Questionable: Emotional Shorthand

Suzanne said:

In my first draft, I’ve got characters grimacing, smirking, scowling, smiling, and laughing. In every subsequent pass, I work hard to go deeper into the character’s POV to figure out what he’s actually experiencing. But it’s hard because that leads to a lot of teeth grinding, gut clenching, and hands curling into fists (not literally, but you know what I mean). And that’s not good, right? I’ve been told not to do that–but isn’t that showing what they’re feeling viscerally? It’s overdone, for sure, but…? So how do we show/express a character’s emotions without being clichéd or…dumb? How do you do it differently for men and women?

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Happy “Crap, I Forgot It’s” Cherry Saturday, “Again” 2 – 21- 2015

But I remembered because now I have heat and my brains thawed out.

So how cold are you? (If you’re not cold, how’s that drought coming?) (If you’re not cold or in the middle of a drought, what horrible things are happening to you because of the weather?) (No, wait, that’s depressing, what’s GOOD in your life?)

Good in my life: Working heat. And you?

Also, it’s World Pangolin Day:
They’re endangered, so enjoy ’em while we got ’em.


I’m still brain-frozen, but there are interesting things being talked about on the net about women in stories and agency. I first heard “agency” as part of characterization a couple of years ago and had no idea what it meant, so for those of you in the same boat, here’s Chuck Wendig’s definition: Continue reading

Cabin Fever

I’m trapped inside a cottage with four dogs and some miscellaneous wildlife–mice I think–that have decided that four dogs is less of a threat than the sub-zero temps and no food. I’m okay with that; chasing screaming after the skittering in the next room is the only exercise these guys are getting since once they get outside the snow is taller than they are. The good news: If they can make it up over the edge of the shoveled walk, they can run all they want because the snow is covered with ice. Yes, that’s the good news. Continue reading

Happy Cherry Valentine’s Day

Eat more chocolate.


(Okay, I really want to make these. They’re mini cupcakes decorated with Valentine’s candy; the truffles are chocolate covered marshmallows. Which means I have to get to the store before the candy is all gone. Back later.)