Writing Status: Participles and Clauses

Things to correct that I’ve noticed about my writing (so far!):

  • A possible overabundance of participles, participial phrases, and absolute phrases
  • A lack of gerund phrases
  • A lack of “when” and “while” and “where” clauses


Writing Tidbit: Hurricane

A waterfall of rain cascaded over the windshield, the wipers battling futilely.  She peered ahead cautiously, driving slowly and rocking the steering wheel side-to-side in tight, white-knuckled motion as she fought the winds.

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On a Personal Note: Spacecraft in the Solar System

We have spacecraft roaming the solar system. Some are parked in orbit around Earth, and some around Mars. We’ve sent some to collect interstellar dust, others to fly-by most of the planets at one time or another. One spacecraft even landed on a comet.
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A New Year of Writing

As great as my year-end break was, I’m glad to be back to a routine and glad to explore the possibilities here in the new year.

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Writing Tidbit: The Tree

The tree stood as a large sentinel on the land jutting into the bay.  It spread its large branches across higher ground slowly swelling from the flat land around, too gradual to be called a hill.

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Character Arcs and Story Structure

In addition to writing, I’ve been doing more research into story structure.

The problem is, my story doesn’t quite fit the standard model, as each of the three character arcs is well-formed enough to have its own introduction-conflict-resolution — but not at the same points in the overall story.  I think I can strengthen each character’s arc to be more of a solid story, though.

As with all writing advice, I’m going to let it sink in and discard what doesn’t apply.

I also may have too many scenes that are too short.  I’ll be looking at scene structure over the next month.



What I Believe

This will be part of a longer personal series about conservative and being conventional — or not.

Am I conservative? And how conservative is conservative? I might have more liberal views in some areas than you know.  Let’s talk about faith, religion, racism, politics, and other hot-button topics.

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Why was she always such a dork in front of this man?
She went on.
“We were in the office. I was giggling with the other two office girls, typing away on a laptop. I was about to connect the special laptop when suddenly a manager came out of his office (it was a pocket office, not off the main corridor we had checked). We had no idea anyone else was left!”
“I had done a lot of giggling, explaining I had to fix the laptop before Monday.”
“The guy grabbed the special laptop to put it away. I looked at the time, saying I had to go, to come back the next day. My boyfriend (the same one I had chatted up with the girls about my mom not knowing about) was coming.”
“The guy was so suspicious. He found a bug on the edge of the keyboard. I was so wide-eyed and surprised.”
“I thought I wouldn’t make out, but Matt strolled right in and collected me. He was pretending to be the boyfriend.”
The elevator doors dinged.
“And where is he now?” he growled.

Story Trailer/Idea: Colorado, Mountain Climbing, and… Alien?

Here’s an idea from my journal. Let me know what you think in the comments, Facebook, email, contact form, whatever:

Rock climber in Colorado. He watches another climber shimmy up an iced face. The other climber makes a move so fast the watcher almost doesn’t catch it. But catch it he does. It was a move impossible for a human to make.

What does an alien do when stranded on a planet not his own? When he has a long life, and needs to hide out from crowds of people? Learns how to be a mountaineer, of course. Find out how one man learns his secret.

Coming-of-Age for Everyone

I’ve always enjoyed a good coming-of-age story. Generally, these are stories about young people becoming adults and are marketed to youth accordingly. But, coming-of-age stories are more than that. They’re about growing up, realizing one’s mistakes, understanding one’s self, finding truth. And those stories are not just limited to youth, both in the sense of protagonist and in the market.

Trials of divorce, unlikely challenges, and unexpected change affect us at any age. Stories of people who overcome and grow through these are not only stories of the young but of the human condition.

The primary thing I glean from coming-of-age stories?


Hope exists for all of us, to overcome, to persevere, to make it through the trial.

And that’s not a fairy tale.