Monday, March 16, 2015

Monday's Links to Writing & Marketing Blog Posts

By: Drew Chial

When I started writing, I was more concerned about what my characters were thinking than what they were doing. I wrote uneventful chapters, where the lead spent most of his time talking about his feelings. He rarely explored settings or exchanged dialogue with other human beings. His conflict was internal, his journey was cerebral, and his musings floated free from any kind of story structure.

My narrators weren’t passive observers, giving accounts of events as they happened, they were philosophers whose ideas read more like blog entries than stories. Their selfish nature was made apparent by an avalanche of I feel statements.

After some eye-opening criticism, my writing veered into another direction. I traded narration for strict description, play by plays of what my characters said and done. These stories read like screenplays converted from present tense into past tense. While my writing improved, it felt like it was missing something.

Compensating for my early first person sins, I’d let the plot reign over characterization. At their worst, my descriptions were so devoid of emotion they read like crime scene reports:

“One armed protagonist entered the room, shortly after sunset. He fired several rounds.”

My leads had lost their edge. I tried to smuggle some of their attitude into the dialogue, but it felt forced, especially when they weren’t sharing scenes with characters worth confiding in. I didn’t want to resort to soliloquy, so I tossed their clever musings into the waste bin.

It took a while before I realized I wasn’t taking full advantage of the medium. I was applying the limitations of movies to written stories, denying myself the tools that set the format apart.

Whether you’re writing in the first person or the third person, books let the reader see inside your characters’ heads. The trick is figuring out when to show what they’re thinking through their actions, and when to tell by getting beneath their skin.

Sometimes Telling is the Best way to Show

. . .

Read the full article HERE!

If you missed my writing & marketing tweets and retweets yesterday, here they are again:
  1. What Does it Mean to Be Well-Published? - Where Writers Win
  2. The Ten Commandments of Writing Failure |
  3. Laundering Lines: Converting Excess Exposition into Dialogue | Drew Chial
  4. Behind the Mask: When to Reveal What a Character is Thinking | Drew Chial
  5. Wendell Berry on Solitude and Why Pride and Despair Are the Two Great Enemies of Creative Work | Brain Pickings
  6. Don’t Say I Didn’t Warn You: Women Writers, Women's Books 5 things to know before you send out your manuscript.
  7. Seeing Myself in my Villains: An Author’s Nightmare? | Creative Writing with the Crimson League
  8. How to Punch Up a Blurb or Query | Jami Gold, Paranormal Author
  9. Your Best Friend Is a Horrible Fictional Character
  10. Why You Should Give Free Content To Your Readers
  11. Dear Teen Writer: Avoid the Perils of Perfection - A WOW Wednesday Post by Diana Renn
  12. Writer Unboxed » Of Clams & Editors
  13. The Publishing Step You’ve Probably Forgotten
  14. Video Blogging: How to Become a Video Personality | Social Media Examiner
  15. The 3 Building Blocks of a Blockbuster Blog: @ProBlogger
  16. BookMarketingBuzzBlog: Time To Pen A Sequel
  17. 7 Steps to Successfully Get Endorsements
  18. Can This Be Over Already?: Confronting the Truth about Endings – Kobo Writing Life
  19. Time to Publish? Take It Slow! - PubSense Summit™ PubSense Summit™
  20. Top Ten Things You Need to Know About Characters |
  21. Anne R. Allen's Blog: How NOT to Sell Books: Top 10 Social Media Marketing No-Nos for Authors
Happy writing and running, Kathy

No comments: