Monthly Archives: November 2011

Opening hooks in your novel…

I have been through several classes and when it comes to this topice all of my teachers agree that opening hook in any novel is the most important part of that novel. It hooks to the reader, imploring the reader to go on to the finish of said novel. Without that hook the reader will not feel the connection to that book, it’s characters, the plot itself. There by the odds of the reader putting down the book or novel permanently are quite high.

As I am starting out on my first novel I know how important this is. I have been looking at various different opening hooks not only just to get a feel for them but to post them as a quote on my other blog Cool Quotes, Famous Quotes. Here is one of the most famous opening hooks written by Charles Dickens. The novel is “A Tale of Two Cities”.

“It was the best of times, it was the worst of times, it was the age of wisdom, it was the age of foolishness, it was the epoch of belief, it was the epoch of incredulity, it was the season of Light, it was the season of Darkness, it was the spring of hope, it was the winter of despair, we had everything before us, we had nothing before us, we were all going directly to Heaven, we were all going the other way.”

— Charles Dickens.  “A Tale of Two Cities”

If this opening does not inspire people to read on then I am not sure what will. I am still working on creating characters for my novel. It is a task that is taking some time. It does take time to get to know a character throughly. I do believe in getting this done right. For I must know my characters intimately before I write one word concerning them in my novel.  My goal is (like I have said before) is to get the cast of characters done first and then hash out the storyline. Well I have to go for now so until next time William out.

 

 

 

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To all of my writer friends out there…

have a wonderful Thanksgiving and to those who do not celebrate the holiday may you have peace and good tidings as well. I am still working on my sci-fi novel. There is nothing new there. I am actually still working on my cast of characters and I am outlining the story line as of this writing. I am still reading Prudy Taylor Boards’ “101 Tips on Writing and Selling Your First Novel”. It is quite helpful indeed.

I am still writing some poetry too. But my main focus is getting this sci-fi novel going. I have been saying to myself this over and over again  to get started on this and now the time has come to get the job done. Tonight I have had some writers block trying to nail down the major story goal. It has to with my protagonist overcoming a major obstacle in order to achieve the story goal. But then I have a major obstacle to overcome myself. That is tiredness.  But I have sequestered myself to get this done and once done I will get some sleep knowing that I accomplished something.

After all that is why all of us writers do what we do which is to accomplish things, to create things, to create enjoyment in our readers. That is what keeps me going, even through the rough spots, which right now is going on with me. So I have writers block tonight. One way to beat that is to post here on my blog. The funny thing is as I write here, my muse begins to wake up and so for now I am going to have to go before this idea leaves my head. So until next time William out, and once again to those who celebrate the holiday… Have a Wonderful Thanksgiving and Peace to all of you out there!

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These past 3 days…

I have been  making changes to the character bios. The changes involve the actual structure of the bio itself. It is taking longer than I thought it would but I am still progressing toward the goals of creating the cast of characters first and then from that information I will be hashing out the storyline. I am using Prudy Taylor Boards version of a character bio since it asks a ton of questions about the character involved, whether it would be the Protagonist, Antagonist or a supporting character. I think that this is the right way to go.

Not much going on the writing contest front. There have not been that much coming from Writers Digest Magazine. I am looing forward to Round 8 io All Things Considered Three Minute Fiction contest. I did not win Round 7 but I thouroughly enjoyed being a part of the contest. There is also the next Spoonful of Stories contest coming up in March I do believe. I am looking forward to that. In the meantime I have writing poems as well to be put in my poetry chapbook.

The Critique group meeting went well this Thursday even I did not read this time. I will be reading next time though so I had better have something ready to be read. Like I mention before hand I have some ideas floating around my head regarding my sci-fi novel and now it is about time I start putting them down either on computer or paper. So my goals are to continue creating the cast of characters this week and then once I know my characters on a pretty thorough basis I will go on to do the brainstorming based on that character information.

Well it is getting late so I have I go for now. So until next time William out.

 

 

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I wrote a horror short story…

about a cub scout group meeting up with a werewolf. You can image the carnage that followed.  It is tentatively named A nightmare on Wolf Street. I am going to have it critiqued today. I hope that people will like it. I am still working on the sci fi project. I hope to have the cast of characters pretty much done so I can start to actually plot out the storyline by the information gleaned from the character bios. In other words I will be pitting the strengths and weaknesses of the characters together in order to come up with a good storyline.

I think it is good to  come up with plot lines based on the characters themselves. Lets say the protagonist has certain fears he or she gotten from past events. I could use those fears to create problems for that character in the current plotline. So the antagonist learns about these fears and tries to use them against the protagonist. You can also use a characters strengths in the plotline, that were developed in the character bios.

