Imagine all the stories in here! Image via Pixaba

WHAT I WOULD LOVE ABOUT LIVING IN A MAGICAL WORLD

FAIRYTALES WITH BITE

I don’t know if this is me being negative but tonight’s post, What I would love about living in a magical world, I found more difficult to write than yesterday’s one where I listed the disadvantages of being in such an environment!  Maybe to me at least the disadvantages are more obvious!

THIS WORLD AND OTHERS

I discuss music in tonight’s post, The Joy of Strings, so if anyone was thinking that title meant the blog was going to be a celebration of the old string vest, you’re in for a disappointment!  I was listening to a classical concert as I was typing this and I wondered what role music might play in your fictional world.

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The advantages of being a writer is my topic for tonight.  I only listed a few. What could you add to the list?

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Where so many classic stories started life - just ask Dahl and Wodehouse to name just two. Image via Pixabay.

Where so many classic stories started life – just ask Dahl and Wodehouse to name just two. Image via Pixabay.

 

Now here is a magical environment! Enough books to be going on with for one thing! Image via Pixabay.

LIVING IN A MAGICAL WORLD – THE DOWNSIDES

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I must admit I do love my lists.  I love reading them. I enjoy writing them too.  In tonight’s post I share my reasons for why I would hate living in a magical world. I  think my reasons are pretty sound.  See what you think!

THIS WORLD AND OTHERS

Continuing with lists and the general theme of the downsides of living in a magical environment, I share some hints and tips to those who might be called magically naive. Such people need all the hints and tips they can get!

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I discuss what I like about each stage of the writing process tonight.  Do you agree with my thoughts?  Or is there one aspect you really hate and dread doing?

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Books can be magical, regardless of what genre they actually are. Image via Pixabay.

Books can be magical, regardless of what genre they actually are. Image via Pixabay.

 

What a Library. Image via Pixabay.

BEING TAKEN OUT OF YOURSELF

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In tonight’s post Developments I ask how your characters react to the big changes in life.  I also ask how development in general takes place in your fictional world.  Can big business dictate to government or is there one central power controlling everything?

THIS WORLD AND OTHERS

In Being Taken Out of Yourself, I ask what triggers enable your characters to escape their humdrum lives for a while.  I also ask what happens when characters that need to escape for a while find they can’t do so.  Just how long can they keep going before they crack.

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I discuss what I hope will become a mini series for Chandler’s Ford Today and wonder why it is I have days, like today, when I can catch up with my reading, yet on other days I barely have time to read at all!

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Books help you wind down, can be a trigger to escape life. Image via Pixabay.

Books help you wind down, can be a trigger to escape life. Image via Pixabay.

 

 

 

 

A bookshelf of beautiful books. A joy to look at, but a greater one to read! Image via Pixabay.

IS THERE A MAGIC WAND IN WRITING?

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You shouldn’t be too surprised that the answer to “Is there a Magic Wand in Writing?” is a resounding “no” but I discuss how you can help “beef up” the imaginative muscle.  And the best way of all is to indulge in the flip side of writing, which is to read.  Is there a writer who doesn’t love to read?  I don’t think so and my attitude here is go for it – prose, poetry, fiction, non-fiction – indulge, knowing it will help your own writing no end!

THIS WORLD AND OTHERS

On a similar theme, my post Flexing the Imaginative Muscle shares three writing exercises.  Writing exercises are, of course, the other great way to fire up your imagination.  Some have given me opening lines, which I’ve then used to write flash fiction or longer short stories, though a play, a novella or longer piece of fiction could also start from something like this.

FACEBOOK PAGE/CHANDLER’S FORD TODAY POST

I use my FB author page tonight to discuss my Chandler’s Ford Today post called Why I Use Scrivener Writing SoftwareThis is likely to remain the most technical piece of writing I ever produce but I hope it might be useful to those writers considering using this software.  I have, however, put in links to some of my favourite authors for whom writing technology consisted of the quill and the typewriter!  And those sites are worth exploring if you are a fan of Roald Dahl, P.G.Wodehouse and/or Shakespeare!  At the end of the day it is the imagination that is the most important writing tool of all.

