Nov 17, 2014


One of the fastest way to improve your writing skills is by writing and then writing some more, not just when you are inspired, but even when you are not. The routine of writing every day helps to keep your mind sharp and ready to be creative. Sometimes it seems impossible to stay inspired, and the ideas seem to dry up. A great way to challenge yourself and expand on your writing skill is by the use of creative writing exercises and writing prompts. 


1. Backwards storytelling

 Write a story from the end to the start, drag your audience from the present to the past as you explore the events leading up to the start of you story. 

2. Point of view

Select a short piece of your writing and rewrite the entire thing, using a new point of view. For example if the piece is written in first person try to rewrite it in third person.

3. Character hop
Select a short piece of your writing and rewrite it from a different character’s perspective.  
4. Conflict
Choose two fictional characters (new or familiar to you and your writing) then create a topic or event that would place these two characters into a verbal argument, where each feels that they are completely right. Write in a way that both you and your reader would be unsure who is right, using the verbal sparring as a platform to expose the motivations and emotions of both characters. 

5. Memory

Writing from what we know and have experienced in our lives can add depth and a certain realism that can sometimes be hard to recreate when writing solely fiction. Think back to the first memory that you have, give yourself time to lose yourself in the moment that your mind recalls for you. Then pick up the pen and write with the voice of the child you were, keep your writing on that path, use a child’s language and understanding.

6. Using your own emotions
Think of the thing that you are most afraid of, of a situation that could happen but hasn’t, then write about it the form of a short story.

7. Flash fiction
Take one of your short stories and turn it into a piece of flash fiction (under 800 words)  A simple way to do this by opening a new copy of your story in a word document and eliminating every word that is not 100% needed to propel the story forward. 
Have a good novel!

Nov 3, 2014


I recently read a magnificent poem that I would like to share with you today. 
First I found it on one of the italian blogs I follow. I looked online for an English version and I found many. Some websites claim the author is the Chilean wonderful poet Pablo Neruda. 
The real author is the Brazilian author Martha Medeiros as confirmed by the Pablo Neruda Foundation.

Martha Medeiros, Brazilian author

Dies Slowly

He who becomes the slave of habit,
who follows the same routes every day, 
who never changes pace, 
who does not risk and change the color of his clothes, 
who does not speak and does not experience,
dies slowly.

He or she who shuns passion,
who prefers black on white, 
dotting ones "it’s" rather than a bundle of emotions, the kind that make your eyes glimmer, 
that turn a yawn into a smile, 
that make the heart pound in the face of mistakes and feelings,
dies slowly.

He or she who does not turn things topsy-turvy, 
who is unhappy at work, 
who does not risk certainty for uncertainty, 
to thus follow a dream, 
those who do not forego sound advice at least once in their lives, 
die slowly.

He who does not travel, who does not read, 
who does not listen to music, 
who does not find grace in himself, 
she who does not find grace in herself, 
dies slowly.

He who slowly destroys his own self-esteem, 
who does not allow himself to be helped, 
who spends days on end complaining about his own bad luck, about the rain that never stops, 
dies slowly.

He or she who abandon a project before starting it, who fail to ask questions on subjects he doesn't know, he or she who don't reply when they are asked something they do know,
die slowly.

Let's try and avoid death in small doses, 
reminding oneself that being alive requires an effort far greater than the simple fact of breathing.

Only a burning patience will lead
to the attainment of a splendid happiness.