How to Write After Facing Rejection from a Publishing Company

Writers can face many rejections through their careers, such as rejection from a publishing company, a book not selling as well as an author thought it would, or even disapproval from friends and family. Sometimes writers may get discouraged from these rejections, but none of these should stir that writer away from writing what they have to write. It’s fine to get discouraged, but perseverance is key. But how does a writer do that when they’re told by a publishing company, “We just didn’t connect with the material?” Let me break that down for you.

J.K. Rowling is by far one of the most prolific writers who ever lived. Harry Potter is beloved by millions and has garnered billions of dollars in revenue not only for her, but for her publisher as well. However, Rowling was rejected 12 times before she finally found a publisher who would take a chance on her, an unpublished author at the time. And even though she was broke, that didn’t stop her. She had the passion to continue her project that they thought was nothing more than a joke. The publishers didn’t think that a young boy with a wand and a fat man with long hair and a beard could succeed in a book. And with her endless perseverance, all it took was one yes. Afterwards, Harry Potter and J.K. Rowling became household names. She faced the pain and didn’t let it stop her, just as your pain and failures shouldn’t stop you.

Publishing companies are shrewd. There are only so many books that they can accept, and that number is no where near the amount of submissions they receive. That shouldn’t discourage you as there are alternative routes that writers can take, such as self-publishing. Maybe this route won’t give you the millions you dream of making, but if it gets your work of art in front of a reader, it is a success. I have been an Independent writer for most of my writing career, and I have faced criticism from those who have read my books. That it is a part of writing. I heard somewhere before, whether they criticize you or compliment you, you are doing something right. It means they are giving your work attention. 

The most important thing is to not let rejection stop you. Write anyway. Use the frustration and let it fuel your writing. Instead of feeling down and depressed that your work hasn’t been accepted, keep writing anyway. All it takes is one ‘yes.’ And if not, self-publish. For more tips on writing, check out my audiobook, Your Writing: Tips on Making Your Amazon Kindle Book Great, narrated by Chiquito Joaquim Crasto.  It is a short audiobook on the process of making a Kindle book, which is a good start in writing an independent book.

Don’t get discouraged by a publishing rejection; writers have many options besides big publishers. And remember that the most successful writers never walked away from their passion, no matter how hard life got for them.

Exploring the Types of Fiction

When writing any type of fiction, there are no boundaries as to where you are allowed to go with your story. There are rules, but some of us don’t follow according to plan. For those who write fiction, we tend to follow an unwritten rule which makes us ask ourselves, “Can this really happen?” Sometimes it can and sometimes it can’t. Today, I want to touch on using what’s possible and what’s not possible (how to make this work) in the world of writing.

In most fiction stories, we use the genre “realistic fiction” which means we follow a template that includes guidelines for writing a coherent story. One key factor in this type of fiction is the element of chance. To break that down, I mean that if there is a realistic chance that something could happen, then you could definitely use it in your story. It just has to tie into your plot and storyline and make actual sense when read. If it can happen realistically, then you can write about it.

The other side of the story comes to light when we talk about fantasy or sci-fi. With sci-fi, maybe you could introduce a character and his weapon as something that has not yet been manufactured in real life. A friend of mine, who is a regular in my writing group, uses the fantasy genre to build new worlds for his characters. Futuristic technology is afoot in his tales of bringing down mechanical demons and other enemies from other worlds outside of the ones he is trying to create. He does a great job of drawing the reader into said worlds and keeping them on the edge of their seats when going in depth with his action sequences.

World building like his has no rules or boundaries. This type of writing lets us create from the deepest, most dormant regions of our psyche that we usually don’t put on display under normal circumstances. Meaning, we don’t spend our days talking about how we created a seven-headed dragon and then proceed to talk about how we killed it. This avenue lets us express our fantasies to the extent that we want to believe that maybe a giant scorpion does really exist on Earth. Maybe you could find it existing in a game of Dungeons & Dragons.

Either path you choose, using your keyboard to create these worlds or trying to stick to the element of chance, your thought process can manufacture anything your heart desires, whether it be real or unreal. Movies such as Commando or First Blood take realistic fiction to another level where you can actually conceive that Arnold really killed 100 men all by himself and Stallone really knows how to survive under the direst of situations. Let your muse take you where you want to go. There really are no boundaries as to what you can create. After all, these factors can tie into your passion to explore parts of your mind which you have yet to discover!

6 Tips to Break Through Writer’s Block

There are very few things as debilitating to a writer as writer’s block. Often, just the thought of those two words is enough to send a shiver down one’s spine. Sometimes, writer’s block is a temporary ailment and can simply be waited out. Other times, though, the answer is not so simple, and trying to wait out a persistent case of writer’s block can lead to days, weeks, or even months of lost productivity.

With that in mind, here are five ways that an afflicted writer can help battle writer’s block.

1) Free Writing Exercises

Sometimes the hardest thing to do as a writer is start. Everyone knows that moment when you sit down at your computer, open up your work in progress, hover your fingers over the home keys and just…nothing. No words come to your brain. It’s frightening, and it can also lead to all kinds of self-esteem issues (“I’m not a real writer!” “I can’t do this!” “I’m nothing but a fraud!”).

