Tag Archives: Writing Tips

Editing Tips

A great piece on editing by henrymclaughlin on WordServe Water Cooler! Make sure to check out their other great entries!

WordServe Water Cooler

 Books aren’t written, they’re rewritten. Including your own. It is one of the hardest things to accept, especially after the seventh rewrite hasn’t quite done it… Michael Crichton

The workshop leader looked over the group—a motley crew of aspiring and published authors seeking to learn. She arched her eyebrow and said, “The purpose of your first draft is to get the crap out. Then you can go back and write the book.” Okay, I thought, that’s an interesting way to look at it. And it actually freed me to write better.

I’ve also learned that each draft has crap in it. The goal is to have less and less in each revision. Even today, I’ll pick up my published novel, Journey to Riverbend, and see things I would change. And the published version is the eighth draft.

ScissorsOver the years, people have asked me, “What’s the best way to…

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Point of View: Reblogged

Point of View is important, and this is a great entry about it!

Michelle Proulx - Author

Plots and characters are undoubtedly important things to consider when writing a novel. I would argue, however, that POV is even more crucial. This is because if you screw up the POV, no one will even think about reading your book, regardless of how great the plot or characters are.

I’ll prove my point. Read the following paragraph:

You walk toward me, hips swaying as your silky black stilettos clack on the marble tiles. Bradley sits casually at the bar, considering what to say to the beautiful woman approaching him. She’s way too good for him, thinks the bartender. I eat up the luscious man lounging at the bar with my eyes. “What can I get you?” asks the bartender.

Has your brain exploded yet? That’s because of all the shifting POVs. For the record, the POVs in that paragraph went as follows: second-person → third-person → first-person → third-person. Ack, I…

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Inspired by “Crying On A Suitcase” by Casey James

Admit it boy you blew it, you really messed it up
You can make excuses if you really want to lose her
It’s all on the line, do or die time
Getting on your knees time

Tell her that you want her, need her, love her, gotta have her
Everything good in your life begins and ends with her
Lose your pride while you can
Come on man be a man ~ Crying on A Suitcase by Casey James

I could only stand there and watch as she gathered her stuff and threw it into a bag. It was a heated and yet mind numbing moment, just standing and watching a she rushed around until she finally looked up to me, her tear-stained face an image that simply burned itself into my mind. Her lips parted for a moment; as if she were about to say something, then simply closed again as she turned away, her shoulders sagging in defeat.

***

A few days had passed, and they had been the most agonizing days of my entire life. I hadn’t heard from **** once sense she had packed her little bag and left. Part of me sort of figured he would of at least let me know that she would have let me know when she had arrived safely to where ever it was that she had been going to; but honestly, he was an idiot for letting himself believe that.

The argument was already a thing of the past at this point, and it wasn’t even important. But **** was starting to get a little anxious now. Sure, they had had their share of arguments, but it had been a long time sense they had had an argument that sent her packing to some friends place. And even then, it had only been for a day or so… It had been a week or so sense he had last heard from ****.

Finally, **** decided to put on his big boy pants and try to get ahold of ****. She always had caved before him, so he knew he had seriously fucked up this time… And after about an hour of texting and calling ****’s phone with no response only confirmed his fears. She was either seriously pissed off or really hurt…. Or both, and he instantly began to regret everything he had last said to her e hadn’t meant to tell her off or to tell her that she was seriously fucked in the head.

**** knew there were a few different places where **** may be hiding out at. What had him worried was the fact that when **** didn’t want to be found, she was able to make herself completely disappear. The more that he thought about the entire situation, the more he freaked out. Without another thought, he grabbed his keys and ran to the car, quickly reversing it and pulling it out into the streets.

***

IT only took a few hours, much less then he had expected, to find her. **** couldn’t have been more relieved once he saw her camped out under the Pier. She loved the beach, and he felt a little stupid for not coming here first. After parking his car, he quietly mad his was over to her, not wanting her to notice him just yet, in fear that she might take off again.

He approached her from behind, thanking god that sand made little noise. He was able to sit down next to **** before she realized who was actually sitting down. Once she had realized, she could only glare at him with disgust. After a moment, she finally moved to get up, but **** gripped her wrist, not letting go until she gave in and sat back in the sand beside him. The silence drew on, neither of them wanting to be the first to apologize.

