Newsletter of the Writers Guild of Texas www.wgtonline.org THE MENTOR NOVEMBER 2018 ISSUE October Meeting, 1 / Upcoming Events, “Why I Joined the WGT Board”, Weiss Cracking 2 / Genres 3 /
Scott Bell said, “Fire Up Your Action Scenes” Veteran writer and long-time Writers Guild of Texas member Scott Bell provided our membership with a plethora of suggestions and recommendations to FIRE UP YOUR ACTION SCENES. The night’s presentation started with defining action as anything that is not dialogue or description. Bell focused on four elements: 1) Characters and the need for readers to care about them; 2) Consequences and the importance of bringing suspense, tension, and raising the stakes within your story; 3) Choreography and how to mix it up with short choppy sentences and long breathy sentences; and 4) Conclusion, your scene must end. He also provided us with examples of three common pitfalls to avoid in writing action scenes: 1) Breaking suspension or belief (lightening does not strike on a sunny day); 2) Chekhov’s gun (the concept that if you describe something in your story, you should use it in your story); and 3) Deus ex machina (using a device or machine to resolve your plot issues). Remember the elements and pitfalls as you proof-read your work. A few other recommendations included being believable, being aware of the visual layout of your text including frequent paragraph breaks, one-word paragraphs, multiple one-word paragraphs and a willingness to break grammatical rules. Bell used examples, good and bad, from well-known authors like David Baldacci, Lee Child, Daniel Silva, and Jim Butcher. When it comes to concluding an action scene Scott said, “don’t forget the dialogue and don’t default to magic healing!” Scott’s novels include the mystery/thrillers Yeager's Law, Yeager's Mission, and April's Fool, along with the forthcoming Yeager's Getaway and May Day. He has a Science Fiction novel out called Working Stiffs, and his short stories have appeared in numerous anthologies and online publications. Follow him on BookBub and learn more about his work at https://snapshooter4hire.com/.
2018 WGT EVENTS
The November Critique Group session has been CANCELLED due to the Thanksgiving Holiday.
Dec. 17 WGT Holiday Party 7-8:30 pm featuring networking activities, prizes, refreshments, and the announcement of
the 2018 WGT Flash Fiction contest winners. Members and guests may bring a favorite snack or dessert to share.
Jan. 28 Amber Royer will present Seamless Worldbuilding. Creating a convincing world is important no matter what genre you write in. It is easy to give either too little detail, resulting in a world that seems poorly thought out, or too much detail, leaving the reader overwhelmed. She will discuss how the principle of Hemingway's Iceberg, the adage of showing instead of telling, and the philosophy that character is story play together to give you worldbuilding that feels expansive and seamless.
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The Mentor, November 2018 Page 1 Newsletter of the Writers Guild of Texas www.wgtonline.org THE MENTOR NOVEMBER 2018 ISSUE October Meeting, 1 / Upcoming Events, “Why I Joined the WGT Board”, Weiss Cracking 2 / Genres 3 /
Upcoming WGT Events Why I Decided to Join the WGT Holiday Party Writers Guild of Texas Board
Monday, December 17, 2018 I joined the board after just a few months of attending the 7:00 PM - 8:30 PM Guild meetings. The board seemed like a great group, and I Richardson Public Library wanted to give back to the club and make an impact. It’s been
a fulfilling experience, and I’ve gotten to know other writers Members and Guests, bring your favorite snack or dessert to much better because of it. I find a lot of meaning in helping share, and join us for: Fun, writerly and networking Activities, others achieve their writing goals and Door Prizes, Refreshments, and announcement of the 2018 seeing the growth of our members. With Flash Fiction Contest winners. the help of the other officers, I quickly Seamless Worldbuilding came up to speed on the responsibilities with by Amber Royer and was happy to see how much of a team Monday, January 28, 2019 effort the club really is. I’m excited to see Alex Elfenbein 7:00 PM - 8:30 PM what the next year and a half has in store for the club! Richardson Public Library Alexandria Elfenbein is the Board Vice President of the
