Answering a Few Questions.

In Which GeGi plagiarizes ver own email to bring you a post.

Greetings, friendly octopi!

I (GeGi), have been struggling to find inspiration for this week’s topic. It’s not Writing’s fault; my life has been quite full with Other Things lately, and I’ve been letting the Other Things have all of my attention. Thus, I was quite pleased when someone sent me an email requesting the following writing advice:

So what’s the usual tips to achieve writing productivity?  Do you have some web sites or something?  How to find time to write, how not to over edit, etc.  I suppose I just Google it, but I figure you have better ideas. 

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image description: a blurred black keyboard with the enter key in red, reading “help”

Obviously, the logical course of action was to shamelessly steal much of what I wrote in answer, and then expand on it for the blog. Thank you, dear sender of the email, for saving me from having to think up another topic.

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Writing as revolution

In Which endever* discusses ways and mindsets with which an Evil Author can write Social Justice.

Hello again! Last week I (endever*) wrote about the fine lines of being Evil – specifically, the importance of differentiating between being evil towards your characters versus having an evil impact on the real world. Today I’d like to work forward from that discussion of how oppressions can show up in our writing to the broader idea of making our writing a resistance practice/part of the revolution/a small way of changing the world.

octopus hugging earth
Image description: illustrated octopus hugs planet earth

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Thoughts on How to Start a New Project.

In Which GeGi continues the metaphor of Writing As Gardening, this time in relation to the genesis of a new project.

Greetings, dear octopi!

In a continuation of last week’s metaphor, I, GeGi, will attempt to map out how you can guide the garden of your mind from bare earth to fruitful plant.  In other words, how to go from vague idea to an actual project.

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image description: photo of terrariums featuring small green ground-cover plants with reddish octopus heads and tentacles emerging from beneath.

Continue reading “Thoughts on How to Start a New Project.”

What happens When the Words Stop.

In Which GeGi addresses an issue all writers have eventually encountered.

Greetings, fellow octopi! This is GeGi hosting today.

There are times in a writer’s life when the words stop. The flow seems to dry up; you struggle to craft even the simplest sentences. Inspiration and creative energy feel like things of the past, and you wonder if you’ll ever write again.

I do, at least. The rhythm of my writing is very cyclical — abundance is followed by drought followed by fresh abundance, and on, and on, and on. When I was younger this worried me. Each time I took an involuntary break from writing, I felt like it was the final time. The well had run dry, and I wasn’t a real writer after all.  Then the words would come rushing back, and I would be consumed by writing again, trying to ignore everything else so I could spend hours upon hours in the fictional worlds of my own creation. I would tell myself that this time it had to be real, that it would last. Which, of course, it never did.

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Image description: photo of an octopus, one tentacle upraised and coiled at the end. Caption reads “curse you” with extra u’s at the end, and three exclamation marks.

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Extracurricular mediums

In Which endever* shares specific ideas about developing your world and characters.

GeGi wrote beautifully last week about the importance of developing a clear vision of the world you’re building in your fiction, even if all the details don’t directly end up in your finished piece. Today I’d like to share some of my techniques for worldbuilding as well as characterbuilding – that is, all the ways I novel when I’m not actually writing. The idea is to develop a clear vision of your characters, including their backstory, and of the universe they occupy and its history. The better you know your characters and the situation you’ve placed them in, the easier it’s going to be to let them make decisions that make sense (rather than jerking them around in service of your plot).

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