• The Writer


    Hello! My name is Laura, welcome to my blog! I write weird stories, collect dragon plushies and stay up too late with my nose in a book. I am a wife, mom and child saved by grace. My hope is that you find encouragement here or at least a smile or too.
    God bless!

  • “Now go, write it before them in a table, and note it in a book that it may be for the time to come forever and ever.”
    ~Isaiah 30:8.

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  • Quotes

    We have come from God, and inevitably the myths woven by us, though they contain error, will also reflect a splintered fragment of the true light, the eternal truth that is with God. Indeed only by myth-making, only by becoming 'sub-creator' and inventing stories, can Man aspire to the state of perfection that he knew before the Fall. Our myths may be misguided, but they steer however shakily towards the true harbour, while materialistic 'progress' leads only to a yawning abyss and the Iron Crown of the power of evil.
    ~J.R.R. Tolkien

    "The only just literary critic," he concluded, "is Christ, who admires more than does any man the gifts He Himself has bestowed."
    ~J.R.R. Tolkien

    “Fantasy is escapist, and that is its glory. If a soldier is imprisioned by the enemy, don't we consider it his duty to escape?. . .If we value the freedom of mind and soul, if we're partisans of liberty, then it's our plain duty to escape, and to take as many people with us as we can!”
    ~J.R.R. Tolkien

    "Writers who see by the light of their Christian faith will have, in these times, the sharpest eye for the grotesque, for the perverse, and for the unacceptable. To the hard of hearing you shout, and for the almost-blind you draw large and startling figures."
    ~Flannery O'Connor

    You write to communicate to the hearts and minds of others what’s burning inside you. And we edit to let the fire show through the smoke.
    ~Arthur Polotnik

    Words - so innocent and powerless as they are, as standing in a dictionary, how potent for good and evil they become in the hands of one who knows how to combine them.
    ~Nathaniel Hawthorne

    "There are forms of insanity that condemn people to hear voices against their will, but as writers we invite ourselves to hear voices without relinquishing our hold on reality or our right to control."
    ~Writing Fiction by Janet Burroway

    Christians have sometimes been suspicious of stories, because they really can influence you. If you read the Twilight novels once a month for a year, I think you'd be a different human afterward—and not a sparkly one.
    ~Nate Wilson

To the Frustrated and Frazzled Writer – It’s Okay to Walk Away

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We’ve all been there.  Your story is just not working, but you’re on a deadline!  You have to get the last 10 chapters done in the next two weeks, you just have to!  But the more you try to force creativity, the worse it gets.  Now all you’re doing is beating against a mental brick wall that refuses to budge.   It’s big, it’s in the way and it’s size mirrors the enormity of your frustration.

Deadlines can be a blessing and a curse.  Some writers flourish under the pressure of deadlines, others crack, while some are 50/50.  Deadlines are good, they help us achieve our goals, but they can also become looming specters casting shadows over our work and peering over our shoulders, striking us with anxiety.  When plot holes begin to swallow you and you’ve run down so many bunny trails you’re head is spinning it may be time to get up, put the story aside and walk away.

Everyone’s creative process is different.  Some can whip out the stories.  It’s as easy has mixing up a batch of chocolate chip cookies.  Each new batch brings out dozens of new and amazingly satisfying ideas.  Plot holes are foreign to them, woody characters don’t exist and they’ve never head of this mysterious ailment known as “Writer’s Block”.   Others are constantly plagued by creative blockage and instead of delicious chocolate chip cookies, they’re stories look more like old Swiss Cheese.  Then of course we have those who are in between.  They deal with plot holes, but it’s not too difficult for them to full.  They may burn a few batches, but in the end they have a nice gooey batch of chocolate chip goodness.

I’m of the second group.  Writing is my passion, it’s something I feel at home doing, something I was made to do, but it is also the hardest taste I have ever undergone.  I love developing new stories, it’s my favorite part of the creative process and it’s also the most frustrating.  I’m constantly falling into plot holes, frantically looking for new and better ideas to fill them.  When I first started writing I got into the bad habit of blazing ahead and writing rough drafts even thought half my outline was empty.  As a result I created more work for myself later on in the form of a cliched pile of Swiss Cheese instead of a golden chocolate chip cookies.  It frustrated me to no end.  (I’d rather of cookies then cheese any day!)

