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Writer’s Mail

Writer’s Mail
Tuesdays with Story
August 10, 2018

Tuesday eve at ye olde book shoppe

Eight writers came out Tuesday evening to critique the work of six of our colleagues. Here’s some of what was said:

Kashmira Sheth (chapters 4-5a, Surya’s Story): Kashmira submitted more chapters from her MG novel. There were some spelling and word choice concerns that Tracey and Jerry pointed out. Jack wanted some tightening to make sure Surya’s fear and desperation came through. There were discussions about the lemon grass, step-well, python etc. Overall, everyone like the story.

Lisa McDougal (chapter 01, The Tebow Family Secret): Tracey suggested that the intro be told in first person. Bob said that the intro could be told in the 3rd if done more creatively. Jerry questioned if a billionaire would come home and get soda himself. Millie and Tracey gave suggestions on a new name for one of the characters. “Dotty” was the winning name. Larry and Jerry had questions/suggestions about the key code lock for the wine cellar. (more…)

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Tuesdays With Story
Fifth Tuesday stories
July 31, 2018

 

Writing challenge: Write a fake book blurb, a nice way to roast a fellow writer. Example: blurb Larry Sommers’ latest book, The Sommers’ System for Writing a Bestselling Novel in 30 Days.

200 words max.

Children’s Author Strikes Again

Lisa McDougal

Monsters in my Soup

By Millie Mader

Monkey-Man Publishing, 2013

220 pages

Retail: $8.49

Smell the soup and it’ll make you hungry. Eat the soup and it’ll make you a monster. Monsters in my Soup is a terrifying children tale about the perils of eating soup. This isn’t your grandma’s special chicken noodle soup. Also, this isn’t your grandma. When monsters invade the little town of Safe Haven, Connecticut, posing as grandmothers aiming to enslave children by feeding them their special soup. Can our heroes, Blake, Jake, and Cake, stop them in time before they get so hungry that they eat the soup?

Millie Mader is the author of the children’s books, Creatures in my Teachers and No Razzle in my Dazzle.

—Lisa McDougal, author, It’s a Crime not to Give a Child a Horse (more…)

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Writer’s Mail

Writer’s Mail
Tuesdays with Story
July 20, 2018

In 10 days

It’s Fifth Tuesday!

The Trivedis will host us at their home in Madison, about a five-minute drive from Barnes & Noble Westside.

Yes, it’s a potluck, so bring some great food to share. Vegetarian, please. No meat dishes allowed this time.

And we have a writing challenge: Write a fake book blurb, a nice way to roast a fellow writer. Example: blurb Larry Sommers’ latest book, The Sommers’ System for Writing a Bestselling Novel in 30 Days.

Maximum length: 200 words

Format for your page:
(Title of book)
(Author’s name)
(Publisher and publication date)
(Number of pages)
(Retail price of book)

(Your blurb)
(Your name and at least one writing credit)

When you have your mini-masterpiece finished, email it to Jerry Peterson by Sunday evening, July 29.

Start time for our Fifth Tuesday is our usual 7 p.m. (more…)

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Writer’s Mail

Writer’s Mail
Tuesdays With Story
June 19, 2018

Nine of us gathered around to read and critique each other’s work.

Millie Mader read from her short story “Stone Cold Stripper.” Millie writes, “I’m going to eliminate the first chapter and the info about the founding of DNA. Will (hopefully) try to ‘tighten’ the whole thing up.”  Amber noted the following: John questioned the characters flying all the way out, getting three statements and leaving. He felt they would have asked more questions. Tracey thought the ordering had improved, but she had a few questions about verb choice. Jerry wondered about the traffic and Tracey suggested changing it to unfamiliar roads. Tracey was also looking for more suspense. Millie questioned how long a short story should be. Jerry suggests 30,000 words max. Tracey would really like to see the explanation of DNA removed. Larry thought the character’s interaction at the crime lab was too similar. (more…)

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Writer’s Mail

Writer’s Mail
Tuesdays With Story
 June 5, 2018

Eight of us gathered around to read and critique each other’s work last Tuesday.

Jack Freiburger read from A Walk upon the Water. Millie noted a character blew his nose twice and Jack admits the Irish are a sentimental bunch. Deb hopes Jack reads the audio version of the book, but he says he can’t do the accents from Maine. Millie wants to know how old one of the characters is. Larry wonders if there’s going to be a golden fleece and thought it was a good read. Deb thought the pacing was fine but wanted a little more detail about a character’s handkerchief. And Larry congratulated Jack on using a word he had to look up. (more…)

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Writer’s Mail

Writer’s Mail
Tuesdays with Story
May 18, 2018

We came out …

Ten TWS writers met Tuesday night to consider six pieces of work.

Mike Austin (prologue, Backroads)

Larry Sommers (chapters 8-9, The Boat Builder’s Daughter)

Kashmira Sheth and Amit Trivedi (chapter 21)

Meg Matenaer (Chapter 1, Write in Time)

Kashima Sheth (Middle grade mystery, first ten pages)

Amber Boudreau (chapter 1, rewrite, Avice)

 Amber read from Chapter One of her new fantasy novel based on a previous work. Larry felt there were three plot points that got lost in the ordinary of everyday tasks. A few people wouldn’t have known it was fantasy if Amber hadn’t mentioned the genre as there is nothing in the first chapter to indicate it as such. Kashmira recommended taking all of this advice and holding onto it until the novel is finished and then rewriting it after.

(more…)

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Writer’s Mail

Writer’s Mail
Tuesdays with Story
April 20, 2018

We came out

Rain, sleet, and snow kept us away two weeks ago, but 11 TWS writers and old hand Lisa McDougal braved the cold Tuesday evening to consider the works of six of their colleagues.

Millie Mader (chapter, Stone Cold Stripper):

Paul Wagner (short story, part 1 rewrite, “Mad Jack”): Just wanted to say I’m taking all the suggestions given to heart and am trying to put them into the revised work. Gonna be busy this weekend.

Kashmira Sheth and Amit Trivedi (chapter 22):

  1. Need to remove words like ‘He wondered’, ‘He thought’ etc.
  2. Tracy liked the part with the ‘key and house.’
  3. Jack suggested to move the first paragraph to the previous chapter of have some sort of transition between first and second para of chapter 22. Thanks!

Jack Freiburger (chapters 2-3, A Walk on the Water): Comments on Walk Upon the Water more positive than I expected as these chapters are not part of the “ripping yarn” section. Seems our troubled and troublesome anti-hero/unreliable narrator is not unlikeable. Will shorten Cousins by a few lines based on advice and the usual typos. Many thanks. (more…)

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