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#Writerslife: Interview with a character

#Writerslife: Interview with a character published on 4 Comments on #Writerslife: Interview with a character

Writers are advised to write character studies or “interview” their characters. How do you interview an imaginary character? Here to help you is my process.

Beth: Hello, new guy. Welcome to my head. Have a seat and get comfortable.

NG: [looks around] Gee. It looks crowded in here.

Beth: Yeah. I write a lot. Some people like to read it.

NG: Hey, that’s good. You should use it as a tagline or something.

Beth: [clears throat, because Beth has indeed used this a tagline] Let’s get going.

NG: [craning neck] Who are those people over there with the swords? They look dangerous.Continue reading #Writerslife: Interview with a character

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Feedspot Names Bethturnage.com a Top 40 Ghostwriter Blog

Feedspot Names Bethturnage.com a Top 40 Ghostwriter Blog published on 2 Comments on Feedspot Names Bethturnage.com a Top 40 Ghostwriter Blog

Feedspot names Bethturnage.com in the top forty of ghostwriter blogs
In September Feedspot sent me this thing
Out of the blue Feedspot sends me this handy dandy little award naming this writer’s blog a top forty ghostwriter blog.

Cool.

I’ve been a little too busy to post it, but seeing it languish in my draft section made me sad, so I’ll display it now for your perusal.

You can see the list of other top forty blogs here.

Thanks Feedspot!

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#Writing Arts: Master Your Tweet Pitch

#Writing Arts: Master Your Tweet Pitch published on No Comments on #Writing Arts: Master Your Tweet Pitch

Send those Twitter pitches
Send those Twitter pitches
The newest kidz on the block are Twitter pitch events where writers pitch their books in 140 characters or less to catch the attention of agents and publishers. If interested in reading more the agents and publishers like your pitch which is an invitation to query them.

Yes. You must go through the query process. But at least you have an invite and aren’t a stranger knocking at the gate.

Pitch Events are very competitive with only eight to ten percent of submitters gaining that coveted Twitter like. So what is it going to take to make your Twitter pitch shine? What do the agents and publishers look for.

Dan Kobel, an ardent supporter of SFFPit, says that they are looking for the main character’s name, the challenge they face and the stakes.

Great.

Cool.

In 140 characters?

Argh…

Well, it goes a beyond that because let’s face it. Your pitch is a marketing tool. And here I’ll let you in on a little secret. If you want to get the attention of agents and publishers you may have to write like a copywriter.Continue reading #Writing Arts: Master Your Tweet Pitch

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The Craft of #Writing: Beware the Adverb Nazis.

The Craft of #Writing: Beware the Adverb Nazis. published on No Comments on The Craft of #Writing: Beware the Adverb Nazis.

Adverb Word Cloud Pro-Writing Aid, an online program that analyzes your writing and gives you recommendations to improve it. As I was looking at a report on a piece it gave the number of adverbs and recommended that I remove three.

I must have missed this before but I do tend to use the old editor, instead of the report on the new editor.

Hmm.

With a word count and a number of allowed adverbs in hand, I calculated the percentage of adverbs that Pro-Writing Aid said I could use.

And I was shocked.

Those of us that ply the writer’s craft are aware of all the different pieces of advice from different writers, editors, and pundits that basically boil down to “use fewer words to express your thoughts.”

Adverbs, in particular, have received a bum rap. Stephen King wrote in On Writing: A Memoir on the Craft:Continue reading The Craft of #Writing: Beware the Adverb Nazis.

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#SFF #Bloggers is now live!

#SFF #Bloggers is now live! published on No Comments on #SFF #Bloggers is now live!

Screen Shot 2017-06-30 at 8.10.20 AM Every once in a while I get a cool idea. And this idea comes from the space of generating more traffic to my blog. But we don’t live in a vacuum. Okay, space is a vacuum and our planet resides in it, but you know what I mean. There is strength in numbers, and as it turns out, traffic too.

So by the sweat of my brow, because it is hot on Connecticut now, I created SFFBloggers.com, an aggregator of Science Fiction and Fantasy blogs. A bunch of my buddies at Fantasy-Writers.org, drank the cool-aid climbed on board and we’ve got a nice community going on of writers blogging and getting a snippet of their posts automatically uploaded to the aggregator.

And you can too.Continue reading #SFF #Bloggers is now live!

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Chuck Wendig’s #FlashFiction Challenge: Demons vs. Assassins

Chuck Wendig’s #FlashFiction Challenge: Demons vs. Assassins published on No Comments on Chuck Wendig’s #FlashFiction Challenge: Demons vs. Assassins

DemonThis piece of flash comes to you by the way of two sources. The first is Chuck Wendig’s Friday Flash Fiction Challenge. And here is what he says about that:

Way this works is, below you will find two tables — X and Y! — and you will pick (or randomly draw) from those tables. That will leave you with a set of X versus Y — and from there, you will write a piece of flash fiction based on that parameter set. You can even use the match up (SKELETONS VS. SCIENTISTS!) as the title to the work, or come up with a new title.

The second is a contest of sorts held between the writers at Fantasy Writers.org called FWO’s Deadliest Warriors. Here one of our own challenged us to bring out our deadliest warriors and pit them in matches against our fellow writer’s warriors. What started as a D&D style matching of abilities and battle strategies turned into, toward the end, a head to head battle of writing skill, where entries started to assume the form of short stories. Continue reading Chuck Wendig’s #FlashFiction Challenge: Demons vs. Assassins

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The Art of #Writing–Audit Your Novel’s #StoryStructure

The Art of #Writing–Audit Your Novel’s #StoryStructure published on No Comments on The Art of #Writing–Audit Your Novel’s #StoryStructure

Over typed keyboard
Over typed keyboard
You’ve sweated, plotted and struck the nubs of your fingers into your keyboard enough times to wear indentations into the keys. The first draft is in your hands. What do you do now?

