Tag Archives: Writing

“We were on a break!”

I’ve been a bit neglectful.

See, I started to panic about the progress of a story I was writing. I was wondering if it was going to be long enough; if I had enough plot; if I was only writing things for the sake of filling up the word-count; if I’d taken the right direction or if I was way off course.

Doubts, man, they can really get in your head sometimes.

So I took a break. I stopped staring blankly at the screen, writing half a sentence and then deleting it. Instead, I worked on a couple short stories. Then a couple more. Then I was chatting with someone who’d read The Six Elemental and that gave me an idea for another short story. Then I got distracted by an old novel I’d written a few years ago and sunk WAY too much time on that (long story short: I decided to move from first person POV to third person, and now I’ve basically got to re-write the entire 50,000 words).

But last week I decided to go back to that first story, and you know what? I started to fall in love with it all over again. I was getting new ideas, fixing problems, making motivations clearer… It was like meeting up with an old friend.

When I’m in between edits, I’ll try to take a break from what I’m working on. It gives me a chance to come back to it anew and see things that I might have missed because my face was jammed so close to it. But there are times that I need to take a step back from a project because something isn’t working, and I need the space to realize what the problem is.

It can be tough to step away. It might feel like you failed your work or your characters, or that now you’ll never get it finished. But the best part is that you can always go back to it. And sometimes, when you come back, you might see that you were actually doing a pretty great job.

 

Female Characters in Sci-fi and Fantasy | The Writer’s Block

51ptLF0akDL._SY346_The next Writer’s Block course we’d like to announce as happening during Avalon Expo is ‘Female Characters in Sci-fi and Fantasy,’ which is tentatively scheduled for Saturday August 26th from 1-1:50PM.

This panel will be essential to anyone looking to make sure they craft strong, reliable, and realistically-portrayed female characters into their genre fiction, a must in today’s market! It can be daunting — for writers of any gender — to get this delicate balance correct, partially because many of the traditions of genre writing are rooted in gender-norms that aren’t always reflective of today’s societies. How does one navigate the challenges of writing for today while respecting the greats that paved the way before you? The author-editor team behind As Fierce as Steel Christopher Walsh (the Gold & Steel Saga) and Erin Vance (editor of the From the Rock series) will help guide you through this path as an author… with a third special guest panelist yet-to-be-announced! Continue reading Female Characters in Sci-fi and Fantasy | The Writer’s Block

Fairies, Mermaids, Vampires, and Zombies, OH MY! | The Writer’s Block

The first Writer’s Block course we’d like to announce as happening during Avalon Expo is Fairies, Mermaids, Vampires, and Zombies, OH MY!, which is tentatively scheduled for Saturday August 26th from 4-4:50PM!

This panel will be a fun and informative look at the staples of genre fiction — tried and true literary trends like fairies, mermaids, vampire, and zombies, some of whom have been with us since the oral tradition of storytelling. This panel discussion, aimed at authors, interested parties, and fans of genre stories, will be headed by an all-star cast of authors who have taken these pillars of fantasy and horror and used them in fun, exciting, and innovative ways! The panel will include: Ellen Curtis (editor of Fantasy from the Rock and author of the Infinity series), Charles O’Keefe (the spellbinding author of The Newfoundland Vampire and its sequels), Paul Carberry (author of the Zombies on the Rock series), and Amanda Labonté (author of the mermaid-inspired Call of the Sea series and the Vampire-Werewolf medical drama Supernatural Causes). Continue reading Fairies, Mermaids, Vampires, and Zombies, OH MY! | The Writer’s Block

Dude, Where’s My Character Sheet…? (AKA I am the worst at titles)

I have a very long To-Do List when it comes to writing projects. It’s so long that I’ve had to separate it into sub categories:

  • Ideas to develop further
  • Stories to start writing
  • Plays to start writing
  • Stories/Plays I’ve started writing and need to finish
  • Finished works I need to edit
  • What even is this idea/story/play and where is it going?

And, finally:

  • Reference binders to create

Continue reading Dude, Where’s My Character Sheet…? (AKA I am the worst at titles)

The 48-Hour Writing Slideshow!

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This past weekend was the first of what we think will be many 48-Hour Writing Marathons, sponsored by THE Tutoring Center, Engen Books, and Thrive! A great time was had by all, we raised a lot of money and collectively wrote over 60,000 words, the majority of which (over 10k!) went to Sci-Fi from the Rock author Stacey Oakley.

Lots of authors and writing enthusiasts showed up to write and enjoy a quiet creative space with which to work and bounce ideas off of similarly-motivated individuals. All said an amazing weekend, and we thank Call of the Sea and Supernatural Causes author Amanda Labonté for arranging it!

How (NOT) To Write A Blog Post

Step 1)  Think of a topic and start writing.

Step 2)  Realize half-way through that you don’t like this topic as much as you thought you did.

Step 3)  Think of new topic and start writing.

Step 4)  Wonder if maybe the first topic was better and consider returning to it.

Step 5)  Wonder if maybe there’s a third topic out there that’s even better than the previous two*. Continue reading How (NOT) To Write A Blog Post

Engen Books sponsoring the International Small Island Cultures Conference June 15 – 19 2017!

Engen Books is a proud sponsor of the 2017 International Small Island Cultures Conference happening all this week at Memorial University of Newfoundland.

Nearly 60 presenters will be attending from Newfoundland and Labrador, elsewhere in Canada, Australia, Cayman Islands, France, Hong Kong, Japan, United Kingdom, and the United States. The topics are just as varied, and will include presentations on island identity, narratives, music, legends, mythology, literature, migration, gender, fisheries, tourism, creative industries, geography, health and wellness.

Although tickets for the conference as a whole have been sold, throughout the weekend our table will be open to the public and Engen Books authors Matthew LeDrew, Ellen Curtis, Amanda Labonté and editor Erin Vance will be present to sell books and talk about opportunities for your authors, editors, and smart creatives in the province. Come join us from 8am-5pm June 17, 18, and 19th!

Join the Facebook event here!

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Thank you for having us, @harriscentre! 🙂