Wednesday, May 15, 2019

Cards Against Humanity: Writing Prompts for Horrible People

By Eleanor Shelton

On Shakespeare's 455th birthday the Shakespeare Birthplace Trust released a Trivial Pursuit Shakespeare Edition. While Bard buffs may have a leg up playing the game, it purports that anyone with "general cultural awareness" will have a fighting chance.

Linking literature with games is a fun way to celebrate the classics. So, I thought of using another game to help prompt me. Something a little less cerebral than Shakespeare Trivial Pursuit while still offering a myriad of possibilities.

Wednesday, May 8, 2019

The Plot Twist

By David E. Sharp

If you've read so much as a cereal box within the last decade, you're familiar with the art of twisting plots. Cheerios are gluten free!? I never saw that coming.

We don't want to read something we find predictable. We want surprises. We want the thrill of a literary sideswipe. Enter the plot twist. This is that unexpected development that jolts us from our doldrums and keeps us reading way past bedtime.

Friday, April 26, 2019

So You Are A-Writering Or Known As The NCW Writers Conference


Ronda Simmons and JC Lynne

First, let us say for everyone at Northern Colorado Writers, YIPPEE! Whether this is your first conference or you are a veteran, buckle up for as much fun with people that some of us can stand. 

The NCW Conference is an excellent place to observe the social habits of the everyday writer. 

Thursday, April 18, 2019

The Argument for Writing What You Know

By Eleanor Shelton

Writing and food are two of my favorite things. Many years ago, I decided to combine them and become a food writer. I pitched a few food-related articles to the local daily paper where I used to live, lo and behold, I became a food writer, just like that. 

Wednesday, April 10, 2019

Writing about Place

Laura Mahal circa 1979

By Laura Mahal

Often, when writing about place, authors tend to reach for descriptive language--adjectives and crafted phrases to conjure sights, sounds, and perhaps even tastes or tactile memories. We may dig into our own past to mine the sensory memories associated with a particular locale.

The idea being if we swirl these things together in the perfect way, we'll transport our readers by metro, plane, car, or canoe to that place we want them to know as intimately as we do.

My approach is a little different.

Monday, April 1, 2019

Big Changes Coming to NCW

By Ronda Simmons

As most of you have heard by now, NCW's former director, the fabulous April More, has moved to New York City to begin her modeling career with the Ford Agency.  

The also-fabulous Amy Rivera, former head writer for Saturday Night Live, has been crowned our new director. Amy was recently nominated for a Pulitzer for her novel To Inconvenience A Mockingbird, and we're so fortunate to have lured her to NCW!

Wednesday, March 27, 2019

What to Do with Minor Characters

By David E. Sharp

You've learned how to create a compelling character arc, how to imbue your protagonist with three-dimensional layers and how to shrug off the stereotypes. You've created main characters with compelling backstories, subplots, and nuance.

Lumiere Fans The Flames of Romance.

Now you're writing a scene where your protagonist is having a conversation with a waiter we will never see again. What do you do? Give him a full backstory, a family tree and a quest to retrieve the holy grail? How should we handle minor characters?

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