Facebook – General – and Chandler’s Ford Today
My latest CFT post is Getting Away From It All. Appropriate as I am about to swan off to Swanwick! I share some thoughts on the importance of relaxing and how just writing something for the sheer fun of it can be a marvellous way to unwind for writers.
The great thing too is you can always work the piece up “properly” later on and submit it but to just write something for fun is wonderful. Possibly something we don’t do enough of? I’ve found doing this useful (a) to take a break from my main writing work and (b) to remind myself during tough patches just what it is I really love about writing – the creativity of it. I think you can lose sight of that at times.
Facebook – From Light to Dark and Back Again
More on the ABC of Flash Fiction…
D = Drive. Not only do you need that as the writer, but your characters do as well. Something has to happen in your narrative for it to be a story at all so your characters must be ready to “act” and for that to wrap up quickly. They must be ready to “hit the ground running”. They do something, there is a reaction, there is a conclusion (and of course it doesn’t necessarily have to be a happy one).
E = Entertainment. Whatever your genre, your flash fiction should entertain (even if that entertainment is simply to make your reader think about the theme of your story and whether they would do the same as your character has). Every word has to make your reader want to read on, every line has to move the story on, and at the end you want your reader to feel as if they have had a good read, even if it is only in 500 words, 100 words, 75 words or what have you.
F = Fairytales. I’ve found flash fiction to be a good vehicle for fairytales (albeit of the short and sharp variety. Not necessarily sweet as well though. Many of my fairy characters do have a penchant for justice, the rough kind where they feel it is necessary at that!).
Association of Christian Writers – More than Writers – On Criticism
Confession time: Am certain I didn’t put this up when I was supposed to so will share now. It IS better late than never and I hope my post for July on On Criticism will prove helpful.
Fairytales With Bite – the Fairytale A to Z Part 1
I love a list – whether it’s a numerical one or an A to Z format. So for fairytales and the magical world, what would my A to Z be? Part 1 then would be:-
A = Anthropomorphism
Not my favourite word to spell, I must admit! However, for me, a classic tale will have this as one of its elements. Think Puss in Boots, Shrek, The Chronicles of Narnia etc etc. What matters is the traits shown or speech given to an animal character to have/speak must make sense for the way that character has been portrayed. We see Puss in Boots is a character who would be smarter than his master so the speech given to Puss must reflect that.
B = Beauty
One thing I love about fairytales is that beauty is in the eye of the beholder and is not always the classical definition either. I love the stories of The Ugly Duckling and Beauty and the Beast. Is it just me but I didn’t think the Beast was that ugly incidentally (especially as Disney portrayed him? Huge, yes, but that’s not the same thing! That aside, there is a strong emphasis that it is a beautiful heart/character that matters most, which I fervently believe. I can’t say what single thing makes me love fairytales but this is a very high contender for being the top one.
C = Characters
There isn’t one dull character in fairytales, is there, when you come to think about it. There shouldn’t be in your stories either. (And even when a character is meant to be “dull”, there still has to be something about them that will make your reader want to find out if they stay that way or change or if there is a point to the dullness. Maybe the lead character needs a duller one’s sensible comments to point them in the right direction?).
More next time….
This World and Others – Getting Away From It All
What do your characters do to unwind? Where would they go to get away from it all? If your fictional world has a hierarchy (and frankly most will have something), are there places where the “commoners” can’t go? How is that enforced?
I am about to head off to the Swanwick Writers’ Summer School for a wonderful week of courses, catching up with writer friends, and making new ones. A marvellous time is had by all. For your longer stories, where would your characters go to catch up with friends and family they can’t see often (and how did that situation happen)?
In my Goodreads blog, I talk about my holiday reading. What would your characters read? Does your fictional world have a good literacy rate? If not, is anything being done about it? I’ve mentioned in previous posts that a totalitarian world will seek to restrict/ban books (as sadly is seen too often in this world!) but is there an underground system that bypasses/overcomes those restrictions?
Plenty of story ideas there!