Welcome to Following the Whispers blog

Thank you so much for taking the time to visit. Hope you enjoy your stay. I blog here whenever I feel the need. This blog was created at the time my memoir came out, in February, 2009. Its motto was: creating a life of inner peace and self-acceptance from the depths of despair. Now, my focus is sharing this journey we call life.

“Only one thing is more frightening than speaking your truth, and that is not speaking it.” Naomi Wolf

“We are called human beings, not human doings.” Wes Nisker, Buddhist teacher

“It is not the critic who counts; not the man who points out how the strong man stumbles, or where the doer of deeds could have done them better. The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena, whose face is marred by dust and sweat and blood; who strives valiantly; who errs…(And) if he fails, at least fails while daring greatly.” Theodore Roosevelt

Wednesday, June 5, 2013

Insecure Writer's Support Group - June

First of all, thank you, Alex http://alexjcavanaugh.blogspot.com for creating this forum for writers to share their angst, their successes, their joys, their struggles. I am in the throes of going through my novel (my first attempt at fiction writing) line by line and trying to "show" not "tell." It is a torturous process for me, as I am a nonfiction writer by trade. The negative voice inside me says, "Ha ha, you think you're a writer. If you were a real writer, this would be a piece of cake." Then the voice of Spirit/wisdom says, "No, all writers struggle with some aspect or other in writing. You can do it."

Well, there's doing it and there's doing it well. That remains to be seen...
Blessings,
Karen

20 comments:

Elizabeth Spann Craig/Riley Adams said...

That's a tough edit, but it's going to make sure a big difference! I struggle with description, myself, and always put it in at the end. Excited for you that you're in the edit stage!

YVONNE LEWIS: said...

In life whether it be writing or any situation I do try and let the positive side take over the negative, but it's not always that easy. I'm sure your book will be a success when finished. Good luck.

Yvonne.

Tonja said...

The work will be worth it. I do that too - edit all the way through to fix one thing, then another round to fix something else.

Karen Walker said...

Elizabeth, that makes me feel better!
Yvonne, yes it isn't always easy
Tonja, I know it will be! Thanks

Alex J. Cavanaugh said...

Hey I write fiction and taking out the tell is never a piece of cake. Don't worry, you'll get it!

Julie Flanders said...

Sometimes just the phrase "show don't tell" makes me want to crawl in a hole and hide. It's such a hard thing to do. But I know you can and will do it and do it well! :)

L.G. Smith said...

Writing is all about the revision. That's the hard part of the process, but it's also the part I enjoy the most. I like getting the words just right. That's where you get to bring your intelligence and emotions to the story and really make it sing with your voice. :))

Jess * Jessie * Jessy said...

I thought I'd 'mastered' POV and show vs. tell -- until my editor got hold of my novella. Now I realize, I'm beginning to forget all I knew .. or someone's changing the rules. :)

Elsie Amata said...

I think it's great that you've finished your novel and are now editing it. I wish you the best as you go through and make the changes. I'm still in the writing stage.

S.K. Anthony said...

I struggle all the time! I think it would be a lot easier if they allowed us to "tell" stuff sometimes lol... ah well, we can't have it all. I'm trying to practice my skills at "showing" more too. I'm sure you'll nail it ;)

Karen Walker said...

Alex, thanks, makes me feel better
Julie, me, too
L.G., yes, I enjoyed this phase in my memoir- the fiction, not so much
Jess, oy!
Elsie, thanks - you'll get there!
S.K. ah yes, it would be easier - but who said life was supposed to be easy?

Pk Hrezo said...

You said it, Karen! Writing fiction is SUPER hard. So many elements to get on track for it to work. I think that's why it takes so many so long to be successful with it.

M. J. Joachim said...

Oh yes you can! The power of positive thinking applies here!

Liza said...

If it were easy, it wouldn't mean nearly as much to us. Good for you and good luck!

Candilynn Fite said...

You're so right, Karen. All of us go through the struggles. I wish you the best with your fiction! I appreciate your sweet comment on my IWSG post today. New follower. :)

Susan Flett Swiderski said...

You can do it!!! I know you can.

Arlee Bird said...

If it were a piece of cake you'd be a hack--or a baker. I not saying anything bad about hacks, but I don't think that's what you're aiming for.

Lee
Wrote By Rote

Suze said...

Writing fiction is a titanic, blessed struggle. Tell the wrong voice to shut the hell up and keep at it, beautiful lady.

Sharon Lippincott said...

Karen,

Do you know how few people get to this point? Bravo for you! Big victory.

None of the painters I know dab paint on canvas in one sitting and have a masterpiece an hour later. They begin with a rough sketch as the "bones", then add layers of color and detail, constantly refining and enhancing.

You are painting with words. Natalie Goldberg has us write down the bones, and Anne Lamott urges us to flesh out those bones with a shitty first draft. (Bones and draft may coincide.) Now you're fleshing it out, refining, adding details. That's how it works!

I have a few chapters on dealing with that pesky inner critic on The Heart and Craft of Writing Compelling Description.

What I don't cover is the importance of sections of narrative (telling) to condense connective material and tie the "showing" scenes together. You have to do some telling! Read some acclaimed novels and memoirs and study how they do this.

I read last night that twenty edits is about the minimum for a decent product.

Write on!

Talli Roland said...

Ugh, I know the feeling well - I get that little voice in my head every time. If you figure out how to shut it up, please let me know!