Posts Tagged ‘writing fiction’

Fiction Writing Tip: Read, Little F*ckers.

In Loose Change on April 19, 2017 at 9:07 am

proulx

 

“You should write because you love the shape of stories and sentences and the creation of different words on a page. Writing comes from reading, and reading is the finest teacher of how to write.”
—Annie Proulx


 

Read. Write. Talk pretty.

In Murmurings on September 20, 2016 at 11:43 am

I’ll be reading an excerpt of my novel-in-progress at Litquake, Oct. 9 2016. http://sched.co/7juH

It’ll be in a bar. What could go wrong?

litquake2016

litquake-2016-qr-code

 


The Writing Life: Mediating the Social

In Loose Change on November 6, 2015 at 10:39 am

“Quote.”
— Author

social


 

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For What It’s Worth: Writing Tips from Kurt Vonnegut, No. 7

In Loose Change on July 24, 2015 at 6:02 am

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7. Write to please just one person. If you open a window and make love to the world, so to speak, your story will get pneumonia.


 

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For What It’s Worth: Writing Tip from Kurt Vonnegut, No. 6

In Loose Change on June 19, 2015 at 5:50 am

kurt

6. Be a sadist. No matter how sweet and innocent your leading characters, make awful things happen to them — in order that the reader may see what they are made of.


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The Writing Life: Antisocial (Media) #2 — Behold the Internet Scorned

In Loose Change on June 15, 2015 at 6:00 am


Flannery O'Connor

“I do not like the raw sound of the human voice in unison unless it is under the discipline of music.”
— Flannery O’Connor


 

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For What It’s Worth: Writing Tip from Kurt Vonnegut, No. 5

In Loose Change on June 8, 2015 at 6:38 am

kurt

5. Start as close to the end as possible.


 

Novel Writing: Is There an App For That?

In Loose Change on November 19, 2014 at 6:02 am

 AB

 

“A work of fiction should be, for its author, a journey into the unknown, and the prose should convey the difficulties of the journey.”

— Anthony Burgess


 

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The Writing Life: Antisocial (Media) #1 — Like Me

In Loose Change on October 9, 2014 at 5:59 am

“You will become way less concerned with what other people think of you when you realize how seldom they do.”
―David Foster Wallace

“Infinite Jest”


 

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Writing Tip # 224: Magic Recipes

In Loose Change on September 25, 2014 at 6:05 am

steinbeck

“If there is a magic in story writing, and I am convinced there is, no one has ever been able to reduce it to a recipe that can be passed from one person to another. The formula seems to lie solely in the aching urge of the writer to convey something he feels important to the reader. If the writer has that urge, he may sometimes, but by no means always, find the way to do it. You must perceive the excellence that makes a good story good or the errors that makes a bad story. For a bad story is only an ineffective story.”

— John Steinbeck


 

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Say… Writing Tip from John Steinbeck, No. 5

In Loose Change on September 22, 2014 at 1:18 pm

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5. Beware of a scene that becomes too dear to you, dearer than the rest. It will usually be found that it is out of drawing.


 

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For What It’s Worth: Writing Tip from Kurt Vonnegut, No. 8

In Loose Change on September 16, 2014 at 7:01 am

kurt

8. Give your readers as much information as possible as soon as possible. To hell with suspense. Readers should have such complete understanding of what is going on, where and why, that they could finish the story themselves, should cockroaches eat the last few pages.


 

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Say… Writing Tip from John Steinbeck, No. 4

In Loose Change on July 15, 2014 at 6:30 am

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4. If a scene or a section gets the better of you and you still think you want it—bypass it and go on. When you have finished the whole you can come back to it and then you may find that the reason it gave trouble is because it didn’t belong there.


