Thursday, April 22, 2010

Ask the Working Stiffs

by Joyce

Since I'm having an incredibly busy week, and I don't have a topic prepared, I declare today "Ask the Working Stiffs Day."

Ask me, or any of the other Stiffs anything you want--preferably writing related, or in any of our areas of expertise (we do have some expertise in something, don't we?) and we'll do our best to answer. Just don't ask me anything involving math. Unless you want the wrong answer, of course.

Have at it!


PatRemick said...

How come I can't get this novel finished -- and do I need therapy for it?
But it is the question on my mind today.... :)

Joyce said...

Funny, I have the same question on my mind. I'm at the point where I'm calling it the "effing book."

Laurissa said...

I have a million and one, yes, a million and one questions for myself and others. But since you're limiting our questions to writing questions or areas of expertise (lol), I'll go with this question: Is there one particular online writing course that would be recommended over others for a novice mystery writer?

nancy said...

How come I'm back on page 95 on the book that's due next week? And I'm only on page 95 because I can't tinker with Chapter 1 anymore without going insane.

Joyce said...

Laurie, I've never taken an online writing course, so I can't recommend one. I think Annette has taken a couple, though.

Two books I'd recommend are "How to Write Killer Fiction" by Carolyn Wheat and "Writing the Breakout Novel" by Donald Maass. They're the two I refer to the most.

Joyce said...

Sorry, Nancy. I don't have an answer to your question, either! I could spend my entire life tinkering with my first chapters. It's so much easier than writing the rest of the book.

And I keep telling myself I should enjoy not having a deadline for as long as it lasts.

Wilfred Bereswill said...

I'll chime in here. Long sgo I asked Ridley Pearson a question. "When are you done with a book? When do you stop tinkering with it?

His response was, "You have to trust yourself that your story is good enough. Otherwise you'll tinker with it forever."

I have never taken an online course. Most of what I've done is through the local universities.

BTW, I just started writing a new suspense novel. I'm in the middle of the prologue. Yes, I said the prologue. I think it will all work out.

Gina said...

AHA! Just as I expected, the real reason we all want our work to be published has nothing to do with fame, fortune, making a statement, art, etc., etc. It's because, once it's in print, we can stop re-writing the @#*!% thing!

Jennie Bentley said...

I've never taken an online writing course, either. Don't really think they're necessary, to be honest. The best way to become a writer, is to read a lot and write a lot; there's nothing more to it than that, really. My favorite writing book is Stephen King's "On Writing." Not because it's technical at all, but because it really makes you want to write...

Patg said...

Oh Gina, so well said, so well said. When my book came out I put EVERYTHING relating to it in one file then sat and enjoyed the emptiness of my document file and desktop. Ahhhhhhhh!

Question: What is the meaning of Life?
The answer should cover every and any thing including writing problems. No more than 3 words, please.

Joyce said...

Very funny, Pat! There. That's three words.