Posted in Anthologies/Novellas, Christian, Craft, Dystopian, fantasy, Historicals, horror, Indie, MG & YA, Mysteries/Thrillers/Suspense, Paranormal, Romance, SF, Short stories, traditional, Urban Fantasy, Women's Fiction, writers, Writing and Poetry

Writing Links…4/2/18


Writing Links…4/2/18
Traci Kenworth

1. “March was a bit of a rough month. I felt like something negative happened every week, but I still enjoyed the plethora of spring flowers, especially cherry blossoms. I love cherry blossoms.” March was a rough month, April’s proving to be the same but it will get better with God’s help.
2. “As many of you know, my beloved Pomeranians passed away last year. Spice went first, in July, and Sugar followed in late November. In January, these sweet creatures would have been fourteen years old. We were blessed by their unconditional love for many happy years. To say that my husband and I miss these dogs is an understatement, but time does truly heal the wound.” I’ve been hearing my dog bark lately too. He died this past July.

Romance/Women’s Fiction:
1. “There are three main types—first, third, and second. And of course there are subsets (omniscient, limited, deep, etc.). I’m going to focus on the main three today, highlighting the major pitfalls.” I started writing in the first person but eventually switched to third. Some cp partners still love my first but I wanted to have bring a rounder experience to my writing and that involved third.
2. “There are layers of voice in a book.” I think she’s right. Voice is a lot of layers set down in words.
3. “If you’re a pantser and read the title, you probably scoffed. But I promise, this is easy, doesn’t take much time, and can help keep you on course.” This is a good outline!

1. “Christian writers are called to a higher standard. We are the reflective image of God to the world, so how we write our words is vital. You cannot be afraid to stand your ground in writing truth. You can however, write it appropriately.”
2. “One of the things that struck me as I read Stephen King’s On Writing (besides his reliance on the “S” word!) was his depiction of some of his first steps as a writer. Back then, a fiction writer could cut his teeth, so to speak, writing for pulp magazines (Weird Tales, Amazing Stories, etc.), weeklies (Saturday Evening Post, etc.), monthlies (including so-called men’s magazines), and so on, before “hitting it big” with a novel like Carrie.” It is more difficult to get published in magazines, I hear, but I’m still trying. That doesn’t mean I’m not writing novels in the meantime. Whatever comes first.

1. “Many of you are aware that being a writer these days is a challenging mission. In fact, there are so many barriers to getting an agent and then to getting published, it’s a wonder any of us remain sane. Most of us blog, we’re on various social media, we collaborate with other authors, we build and execute marketing plans – oh, and did I mention, we write novels?” I admit both of my desks need organized but I’m working on it, lol. My email storage, on the other hand, is about to bust. I clear some but just as fast, more come.
2. “Sir Thomas Grosvenor, 3rd Baronet, was the head of a family long established in Cheshire, whose wealth came primarily from Welsh mines. He significantly increased that wealth when he married Mary Davies, the heiress to the Ebury estates in 1677. The property he acquired through this marriage covered a large area of what is now Mayfair, Pimlico and Belgravia.”
3. “In medieval times, women of high birth essentially only had two “career” options: marry or become a nun. Not that the choice was theirs—in medieval times the future fate of a child was decided by his/her father—but a young woman who openly expressed a vocation to serve God could often sway her father. Becoming a nun was a way of avoiding the uncertainties of childbirth, plus, of course, it allowed the lady in question to theoretically lead a somewhat more tranquil life.” I’m so thankful we live in age when we decide our future.

