Tuesday, June 3, 2008

I'm Baaaaaaaaaaaaaack!!

It's good to be back. I’ve been bouncing back and forth between the beach and Camp Swampy and writing time has been non-existent. Don’t think for one minute I’m complaining about the beach, no way. But it feels real good to be back at my desk again with a real internet connection. We use NetZero dial-up in OC and I can play a whole round of Zuma while a page loads.

I did manage to enter two contests in May and I’m hoping to enter a few more this month and next. While getting my entries ready I decided my descriptions could use some pumping up. You know – the word pictures that make you feel like you’re right there. I went to my collection of writing books for guidance.

I have quite a few books written for writers. Some are good and some not so good. The not so good ones stay on the shelf.

Today I’m going to start a list of the good ones; starting with one that gets pulled off my shelf a lot - “Word Painting” by Rebecca McClanahan. Non-fiction or fiction, this book made my writing better. It’s helped me turn ho-hum sentences into an electrifying paragraph.

McClanahan defines description as “eye, word and story” and she shows you how to move from one to the other - to look around and translate what you see into something that will transport your reader. There’s technical stuff as well - like point of view, active and passive voice, similes and metaphors. Exercises are provided to get your juices flowing. I guarantee you’ll refer back to it again and again.