Category: Rewrite

Zen in the Art of Writing

From Zen in the Art of Writing—Ray Bradbury The time will come when your characters will write your stories for you, when your emotions, free of literary cant and commercial bias, will blast the page and tell the truth. Remember: Plot is no more than footprints left in the snow after your characters have run by on their way to incredible destinations. Plot is observed after the fact rather than before. It cannot precede action. It is the chart that remains when an action is through. That is all plot ever should be. It is human desire let run, running, and reaching a goal. It cannot be mechanical. It can only be dynamic. So, stand aside, forget targets, let the characters, your fingers, body, blood, and heart do. Share this:TweetShare on TumblrEmailLike this:Like...

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How to Develop the Memoir Moment

© 2010 by Jack Remick and Robert J. Ray Think of the memoir as a series of frozen moments in the past that you free with your writing. The structure of the moment can be seen as a theme with variations in much the same way a jazz musician or a classical composer works theme and variations. Think of the people in your memoir as inhabitants of a secret world each on hiding behind a mask that needs to be lifted. The problem of memory and mind is chaos. Memory doesn’t work in a straight line but seems to come from all around you. One thought or memory trains into another and pretty soon you’ve got a whole cloud of feelings surrounding you. How do you get some control of the chaos of memory? You use the Memoir Moment. Musical in nature, deep in meaning, loaded with subtext, the memoir moment contains a delicious, sometimes hilarious, often painful memory that has etched itself in your unconscious To get to the memoir moment, you follow your mind and your memory by writing about Firsts and Lasts — the first time I bled, the last time I kissed… Firsts and  Lasts are Thresholds that you and the inhabitants of your memoir cross  on the life journey. The first time initiates, the last time severs with pain or memory or nostalgia. To...

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Posts and Comments, Questions and Answers

Posts and Comments. Q: My writing group says my story lacks tension. What can I do? A: Tension comes from dramatic conflict. Conflict comes from intense competition for a resource base – the protagonist wants something; the antagonist blocks the way. For more tension, ratchet up the evil in your antagonist. See Character Profile in The Weekend Novelist. In the blog, see motive. If you’re eager to write, use this startline: My name is… I am the killer….I made my first kill at the age of ….. in a town called…… I discovered I liked killing because…. Q: Everyone says I’m a great writer, but my story flops around. They say it goes out of focus, then comes back. How can I fix this? A: You need to create a list of scenes, starting with your opening scene – Page One and After – stretching through the book to the climax. To create a helpful scene list, you need to name the scenes. See scenes and scene work in The Weekend Novelist, The Weekend Novelist Writes a Mystery, and The Weekend Novelist Rewrites the Novel. See modular scenes in this blog. When your scene list is done, lock down your key scenes: Page One and After, Plot Point One. Midpoint, Plot Point Two, Climax, Ending, and First Encounter. Q. I’ve started five novels. All my friends really love the...

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Copyright & Excerpts

©2010-2017 Jack Remick, Robert J. Ray. All rights Reserved. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material, including text and images, without express and written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Short excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Jack Remick and Robert J. Ray and "Bob and Jacks Writing Blog" with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.