novel

Facebook and a Fictional Arm-Twist

I’ve now got a facebook fan page for Ever Actor! For those of you who know naught of Ever Actor, here’s the scoop:

In Ever Actor, Syawn, a thief lord with many masks, has everything under control.  The crowds love him, the nobles and upper class love his undercover persona, and the local Law doesn’t even know it’s under his thumb.

Then a new tax law  threatens to topple his carefully manicured empire, with the aide of the one thing Sy can’t control: magic.

Desperate to keep his underworld throne, Sy  decides to apprentice himself to a mage — an easily controlled mage. So he joins Mysst, a naive mage child on a hero quest to save her doomed tribes. But can she help him grasp magic,
his keystone to power, or will it destroy him?

To see some excerpts, check out the Novels page on my website.

If that’s not enough to sway you, how’s this: pictures of redheads!

Black-and-white pictures of a redhead!

“What she’s trying to say,” Syawn buts in, “is that I’ll be there. And I know your people say a picture is worth a thousand words, but I’d think a writer would know better.” He shoots an amused smile my way. “The poor girl is soft in the head. She thinks everyone will go running just to see carrot curls. Certainly it has allure,” —he runs his fingers back through his hair— “but surely wry wit is more of a draw than happy accident of nature.”

“In any event,” he continues, “you should know that I take the liberty of posting my own updates, most of the time– that decreases the risk of my little author botching things, aye?”

So go! Visit the page! Like! Win! …Not that there’s anything there to win (yet!).

“And that’s the kind of foolish botching I’m talking about,” he drawls, chin propped on fist. “Honestly, with words like that, I can see why she went with pictures instead. Good job her noveling is better. Be that as it may, I’ll be ever so grateful for your support.” Green eyes lock on the screen, and he smiles almost-sweetly. “I expect to see you there.”

“Remember,” he adds, standing to leave, “my author may not know where you live, but I’m fictional. I can find your dreams. Click a couple buttons, save yourself a couple night terrors.”

O_O … Uh, I’m Tirzah Duncan, and I in no way endorse my character’s  message. B-but please go like the page anyhow?

Seithr the Kahn in the Doghouse

Inner Editors can be the bane of a first draft.

You’ve been plagued, I’m sure, by the creature of which I speak; it lurks on the blank page, ready to pounce on your first sentence, erasing it all before you’ve reached the period.

It demands that you write a better first sentence next time, a better first word, a better first draft. Or better yet, don’t even start—forget the whole thing. You’re hopeless and you know it.

If you don’t look out, this overzealous naysayer will stamp out the flame of your novel before you’ve struck flint—and if it can’t stop you writing in the first place, it will be in your ear the whole time, whispering—or screaming—that everything you write is crapcrapcrap.

And of course it’s crap. First drafts are always crap(Hemingway said as much in stronger language). That’s what editing is for.

So you need to keep your Inner Editor’s grimy influence off your first draft. There are only two ways I know of to do this:

One, ignore its comments.

Two, shut it up altogether.

You could, I suppose, do this by an act of will, but I’ve found a trick that helps me take command of my Inner Editor.

I call him Seithr the Kahn.

No, not the trick, my Inner Editor. That’s the trick; I gave him a gender, a name, a species(human), an appearance(muscular, square-jawed, and stubble-headed), and a personality(tough as formaldehyde and more brutally cold than The Long Winter).

And I gave him a voice. A loud, barking, growling voice. A drill-sergeant voice that tells me that I have “The imagination of a wet dish rag”, and calls my book things like “the brainchild of a jellyfish’s whore”.

And then I lock that man, and his filthy drill-sergeant mouth, out of the house. I lock him outside of the noveling part of my brain, outside of my creative space, and he doesn’t get to come in until the first draft is finished.

Sometimes I hear him pounding on the door and howling as I venture out onto some grievous writing limb. Sometimes I see his blue-stubbly face pressed up against the window, his breath forming clouds in the air as he glares furiously in at me, at my blossoming first draft.

And you know what? While it’s kind of creepy, it’s also laughable. More laughable, certainly, than some disembodied voice of shame.

And whenever any thoughts of disgust and self-doubt creep in, I give them stern looks and send them outside to play with Seithr the Kahn as he stews in a moody huff.

So tell me, who’s your Inner Editor? And once you’ve figured them out, and we’ve met them and said our hellos—banish them to the doghouse.