But every writer has experienced this, even those “real” writers. (By the way, if you writer, you’re a real writer. That’s just the truth.)

When this happens, all you have to do is break through that dam. Open up an empty document, or flip to a blank page in your notebook, and begin writing whatever comes to your mind. Don’t focus on any one thing, least of all your work in progress, but just start writing. Make like Ron Swanson and write every word you know.

Even if you start off writing “I don’t know what to write,” your brain will automatically make connections to other trains of thought. Then write those down. Do this for about five minutes, until you have a full page, or until you feel motivated to continue your WIP. Free writing can work wonders on a blocked writer.

2) Clear Your Mind

Writer’s block can be a side effect of overwork. And just like with any other type of work, you need to rest. Writers tend to not put in forty hours each week and clock out like many other jobs, and probably most writers have a full-time job on top of their writing. So, writers are often burning the candle at both ends and still beating themselves up when they can’t be productive.

Take a step back to refill your creative energy. Go for a walk. Take a nap. Watch a couple of episodes of your favorite television show. According to Alex Soojung-Kim Pang, a visiting scholar at Stanford University, from his book Rest: Why You Get More Done When You Work Less, when we focus less on immediate tasks, we allow our subconscious minds to keep working on problems. In his words:

The experience of having the mind slightly relaxed allows it to explore different combinations of ideas, to test out different solutions. And then once it has arrived at one that looks promising, that is what pops into your head as an Aha! moment. The people I looked at are able to construct daily schedules that allow them to draw on that process in little increments.

So the next time you find yourself at your computer struggling for the words, take a deep breath and walk away. Do something else for a while. Something you enjoy doing. And importantly, something that doesn’t require a lot of focus. It could help you find that “AHA!” moment.

3) Write Something Else

Perhaps it’s not the writing itself that’s the problem, but the current scene in your WIP instead. Maybe you’ve set something up, but aren’t sure how to pay it off, and because of that, the words aren’t flowing properly. If so, move on to something else. Work on a scene later in the book/screenplay/whatever or start a different project altogether. If you’re anything like me, you have at least six other ideas that you’re super excited about but don’t want to start until you “finish the one I’m working on.” Instead of continually putting it off, jump into it while your subconscious mind mulls over your issues in the current WIP.

Caveat: You may be tempted to go back and start editing your work in progress instead of writing a different scene, but don’t do that. Writing and editing are two different beasts and require two different mindsets. Writing is a creative flow, while editing is a logical state. If you shift into a logical mindset, you’ll only further block your creativity. Though some writers can shift easily between writing and editing, I’ve no idea how they do it so I just recommend you avoid working like that.

4) Journal

If your block is a result of an exceptionally emotional bout, you can also try journaling. Find a notebook (and again, if you’re anything like me, you have plenty), open to a clean page, and write out your feelings. While this could also be an extension of freewriting that I outlined earlier, journaling can help you analyze your emotions and find a way to break through them. Not only can journaling reconnect you with your creative self, but it can reconnect you with your regular self.

Please be advised, however, that journaling shouldn’t be used as a replacement for professional help. If you feel like you may be seriously depressed, I’d highly recommend reaching out to someone. There are various free outlets to use to talk to a trained professional, such as MentalHealth.gov and the SAMHSA National Helpline and 1-800-662-HELP.

5) Talk It Through

Maybe writing is the issue. Maybe your brain and your fingers had an argument and are giving each other the silent treatment. Maybe you have the ideas, but you’re just struggling to get them onto the page. If that’s the case, try speaking instead. Use a voice recorder on your phone or transcription software and a microphone for your computer and talk instead of writing. Writer’s block is sometimes just that, a block on writing. So, if you’re not writing, you shouldn’t be blocked.

6) Force It

Writing, just like anything else, is work, and sometimes the work has to get done even if you don’t want to do it. You never hear a warehouse worker talk about “Box-Lifting Block” and that they just need some time to themselves to get back in the flow. That’s because they know it’s work that has to get done, so they do it.

Forcing yourself to sit down at your desk for an hour to write without distraction or interruption is sometimes exactly what you need to overcome writer’s block. Sure, what you write may come out in bits and spurts, and not always be the best thing you’ve ever written, but that’s what the editing process is for. And if you’re only able to get 500 words written in that hour, it’s 500 words more than what you started with. It’s far too easy to just give in to writer’s block and go a week or longer without writing, but if you make a determined effort to write something even during a blocked state, you’ll feel more accomplished. Brick by brick isn’t the most efficient way to break down a wall, but it’s effective. If you’ve ever experienced writer’s block, then you know it’s only a temporary ailment. Something will always come along and ignite that creative spark and allow you to get your thoughts on the page. But do you always want to sit around and wait for that to happen? The next time you experience writer’s block (and I’m absolutely not wishing that on anyone), try using one of these methods to overcome it. They may just get you back on that horse that much sooner.

The Twitter #WritersLift: A Good Idea Gone Bad

The #WritersCommunity on Twitter tends be to a fairly supportive place for independent authors like me. If I’m ever looking for inspiration, or advice, or just a friendly person to talk to, I know that I can search the hashtag and find exactly what I’m looking for in just a few minutes. One thing, however, that is prevalent with independent authors on Twitter is the #WritersLift, and it’s a low point for the community.

