Promptly Creative: December 2016

It’s a wonderful . . . knife? Holiday thriller and suspense is a thing, right? It should be.

The family gathering went to a dark place this year for your protagonist anti-hero. What pushed him/her over the edge?

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What’s Your Read: September 2016

Some weeks I’m itching for a good mystery. Others I’m craving an emotional roller coaster. Or fantasy. Or historical fiction. Or goodness knows what. It might be brand new or something ancient or anywhere in between. In any case, it’s nice to share, so …

What’s Your Read?

The Fiction Class
Susan Breen

2016-09-28-fiction-classNo, there won’t be information on getting an agent. Yes, you really should do the assignments. Sorry, not sorry, the rabbit stays in the classroom.

Arabella covers the basics as usual, but something is different during this term’s fiction writing course. It could be that this is the first time that a student has run out of her class when asked to contribute. It could be the distracting older man flirting with her in the front. Or it could be the fact that her mother is dying.

Every week brings a new topic, a new assignment, and a new visit with the same difficult relative.

Find Your People

Ever play Six Degrees of Kevin Bacon (or Separation, if you prefer the classic version)? Actor A was in Movie A with Actor B who was in Movie B with Actor C, etc. Actor A might never have worked with Actor C, but they do have someone in common in Actor B.

Apply the general principle of Six Degrees to writing. Having a community to rely on and contribute to is a valuable asset. One person might not have the answer to a question, but someone else that person knows might. The hive-mind is a powerful resource.

Find a local writers group, an online forum that talks about your genre, or an old-school pen pal. Don’t join something that doesn’t fit your needs, and certainly don’t break your bank on a membership. There are lots of free options from bigger organizations out there. For example, the Science Fiction & Fantasy Writers of America (SFWA) have a great resource page that’s accessible without membership.

Can’t find exactly the community you’re looking for? Start one! Chances are someone else is searching for the same thing.

Promptly Creative: Going Somewhere?

How many different directions can you take this little prompt?

“I’m going to need to check your bag.”

The man in front of her handed over his case for the uniformed officer to search while she clutched the handles of her tote a little tighter. They wouldn’t check two people in a row, would they?

WYR: To Thine Clone Self Be True

Some weeks I’m itching for a good mystery. Others I’m craving an emotional roller coaster. Or fantasy. Or historical fiction. Or goodness knows what. It might be brand new or something ancient or anywhere in between. In any case, it’s nice to share, so …

What’s Your Read?

2016-4-29 And Again

And Again by Jessica Chiarella

If your mental identity – memories, knowledge, likes and dislikes – was transferred into a clone of yourself, a body grown to be medically superior but without all of the mileage of the life you’ve lived to date, would you still be you?

The SUBlife program has offered a second chance at life for terminally-ill patients like Hannah, David, Connie, and Linda, but now they’re experiencing a whole new context for the cliché “life goes on.” Jessica Chiarella’s And Again explores the nature and frustrations of identity, relationships, old habits, and new opportunity.

 

Happy Finals Week!

To all folks who are finishing classes, cramming like mad, sitting those three hour exams, and writing page after page of caffeine-stoked brilliance through the night, I salute you.

If you’re one of the lucky few who can snap in and out of writing styles with expert survival skills, then good on you, you magnificent chameleon! However, if you’ve been specifically toning your creative writing muscles and now have been slapped with a standard essay, the transition back to academic writing can be a bit tumultuous.

Below are a few links to some great writing resources for the academically inclined. Your institution might have a writing center, too, so be sure to dig a bit around campus if you’re in need.

Amherst – Writing Center’s List of Online Resources for Writers

Purdue – Online Writing Lab (OWL)

Harvard – Writing Center Resources