I wondered if anyone had any ideas on what they'd like to attempt with their writing this year. Maybe you want to try increasing your output. Maybe you want to try using some new software or hardware.
I'm trying to voice record my thoughts on the way to and from work in an effort to get rough drafts done. I've got voice to text software with the recorder and I'm hoping this increases my overall output.
Is anyone else going to try something new this year?
Posts: 823 | Registered: May 2009
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Robert, You and me both. Part of mine was a move of my writing space/desk. My zone, literally, has moved. I can't get comfortable, and dream.
That and my sleep issues are plaguing me more than usual, but that also has to do with the shuffling of rooms in the house.
Ugh. I'm glad for TaleSpinner's challenge. That 1k was half of the total I've written in the past 3 mo.
This past weekend I moved my "writing" desk again, back into my new office space, but not my work desk. Next to it. (One of my employee's desks, sigh.) So I'm trying to find a new space.
I'd really like to write new words. If NaNo was NaFeb I think I'd go for it. I'm desperate to create. I need to get over the idea that my first draft must be polished. I think if I vow to write crap, then at least I'll write...
Application of all I learned since I first became serious serious about writing is my New Year's resolution.
An arts fellowship grant application is also on the horizon this year. Highly competitive and subject to bipartisan political machinations, the grant is five figures and requires a submission package that would make troubled query letter writers cry and wring out their hair.
I know several writers who won the grant for creative writing. One writer, who won the grant twice, showed me the successful submission materials.
Also on the 2015 agenda per moi is a writing Web site research and development -- part like the way print digests were managed during their heyday: close and intense editorial guidance and support. Develop a stable of dedicated, robust writers al la ancient "schools" of thought. Publish for fun and profit and writer and personal growth. I expect maybe one in a thousand candidates will rise to the occasion. The rest -- they have their own Poet's Journeys to travel. Many, many more will self-elect to boycott.
The overall aesthetic intent is advancement of written-word expression. Much unlearning, relearning, and new learning to go for writers who shape the cut, and for editors, and writing that suits the times and leads the culture ahead in these chaotic and interesting, dynamic times. Where will tomorrow's writing become?
Posts: 6037 | Registered: Jun 2008
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I moved my "office", too, Axeminster. It worked fine while I was in revisions. Kind of having a slow-go getting up and running with the first draft of the next story, though. Wonder if that has anything to do with it. However, this is the book I shied away from writing five or six years ago (the one where this world starts to fall apart) so that might have more to do with it.
Got a graphic design book for Christmas (what I asked for). Trying to educate myself about what I'm doing right--or wrong--on my book covers.
Posts: 4633 | Registered: Dec 2008
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Yep babooher, Besides the short stories and the classes, I'll be starting a novel. I need to complete some world building, religion, rules of magic, governmental structures, parameters of technology and such framework on which to build lives. And then, um, uh...
Are there any good books out there that advise one on novel construction? I've been thinking about this for a long time and it still seems like attacking the ocean with a straw and a pucker.
Posts: 133 | Registered: Mar 2014
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An essay from Writers Digest summarizes and explains our host Orson Scott Card's M.I.C.E. principle and how it applies to fiction, novels, structure, plot: The 4 Story Structures that Dominate Novels, from Card's poetics text How To Write Science Fiction & Fantasy.
The Poetics of Aristotle also details dramatic structure, short or long narrative, from a causality approach. Actually, though Card does not indicate so, the MICE principle is part of the Poetics's topics.
Gustav Freytag's Technique of the Drama also details dramatic structure, with tension as the organization principle emphasis and builds upon Aristotle's causality principle emphasis. Tension's simpler criteria is emotional reader effect.
E.M. Forester in Aspects of the Novel expresses a simple criteria for dramatic structure; that is, a causal sequence of events. Back to Aristotle's causality.
One more axis of dramatic structure Aristotle and Freytag scratch at the edges of is complication. Complication is antagonism's dual identity of want and problem satisfaction in opposition. Causality's cause and effect and Tension's empathy and curiosity emotional stimulation likewise are dual identities. ACT: antagonism, causality, and tension are the eventful fundamentals of dramatic and novel structure and movement. Without ACTion -- not a dramatic narrative.
Causality is the time x axis: time passed within a narrative's reality imitation. Tension is the y axis: as time passes, emotional stimulation arcs like a triangle. Antagonsim is the z axis, antagonism oscillates back and forth between want and problem along the z axis while causal time and tension progress. A three-dimensional shape results and compares closely to successful narratives short or long.
The idealized shape these axes graph into is a regular tetrahedron, the base edge teetered upon the x axis. Two faces represent antagonism; two faces represent tension. The six edges represent antagonism, causality, and tension intersects. The top, perpendicular edge mid narrative, mid shape is the climax edge. As a novel's shape, the tetrahedron models the more stimulating aspects of ideal dramatic dimensionality and structure. The tetrahedron contains the set of natural and necessary words that factor into the structure's erection, as a bricklayer shapes a pyramid, for example.
Reduction of the "straw and pucker" is matter of division and conquer, started with first principles. What complication is foreground? A high magnitude moral crisis struggle suitable for a novel's length, implied or directly stated, external and internal congruent crisis, is a large part of the complication. Give agonists personal wants and place escalated problems in their way. Or give agonists problems they want to satisfy and place more problems in their way to oppose satisfying their problems.
Original, first sources are often the better access to guidance and perhaps first principles. However, older texts tend to be less accessible today; new texts tend to be derivative and long-winded explications of inaccessible first principles espoused long ago. The Poetics of Aristotle fits within those perimeters.