Showing posts with label Non-Fiction. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Non-Fiction. Show all posts

Saturday, April 25, 2020

Decriptive Writing With Specificity

We strengthen all of our writing by using descriptive details: even more so with specificity.

Our goal is to grow our observation skills, both specific and general. Being observant is essential for all writers; it creates relatable writing and gives the texture of reality. So, in this we are building our descriptive muscles and research skills.

To build up our descriptive writing:
  • We use detail to express areas of importance; big picture, specific purpose, or differentiation,
  • We use words that are vibrant, essential, and focused,
  • We use metaphors, similes, and comparisons to tell the story,
  • We use sense words and articulate a picture,
  • We stay on point and write economically

Research is involved for our fiction or non-fiction projects.
Here are a few points to consider:

  • Is the setting a place you have traveled or lived? Is it from a life experience? If so, a lot of your work is done, it’s relatable because you’ve been there. You know the landscape, the business environment, the social makeup.
  • Consider writing in real time, describing the scene in such a way to bring your reader along, present for the journey. Describe what you see from where you are to develop the scene.
  • What’s the time-period, which century? Descriptions will vary according to the time; i.e. street lighting by gas lamps or bulbs, roadway construction, metropolis or rural location, east or west coastline, piper-cubs or jet stream travel.
  • Be willing to adjust your project plan as you go. Is it reachable or does it need revision?

Need ideas?
  • Use life experiences and pull short sections to launch your story,
  • Use one word prompts to free write and spark ideas,
  • Where is your favorite place? Is it a beach town, or mountain village? Start there and chose the best memory or daydream,
  • Books like “Where Do You Get Your Ideas” by Fred White, published by Writer’s Digest, could be just the thing to help launch your project.

Previous Post links in this series—Descriptive Writing for Fiction and Non-Fiction:
1)    Make it Personable & Tangible: https://www.writersonthemove.com/2020/02/descriptive-writing-for-fiction-and-non.html
2)    Make it Realistic: https://www.writersonthemove.com/2020/03/descriptive-writing-make-it-realistic.html


Deborah Lyn Stanley is an author of Creative Non-Fiction. She writes articles, essays and stories. She is passionate about caring for the mentally impaired through creative arts.
Visit her writer’s website at: https://deborahlynwriter.com/
Visit her caregiver’s website and read the Mom & Me memoir at: https://deborahlyncaregiver.com/
Facebook: Deborah Lyn Stanley, Writer    https://www.facebook.com/deborahlynwriter/?modal=admin_todo_tour



Share on LinkedIn
And more via the icon bar below:

Thursday, September 7, 2017

Books to Movies

I was pondering the best movies I've seen so far this year, and I realized that they all have a few things in common.  See if you can figure it out:

Bridge of Spies
Hidden Figures
The Zookeeper's Wife
A United Kingdom
Lion

Things I found in common:
-All take place in the recent past
-All are based on true stories
-All feature some sort of prejudice/segregation/class inequality and the fighting of it
AND...
-All are based on books.

Yay for books!

Bridge of Spies is based partly on Strangers on a Bridge by James Donovan.  The part I found most interesting was the ethical dilemmas centering around the rights of a foreign spy during the height of the Cold War.


Hidden Figures is based on Hidden Figures:  The American Dream and the Untold Story of the Black Women Mathematicians who Helped Win the Space Race by  Margot Lee Shetterly.  I'd never heard about this corps of African-American women in NASA, and we all should have known.


The Zookeeper's Wife is based on The Zookeeper's Wife; A War Story by Diane Ackerman.  It's not hard to make Poland in WWII emotional, but this does an exceptional job.


A United Kingdom is based on Colour Bar;  The Triumph of Seretse Khama and His Nation by Susan Williams.  Another story I'd never heard, but a great inspiration in the fight against segregation and inequality.