Photo by Marten Bjork on Unsplash

If you’re unfamiliar with the #WritersLift, the idea behind it is to help raise the visibility of smaller creators, such as those who have a small following, or are just getting started. On the surface, it seems innocuous, and even a little helpful. It works like this: an author will post something on Twitter along the lines of “Hey, #WritingCOmmunity! It’s time for a #WritersLift! Post your #WIP (short for “work in progress”) or links to your books, blogs, or whatever! Share and follow those you find interesting!”

Like I said, it’s innocuous and even meant to be helpful. However, I’ve seen too many authors use this as a way to boost their follower numbers on Twitter, which dilutes the helpfulness.

While the example I gave above is framed in a way to help other authors, more often than not the tweet is worded, “I’m close to *insert follower number milestone* so it’s time for a #WritersLift!” Many authors treat the Writers Lift as selfishly and self-servingly as possible. It’s not about lifting other writers; it’s about lifting their own follower count.

Gaining followers is the end goal for most of these Writers Lifts. To accomplish this, users follow as many people as they can in the hopes they receive a follow back. By the end of it, these accounts have 10,000 followers, but are also following 10,000 or more accounts. In my experience, following 1,000 accounts makes Twitter difficult to use; at that point, there are so many messages coming in every second that it’s hard to follow along, so following a timeline of 10,000 people would make my brain explode. Sure, Twitter has tools to allow users to curate their feeds, like the ability to create lists of specific users which will show a timeline of only their tweets. But how many partakers of #WritersLift will take the time to do that? More than likely, the person following 10K Twitter users is simply turning off the tweets of each person they follow by muting them. So sure, while a new author may have just picked up 10 new followers from a #WritersLift, they’ll be lucky if only 1 of them continues to see their tweets.

I’ve also noticed that many of the authors who regularly do #WritersLifts constantly talk about being put in Twitter Jail. When they refer to “Twitter Jail,” they’re speaking of the limits that Twitter places on following other users and number of tweets sent in a certain time frame. You know, Twitter’s implementations to reduce spam on the platform. Now, I’ve been on Twitter since 2009 and I have never once, in that 11 years, had any aspect of my account locked for any reason. I’m also not trying to follow 1,000 users each hour in the hope that 500 of them will follow me back. For so many authors to be restricted in that manner, it shows that many of their actions are spammy, and is that really what you want on your timeline?

Too many people think that Follower count is a measure of how successful someone is on Twitter, and while in some way that’s true, but the real measure is engagement. It’s easy enough to get followers on Twitter; there are numerous websites where someone can buy followers for their account. This WordStream article actually outlines the pros and cons of buying followers and even links to some websites that make it possible. 

Photo by Antenna on Unsplash

But purchased followers and #WritersLifts don’t create engagement, they only inflate numbers. You’re not going to sell your book to another struggling author that followed you back after you followed them on a whim because you saw their name in a #WritersLift thread. Just like you won’t buy that person’s book for the same reason. But you are more likely to sell a book to someone whom you’ve engaged with, someone you’ve had a conversation with, joked with, exchanged pleasantries with, because they see what kind of person you are, like how you spoke to them, and now they want to support you.

“But that’s impossible to do with 10,000 people,” you’re shouting at me through the screen. Yeah, it is. You can’t reach out to 10,000 people individually in order to sell books to each one. But you can be real on Twitter and let them see what kind of person you are. Instead of only tweeting links of your books and blogs in long reply chains of every #WritersLift you see, maybe talk a bit about what’s on your mind. Share or ask for writing advice (you can even use #WritingAdvice when you do so). Delve into your own writing process: how you outline, create characters, get past writer’s block. Whatever! But just talk about something other than, “MY BOOK IS AVAILABLE NOW ON AMAZON FREE WITH KINDLE UNLIMITED!” The constant sales pitch is tiresome and will get you muted on most people’s accounts.

And if you are following someone who does not add anything to your Twitter feed, it’s OK to unfollow them. Sure, if they’re a mutual (meaning they also follow you), they’re just as likely to unfollow you in retaliation. That’s fine; it just shows that they had no intention of interacting with you, and that’s the real reason behind social media.

Have I taken part in a Writers Lift before? Yes, of course. Multiple in fact. Does this article coupled with that fact make me a hypocrite? Yeah, probably. At the end of the day, if you choose to still participate in #WritersLift because you want a larger following count, then have at it. You’re not hurting anyone and if it makes you feel better about your social media then good on you. But just be aware that if you go this route to increase your following numbers, it won’t necessarily correlate to an increase in your sales numbers.

Paragraphic Rift: Paragraphic Nexus

Now that you have been through JWC Paragraphic Rifts steps 1 through 10, which seeks to examine points of clarity and or obscurity in a text, JWC Paragraphic Nexus looks to focus on those points concerning characters and concepts. This is all building up to something, so bear with all this overview. ; )

At the core of our subject’s cosmic duality lay that which is creative, and that which is adaptive. In the symmetry between these hides various patterns, some camouflaged by mystery, and others so elegant and beautifying that one can scarcely forget them, even if such were desired. Falling from heaven is the muse, the bright cyclical flashing of which leads to a creative obsession. Yet certain things tend to obstruct this process.