I blazed ahead because I wanted to have written.  I wanted to be the person who when asked how many books I had finished, I could proudly proclaim “Oh, fifteen or twenty.  I’ve lost count.”  As writers we tend to look at the amount of things we have finished as our status.  As Michael Kanin put it, “I don’t like to write, but I like to have written.”  Walking away is not an option, WE HAVE TO FINISH IT RIGHT NOW.

Walking away may be the best thing you ever do for yourself and for your story.  It was hard for me to finally admit this it and to actually take action on it.  It’s okay if your writing process is slow, if it takes more than a few months or a year for a story to rise to it’s true potential.  It’s okay to walk away from the draft, deadline or not.  In fact, it’s okay to walk away from writing all together for a time if need be.

Whether it’s walking away for a day, a month or a year it’s okay.  Walking away doesn’t make you a failure as a writer, it just means you need a break, a breather, some time to give your imagination a time to recuperate.  Find a good book, spend some time enjoying nature or family.  Ideas come from life and the stories we read.  If you’re lacking ideas, take a break and look around you, the answer may be hidden under an old dusty cover or in a moment with a loved one.  Where ever it is, you’re not going to find it by staring at your computer screen.

Don’t Just Write

After posting A Page a Day, I came across a fellow blogger’s post about not writing everyday and realized I needed to expound of that point.  To be a good writer it is important to write and write a lot, but there so much more to it than that.  Practice makes perfect and writing everyday is good practice, but there is more to that practice than just writing.

Becoming a Proficient Writer

To became a skilled writer don’t just write – read, learn and critique along with writing.  If you want to learn a skill what do you do?  You read up on it, you research, you look at the examples of others along with practicing said skill.  It’s the same for writing.

Writing everyday is a good start, but if you write everyday for a year without going out and learning about writing, without reading stories or articles, without reviewing grammar rules, story structure and character studies, you’ll more than likely end up with a bunch of writing that is unusable.  Writing is a skill that’s learned.  Even for the people that it comes naturally too, they still have to work at it.  Writing is also a learn-as-you-go-along skill.  No matter how long you’ve been at it, there is always something new to learn.

More Ways to Practice

Finding Resources:

There are so many resources out there today for writers.  Books, blogs, websites.  Take advantage of them.  Go online, search through the library, materiel is out there, you just have to go find it.   Here are a few that I have used.

The One Year Adventure Novel writing curriculum – by Daniel Schwabaurer

A Writer’s Coach – by Jack Hart

Writing Fiction: A Guide to Narrative Craft – by Janet Burroway

Comma Sense: A fundamental guide to punctuation by Richard Ledder and John Shore

Critiquing:

One of the things that tremendously helped me as a writer was critiquing for others.  By finding flaws in other’s works, I was able to more easily find flaws in my own writing.  If you know someones else who is a writer, share your work with each other and go over it together.  Find a writer’s forum where people post pieces to be critiqued.  Start a critique group at your school.  Whatever you do, critiquing is not only helpful to the person receiving the critique, it’s helpful for the person giving it.

Review:

Reviewing basic grammar rules, sentence structure etc. is a good idea.  You might feel like you’re back in grade school, but if you want to write well, keeping your mind refreshed on the rules of writing is never a bad idea.

Read:

It’s just that – read.  Why did we want to be writer’s in the first place?  Because we love to read.  (Well, that’s true for me anyway.)  I’ve found when I haven’t read a good novel in a while, writing just doesn’t seem possible.  Books are like fuel. Out minds need them, our imaginations need them.  Keep a reading list so when you’re not sure what book to read next you can refer to said list.

Writing not only involves disciplining yourself to do it, it involves disciplining and training your mind as well.  Writing everyday will give you lots of practice putting words on paper, but studying and learning the skills will help you learn how to write well and make those words on paper came to life.

Writing Again

A couple weeks ago I wrote the opening to my next novel.  After almost a year of writing nothing new and months of battling Writer’s Block it feels SO GOOD to be writing again!  (And I have to say, I’m in love with this opening.)  I can’t wait to completely immerse myself in this new world and follow this set of characters on their journey.  It’s going to be epic, at least in my humble opinion. 😉

Anyone want a sneak peek of the opening? Let me know by liking this post or leaving a comment!

