Tuesday, August 25, 2015

Practice the Craft

It certainly seems that I have not mastered the daily writing routine.  My life isn’t that orderly and perhaps I am not that disciplined.  So I have a number of tricks that help me return to my fiction writing.  One of my favorite tricks is to write about the writing process.  I can explore my writing habits and I can challenge or encourage the processes, depending on the effectiveness.  So that is one way that I get back writing.  Another is to devise exercises for myself, as I describe in this essay.   

“Practice the craft”

My current ‘practice the craft’ exercise concerns the transitional methods that can be used.  A transition is the movement from one thought, one action or one paragraph to another.  I have a list of common and ordinary transitions – after, at first, before long, suddenly, eventually, before and the like. 

The exercise I have devised is to take a short story written by someone else and to list the transitions used.  Then I can examine them. 

How does the transition work for the author’s purpose?  Is it effective? Do I like this?  Are the transitions used similar to each other?  What effect do transitions have on the style or the readability?  What do I think the author is trying to accomplish? 

And then I intend to do the same for one of my stories.  Is there another way?  Is this a place where my story falters?  What new knowledge can I apply? Can I do better as I practice the craft?


Wednesday, August 19, 2015

In the Mail

Yesterday's mail included the acceptance of a short story from Prairie Journal.  They are among the very few markets that I send my stories to via the post office but they are Albertan and they treat me well.  Enough said.  The short story that they wish to publish is called 'Second Job'.  And I will share more about it when you can read it from its online home.  This is encouraging!  Back to the keyboard. 

Monday, August 3, 2015

"On the Verge"

My latest published short story is online at  Pif Magazine.  Mine is the second of the two featured macro fictions.  On the Verge began its creation when I read an article about the interview process.  Why I thought that there was a story to be based on this is a wonder.  However, I like this story just fine, no matter where it came from.