I knew that I didn’t want to draw a cactus, at least not a plain cactus, since that was the “low-hanging fruit” on this picture. As I let myself start thinking deeply about this prompt, I started thinking about what makes me prickly. The topic started to make me uncomfortable, so that’s how I knew I was on the right path. I started thinking about how once someone has been hurt by love, they can get prickly and not want anyone close to them.
While taking my lunchtime walks this week, I finished up listening to Kristine Kathryn Rusch’s audiobook, The Freelancer’s Survival Guide. It’s interesting to see how things have changed in the 5+ years since this book was written as posts on her blog, then published. While there were many good gems in this book (brilliant advise I wish I’d had ages ago and some that I will be delving into myself over the next few years), there was one thing that really struck me and I want to share.
Don’t make the words fancy. Translation into other languages translates the story, not the words.
These were my notes, so I’m certain I paraphrased for me to remember. So often, I know I try to strive for just the right sentence or word. All too often, I feel like I’m just using the same words over and over. Oh look, another THE. How about and AND. Yes, I’m oversimplifying here, but that’s how it feels some days. It’s if I’ve just taken every word I learned in first grade, probably when we were pasting words into the sentences on our sheets, thrown them into a bag and shook them, and now I take them out one by one and line them up all in a row just like I did then.
I remind myself that my purpose it to entertain with a good story, not fancy words. I don’t want to mire my readers in a deluge of words to get through. No slough for them to cut through.
I am so pleased to announce that I’m part of the Thrilling Wonder Adventure Stories. 15 stories are included in this huge ebook collection, featuring Kristine Kathryn Rusch, Dean Wesley Smith, M.L. Buchman, Stefon Mears, Thea Hutcheson (all wonderful authors I’ve had the chance to get to know personally), as well as many others. I have to say that it is really amazing to have my story, The Last Ant, in with all these other writers’ works.
It’s on pre-order now, to be released tomorrow on September 8th — this Friday, just in time for some weekend reading. Best of all, you can get all 15 stories for the low price of $3.99!
Also makes a great gift for your sci-fi, dystopian loving friends.