Wednesday, September 19, 2012

How do you get the right Critique Partner?

This question was recently posed in a chat room I was in.  Because of the limited response it got, I decided a more in depth explanation was required.

First thing's first.  Do you want to be published?  If so, you have to develop a tough skin.  You have to be able to take as much constructive criticism as you're willing to put out. 

Many people are at different stages with their writing, so you may need to test drive a few critique partners before finding a good match.

Start out with a few basics.  Communicate your goal, your genre, what draft you are on, and what you hope to gain from your critique partner.  Exchange a small amount of work- the first page or two.   With this type of preliminary run through, you can get a good idea of your potential CP's style and feel out your compatibility level.  Do not commit to exchanging chapters until you've established this.

You put a lot of trust and value into your CP's feedback, so it is well worth the trial and error to find the right one/ones.

A few qualities that are helpful in a CP:

      - Honesty- yes you can give/receive honest feedback without being cruel
      - Attention to detail- your MC's eye color changed from ch 1- ch 5...they need to recognize this
      - Good grammar-
      - Promptness- if you agree on a chapter a week- stick to it
      - Personality-
      - equivalent goals-
      - same stage in your WIP
      - write in the same genre as you- if not- make sure it is a genre that they actually 'like' reading
Good luck and as always...happy writing!

Saturday, March 31, 2012


Need help eliminating cliche actions, descriptions, or diaglogue?  The following links will take you to a series of creative checklists:   This is a blog with numerous how to's along with writing prompts.  You'll find info on free writing courses, free journal courses and a wealth of knowledge from other industry professionals.  These are great prompts to use when polishing your manuscript.  There is a list of ideas to utilize when you don't feel the creative vibe.  This link takes you to 3 exercises that will, at the very least, assist you on some level.  These are great exercises on description and character.  This a great resource to bookmark.  Filled with basics on grammar, sentence structure, and writing; this site also has free powerpoints on persuasive, technical, expository, narrative, and descriptive writing.  It's worth a look.

Tuesday, February 21, 2012

So, You Want to be a Writer?

Welcome, friends and compatriots alike.

So, you have chosen to embark on the path that has inspired equal parts culture and criticism: You're going to write.

Have no fear, you've come to a friendly and supportive little corner of the 'net in your quest for literary greatness.

So, you want to be a writer?

We do, too.

This is a place where we, you, and any the others just starting out on this journey can come together sharing both success and failure as we grow and perfect our craft.

So, climb aboard. It's fun here.

Friday, February 10, 2012

How important are sensory details? Part 5... SIGHT



White- antique white, vanilla, cream, ivory, frost, snow, beige, pearl, eggshell, champagne, linen, platinum
Pink- fuchsia, rose, magenta, peach, salmon, opal, blush, bubblegum, coral
Red-crimson, burgundy, chestnut, brick, ruby, scarlet, vermilion, wine, strawberry, cherry, blood, tomato, maroon, apple
Orange-amber, apricot, tangerine, carrot, flame, mahogany, rust, papaya
Brown- auburn, beige, bronzed, camel, chestnut, chocolate, coffee, copper, sand, fawn, khaki, rust, tawny, umber, sienna, sepia, wheat, taupe, tan, buckskin, brandy, tawny, walnut, topaz, brunette, antiqued
Yellow- amber, cream, gold, khaki, lemon, maize, school bus, sun, vanilla, chiffon, honey, blonde
Gray- ash, charcoal, silver, slate, steel, smoke, soot, graphite
Green- honeydew, jungle, lime, mint, hunter, olive, pine, sage, seaweed, forest, emerald, leaf/grass, hazel
Blue- aqua, cerulean, cyan, teal, turquoise, baby blue, powder, sky, cobalt, midnight, royal, periwinkle, sapphire, ultramarine, navy, denim,
Violet- amethyst, eggplant, lavendar, lilac, purple, plum, orchid, wisteria, indigo, grape
Black- ebony, charcoal, tar, onyx, jet, obsidian, midnight


Saturday, January 21, 2012

How important are sensory details? Part 4...TOUCH

Sensory details can make the difference between reading a story and experiencing it.  Using the correct identifiers for descriptions, can make words burst off the pages.
This post is divided into five parts, allowing each of the senses to take center stage.

blunt, braided, bristly, brittle, bubbly, bumpy, burning
chalky, cloth, clumpy, coarse, cold, cool, cottony, cushiony,
damp, dull, dusty, dry
feathery, foamy, frayed, frosty, frothy, furry, fuzzy
gelled, glassy, gnarled, gooey, greasy, gritty, grooved
hairy, hard, hot
jagged, jellied
knobby, knotted
lacey, leathery, limp, lumpy
pleated, plush, pointy, porous, powdery, prickly, puffy, pulpy
raised, ribbed, ripped, rippled, rocky, rough, rubbery
sandy, satiny, sharp, shredded, silky, slick, slimy, slippery, slivered, smooth, soggy, splintered, spongy, sticky, stitched, stiff, stubbly, suede, sudsy, swollen
tacky, tarry, tattered, thick, thin, treaded, torn
velvety, vinyl
warm, watery, waxy, wet, wiry, wooly, woven, wrinkly

resources include: