I’ve started doing little writing exercises, and have doubled down on reading novels in order to improve upon some of my skills.
I find reading helps me understand the areas that I need to work on, because I’m able to see and interact with multiple texts.
With the writing exercises, I’ve been doing little things like picking a word and basing a couple paragraphs around that. I like doing this by hand versus typing it out on the computer because when I’m finished I can go through and highlight the areas I’d like to improve upon. For example, if I notice that I used one of my crutch words, I can underline it and spend some time thinking about alternative words that I can use or if a sentence is pronoun heavy, I can highlight it and find ways to fix that and make the sentence stronger. I find trying to do this on the computer can make it harder for me to stay on task because there are a lot of distractions.
Truthfully, I started writing out a new chapter today and then while breaking for lunch ended up spending an hour browsing books, cleaning products and plants. Me browsing books isn’t anything new, I do this several times a week and just ordered a handful yesterday however, cleaning products? I don’t need any new cleaning products right now. I was just at the store the other day. I bought dish soap. Why do I need to look at fancy, expensive dish soap and contemplate the different scents offered?
That’s why doing these writing exercises is a lot more effective when I do them on random scraps of paper or in one of my journals. Initially I actually went to look for new journals. I have two which are currently unused, but I plan on using them for other things. I’d rather have one that is completely dedicated to me practicing and playing around with different techniques and just…focusing on improving. A journal where I can make mistakes and highlight things and scribble and doodle on. I absolutely adore journals. I think they’re beautiful, and you can use them for so many things but also I find that I can really grasp things when I put them to paper…and I can track my progress, which I find during this pandemic has really helped me keep my sanity.
One thing that I also do with these writing exercises I’ve been doing, is using my current characters. The reason I decided to do this was because it lets me put them into different scenarios and really play around with them. I also get to take the time to think about that character, and how much they’ve grown over the course of the story. Sometimes, I also really enjoy the little scene I’ve put together and decide that its worth incorporating into the actual novel. It keeps me focused and engaged in the world of the story.
If you’d like to try out this writing exercise yourself, its honestly really simple.
Decide what it is you’re going to work on. It could be setting descriptions or creating movement in a scene.
Choose a word as your prompt. It could be potato, plunder, wilt…anything really. Sometimes its fun to grab a dictionary and open up to a random page!
Begin writing. It doesn’t need to be long. It can be a couple of paragraphs, a single page, maybe two. While writing try to keep in mind what your main goal is.
Go through and highlight or underline areas that you need to improve on. This will help you see if you’ve made progress.
If you like, rewrite it or write a new paragraph taking into consideration the things that you’d like to work on.
Compare each version and see how you’ve improved. Be sure to again, highlight or underline what it is you think you can work on and make notes for yourself.
Be kind to yourself. It’s very easy for us to bash ourselves and our work…so if you begin to feel frustrated take time to breathe. Step away for a while, get some fresh air, clear your head…and then start again once you’re in a good head space. These exercises aren’t supposed to make you hate your writing or yourself. They are meant to help you grow, and that takes time. So please be kind to yourself, and do the best you can.
I made this video back in 2020 after having several people mention that when it came to editing they felt overwhelmed. Most pointed out that they had know idea where to start.
I thought that by putting my tips into a video format, that it would make it easier for people. I wanted to keep it short, and to the point. I’m someone who enjoys this process, but after years of tutoring and editing for others I’ve learned how quickly a person can stress themselves out. A lot of them will say things like, “I just wanted to write a story! Why do I have to do more work?”
I get it. I do. You feel like you’ve finally completed something and then BAM, you get hit with this realization that there’s a lot more work to do. It’s okay. It’s perfectly normal to be a little stressed out by that, especially if this is your first time completing a book.
I hope that this video will be helpful to those who get overwhelmed by this process. I spend a lot of time editing myself, and something that I have learned…and this is probably one of the most important tips, is that it is important to take breaks. Step away for an hour, go for a walk, call your folks, play a game…whatever it is, take a few moments to allow yourself to unwind. Your thoughts will flow better, and you’ll be able to edit more effectively while you’re in a good headspace.
