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Saturday, May 24, 2008

Writing Ideas From Letters

Have a question? Agree, disagree, with me?
Leave me your opinion.

Letters hold, countless, sources of ideas
for writing. A written letter, for example,
explains inner thoughts, feelings, and

You sent an e-mail, text message, or
snail-mail to a friend, and your feelings
were reflected? Your have concerns
about the rising, no end in sight, gas

"If the gas prices go up, one penny,
higher, I'll have to dig-out my bike."
You wrote several paragraphs about

Now, think in terns of writing ideas.
How to stir-up your dissatisfaction into
a writing idea.

Here's a suggestion. You haven't
been in the attic for years, since
the bike was crammed in there.

In order to get your bike, a trip
to the attic is necessary.

You approach the door. It refuses
to open. You kicked it, several times.

The moment you turned to walk away,
it creaked open.

"This is weird." You complained loud
enough for a neighbor to hear.

A shadow splashed on the wall. Fear
or something riveted you to the floor.
A hand from...

There isn't a specific method to
peeling ideas from letters. It's
taking situations, places visited,
and developing writing ideas.

Use your creative talent to form
a new situation. Whirl out a work of
fiction or non-fiction unique to you,
your writing ability.

The situation can come from real life,
television, a movie, or book. Change
names, places, what happened, and

If, for instance, a jewelry store was
robbed, your idea would surround a
farm. Certain animals disappeared,
nothing was left behind. How would
you finish it?

"Why can't I write how it happened?"
Several people questioned.

Aside from causing hurt feelings
before people have healed, you
avoid the L-word, litigation.
Imagine reading about an emotional
incident that filled your space. You
had no idea it was in the world's domain.
It touched you emotionally, deeply.
Some of the turmoil spread to friends
and family.

It's not hard to see why you, anyone,
would file a law-suit, and that's the,
main, reason facts are changed.

The point is to see a word, phrase,
problem, that flames your creative

It's bad form, violates moral standards,
to re-write someone else's work, and
call it your own.

Do you have a friend living in a
different culture? The two of you
share letters about each other's

It's interesting to put characters in
a setting new to you. Try writing an
essay on a specific place, food, in
your friend's country. A poem about

There are many ways to weave writing
ideas from a different culture.

Pull-out letters you've had for years.
Read through them. Jot down the
writing ideas as they pop-out at you.
Did you discover something you
missed before? A new understanding?
See the person in a different light? Would
it make a good writing idea?

Look at an idea upside down, inside out,
side-ways, and backwards. Get as much
use as possible out of it.

Writing ideas from letters is another way
to channel creativity. Change actual facts
to avoid a, possible, law-suit, and/or painful
memories for those involved.

Before writing from letters, ask yourself
questions. How would I feel in the same
situation? Have I changed any identifying
references? Will writing this bring a law-suit?

Saturday, May 17, 2008

Fifty Relaxing Ways To Find Writing Ideas

Have a question? Agree, disagree, with me?
Leave me your opinion.

You have tried the game to writing, remarks heard, sayings,
and your creative flow refuses to show itself.

Perhaps, it's time to move away from your computer,
typewriter. As a matter of fact, take your mind off
writing. Do something amusing, fun.

Here are fifty ways to relax while writing ideas
pop-out at you.

1. Play with your bird, cat, or other furry friend.
The act of rubbing your cat's head can spark
an idea. The following is a possible writing

You dozed. Before you fell asleep, you had
a cat in your lap. You were awakened by
your snoring. To your surprise, a lion sat
in your kitchen, and you were no longer in
your house.

"What am I?" You rubbed your eyes.

2. Take a walk. Who did you see?
What did you see? You find your

3. You turned on the television. A scene
from a movie, commercial, ignited your

4. Go to the beach. Soak up material for

5. Someone at the salon called you another
person's name. Hmm. Imagine the avenues
of writing ideas.

6. A name from the past. Take each letter
to make new words. Sam turns into:

--Saturday, Arrives, Mocha

How would you churn out a writing idea
with those words?

