WriterWoes #10 – Tug-o-warring

This post is partly, if not entirely, inspired by my roommate. She got me thinking, you see, during one of our bullshit trade-offs. You know, those trade-offs between friends that have nothing left of interest to talk about after years of breathing the same stale air and then have to kill that stale air with enough hot air that the staleness is pushed to the floor, subjugated by physics?

Anyway, this particular time, my roomie provided me with an image that I needed to get down on paper and share with others – now.

Without further ado, I present to you……….

*drum roll*

…..… the Tug-o-war between Missus Writer and Sire Brain!

 

Mode 1 – Missus Writer vs. Sire Brain

MS: “Sooo… anything good happening over there? Hm? Hmhmhmhm?”

scan0004

Mode 2 – “Sire Brain vs. Missus Writer”

SB: “Hey! You! Heeeeeyyee…. balabalabalabala—”

scan0001

 

They say that miscommunication is part and parcel in a relationship, which leads me to believe that I’m in a relationship with my own brain. If I dare peek at it, it cowers in a corner, and if I leave it alone to fend for itself, it springs on me when I least expect it. Or, god forbid, when I have no time for it. Now, this doesn’t just happen with writing, I know. This is just how a brain works, I suppose, with a lot of things.

But, but, but, but— when my brain decides to spring on me with a plot twist that demands I change the last fifty chapters of my novel…. or when it decides to shut the door on me and my deadline… weeeellll……..

My brain never stops working with words and stories.

Rather, it alternates between modes of working with words and stories.

Tug-o-warring.

I do wonder how this will look on a brain scan…

I’d ask Sire Brain, but that might undermine my argument, so let’s leave it at that, shall we?

cropped-18056855_1321266851295738_4958416733338325907_n.jpg

 

 

Liebster (Discover New Blogs) Award!

img_7459

Ah, so I got nominated for the Liebster Award. Which I had no idea existed. Whatsoever. At all. So, yes, that took me by surprise. But by nice surprise, of course! And it’s all thanks to the lovely, talented Storyspiller! Make sure to give the blog a peek. If it counts for anything, it has my stamp of approval. Anyway, on with the (award)show!

The rules of this award:
1. Acknowledge the blog who nominated you and display the award.
2. Answer the 11 questions the blogger gives you.
3. Give 11 random facts about yourself.
4. Nominate 11 blogs.
5. Notify those blogs of the nomination.
6. Give them 11 questions to answer

My answers:

1. What is the first moment you remember from your life?

I honestly don’t know if this is a true memory or not, but I have a very vivid memory of crying in my stroller, staring up at the sky, having lost my pacifier, supposed to sleep, but now upset that nobody can hear me and haven’t picked me up…. Like I said; I have no idea if this is fabricated or not, but regardless, it’s there in my memory.

2. What was your last milestone?

… Paying my bills, feeling real good at adulting.

3. What is your favorite cuisine?

Danish traditional cuisine, particularly fish.

4. If you could give a speech to the whole world what would you talk about?

Not myself. For the love of god, not myself.

5. Do you like fried or baked?

I just… love food… both fried and baked.

6. Brown or white rice?

White for Asian dishes, definitely. And for fish. Brown for, well, meats?

7. Favorite disney movie?

Beauty and the Beast – no other contender for the spot. Also, I’m a feminist by nature, so no, don’t get me started on the Stockholm Syndrome debate here.

8. Who’s your favorite author?

Hmmm. Maybe if I had a starting letter, I could choose from the dozens of authors that I wholeheartedly love? No? Let’s see… Stephen King for horror, Diana Gabaldon for historical romance/drama/sci-fi, Neil Gaiman for whatever the hell his core genre is, Laurell Hamilton for supernatural, Charlotte Brönte and William Faulkner and Ray Bradbury for classical lit, Lisa See for historical with Asian focus, Jay Kristoff for YA (the only YA author I’ll read nowadays), Ai Yazawa for manga…… erm… yeah, I better stop now…

9. What kind of magazines do you read? 

Online literary ones. But I was never that great of a magazine reader, truth be told. Do comics count as books or magazines? Or, wait, they’d be a genre on their own, wouldn’t they?

10. If you could go anywhere where would you go?

Into a book. Or computer game. Or a movie. Anything with a good, fantastical narrative.

11. If you had your own mythical animal which one would it be? (Animals from books count)

Don’t know if this counts as a mythical “animal”, per se, but here goes: the specific yōkai from Japanese folklore that floats around and licks ceilings. I’d like to float around and lick the ceilings of my enemies.