1. Michael David Wilson is the founder of This Is Horror. A professional writer, editor, and podcaster, his work has appeared in various publications including Dark Moon Digest, LitReactor, and Scream. Connect with Michael on Twitter @WilsonTheWriter. For more information visit I loved learning about their childhoods and how their parents, grandparents inspired them with reading. My mom always had books around. I read through those and she’d often take me to the library where I was allowed to get as many as I could carry. Relatives had Reader’s Digest when I stayed with them. All these went into my wanting to be a writer when it registered on me that you could be such a thing, lol.
2. New Robert McCammon novel.
3. “But Christianity wasn’t the only thing influencing supernatural fiction, and by the twelfth century, horror writers were using another monster to depict a very specific human fear—one that all women have felt at one time in their life, from the days of ancient Rome to Harvey Weinstein’s casting couch in 2017. It’s a fear that transcends religion, race, class, and financial status. And in an era when our civilization seems more divided by our political differences than ever before, it’s a fear transcends those, as well. Conservative, Progressive, or Middle-Of-The-Roader like myself—it’s not politically controversial to acknowledge the unfortunate truth that some men have treated women abhorrently throughout humankind’s existence.”

1. These are fun, so many authors, sure to find great books!
2. “First books feel deeply weird from the inside. It’s everything they tell you about writing. It’s like having homework for the rest of your life. It can also be unspeakably lonely. You feel inert but also bone-tired because your butt’s threatening to sprout bedsores but your brain is racing all day. It can be terrifically discombobulating. But getting to the end of a book, a whole novel that you made up on your own is a wonderful experience. Emergency Contact was the first piece of evidence that proved I was capable of writing an entire book. I’m still over-the-moon high-fiving myself about it.” Every book feels weird to me until I make the second pass. There’s something about putting all the cogs together that tightens the story for me.
3. “Writing THE BELOVED WILD made me deeply appreciate those novelists who devote all their energy to creating historical fiction. Not only do the preparations for historical fiction require a great deal of research, but the actual writing of the work demands a constant attention to language in order to convincingly and accurately capture the minutiae of a long-ago time. Exclusively writing historical fiction would be a tough gig.” I do find it more exhaustive to write historical, but I do it anyway. I’ve done two now and each has their own stumbling blocks in regards to research but I still love the stories anyway.
4. “Andy and I first began doing improvisational puppetry together at Bank Street Bookstore in New York City. It has been such a fruitful collaboration, we wanted to take it to the next level by putting a puppet theater in our own bookstore.” What a unique idea!
5. “Once upon a time, back in 2015, I got editorial feedback from my critique partners and was—shall we say—a little overwhelmed with just how much work I had ahead of me. So I sat down and started my journey of revision refinement, in which I tweaked the way I revise my manuscripts, until now, three years later, it’s become an expected part of my revision process.” I usually do one scene at a time all the way through but I’ve been hearing about fixing the big issues first then working down to the smaller issues.
6. “This book pushed me to the edge of the envelope. There were many times I wanted to put it away and never look at it again. But every time I would walk away, the characters would pull me back. Grace would plead not to give up on her and I’d imagine an idea for a new stunt. Or Henry would whisper another story about his past and I would be drawn back to the page. NOTHING BUT SKY taught me that if your story has enough teeth, it’s worth sticking with it to the very end!” This was a good book.

1. “What Ray Bradbury called the muse, Stephen King called the “guys in the basement.” Others call it the sixth sense, the Spidey sense, intuition, superpower, or the subconscious. Whatever you call it, your subconscious—the thoughts you don’t know you’re thinking—is what makes the magic happen.” I like the “guys in the basement” description but think they’d more likely be in the elevator. Or the pilot position, lol. As far as showing up, it’s something you need to do to boost the chances. Don’t worry about every day, the Muse will learn your schedule, just make a habit of it. My muse is like a cat. You can’t scare her, unless that’s the point of the tale. You have to capture her attention and hope she’s willing to play. Oh, and she bites, so be careful.
2. “Of course, what qualifies as a “good amount” varies, but I’m assuming this writer means more than Starbucks money. To get there, you’ll need a large following and more than one book. So…” I wrote my first series of four three times each. The first book of 120,000 taught me to cut, cut, cut, lol. It did however get me into my cp group though. The second set of series, a trilogy has also been written three times as I learned more and more. I think this series can be saved though. I’ve written three standalones as well.
3. “What aspects of writing brings you vitality and what parts of the process are exhausting?” For me, it’s writing that first draft. Editing revitalizes me.