Building a convincing world is important Writers Guild of Texas and will advance to President in no matter what genre you write in. It is January 2019. She will serve with David Douglas, Barbara easy to give either too little detail, resulting in a world that Mathes and Leah Hinton our new Program Coordinator. seems poorly thought out, or too much detail, leaving the Please consider joining the Writers Guild of Texas Board to reader overwhelmed. The principle of Hemingway's Iceberg support our community of writers. will be discussed. It is the adage of showing instead of telling, and the philosophy that character is story play together to
give you worldbuilding that feels expansive and seamless. “Weiss-Cracking”
by Jerry Weiss
Writers Guild of Texas 2019 Board
President Julie Mendel Vice President: Alex Elfenbein
Secretary David Douglas
Treasurer: Rainer Bantau
Membership Chairman: Barbara Mathes
Program Coordinator: Leah Hinton
Communications Chairman: Gary Bowers Website Chairman: David Douglas Social Media Volunteer: OPEN * Critique Group Coordinator: OPEN*
*We encourage you to serve the WGT in one of these
positions. Learn more by talking to any one of the Board members. Without a Board, the Writers Guild of Texas cannot exist. “HARRY, YOUR MUSE HAS SUFFERED ENOUGH FOR TONIGHT .”
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The Mentor, November 2018 Page 2 Newsletter of the Writers Guild of Texas www.wgtonline.org THE MENTOR NOVEMBER 2018 ISSUE
October Meeting, 1 / Upcoming Events, “Why I Joined the WGT Board”, Weiss Cracking 2 / Genres 3 /
Here is a list of genres, although you may know of many • Picture book – picture storybook is a book with very others. Do y0u write in one genre or across one or more little words and a lot of pictures; picture stories are genres? Take a look and see if you find another genre to usually for children tackle or a genre that sparks a new story idea. • Romance – the relationship and romantic love between two people, and must have an "emotionally • Biography – a narrative of a person's life; when the satisfying and optimistic ending. subgenres include author is also the main sub, this is an autobiography. fantasy, paranormal and historical romance. • Classic – fiction that has become part of an accepted • Science fiction – typically dealing with imaginative literary canon, widely taught in schools concepts such as advanced science and technology, • Comics/Graphic novel – comic magazine or book spaceflight, time travel, and extraterrestrial life. based on a sequence of pictures (often hand drawn) • Self-help book – information with the intention of and few words. instructing readers on solving personal problems. • Crime/detective – fiction about a crime, how the • Short story – fiction of great brevity, without subplots criminal gets caught, and the repercussions of the • Thriller – characterized by the actions that elicit, crime heightened feelings of suspense, excitement, surprise, • Fable – legendary, supernatural tale demonstrating a anticipation and anxiety. useful truth • Fairy tale – story about fairies or other magical • Western – fiction set in the American Old West and placed in the late 1700 to late 1800’s creatures • Fantasy – fiction with subplot(s), theme(s), major • Young adult (YA) – is a category of fiction published and minor characters, in which the narrative is for readers in their youth. YA books are for readers presented in verse form (usually free verse) from 12 to 18 years of age, although approximately • Folklore – the songs, stories, myths, and proverbs of half of YA readers are adults. a people or "folk" as handed down by word of mouth • Historical fiction – story with fictional characters and events in an historical setting • Horror – fiction in which events evoke a feeling of I still get up every dread and fear in both the characters and the reader morning at 4 A.M. I • Humor – usually a fiction full of fun, fancy, and write seven days a week, excitement, meant to entertain and sometimes cause intended laughter; but can be contained in all genres including Christmas. • Legend – story of a national or folk hero, that has a And I still face a blank basis in fact but also includes imaginative material page every morning, • Memoir – factual story that focuses on a significant and my characters don't relationship between the writer and a person, place, or object; reads like a short novel really care how many • Mystery – fiction dealing with the solution of a crime books I've sold. or the revealing of secrets Dan Brown
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