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Writer's Circle is a place to work with your fellow writers to improve your skills, get advice, get help and to provide more opportunities for writing at Gay Authors.


Writing Club
  1. What's new in this club
  2. Erick is Tolkien reincarnated? 😮 It is such a cool language Comsie! It sounds so real! Sort of like a version of ancient Greek!
  3. Actually, Erick came up with the language all on his own. i really had nothing to do with it at all, but when he started teaching it to me, I added it to a couple of stories and love the way it sounded. I was amazed! Here's a short sample of how it sounded when spoken aloud.
  4. Since Halloween is around the corner, last year I came up with a horrifying story that is just deliciously evil! 😈 I named it after the character which is a new word I concocted putting together Umbra and Death (Shadow of Death), Umbereth! He is basically what happens to a spirit when it becomes consumed with revenge and hatred because of how it was killed. He was an antagonist to a previous story I wrote which makes this a prequel to that story. Anyway, the soundtrack for Umbereth is great for Halloween if you're stuck this year at home and need to have a Halloween Horror Movie party all by yourself.
  5. I can't say that I have any 'abandoned' stories, just stories that I haven't circled back to yet. I have one that is actually a sequel to a story I wrote called Adagio about the ghost of a murdered teen male prostitute from the 1970s (yeah I know, but it isn't what you might think ). It was supposed to be a one-off story for Halloween, but I felt it had enough in it to actually spawn a world of its own. In fact, I rolled it into one of my Worlds because it shared characters and could be part of a mythos that was forming. In any case, I want this sequel to cover another difficult issue facing gay teens and teens in general: school shootings. I actually got a few chapters in and felt the idea was getting too grandios for the intimate nature of the Adagio series. So, I left it to revisit at a later time. I was also coming up on the Halloween deadline that I wanted to meet to release the story and found I couldn't finish the story in time. Instead, my work on this main Adagio sequel actually spawned a prequel to the story concerning the main antagonist in the original story, basically a demon, an Umbereth. I was able to pull that one off for the Halloween release last year and, I gotta say, it is some of the darkest stuff I've ever read, much less written. 😮 But, that just makes me want to return to my Adagio sequel all the more so my 'abandoned' story will have its day as soon as I actually complete some of my other projects going on. I'm not one to never finish what I start. I will force myself into a cycle so that I can finish a story before I go on to a new idea. It takes a lot of discipline to do, sometimes, but worth it as long as you can keep with your material and keep your passion for it burning. I often feel like I reward myself with the chance to start a new story if I finish a story I started already. In this way, I try not to abandon things. Especially, if I already have some readers that want to see the story progress and come to its resolution.
  6. I like the slow reveal of magical systems from 'soft' to 'hard'. Ummm . . . Anyways! Yeah, I like to introduce a magical character totally out of context with the 'reality' of the 'regular' main protagonist. As the relationship between the magical being and the 'regular' person grows, the nature of the magic starts to reveal itself. The 'magical' being starts to become less strange to the 'normal' person and the normal person slowly finds themselves transitioning into the magical being's reality. What once seemed 'impossible' suddenly becomes not only possible but commonplace! The 'normal' person then finds that they are no longer 'attuned' to their old reality like they once were. They have become a magical being themselves! It is analogous to when one learns something profoundly new and they can't look at the world the same way they did before! They have stepped into a far larger world than they ever thought possible! Then, as they come to learn what they can from this new reality, they start to find the patterns of laws and properties that hold that new reality together in its own context. What seemed wildly strange and out of place in the person's old reality now has meaning and purpose and informs them of how their old reality may, in fact, be held together and driven by this magical reality. Then the consistency and grounding of the magical system can have some solidity for the reader. They can feel like they are now privy to a deep, deep secret about the universe and how it really works behind the curtain!
  7. Oh, oops. I didn’t mean to imply that from what you said @Myr. I was just making that point about not always having to do thing the ‘right’ way to make an entertaining story.
  8. @MrM 🤷‍♂️ I didn't say not to, just that it is harder. And yes, fans love Harry Potter and academic stuffed shirts get prissy.
  9. And yet, Rowling's 'Avada Cadaveras' and 'Expecto Patronums' are well loved by fans even if their mutilation of Latin makes linguists grind their teeth. The audience, children and young adults in particular, thought these things 'cool' and so derived a great deal of joy from using them and debating on how to 'correctly' pronounce them. On the other hand, some of Tolkien's readers can find his continuous use of Quenya, Sindarian, and the Black Speech tedious. The Silmarillion is a challenge to get through even for fans! Many readers have trouble with the languages in The Silmaillion even when they are fully realized, fully functioning languages with verb structures, tenses, and diacritical rules for the pronunciation of their written forms. Quenyan even has its own alphabet, Tengwar, that has cases and diacritical forms informing grammar! One of the appendecies of The Silmiarillion (at least in my copy) actually has an alpha-runic profile for the Tengwar for proper writing! Tolkien was a philologist first and an author second and his stories were actually created to showcase his new languages! That is a high bar that he set for those that would follow him as their template for how a 'proper fantasy' should be written. Sometimes, it is a matter of gaging who your audience is and making something 'cool' sounding rather than 'correct' sounding. I just popped in because I, myself, just had to toy with a new language to come up with a phrase. I actually mixed a bit of Quenya with Gaelic together to come up with this sentence: "Talár duí! Tatán duí! Mírilli kageál!" This translates as 'Hear me! Show me! Jewel become bright!' I imagine a whole new language can be built using the structures of both languages since Tolkien's elvish languages borrow heavily from Gaelic and Welsh with a sprinkle of Finnish for flavor. But, that would be too derivative and, like Rowling, I just wanted a 'magical phrase' that sounded cool when spoken aloud. Tahl-AIR ThWHY! Tah-TAYN ThWHY! MEYE-rill-eh kah-YAY-el! A lot of fictional languages start out this way. You can also see if you can partner with a linguist friend on linguistic forums where they actually try to come up with new languages for fun! Here in GA-Land, my writing mentor and buddy @Comicality actually had a language expert friend come up with a whole new language for him called 'Verzpertillio' which is the ancient language of his vampires in his Gone From Daylight series. When spoken aloud, it even sounds like a vampiric language because it sounds like something only people with fangs might be able to pronounce properly! Genius! Here is an excellent article about the use of fantasy languages and their pros and cons. The article also goes on to explain how to connect with a 'conlanger' or a linquist who specializes in creating new languages. https://selfpublishingadvice.org/writing-how-to-create-a-language-for-a-fantasy-novel-world/
  10. Take a character from one fairy tale and place them in another. What is different from their original tale? How do they fare in their new environment?
