images_080After a “Mad” Monday, everything got unsettled and confused. I’m tired of dark dreary skies, droplets of water, outside, and did I mention dreary skies?

How many times in our writings do we hear echos? We find a phrase or a couple of words and repeat them all over the page, or chapter, or chapters, or throughout the whole book.  “Well, this is the way to recognize my character.” But on every page? “My character speaks like this all the time.” Then silence your character(s) for a few pages.

Echos equal repetition and as writers, we are capable of creating such a vast entity of settings, words, descriptions, and conversations. We do not need ECHOS. Or do we?

If done in a subtle way, this can create a reference to a crime. Then the reader gets shivers knowing about the echo. Or you have a vicious love circle and the same phrase, “I’ll be late.” comes out quite often. Still not in every scene.

When we write, we need to get our ideas out, kinda like a free-write. These ideas are fresh to the writer. We can’t take the chance of forgetting one twist or turn. So we write, write, and write. Word fill up the pages and echos reverberate. Not loud enough we hear them, until revision time comes. Then, we shake our heads and start to worry how many of them did we put in?

A simple “Search and Find” can do the trick. If at any time you think you have echos or overused a certain word, hit the find and then the next, and next, and next. I’m always surprised and shocked. I don’t remember writing the same word that many times, but there it is right in front of me.

A gentle reminder to all of us, don’t forget about “Echos.” Your readers will remember.

Happy Writing. Happy Writing. “Oops.”

See you back on Friday.





As a writer, we should read, read, and read other authors. We need inspiration by their word choices, settings and different genres. These readings stimulate our own mind and the way we look at our stories.

Read all genres, which are different from your normal writing, and then read in your genre. Read for pleasure. Experience the feelings your body absorbs. Do not question, just enjoy. Then when you finish the book, examine some of the areas where you found yourself stimulated or bored. Go back to the places and read again to see why you experience the different emotions. Do not get bogged down, let your own imagination take you on your journey through other books.

When I belonged to a book club eons ago, our choices ran rampant. We selected books at random and across all genres. This was when, in a bookstore or library, I ran to the thriller section, my get-away genre. In our book club, I found myself venturing into other areas and my mind became saturated with all books. Once every six months, we would pick a non-fiction book about a specific individual, such as Georgia O’Keeffee, Queen Victoria or Indira Gandhi, just to mention a few. You had to stay with the chosen person, but you could pick any author who wrote on this subject.Talk about intriguing and stimulating conversations….we sometimes went way over our closing time. This is where you find out how different authors view the same subject. Interesting comparisons.

A friend gave me a book while I was in the hospital. “You will enjoy reading this, I promise,” she told me.  THE GUERNSEY LITERARY AND POTATO PEEL PIE SOCIETY became my bedfellow. The author, Mary Ann Shaffer, was an editor, librarian, and bookseller. This was her first novel. Her niece, Annie Burrows, stepped in when Shaffer’s health issues took top priority. After her death, the niece’s persistence and ability to promote, gave this book the push needed for a best seller.

Take yourself back to WWII and the German invasion of Europe. There are several Channel Islands between the United Kingdom and France. This novel is about the Guernsey Channel Islands and the people who lived there and the hardships they endured. This is a book of letters and each letter to a person gives, you the reader, the feeling of being right there. You get to know the people associated with the Guernsey Island and the literary society. Sometimes, I’d put the book down and wait for–mail call. I met new and interesting characters; resourceful, funny, sad, lost lives, hard-working, limited abilities, deaths, a young child and love. All of this during the invasion of their little island. Please take yourself on a letter journey with this book. I bet you will find yourselves waiting for the mail to arrive.

This was ‘outside my box’ reading until a non-fiction writer friend loaned me a copy  one of her critique friends had published, OF HUMAN CLAY, the making and breaking of a nun by Aimee Wise.  Check her out on Facebook and Twitter

Writers, readers, and followers, I’d love to hear your comments on how and what you read “Outside Your Box.”



9776003-audienceWhich are you? Don’t stammer. Don’t hem-haw. Don’t question. Why? As a writer, you are both. I can hear your comments – last post she went to the ‘otherside,’ and now is over the edge. Stop and look at these two words and. apply them as them as a writer.

What happens when an idea forms in your head and mind? You began to expand these ideas. A setting presents a possible starting point. Then, other settings form and become other possibilities. A time period pops into your thoughts along with other political happenings in this period. Maybe you see outside the box and something unknown takes over; science fiction, paranormal, or an arrival at a point of time by who knows what.

When these things happen you are the creatER of many ideas. Next, these ideas form and you may have a story. You do many avenues of research to get the right mixture of ideas and time periods. Yes, research and research, whether for fiction or non-fiction. You can massage the research in fiction, but when you write something, you’d best have the correct information. Of course, as you create, you can mix the truth with a little variation. That’s called fiction.

But, places, ideas, setting, and story are nothing without your creation of characters. Yes, you become the creatOR, when your characters become part of the story. YOU, as a writer, have to make them come alive from nothing to the power of the people who crawl into your story. You are the creator of your characters. You give them all of the outlandish ways, cunning thoughts, beautiful bodies, and maddening tempers. Then you put in wimpish movements, unknown possibilities, bright, educated, characters, and whatever else can fit your story

Now, go write the beginning of the thoughts flowing through your mind, heart and soul. Create a place for them to gather; but be the creator of how they will interact with life.

Be a CreatER. Be a CreatOR. Be the writER you want to be.

Happy Creating.