Posts Tagged ‘Roger Ebert’

Writer’s Mail
Tuesdays with Story
April 21, 2016



Last night I attended a presentation by Henry David Huang (Madame Butterfly, Chinglish), who is a Pulitzer nominated and Tony award winning playwright .  He is a brilliant writer and speaker, and enlighten the crowd in a number of ways.  One take away from the talk was about a technique for tapping into the sub-conscience mind where the really good stuff festers.  The technique he learned from Sam Shepard (Top Gun, Steel Magnolias), was to write as fast as you can.  This  technique prevents the conscience mind from constantly criticizing and self editing.  I had to write a one page paper summarizing the talk, so I decided to try the technique.  Before I thought of trying the technique, I stared at the blank page wondering what the hell am I going to write.  Then the idea hit me to try just writing fast.  I quickly blasted through three pages in eight minutes and at the end I was amazed at what I had written.  Of course there were plenty of missed commas and a lack of structural flow, but there was great content that I had recalled from the previous night.  Not sure if anyone has tried this but I found it very useful.


Who’s up next . . .

April 26:

May 3: Pat Edwards (???), Eva Mays (chapter 4, Dhuoda), Bob Kralapp (short story, part 2, “Wings”), Amber Boudreau (???), and Kashmira Sheth (YA novel chapters, Journey to Swaraj), and John Schneller (???).

May 10:

May 17: Mike Austin (chapter, Before I Leave), Millie Mader (poem), Hannah Marshall (poems), Kashmira Sheth (chapters, Journey to Swaraj), Judith McNeil (short story, part 2, “Just Visiting”), Cindi Dyke (chapter 26, North Road), Jerry Peterson (short story, part 2, “Digging in the Dirt”). (more…)


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Writer’s Mail for 05/29/13

“The Muse visits during the act of creation, not before. Don’t wait for her. Start alone.” ― Roger Ebert

Tuesday at B&N . . .

Ruth Imhoff started the night with Chapter 1, The Motto of the Hound. Ray suggested using the coroner’s name once we learn it. Nice set-up, good intrigue. Daniel as a detective, though, should be cataloging the crime scene. Throw in some clues, more details. Jen thought the voice was a little passive. Need more action, too much being told what’s going on. Rebecca lost track of the relationship of the characters at points. Wasn’t sure who the nemesis was… could be point of view issues. Carol thought it was a good set-up, especially the line about Daniel being back from personal leave – what happened?

Mike R. shared a couple of poems with us. Holly thought the line about “love for all” could be clarified a bit, and Carol spotted the use of the word “lost” in quick succession. Rebecca thought the line about spontaneity was a bit convoluted, but enjoyed the details in the resot of the poem. Katelin liked the first poem better, as the imagery stood out for her more. Ray liked the line about ambivalence relating to the strength to do right.

Ray Woodruff read Chapter 1 from his novel. Carol found it very creepy, felt the kid was behaving so well because he was absolutely terrified. Andy thought the narrative put downs of the kid were excessive. Holly said the kid didn’t really relate to the mom as a mom, and appears more scared than trusting. Katelin followed up on that, saying the narrator’s perspective is overriding that of the child and is creating the difference between scared and trusting. Andy thought it was well written, but perhaps a little too dark, which distracted from what was going on in the scene. Carol liked the line “He’s pretty sure bad things happen in the dark.”

Katelin Cummins offered scenes from her new idea, Viera. (more…)

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