Be the writer YOU want to be

Unfortunately we live in a world ruled by expectations. By age one we are expected to be talking. By first grade we have to be reading. By twenty we have to be studying hard at college or join the military or have some other career path set before us. By early twenties (late twenties at latest) we must have our lives figured out and working diligently to make it happen. But rarely do these expectations actually ever happen the way other people think they should, or even we think they should. Life likes to throw curve balls, or worse, we just don’t dance to the beat of the what-is-expected drum.

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Third Draft Success!

I finally did it! After writing and rewriting and editing, I finally finished the third draft of my novel, and it only took seven long months to do it! lol… Honestly, this was the hardest draft yet, because I had to make some difficult choices that I’ve been ignoring for far too long and change a whole heaping lot of the original story. But I am glad I did, because as I rewrote the ending scene last night at about midnight, I realized how perfect it all flows now. Sure, there are a lot of little things that need fixing, some minor holes that need to be filled, and other things that I rushed to get through or overlooked entirely just so I could fix the big important stuff. But it sings to me now and even though I have loved this story from the moment I conceived it, it’s never sung to me like this. And it’s an incredible feeling.

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My Writing Process (Blog Tour)

I was recently invited to be involved in a writing blog tour to discuss my writing process. Thanks Denise for inviting me! You can check out her blog and her responses here. I am supposed to pass this torch on to other bloggers, but dropped the ball (because I’ve been so busy working on my novel) and didn’t send out my invitations to other bloggers in time for this to post. So I thought I would open this up to any of my readers who would like to keep the flame going. If you would like to answer these questions and post on your blog (on next Monday), feel free to do so. Just post in the comments below or use my contact page to email your blog link to me, so I can post your link on this post.

So let’s get started with these questions…

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Heating up the Summer Giveaway

Heating_Up_The_Summer1_webTired of winter? How about a chance to win some steamy stories to warm you up?

Here are six steamy stories in one package to make you sizzle!

Heating up the Summer Anthology Description

Watch Over Me: Kaylie’s drop-dead sexy neighbor, Evan, that she’s been fantasizing about for months asks her out. But things really heat up when she watches him across the way do a seductive strip tease in his apartment. Sometime voyeurism can be fun!

Latin Heat: Broken-hearted Simone Blackburn escapes to a beautiful Caribbean paradise to forget her cheating ex-husband and finds herself face-to-face with the one thing she hoped to avoid: an available, sexy, and handsome man.

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Short Story: Shadow

Here is a flash story I wrote from a writing challenge my critique group took part in a while back. I decided to dust it off and post it. This story was written from the writing prompt…You hear a baby crying, but you know you are alone… I didn’t stick strictly with the prompt as you will see when reading the story, but it got the wheels in my head turning and this is what I ended up with. Enjoy!

Shadow

By: Cynthia Dawn Griffin

The wail came from everywhere and nowhere at once. The sound jerked me awake from a dead sleep. My blood froze as I looked about my darkened bedroom. The chilling noise came again, and it propelled me into action despite the fear twisting in my gut. I fumbled for the light by the bed, but my trembling hands refused to cooperate with the switch. I stumbled from my bed.

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What is Science Fiction Fantasy?

star warsAbout a year and a half ago, I started out on an incredible journey writing a science fiction novel. As the story unfolded in my head and onto paper, I realized I did not want to write a strictly science fiction story, but felt the pull to make it into something more. I wanted to add elements of fantasy in the tale. In doing that, my novel transcended from straight up science fiction to a lesser known genre called science fiction fantasy.

This sub-genre is not well defined, and some believe it has an element of actual fantasy like Tolkien’s Lord of the Kings complete with dwarfs, elves, and talking trees. Some science fiction fantasy stories might have these things, but that’s not the kind of fantasy I’m talking about here. The sort of fantasy I’m referring to can seem “magical” to some because there is no satisfactory explanation to call it anything else.

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Stages of Writing: Freestyle Writing vs. Rewriting vs. Editing

Writing-StagesThe first thing to learn in the writing journey is that not all writing is the same. There are several types or stages of writing, and each of them requires a certain mindset and set of skills to accomplish them. And just because you’re good at one type of writing, doesn’t make you good at the other types, and making the transitions to each can be difficult to accomplish or there might be difficulty in determining when to make the transition.

Freestyle Writing
This is the kind of writing most people assume writers do (but in reality it’s just the first step in a larger process). It’s the fun stuff. The part were you let everything just explode out of your head and onto the page. It’s an everything goes kind of thing where no idea is a bad idea and anything can happen. It can be a most uplifting experience, especially if you’ve done a lot of thinking about the story before ever placing pen to paper. If you’ve been there, you know what I mean. It’s where that thing called a writer’s high happens, and it’s a great place to be!

This writing stage doesn’t require a whole lot of special knowledge. Just an idea of what makes a good story, what makes compelling characters, and how to write a beginning, middle and end of a story. Much of this can be learned simply by being an avid reader, or taking some writing workshops on story structure and character development.

Rewriting
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