Monday, December 31, 2012
Thursday, December 13, 2012
Monday, December 03, 2012
Only a mediocre writer is always at his best.
- William Somerset Maugham
I have rewritten- often several times- every word I have ever written. My pencils outlast their erasures.
- Vladimir Nabokov
Writing is 1 percent inspiration, and 99 percent elimination.
- Louise Brooks
When you sell a man a book, you don't sell him 12 ounces of paper and ink and glue - you sell him a whole new life.
- Christopher Morley
A good many young writers make the mistake of enclosing a stamped, self-addressed envelope, big enough for the manuscript to come back in. This is too much of a temptation to the editor.
- Ring Lardner
Publishing a volume of verse is like dropping a rose petal down the Grand Canyon and waiting for the echo.
- Don Marquis
If I don't write to empty my mind, I go mad.
- Lord Byron
What is written without effort is in general read without pleasure.
- Samuel Johnson
Substitute "damn" every time you're inclined to write "very;" your editor will delete it and the writing will be just as it should be.
- Mark Twain
The art of writing is the art of applying the seat of the pants to the seat of the chair.
- Mary Heaton Vorse
We don't write what we know. We write what we wonder about.
- Richard Peck
Good things, when short, are twice as good.
- Baltasar Gracian
Monday, November 26, 2012
Monday, November 19, 2012
“Bronwyn Alessia St. Vincent Clare!”
Four names, five words, one pissed off werewolf. The math in this particular equation never came out in my favor.
--Raised by Wolves by Jennifer Lynn Barnes
Prayer candles flicker in my bedroom. The Scriptura Sancta lies discarded, pages crumpled, on my bed. Bruises mark my knees from kneeling on the tiles, and the Godstone in my navel throbs. I have been praying—no, begging—that King Alejandro de Vega, my future husband, will be ugly and old and fat.
--The Girl of Fire and Thorns by Rae Carson
It was 7 minutes after midnight. The dog was lying on the grass in the middle of the lawn in front of Mrs. Shear’s house. Its eyes were closed. It looked as if it was running on its side, the way dogs run when they think they are chasing a cat in a dream. But the dog was not running or asleep. The dog was dead. There was a garden fork sticking out of the dog. The points of the fork must have gone all the way through the dog and into the ground because the fork had not fallen over. I decided that the dog was probably killed with the fork because I could not see any other wounds in the dog and I do not think you would stick a garden fork into a dog after it had died for some other reason, like cancer, for example, or a road accident. But I could not be certain about this.
I went through Mrs. Shear’s gate, closing it behind me. I walked onto her lawn and knelt beside the dog. I put my hand on the muzzle of the dog. It was still warm.
--The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-time by Mark Haddon
Monday, November 12, 2012
- Where the story begins.
- The first sentence.
- The first paragraph.
- The first page.
I’ll talk about the first two points today, then get to the other next week.
“It used to be a house.” --A Room On Lorelei Street by Mary Pearson
“We went to the moon to have fun, but the moon turned out to completely suck.” --Feed by M.T. Anderson
“I was seven the first time I was sent away.” --The Miles Between by Mary Pearson
“My name is India Opal Buloni, and last summer my daddy, the preacher, sent me to the store for a box of macaroni-and-cheese, some white rice, and two tomatoes and I came back with a dog.” --Because of Winn-Dixie by Kate DiCamillo
“I spent most of the summer wondering if I was adopted.”
Thursday, October 18, 2012
Monday, October 15, 2012
In the mean time, hope everyone had a great weekend!!
Thursday, October 11, 2012
Monday, October 08, 2012
Thursday, October 04, 2012
Monday, October 01, 2012
Basically, he's concerned that literature will be swallowed up by mainstream fiction, because that's what most bloggers talk about.
"If we make the main criteria good page-turning stories – if we prioritise unargued opinion over criticism – then I think literature will be harmed."
The problem is that literature isn't so easy to define. For example, Shakespeare is considered literature today, but when these plays were new they were written for the masses. I.E., mainstream. So who is to say that some mainstream fiction of today won't be considered the literature of the future? There are plenty of books out there that are good, page-turning stories that also have deep and important themes running through them.