Stress is the enemy of creativity and leads to writer’s block, reader’s block, and misdirection in any project that is not due to inexperience, incapacity, or ineptitude. Some factors can be corrected through practice, while others are just drops of the dice. (If you believe in luck) Stress comes from emotionality and manipulation. The many are trying to control the few, or the few seek to lead the many, so that a vision of some sort may be realized for a supposed good.

Instead of submitting to (or tolerating) the primary world’s conditions and seeking a secondary world to simulate and or originate inspirational change, some people wish to weave degrees of control over others.

Photo by Cole Keister on Unsplash

Spiders catch flies, and flies get to swing. Feelings are not equal to logic in regard to planning, but oftentimes the former shapes the latter to a damaging degree. Some emotions are profitable in certain situations, but unchecked emotion no matter how seemingly in the right, has its price.

Desire leads to emotionality. Desires unfulfilled lead to hysteria, the rush for moral/principled correction tending toward overreaction. Sometimes violence occurs or personal rights get violated for nothing but a momentary psychosis, rising from an urge to “set things right.”

Freedom and Justice are emotional states of being, not to be bottled or sold, and so long as two people have differing interests in a subject, emotions will run strong with some. The difference between a character’s disposition contrasted by the crisis in their life (or world) can define them, especially when measured by the others rising and falling around them.

What Is Hysteria Culture? = An Emotional Infrastructure

Herd Determined Logic = The Mob

Hysteria is an emotional force born of the need for control, not of one’s own body or deeds but of the body, deeds, mind, and ultimately the spirit of others, this to satisfy a need for vengeful correction. Negativity and apathy tend to warp people a certain way, but not always into abusive or otherwise dominating behavior. Manipulation of space and time marks the hysteric, and pushes others to conform without knowing them personally,

Self Determined Logic = Personal Identity

Zeal is an emotional force born of the need for rightness. Zeal and sacrifice may inspire others to self-correct souls and spirits, and so personal change for the positive or at least to be less negative. Hysteria polarizes people by striking at (or bending) the (will) vital forces in life, while zeal wishes for change benignly but does not demand or rely on tyranny and coercion. Obsessive containment of urges and deeds is the result of discipline or counter discipline, yet restraint or conditioning is seldom enough to endure extreme levels of persecution against one’s identity. Dogmatic Indoctrination or mortal threat can be hard to overcome.

What is Obsession Containment? = An Unemotional Infrastructure

Coping with the zeal and hysteria of others often leads one to either explore the nature of these emotional states in life or to retreat into another life beyond one’s native culture.

Design and evolution factor in this willpower against obsessive containment, as to if or whether the exploration and or retreat is external or internal. Some people embrace the cosmic duality structure while others cast it aside.

If you face hard times or adversity, a crisis will arise and challenge your identity. That is the common ground between fictitious minds and living ones, the notion, and limits of identity clashing in the storm of mortal seasons and eternal destinies. Each person weathers the elements and fights to survive, and so flesh and blood, misery and torment, and the agony of birth, life, death is symmetrical and so able to be recognized.

How much is any character like an author who writes them?

Do they embrace, retreat, or cope with being obsessively contained?

Photo by 🇨🇭 Claudio Schwarz | @purzlbaum on Unsplash

The Networking of Minds:

Author’s Identity – Character’s Identity

Conscious Mind – Conscious Mind
X
Subconscious Mind – Subconscious Mind
X
Unconscious Mind – Unconscious Mind

When the weight of the world comes down on your main character’s shoulders, or the child loses a father, a family homestead burns down, a lifestyle is destroyed, and through all of this obsession containment that the story is told. Setbacks, sidetracks, misadventures, and failures might be relatable, just as would triumphs, elevations, or accolades, so long as the reader and writer see the same person in themselves.

As the narrative unfolds the characters unfold, the world blossoms as if springtime comes in time-lapse offering flashes of sunlight, moonlight, and storm. Senses perceive mentalities are linked, awareness is focused, consciousness is explored, all this through the networking of minds.

The Networking of Fictitious Minds:

Author’s Identity – Character’s Identity – Readers Identity

Conscious Mind – Conscious Mind – Conscious Mind
X
Subconscious Mind – Subconscious Mind – Subconscious Mind
X
Unconscious Mind – Unconscious Mind – Unconscious Mind

The networking of fictitious minds IS character development. To simulate character is the goal of every writer of fiction, and someplace more effort or emphasis behind such simulations than others. During a lifetime the reader encounters all sorts of people, some liked, some ignored, but at least a few of these “characters” make a mark of influence on said lifetime. It’s a whirlwind of influence, non-influence, and the subtle twilight of apathy. Caring is the source of honor, the core within every honorable person shines brightly like a noondays sun. Regardless of honor, dishonor, or loyalty, any strong-willed person wishes to feel freedom along with some sense of justice, to follow their bliss, and to have self-determination in accord with a dream they wish to fulfill.

Simulated World = Simulated People

When you enjoy the Intellectual Property of other authors, it is normally because of the world it offers (the fantasy setting) or the various characters. (the fantasy persona) The places and people who are most authentic tend to provide the most relatable characteristics. Those concepts who subtly reveal their ways offer a pace matching “real” encounters, the sort of thing likely or unlikely that might happen.

