Wednesday, January 1, 2014

It's a NEW YEAR - share it with your friends

I'd planned to post yesterday on 12/31/13, but as I started typing my computer started jumping (pictures on the screen) like it was being shocked by electric waves. Needless to say, I shut my laptop down. I didn't want to take any chances. I hope waiting an extra day, you'll see it was worth the wait.

Today is the first day of the rest of your life. We all know things happen to us in life that may slow us down, try to take us down, and sometimes even leave us shattered, but take heart. Tomorrow is another day. As a believer, we are overcomers…we have victory in the depths of our hearts. Walk today believing for a better tomorrow and you will succeed.

We have to learn not to focus on our failures, our let-downs, or even our disappointments. We have to know that tomorrow is a new day. We have to pick ourselves up and push forward.

2013 is over. If you’ve made mistakes, try to learn from them. If you’ve hurt someone or someone has hurt you, ask forgiveness or forgive them and move on. Try not to do it again. If you’ve failed in some attempt at something…try again. Sometimes the third time is the charm. The main thing is—keep trying or move on to something else you should be doing. Sometimes we fail because we are not meant to succeed at that particular thing or at that particular moment.

Learn from your mistakes, but don’t dwell on them…don’t keep looking back. 2014 is going to be a great year. Start making plans to accomplish something this year. Give yourself small challenges and work up to greater ones.

I don’t know about you, but I had a lot of great things that happened in my life in 2013. One of the biggest and best things was my new grandson, Elijah, being born. Molly, my daughter and his mother, made a picture video of his short life here on earth and I’d love to share it with you. I am getting better and better with the technology of today – thanks to my grown kids who haven’t given up on their old maw. Hee-hee.

Isn’t he adorable? The boy always smiles…not only with his lips but check those baby blues. It’s in his eyes. We’ve learned if you’re having a conversation and you want to stay focused, don’t look at Eli. Your mind is immediately blindsided. He’s all you can think about from that moment on.

Now for my fellow writers…I’ll continue the lesson on layering your novel. I started sharing with you in December 10ths blog a lesson I learned (took notes—I’m still learning…always learning) through my membership with ACFW. I told you I would go back and check the archive’s of their teaching lessons (March 2011) and find out who taught this lesson to me through the group teaching. Unfortunately, I couldn’t find it.

A quick recap of what I noted on December 10, 2013:

Layering – a mix of elements beneath the surface of the main plot and characters to create a richer reading experience. When a reader is touched on several layers, it enhances their reading experience.

Purpose of layering:
            1. It adds more highs and lows
            2. Can add humor to a heavy story or weight to a lighter one
            3. Take some pressure off an especially emotional main plot, so as not to exhaust the reader
            4. Helps to control pacing and extend the plot
            5. Gives your fiction a “bigger” feel to it - better representing the complexities of real life

Now a little deeper look:

I.               Subplots
A.     A secondary strand of the plot that is a supporting side story of the main plot. Subplots connect to main plots through time and place OR in thematic significance. Subplots usually involve secondary characters.
1.     Subplots will deepen characterization by introducing other emotions, situations, actions, and reactions
2.     Subplots will enlarge the story world
3.     Subplots help control the pacing
4.     Subplots also grow your word count (but make sure your subplot enhances your story or you will bore your reader)
II.             Texture
A.     Adds volume and enriches your story, your characters – making both come alive to the reader. The texture makes your story stick to the reader long after he/she has read the last word.
1.     Add texture by sprinkling background of the city and/or location of where the story takes place
2.     Add texture by dropping in a piece here and there of the characters’ backgrounds—this is what makes them who they are and makes them react how they do…help the reader understand your characters by layering their stories within your story.
III.           Subtext
A.     Subtext is a more specific undertone message in a novel. Subtext is what your reader will detect from your story more subtly than through the main message or theme…example – the ugliness of racism as depicted in A Time To Kill by John Grisham.

I hope this is helping you; I know it’s helping me. We will touch on foreshadowing and symbolism next time…plus more. Stay tuned to e-journal for more. If you’ve missed any of my blogs, feel free to go back and read past postings. On most of my blogs, I touch on the person and writing events in my life and finish with a writing tip. Feel free to share with your friends who are writing or thinking about starting to write.

Have a great NEW YEAR!!!


  1. Lots of good advice and tips here, Debbie, thanks! And your grandbaby is just adorable! You do have a lot to be thankful for! Hope Scott continues to improve and feel good.

  2. I'm glad you enjoyed the info on layering.
    I think Eli is precious too. You cant help but smile when you're looking at him.
    Thanks for all, Allyn.