writing tips

It’s All in the Perspective

>You’ve heard it a million times–half full or half-empty? Eeyore or Tigger?

I’m working on a transition, spending more time in a Tigger state of mind than in an Eeyore state of mind. It’s tough. Eeyore has been ingrained in me all my life, and he doesn’t like being in a cage while Tigger bounces around outside the bars blowing rasperries at him.

So after forty years of seeing the glass half-empty, I’m trying to take a new perspective and see it has half-full.

I ran across this article with it’s gleaming little gems and wanted to share with other Tigger-challenged writers out there.

From Robyn DeHart:

“Take the dreaded synopsis for example. How many of us have heard it called
such a thing? The word “dreaded” conjures up images of torture and pain,
something that is difficult or impossible to accomplish. Before I even began to write my first synopsis, I expected it to be horrible. Dreaded. And with these expectations, it was rather dreadful. “

“Another example is the “sagging middle”. When I started my first book I looked to that middle with trepidation. I was terrified. I studied cures to fix the certainty of my sagging middle. I can’t really remember the middle in that first book or whether or not it was particularly difficult or saggy, but I’ve written enough now to know that the middle is actually my favorite part.

What’s your favorite (or least favorite as the case may be) “saying” regarding your writing?

Robyn goes on to echo one of my own firm beliefs when she says:

“I’m a firm believer in embracing your own way to write, but I am also a firm believer in growth and education. I think writers who live their lives by “I cant’s”, “I onlys”, or “I nevers” do themselves an injustice. You never know what will or won’t work for you until you try. Try something before you make an opinion about it, and don’t allow another person’s experiences color your own. Keep an open mind – a mind willing and ready to learn. Make your own decisions about things like synopses and middles; the last thing you need is to question your ability because things aren’t like they’re “supposed” to be.”

Thanks for the reminder, Robyn!

>It’s All in the Perspective

>You’ve heard it a million times–half full or half-empty? Eeyore or Tigger?

I’m working on a transition, spending more time in a Tigger state of mind than in an Eeyore state of mind. It’s tough. Eeyore has been ingrained in me all my life, and he doesn’t like being in a cage while Tigger bounces around outside the bars blowing rasperries at him.

So after forty years of seeing the glass half-empty, I’m trying to take a new perspective and see it has half-full.

I ran across this article with it’s gleaming little gems and wanted to share with other Tigger-challenged writers out there.

From Robyn DeHart:

“Take the dreaded synopsis for example. How many of us have heard it called
such a thing? The word “dreaded” conjures up images of torture and pain,
something that is difficult or impossible to accomplish. Before I even began to write my first synopsis, I expected it to be horrible. Dreaded. And with these expectations, it was rather dreadful. “

“Another example is the “sagging middle”. When I started my first book I looked to that middle with trepidation. I was terrified. I studied cures to fix the certainty of my sagging middle. I can’t really remember the middle in that first book or whether or not it was particularly difficult or saggy, but I’ve written enough now to know that the middle is actually my favorite part.

What’s your favorite (or least favorite as the case may be) “saying” regarding your writing?

Robyn goes on to echo one of my own firm beliefs when she says:

“I’m a firm believer in embracing your own way to write, but I am also a firm believer in growth and education. I think writers who live their lives by “I cant’s”, “I onlys”, or “I nevers” do themselves an injustice. You never know what will or won’t work for you until you try. Try something before you make an opinion about it, and don’t allow another person’s experiences color your own. Keep an open mind – a mind willing and ready to learn. Make your own decisions about things like synopses and middles; the last thing you need is to question your ability because things aren’t like they’re “supposed” to be.”

Thanks for the reminder, Robyn!

TIP: Less Is More

>I subscribe to a lot of lists that send me articles on writing. I’ve gained quite a bit of knowledge over the years from these aricles as well as hours and hours and hours of practice. I often think how I’d like to share some of this knowledge with other writers, but just as quickly remember that instruction is definitely not my forte.

So, I’ve decided to offer up some tips as described by those who are talented instructors echoing my thoughts and feelings on the subject.

Today’s tip: Less Is More.

I find this a lot when critiquing, typically with young writers–not young as in age, but young as in length of writing career. I recognize it because I, too, made this mistake as a young writer. I sometimes still make this mistake and am constantly cutting in edits and revisions.

The culprit? 1) Not trusting your reader. They’re much smarter than we give them credit for. Our audience is filled with seasoned romance readers. They understand the nuances of romance, they can read between the lines, they anticipate plot lines and character arcs. We don’t have to explain it all to them.

2) Not trusting yourself. When you don’t trust the strength of your writing, you tend to over-explain, over-simplify and repeat yourself. If you’re truly showing and not telling, you won’t need to over-write.

Here are a few tips from Caro Clarke:

“…since you don’t want your readers to start with the wrong impression [of your character], you pile up descriptive scenes as soon as the story opens.

“…personal appearance matters only when it influences a character’s motivation or has an impact upon the story.

“…where description is necessary, avoid a solid, dull block of descriptive prose by integrating description with action, or by having the description filtered through the eyes of a character.”

“…give the reader the fewest descriptive words necessary to convey the scene.”

“…a basic rule of writing is to have nothing that does not propel the narrative, either because it furthers the action, or because it illuminates character within that action. Two people rushing through the night to the hospital is action, two people arguing in the car as they rush to the hospital is character development within action.”

One other tip I heard somewhere in my writing travels was regarding description: Don’t use more description in your manuscript in any one place than the character could take in or recognize within two minutes time under the setting circumstances.

Do you have tips on Less Is More that you can share?

>TIP: Less Is More

>I subscribe to a lot of lists that send me articles on writing. I’ve gained quite a bit of knowledge over the years from these aricles as well as hours and hours and hours of practice. I often think how I’d like to share some of this knowledge with other writers, but just as quickly remember that instruction is definitely not my forte.

So, I’ve decided to offer up some tips as described by those who are talented instructors echoing my thoughts and feelings on the subject.

Today’s tip: Less Is More.

I find this a lot when critiquing, typically with young writers–not young as in age, but young as in length of writing career. I recognize it because I, too, made this mistake as a young writer. I sometimes still make this mistake and am constantly cutting in edits and revisions.

The culprit? 1) Not trusting your reader. They’re much smarter than we give them credit for. Our audience is filled with seasoned romance readers. They understand the nuances of romance, they can read between the lines, they anticipate plot lines and character arcs. We don’t have to explain it all to them.

2) Not trusting yourself. When you don’t trust the strength of your writing, you tend to over-explain, over-simplify and repeat yourself. If you’re truly showing and not telling, you won’t need to over-write.

Here are a few tips from Caro Clarke:

“…since you don’t want your readers to start with the wrong impression [of your character], you pile up descriptive scenes as soon as the story opens.

“…personal appearance matters only when it influences a character’s motivation or has an impact upon the story.

“…where description is necessary, avoid a solid, dull block of descriptive prose by integrating description with action, or by having the description filtered through the eyes of a character.”

“…give the reader the fewest descriptive words necessary to convey the scene.”

“…a basic rule of writing is to have nothing that does not propel the narrative, either because it furthers the action, or because it illuminates character within that action. Two people rushing through the night to the hospital is action, two people arguing in the car as they rush to the hospital is character development within action.”

One other tip I heard somewhere in my writing travels was regarding description: Don’t use more description in your manuscript in any one place than the character could take in or recognize within two minutes time under the setting circumstances.

Do you have tips on Less Is More that you can share?