Monday, February 18, 2013

Guest Post - Suzanne de Montigny

A loud, hissing sound filled the air. The unicorns looked up, their eyes filled with horror.

Azaria, a unicorn colt, is intrigued when the young clairvoyant dinosaur, Darius, foresees a terrifying change in the world. When a giant fireball smashes into the earth, the unicorns struggle to survive the hurricanes and starvation that follow. Danger of a more sinister nature threatens when the creatures-that-walk-on-two-legs settle in the valley and their leader, Ishmael, discovers the healing power of the unicorns’ horns. Azaria, now a young stallion, must use his wits to save the herd from complete extinction.

A Reader or a writer, which would you rather be?
by Suzanne de Montigny

A reader or a writer? Both. I feel that by reading other writers’ works, I learn a lot about writing. There are some writers that blow me away with the beauty of their words, and then there are others who teach me what not to do. Things like:

Don’t overwrite. Sometimes writers get carried away and have a need to explain something important to them in several different ways. For example: “It changed my life forever. It would surely make me think first from now on. It would make a difference in the world.” Snore. “It changed my life forever was more than enough.”

Don’t tell. Some writers tell us everything their character feels instead of showing us. For example: “She was shocked.” No, no! Make her muscles tighten, or jaw drop, or something.

Don’t use too many words For example, take the line: She now understood why Mom told her to keep away from Mr. Joans. (Right after Mr. Jones gave her heck for walking on his lawn.) Inexperienced authors will add on, “Mr. Jones was a mean man who yelled at everyone. So why should she try to talk to him? It didn’t make sense since he was as mean as a junkyard dog.” See what I’m getting at? We, the readers, can figure it out by ourselves. We don’t need the author to elaborate so much.

But as far as writing goes, I oftentimes tell people, writing is like reading a really good book except that you’re writing it. I write off the top of my head and my characters take on a life of their own and start doing things I never planned on. And I just follow along and see where they’ll lead me. It’s quite fascinating.

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Genre – Middle Grade Fantasy

Rating – G

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