Rules for Getting the Story Down
1. Write it fast, fix it later.
2. Commit to writing 16 ½ minutes per day or 3 hours per week. If it is easier foryou, commit to writing 3 pages a day.
3. Quality is more important than quantity. If you only get one paragraph donebut it conveys your feelings and paints a picture the reader can see, then it isgood.
4. Write stand-alone anecdotes, stories or chapters. You can connect them laterwith a theme, but if you don't the "pearls" will still have great value.
5. Make sure each piece has a "hook" which brings the reader in, a "middle"which gives the necessary information and the "end" which teaches a moral,makes us laugh or delivers the point. The end is usually tied in with the hook.
6. Don't worry about literary style. Write your story as if you were sitting at thekitchen table swapping tales. Be yourself.
7. Include lots of details. Remember what was going on in society, the family,and the neighborhood as well as physically and emotionally with the peopleinvolved in the story.
8. Remember the five senses. Sight, sound, smell, taste, touch and feel. Help thereader relive the memory with you.
9. Edit out 10%. You will be amazed at how much better it is when you take outthe extra words and phrases. Now edit out another 10%.
10. Let others read it for content, grammar and flow. Listen to their suggestions. If one or two people tell you the same thing it is an opinion, however if 3 ormore tell you it is an observation that you should definitely consider.
11. Don't allow others or yourself to criticize too much. You are your own worstcritic. It doesn't have to be perfect or to please everyone. It just has to bedone. Many generations will be grateful you took the time, energy and risk torecord some small part of history.
12. Re-write or correct passages. Let it sit for a few days and then you may wantto tighten it some more.
13. Include some memorabilia or photos to bring the manuscript to life. You mayfind copies of newspaper articles, letters, cartoons, maps etc. that will addinterest and information.
14. Finish the thing! It will never be completely done but bring it to a logicalconclusion and be able to let it go and start on another project.
You are a writer -never forget it- just keep writing!
If you are interested in getting the answers to these and otherquestions about life story writing, please contact us firstname.lastname@example.org and sign up for a tele-classand our FREE e-zine: "The Artichoke" - finding the heart of thestory in the journey of life..
©Judy H. Wright, Personal and Oral Historian - www.artichokepress.com
Getting Published Is Different For Everyone: Two Paths Among Many
One obvious question that can get overlooked in the process of seeking publication is, Why do you want to publish this book, article, story or poem? Most likely, the answer involves some combination of artistic or spiritual vision, desire for recognition, need to communicate an idea or body of knowledge, feeling a compelling urge to shift consciousness around a particular topic, seeing a knowledge gap in the general society and feeling called to fill it, and of course receiving a little or a lot of financial compensation for one's efforts.
Creative Writing Tips - Have You Established Your Main Character At The Start?
In the beginning of your story you have to grab your readers' interest and sustain it till the end. Our hook is our character. Readers keep on reading to find out more about the character. To see what he'll do in the story; how he'll solve his problems. What his goals are and whether he'll achieve them.
Is Someone Plagiarizing Your Work?
About two weeks ago I received an article submissionthat immediately attracted my attention. The title wasidentical to the title of an article I wrote and whichwas published in 'WebProNews' in May 1999.
Good writing is like sex. Two people are involved ? the writer and the reader. Bad sex usually satisfies only one person, most preferably, the writer ? the person who leads. Good sex not only satisfies both people, it pleasures them. So, like sex, writing must have all vital points that reach unto this pleasure ? movement, foreplay, sensitivity, rhythm and climax. When a writer carefully and logically includes all these aspects, the reader is pleasured, satiated and gratified, but when a writer ignores them, the reader feels that the writer is impotent and he abandons him after that one night. Good writing is about making a person desire to read.
How Long is a Chapter?
How long should your chapters be?
Hey Cient, this is Me! Find Your Writing Voice and Sell Yourself
In a crowded market, clients will be seeking personality as they read what you've written -- they'll click right past pages that feel "been there, read that." They're looking for a voice that says, "Hey, client, this is me!"
Use These 3 Editing Tips to Ensure Your Writing Hits the Bull?s-Eye
The first step in the writing process is to put your ideas down on paper. Once you have text to work with, the second step is to revise what you have written to make it as clear, accurate and powerful as you can. The final step is to edit your work carefully.
