Dual-Use of Meta-Content Part 5: World Building

Part 5 of P. H. Solomon’s very interesting and useful series on “Dual Use of Meta-Content” is ready for your perusal. This is another goldmine of ideas, some of which I intend to implement with my current WIP. Check it out and see what you think, and I hope you’ll remember to pass it along, too, so others can take advantage of these tips. Thanks, and thanks to P. H. for such a cool post! 🙂

Story Empire

Good morning story Empire readers, PH with you today, continuing the series of posts which helps you create marketing material as you develop your book. I call this process dual usage of your meta-comment content (based on your story bible, if you will). Meta-content is basically any content use or create specifically for your book or series. Dual usage means that you’re using the meta-content for both writing your book and writing your marketing, that is, creating both at the same time. If you wish to read previous posts on this subject you can find them here at these links:

Part 1    Part 2    Part 3    Part 4

To elaborate and recap a little of what I’ve written previously, the concept is that you specifically write development material so that it is also marketing materials such as blogs posts, newsletters, reader guides and whatever…

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Using The Five Senses: Sound

Once again, it’s time for the next installment of Joan Hall’s wonderful “Using the Five Senses” series on the Story Empire blog. Today, she’s focusing on Sound, and I hope you’ll stop by and check it out. You’ll be glad you did! Then, if you would, pass it along so others can enjoy as well, thanks. And thanks to Joan, as well, for this reminder of how important the use of sound is in our writing. 🙂 ❤

Story Empire

Hey, SE Readers. Joan with you today with the fourth in a series of posts about using the five senses in writing. Today’s post is about the sense of sound. If you missed the first three, you can read them by clicking the following links:

It’s been said, “Silence is golden.” In reality, sounds are everywhere. Even if you’re in a quiet house without the noise of a television or radio, there are still noises. The humming of a refrigerator. The whir from an air conditioner. We’ve become so accustomed to these sounds, we barely notice. But if your electricity fails, you’ll discover how quiet your house is.

Like with the other senses using sound, or in some cases the absence of, can help convey a character’s emotions.

In the song, “I Think I’d Rather Be a Cowboy,” singer/songwriter John Denver wrote a line that I’m envious…

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A Dozen Ways to Start a Story

Staci Troilo is back! Her hiatus is over and her first post on her return to Story Empire is superb! “A Dozen Ways to Start a Story” is filled with great tips on generating ideas for your stories. Trust me, you don’t want to miss this one, so head on over to check it out, and then pass it along so others can take a look as well. Thanks, and thanks, Staci, for so many helpful ways to jump start a new tale, or perk up an addition to a series. 🙂 ❤

Story Empire

Ciao, SEers. Wow, it’s been a while since I wrote that opening. For those of you who missed me, please know I’m sorry I was away so long. I missed you. For those of you new (or new since I took a sabbatical) to the site, I’m Staci, and you’ll come to recognize my posts by me signing on this way.

Before I continue, I really need to give a shout-out to my SE partners in crime colleagues, who went above and beyond covering for me in my absence. I couldn’t ask for a better blogging family. Mae, Joan, Craig, Harmony, P.H., Marcia… many, many thanks for all the support.

Now, back to one of my favorite topics. Not my kids (though I could talk about them forever). And not my dogs (and we all know I could ramble on equally long about my furry family members). Today, third time’s…

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Character Archetypes: The Trickster

If you’ve been following my reblogs of C. S. Boyack’s series on archetypes, you’ll really enjoy his Story Empire post today on Tricksters. What are they and how can writers use them to add surprising elements to their stories? Just head on over and check it out. You’ll be glad you did! Oh, and please don’t forget to share so others can learn more about archetypes, too. Thanks, and thanks to Craig for such an interesting and helpful post. 🙂 ❤

Story Empire

Hi gang, Craig with you today. This is post number five in the character archetypes series. In the Hero’s Journey, there are some common characters that are likely to show up in all stories. This doesn’t mean each archetype shows up in every story, and aside from the hero, the rest are kind of optional. Almost every story will have an assortment of them.

This series is to introduce you to them. Once you’re aware of them, you can decide if they can benefit the story you’re writing.

I have to say, this is the most maddening one to write about so far. Almost seems poetic when you consider it’s about The Trickster. There are as many different opinions about this archetype as there are websites, so I’m going to reject their reality and substitute my own. This is all in an attempt to offer some help, which is what…

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I’m at #StoryEmpire Today and I Hope You’ll Stop By!

