Monthly Archives: August 2012

Reading Circles – Plot & Structure {Part 4}

When I write fiction, my work is almost always about some kind of internal struggle, often involving an impossible decision that, whichever way the character chooses to go, ends up defining and shaping them thereafter. Those are the kinds of conflicts I personally find compelling.

But listening to a whole bunch of inner dialogue without anything else going on is not. I like literary…but not that kind of literary.

(Waiting For Godot, anyone? All right, that was dialogue, but please, shoot me first if I ever have to read that again.)

Anyway, so the point is, how do you engage readers throughout your story, and especially in my case, where the demons are often inside the protagonist herself? Bell provides the answer in his chapter on Middles: set up opposition. Whether it’s a villain, a disease, a ticking time bomb, or just plain old obstacles, make things tough for your character. And the opposition must be credible: significantly stronger, bigger, more powerful than your character, or else there’s no challenge. So, because of Bell’s advice, I now make sure I have some other, linked, conflict going on — and it turns out it helps me a lot too because the outside forces continually push my characters to deal with the internal conflict, so the two become inseparable.

Was there something you learned about setting up opposition in the Middle, or increasing and sustaining tension?

All right, next week, let’s read the chapter on Endings. After that, we will move very quickly through the rest of the book, and on to the next. Sound like a plan?

Have a great weekend!!


Bigger Picture Captures

Reflection  from last week’s pool of shots by My Memory Art

Often just like writing, inspiration for a photo comes immediate and you simply must capture the moment. Other times picture taking is less inspired.

In the spirit of creativity that is being nourished here on this site and in your hearts, we’re bringing back Bigger Picture Captures.

Each Wednesday a thought, a word, or a moment will be shared and you will have the opportunity to capture the creativity with your lens and share it.

No need to worry about blogging it (unless you want to of course) or linking it up. All you have to do is Tweet it, facebook it, or Instagram it.

We know that a lot of you are participating in the P365 or P52 challenges. This is  a little more creative inspiration to get your camera out and take a picture of something different.

Use #BPCaptures anywhere you are collecting your pictures, and get ready to CREATE!

Today’s prompt for Bigger Picture Captures is Summer’s end

How will you capture the last bit of summer before Labor Day weekend? Show us! We can’t wait to see what you come up with.


Writing Me: I Remember {Adrienne}

Writing Me is Bigger Picture Blogs series of writing exercises created to help our community dive deeper into writing, grow creatively, and learn about ourselves and each other. This quarter we are writing from the prompt “I Remember…” and each week we will feature one of our community members.

This week’s post comes to us from Adrienne.


I remember the dream fulfilled. Though I have no memory {no conscious memory} of the dreaming.

I remember that in those first moments alone with the brand-new-you, I too was made new.

I remember meeting your tiny feet, and knowing them as my own.

I remember the white of the sheets and your cottony soft swaddle.

I remember the quiet. And the morning light filtering through the hospital blinds.

I remember your wide awake eyes that seemed to listen and speak all at once…and that seemed bigger to me than half your little face. On that first, quiet morning your eyes invited me in to stay.

I remember the dream fulfilled.

I remember your early words and first steps, ever cautious, always clear and steady.

I remember the joy of walking with your tiny hand in mine.

I remember our face game. We’d sit for hours and mirror each other – starting with the “Oh” face,
we’d move through happy and silly and sad and mad…always ending with kisses.

I remember the dream fulfilled.

I remember when we met your brother. He was as noisy and restless as your were quiet and still.

I remember his cries, his chatter, his bumps and his bruises.

I remember watching you teach him. Anything. Everything.

I remember that the Little Mermaid grew into Dorothé, that Pooh grew into Power Rangers and
that they all turned into FRIENDS.

I remember the dream fulfilled.

I remember family dinners and holidays and devotionals and airplane trips.

I remember moving. A lot. And knowing that wherever we landed the four of us would always be there. Together.

I remember that church was “all that” and school was….well it just was.

I remember feeding friends, and driving friends, and finding friends sleeping on our couches.

Mostly, I remember loving all the friends and the activity that came with them!

I remember the dream fulfilled.

I remember first cameras, first trophies, first loves, first cars and first jobs.

I remember when you fit in, when you didn’t. When you cared. And when you didn’t.

I remember when I realized that you and your brother would always be best friends and

I remember when he stood next to you at your wedding.

I remember my early, Barbie playing days. The made up future me loved fashion, boyfriends, and her career. But never once was there a husband or any children. I didn’t know to dream of that. To dream of you.

I remember discovering my sweetest dream in its living – grateful that the keeper of dreams knew my heart better than I knew it myself.

I remember, and live, this dream fulfilled.

Adrienne is a 51 year old “empty nester” who loves scrapbooking, blogging, photography and camping. She shares her love for God, her family and her hobbies on her blog My Memory Art. Though it’s her job as office manager that helps ‘pay the rent’, it’s the creative, crafty stuff that she considers to be her real work.