire what he's done as a worldscaper of the Forgotten Realms D&D setting but the fantasy writer projected in fantasy land... no, please, no. • Had trouble with David Edding's Belgariad too. While the characters are supposedly native to their own world, they feel like they could have just as well be some displaced average everyday western world family, 'cept with magics. They got it somewhat right : • Orson Scott Card : Enchantment. While this one *is* about a modern-days character waking up in fairy-tales land, the protagonist isn't a cookie-cutter id crutch, and the whole thing is researched and witty enough to save itself.
Aude
Writer seeking Book Lovers Ideas!

As a writer I am constantly looking for new ideas. I'm assuming you are all avid readers . . . what topics are hard to find? Finish this sentence: I want to read a book about a . . .

Shirlee
4 years ago
13 comments

Recent comments:[write a comment]
(4 years ago)Michael, thanks for your input on my skateboarding novel. I'll post it when it gets published. My pen name will be S.D. Fender on this book. Shirlee
Shirlee
(4 years ago)The skate boarding book would be interesting to me. My nephew would love it. He's 14 and loves to skateboard. He also plays guitar, writes music and listen to hard rock, but that's a different story...! :-)
Hercules40 (a.k.a. PapaG)
(4 years ago)These all sound like very interesting topics for books. My sister just retired as a high school teacher (sex ed, for one thing) and I'm sure I can get some ideas from her. On her last day of school she had a gang fight break out in her classroom. Since it was her very last day of teaching, she did what any sane person would do, she said she had to pee and left the room. lol As far as writing about the mob, I would have to do a lot of research on that subject . . . perhaps I will ask my Italian friends. Thanks for your ideas. Shirlee
Shirlee
(4 years ago)Thank you so much for the information on the publisher for these early readers. I have saved the information and will consider writing a book about a teenage skateboarder, but in the easy to read format. I will have to do some research, but I think this is worth my while. Shirlee
Shirlee
(4 years ago)I am a teacher! How did you guess? Unfortunately I don't know about word count. Some of the publishers doing these types of books are Stone Arch and Capstone. We really need books with the readability of Step into Reading, or Easy Readers, with young adult themes.
nogoodkris
(4 years ago)Kathy, That's a very good idea. I recently read a book, "Riding the Bus with My Sister" about a mentally challenged adult woman and her sister. It was very good. Her sister learned a great deal from this experience. I like that you mentioned humor. Many times we feel sorry for people with disabilities and treat them with kid gloves. I will keep this in mind while choosing my next novel subject. Thank you for taking the time to respond. Shirlee
Shirlee
(4 years ago)Shirlee, as a 51 year old woman living with multiple sclerosis, I'd love to see more books about people with disabilities and how they don't let that stop them - maybe slow them down sometimes, but not stop them. Too many people look at a physically challenged person as someone to be pitied, but that's just not always the case. I like to tell people that I can still do anything I want to do - it just might take me a lot longer and come up with more creative ways to do it. Another aspect is humor, lots and lots of humor and any book that makes me laugh is a keeper. Kathy
feedtheneed2read
(4 years ago)nogoodkris, are you a teacher? I can see why teenage boys wouldn't want to read books written from an eight year old prospective. How long do you think these books need to be? I'm currently writing a novel from a fifteen year old males perspective and it's about skateboarding and saving enough money to get to skate camp. However, it is more of a young adult book, in the 50,000 word count range. If you give me more of an idea of word count, I will see what I can do. Thank you for taking time and offering ideas for future books. Shirlee
Shirlee
(4 years ago)Not so much for me, but I need books for male adolescents who are poor readers. Or else books like Nate the Great or Henry and Mudge with edgy urban characters and illustrations that won't embarrass a teenage boy who needs a book on a first or second grade level. Nobody's listening...
nogoodkris
(4 years ago)This sounds very interesting. Since I am also a woman in my fifties and a former stock broker, I have some traveling experiences of my own to draw from. I think you are selling yourself a bit short. You have a wonderful writing style and I think you should consider writing about your own experiences yourself. As far as your worries about your grammar . . . that's what editors are for. Thank you for your wonderful idea for a novel.
Shirlee
(4 years ago)What I would love to see is a book about a professional woman who travels the world and her experiences as a mid level management person not the suite type female suit, read this as me wanting to see what other women experience. If I could write even close to well I would do it myself but alas, I am grammatically challenged and really shy about trying. Maybe an oral project that you could transcribe and edit? Just a thought as I've had some lovely, odd, scary, egregious, sexist and just plain fun experiences on the road as a female road warrior. Lots of good and bad food, hotel/motel rooms, rental cars with a mind of their own, cold calling on the US Southern male and sooo much more LOL, it could be a series.
JDV
(4 years ago)I hear you. I get it. Stories about the real women out there, not the Desperate Housewife versions. FYI Kris Radish has written some great books about the type of women you are referring to. I think there are a lot of women over 50 that are very attractive and I will keep that in mind when I'm writing another novel. Thanks for commenting.
Shirlee
(4 years ago)I want to read a book about a woman who is not 20 to 30 and thin and tall and drop dead sexy. I want to read about a woman who is in her 40s or 50s and still sexy and attractive, not necessary that she look like a half starved waif, in other words a real woman! Sometimes I think, sheesh, I know that the author (by looking at her picture) is at least my age (50) so why all the comments about any woman over 35 being over the hill and gasp! single? OH NO no man could want you if you are over 30! Get real. Okay, I will step off my soapbox now. :)lol thanks for listening.
Mary G
your opinion: synonyms for appreciation

