A reminder for any planning to attend the September 2018 meeting of the Vision Writers Group:
We will be meeting on Sunday 9th of September instead of the usual first Sunday of the month so as to avoid conflicts with Father’s Day. The venue will also be different from our usual library meeting room.
The new details are:
Where: Coffee Club Milton (https://www.coffeeclub.com.au/stores/park-road/ )
Date: Sunday 9th September
While newbies are most certainly still welcome to attend I’ll give anyone intending to submit a piece for critique the warning that unlike our usual meetings where you are in a private meeting room, this meeting will be taking place in a public space, people may overhear discussion of your work. If that is something you are not comfortable with don’t submit for this meeting. We will be back into our usual private meeting room for October and November.
Welcome to the Vision Writers webpage.
We meet on the first Sunday of every month, Feb – Nov.
Venue: Brisbane Square Library
266 George St,
The meeting room we use is 1.9
11:00am – 2:00pm
If you’re thinking of coming along to a meeting, consider joining the VISION Groups.io Discussion List to check on meeting times and ask questions.
More details and exact dates can be found on the Meeting Times page.
Super heroes still gotta eat, right?
Tough chick vampire hunters in the big city gotta get the talcum powder to make sure their leather pants don’t stick to them from somewhere.
Ancient Greek deities reborn in human form (whether aware of it or not) probably don’t get their milk from women turned into cows by Zeus trying to disguise them from Hera. And if they did it probably would be hella weird.
Sexy modern fey here to tempt mortal men into illicit relations need to buy lots of nappies for the resulting offspring, and lets face it, cloth is better for the environment, but who’s got the time around all that seduction?
And where do they go to buy all this? The supermarket.
Take a modern fantasy character, and make them do the grocery shopping. But let’s not just have them go and get some ramen-in-a-cup, make something happen. Maybe a mist filled with eldritch terrors rolls in, confining them to the store with other survivors (or not, Stephen King already did that). Maybe the last box of Fruit Loops has another hand on it – and that hand belongs to their nemesis.
How much fun can you have at the grocery store?
I’ve heard this one sometimes called ‘alternate biography’. You take someone you know from your life, someone who you know the ‘back story’ of well, and change it.
But what I want us to do is look at all the root causes of what changed. How did that world differ to this? What major events did/didn’t happen and how did that affect their life? Could something so small as a landmark she used to walk by on the way to school wasn’t there in this other world, thus meaning she walked a different path to school so met a different guy to your father, who failed to become the sweet first love story and sent her on a horrid downward spiral?
Or maybe genetic engineering was available back then thanks to advanced aliens so your mother looked completely different but somehow events still conspired to lead her to your father?
And what twists can ou throw in? Could your real mother and your alternate mother somehow meet? Or does your father or you bump into her?
Don’t feel like you have to focus on your parents only either, these were just the ideas my brain jumped to. Where does your creativity take you? Feel free to post links to any resulting stories in the comments.
I’m sorry Full Metal Alchemist fans
I love chimeras. Not just the original mythic image, but the evolved meaning: animals mixed together to form a new animal.
They don’t always have to be terrifying either. Think like polar bear dogs and badgermoles from Legend of Aang/Legend of Korra , or owl-bears from The Croods. Or you can go tragic, like what happened to Nina in Fullmetal Alchemist (*sniffle* if I have to remember this pain you all will!).
Struggling to think of a good chimera? What are your two(or three) favourite animals? How can you combine them? Would the resulting animal be awesome or evil?
If you really truly can’t come up with your own I won’t hold it against you if you pilfer something (as long as it’s not copyrighted) and use it in your story.
Your story can be ludicrous to accommodate an absolutely ridiculous chimera, or horror for a terrible creature, or whatever you want it to be.
Now let your imagination fly, fly my pretties!
If you publish your story we’d love it if you’d link in the comments below, or at least tell us how much you love these prompts.
Original photo credit: member Dave Brine
Another simple prompt for you today, but simple can be surprisingly versatile.
