How to Edit Your Story Using Fillers

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When I write a book, there are chapters that end up being shorter than what I need them to be. Usually, I write my first draft on pen and paper and transcribe it into a word processor. Pen and paper eliminates spending a whole day editing a few paragraphs around and not making more progress on your story (that’s something I call Editing Syndrome). It also eliminates the millions (okay, maybe just thousands) of distractions that come with a computer.

When I revise my story, I use a word processor – usually. There are times it is good to use real ink even when revising a story. If you realize that a chapter is too short or that you need to add a scene somewhere, going back to ink and paper is generally the best way to construct your scene.

I did this just today, and it worked!

The only steps you have to do is 1) plan where you are going to insert the new scene and edit the text accordingly for it. 2) Write the scene using pen and paper. 3) Transcribe it into the word processor where you are supposed to insert the text. 4) Read the new version and revise to make everything flow.

It’s really that simple. Try it for yourself.

Your fellow writer,
Joshua Reynolds

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Latest from YouTube and Other Websites

In recent YouTube videos, I’ve been doing a series about using pen and paper. Check out the first video in the series:

My Treasure on the Southern Moor website latest post: https://treasureonthesouthernmoor.wordpress.com/2018/08/22/a-late-meal-aboard-ship/

My The Williams House website latest post: https://thewilliamshouse.wordpress.com/2018/08/22/autumn-time/

Your fellow writer,
Joshua Reynolds

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The Top 10 Reasons Why Every Storyteller Should Write About Nature

  1. Nature is aesthetically pleasing.

It makes your story that much more alive. Rich descriptions of nature as the characters interact with it throughout the plot (whatever plot that is) are always a thrill to read and refreshes the reader.

  1. Nature is imaginable.

We are always interacting with and around nature, even when we do not realize it. When we read nature in a story, we can easily envision what is being described. This paints wonderful pictures in our heads and makes it easy for the author to convey into our minds the same images he/her envisioned.

  1. Nature draws a reader into a story.

Unless we can (as the main character of the story does) feel the texture of the tree, smell the pine needles, feel the rich soft grass and dirt, hear the babbling brook, listen to the birds and insects chirp, watch the setting sun shaft through the limbs of the trees, then we won’t be attracted to the story. When these descriptions are included, we will be drawn in to experience the story ourselves.

  1. Nature defines the scene.

How can you describe what a scene looks like, feels like, sounds like, smells like, and tastes like without any nature at all? The only way to describe an environment of a story is by using nature.

  1. Nature is very interactive.

It is easy for us to picture a main character walking his horse down a cobblestone path through the woods in the late afternoon because even though we might not have done so ourselves, we have felt stone before. We have walked through woods before. And, we have seen the late afternoon sun shaft through the limbs of a small forest.

  1. Nature is all around us.

Have you ever tried reading a story in an airport and then out in a park near a garden? Why is it you could visualize the story so much better in the park? Well, there could be thousands of reasons, everything from being nervous about your flight to the shouts and conversations of others in the airport. Yet, as nature draws us into the story, we generally find that we can understand it much better if we are around nature ourselves.

  1. Without nature, stories don’t make sense.

A story without nature is a story of confusion.

  1. Without nature, stories are dull.

If the characters never interact with nature, the story will not be imaginative.

  1. Without nature, stories cannot be visualized.

It’s impossible to truly be able see the paintings of the story without descriptions of nature.

  1. Without nature, your book will have all the negative reviews.

No one likes a story that doesn’t have nature described throughout it.

Your fellow writer,
Joshua Reynolds

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Latest from YouTube and Other Websites

In my Writing Motivational Tip videos, I am in the middle of doing a series on Conservative Writing. Head over to my YouTube channel videos to check them out! Here is the first video in the series:

I have begun a new series on YouTube! In real time, you get to observe my work on my stories. This is an insider’s peek on what it actually takes to make a story come to life. Watch this series for inspiration as well as for a relaxing background noise when you go to write your own story! Here is the first video:

From my Treasure on the Southern Moor and The Williams House websites, I am beginning again to re-broadcast story snippets. Head on over to check them out!

Treasure on the Southern Moor: https://treasureonthesouthernmoor.wordpress.com/

The Williams House: https://thewilliamshouse.wordpress.com/

Your fellow writer,
Joshua Reynolds

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The Amazing Secrets of Storytelling

Now that I have your attention by my motivating headline, you probably think that I’m either a genius or a quack. The truth is neither. The amazing secrets of storytelling are something that’s common sense; the trouble is that so few people are taught common sense these days. I can give you the secrets in three simple words.

Imagination. Inspiration. Wholesomeness.