I'm writing this short essay and I would like your opinion on synonyms for "appreciation".

Which of the following is the BEST synonym for appreciation?

Synonyms:

gratitude
approval
pleasure
admiration
enjoyment
thankfulness

Thanks for helping!!

Jessie
4 years ago
3 comments

Recent comments:[write a comment]
(4 years ago)I'd go for gratitude or thankfulness.
Aude
(4 years ago)In what context do you want the BEST synonym for appreciation? Clarification please :) After that, I'd be happy to help.
JDV
(4 years ago)I would go with gratitude.
Shirlee
Understand your characters, be true to their real world counterparts

I want to read a book about a magician, gambler, mathematician, computer scientist, or carny that isn't full of trite sensationalism. I am in my late 20s, and when I was younger (high school an earlier) I hated to read fiction, opting instead for history or technical books. However, somewhere in college I discovered the right fiction can be fun too. And I gravitated towards reading every novel I could find about magicians. (I have always been an amateur magician.) And so many of those books were the same trite boilerplate characterizations of magicians as wizards or as con-man that it almost ruined fiction for me all over again. And then the novel "Carter Beats the Devil" by Glenn David Gold was published, and it was different. It was not only first class fiction, but started to get at the mindset of a magician the way they view themselves - as skilled artists and showmen. Another book "The Prestige" by Christopher Priest, which was later made into a movie, also gets closer to this view of a magician as a tinkerer, inventor, artist, showman, etc rather than falling into the "wizard" or "con-man" paradigms. In much the same way gamblers are often mis-portrayed in novels, regardless of the huge number of novels about Las Vegas or various types of gambling. The same would go for mathematicians and computer scientist, not to mention the oh so overused ridiculous media & hollywood portrayal of "computer hackers." Basically, I guess what I am really saying is regardless of the type of characters in your novel it would be wise to understand their real world counterparts and how they view themselves in order to best understand how to portray them best fictionally. Did that make any sense? I hope it helps.

ssebeny
4 years ago
1 comment

Recent comments:[write a comment]
(4 years ago)Ssebeny: Thank you for your comments. I agree with you. As a writer I try to write about things I know. It makes it much more realistic. However, right now I'm writing as a fifteen year old skater, but I have a reading group that has been in that industry forever that is tweaking my terminology for me. I like what you said "it would be wise to understand their real world counterparts and how they view themselves in order to best understand how to portray them best fictionally." Well said. As far as your idea for the type of book you want to read, my husband (a software engineer) would be the type of writer that could write that kind of thing.
Shirlee