1.) Ernest Hemingway said it: All first drafts are shit.
He was a genius. And if his first draft was bad, ours will most likely be less than sterling, too.
Which is a relief.
It takes the pressure off us to write that masterpiece right out of the chute.
We know what we write will be bad. Then, with the rough foundation laid, we can get down to the fixes.
2.) The Zen of Writing: Write in the moment.
Have your goal for the chapter you're creating up on the chalkboard of your mind. See it as a mini-three act play :
One : build-up with tension and foreshadowing
Two : the dominoes fall into place, sometimes flowing into an unexpected pattern.
Three : the bottom falls out of someone's expectations or plans.
With that mini-three act play in your mind write the first things that occur to you.
Flow with the internal logic of your words, set your sail with the mood of the winds of your muse and travel across your fictive world.
3.) Finish Your Vegetables:Complete your chapter -- hopefully with a cliffhanger.
(You do not want to give the agent a convenient stop point. Make her want to turn the page and keep on reading into the wee hours of the morning.
If she can't stop reading, she will feel that the publisher and reader will not be able to stop either.)
4.) Bad prose is just a problem to be solved. Every prose problem has a solution. Perhaps not a perfect one but an improvement of your earlier prose.
Look at your finished chapter. Correct what mistakes you see on the computer monitor. Print out the chapter.
Read it silently, correcting as you go. Read it aloud.
Slash through clunky sentence, writing the improved version above it. Read it aloud, listening to the flow of the words. Is there lyrical magic to them?
No? Read them again, slashing as you go. Try to see if you can make the mental images clear and vivid in your mind. It can be done. Sometimes simple prose is best.
Write the simplest version of the trouble sentence you can.
Write the first words that come to mind. Like the first answer to a difficult test question, it will more than likely be the right choice.
5.) Every prose pothole you stumble across can be fixed. You don't have to be a genius. You don't have to be Pulitzer Prize material.
You just have to care ...
about writing at your highest level.
about how people interact and how they hurt and heal one another ... sometimes one act right after the other.
You're a writer.
You've observed people around you. You've reflected upon your own words and actions on the job, at play, and at home.
Use those observations to lend depth to the interactions in your novel.
6.) Put Tab A into Slot B:A frequent agent complaint is that your story doesn't hold together.
What does that mean any way?
It means the individual parts don't fit.
At the start of writing your novel, write what you believe will be your last chapter. Tie up all the loose ends you plan to dangle along the course of your narrative.
Present your protagonist, having learned all the hard lessons he picked up in the heat of the crucible. Have him admit to his failings of the past. Have him stand proud and laughing or silent, strong, and humbled by his hard-won wisdom.
Then, using this chapter as a guide, write your first chapter. Show the flaws in your protagonist that have been mended in the climax. Spotlight the areas where growth is needed, especially the ones to which your hero is blind.
Introduce the theme of your novel : Love makes lust seem pale and unsatisfying. Life is more than success. True friends are your real wealth. Family is the yin and yang of life, both pain and healing.
As you write the meat of your novel, keep your creative eye on both of these chapters to time your pacing, tension, laughter, foreshadowing, and ultimate victory.
*) If you dare to be bad, your novel will be very, very good.***
The supernatural predators come out after Katrina. Can two undead legends stop them?
AFTER KATRINA, THERE IS NONE BUT TWO TO STOP THE UNDEAD
ONLY $1.99 WHEN YOU BUY THE KINDLE BOOK!
LISTEN to GHOST OF A CHANCE
Can an author be drawn into his own fictional world and killed by his own characters?
HIBBS HAS FOUND HIS VOICE!
A tale of enchantment
Souls At The Crossroads
Where do you need to be?
THE DEADLIEST ENEMY IS WITHIN
What if Stephen King wrote of the life of a blood courier?
Listen to this haunting tale of horror and love
It is 1853. An undead Texas Ranger is on board a cursed ship in search of a murderer who is wearing the face of her last victim as a mask.
Listen to the LAST FAE
When the world is mad, there is little else to do but show them what true insanity is!
Can a man marry both the moon and the sun?
In the eclipse of myth, he can
What Defense is an innocent soul against the Powers of Darkness?
Let Hibbs, the cub with no clue, show you
Before Indiana Jones or Allan Quartermain
There was Sam McCord and his doomed love for Meilori Shinseen
Alice and Victor in 1834 New Orleans
Do a review and have a 1 in 13 chance to win a Johnny Depp autograph!
Buy_FRENCH QUARTER NOCTURNE
Hurricane Katrina has cast New Orleans into darkness. Predators, living and undead, close in on the helpless survivors. Can Samuel McCord and a vampire priest keep the French Quarter from being drowned in blood?
Buy_LET THE WIND BLOW THROUGH YOU
Enter the dangerous world of a Native American Noir thriller where forbidden love clashes with the politics of crime
You will never see the end coming
In his beginning is his end
My 1st SERIAL TRILOGY continues
There are none so lost as those who refuse to see
The 1st SERIAL TRILOGY!
