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Thursday, November 20, 2014

Writing Therapy

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Writing therapy is a useful means to understanding an experience or your behavior during a specific incident.  Anne Frank was right. Spill your thoughts and fears in writing to find the courage to move on. The writing is a light to better understanding. The writing frees you from un-necessary anxiety which allows a better quality of life.

Address Any Experience with Patience     
  • Are you ready to face an issue or problem?
  • Write down all the details?
  • It may take more than one try.
  • Stop after two hours.
  • Facts can be hard to face.
  • Put it aside.
The practice and understanding of behavior brings about change. It takes time. Some work through issues faster than others. It depends on how fast or slow writing therapy goes for you. There's no right or wrong time limit. 
Change Behavior Through Understanding
  • Let a few days pass.
  • Read through your account.
  • Leave out anything?
  • Jot down all the facts.
  • Writing therapy takes longer for some.
  • You determine the time-frame.
  • There is no one to compete with.
Writing therapy is an alternative and not a replacement for traditional heath-care. There are many reasons why a person would work with writing therapy. Or, some people use both writing therapy and traditional health-care in resolving issues and problems.

Anxiety Disappears
  • Express reasons for fear. 
  • Take a deep breath.
  • Jot down the reasons for your uneasiness.
  • Look at the cause (s).
  • Is the cause (s) preventable in the future?
  • Yes, it is.
  • Change begins.
Negative thoughts can hold you back from living, even bring feelings of sadness. Sit down. Take a deep breath. Write about it. It could inspire you to write a book like I did. My first novel was based on a situation that confronted me.   

Negative Thoughts Are Faced
  • Write down all negative thoughts.
  • Why are they of concern for you?
  • Select one thought at a time.
  • Work on what's within your control.
  • Find a solution.
  • Decide on numerous solutions.
  • Pick one.
The results rolls into a quality of life that sky-rockets with new purpose. You're not tied to the former issues and problems. New memories, plans and happiness can be yours. Writing therapy can be applied to any and all issues/problems that come your way.  

Better Quality of Life
  • Doubt is removed.
  • Fear runs away.
  • Living starts.
  • New energy blossoms.
  • Plan making soars.
  • Laughter.
  • A new you.
Final Word

It worked for Anne Frank, me and the list goes on. Writing therapy will help you as well. Practice with it when it's convenient for you. Take it slow in the beginning. Get comfortable with it. People who wrote regularly visited the doctor less, according to James W. Pennebaker, Professor of Psychology.  

 

Sunday, November 9, 2014

The Role of Conflict in Fiction



The role of conflict in fiction is to hold the reader's attention when two opposing forces clash or disagree in their created "World". Conflict is a major element in the presentation of interesting fiction. Conflict is a quarrel or struggle, according to the dictionary. The same concept applies to fiction.
  • When two characters have differing opinions conflict arises.
  • It spirals out of control each time the characters cross paths.
  • There isn't an easy answer.
Simple Conflicts Can Be Spun into Fiction

A person's alarm clock didn't ring-out which causes conflict in everyday life. The idea of being late for work or school can elevate stress levels, push you to rush while driving. You are focused on getting to a specific place and not on driving which leads to accidents. A character in that situation may react as follows.
  • A character may speed up to avoid another reckless character.
  • Take down a license plate number and try to locate the driver.
  • Start a possible revenge campaign.
Creating Character Conflicts

The role of conflict in fiction is to make the conflict more interesting than in real life. Sure, pluck some ideas from real life but stir-in chaos too for successful fiction. Let's take a look at my character Reeva. Reeva met Bill indirectly when the two stood in a grocery store line listening a customer's love-life. The characters weren't familiar with each other.
  • Reeva shook her head but looked forward.
  • Bill coughed and muttered a few words.
  • Reeva didn't acknowledge him.
 A Character's Ego

The idea of Reeva not turning around to remark about Bill's words or say anything was un-heard of to him. Everyone liked Bill who cheated and lied his way into lives. Besides, he wasn't above doing anything to get his way. In that moment, Bill decided to stalk Reeva.  

  • Bill followed Reeva home from the store.
  • The smile on his face was from ear to ear.
  • Bill started going to Reeva's apartment building just to stare.
Conflict  

The stalking of Reeva has Bill thinking that he has a relationship with her. He has gone beyond staring at her. He knows what time she gets up for work as well as when she returns home. Bill has gone into Reeva's apartment to touch her belongings.