You fix it.

Even best selling authors have to repair their story structure. Kevin Hearn gives a nice accounting about the process between his editor and him. But you, I’m going to guess, don’t have an editor, at least not a developmental editor, because those puppies are expensive, so it’s a DYI exercise.

You: Hey, I’m a spiffy writer and nothing is wrong with my pretty baby.

Here is the dividing line between an amateur writer and a professional one (at least in intent)–you are willing to tear apart your work ruthlessly in order to make it better. There is no emotion involved in this except the “aw shucks” when you have to kill one of your darlings, or cut a character or scene you love but doesn’t add to the story.

So how are you going to do this?Continue reading The Art of #Writing–Audit Your Novel’s #StoryStructure

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Pirate’s Luck~Chapter Eleven-To Forbidden Passengers

Pirate’s Luck~Chapter Eleven-To Forbidden Passengers published on No Comments on Pirate’s Luck~Chapter Eleven-To Forbidden Passengers

Pirate's Luck To Forbidden Passengers Free Serial Ficton

This week’s chapter is another of Chuck Wendig’s flash fiction challenge this time titled Ten More Sentences; Round Two. That’s self explanatory. You should be able to read this as a stand alone, but let me know if you can’t. 🙂

TO FORBIDDEN PASSENGERS

In the end, they ran. The group of them, now four, when before they were three, were spotted by one of the slavers as they slipped from the maze of cages that had held their prize. This was the young man they had stolen to conscript as crew on their ship.

The young man they “rescued” stayed close, his legs pumping as hard as theirs under the blazing white sun of a planet who life expectancy was comparatively short. But humans resided on it now, low and crass as this class was, and they only cared about the air, water and sunlight on it. It was a haven in the vastness of a Universe that served up few of the necessities of life.

But right now, Arekan’s and his fellows necessity was to make their ship, board it, and hope to hell that the captain or the pilot could make way before an Oshijian Empire war cruiser could shoot the pirate ship out of the black.

But the run was difficult. It was hot, humid and the air a touch too thin for physical exertion. But more than that the predations of life aboard the pirate ship—his ship, thought Arekan regretfully—took a toll on his body. He gasped for breath as his legs pumped against gravity that was a full half gee above what the captain set for gravity on the ship. And that little economy move, Arekan realized now, weakened his body.

No wonder the others didn’t want to leave the pirate ship.

Dissolute gits. (Click to read more)

Image by Starry Night Graphix

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The Art of #Writing: #Plotting and #Pacing Using #Scrivener

The Art of #Writing: #Plotting and #Pacing Using #Scrivener published on No Comments on The Art of #Writing: #Plotting and #Pacing Using #Scrivener

The Hero's JourneyYou’ve plotted or pants your way through your novel, spent long months of taking your hero or heroine from there to back again, and then you read it. And die a little inside. Because even though you’ve created engaging characters, put them in gut twisting situations, and gave them a resolution that makes you weep, something is off. Terribly, terribly off.

Your novel drags in places. Goes too fast in others. The beginning is solid, but the middle is soggy. The ending seems rushed. One character seems to overtake scenes they shouldn’t. You think it’s the plotting, but you look at all the elements, and yep, everything is there that you intended as a plotter, or discovered as a pantser. Maybe this is the place you stall. You aren’t sure what to do. Or maybe you suck as a writer (hint: you don’t) and you shove the whole thing (figuratively, because you use a computer) into the furtherest corner of your desk.Continue reading The Art of #Writing: #Plotting and #Pacing Using #Scrivener

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Pirate’s Luck~Chapter Ten-Discount Skin Ticket

Pirate’s Luck~Chapter Ten-Discount Skin Ticket published on No Comments on Pirate’s Luck~Chapter Ten-Discount Skin Ticket

Pirate's Luck Discount Skin Ticket Free Serial Fiction

Chuck Wendig’s Flash Fiction challenge was to pick one of ten titles and write a story to it. At first, my inner muse said “write something pretty,” but then that old dog, Arekan whispered, “You’d been looking for a entree into the next chapter of Pirate’s Luck.”  Though it is part of the larger work, I’ve tried to make it as standalone as possible. So, here is the next chapter of Pirate’s Luck. Warning: Adult themes though more a suggestion than action. 

Discount Skin Ticket

The main drag of the spaceport town flashed and jittered with bright lights, blinking signs and sharp sounds that sprang from nowhere. Walking side by side to Arekan, Obon gawked at the women and boys standing or sitting seductively behind their plasglass windows. One young boy licked his lips salaciously as the men of the Rogan walked by.

“We should grab that one,” said Obon. “He’d be fun.”

“So you like boys?” said Egren who stood on Arekan’s left.

Obon shrugged. “I like them all. A touch of skin, whiff of their hair, tasting them.”

The Rogan’s crewmember ran his tongue across his lips and Arekan shivered. Unlike many of his shipmates, Obon was a pirate born into the trade. That he crewed on the shitehole of the Rogan was a testament to his degenerate nature.
(Click here to read more)

Image by Starry Night Graphix.

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