#Writinglessons: Embarrassment – A Storytelling Device

Empire is one of the scripted television shows that I enjoy watching. Check out my post on the shows I indulged in last year. The show is a combination of several things I enjoy watching – it’s got a lot of drama, high levels of family conflict (I grew up watching Dallas with my mom in the ’80s), ratchet galore (uh, I watch LHH and the Real Housewives franchise) and fabulous clothes!

Continue reading “#Writinglessons: Embarrassment – A Storytelling Device”

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#Writinglessons: Emotion Amplifiers

As I noted in a previous post, I’m doing less writing and more reading nowadays.

I’ve got to say, I love it! It took a while for me to accept that this was to be a period of learning and not one of creation. Still, I’m enjoying the focus on craft and have pinned several relevant writing tips at my Writing Tips board on Pinterest as well as shared several links to important writing advice on Twitter.

In my quest to become a better writer, I downloaded Emotion Amplifiers from Amazon when it was available for free. Written by Angela Ackerman and Becca Puglisi, the book provides writers with tips on how to strengthen the emotional tone of a scene. The authors highlight that doing so can enhance a reader’s emotional investment in the story and it’s characters, as well as assist with the pace of the story.

Image result for emotion amplifiers

As a writer whose editor kindly noted a need for such in my WIP, I definitely found Emotion Amplifiers to be useful and recommend it to any writers who need it.One of my goals as a writer is to keep my readers engaged from beginning to end. I want 1o eliminate any skipped pages or paragraphs and encourage my readers to love (or hate) my characters enough to want to see what happens to them. I think this book will help me achieve my objective.

If you don’t have the Emotion Amplifiers book, get your copy at the following online outlets

KOBO

Barnes & Noble

Smashwords

Kindle

As of 10/12/16, the ebook is free on Amazon!

What books have you read recently that you find useful, be it for writing or something else? Do share! I’m currently reading Leviathan Wakes by James S.A. Corey (pen name for 2 dope science fiction creators) and will soon read Let’s Get Digital by David Gaughran to learn more about the self-publishing business.

#writinglessons: Star Trek Beyond

I finally watched Star Trek Beyond and loved it!

Image result for star trek beyond

What a great movie. Right amount of laughs, tension, action and heart-racing fear to keep me engaged. Even the bad guy made sense in the end.

So, what did I learn from the movie?

Plenty. Continue reading “#writinglessons: Star Trek Beyond”

#writinglessons from Independence Day Resurgence

I tried y’all.

I really tried.

But.

Independence Day Resurgence was super hard to watch and put me to sleep (granted, I have a lot going on and have been underslept as of late).

Source: meowgifs.com

I don’t think I got halfway through this flick but in an attempt to stay awake, I pulled out my phone and started taking notes.

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#WritingLessons from George R.R. Martin

I recently read an article which reviewed a talk George R.R. Martin , author of the Game of Thrones books, gave in Australia.

As a fan of the television series and a writer aspiring to create worlds that readers can get lost in, it’s no surprise that I paid close attention to what he had to say.

Here are a few of the tips I took away from the article:

  1. don’t let characters wallow in despair for too long;
  2. avoid cliches;
  3. show violence truthfully but also show its after-effects; and
  4. use grey characters (i.e. not all good, not all bad).

He had a lot more to say but those four tips spoke loudly to me.

(I’m sorry that I don’t have a link to the original article. Please don’t shoot me.)

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#WritingLessons from #GOT S6 E10

I just got to watch Game of Thrones because, I hardly get to watch my preferred tv shows live.

 

It is what it is, but my life doesn’t always permit me to watch much live tv but the news.

Anyway, this season finale episode was … PURE FYAH!!!!

Yes, I loved almost every second of it and I managed to walk away with a few #writinglessons. Please be aware that spoilers lie ahead.
  1. Shock the hell out of everyone. As a writer, I know the importance of shocking my readers.  It is always important to give them something they don’t expect. Like, I didn’t expect Tommen to off himself the way he did. I also didn’t expect Cersei to off everyone in the septum the way she did. As in, damn, Cersei is a cold-blooded BAWSE.
  2. REALLY shock the hell out of everyone. I’m certain I wasn’t the only one surprised that Cersei and Qyburn would use children as assassins. Like DAMN. But it’s those sorts of surprises that make for a good story. Oh, and the irony of the young destroying the old was a great image and I wonder if that will be a theme in the future.
  3. Allow your characters to be their true self. Eventually. Cersei – the black queen has come into her own, forced there by a series of events.  Daenerys – the dragon queen has relinquished love, with no emotions, in order to gain the seven kingdoms (is she going to be just like her mad father?). John Snow – the bastard Targaryen has become the king of the north (but trouble lies ahead what with the secrets between himself and Sansa). Arya Stark. Need I say more? These essential characters have come into their own and I like it. Ooh and I can’t forget Granny Olenna Tyrell. She cut those Sand sisters at their knees in her typical quick tongue and she’s about to be that granny out for revenge. Long story short – be true to your character’s character.

And now, I’m off to see how I can apply these few tips to my story, THE PURSUAL. It goes to the editor later today and I’m so nervous.

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#WritingLessons from Nollywood

Nollywood is the colloquial term for Nigeria’s homegrown movie industry. It’s considered the second largest by volume, after India’s Bollywood and America’s Hollywood.

We all know quantity does not equate to quality.

Nollywood movies, while dramatic, highly entertaining and (sadly) often realistic portrayals of real life for the average Nigerian, do not always measure up to well-crafted stories. That has something to do with the economics of Nollywood – films are made quickly on the cheap.

(You think I’m kidding when I say they are dramatic, heehee)

I recently watched a movie (because despite their challenges, I enjoy Nollywood) and walked away with the following #writinglessons –

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#WritingLessons from Star Wars VII: The Force Awakens

I love science fiction and watch it religiously.  Luckily, there are quite a few sci fi franchise options to indulge in, one of which is Star Wars.

Recently, I was on an American Airlines flight and got to watch Star Wars VII for a second time. The first time I watched it, the movie was boring to me. I watched it as a regular consumer of creative content but didn’t feel any attachment to the characters or the story.

So, given that experience, I wasn’t interested in a second viewing, but I am so glad I did it because I learned a lot about storytelling from watching the movie again.  And as a novice writer, I’m happy to take good tips from almost anywhere. (I lie. I’ll take ’em from anywhere.)

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