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Posts Tagged ‘Critique’

Tuesdays with Story
February 21, 2020

The first word . . .

“You can’t wait for inspiration. You have to go after it with a club.”
― Jack London

“I hate writing, I love having written.”
― Dorothy Parker

“Amateurs sit and wait for inspiration, the rest of us just get up and go to work.”
― Stephen King, On Writing: A Memoir of the Craft

Learning music is hard. If it was easy, everyone would do it because it’s so much fun.”

My old friend John, a jazz pianist who was teaching me basic guitar chords. Much later, when I could finally do a few chord progressions without effort, I realized that he was right. It’s good to know that other writers, and musicians, talk about their craft being work, something that they have to practice or they lose the muscle memory of that skill. And unlike piano playing, writing can be practiced almost anywhere.

 

Last Tuesday evening with Tuesdays with Story…

 Nine dedicated folk gathered together at Barnes & Noble to discuss their work. (more…)

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Tuesdays with Story
January 25, 2020

The first word . . .

“Five common traits of good writers: (1) They have something to say. (2) They read widely and have done so since childhood. (3) They possess what Isaac Asimov calls a ‘capacity for clear thought,’ able to go from point to point in an orderly sequence, an A to Z approach. (4) They’re geniuses at putting their emotions into words. (5) They possess an insatiable curiosity, constantly asking Why and How.”
― James J. Kilpatrick (1920-2010), newspaper journalist, columnist, author, writer and grammarian

Tuesday evening at ye olde booksellers . . .

Seven hearty souls gathered around the tables—yes, we had two tables—at Barnes & Noble Westside to work over chapters of four of their colleagues. Here is some of what was said:

— Larry F. Sommers (chapters 38-39, Freedom’s Purchase) . . . Jerry wondered how Anders could hold a rag to Will’s head when they were walking to the hospital. He also noted there was too much detail on Grant’s military maneuvers, and a big dump of pointless information on Daniel’s activities before hiring on as a hospital aide. Amber was interested in the romantic possibilities of Anders’ possible demise. Jerry was bemused by the thought that maybe Maria, rather than Anders, is the main character—a possibility suggested by the structure of the story. Thanks to all for comments. (more…)

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Tuesdays with Story
January 10, 2020

The first word . . .

“It’s none of their business that you have to learn to write. Let them think you were born that way.”
― Ernest Hemingway (1899-1961), novelist, journalist, short story writer

 

Tuesday evening at Barnes & Noble . . .

Eight good souls gathered around the table at B&N Westside Tuesday evening to critique the works of six of their colleagues. Here is some of what was said:

 

— Kashmira Sheth and Amit Trivedi (chapters 31-32, untitled novel) . . . (1) Add ‘listing’ more times in the first paragraph of chapter 32.  (2) Have Kedar go inside the church and contrast the noise with the silence in the church. (3) Tie in the water of the Kund with the holy water of the Church. (4) “All this cloth…” It is not clear who says it. Also move the line closer to the description of the cloth market. (more…)

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Writer’s Mail

TWS News:

The first word . . .

“Start writing, no matter what. The water does not flow until the faucet is turned on.”

― Louis L’Amour (1908-1988), novelist and short story writer

Tuesday evening at Alicia Ashman . . .

Amber Boudreau returned to the group, and she brought brownies to power the group while they critiqued the works of six of their colleagues. Here is some of what was said:

 

— Larry Sommers (chapters 33-35, Freedom’s Purchase) . . .  Several people commented on the apparent infrequency of letters home from Anders once he was in the Army. Huckle asked what was the point of the section in which Maria watches the mustering-in ceremony from the bleachers. Jack opined that it shows Maria has accepted Anders’ decision to enlist. There were concerns over Crawley¹s confrontation with Anders was he consistent in the way he communicated his threat, and would Anders been surprised by his presence after a month of basic training drills? The focus on baby John Oliver’s nursing drew attention from Huckle and Amber, because (1) Maria may not have wanted to wean him early due to economics, and (2) even though he was cutting teeth, the nursing process would not be “traumatic” to Maria as described. All in all, several important points to ponder. Thanks, all. (more…)

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Writer’s Mail

Tuesdays with Story
November 25, 2019

The first word . . .

“The beautiful part of writing is that you don’t have to get it right the first time, unlike, say, a brain surgeon.”

― Robert Cormier (1925-2000), author of YA novels

Tuesday evening at B&N Westside . . .

Hey, we had a long table to gather around for our last meeting of the year at B&N Westside. Five of our colleagues shared their works. Here is some of what was said:

— Huckleberry Rahr (synopsis and chapters 1-2, YA novel) . . . (more…)

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Tuesdays with Story
September 20, 2019

The first word . . .

“Almost all good writing begins with terrible first efforts. You need to start somewhere.”

― Anne Lamott (1954- ), novelist, nonfiction writer, writing teacher

Tuesday evening at the bookstore . . .

Eight writers gathered at Barnes and Noble and enjoyed meeting a guest illustrator, introduced by Amit. Jozi Anderson, UW student artist, is seeking commissions from writers for self-published books. She showed samples on her phone of a children’s book cover oil painting and interior illustrations. Members engaged in a lively discussion with her about effective and economical ways to produce art for prospective books. Tracey suggested Jozi place her work on the Behance site at https://www.behance.net/, where artists can display work and authors can find cover designers. If anyone is interested in discussing further projects, Jozi can be contacted at jozimanderson@gmail.com.

(more…)

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Writer’s Mail

Writer’s Mail

Tuesdays with Story
September 6, 2019

The first word . . .

“Most things I love to do are like writing, in a way. I love to cook, but that’s putting things together to make a new thing. It’s creating. I love to garden, but that’s generative, too. I love to dance, and that’s about finding a rhythm that’s pleasing to you. Maybe everything’s a little like writing.”

― Less Smith (1944- ), novelist and short-story writer

Tuesday evening at the bookstore . . .

Ten writers and one guest, Melissa Zernick, gathered to critique the works of five of their colleagues. Here is some of what was shared:

— Cindi Dyke (back cover blurb, The Mansion Secrets): What started up as a blurb grew into a synopsis which the group critiqued. Tracey felt it needed to be written in a younger voice and that the personality of the main characters needed to be brought out. Several thought an example of the humor needs to be included. Several good thoughts on what should be deleted to create space for the additions. Amber wondered if the secrets inside the mansion walls were literally in the wall. Good points. Thanks everyone (more…)

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