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Writing Tips, Editing Tips and Writing Prompts

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Renee Stevens

I hope everyone is having a great week! It's time for this weeks prompts, supplied by our prompt guru, Comicfan. Just a reminder, and for those who haven't worked with the prompts before: prompt responses under 1,000 words must be posted as part of a collection.

 


Prompt 650 – Creative
Tag – List of Words
Use the following words in a story – a soldier, a school, a note, a red coat, and a large truck.

Prompt 651 – Creative
Tag – First Meeting
Two shy people are sent to do the initial meeting between their families entering into a business contract. How does the meeting go and what sort of contract are they discussing?


Did you write a prompt response last week? Don't forget to share it below.

Renee Stevens

Hope everyone has had a great week so far. It's time for this weeks writing prompts. If you're stuck, or you're considering writing for the first time, these might be perfect for you. Don't forget that stories under 1,000 words must be posted as part of a collection.

 


Prompt 648
Tag – The Dragon
You walk into the Dragon’s lair, swearing you are well prepared for anything. However, now that you are actually face to face, this isn’t what you had imagined. What is the dragon like?

Prompt 649 – Creative
Tag – The Eavesdropper
You have overheard something you shouldn’t have. Now, knowing this secret and keeping it means you could be complicit in a crime. What do you do?


Did you write a prompt response last week? Don't forget to share it below.

Renee Stevens

I hope everyone is having a great week! It's time for this weeks prompts, supplied by our prompt guru, Comicfan. Just a reminder, and for those who haven't worked with the prompts before: prompt responses under 1,000 words must be posted as part of a collection.

 


Prompt 646 – Creative
Tag -The Rocket Ship
You were the last person placed into the ship. You haven’t fully realized what is happening when the ship begins to take off. Why are you on the ship and where are you going?

Prompt 647 – Creative
Tag – First Line
I’ll see him in hell before that happens!


Did you write a prompt response last week? Don't forget to share it below.

Renee Stevens

Hope everyone has had a great week so far. It's time for this weeks writing prompts. If you're stuck, or you're considering writing for the first time, these might be perfect for you. Don't forget that stories under 1,000 words must be posted as part of a collection.

 


Prompt 644 – Creative
Tag – First Line
“I never would have expected that from you!”

Prompt 645 – Creative
Tag – List of Words
Use the following words in a story – a corgi, a manuscript, a phone message, broken glasses, and a bill.


Did you write a prompt response last week? Don't forget to share it below.

Renee Stevens

I hope everyone is having a great week! It's time for this weeks prompts, supplied by our prompt guru, Comicfan. Just a reminder, and for those who haven't worked with the prompts before: prompt responses under 1,000 words must be posted as part of a collection.

 


Prompt 642 – Creative
Tag -  The storm
On the way home from work you hear on the radio that a storm is building in intensity and due to hit your area in a few hours. You pick up a few things, especially some food for your pet, and head home. Within moments of entering your home the storm knocks out the power. What happens?

Prompt 643 – Creative
Tag – The dancer
You walk into a room to find a figure dancing alone. Who are they and why are they dancing?


Did you write a prompt response last week? Don't forget to share it below.

Renee Stevens

Hope everyone has had a great week so far. It's time for this weeks writing prompts. If you're stuck, or you're considering writing for the first time, these might be perfect for you. Don't forget that stories under 1,000 words must be posted as part of a collection.

 


Prompt 640 – Creative
Tag – Alien
Driving home you manage to get past dozens of cars that are pulled over or stopped to watch some sort of accident. You get home and just strip off, climbing into a hot shower and trying to let the day go. When you finally finish, you pull on some clothes and go to make dinner. As you enter your kitchen you hear a crash in your backyard. Rushing outside into the darkening evening you see a figure spread out on the ground. When you finally are close enough you find a figure sprawled out on the floor. The deep green blood and light silver skin make it clear that the figure is an alien. What do you do?

Prompt 641 – First Line
Tag – First Line
“Do you honestly expect him to call you?”


Did you write a prompt response last week? Don't forget to share it below.

Renee Stevens

I hope everyone is having a great week! It's time for this weeks prompts, supplied by our prompt guru, Comicfan. Just a reminder, and for those who haven't worked with the prompts before: prompt responses under 1,000 words must be posted as part of a collection.

 


Prompt 638 – Creative
Tag – The Holiday Party
You’ve been invited to your sister’s holiday party. When you arrive your brother-in-law apologizes, but before you can ask your sister rushes you into the kitchen to help her. Once the guests arrive it becomes apparent that she is attempting to set you up. Is this good or bad?