  • Reeva noticed clothes in her closet were re-arranged. 
  • Dishes left in the sink washed.
  • She'd awaken to a turned off alarm clock.
 Reeva's Plight

Reeva has told family and friends about what has been happening. She was advised to change her door locks, move and/or call the police. She doubts the police will believe her, and she has no proof. Reeva isn't sleeping well. On this particular night, a noise pulls her to full consciousness.
  • Reeva jumps to her feet.
  • She grabs one of the 5" heels.
  • She moves toward where the noise originated. 
The Noise

Bill had been sneaking into Reeva's apartment for about 2 months without being caught. He has watched her sleep, even stolen through her personal belongings. Still, the 30-year-old couldn't find the courage to address Reeva or introduce himself.  
  • Reeva finds everything in its place.
  • She manages to go back to sleep.
  • She wakes up late and takes the day off.
Reeva Goes to the Store 
 
Reeva washes clothes in the apartment's laundry room. She dusts and cleans. She tires of sitting home and goes out to the store. Or, she just wants to get away from the apartment. She grabs her hand-bag and leaves. Bill has moved into the apartment under Reeva's, knows where she shops and follows her.   

  • She sees Bill at the Less-Everything Store.
  • He pretends to look at an item.
  • Reeva runs in and out of different stores.
Bill Makes His Move 

Bill shows-up at the last store Reeva visits. She recognizes him but isn't sure from where. Reeva backs up as though she's uncomfortable. She grabs her few bags with items and departs. She looked behind her several times. 
  • Bill catches up with Reeva and tries to start a conversation with her.
  • Reeva speaks and moves away from Bill.
  • Reeva wants nothing to do with him.
Moved Furniture

 A few days passed without major incident. Reeva took a nap to get up earlier than usual to bake cookies for the party at work. Bill walks in as she's in the kitchen. Reeva runs to her bedroom with Bill following. He reaches for her. She falls, lands on her shoes and wraps her fingers around a five-inch heel.  
  • He drags her to him as she screams.
  • She tries to wiggle free, kicks.
  • Bill pulls Reeva up with her hair.

The Struggle Continues

Reeva asks what he wants, why and how did he get into her apartment. Bill kicks her and she moans. She slowly raises the high heel shoe and stabs him in the eye. Bill pushes Reeva and she falls to the floor. He howlers as he snatches the shoe from his eye.     
  • He steps on Reeva's body as he palms one eye.
  • Reeva rolls around the floor.
  • Bill stumbles as Reeva stands.
Conclusion 

Bill is dazed, throwing words of ill-repute at Reeva. He searches for the door. Reeva heads for the bedroom to get her cell phone. She dials nine-one-one. She hears a big boom as she talking to the nine-one-one operator. She looks-up to see Bill charging at her.   
  • She drops the cell phone.
  • Reeva hops up and begins throwing bottles of cologne and fingernail polish.   
  • Bill in an effort to avoid them bumps into the wall, head first and falls-over.
The role of conflict in fiction requires a resolution too. It may not be a happy ending, but there must be a resolution. The resolution should come from the characters involved with he disagreement. In other words, it wouldn't be fair to readers or ring true if a neighbor just walking by ran into Reeva's apartment to save her.     













Saturday, November 1, 2014

Fictional Characters



Fictional characters are products of a writer's imagination. The characters are mixed into a make believe setting for entertainment or learning. The character isn't a real person in the sense that he/she really lives, but some fictional characters can seem like actual people. Take a look at how fictional characters become memorable.  
  • Fictional characters must be believable and interesting.
  • Writers must know their characters to tell attention grabbing stories.
  • A major character's trait or quality is the "stuff" that brings him/her to life.  
 The focus of this post is on major characters, because they move the story forward. The choices of main characters are very important. Why? The choices of main characters move secondary characters to action, gossip or more problems. The profile of my character begins. The character hacks into any business computer system at random intervals, in hopes of not being caught.   
  • The character stole his/her way into employment.
  • He/she gained access to the computer system and stole money.
  • This fictional character lived a life-style far beyond his/her means.
A character's profile holds all the information about him/her. The name, his/her mannerisms, flaws and attributes. As with people, my fictional character gets greedy and goes too far. You, too, jot down any feature or trait that you want to dress-up the character with.   
  • What will the character's eye color be?
  • Will he/she have a limp? 
  • The strengths, ambitions or weaknesses of the character?
The above character that stole into his employer's computer system have the weaknesses of hacking and thinking he/she's smarter than most people. This character is always trying to dig information out of people, especially secrets.   
  •  The character looks for information to accounts.
  •  The character tends to brag about how easy it's to steal credit card information.   
  • Social security numbers are a favorite of this character too.
Look-over your character profiles. Is more needed to make a character well rounded? You have too much information which isn't show-casing the character. It's information that can be uttered by his/her actions or secondary characters?
  • Character profiles are sprinkled in.
  • Memorable characters display a certain flaw or trait.
  • Fictional characters grab attention when the flaw or trait is believable.



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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: http://twitter.com/marcellaglenn.



Grave Street House Interview
Authors Show Radio Announces Interview Lineup For Week Of February 16, 2009
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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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