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  1. There are several works of mine which are headed their way towards debuting on this site upon their completion and first edits. Until they do, however, there's not a thing i can do toward getting them out there for my ravid readers. [heh, yeah right... but oh well]
    And at the risk of putting a negative spin on this blog, i feel the need to discuss inspiration. Inspiration is, i think, the single most important thing that an artist can have if he or she intends to go about creating anything. Without inspiration, the finished product looks or feels forced and unprofessional. The only way to avoid such failures and sub-par works is to allow them to happen only under the influence of Inspiration.

    I have found, in the pieces i've written and published, that it is best to always have a variety of works to be busy with, to allow for A. Maximum variety in what you can write about. (This is useful if you find it difficult to finish that story about Jack and Jill who found a magical petunia in their great great great grandmother's back garden which has long since died...Instead, you might try finishing that one about the the chicken who's really a dragon [but, of course, nobody knows that] that's waiting to break out of its body and consume the earth before making its way through the outer reaches of the galaxy where it will presumably find a new world on which to pull the same trick {because it works every time}) And B. To submit to publications or editors. The more works you have going, the more you can submit to potential publishers and the less it will hurt in the even that you are rejected.

    Then again, i do find that it is helpful to completely withdraw from writing for a time. If you are finding it difficult to write on any of your pieces, then forget it and come back to them next week.... or next month....or next year.... Don't be affraid to leave your works sitting by themselves locked deep in a desk drawer. They'll be there when the inspiration has returned to you--just make sure that you remember to return to them when it does.
    Even that may not solve your problems. Some writing problems are simply unsolvable. I firmly believe that no amount of time or energy can cause some pieces to come out to the satisfaction of you or your publisher. Hopefully, and if you're very fortunate, these instances will be few and far between, but i'll bet my bottom dollar that you'll have at least one of those sometime in your writing career.

    Of course, it is still possible that everything i've just written is complete garbage and i've no idea what i'm talking about. Maybe i made it all up for the sake of writing a blog entry. If you think that, then congratulations: you are the exception to the unwritten rules of writing with which i have become familiar.

    But seriously, let me know if i'm on the right track here, guys. I'm sure what i've been saying makes sense to at least some of you... i hope....;)

    At any rate, happy writing, and i hope at least a few of you have found this article to have been mildly insightful.
  2. So, at one point i bought a book. It was a guide to writing short stories. The thing i liked so much about this book was that it was helpful, but not to the point of being formulaic. It left plenty of room for creativity, and took none of the hard work of the writing process out of my work. What it did do was bolster my confidence and give some very useful tips on writing short stories.
    A couple things jumped out at me as far as useful tips to be passing on or writing about.
    The first deals with drafting. Personally, i hate writing drafts. I never really liked the idea of changing something i've written. It doesn't feel like the same piece after i finish an edit. The mistake i was making when i thought like this was thinking that change was a bad thing.
    In the context of creating drafts for any work, change is a glorious thing! I just realized how brilliant drafts can be. The book i purchased broke it down like this:
    First draft: get down what you wanna say.

    Second draft: get the details of how you wanna say what you wanna say ironed out.

    Third Draft: Finish the final bits, polish it up, and (this was particularly difficult for me) don't be afraid to cut unneccesary flab from your story.

    The second set of tips which i really enjoyed delt with how to set up the scenes in your short story. Sometimes, a scene is all your short story is. That lead into the whole "you don't actually have to have a plot for every short story you write" section. That was amazing, and i was so happy to have found it, but that's a story for another blog entry.
    Anyways, with the setting up of the scenes for your story, it was broken down about like this:

    Step one: Set up the scenery. (You know the stuff... trees? chairs? tables? Priceless antiques? Whatever goes in the story physically.)

    Step two: Put the characters in. (what are they doing, how are they positioned, etc.)

    Step three: Commencement of the scene. (What goes on. get the action out in the open.)

    Step four: keep to the point. (Don't put in unneccessary crap)

    Step Five: Close the scene quickly, and, if necessary, transition smoothly into the next scene.

    I loved this particular breakdown. It was like pasting together a home-made pop-up book or something.

    It was also mentioned that one needs to use "stage business". These are actions that people in the scene do to break up the monotony of just giving dialogue. (twirling the stem of a wine glass, lighting a cigar, digging one's fingernails into the aphostery of the furniture, etc.)
    Some may find it elementary, but lately, i've been needing to get back to basics with writing. Some people focus too much on being "fancy" when they write, i think. I loved sitting down and rethinking how i write and how to go about setting up my short stories.
  3. So blogs... Why? There really is no point. Nobody cares about what i think, (if you do you might need your head examined), i'm not gonna go posting diary-type things in a blog, and i'm not gonna write my autobiography here. Why have one? Haven't the foggiest. But oh well! I've got one so i shall be using it. In the past i've made blogs and never visited them after making one or two posts. It was really quite depressing. Perhaps this one shall be different. Anywho, if there are any questions as to what's going in this: tough twiddle. I can't be saying--i don't know! But that's what'll make it more interesting. :cool: