If I’m Being Honest…

This is my acceptance of my weekend challenge. I’m not really satisfied with it, but I wrote it after hearing about an online bullying incident of a friend. By my own personal rule, I stay out of hot topics online.

 

If I’m being honest…

 

If I’m being honest…

I’d say I’m trapped in a parade.

Always presenting an outside life.

Walking an endless charade,

Along the edge of the world’s strife.

 

If I’m being honest…

I hold back what I yearn to say.

I wish to take up my sword

And run into the fray.

Never to turn back, but always towards.

 

If I’m being honest…

I’d admit I’m scared,

And I’ll bite my lip.

Instead of facing the feared

I’ll give them the slip.

 

If I’m being honest…

I’d tell them they’re the cowards

For hiding behind computer screens

And using anonymity’s rewards

To say things cruel and mean.

 

If I’m being honest…

One voice shares an opinion

Only to be torn down

By family, friends, or Satan’s minion

Who laugh as the innocent frown.

 

If I’m being honest…

I’d say I’m tired of the fighting.

We’re all humans, living together,

Why are we still bickering?

There’s more important things to weather.

 

If I’m being honest…

We should use this passion

For things that really matter

Like against slavery, hunger, destruction

Abuse, hate, and murder.

 

If I’m being honest…

I’d shout to the world

That we need to be in alignment.

But because of the harsh online world

My message will remain silent.

 

L. R. Mauck

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Author Bio’s

Writing an author bio was a little hard for me. A bio must be short – one to two paragraphs depending on your qualifications and if you are writing fiction or nonfiction.

pen

In my research, a bio is written in third person. A good example of a bio is to look in the back of most books. They’ll include an author’s bio.

List who you are, a pen name if you go by one. Write a short couple of background sentences about yourself, another sentence for schooling – if it relates to writing, and your qualifications to write your nonfiction topic. I, personally, hold a bachelors in Hospitality Management, and several associates in culinary arts and architecture. None of these degrees are worthwhile in the writer’s industry unless I was writing a cookbook or another degree topic. However, I did take several writing classes when I spent two years working on an English degree before switching my major. So, I list my creative writing classes.

Then list where you live – city and/or state in a closing sentence.

 

Websites to help:

How To Write A Bio – this one also gives a diagram

9 Tips on a Great Author Bio

Writing An Author Bio – this link offers links to writing organizations

 

L. R. Mauck

Current book word count total: 11,045 words

 

Personal Update

Hello. I just personally want to take a moment and thank all of you who have followed me – both here on the blog and on twitter. I’ve been amazed over the last few months with the responses I’ve received and the encouragement from other writers. Thank you. It has truly been an uplifting experience.

End of June, I joined a website called “Camp NaNoWriMo”. It’s to encourage writers to achieve a set goal of word count for a particular month. Sadly, I’ve not hit my 20,000 words of which I thought would be easily obtainable. However, this month got incredibly busy that I’ve found I’m too exhausted to write in the evenings. Plus, there was a “writer’s block” last week that I could not get passed until I got some research done for the book. I wrote a little bit this weekend but spent more time playing solitaire on the computer with my book in the background. With the research accomplished, I hope to get back at it this week. I doubt I’ll hit the 20,000 words, but I’ll aim for at least 5,000 this month.

My book/agency update: Sadly, I must have received my first rejection. The agency never contacted me back. BUT I am not disheartened. I went back through the first few chapters and saw a bunch of mistakes. So, I can’t blame them. It was pretty poor of me to submit that when I didn’t read back over my changes. At the conference I learned a lot of what to do and not to do. So, I did a very quick rewrite of my first three chapters and submitted it. This one was my fault and I take full blame. I have since fixed the errors and sent queries off to two more agencies. One I might hear back in two weeks and the other is a month. I know I will not succeed in the first hand full of attempts. So, I’ll keep pressing on.

To writers out there: Never give up. This is your dream. Just like actors, athletes, artists, and musicians – you must practice your craft and work to achieve your dream.

L. R. Mauck

Dialogue

Dialogue: 1. A conversation between two or more parties 2. the parts of a literary or dramatic work that represents a conversation (Merriam-Webster’s Dictionary)

Inserting a conversation between your characters is, in my opinion, one of the better options available to move a story along or reveal past or current parts of the story without falling to telling. It also allows your characters to interact with one another – brings the characters alive by showing thought process behind the conversation as well as facial expressions and gives the characters a voice.

dialogue

Do: Pay attention to proper punctuation when writing dialogue. Use quotations for someone’s conversations, not single apostrophes (unless, it is a quote within a quotation i.e. “Tom said it was ‘by the barn’,” said Phil.)

