Linda’s Writing Challenge # 13

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Editor’s Note: This post has been written by Linda K. Strahl, an editor-in-training at the Jet Fuel Review. Her full bio can be found at the end of this post.

There was an interesting background to these prompts that I feel should be shared with the audience. The “Letter to God” exercise was challenging for me, and the only reason it could be is because of my recent bout with Theology. At Lewis University it is required that students take two classes in theology. While I have taken two at Lewis, I have also taken many similar classes in other schools. What interested me about this “Letter” is I have rarely sat down and had a dialogue with the all powerful creator. I recognize the fact that every culture has a creator, and that this is a common thread shared by humanity. It has just never crossed my mind to start a dialogue. It might be my innate fear that he will answer back. That is the only theory I can come up with. I felt that I should stay true to the language so pardon the phrase at the end. I hope none of the audience takes offence to the blurb as it is out of my control what I am assigned to write.

As for the second prompt of the week (It’s only Natural), Bonnie Goldberg, had a great idea to look at the nature of a person. This however, did not come out in my free write. I chose to look at the one thing that surprised me when I was a decade and a little younger than now, sun-showers. I grew up in on the northern east coast of America from the age of five through to eleven. During this time, I do not recall ever seeing a true sun-shower until I visited my great grandmother in Florida. It was an astonishing surprise at my young age, and it thrilled and confused me. There is, however, something new that I learned in my perusing research of sun-showers in cultures throughout the world. Sun-showers, though beautiful, have been given a negative connotation in many ways because of their abnormality. The most information I could find was on Wikipedia, but the idea that something which creates the best rainbows has such an awful reputation, caused me to catch my breath and realize, that the reaction of people to the abnormal… is only natural. Just like the number 13 in many circles. Now that I have bored you enough with facts and research, here are the posts. Hope you enjoy, and get Bonni Goldberg’s book!

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Linda’s Writing Challenge # 12

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Editor’s Note: This post has been written by Linda K. Strahl, an editor-in-training at the Jet Fuel Review. Her full bio can be found at the end of this post.

The writing challenges that I am prompted to do today are about the unsayable and the unsaid. Writers have to express things that cannot truly be described with words. Emotions are difficult to explain in our daily lives because the vocabulary we use does not touch the truth of the feeling. Because emotions are key aspects in building a character to an audience, Goldberg gives her devote audience and prompt doers the idea to compare the physical with other sensations, juxtapose the conflicting thoughts (fear, excitement etc.), use rhythm in the line to set a tone. This paraphrase might be unclear so feel free to reference the term to the page number twenty-three.

As for the unsaid, or unspoken prompt, say what you didn’t say in a conversation from your past. Since this is a public rendition of the prompt, I am going to stipulate that my conversation didn’t ever happen. Therefore the entire thing will be made up in a fashion of a blunt character conversation. If I wrote what I didn’t say in one conversation or another, people that know me could recall the incidents and possibly maim me. Disclaimer said, now onto the prompts!

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Linda’s Writing Challenge #11

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Editor’s Note: This post has been written by Linda K. Strahl, an editor-in-training at the Jet Fuel Review. Her full bio can be found at the end of this post.

I want to apologize to the audience for my absence last week. There was a family commitment that was unavoidable, and took me away from my duties. Now back to our regularly scheduled program. To not cause confusion, last week’s prompts are this weeks, which makes this simple. Bonni Goldberg gives the audience, and me the challenge to write about our wishes and dreams. How truthful can I be about these particular prompts? Do I want to tell everyone about my wishes and dreams. I don’t think so. These are private in many ways, therefore I can only say that these are fictional, and not be taken into consideration as a part of my character. Thus, with the disclaimer written, I should explain what purpose these prompts may have for a writer.

Writer’s have dreams. Dreams and wishes build worlds. A story can build from a random dream, where the world has flying cars or a character is a crack addict. Where would the world be without dreams and wishes, like wishing to read, or dreaming to fly? If dreams and wishes influence the lives of people in our world, imagine what they do in the fictional world. They would be monumental events within the pages of a story, as they are monument making in this one. So here are dreams and wishes.

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Ekphrastic Poem #10

Editor’s Note: This post has been written by Linda K. Strahl, an editor-in-training at the Jet Fuel Review. Her full bio can be found at the end of this post.
 

Today’s Ekphrastic is inspired by a great song performed by an amazing artist. I first heard his haunting voice on Castle. One of my favorite shows and yes, half because it deals with a writer and the other half being that Nathan Fillion will always be fantastic even if he isn’t Malcolm Reynolds. If you are a fan of FireFly then you would be one of the geeks that freaked when he stepped out that one Halloween episode in his space-cow-boy outfit. (This comment makes me wonder why he isn’t in Cowboys and Aliens). But, I digress from the topic at hand.

This phenomenal artist (back to the singer) is also feature in The Vampire Diaries soundtrack (Don’t judge me!) If you don’t know this artist from Denmark (hint hint) you, dear audience, are missing out. Thus I added the music video from youtube of one of his many songs “Fact-Fiction”. Hopefully you now know it’s Mads Langer. Continue reading

Linda’s Writing Challenge #10

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Editor’s Note: This post has been written by Linda K. Strahl, an editor-in-training at the Jet Fuel Review. Her full bio can be found at the end of this post.

