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POV article [07 Aug 2018|11:06am]

slaymesoftly

From a similar source to the first one (which still hasn't asked me for money or cut me off), this is a good article on point of view — what the different ones are, pros and cons of using a given pov, and some examples. <a href="https://www.nownovel.com/blog/different-points-of-view-tips">find it here</a>


(Full confession, no less a writer than Ursula Le Guinn is a fan of omniscient involved narrators, so rather than rewrite everything I've ever written where I jump between pov, I think I can fix the ones that really bother me without doing anything that extreme. And I may do so, at least on my own laptop copies of the stories. Will I repost and/or edit the ones already archived? Probably not. But fixing them will be a great writing exercise for me and we all know how much the teacher in me loves finding things to use that way.)

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While we can get it... [01 Aug 2018|05:56pm]

slaymesoftly

So, I looked at something somewhere that was writing advice (may have posted a link here last week, I don't remember) and it seems that got me on a mailing list of some sort. The site or business is for those who are or want to be professional writers, and I would guess at some point they will want money for something or will insist I "join" the group. But, meanwhile, they are sending me links to some useful stuff. Which I'm sharing, cause, you know, useful stuff!


I'm not usually a big fan of writing advice because it's a creative art and really has no room for things like "never do this" or "always do that", but these two articles seem surprisingly free of that kind of insistence on following a pattern, so I think they are worth reading and considering.  


If you are a complete newbie, very young, very unsure of yourself, or have received hurtful, unsolicited "con crit" (ouch!)  these could provide some excellent guidelines, and I will continue to link to the ones I think are worth reading. If you've been writing for years and know you have admirers, and you are comfortable and satisfied with your own style, then the articles are still worth reading, but with an experienced eye toward your own successful comfort level.












And for anyone who betas or edits for someone else, it's a good look at some things to keep in mind while working on another writer's work. 

1 commented + comment

Resources [29 Jul 2018|10:58am]

slaymesoftly

There is now a Facebook group for Elysian Fields discussions that has some wonderful conversations, as well as a growing list of resources for writers that includes links to Victorian facts of life, some punctuation/grammar sites, fighting scenes, and lots of other places to research something you may want to use in your own writing.  This link to that thread may or may not work, but if it doesn't, you can look for the thread on your own.  If/when I have time, I may try to copy all the links and put them up here, but don't hold your breath waiting for it!


<a href="https://www.facebook.com/groups/388853654965315/permalink/438928539957826/?comment_id=444001036117243&notif_id=1532863867122837&notif_t=group_comment_follow">here</a>

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[05 May 2018|08:34am]

petzipellepingo
I don't write but I have friends that do so here's some timeline software for anyone who writes historical fiction.

Hope that's useful.
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Point of view [05 May 2018|08:21am]

slaymesoftly

Who? Why? What can he/she see or know? This is a good article on pov — the various versions of it and some discussions of how to make first-person pov work. You can find it . <a href="https://thewritepractice.com/...ords/">Here</a>


My plan is to try to make this community a little more active again by posting other writing-related links, as well as updating some of the old entries. There are words to add to the homonym list, I just have to remember what they are or add them as I come across them somewhere. 


So, if anyone is still hanging around or checking occasionally, feel free to add your own contributions or begin a discussion about something you'd like to talk about. And if you're new here, I hope you find something helpful. We are oriented toward the technical aspects of writing (grammar, punctuation, word usage — my thing, sentence structure) but have no rules against discussing more subjective issues like genres, tropes, and so on. Just try to keep it constructive and/or if it's opinion, be sure to state that it is only your opinion or preference.




PS: looks like LJ has changed the way I do links. I'll have to figure out what that is, but it looks like this one will work, it just is showing its parts.