The fictitious situation being written could be totally fantastical, the setting as far removed from commonplace as an amusement park, and the characters completely alien in form and function, yet if these experiences are properly simulated the spirit or nature of them climbs into the text and completes what the muse started. Creative Obsessers are always interested in going to new places or meeting new people because the raw data arising from the networking of minds needs to happen in order for the collective awareness/consciousness to perfect itself in any work of creative obsession.

There are great shoulders to stand on, so seek formulas for sensual Immersiveness or unique perspective. Such formulas wait to be discovered in all the great works of literature, offering many experiences of being surrounded by intense revelations, if they be jump scares, injections of the chaotic random, or the stalking dread of exploring a harrowing elsewhere. Experience is the key to it all, and represents the very heart of the matter, an infinite door opening or shutting on elsewhere.

Revelations beyond common experiences, and moreover beyond human or earthly experience, focus the way a character copes with themselves under stress. Character is the style of emphasis, so what does the character focus on? In that focus waits the knowns and unknowns and the relatable thoughts, feelings, and reasons behind how a character behaves.

Photo by Sara Cottle on Unsplash


Levels of Emerson: Knowns and Unknowns

1: Environmental Index: exposure vs. shelter

Elemental = storm, inferno, deluge, quake

What are the Knowns and unknowns in the story’s setting?

2: Reality Index: immersion vs. dump shock

Sensorium = sights, tastes, stinks, noise, textures, oblivion

What are the Knowns and unknowns in the character’s mind?

3: Vibrational Index: static vs. fluid

Vibe = blissful, dreamy, empty, spooky, creepy, incubus

What are the Knowns and unknowns in the character’s heart?

4: Mentality Index: glass full vs. glass empty

Cultural = life, death, charity, atrocity, money, no money

What are the Knowns and unknowns in the character’s attitude?

5: Regional Index: sympathy vs. apathy

Origins = Xenophobe / Xenophile

What are the Knowns and unknowns in the character’s territory?

6: Terminal Index: living vs. dying

Religion = God / no God

What are the Knowns and unknowns in the character’s soul?

7: Crisis Index: leading vs. following

Command = obey / defy

What are the Knowns and unknowns in the character’s spirit?

To network the minds of readers, writers, and characters with the environment in thought space, an intermix of power and powerlessness must be calculated. When such is achieved, the force behind power and powerlessness clashing causes pages to turn and return year after year, offering the audience a grasp at unknowable dreams, nightmares, and transcendence, not to mention access to a parallel of common themes that can accentuate or otherwise verify immersion of the knowable.

Writer’s Note: My stories do not emphasize characters as much as relationships, nor do they dwell on mind space, but rather seek to express heart space. Thoughts are more obvious than emotions, and one is subtext to the other. There are certain characters that are of such a vibrational charisma, of such excellence or monstrosity, that they are only somewhat comprehensible to the average mind. Such characters are touched by what nearly everyone else around them feels very strongly about but called by destiny to be able to shape things differently. Just as many people may bring change or take power when they gather together. (As we went over above)

Also… It is far better to import a timeless character archetype into a well-fleshed world, as opposed to basing a whole world around one character’s establishment. JWC will be going over this concept further in the posts following this one.

Paragraphic Rift: Have You Checked For Redundancy In Your Text?

9: Have you checked for redundancy in your text? 

What is Textual Redundancy? 


Redundancy is the poetic variety and the targeting of repeated words/phrases. 

Systemically, redundancy in a text is often attributed to insufficient literary influence. In other words, a writer hasn’t read enough, hasn’t reread to study, hasn’t typed up preexisting manuscripts, hasn’t played stenographer, and certainly does need to make some adjustments or else face the editor’s solemn wrath. 

Refrain is repetition with purpose, normally attributed to lyrics, poesy, or dramatic flair, and is, outside of classical or formalist writing, considered to be fit only for song. It used to be that someone could triple repeat a statement and from this, some sort of emphasis could be commanded, or that a focus might be adjusted. The same effect might come from yelling or whispering in a hush. In any case, repetition for empowerment is one thing, but repeated words outside of this can crush the pace and disinterest the reader, not to mention mucking up what the muse and voice are trying to achieve together. 

*There are tools and techniques in certain software packages that can count specific words and so aid in anti-redundancy micromanagement. Seeking these can help fix what’s already there, but using the following JWC tools can help to correct these tendencies, and so transform/manage your voice. 

Photo by Mark Harpur on Unsplash

When you write a page/paragraph that satisfies both muse and voice and has been overseen and observed by a creative workshop, then use the following exercise. 

