Blog by VONNIE DAVIS -- International, Award-Winning Romance Author: Adventurous...Humorous...Amorous.

Wednesday, September 28, 2016

Wednesday Writerly Wisdom

No one starts out as a good writer.

There are those with a natural inclination for it. They can tell a good story. Hold your interest. But no one starts out as a good writer.

I was one of those nerdy students who loved term paper time. I'd get darn near giddy at the prospect of researching a topic and then writing about it. My college professors loved the papers I turned in. Often they read segments of them to the class. But I was not a good writer.

I'd worked as a technical writer for two companies. I knew how to craft a sentence. But guess what? I was not a good writer.

To become a good writer, I had a craft to learn. And there were no short-cuts. I had to read books on the topics, take online classes, attend workshops...and get dinged by editors. So, let me repeat this because a lot of new writers aren't getting it.


After five years in this business, I'm still learning it. There are no short cuts. Yeah, I said that already. One needs to develop her characters. I don't mean the color of their hair or eyes or their height or whether they have six or eight-pack abs. Really, that stuff is so unimportant. What is important is how they think, act, and react. What makes the person tick? How will this person fit into this particular story? What makes this man perfect for this woman?

We need to think through what drives the story: Goals, Motivation and Conflict. I had zero clue on this when I started writing.

Dialogue. It's got to be fresh and zippy. It has to move the story along. It has to age appropriate. Some reviewers say my characters talk like old people. Ouch! Dialogue must also show sexual tension. Mine doesn't always do that. I have to rewrite a lot.

Opening hook. My favorite thing. I work hardest at this, because I love a story that opens with a bang, reaching out and grabbing me by the throat and telling me to hang on. I'm going to be in for a helluva ride.

Pull emotions from your reader. I'm reading a lot of books whose only intent seems to titillate. I know that sounds odd coming from me since I write high on the heat scale, but I also write with a strong plot. I want a good where the sex fits and doesn't feel like it's been put there as often as necessary. I mean, folks, people get sore!!! Let's keep it real. Learn your craft so you don't have to rely on sex alone to hold the reader's attention.

Learn your craft. Good writers have to work to get to that classification. I'm still working. Still learning. Still rewriting and rewriting...and rewriting.


Cathy Connell said...

Bonnie I always love hearing about you and your writing helps me to connect to you.
From your No. 1 bear FAN

Cathy Connell said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Cathy Connell said...

Uuugh! I know how to spell your name!!! Vonnie!!! ;)

Vonnie Davis ~ Romance Author said...

Thank you, Kathy. I'm just an ordinary woman with an over-active imagination. A grandma who bakes cookies and writes. No one special. But...BUT...I am fortunate enough to have very special fans.

Angela Adams said...

My grandmother always said, "Life is a never ending learning experience." And, writers are constantly working to better their craft.

Vonnie Davis ~ Romance Author said...

So true, Angela. A writer's learning curve is continual. And you better learn to accept criticism, because you'll be slapped with it.