Search found 492 matches

by J. T. SHEA
April 19th, 2011, 2:39 pm
Forum: Writing
Topic: Dream sequences -- too cliched?
Replies: 14
Views: 2154

Re: Dream sequences -- too cliched?

Good points, Margo. There is indeed much misplaced bitterness and hatred on the part of writers for agents and editors and readers. There's no accounting for taste and people can disagree without being disagreeable. I would pay great attention to what an agent, editor or reader said about my writing...
by J. T. SHEA
April 19th, 2011, 2:27 pm
Forum: Writing
Topic: What to do with parents?
Replies: 16
Views: 3519

Re: What to do with parents?

Immediately after my teenage protagonist is finally separated from his parents, the ocean liner he is traveling on is attacked by saboteurs, an entire fleet of Fascist fishing boats and whalers, and dozens of 500 foot long sea snakes. His parents still being there probably would not have made much d...
by J. T. SHEA
April 19th, 2011, 1:55 pm
Forum: Writing
Topic: Using 'this' in past tense
Replies: 15
Views: 3063

Re: Using 'this' in past tense

I like your description of the first person as a guided meditation, Margo. Indeed it is. Interesting that guided meditations are usually written in the second person. And the old multiple choice CHOOSE YOUR OWN ADVENTURES beloved of Nathan and others were second person too. And you can hardly get mo...
by J. T. SHEA
April 19th, 2011, 1:40 pm
Forum: Writing
Topic: Dream sequences -- too cliched?
Replies: 14
Views: 2154

Re: Dream sequences -- too cliched?

I read with the author has written. I don't mind what he/she calls it. Prologues, flashbacks, epilogues, acts, chapters, they're all just part of the story to me. Dreams likewise. All of every novel is a dream sequence really, even if based on fact. I don't mind novels starting with dreams, or the w...
by J. T. SHEA
April 19th, 2011, 12:18 pm
Forum: Writing
Topic: Using 'this' in past tense
Replies: 15
Views: 3063

Re: Using 'this' in past tense

Interesting that you find the second person pronoun distracting and distancing in first person stories, Margo. I find it quite the opposite. I use it at the start of my trilogy in a manner something like Nigel's. Mind you, my narrator is a cub reporter addressing the readers of a populist newspaper....
by J. T. SHEA
April 18th, 2011, 1:44 pm
Forum: Writing
Topic: What to do with parents?
Replies: 16
Views: 3519

Re: What to do with parents?

The absentee YA and MG parent archetype could be as much an opportunity as a problem. Long before I ever heard of it I used it in my YA Steampunk Trilogy as a plot device. Jimmy, my teenage protagonist, strives to join a great sea-borne expedition in search of a lost city. He eventually gets on boar...
by J. T. SHEA
April 18th, 2011, 11:58 am
Forum: Ask Nathan
Topic: A Publisher dealing with American Indians
Replies: 11
Views: 1873

Re: A Publisher dealing with American Indians

Just use Irish characters instead. I hereby grant you all full permission to use elements of our culture, religion and heritage (which we no longer guard with high explosives, so don't worry) and the names of our deceased persons (but do print a warning at the beginning of the book about my grandunc...
by J. T. SHEA
April 16th, 2011, 3:24 pm
Forum: Excerpts
Topic: YA Fantasy "Hidden in Plain Sight" First Two Pages
Replies: 5
Views: 1972

Re: YA Fantasy "Hidden in Plain Sight" First Two Pages

Good stuff, Wordranger! Your opening pages are both matter-of-fact and portentuous in the best sense of the word. Childhood vs adulthood. Peripheral vs central. Freedom vs authoritarianism. Plenty of dualities established early. You start with a bored kid and end (this section) with the King of the ...
by J. T. SHEA
April 16th, 2011, 2:12 pm
Forum: Excerpts
Topic: YA Horror - 600 Words *Edited*
Replies: 14
Views: 4707

Re: YA Horror - 600 Words

Interesting, Falls Apart. I love the first sentence. Talk about high concept right out of the gate! And it rhymes! I first assumed a murderous reality show, but the word 'fictitious' does undercut that expectation. As for Akila's point, perhaps you could call Rajan an Indian-American? My grandmother...
by J. T. SHEA
April 15th, 2011, 12:31 pm
Forum: Writing
Topic: Chapter Word Counts
Replies: 11
Views: 1354

Re: Chapter Word Counts

My edits are to to remove the superfluous 't' I have an unfortunate habit of adding to Margo's name. Sorry, Margo!
by J. T. SHEA
April 15th, 2011, 12:20 pm
Forum: Self-Publishing
Topic: The Future Has Happened Already: E-books are now #1 format
Replies: 6
Views: 2930

Re: The Future Has Happened Already: E-books are now #1 format

Now hold on just a cotton-picking moment there, David! 29.5% of the market? Certain important categories no doubt, but the overall book market? No way! Not unless maths have changed. I was helping my nine year old nephew with his maths yesterday and two plus two still equaled four. And if the Irish ...
by J. T. SHEA
April 14th, 2011, 11:51 pm
Forum: Writing
Topic: Is "sci fi" a poisonous label?
Replies: 19
Views: 7236

Re: Is "sci fi" a poisonous label?

Science Fiction Dieselpunk indeed, Mike R. But Steampunk is a more generally recognized umbrella descriptor.

Thanks, Cookie. If I don't finish book three soon MY head will explode!

Amen, Wordranger! You know what they say, reality is just a crutch for those who can't handle SF and Fantasy!
by J. T. SHEA
April 14th, 2011, 6:32 pm
Forum: Writing
Topic: Is "sci fi" a poisonous label?
Replies: 19
Views: 7236

Re: Is "sci fi" a poisonous label?

Mike R., my YA trilogy has aliens and spaceships and is set on a colony planet. But its humans and their steamships and trains and airships and flying boats and biplanes and submarines and Art Deco skyscrapers are more important to the plot. So it's Steampunk, or more exactly, Dieselpunk, both of wh...
by J. T. SHEA
April 14th, 2011, 5:46 pm
Forum: Writing
Topic: megalomania as motivation
Replies: 16
Views: 6302

Re: megalomania as motivation

Selfish bratty hero, Mike R.? A good challenge indeed!

Of course you're speshul, Margo!

Sommer, I agree. Seriously! C. S. Lewis and others have warned that sincere do-goodery can become the worst form of tyranny, and the appetite for power over others much worse than any mere greed for wealth.
by J. T. SHEA
April 14th, 2011, 3:20 pm
Forum: Writing
Topic: Chapter Word Counts
Replies: 11
Views: 1354

Re: Chapter Word Counts

Margo, Akila's question was about a variation in chapter length between 6,000 and 8,000 words, which I do not consider significant. Akila also gave the reason for the extra words, that the chapter is all on one subject and stands together well. As it happens, I agree with you versus very long chapte...