Guidelines to Variety of Phraseology: Mythic Containment 

How many Vehicle words? + or – = 
The, with, was, etc 

How many Flower words? + or – = 
High caliber words 
EX: gorgeous 

How many Power words? + or – = 
Hysteria words 
EX: dismemberment 

How many Elevation words? + or – = 
Those immersive into bliss so that the reader can climb into the infinite 
EX: scintillation 

How many Descending words? + or – = 
Those immersive into terror so that danger can capture the reader 
EX: hideous 

How many Nonsense words? + or – = 
Diversions into humor or absurdism in order to cut tension 
EX: flatulence 

How many Mythic words? + or – = 
The phrasing of concept so that it may not easily be forgotten. 
EX: quest 

Wordsmithing? + or – = 
The generation of terminology so that the reader “learns” with the characters 
EX: cleromancer 
Photo by Sandra Ahn Mode on Unsplash
Using the Guidelines to Variety of Phraseology: Mythic Containment, you can modify how many words more or less for each variety, so that voice dial-ins and or modifications can be explored. By this an off text or over polished work can be adjusted to the taste of what is called for, or be further perfected and/or studied so that every criteria is met.

Paragraphic Rift: Have You Checked Narrative Continuity?

8: Have you checked narrative Continuity?

What is narrative Continuity?

Narrative Continuity is the coherency of forms or concepts in the narrative flow. As the project is completed many updates will be registered and accounted for, and this should be done through an outlining process so that such data is organized and always at hand.

Just as a character would, an author must reckon all that has happened to them and network conscious mind to unconscious mind in order to sort out the details. A creative obsessor is always in a twilight awareness between their adaptive life and their creative obsession, doing their daily tasks with half their conscious processes engaged in the muse at hand. So an outline of muse flashes is the surest way to discover each narrative step because by such is the tale told and creative satisfaction gained by the writer.

Photo by Simon Moog on Unsplash

Muse Flash Outline / Journal 1: Example
Original inspiration – That material written by another author which fascinates and motivates creativity.

Muse Flash 1 – The first blink into unconscious creativity, being the primary interface that establishes the networking of minds, in this case, conscious and unconscious.

Muse Flash 2 – The second blink into unconscious creativity leads to the next stage of mind networking, where the awareness of the author connects to the awareness of a character. Through this contemplation, the very essence of creative obsession depending on duration and output, the situation and circumstances of the narrative are shared, and by this the conscious/unconscious minds of both are networked. So the character “comes to life” by the way its author, and eventually, its audience, are able to realize them. Places, people, concepts wait to be actualized by way of such mental networking when plugged into a Creative Workshop, where a whole room of Creative Obsessors might network collectively.

Muse Flash 3 – By this point the cycles of muse suggest a broader narrative, proposing places that the main thread might follow into a situation brought on by circumstances beyond the main character’s control. The attempt to gain control or at least reorient any disjointed lifestyles that change or crisis have brutalized.

Muse Flash 4 – So on and so forth, the unconscious continuously sends muse flashes, and if a creator gets out of their own way they might see some words on pages. A creative obsessor looks at life as a bubble of temporality which timelessness tries to penetrate, therefore any temporal (calendrical or adaptive) concerns must be completed so that nothing may distract the creative process.

The time between these flashes varies between creative types, but the more you practice/use these faculties, the more they should develop. To break block or stimulate the muse if she’s shy, utilize the following model of outlines.

Muse Flash Outline / Journal 1 is an after the fact model, seeking to outline the existent muse flashes as they have occurred, and thereby an unconscious chronology of mind networking.

Photo by Maria P on Unsplash

Muse Flash Outline / Journal 2: Suggestion
Original inspiration – Convey favorite authors, favorite works, favorite scenes.

Mush Flash 1 – Check origins of main character

Muse Flash 2 – Check thinking of main character

Muse Flash 3 – Workshop feelings of main character

Muse Flash 4 – Workshop deeds of a conflicted main character

Muse Flash 5 – Simulate a conversation about the main character’s reputation

Muse Flash 6 – Simulate public conscienceless of a conceptual legacy

Muse Flash Outline / Journal 2 are the kinds of outlines based less on creative obsession and more on the networking of minds. Adaptive networks outline the conscious exploration of concepts, and any muse flashes that occur arise from meditation on already known conditions in the project, or the muse flashes of others during that conscious to unconscious network.

Muse Flash Outline / Journal 3: Suggestion
Original inspiration – Convey favorite concepts from scenes/settings you admire.

Muse Flash 1 – Nicknames = familiarity and so a sense of time spent together as if the reader has grown up with them as a distant relative.

Muse Flash 2 – Industrial terminology = at least three names for everything, commercial, scientific, industrial.

Muse Flash 3 – Goals, dreams, wishes, aspirations, so that we have pieces of the characters/concepts deep philosophy, and heart space.

Muse Flash Outline / Journal 3 is an outline that seeks to define familiarity or intimacy, and so draws readers into concepts, providing a personal closeness that helps to network minds and swap awarenesses. Interspersing such concepts within an outline structure to then be worked into a text helps to thicken the narrative stew.

Narrative Continuity is of vast importance, and of such a priority to the text that it cannot be overstated. An Author must be absolutely certain that dump shock (counter immersion) due to discontinuity does not corrupt the narrative, and so ruin the muse, mood, and moment of creativity’s obsession. This must be avoided at all costs.

Paragraphic Rift: Have you Weaponized the Core?

6: Have you Weaponized the Core?

What is the Core? 

