JUNE Update: As Life Flows, It Goes. #amwriting #update


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It feels as if it’s been a while since I have posted a personal update. I would think a month, then again, I start writing and get lost at times, not realizing for instance, how far along we are in June. I hope everyone is having a fantastic month and is  looking forward to July and August, our summer here in Canada and many other places.

As many of you know, How Was Last Night For You, my novel is finished in first draft. In second draft, I have edited until about Chapter 6, but you’ll want to note, the finished version, will probably have more chapters than the thirty-one chapters, the first draft has. When I start to realize I’m at three-thousand words or over, I consider splitting the chapter if it’s possible. It isn’t always, but sometimes it is, I only have to insure I hook the reader into the following chapter. I have connected chapter 1 to all chapters proceeding it in first draft. If you wish to read, you can start here: Chapter 1

At the moment, I’m letting my novel sit for a couple of weeks. I’ve read you’re supposed to leave it months, but I feel separation anxiety when I think of leaving my could-be book, for so long. As it is, some of the first few chapters were originally written more than a year or two ago anyways, so I think it is fine for me to go back and edit those chapters. By the time I get to the end chapters, I’m certain it will be late August or September, so I think I’m okay for editing as a whole.

Some issues I want to work on is developing my main character Nina. I feel as the central character, and main point-of-view for the novel, she is a bit flat as a character. I’ve been reading and researching, and would like to give her greater depth. I believe her lover John develops as the story goes on and has depth, so does my antagonist Talise or Tia. Talise has an interesting background, and so does John. Nina needs work though. She is a flirt right now who believes in the paranormal, and that things occur that can’t always be rationally explained. She also believes the best of people, this can be a flaw for her as well.

One blog I read said that we need to be careful we don’t create our characters after ourselves. They might share bits of us, as our so called “darlings,” or our “children” in a sense; it follow that they would. But there are all kinds of people in life and in stories and they need distinctive features and personality traits. This blog suggested, giving your main character a trait which is opposite of one of yours, this immediately makes them different than you. It makes you think about your character in a significantly changed way. So I’m pondering this advice, one reason for the editing break.

Another thing I have been considering a great deal is setting and how it impacts characters and the story. In my novel, I have set this story in Adare, a small fictional city outside Vancouver, BC , Canada. Adare’s down town has a harbor where there is the Sirene Lake. Many events happen at this harbor and in downtown Adare, as well as by or at John’s house, which is beach front property. Although, I have changed much of what I told into dialogue, this isn’t possible with everything. A descriptive setting is still important. 

Funny enough, a great writing blog I follow, posted an article today about working “showing” into your setting. It is exactly what I needed to read, having your setting represent a characters state of mind or mood. Or setting showing certain character attributes. The article is called: Setting – Why A Picture is Worth A Thousand Words. I recommend the article and following Kristen Lamb’s blog. She also holds online courses and I thinking about taking her course on character and plotting, I believe it would be quite helpful. 

On a sad note, I lost my beta reader for my novel, so I’m working on doing corrections on my own, as well as comments you all have left. My plan is to do my best, then higher an editor to look through the whole novel in a substantiative manner, and after those corrections I can decide whether I want to self-publish or start sending off query letters on the outside hope I can get an agent. That’s the plan, but one day at a time.

I have also been submitting smaller works to be published. I have had some success with poetry, but not so with fiction. I’m searching through literary magazines, and other websites etc. which publish writer’s work, jotting down what each place wants in terms of style, writing, and submission standards. I enjoy the rejection emails which give you ways to improve your writing the most. Either way, a rejection email means they at least read your work and considered it. Many places who don’t even consider your writing, don’t send any rejection email. You get nothing. 

Submitting is an ongoing process, and I hope eventually to have some fiction pieces published. As well, I’m beginning my work on a Masters Application. Haven’t started yet, in the thinking stage. I’ll let you know how it goes. Application at UBC isn’t open until late summer so I have a bit of time.

Also, I’m hoping to go on a small vacation somewhere. I’m not sure where, but somewhere in Canada. Probably go somewhere with my Mom or my eldest brother. But I’m trying ‘adulting,’ in some places, putting money away every month for RRSP’s and got some extra life insurance/accident insurance, so if something ever happened to me, my parents and brothers are covered for cost. I want to be out of debt and put more of my money away. It’s difficult in as all budget.

Happy to visit a friend on Whyte Avenue tomorrow, at a favourite newly renovated Cafe called Block 1912. Also, attending Shakespeare in the Park at an amphitheatre outside on Thursday, seeing Loves Labour Lost. I’ve never read this Shakespeare play so I’m excited to see it. What is more exciting than Shakespeare, is Shakespeare, good friends, and beer. 

Working on the weightloss, slowly, it’s coming. I wish it were easier, but it’s not. Birthday’s are coming up in July, which makes dieting difficult. But I try. 

Have a great week! 

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©Mandibelle16. (2016) All Rights Reserved.

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Setting—Why a Picture is Worth a Thousand Words


Found this article extremely helpful. Using “show” not “tell” with setting. Puts things in perspective for me.

Kristen Lamb's Blog

Hmmmm. Must be Walmart. Hmmmm. Must be Walmart.

Today we are going to talk about setting and ways to use it to strengthen your writing and maybe even add in some dimension. Setting is more than a weather report. It can be a magnificent tool to deepen characters.

Setting Can Help Your Characterization

Setting can actually serve a dual role in that it can be not only the backdrop for your story, but it can also serve characterization through symbol.

We editors love to say, “Show. Don’t tell.” Okey dokey, here’s where setting can help you do just that.

