What Books Mean To Me Part 2

Facebook – General – and Chandler’s Ford Today

I am thrilled to share Part 2 of my CFT series What Books Mean To Me.

Many thanks to Patricia M Osborne, Jennifer C Wilson, Anne Wan, and Richard Hardie for going under the spotlight this week.

I quiz them about the one book they would save, what reading has done for them, and also find out how reading has helped them develop as writers.
I’m fascinated at discovering what my lovely guests feel reading has done for them as writers. There is plenty to learn from here!

Fascinating insights so far in Part 1 as well (on CFT from last Friday) and there’s Part 3 to look forward to as well next week.

Meanwhile, do send in your comments as to what book you would save.

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What does writing do for you?

Writing takes me out of myself. It makes me dream up characters and worlds that could exist in an alternative reality.

In developing characters, I have to know what makes them tick. In working that out, empathy is encouraged.
I have to understand why my characters are the way they are. I don’t necessarily need to like them but I have to be able to understand their motivation.
In doing that, I can get to understand more about how others tick and that includes me!😊
Writing stretches me whenever I have to research anything (and that applies to my fiction as well as my Chandler’s Ford Today posts).

Writing has taught me to look beyond the obvious as I don’t want my characters to be cardboard cut-outs after all.

Writing is good for you!

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Facebook – From Light To Dark and Back Again

I chose my book’s title based on the moods of the stories in it. I could only pick the title when all the stories were gathered together and I could judge how the book would work as a whole. Sometimes you do have to step back and see the bigger picture.
I had assumed one of my stories would give the title for the book but couldn’t make up my mind as to which would work best. So I turned to the overall mood of the collection instead.
It’s perfectly okay to take your time to get your title right. What matters is that you are happy with it as you will be living with that title for a very long time, hopefully!

If you’ve got a scene with a super-duper character from a longer work that really has to be cut because it does nothing to move that story on, could you look at it and work it into a flash fiction tale?
Bear in mind, you could use short pieces like that as “adverts” for your longer work later on.
You could see them as intros for the super-duper character.
Worth considering I think!

Short story and flash fiction collections make excellent presents, of course, especially if the people you are buying for have eclectic tastes in fiction. Also, collections can be a great way of trying an author out before going on to enjoy their longer works.
So do put all kinds of books on your present/wish lists but don’t forget the collections!

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Fairytales With Bite – Books and Their Importance

All of my lovely guests for my CFT series What Books Mean To Me have rightly stressed how important books are to them.
What books are important to your characters and why? Are there books they must read?
Are any books banned and, if so, which ones and why? Is there a kind of “read-easy” mirroring the speak-easies of the American Prohibition era?
In your setting, are books, writers, publishers, librarians etc cherished or seen as potential threats? Not everyone welcomes knowledge being freely available to anyone. (Oh how I wish that was only true for fictional set-ups!).
Which formats are books available in? Are books easy enough for most to buy?
Hopefully answering at least some of those points will trigger story ideas.

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This World and Others – Worldviews

When you set up a fictional world, what is the dominant worldview of that setting? In my flash fiction, I have to focus on my character(s) and their attitudes as the word count restricts your room for manoeuvre here. (You can imply worldview though).
For longer fiction, you need to decide what it is your readers really need to know here. Do they just need the worldview of your main characters as it affects their behaviour, or do they need the worldview of the setting so readers can see if your characters are “normal” or not compared to that?
Whatever you decide here, do drip feed things into your fiction. Leave some gaps so readers can put two and two together for themselves. One of the best ways of showing a worldview is in the attitudes and actions of your characters.

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