Prompt 639 – Word List
Tag – Word List
Use the following words in a story – a gift, a winter coat, a nurse, a novel, and a glass of champagne.


Did you write a prompt response last week? Don't forget to share it below.

Renee Stevens

Hope everyone has had a great week so far. It's time for this weeks writing prompts. If you're stuck, or you're considering writing for the first time, these might be perfect for you. Don't forget that stories under 1,000 words must be posted as part of a collection.

 


Prompt 636 – First Line
Tag – First Line
“No way in hell am I going with him!”

Prompt 637 – Challenge
Tag – Emotion
No one enjoys dealing with the sad emotions. A breakup, a death, or even a serious illness can put a character through hell. Create a scene where your character is given some bad news and what happens when they are alone and process it. Remember to show and not tell. Bring the anguish alive for the reader.


Did you write a prompt response last week? Don't forget to share it below.

Renee Stevens

I hope everyone is having a great week! It's time for this weeks prompts, supplied by our prompt guru, Comicfan. Just a reminder, and for those who haven't worked with the prompts before: prompt responses under 1,000 words must be posted as part of a collection.

 


Prompt 634 – Creative
Tag – The Romance Cover Model
He is the man who has graced a hundred romance novels. His long hair, broad chest, and sheer masculinity has captured the imagination of hundreds of readers. You have been asked to interview him. What sorts of things would you ask, knowing he has been interviewed dozens of times before? How would you try to approach him so he comes away as more than just a piece of meat selling romance?

 Prompt 635 – Creative
Tag – The Choice
For most of your life things have gone wrong, but last few months were beyond perfect. Your job has seen your worth promoting you, and you are dating a man who loves and respects you. But the last forty eight hours have seen your boss offer you the job of your dreams, only it is in an office on the other side of the country. At the same time, your boyfriend proposes and tells you the child he had with his ex is going to be his now after winning his court case and he wants you to help pick out a new home for all of you that will be close to the school and his aging parents. Which option do you take and why?


Did you write a prompt response last week? Don't forget to share it below.

Renee Stevens

Hope everyone has had a great week so far. It's time for this weeks writing prompts. If you're stuck, or you're considering writing for the first time, these might be perfect for you. Don't forget that stories under 1,000 words must be posted as part of a collection.

 

 


 

Prompt 632 – Creative
Tag – Snow Job
You’ve rented a cabin up in the mountains to get away for a while. You barely settle in on your first night when a horrible storm hits, burying the area in over a foot of snow within a few hours. You are comfortably wrapped up in bed when you wake to a loud crash and as you look out the window you see the falling snow and flames a few hundred feet away coming from a car. You grab clothes and race for the door. What happens?

Prompt 633 – Word List
Tag – Word List
Use the following words in a story – Soldiers, a bomb threat, a mouse, handcuffs, and a blanket.

 


 

Did you write a prompt response last week? Don't forget to share it below.

Renee Stevens

When deciding what to post for today, I took a look through some of the things I have in reserve. I found a writing tip sent in a while ago and when I took a look back, I realized I'd never used it in a blog!  So, without further ado, here's "Things to Keep In Mind" by craftingmom!

 

Things I constantly keep in mind as a writer

by Craftingmom

 

 


 

1.  The Opening needs to grab the attention of the reader and be interesting enough to hold it.  Starting the story in the middle of an action scene engages the reader immediately.

Example:

At age eighteen, he was rather short and thin.  He had black hair and green eyes.  He loved to run and climb.

Or

He hit the ground.  Hard.  He gasped as something sharp pierced his side.  Damn rocks.  The air whooshed out of his lungs before he felt an arm press across his throat.

Technically, you know more about the character in the first paragraph, but do you really care?  Are you anxious to know more?  The second paragraph often has most readers already on edge just from the first few words, and they will continue reading to know what is happening, even if they don't know much about who the person is yet.  

 

By jumping into the story in an active scene, a reader is more likely to become invested in the character(s) and want to know more about them. 

 

2.  Try to describe your characters and settings actively.

Examples:

Non-active:  Kathleen was sixteen years old and rich.  She had blonde hair and bright blue eyes.  She loved reading, and she usually had a book with her at all times.

Active:  Kathleen's blue eyes flew open in surprise as she tripped over the edge of the ornate coffee table, the book she'd had her nose buried in flying from her hands.  She landed in a thud on the oriental rug, her long blonde hair falling in her face.  She cursed to herself, how many times in her sixteen years had she fallen over something because she was so engrossed in reading.

