Preparing to Fail, Being Scared of Success.

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Hi guys!

This week I achieved a goal of my own.

Walking three miles on my own.

That might not sound much, but to someone who hasn’t done that length in solitary can be a big thing.

Especially when hindered by anxiety.

It happened accidentally.

I’d decided to go for a short walk.

During the course of that I thought. ‘No. If I’m going to do this. Let’s go all the way.’

The anxiety was still nibbling away at me at a small frequency, but it was manageable.

My husband could hardly believe it when I’d told him.

‘How’d you feel now that you’ve done it?’
He’d asked that night.

I thought about it.

I didn’t feel a thing.

‘You should do. That was a big thing. You should be proud of yourself.’

But there was nothing.

No elation. No sense of accomplishment.

Nothing.

I didn’t understand it. I’d been happy and bubbling when outside. Yet it was almost as if it hadn’t happened at all.

I’m wondering whether it’s because I have always set myself up for failure. Perhaps all those years of playing down success as luck have numbed me to any sort of achievement.

I’ve always struggled with being positive. Whenever I get a good feeling about something it always turns out to be because of something negative. Coming from a family full of negativity it’s unsurprising. And it’s something that I’m sick to the back teeth of.

How do I expect something good to happen if all these bad thoughts cloud my brain?

No chance is there?

Having depression doesn’t really help, either.

This past week I have been looking into the Law of Attraction for encouragement. Although, at  the minute I’m more discouraged.

I’m willing to give anything a go once.

I’m still working on editing/ revising my WIP. Still not happy with it.

Until next week,

Blaze

With thanks to Jeremy Thomas for the image via Unsplash.com.

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Lost In the Wilderness

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Hi guys!

I’d thought about doing a post about writing from a male POV, but as I haven’t ventured down that alley yet I will leave off.

As you all know I’m in the middle of editing my novel, Pandora’s Kiss. There’s really not much of that going on right now.

It’s more me shuffling from one option to the other and back again.

A few weeks back I’d started writing with two characters.

I’ve probably mentioned this in earlier posts, but just in case I haven’t I’ll go on to it again.

The two characters I’d worked with were Seori, the Protagonist and Desdemona, the Antagonist. I liked it on a whole, but stopped after it revealed a little too much information and left nothing to surprise or intrigue.

I’ve also tried writing from Seori’s point of view, but have found my chapters are too short and the pacing to be slow.

At the minute I’m back to working on the original draft with the three characters.

It’s hard to know which direction it is I’m headed.

Still, the only way to find yourself is to get lost completely.

Maybe something will come out of it.

Until next week,

Blaze

With thanks to Richard Loader for the image via Unsplash.com.

Creating A Strong Female Protagonist

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Hi guys!

Having a strong female protagonist in fiction is vital for many readers.

Why?

This can be for many reasons.

Strong female protagonists can be role models for teenagers and women. It can also provide inspiration and support for those who are experiencing similar situations to their fictional characters.

But how do you go about writing one?

Here are five handy tips to creating a strong female protagonist.

1. They don’t have to be badass to be strong.

You read about a female protagonist who is physically strong and can take down twenty men in a small amount of time. This is considered strong. There’s nothing wrong with this if your character can do this. It’s fine. A strong female character needs to be strong emotionally; she needs to have flaws, attachments, personality and strength.  This will help them with whatever they have to overcome. Which leads me to the second point.

2. Give your female protagonist something to overcome.

This gives her a reason to stay strong. Whether it be a fear or otherwise. For example, she could have to move to a different neighbourhood leaving everything she knows behind, or having to rebuild her life after a traumatic event. Don’t be afraid to make them vulnerable. Change is uncertain and characters will warm to them as they grow.

3. Make sure they have a life outside of romance.

This is not to say that they can’t have a romantic relationship. It’s important that they have a storyline of their own without a male counterpart to hold it up.

4. Write her as a human being.

Being strong doesn’t mean that she has to be happy and knowledgeable about every situation she finds herself in. That would be unrealistic. The important thing is to give her a quirk whether it be her wit or her personality. Make whatever it is hers. She can be sassy and sharp tounged, but can also be the type of woman to cry herself to sleep at night.

5. Don’t be afraid of her under estimating herself.

This could be an opportunity for her to prove herself and everyone else wrong.

I hope this helps you write strong female characters.

Have a great week!

