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In which we consider the lesson from

'It/ll be better tomorrow'

(Hubert Selby Jr. Docu)

Essential reading from all #fiction #writers

(and everyone else)

@MattheWrite @SamuelThews @ryanstephens @pathtomanliness

‘Being an artist doesn’t take much, just everything you’ve got.

Which means of course, that as the process is giving you life, it is bringing you closer to death.

But it’s no big deal.

They are one and the same and cannot be avoided or denied...
So when I totally embrace this process,

this life/death,

and abandon myself to it, I transcend all this gibberish and hang out with the gods.

It seems to me that this is worth the price of admission'

Hubert Selby Jr (1928-2004)

The subject of today's #amwriting thread..
Read 33 tweets
//THREAD\\ In which we discuss how to develop your talent as a #writer Part 3

(vital for all #writinglife #amwriting people, but applicable to anyone wishing to improve at a skill)

CC @pathtomanliness @@SamuelSThorp @CraigJamesTFA @samuelthews

H/T to @tellyoursonthis
This is day three of our analysis of our application of the lessons from Daniel Coyle’s work on talent to the discipline of #writing.

(Aspects of his number system are not relevant & will be marked N/A.)

Click link for day 1 & 2

On with the show...…
31/ To Learn A New Move, Exaggerate It

In #writing terms- if you are trying to imbue a scene with certain emotions or details and struggling

Practice by really overdoing it

You will go beyond the edge of what is needed and can use this as a reference point to dial back from
Read 29 tweets
//THREAD\\ In which we discuss how to develop your talent as a #writer Part 2

(vital for all #writinglife #amwriting people, but applicable to anyone wishing to improve at a skill)

CC @pathtomanliness @AJA_cortes @CraigJamesTFA @samuelthews

H/T to @tellyousonthis
This is day two of our analysis of our application of the lessons from Daniel Coyle’s work on talent to the discipline of #writing.

(Aspects of his number system are not relevant & will be marked N/A.)

Click link for day 1

On with the show...…
13/ Find the Sweet Spot

The sweet spot is where you learn best and fastest. It is a zone right on the edge of your ability.

It is one of three zones:

Comfort Zone
Sensation: ease, effortlessness. No struggle.
80%+ of attempts are successful
Read 28 tweets
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In which we discuss how to develop your talent as a #writer
Part 1

(vital for all #writinglife #amwriting people,
but applicable to anyone wishing to improve at a skill)

@futureinmind @ryanstephens
@pathtomanliness @AJA_cortes
#writing is a skill like any other.

Intensive, deliberate practice applied consistently over time is what leads to improvement.

This thread is the first in a series that will apply Daniel Coyle’s extensive work on talent to the discipline of #writing

Read on and learn…
Over the next few days we are going to apply the lessons from

Daniel Coyle’s Little Book of Talent

(A distillation of his groundbreaking The Talent Code)

To the discipline of writing.

Aspects of his number system are not relevant & will be marked N/A

On with the show...
Read 25 tweets

In which we discuss Elmore Leonard’s 10 Rules for writers

(essential for all #writinglife #amwriting people)

Full of #writingtips

CC @ryanstephens @AwareIntegrate @Sociopathlete
Elmore Leonard wrote 45 novels and innumerable short stories

They feature some of the clearest, most propulsive and memorable writing of the 2nd half of the 20th century & beyond

Leonard achieved this by ‘remaining invisible’ on the page.

Here’s the 10 rules he used...
1\ Never open a book with weather.
2\ Avoid prologues.
3\ Never use a verb other than ”said” to carry dialogue.
4\ Never use an adverb to modify the verb ”said.”
5\ Keep your exclamation points under control.
6\ Never use the words ”suddenly” or ”all hell broke loose.”
Read 20 tweets
If you’re a survivor and/or have to be on Twitter for work/community?

May I suggest browsing Twitter by lists or hashtags today?

Here’s one based on The top 200 women of color on Twitter.…
The #cutebaby hashtag is currently not full of nonsense. Just cuteness.Baby clothes and actual babies. Try the photos tab.
Top Women Futurists has some women talking about news but it’s more survivor focused.…
In case you want to be informed but not drowning in negativity.
Read 6 tweets
I was thinking. There's probably a lot of #writers that really want to get involved in the #WritingCommunity , but maybe don't know how or feel a little lost. So I decided to create a little guide on Book Twitter to go over the basics for anyone who needs it! A thread.
Common writing age-group acronyms:
MG = Middle Grade
YA = Young Adult
NA = New Adult (you may see a little conflict over this topic, so be wary. To quickly summarize, it's an age group between YA and A that typically depicts people between 18 - 30)
A = Adult
Common writing terms:
Beta Reader = Someone who reads and gives you feedback on the early drafts of your story. They read bc they enjoy.
CP/Critique Partner = A partnership where you read their story and they read yours for feedback.
1st, 2nd (X)st draft = stages of editing
Read 13 tweets
Strap in, #amquerying and #amwriting Twitter! Time for some primo, uncut #writingtips from an agent.

