“I write because I don’t know what I think until I read what I say.” – Flannery O’Connor
The Passive Voice: eBooks Could Finally Inch Past Print
A Writer’s Path: Showing vs. Telling
Alice Osborn: 5 Ways to Keep On Truckin’ After Rejection
Kendall F. Person: A Lesson in Marketing from Evel Knievel
The Better Man: Live a great story
Quinn’s Books: Naming Jack the Ripper
Dave’s Corner of the Universe: He Stole Enstines Brain!
Cristian Mihai: You’ll Live Forever if a Writer Falls in Love with You
“In truly good writing no matter how many times you read it you do not know how it is done. That is beacause there is a mystery in all great writing and that mystery does not dissect out. It continues and it is always valid. Each time you re-read you see or learn something new.” ― Ernest Hemingway
Fred on the Head has posed an interesting question: Do you re-read?
To this I can only plead: Guilty.
There are about a dozen works I find myself returning to, and for exactly the reason Hemingway cites above. In fact, three of Hemingway’s works are on my list: The Snows of Kilimanjaro, The Killers, and The Short Happy Life of Francis Macomber. For me, they never lose their power to amaze and teach. Even when my intention is to analyze, I end up getting lured in once again by the robust narrative.
Mishima’s Patriotism leaves me reeling each time I experience it. What a show: breathtaking eroticism and rapturous prose made all the more vivid and potent by the blunt reality of sepukku. Whoa.
Among the classics, I keep returning to A Midsummer’s Night Dream and Beowulf more than any of the others. And I’m in the process of travelling to Mordor once again with the Fellowship of the Ring. I’ve almost finished The Two Towers, and am just as carried away by Tolkien’s imaginative world-building as the first time I experienced him.
All good friends I could never get tired of.
Death Legacy by Jacqueline Seewald is a great novel for romantic suspense and mystery readers alike. The protagonist, intelligence consultant Michelle Hallam, is tough, dedicated, and sexy. Think of a vulnerable, modern-day Valeria from Robert E. Howard’s Red Nails. Ah, yes.
Tweet @thenovelfox a description of your ideal female secret agent and include #giveaway for a chance to win a free iBooks copy of Death Legacy by Jacqueline Seewald!
The Death Legacy Giveaway will run for 7 days starting Friday, November 21st and ending Friday, November 28th. The Novel Fox team will select their favorites and 20 winners will be announced on Saturday, November 29th.
I will confess to having never been tempted to participate in NaNoWriMo, or National Novel Writing Month. The goal of dashing off a 50,000 word manuscript in 30 days struck me as gimmicky and pointless.
But I may have to change my mind. Though a recent Publishers Weekly article on NaNoWriMo is entitled “How to Succeed at NaNoWriMo,” I’m more interested in WHY I should participate.
Turns out the article zooms right in on that concern, and it got my attention:
NaNoWriMo’s pressing time constraints leave little time for polishing and perfecting—and that’s perhaps the point.
Marissa Meyer, whose novels Cinder and Scarlet (Square Fish, 2014) began as NaNoWriMo drafts, says the beauty of the program is that it “forces you to silence that internal editor and just get something written. If you’re telling yourself that it’s OK to be writing something bad because you can always come back and fix it later, it takes a lot of the pressure off.”
Ouch. That hit home. That internal editor remains one of my biggest writing roadblocks. I can’t peck out two sentences on the laptop without having to go back and proof what little I’ve done. I know I’m supposed to complete my manuscript before getting all editorially and nit-picky, but I succumb every time to the temptation to tweak what I’ve written. And that slows me down, which impedes the completion of my manuscript, and a completed first draft, despite its inevitable ugly spots, is an accomplishment that will spur me on to sticking to the whole process.
I used to dismiss flash fiction as a gimmick, too, until I tried my hand at it and discovered the rigor and discipline it takes to complete quality pieces. It isn’t easy, and that’s the point. There’s no doubt writing flash fiction has improved my writing by forcing me to say what I want to say in fewer, stronger words. You can judge for yourself here and here.
So look out, NaNoWriMo 2015. Here I come.
From Young & Twenty, a new favorite:
Your family may fight but it shows that they’re there. Your job may be boring but it means you still have one. Your skin may be flawed but it means that you’ve grown. Your mistakes may be bad but it means that you’re human. Your smile may be temporary but it means there’s still hope. Your life may be hard but it means that you’re living, and the fact that you’re living means you’ve done something right
Compiled by il miglior fabbro
Sara Hoyt : No More Crying Now
Ryan Lanz: Under the Microscope: The Destiny Matrix
Alice Osborn: How to Effectively Prepare For Your First Writers’ Conference
Jacke Wilson: Brush with Greatness: Harry Shearer and Me!
Notes from an Alien: Some Questions for The Serious Writer
Bob Mayer: The Last Czar
Fred on the Head: What Does a Half-Century Look Like?
Cristian Mihai: Over the Edge