Thursday, September 08, 2005


Can you hear them? Listen to them sing!

The boy is off to school!

The beloved bus even came early! Moo woke up and was prepared to give me typical vampiric, "Who dares wake me from my sleep?" look when I asked, "Wanna go to school?" The child got up so fast I nearly got knocked over.

It's nice to know our love is mutual.

So, now begins my mental restoration period. I was fully at wits, body's, everyone's end yesterday. And I had tried taking a look at something I wanted to edit. It wasn't the worst thing I ever read...but it was total crap and not in the good way. I looked at the latest book and realized, hey, that's crap too. I was absolutely sure that I had discovered the reason why I haven't sold yet.

I can't wirte.


I don't know what the hell I'm doing. I mean, sure, I study craft. But do I put it all in my writing as I work. I thought I did. I really did. But I think I'm wrong. I started thinking about how many elements there are for us to remember and work with. I even dragged X, my CP, into it--poor woman--and we both agreed. There's too much stuff. The biggies are easy to rattle off, much harder to use. Then there's The Layers. And that's where the list goes on and on and on. So, I'm setting a challenge. I'll list what I've come up with--listed randomly. Would love to see what others think of too.

So here we go:

The Biggies:


The Layers:

• Appropriate Use Of Dialogue Tags
• Remembering to use different voices/speech for different characters
• Making sure dialogue is useful
• Point Of View used to best advantage
• Graduating levels of sexual tension
• Adding to the conflict by making things worse for characters as romance proceeds, level by level.
• Sentence stuctures used varyingly to create pace: short, long, short, short, long, long, short.
• Verifying that sentence structures are not repeated in same paragraph: em-dashes, colons, semi-colons, ands and commas.
• Double checking that commas are used correctly instead of genocided.
• Setting: How much white space to fill in before you become Steinbeck
• Characterization and Arcs: Where are they headed, have you guided the way?
• Voice: Will the reader know it's you?
• Scene & Sequel: Making each scene move the story forward
• Secondaries and not overusing them/overmaking quantities
• Avoid repetition on singular word/global levels
• Using Pace to increase plot tension/sexual tension
• Writing descriptive but not gross or boring sex
• Breaking up the dialogue or exposition so that you don't have too much white space or full space on page.
• Deciding if something is passive voice and whether to eliminate it
• Reduction of Adverbs
• Removal of commonly used words: Very, really, be-verbs, unnecessary words like Actually, meanwhile & although

Okay, that's what I do to myself while I write and revise. Anyone else have anything they remind themselves to do? Come on, the crickets are good at home. Crickets not so fun on blogs. Tell me what you think. :)



Danica said...

Dude, you're making my head hurt. I think I'd be paralyzed if I tried to think about writing that much. Of course, that could be why I haven't sold yet. ;) I just try to write the story and worry about all the other stuff, uh, later. Yes, this would be why you're the detail person, and I am not. :)

Dee said...

LOL, or I'm the psychopath.

But I'll take "the detail person", lol!


Lis said...

Yikes, what a list! :o)

What I usually remind myself to do? Well go through and make sure they're not all just smiling and nodding at each other. Cut out overused words (just, and, as).

Dee said...

LOL, I think most of that list is just stuff I know we have to do and it's sort of subconscious. But I'm aware when I make plot decisions. "She can't do that, it's stupid!...why?...Because it's not her will ruin her development...he'll hate her forever." (If it's the last one, that's usually a good reason to do it. LOL!

Oh, the smiling and nodding! Yes, I do that too. Or the narrowing of eyes. Seriously, I won't be happy until everyone squints as much as I do. LOL!


THIS! Christine said...


Head hurting now.

Shesawriter said...


Another great read. I especially like your advice on dialogue. You GO girl. Thanks!