He also said some pretty, erm, inflammatory things:
I'm not going to touch the 'not everyone's opinion is worth the same' because that's so obviously narrow-minded that nothing more needs to be said. That also comes through with the comment about books that are no good--this is another opinion, and people should be able to read whatever books they want to read. Not what critics dictate that they should read.
But this is what really puzzles me. He's saying here that the role of a critic and the role of a blogger are one and the same. I don't agree. Sure, some book bloggers might be trying to take on the role of critic, but that doesn't mean everyone is. I mean, I write book reviews and I try to critique the work in a diplomatic and professional manner, but that doesn't make me a critic. He says "literary criticism is...work, a technique, a skill." EXACTLY. I have not been trained to be a critic, and don't consider myself to be. I think most bloggers probably share this opinion.
Mostly, I think we set out to just talk about the books we've read. It's the same as having a conversation with a friend about books we've loved or hated--it just so happens that the 'friend' is everyone in the blogosphere. :) Since when is a conversation about books a bad thing?
Thursday, September 27, 2012
Monday, September 24, 2012
I Hate This Book So Much
I think every single writer out there has had this reaction to a book at some point. I know I have.
What do you do when you come across a book you hate? Do you put it down? Do you keep reading, hoping for redemption in the end? Do you shred it when you're done? Do you politely set it down and swear off the author's future books? Do tell!
Monday, September 17, 2012
So, hope you all have a great week, and I'll be back next monday. Wish me luck!
Monday, September 10, 2012
I do hope those of you reading will offer your thoughts on this story. If you like, you can read the original by clicking on the link above. The new version is below:
Tuesday, September 04, 2012
Publishing is Broken:
I'm going to go collapse in a chair and stare at the walls for a while...
Saturday, September 01, 2012
Every morning, A wakes in a different person’s body, a different person’s life. There’s never any warning about where it will be or who it will be. A has made peace with that, even established guidelines by which to live: Never get too attached. Avoid being noticed. Do not interfere.
It’s all fine until the morning that A wakes up in the body of Justin and meets Justin’s girlfriend, Rhiannon. From that moment, the rules by which A has been living no longer apply. Because finally A has found someone he wants to be with—day in, day out, day after day.
Deuce’s whole world has changed. Down below, she was considered an adult. Now, topside in a town called Salvation, she’s a brat in need of training in the eyes of the townsfolk. She doesn’t fit in with the other girls: Deuce only knows how to fight.
To make matters worse, her Hunter partner, Fade, keeps Deuce at a distance. Her feelings for Fade haven’t changed, but he seems not to want her around anymore. Confused and lonely, she starts looking for a way out.
Deuce signs up to serve in the summer patrols—those who make sure the planters can work the fields without danger. It should be routine, but things have been changing on the surface, just as they did below ground. The Freaks have grown smarter. They’re watching. Waiting. Planning. The monsters don’t intend to let Salvation survive, and it may take a girl like Deuce to turn back the tide.
To enter, fill out the form below, then come back on Saturday, September 29 to see if you've won. Good luck!
Tuesday, August 28, 2012
I thought the last Saturday in August was next weekend, not last weekend! Sorry about that...and thanks much to those of you who reminded me of the actual date. :)
Sooo, here's the winner of this awesome trilogy:
Congratulations! I'll get your books out to you asap. As for everyone else, stop by this Saturday to see what I'm giving away next month.
Monday, August 27, 2012
I have no post for you today, but I do have this Ted Talks gem. It's chock full of great stuff about story telling. Fair warning: there is kind of an inappropriate joke in the beginning, but after that it's all great stuff. If you don't want to hear the joke, you can read the transcript and skip it. The rest is totally worth it.
Andrew Stanton: The Clues To A Great Story
Monday, August 20, 2012
General Thoughts: This sounds like the start of a great adventure. I like Raven. She feels real, and we are solidly inside her head. There are a few moments where we're brought outside of her, which was a bit jarring, but that's easily fixed. I would have liked to know why they were being chased--I'm guessing Raven is a pirate and 'the law' is chasing her to bring her to justice. But why? What did she do? And why is it so important that she get away? I'd rather have this info up front, and then show insights or the incompetence of some of her crew later on.
But, overall, this is well written and sounds like a lot of fun. Keep going!!