Both descriptions tell you the same thing about Kathleen—she's 16, she's a blue-eyed blonde, she loves reading, and even that her family has money.  However, in the second paragraph, you learn even more about her because of her actions.  You aren't told about how much she loves reading (in fact, those words are never even used), you actually SEE it because of how oblivious she is to her surroundings when she does read.  The author didn't have to say "she loved to read" because you experienced it.

 

3.  Use a thesaurus!!!

I have Thesaurus.com open on my laptop every time I'm writing.  When I was younger, I carried a paperback thesaurus around.  It is too easy to fall into using the same words over and over again (I still do it sometimes, but I try to catch myself):  she was sad, he was happy, she was mad, he was tired.  Use words that tell more.

She wasn't just sad, she was depressed, heartbroken, grief-stricken

He wasn't just happy, he was ecstatic, overjoyed, thrilled.

She wasn't just mad, he was furious, enraged, agitated

He wasn't just tired, he was exhausted, fatigued, drained.

(Robin Williams in Dead Poets Society, anyone?)

 

4.  Be aware of repeating words. 

My editor gets me for this still, and because of her diligence, I've become much more aware of when I do it.  Most of the time when I'm editing other's works, I'll see things like:  And then, he did ...., And then he went to...., etc.  And next, he...

 

5.  Don't rush it, and be willing to accept constructive criticism. 

Sometimes it's hard because you just want to get to the 'good stuff', but building your back story is just as important.  Be willing to listen to what others have to say.  Sometimes what you have in your head, doesn't get onto the paper, or you assume your reader might already know it.  You can't assume that.  You may know what the "Hurricane Mile" is, but your reader might not.  So you may have to spend some time explaining things you might not have thought about before.

 

6.  Be willing to start over. 

There are times when I've had to scrap a whole chapter.  It's okay to say 'this isn't working' and throw it away, even if it's 5,000 words or more. 

 

7.  Dialogue!

Dialogue makes your story more interesting and real, in my opinion.  Life isn't quiet; people are always talking, even if it's in their own head.   Keep your dialogue natural and fluid; write as they would speak. 

 

So that kinda covers what I've learned over the years to help me become a little better writer.  Many of them are probably pretty obvious, but they weren't always to me as I was starting out.  My very early writing (in middle school and high school) was rather boring looking back on it.  Over many years, I think I've become a little better and hope others enjoy the stories just that much more.

 
  •  
Renee Stevens

I hope everyone is having a great week! It's time for this weeks prompts, supplied by our prompt guru, Comicfan. Just a reminder, and for those who haven't worked with the prompts before: prompt responses under 1,000 words must be posted as part of a collection.

 

 


 

Prompt 630 – First Line
Tag – First Line
“When did I get so old?”

Prompt 631 – Creative
Tag – The Card
It is your birthday and no one remembers. You go home and as you prepare to make dinner you notice a card in among your bills. Opening it you are surprised at who remembered your birthday. Who is the card from and why are you surprised?

 


 

Did you write a prompt response last week? Don't forget to share it below.

Renee Stevens

Hope everyone has had a great week so far. It's time for this weeks writing prompts. If you're stuck, or you're considering writing for the first time, these might be perfect for you. Don't forget that stories under 1,000 words must be posted as part of a collection.

 


Prompt 628 – Word List
Tag – Word List
Use the following words in a story – a turkey, pumpkins, a broken chair, a football, and a book.

Prompt 629 – Challenge
Tag – Setup for a Crime
A crime has been committed and you’ve been called in to work on the case. Everything seems to point to one character, but you figure out it is all a setup. Explain the mystery to your superior and how you solved the case.


Did you write a prompt response last week? Don't forget to share it below.

Renee Stevens

I hope everyone is having a great week! It's time for this weeks prompts, supplied by our prompt guru, Comicfan. Just a reminder, and for those who haven't worked with the prompts before: prompt responses under 1,000 words must be posted as part of a collection

.


Prompt 626 – First Line
Tag – First Line
“Who did you just invite to dinner?”

Prompt 627 – Creative
Tag – Trainee
Your boss has hired someone to help out as you prepare to go into the busy season at work. However, the trainee has never done anything like your job and you have exactly one day to train them. What happens?


Did you write a prompt response last week? Don't forget to share it below.

Renee Stevens

I've received quite a few editing tips from our membership. Today, we're going to look at some provided by JayT. Enjoy!

 


 

There are three common editing issues that I come across frequently. They are punctuation (ie. missing commas, misused commas, and dialogue punctuation), misused words (ie nauseous instead of nauseated, then/than misused, they're, their, there misused), and sentences that don't read correctly and interrupt the flow of the story (they can be fragmented sentences, run-on sentences, or sentences that are structured incorrectly). 

