All images from Pixabay/Pexels unless otherwise stated. Book cover images from Chapeltown Books and Bridge House Publishing. Screenshots taken by me, Allison Symes.
Many thanks to Lynn Clement for her author photo and book cover pic for my interview with her on Chandler’s Ford Today. Many thanks also to Sarah Archibald for the Brechin/Angus Book Festival materials – it is a joy to share them!
Facebook – General – and Chandler’s Ford Today
I’m delighted to welcome fellow flash fiction writer, Lynn Clement, to Chandler’s Ford Today. Her debut flash collection, The City of Stories, was recently published by Chapeltown Books. And a shared publisher is not the only link between Lynn and I. See the full story on CFT.
And I look forward to chatting with Lynn next week about how she found the editing process (Chapeltown Books has a vigorous three stage process here) and discussing why using song lyrics in fiction really is not a good idea unless you have written said song lyrics yourself.
Am on the first leg of my train trip to the Brechin/Angus Book Festival as I draft this. So looking forward to taking part in this.
Meantime I’m pleased to share my latest blog post for Authors Electric. Naturally I’m talking about book festivals – well, they do say write what you know, right?!☺
Book festivals are a great way to celebrate books and my post takes a look at that aspect. Hope you enjoy.https://authorselectric.blogspot.com/2021/11/book-festivals-by-allison-symes.html
I’m packed ready to go to the Brechin/Angus Book Festival. Well almost. I just need to pack up this laptop after this evening’s writing session but then I’m ready.
Plenty of writing to get on with on the train journey up. And am looking forward to plenty of reading too. And am always glad to spread the word about flash fiction so this weekend should be fun there!
Looking forward to sharing Part 1 of a fab interview on Chandler’s Ford Today with Lynn Clement, whose debut flash fiction collection The City of Stories was recently published by Chapeltown Books. Link up on Friday (though my times of posting will vary over the next few days).
Will be busy getting my next author newsletter ready once I’m back from my travels. I share writing tips, prompts, news etc here and there’s a giveaway too.If you want to check things out do go to my website at https://allisonsymescollectedworks.com
Facebook – From Light to Dark and Back Again
Am pleased to share my latest story on #FridayFlashFiction – hope you enjoy Lucky. I think my lead character, Bert, here was sensible – see what you think.
Will be spreading the word about flash fiction at the Brechin/Angus Book Festival this weekend. Am on my way up by train as I draft this.
I’ll be running a flash fiction workshop and will be looking at ways in to creating a story. I’m also giving a talk on The Ups and Downs of Becoming An Author and of course flash fiction is a major part of that. A hugely enjoyable part too!
And flash will be celebrated again tomorrow thanks to my Chandler’s Ford Today interview with Lynn Clement. Flash is a common link for us both. Link up tomorrow.
Looking forward to my flash fiction workshop as part of the Brechin/Angus Book Festival this weekend.
I’m “on” during the Sunday twice – firstly the workshop and then later in the day I’ll be talking about The Ups and Downs of Becoming An Author. This talk is especially apt given I discovered flash fiction by accident which has proved to be a definite “up”!
And you could argue my latest YouTube story is also an “up” given it is called Rocket!
Fairytales With Bite – Putting on the Glad Rags
Do your characters ever put on the glad rags and, if so, why? Do they achieve their objective in doing this? The obvious practitioner of this is, of course, Cinderella, though she did need fairy godmother help to get those glad rags in the first place.
Assuming magic is not involved here, what would your characters wear for daily life? What would they wear for special occasions? Are there dress codes?I save my own glad rags for special writing events but your characters could use doing this as a way to disguise how they really feel inside.
Putting on the glad rags can be like putting on a kind of armour especially when you want to put on a good “front” to someone/the world in general. Does putting this “front” on work? Does it help your character cope with a bad/sad situation?
Does it elicit sympathy from those closest to your character who know the glad rags business is just an act for your lead? Is there a situation when putting on the glad rags is the wrong thing to do? When perhaps your character would be better off coming out with how they really feel… plenty of story ideas to think about here I think.
Oh and one truth throughout most fairytales I think, is while magic can help a character, it doesn’t resolve the overall problem. Cinderella still had to get away from her awful stepmother, the Prince still had to find Cinders despite the use of magic to bring them together at the ball.
This World and Others – Cultural Events
What kind of culture exists in your fictional world? Is culture appreciated, a tourism magnet etc., or is it despised?
Arts and the humanities are often not considered so valuable as, say, engineering, the sciences and so on. (All nonsense of course. All of these things are valuable and you can’t compare like with like anyway.
But what stance does your fictional world take? Has it ever changed its position and, if so, what made it do so? How do your characters react to their own culture? Are they an active part of it or do they leave the “arty” things to others?
If your fictional world does value culture, what kind is it? Is it “arty” or military based, say? Where would your characters best fit in? (You can find out more about what makes your characters tick here by looking at why they, say, prefer armed strength to the arts and so on. Are they compensating for their own weakness? Do they think they will become better, bigger people by showing a preference to the military side of things here?).
And can you develop characters who love the pomp and ceremony side of the military and the arts? How do they cope with others who prefer one or the other and consider the “opposition” something to be despised?
What sort of events does your world hold to commemorate historical events and is it compulsory for all citizens to take part? How does the culture of your fictional world affect the way it treats its own citizens and reacts to anyone/anything different?
What is your favourite part when writing a story? Do you prefer writing the opening lines or the closing ones? I always feel a certain relief when I am “hitting the ground running” with my latest character and the story is well under way. pic.twitter.com/Y9kRX2Ig8Y— ACW (@ACW1971) November 17, 2021
Authors Electric: Book Festivals by Allison Symes https://t.co/rfaiQJXRhA Am on way to Brechin/Angus Book Festival as I send this. Great thing here? There's something for everyone at these events. See below for proof!☺ pic.twitter.com/C7QqeTY8hE— Allison Symes (@AllisonSymes1) November 18, 2021
What is your favourite part when editing a story? I love it when I can sense my writing “tightening up” and becoming so much sharper in comparison to the first draft. I have no fears about cutting what isn’t moving the story on. Now where are my editing scissors?! pic.twitter.com/nyV3ACyhg6— ACW (@ACW1971) November 18, 2021
What is your favourite part when reading a story? For me it is the middle. By this point I know the characters and am rooting for them. I am at the must know what happens next stage. It is also a challenge to ensure I have no flabby bits! (I am talking about my writing here!). pic.twitter.com/BM30nXfGOV— ACW (@ACW1971) November 19, 2021
Introducing Lynn Clement – The City of Stories https://t.co/VdeyAjhUa9 It is a pleasure to introduce a fellow flash fiction writer to Chandler's Ford Today. Hello and welcome to Lynn Clement, author of recently published The City of Stories (Chapeltown Books). pic.twitter.com/sxQNmOMAyu— Allison Symes (@AllisonSymes1) November 19, 2021