Tag Archive | brainstorming

Free Writing: The Dead Can Run (Chp 4 Prt1)

Please keep in mind this is a first draft and no revisions or editing should be done as part of the exercise, though I failed miserably and edited for hours on end on this one. Though in no way does that mean you are getting a clean and amazing chapter, most likely the opposite. 🙂

I will be properly revising and editing this story in the next few days. Here is hoping to have the first compilation of the first six chapters before the end of this month. Also, I am sorry for taking so long in continuing this story. This is intended to be a free writing project and I was brainstorming ahead. Needed to take time off to undo those chapters in my mind.

Warning: 1st draft, possible rambling

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The Dead Can Run

Chapter Four Part One

My teeth cut into my lower lip and my mouth filled with the taste of copper. I struggled to my feet to only be shoved back down. A hand pinned me to the floor by my hair followed by a knee to my back. The man was heavier than he looked.

“Let…let me…go,” I pleaded, blood seeped from my busted lip and coated the floor to then cling to the strands of my hair that had fallen loose from his grip. I tried to muffle a cry at the touch of the man’s hand trailing down my bare back. His rough fingertips lapping up the droplets of water that still clung to my flesh.

“What do you say we have a little fun before I turn you over to our Mr. Self-Made Leader huh?” the brute sneered, pressing me harder against the ground and digging his knee further into my back.

“You’re disgusting,” I shouted past his mocking laughter. I recognized his voice. He had been one of the men I had overheard while tied in the closet. His companion must be the other man he had been talking to.

“Just kill me already,” I cried, struggling against his hold as best as I could. My actions earned me another tug of my hair. Tears welt up in my eyes at the pain. I could feel my warm breath against my face and the blood draining from my fingers as I clung to the man’s wrist with both hands in an attempt to loosen his grip on my hair.

“Feisty, I like them feisty,” he laughed, yanking me to my feet, his grip on my hair threatening to scalp me where I stood.

“You know he won’t approve of this,” Cassy cut in, removing her gloves and tossing them aside. She stepped back into the bathroom to emerge with the handcuffs. Her calm and blank demeanor told me there was no salvation there and my fear grew. Just what kind of people were they?

“Come on Cassy, relax. I wasn’t really going to rape her,” the man who held me teased, pressing a blade against my skin. “At least not right now,” he whispered into my ear.

Were the zombies the real monsters here? I thought to myself as the knife nicked my skin.

“On second thought, why wait? I think you deserve a good reminder of how lucky it was that we found you. The zombies would have finished you off if it wasn’t for us. The least you can do is repay the gesture. What do you say?” my tormentor replied, his voice full of malice and of something else I wanted nothing of.

The blade disappeared and I was shoved towards the bed again. I cringed as my hands came in contact with the blood stained sheets. The smell of death engulfed my nostrils and my gag reflexes reminded me that they still worked. I dropped to my knees and threw up again, this time white foam mixed with the blood that had dripped to the floor from the carnage on the bed.

Before I could wipe the vomit clinging to my lips my head was jerked back and the man pressed himself against me, kneeling behind me.

“Should I take your silence as consent?” He ran his fingers across the side of my face. Every touch made my stomach twist with greater disgust, threatening to make me gag for a third time.

“Get off me,” I snapped, elbowing him in the face. I had just walked in on a bunch of lunatics, deadly lunatics, but I wasn’t ready to die yet. I still hadn’t found my son and I wasn’t about to let them have their way with me either.

I bolted to my feet and dashed for freedom. The other man blockading the door leading out of my room grasped my arms and twisted them behind me, turning me around to face my first attacker. My eyes swelled in tears and my throat tightened, I tried to scream but nothing came out. I didn’t want to think about what they had planned for me. Now that I was found not to be infected, would I die or worse would they really rape me?

“Where do you think you’re going?” the biggest of the brutes sneered, taking one broad step towards me. He grasped my neck with both his hands and squeezed. “You really want to die? Then who are we to keep…”

The man behind me yelped in surprise and I was shoved forward into the very man who tried to strangle me. We both tumbled towards the bloodied bed. I rolled off the bed and slammed into the hard floor, slamming my head against the edge of the night stand. I withered on the floor and clung to my head. Silence filled the room and I chanced a glance at the man still sprawled on the bed.

“What were my orders?” a familiar voice bellowed followed by the sound of a gunshot. Warm blood splattered on my face and I screamed.

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Peaceful at Last, Now let’s get to Work

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NaNoWriMo has started to become a blur for some of us, for other’s it is still a heavy reminder of the few pounds we gained from all that sugar rush and snacks. But now it’s time to hop back on the roller-coaster of publishing that novel.

Hope you used that time away from your manuscript to refresh your take on your story and are now prepared to hack it to pieces. Love hurts after all and you have to love your novel to want to clean it up, get it to par for publication, and decorate it with a beautiful cover.

