Monday, October 27, 2014

Writing Superstitions: A Top 10 List

As luck would have it, I ran into my good friends Random House Webster (in print) and Merriam-Webster (online), who gave me my first chuckle of the day jumping ahead of me defining how I initially intended to open this post.

Random defines superstition (soo´pər stish´ən) as “an irrational belief or notion of the ominous significance of a particular thing."

Merriam says superstition (sü-pər-´sti-shən) is “a belief or way of behaving that is based on fear of the unknown and faith in magic or luck."

This post however, inspired by a super marvelous page-turner book I’m currently reading, is a list of rational beliefs on writing Fiction that work for me, but others may find irrational.

For instance, and this is number (10) counting down; I do not write when I’m angry or sad. Gratefully my mood swings are fairly sporadic, or in positive language, well balanced.

I also (9) do not write from a closed mind, which true, can be put up for debate. Never-the-less, I believe an open mind lets my characters do their own thing.

I (8) do not write fiction about people I know. Some, too, might find this one debatable, though from my process of cogitation, while I have read stories and imagined semblances of me in a character or two I've read, I still have yet to read a tale about...let’s say Dracula, and gotten worked up thinking the author was writing about me. Who me? If the character isn’t an angel, then this character simply was not intended to be any reflection of me.

I (7) do not write while reading other books, watching TV, or even listening to music. Writing is one of the things I do not share with any other activity.

I (6) do not collaborate with others when I write fiction. I firmly believe in attributing fictional stories to the working imagination of one author (or artist), and only one author or artist.

I (5) do not write books about religion. The Holy book has already been written, and I have yet to finish reading more than one page straight through..

I (4) do not regularly make up words. I ALWAYS make words up, and add them to my computer dictionary.

I (3) do not write advice books on how to live, eat, think, ace job interviews, or become one of the wealthiest individuals in the world. Writing already has enough natural interpretation foibles to its credit. Just peek back up there at those two symmetrically asymmetrically definitions. Things not only could, but would get problematic if I jumped in this lane and started showing off how I tweak and change my mind too.

I (2) as well do not have a favorite writing chair, a best time of day, or any other vice that nurtures my writing. Genuine inspiration is all I need to write, and that can be gotten from a*n*y*where.

My Number (1): I do not write in the palm of my hands, soles of my feet, bottom of my shoes, or anywhere else where my stories are least likely to leave lasting, permanent impressions on hearts and minds.

Wednesday, October 22, 2014

Books with Teeth!

With Halloween creeping up on us, this is the perfect spot to slip in a post on creepy books.

Here’s the thing though. I don’t read “creepy” books. Or rather, I don’t think I read them. I would extend this to add I don’t write them either, except if only I hadn’t written Lock Box… a paranormal mystery… and was told on a number of occasions that the story is really, really very creepy.

Honest to goodness, that was not my intention. I just so happened to be musing on extraterrestrial life, and the next thing I knew, I got caught up in this story that took all of a few weeks to write. At 70,000 plus words, Lock Box was one of the easiest stories I’ve written. And while I’m singing on that note, let me add, I also call it my best work. The story is so paranormal that it still amazes me.

Monday, October 13, 2014

Definition of a Page-Turner Book

I’m writing this post because I am hungering for a true page-turner. A book I can curl up with and can’t put down, which wouldn't it be, on Columbus Day I would make this discovery.

Finally! After all this time I now realize why it is so difficult to distinguish what sets page-turners apart from unquestionably great books.

There are five distinctive characteristics ALL page-turners I’ve read share. Hostage by Laurie Davies, Gift of a Lifetime by Sue Batton Leonard, Farewell, My Beijing by Chi Newman, Doing Germany by Agnieszka Paletta, I Didn't Ask to Be Born by Bill Cosby, The Big Belch by Kay Wood… just to call out a few… each share the following qualities.

Friday, October 10, 2014

Quoting the Greats!

This post was inspired by a quote I caught the other day on LinkedIn. “The Cream Shall Rise to the Top” my now latest favorite quote.

That phrase has been tangled up in my spirit, ruminating in my mind, resonating deep in my heart and wreathing above my head like a dancing halo vying to keep me looking up.

One thought led to the next, and the next thing I know, I’m thinking it would be a great idea to update my blog with great quotes; all those quotes that come to me without having to go anywhere searching and digging them up.

Wednesday, October 8, 2014

Movies Show * Books Tell

You've heard that phrase, 'don’t tell, show,' as in don't tell the story, but show the story.

Of course you have. I know you have, because if I heard it, I know everyone has heard it. I'm just like the rest... when I first heard the snazzy line, I was hooked on the rhyme of the words too... like something I'd caption in one of my stories over and over to death. Instantly I bought into the inanity of the colloquialism; in full sight of everything I was reading and hearing, persisting on telling me a story.