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The Misadventures of Tuppence Weatherstom Manuscript - Phase 1My first novel manuscript has had an assessment by the brilliant editors from Brisbane Writers Workshop, and I couldn’t be happier with the guidance I have received.

I’ve received layers of feedback on the overall story, the plot, the theme, the characters, scenes that don’t do the story justice and those that do, and so much more.  This feedback is gold and it will assist me to become a much better fiction writer.

I have a great deal of work to do on developing my showing and not telling skills.  And there is a theme in my story that was identified that I hadn’t been aware of.  I’ll be focusing on bringing that out as I rewrite.  I’ll also be reworking scenes to stick to a tight plot and not go off on any tangents.

I’ll be taking all of this valuable feedback into account and pacing myself as I work through each part of the process rewriting my story.

You see, I believe that editors are brilliant people and professionals because they save writers from making fatal mistakes in our manuscripts before the story goes to publication.  Editors see things that I can’t see, and I like to think of them as an author’s guardian angel as they help us writers bring out the best of the story for the reader’s pleasure.

Sometimes feedback stings a little but it’s always meant to be of assistance to improve the manuscript for an audience.  I think it’s important to listen to expertise to create the best story I can write.  So, I’ve been swimming in my story, thinking about all the feedback and considering how I can put it to best use and chisel away the dross to create the best piece of art on the page that I can.

Today, I’ve also finished my first six-week writing course with Dean Wesley Smith – Depth in Writing. This course challenged and stretched my creative writing skills and reoriented my thinking as I learned a new way to approach writing story openings.

I learned how to use the five senses and character opinion to focus the depth in an opening.  This course was so beneficial to learning the art and craft of writing, and I’m so pleased I invested in it.   I’ll be saving up to do more courses with Dean Wesley Smith in the near future. Maybe sometime in 2017.  I’d like to do the Character Development, Plotting with Depth, and Writing Mysteries courses, just to name a few.

The week after next, David Farland will be here in Australia. He’s teaching a couple of writing courses, including Writing Million Dollar Outlines which equates to how to write stories that sell.

I’m pretty excited because I’ll finally have an opportunity to meet David Farland face-to-face.  I’ve been studying writing with him since December 2014 and what I’ve learned has been beneficial to developing my own creative writing style.  I’ve learned how to plot a story, flesh out characters, develop settings, think about theme and consider treatment too.

Then, on 9th October, I will have another opportunity to attend a course with Brisbane Writers Workshop as they will be holding a Polish and Publish course.  This course has a maximum of 4 to 6 people and will focus on giving each participant time to polish 1500 words of their work-in-progress manuscript.  I can’t wait for this course as it will really help me with my manuscript.

And, quite a few months ago, I signed up to another online writing course with Margie Lawson, called Visceral Rules: Beyond Hammering Hearts.  This course starts 1st October, and is designed to teach the importance of visceral responses in writing and helps writers to move beyond cliches.

One day, I hope to have a story that will be published and people will truly enjoy reading.

Until then, I’ll keep learning the art and craft of fiction writing.  And when the hard moments hit and I want to turn away from the course I’ve stepped upon, I’ll continue because I do love to create and I love to write.