And here, once again, The Story Reading Ape’s Monday Funnies with wonderful Aunty Acid. Thanks so much for the giggles!
Author Jaq D Hawkins published a guest post on The Story Reading Ape’s blog about author’s ‘stealing’ each other’s ideas – unconsciously and unintentionally – and still it happens… Read the post, it’s enlightening!
Ever think of a great plot and put it aside while you finish your current work in progress, only to find that someone else publishes something based on the same idea before you can get your version out?
I think this happens to all of us at some point. I don’t mean someone actually steals the idea, but someone totally unconnected to you thinks of the same idea independently, sometimes even a well-known author.
It can be frustrating, especially if it’s a big name author who gets the same idea as you and releases it sooner, but it’s also a great endorsement of the idea itself! So what do you do when this happens?
Ari Meghlen published a fascinating and educational blog post, written by Tobias Salem of writing about a character with depression. I found the post very useful and highly interesting. Thank you Ari and Tobias.
Since I don’t have a guest post today, I thought I would put in one of the A Writer’s Guide articles I received since this series is going to be put on hold for a while, I wanted to share the last few I had.
This is part of the series of blog articles called “A Writer’s Guide…”. The purpose of this series is to give detailed information on skills and occupations that writers can use when creating characters.
Check out today’s article by writer Tobias Salem is on writing about a character with depression.
by Tobias Salem
It makes sense that, as writers, we may be expected or feel compelled to include accounts of psychological illnesses in our fiction. Maybe, like me, you are dealing with your own mental illness.
Or, perhaps, it’s your partner, parent, sibling, or child. After all, an estimated 25% of the global population will contend with a mental illness at some point.
Kristen Lamb provides us with an amazing blog post about authors taking charge of our future in a time of uncertainty. Thank you for a great post, Kristen! You’re amazing.
Authors have certainly endured our fair share of upheaval. We witnessed a business model that had barely changed in over a century collapse in less than a decade.
Many of us felt the initial seismic activity back in the 90s when the big-box stores obliterated the bookstores we’d known all our lives. Witnessed the places we learned to love reading shutter one by one.
Those aisles where we daydreamed that maybe…just maybe one day WE would be on those shelves? Vanished.
We retooled the dream. Imagined our books in large hardback displays in the front of a Barnes & Noble. Or, perhaps on a kiosk next to the coffee bar at a Borders.
Then that went away as well.
Now, thrust into a digital age where anyone can be published and it seems there are too many hats for one head? It’s hard not to get discouraged.
But, writers are a tough breed.
On the “Insecure Writer’s Support Group”‘ blog, C. Lee McKenzie posted a list of 10 literary devices to master. I found this post on The Story Reading Ape’s blog. Thank you very much for all your hard promotion work, Chris!
on The Insecure Writer’s Support Group:
James Joyce’s Ulysses takes place over the course of a single day, but it’s notoriously chock-full of literary devices. Weighing in at over 700 pages long, it’s a masterclass in writerly tricks, with the intimidating heft of a brick.
oyce seems to have never met a literary device he didn’t love, a fondness that made him the bane of many English majors’ existences — but also a celebrated genius.
The good news is, we don’t all have to be James Joyce.
There’s no need to frantically stuff your novel with every literary device you can think of, in the hopes that it’ll turn it into the next Ulysses.
Still, it’s good to have a handful in your bag of tricks — they can punch up your prose, and make your readers unable to look away from your skillful weaving of plot and theme. Just don’t overdo it.
If you’re only going to master 10 literary devices, let it be these ones!
Melissa Donovan published a very educational blog post about the elimination of redundancies in our writing. Thank you very much for your hard work, Melissa. That post is very helpful!
Writers are human, and sometimes we make mistakes. You’re probably aware of the most common mistakes in writing: comma splices, run-on sentences, mixing up homophones, and a variety of other broken grammar, spelling, and punctuation rules.
In my coaching work, I’ve noticed another common mistake: redundancy. Sometimes we use repetition effectively, but most of the time, by saying the same thing twice, we’re littering our writing with unnecessary language, or verbiage. If we remove the excess, we can improve our writing by making it more concise.
Understanding and Identifying Redundancies in Writing
Dictionary.com defines redundancy as a noun meaning “superfluous repetition or overlapping, especially of words.” Its cousin, the adjective redundant, means “characterized by verbosity or unnecessary repetition in expressing ideas” or “exceeding what is usual or natural.”
I found a really fascinating blog post, written by David Kudler, where he writes about book covers. Thank you very much David.
While the truism “You can’t tell a book by its cover” holds true in most of our lives, one place where it doesn’t, ironically, is in publishing.
Oh, it’s still true — the cover doesn’t necessarily communicate what’s inside (though it should). But potential readers ignore it almost universally — especially when it comes to ebooks.
The cover is the first and (in many cases) most important piece of information those readers get about a title. This time out, I’m going to look at what should go into designing a cover that works for, rather than against, your ebook.
The Cover’s Job
Whatever format a book is in (print, audio, or ebook), the cover has a very important job — apart from and in addition to being visually attractive. As readers of TheBookDesigner.com probably already know, that job falls into several very important parts. It must communicate:
- The genre/subgenre of the book
- The tone of the book
- The subject matter of the book
A cover makes a promise. It tells the reader very clearly — through words, but also through design — exactly what they’re going to read.