Tuesday, November 15, 2016


Todayness we were able to skype with the awesome face of Christine Hayes, author of Mothman's Curse, which, if you haven't, please read it.
Image result for jedi mind trick hand gesture
Any of the ways (Ways of the any?) here is the awesome (very summarized) answers that she gave to our questions! 
  • On Writers Block: Take a walk, do writing prompts, or just sit down and force yourself to write. 
  • On Fan Fiction: Fan Fiction is good practise.
  • On Writing a Story Idea, Writing the Beginning, Getting Stuck in the Middle, then Getting Another Shiny Story Thing But Actually Finishing the First One: If you love it enough you will go back to it until it is done. Also, set goals, like, "I'll do two pages of this story today". 
We humbly thank with humbleness with all humbility in the most humbleded way possible Christine Hayes for taking the time to talk to our small group of crazy writing people! 

Many stuff,

Tuesday, August 9, 2016

Writer's Club Fall 2016

Aloha to all the peoples creepily reading over my shoulder (I'm looking at you, GRAPE!) and you weirdos on the internet. Don't be on the internet all day though. Get a life. Any of the ways, tis is I, Chrys! Who is Chrys, you may ask? Well, I did just say it was me, so that's obvious. The description of me right now is that I became one of the Bloggers for our amazing authors' club just today and I have the maturity of a chipmunk high on magic mushrooms tied to a pair of rollarskates with a cell phone.
Okay, now Imma do a thing of stuff we're doing this Writer's Club sessiony thingy:

  • Character Development--How Characters change and whatever. 
  • Other Kinds of Writing-- Including, but not limited to:
    • Screenplay
    • Graphic Novel
    • Picture Books
    • Stage Plays (basically the same thing as a screenplay, but who cares?)
And, of course our...
  • Author Skypes--We call an author while they're supposed to be writing and stuff. Perhaps that's why character's deaths are worse... Hm... Nah, we like them worse! The shnastier and more gruesome, the BETTER!!! 
Anyways, that's it for now. Keep Writing and all that inspirational mojo.


Tuesday, April 5, 2016

Author Skype with MarcyKate Connolly

We had a really fun author skype visit with MarcyKate Connolly, author of the middle-grade fantasy books, Monstrous and Ravenous.

 She gave us the following writing tips:

  • If you want to publish, you should get a literary agent.
  • It takes time and lots of trial and error before you can publish a book.
  • Plotting and pacing are very important, and it takes trial and error and listening to critique partners to get it right.
  • Writing is rewriting. Many people don't like to revise and rewrite, but that's what most of writing is.
  • When giving critiques, it helps if you say something good first, then make a suggestion, then say something good again. This is called the sandwich method.
  • To help with pacing, you can use a plotting tool like Blake Snyder's Beat Sheet
  • There are lots of places to find critique partners online, like AgentQueryConnect or AbsoluteWrite.
Thank you so much, MarcyKate, for taking time to talk to us!

Monday, January 18, 2016

Staying Focused

When talking about focus, there tends to be a spectrum between scattered and obsessed. When you are scattered, you have a bazillion stories that you are working on simultaneously in your head. When you are obsessed, you have one story. One idea. For months. Maybe years.

Obviously this doesn't cover all cases, but in general it is a good system of classification.

So the trick is to break out of what you are and do something new to freshen things up. So if you are scattered, pick one idea, nail it down, and make a goal to see it finished. If you are obsessed, put down what you're working on, and try something new.

Writing Exercise: Write down ten ideas. If you are closer to the scattered, write down ideas you've had. If you are closer to obsessed, write down new ideas. If you are closer to scattered, pick one of those ideas, and make a goal to finish it. If you are obsessed, try writing one of the new ideas.

In the end, once you've mastered your brain and all, you'll probably want a type of mindset called relaxed focus, or "scattersessed" in which you have one main idea and a bunch of others floating around in the semidistance. Not close enough to interfere, but close enough to get the attention that they deserve.

Keep writing!

Monday, November 2, 2015


Fear is universal. Fear is one of a human's base instincts. Fear is felt by everything. Fear is something that all can share and enjoy. Readers love feeling this most base of emotions.
When you are writing fear, you also have to keep in mind the reactions of the characters. The characters have to be feeling the same fear that the audience is feeling.

Some reactions that are common and help your reader understand that they should be afraid are:
  • Screaming
  • Worrying
  • Cowering in the corner
  • Shuddering
  • Avoiding the danger
Remember all of this, but beware. Writing can hurt you. Often your brain can't tell the difference between what is happening to your characters and what is happening to you. Writing can hurt you as an author, and it cal also hurt the reader. So be warned, don't make it too gruesome or scary.

Keep writing!

Wednesday, August 26, 2015


Before the beginning, there was a prologue. A prologue is a written section of the story that gives background information on the world, the characters, and/or add some extra exposition.

The word "Prologue" above a section of writing tells the audience that this is extra exposition. A prologue is NOT chapter one, and is not a part of the linear story. With or without the prologue, the story should make linear sense.

A prologue can give you an extra hand in getting the audience to know the world and characters. If the book is a sequel, you can use the prologue to tie off loose ends from previous books.

Prologues can be a legend or folk tale from the world. They could also be what happened seven years ago, or shorter, or longer, or whatever. A prologue is a part of the story that isn't part of the main storyline, so with that in mind, you can do anything, except...


Your prologue must be consistent with the rest of the story! No magical prologue and then modern rest of the story. And if you're doing something exciting in the prologue, you'd better keep the tension at the same level in Chapter 1. A prologue is not where the main story starts. It may be the initiation of the story, but it is not where the story itself starts. I cannot stress this point too much, for it is one of the greater pitfalls.

Another thing, don't drop characters from the prologue. If you get the audience to like the character, keep the character, cause if you don't, the audience gets mad. Always tie in the prologue to the main storyline, otherwise YOUR PROLOGUE MAY BE UNNECESSARY.

Thank you to all that came this week, and I'd like to see those who couldn't come on Tuesday come next week. Especially our secretary, because I need her to take notes on the lesson so I can write these blog posts.

Keep Writing!

Wednesday, August 12, 2015

In the Beginning...

Being the beginning of the school year and the beginning of this year's Writer's Club, we started with the lesson about beginnings.

In the beginning of a story, you can add a prologue to give background with the world or some of the characters.

The beginning can also have a hook, to draw the reader in. The hook must have a problem, raise a question, have something unusual, and/or make a promise.

Something to be sure of, it is best to include the character, setting, and conflict in the first page.

The beginning should be simple, and make enough sense for the reader to continue reading smoothly. You need to introduce everything that you need for the story in the first chapter. And you need to start when things start changing. You need to start when the story starts.

Important Information: There will be no Writer's Club next week!