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New stuff! [08 Mar 2018|11:08am]

slaymesoftly
Yay? LOL Below is a link to an entry on AO3 that provides a list of commonly-used terms that are different in the US and UK. Should be helpful for writers on either side of the pond (British term - see what I did there?). Even if you just glance down it, you may see something that surprises you and you'll know to go back and check if you're in doubt. I only had one quibble, which was the word "heels" for shoes with, you know, high heels. I've never used the word "pump" in my life, although I am quite aware that it is the official term for dress shoes with a heel of any height, but I also don't bother to say "high heels". Just "heels" has worked fine for me my entire life, without any influence from abroad. :) No doubt you will find your own personal issues with it, but I believe it is pretty comprehensive and worth taking a look at.



http://archiveofourown.org/works/6010708?show_comments=true&view_full_work=false#comment_153530217

Even better, IMHO, would be a list of different phrases that skew heavily American or heavily British. (Xander saying he's just going to "pop round to the..." would be an example of what I mean by phrases that skew British. I'm sure my British friends can find just as many examples of things Giles has said in fics that make them roll their eyes. I may find myself working on something like this for RRU with assistance from my British friends who can provide a list of phrases Americans get wrong.

There are so many things to consider when writing someone else's characters and their dialogue. In addition to the words and phrases that make up an "accent", there is the cadence of the character's speech, his/her level of education and attention to proper grammar, and even the way the character structures their sentences. Interesting side note: I find that I can sometimes tell how an author feels about a particular character by the words they put into the character's mouth....
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submissions [10 Mar 2017|07:53am]

slaymesoftly
So, here's a new wrinkle - LJ asked me to approve or disapprove the latest post in the community. It was not originally set up as a moderated community, so I don't know what that's all about, but shouldn't be a big deal since they send me a notification when it happens. But just in case anyone posts something and you get told it has to be approved, that's apparently the case now. Perhaps it's an attempt to keep spam away or something. Anyway, I'll be checking regularly, so no worries.
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stuff [14 Nov 2016|02:05pm]

slaymesoftly
In the interest of renewing interest in this community, I'm going to be throwing things out for discussion as and when I see them. Probably not every day (okay, let's get real. Definitely not every day. lol), but I'm going to shoot for once a week. Sometimes they will be things from fanfic, sometimes they will come from stories I've worked on (examples will be heavily disguised so I don't get fired), sometimes from things I've read other places - magazines, short stories, or even from actual, you know, books. And I'll add a few not-so-daily-doozies at the end of each post because some things bear repeating...


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New link - lot's of fun [02 Nov 2016|08:32pm]

slaymesoftly
I'll try to copy paste, but if I can't, here is the link to a Writers Write post:

http://writerswrite.co.za/33-commonly-misunderstood-words-and-phrases-1



 photo medium_33-commonly-misunderstood-words-and-phrases-infographic_zpsa0gwtnmt.jpg
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Actual post - for realz! [22 Oct 2016|01:25pm]

slaymesoftly
Betas, even not-so-good ones, can be difficult to come by and difficult to keep. People's lives change, they move on to other fandoms, they just lose interest, lots of stuff happens. So, even if you have or have had a wonderful beta, you may find yourself having to do a lot of self-editing. (Which, FYI, you should be doing anyway, but authors who think "beta" or "editor" means they don't have to do any work themselves... well, that's a rantsubject for another day.)

We may or may not have done this before years ago, and I know there's an entry on here somewhere with comments that offer some of these, but just in the interest of adding something of interest or use to any newbies there may be, here are some suggestions for self-editing:

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update [18 Oct 2016|10:32am]

slaymesoftly
of sorts - Haven't had time to play with the changes a paid account will make (if any). What I did re-learn (I'd forgotten, I guess) is that if you are set up to have the entries appear in your own settings, everything is there. All the tags, visible posts, etc. If you just go to riters_r_us without that, you see the lovely banner, but not much else. Each post is only shown with its subject line which must be clicked on to see the actual post. Useless, even for me, never mind anyone who may be visiting the community for the first time. That will be one of the things I hope I can fix now. The tags are absolutely necessary if anyone is to find a particular discussion or entry (the easily-confused words list, for instance).