11 Random facts ’bout me:
  1. I paint as a secondary hobby.
  2. I’m a master of lies.
  3. I decided to learn Japanese recently… I now live to regret it.
  4. I’m a longtime lover of K-pop and K-drama. (And J. And Chinese.)
  5. I love writing to the flicker and flame of candlelight.
  6. I wish I dared taking singing lessons.
  7. I also wish I knew how to ride a horse.
  8. I have weird, soft nails that grows in curves rather than straight.
  9. I recently chopped off half of my hair, including every last bit of dye. I now carry my own hair color for the first time since thirteen years old. And the color is not at all what I spent the last fourteen years thinking it was, meaning boring and bland. What a waste of money, right?
  10. I began my writing career as a writer of fanfiction.
  11. I prefer craft beer to white wine, but I prefer red wine to white wine.
Blogs I nominate:

https://rltierney.com/

https://simplesoulsister.com/

https://piecesandpapers.wordpress.com/

https://sawritingsblog.wordpress.com/

https://fictioncafe.net/

https://lowfrequenciesatnight.wordpress.com/

https://orchidslantern.wordpress.com/

https://aplikestowrite.wordpress.com/

https://jccauthon.wordpress.com/

https://weedstoash.wordpress.com/

https://randomroamings.wordpress.com/

My questions:
  1. What is your favorite type of weather?
  2. Do you like licorice – as in, real black licorice?
  3. What other language(s) do you wish to learn?
  4. What is the most comforting sound you can think of right now?
  5. Have you ever considered a name change for whatever reason?
  6. Which book do you hate the most?
  7. Who’s your favorite author?
  8. Christmas or New Years?
  9. Travel by plane or by ferry?
  10. What color highlighting pen do you prefer?
  11. If you could live a day of no consequences, what misdeed would you do first?

That’s it! I’ve not been very active lately, but this nomination finally seemed to set things into gear once more. It was super fun, too! And as for the blogs I’ve nominated, I’m crossing my fingers that you choose to participate in this bit of innocent fun. Promoting each other, especially fledgling and growing bloggers, is an honorable thing to spend one’s time on, is it not? As far as I understood, the blogs that I nominate has to have less than 1000 followers, so even if they aren’t actually new in terms of time, they are new in terms of deserved recognition. And new to me, as well, and hopefully now new to you!

cropped-18056855_1321266851295738_4958416733338325907_n.jpg

 

 

WriterWoes #9 – The Do’s of Dialogue

This is less of a woe, and more of an advice to whoever cares enough to listen to a self-taught writer who may or may not know what the heck she’s doing. Anyhow, I had saved this post for a different page, but, alas, I decided to post it here – so, here we go, my two cents on the matter of dialogue:

  1. Identify and toss the extras

    How often do you hear yourself talk in lengthy complex sentences?
    How often do you toss in five adjectives in one sentence, maybe more?
    Not often, right?
    While poetical writing is beautiful and poignant in its own right, it can be difficult to make work in dialogue, particularly in modern times (a.k.a. the age of text messaging).
    Of course, every style and voice is different, but where it pertains to dialogue only, I very much believe that less is more – to quote Stephen King: “the road to hell is paved with adjectives.”
    But, but, but, there are always exceptions: if you’re writing a historical piece, for example, you should always engage in dialogue that fits the period.

  2. Mind the punctuation

    When you identify and toss the extras, the punctuation becomes important. Why? Because while we don’t naturally talk in complex sentences, we do tend to talk in ellipses, dashes and italics. Do not, however, rely on ellipses, dashes and italics in your dialogue. If used too often, they lose the punch-thwack effect you want them to have. Bottom line: trust the reader to understand what your characters are saying and instead use the punctuation to tell the reader how your characters feel. If you will, have a look at the example below and consider the effect of punctuation on the mood of the sentence rather than the clarification:

    “… Can meet? What do— can? I’m set to leave for Wallace’s property— land— the man’s whatever in a matter of days. You said that you would help me; now you ask me to finish the document all on my own with guards lurking outside my door both day and night, breathing through the damned keyhole, until the two of us can meet again— can meet—what do you mean by can?”

  3. Delay the underpainting

    One way to secure an easy, readable flow in your dialogue is to delay the underpainting and focus solely on the tennis-match dialogue itself. When applied to writing, the so-called underpainting equals the meaty bits of text in between your dialogue – that is, your character’s actions, the tinkering of plot, scenic descriptions, and whatever else. It can be advantageous to save this for later so that it won’t interfere with the natural flow of dialogue as it transfers from your mind to your fingers and, lastly, to the paper before you.

  4. Read it aloud

    In a way, dialogue is much like poetry in that it ought to be read aloud. After all, dialogue happens out loud in real life and not inside your head (of course, that’s debatable, but let’s not debate that just now). Reading dialogue aloud gives us the absolute best idea whether something sounds natural or unnatural. It shows us the hitches, or the lack thereof, in the flow. Remember that in the matter of dialogue, our ears work far better than our eyes.

Easy is as easy does!

Basically, if you do not speak it, you should steer clear of writing it, so always keep that rule of thumb in mind. Otherwise, write your dialogue however you want to. The best writing ultimately comes from the gut – in it’s original, first-draft form, of course.