Thursday, September 29, 2016

11: The Scene that Never Was

The Scene that Never Was -

The difference between storytelling and writing.

 Welcome to's Creative Writing Podcast. 

I was talking with Tara this week about my Coma: The Cataclysm project and today's episode stemmed from that conversation.

Is it possible to plan a scene so long that you forget you never actually wrote it? Yes. I can confirm that this is a distinct possibility!

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Podcast News

I realized that my podcast episode file sizes were pretty large and I'm experimenting with adjusting the settings to get things just right. Big files means more hosting costs and a pain for you. So I'm going to be working on that in the future. Also. just a heads up, there probably won't be an official podcast next week. We're going on a little trip and it may be difficult to record and upload something.

Also, stay tuned for this week's special, funny creative writing prompts intro. I don't think this one will be permanent, but it was a lot of fun to throw together and I challenge you to listen to it without smiling.

Writing Updates

I've had to make some tough decisions with my writing lately. Yeah?

One of the big ones came with the realization, and finally admitting to myself, that Chlorophyllium 9 doesn't make for a very searchable title. And it's really hard to get the type settings to look good on my cover. So, going forward, I think I'm settling on the new title: Distant Worlds. While this move ditches the novelty of showcasing the name of the mineral I invented, it makes a lot more sense when you consider how readers will find and otherwise look for the novella.

I had originally intended that title to be for one of the novels in the series, but it really does capture the essence of what Chlorophyllium accomplishes as a story. It's okay! I have plenty of time to  come up with a replacement title for future books as I move forward.

I'm still working on Final Hope and making progress. It isn't coming as fast as I would like, but every day I sit down and write and get my word count higher, it's a win.

Storytelling vs. Writing

How much time do you spend in the planning phase of creating your story? Are you like me, in that sometimes it seems like you spend far more time planning and building than you do actually writing?

This can be a significant problem for some writers. Myself included. But, I'm climbing that mountain every single day. Instead of just dreaming about writing, I'm actually doing it. Look, there are a lot of resources out there. A lot of products claim to have all the answers, but it's a never-ending road, that one. Sometimes I think how-to writing books and courses tend to feed into themselves, imparting a fear of failure in many cases when they should be filling you with hope.

Make sure you're not just crafting a story, if your dream is to be a writer, stop planning and start doing. Start writing and let that be the medium you use to tell your story. I'm doing it. It goes one step at a time. And guess what? You can do it too.

Stop buying into products that promise to make you into a writer. You've got to actually sit down and do it. If you want to read something, read a book you love or even one you hate. What did the author do well? More-so, how did they tell the story?

The Prologue

This once scene in particular, the one I thought I wrote, will be making its debut on my blog in the next couple of days. You can check it out here:

The scene has changed a bit since I first imagined it. Much of it is the same, but I did choose to break sooner. I've learned how to be a better storyteller since then, and part of that is knowing where to cut things to leave both an emotional impact and a desire to read more.

I'm not about to say I've done it perfectly, but I think it's pretty good and it's a heck of a lot better than not being written at all. Right?

The Sign-Off

Keep moving forward, folks! You can do this! Don't let your scenes or chapters be the ones that never were.

And now, for this week's writing prompts!

What you'll find below is a series of creative writing prompts to help get you through your week. There are no rules as to how you should use them, but I recommend taking your muse's hand; wherever she may lead you.

Whether you find yourself writing a descriptive scene or dialogue, a poem or prose, or anything else (even if it seems entirely unrelated to the prompt), you have won. Happy writing, and may you find success in hunting your muse this week. 

1. Call of the Water

Ever since you were a small child, you’ve heard a song that no one else seemed to hear every time you were near a large body of water. Now that you’re grown , you can’t seem to shrug the call of the ocean. You feel driven to the shoreline and some powerful force compels you to step out into the oncoming waves.

2. A Sky of Flames

The world is burning. At night, the sky glows orange from the wildfires. The mid-day sun is oft obscured by the dark tendrils of smoke. Sunsets blaze red in the west, leaving an echo of the days’ destruction in the last vestiges of light before the bonfire that consumes the night.

3. Colony

Chosen as a member of the first planetary colony, outside of Earth, you have started the voyage to what will be your new home. The trip is long and, once the initial experience and excitement wears off, rather boring. But it’s the perfect time to get to know your new colony-mates.

4. The Broken Promise

You always said you’d never lie to those you love, but after recent events you are starting to rethink that promise. Some things are better left unsaid. How could you expect them to understand? The things you’ve seen would be too much for most and it’s a burden you can’t have them bear.

5. Needle and Haystack

In true fairytale fashion, you’ve been set to an impossible task. If you succeed, riches and opportunity beyond imagination. If you fail? Well, let’s just say that would be significantly less pleasant. You have twenty-four hours to beat the odds or pay the price. Will you rise to the challenge, find an unexpected loophole, or suffer the consequences of failure?

6. The Three Visitors

Throughout the course of the night, you’re visited by three apparitions. But this is no Christmas story. These ghosts have other intentions, and you are the one person who can help them realize their schemes. Hold onto your hat, throw on your slippers, and prepare yourself for an spectral, out-of-this-world adventure that no one saw coming.

7. The Corporate Scheme

Someone high up in the food chain at work has been making waves, and it’s no secret that they’re pulling any string they can find to get their friends in high places. All around you people are talking about leaving the company in an effort to get out of the toxic environment. You don’t know if it was all the promises this person made when they first arrived or what. Surely, other executives have done the same in the past and most folks just looked the other way. As fate would have it, you find yourself in the hot seat. You’ve somehow managed to come across a thread of information that will undo this person’s entire career. You feel morally obligated to bring it to light, yet you’re not sure you want to be the one who faces the consequences of doing so.

I hope you've enjoyed this week's episode and creative writing prompts.

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