You can do the same to the antagonist as well. By using their strengths and weaknesses, you plot their rise and fall. Darth Vaders strength was the love for his son, which was brought to the fore when he destroyed the evil Emperor. The weakness of the Emperor was two fold. 1.There was this overall arrogance he had and 2. there was his confidence that Darth Vader not to give in to the love for his son. Well we know what happened there in that story. I still have that image of the Emperor falling to a, fiery/dark electrical energy death, set in my mind.

Well it is time now for me to move on. I still have things to do regarding my writing goals this weekend. Right now I must get to them. So until next time William out.

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While doing a little research…

on the internet I found this little ditty! Poets & Writers magazine. Here is the link! It seems like the website is well organized from top to bottom. Starting at the top is a search engine along with a list of buttons that range from donate to subscribe. Under the heading you have a menu option list. There are a whole host of other good informational links on the web site as well. One the left side of the webpage is a host of links that will help an aspiring writer such as myself. One of the links on that side is writing contest and competitions link of which I will avail myself on a regular basis.

Three Minute Fiction Round 7 has a winner! The name of the story is “Little Hossein” by Chris Westberg. Here is a link to that story. I hope that you will like it! I had a lot of fun competing in this contest and look forward to Round 8 of Three Minute Fiction that will be coming in early January. Now of course I will be working toward my other writing goals. One of them is to continue to work on my sci fi novels and the others are to submit short stories to various different writing competitions and magazines.

This weekend I am going to work on my cast of characters and from that I will brainstorm the plot of the novel. The plot of my story is going to be character driven. That is it will be derived from the behavior, background, heatlh, desires, wants, strengths, and weaknesses of the characters. I learned that you can put together a story based on differences in characters. These differences will provide the conflict of the story. Well it is time for me to go so until next time William out!

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I found this little ditty…

on the November 11th edition of “The Writer’s Almanac” by Garrison Keillor. Mr. Keillor noted that it the author’s Kurt Vonnegut’s birthday. Kurt was born on November 11th 1922. Mr. Keillor went on to write that Vonnegut in 1999 wrote an essay called “How to Write With Style.” Vonnegut ended his essaying by suming up his seven most important points.

1.  Find a subject you care about.

2. Do not ramble.

3. Keep it simple.

4. Have guts to cut.

5. Sound like yourself

6. Say what you mean

7. Pity the readers.

Now that is pretty good advice if you want to be a writer. Write about something that you care about. Be straight to the point and do not ramble on. Always keep it simple as keeping it complex will confuse the reader. Always have the guts to cut, trim and hack away at your work. Sounding like yourself is being yourself. Say what you mean from the heart. Always pity the readers. When it comes to my writing I follow all of these points.

Speaking of following, I have followed “The Writer’s Almanac” for many years either on Itunes or on the web. It has given me countless hours of enjoyment and enlightment. Mr. Keillor is quite the proficient writer himself. He is also the host of “A Prarie Home Companion”, a PBS radio show which broadcast from many different locations in the country. It’s home base though is Fitzgerald Theater in Saint Paul, Minnesota. It is the oldest theater ins the city of Saint Paul. Well I must go on and do my other writing chores. So until next time William out.

 

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Well its my weekend….

And I am going to do a lot of writing. My goals are to finish the character bios, start on the setting sketches and to get ready to map out the storyline as well. I am moving along with the writing of this novel. I am also going to create a sci-fi short story as well and have it ready for submission as soon as possible. If anything else comes to mind then I will achieve that!

The winner to the Three Minute Fiction contest will be announced next weekend. So far my story has not been announced amongst the favorites but I am still hopeful. Hey you never know in this business. I am always looking for other contests to enter as well. So far there is not much doing on that front but never fear I know that there is always going to be a contest coming around soon.

This weekend I need to get a few odds and ends to help me write my novel. I already have a three ring notebook that I will be using to put the pages of my first draft in. I already have the colored index cards for writing scenes. I even have some post it notes to remind me of anything that I might need in the future. I hve my Merrian Webster “Pocket Guide to Punctuation” on the table in case I need to look up something. So I believe I have lined up all my ducks in a row. Now it is a matter of just getting things done.

Having said that, I am going to have to go off to that special place inside my imagination. My imagination could take me on a journey to the stars or take me to an exotic place on earth. It could lead me into the future or the past. It could take me into the mind of a brilliant scientist or into the depths of madmans soul. But one thing is for sure, that no matter where my imagination takes me. I am going to to have fun with it! Until the next time William out.

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