**** knew he had come here to apologize, but he still seemed to be choking on his words. **** refused to even look at him, and even though he knew he deserved it, her cold shoulder was breaking his heart. He wanted to say something, but he just… couldn’t.

“You’re an asshole,” she simply stated as she turned her death glare from him to the water front. He didn’t mean to crack a smile, but he did. “It’s not funny” she bluntly stated; the anger and hurt more than noticeable.

“I know….” was all he could come up with. What was so difficult about saying ‘I’m sorry’? He knew he had to, but it wasn’t as easy as he had thought.

“If you have nothing to say, then I’m leaving” **** said, her annoyance level climbing quickly as she moved to get up again. **** grabbed her hand this time, holding for dear life.

“Please….” He finally whispered as he looked down to his hand on hers. He didn’t want to see her disappointment again. After a few moments of silence, **** felt a little relieved that she hadn’t moved to leave again. “Look…” he began, not even sure where to start. “****, I’m really sorry…” he continued, though he really had no clue where to go from there.

“You’re sorry…?” she replied, a tone in her voice that **** couldn’t quite place. “You blatantly point out how fucked up I am and all you can say is you’re sorry?”

Her cold words slit through him like dull knives. She was right… A simple sorry wasn’t going to make everything magically better. Honestly, what words could make this whole situation better? With a small sigh, **** buried his head in his hands. What was he supposed to say? What could he possibly do to make this better?

“Look, if you’re done, I’m sure I can find something better to do,” She said as she moved to get up again, but this time **** did the only thing he could think of. He threw his arms around her, both of them tumbling into the sand as his lips found hers. He was expecting some form of resistance from ****, but as the seconds passed, her lips and her body melted into his, allowing him to put all his passion into this one moment. A few moments passed before **** finally pulled his head back to look down at ****. When he choked on his words again, a smirk finally graced her lips. “I get it…. You’re sorry…” she whispered.

A wave of relief washed over **** as he looked down at the beautiful creature beneath him. He had so much to do in order to make up for how badly he had fucked up, but he knew that he would do anything for this girl. He wasn’t going to just give up on her; no, **** was his life, his…. everything, and as he leaned back into her to shower her with the love she deserved, he knew that she was his everything.

***To Be Continued***

Alright guys! This is where you share your thoughts and opinions! Feel free to critique anything and everything! Either leave a comment here, or find me on my Facebook/Twitter pages! And remember, there is more to come of this little story!


Total Submergence

Purely inspirational! When you think you can’t do it, take a breath and remember that you can!

Insanity

There are times when we dive underwater to explore what rests below; to discover what can be found at such great depths within ourself. And then there are times when we go under not from our own choosing, but because something forced us under; our fingers slipped, and without premeditation, we suddenly let go.

I’ve found that almost all of my answers can be found from looking within. Some answers I placed there years ago. Others surprise me with their appearance. Memories dwell inside us like colorful coral reefs. And when the time is right we swim gently around every outcropping, allowing ourselves to live in the memory.

If one is prepared to be underwater, then it is a place of beautiful exploration. Downed ships still retain some of their prior glory, even when shrouded in loss. But it is when we are there without oxygen; when we wake in…

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Well What a Surprise!

Well all, I know it’s been a few days sense I’ve posted, and I do apologize for that! I know I’m behind on my February Writing Challenge… But the busy life of a final semester senior in college and intern life has gotten the best of me and has claimed every last bit of attention that I can muster up! I do promise you all that I will be posting a new scene up soon!

But on a happy note, I would like to share with you some fun news! After arriving back to campus after a short weekend back home with my loved ones, I check my blog to see that I’ve been nominated by Laura Hogan for a blogger award! Now if that’s not exciting news, I don’t know what is!

Very Inspiring Blogger Award

Very Inspiring Blogger Award

Rules for the ‘Very inspiring blogger award’

  1. Display the award logo on your blog.
  2. Link back to the person who nominated you.
  3. State 7 things about yourself.
  4. Nominate 15 bloggers for this award.
  5. Notify those bloggers of the nomination by linking to one of their specific posts so that they get notified by pingback.

