Tuesday, March 24, 2015

Writing Tips #4 - Nuggets of Wisdom on Story Making

Congratulations to Connie Saunders who won a copy of Kathy Weichman's book,  Like A River.

As promised, I'm returning to my mini-series of posts on Writing Tips. If you missed the earlier posts, Part I and II included General Advice and Part III was on Deep Point of View. Today, some of my fellow writers tackle story making.

"I spend time lying in bed late at night just before nodding off or first thing in the morning before I'm really awake, mulling over my characters and their motivations and my story line. I love it!" Kim Van Sickler, author of Snatched in Gullybrook. 

From: http://www.onstory.tv/interact/making-on-story/
Five ways to engage your reader from Martina Boone's blog Adventures in YA Publishing
  • Set out the stakes early.
  • Start with the story question.
  • Keep your main character in the forefront by engaging her/him in activity.
  • Reveal character and special abilities through action as much as possible.
  • Build the story world as you go, slivering in the details of place as needed.
Martina adds, "Put the core of the story on every page—the thing that you wouldn’t change no matter what. That needs to be there from the first paragraph to the last. It may or may not be the story question. Perhaps it’s voice, or setting, or a character, a style, a mood. Whatever it is that makes the story important to you, start with it, end with it, and carry it through the book. Chances are that will make the story truly yours and that’s what will separate it from others in the slush pile and on the bookstore shelves." Martina Boone is the author of Compulsion.

"If you are writing for teens, surround yourself with that age group and ask questions, look at their fashion statements, find out their interests. Listening to conversations with their peers is helpful in writing dialogue and understanding their issues. Words I use are sometimes out of date and they give me the new slang term." Sheri Levy is the author of Seven Days to Goodbye.

Finally, here are two excellent posts by Katia Raina on plot and structure

Next week I'll finish this series with a post on revision and will announce the winner of Nancy Kress's book:


Rosi said...

Thanks for these posts. For contemporary fiction, Sheri really nailed it.

Carol Baldwin said...

Thanks, Rosi. You just made Sheri's day!

sheri levy said...

Thanks, Rosi. It's fun, also.

Linda A. said...

More great tips. I especially enjoyed Katia's comments on mini stories, bridges and moments.

Thanks Carol and contributors!

Carol Baldwin said...

Thanks, LInda--glad you have profited from tho series. And yes SHeri, it is fun--listening in on kids of ALL ages!

Linda Phillips said...

Thanks for always doing such a great job of sharing the wisdom you have gathered about the writing journey!

Connie Porter Saunders said...

Thanks, Carol, for these great posts. Wonderful tips and observations for writers AND those of us choosing YA literature to read.

Carol Baldwin said...

Glad you've liked this series, Connie and Linda!

Anonymous said...

Carol, Love this mini series you are doing. Great advice from Martina and Sheri!

Carol Baldwin said...

Thanks, Kathleen. Glad you've enjoyed it!

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