Some people try make it sounds natural, “Hi Jane how are
Blah blah blah
Get into the head of your characters
Read loud your scenes. –
Dropping in a little information.Give the reader a more concrete information.It’s one or two sentences, that sets
the setting.A shortcut wayto get information to the reader.Physical action.Motion
has to be crisp and bouncy, sometimes it’s just trying to give the reader
Be careful sometimes dialogue becomes a form of telling.
Don’t tell that something is going to happen then show it
You can use incomplete sentences IF it serves a purpose. Good for high emotions, chase scenes.
During an emotional scene, people often talk AROUND what theywant to say.
Saying it in a around about way, they don’t come right out
and say stuff.
will know more then the characters. Play games with the reader.
Cut out the stuff no one will read.
Look for repletion --- cut it
Don’t repeat the same words in dialogue.
AVOID using the character’s name.
USE said or says.It becomes almost invisible.The TAG is not important, it’ the dialogue.
Dialect- Less is better
You don’t want your reader to have to translate the words.You can use it sparingly.Get the flavor without creating a
new language.Be consistant.STAY WITH IT.Don’t change it or forget about it.
Just say, “She had a strong southern drawbut it only came out when she was
upset.”Then show it from time to
It doesn’t make sense for characters to talk aloud all the
Limit to 1 or 2 sentence.Sounds inane if its too long or forced.
1st job grab the reader’s attention.
Choose any dialogue scene in your story. Isolate it. Do you
need all the tags you have? Can you remove any?Use said.What
beats might you add to create a fuller scnen that guves you more info.Check your punticuation.
Self Editing for Fiction Writers--- THIS WERE THE BEST 3 CHAPTERS EVER! Everything was extremely concrete and it showed you WHY dialogue didn't work and WHY it was bad writing. The book was worth the cost for these chapters alone: Read chapters 5,7, 8.
First five page- These chapters show you really bad dialogue and it's not really was effective because you sit and think to yourself, "my writing isn't THAT bad. Clearly I don't have a problem at all."
In my three and half years of being a mom and my fifteen years (give or take) of being a writer I've noticed one huge similarity.
As a mom, I could do a thousand things right. My kid is a smart, funny kid, she's creative, caring and happy. I keep her healthy, well feed, I read to her every night. I'm doing all the stuff I'm supposed to. But the only thing I can see is mistakes.
Not her mistakes, but mine.
I forgot to floss her teeth, disinfect her stinky shoes, brush her hair. (clearly hygiene isn't a high priority)
Writing is the same way.
I can write a funny scene, interesting characters and fun plot, but all I see is, my characters are one dimensional, I used too many adverbs and I hate that I can't spell.
Sometime mistakes aren't obvious to the world, like when my daughter puts her underwear on wrong, like her leg through the hip hole in a way that can't possibly be comfortable and yet not once did she ever stop to question it or ask for help.
A writing example would be naming all my minor character Mike, or those plot holes that no one else seems to catch.
Then there's BIG stuff.
I forgot my kid's lunch on the kitchen table and I can't go home to pick it up. What makes it a billion times worse was she was the one who decorated her bag and picked out the food. Which means when I dropped her off at pre-school she's a sobbing messing and I'm getting dirty looks from her teachers.
For writing it's unclear plot choices and slow pacing.
There are things you just don't want people to see.
When you focus on the mistakes, its easy to forget all the amazing things.
My daughter is incredible. Every day I look at her and think, "you made me a better person." She can put me in a great mood in the matter of seconds. She makes me laugh and cry.
Writing is the same thing. The simple fact is, writing itself is incredible. Your characters (much like your child) didn't and couldn't exist without you. It can make you laugh and cry. Make you feel like the smartest person on the planet and make you feel worthless. Writing gives you the oppertuinty to FEEL and to CREATE.
Don't focus on the mistakes.
You'll miss all the incredible.
Zoey dressed up as her imangary friend...how meta!
People and Things debuted at #9 on the Billboard top 200 list.
Just a little side note, 9 through 15 are pretty freaking awesome:
9) Jack's Mannequin- People and Things
10) Blink 182- Neightborhoods
11Wilco- The Whole Love
12) Mayday Parade- Mayday Parade
13) Kanye West (who cares)
14) Foster the People - Torches.
Anyway People and Things is by FAR the best Jack's Mannequin CD. It's perfect. Seriously. It's perfect.
The music breaks my heart but makes me happy at the same time.
"My Racing Thoughts" is one of the best singles I've heard. It totally embraces the Jack's Mannequin sound but still stays fresh. It's like running into a old friend on the street, there's a split second you've forgotten all about them and as soon as he or she opens his or her mouth, it's like your home again and you don't know how you could ever forget them.
If you don't know about their back story, read it here: because it's amazing.
When so few CD are worth the $9.99, this one will pay for itself in the first listen.
Oh Andrew you're such a cutie (and by confessing that I"ve made my entire review null in void) check out My Racing Thoughts video here.
My good friends at the paper hangover are discussing this question.
What are my Top FIVE favorite books from Childhood.
1) Only One Woof by James Harriet - Its a story about a dog who only barks one time, (as the title suggests) Even as an adult I cry thinking about it. It was a perfect story.
