Showing Tag: "reading" (Show all posts)

Why Reviewing Helps You

Posted by Nora Quick on Monday, March 9, 2015, In : A Writer's Life 

Hello my fellow readers. This rant is for you! I try to address writers often, but of course I myself am an avid reader and of course as I writer I write for readers, so I thought I mist address an issues that helps both writers and readers, but readers most of all: reviews.

Reviews are hard to get. That’s the first thing to understand. I’m not sure why, I’ve always tried to review a book I’ve read because I’ve always known how it helps other readers and writers. So why do people gen...

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What Smokey The Bear Actually Meant

Posted by Nora Quick on Monday, February 9, 2015, In : Strangeness 

I know I can get pretty passionate in rants, but please know there is a method to my madness. I feel that what is happening to the world of publishing is kind of a microcosm for society at large, and I desperately wish to change both.

Yes, I see that eyebrow raised! I know you’re baffled, how are these two things related? Here the problems I see are quickly explained: In publishing an old, guarded system left millions of people dissatisfied , and now technology has melted the walls and peopl...

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Why The History Channel Has Alien-Themed TV Shows

Posted by Nora Quick on Tuesday, January 20, 2015, In : Strangeness 

Fair warning, I am going to sound a little like The Last Psychiatrist but only in sentiment. Unlike the anonymous shrink, I know how to write things in order so they make sense. What I specifically mean is I am going to rant about a concept that is both wide and narrow: critical thinking.

What is critical thinking? It is the ability to look at a concept, idea, or paradigm free of bias, analyzing it from all possible viewpoints in an attempt to understand it. It is logic and pragmatism, things ...

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A Feminist Essay: Of Queefs, Jane Bond, and Rosalind Franklin

Posted by Nora Quick on Thursday, December 25, 2014, In : Feminism 
Recently my forthcoming novel Hidden Magic was reviewed by the Romantic Times (I will link it when it goes live). It was given three stars, and I am actually 100% fine with that. The review comes from the traditional stance of romance readers, and I don’t write for them. I write for the Joss Whedon girls. I accept the review and some criticism I think is completely fair, but one line in the review gave me absolute chills:

This fantasy reverses the traditional gender roles and places women at...

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Writing 104: 1- Supplemental B: See Dick And Jane Run

Posted by Nora Quick on Saturday, November 1, 2014, In : Writing 104 
It's time to go over the pacing rules for your genre. You should already know this, meaning you shouldn't write in a genre until you've read the standards of it and have fallen in love with it, but even then  it might just be a set of rules rattling in the back of your mind.

What follows are general guidelines: they are not terribly specific. You'll see sections of the plot and how they are broken up across a story. This is the pattern you should see in your reading and your story should follo...

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Writing 104: 1- Supplemental A: Red Rover, Red Rover, Let Chaucer Come Over

Posted by Nora Quick on Saturday, November 1, 2014, In : Writing 104 
So you're at the marketing stage, which means you need to read the masters of your genre and learn their tricks. Deconstructing Dickens is a good movie title, but it's what you have to do. You'll be tempted to read your favorites, but try to go for the books of your genre that are the most critically acclaimed or best-selling.

The easiest way to do this is go to Amazon.com, click into your genre, organized by best-selling and note the top, then go to review ranked by top down. That gives you t...

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Writing 104: 1-A: Let's Shove Some Coal Up There And See If We Get A Diamond

Posted by Nora Quick on Saturday, November 1, 2014, In : Writing 104 
Strictly speaking the old insult popularized in Ferris Bueller's Day Off isn't true: compressing a lump of coal (anally or no) cannot make a diamond. Yes, they both contain carbon, but mother nature made diamonds and your charcoal ain't gonna cut it. Still, the phrase refers to a mindset you should get into as we enter the final editing/beginning marketing stage of your novel. It's time to get Type A!






First off, do you own Mortimer J. Adler's How To Read A Book? If you don't, please buy it or ...