Imagination refers to your ability to give your reader through words the same visions and images you have inside your head. Drawing a reader into your story takes imagination – the right descriptions, composition of scenes, environments, and proper portrayals of characters.

Inspiration refers to everything you need to gather in order to have imagination. I call this “reference material”. The truth is that no writer is 100% original, or even 50% original. We acquire our ideas from our interactions with the real world: Places we go to, people we visit, paintings/pictures we observe, other stories we read, stories we are told verbally, smells and tastes, etc.

Wholesomeness refers to the level of simple virtues placed within a story. If your story never talks about food or nature or sleep/rest or water or trees or rocks or characters who appreciate such things, then your story will not be a good one.

Your fellow writer,
Joshua Reynolds

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The Top 10 Reasons Why Over 50% of the Novels in Your Local Library Should Not Exist

Over 50% of the novels in your local library either. . .

1.) . . . teach you to escape the world and not how to live in it.

This is problematic because the reader will be discouraged to live life, always wanting something different from what they have. A novel should tell a story that will encourage the reader to understand this world rightly. It serves as a way to interpret the world, not how to escape it.

2.) . . . exhaust you.

One of the best “virtues” touted for storytelling these days is to always keep the reader at the edge of his/her seat. This is a huge mistake. If the reader is always at the edge of his/her seat when reading a novel, they will be far less likely to re-read the story because they will be on to the next adrenaline-pumping novel.

3.) . . . are narcissistic.

Haven’t you noticed that most new novels these days are all about one individual discovering something secret and using it for himself/herself? Either that, or an individual wants something special and obtains it near the end of the story. Many people actually state this is one of the reasons why the Millennial generation is a lot more discouraged. They’ve been taught all their lives that they are special and can have whatever they want.

4.) . . . are not imaginative.

Read the below example and see how much you can envision the scene.

So saying, he stopped his horse and let the reins fall on its neck: then, slowly beating time with one hand, and with a faint smile lighting up his gentle foolish face, as if he enjoyed the music of his song, he began.

Of all the strange things that Alice saw in her journey Through The Looking-Glass, this was the one that she always remembered most clearly. Years afterwards she could bring the whole scene back again, as if it had been only yesterday — the mild blue eyes and kindly smile of the Knight — the setting sun gleaming through his hair, and shining on his armour in a blaze of light that quite dazzled her — the horse quietly moving about, with the reins hanging loose on his neck, cropping the grass at her feet — and the black shadows of the forest behind — all this she took in like a picture, as, with one hand shading her eyes, she leant against a tree, watching the strange pair, and listening, in a half-dream, to the melancholy music of the song.”  ~Lewis Carrol’s Through the Looking Glass

This sort of imagination you cannot obtain through the new-fangled fantasy genre that has popped up in the modern world. I am not opposed to fairytale, but stories full of witch-dogs, magic incantations, wizards battling sorcery, etc. do not aid imagination. They only hinder it because they are not things we can (or should try) to grasp. Such stories end up leaving the reader empty.

5.) . . . do not sustain the reader.

A book must have places of respite, very much like the example I gave in the point above. Such places are points the reader can go back to and re-read again and again – places of great descriptions and imaginative scenes.

6.) . . . have a theme of despair.

Too many stories these days end in sorrow or poorly made decisions by the hero. I understand if an authors doesn’t want a story to end with the old cliché, “and they lived happily ever after” (though I also think this is a nice ending!). There can be a moment of sadness even in a last chapter, but the overarching theme of a story should be one of redemption/joy instead of despair/sadness. If a plot gives a message of despair to its main characters, then it gives a message of despair to its reader.

7.) . . . are dumbed down for the youth.

I love children’s stories. In fact, stories about children having adventures or living ordinary life, stories that families could read together so they desire, are some of my favorite stories. Yet, these stories are not being told much today. Instead, we have a genre where everyone is trying to be “teenager-ish”. In the “good old days”, adolescence was the stage where a boy started growing into manhood and a girl into womanhood. They learned from their elders what adulthood is about. Now, we are dealing with youth rebellions, and our literature is encouraging it. Instead of appealing to youth immaturity, literature should be appealing to values and virtues that apply to all ages, young and old alike.

8.) . . . have too much magic in them.

I wanted to further explain point four with this point. Imagination I think is key to writing a good story. Without imagination, a reader cannot see the story themselves. Yet, tales of dark sorcery that are all about magical powers beating out other magical powers without any real conclusion are pointless and only corrupt imagination. A society indoctrinated with such stories become ignorant because they do not understand the simple wholesomeness of everyday life. Where are all of the great ordinary adventure stories and historical fiction books of the day? Reforming literature is key to reforming society.

9.) . . . run from moral truth.

