First a little bit about Tracy:
Tracy Hewitt Meyer has a B.A. in English and a Master of Social Work, but becoming an author was her true calling. Specializing in paranormal, young adult and contemporary romance, Tracy enjoys taking the journey with her characters and is always surprised at what can unfold during the writing process. Her contemporary romance novella, Trust of the Heart, and paranormal romance, Wren’s Fantasy, are available now.
Born and raised in West Virginia, Tracy now lives in Virginia with her family. She is a member of Romance Writers of America, Washington Romance Writers, the Fantasy, Futuristic & Paranormal Special Interest Chapter of RWA, and the Young Adult Chapter of RWA where she acts as the PRO Liaison for its membership.
Follow Tracy’s blog for writing tidbits, inspiration, motivation and senseless meandering thoughts on whatever goes through her mind.
You can also follow Tracy and other Soul Mate Publishing authors at their blog: http://smpauthors.wordpress.com/
Now let’s hear what she has to say about that all important part of a writer’s life: Words.
Writers use words. We think and dream about, analyze and dissect words. We build, create, and demolish, with words. And while utilizing a language that boasts anywhere from a quarter to three quarters of a million words, we writers should never run out of them.
It can be incredibly difficult to use variety in our descriptions. If we’re in the midst of creating a love scene, is it really time to stop and research alternate ways to say ‘stared’? But haven’t we all read, ‘And they stared longingly into each other’s eyes…’? I’ve read that in a hundred different scenes. I’ve written it myself nearly as much. But why? Why, with a vat as deep as our English language reserves, is it so difficult to find unique and fresh words to use in our stories?
When I wrote Wren’s Fantasy, I found myself repeatedly stumbling over the same old, boring phrases. Her heart nearly beat out of her chest. Or, Her lips were plump, desperate for a kiss. And better still, Her breasts were perfect orbs, just made for touching.
Yikes! That all sounds good enough, but it’s not different. Rather, it’s typical for romance novels and love scenes. Why did I find it so hard to enrich my writing? For one thing, in the midst of a scene, I found it very trying to pull myself out of the action and search for an alternate way to carry the story along. It stopped my creative flow. But the result left me wanting more. I’m not a poetic writer by nature and so what did I do? I wrote the scene any way it came out and then I went back and enlivened the language. I had to do this if I didn’t want my scenes to fall flat and sound like every other love story out there. We may all write about love, but it is how we write about it that can make or break a story’s success.
My greatest resource when I wrote Wren’s Fantasy, was, http://thesaurus.com/. When I tried to write the word ‘stand’ for the hundredth time, I’d skip over to this website and find a list of alternatives. Some fit. Some came across as trying too hard.
Trying too hard? Yes. It can be a challenge to make the language of our stories rich and creative. If we try too hard, we run the risk of pulling the reader out of our story with unusual or misunderstood wording. If we don’t strive for descriptions that are vivid and alluring, our story can wind up on the ‘don’t bother’ list. There has to be a balance and it can take years of practice to hone this seemingly easy skill.
So, fellow comrades-in-writing, I challenge us all to study a dictionary, a thesaurus, a favorite novel. Let’s strive for words that fall outside the box, pushing the language of our stories out of our comfort zone and into something truly unique; something the reader can’t put down.
I have read hundreds of novels, as I’m sure most of you have. Ones that immediately come to mind as being rich in descriptive detail are: Daughter of Smoke and Bone, by Laini Taylor and Chocolat, by Joanne Harris. Both are beautifully written. Not only are the stories incomparable, but how the words are used makes them leap from the ‘been there, read that’ to the ‘must read again’ file.
Do you have trouble broadening your word base?
What novel stands out to you because of its beautiful prose?
I’d like to thank Callie for hosting me on her blog today! It was so much fun! If you’d like more information about Wren’s Fantasy, or any of my works, please visit my website at www.TracyHewittMeyer.com.
Here’s the blurb from Wren’s Fantasy:
Wren O’Hara is a social worker waiting for the day when she slips into mental illness, just like her mother. When she is attacked by one of her clients, then rescued by a mysterious blond man who looks more like an angel, she knows her mental break has finally come. It doesn’t help that he disappears from the scene after killing her client, leaving her the sole suspect for the murder.
Riagan Tenman is an immortal druid and protector of the Murias Cauldron. After being banned to the spirit realm as punishment for leaving his post, he wants nothing more than to return to his duty on the druid realm. But when the cries of a woman reach him, he morphs into human form to save her before considering the grave consequences of his actions.
With a looming threat to the safety of the Cauldron and Wren the suspect for murder, Riagan and Wren are forced to work together in a race against time. What neither could know is that far away in the druid realm is where Wren’s true destiny lies, which will in turn change Riagan’s future forever. But through it all, Wren is left wondering if these events are real and true or are they just a delusion?
Tracy will be giving a free copy of Wren’s Fantasy to one lucky commenter! Let’s show her some love.