All images from Pixabay/Pexels unless otherwise stated. Book cover images from Chapeltown Books and Bridge House Publishing. Screenshots (and photo of Lady) were taken by me, Allison Symes. Many thanks to Dawn Kentish Knox for taking the photo of me reading at a previous Bridge House Publishing event. Very much looking forward to going to the 2022 one!
Hope you have had a good few days – weather stormy and then next day gorgeous sunshine. It’s a case of looking out of the window and thinking big coat or not today then! This will be the position for the next few months – certainly till at least early March.
Facebook – General
Hope you’ve had a good day. Lady got to play with her “boyfriend”, a lovely tri-coloured Aussie Shepherd today. Both got a good run!
Am looking forward to sharing Part 2 of my interview with Jenny Sanders on Chandler’s Ford Today on Friday. This week we’ll be discussing short stories and flash fiction, other areas in which our paths have crossed, writing wise.
Have booked my tickets for the Bridge House Publishing event in London on 3rd December. Looking forward to that very much. Will be giving a reading at that event too. Flash is ideal for that kind of thing – you cannot go on for too long!
To say Lady and I got wet this morning is something of an understatement. Had Noah been passing, we’d have thumbed a lift.
Now I use Book Brush to design graphics with and I love using their tools to help me achieve great images for my blog posts. (I use them all the time for Chandler’s Ford Today, Authors Electric, Mom’s Favorite Reads, More than Writers etc). I’ve now set up my Reader Hub page on this (it is a new feature) where I can share pictures, my social media links and a bit about what I write, all in one handy place. Very pleased with this and am sure it will prove useful.
Progressing well with Flash NANO. One of my pieces for this I plan to use for my YouTube tale this week so look out for that when I share the link tomorrow. See below. I’ve mentioned before about having a “stock” of stories ready for competitions, markets etc. Taking part in Flash NANO is a great way to build up a good stock!
I’ve shared a couple of my pieces on the Flash NANO Facebook group (as these stories needed little alteration) but I won’t share everything there because I know there is plenty of work to do on my other tales before I want anyone else seeing them! Having said that, I am loving reading what others are sharing here – it does to pay to read in your genre as well as outside of it. It always reminds me of why I love the flash format. And it is such a fun thing to do so win-win!
Hope you have had a good day. Many thanks for the lovely comments coming in on Cat Chat, my new tale (or should that be tail?) on Friday Flash Fiction. I write stories from an animal’s point of view every so often. They’re fun to do. But, as with any story, the character voice must be strong enough to be convincing.
Am looking forward to sharing Part 2 of my interview with Jenny Sanders on Chandler’s Ford Today next week (and again thanks to all who have responded so well to Part 1 where the post was shared on social media yesterday. Lots of memories about schools programming from years ago!) Part 2 will look at where Jenny and I cross paths with regard to short story and flash fiction writing.
Facebook – From Light to Dark and Back Again
Am looking forward to the Association of Christian Writers Flash Fiction group meeting on Zoom next week. It is a lovely time to catch up with writing news, share details of competitions etc, and I usually share a short presentation.
Writing wise, I am already beginning to think about stories for a future (fourth) collection. It does take time to build these up but Flash NANO is going to be a good contributor here!
Have got a story in draft which I want to enter for a competition before the year is out. Currently resting it but hope to have another look at it over the weekend. I can’t stress enough how useful it is to have time away from a story as I find I pick up various things to put right having given myself enough distance away from the piece. It really is worth doing.
It has been the kind of Monday that makes Noah wonder if it’s time to set sail again so definitely time for a new YouTube story from me. This one, Looking and Finding, is one of my responses to the Flash NANO challenges set so far for this year. The 19 word story, all in! Hope you enjoy it. (I didn’t include the title as part of the word count for this or for the Flash NANO challenge itself but this was great fun to write and will resonate with cat owners and Tom and Jerry fans in particular).
What makes for a good opening line for me? It’s something that draws me in, sets up an interesting premise, and gives me that “I’ve got to find out what happens here” feeling. Only one way to do that – read the story – job done! But…
The job is only done if that vital closing line does its job well and delivers on the promise set by the opening one.
This is why I like to outline my flash and other stories. I don’t need to work out everything but I do need to know how I am going to get from A to B with a rough idea of the stopping points on that journey. In a flash tale, even at the 1000 words upper limit, I often only need a line (which will form the basis of Start Point A), a rough line about what happens in the middle, and another line summing up how the story finishes (my finishing point B). For a longer tale I might need a couple of lines for each of the three points of my story.
I’ve found outlining doesn’t take too long and has saved me a lot of grief. I no longer box myself into a corner with my story. I’ve only scrapped two stories in my time because I hadn’t outlined and I did box myself in as a result of that.
Don’t forget my author newsletter goes out on the first of the month and I do share tips here, especially those pertinent to flash story writing. Last time I shared a pdf I’d created for a flash fiction group I run on Zoom (the ACW one). If you’d like to sign up head over to my landing page at https://allisonsymescollectedworks.com – you would be most welcome! A big thanks to all who are already subscribers too.
One of the Flash NANO challenges is in the form of an exercise I’ve done before – to cut a story in half word count wise. It’s a great exercise to work on your editing skills as the story still has to make sense and to not lose anything important to its meaning. This kind of exercise though is not the type you can do in five minutes. What I’m hoping to do with mine is have it done by the end of Flash NANO at the end of the month.
Goodreads Author Blog – READING ACROSTIC
R= Reading is wonderful and inspires further stories to be written.
E = Educational and entertaining – what is there not to like?
A = Animals, aliens, all sorts of characters end up being the heroes and villains in the stories.
D = Dialogue in books and stories is like overhearing an intriguing conversation where you have to find out what happens.
I = Imagination – reading fires this up considerably even if you don’t write yourself.
N = Novels, novellas, short stories, flash fiction, non-fiction, articles, books, magazines – there is something to suit you somewhere!
G = Great reading can cross centuries – there is no time limit on how long a book or story can be good for.
ALWAYS PUT MAILCHIMP BLOCK ON TO END OF THE POST
liked Allison Symes's blog post: Reading Acrostic https://t.co/3qq3JvV4yT via @goodreads Thought I'd share a Reading Acrostic this week for Goodreads. Hope you like it. pic.twitter.com/ncuM6qODTC— Allison Symes (@AllisonSymes1) November 19, 2022
Many thanks, @valeriepenny – my two flash collections are below. https://t.co/iJ4XP6iF6Z pic.twitter.com/jRgMRHmEkR— Allison Symes (@AllisonSymes1) November 19, 2022
Pleased to share my Reader Hub page on Book Brush, which I use for my graphics on my blog posts. This is a new feature where I can share my book pics, social media links etc. Sure it will prove useful.https://t.co/sEv2yzx9mN— Allison Symes (@AllisonSymes1) November 21, 2022
It has been the Monday that makes Noah wonder if it’s time to sail again so definitely time for a YouTube tale from me. Looking and Finding is one of my responses to the Flash NANO challenges set so far and will resonate with cat owners/Tom + Jerry fans. https://t.co/Yx6bNzR0nV— Allison Symes (@AllisonSymes1) November 21, 2022