Let’s be honest, the “subjective moral reasoning” of today has greatly affected storytelling. Heroes are no longer heroes, and villains are no longer villains. Yet, this does not change the fact that moral truth still exists. A good story never twists what moral truth really is because if it did, that would be the message given to the reader. Since that message is false (that morality is subjective), it would be portraying falsity to the reader.

10.) . . . are unintelligent and disorderly.

So many people do not understand these days what a good character really is because they do not have many examples of what a good character is. Instead of constantly writing turmoil in our stories, we need to show what truly good characters are like and how they would live.

Your fellow writer,
Joshua Reynolds

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Do You Have the Courage to Read: Last Call to Action

This is it. This is the moment. The Last. . .Call. . .to Action.

You have a choice to make: Do what you’ve been doing (or worse, do nothing at all). You know where that will lead. No imagination. No inspiration. Wandering through aimless stories that exhaust you and lead you nowhere. Is that really where you want to go? Take a new action, and get a new result. Buy The Williams House and Treasure on the Southern Moor. Finally immerse yourself in stories that will profit your life.

What do you really want for yourself? If you still have not purchased my books, I’m sending this post as a last reminder. Sure, I’ll remember to include their links in future posts, but my topics will shift a little to other writing aspects.

Do it. Take the course of action that will unlock the key to:

1. understanding what imaginative, inspirational, and wholesome stories are.
2. You will be able to spot in your local library what a good story is and what it isn’t.
3. You will enjoy your life much more and be more content.
4. You will have a deeper imagination and love for the outdoors and for stories that use them.
5. You will have started on a path to a much . . . healthier . . . life!

Purchase these stories today:
The Williams House at Amazon
Treasure on the Southern Moor at Amazon

Always your fellow writer,
Joshua Reynolds

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Spend 8 Weeks and Write a Novel that Exceeds Your Expectations

We have reached the moment of decision. I know what I’m asking of you. Believe me, I’ve asked it of myself multiple times. It’s that moment when I realize I’m going to take the plunge to write my next book. And trust me: There is nothing so thrilling and adventuresome as the process of crafting your own imagined story!

You have a choice to make: Do what you’ve been doing (or worse, do nothing at all). You know where that will lead. An unfinished book. Embarrassment. Negative reviews. And dissatisfaction with your own manuscript. Is that really where you want to go? Take a new action, and get a new result. Apply for Writing Imagination Academy. Finally get the story you have imagined in your head to a completed manuscript that will exceed your own expectations.

8 weeks. A completed first draft. A road to having your story revised and ready for publication.

. . .or . . .

Several years – still an unfinished manuscript – lost confidence from your friends – and no seeable solution to having your book completed.

Which option do you really want for yourself? Here’s what to do now… Make sure you have signed up to my email by clicking the button at the bottom of this post. Watch the free video training, and send me an email with a couple paragraphs outlining a few things about your book (general plot-line, a few things the main characters do, setting, a few action points from the free video training). It doesn’t have to be detailed. I will be sure to get back with you.

Again, the seats are limited to 50 total. Go to my home page: www.conservativecornerstones.com to see how many seats are left and how much time there is until the next course, and apply today. If accepted, I’ll provide you a link where you may purchase the course for the flat fee of $200, and you have two weeks of the course to opt-in for your %100 Money Back Guarantee. I’m taking all the risk. Hope to see you on the inside!

Your fellow Writer,
Joshua Reynolds

P.S. Still undecided? I still plan to always give more tips and tricks for FREE in future posts! I’ve left you with the decision. The rest is up to you.

P.P.S. Did you know that I always write my first draft on paper? I really do! This is the writing tip of the day. Writing with pen and paper helps push all distractions away, such as the internet, the glowing screen of a computer, the operating system and word processor, etc. I have found that the best way to let my creativity flow is allowing my mind to think and immediately transfer it down to the notebook.

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How to Eliminate Boredom by Keeping Things Fun!

Have you ever wished that you could imagine something at any time of day? Do you ever pause your work to take a glance outside and see what the weather’s like? If I gave you something that could with %100 certainty help you enjoy your day, would you take it?

Not wanting to spend money, yet? Try reading The Williams House and Treasure on the Southern Moor for free! Go to my Free Resources tab and read free chapters of them in PDF form. Also go to their perspective Amazon pages and read the sample Kindle previews of them!

The Williams House at Amazon
Treasure on the Southern Moor at Amazon

All you have to do is take a few minutes away from your social media networking and watch how imaginative and inspirational stories can impact your life. In a day and age when fiction portrays hopelessness, read something that gives hope and light. After all, good stories cannot be written unless they are read.

Your fellow writer,
Joshua Reynolds

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