a campaign for twitter

I joined Twitter in 2011 but didn’t start tweeting until February of the next year. Took some time to learn the ropes.

And I have to say it made me a better writer. There are people to network with (complain about scenes, ask advice, become partners); people who give you an up-to-the-second report of writing news (so-and-so gets a 6 figure deal and you *will* find out); and research (on AGENTS).

There’s a constant stream of tips, blogs, contests, information. Sometimes, you can chat with agents, publishers, win critiques.

It’s amazing that I ever got along without the community.

So I’m offering to help ease you into Twitter. Feel free to ask me questions (really, don’t be embarrassed. I always was.) I can even suggests friends and who to follow.

I’m @ebelleful (for those who aren’t tech savvy, just search that on Twitter with the @ in place.)

If you’re not sure where/how to start, leave a comment or email me at miss ellis belle (at) gmail (dot) com. It’s all one word.

Hope to see you there 🙂

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SSH!

So as my soundboard, I read a lot of things to my toughest critic. It’s a good way to edit and catch things.

Like, ‘if I’m too embarassed to say that out loud…out it goes’ sort of thing. And it happens. A lot. And that’s good, I’m sure.

The other day, I was reading a blurb I’d been toying with for a few days and was eager to get things right.

So I read three paragraphs of four when TC tried to interrupt me. I thought: “She must be confused on what it all means. Last paragraph will tell her.”

Halfway through the fourth paragraph, she hushes me. “Cut out the fourth paragraph. Don’t keep explaining.”

I stared at her. And it hit me. I’ve had other (poor souls) tell me how my blurbs/queries sound and they’ve been confused. Not every time, but sometimes.

The first three paragraphs are generic, second paragraph might need tightening, but I can’t keep explaining every twist, every gut-dropping secret in the blurb. Why would I rewrite the story?

Sometimes, the less you say, the better.

judging a girl by her lover

I hit a snag in the drafting process not long after I started writing.

My characters kept jumping ahead, doing things that I thought weren’t set up yet. First of all, first drafts for me are always the discovery of an idea.

Getting annoyed by what my characters did and at what pace was ridiculous.

But I kept deleting scenes about my FMC and her love interest admitting feelings to one another.

When I discussed (read: whined) about my block to my sister, I was sure the problem was the lack of killing or that the romance was slow-going or demanded more than I wanted to invest.

She told me, very coolly (as she was excited about the idea I was slowly ruining): “Maybe you’re not as open-minded as you think.”

My mouth opened to protest but I froze. I like to believe (and gloat) that I’m open-minded, that I can’t be more open to suggestion. This ‘maybe’ hit me like a brick.

My sister’s advice and observations are *never* wrong. I reanalyzed how I felt about my FMC and her relationship with her brother.

And the sis was right. I’d left myself in the main character. I rejected MMC and kept the sexual and romantic elements out of the story because of what *I* believed in.

The sooner I accepted that I was standing in the way of a key element, the faster things fell into place. Don’t get me wrong. That wasn’t the end of my intolerance for incest, but I know with a draft done and the challenge of accepting taboo ideas, I’ll be better about what the story wants and needs.

What’s a topic you’ve written about that challeneged your beliefs or exposed something about you that changed your way of thinking?