This sudden flurry of interest was brought on by the discussions going on at the Elysian Fields shout (chat) box, which made me realize that none of these relative newbies (relative being the important term there. LOL Ten years is a lifetime in fandom) has any idea we even exist, and some of them have a great deal to contribute.
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paid account [17 Oct 2016|06:22pm]

slaymesoftly
Ok, in theory, this is now a paid account, which I hope is going to allow me to make it easier to navigate. Or not... could go either way. :)
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Mostly testing to see if it shows up on my flist. [17 Oct 2016|06:09pm]

slaymesoftly
So, conversations on the EF shout box had me remembering that this community exists, and that I've not done doodleysquat (anyone have a clue how doodley is spelled?) on it for for a very long time. Which, given what I've been doing for past several years and what I've learned there is very negligent of me. I'm also thinking I may make this a paid account which should help it be easier to read and allow me to make tags or links. I dunno. Worth a shot probably.

First item of business is to be sure the community is actually still here and available, and then I'll work on making it more useful and better.
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spam and stuff [15 Aug 2015|05:42pm]

slaymesoftly
Okay, I've been told RRU has been attacked by this morning's spam bots, but I'm not seeing it? I guess TPTB at LJ have found a cure? On the other hand, I'm not seeing much on my RRU main page and I don't remember what the explanation for that was last time it happened. If I click on comments, I can see the posts, so not the end of the world, just annoying.
6 commented + comment

Word to the wise... [22 Jul 2015|07:48pm]

slaymesoftly
Because I've seen this twice lately (at least - maybe three times?):

The flunky who runs and gets things for someone (goes for....) is a "gofer". It's a common job on movie sets, but is also used to describe someone who gets everything from a cup of coffee to an expensive suit. He/she "goes for" things the boss wants or needs. :)

A "gopher" is a burrowing rodent.
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something to post! [19 Apr 2015|04:28pm]

slaymesoftly
An excellent article on why we continually make typing mistakes when we obviously know better. (And why everybody needs a beta!) It's referring mostly to on-line responses, but goes on to mention other times these things happen and why they do. You can find it here I hope. If not, I'll try to find time later this evening to copy/paste it on here.
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Thinky thoughts about stories, authors, and archives [07 Feb 2015|01:15pm]

irishrose1
[ mood | contemplative ]

Greetings and salutations!
I know I fell of the edge of the earth for a while, but I am slowly getting back into the groove. In doing so, I have really noticed a few things that I would like to comment on, an perhaps make a suggestion or two.

First, I want to say that my fandom isn't dead! Upon my return, I fully expected to find that no one was writing my fandom (Buffy/Angel) related fanfic anymore, aside from tweens and teens who are discovering the show via Netflix suggestions as they devour their Vampire Diaries episodes. After all, the shows ended over 10 years ago! How many of us diehards can be left, still plugging away at prolonging our fanfiction glory days? Well, a lot, as it turns out. Imagine my joy at finding several quite good authors whom I still consider friends in my heart, are still putting up stories and contributing to fandom in productive ways! Not only that, but there are some really excellent somewhat new ones that are regularly cranking out intriguing stuff as well!

Second, I did find that as expected, many of the previous ways our collective had to encourage excellence in transformative works, have indeed gone the way of the dodo. I've found very few awards or rec sites in current operation.

Third, and perhaps most distressing, is the fact that several fantastic archives seem to have disappeared. I almost feel like I myself am standing on that road in 2003 staring into a giant crater, thinking about all of those priceless treasures that have now been swallowed into a great void. The stories and art that were housed in those archives and awards sites are gone now, and may never be seen or read again.

So, if anyone is still following this, I would like to reach out and see if anyone feels up to starting a movement of sorts? How do we save the amazing legacy of stories, essays, and art housed at defunct sites before those too are gone? Some of them are still semi-accessible via Wayback or offline via Slayerworld. Some are there, but haven't been updated in years, and may disappear at any time. The archives in current operation are quite few, and fandom specific ones are dependent on the kind soul or two who foots the bill and maintains it, which could at any point in the future become unsustainable due to an unforeseen circumstance or two. I so hate to see such excellent art simply cease to exist.

