Writing Tips Roundup No. 2

Catch up on the last four weeks of writing tips.

4 Unique Ways To Get Inspired To Write
Featuring the Fake Redhead’s personal stories of finding inspiration in places outside of reading other novels.

6 Sources Of Productive Background Noise
Including background noise generators, classical music, anything John Williams, Bear McCreary’s Battlestar Galactica score, and a bonus!

2 Reasons Not To Be Afraid To Use Your Character’s Name In Your Novel
Your life will be about a million times easier if you just use their name.

1 Reason Why ‘Said is Dead’ Is Bull
Said isn’t dead. There, I said it.

Click HERE for the complete library of writing tips

Need some inspiration? Check out the Writing Prompts library HERE

Interested in some one-on-one writing advice? Send me a message via the Contact Form!

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-Kathryn, the Fake Redhead


Part Twenty Four

Read Part Twenty Three

Part Twenty Four of You Will Find Your Way
Explanations are difficult when Dallas doesn’t remember half the thing she’s
 trying to explain.

A Very Long Time Ago

A symphony of whispers follow Dallas as she sprints out of Central Park.

To all these people, she looks ridiculous and is carrying a weapon on her back and is a woman out unescorted, and holy shit she is going to kill Maris if she ever has the misfortune of seeing her again.

Curses spill from her mouth as the passes a gaggle of ladies in massive flowing dresses with long sleeves and petticoats and bonnets covering their coiled hair. They’re carrying fans, scandalized twitters echoing around them when she launches herself off the open street and into a shaded alley.

Dallas’ shaking fingers twitch and she clenches them to fists, knocks her head back against the brick wall behind her.

She looks up at the pale, clear sky—the beautiful clouds mocking her in their simplicity—and glares, “Now what am I supposed to do?”

After allowing herself a few minutes to panic and then get herself back together—because she has dealt with much worse than accidentally ending up in the wrong damn era and she can handle this, Mathias trained her to—Dallas casts a glance around, makes sure no one decided to follow the weird heathen lady into the alley.

Because it’s about to get worse.

She strips her harness off, drops it and the blade at her feet before tugging her shirt up over her shoulders. She resettles the harness, shivers when the cool metal of the blade touches her skin before she tugs her tunic over it.

Better than nothing.

Squaring her shoulders, Dallas sneaks out of the alley, looks from one side of the street to the other before she spies a man in rags huddled up at the end of the block.

“Excuse me,” she manages through the lump in her throat, ignores the way he narrows his eyes at her in a leer. “Could you tell me what year it is?”

Continue reading “Part Twenty Four”

This is not remotely an appropriate time.

Six unedited sentences from the upcoming Part Twenty Four of You Will Find Your Way

This is not remotely an appropriate time.

Dallas looks at Giselle, who just shrugs.

“Well,” she draws the word out for a breath. “What do you want to know?”

Luke’s eyebrow cocks up and he looks a little like he’s about to yell at them, so Dallas shrugs and amends with, “I mean, where do you want me to start?”

“The beginning, would be nice,” he snaps. “They ran DNA. The arm they found was yours.”

Miss yesterday’s Writing Tip about how ‘Said is Dead is bull? Read it HERE

Previous Sunday Sixes
February 19 and February 12 and February 5 and January 29

Start You Will Find Your Way from the beginning.

Like what you read? Want to see more?

Buy Me a Coffee at ko-fi.com

-Kathryn, the Fake Redhead

The One Reason Why “Said Is Dead” Is Bull

Click HERE for the complete library of Writing Tips

Said Isn’t Dead

There, I said it.

Now, hear me out before you gather your torches and pitchforks and march on my apartment.

First, some backstory and why I’m putting this piece out today:

Last Sunday, I was trolling through my Pinterest, re-pinning some prompts to my Writing Prompts board, when I got a notification that someone commented on a pin I re-pinned about ‘said’ being dead.

The commenter, a professional editor and critic (and therefore probably knows what they’re talking about), says that, “Using every word except for “said” results in clunky prose that distracts the reader from the dialogue.”

Now, I re-pinned the “Said is Dead” pin, so I don’t have a problem with the concept as a whole, when it’s used the right way. There’s absolutely nothing wrong with using alternatives in your text, and if there’s one thing Pinterest is great for, it’s for supplying you with alternatives.

But I ALSO have no problem with the comment.

In fact, I probably agree with it more, solely due to the fact that if you don’t know how to use the “Said is Dead” concept the write way, then your writing is going to have some problems.

Because here’s the thing: if you focus on tagging your dialogue with words that aren’t ‘said’, then you’re not focusing enough on the important part—the story.

“But wait!” You may have said as you stare at Google and look at the thousands of results about ‘Said is Dead’, like the article about a school in Kentucky that had a funeral for ‘said’ and other words they deemed worn out. “Does that mean that the Fake Redhead has gone off the deep end and is steering us wrong?”

Put down the pitchforks, I’m not steering you wrong, I promise.

While it IS important to teach kids in school about synonyms and that there are other words to use instead of said—it’s important because it expands their vocabularies and is a step toward making them into semi-articulate adults.

But with writing, it’s a double-edged sword, because yes, there are times where other words are better than ‘said’, and good writing is also important.

So this piece is going to sound a LOT like last week’s post on not stressing and just using your character’s dang name.

But I’m writing it anyway, because that’s how I roll.

Click the Continue Reading button for my number one reason why this whole ‘Said is Dead’ thing is bull.

Continue reading “The One Reason Why “Said Is Dead” Is Bull”

TFR’s Writing Prompts No. 51-55

Prompt Library

Five prompts to kickstart a productive weekend of writing.


Inspired? Leave a comment and let me know!

Looking for more? Check out the Prompt Library.
Written yourself into a corner and need advice? Check out the Writing Tips page for more resources.

Like what you read? Want to see more?

Buy Me a Coffee at ko-fi.com

-Kathryn, the Fake Redhead

Part Twenty Three

Read Part Twenty Two

Part Twenty Three of You Will Find Your Way
Look, Dallas isn’t trying to be vague on purpose.

“Hey! That hot guy you picked up at that bar is here to see you!”

Bent over the sink in the powder room, Dallas splashes water over her face when Giselle yells—whatever it is she just yelled—and misses most of it over sounds of water landing on the drain.

She frowns, tilts her head and—what kind of bar is she yelling about and what does it have to do with whoever’s at the door?

“What?” She snaps and tilts her chin to one side, glowers at the streak of mud still staining her jaw below her right ear.

Dallas dunks her head again as Giselle yells something about picking up a bar, again, and this is not helping at all.

She grabs a pile of paper towels and dabs at her face, favors her reflection with a dubious look because her she’s pasty in some places and splotchy in others, and her hair falls in inky strings around her shoulders, “Well,” she mutters. “This is going to be an adventure.”

One that she does not have time for.

Continue reading “Part Twenty Three”

79 Words

One unedited sentence (plus a little more) from an upcoming Saturday serial that is definitely not a fairy tale, but does contain numerous fairies.

Through his annoyance and the discomfort, Fallon’s brows knit as he tries to remember the Urban Dictionary definition, “I declare that you’re full of shi-” he breaks off because there’s still no reason for her not to turn into a harpy and rip him to shreds if he insults her. “Full of crap. If I had ever been to a place like this, I would definitely remember it. I do not remember this, and that’s not how dreams work.”

Don’t forget this morning’s #1LineWed post previewing tomorrow’s Part Twenty Three of You Will Find Your Way.

Like what you read? Want to see more?

Buy Me a Coffee at ko-fi.com

-Kathryn, the Fake Redhead