Short Stories/Anthologies/Novella:
1. “My mornings are hectic. I have things to do before I head out the door. I bathe, comb my hair, etc. After getting dressed, I have to let the dogs outside, prepare their food, make the coffee, etc. Like most folks out there. In addition, I usually turn on the morning news while I putter about.” Hm…
2. “Your Friday prompt for Stream of Consciousness Saturday is “bun.” Find a word that contains “bun” or use it as a word all by itself. Have fun!”
3. “Welcome once again to the faery land of Thistledown. At the end of the previous episode an orange feather from Bob the humming bird drifted down to Fallow Blackmoon. Thanks to Jacquie Biggar for being the first reader to cause me to see what a symbol of hope that feather was.”
4. The Tuesday Tales feature continues with a new story this week. The previous story was Shadow of the Beast To read the story, click on each link: Shadow of the Beast Part 1 | Shadow of the Beast Part 2 | Shadow of the Beast Part 3

1. “I love Ben the dog’s poetry and was thrilled to find that his favorite thing to do last week was to write a poem for my Tanka Tuesday Challenge. That, Ben. He’s a darling.”
2. What they are.
3. Old friend.
4. Nature’s temple.
5. “She sat in a corner,
Hands over her knees,”
6. Virgin morn.
7. Patience.
8. Betrayed.

1. “Welcome to this issue of the Carnival of the Indies blog carnival. This issue is for March, 2018. We welcome your submissions on topics related to writing, self-publishing, book design or marketing books.” Some great-looking posts to read through.
2. “Many of you are on Facebook. It’s easy to hop on quickly … and then an hour, sometimes two, disappears. A few minutes turns into lost hours with almost mindlessness, clicking, liking, adding a few comments and just plain old curiosity—what else is “someone” doing or saying. I get it, most of us have been caught up in it. Right?” I usually spend fifteen mins. less if I can help it on FB, just checking notifications, not looking at all but those but the most important, albeit usually someone I haven’t heard anything from in a while and close friends. Twitter is a bit more time-consuming, but I manage no more than a half-hour most times, except when I’m following threads on Tweetdeck then I allow an hour as it’s for research purposes. I don’t usually hang out elsewhere. Pinterest is an every now and then event.
3. “In this video and the article below, I’m going to talk more about some tips on how to find the time to write. You can also find the video on YouTube here.” It’s tough but I have been making a schedule of what to tackle each day. Five days a week, I work on my current project. I alternate days on working on short stories, marketing projects like guest blogs, and Friday’s my free day from those. Sometimes I accomplish no more than a sentence, others I can gain mileage.
4. “Audiobooks. My first thought when I hear the term are questions like Why? Or what’s the point? The thought that “those aren’t real books” might float through my head. I feel pretty damn full of myself unless I stop to think for half a second, maybe get a bit introspective. Then I realize how much I sound like the paper sniffers. You know, the people who say an eBook isn’t a real book. They love the smell of paper and apparently the reading experience isn’t the same without it. I don’t want to be one of those people. Then I’ll admit to myself that if my commute involved driving an hour or two every day instead of the 30-foot stroll in my slippers and work pajamas from bed to office that I might see more of a need.” I’ve listened to audiobooks. My trouble now is that I don’t have the equipment or time to do so. Instead, I read print books during drives and apts. Kindle books on Teus., Thurs., and Sat. Otherwise, I read on the computer. I’m usually listening to music when I’m doing my blogs or listening to podcasts.
5. “When I was a brand new writer, a number of well-established authors helped me. They gave me advice about my blurbs, how I structured my stories, my phrasing — essentially everything an early-stage writer needs to get a handle on things. Now, five years later, I won’t claim to be well established myself, but I do have my first million words written, and I do my best to return the favor by helping others who are at the beginning of their writing journey. As I do, I see many of the same mistakes repeated over and over.” Some good tips.

