My Craft

A Diamond in Her Eye

[aesop_image imgwidth=”800″ img=”https://wordsmithholler.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/03/gangster-539993_1920.jpg” credit=”Pixabay” align=”left” lightbox=”on” captionposition=”left” revealfx=”off”] “You’ll never get me to tell you where the jewels are,” the child said. She leaned back and smirked. Too much television, thought the inspector. He sat down across from her rattling the metal chair against the table in the interrogation room. The girl leaned forward. She glared at him. The stare-off went on for a few minutes until he leaned forward. The girl pushed back pinning her arms…

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My Craft

Driving Back from Spring Break

[aesop_image imgwidth=”500px” img=”https://wordsmithholler.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/11/bokeh-1033539_1920.jpg” credit=”Pixabay” align=”right” lightbox=”on” captionposition=”left” revealfx=”off”] Three days earlier I studied all night with a girlfriend for a physics exam and afterward drove four classmates 12 hours to San Diego for spring break. The entire trip the girls giggled and cackled behind me while a Korean kid sat silent up front. I decided we scared Jae. Although, being a confused immigrant might also explain his silence. Either way, he only said thanks when I dropped him off…

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My Craft

A Moment of Pure Truth

Christopher stood over the maze of workday and eyed the sea. A thin fog cloud floated passed his perch on the 45th floor. On the docks, sea lions barked at tourists. East Bay traffic sought a faster path, ships hauled electronics in and almonds back out, and the blood-red sun sunk into late afternoon north of the Golden Gate. In the conference room, five people sat in executive chairs around a table. Their faces reflected…

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On Writing

Second Writing: Proofreading and Editing Skills

By all means write as fast as you can and put the words on paper. In the movie Finding Forrester, the fictional reclusive author William Forrester tells Jamal Wallace, “No thinking — that comes later. You must write your first draft with your heart. You rewrite with your head. The first key to writing is … to write, not to think!” No thinking — that comes later. You must write your first draft with your heart.…

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On Writing

The False Ending

I have mentioned that many stories fail to gain traction in the second act. This is where the viewpoint character forgets why they are in the story. Of course, it is the writer who has forgotten; either by writing by their pants or failing to plot in enough conflict to keep the story moving forward. Stories thrive on conflict and bad things must happen to the hero before it all ends up as good and…

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My Craft

The Devil Knows You’re There

He hung 100 feet above Fremont Street, like Superman, tethered only to the narrow ribbon of wire in a harness. Unable to twist and look up at why he was stuck, he looked down at the street instead. A sea of tourists moved below him as if he was another attraction. A small boy let go of a smiley-face balloon and started to cry.  A bald dude stared at him in a peewee muscle shirt.…

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