Lion is based on A Long Way Home by Saroo Brierley with Larry Buttrose.  It's a unique story I heard about first through an interview with the little boy in the story, now a man.  The movie didn't disappoint.


So if you're wondering about your next writing project...take some inspiration from these important and enduring themes or from the world around you.



Melinda Brasher's fiction appears in Nous Electric SpecIntergalactic Medicine Show, and other magazines  For an e-book collection of some of her favorite published pieces, check out Leaving Home.  

Her newest book, Cruising Alaska on a Budget; a Cruise and Port Guide helps budget travelers plan a trip to majestic Alaska.  Visit her online at http://www.melindabrasher.com.

Friday, June 10, 2016

5 Ways to Find a New Idea


I previously shared 5 pursuits to inspire creativity, as well as ways to get unstuck. While you can use activity to find inspiration and breathe life into your projects, sometimes what you really need is a new idea.

Whether you are writing blog posts, prose, or long-form fiction or non-fiction, sometimes you need to go back to basics and find a kernel of an idea to get you started.

Here are 5 places to find ideas, as well as how to use them for non-fiction or fiction.

1. Explore Social media. 
See what's up on your favorite social media pages and groups.

Non-Fiction: Check out which newbies are doing what in your field. Then, reach out to some of these up-and-comers, and see if they would be interested in being interviewed This could turn out to be a profile for your blog, an article to pitch, or a feature that includes several people doing interesting things in your field. 

Fiction: Social media is a great place to seek out character traits, including descriptions, hobbies, and even jobs. Sometimes a great character is all you need for a fabulous story.

2. Read Books. Writers should be readers.

Non-Fiction: Write a list post of books to recommend your readers. Lump books together on a certain theme or topic. Start with ideas that interest you, because, if you get excited about a topic, it's likely your readers will too.

Fiction: Pick a page, a paragraph, and a line in a random book on your shelf. Or go to a library and pick something new. That line is the start of your next story or novel. Okay, this may not work for a long-form project, but when you give yourself the mandate to write at least a few pages about any random thing, it will certainly rev up your creativity.

3. Watch Videos. Dive into someone else's world.

Non-Fiction: Take a topic you've always been curious about or find a person who seems interesting, do a search, and watch some videos. Something within this exploration will make a good topic.

Fiction: This is a great place to people-watch (and find character traits) without leaving the comfort of home. Since this is a visual medium, pay close attention to the way people interact. Look at body language and listen for dialects.

4. Have a Conversation. Pick up the phone and call someone you haven't spoken to in a while. Or else, strike up a conversation with someone while waiting in line.

Non-Fiction: You never know what you can discover about someone unless you really pay attention when they speak. This person may have a great lead for a post idea ...or this person may be that great idea!

Fiction: Take someone's story and fictionalize it: minimize or exaggerate it! Have fun with this one. 

5. Make a List. Write a list of anything that has ever piqued your curiosity. 

Non-Fiction: Pick something at random to learn and then write about it. If it's a long-term project, write a monthly update on your progress.

Fiction: Challenge yourself to write a story incorporating no fewer than 20 items on the list. Feeling gutsy? Go for 50.

This is just the tip of the iceberg. The more you seek them out, you will see that ideas are everywhere.

Where do you go to find ideas, especially when ideas elude you? Share your recommendations in the comments. 

* * *

Debra Eckerling is a writer, editor and project catalyst, as well as founder of Guided Goals and Write On Online, a live and online writers’ support group. 

She is the host of the Guided Goals Podcast and author of Purple Pencil Adventures: Writing Prompts for Kids of All Ages. 

Debra is an editor at Social Media Examiner and a speaker/moderator on the subjects of writing, networking, goal-setting, and social media.


Celebrating the Coming Release of "The Frugal Editor" with an Essay on the Conceited Pronoun "I"

A Little Essay on the Pronoun “I”   Using "I" As a Conceit   By Carolyn Howard-Johnson, author of fiction,  poetry, and how-too bo...