Stark Writing Mad Podcast #1

The first of a recurring series of stories by and about writers desperately trying to write away their insanity. This week, we don’t have much, since we’re still feeling our way around the community. So, we’re featuring CJ Casey’s magic realism short story “Mrs Shaw.” You can also find this on the Way Too Fantasy blog, or here.

In the future, I’d like to add other readers and writers. Please, if you have anything you’d like me to feature, or if you’d like to join while we talk about stories and writing, drop a line. I would love to talk to you.

For now, set aside a mere fifteen minutes so I can tell you the somewhat autobiographical story of “Mrs Shaw.”

The English Language On Word Order Depends

Reblogged from Live to Write – Write to Live:

Click to visit the original post

  • Click to visit the original post

          The English language on word order depends.

If that sentence doesn’t convince you, try this:

Take the adverb “only” and place it in different positions in the following sentence.

He said, “I love you.” (Nice thought.)

Only he said, “I love you.” (No one else said it.)

He only said, “I love you.” (He said nothing else.)

He said, “Only I love you.” (No one else does.)

Read more… 531 more words

I’d add that half of the skill of writing poetry (or poetic prose) is knowing what you’re doing when you play around with modifiers.

from Stark Writing Crazy

Popcorn and Rubber-Necking: NaNoWriMo Survival Guide For Spectators

This might be more in line with yesterday’s topic, but this is a great article on how to survive NaNoWriMo when all of your writing support group seems to be doing it. If you want more of the same, check out Charlotte Cuevas’s excellent article on the same subject. Honestly, that might have been what pushed me over the edge from ‘Thinking about not doing it and feeling guilty’ to ‘Not doing it and still being productive.’

Popcorn and Rubber-Necking


Workshopping: Perdido: Un Sueño

Today I’m posting information about workshopping and editing writing. Around about the time I finished my fourth full-length novel (okay, the first was just over 60,000 words but I called it a novel, anyway) I realised that I should probably actually start editing them. That is easily the part of writing that I have the most trouble with, and I don’t think I’m alone. So, I’m posting this story, a surreal fantasy story about an American (well, a USAnian) as an experiment in workshopping. Read it. Tear it apart. Help me make it better.

And it’s not just me who will be posting here. If you have something that you think is decent but just can’t seem to push over that final-draft finish line, send it to me and we’ll put it up. Maybe we can make this space an informal writing group. While every writer is different, I don’t think I’m alone in having issues with editing my own work… but I can edit other people’s work alright. I’m curious to see what the rest of you are working on, too.

Perdido:  Un Sueño




Creating Awkward Characters

No, I’m not talking about what my parents did years ago. This is an article by Kathleen Hale about how she realistically created a socially awkward character for her upcoming novel without falling into either the “I’m a loner, Dottie, a Rebel” or the Manic Pixie Dreamgirl stereotypes. Not only does she start with a good write-up, the excerpt follows along with her suggestions… not always the case when writers write a ‘how-to.’ Also, I’m curious to read the rest of the book, now.

One more article on Inspiration and Writing…

… and then I have a date with a book and a large mug of tea. This article is by Richard Nordquist and it’s not so much food for thought as it is a lush, wonderful buffet.

“Had I mentioned to someone around 1795 that I planned to write, anyone with any sense would have told me to write for two hours every day, with or without inspiration. Their advice would have enabled me to benefit from the ten years of my life I totally wasted waiting for inspiration.”
(Stendhal [Marie-Henri Beyle], quoted by Enrique Vila-Matas in Bartleby & Co, New Directions, 2004)

The whole article is worth reading and bookmarking.