Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Writing Exercise Wednesday #40

Happy Halloween Everyone! Fun day, fun costumes, fun size candy.
We are in the final stretch of this year long blog of writing exercises. And now I'm at 40! 
I do have to comment on Writer's Day on Saturday. It was fantastic and informative and a beautiful day and so great to see so many friends! A fabulous success. Well worth driving in the (slow) Friday traffic. I will leave earlier next time.

Here is today's exercise - hope it sparks and illuminates.  And it's perfect for Halloween since that's the photo I used from the prompt!

WEW #40

Think of photos from around kindergarten age – can be photos of anything and then bring one to life.  My photo is of my two older sisters dressed up for Halloween.

Why do they keep dressing us alike? We’re not twins, just sisters. I wonder if Jan’s costume is as tight as mine? I love the baby blue of mine. But it is riding up. I think I look more like a china doll than Jan – her blond hair isn’t very Asian looking. Her red outfit with the little flowers is pretty. I think the orange pumpkin filled with candy clashes with our costumes. Oh well – it’s only for one day. Jan stole some candy out of my pumpkin, I just know it. Well, I’m going to take some back. Hey, who put this apple in here? It’s not even caramel coated. And everybody knows you don’t eat apples from strangers. One more block, my feet hurt in these little black shoes. We should have brought a pillow case to get more candy. I hope I don’t have to share – I can make this stash last for months. That’s if Jan doesn’t steal anymore.


Wednesday, October 24, 2012

Writing Exercise Wednesday #39 + Writer's Day 2012 + Sleep Writing

I probably should do individual posts but might as well put them all together here tied with a nice writing exercise ribbon.

Writer's Day 2012 is happening this Saturday, Oct 27! It's at Cal Lutheran in Thousand Oaks. Always such a fun event, I hope to see all you artist people there.

Sleep Writing - I keep a pen and paper next to my bed since I used to record my dreams. I could never figure them out. But it has been great for lists that need to download from my brain so I can sleep better. Last night, at 1am, my brain was giving me the beginning to one of my stories. So, waking up the cat, I reached for my pad and pen and wrote stuff down. And when it wouldn't stop, I picked up the pen again and continued on until it was done and I could sleep again. That is such a gift when it happens. Deciphering it the next day is always interesting and my pen did short out here and there, but I think the act of writing it down makes it easier to remember once I see the chicken scratch I created in the dark. It's very interesting writing in the dark and if I hadn't had the kitty squished against me, I probably would have gotten up and written everything possible. Now to see if it's any good. Even if it isn't, it might be the jumping off start I needed.

Now on to the writing exercise.  Short and sweet - just what the sleep deprived writer ordered. While not Shakespeare, it'll do. 

WEW #39

Bones, pain, lies, frilly, stupendous

“Bones,” she said, wincing in pain, “your stupendous lies have landed us in hot water again.”
“You’re such a frilly, little girl, Carla. Suck it up. It’s only a sprain. Get up.”
“What a jerk,” Carla mumbled. “At least help me up.”
“Fine,” Bones huffed. “But this doesn’t mean I like you.”
“Same here.”
Bones helped her up and she gently touched her foot to the ground.
“Girls,” Bones said with disgust. “Wait here, I’ll go get my old man’s truck to haul you back.” 

"Great, another lie. You’re not old enough to drive,” Carla said.
“Doesn’t mean I can’t. Be back in a jiff.”
Carla sulked.  “Boys.”

Wednesday, October 17, 2012

Writing Exercise Wednesday #38

Work has been taking up all my time - ack - need to post an exercise! Quick!
This exercise is a bit different in the outcome for me - but isn't that half the fun?! Enjoy.

Forego, plethora, bird, runner

     “Actually, you don’t know anything about anything! What’s my favorite color? What’s my favorite flower or bird?” Charlotte shrieked.
     “Um, I would like to forego the bird part of the question. If that’s okay,” Bert said.
     Charlotte turned her face away.
     “But, I believe, ma’am, that you’re favorite color is red and your favorite flower is a red rose. And I’d hanker a guess that the bird you favor is a cardinal.”
     “Oh, Bert!? Charlotte cried. “You know more about me than my own mama.”
     “I know a plethora of things about you, Charlotte, if you’d just give me a chance to share them with you.” Bert shuffled from one foot to the other.
     Charlotte clasped her face and then Bert’s and gave him the loudest smooch on his cheek.
     Bert stumbled off the front porch, missed his step on the truck runner trying to get in, and almost caught his finger shutting his door.
     Charlotte waved her hanky as Bert drove away. “It is the cardinal,” she said with a sigh. “He doesn’t know it yet but we’re getting married next week.”

