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Topic: Shot in the dark?

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Subject: Shot in the dark?
Date Posted: 6/24/2013 3:22 AM ET
Member Since: 6/16/2013
Posts: 3
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I'm looking to make a few new friends here that understand the writing process. I've been working on a story for about 9 months now and  I'd love to be able to, eventually, bounce ideas off of other people. I'm a touch untrusting, especially with strangers and I'm slightly insecure about my skill level and ideas... so I'd love to get to know you a bit and then perhaps we can help each other?

Date Posted: 6/24/2013 10:05 AM ET
Member Since: 6/20/2013
Posts: 9
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Hey, Erica! It's nice to meet you - I'm new here and looking to make a few friends myself. I hold a BA in creative writing, so I know a thing or two about the writing process haha. I would like to say though if you're looking to seriously publish this story, my best advice to you is to only show it to those you sincerely trust because there's a lot of theft out there! Be careful as to who you show your work to, but not for the reasons of being self conscious. Working on your style and skill takes years of practice! I suggest find one of your closest friends and let them read some blurbs. Tell them you need straight up honesty about the voice and style of the work, not what the story is about. Start there and see if you get some good advice from them! Best of luck to you, Erica!

Date Posted: 6/24/2013 12:11 PM ET
Member Since: 10/13/2007
Posts: 36,445
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Sorry but the number of people I've worked with over the years has shown me that theft of written work is VERY uncommon. Just keep in mind you cannot steal ideas or basic plotlines.

I'd also suggest going to the nanowrimo.org website and looking around, there are many active people who are glad to help out. Also look for writers groups or classes (good way to meet people) in your area.  They also have local area forums which might be active (depends on the area).
Google writing groups in your area, email them and ask what they do, where they meet and if they are happy to accept new writers.

The only way to get better is to write :)

 

Date Posted: 6/24/2013 1:15 PM ET
Member Since: 6/20/2013
Posts: 9
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The only reason I put that suggestion forward was because it has personally happened to me and it was a lot of effort to  prove it was my original work. Of course I'm only one instance - if you feel comfortable sending your work out, then by all means do so! :)

Date Posted: 6/24/2013 2:01 PM ET
Member Since: 6/16/2013
Posts: 3
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I appreciate both of your responses! Thank you both for the suggestions!

I've shown what I have thus far, outlines, character sketches and my actual work to one friend and he's been very helpful... I just didn't know what to ask him to focus on as he reads my rewrites. I think your suggestion, Antonia, is a great one! And I will have to check out nanowrimo.org  xengab!

Date Posted: 6/27/2013 12:54 PM ET
Member Since: 1/23/2010
Posts: 2,364
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Hi Erica,

I could have written your post. I'd really like to get to know the writers here. Being the untrusting type I Can't just put my work up for all to see, or share it with someone I don't know. I hope you and others will keep this thread moving.

We don't have to share work to be supportive or provide insite. We could share things that suprised us. Situations that didn't work out as planned. Many times when I sit down and try to explain to someone-else what went wrong I can see things that weren't obvious on the page.

Date Posted: 6/27/2013 4:16 PM ET
Member Since: 10/13/2007
Posts: 36,445
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Erica- REALLY depends on what version you are up to, draft, first edit, second edit, fifty first edit (trust me it does feel that way)..LOL
Draft, I just focus on what strikes me the most, is the story working/flowing, does it make sense, do the characters make you feel for them? 
First edit, I look for plot holes

Second edit, grammar, more charcter issues, word choices.   For example I recently helped a writer friend by reading her first chapter, the Spirit name she used for a character was the same name I knew to be used in a popular series. So I pointed that out to her, could it be spelled differently, use a different name.  Because soon as I read that name (not a common one) it made me think of the other series, since they would be in the same genre I knew others too could get that problem. 

Also if the names make sense, or get mixed up. 

Nancy- writers are a weird lot.  :)  We are the anti social, social people.  I am very social around other writers, but not so much around general people..LOL
It does take awhile to find a group you click with. And you HAVE to get out there and find ways to meet other writers. Networking is a huge thing these days.
If you post an issue that you are having on here, I do check each day so would reply best as I can :)

Plus you DONT need to put up all your work, just small pieces you are stuck on.  If you don't put it all out there, then they cannot steal it.  I've done edits for total strangers that I met through a conference. Was for a guy who was writing horror, no novice writer either. But he liked how I pulled his work apart and made it get that tension needed for good horror.  He sent me half a chapter at a time in a PDF file that could not be copied or edited.  I had to use line numbers to let him know what needed changing.  But it was more secure for him knowing I could not copy/save/print his work.  Not sure how one does that but might help you with sharing work. 

HRMM there is also an internet writers conference. http://themuseonlinewritersconference.com/  usually the information is up for this years conference but not seen anything much for it. WIll email and find out.

Friends can help but unless they know how to give constructive advice (or they also write) it can sometimes not work past the first draft edit.

SAN is always looking for a writing buddy. So PM her (look down a few posts on this forum and she has posted about it). 

If you want to do NaNo this year, we usually have a good group of PBS members doing it :)  Many of the regular members encourage us, gives up advice or vetos my weird plot ideas :)

 



Last Edited on: 6/27/13 4:32 PM ET - Total times edited: 1