Thursday, February 26, 2015

Rewriting prompt: A Moody Rewrite

Find a scene or story that has a strong mood to it and rewrite it to give it an opposite mood. Make a somber scene light-hearted, or a scary scene funny. Or at least fun.

Tuesday, February 24, 2015

Speed Reading as a Sales Tactic?

I'm not a speed reader myself. When the writing is good, I like to savor it.  (When the writing is bad, I find something better to read.) So I never really gave much though to how quickly I could actually read.

Monday, February 23, 2015

Writing prompt: Communication Breakdown

Pick your favorite disaster — earthquake, alien attack, sharknado, whatever. In the midst of this disaster, place two people who will need to rely on each other if they are to survive. Problem is, they don't speak the same language. How do they communicate with each other in order to make it out alive?

Thursday, February 19, 2015

Rewriting prompt: Not to Be

In a blog editing tip way back in September 2013, I wrote that "No word in the English language is as insidious as is is." What I meant is that the forms of to be, whether as helping verbs or linking verbs, can become like table salt: you can use it with almost anything, but too much of it can make the whole thing unpalatable.

That might be a bad metaphor.

Monday, February 16, 2015

Writing Prompt: Chatter Chatter Chatter

Write a scene involving two characters that consists only of dialogue. No description. No "he said" or "she whispered" or "they expostulated." Only dialogue. And because it's only dialogue, you don't even need to waste time using quotation marks; just start a new paragraph whenever the other person starts talking.

It'll make you feel like Cormac McCarthy.

Thursday, February 12, 2015

Rewriting Prompt: Trying These Times

You've seen this done countless times by well-known authors. You've even seen it done and not known that you've seen it. It's been done to entire novels, but for now, maybe just focus on a scene.

Monday, February 9, 2015

Writing Prompt: Do You Push the Button?

This week you get a very detailed and specific writing prompt that requires some personal exploration:

Thursday, February 5, 2015

Rewriting Prompt: You First

Start with a scene or short story (your own or someone else's) that has a fair amount of action in it. It doesn't have to be intense action, but the main character has to do some thing and have things done to her. Rewrite it in second person, present tense.

Tuesday, February 3, 2015

You Might Be a Troll If...

I've never met anyone who says they like internet trolls. That raises the question, then, of why there are so bloody many of them out there.

Granted, there are literally billions of people in the world whom I have never met, so maybe I'm just talking to the wrong people. The non-trolls. It's possible, too, that some of the people in my circles are pathological liars who secretly get a sadistic glee from trolling.

Monday, February 2, 2015

Writing Prompt: A Larger Vision

Your protagonist is in an unfamiliar place and, for whatever reason, suddenly cannot see — unexpected blindness, a chemical spill, a massive power outage, whatever. He needs to navigate through the area in front of him — again, why he needs to do this is up to you. Maybe there's an eye-wash station, or he's trying to get to the circuit breaker.