Something I've been thinking about this week wrt a particular type of #nonfiction book proposal:

The one structured around Examples Of A Phenomenon.

For these, first proposal draft submitted to me is usually structrd such that 1 chapter = 1 example.

Intro: This book seeks to answer the eternal question "what is a sandwich"
Ch 1: Hot dogs
Ch 2: Burritos
Ch 3: Falafel pita
Ch 4. Choco taco

This is a dumb example on purpose, but you see what I mean--it's basically a listicle. The chapters could be anything: Countries Doing Austerity, Stolen Artwork In Museums, 10 X That Changed Y

And the form can work, but it's trickier than it looks because...

Read 14 tweets
In an ordinary town, on an ordinary street, there is an ordinary house. A little older than any other house, but ordinary, nonetheless. If you passed this house you wouldn’t think twice about it. In fact, you wouldn’t think about it all.


Unless she wanted you to think about it.
If she wanted you to see the house, you would. You would want to go to this house and you would want to walk up to the door.

Read 15 tweets
sign up for my email lists (one for #writing, one for #music) & get free mp3s with each update!… #amwriting #LGBTQ #queer #feminism #bands
...the first mp3 will be "Bath Tub Orgasm" - pretty sure it's the only song ever to reference sex toys, the band BTO, and "Hocus Pocus" by Focus. you can listen to it here:… - and get a FREE copy if you sign up for the email list(s)!
...btw I will attempt to perform a *soft vowel sounds* version of "Bath Tub Orgasm" at my August 29th show (w/Scorpio Moon & @PolyPamBand), details in the photo. and here's the link to the FB invite for the show:… #LGBTQ #queer #music #bands
Read 4 tweets
Writing deadline Monday. 😬

I anticipate several stages in the writing process this weekend.

First, pep talk time! #amwriting
But then I'll reread my earlier drafts...
And try to come up with new ideas...
Read 12 tweets
A story written with no plan or script through nano-chapters using the prompts from #vss365 #AmWriting #SunScribbles #SunWIP #SciFi #Satsplat #BadWordSat
#Swim steady and firm”, 15 yr old David told the others. They had been prepared. Their go-bags had the clothes approved by Deplorables and they had a small list of safe-houses in the mainland. All the adults in the island died do make their escape possible. #vss365 #AmWriting
In the mainland, it was safer to marry the kids to each other. They would live with their assigned parents according to the fake identity genealogy. What used to be known as the #cycle of abuse had been normalized. They had to blend in and hide in plain sight. #vss365 #AmWriting
Read 50 tweets
No evidence: the drug wore off, he used a condom, she woke up confused and drove home after the humiliating conversation. They were friendly the day before and she accepted his offer to stay over instead of taking the road so late. No witnesses. The perfect #crime. #FicFri
Overdose survived. She flirted with him until he invited her over again. She denied him nothing in bed, she was #obsequious. “I’ve got a surprise”, she said, and massaged his feet as he sipped the wine she gave him. He died of sepsis a week later. #vss365 #AmWriting
“He committed #treason against the sacred dojo. He disgraced the sport”, they said. “Perhaps. I am still going to the cremation ceremony. We must protect our art and not speak ill of a dead coach”, she said. “If he has a #soul, it will burn in hell”, they said. #FP #FridayKiss
Read 42 tweets
#amwriting. Last night's creative exercise was naming and describing the ethnically-diverse delightfully-steampunky fairy seamstresses from the alternate universe of Paracelsian alchemical gnomes. Mom thinks these are a worthy inspiration for artists and illustrators. /1
These are all minor characters, and there are no big plot spoilers involved. All of the main characters are getting period-accurate Victorian-era clothing, including the capuchin monkeys. /2
While the goblins have chosen to outfit Sandra X (they see dollar signs in doing the costumes for one of the wealthiest women in the multiverse), and the gnomes are dressing up the Baron, the fairies are taking on the challenge of doing the outfits for the capuchins. /3
Read 5 tweets
I thought today we'd have a nice chat about outlines today.

Are they the enemy? Are you making them the enemy? What do they do? What good are they? Why is this the hill people want to die on?

#ontheporch #amwriting #amrevising #writerlife #amwritingromance #amwritingfantasy
For reasons I never learned in school and have only barely begun to learn in life as a professional, people absolutely love labels for their work, and the work of others. It gives them something to debate, it gives them something to cling to or hide from.
Right up there with the show-vs-tell argument is another ancient battlefield with its own misconceptions, assumptions, heaps of bullshit, and utility.

Pantser and plotter.