In the dark, we are all orphans
In Memoriam - Maukie my cyber friend
Maukie - the virtual cat 2 3
RITES OF PASSAGE link
The earliest Samuel McCord adventure: Dare to board a fantasy Titanic as it sails into the Bermuda Triangle
BOOK 1: No one talks openly of the misty figures seen walking along New Orleans' iron-laced terraces, casting no shadow. Of the shapes seen rising from sewer grates. And no one willingly visits the crypt of Marie Laveau at midnight. Into this strange world arrives the street orphan, Victor Standish, from Charon's Greyhound. Charon has to keep up with the times ... the End Times. And the teen destined to be called the "Ulysses of the French Quarter" has come just in time for Hurricane Katrina, the End of All Things ... and the deadly love of the Victorian ghoul, Alice Wentworth.
VICTOR AND ALICE ARE BACK!
BOOK 2: Victor's a street kid. Alice is a Victorian ghoul Their love breaks the chain of reason. Their new adventures bring the French Quarter back from the brink of nightmare.
BOOK 3: Victor & Alice are in the French Quarter of 1834. Voodoo. Demigods. Revenants. And the hilarious Menage a Trois of Death! Oh, and someone we love dies at the end.
END OF DAYS is here!
St. Marrok's. The most eerie high school in which you will ever die. Its curriculum? The End of Days. Alice Wentworth plans to get an A+.
ADRIFT IN THE TIME STREAM link
SEQUEL to RITES OF PASSAGE: Come aboard the doomed DEMETER with undead Texas Ranger, Sam McCord, and sail with her into the depths of madness in ADRIFT IN THE TIME STREAM.
SEQUEL to FRENCH QUARTER NOCTURNE: The dead rise. Elder Beings strain to enter our world through Katrina devastated New Orleans. And the Angel of Death is kidnapped to clear their way. Can Sam McCord stem the tide of madness in time?
Buy_THE LAST FAE
Once there was an age undreamed where legends walked this earth … and nightmares, too. Terrible were the battles, tragic the outcome of the wars. Until finally there were only two survivors : the nightmare and one bruised legend. These are the legend’s stories, each one a different facet of the same priceless gem – a jewel that has come to believe herself worthless. So come. Listen to her. Listen to THE LAST FAE.
GHOST OF A CHANCE
What if what you wrote became real?
When dreams are sacrificed, it is the soul that burns.
CHECK OUT THE FUN!
Explore if you dare
Buy_THE LAST SHAMAN
Journey with the last Lakota shaman, Wolf Howl. The white govenments call him Drew August. Those who hunt him call him Death. The last day of Man has dawned. Watch as Wolf Howl turns to meet his human hunters. Shadow, the love of his life, returns to aid his hunters. Then, Mankind's death descends. Can he save Shadow before the world's time runs out?
BRING ME THE HEAD OF McCORD!
Only 99 cents. C'mon. Take a chance.
GHOST WRITERS IN THE SKY
LEARN TO WRITE BETTER AND LAUGH ALONG THE WAY
LAST EXIT TO BABYLON
At the dawn of the End of All Things, the Last Fae finds there is no hope ... but love.
IT'S HERE TO BUY!!
The trilogy concludes. Not even the eclipse of myth is forever. But love is. And eclipses return. Listen. The voice of Blake, son of Man, is calling across the night skies.
Buy THE PATH BACK TO DAWN
Only in the eclipse of myth can a young man find himself with both the Moon and the Sun as his brides. Can he survive what follows?
Buy_LOVE LIKE DEATH
From the pages of THE LAST FAE springs this paranormal romance/thriller. Fallen, the last fae, discovers the name of the young teenager to whom she lost her heart : Blake Adamson.But she also discovers what happens when you believe your fears over your love : heartache and loss. And so Blake Adamson finds himself torn between two loves : one fae, the other an alien drinker of souls. Their love is deadly, but love, like death, will have its way.
THE BEAR WITH 2 SHAD0WS link
Based on the stories my Lakota mother told me as a child when I was deathly ill in a freezing Detroit basement apartment. Think a Native American LORD OF THE RINGS.
FROM THE GREAT BEYOND HOP!
You dare not miss it!!
LISTEN TO THE CDC
THE WORLDS OF ROLAND YEOMANS
Donna Hole astonishes with her insights on my linked worlds
FANTASTIC REVIEW OF THE LEGEND OF VICTOR STANDISH
Michael Di Gesu does a masterful review. I am honored by his friendship
LIFE LESSONS taught me by GYPSY
Dedicated to GYPSY
Have Wendy make your book into a trailer that wows the reader!
HELP THE HURTING
100% of the profits for ALL my books this FEBRUARY are going to THE SALVATION ARMY. My Valentine's gift to the hurting.
Buy_BLOOD WILL TELL
One lone telepath finds himself a helpless spectator as the race of Man is subjugated into mindless drones by the very blood within their bodies.When the war is over, and he finds himself totally alone ... How can he go on and why?
CALL ME TOMBS
The last Lakota Heyoka faces voodoo and ultimate evil in the Carpathian Mountains of Transylvania with his Hellhound, Puppy
BLOG TOUR FOR ALEX J, CAVANAUGH'S NEWEST NOVEL
The Norse Gods Are Watching You!
BRAINE at TALK SUPE
NERDY IS THE NEW SEXY!
BECOME A JEDI KNIGHT FOR TEENS
THE SECRET OF SPRUCE KNOLL
Help save the endangered species of Earth by buying THE SECRET OF SPRUCE KNOLL!
AMAZON KEEPS SELLING OUT!
Written by the author who could very well turn out to be the new William Faulkner, Elliot Grace
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