I sit down at the table, glancing slightly nervously at the endless queue of hundred – no, thousand in front of me. I stretch my fingers, take out my pen and nod. The first person is let forth.

“Who shall I sign that for?” I ask.

“My name’s Marie”, she says, handing over the book – my book. “I just wanted to say that I’m a huge fan of yours, your books made me start writing!”

We all do it and we all enjoy it, be it daydreaming in class or just brainstorming on the bus. We see ourselves as stars, instant successes, imagine interviews and book signings, planning out exactly what we’re going to say. This is the day to let it all out: write the ultimate wish-fulfillment story. Bigger than life, filled with masses of fans, thousands of bestsellers, huge blogs, millions of jobs and yet tons of free time, spa trips, luxury hotels, fine meals and great company… Photo by Bill Longshore.

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A Family of Hunters

(Left to right:) Meggie (mother), Paul (father), Christopher, Eloise and Iris Clark.

They look, speak and act like a perfectly normal, happy family.

They’ve lived in over 10 states and 27 different towns and cities during the last five years.

They are hunted by vampires.

After a very brief period of illness I’m back with the usual phrase: Go and get writing! It can be a monologue, an action piece, a summary, a poem, a short story, flash fiction, a novel, a character profile, a mind map, a – you get the idea. Photo by Tom Clare.

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Novel Writing: Planning (part 2a)

Last time we touched the surface of developing your idea further: this time we’ll be going deeper into plot development by talking about outlines. So how do you use your brainstormed scenes and characters and make a solid, polished plot? Join me after the cut for an illustrated guide on outlining!

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Alternate Evolution

“Is the web done yet?” Sher asked, peering over Arash’s shoulder.

“In a minute”, he snapped, frowning in concentration. “Only the best for our queen.”

“Best indeed – don’t screw it up. You remember what happened last time… Although those eggs did provide a mighty feast.”

Arash seemed to pale, although Sher couldn’t know for sure.

What if mammals hadn’t become the dominant animal type on this planet? What if lizards hadn’t taken that title either? What if Earth’s oxygen levels had remained high, high enough to upkeep a vast amount of huge arthropods? What if they, instead of us, had risen to full power?

This is just one version of the story: there are hundreds more. What if birds had become sentient? What if we humans had developed to live underwater – what if no continents would ever have been formed? Go on, write about this! Alternate evolution: how things could’ve been. Picture from WoWWiki.

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That Person

She’s fine. I mean, she’s alright. I still like Sarah more though, why can’t she stay?

You ever had that one person in your life that you can’t hate, but… you really can’t like either? Maybe she’s just blah in some way. Perhaps she’s trying to take a place in your life (as your teacher, boss, co-worker…) that you just don’t see her in? Taking a place of another, in your opinion better, person? It’s not her fault, and you see that, but you can’t help the fact that you feel disappointed and a little bit bitter about the whole situation. Write about this feeling! You can use the POV of the intruder or the one that has these emotions. Photo by glodis2.

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