Tag Archives: Life

Do Your Characters Talk too Much? When to Use Indirect Dialogue…

Chris The Story Reading Ape's Blog

by Anne R. Allen

I’ve been looking over some of my much-rejected early work and discovered my old stories have way too much dialogue. This is something I see in a lot of newbie fiction.

I remember a guy who came into the bookstore where I worked in the mid-1990’s, schlepping a huge carton of copies of his self-published novel. We agreed to give him a read, but I couldn’t get past chapter six. By then I still had no idea what the novel was about. Four guys were sitting in various places talking about relationships and politics. The book was nothing but dialogue. It read like a script that didn’t even have stage directions.

His characters needed to shut up already and get on with the story. If there was one. So did mine.

And yet, in all the standard how-to-write books, we’re urged to write: “More scenes! More…

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The time has come…

Have We Had Help?


…to end the ridiculous professional versus amateur writer argument!!

For a few days several months ago various highly inflammatory articles appeared across the internet voicing differing opinions regarding independent writers, claiming that they were not professional in their approach – whatever that is supposed to mean.

Certain commentators delivered vitriolic attacks accusing independent writers of being nothing more than an editor’s worst nightmare and a monumental pain to deal with. When they were quite rightly challenged for making such statements, they immediately went on the offensive, under the illusion that attack is always the best form of defence when you’ve been caught out! By reacting in the way they did, they instantly lost the argument. Apart from venting their spleen, what was the point? I suspected when I read the articles at the time that the attackers were probably jealous of the sales success of some independent writers. Of course…

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Darkness Defines the Light – Guest Post by, Tina Frisco…

Chris The Story Reading Ape's Blog

Image courtesy of Ningren

Without darkness, light would have no definition. Without evil, good would never be challenged to expand. Without definition and challenge, there would be no growth. Without growth, our spirits would not evolve.

Many indigenous peoples say the Earth is a schoolhouse and we incarnate here in order to learn. This makes sense only if we view the spirit as separate from the corporeal. If we do, then advancing to higher consciousness and an elevated spiritual plane holds great promise for human transcendence.

The Earth is a bipolar planet. Since all matter converts to energy, we can infer that our lessons will be of a bipolar nature. Darkness and evil are not, in and of themselves, our enemies. When we set up something as the enemy, we constrict and lose all prospect of growth. When we see adversity as our ally, our growth potential expands and accelerates.

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Let Us Keep Our Hearts Open – Guest Post by, Tina Frisco…

Chris The Story Reading Ape's Blog

Figure 1 Courtesy of Lucie Stastkova

It is easy to close our hearts; not so easy to keep them open. Or so it seems …

When we experience emotional pain, a common human response is fight or flight. Become angry or shut down. Neither of these reactions solves anything, and both can cause serious health problems if sustained over time.

Fear is the culprit in any action or reaction that is not love-based. It obscures awareness and keeps us ignorant of its deleterious effects. It constricts our bodies, imprisons our minds, catapults our emotions, and darkens our spirits. When trapped in fear, it is impossible to keep our hearts open.

If we close our hearts to one, we close them to all. Open is open and closed is closed. At one time, this was a difficult concept for me to get my head around. I thought I could open and…

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Keep Your Kids Reading! Reading is a Good Thing!

reading gragh


November 17, 2017 · 2:36 pm

Why Your Favorite Author Probably Can’t Give You a Free Book

Bethany House Fiction

It’s a dilemma that many in my circles are puzzling over: in today’s world, authors have nearly limitless creativity and research sources and opportunities to get their stories out to a wider audience…but fewer people are willing to pay for them.

I’m an administrator for a few dozen authors’ Facebook pages, and from time to time I glimpse notifications of another message with the same question, phrased in a few different ways: “Why is your book (or ebook) so expensive?”

If you’ve ever wondered that yourself—and I don’t blame you, because I did too before I started working in publishing—here are a few thoughts that authors probably want to say but feel they can’t, because it seems a little too direct, a little too self-serving (even though it really isn’t).

It’s the same reason restaurant owners can’t give you a free dinner: because that’s how they make a living. Sure…

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Negative Self-Judgment – Guest post by, Tina Frisco…

Chris The Story Reading Ape's Blog

Image courtesy of Ningren

The people we tend to be hardest on are ourselves. Some folks are an exception to this, but it seems to be true for most of us.

While I was in Pennsylvania helping care for my mother, I fell into judging myself… harshly… a lot.

I should be doing more. I should move back to Pennsylvania in order to help my sisters meet my mother’s needs. I should not feel guilty that my nephew gave up his bed for me and is sleeping on the couch for five weeks. I should not be afraid to drive a (huge) van for the first time in my life, down unfamiliar winding roads, and over freeways and across bridges under construction. I should be able to stick with my dietary regimen and exercise program, even though I am constantly on the go and thoroughly exhausted.

How often do we…

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