I’m coming to the conclusion that I need to add more emotion to my writing. I have received a few critiques on the two stories I uploaded to YouWriteOn.com . That seems to be a common issue. Again, I don’t know how to fix it. I’m thinking more dialog, one more item to work on in the rework of both these stories. Another complaint was too many glue words. I had never heard that term before, so (glue word) I looked it up. It’s fillers added to the sentence, theoretically there should be less than 25-30% of these glue words. My question is those glue words, and there are lists of glue words available online, are essential elements of sentence structure; however. they can become crutches and need to be used sparingly. I have pasted some below, not sure if it is a complete list as (so) isn’t on this list. Not sure if so is a glue word, it’s one of the seven coordinating conjunctions (and, but, for, so, nor, yet and or).
I’m now taking random sentences and putting them to the glue test. After reading about commas, independent clauses, phrases and coordinating conjunctions there are more bumps in the road to navigate. I went to school a long time ago and I think rules have changed, and I have work to do to catch up.
I finally did get a response from an agent I had queried in August. It was a no, but a pleasant reply to an email I sent out in November as a reminder. That story I submitted in August has changed and I have been passed over again, but with another message not to give up.
If I were to give advice to new writers I would say:
- A first draft MS should not be read by anyone but yourself. Print it out and read it out loud, proofread and spell check. Check the seven structural elements (plot, character, description, dialogue, pov, scene, and sentence) use a check list. Then you are ready for a beta reader or friend to read it through.
- Write a synopsis, a biography, query letter and cover. Follow the guidelines for submission and send out ten individualized submissions.
- Wait. No, don’t wait. Keep writing, blogging, reading and keep good records of who you sent q’s to.
- Get a tough skin, be reactive follow the good suggestions, but remember it’s your book. Believe in yourself.
I have written several stories in different genres, the only genres I haven’t tackled is non-fiction and poetry. Once I get through the vast and getting vaster projects I have (rework of three novels) I may attempt a non-fiction story. I’ll have to find out exactly what a non-fiction story is compared to a memoir, which I have written. Something else to look forward to.
Thanks for listening.