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Reflections on Plotters Vs Pantsers

Posted by Nora Quick on Wednesday, October 8, 2014, In : Writing Advice 
I have recently been exposed to the terms plotter and pantser via a Red Sage author questionnaire. Basically a plotter plots everything out in advance and a pantser makes it up as they go along. Let me make clear: I HATE pantsers with the fire of a thousand suns. That is my gut reaction, but let me give you real world examples why being a pantser is horrible for your readers.

First up, let's take an example most people know (but know that I had to vomit about twelve times while writing this): ...

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Inception Solved: the Totem at the End isn't Cobb's, it's Mal's, So Stop Analyzing

Posted by Nora Quick on Saturday, March 9, 2013, In : A Writer's Life 
Hello my faithful friends.

Once more I must apologize for a long absence. Working three jobs eats up my time, and doing such while battling depression is a challenge. It's gotten worse lately, just too many things going wrong, and last weekend a friend of mine was murdered. There are no leads on her killer but we've managed to raise money to help her family and are now working on putting together reward money for information on her killer.

It's a lot to deal with. I retreated into a strange kin...

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Writing 102: 2-C What's Your Kryptonite?

Posted by Nora Quick on Sunday, October 21, 2012, In : Writing 102 

Now that you're writing, one issue you may face is writer's block. Remember our first, best defense against writer's block is a proper outline & summary. Why? Struggling to generate content is one main cause of writer's block. Let's examine the causes now:



Here is one of the few places where "The only thing we have to fear is fear itself" rings true


  
 

1. Inability to generate new content
2. Difficulty maintaining attention
3. Strong desire to work on another project
4. Not being in the mood (aka ...
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A German, Pole, and Jew walk Into a Bar...Order Three Beers, Pay, and Sit Down

Posted by Nora Quick on Monday, September 17, 2012, In : A Writer's Life 

Well, damn it, I was back but couldn't post last few days as the flu struck. I think it's the flu. Either the flu, the worst goddamn head cold ever, or the zombie apocalypse has come and I'll need to eat brains soon. Whatever it is, I'm out of bed and not all that nauseous, at last!

Something I've been musing over is racial stereotypes in books. See, stuck in bed, I read in between blowing my nose and cursing all viruses. The last two books I re-read were Blue Moon by Lori Handeland and Sizzli...

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Writing 102: 1-C Why You Hear 50 Million "Who" Songs Every Day

Posted by Nora Quick on Saturday, September 8, 2012, In : Writing 102 

Resuming writing 102, we've gotten our idea, designed our plot, paced our conflict, created character bios, have written a few chapters, and started to build a fan base. In our last lesson you decided if you want to publish the old or new way. Now you have to make some adjustments for that. C'mon kids, it's time to sell out!
 


To sell out: (v) To place the goal of making money over any artistic merit or construct. Surprisingly effective


  

Writing is an art, but it is also a business. Never forge...
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Don't You Ever Laugh As the Hearse Goes By...

Posted by Nora Quick on Saturday, July 14, 2012, In : A Writer's Life 


I've had my best friend Susan "Devin" Droste staying with me for two weeks, and living with another writer opens your eyes. It's amazing how many things go into our subconsciousnesses to formulate the tapestry that is us. Nowhere is it more apparent than when you write.



How does the subconscious work? This picture is as accurate as any


  
 
 

Something funny happened. I started writing Out of the Past, a short story styled after those 1980's pulp novels you bought off the circular rack at a gas st...

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Writing 101: 2- Supplemental C: 4 Out of 5 Voices In My Head Say I'm Sane

Posted by Nora Quick on Tuesday, July 3, 2012, In : Writing 101 


In this supplemental we take a closer look at choosing your narrator. Let's keep it as painless as possible and dive right in to the different styles of overall narration to choose from.



There's a good reason Doyle chose Watson to narrate Sherlock Holmes' adventures


  
 

Third Person: The best according to writing teachers everywhere. The easiest for a reader to read and enjoy, think of it as how you'd tell a story about another friend. ("Then Suzie told the carnie to go fuck himself and dumped a...

