I’m feeling a bit introspective today after my rant. Doubly so since it got more likes by far than anything else I’ve written, LOL. It almost makes me wonder if I should be blogging about common sense middle ground solutions to social issues instead of writing erotica. Like all redheads, I’m stubborn once I’ve set my mind to something though.
In between plotting several new stories I have in mind and posting that rant, I’ve been reading books on how to be a better writer & author. Thanks to said books, I’m seeing where I’ve come up short on my past stories. This is especially true of the more recent ones.
First, in some cases, I haven’t got into the characters’ heads enough to properly define them “on paper” for the readers. I’ve done a fair job, (I think), but not enough to truly capture the readers’ attention and make them feel connected to the characters. Marc in the Power Girl story and even Krystal (Witchfire) come to mind. I gave people enough to understand who they are on a basic level, but not enough to make them understand or empathize with the character.
The other major flaw has been the oft heard writing adage of ‘Show, don’t tell’. I think I do a good job there when it comes to the sex scenes. Not perfect, but better than many folks. Where I fell short, particularly with “Power Girl” was not being as descriptive of what was happening and how the characters were feeling elsewhere. People that gave me feedback felt it was too long. Looking at it after reading those books, I can see it was too dry up till the sex and there wasn’t enough to capture the readers’ imaginations and draw them in. Granted, a writer can get away with that to a limited degree in a short story. That one was just too long for it though.
I’m working on keeping my sentence structure cleaner and more straight forward as well. I’ve been knocked on overly complex and run-on sentences since I was in the third grade, so I should know better.
As an added note, I’m also going to do better at remembering that people may not be familiar with characters established elsewhere, and do a better job bringing such characters to life for the reader.
So, this post was mainly just thinking out loud. Maybe it will also have the benefit of helping other aspiring writers avoid a few common pitfalls however. The best mistakes to learn from are other peoples’ mistakes after all. 🙂
At this point, I figure I need to get a few stories I’m TRULY happy with posted here as well as rework the existing ones before I’m ready to try publishing “for real” (ie outside of a blog). The journey continues however.