Saturday, March 21, 2009


Grammatically, I know what a sentence needs to have: subject, verb. Sometimes, a direct object is needed. Yet, in my first drafts, I invariably find myself writing long-winded sentences. Case in point: this sentence is taken from my current writing project:

"Plus, her papers tended to be very depressing, and resulted in Herman’s hoping the school board was putting their prayer to good use, and trying to convince God to grace the school with a miracle by giving Faith a sense of humor."

(Yes, I am still writing the schoolteacher story. But I wrote another story in between posts, so it's kind of okay! I'm really not being super slow. Just slow.)

So I have a question, for those who chance upon this blog - what do YOU think of long sentences? As a writer, and/or as a reader. Are they okay? Are they annoying? Do they make it harder to read? And is that necessarily a bad thing?

Monday, March 16, 2009

Think you're funny?

Prove it.

There's a contest looking for funny plays.

If you know how to craft plot, write dialogue, and make people laugh, then you should submit a play to the contest. Deadline = April 1st.

Thursday, March 5, 2009


So I heard about a few anthologies which are currently seeking submissions. It seems kind of weird to me, though. These anthologies are supposed to be published in June of this year. Submissions are due at the end of this month. The pieces which will be published are going to be picked by April 10.

Doesn't that timeline seem a bit fast to you? Or is that the way it usually works? I don't really know.

I might submit something. We'll see.

Here's the information about it, if anyone else is interested: Click Here.

Wednesday, March 4, 2009

Fun Question

I'm currently writing a story about one of the worst teachers on the planet (hopefully, he'll become more humane later). He never really wanted to be a teacher, and he doesn't think very nicely about his students.

And I added a little bit to the story where he's grading pop quizzes, and he gets some really weird responses, because a lot of the students obviously haven't read the book. He's teaching The Great Gatsby.

So I thought this would be a fun little exercise - if you hadn't (or haven't) read The Great Gatsby, hadn't ever heard any discussion about it or anything, what would you think it was about?

I'll start it off with this bit from my story:

" One student had written: 'The Great Gatsby is set in an alternate universe, where gadflies are the top of the food chain, but the ruler gadfly falls in love with a pretty human girl named Melanie.'"

Your turn.

Tuesday, March 3, 2009

Stephen King & the Short Story

I thought this video is pretty interesting. King is talking about the short story.

Sunday, March 1, 2009

Becoming More Realistic

I'm about to start at least one, and possibly two, new jobs this week. Also, I've been feeling really tired lately, for some reason. It usually starts around 3 or 4 in the afternoon.

So, I'm going to need to revise my goal of writing something complete every day.

I'm not totally giving up on myself, it's just that if I don't revise what I want to do, I'll feel overwhelmed, and then, most likely, nothing will get done at all.

So instead of daily output, I'm going to look at weekly output. Since I plan on focusing on short stories, this means I want to finish at least one piece of writing per week. I might deviate from short stories. I do have an essay on Emma I want to finish sometime this decade, and there's the high school story I've been revising for awhile that's at least half done now. Overall, though, I'll probably finish one piece a week.

I don't plan on publishing my pieces on this blog, as they'll be pretty rough, but I can give synopses, I guess.

At the moment, I'm working on a story about a teacher who is obsessed with one of his students. It's about idealization, perversion, and that tricky feeling of love.