Yeah, we're going there today.
Read 29 tweets
How to craft a query: a step-by-step guide. The purpose of this thread is to help you create a starting point/query template upon which you can build! And customize! And generally spectacular-ify! Starting in 3...2...1... #querytip #amwriting
Queries should usually open with "Dear Mr./Ms. [agent's last name]". Some agents are okay with "Dear [agent's first name]," but I'd say to default to the former just in case. DO NOT open with "To whom it may concern" or "Dear agent." Don't be overfamiliar or unprofessional.
Remember: query letters are first and foremost a form of professional correspondence. A light, fun tone is totally okay!! But getting too personal/familiar with the agent (ie mentioning her looks, using a "Hey Jen!" salutation, etc.) is creepy.
Read 15 tweets
Okay, so here's a thread for fellow writers who use Arabic names in their WiPs, and some of the common hair-raising mistakes that happen👇🏽
#amwriting #amreading
1. Don't mix up "Eastern"-sounding names:
This is a very common pitfall people. MANY authors mix up, for example, Arabic and Desi names. AKHTAR and KHAN are not Arabic names. Names that have "IBN" in them are not Desi names. Do your research and respect the cultures.
2. Don't mix up "younger" and "older" Arabic names:
Just like you wouldn't name him "Ricky Dumbledore", don't just pick up a "trendy" name from a baby website then toss it in your fantasy novel. Ask a RL Arabic-speaker how the name sounds to them.
Read 8 tweets
I think this morning's thread is a pretty good one. It's one of my favorite "it's important but boy oh boy do people freak out about it" topics.

This morning, I want to talk about "characterization"

#amwriting #ontheporch #amquerying #amrevising #writerslife
CHARACTERIZATION is a big word that carries a lot of weight conceptually, but often gets blown out of proportion when the panic starts.

What is it?

It's making a character feel like a person. Like you could relate to them or find them out in your world pretty easily.
Now if there's a reason why I'm making this sound like it's kinda straightforward, that's because it is kinda straightforward.

Let's dispense with the bullshit of "it's so hard" and go give you some practical tools for it.

Go get some paper and your character.
Read 37 tweets
Here's a guaranteed way for #Writing Contest Jurors to ruin an #emergingwriter's day: tweet to your followers (some of whom have to be thinking of entering the contest you're judging) that you're not a fan of certain kinds of stories, so maybe it's best if they "skip this one..."
...bc being an #emergingwriter isn't hard enough. It isn't hard enough that there already is a magical/frustrating subjectiveness and unpredictability to contests, and that entering one is an act of #faith, yet maybe your surprising story will be the one to enchant the jurors...
...nor is it a challenge to come up with the contest fee, which is usually significant, because you think your story's great and might have a shot, even though it's got #scifi or #specfic elements, because you've been inspired in the past by unexpected and genre-bending work...
Read 12 tweets
I'd like to know if an editor asked Bari Weiss about this paragraph in her own piece that contradicts her entire premise. /1
I understand that these incredibly rich people ALSO want to promote dehumanizing ideology without social consequences. I understand that they want this. /2
The wealthy always want total impunity and to be loved by the people they destroy. /3
Read 8 tweets
There were five
of us in that
that dropped
It was
an everyday day
good weather
high hopes
We all ended our day
at the same time
which was why
five strangers
were in
that elevator
that #Monday
The doors closed
that #Monday
but nothing happened
He jammed the close button
The other grumbled,
some version
"Always when
your trying to
get home"
The doors
the elevator jumped
we froze
a collective intake
then we fell
we braced ourselves
and each other
one screamed
another managed
to hit the alarm
but it keep going
alarm screaming
us screaming
twenty stories
an impossibly
fast drop in
slow motion
three of us
on the floor
the handrail
then it was
Read 5 tweets
As promised, here is a thread entitled “Confessions of a Clueless White-Lady Novelist.” #amwriting #mglit #kidlit
THE BOY FROM TOMORROW is a *very* white book, and I feel uneasy about this. But I didn’t make my characters white by default, and I want to talk about this today. I also want to tell you how I intend to write more diverse books from now on.
My two main characters are Josie and Alec. Josie is 12 years old in 1916; she is the daughter of a popular (and therefore affluent) Spiritualist medium. They live in a New York suburb.
Read 39 tweets
Hi @KMWhite18 et al, I'm a day late, but here it goes...


I'm Remy, just an average, middle-aged gay guy.

I write MM erotic fiction, probably best aligned with the paranormal subgenre.

Book Fave: What Belongs to You


A gay MM mashup of A Christmas Carol (minus the Christmas) with the movie Ghost.

#LGBT #LGBTQ #amwriting #gayerotica

Your MC in 5 objects:

- high school locker room
- old, broken watch
- bottle of Scotch, top-shelf
- tattered, frayed map
- run-down house in a decrepit neighborhood

#LGBT #LBGTQ #amwriting #gayerotica
Read 32 tweets
Writing Myths #3 Writing Portfolios are the magic way into the industry!!
Get a portfolio said the writing panel/advice/speaker in what is the latest throwaway simple advice that instantly builds a career…. So, let’s talk about them.
1)Portfolios are NOT magic. Simply having one doesn't get you a job. Tey are a tool to be used in chasing work and an increasing number of employers ask for them. Having one can be very useful, but just putting some bits of writing in the same place does not = instant career.
2) People tend to read your email first, then your c.v. and then portfolio. Mess up stages 1, or 2 and 3 may well not matter. Always rework your email, c.v. and portfolio for EVERY application. Focus on what matches that job/company.
Read 60 tweets
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