Category Archives: Writing

My thoughts on, struggles with, progress in, and news of all things writing.

Name That Character . . . Or Baby

Baby Jack

      Naming characters. It’s a lot of fun, but at times, it can also be surprisingly difficult. There’s a lot you have to consider when naming anyone, whether it’s a real baby or a fictional one: how the first, middle, and last names sound together; family names; meanings of names; personality (if it’s a character), and that’s just to name a few. I’m always on the lookout for character names (seriously, you would think that I have a billion kids based on how many baby name websites I view), so I would love to hear your suggestions. The names have to fit the character, whether in meaning or sound or personality or all three. I don’t want to use a common name unless it matches that character’s personality; I want unique names, but there is a fine line between different and just downright weird (think Espn or Tequila). Sometimes I’ll stick in a placeholder name, like Claire or Seth, for my main characters until I can come up with fitting names for them. I’d rather do that than go with the first one that pops into my head!

Original artwork in pencil by MeMe Collier

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Filed under Day to Day Musing, Writing

Plausibility and Capability

               I have an idea. I’m not sure that it’s a plausible idea, but it is an idea. I’ve considered trying to publish an anthology of the poetry, short stories, and nonfiction pieces I’ve written. However, I’m concerned that there might not be much of a market for that sort of thing. To my knowledge, it certainly isn’t very main stream, and pulp fiction, in general, is most popular with teenagers right now. The novels I have written or plan on writing are usually geared towards a young adult audience, although I have considered writing for adults, and the anthology would probably appeal to them more so than teenagers. Since I am technically not an adult quite yet, I feel that perhaps I should gain some experience before writing a fiction novel for adults; I don’t want to be presumptuous and act like I know about topics when I really don’t have a full grasp of them. It’s a similar issue with historical fiction; I have several ideas there, but to write a historical fiction novel properly, you have to do the research, and I simply don’t have time for that with school (which, as it’s a college prep school, frankly takes up far too much of my time), social activities, family, and friends. Thus, goodbye to that idea until after college.

               Another problem I have is negative capability. John Keats defines this as a writer’s ability to step outside his or her perspective so that he or she can passively receive inspiration. According to some literature theory, a good writer should practice this technique so that his or her message doesn’t overwhelm the rest of what the piece has to offer. I know this, and I want to employ it, but here’s the catch: I am a Christian. I harbor no ill feelings towards other religious beliefs, but I cannot help how I feel about mine. Sometimes I write characters that are blatantly anti-God, and sometimes I write characters that are ambivalent; other times, I write characters that are Christians. It simply depends on what the situation calls for. However, in certain scenarios, I feel that I cannot help but bring God into the story; I’m not trying to preach to my readers, but it feels wrong for me to leave Him out of a situation in which my worldview believes that He is inherently a part of. For example, how do I explain accepting the questions in life to which there are no answers without God’s sovereignty? My mother has been ill with a brain tumor for five years. Without God in my own life, I don’t know how I’d deal with that; there would be no sense to it, just suffering. When my characters face similar tragedies, and I need them to cope and carry on in order to resolve the conflict, I have issues with believably making them do it without biblical support. This is a real dilemma because I want to stay true to my vision, but I also don’t want to alienate readers. Furthermore, I want to be a good writer, and that often depends on how others perceive the quality of my writing. I believe that there is a difference between popular writing and good writing; they are not necessarily the same thing.

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Launching of Wonderstruck Anthology

ImageWonderstruck is almost here! My short story “The Fairy Jar” will be featured in this anthology by Clean Teen Publishing. To get involved . . .

Check out http://www.cleanteenpublishing.com/wonderstruck-authors.html to read up on the authors.

Check out http://www.cleanteenpublishing.com/wonderstruck-anthology.html to find out more information on the contest behind the project.

Join the WONDERSTRUCK Anthology- Virtual Release Party event on Facebook.

See my previous post on the Wonderstruck Rafflecopter giveaway.

(Image credit: http://cleanteenpublishing.blogspot.com/2013/05/wonderstruck-giveaway-of-epic.html)

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Filed under Wonderstruck, Writing

Wonderstruck Giveaway – $100 Amazon Gift Card and More

In celebration of the launching of Wonderstruck, an anthology by Clean Teen Publishing, enter their Rafflecopter drawing for an opportunity to win a $100 Amazon gift card, a digital copy of Wonderstruck, and a Wonderstruck bookmark. 

My short story “The Fairy Jar” will be featured in the anthology released May 31, 2013.

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May 29, 2013 · 5:04 am

Poem from MeMe Collier

This is part of a poem I wrote called “Interlude In Somnium.” It revolves around my novel, Etherworld, as it is written from the perspective of one character to his brother.

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Why I Write

Last night, my grandmother suggested that I be a screenwriter. Yeah, that’s cool, and there are times I’ve wondered what it would be like to write for a movie or television series rather than a novel, but—and don’t take this in a petty way—screen writers get no credit. Outside of the entertainment industry, few know their names with the exception of guys like Steven King, but that’s because he writes novels. The people  we remember are the actors and occasionally the directors. With books, though, the majority of readers will pick one up, and if they like it, they’ll look up the author to see what else they’ve written. Those that I like to call “true readers” will form an emotional bond with the book if it’s good, and in a way, that bond extends to the author–the driving, creative force behind the novel. My grandmother then pointed out that a lot of readers just read for pleasure and don’t care who wrote the book, but I countered her by saying that if it were my book, that would be fine with me. However, I don’t really write for them. They’d help further my career, which I definitely appreciate, but they’re not my intended audience. I write for those who read a book and connect with it, who care about what’s behind the words–what they mean and stand for. I want to reach out to them while staying true to my own vision. Art for art’s sake, the Aesthetes say. Not to make money or fame, but to simply create a thing that lives and breathes beauty. To a degree, that is me. Even if I don’t become famous or make any money, I will continue to write, because it is a great part of who I am. However, I’m not wholly satisfied with just that. I still strive, still aspire to something more—but not just for myself, not really. I want to touch people’s lives. I want to make them see what I see and feel what I feel. I want to create entire worlds and share them with this one. I truly believe that imagination is the key to all kingdoms; because of it, there are always new worlds to explore, new doors to open, new dreams to dream. Besides my own personal passion and enjoyment, this is what keeps my mind moving and my fingers typing. This is why I write. 

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