Wednesday, March 27, 2013
Thursday, March 21, 2013
Devon dives into her new role providing support for Hutch’s friends, but she’s haunted by her own attachment to him. The two shared an extraordinary night during their first week freshman year; it was the only time at Keaton when she felt like someone else really understood her. As the secrets and confessions pile up in her sessions, Devon comes to a startling conclusion: Hutch couldn't have taken his own life. Bound by her oath of confidentiality—and tortured by her unrequited love—Devon embarks on a solitary mission to get to the bottom of Hutch's death, and the stakes are higher than she ever could have imagined.
The clock is ticking. Everyone must choose.
Passion. Power. Secrets. Enchantment.
Locke must infiltrate the home of a government official by gaining the trust of his daughter, seventeen-year-old Raine, and he soon finds himself pulled deep into the world of the resistance—and into Raine’s life.
Tuesday, March 19, 2013
Only add enough world-building detail and back story for everything to make sense and to give an accurate picture of the world. Don't waste paragraphs explaining every detail of your main character's past. Only add what's relevant to the short story.
Keep info dumps to the bare minimum. Stating things in this way can be boring to read and pull the reader out of the story. World-building and back story is best worked throughout the story, rather than all at once.
The story must have a complete plot arc. There has to be conflict. There has to be a beginning, middle, and end. Rising action. Climax. Resolution. It's okay for some things to be left open to interpretation, but the story shouldn't just end.
Monday, March 18, 2013
Posted by Rachael at 11:37 AM
Thursday, March 14, 2013
Gideon Lir: a legendary Celtic warrior with a bit of a temper of his own.
Secretly, these blue-collar warriors battle the hobgoblins infesting their suburban neighborhood...when they are not battling each other.
Finn (not bleedin' Finnegan) MacCullen is eager to begin his apprenticeship. He soon discovers the ups and downs of hunting monsters in a suburban neighborhood under the demanding tutelage of the Knight, Gideon Lir. Both master and apprentice are descendents of the Tuatha De Danaan, a magical race of warriors from Ireland. Scattered long ago to the four corners of the world, the De Danaan wage a two thousand year old clandestine battle with their ancient enemy, the Amandán, a breed of goblin-like creatures.
Now with the beasts concentrating their attacks on Finn, he and his master must race to locate the lost Spear of the Tuatha De Danaan, the only weapon that can destroy the Amandán, all the while hiding his true identity from his new friends, Rafe and Savannah, twins whose South African roots may hold a key to Finn's survival.
Armed with a bronze dagger, some ancient Celtic magic, and a hair-trigger temper, Finn is about to show his enemies the true meaning of "fighting Irish."
Tabitha, Elodie, and Moe: a beauty queen, a wallflower, and a burnout-a more unlikely trio high school has rarely seen. And yet, when Tabitha challenges them to a steal-off, so begins a strange alliance linked by the thrill of stealing and the reasons that spawn it.
But what if the stranger is well-dressed and handsome? On his way to meet his wife and daughter? And casting a movie that very night—a movie in need of a star dancer? What then?
Then Diamond might make the wrong decision.
It’s a nightmare come true: Diamond Landers has been kidnapped. She was at the mall with a friend, alone for only a few brief minutes—and now she’s being held captive, forced to endure horrors beyond what she ever could have dreamed, while her family and friends experience their own torments and wait desperately for any bit of news.
Wednesday, March 13, 2013
There are a lot of things I hope to clean out from my writing. Writing-wise, I need to be more careful of cliches and using the same sentence structure repeatedly. Character-wise I need more diverse hair and eye colors for my main characters. I tend to favor characters with brown hair and brown eyes. Sometimes redheads and a few blonds. I've found websites listing different hair and eye colors that I like to use for reference if I'm struggling to diversify.
When it comes to writing habits, I need to stop rushing through essential scenes in order to get to scenes I'm more excited to write. Sometimes I just skip ahead, but if I'm not inspired with details, I'm just excited to get to that scene, I'll rush through everything in between.
Tuesday, March 12, 2013
Now she has no choice but to run—from the dangerous operatives who want her terminated because she knows too much and from a mysterious group that wants to capture her alive and unlock her advanced technology. However, what Mila’s becoming is beyond anyone’s imagination, including her own, and it just might save her life.
Monday, March 11, 2013
Presentations are stressful things at the best of times. It's not easy to get in front of class room of people, especially alone, and talk. But presentations are a necessary part of college. I've lost count of the number I've had to do over the last three semesters and there are more to come this semester. Here are some tips on how to make giving a presentation easier.