*opens new Word document….dives in*

Yep, that’s right, a new Word document.

So, what then am I writing?

*drum roll*

CHANCES! 

That’s right!  The time has finally come and book 2 of Aeden’s Call is no longer just scribbles in a note book, but a real Word document.

So this is what I’m up to.  Between working, editing Choices and family life, I am writing Chances.

Who’s excited?  (Other than me of course.)

Opening Line

The opening line to Kaeley’s story…

“Eight years old and alone, but Kaeley wasn’t afraid.”

So readers, is it a good one?

Some Writings from a Writer’s Mind

Whether it’s on paper or just in my head, I’m always writing.

Here’s a little something that was going through my mind while out on a lake with my family yesterday.

What do you think?

Ominous gray clouds lined the sky, turning the lake a cold blue. Wind rippled across the water stirring up reflections of the firmament above. Suddenly a break appears; a tear in the gray. Amber sunlight spills through, washing the clouds with its brilliant light. Golden fingers of sunbeams reach down to touch the tree covered hill tops, crowning the world around with heavenly splendor. A voice seems to whisper from the wind; it glides across the water. “Take comfort dear heart, for you are not alone.”

Out of Sight

I just had to share this here.  The imagination in this short is so brilliant and beautiful.

Hope you guys enjoy it!

Critiquing

Archimedes M. Quinn

Every writer has an inner editor.  Each editor is as different in personality as their writer is from another writer.  Some have names, some do not, while others are known simply as Ed.  Mine, well, his names is Archie.  Actually, that’s his nickname, his full name is Archimedes M. Quinn.

Archie has been around for quite some time, but recently he decided he was going to come out of his little inner editor shell he put himself into inside my head and let me get to know him better.

I’m sure all of you are wondering, “What kind of an inner editor calls himself Archimedes M. Quinn?”  (btw, he gave himself that name, I had nothing to do with it.)  Well, I shall tell you.

Archie is a red-headed, perfectionist-realist-skeptic.  That’s right.  He thinks of himself as some sort of James Bond, Doctor Who cross over, (not kidding) and is obsessed with his wardrobe.  He likes to be well dressed and tends to look down on inner editors who do not take their appearance as seriously as he does.  (Yes, that means he’s a bit of a snob.  Where did I get such an inner editor?)   His interests include (but are not limited to), rapiers, bow ties, pocket watches and owls.  (Not to mention diving his writer crazy.)  He most recently informed me that he had a pet Spectacled Owl named Theophilus.

There’s Archie, pocketed into one paragraph, though he says I’m exaggerating on some of his lesser qualities, therefore, I shall tell you about his better qualities.  First off, his skepticism.  Yes, I see this as a good quality.  It keeps me on my toes.  If he’s skeptical of something *cough*my romance writing*cough* it forces me to rethink what I’m doing and make sure I’m showing it correctly.  (Though, if it’s a rough draft I usually just tell him to take a hike and come back for the revision.)  Even his perfectionism and realist POV can be good qualities.  Though maybe annoying, they really do help.

Archie and I tend to argue allot, but in the end we’re still writer and inner editor and get along pretty well.  (And he’s slowly learning to be nice.)  There you have it, you have now been introduced to my inner editor, aka, the personality in my head that keeps me thinking, aka, the side of me that was so frustrating it needed it’s own character. 😉

P.S.  Here’s a picture of Archie and one of a Spectacled Owl.

Spectacled Owl Pulsatrix perspicillata

Spectacled Owl (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

“Scribblings” is OUT!

IT’S HERE!

Scribblings is now available for purchase at Lulu.com!

My very first book!

😀 😀 😀

Can you believe it?

To God be the glory!  I wouldn’t be releasing a book today if it wasn’t for Him.  Thank you Jesus for everything you have taught me and brought me through so I could write these stories and poems.  May they be used to bring glory to Your name.

Thank you readers!  You guys rock!  Thank you for your support and enthusiasm.   What’s a writer without readers?

This book is dedicated to my amazing family.  I love you guys so much!

Scribblings

by L.E.R. Jenkins

Price: $9.99

ISBN 978-1-105-44121-9

CLICK HERE TO PURCHASE! 

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