Posts Tagged ‘Leslie Huber’

by Greg Spry

Next Fifth Tuesday: August 31st, 2010
It’s only 6 weeks away, August 31, our next Fifth Tuesday feast and festival of writing, August 31. Place to be announced, but not the writing challenge. We have that: You’re late for work because you overslept. Your boss hates oversleepers, but he does love entertaining stories. Create the most outlandish excuse for why you were late . . . and do it in no more than 400 words.

Write your mini-masterpiece now. Git ’er done, and email it to Jerry Peterson.

Meeting Recap: Tuesday, July 20th – 1st & 3rd
Randy – Judith wanted to know where the story takes place. Randy tells us it takes place in a fantasy world, in medieval times. Pat felt like it was Mexico. Judith thought it was Finland. She also felt the dream could be more mystical. Jerry wondered why Hona didn’t turn to look and see what was carrying her in the dream, or at least try to see if she was able. John and Jerry wanted to know what made the creature noble. Elijah thought she needs to take the time to consider her answer after her friend asks an evocative question. Jerry thinks her world feels very real, but for a medieval period, would she be allowed out in the woods? Does Thil hear the conversation between Hona and the goat?

Jen – She tells us a few years ago she was searching for something and a little lost. Pat enjoyed the poem and picked up on the Zen of it but had a question about the opening lines. Pat would like to see her take the poem to the next step, because the rhythm is there, she’s curious to see what she could do with it. Elijah thought it didn’t rhyme, but that it worked. Judith wanted to see what happened to the mind throughout the poem. Cathy got more of an understanding from Jen’s introduction than she did from the poem itself – something she could relate to. John wanted to know about one line in particular. Millie wanted to know why one word was capitalized, but if it’s a spiritual reference, then it made sense.

Judith – Elijah found words that ratchet up the tension in any conversation, not just in the car on the road. Pat was surprised Marshall didn’t make any comments about it being Sam’s fault the car got pulled over. Perhaps the tiredness is causing some of the tension. Randy wondered if you can say ‘shit’ on the radio. John thought it strange he died and then survived with a head wound. Cathy wasn’t sure about the word dialogue – perhaps it could be replaced with tirade or rant.

Pat Tomlinson – Someone wanted to know if Wynn was British or not. Pat decides on the spot that he’s a New Zealander. Pat E, brought up the story to print it out and couldn’t stop reading. Jerry had a problem; after a while the android is referred to as a character, who is dead on a table, but now there are two – it’s a naming issue for him. Amber wanted the main character to show a bit more bravado, but Pat insists that since the character isn’t curled up in the fetal position on the floor shows he had some guts. Cathy thought the main character could go over his feelings in the epilogue. (more…)


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Tuesdays With Story
Writer’s Mail for July 8, 2010
by Greg Spry

Next Fifth Tuesday – August 31
Our next Fifth Tuesday feast and festival of writing is August 31. Where, we don’t know. But we do know what the writing challenge is: You’re late for work because you overslept. Your boss hates oversleepers, but he does love entertaining stories. Create the most outlandish excuse for why you were late . . . and do it in no more than 400 words.

Here are two things you should do now:
– Put our Fifth Tuesday event on your calendar. First-and-third hosts.
– Write your Fifth Tuesday mini-masterpiece now. There isn’t a good reason to put it off. Yah, right, I overslept. Who’s gonna believe that?

Who’s Up Next? 
July 13: Holly Bonnicksen-Jones (???), Randy Haselow (chapter, Hona and the Dragon), Ann Potter (chapter), Jack Freiburger (chapter, Return to Bray’s Head), Patrick Tomlinson (???), Andrea Kirchman (???), with Dan Hamre as alternate.

July 20: Randy Haselow (chapter, Hona and the Dragon), Nicole Rosario (???), Jen Wilcher (chapter, Memories Awakened), Judith McNeil (radio play/part 2, “South to Sunday”), Patrick Tomlinson (short story/part 2, “Downloading Death”), and Karl Bryan (short story, “Dubai Stopwatch”/part 2). (more…)

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Tuesdays With Story Writers Mail, June 28, 2010
by Jen Wilcher

Tuesday Night at the Bookstore

Kim: City of Winter: Hero’s age is unclear. Snotty nose kids are usually younger than thirteen, need to clarify age, scene a bit thin, discussion on how to develop his anger at the ocean, Jack carried on as usual about cinemagraphic writing, landscape levels and referent development, etc. Group moved on to …

Dan: Idolatry: Most liked the dialogue, but some suggest the story could use some compression, street light in a blackout? Patrick suggested “a miracle”, Jack a burning dumpster as the Christmas Star, second wave objections to Mary Magdalene as a stripper, Patrick lead group prayer for divine guidance. As no guidance came we turned to….

Jen: Group applauded big improvement in the rewrite of her chapter, most corrections were grammatical, migraines discussed, some objections to type of headache

Randy: Hona and the Dragon: Does a child know what an Equinox is? Is a dragon feline or leonine? Extensive discussion on lengths of sword and daggers, simile for claws, Hona at eleven must not baby talk, possibly change her mis-pronunciation of Firebreath’s name, Jack liked even tone and it quality.