 

Commas can be the bane of both a writer's and an editor's existence. I've found that writers will either totally ignore using a comma because they're not certain where to place them or they'll overuse the comma and randomly place it where it does not belong. There are several resources on this site and out on the internet that will help writers when it comes to comma usage.  Additionally, there is a blog on this site about proper dialogue punctuation.

 

The next common editing issue that I've often encountered would be the misused words. An easy example of this would be they're/their/there. They're is a contraction for they are, meaning the only time a writer would use they're is when they combine the words they are. Their is used when referring to a group of other people. Finally, there is used when referencing a location. Some common misused words would be then and than, break and brake, neither/nor and either/or, and finally nauseous and nauseated. Then is used when you are referring to whatever will happen next. An example would be- When I get home from work, I change clothes then I decide what I want to eat for dinner." Than is used to compare things- "This is better than that." So, basically, then is used for chronological references and than is used for comparisons. Next, writers often misuse break and brake. While I'm working, I take breaks. The car's brakes are going out. Another common misuse is neither/nor and either/or. If you were given the choice between two things and you wanted to let the reader know that no matter what was chosen, nothing would work, you would use neither/nor. I've read sentences that say, "Either Chuck or Rick would not make a good teacher." That is incorrect. The proper way to word that sentence is, "Neither Chuck nor Rick would be a good teacher." The next misused word I'm going to mention is mainly a pet-peeve of mine- nauseous vs. nauseated.  Other things give off smells that are nauseous, making someone nauseated. If you write, "I started feeling nauseous," you are saying, "I started felling like I was giving off an offending smell." If you were to write, "I started feeling nauseated," you would mean, "I started to have a queasy feeling in my stomach." 

 

Finally, the most common editing issue I come across is poorly structured sentences that do not flow well. They can be anything from a fragmented sentence like, "I noticed everything in the room. The grand chandeliers hanging from the ceiling. The tables lined with white linen table cloths. The green balls." In this example, "The green balls," is a fragmented sentence. What were the green balls doing? They can also be run-on sentences that should have some sort of punctuation but don't so the sentence just keeps going and overloads the readers with constant information instead of helping the reader understand what is going on in the story. I believe that last sentence is a great example of a run-on sentence. Lastly, poorly structured sentences are ones that a reader has to go back and reread to try and make sense of what the author is really trying to say. I cannot think of a good example right now. 

Renee Stevens

Hope everyone has had a great week so far. It's time for this weeks writing prompts. If you're stuck, or you're considering writing for the first time, these might be perfect for you. Don't forget that stories under 1,000 words must be posted as part of a collection.

 


Prompt 624 – Challenge
Tag – Point of View
Right about your day from the point of view of your pet. If you don’t have a pet do it from the point of view of a spider that has built its web in your home.

Prompt 625 – Word List
Tag - Word List
Use the following words in a story – Maple tree, winding road, storm clouds, a green jacket, a ball.


Did you write a prompt response last week? Don't forget to share it below.

Renee Stevens

I hope everyone is having a great week! It's time for this weeks prompts, supplied by our prompt guru, Comicfan. Just a reminder, and for those who haven't worked with the prompts before: prompt responses under 1,000 words must be posted as part of a collection.

 


 

Prompt 622 – Creative

Tag – First line

“Are we almost home?”

 

Prompt 623 – Creative

Tag – The Adult

The government has become concerned with its overwhelming elderly population. To keep so many from being left living alone, they are now doing a lottery for new places, whether it is a single person, a couple, or a family for housing, but you are matched with a person 65 or above who has no family. You find out you just got chosen. What is your new roommate like?

 


 

Did you write a prompt response last week? Don't forget to share it below.

Renee Stevens

Hope everyone has had a great week so far. It's time for this weeks writing prompts. If you're stuck, or you're considering writing for the first time, these might be perfect for you. Don't forget that stories under 1,000 words must be posted as part of a collection.

 


 

Prompt 620 – Creative

Tag – List of Words

Use the following words in a story – tablet, phone, a sandwich, a pen, and an ambulance

 

Prompt 621 – Challenge

Tag – Country Western

Authors can get stuck writing in the same style. Your challenge is to fit within this theme. Focus on the setting and having your characters come to life.

 


 

Did you write a prompt response last week? Don't forget to share it below.

Renee Stevens

I hope everyone is having a great week! It's time for this weeks prompts, supplied by our prompt guru, Comicfan. Just a reminder, and for those who haven't worked with the prompts before: prompt responses under 1,000 words must be posted as part of a collection.