The Core is value. Taking stock of what you have and remembering bereavements. It is defying the threat of preservation against opposition if it be by destiny, foes, or legal decree so that a narrative is humanized, or brought to a dehumanized state. Concepts like extinction, annihilation, devolution, damnation, etc, may be used as a proper crisis to test the core. The stakes must be raised in order to sync core values and elevate dramatic themes. 
Photo by Paweł Czerwiński on Unsplash
Weaponize the Core 

In sci-fi like Star Trek, when the antimatter core is ready to go up, the mission is put on hold until the situation is resolved. Or… they have to abandon ship. There are even times when the ship’s core may be weaponized, and the order given for ramming speed or warp jump into a target. It’s all or nothing, do AND die, this done to pay a debt or buy time for a desperate plan. 

Such dire conditions bring dense gravity to the narrative and a sense of unexpectedness, which sometimes passes for surprise, but in either case, does not dump shock the reader. It is critical that the reader is drawn in by what is done to the core because it is their own core that is of chief concern. 

Empathy is needed in order for the flavor of hero, antihero, villain, etc to drive home what is at stake and so what may be lost. Like when a muse flash is obliterated due to a lack of paper or time. When we focus on forever in a departed now, what might be lost in a moment becomes precious. 
Weaponize to emphasize 

There is another core, one of liberty, morality, principles, and justice. If you see someone suffering, the instant reaction is to wonder why. Some have it coming for misdeeds wrought or crimes against the just and innocent, but “why” isn’t the point we are making here. The point is what abuse, punishments, torture, and incarceration do to both writer and reader. 
Empathic Index: 
  • broken anatomy – outer vulnerability  

  • parading anatomy – external vulnerability  

  • visceral anatomy – internal vulnerability 

  • diseased anatomy – inner vulnerability 

  • abominable anatomy – cosmic vulnerability 

Photo by Alexandru Acea on Unsplash
Such vulnerability should move an audience emotionally, or harden their hearts.  

Important Questions: Do we care about what’s happening? If not, why not? Do they, the victim, have it coming? 

According to each person’s deeds and intentions, that is how people should be treated, and when that treatment is deformed, distorted, or warped by agenda or hatefulness, a character (or culture) may be traumatized by abuse or violated through an unjust ruling. Out of suffering comes great measures of behavioral accentuation, for good or evil, and so one of a kind characters, nations, or situations may emerge. 
  • Trauma as (is) teacher 
  • What is a sacrifice? 
  • How best to assign value to blood? 
  • Violence, violation, deprivation, intimidation 

When writing fiction, you cannot get away from themes of violence, sex, and conquest. The body is THE common ground, for embodiment of spirit is synonymous with being alive. Many such themes have suggestions, implications, and out and out consequences for characters and plot so that the narrative gains mass. 

The artful wielding of trauma, or an escape from its possibility, brings a lot to the table for readers. Losing a hand, an eye, a child, a kingdom, a planet, a parent, a bride, can make all the difference in a character’s life, altering them in ways that otherwise would never have been possible.  After all… Do any of us truly know what we have until it’s gone? 

This Trauma as (is) teacher thing sounds cruel or demented from the outside, or at the very least a bit overboard. However, when it comes to myth and that which is mythic, there is no such thing as overboard. All the fables, myths, legends, and fairy tales are blood-soaked and reaching into incubus. Are we not to learn from and build on these elder Texts, just as our famed literary masters have done? 

No author mindful of cultural backlash is trying to trigger someone, yet the form of myth compels said author to explore beyond the expectations set by creative yesterday. That is why genre and demographic funnel audiences the way they do. No one wants to ruin someone’s day, yet all the greatest tales in mankind’s library touch us so because they are at least brutal, and at worst traumatizing so as to be remembered always… The collective core having been weaponized against an engaged audience for their entertainment and inspiration.

Paragraphic Rift: How Loyal Are You To Your Muse?

Now that we have been over 1 (What is your Inspiration?), 5 (Creative Workshopping), and 10 (Adaptive Bookcraft) you may proceed to the next level of JWC Paragraphic Rift, which begins to unlock our method for creative editing and analysis of voice. 

2: How loyal are you to your Muse? 

What is your muse? A Muse (in as far as we are concerned) is a continuous (reoccurring) source of inspiration if it be about a character, a theme, or even an entire secondary world.*

You must honor the muse of your first inspiration in order to explore its potential. 

Honor the first draft inspiration, then honor the muse flash from which it arises. 

But first… you have to acquire a creative obsession. And before you can gain a creative obsession, you must first find what you want to write and a vision/dream to work toward. 

We’ve already asked the questions: 

– Dream / Write What? 

– Are you adapting something that is? 

– Or are you creating something new and continuous, a foundation for a creative obsession? 

Inspiration becomes muse becomes vision. The vision tells the creative obsessor what they will be willing to do, and how far the vision reaches. This is the difference between a goal and a dream. Goals are for every day, but the dream is timeless, with the vision encompassing both. The muse is derived from the connectivity between goals and visions, temporality and timelessness, and of course consciousness and unconsciousness. 

Consciousness is knowable whereas unconsciousness is unknowable; that is to say, known and unknown come distinct through what we experience consciously. 

Inspiration is born of what we know, and so is derived from preexisting forms, but a muse flash arises from the mutation of forms into something other than. Otherness is prime. Other than what we read or watch, so that it seems new in some way, even though its formula is tried and true. 