Is it Thursday already? Well the Writing Challenge has come and gone. So I will explain the reasons behind the inspirations this week. Bonni Goldberg prompted readers to write about lies. To write a lie that I told or did or regretted, which is not something I really want to do. So, I decided to think externally. One of my favorite shows is The Good Wife, starring Julianna Margulies, which is all about a woman finding a new way to define herself after learning that her husband is a well-dressed-scumbag. Thus, my nineteenth free write is successfully inspired.

The twentieth, wow, the twentieth prompt! This prompt, Goldberg wants writers to concentrate on discipline. Or at least what we know of discipline. I chose to write in the perspective of a workout. The personal touches are what count. What I know of discipline is through training, so I wrote about the training I have been going through for the past year. Who would’ve thought martial arts would have so inspiring. Enough with the prattling, here are my prompts! And try writing your own while you’re at it.

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Linda’s Writing Challenge # 9

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Editor’s Note: This post has been written by Linda K. Strahl, an editor-in-training at the Jet Fuel Review. Her full bio can be found at the end of this post.

What is so important about these writing challenges? What purpose do they serve? These are not questions I ask myself, because it is a simply a part of being a writer. If I didn’t write these challenges, if I didn’t commit to them, as much as I have thus far, my writing would suffer. It is like exercising muscles, it is necessary that writers always write, daily. In a way the challenge is to come up with something different each time.

The tasks for today involve descriptors. There are so many kinds of ways to describe an object or a place. The color, size, and shape are a few of the quirks needed to describe a thing with no image. Writers use words to give the audience a picture, and in the case of these writing challenges Goldberg wants us to use sound and texture.

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Ekphrastic Blog #8

Editor’s Note: This post has been written by Linda K. Strahl, an editor-in-training at the Jet Fuel Review. Her full bio can be found at the end of this post.

As the all the rest of the world knows. Today was the Premiere of Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Part 2. All of us Harry Potter fans, old and young expected the day to come, and what an epic ending it is. It is an open secret that the characters die in the books. There are always the heroes we know, and the ones that surprise us. We have all had our favorite characters. The villains, the comic relief, and the underdogs, along with the ever present heroes are the things we can’t live without.

I chose to write an Ekphrastic poem about the underdog. I always liked the Weasley Twins. I have to admit that truth to you, because who doesn’t like that Dynamic Duo? But those guys have their own fame, so I chose the other guy, the one that no one really thought to be anything other than the other boy born on the same night as Harry Potter, Neville Longbottom.

I apologize for the movie poster, but it was the one picture I could link, that best described the scene. I used the knowledge of the book, as well as my new knowledge from the movie. It was worth waiting until 3am to see. Enjoy the poem, and go see the movie! Continue reading

Linda’s Writing Challenge #8

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Editor’s Note: Linda K Strahl is a transfer student from University of Wisconsin- La Crosse, where she was studying Archeaology and minoring in Creative Writing. She came to Lewis University in Fall of 2010 to major in Creative Writing. After participating in the production of two plays at Phillip Lynch Theater she has become an enthusiastic dramaturgist, and is contemplating a career as a researcher and playwriter.

The senses are key elements writers have to be able to use when building a scene. If a writer only does dialog then the audience isn’t captivated, because they want to imagine the smell, taste, touch, and color of something. How her hair smelled? How his brow crinkled? How the yogurt tasted on her tongue? These are essential things a writer must have in their repertoire, BEFORE they write dialog. These writing prompts reminded me of the novel Perfume, by Patrick Suskind the element he uses is olfactory. How does everything smell? What was interesting about the about a book with smell? Suskind went a step further, he made the main character smell everything!! Glass has a smell!! The prompts today, are about smell and taste. Bonni Goldberg is again the prompt inspirations, so here they are:

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Linda’s Writing Challenge #7

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Editor’s Note: This post has been written by Linda K. Strahl, an editor-in-training at the Jet Fuel Review. Her full bio can be found at the end of this post.

Bonni Goldberg makes writing as simple as breathing, usually. There are always some challenges that make writers hesitant to attempt. This is because these topics can be out of the metaphorical box, or on the other side of our comfort zones. They can cross the line from a normal twenty lines a day exercise, so far across that line that, the writer can’t seem to find her way back without serious counseling.

I mention this… Continue reading

Linda’s Writing Challenge #6

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Editor’s Note: This post has been written by Linda K. Strahl, an editor-in-training at the Jet Fuel Review. Her full bio can be found at the end of this post.

Bonni Goldberg puts prompt writing to good use by making some stepping stones. In these two prompts there is a stacking effect. You cannot do the second prompt without the first prompt. This is because there is a character development required. Building a character from the toe up is not so difficult when it comes to the physical representation.

The difficulty lies in how to make the character’s thoughts believable. So first the physical representation of our character, which I suggest that the audience keep in mind, I try to take as little liberties as possible, when it comes to description. It was not until the second draft that I realized it would be far more fitting to have a hinted setting. Because setting also helps describe the character. This is also how I know the man I describe the best. Continue reading