Much Ado About Trivialities

Thanks Jack!

itinerantneerdowell

What did the “b” represent?  Maybe, breakfast?  No, it stood for “burgers.”  What a letdown. IHOb, nee IHOP’s decision, to enter the burger wars was a real head-scratcher.

How will this play out? There’s too much competition already. They kept the “International House of” prefix.

Will they be offering burgers revved up with salsa, pizza sauce, blue cheese, jalapeno, and the like?

At the recent G7 summit, Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau’s eyebrows, were the topic of conversation in some circles.  Were they real or fake?

Inspired by the Duchess of Sussex, Meghan Markle’s complexion, there were some that aspired to tattooed freckles.

On the home front, my dogs no longer sported their pouty faces, after monthly flea, heartworm, and tick treatments.  Forgive and forget.  That’s one of the reasons why I liked my dogs more than most people.

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Writing the dreaded blurb! #writingtips #amwriting #writinganovel

Taking the dread out of the blurbs…

Alison Williams Writing

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A lot of the writers I work with have a great deal of trouble writing a blurb. I’ve given some tips on this before, but they are definitely worth repeating.

Almost as feared as the dreaded synopsis, the book blurb has the power to turn wonderful writers to jelly. But the blurb is the hook, along with the cover, to reel those readers in. You need to make sure that you entice your reader, that you intrigue them without giving too much away. Longer than the elevator pitch, but shorter than a synopsis, the book blurb is key to whetting a reader’s appetite.

So how should you approach it? Here are some quick tips on getting that blurb up to scratch.

Keep it short. This is NOT a synopsis. You want a couple of two to three line paragraphs. Too much and you risk giving too much away and turning…

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Don’t throw out the baby! Why #Amazon doesn’t want your #BookReviews

Strike three Amazon, I should so love to see the alternative arise, such as a collective of writers and readers…

Barb Taub

An open letter to Amazon:

Dear Amazon,

I should be your Holy Grail. I’m the real deal, an actual reader who goes through books carefully, thinks about what they mean and how they’re written, and then writes a considered, thoughtful, and hopefully helpful analysis—in other words, I’m a book reviewer.

Writers, potential customers, publishers, and oh yes—you, Amazon—should be jumping for joy and giving thanks that I’ve taken hours to read and yet more hours to craft reviews for hundreds of books. Instead, Amazon, you’ve decided to punish reviewers like me.

In the name of discouraging “fake” reviews, your new policy requires reviewers like me to spend $50 on Amazon’s US site and even more, £40 on Amazon UK before I can share my review. Have you thought about other solutions, or the effect this will have on legitimate reviewers?

Amazon has figured out how to conduct millions of legitimate…

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Communication:

I know I am not the only one to have realised that WordPress have ‘lost’ the reblog button. This has been going on for several days now, and at the time of writing, I have seen no sign of its return. It is, we are assured, the result of some unknown technical issue that has […]

via Way to go, WordPress… — Sue Vincent’s Daily Echo

Creating an Anti-Hero – From The Maltese Tiger blog

Author Don Massenzio

Creating an Anti-Hero

This week I want to talk about anti-heroes.

In this morally ambiguous time, it’s no longer popular to write about classic heroes who are purely good and righteous. I mean, where’s the fun in that? Gone are the days of swashbucklers like Ivanhoe and Robin Hood. Even the most recent incarnation of Superman has a gritty, brooding veneer.

However, you may be wondering…

What is an anti-hero?

An anti-hero is a protagonist who is flawed, but in a way that the reader can still sympathize with the character.

There are plenty of examples from modern fiction like Wolverine of the X-Men or John McClane in Die Hard. But anti-heroes are nothing new.

The classics are chock-full of anti-heroes like Scarlett O’Hara and Philip Marlowe. Even Shakespeare wrote intriguing anti-heroes like Othello and Hamlet.

So, you’re probably asking, “How do 

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Writing the Hook

Who can resist a good hook?

Have We Had Help?

marsglobe1

The setting is Valles Marineris on Mars

Well, In the last few days I’ve been going over several often diametrically opposed scenarios for my new science fiction novel in my mind. I have finally eliminated all but one of them. So, now that’s settled, all I have to do is come up with the hook.

What’s a hook Jack?