It is not newness but rather timelessness that is perceived, which is either converted into “newness” and or nostalgia vibes. A mixture of rose-colored past and a timeless now leads to this precious otherness and so a place among the others who are valued by the many. 

Here’s the thing… the networking of minds is key, especially between your conscious mind and unconscious mind, with the muse being a network route interfacing between the two, and so much more. 
Photo by KAL VISUALS on Unsplash
Conscious thought is an island. 

Unconscious thought is a boiling sea. 

Subconscious processes come from both, but don’t factor into this directly. 

Creative Obsessor 1:    Creative Obsessor 2: 

Temporality = Consciousness = Adaptivity 

Conscious Thought      X   Conscious Thought 

X   Escape into Bliss / Creative Obsession   X = Muse Flash

Unconscious Thought   X   Unconscious Thought 

Timelessness = Unconsciousness = Creativity 

What is a Muse Flash?

Definition: A point during creative meditation when the compulsion to capture an update of the muse takes hold of consciousness, having arisen from the unconscious or timeless mode. 

What happens next? That is the subconscious question being asked, by the reader, by the narrative, by the debt between the two. They have a networking with the author through the text, and so the conscious/unconscious must be bridged in that way also. What is revealed and what is obscured, mystification hiding explanation, verses what is known through the details of revelation. The guessing game is phenomenal! 

Conscious thoughts, which could be figured out during a workshop dialogue with a fellow creative, are adaptively debated, but then a muse flash strikes and something unforeseen occurs. You find yourself impressed with the inspiration of inspired work, a muse, not just fan fiction or a wild what if, but a true continuity into your own creative obsession! Inspiration is one thing, sometimes the first thing, but a muse flows cyclically in flashes and foundationally, becoming a continuous project, defining itself and seeking to finalize all expression, making a bond with one’s creative obsession. 

Your muse brings bliss and satisfaction to the project that you are constantly thinking about / working on. Creative obsession is built from a muse that literally won’t leave you alone. There is a persistent need to work on certain ideas, and during the day when you are dealing with adaptive work (your job or any other obligation) these concepts will appear in your third eye (imagination) offering you the creative obsessor, an escape from temporality. 

Timelessness is the goal. Temporality is what our clocks measure. Timelessness is made of limitless moments, and in these spurts of anti-time, the muse comes. Inspiration comes from this source, especially after wandering through a well-loved reread of a favorite book or some top five movie watched until quotes are memorized.  (and friends tire of the endless references made to certain scenes) 

Just like muse flashes, the intellectual shift into inspiration seems to come from seemingly out of nowhere. The nowhere it emerges from is unconsciousness, or rather the result of consciousness being added up over long years of life, research, and or creative obsession. Like the otherworldly threshold between wakefulness and dreaming sleep, this place holds nearly limitless potential. 
Photo by Brannon Naito on Unsplash

Fathomless Dimensions of the Muse

As the muse flows we find ourselves and otherness. An artist seeks to dimensionalize the known and unknown, and the fantasy artist must describe that which is not. To sketch a field of flowers is different from a flight of dragons since we can have a broad contrast of flower fields, but we don’t have very many examples of dragons. 

It is the same thing with cyborgs, or fairies, or a sentient nebula, are an artificial intelligence because to imagine or see is not to experience. To witness is not to be witnessed, and the experience of another is half of why we escape into both our own muse or the muse of others. 

One must set aside adaptive (necessary) or temporal (scheduled) by completing said tasks; then, they may address the creative (satisfying) or timeless (unburdened) mode. Creative obsessions are made in the balance of these two modes, and the states of being between them. 

The Muse = Timelessness 

It is timelessness that a writer seeks, that a creative obsession provides, and if they get out of the muse’s way they shall have it. Give yourself a moment of creative meditation alone each day, and in that solitude see if you don’t find profound satisfaction!

*Coming soon:
JWC Secondary World & Tree and Leaf: J R R Tolkien – On Fairy-Stories – essays

Blue Water Writing: Note-taking and Narrating

To avoid making the mistakes that I previously made, I utilized many of the suggestions from Writer’s Digest, and I constructed an outline before writing the text.  Some of the choices that I made in the outline were not ideal. Making my narrator a cop seemed to make sense while outlining, but the choice felt restrictive during the narration of the story. In the second draft of the outline, I changed my first-person narrator – from a retired cop – to a retired camera operator.  With this change, the narration flowed, and the next 1000 words were more enjoyable to write.  

Image by Pikist

While that change worked, I eventually came across an issue with the logistics of a scene, and uncertain of where I was going, I constructed a third draft of the outline.  The details that I added were in the form of sketches. The pictures presented only bird’s-eye views, looked very messy, used arrows to represent the characters’ movements, and referred only to the scenes that I was struggling with.  With these details, the narration resumed, and I was satisfied with the quality of the text generated.  

Initially, I thought that an outline was the solution. With an outline, I’d pay up front and rip the band-aid off fast. As I confronted the challenging aspects of the plot in the outline, the writing process would feel less like climbing up a mountain and more like sliding down one. While the outline supported the story, it was the writing of the text that revealed the holes in the outline. The best approach for me might include a continuous back-and-forth between note-taking and narration.