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Our September Author Interviews--9/6 Kathleen Valenti, 9/13 David Burnsworth, 9/20 Jeri Westerson, 9/27 Frances Brody. Please join us in welcoming these authors to WWK.
September Saturday Guest Bloggers: 9/2--Anne Bannon, 9/9 WWK Bloggers, 9/16 Margaret S. Hamilton, 9/23 Kait Carson, and on 9/30 Trixie Stiletto.
“May 16, 2017 – The Women’s Fiction Writers Association (WFWA) today announced the finalists of the second annual Star Award, given to authors of published women’s fiction. Six finalists were chosen in two categories, General and Outstanding Debut. The winners of the Star Award will be announced at the WFWA Retreat in Albuquerque, New Mexico on September 23, 2017.” In the general category, WWK’s Carla Damron was one of three finalist for her novel, The Stone Necklace. Go to Carladamron.com for more information. Congratulations, Carla!
Congratulations to our writers for the following publications:
Warren Bull's new Lincoln mystery, Abraham Lincoln In Court & Campaign has been released. Look for the Kindle version on February 3.
Shari Randall's "Pets" will be included in Chesapeake Crimes: Fur, Feathers, and Felonies anthology, which will be published in 2018. In the same anthology "Rasputin," KM Rockwood's short story, will also be published. Her short story "Goldie" will be published in the Busted anthology, which will be released by Level Best Books on April 25th.
In addition, our prolific KM will have the following shorts published as well: "Sight Unseen" in Fish Out of Water, Guppie (SinC) anthology, just released, and "Making Tracks" in Passport to Murder, Bouchercon anthology, October 2017.
Margaret S. Hamilton's short story, "Once a Kappa" was published as a finalist in the Southern Writer's Magazine annual short story contest issue. Mysterical-E published her "Double Crust Corpse" in the Fall 2016 issue. "Baby Killer" will appear in the 2017 solar eclipse anthology Day of the Dark to be published this summer prior to the eclipse in August.
Wednesday, August 22, 2012
The Writerly Taboos
She's twelve, and a very sweet, intelligent girl, so I knew she wasn't meaning that she likes people to be sad, but that she enjoys the act of making up the “why” they’re sad. She has participated in the last three NaNoWriMo events for kids, so I wasn't surprised to hear she did this. But when she expressed her concern that she should feel bad about that, I quickly assured her that doing so is part and parcel of being a writer.
I told her that knowing a character’s back story is crucial to being a successful author. We need to know our characters inside and out in order for them to jump off the page, like they were actually made of flesh and blood. I even assured her that I do it myself all the time, and cited some examples.
I understand her guilt, though. There are so many societal rules that would make an activity like that seem cruel and mean:
Don't lie/make up stories - This one is the biggest one to overcome, especially for a child. "Don't Lie" was ingrained in my head so much growing up that, if I tell even a white lie in my adulthood, I ruminate about it for days, wondering why I told the lie in the first place and scolding myself for doing so.
Don’t stare at people – I’m not sure why this one is such a taboo, or where in our adolescence it becomes so. If you watch toddlers, they’re staring at people all the time. They take in the new person/people in their field of view, and are fascinated. So, why isn’t that “allowed” as we get older? Is it because the other people are afraid we’re judging them? If I wear a sign that says “I’m not judging. I’m a writer and want to absorb your nuances,” would I be allowed to stare? Probably not. I’d probably get sued by people who didn’t want me “absorbing” their “nuances.”
Don’t steal another’s likeness – We writers have to be so careful about describing people in our books, for fear that a girlfriend would get angry with us for writing about her propensity to date loser men, or that we described another friend’s baldness in such a way as to make him appear to be one of the said “losers.” That’s why you’ll hear so many authors say their characters are an “amalgamation” of people they’ve met over time, in any interview that asks that question. The hard part is, there’s probably at least one person out there who embodies even the characters that we truly make up out of thin air.
I’m sure there are other “rules” that we break, as writers, but I can’t think of them right now. It might be taboo to break them, but doing so helps us be good at what we do . . . so long as we make sure we're rebelling in our fictional worlds only.