It’s not every day that the writing community trends along with Grimes and Elon Musk’s baby getting a haircut.
Sadly, this tweet, like many tweets on Twitter, is receiving a lot of backlash. Why? Well, it makes the claim that writers are constantly in competition with their peers.
Personally, I loved Tessa Dare’s response to this. She starts off by saying how “harsh” writing advice and “bad” writing advice are often confused.
It’s true. I’m sure many writers on and offline have come across bad advice being tossed around under the guise of harshness.
In her tweet, Tessa also points out how without peers within your genre, your audience would have nothing to read while you, yourself are working on your next release. Some authors only release one book a year. Others might only ever release a handful of books ever!
Some twitter users (mainly one who has removed their tweet since), thought it unfair of her to make such a statement. They couldn’t believe a New York Times bestselling author would have “the audacity” to comment on the competitiveness of the industry. Basically, trying to gaslight Tessa Dare by saying she couldn’t possibly understand, being a successfully published author.
Tessa was quick to clap back and the reading community backed her. She also elaborated on her statement in a separate tweet to avoid blasting this person.
“Especially when it comes to NYT publishing contracts, it’s important to note this business is not a meritocracy. The playing field is not even. Privilege, connections, timing, and just plain luck are all factors, and I have benefited from all of them to one degree or another. But one thing that doesn’t help in publishing is treating this business like the Hunger Games, where eliminating the competition is how you win. The absolute worst time to sell a historical romance is when no one else is successfully doing it.”
This is something that I agree with, there are many factors that come into play but if we treat industries like these as some sort of cutthroat competition, we aren’t doing ourselves or our peers any favours!
Sure, I work in what is considered to be competitive industries, but I don’t look at it that way. With my acting, I look at each person I meet at an audition as a new friend. More than likely, the people you run into at an audition, you will end up working with in the future. It’s a small world after all!
Here’s a real life example: when I auditioned for Tiny Tukkins, I met one of the sweetest actresses I know! We casually talked in the waiting room before our auditions and wished each other the best. Although both of us didn’t end up on this show together, the following week at a different studio I was called in by the director to play a character, on another show. Turned out, the girl I’d had a nice conversation with at the audition was one of the leads on this show. One week later and we ended up working together! Imagine if we had been cold to each other at that audition the week before?
I absolutely hate this cutthroat, competition mentality.
Nothing turns me off of a person more, than when that person targets their peers and treats them like the enemy.
In recent months I have witnessed so many authors/writers bullying others in the community. They attack anyone who writes something similar to their book. Even if it’s something as little as a person having a similar trope like…the girl next door. They consider everyone around them their competition, rather than their fellow peers as a potential opening for new readers.
This “I’m not here to make friends attitude” is ludicrous. Some go as far as to leave negative reviews on other authors books, just to help boost their own sales. Why? Why do you have the time to do stupidness like that? My harsh advice to those people would be, stop wasting so much time worrying about your peers and focus on your book. If you feel like you need to sabotage someone else, maybe you should spend a little more time perfecting your craft.
I personally don’t like associating with these types of people. They’re just plain mean. I don’t see the point in treating others like my enemy, when we have something in common. We can help each other navigate this business. We can provide each other with resources and wisdom.
If it weren’t for the wisdom given to me by others in the acting world, I may have signed with a sketchy agency. If it weren’t for the advice and critiques of my peers and professors, I would have continued making similar mistakes in my writing! You cannot grow without the help of your community in industries like these. It is the connections that you make with others, that encourage you to keep going and to put your best work out there!
I’ve wanted to go on a rant about some of the bad/harsh advice floating about the community for some time now…because the negativity and the jealously towards one another is gross and discouraging. My favourite thing is seeing others announce that they were accepted for publication! It brings me so much joy to see others doing well, and prospering in this industry because I know how hard we have all worked to have our dreams realized.