Until next time,

Blaze

With thanks to Roksolana Zasiadko for the image via Unsplash.com

The Nightmare Of Writing Descriptively

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Hi guys!

With writing comes descriptive writing. Without it, readers will get bored. You can’t have the building without any windows to see out of.

Whoever heard of a house with no windows?

Whoever heard of a book without  description?

Having said that I can imagine that you’ll tell me that such a thing exists.

Still, I use it in a matter of speaking.

My dislike for descriptive writing probably comes from my boredom. It doesn’t excite me.

And that’s a problem.

But beneath that boredom lies inability. I find myself unable to describe buildings, faces, emotions, objects.

All those things stifle me. I spend too long trying to think of a beautiful paragraph to describe something.

By that time my idea for another part will disappear.

This is something I’ve been trying to overcome since my teenage years, but it’s not shifting.

I’ve tried exercises, but the same thing keeps happening. I struggle a little too long, boredom sets in and I lose interest.

I know that it’s something I have to overcome if I am considering publishing. No one is going to want an undescriptive book.

It’s just getting there.

That’s half the battle.

Does anyone else have this struggle?

How did you overcome it?

Let me know in the comment section below.

Until next week,

Blaze

With thanks to Liz Bridges for the image via Unsplash.com

The Nightmare Of Writing Descriptively

image

Hi guys!

With writing comes descriptive writing. Without it, readers will get bored. You can’t have the building without any windows to see out of.

Whoever heard of a house with no windows?

Whoever heard of a book without  description?

Having said that I can imagine that you’ll tell me that such a thing exists.

Still, I use it in a matter of speaking.

My dislike for descriptive writing probably comes from my boredom. It doesn’t excite me.

And that’s a problem.

But beneath that boredom lies inability. I find myself unable to describe buildings, faces, emotions, objects.

All those things stifle me. I spend too long trying to think of a beautiful paragraph to describe something.

By that time my idea for another part will disappear.

This is something I’ve been trying to overcome since my teenage years, but it’s not shifting.

I’ve tried exercises, but the same thing keeps happening. I struggle a little too long, boredom sets in and I lose interest.

I know that it’s something I have to overcome if I am considering publishing. No one is going to want an undescriptive book.

It’s just getting there.

That’s half the battle.

Does anyone else have this struggle?

How did you overcome it?

Let me know in the comment section below.

Until next week,

Blaze

With thanks to Liz Bridges for the image via Unsplash.com

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Thinking It Over – Receiving Feedback

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Hi guys!

Let’s imagine this situation.

You’ve sent your work in progress to a beta reader or editor. You’ve put it to the back of your mind until you get the dreaded notification. Your work’s back.

Yikes!

Instead of opening it right away you avoid it like the plague, imagining all sorts of hideous things. You distract yourself as best you can when a voice starts to nag you to look at it.

‘It might not be so bad.’

‘It could be really positive.’

With a cup of coffee (or tea, whichever you prefer) you sit down to open the email.

I still do this now, even though I’ve been asking for feedback for years. I’ve only had a couple of really bad critiques of which I’m thankful for.

But how do you handle receiving feedback?

Here are a few tips:

1. Say Thanks.

Whether the outcome is positive or negative say thank you. This person has taken the time to read your work. That’s what I always remember. Even if I disagree I find it’s common courtesy.

2. Don’t Argue.

This can make you come across as unapproachable. You don’t need to defend your work to said person because you know where you’re coming from. Explain if there’s confusion, but don’t tell them that their wrong or stupid for not seeing what you see.

3. Take Time To Evaluate Each Point.

There’s no denying that feedback can make a book better. However, it’s important to remember that a person’s feedback is just an opinion. You can agree or disagree. If the person says that they found the pacing slow re read it and check. If a comment is repeated, then it’s important to pay attention to that as well.

4. Ask What They Would Change Or Do Differently

It’s always good to have a second opinion. Sometimes the person giving you feedback will come up with an idea that intrigues you to experiment. It can also draw attention to an area that you never thought about doing differently.

5. Update The Person Giving You Feedback.

This is only an option. I do this if someone asks me to or if I find that a part of their criticism was integral to my story improving.

These are just some of the things I go by when I receive feedback.

I hope they are of use to you.

Until next week,

Blaze

Thanks to Dariusz Sankowski for the image via Unsplash.com.