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How To Piss Off A Writer

Posted by Nora Quick on Wednesday, June 13, 2012, In : Strangeness 


Why do people read so much into stories? I've been wondering this since reading a few feminist blogs on Prometheus. If you haven't seen this film, by the way, do so! Go with friends. There will be plenty of theory and conjectures you'll need to discuss after seeing the visually inspiring film. If you haven't seen it, don't read on, there be spoilers ahead.

 

Not symbolism but plot: you won't understand the first scene of the film until you go home and discuss it with others.


  

In the middle of t...

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R.I.P. Ray Bradbury August 22, 1920- June 6, 2012

Posted by Nora Quick on Saturday, June 9, 2012, In : Strangeness 


It's a little late in come, this, my version of a eulogy for a hero. It's been a very busy week and the weekend continues to be just that. Thursday night on the bus between dinner with friends and then drinks with friends (and later a date) my best friend called to give me the news. One of my many heroes, Ray Bradbury, had passed.

If you know much about him, you can appreciate how much he would hate this being on a website. Sorry, Ray, I admire you, I worship your story-smithing skills, but th...
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Writing 101: 2-A The Good, the Bad, and the Ugly

Posted by Nora Quick on Tuesday, May 29, 2012, In : Writing 101 


How do we select the main characters? Often we speak in terms of heroes and villains, but what we mean is protagonists (heroes and anti-heroes) and antagonists (villains). These will be the first characters that spring to mind when you think up a plot and you have to make them follow a delicate balance. The #1 protagonist is the person narrating the story or the person the narrator follows, and the antagonist is the person or thing that sets the plot into motion.

 

Sometimes it's easy to tell p...

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Big Changes

Posted by Nora Quick on Saturday, May 26, 2012, In : Site Updates & News 


 There are some big changes on this site. You may notice a new page on the navigation list to your left: Novels & Novellas. This page contains links to all my finished erotic novels & novellas (also available on literotica.com). In the future I will publish new chapters of works in progress the same day they are uploaded to literotica so you can read them 5 days in advance. However this will happen after Fey World is posted in compete on literotica. I hope you enjoy!

 

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Fifty Shades of Sucking

Posted by Nora Quick on Tuesday, May 22, 2012, In : Strangeness 





 Timing is everything. Time is money. Time is so important that many great quotes on the subject exist:

 "It is my feeling that Time ripens all things; with Time all things are revealed; Time is the father of truth." Francois Rabelais

"Time shall unfold what plighted cunning hides;
Who cover faults, at last shame them derides" - Wm. Shakespeare (King Lear)


I bring this up for one reason. Now is the time to restate something I've harped on before: if you write a story in present-tense I will hu...

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With a Little Help From My Friends

Posted by Nora Quick on Monday, May 21, 2012, In : A Writer's Life 


Here I was working on the next Marly Jackson novel The Violin Case, having panic attacks. Why? Because before this weekend I realized  the first half was so damn boring it put me to sleep and it was MY work.

 

If this happens to you, first blame something else to blow off steam.    Credit



How did I fix it? Well, you can probably guess from the title of this post how: I re-learned the importance of having non-writer friends. They ask questions writers never would, and questions are what make you ...

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Creating Your Own Landscape

Posted by Nora Quick on Saturday, May 19, 2012,


I write this rewatching Stardust the film. I confess though Neil Gaiman is awesome I have a hard time reading most of his work, but the film adaptations are much more accessible. Why? Because Gaiman has the most completely unique landscape of any author I have ever encountered. Though it makes him slightly inaccessible to me, that's a good thing.
 


Many Gaiman stories have certain parts that make as much sense to me as this sign. Credit


  

Every writer should have their own landscape. What is a l...