7 Things About Me!

  1. Only just recently found an interest in Social Media and Blogging. Never thought it would be my cup of tea until my Internship demanded it of me 🙂
  2. I have a twin, though he looks NOTHING like me, and the scariest part is… our little sister (2 years younger) looks like she could be his twin! That’s some weird mumbo-jumbo!
  3. I have a (not so) secret love for Penguins (this one is kind of important…. just saying….)
  4. My not so secret hobby is to RolePlay online. Nerdy? Maybe, though it does help in my character creation and keeping me on my toes with my writing! SO NO JUDGING ME! 😉
  5. I suprise people often because I’m very shy when I initially meet someone, though give me some time and I come to life!
  6. I believe in love at first site
  7. I will forever be a Romance Book junkie

Nominees

My nominees are based on two things: 1 – They really have inspired me in some way, 2 – Most Recently Followed [which means you again have really inspired me or I wouldn’t be following you 🙂 ]

  1. authorteasereadings Making Naughty Nice
  2. PRofessional Experience
  3. Novel Girl
  4. TheNovelReviewer
  5. shaunanagins
  6. WordServe water cooler
  7. laurenswrittenword
  8. Out Where the Buses Don’t Run
  9. Laura Catherine: The Quill Wielder
  10. The Librarian Who Never Says Shhh
  11. Reflections of a Book Addict
  12. The Insanity Blog
  13. Her Cup of Tea
  14. Short Stories for The Soul
  15. hello fellow wanderer

Cover Reveal! Drowning in You by Rebecca Berto!

Are you guys ready for this one! I couldn’t wait any longer! This is my first event that I’m getting involved with and I’m so excited that it just happens to be for a wonderful author! One of my first blog followers and a great inspiration! Meet Rebecca Berto!

VLUU L100  / Samsung L100About the Author

Rebecca Berto writes stories that are a bit sexy, and straddle the line between Literary and Tear Your Heart Out. She gets a thrill when her readers are emotional reading her stories, and gets even more of a kick when they tell her so. She’s strangely imaginative, spends too much time on her computer, and is certifiably crazy when she works on her fiction.

Rebecca Berto lives in Melbourne, Australia with her boyfriend and their doggy.

Wanna get social with Rebecca? Then check out her pages!

Rebecca Berto | Facebook | Twitter

So… Are you all ready for this?!?!? It’s about time! I don’t know about you guys, but I’m SUPER excited! The cover for her newest Novel, Drowning in You! It looks beautiful! And I have to say, I’m super excited to read the book once it comes out in April!

Now here it is!

 DrowningInYou AMAZONTitle: Drowning in You

Author: Rebecca Berto

Expected release date: April 12, 2013

Genre: Contemporary Romance

Age Group: New Adult Cover

Designer: Okay Creations. http://www.okaycreations.net ; Jacqueline Barkla Photography (http://jacquelinebarkla.deviantart.com)

Reveal organized by: AToMR Tours

Goodreads: http://www.goodreads.com/book/show/17206928-drowning-in-you

Book Description:

Secretly crushing

Crushed by a tragedy

Charlee May’s been crushing on Dexter Hollingworth since she was fifteen. Five years later, a horrific skiing disaster at Mason’s Ski Lift Resort leaves her millionaire dad critically injured and her mom dead at the hands of Dexter operating the lifts. Charlee is suddenly the sole caretaker for her little brother while their world falls apart.

Dexter couldn’t be more different from Charlee. He’s tattooed, avoids exclusive relationships and his Dad has a fair share of illegal dealings. With Dexter’s reputation, almost everyone believes he planned the Mason’s skiing disaster.

And after all these years he’s still crushing on Charlee May, the girl who’s too good for him.

When this cruel twist of fate ties Charlee’s family and Dexter’s reputation together, Charlee and Dexter wonder if their feelings are reciprocated, while Dexter discovers his dad is trying to steal the May’s millionaire fortune.

But like an addiction, one look, one touch, one taste—they’re hooked no matter the consequences.

Pageflex Persona [document: PRS0000038_00071]I don’t know about all of you, but this one sounds really exciting! And addictive 😉 I’ll be waiting for the release of Drowning in You April Rebecca! I can’t wait to dive right into it!

Reveal Organized By:

AToMR 2


Networking

Hey readers!