You can go Hitchcockian horror like in ‘The Birds’, or take a science fiction turn like the genetically mutated Mockingjays in The Hunger Games Trilogy. Or think of the significance of eagles in the Assassin’s Creed video games.
Feel free to link any resulting stories in the comments below.
The first meeting of the year saw much great advice at the table on Sunday and that always makes my job of picking a piece of advice for this post hard. This month I selected some advice received by two different submissions, but while about the same thing they looked at different functions of that one thing.
Paragraphs can have a larger effect on pacing than you realise. A long paragraph is daunting to a reader. Too many in a row can put people off, make them put your book aside. Even if you disregard that, a long paragraph takes longer to read. It gives the illusion of time passing more slowly. Unless that’s the pacing you’re intending to create, be cautious of putting too many together, or a large one in amongst a quick-paced portion that might halt or hinder the reader’s velocity.
A lot of quick, short paragraphs give the feeling of the story going swiftly. The same can be said of sentences too.
You can also make use of paragraph length to make a point or a statement, such as my single word paragraph further above. Don’t stop there though, you can do more than just that.
One of the submitted pieces was contrasting the lives of two different people, slowly looping it back around to show how they were actually deeply connected. It was a beautiful paragraph – but it was a single one. By breaking it up so the characters differences were each in their own paragraph it enhanced how the two were so different, but when it cycled back to showing how their lives were actually linked, they began to share paragraphs to symbolise the joining.
Paragraphs may seem like one of the smaller and less important parts of writing, but they too can be used for all kinds of effect. Don’t overlook them!
There are problems with our Yahoo Group currently(as at 22/1/18). The files section was down for several days prior and just now the entire group has seemingly vanished.
I have made efforts to contact Yahoo support and hope to hear from them/see results soon, but cannot guarantee anything as it is out of my direct control.
Please check here on our blog for further updates.
UPDATE: The message board part of the group has returned, but the file section is still missing, please read the post marked ‘ATTN: Files Section Missing – Meeting Work-Around’ on the message board for what to do if you intend to attend the February meeting.
For the first writing prompt of the new year I thought I’d challenge you to try something new.
Most of us should be familiar with three act structure which most movies and books use. A lot of people might also be familiar with five act structure. But have you heard of kishotenketsu structure before?
Kishotenketsu is a story structure used in Japan, China, and Korea. It isn’t conflict driven like three and five act structures are and uses a four-beat system where the first two beats are set-up, the third is a twist/complication, and the fourth the resolution which ties it all together.
To gain a better understanding you’re going to have to do, dun-dun-dahn, research! Here are some articles I used when writing my first kishotenketsu structured story:
Before you panic too much about tackling something so unfamiliar, you can find a blend. My story Hanabi to Kitsune uses both kishotenketsu and three-act structure (though more strongly kishotenketsu, but with some conflict so it could sell in a western market (which it did)).
So challenge yourself to do something new and try writing a story using kishotenketsu structure. Feel free to put any links in the comments to the work you produce from this prompt, we’d love to see what you do.
This months prompt is inspired half by the ‘perfect working day’ exercise I redid recently, and half by this very cool photo post.
So, first up, look at your workspace (do you have one? As a full-time mum/whenever-I-can-squeeze-the-time writer mine is wherever I can fit a laptop in the moment I have time ;p ). Can you gain inspiration from it? If so great, get to writing.
Not so lucky? Then dream up your perfect workspace. What does it look like? What type of desk, writing tools, and decorations are there? Is it in a specific locale or country you can admire through the window? Start like a free writing exercise, write all about it, then let the story emerge when inspiration strikes.
Ok, so what if inspiration didn’t strike and all you ended up was jealous you don’t have the killer workspace you described? Then go to this article, look at all the amazing workspaces (how jealous did I instantly become of Nigella Lawson when I saw hers!). Pick one you love the look of and start writing about someone you imagine works there (not the person who actually does, there could be some issues with that).
Don’t forget to post or publish and link back here – or at least let us know if you were inspired.