When I see people acting petty and cruel towards their peers in this community, I automatically unfollow them. I don’t have time for that. This isn’t grade school. It makes me miss the old writing websites I used to submit poetry to. People were supportive, and even when they gave criticism it was both constructive and respectful.
I received a comment last week asking me to revisit and elaborate on my post “raising the stakes” where I talked about struggling with a particular scene I’d been working on with my editor.
To summarize what I’d written in this post, it took me watching cartoons to fully understand how this was done properly. I had to create an atmosphere and situation in which the character’s were truly fearful of what lay ahead.
I decided to do a bit of reading on the subject, because even though I’ve been writing and studying the craft for a long time I like to explore others thoughts on the subject as well. I don’t believe that there is one concrete way of going about every single aspect of this craft. In fact, I feel that each individual eventually finds what works best for them and that only comes after years and years and years of practice.
The first article I read, “5 Surefire Ways To Raise The Stakes Of Your Story” broke down what it means to “raise the stakes,” noting that each story must have them in order to keep the reader invested. Stakes allow for character development, and create a steady pace for the plot. The higher the stakes, the larger the consequences and the larger the consequences the harder it is for a character to make decisions.
It is our actions and decisions as people, that help others characterize us. We are more often than not judged upon our “character” versus solely on things like our appearances. Now, although a character’s appearance in a novel is important it is also important to remember that what the readers connect with in the end, is the character’s personality.
A good example of this is a novel like Catcher in the Rye, which is told in the first person point of view (P.O.V). When reading this in university, I absolutely adored it. I thought Holden was funny, charming almost, despite not being the greatest person. My professor at the time, did a survey, having us do just a quick show of hands, to see who liked the book. She, like myself adored Holden’s character and was shocked to find that the majority of the class absolutely hated the novel.
Why did they hate it?
Well, they hated Holden.
The three of us who liked the book (including the professor), loved him. We thought he was hilarious.
If the reader doesn’t like the character, they won’t like the book and most characterization is not done by what the narrator tells you about the character, but what the character does in contrast to what is being said about them.
This why we have cases where a book has an unreliable narrator, as these narrators are flawed. They tell us what they want us to believe about the character and those around them, but it is through the actions taken by these characters that we piece together the “real” story.
A character’s reaction to the stakes within the story, gives the reader two options: care about the character, or ditch them.
Another article that I looked at was from Well-storied, where they gave a list of 7 main things that one could/should consider when trying to determine what the main stakes of their story are:
1. What does my main character want (e.g. happiness, revenge, forgiveness, love, etc)?
2. How does my main character plan to achieve this? In other words, what is my character’s story goal?
3. WHY does my main character want to achieve this goal? What’s their motivation?
4. How is the path to achieving this goal out of my main character’s comfort zone?
5. What does my main character stand to lose if they don’t achieve their goal?
6. How will my main character’s life, beliefs, etc. change for the worse if they don’t achieve their goal?
7. If my main character fails to achieve their goal, what are the consequences for those my main character loves?
These are definitely great questions to ask when thinking about the plot. Of course, you should develop your character before attempting these questions. Trying to fill these in, without fully understanding who your character is can be extremely difficult, even if the questions seem very straight forward.
Something that I like to do, is create a list of character building questions. I started doing this years ago by making character sheets for my story binders. In these binders I would have a character sheet that had a full body drawing of my character in their favourite outfit. Along with that, I would write down their name, age, family members, personality traits, hobbies, interests, music preferences, favourite colour, favourite food/desert, if they had any pets, favourite subject, favourite movie (if applicable), what languages they spoke, a list of their friends and enemies…and anything else that seemed relevant to the story.
I will say, that those things alone don’t always help you fully understand the voice of your character, which I feel is just as important as knowing what sort of story you want to tell about them.
