7/10 Jennifer J. Chow
7/17 What We're Reading Now! WWK Bloggers
7/24 Kait Carson
7/31 Write Your Way Out of This! WWK Bloggers
7/3 M K Morgan
Warren Bull's short story, "Just Another Day at the Office" appears in the anthology, Red, White, and Blue available this month by Whortleberry Press. Congratulations, Warren!
E. B. Davis's "The Pearl Necklace" will appear in the new SinC Guppy anthology The Fish That Got Away to be released in July by Wildside Press. The anthology was edited by Linda Rodriguez. It will be released on June 21st.
Paula Gail Benson's monologue "Beloved Husband," from the perspective of Norton Baskin the second husband of Marjorie Kinan Rawlings (who wrote The Yearling and Cross Creek), appears in the Red Penguin Collection's An Empty Stage (released March 28, 2021).
Martha Reed's "Death by GPS" will appear in the Spring 2021 issue of Suspense Magazine, which will be released in the second week of April. Congratulations, Martha!
Susan Van Kirk has a new audiobook, A Death at Tippitt Pond, that will be released this month. Marry in Haste will be released in May by Harlequin Worldwide Mystery, as will Death Takes No Bribes in September. Congratulations, Susan.
Congratulations to Martha Reed. Her short story, "The Honor Thief" was chosen for the 2021 Bouchercon Anthology, This Time For Sure. Hank Phillippi Ryan will edit the volume, which will be released in August at the time of the convention.
Margaret S. Hamilton's short story, "Killer Weeds," appears in the January 20 edition of Texas Gardener's Seeds: From Our Garden to Yours. Congratulations, Margaret, who, if you follow Facebook know, is a superb gardener herself!
Congratulations to Paula Gail Benson whose "Reputation or Soul" has been chosen for Malice Domestic 16: Mystery Most Diabolical anthology to be released this spring.
KM Rockwood's "Stay Safe--Very Safe" appears in this year's 2020 BOULD anthology. Congratulations, KM!
Annette Dashofy signed with agent Dawn Dowdle of the Blue Ridge Literary Agency. Congratulations, Annette!
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.