All tagged creative writing tips
Having grown up in Africa, it's no surprise that magic realism is by far my favorite literary genre. I am always exploring books, blogs, and writers who share my fascination with the 'mysterious' stuff of life. To my delight, I've come across a magic realism writer whose love of the concept has lead to an amazing project.
An easy and clear distinction between magic realism and fantasy/science fiction is that MR is about revealing and exploring character by weaving the story through two worlds—reality and fantasy— in such a fluid manner that neither seems to intrude on the other, whereas the other two genres are about building fantastical worlds that are meant to be dissociated from the reality we know.
A sound premise and compelling themes are undoubtedly the hallmarks of great writing. Plus, effective book publicity relies on strong promotional messages, which are extracted from the themes contained in your writing that, collectively, make up the premise of the story.
Getting out of your comfort zone to a foreign country leads to emotional growth and change. A suburban family discovers that trading materialism for a simple life on a tropical island helps them reconnect in unexpected ways.
When Ed Gaydos discovered that the website of his old artillery regiment is littered with pleas for information about loved ones who are either dead or frozen in silence about Vietnam, he realized it was time for him “to start talking and to leave something for the next generation beyond dates on a tombstone and an old fatigue shirt.”
Most memoirists tell their own stories, often because they feel the need to vindicate themselves and other times for catharsis or self-actualization. But there are stories about people and cultures that, if they are not recorded, might be lost to the rest of the world—people who deserve to be remembered, histories that should not be sacrificed in the name of progress.
My life and experiences of those around me serve as inspiration and are my motivation for the stories I tell. What began as a healing process has turned into so much more. My stories are not your typical ‘love at first sight’ or ‘the rich hero falling in love with the everyday heroine’.
My team experiences taught me tolerance as I learned to live with inner city blacks, gays, French and Germans. As an educator, I applied that understanding and empathy to my teaching and coaching, as well as to my new experience as an expat in a different, more tolerant society.
Writers block hit me like a ton of bricks. I had nothing to say. My writing group allowed me to wallow for 10 minutes, then said, “Write anything. Write about what you know.” So I looked around panic-stricken and then looked down—there they were. I thought, I know about my breasts. Snarky stories came spewing out of my brain.
My writing is strongly based in the culture and values of the Midwest United States. My memoir—Growing Up Country: Memories of an Iowa Farm Girl—tells the stories of growing up in the middle of the United States in the middle of the 20th Century. A time when a family could make a good living on a 160 acres. A way of live that is rapidly disappearing from the American landscape.