This article goes on in more detail about the other components that one must consider when raising the stakes, which as I mentioned, require you to understand who your character is. They talk about using the same questions for the stories antagonist, and also looking at things like “is there a time limit for the character” or how a character’s fear of something might cause them to question their goal.
The next article I looked at was by NY Book Editors, titled, How to Raise the Stakes in Your Novel and Create a Gripping Story. This article starts off by warning about the dangers of raising the stakes too much, or piling them on so heavy that things like characterization completely get overlooked by the author. This is definitely an important thing to point out, as when discussing the previous articles, I myself spent a great length of this post emphasizing that characterization and raising the stakes work hand in hand. There needs to be balanced. If the reader has no reason to care about the characters in the story, why should they care that a giant monster is about to devour them?
I have read books where the characters just fall flat. It is just as disappointing as a book where the plot seems to drag on and on for what seems like years. It takes time and practice, but finding a good middle ground is definitely the ideal. I know that as a reader, I need to care about a character in order to care about what happens to them in the story, otherwise I get bored. In a manga I reviewed a little while back, I was extremely bored with the leading character. I could care less if she ended up with the male lead at the end of the series. The side character’s however, were interesting. I’ve been debating on whether or not I’ll continue the series SIMPLY because of them. The issue here is that as a reader, I’m debating. You don’t want your readers to debate whether or not they’ll drop your story. You want them to like it…and having a balance between the stakes and the characters allows for a satisfying read.
The next article, by The Creative Penn touches upon the same thing, but more so in regards to how creating tension in your books, can help to drive up sales. Obviously if you are publishing your work this comes into play, however I personally don’t like to look at my books in terms of sales while I’m still in the stages of writing. I like to enjoy my books, so I look at them from a readers perspective. I always write what I want to read. To me looking at my work, as someone who reads books (usually in the same genres), is the best way to determine whether or not the tension is strong enough. Of course, once you’ve gone through and edited yourself, you’ll pass the manuscript on to your editor, or beta readers or your agent (or even just a friend) for the final test.
Still, regardless of my personal feelings toward that, I agree 100% that as the article states, you want the book to be good enough that readers will recommend it to one another.
I’m always on Twitter or Instagram recommending books. I work part-time in a bookstore, the majority of my job is recommending books! Depending on the genre or section, each of us that work there, know someone on the floor who has extensive knowledge of something that might pique the customers interest.
This article by The Creative Penn, talks about creating “reader glue” which to them means that when a book is well written (the stakes and characters are balanced, etc) it creates an, “intense emotional experience.”
The final article I looked at from WHW (Writers Helping Writers) mentioned how the main plot and sub-plots will have different stakes, each contributing to the story in their own way. I liked that they pointed this out, as I didn’t see much mention of this in the previous articles.
In books that I read about the writing craft back in middle school, specifically those about crafting novels, I paid a lot of close attention to the chapters on sub-plots and their significance to the overall tension of the story. It’s usually within the sub-plots that the reader gets a closer look at the character and how they react to different situations.
I always think about those adventure stories, like The Hunger Games series, where there is this underlying romance sub-plot. Although it plays a small role in comparison to the whole “try not to die!” aspect of the books, it is still significant as it shows the readers how far Katnis is willing to go in order to survive.
Her playing into the wants of the viewers by pretending to fall in love with Peeta so that she can not only keep herself alive, but him as well tells the reader a lot more about who she is, versus what she herself says in the narration. She pretends to love Peeta to keep him alive even though she knows that manipulating him will break his heart.
This one sub-plot tells the reader that Katnis would rather not have to go through the games alone, we even see this with her connection to Rue. Although she keeps much of her thoughts to herself, she is protective. In Rue she sees her younger sister, the one who she would do anything for. In Peeta she sees warmth and innocence. Innocence is probably the one thing Katnis is constantly trying to protect and it might be because she by participating in the games has lost her own. She’s no longer naive about the world around her. She sees the evil being done and the only option she has is to survive…but what is she willing to do to Rue and Peeta, who remind her of the life she once had?
