July 3 Writing Tips, Tricks, Thoughts

Birthdays: Charlotte Perkins Gilman (1860), Ralph Barton Perry (1876), Franz Kafka (1883), M.F.K. Fisher (1908), Tom Stoppard (1937), Dave Barry (1947), Rohinton Mistry (1952), Franny Billingsley (1954), Charles Higson (1958), Julie Burchill (1959), Joanne Harris (1964), Matt Haig (1975)

Ralph Perry won the 1936 Pulitzer Prize for Biography for “William James”

Dave Barry won the Pulitzer Prize for his humorous works.

Quote: “Getting published requires a great deal of time, energy and commitment. You are likely to be rejected many times. You will need to develop a very thick skin. If you are very sensitive, or if you think rejection will upset you too much, then perhaps you should just stick to writing for pleasure – after all, not everyone who plays tennis wants to be a pro. A very few writers make lots of money. Some writers make enough money to live on (I am one of the lucky ones). Most writers don’t make enough money to live on. Some don’t make any money at all.” – Joanne Harris

Tip: Be careful about overusing tropes (a common theme that shows up in a lot of books). They can be used to your advantage, especially in some genres, but use them carefully.

Jumpstart: In 1863, Gettysburg, Pennsylvania became the center of the conflict between the North and South. Put your character there. What side is s/he on? Is s/he a fighter or a civilian? What happens?