THAT'S a desk with a story. "The menthol brings out the blueberry notes in the Yoplait…" THAT’S a desk with a story. “The menthol brings out the blueberry notes in the Yoplait…”

Say you have a character, Buffy, who is depressed. You could go on and on telling us she is blue and how she cannot believe her husband left her for the Scentsy lady, OR you can show us through setting.

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Flash Fiction for the Purposeful Practitioner:  “Cheater, cheater . . .Oh Baby.” #amwriting #fiction


Thanks to Roger Shipp for hosting FFftPP.

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http://www.pixebay.com

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” You never do anything halfway,” Lorna complained. “I used to think how wonderful it was that you were so committed to your research. Then, I realized you were so focused on it, everything and everyone else in your life became second place.” 

“That’s not true,” Kostos said. “I always took you out to various events I had to attend. I spent Sunday’s with you and our boys whenever I could. I’m positive we went on family vacations.”

Lorna sighed. “You don’t get it Kostos. You gave your family scraps, not the main focus of your attention.”

“I was discovering new ways to cure cancer. It’s a vital job and it takes a huge effort directing those technicians and researchers working under me, and securing more funding and grants. There were speeches to be made and proposals to be filled out. What’s more significant than curing cancer?” 

Lorna didn’t know how to maker her husband of thirty-years understand her anymore. She gazed past Kostos to her stunning blue pet parrot. Her friend of many years, Oliver. She wished it was only her and Oliver now.

“Don’t make me out to be the bad guy Kostos. I never kept you from your work. I supported you, accompanying you to all your events. I watched you spend time with strangers, more than you did your own kids.”

“What I don’t understand is where you were inbetween, when you weren’t at work, at meetings, home, or even at the gym. So many times I called to talk to you, to meet up with you as we used to do. But in the last ten-years, most every time I called, Jane would tell me you were out.” Lorna remarked.

“What are you accusing me of?” 

There was silence but for Oliver who drew himself up and squawked,  “Cheater, cheater. Oh baby, oh Simone. Cheater, cheater. If only I’d married you Simone. Cheater, cheater.” 

Lorna stared at Kostos, eyes wide, ” You brought Simone, your colleague here? To our home?”

“No, I wouldn’t cheat . . .”

“Cheater, cheater. Leaving Lorna for Simone. Cheater, cheater.” Oliver parroted.

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©Mandibelle16. (2016) All Rights Reserved.

Published Poetry On www.spillwords.com #amwriting #poetry 


Today I’m excited to share with you my first ‘published,’ piece of poetry not as a blogger or a guest post for another blog. The website which published my poetry is called Spillwords and I found them through Twitter.

Please take a look at the website there are many fantastic pieces of writing to explore. I know you’ve read this poem before a couple of times but I’m so pleased it became  published especially for my Grandma Reeder’s sake, as the poem is written for her. She is I believe, ninty-six-years-old and despite a few health issues this year, doing fantastic for her age.

Here’s my poem on Spillwords: Your Wrinkles Make You Beautiful

http://www.spillwords.com

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©Mandibelle16.(2016) All Rights Reseved.

Three Line Tales: A Letter To Whomever Brought the Cupcakes #amwriting #3LineTales


Thanks to Sonya of 100 Words or Less for hosting 3 Line Tales.

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Stephanie McCabe

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To Whom It May Concern:

1. Wow, you’ve brought scrumptious, mouth watering, sinfully fattening, cupcakes to work, however; there’s a problem or three with the cupcakes you’ve bought to share; first of all, the cupcakes are small, if you’re going to allow us all to indulge in a cupcake, at least make the cupcake full size, not mini; cupcake are not a delicious treat most of us have often so please, don’t leave us wanting more ( a second cupcake) when you’ve only brought enough for one each.

2. The second issue I have is, your cupcakes aren’t chocolate; a most grevious error on your part, I don’t know who decides to bring cupcakes to work and doesn’t buy chocolate ones; chocolate is beloved by the majority of people and vanilla is boring (even if it vanilla does smell delightful), vanilla isn’t chocolate, it can’t compare; you’ve unknowingly offended at least all the females in our work area by bringing cupcakes which aren’t chocolate; in fact, I’d say my day is ruined, having seen the cupcakes and realized, they weren’t chocolate or even chocolate iced.

3. My third issue has to do with the icing on the cupcakes; I understand, you’re not the baker and you don’t ice the cupcakes yourself, but the icing is the best part of the cupcake; a slightly stale cupcake can get away with being stale, if the icing is to die for; vanilla icing could be satisfying but again, chocolate would have clearly, been the wiser icing choice; as well as choosing cupcakes which were “fully” iced; the baker’s icing style has much to be desired because the baker did not ice to the end of the cupcake, to the cupcake paper edge; icing is the most imperative aspect of a superb cupcake, perhaps, in the future, when you visit this cupcake bakery again, you will choose cupcakes with more icing; while the icing was delicious, there was far to little of it.

 I’m no cupcake expert, but I know what I like when I taste it.

Sincerely, 

Anonymous 

Blogger’s Pit Stop #28


Exciting news! Last week Jacqueline from A Cooking Pot and Twisted Tales interview was one of the top read posts on the site. This week Jacqueline’s Interview is a feature! Please check it out and add your own link to the link up below! 

Friday, 17th June 2016 Blogger’s Pit Stop #28 – Welcome Blogger’s Pit Stop is open from 9 pm ET(US Thur) 11 am(AUS Friday) and Closes 3 am Monday ET(US) 5 pm(AUS) Meet Our Pit Stop Crew Kathleen from Lifestyle Building Blocks: She finds it both humbling and satisfying to write posts and to have bloggers […]

Source: Blogger’s Pit Stop #28