All of these things build tension. A characters actions in relation to those around them throughout different sub-plots.
I personally think that the whole love-triangle thing clouded aspects of Katnis’ character (mainly because of the Team Peeta versus Team Gale), as throughout we constantly see Katnis losing more and more of this innocence in the sub-plots of the three books. Who she ends up with isn’t insignificant but it does show us how deeply Katnis was affected by her participation in the games. She sacrifices more than just love…she sacrifices herself. She loses everything that made her, who she was before she entered the games.
I really like this example and I could go on and on elaborating on it, breaking down each of the books and how the sub-plots contribute to Katnis’ characterization but I won’t. The idea here is mainly to provide an example of how by balancing the stakes both within the main and sub-plots with the character development (who they are at the start and who they are at the end), creates a story that readers will enjoy and probably come back to.
In my case, I’ve made reference to books in this post to use as examples. Someday, someone (maybe even me), could use your book to do the same thing. They might revisit their favourite passages or gush about it to a friend.
I can definitely say that the parts of books that we readers tend to recall are the points where the author raised the stakes.
When building my character’s personalities and backstories I like to include as many details as possible. I’ve created character profile pages like the ones in manga, which usually include a list of things like favourite foods, blood type, star sign etc. Not only is it fun but it also allows me to spend quality time with each individual character.
I love watching my characters go from being an idea to a fully fleshed out being…well fully fleshed out on paper (haha).
Each of these types of questions gives me a chance to think about who my characters are. What makes them happy? What frustrates them? Do they have trouble sleeping at night?
I may never use this information, but I find knowing it allows the story to progress naturally. I don’t have to think hard about how each character would respond because I’ve taken the time to get to know them as if they were a close friend.
So…do my character’s have any special hobbies or interests?
Nicholas likes to draw. Many of the things he’s good at he considers hobbies as they were things he used to do with his grandmother. He’s always done them, so he hasn’t acknowledged that he might actually have a talent for them. He can also play music by ear, something that he picked up as a little kid. These are things that actually come up in the novel.
He also loves to explore and make friends with small animals. Mainly frogs or rabbits. He’s known in his family for bringing home new “pets” every once in a while.
Rose likes to read. She’s the type of person who can’t go into a library or a bookstore without walking out with a book. She’ll reread her favourites over and over and will even come up with her own stories to share with her family. Aside from that, Rose collects ribbons that she uses to accessorize with her outfits.
I’m not exactly sure why I always associated her character with ribbons but from day one that’s how I pictured her. I like that she’s a talkative, fashionable bookworm. Even when she reads, likes to read with or to someone. She’s what my Nana would call a little chatterbox…but it’s one of my favourite thing about her character.
Roland plays the piano. He can also play the guitar but it isn’t his favourite instrument. He just likes how portable it is. He quit playing before he reached his twenties and gave up on the idea of being a professional musician. Prior to that he dabbled in writing his own music and was forced by his teacher to sing solos at the school’s Frost pageant. Before that he was shy about playing or singing in public but after he gained a lot of confidence. Performing made him really happy. Now he claims not to have time for it but every so often he’ll sit down and play something.
He doesn’t look anything like Soul when he plays…I thought I should add that. Although it would be funny if he hunched over like that and smiled at the keys.
Dianna likes to travel. She did a lot of it while she was in college, especially between semesters. She’s very adventurous and loves meeting new people, which is mentioned in the first book. She even does some travelling in it! She doesn’t have her own car but if she did, she’d probably spend most of her time on the road. A lot of the time she travels by train. She also learned a new language while she was in university, which comes in handy (but no spoilers!).