Saturday night, Russ charged over to us in
a rage. His skin appeared mocha colored.
He attacked...

7. Pace to a friend's house.

8. Let the sunshine press against your skin.
Any ideas for writing come to mind?

9. Listen/look at people as they enter and leave
the mall.

10. A color that caught your attention.

11. Dress differently than usual. Ideas?

12. Act like a person you know. How would
you write about it?

13. Write about laughter.

14. The funniest moment of your day.

15. The strangest person near you.

16. The lowest point in your life.

17. A person who dislikes you.

18. Write down a problem existing in
the world.

19. The last dollar you spent.

20. Detail an incident.

21. Comment on a blog.

22. Describe your favorite food. Why
is it?

23. Explain emotions. How does sadness

24. What is happening outside the room
you're in?

25. What happened Saturday?

26. Write about a name you like.

27. Write, step by step, instructions on
how to swim.

28. How many pages should an e-book

29. Recall a happy moment with a cousin.

30. Can you sing?

31. Stand on one leg. What comes to mind?

32. Why use a fork?

33. Is the sun up? Describe it.

34. Rain does what?

35. Snow brings about?

36. To study?

37. If you won a million dollars, what
would you do first?

38. Crying clears the...

39. Birds fill the air with...

40. My life is...

41. I'm aiming for the stars.

42. The stimulus rebate.

43. No one writes.

44. Is there a writer in you?

45. How many words do you write daily?

46. Peace is...

47. Coffee is good for...

48. A new car...

49. I want a_________.

50. When I reach the writing level of ______.

Monday, May 12, 2008

How To Write Attention Grabbing Fiction

Have a question? Agree, disagree, with me?
Leave me your opinion.

There exists more than one factor to writing interesting
fiction. Fiction leans toward the imaginary, invented,
made-up, and inspired. Of course, writers want to
entertain, and invoke the reader's emotions. Hopefully,
the reader becomes involved, and puts the story
down after the last page has been read.

A key to writing fiction well, in my opinion, is plenty
of suspense.

Suspense is indecision, doubt, knowing something
is going to happen, awaiting, and anxiety.

It doesn't matter if you're writing a mystery,
romance, or science fiction. Suspense pulls the
reader in the story. Begin suspense with
paragraph one.

Start the story in the middle of a crisis, problem.
This is where the reader's attention is grabbed.
He/she has something to be concerned about,
wants to know how a character(s) will resolve the
issue. Perhaps, the reader identifies with a
character, knows someone in a similar situation,
is cheering for the protagonist, and/or is gripped
by the plot.

Plot is the problem in the story, and how it unfolds.

The pages of a story should have something new,
exciting, or, even, a threat of an approaching doom.

"Do you ever pause?" Someone asked.

Yes, there are brief pauses. The idea is to keep
the reader buried in suspense.

Take a look at my example.

I opened the front door, heard my cousin

"Pete!" I shouted. "What's goin' on?"

"Call..." He fell on the cement steps before

The strange man started toward me...


How would you have started the first
sentence? Could it be laced with more
suspense? Would you continue to read
the story?

In short fiction, there's a concern for space,
word count. Publishers adhere to a
specific number of words, and so should

One problem is enough for short fiction.
In longer fiction, more than one issue is

Make every word earn its place. Every,
suspenseful, word should move the story
forward, not just take up space. Words
holding up valuable space must be

It's been my practice to keep cut lines,
paragraphs. They can be re-worked,
placed somewhere else, spark a new
idea, and a tool against writer's block.

The more you write, the easier it will be
to include that major factor, suspense.

Take a look at the following.

"'Member our dare?" Barb asked.

"Don't think it's a good idea." Tish
dropped her hand.

"Ya shoulda thought 'bout that before
sayin' crap 'bout bein' as tough as me."

"Was a joke."

"Be there, or..."

"You'll harass me?" Tish interrupted Barb.

