Purple Prose + TIME

A Few Good Tricks

Monday was a statuary holiday in Canada, and I was away in Banff with my family, so Lisa Gail Green’s guest post has been rescheduled for today and there won’t be a post tomorrow (Wednesday). My regular schedule will continue next week.


I was trying to think of a good craft post and several things came to mind. But then it hit me, what are some quick and relatively painless tricks I’ve used successfully when it comes to writing and revising? A good magician may never reveal his secrets, but a good writer shares! Have you used these? Have more to add?

· Character Interview
o When I get a stuck trying to bring a flat character to life, I take a breather and interview him. I open a new document, ask a question and type in first person from his perspective. Something NOT having to do with the plot of the book. This usually gives me a new glimpse into the character’s head and helps me dive back in.

· Predictability Meter
o Whether you are a plotter or a pantser you have to make constant decisions about what happens next. Ever get to that soggy middle and wonder why your characters are just sitting around talking out their troubles? Throw something at them! Literally. Think of Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy and the improbability drive. What’s the least likely thing to happen right then? Turning into penguins? Well, okay maybe not that. Then again… Anyhow, see what happens when you do something unexpected and it may just breathe new life that you can use. You’d be surprised. And the best part? So will the reader!

· Props
o When I used to act I’d sometimes pick up random props and use them in interesting ways. Example? I remember being a lady from the 1800’s and finding a fan. It became an extension of my hand, where I’d snap it open and closed and poke it at people when I was upset, or fan myself while giggling. It was a great tool. Writers can use those too! They can fit both character and world, and that’s awesome! Especially since you don’t have to worry about practicality when it’s in a novel.

· Wordle.net
o Have you used it? I copy and paste my first chapter inside and see what happens. I remember one time the word LIKE was about two-thirds of the page! Yikes. I knew right away one of the first revision checkmarks. When I was done? I did it again and everything was nice and small and even with the characters names being slightly larger maybe. Much better.

· Meditation
o Okay, that’s not quite it. But close. I have to work on world. So I like to stop. Take a breath. Imagine the setting. What do I notice? Besides with sight, what do my other senses pick up? What about my MC? Would she notice the same things? Or would she notice something different? How does she feel? Does that change what she experiences? I keep asking myself these questions throughout.

Do you have a trick you like do use when revising?

Be sure to visit Lisa's blog for her giveaway.

Blurb for The Binding Stone:

"Genies like you’ve never seen them, THE BINDING STONE is a wild ride of treachery and deception. For my first wish, I’d like a sequel, please." - PERSONAL DEMONS author Lisa Desrochers

"I dream of Lisa Gail Green! The Binding Stone is magical in so many ways. My Djinn asks for my third wish? The sequel, of course!" - NYT Bestselling Author Nancy Holder

Tricked into slavery by the man she loved, the Djinni Leela has an eternity to regret her choices.

Awakened in the prison of her adolescent body, she finds a new master in possession of the opal that binds her. But seventeen-year-old Jered is unlike any she’s seen. His kindness makes Leela yearn to trust again, to allow herself a glimmer of hope.

Could Jered be strong enough to free her from the curse of the Binding Stone?

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A Few Good Tricks + TIME