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Author Topic: The good morning, good night thread  (Read 589780 times)
fnord33
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« Reply #4530 on: March 14, 2014, 07:15:02 AM »

The last press to accept one of my stories invited me to this. I thought I'd pass it along. It looks fun. Call for Submissions: Axes of Evil II: Rise of the Metal Gods - they're looking for anything epic and metal inspired.
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« Reply #4531 on: March 16, 2014, 03:28:16 AM »

I'm glad some of you were able to take advantage of the sale price.

To answer your question, my writing hasn't been going anywhere lately. I had a burst of activity in Jan-Feb when I bought Scrivener and got my old novel all set up in it. But right around March 1, I got an editing job and I haven't been able to do much of anything else for the past two weeks. The work is interesting, though, because I have to think about how I'd go about fixing the various issues such as converting Tell to Show or tightening the POV (my author tends to drift into omniscient).

Once this job is out of the way, I plan to get back to the writing.

Del, I admire your determination and persistence. I have a hard time pushing through the feeling that my writing sucks, nobody will find it engaging, and why bother, anyway? It's great to hear that you've got a cool idea and you're happy with the way things are going.

Elay, good to know you're working on another story. I'd love to read it when you're done. My "short" stories tend to bloat past the point of salability as well. And then I give up because my writing sucks, etc.

Geoff, thanks for the mention of David Lodge and Sol Stein; I hadn't heard of them or their books. Yes, I'm leery of people finding "hidden meaning" in fiction. After taking an online lit class last year and hearing multiple, conflicting analyses of some famous works, I decided that any given interpretation comes more from what that reviewer got out of it than what the author put into it.   rolleyes

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delboy
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« Reply #4532 on: March 17, 2014, 04:06:43 AM »

Little disappointed with David Baboulene's book, I must say. I kept waiting for the academic stuff to finish and the story stuff to begin and most of all I was looking forward to his analysis of all these top movies from IMDB and the revelations and explanations of the 'knowledge gaps' within them that made them so strong and so well-loved... and it never happened. There was an awful lot of repetition, too. But most of all I was disappointed because he never did what he said he was going to do. Just as he'd done all the build up, all the preparation and foundation work, and (I thought) was about to present us with this key chapter the book ended. Maybe it's all one big knowledge gap.

The theory is good - and it's definitely something to bear in mind when writing stories - but in the end Baboulene didn't really explore or demonstrate this theory with enough practical examples. The example he did use is currently number 48 in the IMDB list (this list being his basis for scoring the impact of popular story) - so there were potentially quite a few other stories he could have or should have also applied his thinking too.

For sure, I got my money's worth (which is all you can really ask) - but then it only cost £1.02. Probably just me...
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"If you want to write, write it. That's the first rule. And send it in, and send it in to someone who can publish it or get it published. Don't send it to me. Don't show it to your spouse, or your significant other, or your parents, or somebody. They're not going to publish it."
 
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« Reply #4533 on: March 17, 2014, 06:49:03 PM »

Hi Pharo -- good to see you stopping by afro How are you and your hubby doing? Life treating you both well, I hope smiley
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Planning is an unnatural process - it is much more fun to do something.  The nicest thing about not planning is that failure comes as a complete surprise, rather than being preceded by a period of worry and depression. [Sir John Harvey-Jones]
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« Reply #4534 on: April 01, 2014, 05:27:18 PM »

My eldest just took his mock exams and scored all Es and Fs. I've no doubt its down to a lack of effort rather than a lack of aptitude, so I would like to intensively work on revision ahead of the coming real exams in June. The trouble is, his notes are in an appalling state and I don't know where to start. I don't know what he is supposed to have learned to pass the exams, so I can't help, but I really want to. Does anybody know what the best way is to proceed? Can I get a syllabus for each subject and hit the library for books? The teachers aren't very helpful, so it's pointless going to them, I've tried.