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Writing 101: 1-C Once More With Feeling

Posted by Nora Quick on Sunday, May 13, 2012, In : Writing 101 


 
Yes, we're still on Inspiration, or getting started writing. This shouldn't surprise those of you who've tried it, writing is hard work. If it was easy, it wouldn't be worth doing.



If you look like this, you're doing it right.   Credit.


 
One of the most common problems for authors is the plethora of old ideas that frustratingly never came to fruition. Maybe you just couldn't take it in the direction you wanted, or it simply stalled. It happens all the time, and it's not a mistake. The only mis...

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Writing 101: 1-B Under the Influence

Posted by Nora Quick on Friday, May 4, 2012, In : Writing 101 

Last 101 lesson we discussed gaining inspiration from direct sources, basically crafting tasteful fanfiction. Today we delve into the world of "no copyright lawsuit worries" inspiration drawing again from stories, movies, and TV shows, but using basics and not directly specific plot points and characters. Indirect influential inspiration is about using voice, themes, and imitating minor arcs.



Just hang in there, we'll get through it. Credit.


 
A note on voice: it is basically comprised of your w...

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Got Paranormal?

Posted by Nora Quick on Tuesday, April 24, 2012, In : A Writer's Life 
As a head's up I may not post for several days, all part of the fun of being a starving artist. In my day job we've been between projects for a month now, and my night job...the economy has tanked it, so I've had 0 income for a month. Since food takes precedence my internet bill has been neglected and will be until I can get some scratch together. 




Because you have to be this cute for that line to work


 
As such I wanted today to be a positive blog. I'm always bitching about bad writing, so I th...

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Two Legged Lampreys & The Women Who Love Them

Posted by Nora Quick on Tuesday, April 10, 2012, In : Strangeness 


Welcome all, I hope you survived the holiday. Today's post isn't going to be on writing so much, it's more of an update/explanation/rant. Of course a rant. Also, this was originally written on Monday 4/9/12 but Yola had issues that prevented it from being posted until now.

 


I don't know how computers work exactly, but this seems like a reasonable explanation

 
 
First off, to my literotica fans, I do apologize there has been no update on Fey World as promised. Times have been lean on my end and I...

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Extemporaneous Anachronisms

Posted by Nora Quick on Saturday, March 31, 2012, In : Writing Advice 


I'm going to tell you a secret. Pull up your chair real close. Closer. No! Not that close, I can smell your lunch on your breath. There. Better. Okay, here goes: I love to read slightly-better-than-mediocre writing.


Guilty pleasures are often the best things in life

 

Er, wha? I know, I know, but writers get inspirations from the strangest places. For me it's the above-mediocre writing, you know, a story with great potential but the author fucked up one aspect. I read that and it makes me think ...

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Smoke. Smoke. ARE YOU SMOKING YET!?! (NSFW)

Posted by Nora Quick on Tuesday, March 27, 2012, In : Writing Advice 

 

There are many “subliminal” messages we are “treated to” every day. Even if, like me, you don’t watch TV to escape them, they’re still there. I can’t tell you how many damn times I’ve watched a “public good” ad online about taking to teens about sex and had to run out to buy a burger. Wait, wha? Well, those ads always seem to take place at the dinner table and families always eat either chicken or beef. Come to think of it, I eat way too much beef. Humans should only have...


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Fantasy v. Reality

Posted by Nora Quick on Sunday, March 25, 2012, In : Writing Advice 

Fantasy wins, but reality pwns
 


Before the official post, I'll share a funny story with you that's true. Friday I met up with my best friend who gave me a tray of baklava, for she knows my sweet tooth is small, but I can never pass up baklava. Ever. She called to let me know she got home okay and asked me to kiss my dog for her. So I did, but at that moment he smelled the baklava, jerked his head, headbutted me...and broke my nose. Kind of funny, but now after 36 hours the swelling is going do...