Ann Potter: Memoir: A nasty scene well done, ending in a faint, discussion on how to craft jump-cut to the unconscious/regained consciousness, changes in tense useful but not consistent.

Jack: Bray’s Head: Problem with old men’s dialogue, sounds southern, Andrea says what Jack reads is an improvement over what he writes. He hopes she takes shorthand.

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“If there’s a book you really want to read but it hasn’t been written yet, then you must write it.” ~ Toni Morrison

Tuesdays With Story Writers Mail, June 3, 2010
by Jen Wilcher

Tuesday Night at the Bookstore

Clayton read from Chapter twelve of his story, Fishing Derby. He tells us he’s not wild about the beginning, and Pat suggests cutting the first paragraph. Jerry notes that the chapter starts with a dependent clause, which is a weak beginning anyway. Pat got bored with the other boat. It was like a really slow car chase. Millie thought it was exciting. Jerry thinks if a character has severe PTSD, it has to be set up earlier, so we understand it. John thought the character was shot. All Miker did in this chapter was drive the boat, which might be a problem – readers might want to scream, “My hero isn’t doing anything!” John was confused, but he loved the action.

Kim read from her Chapter thirty-two of her recently renamed novel; City of Summer. Millie thought it had a lot of action. Pat wanted to know if someone from Summer would know what a snowflake was. Jerry didn’t think Hell would be in one character’s frame of reference. Clayton liked a word Kim created, could she come up with another for Hell? Elijah (new guy), notes that nowhere with ‘deepest pits’ is a nice place. Greg was wondering about what the main journey was.

Greg introduced us to his story Goodbye, Mars. Jen liked the general story overall, but didn’t get that the people he helps were human colonists. Pat wondered if the story should start later and the back-story could get sprinkled in. Jerry had a question about the viral toxin not being communicable. Pat thought the description of the gangster was a little, well, trite – could he make them good-lookin’? Cooties survive! Cathy was relieved to read the first page because she’s usually lost when she begins reading something sci-fi. John thought the computer could be used to account for the time change that concerned Amber.

Amber…is taking notes and can’t keep up with the wonderful comments. I read from chapter fourteen of my as yet untitled piece of work. How does Moira recognize the circle of stones? – Jerry. Do we see Bucktown coming? Merlin? The Once and Future King? Absentminded professor-ish – Clayton. Lighting in the distance at the game. Leave out some she saw, etc. – John. And other great comments I’m not fast enough to type.

Cathy shared her story, since changing the main character to the lifeguard who finds the dead body. Pat didn’t know why she was so upset after having seen a dead body. Maybe a line about, “never had a floater, huh?” John wasn’t sure why the lifeguard was so scared about being sued, because there didn’t seem to be reason for her anxiety. Overall, it felt accurate to Pat.

Jerry shared the tenth chapter from his novel. Greg thought the chapter by itself read like a short story. Jerry reminded us that the main character, Quinn, lost a hand and a leg in Iraq. John Wondered what the odds were of people taking pictures with their cell-phones at that exact moment in time. Most others found it likely. Pat hopes this is relevant to the story somewhere down the road in Quinn’s own murder trial. So does Jerry. So do we.

Who’s Up Next

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“Substitute “damn” every time you’re inclined to write “very;” your editor will delete it and the writing will be just as it should be.” ~Mark Twain

Tuesdays With Story Writers Mail, May 27, 2010
By Carol Shay Hornung

Tuesday Night at the Bookstore

Patrick Tomlinson – wrote a very funny story about zombies being recruited to vote in Chicago. Everyone thought the dialogue was hilarious. There were opposing suggestions on whether or not the zombies should be described, including facial expressions. There was some discussion on whether the dialogue should be described with adverbs or if the dialogue should speak for itself.

Ann Potter – read from her memoir. Everyone was blown away by her writing and being able to channel a 12-year-old girl’s voice. One observation was that it reminded the person of the movie “A Christmas Story.” A suggestion was made to provide some description of how characters look, move their body when they are talking.

Holly Bonnicksen-Jones – didn’t read, but asked the group for suggestions as to how Liza should come to terms with what Taylor revealed to her. Suggestion to have her do some self-revelations through talking to a friend or sister. Then there was a strong debate over whether or how she should have closure with her ex-husband. Should she meet with him, write to him, or meet him to discuss what happened to their marriage.

Kim Simmons – read her science fiction story. The group agreed that it would be a good idea to provide a synopsis of the world she is creating so that the listeners can understand the story better. One observation was that the story needs to show how the characters impacted their physical surroundings.

Jen Wilcher – read her fan fiction story. One observation was to provide a little more context for the characters and stay true to the characters. Another observation was to not describe a character as Chewbacca, but as a sasquatch or some other more generic term.

Who’s Up Next

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Some of the “old” members of the group will remember me. I wanted to let everyone know that my book, The Journey Takers, comes out this summer.  It is the same book once called Generations: A Journey Through History that the group once edited many moons ago – and many versions ago, too. The writing group there in Madison is in my acknowledgments!!

I am driving from Massachusetts to California this July to promote the book – and I have a stop in Madison. I am speaking at the Sequoya branch of  the Madison library on Thursday, July 8 at 7 p.m. I would love to see some members of the group. – Leslie Huber

Leslie also has a website at www.understandingyourancestors.com

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