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Practical insights for writers from author and developmental editor Jessica Morrell

Archive for the 'Jessica Page Morrell' Category

Word of the day: Sternenzelt

Sternenzelt: literally “star tent”; an expanse of star-filled sky stretched out above an observer; the celestial canopy in all its sheltering, shattering extent. (German) And for more info on seeing the night sky check out this site. From Robert McMarfarlane (@RobGMacfarlane) keep writing, keep dreaming, keep collecting language

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Books…..

Books are many things: lullabies for the weary. ointment for the wounded. armour for the fearful, and nests to those in need of home. Glenda Millard, The Tender Moments of Saffron Silk

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NaNoWriMo Week 2: How’s your ANTAGONIST coming along?

Well, I made it through the election, champagne and all. I’ve been working with a historical fiction writer, writing a short book about resonance (More on this soon), chopped and simmered another batch of soup–Italian wedding, picked more late-harvest tomatoes, visited an art show that has stayed within me, walked amid the golden colors of […]

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NaNoWriMo Writers: plotting suggestions

A few suggestions: Don’t edit–this is a first-draft mad dash. Remember your story is essentially a problem that needs solving. Not your problem, the protagonist’s problem. Keep asking yourself ‘what’s the worst thing that can happen next?’ Remember you’re sending your protagonist into new emotional and physical territory. Start at least one subplot. This subplot should […]

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November

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NaNoWriMo prep: consider your story’s overall atmosphere

Yesterday there was a break in the rains and I managed more yard clean-up. I tossed out two large hanging plants with relief since I started watering them in May. Still more plants to care for, but they’re blooming away. I want to recommend another starting place for fiction: atmosphere. Now, I’m not suggesting you […]

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NaNoWriMo Prep: Getting to know your main characters, part 2

More rain around here, but I managed to get in a few walks over the weekend including trails at the Hoyt Arboretum, or Portland’s Museum of Trees. If I could offer a single piece of advice about creating characters it would be this: Take risks with your main characters. Make them stand out from the […]

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Prepping for NaNoWriMo–start with character…oh and food.

It’s raining here, but we’ve had the most glorious spate of Indian Summer weather and the amber, lemon, and copper colors continue to bejewel the trees. I’m cleaning up the yard, moving plants, and planting bulbs. And hallelujah, I’m back to cooking hearty food–soups, stews, and a big batch of Beef Bourguignon and mashed potatoes […]

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Walt Whitman on the secret of writing

The secret of it all, is to write in the gush, the throb, the flood, of the moment–to put things down without deliberation–without deliberation–without worrying about their style –without waiting for a fit time or place.  I always worked that way. I kept the first scrap of paper, the first doorstep, the first desk, and […]

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Fiction Mastery workshop December 1 in beautiful Manzanita, OR

No matter where you’re at in your writing career, this workshop will give you insights that create a more nuanced, polished, and compelling story. And it takes place at the Hoffman Center in Manzanita, one of the most charming towns on the Oregon coast. You’ll find the details for payment and registration here.  Crafting a novel is a […]

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