Get a stack of notecards and list out all of your main points. I make these for almost every presentation, but I rarely ever use them. It's a good stress-reliever, knowing that I have them. If I ever get off-track, I know I can just glance down and check to see where I am. Make sure to number them, though, in case they get dropped.
Breathe and read slowly
This is very important. Don't forget to breathe. It will also help to slow you down. Take your time and speak clearly. Don't rush.
Keep distracting behavior to a minimum
It's easy to fall into repetitive behaviors when doing a presentation to calm yourself down. Try to keep it a minimum. Don't mess with your hair, shift your weight a lot, bounce your foot, or anything else that can distract from your presentation. Stand comfortably and relaxed, and keep your hands down or balanced on a flat surface (try not to hold anything that might not shake).
Look around the room
Make eye contact with the audience. Don't just stare at your laptop, notecards, or paper. Look up often.
Allow time for questions
If there's a set time limit to presentations, make sure that yours will be short enough to allow a few minutes for questions at the end. Don't run away when you finish. Stop, smile, and ask if anyone has any questions.
Friday, March 8, 2013
This is a new series inspired by my Intro to Creative Writing class. We start out every class period with fifteen minutes to write a piece based on a prompt given to us by the professor.
Every Friday I'll post a short prompt. Write for ten minutes on a piece based on that prompt. It can be a short story, a poem, creative non-fiction, anything. Then post a few of your favorite lines in the comments.
This week's prompt:
Thursday, March 7, 2013
Seventeen-year-old Audra is a sylph, an air elemental. She walks on the wind, can translate its alluring songs, and can even coax it into a weapon with a simple string of commands. She’s also a guardian—Vane’s guardian—and has sworn an oath to protect Vane at all costs. Even if it means sacrificing her own life.
When a hasty mistake reveals their location to the enemy who murdered both of their families, Audra’s forced to help Vane remember who he is. He has a power to claim—the secret language of the West Wind, which only he can understand. But unlocking his heritage will also unlock the memory Audra needs him to forget. And their greatest danger is not the warriors coming to destroy them—but the forbidden romance that’s grown between them.
Sixteen-year-old James Whitman has been yawping (à la Whitman) at his abusive father ever since he kicked his beloved older sister, Jorie, out of the house. James’s painful struggle with anxiety and depression—along with his ongoing quest to understand what led to his self-destructive sister’s exile—make for a heart-rending read, but his wild, exuberant Whitmanization of the world and keen sense of humor keep this emotionally charged debut novel buoyant.
Wednesday, March 6, 2013
Where I should be: About 16
Where I am: 5
Clearly it is not going very well. In my defense, I did finish up A Clash of Kings in January and read A Storm of Swords in February. I'm hoping to do some catch up reading over spring break and then really get trucking when summer rolls around. I'm probably getting A Feast for Crows this week, though, so we'll see how long that lasts.
I didn't set any writing goals for this year, other than just to keep writing. My writing kind of dropped off last semester so I'd really just like to focus on getting back into a groove. I have started working on my WIP again, which I'm really excited about. I'm also doing a lot of flash fiction pieces based on biweekly prompts in my Creative Writing class and those are a lot of fun.
Tuesday, March 5, 2013
Dialogue is a tricky thing to get right, but it often takes up a good-sized portion of every book. Dialogue can bring two characters closer together, drive them further apart, reveal important information, and display any number of things.
Use double quotation marks to open and close each line of dialogue. If there's a dialogue tag (said, asked, responded, quipped), use a comma, unless the dialogue requires an exclamation or question mark. If there isn't a dialogue tag, then there should be a period, unless it needs an exclamation or question mark. Beware of using an excessive amount of exclamation marks. If there's a lot of tension in a scene, the dialogue and actions of the characters should exhibit that.
Also, there should be a new paragraph for each new speaker.
When writing dialogue, keep the character in mind. Take their age, schooling, background, and who they are talking to into consideration. People talk differently to their friends than they do to their parents. They might also talk differently to one friend over another. Incorrect grammar is okay, as long as it makes sense and that's the way that the character would speak. However, be careful when using slang. It tends to evolve quickly and constantly, and can also be regional.
Reading dialogue out loud can help with testing the authenticity. If it doesn't sound right out loud, chances are it's not authentic.
Friday, March 1, 2013
This is a new series inspired by my Intro to Creative Writing class. On Tuesday, I posted about getting outside of your writing comfort zone and mentioned using prompts to help. In Intro to CW, we start out every class period with fifteen minutes to write a piece based on a prompt given to us by a professor.
I thought it might be fun to give it a try on the blog. So, here's my suggestion. Every Friday I'll post a short prompt. Write for ten minutes on a piece based on that prompt. It can be a short story, a poem, anything. Then post a few of your favorite lines in the comments.
This week's prompt: