The #FridayFlash Report – Vol 6 Number 11

August 16, 2014 in FridayFlash Report by Tim VanSant

We had 23 stories in the Collector this week with 1 debut. Please welcome Renee Hills to the community.

FFDO contributor Helen A. Howell serves up Poetry— an aid to writing fiction in our Thursday Writing series this week. Click on over and give it a read and then wax poetic in the comments.

FridayFlash.org is looking for a new News Editor for The News Hound. As previously announced our long-time News Editor, Angie Capozello, is stepping down in order to devote more time to other things. If you are interested please contact our founder, Jon Strother at jmstro@gmail.com. If you have questions on just what is involved in the position you can ask Angie by contacting her at AngieC@fridayflash.org.

It’s easier than ever to share your writing good news in our weekly News Flash with the form on our News Hound page.

As always, if your story is not in the listing below please go to the Collector and add the details. It will be in next week’s report. ~Tim

The Stories: Read the rest of this entry →

Poetry— an aid to writing fiction

August 14, 2014 in Poetry, Tips and Suggestions, Writing by Helen A. Howell

Poetry in cursiveEarlier this year I took part in National Poetry Month, whereby you were meant to write one poem a day for the whole month of April. I didn’t write one a day but I did show three a week, some of which were new and some which I had written before. I don’t consider myself as a poet, or even a good reflection of one, but I’ve never been one to not try a challenge and so poetry got added to my list of things to attempt to write.

Now a lot of people don’t like poetry, and that’s okay. But I’m here to share how poetry helps you improve your fiction writing. Yes it does, but how? That’s the question. When you write poetry, regardless of whether it rhymes or not, it does have to have metre. That really means one needs to be conscious of the syllables and the way they are used. You could be counting them or measuring the stresses as in da dum, da dum etc. (Not that I always manage to do this successfully myself – well, I did say I wasn’t even a good reflection of a poet didn’t I?) This helps you learn how words fit together, how they complement each other and, in writing fiction, that aids you in not writing awkward sentences and contributes to getting the flow right.

The other thing about poetry I found is that poems have a theme or tell a story. But they do this with an economical use of words that flow together in a rhythm, which allows readers to engage their senses and become part of that piece of writing. We all know William Wordswoth’s ‘I Wandered Lonely As A Cloud.’ I think that poem illustrates beautifully what I’m saying here.

So I’ve found writing, or at least attempting to write poetry, helps me as a writer become more aware of how words work together and what impact they can have on those who read my work. One of the challenges that I love to attempt in poetry is writing a pantoum. The challenge here is to write a poem composed of a series of quatrains whereby you take the second and fourth line of each stanza and repeat them as the first and third of the next stanza. The poem can be as long or as short as you like but the last stanza differs from the rest, in that the first and third lines of the last stanza are actually the second and fourth of the previous, while the second and third lines of the last stanza are the third and first lines of the first quatrain. Not only are you trying to keep the metre right, but you also have the repetition of lines and the task of keeping the poem making sense. Why not give writing poetry a go in its many forms. You may surprise yourself with what you can learn.

Here is an example of a Pantoum I wrote for the National Poetry Month.
GOBLINS!

I’ve seen them with my eyes,
there are goblins in my patch.
Trust me, I tell no lies,
a really nasty batch.

There are goblins in my patch,
they’re tricksy and they’re sly.
A really nasty batch,
from behind the wood they spy.

They’re tricksy and they’re sly,
‘cause deceit is their game.
From behind the wood they spy,
to bite you is their aim.

‘Cause deceit is their game,
Their stomachs must be filled.
To bite you is their aim,
your blood they plan to spill.

Their stomachs must be filled,
they’re greedy little blighters.
Your blood they plan to spill,
those nasty goblin biters.

They’re greedy little blighters,
but I know what they hate.
Those nasty goblin biters.
to my dog they’re just bait.

But I know what they hate,
The dog will sniff them out.
To my dog they’re just bait,
oh, how they’ll run and shout.

The dog will sniff them out,
trust me I tell no lies,
Oh, how they’ll run and shout,
I’ve seen them with my eyes.

©2014 Helen A. Howell

NewsFlash – Vol. 6 #11

August 12, 2014 in Uncategorized by JM Strother

NewsFlash

FridayFlash.org is looking for a new News Editor for The News Hound. As previously announced our long-time News Editor, Angie Capozello, is stepping down in order to devote more time to other things. If you are interested please contact me, jmstro@gmail.com. If you have questions on just what is involved in the position you can ask Angie by contacting her at AngieC@fridayflash.org.

Speaking of news, you may have noticed our community news has been a bit sparse of late. I’m sure you all are continuing to do great things. Please share them with us by feeding the News Hound. Give him a scratch behind the ears while you’re there. Thanks.

The Girl Who Tweeted Wolf CoverNick Bryan announced that the first in his Hobson & Choi mystery series, The Girl Who Tweeted Wolf, is now available both in print via Amazon, and in digital form from many sources. Be sure to check it out by visiting the official Hobson and Choi webpage.

Teaser Tuesday — Drop by FFDO on Thursday for Helen Howell’s discussion of poetry as an aid to fiction writing. 

Keep on writing, and congrats, Nick!

~ jon

The #FridayFlash Report – Vol 6 Number 10

August 9, 2014 in FridayFlash Report by Tim VanSant

We had 25 stories in the Collector this week with no debuts.

FFDO NewsFlash Editor Emeritus Angie Capozello finds a disturbance in The Force in From Scene To Screen – When Collaborations Go Wrong for our Thursday Writing series this week. Click on over and give it a read and then collaborate a little in the comments.

FridayFlash.org is looking for a new News Editor for The News Hound. As previously announced our long-time News Editor, Angie Capozello, is stepping down in order to devote more time to other things. If you are interested please contact FFDO founder Jon Strother at jmstro@gmail.com. If you have questions on just what is involved in the position you can ask Angie by contacting her at AngieC@fridayflash.org. (We can even give you one of those spiffy fridayflash.org email addresses!)

It’s easier than ever to share your writing good news in our weekly News Flash with the form on our News Hound page.

As always, if your story is not in the listing below please go to the Collector and add the details. It will be in next week’s report. ~Tim

The Stories: Read the rest of this entry →

From Scene To Screen – When Collaborations Go Wrong

August 7, 2014 in From Scene to Screen, Thursday Writing by Angie Capozello

star-wars-episode-7-viiWelcome back to From Scene to Screen!  This week, I’m delving into the murky world of collaborative script writing.

There is a fine art to collaborative writing, whether it be for print or screen. There has to be a lot of give and take, and every bit as much chemistry between the writers as there is between the actors on the set. But what happens when a collaboration doesn’t work out?

I just read an article about that happening on the latest Star Wars movie. They have a script. They have started shooting and yet, the co-director Rian Johnson kept insisting that they focus the new movie on Jar Jar Binks. (Am I the only one that feels a disturbance in the force at the very thought of such an atrocity?) He argued for it so hard and so long that Disney ended up showing him the door. Yep, he got himself canned.

And sadly this happens all too often. Much as I love movies, I think we all realize that a disproportionate number of the folks out in Hollywood are a half bubble off of plumb. Some artiste gets an idea stuck in his head and won’t let it go, no matter how bad it is. I’m not sure whether it’s due to pride or epic cluelessness, but it happens. I remember seeing a speech by Kevin Smith where he talked about why he walked away from writing a Superman movie. The Director got hung up on the idea of a fight between a giant spider and a polar bear outside the Fortress of Solitude. Needless to say it didn’t happen, but what did I see in that Directors’ next movie, Wild Wild West? A giant steampunk spider. Sometimes you just can’t keep a bad idea down.

So what do you do when a collaboration goes bad? Honestly, as much as we all would like to get along and work things out, sometimes it’s just better to kill the collaboration. Let the dissenter go if you can, walk away yourself if you must, but do what you have to do. Yes, making money is important, but professional integrity is important too, both yours and that of the project. Which is why I am so glad Disney gave that Director the boot, no matter how harsh that sounds. If Episode VII had focused on Jar Jar, it would have been as if the hopes of millions of Star Wars fans had cried out in terror, and been silenced…

That’s my two cents, anyway ;)  What do you think? I’d love to hear your opinions!

-Angie

NewsFlash – Vol. 6 #10

August 5, 2014 in Community News, News Flash by Angie Capozello

NewsFlash

if:book Australia is entering week two of its 8 week long literary remix experiment, Lost In Track Changes. You can participate in the Open Changes portion of the project as described here on FFDO in last week’s post, The Open Changes Project. We hope many of you will give it a shot (or two to eight). You just may end up getting published.

FridayFlash.org is looking for a new News Editor for The News Hound. As previously announced our long-time News Editor, Angie Capozello, is stepping down in order to devote more time to other things. If you are interested please contact me, jmstro@gmail.com. If you have questions on just what is involved in the position you can ask Angie by contacting her at AngieC@fridayflash.org.

Speaking of news, you may have noticed our community news has been a bit sparse of late. I’m sure you all are continuing to do great things. Please share them with us by feeding the News Hound. Give him a scratch behind the ears while you’re there. Thanks.

A standing crow silhouetted against a full red moon. The Were-Traveler is looking for judges for the Harvest of Souls story contest.  If you are interested in judging the contest email Maria Kelly at were.traveler@gmail.com, or message her on Twitter @TheWereTraveler. Maria is a long-time member of Friday Flash and she could use your help. You can read more about the Harvest of Souls here, and you can follow The Werre-Traveler on Facebook.

Teaser Tuesday — Drop by FFDO on Thursday for  Angie Capozello’s continuing series of articles on screen adaptations, From Scene To Screen. This week she discusses When Collaborations Go Wrong.

Keep on writing, and good luck, everyone!

- Angie

The #FridayFlash Report – Vol 6 Number 9

August 2, 2014 in FridayFlash Report by Tim VanSant

We had 25 stories in the Collector this week with no debuts.

