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JessicaElinord

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    JElinord@yahoo.ca

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  • Gender
    Female
  • Location
    Ottawa ON
  • Interests
    I love my dark coffee topped with marshmallows. As of late, I've grown addicted to behind the scenes of TV shows and movie productions. Myths, legends and Grimm's fairy tales are still my favourite reads. When I'm not writing until midnight or during my lunch break, I'm attacking my New Year's resolution by practicing yoga and training for a horrifying 5K I need to run this summer.

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  • About Me

    <p><span style="font-family:Calibri;"><span style="font-size:12px;"><span style="color:#000000;">Hi, </span></span></span></p>
    <p>
    <span style="font-family:Calibri;"><span style="font-size:12px;"><span style="color:#000000;">Born and raised in Ottawa, Ontario, I graduated with a Bachelor in Psychology, while sneaking in as many Lit classes as possible. Logically, I was later hired as a Maintenance Administrative Assistant. </span></span></span></p>
    <p>
    <span style="font-family:Calibri;"><span style="font-size:12px;"><span style="color:#000000;">A closet introvert and severe daydreamer, when I’m not dispatching maintenance staff to fires or clogged toilets, I am rewriting my DEMON HALF trilogy. </span></span></span></p>

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  1. "The Art of Fiction" by John Gardner (a great primer for this commercial program)
 1. How did the book help you as a writer? What overall aspects of it taught you something? “ The first and last important rule for the creative writer, then I stat though there may be rules (formulas) for ordinary, easily publishable fiction - imitation fiction - there are no rules for real fiction, any more than there are rules for serious visual art or musical composition. Pg. 158. That line made me question a lot of things. With that said Gardner does later imply that you have to be a master to learn how to break those rules correctly. It was good reminder that Im still green and need to learn these apply rules, and practice the module (no mater how whimper inducing) to become a great writer. 2. What two or three major lessons did you learn from the book that you can apply to your writing and/or your novel? To avoid loose ends, ensure that all questions are answered. If I’m going to make Mya Merlin’s descent there better be a good reason in the story why that’s relevant or it will come off as sloppy and insulting to the reader. For ex J.J Abrams’ Lost. Practice makes perfect and to write, I need to read. Following the concept of writing mastery, the best way to become a great write is to read extensively and learn from the masters. Books are my mentors. Since trying to write this novel, and working a 9-5, I haven’t made time to read. Could e why I run to so many writer’s block. I want writing to become second nature again. 
 3. Was there anything in the books that obviously conflicted with lessons and readings in our novel writing program. If so, what were they? Technically, this writing course, along with any English class is “”shrinking art.” HERE ME OUT. Gardner mentions that sometimes an author needs to go with his or her intuition and nor follow plot logic. Perhaps a question is left unanswered, plots laws can get suspended. Gardner wants authors to take risks. Don’t get me wrong, this course has definitely elevated the writing in my story, but Gardner doesn’t want the author to play it too safe to avoid being trivial. 
 "Writing the Breakout Novel" by Donald Maass (another good primer) - My favourite of all the readings 1. How did the book help you as a writer? What overall aspects of it taught you something? • Reading “it is not good enough just to get published”This book is great at debunking myths and giving realistic expectations to aspiring writers and the work that is involved in not only getting signed by a publisher, but staying signed by a publisher. I —like many— assumed that as long as I get signed, I’m in for life. The publishers, editors and agents are there to hold an authors hand, learn as much as you can to write first, second, third, how many number of books to survive this competitive market. • This book also taught me to be ruthless with scenes (so grateful) I’m removing the scenes that help the plot along. If ever I caught myself skimming a scene, I was objective enough to see that this point of view, or sub-plot wasn’t moving the main story further. I had A LOT of ideas that slowed down the novel, and It was help reading that a book was slow enough and need as much high stakes, and tension to get the story going. 2. What two or three major lessons did you learn from the book that you can apply to your writing and/or your novel? Each chapter had a new major lesson that I had to apply to the manuscript, but the top three that stuck... • 1) More like a reminder then a brand new lesson. The book is what sells. Sure he publishers, agents, and sales people help, but the writer needs to write that authentic book that get people talking. The book success is from word of mouth and cm to think of it most of the book I read were recommended by people I knew or teachers who assigned it to me. Something to keep in mind when querying, because agents won’t have that word of mouth recommendation, so that manuscript better stand out from the on slaughter of request. • 2) The “So What?” Principle. This advise punched at the gut. What happens if the protagonist doesn’t complete the stake? This whole time I thought I upped the stakes by genocide and almost certain death. My pitch was basically, one girl to save the world. • 3) I’m relived that premise needs plausibility, emotional gut appeal, and originality. I was worried that demons, time travel, and merlin decent were one-too-many ingredients for this manuscript, (which it might still be for a first time writer) but in crossing these concept, if I execute