Ever gotten on the phone with someone and you haven't talked to them for a while and the first thing they ask you is, "What's new?" Personally, this question stops me cold. It sends me into what I can only describe as analyze mode, and ask anyone who knows me whether I analyze anything. They'll tell you that I do.
First of all, I cannot just start what I was going to talk to them about, because they specifically asked for "new" information. This means that before I tell them anything, I need to run the information through a spot in my brain I call the "masher" - a personal grinding, mashing, and separating area. A perfectly good thought can go through the masher and come out completely obscured, senseless, and dissected like an insect in science class.
It's a shame really. I can be quite brilliant and entertaining if given some free range with what I am going to tell you. You may not listen to a word I say, or you might be drawn in. One problem I have is with tangents. If I encounter a listener who doesn't have all the knowledge about some subject that I am referring to, I will try to explain what it is that I feel that they don't understand. After a while of following sidetracks, I will completely lose track of whatever point I had originally been trying to make. One conversation that began with talking about rabbits' feet ended up a conversation about certain cancers.
Anyway, I'm sure I had a point to this, when I started, but see what I mean? I simply cannot talk about any particular subject without going off on a tangent. So, I guess I'll give in to myself.
The following are the top 10 resources on tangents:
Nancy Hoft Consulting
Link on a lot of different topics. Scroll down to find Interesting Tangents.
Cosmic Connections - Creative Corridor
This is a large grouping of resources for writers and aspiring writers.
Fight the Fluff!, by Robert S. Warren
How to eliminate or at least recognize fluff in your writing and how to do something good about it.
Perfect your Content with a little Help from Friends, by Barbara McNichol
Getting the kind of critique you need.
Dave Switzer's Fascinating Places on the Web
You'll find something here that suits your story.
Writers' Federation of Nova Scotia: Markets: Periodicals
Links to tips on putting your work together for submissions as well as an alphabetical list of periodical markets.
James P. Mercurio explains his method. It's okay to go off on a tangent.
Serial Writing: The ongoing Paycheck, by Alina Sandor
Advice, markets, and other things you should know before you start writing serials.
Bob Baker's PromoteYourCreativity.com
Unleash the Artist Within - Day 18: Encouraging the use of tangents to get yourself better exposure.
Writing a First Novel, by Amanda Baker
If you are a registered member of the Freelance Writing Organization - Int'l (www.fwointl.com) you can also use our free, online writing resource database which contains thousands of writing websites.
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