In our first step of many, many steps, is Revision.

If you have already started revising, two thumbs up to you, but that isn’t always recommended for everyone. It is encouraged to take a break from your work before tackling the massive step of revising your story, to let your brain reset after writing 50,000 words in one month. It helps make it easier to notice misspelled words, obvious word swapping, and other minor edits you can avoid later.

So what exactly does one do in revising?

Revise:

  • to re-examine and make alterations to a written or printed work, to alter so as to make such work more efficient or realistic

  • to reread work done previously and improve one’s knowledge of the subject

And there you have it. This is the step where you reread your entire work, catch those obvious, hard to look away, mistakes. This is where you notice discrepancies, slipup’s, and gaps in your story, content, and flow. Here you cut the fat from the fat. Notice all those repetitive phrases and words, change them up or take them out completely.

Search for ‘as’ and try to take as many of them out. ‘As’ is mainly your brain telling you that you should use ‘and’ or start a new sentence. Sometimes you can flip the sentence around and delete both ‘as’ and ‘and’. Another word is ‘just’, the list goes on.

How about tackling those other areas like dialogue? You can read the dialogue on its own and then as part of the story to see how it flows. Dialogue is one of your weaker points in writing? Check out my blog on how to make dialogue work.

Don’t forget the dispute whether to use a prologue and epilogue. Does your first chapter work better as a prologue and does your prologue flow better as the first chapter? Read my take on this conundrum in Prologue and Epilogue, both or neither?

Done with revising? Fine tuned your dialogue and figured out what flow your story should start off with? Check back later for the next step or question rather, to beta or not to beta?! 🙂 Till then.

 

Pep Talks (Because you know you want to talk instead of write)

Challenge

Day Two of NANOWRIMO

The writing challenge is in full swing or at least should be. But what should one do if it isn’t?

One of the things I missed out on those two years I tried writing a novel in 30 days and failed was taking advantage of all the positive support and resources out there. Like I said before and will probably say 28 more times, there is a vast amount of information for your brain to soak up. There are books on how to do just about anything related to writing and otherwise, blogs and journals (if you still use livejournal), websites, and careers centered on helping writers write.

Our two previous blogs talked about getting a head start and brainstorming. We also dabbed in the topic of finding inspiration to write. But what if after all that writing is still coming at painful chunks, each more painful than the last?

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Pep Talks is one of those lovely resources we can fall back on. If you signed up for NANOWRIMO you might have already received your first one from Chuck Wendig, writer of The Kick-Ass Writer and 250 Things You Should Know About Writing. If you haven’t or didn’t get around to reading it yet go read it now. What are you waiting for? You’ll laugh and want to write Donuts in an empty field when your done reading it. And who knows maybe you will want to keep writing and knock off some of those words you need for today’s word count.

Or maybe you will want to write your own pep talk.

Maybe you’ll make a list of all the great things you can accomplish by treading through the thick mud and refusing to stop so early in the game.

After all:

  1. There are only 29 more days left, 28 if you managed to write today.
  2. You are less than a month away from having a finished novel to stuff in your drawer and never look at again. Or maybe you could try and share it with others and actually publish it.
  3. Think of all the characters you could kill off, marry, or toss in the meat grinder before you write HFA or HFN.
  4. What about world building? How could one say no to the opportunity to create the next world kids and people will be dreaming about?
  5. Or how about all the weird names you can give your characters? You know the world needs another Charlie and Rapunzel to drive us madly in love or insane, which ever fits your genre.

Or maybe you could skip the list and check out writing communities and writing support groups to see how others are overcoming each challenge NANOWRIMO throws at them.

The goals, dreams, desires are endless and so is wanting to hang up the towel and hit the sack. But remember you can still do those last two so why not wait till the end that way you get to really enjoy that overdue sleep while holding your novel in your hands?

Pep talk over. What? That was pep talk? Well it was my own twisted version of it. See how sneaky I was and slipped it by you. 🙂

And now for the results.

Word Count for today: 1578

Day Before: 2139 (1692 at the time of first blog post)

Total so far: 3717

I was able to write a little more yesterday and boost my word count past 2,000 for day one. That is a great accomplishment for me. 🙂 Hope you found this blog entertaining and motivating. Have a few other pep talks, motivational speeches you love, share them with us and don’t forget to stop by tomorrow for day two of my promo launch and day three of NANOWRIMO.

Passing that First Hurdle and Gaining Inspiration

National Novel Writing Month

Day One:

Today is the big day! NANOWRIMO officially starts and it doesn’t help that yesterday was Halloween. For those that celebrate this day, dressing up, taking the kids trick-o-treating, and party hopping can be quite exciting and daunting at the same time. Why not use that pumped up energy, all that pent up celebrating hype, for NANOWRIMO?

