open invitation no. 50: pause

Give a pause. Pauses in writing, just as in life, are a beautiful thing. How might you add a pause to your writing? Here are some of my favorite ways. Use ellipsis…or sometimes informally called dot-dot-dot. This word stems from the Greek word, élleipsis, meaning to leave out. First graders often use this convention toContinue reading “open invitation no. 50: pause”

open invitation no. 31: listen

Listen for gratitude. Sound is a huge influence on people’s attention.—Walter Murch Lately (like for my entire life), I have been opening my eyes to discover gratitude. A well-lived life hinges on a grateful outlook. Lately (like in the last few months), I have been having a harder time hearing. I’ve chalked it up toContinue reading “open invitation no. 31: listen”

open invitation no. 25: commentary on the setting

Take time to offer commentary on the setting. Writers often add setting description to their scenes. It is fun to use the five senses, metaphors and similes to paint a picture of the setting for the reader. As readers we know that too much description can sometimes cause us to slog through the sentences. TakeContinue reading “open invitation no. 25: commentary on the setting”

open invitation no. 23: a series of three

Three is magical. When you write in a series of three, magic is stirred. It is true. It is lyrical. It is bold. You can use a series of three by repeating sentences, phrases or words. It can add structure, cadence and meaning to your writing. I do it all the time, and I loveloveloveContinue reading “open invitation no. 23: a series of three”

open invitation no. 11: learn some facts

Learn some facts. Research is one of my favorite parts of the writing process, and I use it all of the time. I love to find facts or learn how things work or dig out quotes and statistics. Research is not just for informational writing. It’s great for fiction. It’s an asset to poetry. ItContinue reading “open invitation no. 11: learn some facts”

open invitation no. 9: stack a series of sounds

Play with the sound of words by stacking a series of similar sounds. Let’s have some fun with words. There are a few ways that writers play with similar sounds of words. Try one of these! AlliterationUse the same beginning sound three or more times in a row. “Stacking a series of similar sounds” isContinue reading “open invitation no. 9: stack a series of sounds”

open invitation no. 4: inside stories

Characters have an inside story. Tell yours. All of us always have two stories happening — the one that is happening on the outside and the one that is happening on the inside. It is natural to tell the outside story — those events that are happening around us — when we write the storiesContinue reading “open invitation no. 4: inside stories”