Don’t: Don’t write speeches. Dialogue is a conversation between multiple parties. Break up the talking, even if it’s an inserted “Uh” from another character. If your character has over a paragraph of speech – that’s too much. Simplify it, or shorten it.

Don’t: When writing dialogue, don’t fall into the pattern of changing or using multiple synonyms of “said” as each person that speaks.

Example:

“Larry,” said Mark. “What are you doing tonight?”

“I’m not sure,” he replied. “Is there some where you want to go?”

“I need to go to the store,” Mark answered.

“Do you want me to go with you?” Larry asked.

 

An agent mentioned that the word “said” is typically overlooked by the reader anyway. Their eyes follow the conversation and who is speaking, not so much of “said”, “replied,” etc. You can reuse “said” multiple times within a conversation, but it’s easier to leave it out if the conversation is between only two people.

 

Cleaned Example:

“Larry,” said Mark. “What are you doing tonight?”

“I’m not sure. Is there somewhere you want to go?”

“I need to go to the store.”

“Do you want me to go with you?” Larry asked.

 

Also, I’ve seen several dialogues that have a word that ends in “ly” following the speaker to relate an expression or movement.

 

Example:

“Larry,” said Mark, hesitantly. “What are you doing tonight?”

“I’m not sure. Is there somewhere you want to go?” His eyebrows rose in waiting for a response.

“I need to go to the store.”

“Do you want me to go with you?” Larry asked, reluctantly.

 

It does add more to the converstation, but the “ly” gets used a lot when you do dialogue throughout your novel. So, change it up a little.

 

Clean Example:

“Larry,” said Mark, hesitantly. “What are you doing tonight?”

“I’m not sure. Is there somewhere you want to go?” His eyebrows rose in waiting for a response.

“I need to go to the store.”

“Do you want me to go with you?” Larry asked with reluctance.

 

L. R. Mauck

 

Weekend Challenge #12

challengeThis weekend challenge is going to be tough in my opinion. I want you to describe what pain is. I do not want synonyms used: ache, hurt, anguish, twinge, pang, etc. If you need to describe a scene – go for it. I want to know how you can divulged pain to the reader without telling or using the word. How can you make the reader connect and feel that pain?

Sorry, I couldn’t come up with a better challenge. I had not realized just how much of a writing muse Linkin Park was to me until yesterday.

One More Light has gone out.

lpMy little world just got shaken. There are no words to describe the heartache and disbelief at the moment. Back in 2001 I heard a song that knocked me back and completely changed my view on music. I was 16 and in the middle of my N’Sync era. Linkin Park’s song “In The End” went mainstream and was featured on the TRL count down. I truly had never heard a voice like Chester Bennington’s before. His range was simply amazing. He could hold strong notes for multiple beats. He could  easily transition from singing to hard core rock. But more so, he put himself completely into the words of the songs. You could feel and connect to the songs on an emotional level. I have followed the band for years and truly love how they have been able to capture a unique sound and enjoyed watching and hearing their growth as musicians, standing the test of time. Each member has something, irreplaceable, to offer to the band: Mike, Dave, Rob, Brad, Joe, and Chester.

Linkin Park has very much shaped my life. They were there for me to listen to for my commute, they were there through my breakups, they were there for inspiration. Much of my writing has been influenced by them, whether it was by study of their lyrics and model characters after the band members, or by listening to their music for hours while writing.

To Chester Bennington’s family, friends, and the band: I can never dream of what you are experiencing right now. He’s left so many people behind that care for him. I hope you all will be able to honor his memory as you find your way through this tragedy. You are in my thoughts and prayers. He inspired so many, and I’m grateful that I count myself with those who feel the same.

lp2

To all of you who struggle with suicidal thoughts, there is help. If you ever need someone to reach out to: please call National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-TALK (8255).
If you feel uncomfortable speaking to a stranger – then talk to a close friend, a family member, even your doctor. There is help. You are NOT alone.

Whatever is going on around you that is dragging you down, look to the things that hold you up. You can get through this. You can survive. Be that example to others. Show them your strength. Rise above it. You can do it. I have faith in you.

“One More Light” is out.