February 15th, 2011

Me typing?
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Writing Excuses Season Three Episode Two: Keeping It Real

Writing Excuses Season Three Episode Two: Keeping It Real

From http://www.writingexcuses.com/2009/06/14/writing-excuses-season-3-episode-2-keeping-it-real-with-aprilynne-pike/

Key points: Make your characters feel real by studying real people. Research (Google maps, pictures, etc.) can help with setting. Also, distill the essence for imaginary settings -- how do places like that work? Ground your fantasy in science for plausibility. Give your readers convincing gnats, then don't try to explain the black boxes. Real characters who react in believable ways help make even ludicrous plots believable. Research can suggest plot hooks and twists that make the plot more real. Baby steps -- start small, then work up to big stuff -- can help writers to create and maintain the illusion of reality.
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Burp
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Writing Excuses Season Three Episode Three: Q&A, Also Stump Howard, At CONduit

Writing Excuses Season Three Episode Three: Q&A, Also Stump Howard, At CONduit

From http://www.writingexcuses.com/2009/06/21/writing-excuses-season-3-episode-3-stumping-howard-at-conduit/

Key points: Laughter, consistency, and admiration make different beliefs easier to swallow. Eyebrows help aliens emote like people. Similarities can help us identify with aliens so that the differences can hit us in the face. Scenes that are hard to write may be the best scenes you ever write. Write your novel, submit it, and repeat -- 3 or 4 novels later, take another look at that oldie and see if you can't fix it up. To write about megalomania, read about it! Make sure the Evil Overlord's plans are believable and smart.
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[Howard] Writing prompt. We're going to go to the supervillain here. You've got a device that vaporizes water using microwaves a la Batman Begins. Now turn it into a believable superweapon that's not being used to destroy the world.
[Brandon] This has been Writing Excuses. Thank you for listening. You are out of excuses. Now go write.
Me typing?
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Writing Excuses Season Three Episode Five: How to Take Criticism

Writing Excuses Season Three Episode Five: How to Take Criticism

From http://www.writingexcuses.com/2009/06/28/writing-excuses-season-3-episode-5-how-to-take-criticism/

Key points: Insults are not criticism. Don't defend your work. You don't have to believe or accept reactions, and you don't have to change your work. But other people do have the right to their reactions. Watch out for the turd in the bowl of oatmeal. Rejection letters are trophies for submitting your work. Sometimes, you just have to give it a try and see.
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[Brandon] Writing prompt. I'm going to go ahead and do this one. Let's have you write a story about a critic who is the hero, instead of the villain. We always want to make the critic the villain. This has been Writing Excuses. You're out of excuses. Now go write.
BrainUnderRepair
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Writing Excuses Season Three Episode Six: Dramatic Breaks

Writing Excuses Season Three Episode Six: Dramatic Breaks

From http://www.writingexcuses.com/2009/07/07/writing-excuses-season-3-episode-6-dramatic-breaks/

Key points: A dramatic break makes the reader want to go onto the next scene. Use cliffhangers, a tense lack of resolution, a sense of satisfaction, emotional ploys -- and mix it up. Pay attention to your genre -- thrillers like cliffhangers, epic fantasy prefers satisfaction. Be aware of the sense of time. Dan parks his flying car outside. Satisfying installments keep people coming back. Scenes need to progress the character or the plot to satisfy readers. Let the reader know the scene is over -- walk out the door, step into the street, etc.
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[Dan] Write a story in which Howard hates elephants and dramatically breaks one.
[Brandon] This has been Writing Excuses. You're out of excuses, now go write.
Fireworks Delight
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Writing Excuses Season Three Episode Seven: Genre Blending

Writing Excuses Season Three Episode Seven: Genre Blending

From http://www.writingexcuses.com/2009/07/12/writing-excuses-season-3-episode-7-genre-blending/

Key points: Mixing genres can alienate readers. So don't tell them. Borrow and hide it. Well stolen is half composed. Even the writer doesn't always know what he will grow when he blends genres. Beware the Western Stigma!
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[Brandon] We have our writing prompt. Combine horror and Western, and don't make it look like either one. This has been Writing Excuses. You're out of excuses, now go write.