I’m not sure if anyone other than Peter would consider this a hobby…but he really likes hanging out at the pub. He likes the food, the people and the music. I don’t believe he’s actually shown hanging out there in the first book but it does mention it a few times. A lot of the time he’ll go there to catch up with old classmates or to kill time. Unlike some of the other character’s Peter has a lot of time on his hands, so he spends it either doing something stupid with Roland (like most bored people), going on the odd date or hanging out at the pub.
Well, I’d say it’s time to get back to work! I’ve been back and forth between recording, work and catching up on my TBR list (which never stops growing!).
I really want to see how much of the sequel I can knock out before the end of the month. If you’d like to see some of my process, I posted some writing vlogs on my YouTube channel.
This one features me painting my home studio, a portion of my manga collection and my sister’s Persona 5 posters haha. The sparkly guy in the thumbnail was made by my niece. He’s a love bug.
I often call myself an “over-editor” but I’ve started to wonder if over-editing is actually a thing. Way back I posted a video on my editing process. I broke it down into its simplest form because I know some folks would rather get a quick run down versus spend 40 minutes watching a video when they could be working on their manuscript. Still, that video which I believe is around 4 minutes doesn’t accurately show how much time I actually spend editing.
For me editing also takes part in the planning stages of the novel. At this point you’re researching and deciding what to include in your book. That to me is the same as when you decide to cut chapters or make word substitutions later on when your manuscript is complete.
Then there’s the “okay I’m finished writing” editing…which is reading through your first draft. I do three rounds of this edit. Sometimes more. I want to make sure I didn’t miss any “stupid errors” as I call them, which is basically spelling, grammar or major plot holes. These tend to be the mistakes I made while staying up till 3 am to write after working all day.
This editing also familiarizes me with the text because I am forced to read it over multiple times. I also try to take notes while editing, however I make more notes while working with another editor or a beta-reader. Notes from other peoples feedback is extremely beneficial and I tend to keep it to enhance not only my current work in progress, but all my future projects as well. It can be difficult to realize what areas you need to work on and to top it off you also learn where your strengths are!
But is over-editing a thing? After writing and revising this manuscript as many times as I have…personally I’ve lost count. I’d say to keep things simple I’ve gone over it about 8 times in total. 3 times on my own with the initial first draft. This being the 3rd now while editing with my editor…which makes 6 and within those 3 I read over it on my 3rd edit two extra times before sending it back to my editor yesterday. So yes. 8. Math.
I suppose over-editing could be a thing but to me I’m only doing what I feel is necessary. If it feels like something is off or needs to be corrected, I find a solution for it (or in some cases scrap it and start fresh). To me that is all apart of the editing process…I think however there are probably more efficient ways of editing ones book but each of us are different and will benefit from different forms of editing. I know some folks who don’t edit their own work at all. I simply prefer to edit mine before giving it to someone else to read because I want it to feel “reader friendly”/”ready.”
As a reader I absolutely hate being thrown off by a random spelling error in a book. This has happened more than I’d like to admit. It’s like having someone pinch you while you’re in the middle of a good dream! Little things like that get to me. It doesn’t make me stop reading, but it can pull me from the experience temporarily if I have to go back and reread the same sentence to figure out what’s going on simply because a single word was spelled incorrectly.
I’ve seen this in a lot of traditionally published books I’ve read lately…more so in comics. For me with the comics it is more frustrating simply because it literally lists every person who edited the book, and I’m like “there were 5 spelling mistakes.” One I can forgive but 5? And by a larger company…yikes. Especially since those books are expensive! I love them…and they’ve brought me so much joy over the years but I can’t get over how the last 3 books I’ve purchased from them have had around 3 to 5 spelling errors each. Which then while I’m editing (which I’m almost always editing…unless I’m writing) makes me extremely paranoid about spelling errors in my own manuscript.
So…maybe to answer my own question: There’s editing, not editing at all and editing for hours on end because you’ve suffered from editorial errors as a reader and don’t want to do that to anyone else.
Honestly if I find spelling mistakes in my manuscript I get a little cranky. I’d say I’m fairly calm when it comes to my projects but if I accidentally spell “peach” as “peech” I’m not very peachy.