Any ideas? scratch
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Planning is an unnatural process - it is much more fun to do something.  The nicest thing about not planning is that failure comes as a complete surprise, rather than being preceded by a period of worry and depression. [Sir John Harvey-Jones]
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« Reply #4535 on: April 02, 2014, 02:36:36 AM »

The teachers need to get their act together. I'd arrange an urgent appointment with your son's head of year and ask them directly what you can do; make it clear that the teachers haven't helped and maybe s/he can do something about it.

In cheerier news, I became a granny yesterday. Baby Almabella was born on April Fool's day, so some people thought I was joking, but I wasn't!
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« Reply #4536 on: April 02, 2014, 02:44:23 AM »

Congratulations Delph!  Cheesy

Ed, the boy here had a similar set of results in his A-Level mocks - and similarly I put it down to little effort. I rarely see him doing any work at home - he says he does all his homework in free periods at school. He's also adamant that they haven't been taught much of what was in those mocks. That said, the same thing happened in his GCSE mocks and come the exams he did all right, so fingers-crossed...

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"If you want to write, write it. That's the first rule. And send it in, and send it in to someone who can publish it or get it published. Don't send it to me. Don't show it to your spouse, or your significant other, or your parents, or somebody. They're not going to publish it."
 
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« Reply #4537 on: April 02, 2014, 03:22:06 AM »

And just to add - the writing regime is still ticking along. There have been some very tough days, but so far I've done my words every day this year. On to draft # 2 of the latest piece now. I didn't quite finish draft # 1 if I'm honest. Got up to about 60k which was close enough to the end that I knew where everything was going and how it all fitted together - but I knew it was also a pile of poo, that the timings were wrong, that there were too many characters, that those characters were poorly developed, the backgrounds were poorly written, there was too little conflict and motivation, etc etc. So there seemed little reason to push on to the end when I'd achieved what I needed from the first draft (which was to find out what the story was).

The other thing was, that a surprise character took over in draft # 1. A guy who was only supposed to be there for a short period of time became the most interesting character and the most fun to write. Every time I thought he was done he would pop up again. It struck me that the whole tale could be told from this character's perspective - so that's what I'm doing in draft # 2. Instead of a multi-viewpoint third person tale it's a first person version.

And so far it's working...
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"If you want to write, write it. That's the first rule. And send it in, and send it in to someone who can publish it or get it published. Don't send it to me. Don't show it to your spouse, or your significant other, or your parents, or somebody. They're not going to publish it."
 
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« Reply #4538 on: April 03, 2014, 05:09:30 PM »

My eldest just took his mock exams and scored all Es and Fs. I've no doubt its down to a lack of effort rather than a lack of aptitude, so I would like to intensively work on revision ahead of the coming real exams in June. The trouble is, his notes are in an appalling state and I don't know where to start. I don't know what he is supposed to have learned to pass the exams, so I can't help, but I really want to. Does anybody know what the best way is to proceed? Can I get a syllabus for each subject and hit the library for books? The teachers aren't very helpful, so it's pointless going to them, I've tried.

Any ideas? scratch

Ed,

My youngest daughter lost a year and a bit of the two years leading up to her GSCEs due to really deliberating anxiety. She got well enough to get to school for three half days a week for self study in their special needs room, but no teaching.

I had 7 months, you've only 2 so it might be harder. I agreed with the school to cut down her GCSE subjects to just English (Language, and Literature), Maths and double Science. I then got her study guides for each of the subjects (the ones with Revision and Pratice were best), and organised a tutor for each subject once a week. I was lucky that her English teacher agreed to tutor her, and the maths tutor knew her maths teacher well. This meant that they focussed on the parts of the syllabus the school felt important for the exams.

The combination of the tutoring, the guides, and some hard work she got C's in all subjects etc English Language where she got a B. I think the tutoring was key to keeping engaged and explain things she found difficult.

---

Study Guides: check with the school the exam board and makes sure you get the right ones.  As I said above the best were those with Revison and practice.  Also if you can past papers (again for the right exam board) they were great. (The school should help.) In the last few months my daughter only did past papers, checked the answers, revised and practiced what she got wrong, and the did the next exam.