As many of you know, I was invited to join the team over at Story Empire, and will now be posting there regularly (about twice a month). Happily, I scheduled several posts ahead, which is helpful while I’m still moving at a snail’s pace around here. And today, I’m beginning my Why Write Wrong? series over there, as a quick and easy way to understand frequently misused words and phrases. Hope you’ll stop by to say hi, and check out it out. I’ll be running this series on Story Empire every two or three posts, and hope it will be a helpful and fun way for folks to learn how to avoid some of these writing errors. I’ve posted a couple of these here over the years, but there are also a lot of new ones coming up. I see these things way too often lately, and I’ve been taking notes. 😀 

Hope to see you there, thanks! 

whywritewrong2

STORY EMPIRE “WHY WRITE WRONG?” POST

 

Touching Base and #Update

Some of you already know this from various posts around social media, but I am officially under “house arrest” for the next few weeks. Because I’m in a high risk group for Covid-19, due to my age, and have three additional strikes against me due to some health issues, I have been advised to stay at home. Period. I’m taking the advice very seriously. I have grandkids I’d like to see grow up, books to write, and friends to enjoy, so I’ve cancelled my local presentations until further notice, and am NOT leaving the house or yard any time soon.

Now, I’ve become more and more of a hermit over the years, even though I’m not particularly introverted. (Some would say not at all introverted.) I stay at home for days and days at a time, never going past the mailbox, and am fine with it, but it’s my own choice. Knowing I have to stay here is a whole ‘nuther kettle o’ fish. However, I’ve made up my mind that this can have benefits in addition to decreasing my risk of getting sick. If you checked out Don Massenzio’s post I shared earlier, you’ll understand what I mean.

I’m actually looking forward to some uninterrupted writing and blogging time again, as soon as I shake this cold I’ve been fighting. (I’m getting better every day, honest.) I also want to catch up with a whole bunch of things around the house and yard that have fallen by the wayside in recent months. So, I’m going to focus on my at home time as a chance to do all of the above. Naturally, I would have preferred to find a way to make that chance come about without the current wretched crisis we are all trying to cope with, but that’s out of our hands, and we just have to make the best of it.

I’m going to miss getting out to talk about Florida wildlife with audiences that have become friends to me, but many of these wonderful folks are seniors, too, and do not need to be attending events where there are mixed audiences around them. No one wants to expose another person to illness, nor be exposed themselves, so cancelling these events is the right thing to do. If you were planning to attend any of the next few, just know that we will be reassessing in a few weeks, and as soon as it’s safe, we will resume our usual schedule. 

I will also be resuming my regular blog features here in another week or so, as soon as my energy level picks up a bit more.

In the meantime, please folks–take this threat seriously and do everything you can to stay safe yourself and to avoid exposing others to this dangerous illness. When we’ve reached the other side of all this, I don’t want to discover there are any faces missing from my my circle of online friends or the audience at my next event!! (Not even MINE!! 😉 )

Stay safe, stay informed, stay WELL! And I promise to try my best to do the same. 

The Silver Lining from the COVID-19 Cloud

Please do yourself a favor, folks, and stop by Don Massenzio’s blog to read his post today. Hands down, this is the best post I’ve seen so far about the situation we are all struggling with right now. The poem Don shared is wonderful, and his thoughts on what we can learn from this experience are perfection. After having read this, I feel better than I’ve felt for a week! I hope it will uplift and inspire you as much as it did me, and that you’ll pass it along to everyone you know! I’m even thinking of making a copy to pin on my cork board so I’ll be reminded of these things when my spirits sink. Please share, thanks, and my heartfelt thanks to Don, too, for pointing out the silver lining! 🙂 ❤

Author Don Massenzio

As I write this, I’m sitting in my office beginning the fourth day of the isolation brought about by the COVID-19 (CoronaVirus) pandemic.

I work for a company where travel every week is the norm. Last week, as I sat in a corporate office in Chicago, we listened to our travel scenario gradually degrade from ‘travel as normal’ to ‘no meetings with over 25 people’ to ‘no travel to client offices’ to stay at home and work remotely.

As Monday came along, our highly technological company struggled with overworked meeting servers and the inability to dial in. The whole working world had moved to this model and the infrastructure was not ready.

Now, four days in, my perspective on the ‘inconvenience’ of the restrictions on travel and gathering are helping me form a different perspective on what’s happening in the world.

I know many are suffering from this virus, but…

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Book Review Tuesday: Grinders by C. S. Boyack

Though I’m still not feeling up to putting together my own posts yet, I figured today would be a good day to share a review from another site. Check out Mae Clair’s thoughts on Grinders, Craig Boyack’s latest release. Such an imaginative and entertaining tale! As soon as I gather up a bit more energy, I’ll be reviewing this one, myself. In the meantime, stop by to see what Mae has to say, and then head over to Amazon to grab your copy! You’ll be glad you did! Don’t forget to share, thanks, and thanks to Mae for a super post! 🙂 ❤

From the Pen of Mae Clair

Warm and cozy window seat with cushions and a opened book, light through vintage shutters, rustic style home decor. Small cat on window seat, along with coffee cup by pillow, Words Book Review Tuesday superimposed over imageHappy St. Patricks Day, everyone! Whether you’re Irish or not, ’tis a day for the wearing’ o’ the green, and a tip o’ the hat to the wee folk. Right now, we could all use a little luck given the state of the world in view of Covid-19. Whatever your corner of the planet, I hope you stay safe and well. If you’re stuck inside, it’s the perfect time to catch up on your reading.