The problem isn't just Buffy/Angel fandom, either. It involves a lot of fandoms whose shows have ended. Vast blank swaths of stories from other fandoms such as X-Files, Stargate, etc., have simply vanished as their authors moved on, and websites went black. Some were truly masterful and should have been preserved for future generations of fans. So, how do we do that?

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It's alive! [27 Jan 2015|06:56pm]

slaymesoftly
Or, more specifically, I'm alive I guess is more accurate. The community hasn't died, it just hasn't been updated very often. Bad mod. Bad. Partly that's because I'm just not around as much, and partly because the community seems to have shrunk along with a lot of other things in fandom. And let's face it, I'm usually preaching to the choir anyway. I'm unaware of any new or unsure of their knowledge members who might actually be counting on it to provide vocabulary updates or anything else requiring regular input from me.

But today I got an urge to revisit something I've raved talked about before, which is the value of writing drabbles and the joy of reading them. Whether it's a "true" drabble (my preference) of 100 words, a half-drabble of 50 words, or a double drabble of 200, a well done drabble is a thing of beauty. It may capture a moment in time, an aspect of a character's personality, a relationship, or anything else that can be expressed in a few well-chosen words. Most drabbles give you some sort of emotional jolt. Some are very funny (LOL funny), some are very wise (much nodding in agreement), some are shocking(much clutching of pearls and going "oh dear!"), and many, many of them are sad (how can I be in tears after one paragraph? sad). In a mere 100 words, an author will have managed to remind you why you are interested in the characters in your fandom.

Which is the second part of the coolness that is a drabble. Getting that emotion-grabbing message just right in a specific number of words (not 98, not 104) is a writing exercise par excellence. There's no room for unnecessary words, no padding, no "look at me, I'm writing!" feel to the works. Every word has to count. It's a wonderful exercise in clean writing and judicious editing. And knocking out a few drabbles is a great way to clear your head and give you the urge to kick writer's block right down the road.

And to make it legit - a doozy:

Trooper - a soldier or police officer. The drunk paratrooper probably shouldn't have tried to pass the state trooper's car at 70 mph.

Trouper - a actor in a traveling troup, or someone who persists despite obstacles. "You're quite a trouper," the man said to his hardest-working employee. "Nothing slows you down."
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Exasperated vs. Exacerbated [14 Oct 2014|11:32am]

enigmaticblues
In reading a court decision for work today, I ran across this little gem:

"...the condition was exasperated by the death of his mother."

Exasperated: verb (used with object), to irritate or provoke to a high degree; annoy extremely.

Exacerbated: verb (used with object), to increase the severity, bitterness, or violence of (disease, ill feeling, etc.) Or to embitter the feelings of (a person); irritate, exasperate.

So, while a person might be exasperated by his condition, a condition cannot be exasperated because a condition does not have feelings.
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Yes, we are still here! [08 Sep 2014|09:05am]

slaymesoftly
I am a sucky mod. It is what it is. I'm never sure who, if anybody, still sees this journal anyway (although we have had a few member posts lately, so Yay! for that). However, this article on proofreading (not editing - proofreading. That thing you do when the story is ready for its close-up) is excellent. It touches some of the things we've mentioned here in the past - reading in a different font/size/format being the one that I think works best for spotting errors - but it also has some ideas and advice that's new.

You can find the article by e-book publisher J W Manus here

ETA: I had a typo in the post that I didn't notice until I saw the actual post. See what I mean? :) more ETA - and I had one in the title (which I don't proofread - bad SMS!) that was spotted by the eagle-eyed silk_labyrinth.
Actually, I had two typos in the title - Thanks to pickamix for pointing out that my "fix" hadn't really fixed anything. Murphy's Law at work, folks!
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