Good luck

---

On teachers and schools helping:

At one time I did think the school should have helped my daughter more, and they tried, but simply couldn't. They are set up to teach children, in school, in classes, at set times ... the resources (time, staff) don't have the flex to help students who can't fit in with what they are set up for. - even finding a quiet room  away from too many people for my daughter to work in was hard for them. As it happens when she was in school it was the head's PA who helped most - because she had the time, and the clout to arrange things.
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« Reply #4539 on: April 04, 2014, 06:44:46 PM »

Thanks for all the words of encouragement. Hopefully we can get something worked out. The trouble is, you can't make a person do anything they don't want to do. He still thinks he can coast through without putting in any effort
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Planning is an unnatural process - it is much more fun to do something.  The nicest thing about not planning is that failure comes as a complete surprise, rather than being preceded by a period of worry and depression. [Sir John Harvey-Jones]
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« Reply #4540 on: April 23, 2014, 02:52:03 AM »

I'm still pushing on with the morning writing routine. It feels a bit like cheating at the moment as I'm on draft # 2 of the WIP and I'm trying the entire thing from a different viewpoint, so a lot of what's happening at the moment feels like editing rather than writing. Not sure if the new viewpoint will work - but c'est la vie. What else is there to do at this time of the morning with a story still inside one's head?
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"If you want to write, write it. That's the first rule. And send it in, and send it in to someone who can publish it or get it published. Don't send it to me. Don't show it to your spouse, or your significant other, or your parents, or somebody. They're not going to publish it."
 
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« Reply #4541 on: April 23, 2014, 11:38:47 AM »

Good luck with that, Del.
I know the feeling that comes with reworking a WIP with a new POV. Originally I wrote Escaping Reality in third person but after 4 chapters in I decided to try it in first, and it was so much more immediate I kept to it. Tricky though since my fugitive could only know about what the police and the gangland mob were up to via his own experiences.
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« Reply #4542 on: April 24, 2014, 03:03:06 AM »

Good luck with that, Del.
I know the feeling that comes with reworking a WIP with a new POV. Originally I wrote Escaping Reality in third person but after 4 chapters in I decided to try it in first, and it was so much more immediate I kept to it. Tricky though since my fugitive could only know about what the police and the gangland mob were up to via his own experiences.

That's where it's tempting to add a second character viewpoint. Then life gets simpler in one way and hectic in another. Personally, I like to stick with reading a single narrator all the way through a novel.

Well done on sticking with the routine, Del. I'm still not writing anything -- my phone starts ringing at about 7:15 every morning and doesn't let up until at least twelve hours have passed. Can't get up any earlier otherwise it'd be pointless going to bed in the first place afro
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Planning is an unnatural process - it is much more fun to do something.  The nicest thing about not planning is that failure comes as a complete surprise, rather than being preceded by a period of worry and depression. [Sir John Harvey-Jones]
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« Reply #4543 on: April 24, 2014, 09:31:45 AM »

It was the same situation as Geoff's - taking a 3rd person multi-viewpoint story and reducing it to first person. What happened was a minor character in the first draft rapidly became my favourite character, the most fun one to write, and every time I thought he was finished in the story he'd pop up again. Eventually I realised I could tell his story and it would probably be more fun and engaging than the tale I had been telling. I'm also not sure I have the technique or ability to deal with a vast range of characters anyway so 1st Person POV works better for me.

What we need is a crit group so I could run some of this by a group of talented and insightful writers....

It's still a struggle, Ed. This routine. It's not got any easier despite doing it for four months. Still preferable to taking business calls at 7.30 though! I must admit I'm counting down the days to retirement...about 3650 to go, give or take a bank holiday or two. I reckon then things will get easier...

Cheers
Derek
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"If you want to write, write it. That's the first rule. And send it in, and send it in to someone who can publish it or get it published. Don't send it to me. Don't show it to your spouse, or your significant other, or your parents, or somebody. They're not going to publish it."
 
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« Reply #4544 on: April 26, 2014, 01:17:35 PM »

What we need is a crit group so I could run some of this by a group of talented and insightful writers....

I miss the crit group.
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