If you’ve already signed up for this year’s writing event you know one of the tips is starting off right at midnight. If you didn’t, don’t fret. Moving forward try to start as early as you can.

Which brings me to the topic at hand, finding inspiration and motivation to write.

Bust out those play lists that keep you moving and get writing.  Why not compile images that motivate you, that interest you and cause your imagination to take flight. Put those up as a wallpaper or slideshow on your computer. Once you start loosing steam the images kick in and bam, your piqued.

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Two of my Premade Covers available through SelfPubBookCovers

You can create detailed profile pages using pictures of actors/actresses that resemble your own characters. Search for images of locations, moods, etc that fit your story and create a woven setting for them. There are ton of fiction blogs filled with character profiling and story building using this method. But what motivates me the most is book cover hunting.

There is nothing like scrolling through premade covers and letting the inspiration hit. Not to mention grabbing a few you might like, buying a cover now cuts a lot of time in searching for the right one to fit your book later. It can also help cut down on the cost of having a custom one made. Time is one thing that is very important in an event like this and getting a few steps done before you really get going helps in the long run.

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More of my Premade Covers available through PremadeCovers4U

Want to check out more premade covers to get those ideas pumping? Why not check out my list of places I love hunting for covers. See, this wasn’t a self plug blog after all. 🙂 Have a few ideas of your own to really crank that imagination up a notch and boost inspiration? Share them with us.

And last but not least here is my word count of the day: 1692 words

Getting Ahead of NANOWRIMO

November is only three hops ahead and with it comes the overwhelming and well known NANOWRIMO. Just because November is when the writing extravaganza starts doesn’t mean you can’t get ahead of the wave. Here are two wonderful articles to help you start that early jump.

A 12 Day Plan of Simple Writing Exercises

7 Ways to Create a Killer Opening Line for Your Novel

As a writer, one can brainstorm, outline, and work on character profiles. Remember the blog I wrote about character building using names? Yeah, take out your name list, dust it off, and expand on it. Already have a few good synopsis or ideas for a book, revise them, polish them to fruition and get your brain gears turning.

Writer’s Digest is full of information and insight and so is the web. There are endless articles, blogs, and books about writing a novel in 30 days or less. I have read quite a few myself. Here are two that are my favorite.

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So get clicking and reading. But don’t forget to check back every day starting November when I share more of my progress of this year’s NANOWRIMO. I will also be posting more books and articles related to this event. Feel free to share your own and your progress if you are taking part.

Learn Something New Through Your Kids

As a writer, we are always looking for new ideas, influences, and inspirations to adorn our craft. We know the usual suggestion of observing other people, how they talk, how they act, but why not use those closest to you too?

Our family, spending time with them and observing them, can bring a variety of new skills and experiences that can be applied to writing.

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This summer I enrolled my son in a karate class to help with bulling at school, one of those evils that never fades away no matter what generation you are. The class took place once a week and lasted forty-five minutes. During that time I would take a book or my ipod to listen to music, but most of the time I found I had to pay attention so I could review with my son later that day and for the remainder of the week.

Towards the end of the course I realized that not only my son had learned beginners karate and moved up to yellow belt, but that I had as well. It dawned on me that there was so much new material I had grasped from my son’s karate course, material that I could not only apply in self defense but in my works as well.

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I now know:

  • how a karate class is organized and conducted
  • basic karate moves and even a bit of history
  • some basic self defense to break from several holds and immobilize your attacker
  • a combination of techniques (don’t ask me what they are called, forgot that)
  • how to spar and how sparring is scored.

All this new information can be applied to my writing and help either create a character who taught or took karate classes, maybe already knew a specific level of karate. Maybe the character is a mother who took her son to karate class and in turn meets her love interest there? Maybe the character took a self defense class because of a bad experience in the past, the options are endless.

But that isn’t all, one day we had to drive through a flood to get to the class (the city we currently reside in apparently floods quite easily) and everything that happened along the way provided new ideas, observations, and experiences.

Good thing we didn’t get stuck. 🙂 Though that too would have brought its own type of experience, a bad one but an experience nonetheless.

So, next time you are considering enrolling your kids in a sport, class or event take the time to learn the craft as well. Your writing will thank you.

 

Prince Series Promo Launch: Day Six

For today’s launch we have the second promo poster in the set. Some of you might have already seen it if you are a patron for BigWorldNetwork. If you aren’t why not check it out. I will be showcasing more promo material and sneak peeks through their patreon page.

This one is suppose to convey the fantasy element of the story and show Brayden’s world.

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Hope you enjoyed Brayden’s poster and remember this series is free to read as well as my other series, The Five Kingdoms of Severi over at BigWorldNetwork.

Both posters were made by me using photostock from DollarPhotoClub.