"Tell everyone ya're a punk.

"I'll be there."

Do you get the feeling the dare isn't something
positive, upbeat? Could be dangerous? Are
you curious about it? Are you pulled in the story?

Fiction is written well when its smeared with
suspense, on practically every page. A grammatically
correct story is boring without suspense. Suspense
is the, must include, factor a story can't do without.

Sunday, May 4, 2008

How To Stop Writer's Block Twelve Ways

Have a question? Agree, disagree, with me?
Leave me your opinion.

You get writer's block when you're tired, stressed,
in a hurry, must meet a dead-line, or want your
creative flow to, just, hic-cup. Don't panic. Sit back.
Take a few deep breaths to relax before starting.

"My mind is full of ideas." I heard a friend say.
"Can't sleep, might forget them.

I explained the twelve ways to stop sleepless
nights, and drag writer's block to the curb.
I, specifically, recommended number one to

1. A mind full of writing ideas require jotting
down. Or, use a tape recorder to capture

2. Start writing about anything, just to extract
your creative flow. Ideas will form as you
continue to write.

3. Pick any subject to write about. Use an
interesting angle. An angle that's new for
you to write about. It will test, inspire,

4. Keep a journal. Refer to it on the days
when writer's block has your mind blank.

"Suppose, I'm stressed and can't write?" You
sipped coffee.

5. Write down what's bothering you. Pluck-out
writing ideas. Use stress as a spring-board
to writing.

6. Look around the room you're sitting in.
The first object that your eyes see, write
about it.

"What do you mean?" Someone asked.

I, first, saw a pencil. I'd use the word in
an essay, for example. A possible angle:
How many pencils are used by six-year-olds, in
a week. My target would be the neighborhood
grade school.

Or, the writing idea points to a disappearing
pencil. It was a gift passed down for four
generations. Why did it disappear? Is it
connected to murder? Everyone who comes
in contact with it gets sick or dies.

7. Pick a phrase to write about. A phrase
is more than two words. The phrase can
be a remark made by your co-worker, news
head-line, quotation, etc.

8. Choose two colors to write about. Your
favorite color, and a color that looks bad
on you.

9. Write about the, first, moving person,
animal, to cross your path. You're in a
room alone, and there's no one or
animal to disturb you? Look out the
window. Write about whomever, whatever,
you see. A bird? Cat? Human? Car?

10. Write about the funniest moment so far in
your life.

11. Scribble down thoughts on the, most
informative, article or non-fiction
book you've read. How did it help you?
Why was it one of the better books, article?

12. Are you a writer? Why are you a writer?
Show what a writer does.

Writer's block is stopped by writing through
it. The secret to stopping writer's block is
to gather-up ideas around you, from a journal,
and/or write about something that happened
to you. The next step is to turn those ideas
into master-pieces.

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About Me

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Marcella Glenn is a freelance writer who has written news reports, worked in an office, reviewed movies, published a newsletter and had her novel, "Grave Street House," published. She, too, is a Writing Consultant as well as a Personal Coach.

She has tried to go down some of life's other paths. A few paths were a mail-order business, the publishing of a pen-pal newsletter and selling plastic-ware. Only, she was back writing before realizing what she was doing.

She'd critique titles, paragraphs, news reports, that no one submitted to her. She'd stop herself, eventually. Marcella Glenn seemed to be enjoying the act of writing. This is how she knew writing was more than a hobby.

Let it be a lesson in your life too. Is writing calling your name? Or, acting? Teaching? Are you interested in engineering? Have the courage to go for your dreams. Simply, believe in yourself.

Meet Marcella Glenn on Twitter:

Grave Street House Interview
Authors Show Radio Announces Interview Lineup For Week Of February 16, 2009
Internet Radio features five new authors each week
February 16, 2009
Every week, The Authors Show, radio version features interviews with up and coming authors from around the world. This week The Authors Show radio features Marcella Glenn, author of  'Grave Street House'.

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