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Showing posts from May, 2012


You know how I wrote about "Expanding your territory" last week, by branching out and writing in areas that you aren't familiar with? What if you could do that and not have to write a book, or even an essay for that matter? What about a plain and simple writing prompt that forces you to write -- and only write-- twenty five words? Writer's Digest has these incredibly cool exercises that do this. Writing prompts are one of them, and this one -- the super short one-- is not only fun, but hard. Twenty five words? That's like only being able to take a sip of coffee out of a twelve-cup pot. Hard to do, and not as easy as you'd think. Here's the contest: Take a look at this picture, and write the opening sentence to a story. Easy, right? Actually, no it isn't. Everyone has a million ideas, and yet, when it comes to writing, seems like those million ideas boil down to just a handful ... a handful of openers that everyone has heard of. Don't be

Expanding Your Territory

Camp NaNoWriMo I've written several times about why we need to expand our writing, as in, writing in styles and genres that we normally don't write in. I can hear you saying, "That's all fine and dandy for someone else, but for me and my thriller manuscripts I don't need that kind of practice." Now, I want you to hear me saying. "You're wrong!" Why? Because, we have to always be learning in order to keeping knowing. That sounds kind of lame when I write it that way. But here's the gist: to be really, really good at something, requires continual, daily, practice. This means writing in your genre, and writing in OTHER genres to be not only a good writer, but a great writer: someone who can understand all sorts of things because of this very act of writing in a genre one normally doesn't write in. So, what do you need to do? Try doing what I'm doing. Well, so I'm probably not doing all of these, but here are three exampl


Sorry I've been MIA for a little bit. I needed a little break after blogging for thirty straight days! Anway, I'm back and I'm curious to know something. You know how the first few sentences in a book are critical for hooking the reader, well I would love to know your imput on this little paragraph: The hammer in her hand felt smooth and comfortable, and as cool as a glass of water.   Cleopatra Riley grabbed the key from her pocket and walked to the cabinet in her darkened closet. She unlocked it, and after opening both wooden doors wide, took out all of her porcelain horses, setting them on top of the dresser. In a few seconds, what had taken almost ten years to collect, was gone – smashed to hundreds of pieces Does it draw you in? Is it too wordy? Do you want to read more? I know beginnings are SO important. Important as in, getting an agent to request a partial, or having them say "thanks, but no thanks." What are some of your favorite openers? Some b