Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Dwindling dweeby dwarf dwellings

Something quick and, for those on the final day of NaNoWriMo, a bit of a mental break from plotting :-)

There are only 4 words in the English language that begin with dw. Write at least 10 very different sentences using at least 3 of the dw words in each sentence in different ways (obviously changing tenses and forms as you wish).

dwarf
dwell
dwindle
dweeb


Inspired by #88 in Unjournaling: Daily Writing Exercises that Are NOT Personal, NOT Introspective, NOT Boring! by Dawn DiPrince and Cheryl Miller Thurston.

Thursday, November 25, 2010

Be thankful today because tomorrow ...

Bigger at Motifake
What are your characters thankful for? Yes, even the bad guy.

Let them be blissfully thankful today. Because all those things they're thankful for are their weaknesses and tomorrow you will have Fate and the bad guy take them all away <eg>.

Happy Thanksgiving!

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Internal conflicts

Have the heart, soul, mind and body of a character argue about what's been done to them and what direction things should go. It can be the character in your Nano, a favorite character you created, or one someone else created.

Monday, November 22, 2010

Thursday, November 18, 2010

Adambot and Evedroid

Adoptabots by Brian Marshall
Retell the story of Adam and Eve from the point of view of robots with their creator in the role of God.

What knowledge would their creator not want them to have? What would this forbidden portal to knowledge be? What would it look like to them?

Who would want to tempt them to take the knowledge and why? What form would the tempter take?


Their knowledge of the world would be only what their creator allowed them to have. Some artificial intelligence research involves giving robots some rudimentary goals and an understanding of how to explore. This allows them to build their own understanding of their world, refining it as they learn from the results of what they try. So what would their view of their world be? What understanding would they have of their creator? If they were to record their story of how they were kicked out of or escaped from robot paradise how would it read? What misconceptions would they have in their understanding of their creator and his or her motives and of robot paradise?

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

All of the damned

All of the damned
Cripes. All of them? Yes, every single one of them. In your Nano. Soon. (Though of course you can take it in creative directions!)

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Muck it up

Are things sailing along a little too smoothly in the middle of your story? Do you have a story you abandoned when things got boring? Try one of these:
  • Your character gets defensive, edgy, paranoid. Maybe for good reason.
  • Do you believe in justice? If so, who is not getting their fair share of bad karma? Even the scales by doing something unfortunate to the character that has suffered the least.
  • Which character, if killed, would really mess up this whole situation? I know, they are too important to kill off. But due to pressing family problems, they could leave indefinitely.
  • One of your antagonists is or becomes very wealthy. How will they use this against you?
  • Peer pressure [or hazing] is fun, especially when it convinces your character to shoplift, tresspass or go naked.
  • An assumed name, identity, role: someone is not who they are pretending to be.
  • Tomorrow morning your character rolls over and sees the fruit of last night's mistake on their pillow...more interesting: maybe they don't regret it. [The original said "sleeping on their pillow" but leaving it out opens up the possibilities! :-D]

These are from Random Plot Points where there lots of random ways to muck up your plot. :-)

Monday, November 15, 2010

Dead seagull

Dead seagull

Not sure why it didn't occur to me before to find song titles that sounded like plot ninjas! But I'll try to continue that for the rest of the month. :-)

Friday, November 12, 2010

Briefcase full of guts

Briefcase full of guts


Warm up or a plot ninja for your NaNo novel? Not too difficult if you're writing a murder mystery but might be a challenge for a romance! ;-) I collected a slew of Plot Ninjas if you'd like to try some.

Thursday, November 11, 2010

First impressions

Write about a favorite character or your character (can be the main character, villain, a character you're intrigued by) from the point of view of a stranger. Put the character in his or her element or everyday life and describe someone's first impression of them.

Now try putting the character in a situation they don't feel comfortable in. How would a stranger describe them?

Tuesday, November 09, 2010

Great Expectations

Pointing by Marcus Ranum
A big fan of the gangster era genre, Lizzy has spent weekends designing characters to take with her on her Great Expectations virtual reality experience. The characters are base level, perfectly capable of reacting in unique ways to the novel (or genre) they're designed for, either to help her or to throw monkey wrenches into the plot. If she sets the randomizer before entering her experience, one or more will only seem to be as she designed them.

Lizzy enters the virtual reality world and the doors lock behind her for the duration. Then she realizes she's in the wrong novel, she's in a fantasy genre instead. And she's trapped with characters incapable of realizing the genre has shifted.

Feel free to randomize the two genres Lizzy ends up in.


(The subgenre list is from AllBookstores).

Here's some that caught my attention as I was randomizing:

  • Monastic (Mystery) -- Spicy (Romance)
  • English Country House (Mystery) -- Space Travel (Scifi Fantasy)
  • Glitz and Glamor (Romance) -- Psychological (Horror)
  • Vengance (Western) -- Regency (Romance)
  • Gothic (Horror) -- Fairy Tales (Scifi Fantasy)
  • Husband and Wife (Mystery) -- Wild Frontiers (Scifi Fantasy)

Idea from Teresa Schultz-Jones's Nano.

Thursday, November 04, 2010

Hairy alternative grungy metal rocks II

I need something easy. I'm falling behind on my NaNo word count. There's a reason Chris Baty says don't start with a story you've already worked on. And it's not because it makes it too easy. It's because it's harder without the ability to let anything happen! ;-)

So ... onto the prompt. Use the following phrases in sentences. (If you can't make the phrase work, feel free use the words individually.)

death clock
blood sweat tears
buck cherry
arrow smith (or aero if you can make it work)
iron maiden
nine inch nails
beastie boys
sound garden
dead seagull
alien ant farm
wolf mother
deaf leopard
finger eleven
living color
them crooked vultures
hammer fist
screaming monkey boners
faith no more

If you'd like some more: Part I.

Tuesday, November 02, 2010

A maddening cow disease

Click image for larger view
Click -- HERE -- for even larger (but you may want to avoid
the caption at the bottom so it doesn't constrain your ideas).
Yes, those are mini cows bursting out of people. The tub says "Opening Mixture."

The people are panicking but not attacking anyone. Do they know they'll eventually be okay or have their violent reactions been suppressed?

The people in brown, green and blue seem exceedingly calm. They obviously know what's going on but also seem certain the cow people won't attack them. Why?

Are they creating the cow people or curing them? What do they intend to do with these cow people or what caused them to become like this?

What will they do with all the mini cows?