Wednesday, October 24, 2012

guest post: Weirder by Chad Schimke

guest post: Weirder by Chad Schimke


NANOWRIMO TIPS - With November only a few days away, the reluctant novelist might want to consider National Novel Writing Month (NANOWRIMO). What started out as a grass roots Bay Area community group has become legitimate cultural phenomenon. I have heard numerous testimonials that NANOWRIMO has helped aspiring writers realize their dreams. That being said, I haven’t done the NANOWRIMO program myself. But with so many overwhelming testimonials it’s worth checking into. At the very least you owe it to yourself to check out the page that lists published NANOWRIMO novelists. The goal is a 50,000 word novel that can be verified by uploading to the website. I have heard that a great way to get started is by using Book in a Month (BIAM) to complete scene cards, work through an outline, develop characters and the list goes on. If you are not anticipating major life changes (a new job, moving, a divorce, a new baby, etc.) in the month of November, give NANOWRIMO your best shot, your dreams are worth it, see the web link for much more information.

Friday, October 12, 2012


21 KEY TRAITS - Today’s post is a snippet of a Writer’s Digest article. See below for the link that takes you to the full article.
The 21 Key Traits of Best-Selling Fiction excerpted from The Writer’s Little Helper by James V. Smith, Jr.
1.    Utility (writing about things that people will use in their lives)
2.    Information (facts people must have to place your writing in context)
3.    Substance (the relative value or weight in any piece of writing)
4.    Focus (the power to bring an issue into clear view)
5.    Logic (a coherent system for making your points)
6.    A sense of connection (the stupid power of personal involvement)
7.    A compelling style (writing in a way that engages)
8.    A sense of humor (wit or at least irony)
9.    Simplicity (clarity and focus on a single idea)
10. Entertainment (the power to get people to enjoy what you write)
11. A fast pace (the ability to make your writing feel like a quick read)
12. Imagery (the power to create pictures with words)
13. Creativity (the ability to invent)
14. Excitement (writing with energy that infects a reader with your own enthusiasm)
15. Comfort (writing that imparts a sense of well-being)
16. Happiness (writing that gives joy)
17. Truth (or at least fairness)
18. Writing that provokes (writing to make people think or act)
19. Active, memorable writing (the poetry in your prose)
20. A sense of Wow! (the wonder your writing imparts on a reader)
21. Transcendence (writing that elevates with its heroism, justice, beauty, honor)

Saturday, October 6, 2012


FrankensteinFrankenstein by Mary Shelley
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

FRANKENSTEIN - This horror story has elements of mystery, supernatural, a gloomy setting and a character that bridges the worlds of the living and undead. The result is arguably the most identified classic gothic novel. The genesis of Frankenstein came to Mary Shelley in a dream. She was a part of a group visiting Lord Byron (poet of the romantic movement) confined to a villa remaining indoors due to incessant rain. He issued the famous challenge to write a horror story, which ultimately led to Frankenstein and John Polidori writing The Vampyre. Percy Bysshe Shelley was in the villa also, a prominent romantic poet in his own right, as well as Mary’s husband. I am particularly fond of the 1931 film version starring Boris Karloff. Don’t be put off by the movie era or black and white format. This was a pre-code film that didn’t flinch from controversial content. The pace is quick, black/ white reinforces the tone, utilizes stark visual imagery and pioneering movie effects/ sets. This is a classic Universal Pictures monster picture in an era where no other studio could have done it better. Not to be missed!

View all my reviews

Monday, October 1, 2012

From the Bootheel Cotton Patch: GUEST BLOGGER CHAD SCHIMKE

From the Bootheel Cotton Patch: GUEST BLOGGER CHAD SCHIMKE: Today’s blog post showcases guest blogger Chad Schimke. He is the author of two novels, Picker and Pieces. Along with two novelettes, Walker...