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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

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!

#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

Arekan’s Blog: Gratuitous Cat Post

Arekan’s Blog: Gratuitous Cat Post published on No Comments on Arekan’s Blog: Gratuitous Cat Post

Date: Who the Hell Knows

Twix attacking a human.
“Arekan,” says the scribe. “Why has your cat moved in with me.”

“I don’t have a cat.” Truth is I dislike those nasty little furballs. Hate me if you will, but they are entitled jerks and keep the humans wrapped around their tiny paws. Come and go when they please. Whine for their dinner. Gets all annoyed when you don’t clean their litter boxes. No thanks. I’d rather have a wife.

In other words, not going to happen.

It seems the culprit of the scribe’s question is the thing in the little box in the corner. She calls him Twix, which makes no sense. He is, she says a Bengal, which means that some generations back his great-great grandsire was an Asian wildcat. Humans have been cross breeding them ever since to achieve the perfect mix of domestic temperament and wild characteristics in coat, facial shape, and body structure.

Please.

“So what is it about this cat that makes you think he’s mine?”

“He attacks everything.”

Apparently, there is a fail in the breeding program.

“So?”

“Even the rabbit.”

“You have a rabbit? And you haven’t eaten it?”

“Arekan, please. It’s a pet. And you kinda proved my point right there.”

“So you have a wild cat living in your house, and a pet rabbit (rolls eyes) and you wonder why there is a problem? Where did this thing come from, anyway?”

“My son found him locked in his toolshed.”

“Then you should have taken the hint.”

(Scribe sighs) “I can’t talk to you about anything.”

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.

Arekan’s Blog: Time Travel Musings

Arekan’s Blog: Time Travel Musings published on No Comments on Arekan’s Blog: Time Travel Musings

Yfaran Ayne (Somewhere around July 16, 2017, I think)

This first planet calendar hurts the head. I’m not even attempting to match the day because it simply does not work. So you just have the season and the month. Anyway, there is some progress on the scribe front. Oh, she’s still writing trash, and gets jobs for more trash with amazing regularity.

Scribe: Just because what I’m writing not your story doesn’t make my work trash. If I don’t eat I don’t get to write.

See. Entirely difficult. BUT, she did write a very nice piece called Arekan Saves the Universe for her online writer’s group for their monthly challenge. She quite rightly made me very amusing, which I am most days when I’m not in death-dealing-rouge mode. Oh yeah, my daughter, Kelleen, is in there as a toddler. And she has a few choice lines, though, as a rule, while toddlers babble, they don’t say much. Except for Kelleen. Anyway, the story placed third out of the monthly entries, so not bad.

Scribe: Gee, thanks. I’m overwhelmed by your praise.Continue reading Arekan’s Blog: Time Travel Musings

#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!

Arekan’s First Blog Post

Arekan’s First Blog Post published on No Comments on Arekan’s First Blog Post


>Date: San-Tanaran Eve (or thereabouts) (May 20, 2017)

That’s the best I can approximate dates between the Scribe’s homeworld calendar and Kyn’s. If you ask me hers is a crazy calendar. They add a day every four years to it. I ask her why they don’t use the moon like any normal civilization and she gives me one of those looks, like it’s useless to tell me anything.

Maybe I’ll find a new scribe.

But then again, it’s so very fun to watch her face twist when I say something that she disapproves of.

The Scribe’s been busy, earning a living, she says. She’s written about 1000 words on Pirate’s Luck and nothing else on my story, which is a damned inconvenience. She replies that if the stories I already told her sold better she wouldn’t have to write other people’s stories for them. What can I do? And I shouldn’t feel bad because she hasn’t worked on anything else of hers. I call bull pucks and point to the blog posts she writes, which, she spits back don’t count.

And you wonder why I never married.

Until next time.

Arekan

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

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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