I’m glad you asked me that reader. It’s a devise all writers need to employ to get your attention. In other words – we need to dangle enticing bait in front of you as an avid reader, not to mention those who normally couldn’t be bothered to read a book. You know the ones I mean, those who prefer to watch films or play endless video games instead of improving their minds with a book.

If you want an example of a hook just think back to when you last…

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“Backward Glancing on a Tehran Street” and other poems by Lynda Tavakoli

Humbling and so painfully haunting and can that also be beauty? There is certainly beauty in the souls of these writers.

Poethead

Game On

In Syria the shooters
choose themes for target practice,
a living video game of
entertainment for the week.

On Saturday it’s chins –
anything below the nose, above the neck,
and rifle sights explore
a quivered lip
as points deduct for errors –
cheeks and ears are left
for Sunday’s sport.

On Monday, it’s the old,
their leech-peeled progress
over desert skin the easier to track,
points deducted for impairment
but added for an outright kill.

On Tuesday, pregnant women.
Two for the price of one (but scarce)
with double points for primary executions,
only if you’re in the zone.

On Wednesday, barrel metal
rests on gaping sills,
trigger fingers slack
for mobiles phoning home
while someone calculates the points
but lets the stretcher bearers
live upon a whim.

Thursday’s dawn will drone
unblinking and unlit,
sheltering the snipers’
bull’s -eyed sleep from heavenly foe .
Anonymous the…

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My message may be unpalatable to some…

Thanks Jack!

Have We Had Help?

DKdjhH9YSm-2

…certain individuals don’t like plain speaking, preferring to bury their heads in the sand.

~~~

One current ugly stumbling block for all writers these days to be ignored at all costs is the average inbred moron seated at his/her computer who deludes him/herself into believing that what he/she says on a public book based forum, actually matters. His/her kind set themselves up as self-styled critics, typically wittering on endlessly about subjects such as non-American spelling and grammar in books written by anyone living beyond the borders of the US for instance. Thereby clearly demonstrating their ignorance of the English language to the world at large. The aforementioned description while general, nevertheless fits the individuals currently responsible for the majority of one, two and three star reviews for any book you care to name on Amazon, to the detriment of the genuine reviewer.

Not one of them has ever written a…

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Stan Green’s Secret #WW1 #shortstories #RemembranceDay

Judith, once again she raises the bar…

Judith Barrow

‘How old are you, son?’

 Stan straightened his spine and stretched his shoulders back, looking beyond the man to the recruitment poster of Lord Kitchener, on the wall.  ‘Eighteen, sir.’

‘Hmm. Date of birth?’ The captain studied Stan.

‘October 3rd, 1896, sir.’

‘Okay, lad, you’re in. Report to the sergeant over there.’ He dismissed Stan by shouting, ‘Next!’

 Stan grinned and gave the thumbs up to his mate, Ernest Sharp who stood, behind him. He turned and marched as best he could to the other side of the room to the serveant.

‘If that’s the best you can do as a march lad, I’ve got some work cut out for me.’ But the recruiting sergeant, tall and moustached, gave Stan a grin. ‘Welcome to the East Lancashire Regiment. ‘He winked. ‘We’re doin’ well; you’re the tenth recruit today, so that’s ten half-crowns we’ve earned. We’ll be ‘aving a few pints…

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Voices of 1919

Poet Laureate

mike alma voicesCelebrate National Poetry Day in Worcestershire.

Voices of 1919

Autumn in Malvern Festival 

Elmslie House, 8 Avenue Road, Malvern, WR14 3AG

Tickets £8.00 available from Malvern Theatres 

The Box Office, Malvern Theatres, Grange Road, Malvern WR14 3HB – telephone 01684 892 277

http://www.malvern-theatres.co.uk/whats-on/voices-of-1919/

VOICES OF 1919
 
The Great War is over. In the Spring of 1919 the village of Oakby awaits the return of survivors. Each household has its own story. Through the words of 20 contemporary poets, we hear the voices of villagers struggling to recall their past, to understand the present and to imagine the future.

The Armistice, signed on 11th November 1918, signalled the end of The Great War, but most involved in the fighting would not be returning for months.

This poetry is not about the trenches and battles but is, in the main, the thoughts of those who didn’t go to war –…

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