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I love words. I'm learning to use them.

Tag: stories

In Praise of #ThreeFictionalCharacters

There are lots of Facebook trends. They’re all fun to watch and follow. For example:

  • Ice Bucket Challenge
  • Love Your Spouse Challenge
  • 30-Day Thankfulness Challenge
  • “If you agree with this, share it. If you don’t, you’re not supportive of [insert cause]

These are all awesome and trendy, but I never really have been enticed to participate. However, there’s a recent one that I can’t help but love: #ThreeFictionalCharacters. Read the rest of this entry »

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Book Blog Tour for Charades

It has been a whirlwind since the release of Charades, and an awesome one at that! I think the most exciting part of this journey is to hear people’s responses to the story, so it has been fun to talk with my readers after they finish the book. Read the rest of this entry »

Book Release!

After four long years, Charades is finally completed.

 

 

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Let the storytelling begin!

 

 

Why I stopped reading the news

Let’s get one thing clear: I am an information junkie.

  • I love social media and enjoy seeing what’s being posted and who is talking about what (sometimes chiming in to the conversation as well).
  • I focused my undergrad degree on journalism and political science, which required me to stay on top of current news and familiarize myself with past news.
  • I work in the field of corporate communications, which sees me listening in on what’s going on the company and how the public are talking about their needs, then creating an intersection between their needs and our products and services. To help accommodate these different areas, I would begin each day by going to a selection of nearly a dozen different news sites to see what was going on in the world at the moment, then monitoring developments throughout the day.

Then I started to get tired. Very, very tired. Read the rest of this entry »

2013: A year of immersion.

I could sum up 2013 in a number of ways: Switched careers; travelled the Pacific coast; published my second book; learned I was going to become a father [!].

Another way would be this: I read. I read a lot. Read the rest of this entry »

Book review: Push

Push: A Novel

Brutal, ugly, horrific. Eloquent, beautiful, inspiring. Those are the conflicting emotions conjured up while reading this novel. Sapphire’s thoughtful and innovative prose brings Precious Jones – an illiterate 16-year-old with two children from her father – to life, draws you into her tragic world and carries you through her journey of making her life her own for the first time.

Here’s the premise: “Relentless, remorseless, and inspirational, this “horrific, hope-filled story” (Newsday) is certain to haunt a generation of readers. Precious Jones, 16 years old and pregnant by her father with her second child, meets a determined and highly radical teacher who takes her on a journey of transformation and redemption.”

Similar to Hubert Selby Jr.’s Requiem for a Dream, Push ignores conventional grammar and spelling rules so as to give the reader a first-hand account of Harlem life through the eyes of Precious. This approach is extremely effective, and I highly recommend this novel. The story is grim and real, but incredibly hopeful. Certainly not for the faint-hearted, but a powerful testimony to the life-changing power of language.

Advice to writers: Write, don’t guess.

Don’t try to guess what sort of thing editors want to publish or what you think the country is in a mood to read. Editors and readers don’t know what they want to read until they read it. Besides, they’re always looking for something new.

– William Zinsser

Study: Reading literature makes us better thinkers.

I stumbled across a fascinating study today, claiming that reading literature helps encourage creativity and “sophisticated thinking” due to fostering a growing comfortableness with ambiguity. Here’s the heart of the findings:

“Are you uncomfortable with ambiguity? It’s a common condition, but a highly problematic one. The compulsion to quell that unease can inspire snap judgments, rigid thinking, and bad decision-making.

Fortunately, new research suggests a simple anecdote for this affliction: Read more literary fiction. Read the rest of this entry »

Editors can be your best friend.

A year ago, I wrote a post called “Everyone needs an editor – including me” which (to my delight) sparked some great conversation about the process of refining the storytelling process. Today, I stumbled across this short, simple video clip which, although it refers to film, does a great job explaining the symbiotic relationship between editors and content.

Perhaps more than anything, it drives home the point that writing and telling stories is not a one-person process. And that’s what I love about editing: working together to see the larger vision, identifying (and removing or revising) any content that takes away from that vision and refining the content into a beautiful story. I count it a great privilege to play a role in this process.

 

Shameless self-promotion: I love editing. Hit me up? 🙂

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