Wednesday, October 10, 2012

Writing Exercise Wednesday #37

So while I'm in jury duty today, do me a favor and have fun with a new exercise!

Gloomy, white poplar, solidify, formulate, bookman, scanty, admonish, constant

The gloomy day solidified with the heavy layers of falling snow. It looked so peaceful falling. Giant cotton balls sent from heaven. Except for the yellow snow against the snow bank. This would be a perfect day to stay home from school. What excuse would I come up with today?
Step-mother admonished me last time I was faking, but Sabrina, my best friend gave me some tips to fool her. If we could both pull it off today – we had a list of great fun planned.
Step-mother doesn’t approve of Sabrina. “Katy,” she constantly calls me even though I go by Kat. “Katy, Sabrina is a bad influence. Dresses so scanty and that tattoo. What kind of mother let’s her 14 year old daughter get a tattoo?”
I don’t have any tattoos. I barely got pierced ears last year for my birthday. Step-mother has strict rules of conduct every young lady should follow.
This means my long brown hair is always neat; I don’t get to have funky haircuts or color. I don’t get those vibrant green color contacts I wanted. My glasses are good enough according to her. And none of my clothes are black unless we’re attending a funeral. And how often does that happen?
Now that I’ve finally gotten my braces off, I’m finally developing some bumps on my chest and I have a cool best friend.
Step-mother may ruin my entire high school life.

Monday, October 8, 2012

Book Review: The City's Son: The Skyscraper Throne, Book One by Tom Pollock

A darker side of London comes to life in debut author Tom Pollock's thrilling urban fantasy, where train-like demons jump their tracks, flames dance right out of their street lamps, and graveyard statues house the mortal bodies of the undead. All will be called upon to fight for control of the city.

Graffiti artist Beth Bradley's latest masterpiece gets her thrown out of school. Betrayed by her best friend and abandoned emotionally by her father, Beth runs away, only to be picked up by a Railwraith and plunged into a world she never knew existed. Filius Viae, aka "Son of the Streets," must somehow keep the increasingly powerful Reach, the Crane King and the face of urban sickness, from killing the City and enslaving its occupants. Beth manages to save Filius's life, and finds that she thrives on the danger. She joins him in his crusade to stop the Crane King from taking over before Filius's mother, the goddess Mater Viae, can return. To complicate matters, Beth's best friend becomes a pawn in Reach's army, and her father also gets caught up in this bizarre war for the heart of London.
Filius shows Beth a world at once gritty and beautiful, full of power and destruction. As Beth herself points out, long before she fully realizes the depth of truth in her statement, "The city's a dangerous place if you don't pay attention." Pollock crafts a highly imaginative tale, the first in a planned trilogy, with a superb cast of human and magical creatures. --Lynn Becker, host of Book Talk, the monthly online discussion of children's books for SCBWI. First appeared in Shelf Awareness for Readers, reprinted with permission.
Discover: A gritty urban fantasy, where the Son of the Streets battles the Crane King for control of the Skyscraper Throne.

Lynn Becker

Wednesday, October 3, 2012

Writing Exercise Wednesday #36

Today's exercise is a bit different. Write a paragraph that is symbolic or representative of a character.

WEW #36

Emblematic – like a snapshot that reveals character.

Tasting the first snowflakes on her tongue, Sarah's amazement turned into a wide grin. White flakes sitting on her soft brown hair, the red flush of life in her cheeks, warding off the cold. Her eye sparkled with the adventure and fun of experiencing something new. She threw a snowball high in the air, letting it smash over her head – giggling without a care in the world. The dampness of the melting snow on her clothes was only that, nothing could damper her spirit.

Tuesday, October 2, 2012

A Successful Workshop!

Yay!  Mary Hershey's workshop on Saturday was wonderful.  All the feedback I've gotten has been so positive and we had a great turn-out too!  I'm so thankful to Alexis, Lynn, Karin, Val and Edie who dove right in and helped set up and tear down.  You are angels and were so helpful.  Just another fantastic thing about our region.  I appreciate everyone who came and participated from near and far, and to Mary, who is an excellent teacher.

I think we all found hours in the day, we didn't know we had, that we can dedicate to our craft.  Inspiration was abundant.  Creativity was floating freely.  And the practical, hands-on exercises were so helpful and valuable.  Below is Mary and me and also the declaration boards everybody made. And I can't get that photo to turn sideways.  Is it just me?!

Thanks again to Mary and to all who enjoyed the workshop.