Tag Archives: Writing

Extra Words

By Cara Lopez Lee

I’ve been getting rid of them this week. The extra words. I often say too much. My obsessive compulsive disorder makes this so hard to control that sometimes it feels like I only have two options: say everything or nothing at all.

Sometimes I write a Facebook reply in an attempt to connect, some comment about an experience I once had that’s similar to the one a friend has described. Then I ask myself: are you sure this person shared their story in hopes of hearing yours? What then shall I write? “I understand”? Won’t that get lost in the thread? Shall I ask a question? “And what happened to you after that?” Too intrusive perhaps? I give up, delete all my words, and hit “like,” or the surprised emoji or laughing emoji, admonishing myself to be sparing with the heart emoji so they know I mean it.

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“I’m The Bad Guy?”

BRP2013 GoldHow do fiction authors create believable bad guys? I find I must explore the existence of my own inner villain. Today at The Blood-Red Pencil, I explore this confronting approach to writing antagonists, with a post called I’m The Bad Guy?

When Do You Fire A Protagonist?

BRP2013 GoldIt happens to writers sometimes, but I never thought it would happen to me. No matter how much we love them, no matter how hard they work for us, no matter how sure we are that they cannot be replaced: sometimes we have to fire our protagonists. Today at The Blood-Red Pencil I consider why I had to fire my historical novel’s first protagonist, and how I discovered whether my new protagonist was up to the job.

An Ambivert Walks Into A Writing Conference…

BRP2013 GoldToday at The Blood-Red Pencil, I consider how both introverted and extroverted writers deal with the ecstasy and the agony of writing conferences. Whether you’re a writer or a reader, or just an introvert or an extrovert,  I believe you’ll relate to my post: An Ambivert Walks Into A Writing Conference…

Romance Outside the Genre

BRP2013 GoldAre you a sucker for romance even if you don’t read romance novels? Check out my interview of bestselling novelist Andrew Sean Greer (The Impossible Lives of Greta Wells), today at The Blood-Red Pencil. It’s part of that blog’s February look at Men and Romance. Greer has me pondering questions like: Why do writers and readers sometimes talk as if being sentimental is a bad thing? And: How can we write or read stories if we aren’t to some extent in love with love in one form or other? Check out our conversation here.

New Year, Final Draft

BRP2013 GoldSometimes when I wrap up a writing project – heck, sometimes when I wrap up anything in life – I run smack into that most horrifying of human terrors:  completion. How do we know when we’re finished? This month’s theme at The Blood-Red Pencil is “What’s New?” but in my contrary fashion, I’ve decided to focus on what’s old…and what needs to be finished. Please check out my post here.

Stage a House, Revise a Novel – Cara’s Post at the Blood-Red Pencil

BRP2013 GoldMy husband and I are selling our house, while I’m also wrapping up my novel. Today at The Blood-Red Pencil, I compare staging our home to show to buyers with revising my manuscript to submit to agents. Both are bigger jobs than I expected. Please check out my post, Stage a House, Revise a Novel: here.