Tag Archive | revising

Awesome Young Authors in Ottawa

Yes, it’s on! The Ottawa Public Library is holding its annual Awesome Authors Contest for youth aged 9-17. If you’re a young person in Ottawa with something to say, get to work on saying it well. (BTW, the 9-year-olds don’t have to compete with the high-schoolers. The contest is divided into three age categories: 9-11; […]

SCBWI Spring Conference in Ottawa

There are still a few spaces left for Ottawa’s SCBWI Art of Story Conference scheduled for the end of the month. For two days, guest speakers will offer workshops and presentations to everyone interested in writing or illustrating children’s books, from aspiring picture book illustrators to established YA novelists. There’s something for every level of experience. The conference will offer presentations, workshops, one-on-one critique […]

What are you Writing Now?

I went to Laurentian Regional High School yesterday and spoke with Secondary I and II (Grade 7 and 8) students who’d been reading my novel, All Good Children, in class. The students were great audiences: attentive, informed and enthusiastic. They sent me a long list of questions in advance of my visit, and I tried to incorporate my […]

Friday Fable: The Writer and the Word Limit

You may have heard the old story, The Crow and the Pitcher: A crow was nearly dead of thirst when he spied a pitcher of water on a picnic table just beside the dried-up river bed. He flew over and tried to take a sip but, alas, the pitcher was close to empty. Only an inch […]

He Said/ She Sighed Part 3 – Enough Already!

Here’s one last rant sparked by a “how to write fiction” book that advised using “said/say” as the only dialogue verb (as in, “‘I spent thirty dollars on jelly beans at Mont Tremblant this weekend,’ she said.”) (That is a true statement, sadly. They fool you with the $2.99/100g sign. I still think in pounds. “Grab a bag each,” […]

He Said/She Sighed Part 2

I grabbed twenty books from the living room shelf, opened each to a random page, and checked out all the verbs used in dialogue. And here is what I learned: Almost all the authors used a simple “said” at least half the time. But none of them used said all the time. None. Not one. […]

Friday Fable: The Climax that went “meh”

You may know the old tale, “The Mountain in Labour:” A magnificent mountain began to rumble one day, and it made such a mighty noise that it was heard across the land, and people came from far and wide to witness the wonder that was bound to follow. Thousands gathered at the base of the mountain, […]

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