Today’s update is just another short one! My topic today is the big interest in social media and of course, networking. It would seem that in today’s day and age, it feels like we can’t get anywhere in the “real world” without having a secure network of people who know who you are, what you are about and share the same interests as you. One way people are managing to do this is through the use of social media.

I’ve been jumping into the great pool of social media lately, so I finally made the decision to create a Facebook fan page. Yes, this is a plug to check out my new page for this Blog! Click here to check it out and while you are there, give it a like for me, wontcha 😉

But my other reason for talking about this is because I think it’s defiantly a subject that is really taking off and is becoming more important then most people believe. I know I didn’t really think it was all that big of a deal until I started my studies in Professional/Technical writing just a few shorts year ago!

Social media has become a big part in networking, for me especially. It all opens up the possiblity of connecting with people who you may never have had the chance to before! And sometimes its those connections that can become the most beneficial for you! Sense I’ve started using social media as a way of networking with people, I’ve come across many people who have been teaching me a lot in the areas of writing, editing and publishing.

So I guess my question to you all is this: What does social media mean to you? Does it play a big part in your studies, job, or just in your daily lives? Tell me what you think! I’m very interested to see what you all have to say!


Inspired by “Catch My Breath” by Kelly Clarkson

“Catch My Breath…” By Kelly Clarkson

A deep breath in, and let it go. I repeat this process a few more times until I’ve finally calmed down. I didn’t think that such trivial thing like this would bother me so much. She had been my best friend fr so long, you would that by now she would be able to tell when she was pissing me off, but then again, I should know better by now too. She was too self-centered to really give a crap for anyone else.

I had a lot on my mind these past few days, we were both stressing out which was totally understandable considering graduation was approaching us, and at a much faster rate then we were comfortable with might I add. **** was busy freaking out about her graduate school applications while I was busy freaking out about finding a job and starting my life over again, this time as an ‘adult.’

What is the big deal about being an adult anyways? All it seems to be is a ton of anxiety and pressure and a trillion other things that I just don’t want to deal with at the moment Just thinking about all this now, I can feel the heat in my face begin to rise and I instantly run towards the bathroom. After a few more moments of deep breathing and the occasional splash of cold water on my face, i feel like I’m stable enough to start my day.

***

Once I’ve gotten my day started, the anxieties from this morning have been pushed to the very back of my mind. I do have to admit, I love the busy work that runs my current 9-5, three day a week work like. Granted, it’s an unpaid internship as part of my final graduation requirement, but still, it kept me busy and out of trouble. My fancy intern title is the Professional Writing and Social Media Marketing Intern; but what it all boils down to is that I spend hours on top of hours on Facebook, twitter and the companies blog. Yes, I do other things like creating the occasional newsletter and some light editing, but most of my day is spent online. Now who can really complain about that?

It was only about Noon when one of my favorite interns in the office comes and pokes me obnoxiously on the shoulder a few times. I remove my eyes from my many tweets and turn to look up to ****. Hes got his goofy monkey grin on his face and hands me  while chocolate caramel cappuccino.

“My hero!” I squeal as I take the warm styrofoam cup from him.

“It wouldn’t be right of me not to bring the Princess her daily offering,” he replies with a wink as he pulls out the chair next to me.

“I don’t know about Princess, but I’ll take the offering.”

The office Princess was an annoying little analogy that **** had come up with when we first started working here earlier this semester. The only reason being that it had been the first time he had seen me dressed in what was considered ‘professional’ attire. In the three and a half years that **** and I have known each other, he had only seen me in one of two types of outfits: one being my nice yet casually flirty style and the other being the traditional college choice of a hoodie and sweat pants.

“So are we doing lunch soon?” he asks as he boots up the computer next o me. **** is the official Marketing intern in the office, so he spends just as much tie on the computers as I do.

“When do we not do lunch?” I say sarcastically, rolling my eyes at him.

“No… You see, the question was more like ‘When are we going.’ I’m starving!” he groans, fidgeting with his monkey tie.

“Honestly?” I say, only a little shocked, “You have only been here for what.. maybe a few hours, how are you hungry already?” It was a dumb question, and I knew it, but I seemed to be running on autopilot and just spitting everything out of my mouth that came to my mind.

