Posted in Miscelaneous Musings, The Writing Life


I’m fifteen minutes and thirty seconds into Jumanji (1995, with Kirsten Dunst as a little girl in it and Robin Williams as a hyperactively awesome adult) and someone mentioned turning Allan Parrish’s old, empty house into a Bed & Breakfast.

Does this sort of happen often?

How embarrassing….

No, I will not attempt to change my novelette any further.  No, nuh-uh.  Don’t get your hopes up, Ian and Gollum.

Posted in Uncategorized

Where Do You Get Your Ideas?

I really enjoyed reading this post by Evelyn Krieger, author of One is Not a Lonely Number, about formulating ideas in writing. 🙂


ideas2 One of the most common questions I’m asked when people hear I write fiction is: Where do you get your ideas?  The answer is simple: ideas are never the problem. I have too many ideas .

While smack in the midst of  the draft of my second novel, I got an idea of another book. I was really excited about the idea, but I forced myself to put it on hold.

Where do I get my ideas?  In snippets of conversation overheard in a coffee shop. Newspapers stories. Obituaries. Historical events. Dreams. Childhood experiences. Traveling. Imagination. Art. Issues I care about.

When my writing workshop students get stuck, here are some ways I help them generate  ideas.

l.  Ask What if?  What if you find out your best friend was living a double life? What if you discovered you suddenly could speak a language you were never taught? 


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Posted in Absurdity, Miscelaneous Musings, The Writing Life

Editing Objectively – How, Preciousssss?

I’ve got a nassssssty, Gollum-like little inner critic when it comes to writing.  Now that I’ve finished the preliminary writing of my novelette, I’m trying to make edits and smooth out all of the rough spots before I send it to a publish– I mean, self-publish it.

Y’see, since I’m not publishing this thing with a professional publisher, I don’t have the benefit of an outside editor.  I could hire someone, or I could go harass random Figment users I don’t even know to leave ego-stroking but otherwise pointless “reviews” on my story, or I could spend my Young Writers’ Society points on posting the whole thing and maybe getting some feedback.  But I don’t know if I can afford an editor; I wouldn’t post my whole story on Figment to be graffiti’ed and defaced for a million bucks (which I could use to hire an editor…); and I don’t think I have enough YWS points. 😛

So yeah, I’m going with DIY-editing for now.

Continue reading “Editing Objectively – How, Preciousssss?”

Posted in Uncategorized

Allison – Guest Post

Check out my guest post on Michael Gunter’s Tales of Today and Yesterday!

Michael Gunter's Tales of Today and of Yesterday

Good morning, guys!  I recently asked a friend if she’d like to do a guest post on my blog.  Surprisingly, she said ‘sure’, and here we are.  For those of you who’ve never read her blog, check it out:  Allison the Writer

I especially recommend her comments on “Grammar Nazis“.

Hi, everyone!  My name’s Allison.  Before I get started, I’d like to thank this blog’s owner, Michael Gunter, for giving me this guest writing opportunity here. 🙂  (I’ve never done a guest post before, so if I’m an absolute fail at this, you know why….)  Instead of writing about Doctor Who or evil hamsters, today, I’ll my topic is portraying “different” characters in story-writing.

Be forewarned, there are a lot of long sentences in here. 😛

In my work-in-progress novelette, Secrets in Seaport, my protagonist, Abby, happens a homeschooled girl (well, RV-schooled, but you know what…

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Posted in Behind the Scenes, General Fiction, Novels, Written Works

Excerpt: Secrets in Seaport

The following is an excerpt of my novelette, Secrets in Seaport, which I wrote of earlier.  At this point, I’m feeling pretty confident with how it’s turning out, so I’m sharing a little something here on the blog.

This is probably going to sound stupid, but I’ve attached the story as images so nobody can easily cut ‘n’ paste the text.  This story’s going to be up for sale someday, so the last thing I need is for some wicked individual to beat me to that.

For those of you on mobile devices, I’d recommend “tapping” on the images individually and view them in full-size.  You’ll have to move around the screen to read a single line, but it should work.

Alternatively, you can just wait to buy the book, or get on a normal computer. 😉

Continue reading “Excerpt: Secrets in Seaport”

Posted in Uncategorized

From Michael Gunter: Author’s Curse

This is from my fellow writer Michael Gunter; I couldn’t have expressed this thought better myself. As a longtime sufferer of the Sandpaper Curse, I’ve gone through plenty of my old writings and cringed enough times – reading this was such a comfort!

Michael Gunter's Tales of Today and of Yesterday

One of the nastier afflictions that haunts writers (and I mean ALL types of writers, not just writers of fiction) is the Sandpaper Curse.  I call it that because woodworkers (of which I am one) know this same curse, in regards to polishing.

Now, all sanding is a form of polishing, the use of grit to grind down a surface smoother than it was before.  A woodworker starts out with a sandpaper a little smoother than the surface of the wood.  When the wood is as smooth as the sandpaper, the artisan chooses a slightly finer grade of paper, moving on down until the wood is as smooth as he wishes it to be.

For a man building a yard-chair or a garden cart or a rustic chest, the final smoothness may be just enough that there are no rough surfaces or splinters.  If he is building an item of…

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Posted in Miscelaneous Musings, Uncategorized

I’m Walkin’ on Sunshine

‘Coz I’ve been nominated for the Sunshine blog award!

How cool is that?

And for another oldie song reference, when I saw the comment come in bearing these good tidings, I knew it was going to be a bright, sunshine-y day.  😀

Now, with this award comes with some activities/rules that I’m bound to if I’m to accept this award (which I gladly do).

1. Thank the person who nominated you

I extend my gratitude to the blogger “nemonails:)”, who nominated me for this lovely blog award!

2. Post the award logo on your blog

Check. 😉

3. Share 7 facts about yourself

  1. I am very privacy-conscious on the web, which is a fact, so I’m going to stick to things that are not overly personal and somehow relevant to writing.
  2. I live on Planet Earth.
  3. I was nominated Writer of the Week on the week of 3/9-3/16 by my friends at the Young Writers Society.
  4. I dislike (most) band fanfics. The whole idea behind ’em is just creepy.
  5. I am a Sherlockian and have been one long before fans of Gatiss and Moffat’s BBC show thought they coined that title.  Not that there’s anything wrong with that, of course.
  6. I have balanced Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows on my head, but I’ve never actually read it.  Don’t ask and don’t judge.
  7. I knitted myself a scarf based on the Fourth Doctor Who’s scarf.

4. Nominate 5 or more other blogs that inspire you

Boy are you in for a lot of names here! 😀

These are a few of the various blogs and bloggers I could think of off the top of my head who have inspired me in one way or another, as both a writer and a creative person. 🙂

Thank you again, nemonails:), for this award, and thank you to all of those amazing web personalities who have entertained and inspired me!