computer, fiction, Francisco Saez, Gardening, genres, grammar, Kodak, Microsoft Word, non-fiction, novel, paranormal romance, plot, poetry, post net, short stories, sketch, template, times new roman, why write, yWriter
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If you have just joined us, then you need to read previous editions in the series, you will find these here: https://sirpeterjames.com/category/why-write-course/. Scroll down to the beginning, ‘Why Write?’
With each publication in this series, I will be giving you assignments to do and ask you to return these to me for editing. This way you send in your effort, which I call a ‘submission’ and I send back a ‘correction’ In doing this, you end up with a comparison.
Last week I also posted an article on ‘Write for Health’ from Francisco Sáez’s site, which lists some of the many benefits we can gain from writing. This site is worth a visit.
I was encouraged to read Cindy’s submission and she was delighted with her correction. I published these two items so you can get an idea of how it works.
Well, let’s get on with part three and I did say in part two that we would be looking at the basics of writing this time and leave the ‘getting it out there’ for some time ahead.
Irrespective of what you write, poetry, short stories, fiction or non-fiction, the basic principles are the same.
There are writers who like to plan their stories or poems before starting. Often these same people might build sketches of their characters and from there write their stories.
I have completed a manuscript of short stories, which are ready for publishing and I am two thirds of my way through a paranormal romance novel.
With the above two books, I have written from the standpoint of a ‘pantser’, someone who writes from the seat of their pants, or without any planning.
However, in the case of my novel, which is standing at sixty thousand words and heading for ninety, I found after about five chapters (I’m on fourteen.) I needed some means of tracking my characters and chapters. I found an excellent piece of free software, called ‘yWriter’, which has been invaluable for tracking, my characters, scenes and chapters. I also found that I needed to outline a plot, in order to finish my story.
But for poetry and short stories, I certainly have never had a need to use any support systems.
Having said this, I did find that in writing a series of short stories, with a view to making up a book, it is better to use a template, but more about that later.
I’m going to start off with the writing of short stories, articles and poems, because these, in terms of layout are simpler than other genres.
As you will notice I use a Times New Roman 14 font, and this because, it’s easier for me to read! My spacing is default Microsoft Word setting.
However I did locate an excellent site, dealing with layout, maybe you could read through this and pick up ideas.
Now, you are asking yourself, what should I write about? Try this link for ideas on topics –
If what I have mentioned above leaves you a little cross-eyed, don’t worry, please.
To take on the above links, you would need internet access and if you are using a computer you’d want to have word processor software, Microsoft Word, being the most common. If you do not have access to this equipment, that will not stop you from writing.
The most basic starting point could be a lined pad, Croxley notebook or any such stationery. You could write your stories using pen or pencil; go to the nearest POST-NET or Kodak store and ask them to mail it to me.
First step from here is to find a topic. Something to write about. Surrounding you every day are a gazillion items you could write about. For example, do you have a garden, do you enjoy gardening? Even if you not an expert gardener, you will find many things to put down on paper about your garden.
Step two is, start writing, don’t worry about spelling, grammar, repeat words, non-nonsensical sentences. Just write and write and when you think you can’t write anymore, then write some more!
Your assignment for this week is to write between two and three hundred words on any topic you choose;
Once you have completed your article, mail it to firstname.lastname@example.org
After editing your article, I will return it to you. This is how you start to learn.
I would strongly recommend that if you have just joined us, that you submit the first assignment to us in addition to this one.
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If you feel this article has value, please send this link to others, Writings are meant for people, not for dormant files in our computers and very often when we share them, it results in positive changes in the lives of individuals and communities.
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