FFDO Founder Jon Strother introduces The Open Changes Project in his post this week. Click on over and give it a read and then open up a conversation in the comments.

FridayFlash Wants You! We are looking for writers to submit articles for the website, and any writing-related topic is welcome. Feel free to browse through our Thursday articles for inspiration – Reader’s Review, Book Tour Blog Hop and Interviews are just a few of our goodies. For more info on guidelines and to contact our editor, Jon Strother, click here.

It’s easier than ever to share your writing good news in our weekly News Flash with the form on our News Hound page.

As always, if your story is not in the listing below please go to the Collector and add the details. It will be in next week’s report. ~Tim

The Stories: Read the rest of this entry →

The Open Changes Project

July 31, 2014 in Challenge, eMergent Publishing, Notices, Writing Fun by JM Strother

A story tree, branches made of titles.

Artist: Alberto dei Giusti

Last month Jodi Cleghorn, publisher of eMergent Press, graciously introduced me to Emily Craven of The Institute for the Future of the Book (if:book Australia) concerning an exciting writing opportunity some of you may be interested in. If:book Australia is conducting a writing/publishing experiment called Lost In Track Changes. This is a curated event with five professional Australian writers participating wherein each author writes a piece and then the next week a remix is done by the other authors in an eight week long round robin.

Of particular interest to the #FridayFlash community is a sub-project, dubbed Open Changes, which is open to all writers and artists world wide. While the project is similar to Chinese Whisperings, from eMergent, it differs in that it is not limited to written works. The remixes can be fiction, art work, music, and even film.

Each Monday several of the pieces from the Open Changes offerings will be chosen as prompts for the coming week, and so on for eight weeks. Pieces so selected will be included in a graphic “story tree” which will be used to promote the event. Those pieces will also be in the running for publication along side the five professional authors in the Lost In Track Changes project. One person will will a writing course.

Emily explains it so much better:

Open Changes and Lost in Track Changes are writing experiments that will combine contemporary remix culture with old-fashioned writing games. While Lost in Track Changes is the curated version of this event, employing the writing of five influential Australian writers including Cate Kennedy, Fiona Capp, Ryan O’Neill, Robert Hoge and Kissy Kneen; Open Changes will be allowing authors and artists across Australia and the world to participate, with several great participant incentives thrown into the mix.

Open Changes will be run over 8 weeks, and initially starts with a short travel piece written by myself. Creatives are then invited to remix the piece however they want: remake the original work; use it as a prompt to write a new piece of flash fiction/non-fiction/poem; or use it to create music/videos/illustrations. The remix piece can be between 100 words and 612 words (the length of the original travel piece), or a video/audio of under one minute. Once a week we will pick 1-4 pieces to be used as the prompts to be remixed for the next week.

Each piece selected will be included in a large, A1 ‘story-tree’ poster we will be creating to showcase the project. If a writer’s piece is selected during the project they will receive a copy of this story-tree as well as be in the running to have their work featured in the Lost in Track Changes project publication, along with the five prestigious authors.”

The event started on July 28th, and will conclude on September 24th. The due date is the Sunday of each week starting this Sunday, August 3rd.

If you are interested be sure to visit the Open Changes website for details on how to participate and submit. So, if you are looking for a challenge, or simply need a prompt, this is a great opportunity for you to participate with professional writers and publishers in a fun and creative way. I hope to see many of you take part.
~jon

Note: Due to the time sensitive nature of this post Angie Capozello’s regularly scheduled From Scene To Screen column will run next week. ~jon

NewsFlash – Vol. 6 #9

July 29, 2014 in Community News, News Flash by Angie Capozello

NewsFlash

Emily Craven, of if:book Australia, has invited the Friday Flash community to participate in their Open Changes flash-fiction/remix project. It is part of the Lost in Track Changes project. It starts this week and runs through September 22nd. You can find more details at their website. Also, we will have a more in-depth look come Thursday.

One last chance to submit to Carrick Publishing’s upcoming Crime Anthology: World Enough and Crime. The deadline is Thursday, July 31st.

Teaser Tuesday — Drop by FFDO on Thursday to read more about the Open Changes project.

Good luck to everyone!

- jon

The #FridayFlash Report – Vol 6 Number 8

July 26, 2014 in FridayFlash Report by Tim VanSant

We had 22 stories in the Collector this week with no debuts.

FFDO Founder JM Strother posits an editorial — of sorts — Hard Work Begets… as our featured article this week. Click on over and give it a read and then you should be getting into the conversation by adding a comment or two.

FridayFlash Wants You! We are looking for writers to submit articles for the website, and any writing-related topic is welcome. Feel free to browse through our Thursday articles for inspiration – Reader’s Review, Book Tour Blog Hop and Interviews are just a few of our goodies. For more info on guidelines and to contact our editor, Jon Strother, click here.

It’s easier than ever to share your writing good news in our weekly News Flash with the form on our News Hound page.

As always, if your story is not in the listing below please go to the Collector and add the details. It will be in next week’s report. ~Tim

The Stories: Read the rest of this entry →