Showing posts tagged writing

Anonymous asked: how do you write humor? I want my story to be funny but every time I read it, it seems to fall flat...

fuckyeahcharacterdevelopment:

Seeing as how I’m naturally hilarious and all the brilliant humor you see from me is pure talent and wit overflowing (read: I have no idea how to articulate being funny because I’m actually just dumb), I’m going to hook you up with a couple of links.

Five Practical Tips on Writing Humor
Nine Tips on Writing Humor from Scott Adams
Humor Writing Tips
The Secret of Writing Funny
Four Commandments to Writing Funny

I hope that helps!

- Allie

(Reblogged from fuckyeahcharacterdevelopment)
No writing is wasted. Did you know that sourdough from San Francisco is leavened partly by a bacteria called lactobacillus sanfrancisensis? It is native to the soil there, and does not do well elsewhere. But any kitchen can become an ecosystem. If you bake a lot, your kitchen will become a happy home to wild yeasts, and all your bread will taste better. Even a failed loaf is not wasted. Likewise, cheese makers wash the dairy floor with whey. Tomato gardeners compost with rotten tomatoes. No writing is wasted: the words you can’t put in your book can wash the floor, live in the soil, lurk around in the air. They will make the next words better.
Erin Bow (via writersrelief)
(Reblogged from aithne)

Thoughts on writing- crafting a story

The hardest part of writing for me has always been to come up with a story premise.  I often get characters or setting, but nothing for them to do, nowhere for them to move.  I’ve had some thoughts on this subject lately, some inspiration if you will, from a couple different sources.  Maybe you’ll benefit, too.

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Anyone who has read thousands of pages of chivalric literature knows that either these texts were meant for men as well as women, or that medieval women simply could not get enough of combat and war, of the detailed effects of sword strokes on armour and the human body beneath, of the particulars of tenurial relationships, and of the tactical manouevres that lead to victory. Such evidence suggests that the great body of chivalric literature was aimed at knights even more than at their ladies.

Richard W. Kaeuper, Chivalry and Violence in Medieval Europe, Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1999, p. 32

Someone remind me: Why do we consider romances chick lit and war stories to be for men?

(Reblogged from thegirlandherbooks)
All writers are vain, selfish, and lazy, and at the very bottom of their motives there lies a mystery. Writing a book is a horrible, exhausting struggle, like a long bout of some painful illness. One would never undertake such a thing if one were not driven on by some demon whom one can neither resist nor understand. For all one knows that demon is simply the same instinct that makes a baby squall for attention. And yet it is also true that one can write nothing readable unless one constantly struggles to efface one’s own personality. Good prose is like a windowpane. I cannot say with certainty which of my motives are the strongest, but I know which of them deserve to be followed.
George Orwell, Why I Write

(Source: orwell.ru)

Fall is my creative time.

For some reason I feel most inclined to write and get ideas for writing this time of year.

It’s also a time I feel like reading classic ghost stories.  Any recommendations?  Two of my favorites are Roald Dahl’s collection and Ancestral Shadows by Russell Kirk.

Something for fantasy writers

I mentioned that Chris Wickham’s meaty Framing the Early Middle Ages would be good for those looking for a thesis topic.  It occurred to me that it could also give some inspiration for world building.

The book surveys a variety of European cultures in turbulent times, which is usually the type of backdrop used for fantasy stories.  It could give you ideas on how to structure economies and political factions, for instance.

The detective story differs from every other story in this: that the reader is only happy if he feels a fool.
G.K. Chesteron, The Ideal Detective Story

(Source: chesterton.org)

(Reblogged from storyshots)
A good novel tells us the truth about its hero, but a bad novel tells us the truth about its author.
G. K. Chesterton
I’m about halfway through the Songs of Love and Death anthology, edited by George R. R. Martin, with stories by Cecelia Holland, Jim Butcher, Jacqueline Carey, etc.  I think it would be a good read for those who play Bioware games mainly for the romances.  You’ve got your fantasy or sci fi angles but with heavy romance aspect.  There are definitely good stories here.  I was reading mainly for Cecelia Holland, but have enjoyed some of the others as well.
It’s probably my first time reading stuff out of the romance genre since stealing peeks at my mother’s bodice ripper books when I was a teenager (I can’t be the only one who did that).  It was an interesting cross cultural experience.  I actually liked some of them, up to certain points, though I’ll always prefer stories that are heavier on action.  The successful romance writers are good writers, to be sure.  The problem with romance writing for me is that the very things I hate are the things their fans want to see.
Take one story called The Marrying Maid by Jo Beverley.  I sort of liked it, despite what seemed to me to be some cliche’ and schlocky aspects.  There were interesting tie-ins with English history and folklore.  And then, the bedroom scene- when the heroine went from virgin to total ecstasy in two lines despite being under considerable duress.  This is what the readers of these stories want, so it’s what the authors give them.  I don’t understand why, and it’s kind of a shame because it makes me not be able to believe in the story anymore, and it’s what makes other people lampoon the genre.  I guess it’s a rhetorical question, but wouldn’t people prefer something that’s closer to reality, so that you can actually put yourself in the protagonist’s shoes?

I’m about halfway through the Songs of Love and Death anthology, edited by George R. R. Martin, with stories by Cecelia Holland, Jim Butcher, Jacqueline Carey, etc.  I think it would be a good read for those who play Bioware games mainly for the romances.  You’ve got your fantasy or sci fi angles but with heavy romance aspect.  There are definitely good stories here.  I was reading mainly for Cecelia Holland, but have enjoyed some of the others as well.

It’s probably my first time reading stuff out of the romance genre since stealing peeks at my mother’s bodice ripper books when I was a teenager (I can’t be the only one who did that).  It was an interesting cross cultural experience.  I actually liked some of them, up to certain points, though I’ll always prefer stories that are heavier on action.  The successful romance writers are good writers, to be sure.  The problem with romance writing for me is that the very things I hate are the things their fans want to see.

Take one story called The Marrying Maid by Jo Beverley.  I sort of liked it, despite what seemed to me to be some cliche’ and schlocky aspects.  There were interesting tie-ins with English history and folklore.  And then, the bedroom scene- when the heroine went from virgin to total ecstasy in two lines despite being under considerable duress.  This is what the readers of these stories want, so it’s what the authors give them.  I don’t understand why, and it’s kind of a shame because it makes me not be able to believe in the story anymore, and it’s what makes other people lampoon the genre.  I guess it’s a rhetorical question, but wouldn’t people prefer something that’s closer to reality, so that you can actually put yourself in the protagonist’s shoes?

Once you have read a book you care about, some part of it is always with you.

 Louis L’Amour (via iratherthinkheknewanyway)

O_O  I had a huge Louis L’Amour collection as a teenager and was just thinking today that I need to go back and re-read some of his stuff to get some inspiration for a Fallout New Vegas fanfiction story I’ve been noodling on.  He’d probably roll over in his grave at that, but now here he is on my dash.  It’s fate, Louie.  We miss you.  Sacketts live forever.

(Source: booksandnerds)

(Reblogged from serazienne)
A writer — and, I believe, generally all persons — must think that whatever happens to him or her is a resource. All things have been given to us for a purpose, and an artist must feel this more intensely. All that happens to us, including our humiliations, our misfortunes, our embarrassments, all is given to us as raw material, as clay, so that we may shape our art.
Twenty Conversations with Borges, Including a Selection of Poems: Interviews by Roberto Alifano, 1981–1983 (1984)

(Source: mehreenkasana)

(Reblogged from victusinveritas)
I find that most people know what a story is until they sit down to write one.
Flannery O’Connor