Let’s Get Real—Authenticity in Fiction – written by Kristen Lamb

Kristen Lamb published a fantastic blog post about authenticity in fiction, about our protagonists and how not to do it. Thank you very much for this informative and interesting article!

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Years ago when I got the idea to write a novel, I did what a lot of new writers do and created the uber perfect protagonist. In fact, when I came up with the original plot idea for The Devil’s Dance, I cast a Sarah Conner badass…and she was dull as dirt and utterly unlikable.

Yay me.

Bizarrely, when those critiquing didn’t like my protagonist, I made her more perfect thinking that would fix it. Um, no. Made it worse. They went from disliking her to kinda wanting to stab her in the face.
Why did I do this? Why did I default to super perfect?

Fear.

Fear of being authentic. I had no concept of what it was like to be perfect. My family resembled Season Two of the Jerry Springer Show. After my parents divorced, my dad disappeared for years only to resurface and take a job as a cashier at Stop-N-Go so he could get out of paying the originally allotted child support. I was never #1 at anything (unless one counts truancy). Terrible…

 

To continue reading the entire post go to:

http://authorkristenlamb.com/2017/06/lets-get-real-authenticity-in-fiction/#respond

Running YOUR Race—Be Content Yet Stay HUNGRY (by Kristen Lamb)

I re-blogged part of Kristen Lamb’s blog post here. She writes about allies and enemies. An aspect of our writer’s life, all of us, should be aware of.

Thank you, Kristen!!

 

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My goal for this blog has always, always, always been to be honest with you guys, to offer tough love and guidance and support. Because the world has three kinds of people, but two are the most common. Two are not exactly helpful and can be downright toxic. We will start with these folks, then move on to how to win that race!

The Discourager (Enemy)

This is the person who’s going to tell you what you’re unable to do. That it’s too hard, that you’re stupid for even trying.
You want to be a successful author? Seriously? Everyone can be published. It means nothing. Do you have any idea the competition that’s out there? You need a mega-marketing budget and even then you’ll probably fail.
Okay I need to stop there because I’m depressing myself.

 

TO CONTINUE READ HERE:

http://authorkristenlamb.com/2017/05/running-your-race-be-content-yet-stay-hungry/#respond

 

 

Shame, Shame, We Know Your Name—Or Do We? Shame & Fiction – by Kristen Lamb

Kristen Lamb provides us with an excellent blog post about Shame & Fiction. Thank you very much Kristen for sharing your knowledge with us.

 

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Picture courtesy of Kristen Lamb’s blog post

 

Recently, I wrote a guest post This is the Reason All Great Stories are Birthed from Shame. It was a tough post and I needed a nap after writing it. It forced me to peel back layers I hadn’t touched in years. But the post got me thinking about probably the single most important element of great fiction
SHAME.
Since that post was not per se a craft post, I wanted to explore what I began on that blog here today. I firmly believe shame is the critical ingredient for fiction to resonate. It’s the difference between a forgettable fun read and a book we keep and read over and over.

 

Some Examples

I dig examples. I learn better when I have some to work with, so sharing some goodies with you today.

 

To continue reading go to the Original Blog post!

 

 

Oops! Hold on. You’re Newbie is Showing. – Blog Post by Kristen Lamb

Kristen Lamb published an excellent article about how to ‘recognize’ Newbies’. I have to admit, it took me a moment to realize I still do the one or other thing and need to work on that. I’m sure you will like that post as much as I do and might still learn something.

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Get it? You’re newbie is showing? Ah we are talking about the deeper stuff today 😀 .

Writing seems like it just shouldn’t be that hard, and yet? It’s deceptive. Seasoned storytellers make it look easy, and that does us no favors. Sort of like when I was four years old and, high off an episode of Wonder Woman, went flying out the back door and got the bright idea to do a handspring just like–OH SWEET EIGHT POUND SIX OUNCE BABY JESUS THAT HURT.

Many of us who eventually decide to become novelists did so because we grew up loving books. Then, probably just as many of us, thought we could also do that seamless triple front handspring (write a full length novel) with zero professional training, no practice and no falls.

Yeah about that.

 

To continue reading the post, click here: http://authorkristenlamb.com/2017/04/oops-hold-on-youre-newbie-is-showing/

Do Some People Lack the Talent to be Authors? – written by Kristen Lamb

Here you’ll find part of this excellent and very honest post, written by Author Kristen Lamb.

 


 

After the last post, we got in a rather spirited discussion in the comments regarding talent. Lora, an editor, was relaying a common malaise many editors feel (I’ve felt it myself plenty of times), which posits the eternal question.

Are there just some people who simply lack the talent to be novelists?

Good question.

A huge problem is that far too many people believe that a “clever” idea and command of the English language is all that is required to become a novelist, yet that is not the case. We’ve witnessed this with the rise of self-publishing. There are simply a lot of really BAD books out there.

Lora challenged me to write a post that might serve as some kind of a litmus test for talent, but in truth? Such a list is beyond the scope of my abilities because I don’t know if such a checklist exists.

Sales certainly are no indicator of talent. There are plenty of brilliant books that don’t sell or sell poorly and there are other works that sell a gazillion copies and show us clearly how taste has at least fifty shades.

To read the entire post and leave a comment go to: http://authorkristenlamb.com/2017/03/do-some-people-lack-the-talent-to-be-authors/

 

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The Engine of Fiction—Meet the Antagonist – Post by Kristen Lamb

Kristen Lamb has posted an excellent article about the engine of fiction. I strongly recommend reading it. It’s an excellent guide for new writers.

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One of the major issues with first-time novels is that the young writer fails to understand what a novel really is. All great stories are about one thing and one thing only—PROBLEMS. More specifically? Every good story has one core problem in need of being resolved. Granted, there will be many other problems along the way, but they are the setbacks and are all related to solving the core problem.

The trouble is that many of us got our “author training” in school, which really is no training at all. That purple prose that scored us an A on our college short story won’t get us far in the world of commercial storytelling. Additionally,… – READ MORE

 

http://authorkristenlamb.com/2017/03/the-engine-of-fiction-meet-the-antagonist/#respond

The Seven Deadly Sins of Prologues—What Doesn’t Work and What Does

Are Prologues bad? Read in Kristen Lamb’s blog what she recommends. It’s another great post she published! Thank you Kristen.

Kristen Lamb's Blog

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We writers have a vast array of tools at our disposal to craft stories readers will love. But like any tool, it helps if we know how to use it properly. Theme is wonderful. It can keep us plunging a story’s depths for years when used correctly. Applied incorrectly? It just makes a story annoying and preachy.

Description! Love me some description! But pile on too much and we can render a story unreadable.

The same can be said of prologues. Now, before we get into this, I want to make it clear that certain genres lend themselves to prologues. But even then, we are wise to make sure the prologue is serving the story.

So, to prologue or not to prologue? That is the question.

The problem with the prologue is it has kind of gotten a bad rap over the years, especially with agents. They generally hate them…

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