Monday, November 22, 2010

Dragon Sighting…Creative Writing

Upon request from a new writer cyberbuddy--Roland over at Writing in the Crosshairs (click for link)--here is a photo of another of my dragons, a fierce lamp-guarding type.


Also over at Roland's site, on his November 19 post, he has a vid where someone is reading the prologue to one of his works. Speaking of imaginative writing, Roland's got it! The following line really grabbed me:

The hours passed like kidney stones.

I mean, is that brilliant or what? It's not only an appropriate simile because kidney stones pass in an excruciating and often slow way, but it's a slight twist on the normal usage of the word "passed." Unexpected, and imaginative. He has some other great lines too, describing an old lady on a bus, among other things.

WRITING BOOK RECOMMENDATION:
I mentioned this book quite a while ago on my blog, but it's worth repeating. If you want great pointers about how to instill imaginative figures of speech into your writing, I heartily recommend Arthur Plotnik's Spunk & Bite: A writer's guide to bold, contemporary style.

And yes, it's a take-off on Strunk & White, detailing just how far you can stray from the tried-and-true "rules" of writing. I got it for fairly cheap on Amazon! Check it out at THIS LINK. It's even cheaper if you buy a used copy. You can read the first few pages with the Look Inside feature to whet your writerly appetite.

How about you?
Do you like to use metaphors, similes, and other figures of speech in your writing?
Do you like my lamp dragon, or is it too masculine or wicked for you?
Do you like to break writing "rules" in your novels or other works?

20 comments:

  1. Thanks for the gracious link and the even more kind compliments on my writing, Carol. Elena Solodow is the lovely lady reading my prologue to my latest novel.

    Your dragon lamp is truly striking. What a guardian to have by your bed! My cat, Gypsy, would be hissing at it all night.

    Have a great Thanksgiving, Roland

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  2. Hi Roland, and thanks for giving the attribution for your reader! Happy T-day to you too.

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  3. Hi Carol, I break writing rules all the time, but never on purpose;-)And I do like using similes and metaphors in my writing. Imagine my surprise when a critique partner tells me it's a cliché. I do like your dragon, but for my son's room. Thanks for the Christmas gift idea!

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  4. Ha, never on purpose. LOL And it's difficult to think of ORIGINAL, non-cliche figures of speech. I think I've done the same thing as you though--believing something to be unique, and come to find out, it's already been done. Rats!
    Hope you find a great dragon for your son for Christmas!

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  5. I love your dragon lamp. I used to collect dragons as well. I had to stop because I began to get too many and didn't know where to put them.

    I also love to use similies and metaphors. They bring prose alive.

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  6. Thanks, Lynda! I love similes and metaphors too. And like you, I've halted my dragon collecting for lack of room. :o)

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  7. I love your dragon lamp! I'll have to post the one I have--it's pretty cool, although not as detailed as yours. I break the rules, and I do use similes and metaphors. But I could use some help on improving them. Spunk and Bite sounds like a good investment!

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  8. Thanks for visiting, Maria! And I hope Spunk and Bite helps give you lots of creative ways to use words and figures of speech. I'll be looking for your dragon, on your site!

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  9. I finally discoverd about two books ago that I was using too many similies--love them but also wasn't using ones that fit my characters. Like if she is a cowgirl, I needed to use cowgirl type things she would know. So it was a huge learning lesson. I will check out that book! Thanks!

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  10. Ooo, important point, Terri! Good to mention that. I just wrote a light sci-fi, and had to make sure the figures of speech really fit. And now I'm writing a post-apocalyptic YA where technology is nearly non-existent, so my similes have to be more agricultural and "down-home." :)

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  11. I'm a sucker for similies and that's not always a good thing! I like it when they're unique and powerful. I try not to use them for just any reason. Great post!

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  12. Hi T. Anne, thanks for stopping by! I love to use 'em too, and alas, I probably DO overuse them. But they're so fun....

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  13. i am a fan of judiciously used similes and metaphors.
    And a fan of Roland!

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  14. I love the lamp! And I break the rules sometimes. It depends on the scene and the context.

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  15. Lydia--I think "judiciously" is a good word and concept. I still tend to overdo it!

    Nicole--thanks! and you're so right about it depending on the scene and context. We have to be a little careful, as writers.

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  16. Hello back Carol! Glad to meet you and follow a follower! As for similies and metaphors, I have to admit, I'm a sucker for em'! And oh, totally rockin' the dragon lamp!

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  17. Welcome, Nathalie! Glad you like similes, metaphors, and dragons. :)

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  18. I love your lamp dragon - very fun! I also love to use figures of speech. When an author uses fantastic imagery, it makes the book a joy to read.

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  19. Hiya Susan, thanks for stopping by. I love reading books with great imagery too!

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  20. Congrats for the prize and what a great review!
    CD

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