Archives for writing routine

8 Tips for Polishing Your Fiction

I always enjoy working on draft 2. Sure, draft 1 can be full of surprises, discovery and moments of brilliance (or least if feels like brilliance at the time) but it can also be quite a taxing task. Draft 2 is more like the second time you make a new recipe: you’ve worked out what works and what doesn’t and can’t wait to try it again, this time with fewer mistakes. That’s not to say that drafts 3 to 3,000 won’t have their moments of difficulty, but they exist to continuously refine what drafts 1 and 2 have established. Now,
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Alien Methodology

A few days ago, I began working on a story idea of the alien invasion variety, because the premise made me laugh and I thought it would be fun. Besides, I have wanted to do a series of short stories to test the market and see what people were responding to these days. Well, the alien invasion story became more like an alien visitation. And then, I found that while it was entertaining in premise, there was no real conflict going on, and none of the characters had much to gain or lose. That’s the death knell for plotting. So
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Drive-by Writing

  If you’re a writer, you are probably familiar with the tendency to try to write ideas down while driving. I seem to get my best ideas when I’m driving, and it’s the most inopportune moment to do it. Surprisingly, I don’t always have a pen handy. That’s why I bought one of those key chain attachable sharpie markers… But then there’s not always paper. I know this sounds crazy for a voluminous writer like myself not to have paper and pen….there were times when an idea was so good, I considered to pricking my finger and writing it in
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Thoughts from a Literary Contrarian

I enjoy the commonality and compatibility in my current relationship. (Wait. Current relationship makes it sound temporary. It’s not. Let me give that another go: I enjoy the commonality and compatibility with my love, my life, my soon to be wife. (Better). Anyway, we have this ritual of reading every night before sleep, if not also in blocks of time during the day. As authors, that ritual would be expected, but I’ve never been with another author before, so I’m going to notice these things. I like it. A lot. Digression Alert: I remember one night, I’m lying in bed
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Choose your background music with care!

Writers are visceral creatures. They stalk the blank pages of boredom populating them with sprites of creative wonder whose sole objectives are to entertain and stimulate the reader. However, as all scribblers know, sometimes they need a kick-start to get them in the mood. It’s well known how certain novelists sought inspiration in bottles; others have found that plunging into the depths of their own grief to be the fulcrum they need. Myself, I prefer other less harmful pursuits. My drug of choice is… music. We have all been moved by music at one time or another: the stirring in
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Before You Write

There are plenty of days where I can think of nothing else other than getting home so I can get back to writing. However, there are plenty of times that as the day goes on, my enthusiasm and creative charge fades by the time I can finally get to it. So I’ve developed a system to help me out, and I thought I’d share my ideas. You could think of it as a method for setting yourself up for a creative and productive writing session. Before you write: 1.) Read Read something, even if it’s just a paragraph. You should
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