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Feature image for my Chandler's Ford Today post.  Image via Pixabay.

Feature image for my Chandler’s Ford Today post. Image via Pixabay.

Writing in many forms. Image via Pixabay.

CALLING OCCUPANTS AND FAIRYTALE ETHICS

FAIRYTALES WITH BITE

I look at Fairytale Ethics and Etiquette tonight where you can find out what I think about the intellectual capacities of cats wearing footwear and what that means for us humans. One thing I always liked about fairytales as a kid, and still do now, is they do have a very strict sense of fair play and justice.  Even as a kid I knew the world wasn’t like that.  Maybe that is part of the very strong appeal these stories have now.  We know fair play and justice should be a normal state of affairs (but sadly so often are not).

THIS WORLD AND OTHERS

Calling Occupants brings to mind a great Carpenters song but also makes me ponder if, in your fictional world, whether there is acceptance of other life forms and does your world try to make contact with those forms?  There are some story prompts here which I hope you find useful.  At the very least I can see some short stories coming out of these, maybe longer works of fiction too.

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I share why I love short stories on my Facebook page tonight.  I love (and indeed write) quirky fiction and there are some wonderful online magazines which take these.  This is one of the lovely things about being a writer.  You hopefully get to submit work and see it accepted but you also get to indulge in being a fan and loving other writers’ work too.  You can’t write well without reading well after all.

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Where all stories start regardless of technology.  Image via Pixabay.

Where all stories start regardless of technology. Image via Pixabay.

My library is not so huge or grand but precious all the same. Love this image though. It is the library at Leeds Castle. Image via Pixabay.

DAY TRIPPING AND FAIRYTALE WORRIES

FAIRYTALES WITH BITE

Tonight’s Fairytale Worries is a light-hearted piece about what fairytale characters might worry about!  Well we all have our concerns and crosses in life to put up with, so why should fictional characters be any different?

THIS WORLD AND OTHERS

One of my favourite things, away from the worlds of writing and reading, is getting to see a bit more of this big, bad world.  I love day trips.  Tonight’s post, Day Tripping, wonders if characters in a magical world might enjoy this too and asks where would they go?  How would they get there?  There could be some humorous stories to be found in following those ideas up.  Note to self:  give it a go!

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I discuss the debt those of us who write tales for grown ups (as opposed to adult stories, that’s more of E.L. James’ market!) owe to the writers of children’s literature. I share what I loved reading as I was growing up too.

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The ultimate Book Circle perhaps?  Image via Pixabay

The ultimate Book Circle perhaps? Image via Pixabay

 

 

Escape with a good book - and Roald Dahl's were amongst the best. Image via Pixabay

SHORT FICTION

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In Short Fiction I discuss why fairytales fit a short story format so well and what fairytales and other short stories have in common.    One thing I forgot to put on is that both fairytales and other short stories should have a strong emotional response on your readers.

THIS WORLD AND OTHERS

In Legacies, I look at legacies in terms of the impact characters have on your story, other characters and so on.  I discuss Roald Dahl’s legacy briefly (I could have written much more about that!).

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I discuss Roald Dahl in more detail here and share the  YouTube clip of the opening and closing credits for his Tales of the Unexpected.  I also list some of my favourite Dahl stories.

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The most important advice of all when it comes to books whether you are just reading them or trying to write your own as well. Image via Pixabay.

The most important advice of all when it comes to books whether you are just reading them or trying to write your own as well. Image via Pixabay.

It's amazing the worlds a book can show you. Image via Pixabay.

