Revising – Fixing The Plot Line Scene By Scene


Revising – Fixing The Plot Line Scene By Scene

Filling in the Gaps Between the Logs

Read about fixing problems touching multiple scenes.

Ever gone inside an old log cabin?

Did you notice anything?

Daylight peeking through between the logs. An unpleasant thing if we lived in a cabin on those summer rains when the skies open and rain deluges our little home, or winter snows fall, driven by the north wind. The solution? Pack mud into the gaps and keep stuffing it in until only darkness remains.

Continue reading


Revising – Starting At The Top


Revising – Starting At The Top

The Only Direction is Down – And That’s Okay

Read about planning to fix plot holes.

Finally, the endless sorting and planning have come to an end.

Now, our brave writer perches precariously on a mountainous TO DO list.

And she weighs two choices. On the one hand, she might grow wings and soar away to find another work. Or, she can take off her rose-colored glasses and start checking off the TO DO list. With all her heart she prays that, at the end, the story on paper will resemble the story in her head.

What did I do?

Continue reading

Revising to Fix Plot Holes


Revising To Fix Plot Holes

Working On The Revision Chain Gang

Read about planning to fix story structure.

A red sun swims above the horizon, reds and oranges blending with the horizon. Then the camera zooms in on a line of sweaty guys with shovels and hoes and rakes, filling in pot holes on some country road.

The chain gang. That’s me…there…at the back, trying to keep pace.

But, wait. Won’t adding words change those perfect story proportions? Yippers.

But, if I’m going to improve my story, I have to get past that. If it’s not fixing plot holes, scene structures, or characterization will upset the apple cart. But I’m too inexperienced to predict an outcome. Alas, I must wait and see. Continue reading

Revising to Fix the Story Structure


Revising To Fix The Story Structure

Story-Level Decisions To Make Revising Easier

Read about planning to fix my story.

Someone once said there are only seven story types.


Who knows? But it’s clear we have tried and true formulas to fall back on. Want to write a romance? Why not try boy meets girl, boy loses girl, boy gets girl back. Obsessed with adventure? We might do worse than the chosen one forced from a comfortable life, falls victim to flaws, realizes mistakes, comes back to win.

Continue reading

And Now I Know


And Now I Know

Enduring The First Read

Read about  redoing a first draft.

The worst thing ever?

Not knowing.

Take something that matters. Maybe I had no chance at influencing events, reduced to hoping they would draw my name from a hat. Or I tried something, but I didn’t do as well as I should have, like that science project. Or…I devoted several months, pouring my heart out, using every trick I’d ever learned…like writing a story.

How I ached to fix that draft, almost as soon as I finished it.  Instead, needing space to forget, I put it aside. Initially, I thought of nothing else. But, over time, it receded. Still, in odd moments, without warning, a cold hand squeezed my heart, and I couldn’t breathe. Had I improved it, or wasted my time?

Continue reading

Tiny Red Beads


Tiny Red Beads

Bench Pressing Strong Verbs

Read about Tammy’s final meeting with the Count.

All things come to an end. So, too, my strong verbs project, some twenty-five stories, counting this one.

Along the way, I learned about lovely little Amy, poor, put-upon Janet, and Tammy far from home. At first, fictional creations, they became real to me, and I adore them.

And I pondered which I would end with. But I suspected Tammy would close things out. In some future story I might bring them together. I think they would like each other.

Our final strong verbs, using the usual rules: focus, express, translate, rupture, conceptualize, ignore, and abolish.


Continue reading