Dramaquill's All Things Writing

March 27, 2012

Every Writer Should Have a Web Presence

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It’s common knowledge that in this high tech computer age, every writer should have a web presence. 

Don’t know how?

There are some very easy (and free) ways to get page online:

1.      Start a writing blog  (I recommend WordPress) 

2.      Make a separate Facebook Page as your “writing” page or even a separate page for each of”
          your books if you have published books to your credit

3.      Get a twitter account.  Follow other writers and publishers.  Tweet regularly to develop a
          following.

4.      Have an actual writer’s page under your name.  (I am lucky enough to own a business that
          has a website so I just created a page titled JACQUELINE MCMAHON and have my writing
          credits etc. online there.  My business already pays for the site hosting so there’s no
          additional cost to me)
          http://www.slightlyoffbroadway.com/jacquelinemcmahon.htm

5.      Join other sites for writers like: 
          She writes  (www.shewrites.com)
          Jacketflap  (www.jacketflap.com)
          Redroom    (www.redroom.com)

6.      Buy your domain name and pay to have the site hosted.  (Check out this site of reviews
         before choosing a web host:  http://www.webhostingreviews.com/)

7.      Actively comment in writers’ chat rooms, on writers’ blogs and through social media.

8.      Add any book urls to the signature line in ALL emails that you send.

These are some of the more popular ways any writer can develop a web presence.  Now, what are you waiting for?  Get out there and get online.

March 9, 2012

WRITER’S BLOCK: If you’re stuck – take stock

Filed under: Writing — dramaquill @ 3:10 PM

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Writer’s block…two words no writer wants to face.

What is writer’s block? Imagine waking up in the morning and not being able to get out of bed. Writer’s block is that crippling dread that comes over all writers at one time or another. The curser pulses. The blank page shines white and empty. No words. No ideas. Search writer’s block and you’ll find lots of blogs and articles offering advice and support. Just googling those two words presents over ten million results. Whew!

Recently, I’d been too busy with other aspects of my career and had to put my second novel away for a couple of months. Last week, excited and pumped to get back to writing, I pulled out my most recent chapters and read them over. Finally, I could continue working on my story. The first big block of writing time I had managed into my schedule added up to about ninety minutes. I was ecstatic. At least, I started out that way. But after forty-five minutes of starting the same sentence, then scribbling out the four or five words that even came to mind, I just couldn’t get going. I flipped back to the previous chapter for inspiration. Nothing. After sixty minutes, I decided that I’d put the project away until later in the week, when I had another ninety minutes blocked out.

 Later that week, I decided to try writing the next few chapters with pen and notebook. Often, I think better when I’m doing the physical writing by hand, rather than using my computer. Again, I refreshed my memory on where I was in the story and set out to pen the first sentence of the next chapter. This time, I managed a paragraph before the scribbling began. Was I being too picky and editing too soon?

 Nope. It’s pretty hard to edit a rambling bunch of nothing.

This time, I was not going to let this sudden case of writer’s block eat away my precious writing time so instead, I pulled out my planner notebook and started reading my character studies. I looked over the diagrams of some of my settings, tweaking things here and there. I followed my plot points, checking off those I’d already covered, adding some new twists and even questioning some of them. Then, I penned three different endings with pros and cons for each.

I may not have added more chapters to my book, but I did take stock of what I’ve done so far and what I hope to accomplish with the remaining chapters. Having this deeper understanding of the many aspects of this novel seems to have done the trick. I now have the next four chapters plotted out in rough points. I know I’ll be able to write them this weekend when I have my next block of writing time.

Writer’s block doesn’t feel good. Writer’s block can leave you wondering if you’ve run out of steam. Don’t let writer’s block stop you from finishing your next book. If you’re stuck – take stock.

March 5, 2012

Reviews of WHEN LOVE WON’T DIE

I’m looking for reviews of my adult suspense novel, “When Love Won’t Die”. If you’ve already read the book, please post a short review either in my comments section OR at Amazon.com on my book page: http://www.amazon.com/When-Love-Wont-Die-ebook/dp/B004AYD6YE/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1330989772&sr=8-1

March 1, 2012

Writer’s Digest article on Creating Suspense in Fiction

Filed under: Writing — dramaquill @ 3:26 PM

Writer’s Digest article on Creating Suspense in Fiction.

Writer’s Digest article on Creating Suspense in Fiction

Writer’s Digest offers great advice on all aspects of being a writer and their website has lots of free information.  I just found this excellent article on Creating Suspense in Fiction and wanted to share it with all my readers.  I especially enjoyed the section about withholding information.  I enjoyed using that technique to some degree in my first suspense nove, “When Love Won’t Die”  http://www.amazon.com/When-Love-Wont-Die-ebook/dp/B004AYD6YE

Check out this excellent article:  http://www.writersdigest.com/whats-new/5-simple-steps-on-creating-suspense-in-fiction?et_mid=540060&rid=2995854

 

Writing a Novel: Outline or Not?

Filed under: Writing — dramaquill @ 1:15 PM
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Yesterday I finally had the pleasure of getting back to work on my second suspense novel, a sequel to my first book, “When Love Won’t Die”. It’s been quite a while since I looked at the project as a whole, rather than tweaking a couple of chapters to submit to my critique group.

I learned a lot from writing the first novel. This time, I had a general set of plot points and a series of events already in mind before I began Chapter One. I already knew my characters quite well as most of them made an appearance in the first book.

But this time, I decided to outline each prospective chapter before actually writing the entire story. This has certainly come in handy since I had to take a considerable hiatus from my indepth work on this project and the chapter by chapter outlines I have recorded in a notebook now remind me not only of the story’s direction but also how I want to interweave certain characters’ circumstances together and also the layers of sub-plots I intend to use in the sequel.

I’ve never really had a big problem just starting a story and letting it unfold as I write it but I believe that by doing the task of outlining first, every aspect of this second book will become stronger because I have taken the time to really think things through first. That doesn’t mean I’ll be rigid and unwilling to change things from my outline. It just means that I have a clearer direction this time.

Suspense novels need to have a build-up of tension to keep the reader interested, but more than that, each incidence must evolve out of something else and by doing an outline, I believe that the evolution in this sequel will be more believable and more exciting because of it.

Do you outline your novels? What are the Pros and Cons? Try answering this before you start work on your new book and see which side you end up on?

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