2) There's a Boy in the Girl's Bathroom- This is the first book I found symbolism in and it's the first book I openly cried reading - IN CLASS IN FRONT OF MY PEERS. It's a book about a new kid who accidentally ends up in the girls bathroom and the bully he has to face. It's one of those books that stayed with me for a long time.
3) Where the Sidewalk Ends- 'nuff said. -- To this day I still watching for the end point of sidewalks, knowing that the cover is clearly a lie, but I still don't want to take that chance.
4) The Vampire Diaries- L.J Smith is the reason WHY I started writing. I have not gone back to reread them because I'm terrified they won't be as good as I remember. Sometimes memories should be persevered has holy and untouched my dreaded reality.
Note I'm even kicking it old school with the covers
5) The Day Jim's Boa Ate the Wash. A great book about the unpredictable. It's a wonderful story about a girl describing her day at the farm. I loved it as a kid and my daughter loves it now. It's like the circle of life.
What's cool is most of these books are timeless. What's your top five books from childhood?
So here we go, I saw this and my brain was playing tricks on me.
I saw this at the Renaissance Festival and I didn't see the long sliver part, I saw something else. And me being the mature person I am, nearly choked on my turkey leg on a stick. Because what my brain focused on was this:
Now keep in mind, I couldn't see it very well and I didn't see the outline of the heart from a distance.
Can anyone else see what I see? Do you have the maturity level of 13 year old boy even though you are a 30ish year old mom?
Leave comments below.
By the way TODAY is the LAST day to enter my contest! Go harass your friends on twitter and spread the word.
I started taking a revision class and it's amazing. I know title of the article makes it seem like you're learning from my mistake but that's not true.
This class is incredible and because of that, I wanted to share the knowledge I have learned.
The teacher has published over 40 books and she knows her stuff. It's not a NYT best seller but she's made a career of being mid list. She's an example of you do it because you love it and if your smart about it, you can make a living at it.
The class started out with everyone sharing about their writing experience, which while interesting isn't why YOU came to this blog. So I will by pass all the greetings and get into the MEAT of the course.
Now if you are a regular reader of blogs, lots of this is stuff you already know. But it's good to hear it from someone else.
The course focuses on Content editing And this week the topics are Showing and POV. Showing= more dialogue and action. First sentence= important The teacher's favorite opening sentence is: “The last camel died at noon.” BAM it hits you with the tension, setting, conflict. Never start with the weather. SHOWING Show instead of describing – why so the reader can participate. Allows the reader to escape. Participate. Dialogue: Character’s have to talk Flip through and look at how much dialogue. Develop the scenes. Narrative distance- dialogue = closeness. Summary = pulling back . Think about how many characters you have in the story. Think about 1 character you want your character to identify with. They should be in a lot of scenes. Omi POV distances the reader from the story. Who’s head am I in? Stay in 1 character’s head for 1 scene- it’s the strongest way to tell the story Look for: POV- in every scene. Have you kept it the same? Does that character know thing he or she shouldn’t. Uses the sense and only describe what that character knows. We protect our characters- we want to put the characters in stressful situations and challenge them. Scenes that are important to the story needs to be played out.
Industry insider tip, if your goal is to be published:
**** WRITE A BOOK FOR ME AND THE WRITE A COMMERCIAL BOOK*****
Required Reading: The First Five Pages by Noah Lukeman, Chapters 11, Showing Vs Telling and Chapter 12 View point and narration.
Self-editing for Fiction Writers by Renni Browne and Dave King - Chapter 1
Homework Assignment Find three places in my MS where I have summarized action and I needed to SHOW the action. Make them places that COUNT.
The required reading books are the MOST AMAZING BOOKS I've read on writer's craft so far. I am completely in love with The First Five Pages. It's perfect and concrete. GO BUY THIS BOOK
Every writer has those words or phrases that he or she tends to use a lot.
Obviously, this is a weak point in writing and easily fixed.
It's catching it that can be a problem, that goes without saying.
So here's my crutch list broken down by book and why I picked those words
No System At All:
every minor male character was named Mike.
Because my best friend in middle school was named Mike. I had a crush on him, there were times he had a crush on me. But it never worked out... at the end of high school he came out of the closet I figured out why we were never meant to be. And Mike is an easy name to spell.
New York Karma:
The f bomb was dropped over 500 times in a 236 page book... (during the first draft-- it was cut down considerably.)
NYK was an adult book and it was set in New York and New Jersey. These are my people and we curse a lot. The f word is a noun, verb, adverb, adjective and just a filler in conversation. It's a pretty f*cking important word.
Sensiblity won and I cut it back down to 50 words I think, maybe less.
Penny and Hank.
They get pancakes, CONSTANTLY. Seriously every time these characters need to sit down and eat, it's pancakes.
I love pancakes and never get to eat them. They take too much time to make and eat. For me pancakes are a special occasion. Penny and Hank have a lot of time to kill, so why not sit around and eat pancakes...
So obviously we all have fall back words, that goes without saying. Find them and fix them. Your writing will be stronger for it.
Can you tell which words are my fall back words for my blog? What's your crutch words or phrases? Leave them in the comments.