1. “I was invited to contribute three short exercises and I’ve chosen subjects that help you read with a writer’s mindset. They are:” I do like to analyze books, but I still read them as a reader would. I like to be absorbed and then figure out how the author drew me in, so I can learn from it.
2. “The amazing thing about being a writer is that you get to be part of a writing community. Especially now, in the Internet age, you have access not just to the writings of the great minds who have gone before, but also to the shared wisdom, common sense, commiseration, and encouragement of all your contemporaries. If you have a question about the writing journey or craft, you can be sure it is one of many frequently asked writing questions that have been asked before. This means the answers are out there!” Anyone need answers?
3. “When well-intentioned people exhort, “Show, don’t tell!” they forget that showing and telling needn’t be mutually exclusive, that they go hand-in-hand, that one is part of the other. When I say, “Always be writing scene,” I mean always be aware of the dramatic moment you are leading your reader to, that is being prepared or setup through telling. As long as you have that dramatic payoff in mind as your goal, the telling won’t feel inert; it will be imbued with tension, with the sense that Chekhov’s Gun will go off.” Draw your reader in with deep pov. That means giving us her thoughts, letting us see her actions, and describing the characters and setting around her. Of course, you want to do so by showing as much as you can but there are appropriate times to tell as well.
4. “While fairy tales are ancient, dating back to the Bronze age, fantasy turns out to be a revival movement, rising from the grave of the recent dead. Mention of the word fantasy is minimal through through the twentieth century, with some peaks here and there depending on your source. Around 1945, fantasy took flight, soaring up and up, well into the twenty-first century. Why the change? What summoned the word fantasy back to life in 1945?” I think people like other worlds, new creatures, new adventures.
5. “In this 5 On interview, author and publisher Ian Thomas Healy shares what he learned from his experiences with literary agents, what to look for when submitting to small press publishers, his feelings about Amazon KDP Select, and more.”
6. “Writers, I’m here today with some tough love. If you’re not in for a post about the realities of the industry and what it means to enter traditional publishing, put this one aside for now.” I like this. It exposes the truth of how hard it is to make it in traditional publishing. That said, I still want to try.
7. “Common writing wisdom tells us to avoid clichés, but those lines still slip into our writing. Often, it’s the sneaky phrases that sound right for that particular situation. We can’t say why it does, we just feel that a character would say or think a line at that moment.” This is something we all fall guilty of and that’s easy to change up. Substituting a few words, twisting things in some way works. If not, find something more original.
8. “What’s it like writing books that other people put their names on? How do you get this kind of work? What makes a good ghostwriter?”
9. “Publishing your own book means you have to be a publisher. You have to know all the pertinent aspects of successfully publishing a book. You can waste a lot of time and get frustrated if you don’t know how to navigate the waters.” Bootcamp.
10. “I tend to rush them once I get close, summarizing instead of letting things build to the big bang. I always have to rewrite them, usually several times before I get them right. These days, I work hard to figure out my ending before I start the book. I’ve learned (the hard way) that the easiest books for me to write are the ones where I know my ending ahead of time.” I tend to rush as well. I think it’s because I’m ready to get it off my plate. Although, that doesn’t really happen for a while as there’s this thing called editing, lol.
11. “Twisting the Stereotype: Cashiers are often portrayed as run-down women who have fallen on hard times and hate their job. Why not give us a character who genuinely loves the work and interacting with people?” I’ve been a cashier many times when younger. The only time I hate the job was when I worked in a mall but only because the manager didn’t like me because I made a few mistakes ringing up. I’d never done it before and they expected me to just sprint ahead, lol.