 


 

Prompt 618 – Creative

Tag – The Announcement

Your whole family has been gathered together for the first time in years. You think nothing of it, until you hear your cousin’s discussing some sort of announcement and find out this is all about you. What is the announcement

 

Prompt 619 – Creative

Tag – First Line

“I can’t believe I’m doing this.”

 


 

Did you write a prompt response last week? Don't forget to share it below.

Renee Stevens

Hope everyone has had a great week so far. It's time for this weeks writing prompts. If you're stuck, or you're considering writing for the first time, these might be perfect for you. Don't forget that stories under 1,000 words must be posted as part of a collection.

 


 

Prompt 616 – Creative

Tag – First Line

“I would love to do that with someone I loved.”

 

Prompt 617 – Creative

Tag -List of words

Use the following words in a story -  a postcard, nail clipper, hospital bed, Broadway tickets, a rash.

 


 

Did you write a prompt response last week? Don't forget to share it below.

Renee Stevens

I hope everyone is having a great week! It's time for this weeks prompts, supplied by our prompt guru, Comicfan. Just a reminder, and for those who haven't worked with the prompts before: prompt responses under 1,000 words must be posted as part of a collection.

 


 

Prompt 614 – Creative

Tag – The Changeling

You’ve been asked to come see your best friend’s new born child. Arriving you feel a chill as you enter their home, but put it out of your mind. As you hold the child, your ring comes in contact with the green eyed, raven headed child who suddenly screams. As you watch, his hair becomes golden blonde, with very fine features, and kaleidoscope eyes. Before either parent can say a word, you say, “Changeling!” What happens?

 

Prompt 615 – Creative

Tag – Mystery

The statue in the center of town has always been known to give a clue to a large fortune left by the founder of the town. Every year hundreds of people try to figure out the clues on the base o the statue but no one has ever found the treasure. What is the clue to the mystery?

 


 

Did you write a prompt response last week? Don't forget to share it below.

Renee Stevens

Hope everyone has had a great week so far. It's time for this weeks writing prompts. If you're stuck, or you're considering writing for the first time, these might be perfect for you. Don't forget that stories under 1,000 words must be posted as part of a collection.

 


 

Prompt 612 – Creative

Tag – The Costume

You’ve been invited to a costume party and your partner has sated they will take care of your costume too. On the night of the party you are mortified by the costume, but have no time for anything else. What is your costume?

 

Prompt 613 – Creative

Tag – List of words

Use the following words in a story – a sweater, an apple, a dead tree, a flat tire, a turkey.

 


 

Did you write a prompt response last week? Don't forget to share it below.

Renee Stevens

I hope everyone is having a great week! It's time for this weeks prompts, supplied by our prompt guru, Comicfan. Just a reminder, and for those who haven't worked with the prompts before: prompt responses under 1,000 words must be posted as part of a collection.

 


 

Prompt 610 – Creative

Tag – Broken Confidences

For years, you’ve been the one to keep everyone’s secrets and confidences. Now, the one man you’ve always desired comes to you admitting he has been cheated on by your best friend. You know about it, but are trying not take sides. As this hunk cries on your shoulder, do you follow your own desires or keep your secrets?

 

Prompt 611 – Creative

Tag – First Line

“Do you think we can do it again?’

 


 

Did you write a prompt response last week? Don't forget to share it below.

Renee Stevens

Hope everyone has had a great week so far. It's time for this weeks writing prompts. If you're stuck, or you're considering writing for the first time, these might be perfect for you. Don't forget that stories under 1,000 words must be posted as part of a collection.

 


 

Prompt 608 – Challenge

Tag – Description

Pick an item to your right. Describe it in as much detail as you can. Try to use as many details as you can. You may not name the item.

 

Prompt 609 – Creative

Tag – List of words

Use the following words in a story – lunch bag, notebook, pink hat, broken belt, and a spider.

 


 

Did you write a prompt response last week? Don't forget to share it below.

Renee Stevens

I hope everyone is having a great week! It's time for this weeks prompts, supplied by our prompt guru, Comicfan. Just a reminder, and for those who haven't worked with the prompts before: prompt responses under 1,000 words must be posted as part of a collection.

 


 

Prompt 606 – Creative

Tag – The Class

Your job has decided that everyone needs to keep up with the rapidly changing workplace. Everyone has been signed up for various classes at the local university, completely paid for. When you arrive for the class it only has ten students all super attractive and smart, When the professor walks in your stunned silent. What is the class like?

 

Prompt 607 – Creative

Tag – First Line

“How much longer do we have?”

 



 

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