Thursday, September 22, 2011

Location Change

Due to a scheduling snafu, we have a temporary location through the end of the year. 

West Regional Library
1425 Chaffee Road South
Jacksonville, FL 32221

The library is located on Chaffee Road between Normandy Boulevard and I-10.  There is a traffic light at the entrance. 

We will be meeting here from 9/29/11 through 12/15/11 with one exception.  We will meet at our regular location (Wesconnett library) on 10/6/11. 

Due to the holidays we will not meet on Thanksgiving (11/24) or the two weeks of Christmas (12/22 and 12/29).

Saturday, September 17, 2011

Critiques and Books

Our group loves critique! So we've decided that, for the time being, we're going to concentrate on that aspect with the occasional speaker.  But since education is an important part of our craft, I'd like to share some of my favorite writing books with you.

The first book I read when I started my writing journey was Self-Editing for Fiction Writers: How to edit yourself into print by Renni Browne and Dave King.

Both authors are professional editors; Renni Browne began The Editorial Department, a national book-editing company, in 1980 after working for various mainstream publishers including William Morrow.  Dave King works as an independent editor at and also serves as a contributing editor for Writer's Digest.

This book is a good overall guide to fiction writing with chapters on: Show and Tell, Characterization and Exposition, Point of View, Proportion (bogged down in details), Dialogue Mechanics, See How It Sounds, Interior Monologue (voices in one's head), Easy Beats, Breaking Up is Easy to Do, Once is Usually Enough, Sophistication (polished and professional), and Voice.

Each chapter has examples of typical mistakes, followed by the same passage written a better way - I could clearly see my writing in many of the first examples and easily mimic the second.  A checklist at the end of the chapters serves as a summary of important points and exercises provide an opportunity to apply the lessons.

There are books on these specific topics that will go into further depth, but this is a good introduction to all the elements of fiction writing.