9. “In its latest report, the company recorded more than 300 billion visits to pirate sites last year alone. This is an increase of 1.6 percent compared to 2016.” This is a shame. There’s so much free stuff out there, why do people go to these sites? I know, they want the latest from x author, but those authors need to make a living too. And the little guy is getting hit as often. Another option: why not go to the library? They wouldn’t expect to work for free, why should authors? As for music, try Pandora or Spotify. TV shows, Hulu and Netflix don’t cost that much. Films, go to a low-cost movie theater.
10. “Does the blank page cause you anxiety? Do you have a scene that’s just not working? Do readers miss what you’re trying to get across? Using essay structure can help you start and finish clear, purposeful scenes.” This is honestly how I write my guest blogs. I use the format that I learned in school: beginning, middle, conclusion. I haven’t tried it in stories but I think it might be a good frame for scenes.
11. A different way of looking at things.
12. “Thank you for your attitude of gratitude! It is okay to change your mind. What was true yesterday, a month ago of even a couple of years gone by, may not be true today. Allow yourself the flexibili…”
13. “It’s one of those days. Your inner critic is on a rampage. Your writing sucks. All the good words are hiding in the corners of your brain and you’re left with the rejects. You turn to Facebook for cute cats and emotional support, only to discover that every other writer in the world is having a fantastic day.” Just remember: your journey is your own. Your day will come. In the meantime, celebrate other’s journeys.
14. “This is a thorough guide to help you preview your Kindle eBook.” Could be useful.
15. “However, the more I learn, the more I wonder whether it’s possible to become so concerned and even cowed by everyone else’s insights and opinions that you lose touch with the instinct that distinguishes you as an author? And, even when you hold onto your voice, there’s the risk that your eagerness to learn and be led manifests in self-doubt and second-guessing that slows you down. Fellow South African author, Rehana Rossouw admitted in a recent interview, ‘I can’t read when I write – I either copy style and voice wholesale or fall into a pit of despair because I can’t match the writing’.” I think we can learn good things from others, but when it comes to the story sometimes we need to trust our gut. Of course, you do need to follow basic grammar, punctuation, the mechanics of writing, etc.
16. The Rite of Banishing.
17. Family.
18. “I thought of this post when I heard of a problem plaguing one of the groups I belong to. People are using its Twitter hashtag without actually being members of said group. This both confuses readers and dilutes the group’s rather successful brand. Even worse, these authors are taking advantage of the hard work others have put in without ever contributing anything themselves.” This is a shame.
19. “Following on from my little rant about having trouble reading, being the picky writer I am and thus focusing on grammar over story, I’d like to ask everyone about this little conundrum.” I would use “of.”
20. “The week before and including Easter is called Semana Santa here in Spain and is the largest religious festival of the year. Elaborate processions take place throughout the week in most cities and towns. During Holy week religious sculptures are taken out of the churches and paraded through the town to the main cathedral. Some of these precious sculptures,created by well known Spanish artists, are hundreds of years old. They are mounted on floats called pasos, surrounded with flowers and candles. Portapasos (or float-carriers) wearing traditional costumes, carry the heavy floats through the streets lined with spectators. No large trucks transport these floats, only dedicated men and women. I was eager to see one of these parades so we took a bus to nearby Murcia city to witness the Good Friday procession.” This would be exciting to see!
21. “Hello, everyone! Today I am coming up with a different kind of thought – educational thoughts. Really, I am not into YouTubers. I basically only listen to music on YouTube. But my son forwarded the video below to me.”



I write YA as Traci Kenworth. I also write romance as Loleta Abi.

29 thoughts on “Writing Links…4/2/18

      1. Traci you do an incredible service for people. You are entitled to get on with your own work! People are simply happy to be included and grateful for what you do! PXX

        Liked by 1 person

      2. Thank you, Paul. I just feel bad sometimes when I can’t get more links in. I’ve been ill again this week. A lot of people were sick with the flu recently and I think I have a touch of it.

        Liked by 1 person

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