Tag Archives: writing

Do Juliet and Ava Have Traits in Common?

GUESTLIST by Jay Fingers

Yesterday, I was reading a few articles at K.M. Weiland’s Wordplay when I came across this post that said the protagonist and antagonist of one’s novel should share similar traits. The examples cited gave credence to Weiland’s argument, and ranged from the parallels between Luke Skywalker and Darth Vader to the common goal of every character in Dashiell Hammett’s classic The Maltese Falcon.

This made me wonder if Juliet and Ava, the protagonist and antagonist, respectively, of my novel GUESTLIST, have more in common than I initially realized. Looking at the same three comparison points Weiland used in her post, here’s what I came up with.

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Am I Really A Writer?

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Quote: “Anyone Can Become A Writer”

Harlan Ellison

“Anyone can become a writer. The trick is staying a writer.”
—Harlan Ellison, Writer

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Event: Touré – Who’s Afraid of Post-Blackness? Book Launch Party (Sept. 13)

Who's Afraid of Post-Blackness? by Touré

Whether you love him or hate him, one thing is surely true—Touré has a new book coming out, and you do not. The author/journalist has written Who’s Afraid of Post-Blackness?: What It Means To Be Black Now, which is about, well, exactly what it says on the tin. Touré attempts to explore what it means to be black in America in the age of Obama.

Examining the concept of “Post-Blackness,” a term that defines artists who are proud to be Black but don’t want to be limited by identity politics, Touré divulges intimate, funny, and painful stories of how racial expectations have shaped his own life, and explores how the concept of Post-Blackness functions in politics, art, culture, and more. The book also includes insights from a wide spectrum of contemporary luminaries, from Cornel West to Malcolm Gladwell to Kara Walker to David Paterson to Chuck D.

On Tuesday, September 13, Greenlight Bookstore hosts the launch of the book with a party featuring refreshments and music from DJ FRiTZO, along with a chance to meet and talk with Touré.

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Quote: If I Waited Till I Felt Like Writing

Anne Tyler

“If I waited till I felt like writing, I’d never write at all.”
Anne Tyler, Pulitzer Prize-Winning Novelist

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Writing: Words We Don’t Say by Hugo Lindgren

Writing: Words We Don't Use by Hugo Lindgren

A few months back, New York Times Magazine editor Hugo Lindgren shared a story in which he discovered a list of words and phrases (“phony-baloney vocabulary”) that should never find their way into any story. Of course, we’re talking journalism here, but I think the reason Lindgren shared this is because he probably felt this list would prove useful to writers of all disciplines.

I won’t lie, I use a few words on this list. I’m a fan of “maven,” and I just don’t ever see myself ceasing use of “eponymous.” Sorry.

The story of how Lindgren discovered this list is an amusing anecdote in and of itself, and you should read it over at The 6th Floor. I love the way it begins:

In 1997, when I was first hired at New York magazine, Kurt Andersen, now a best-selling novelist and radio-show host, had just been fired as editor. Everybody was grieving about this, though not me, since I wouldn’t have had a job there otherwise.

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Writing: The Drums – Part One Wordle

The Drums Part One - Wordle

As I explained before, rather haphazardly, I will not post my actual work on this blog before its time. That means before it’s been published or produced or whatever. But I know that leaves a lot of you wondering, “Damn, is this guy actually writing something or not?” Yes, children, I am.

But I will prove it to you. Sorta. What I’ve decided to do is create a “wordle” each time I finish a chapter or scene or whatever. The above wordle is from the short story I’ve been working on since forever, The Drums. The two most prominent words, “Tati” and “Jacqueline,” are the manin characters’ names, obvs.

This isn’t the first time I’ve posted a wordle on my blog but it has been a while, so if you’re unfamiliar: “Wordle is a toy for generating ‘word clouds’ from text that you provide. The clouds give greater prominence to words that appear more frequently in the source text.”

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