FAIRYTALE JOBS YOU DON’T WANT

FAIRYTALES WITH BITE

Tonight’s post, Fairytale Jobs You Don’t Want, shows some of the roles in a magical world you really don’t want to be carrying out. That is, assuming you want a nice, healthy life span!

THIS WORLD AND OTHERS

The Unglamorous Side of Magic is tonight’s post and looks at the fact that every world has its lowest of the low.  In a magical world, this “honour” is held by the lowly minion, that poor so-and-so who collects eye of newt for his/her witch bosses and so on.  (No gender discrimination here either, anyone can be a lowly minion).  There really are some jobs in life you don’t want.  That includes the fictional life!

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I discuss the joy of I-player and music tonight.  I also talk about short story collections, particularly The Best of Cafelit 5.  I have a flash fiction piece in this, Telling the Time, but felt it appropriate I should have my own Kindle copy of the book!  I like the Kindle for all sorts of reasons but feel short story collections do work well on it, especially with the ability to bookmark your position and so on.

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The Kindle - modern reading for a modern era. Image via Pixabay.

The Kindle – modern reading for a modern era. Image via Pixabay.

 

 

Now here's a statue that I like! Image via Pixabay

TRUTH AND SYMPATHY

FAIRYTALES WITH BITE

I look at Truth in Fiction tonight and discuss the importance of having characters who are real and with whom readers can identify.  I also mention Richard III.  Am always glad to get a mention in for him as one of my non-fiction books which reveals a lot of research about him is called The Maligned King (author:  Annette Carson) and I think the title sums him up well.  Truth still matters, even after all these centuries.  It matters in fiction too.  If characters aren’t truthful or real in the way they’re portrayed, people simply won’t read their stories.

THIS WORLD AND OTHERS

I look at Sympathetic Characters tonight and discuss how I portray my “people” so readers are likely to be able to identify with them and want to read their stories.  I also discuss what makes for a “good” villain and hero/heroine as far as I’m concerned.  I also reveal what I really think about my rebellious fairy godmother character.

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I discuss Richard III tonight as I was delighted to find a free Kindle download of Clements Markham’s research into the king.  This research helped inspire Josephine Tey who wrote The Daughter of Time, one of my favourite novels ever and which is one of the few to make me change my mind about a person, in this case Richard III.  I reviewed this book some time ago for Chandler’s Ford Today but have included the link here.

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Richard III poster - image via Pixabay. One of my favourite characters to read about but NOT as Shakespeare portrayed him!

Richard III poster – image via Pixabay. One of my favourite characters to read about but NOT as Shakespeare portrayed him!

The world's most beautiful library perhaps? Image via Pixabay.

A MUSICAL NIGHT

FAIRYTALES WITH BITE

Tonight’s post is called A Peek Into My Writing World and also links into the second half of my Chandler’s Ford Today post by the same name that is up on site today. The title of the post gives a good description of the contents (as it should!) but I mention in it that as I typed it I was listening to one of my musical highlights of the year, The Last Night of the Proms.  I wonder what role music could play in fiction and whether it could act as a kind of code too.

THIS WORLD AND OTHERS

Tonight’s post is called Favourite Music and I look at what kind of music characters could like and whether is a direct reflection on their personality or not. I also talk about whether music could be suppressed by an austere government given almost anything can be expressed by music (and the arts in general come to that).

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I discuss the Proms again and link to my Chandler’s Ford Today post as well here tonight.

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CHANDLER’S FORD TODAY

The second half of my post for CFT this week is called A Peek Into My Writing World and I share why I have artificial roses on my writing desk, who I owe my love of stories to and the importance of never giving up.  Rework your stories, test them regularly in the market but never ever give up.  I mention this as my flash fiction book acceptance had made me look back into just how long I’d seriously been writing for publication – and it is at least 10 to 15 years.  Can’t be more specific than that as I changed direction from novels to short stories (though I still hope to get my novels published one day).

 

The best advice for any writer.  Image via Pixabay.

The best advice for any writer. Image via Pixabay.