these elements well, this could be a damn good book. 3. Was there anything in the books that obviously conflicted with lessons and readings in our novel writing program. If so, what were they? • I didn’t read anything what conflicted with what I learned from the novel writing program. "Write Away" by Elizabeth George (a no nonsense primer, and humorous) 1. How did the book help you as a writer? What overall aspects of it taught you something? • This novel is great at setting foundation before writing a novel. It allows you to really think ahead and plan out your novel efficiently, so you don’t just write a 500 page draft only to throw it away after. Though there was a lot of left-brained planning, it still taught me that the characters will tell you how the scene should play out, that the overall theme will create the subplot(s), and that the primary conflict will help plan the story. It all starts from one idea and snowballs from there. Another lesson: You can be a successful author you need discipline, talent and passion always come second. 2. What two or three major lessons did you learn from the book that you can apply to your writing and/or your novel? • 1) Setting: Seeing the setting as a character was a good lesson. I thought about Hunger Games. Readers remember District 12’s drab setting because it further supported the dystopian feel the book was trying to illustrate . A neat trick was read in Chapter three. When discussing landscapes, Annie advises the reader to use ordinary items as props when a character is being reflective. I haven’t used a lot of interior monologue to illustrate the character, so this was a really helpful tip to remember. • 2) Character: The importance of knowing your character inside out before starting the story, will help you write the tory. By know the psychology, and idiosyncrasies of your heroes and villains, you know how the next scene will write. Also, the importance in the name, (more like it confirmed my own beliefs). The name itself tells who your dealing with. It’s superficial sure, but Amanda Steele sounds a tougher broad than Amanda Honeybee. The name clues the reader in on the personality, culture background, etc. • 3) In the plotting section, if ever a story seemed to have stalled (which has happens many times) I have played my hand too soon as in to say I gave something away prematurely. Always keep in mind suspense is what keeps the reader, wondering what would happened. • 4) BONUS LESSON: THAD Talking Head Avoidance Device. That was a pretty good lesson in showing rather than telling. By using metaphors or actions instead of have talking heads exchange in pages dialogue to illustrate character. 3. Was there anything in the books that obviously conflicted with lessons and readings in our novel writing program. If so, what were they? • Author Salon states rules such as The 6 Act Story Structures, rules of inciting incidents, avoid first person, etc rules that keep the structural integrity if a novel, and keeps it competitive. George states (often) that if there’s a writing rule try to break it. For ex: Her professor told her not write in the point of view of a killer who just killed a victim because the killer won’t thin k of anything but his murder. George based an entire book about a killer killing someone and seemingly thinking about other things. So George contradicts AS by saying there are no rules…well except to plan ahead. "The Writing Life" by Annie Dillard (a look at the struggle) 1. How did the book help you as a writer? What overall aspects of it taught you something? • Writing is fun, but it takes a certain degree of masochism to get through each page. I know I’m a masochist and egoist, so I’m in the right field. • Be prepared for the vision to not translate exactly onto to page. The lack of being able to capture your vision onto a page doesn’t make you a bad writer, that’s just what happens to every writer. It was comforting to read because way to often I would get frustrated that an amazing picture in my head wouldn’t describe what I envision no matter how any revisions. 2. What two or three major lessons did you learn from the book that you can apply to your writing and/or your novel? • 1) The first draft is not the final draft. Do not be afraid to throw words away, simply because you have worked on those words for hours. In not letting go of bad ideas, you sacrifice the potential for something great. • 2) It takes 2-10 years to write a book. Yes, there are extremes like AS I LAY DYING which was written in 6 weeks, or TWILIGHT in 3-4 months, but these are the exceptions that proves the rule. They are the extremes. • 3) Write a book not a movie. Like books such as I AM NUMBER 4, if you write with the desire to have the book seen on the movie screen. Removing literary elements to play out more like a movie will leave you book lacking of subtly, and prose. Different mediums need to be treated as such. 3. Was there anything in the books that obviously conflicted with lessons and readings in our novel writing program. If so, what were they? • The writing Life does not really conflict with the Novel writing program, but it does conflict with writing advice learned at The New York Pitch Conference. For a more Marketable, competitive book, participants we’re advised three books in a trilogy, but Ms, Dillard recommends to give everything in your first book. That it’s better to have one big epic novel then a series of short stories. • Also Annie explains that readers can spot rat when an author tries to change a novel for a movie script, but then in Module II, using Nabokov (Lolita) and Graves (Claudius The God) we examine a quiet setting and circumstance made lively, and a lively circumstance and setting made cinematic and engaging, respectively. In the novel audit we are asked Narrative composition (quality of set, tension, cinema, character interactions). The fact that we’re using cinematic techniques to vivify a novel contradicts Dillard’s caution against movie elements in novel writing.
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