Talent or Toil
As in all endeavors, toil is necessary to succeed and more so in writing. Work or its habit is the mother of talent. A writer must labor over his craft until it becomes strength, and the only way the writer can develop this efficacy is by working at it, sitting at one's desk or computer and writing.
What You May Not Learn In College... (Part Two)
If you become a writer for any publication, private business, public entity, non-profit organization and/or large corporation that employs more than one editor, you may find that your job description, expected contributions, desired writing style and similar "guidelines" for your position - are subject to change daily/weekly/unpredictably - according to each editor's mood and/or personal preferences.
On Giving and Receiving Feedback
Writing is a personal and introspective process. To share with another what we wrote is to risk. Some of us are more hidden than others, some of us tolerate risk better than others. When you critique someone's work you don't know where on this continuum the writer stands.
Tips for First Time Authors : 2 Easy Steps to Make Your First Book a Success
Congratulations on writing your first book. That is quite an accomplishment. Many people dream of writing a book, but you actually did it. Way to go.
Writing from Home: It Can Be Great and Not-So-Great for Mothers
I went to school to be a teacher. In fact, I have a B.S. in Education, not journalism.
Freelance or Staff
There is no doubt that a staff writer enjoys advantages not availed by the freelancer. However, there are benefits available to the freelancer that a staff writer can never expect.
Top 5 Rules of English Grammar
Communication is effective when we follow certain rules. These rules make the written words understood. A writer should make the reader's job easier by communicating what he or she wants to communicate. If you also want to write, pay respect to your readers. Don't take them for granted. Learning and understanding the basic rules of English Grammar, you will surely be able to avoid ill-formed, confusing sentences. Hence, following and applying the rules of English Grammar and thereby producing a good writing can help the readers save their time from trying desperately to guess what you mean. This article covers the top 5 rules of English Grammar.
71 Ways For A Writer To Make Money
There are so many ways for writers to make good money by writing. Some people love to write, even as a hobby. You can turn your writing skills into income. Here are a brief list for your reference.
Sell More Books With a Powerful Back Cover
Did you know that your back cover information is, after the cover, the best way to sell more books? And, that most authors, emerging and experienced, miss this opportunity to engage more potential buyers?
Celebrating Writing and Life
Every morning I excitedly get out of bed. Just a few minutes of goals and visions for the day swirl in my head. No lingering for me, no alarm, no wishful notes too. Just me in my night gown with no hat.
Freelance Writing: How Many Regular Clients Should You Have?
This is a tough question for every freelance writer. For me, the worst working scenario is when a few weeks go by and all my work comprises one-off jobs for small clients who never become repeat customers.
Does Your Theme Contain Character, Conflict, Resolution?
Creative Writing Tips ?
Which Comes First - Short Story Or Novel?
A writer writes. Bet you've heard that one before. Or maybe this one: if you want to be a writer, first you write one word, then you write the next.Both of these old clichés are true, of course. That's how they turned into clichés. But there's another dilemma a beginning creative writer often finds himself facing: do I write short stories or novels? Writing novels is almost always the end goal. You'll find exceptions---such as Ray Bradbury and Harlan Ellison, who primary built their careers writing short stories---but the vast majority of successful storytellers are novelists.The real question then is this: do I jump into novel writing with both feet or do I test the waters first by writing short stories? Generally, beginning writers don't understand that these are two very different forms. They see writing a short story as easier, less intimidating. At a cursory glance, it's hard to argue with that. But if you ask a writer successful in both forms, he'll almost always tell you that short stories pose a much more difficult task.Why?Because you're working on a small canvas. The novel is a wall mural. It's expansive. You have time to fully develop your characters. There's room for movement, for growth and change, for surprises and insights, for looking back as well as looking forward. The short story is an 8x10 landscape. It's a moment in time when your character faces a critical point in his or her existence, a moment that changes everything. In a glimpse, readers must believe in your characters, in the crisis they face, in the choices they make. It's a tiny, one-dimensional surface that must appear three-dimensional.With that understanding, starting out writing short stories can still be a good proving ground for a writer. You learn quickly what works and what doesn't. You learn to write tight, to pack as much meat into as few words as possible. You learn to capture the core make up of your characters. All very valuable lessons for both the short story writer and the novelist.
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