Anyway, if you’re doing NANOWRIMO this year, how is it going?
For the month of October I wanted to start introducing my character’s. So on my instagram since it’s #drawtober I’ve decided that for 31 days I’ll be drawing my characters using a variety of prompts. Yesterday’s drawing wasn’t one that I really thought through. I ended up drawing something completely different that I’d initially planned, however going forward I’ll be sticking to my schedule.
I’ll also be doing a blog prompt OC-tober as well! You’re welcome to participate. I’d love to check your your posts, so be sure to leave links to them in the comments for me!
I’m very excited about this and I’m looking forward to taking a bit of time each day to do something creative.
Anyway, here are my prompts! The first list is for drawing and the second is for blogging (or vlogging, whichever your prefer).
2. With a pumpkins
3. On their day off
4. Reading a book
5. With their best friend/squad
6. Eating their favourite food
7. With their family
8. As a toddler
9. Saying their catchphrase
10. Enjoying their favourite drink
11. In Love
12. As a villain
13. In mourning
14. Playing an instrument
15. In their happy place
16. As a student
17. Getting ready for bed
18. With their least favourite person
20. Being mischievous
21. Trying something new
22. At a Fall formal
23. Lost in the woods
24. With a black cat
25. Meeting a ghost
26. Singing their favourite song
27. As your favourite TV/movie character
28. Doing something crazy
29. In their favourite outfit
30. In a fun costume
31. At a party
As for my blog posts. I’ve decided to use some different prompts.
Novel Inspo board.
Create character interview questions
Character Mood Playlist: Chill Vibes
Character Outfit Board: Fall
Interview a character
Write a poem about your character
Describe one of your favourite moments in the book
Which authors inspire you?
Write a song about your character
Interview another character
What is your writing process like?
Character Mood Playlist: Sad Vibes/What is your character thankful for?
Character Outfit Board: Formal
What is your favourite scene in the book?
What are your top 5 quotes from your book?
Interview another character
Describe an average day in the life of your character
Character Menu: If your character had a restaurant what would they serve?
Do the 16 personalities quiz as one of your characters. Tell us the results!
Character Mood Playlist: Romantic Vibes
What was your character like as a child (if they’re a child what will they be like as an adult?)
Who is the biggest influence in your character’s life and why?
Character Outfit Board: Date night
Write a brief scene between your character and someone they admire.
Write a brief scene between your character and someone who hurt them.
Interview another character.
Character Mood Playlist: Angry Vibes.
Character Bedroom Board (show us how your character would decorate their personal space).
Character Bookshelf (show us what types of books your character might enjoy reading).
Come up with a tagline for your book (if you don’t already have one).
Create a Chapter Playlist and describe what your character might be doing today!
My editor got back to me about the scene replacement and she loved it!
I am planning to talk about this in my next vlog a little bit, but I’ve also been debating on contributing to a discussion going around the writing community. I might and I might not…simply because I’ve got a lot in my schedule right now.
Now that I’ve gotten the okay from my editor, I can insert it this scene into my manuscript and move on to the next step, which I’m really excited about. She also gave me one thing to fix with the scene, which is to put more emphasis on the significance of a certain object (sorry no spoilers!) but other than that, it was all positive.
I’m glad she liked it because I enjoyed writing the scene. It took me a few days to work through it but in the end I really liked it, so to get such positive feedback on it is fantastic.
I have some scenes that I’m trying to build up at the moment so my next editing goal will be to focus on those.
I do a lot of brainstorming and read scenes over a couple times before I add to them. I find this helpful. I usually read what happens in the scene prior and the one that follows, just to make sure what I’m adding (even if its just a few lines of dialogue) works within the manuscript.
“Yes, fiction is fiction for a reason but….” Please note that the movies, books and television shows featured in this video are not all good or all bad examples. There will always be flaws in fiction. I selected these because they are more familiar.