With that in mind, let’s jump into this week’s book review!


Book cover for Grinders, a speculative fiction novel features neon lights and holographic images by C. S. BoyackJimi Cabot, and her partner Lou, are two cops assigned to the “Grinder Squad” in a futuristic San Francisco. Grinders are people who have their bodies altered through illegal surgeries which use computer chips to provide enhanced senses. Despite their department assignment, Jimi and Lou usually find their days eaten up by the drudgery of routine patrol and domestic disturbance calls—until they happen upon…

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#GuestBlogger #New Release #MaeClair #InSearchOfMcDoogal

Good Morning, Folks! Today, I’d like to welcome Mae Clair to The Write Stuff. Mae has a brand new book out called In Search of McDoogal, and she’d like to tell you more about it. So, without further ado, take it away, Mae! 

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Hi, Marcia. I’m excited to be here today! Many thanks for hosting me with the release of my Amazon 90-minute short read, In Search of McDoogal. This is a light-hearted story, themed around the hunt for a missing painting. My two main characters—Brady Conrad and Declan Fitzgerald—take a day trip to a neighboring town to track down the buyer of a painting Brady mistakenly sold. They’re on the clock because the artist is Brady’s girlfriend, and she’s returning to her gallery that evening after several days away.

As with most of my stories, my setting is fictional. When it came time to develop the small town where I set Brady and Declan loose, I wanted something that carried a coastal connotation. I chose the name Breaker’s Bay, and from there a trend was born. I decided to play with alliteration for most place names in the town. I don’t draw attention to the fact, but readers will encounter Puddlehopper’s Park, Courtney’s Corner, and the Bountiful Baker to name a few—just an extra bit of silliness to add to the predicaments Brady and Declan stumble over while trying to retrieve Vanessa’s painting.

If you enjoy a comedy of errors, set in a quirky town with oddball characters, In Search of McDoogal is right up your reading alley!

BLURB:
In search of something ugly…

All Brady Conrad wants to do is earn a few merit points with his artist girlfriend, so he volunteers to cover her gallery when she leaves town. What should be an easy day of sales goes belly up when he mistakenly sells a cherished painting.

With the clock ticking toward Vanessa’s return, Brady has less than a day to track McDoogal down. He coerces his friend Declan to tag along for moral support. How difficult can it be for an investigator and the director of a renowned institute to find a single painting in a town the size of a postage stamp?

Neither Brady nor Declan counted on a suspicious sheriff, rival baseball teams with a longstanding grudge, or a clueless kid trying to win his girlfriend with all the wrong gifts.

McDoogal is smack in the middle. But Brady’s biggest dilemma isn’t the disastrous hunt. It’s confessing to Vanessa her painting is the ugliest thing he’s ever seen.


I hope you’ll join in the fun of this road-trip-buddy-fic-comedy-of-errors. In Search of McDoogal falls into Amazon’s 90-minute short read category—perfect for an extended lunch break or quick read any time of the day or evening.

Thanks for helping me celebrate the release!

PURCHASE FROM AMAZON

Connect with Mae Clair at BOOKBUB and the following haunts:

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#Update – Hangin’ in There but Movin’ Slow

Thanks so much to everyone who has sent me wishes for a speedy recovery. Unfortunately, while I’m not seriously ill, this cold is taking its own sweet time about moving on. 

Because I’m in a double-high risk group for you-know-what, I’m paying very close attention to the things I need to watch out for. I do not have a single one of the more worrisome symptoms, and I’m 99% sure I caught this bug from Mark. The good news is, he has pretty much completely recovered. The bad news is, it took about 9 days for him to feel he was totally back to normal. I seem to be following the same pattern, only about 3 days after him, which makes sense, given that he caught it first and gave it to me. (He’s so thoughtful that way. 😀 ) 

I have a regular appointment coming up soon with my family physician, but I will call to talk to her sooner if there is any worsening of my condition. So far, I’ve only seen improvement, slow though it might be. For instance, the low-grade, off and on fever seems to be gone now, knock wood, and I have had no chest congestion at all. Mine has all been sinus related, which probably indicates that my allergies kicked in, right alongside this cold. 

 

I am self-quarantined for now, because a) nobody wants to catch a cold or mild flu from me, either, and b) my resistance is likely low, and I do not want to expose myself to any other problems. Again, there’s no indication that I have anything more serious than a common cold/allergy combo, but I am moving at a snail’s pace, for sure.

Please take care of yourselves! Stay informed on what you need to do to remain well, but don’t give into the mass hysteria. This, too, shall pass! In the meantime, I’m going to remain on R&R a bit longer, until my energy level picks up again, but I will continue to update you every couple of days until I’m back.

And now, back to your regularly scheduled program!