2014 in review

The WordPress.com stats helper monkeys prepared a 2014 annual report for this blog. Here's an excerpt: The concert hall at the Sydney Opera House holds 2,700 people. This blog was viewed about 42,000 times in 2014. If it were a concert at Sydney Opera House, it would take about 16 sold-out performances for that many … Continue reading 2014 in review

The Strong Female Character: I Do Not Think That Means What Some People Think It Means

I recently started watching the new TV series Outlander, based on the popular books by Diana Gabaldon. I have never read the books. The series sounded like something I might enjoy, about a woman who time-travels to 18th Century Scotland.After watching two episodes, I'm already done with it.I see people raving about the show on … Continue reading The Strong Female Character: I Do Not Think That Means What Some People Think It Means

7 Tips For Creating Memorable Characters

Had a mishap in the kitchen this weekend and am nursing a mild burn, so I didn’t get around to writing a blog post. I’m reblogging this oldie. Hope you enjoy!

MOON IN GEMINI

1. Don’t become over-dependent on character charts. I’ll be honest. I’m not a fan of character charts. I don’t think a lot of the information on them is necessary for creating (or for a writer “getting a grip” on) characters. No one cares how many freckles or moles your character has, or what the character’s favorite flavor of ice cream is, or that the dog they had when they were growing up was a poodle named Muffy, or what job they had when they were 17, unless a detail like that is critical to the story.

The worst thing about character charts is some people fill them out and think they’re done creating their characters.

If you feel that character charts are helpful, by all means, use them. Just realize when you finish one that you’re not done, you’ve only just begun.

2. That said, details are important.  Without…

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2014 Starts on a Writing High Note: I’m a Project REUTSway Winner x 2 (and a half)!

As mentioned in a previous post, I participated in Project REUTSway, a short story contest held by REUTS Publications. I found out a month ago that I was one of the finalists. Today the winners were announced and TWO out of my three stories were chosen for the anthology! My third story is a runner-up, … Continue reading 2014 Starts on a Writing High Note: I’m a Project REUTSway Winner x 2 (and a half)!

8 Reasons Why Hollywood Should Have Shelved The Lone Ranger Movie

(SIDENOTE: This week is my one-year Blogversary! WordPress informed me on July 1 that I have had this blog for one year, but that was the day I signed up for a blog. My first blog post appeared on July 8, 2012. Thanks to all who have stopped by over the past year!) What does … Continue reading 8 Reasons Why Hollywood Should Have Shelved The Lone Ranger Movie

Kind of busy this week, so I thought I’d repost an old column. Hope you enjoy!

MOON IN GEMINI

After a lot of frustration trying to find good titles for my projects, I started thinking about titles of successful books and movies.  I realized they usually fall into categories.  Knowing these categories help me create a strategy for finding the perfect title.

1. Main Character – this is the obvious place to start.  I’m not a fan of using the name of the main character as the title of a book.  Sure, there are instances where that worked out fine (Forrest Gump, Dexter) and others where that helped create a disaster (the movie John Carter).  Notice the ones that do work are often unusual names.  So if your character’s name is Ponconby Fassmesser, you might be O.K. using that as your title.

A better strategy would be to zero in on something interesting or unusual about your character.  It should be descriptive and usually should be short.  It could…

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