Skip to main content

Cut the boring...

It's been a crazy few days having my eight year old grandson, Chase Andrew, here while trying to get the article finished for The Plain Dealer, and jotting notes and scenes for the novel I'm working on.
Chase loves to read and write too so while I write he writes: letters to his mom, sister, and two brothers. Or he draws pictures. One day he drew a wonderful detailed picture of Batman and all the leading characters in the movie. It's on the refrigerator, though he tells me it's a gift for his mom when he goes home.
Chase is one of a set of triplets. He's highly intelligent and just as inquisitive. If I've heard, "But why Nanny, why?" Once I've heard it a million times.
Chase has all the attributes of a good writer. He's not satisfied with what satisfies everyone else. He wants to know more. He wants to dig deeper. He wants the whole picture. He wants to know the motive and he needs to know what's behind all the action. And that's what I want to know too when I write.
Right now I'm working on motive for each one of my characters and looking at why they've made the choices they've made - which is what sets a novel in motion.
I have most of the motives and have written several scenes. Now I'm laboring over my notes and deciding which scene to put in and which to leave out.
I think it was Elmore Leonard who said, "I try to leave out the parts that readers skip." How many times have you been reading a good book and come upon several pages of a description or information that is plain boring and you skip on to the next bit of "action?" In this story, I'm making an effort to leave out the parts that readers skip. I hope I'm successful.
The story is being told by an eight year old girl and I think that makes it pretty exciting. You never know what an eight year old will do. I'm learning!


  1. Inquisitive is definitely a perfect word to describe Chase Androody. He always wants the whole picture, the details, and everything in between. I'm glad that he is behaving, and that you and dad are having some quiet time while he is with Daddy Tim. Love you guys!

  2. We have had fun and I have a new respect for Mommy! He's busy and he requires it from everyone else in the house.
    I believe he needs a journal and I'd set the boy writing about some of his feelings and thoughts and ideas. He might form a career at this young age.


Post a Comment

Popular posts from this blog

The Dreaded School Pictures

This year when my children brought home their school pictures, I cringed. These kids can leave home looking cherubic, but the minute they pose for that school photographer they are transposed into unrecognizable beings. My middle daughter brought home pictures bearing her name and room number that couldn't have been my offspring. Nor a distant relative.
I had worked for hours on this child. Her hair was parted in the middle and drawn into a cute little ponytail over each ear. Even though she is at an awkward age, she looked adorable when she went out that door. Her missing front teeth only added to her charm. The kid in the picture has her mouth open wide displaying ugly dark gaps. Her one visible ponytail is lopsided, her part is uneven, and her bangs look like they were cut with pinking shears. I know this isn't my child because I always give my children a good haircut before they have their pictures taken. The only thing vaguely familiar is the sweater the child has on. My dau…

My Favorite Essay by Gladys Taber


From an essay by Gladys Taber
Family Circle  - September 1982

    I sat in the sun the other day while the dogs dug up the lawn and thought about work. I wasn’t working. I was just thinking about it. I have found that when I cannot possibly accomplish everything I am supposed to and feel an unbearable pressure---as all homemakers must---if I just stop, life goes better.
    I get a good book, make some spiced tea and sit down on my own corner of the sofa or in my favorite lawn chair. I let life settle in around me, and that is the only way I can express it. After 20 minutes or half an hour, I go back to the mechanics of living.  AND at days end I am just as far along as if I had not stopped to think.

Another of her thoughts: time for thinking is a gift one can give only to one’s self.

Hope you enjoy reading this as much as I have over the years. When I've had it with my life some days -  I have only to sit down with a glass of sweet tea and think of this essay an…

Rewriting/ Quotes by other writers

Sometimes beginning writers say they don't believe in rewriting because they're afraid they'll "lose the spontaneity" of the first draft. This is naive; rewriting means making the work better by adding, deleting, and revising; what worked well in the first draft stays--that's the effective spontaneity. Most professional writers know the heady sense of control that comes with the revision process--this is where one knows one has mastery of the writing craft. Note the following comments. Not sure who wrote the above intro but the quotes below are worthy of sharing. Enjoy!

"It is no sign of weakness or defeat that your manuscript ends up in need of major surgery. This is common in all writing and among the best of writers."
- E. B. White

"I don't write easily or rapidly. My first draft usually has only a few elements worth keeping. I have to find what those are and build from them and throw out what doesn't work, or what simply is not aliv…