 

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For What It’s Worth: Writing Tip from Kurt Vonnegut, No. 4

In Loose Change on July 11, 2014 at 12:50 pm

kurt

4. Every sentence must do one of two things — reveal character or advance the action.


 

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Say… Writing Tip from John Steinbeck, No. 3

In Loose Change on July 7, 2014 at 9:11 am

steinbeck

3. Forget your generalized audience. In the first place, the nameless, faceless audience will scare you to death and in the second place, unlike the theater, it doesn’t exist. In writing, your audience is one single reader. I have found that sometimes it helps to pick out one person—a real person you know, or an imagined person and write to that one.


 

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For What It’s Worth: Writing Tip from Kurt Vonnegut, No. 3

In Loose Change on June 30, 2014 at 9:43 am

kurt

3. Every character should want something, even if it is only a glass of water.


 

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Say… Writing Tip from John Steinbeck, No. 2

In Loose Change on June 26, 2014 at 9:38 pm

steinbeck

2. Write freely and as rapidly as possible and throw the whole thing on paper. Never correct or rewrite until the whole thing is down. Rewrite in process is usually found to be an excuse for not going on. It also interferes with flow and rhythm which can only come from a kind of unconscious association with the material.


 

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For What It’s Worth: Writing Tip from Kurt Vonnegut, No. 2

In Loose Change on June 24, 2014 at 7:07 pm

kurt

2. Give the reader at least one character he or she can root for.


 

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Say… Writing Tip from John Steinbeck, No. 1

In Loose Change on June 19, 2014 at 7:46 am

steinbeck

1. Abandon the idea that you are ever going to finish. Lose track of the 400 pages and write just one page for each day, it helps. Then when it gets finished, you are always surprised.


 

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For What It’s Worth: Writing Tip from Kurt Vonnegut, No. 1

In Loose Change on June 18, 2014 at 2:46 pm

kurt

1. Use the time of a total stranger in such a way that he or she will not feel the time was wasted.


 

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Fiction Writing Tip # 64: Healthy Workhabits

In Loose Change on June 10, 2014 at 12:07 pm

“Man seeks to escape himself in myth, and does so by any means at his disposal.
Drugs, alcohol or lies.”
—Jean Cocteau

 

Dan Piraro

 


 

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Fiction Writing: Dear Contributor…

In Uncauterized on June 6, 2014 at 5:39 pm

“I discovered that rejections are not altogether a bad thing. They teach a writer to rely on his own judgment and to say in his heart of hearts, ‘To hell with you.’”
—Saul Bellow

 

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Writers, what would you grab first in case of fire? Your answer will reveal a lot about you.

In Loose Change on May 27, 2014 at 4:39 pm

Maike Wetzel of Germany, the Goethe-Institut inaugural writer-in-residence on a cultural exchange in Wellington, New Zealand, has lost chapters from her new novel after thieves stole her laptop from her inner-city cottage.

burn

 

Writers of all stripes: Excluding loved ones, of course, what would you grab first in case of fire? Your answer will reveal a lot about you.

If you said, “the fire extinguisher,” you are a technical writer.

If you said, “the Policy,” you are an underwriter.

If you said, “the Webster’s,” you are a proofreader.

If you said, “the Writer’s Digest Guide to (whatever),” you are definitely unpublished.

If you said, “my mint-con collectables,” you are an unpublished “speculative fiction” writer.

If you said, “my tender childhood things,” you are in your twenties and in an MFA program.

If you said, “my skateboard,” or, “the keys to my parents’ car,” you are a professional blogger for Huff-Po.

If you said the cat, you are single.

If you said the dog but your spouse said the cat, you will soon be single.

If you said your laptop, you were born before the original Apple Macintosh.

If you said your phone/pad/glass, you were born after Microsoft Windows 1.0.

If you said the emails or the internets, you were born before the Cuban Missile Crisis.

If you said the Royal, the Remington Rand or the Olivetti, you are either a literature professor with tenure and a sclerotic liver, or a hipster with a student loan and a nose stud.

If you said, “The original story was about a theft, not a fire,” you are an editor.

 


 

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