Gremlins and Hiccups!

Facebook – General

Sorry, can’t share my CFT post for this week as usual. There’s a site issue which is being looked into. Will share the post when I can (I hope at some point over the weekend).

I’ve written about what I think are mankind’s Top 10 achievements and am looking forward to sharing it. It is not a comprehensive list (it can’t be) nor is it in one particular field but I will invite comments once I can share the post!

Meanwhile, a huge thank you to all for the birthday wishes. All very much appreciated.

Pleased I’ve managed to draft flash fiction pieces this week (I like the acrostic form and will use it again). Won’t be around much tomorrow but looking forward to next writing session on Sunday. I like the occasional break but always look forward to writing again and I think that’s a nice position to be in.

 

NB.  Once I can share the CFT post on Facebook, I will prepare a short separate post here to cover it.  I hope this can be sometime over the weekend.  Meanwhile, I’ve managed to write a blog about gremlins, more below!

I often find getting started with writing is the difficult bit but, once away, there’s no stopping me! This is why I will sometimes leave lines for me to finish or an odd note so that when I resume writing the next day I overcome that starting “hiccup” and can get straight on with things.

It is useful to work out what your writing “hiccups” are and then think of strategies to overcome/minimise them.

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My CFT post this week will be looking at what I think are amongst mankind’s top accomplishments. Link up on Friday. I will say now amongst other things the domestication of the dog comes into it.

Talking of dogs and having owned three collies now, I’ve spotted the similarities and differences in the characters of Gracie, Mabel, and Lady. Gracie and Lady are both champion cushion throwers (right off the sofa and into the middle of the carpet. I’m not talking sissy little cushions here either! They go for the big ones and don’t muck about). Mabel couldn’t wait to get her head down ON a cushion for her evening nap and wouldn’t dream of throwing them anywhere. She’d be very disapproving of Gracie and Lady for that!

Dogs come into my stories sometimes as pets of the main character. Sometimes they’re the driving force of a story (as in my She Did It Her Way, Kind Of). I do believe in writing what I know – well some of the time anyway!

Facebook – From Light to Dark and Back Again

A technical glitch has hit the CFT website tonight so I hope to share my post for this week later on this weekend, all being well.

The nice thing with flash fiction is you can write it regardless of technology. Pen and paper can be ideal for jotting down story ideas for typing up later. (It’s less useful when trying to write a novel – and yes I have written a novel by longhand. Now, I wouldn’t. I’d outline and go straight to screen).

Whatever writing you’re doing over the weekend, enjoy it! Not around much tomorrow but will look forward to my next “proper” session on Sunday. I’m always refreshed by mini breaks but then raring to write again. Never lose the love of writing!

Time for another acrostic flash fiction piece. I’m enjoying these. They’re stretching the imaginative little grey cells, which is always a good thing! Hope you enjoy. I think the mood of this one reflects general moods in the country at the moment, what with the Brexit uncertainty etc.

TRUTH

Truth is what you make it, I was told.
Rubbish, I replied, if you’re right, truth can be manipulated.
Under certain circumstances it’s needed, truth can be sold.
Then I want no part of it, I told the electioneer at my door.
Honestly, he sighed, I was honest then and you still want no part of it!

Allison Symes – 21st March 2019

 

Time for another acrostic piece then.

FICTION

Fabulous in pink, she whirled around,
Irritating her drab neighbours who stuck to their grey.
Carefree, unlike them, she ignored their shouts to stop
Trouble happened to others, never to her.
In a moment that situation changed
Oh my… dancing straight into traffic like that
Now on the national news for all the wrong reasons.

Allison Symes – 20th March 2019

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Publication News:  Cafelit – If It’s Too Good to be True

This was a fun story to write.  Hope you enjoy it.

Fairytales With Bite – Gremlins!

Gremlins have hit the CFT website tonight so I hope to share a double bill of posts with you next week but I thought I’d look at gremlins that can hit a writer.

The Indecision Gremlin
And a right pain this one is too.  You have two good story ideas to work on.  Which to pursue first?  I look at deadlines here and prioritise the one with the closest deadline.  If it’s a choice between a short piece and the novel, I plan out my writing time so I carve out slots specifically for the novel and other time periods I use for shorter pieces.  Over the course of a week, I’ve got done (most of the time) most of the work I’ve wanted to do .  It means I know what I’m doing with each day’s writing session and it kicks the indecision gremlin where it hurts as I don’t give it house room!

The Social Media Gremlin
How much time is the right time to spend on social media?  There’s no definitive answer to that one but I’ve found it has paid me to allow so long on it before I switch it off to write.

The Editing Gremlin
Otherwise known as the “I’ll just edit this one more time” gremlin. Is a very close relative of the indecision gremlin and can be just as much of a pain.  There is no hard and fast rule here but if you find you are just tinkering with a story, stop!  Send it out to the relevant market/competition and see you how do with it.  Remember this gremlin has the power to stop you moving on with new work if you let it.

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This World and Others –

The A to Z of Story Essentials Part 2

Continuing with what I think are the essentials to any story:-

F = Fun.  You should be enjoying what you’re writing even if you’re putting your characters through the grimmest hell imaginable.  Readers should be able to pick up on your enjoyment of putting a story together.  I detect this when I feel the story flows and has good pace.  That makes you want to read on.  There has to be the “I’ve got to find out what happens next” feel to your story.

G = Genre. Write in the genre you love.  Don’t pick a genre just because it’s fashionable as fashions never last long.  You’re in writing for the long haul so write what you love.  You’ll write better because you love it.

H = Humour.  This is tricky.  What is a great one-liner to one reader falls flat with another.  Allowing for humour being subjective then, write naturally.  Humour must come out of the situation or character you’ve created and must never seem forced.  This way the humour will arise naturally and readers will either get it or not but it won’t be out of place or jar your story in any way.

I = Imagination.  Let it run riot especially when outlining your story idea.  Work out possibilities and go for the one you love most.  It’ll be the one you will write with the most conviction.  And that does show through.

J = Jargon.  The best writing is simple writing.  That doesn’t mean it’s necessarily easy to write.  What you can guarantee is there has been a lot of editing carried out!  Avoid jargon.  Where characters might need to use it, it should be clear from context what the jargon means.  You don’t want to irritate your reader by coming up with something they can’t fathom out the meaning.  I’d also use any such jargon sparingly.

More next week….

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