“Come on now ****! I’m a growing boy! I need me my nutrition”

A small laugh passes over my lips as I listen to him ramble on. He may be 22 years old, but he had the appetite of a five year old, and most of the time, the attitude to match. This is only one of the many reasons why I love ****, he can always bring a smile to my face.

***To Be Continued***

Alright guys! This is where you share your thoughts and opinions! Feel free to critique anything and everything! Either leave a comment here, or find me on my Facebook/Twitter pages! And remember, there is more to come of this little story!


“Catch My Breath”

Hey all! So it’s now about five days into February, and I’m feeling extremely sluggish when it comes to posting new scenes for my February Writing Challenge: Write into Words. I have my nice little list of inspirational songs, and even some of them have lyrics specifically for what I was aiming to go for as far as the feel of the post, but forcing myself to actually sit down and write is proving to be a little harder then I thought!

I do have to say, I have this one phrase that has been stuck in my head for a few days now, and I was actually in the process of using it to help me jump start one of my scenes, when a though occurred to me: I’ve been so obsessed with the lyrics of this song… and the meaning that I get from it, why not try writing a small series of passages that were inspired by it. Well that idea seemed great until I sat down with my nice new writing journal and actually started to write because wouldn’t you know it, as soon as I started putting my pen to paper (wanted to avoid a computer this time…) I felt more inspired to write out something more then just a simple scene. I actually felt like I could make something out of this little phrase that was stuck inside my head!

Now, I know this isn’t something to get too crazy excited about because as a writer, this sort of feeling comes to me more then I would like, and in most cases, I have always turned out something half assed (pardon my language) and incomplete and overall just garbage. But this time it feels different; like this time there is a potential for something great! So I think I may be sticking with idea just to see where it can go!

I’ll be posting up a teaser of sorts (really just the scene that originated this wonderful feeling) as soon as I get it typed up, and trust me, it’s ubber short, but it’s where I’m going to start on this new little creation!

Check back soon for that and my next book review! And as always feel free to  leave me your thoughts and ideas either here, my twitter or now my Facebook!


Music, Inspiration and My Challenge

Alright guys! Now that I finally figured out how to organize all my categories and pages, I can finally start my more personal blog posts!

So with that being said, most of the things that I will be posting under my blog will include my writing journey. This has been something I’ve always wanted to do because I have always found that sharing my ideas and journey helps me keep motivated on my writing and my personal growth in the area. I also feel like having things such as these out in the open can allow for more conversation, which helps with feedback and all that! Because let’s get real, we can all lock ourselves in a room and into our own minds, but if we can’t get feedback on ideas, then we won’t ever know if we are making any actual progress.

Now, what I’ve been just recently figuring out is that I’m very inspired by music. This isn’t very new to those of us who have been writing for our entire lives, but to me I always felt that if I was inspired by something as common as music, it would lead to very generic ideas.

After reading some of the extra material in the Kindle version of Stephanie Meyer’s novel: “The Host” I saw that she included an excerpt that had a passage from each chapter and as the heading for each passage was a song title. As I read through this section, I was in complete awe. Here I have believed that doing something like this wasn’t even possible, and yet Stephanie Meyer could make it seem so easy and well, normal.

For many, music plays a huge part in how people see and/or live their lives. Let’s get real, who hasn’t wished that they could live real moments that have a certain special song playing in the background like it does in the movies. I sure know I have!

So what am I getting at? My journey back into writing needed a push. I wanted to make 2013 the year that I sit down and really start planning out and even writing my first full novel. I’ve always had ideas, but my problem has always been that I get so far and then automatically trash it because I feel like it’s missing too many important things such as development, ‘moments’, and in many cases, actual feeling.

I needed a way to create moments in my writing that really make readers “feel,” and I could never figure out a good way to help me develop this area further. So with my new found inspiration from music, I have issued a challenge to myself. For the entire month of January, I have been collecting a list from my music library that really makes me feel. I’m talking a wide range too; things that make me feel love, hate, sadness, all of it! Then beginning in February, I want to take each song I have complied and write out a scene based on the feel of the song or maybe a section of the lyrics.

This is my challenge to myself, but I hope that some others that struggle in this area will give this idea a try! I think it could be very beneficial! I’ll try and keep you all updated on my personal progress, and if you decide to give it a try, I’d love to hear about your progress!