A Tale of Two Tales

A Tale of Two Tales

We’ve been on Big Island, Hawaii for about six weeks now. I’ve been creating, sewing mostly (there is a one-year birthday next month) but I haven’t found my writing mojo until recently. I knew I had some unfinished projects, but I’ve been concentrating on the last story I started and hadn’t found the motivation to continue.
Last night, I opened Scrivener. If you haven’t bought it, do so. It’s a big mass of amazing when it comes to keeping all the details straight, plus you can rearrange scenes, add research websites… I digress.
I had a bunch of unfinished stories. At least six. I plucked two of them from the cobwebby depths of my hard drive and took a look at them.

Here’s what I found:

A Snow White Tale, whereupon the heroine, tossed into the forest after escaping the woodman’s beheading plan, runs into the 8th dwarf. This is probably a novella, as I don’t see much depth beyond the evil queen’s plan to off Snow and Snow’s reaction. POV’s are from Snow, the 8th (cutie) dwarf, the Queen and the Magic Mirror. Complete at 20% but the scenes are plotted.
A modern day Cinderella tale of a woman who is caretaker to the elderly. She inherits a former client’s house, which comes with many secrets and many ghosts. Enter the client’s (cutie) lawyer, a couple of wacky stepsisters and an understandable shoe fetish. Complete at 50%. There’s a lot of depth here with many layers to be written.

Reality bounces between an ever increasingly complicated day life and a dream world, ruled by ghosts’ whims and erotic fantasies. The challenge is to go through what I’ve written and remove the negative word choices, which drags down the story. There’s a killed off ex fiance who needs to exit the story. He’s a downer in what is supposed to be a comedy. There’s an additional challenge of taking the 80% written on Word and moving it to Scrivener. What was I thinking?
More updates as I make headway.
In the meantime, check out my other blog, www.cherylsteimel.com, where I comment on living in Hawaii.

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Writing sex

Writing sex

Writing sex is breaking down barriers.  It's opening long-held secrets and exposing them to the critique of another. Words of wisdom from an old post regarding the difficulty of writing sex:

  • Sex is easy to write.
  • Intimacy is hard to write.

Writing sex is writing logistics.  Tab A in Slot B.  It’s the physicality of the act.

Writing intimacy is breaking down barriers.  It’s opening long-held secrets and exposing them to the critique of another.  It’s raw and vulnerability and an enormous amount of trust.  Writing intimacy should be a pivotal point in the story of the characters involved, pushing them into uncharted territory and sealing the way back to the way they were before.

Don’t cheat your characters and readers by writing a sex scene.  Make it something more, something intimate.  Your story will be stronger for it.

All the best,


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The Plot Thickens

The Plot Thickens

Tonight, I’m conducting a writing workshop for the West Oahu Women Networking Group based on a previous workshop titled The Plot Thickens.  I’m positive I can’t cover everything I’ve learned in the last fourteen years of writing, but I would like to touch on plotting, especially goals, character’s motivation and how to get them embroiled in conflict.

Jack Monroe and I wrote a book on different ways to plot.  No two writers do it the same, and, more often than not, no two books demand the same way.

To purchase The Plot Thickens, 21 Ways to Plot Your Novel, click on the following links:



ibooks, Barnes & Noble, Kobo:


The Plot Thickens:21 Ways to Plot Your Novel, including how to outline your novel

The Plot Thickens


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