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The Remainders Of The Day or Fucking Muse (NSFW)

Posted by Nora Quick on Friday, March 23, 2012, In : Writing Advice 


Inspiration is one of the most common things writers struggle with. It either rains or pours. We know about the drought times, aka "writer's block" but not about the buffet time. It's frustrating just as much, and if you've never experienced it, picture this: you had a big lunch at home and are stuffed when a friend calls you up and invites to you a $2.00 all you can eat steak buffet, but you're so full you feel sick, and now you feel pissed off in three ways. That is the feeling of having to...

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By The Numbers

Posted by Nora Quick on Wednesday, March 21, 2012, In : Writing Advice 


The first thing most publishers, editors, and agents will ask is "how long is your piece?" or "what is your word count?" Now, what they mean is (for books) did you research enough to know general fiction shouldn't be 100,000 words, but historical romance or fantasy can be? For articles, they really want to know, "will it fit on the page?" and for short stories "will it fit in the room allotted for the cover design?"



Sorry, but it's true
 

 
No matter what they want to know they make you focus on ...

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Technical Sensuality

Posted by Nora Quick on Thursday, March 8, 2012, In : Strangeness 
Today's post is going to be a rant. I never noticed this until I got into the publishing side of editing my writing, but now technical problems with stories drive me up the wall. I've been trying to stay in the frame of mind for erotic romance and as such I've been reading many. I've come to the conclusion it really is like porn: 85% sucks.



Er...that's what he said?

 
There's one author in particular I've hated for years, and I'm not sure why they keep pushing her as an erotic romance writer. Ma...

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3 Movies Better Than Their Books

Posted by Nora Quick on Saturday, February 11, 2012, In : Strangeness 
For the reader and watcher in us all, today's post is on the unlikely but possible occurrence of when movie adaptations supersede books. A curious phenomena that happens rarely, we'll examine why.

Yes, it's true. Putting Rosie O'Donnell in leather lingerie once improved on Anne Rice's writing. My apologies for your brain exploding

 
The Book: Exit To Eden, Anne Rice (As Anne Rampling), Random House, 1985
The Movie: Exit to Eden, Directed by Gary Marshall, 1994

Book Synopsis: Lisa is a profession...

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The 10 Books That Changed My Ways Of Thinking & Writing

Posted by Nora Quick on Friday, December 23, 2011, In : Influences 
Everyone should read. No, I'm not saying that as an author, or even as a bookworm, I'm saying that as a human. Stories are what make us dream and grow, what take us away from daily stress, what builds our imaginations. Something John Waters has said resonates with me: "If you go home with someone and they don't have books, don't fuck 'em!"

Books shape us every bit as much as experience. What follows in short is a list of the books I feel have made me who I am:

The Red Badge Of Courage

Stephen Cr...
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Necrophilia

Posted by Nora Quick on Saturday, December 3, 2011, In : writing options 
More and more random opportunities keep coming my way. This is the magic of networking, again, it can be Heaven or Hell.

This time, I was invited to an event on Facebook by a friend only to discover my name was on the flyer for performing spoken word. Now, like most writers, I'm an introvert. Don't confuse this with being shy! I am not shy, I just get quiet in groups. Introverts try to judge the reaction of the people around them to whatever they say and in large groups where I don't know ever...
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New Story "Morrigan's Curse" In Literotica.com's Halloween 2011 Contest

Posted by Nora Quick on Monday, October 3, 2011, In : Contests 
Morrigan's Curse is a 11,989 word short story submitted in the Literotica.com Halloween 2011 Contest. The tale of one of Morrigan's warriors, Cillian, and his true love Siobhan begins with their deaths and takes some spooky twists and turns. Set primarily in modern day, on a Halloween night in the world of high fashion, Siobhan has been reincarnated into the body of Kelly, direct decedent of the man who killed Siobhan and Cillian. Cillian, a ghost, is allowed to take corporeal form every Samh...
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Notes on the Neurotic, Psychotic, and Erotic Art of Writing


Nora Quick A blog on writing and my thoughts on the subject, many humorous, and often birdwalking

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