  11. Someone comes home and finds a black and white photo they never saw before on their coffee table. Two laughing men wearing birthday hats. The upper left corner of the photo is singed. On the back it reads: Steve and Mike 1954. Explain how the photo found its way way onto the coffee table and who the two men are. Well, they are black and white, but not men
  12. Opinions expressed are my own. People can do with them as they please.
  13. I debated between approving of and laughing at your comment. 20k chapters aren't for me either, but I kinda like the 1k efforts. I may do it again in the future. LOL
  14. I don't think you're the exception, Talo. That's a lot. I don't necessarily have time to read all that in one go. If i like it i'll come back to follow the story. Chapters of four to five thousand words are nice. The trend of posting 1,000 word chapters also puts me off but it's good for the ego and your 'like' count.
  15. Am I correct in assuming the third line should read Fall Anthology? (Or is it the first line that's wrong?)
  16. This thread is for links only! Any posts other than links will be moved to the primary anthology thread. If your story uses the theme "Bridges" please post the links in this thread
  17. This thread is for links only! Any posts other than links will be moved to the primary anthology thread. If your story uses the theme "Shadows" please post the links in this thread
  18. Anthology changes to keep in mind for the 2020 Fall Anthology: Anthology Release: Anthologies will be due the 15th of November. Each week, one theme will be released in full with a wrap up the final week. The order of listing in the release blog will be randomized using a site like Random.org This means that stories will have to be posted in their entirety, with no delayed posting option. Incentives: A drawing will be held for all participants where they will have a chance to win premium subscriptions (and there area lot of great stories in the premium section!). ~2020 Fall Anthology: Shadows and/or Bridges~ Now, let's take a look at the themes and guidelines for the final anthology of 2020! The themes of the 2020 Fall Anthology are: Shadows and/or Bridges Feel free to interpret these themes in any way you want. The anthologies are not exclusive, but inclusive, so don't worry if you think your entry has only a tangential link to the theme. If you are inspired, then write a short story, poem or play, and submit it. Please read these submission guidelines carefully. You may address these themes in any style or genre you choose. Be as creative as you want to be with the themes. However, please note that this anthology is an anthology of short stories. By definition, a short story must stand alone and not require reading a prior story. It therefore cannot be a chapter in a serial. Who may participate Everyone is welcome and encouraged to participate. However, submission to GA Stories requires that you be a member here at GA so you can be assigned as the author. If you have author status (which is free and you can get after five posts in the GA forums), you can submit stories. Submission Guidelines Submission Date: November 15th, 2020 Please Note: Submission date is for submission to the Anthology Proof Team. Proofreads should take no more than 72 hours once you have been paired with a proofreader, if you have not received your story back within 72 hours, please contact Renee Stevens via PM. If you send your stories in within the last 48 hours of the deadline, you have 48 hours after receiving it back to upload it in order for it to be included in the Anthology. Non-Poetry No Story Limit: Each story submitted must meet quality and editing guidelines and only one story can be under 1,000 words. Each story posted as its own submission Minimum Word Count Per Story: 1,000 Maximum Word Count Per Story: 25,000 Poetry Up to five poems Posted as a single submission (a collection) Each poem posted as its own chapter Submission Procedure *Please read carefully* Once your story is complete and has gone through your beta and editing team, please complete the following steps: Contact @Valkyrie via PM. Include in the PM the following information: Title, original editor, genre, synopsis, word count, and excerpt in the body of the PM. Attach your story file. You will be paired with an editor from the Anthology Proof Team who will perform a final proof for the anthology and return the file to you. *Please Note: The Anthology Proof Team is not meant to take the place of an author’s normal editing team so all entries MUST be edited prior to contacting Valkyrie* Once you receive your proofed file, complete your edits and submit your story into GA Stories, for help, please read How do I upload my anthology entry into GA Stories? Make sure the story is unpublished by clicking BOTH the publish sliders, one for the chapter and one for the story itself Select “Fiction” as the category. It will be moved to the correct category by the anthology team. Mark your story as COMPLETE. Only completed stories are allowed in the anthologies Please note that once you submit a story it will NOT show up in your list of stories until the anthology has gone live. Copy the URL for your story and provide Renee Stevens with the URL via the announcement thread so that your submission may be checked to ensure it has been submitted correctly and meets submission guidelines. This also ensures that it will get moved to the anthology category. Please give the URL to the STORY page, not the chapter page. *NEW* Each theme will have it's own category and forum thread. When providing the URL for your story please choose the link thread for the correct theme. Renee will not be responsible for posting it in the wrong category if it was not posted in the correct thread. [*]Please do a visual check of your story once it has been uploaded to ensure that it uploaded correctly. If it did not, contact Renee Stevens. IMPORTANT: Please DO NOT do ANYTHING with your story once it has been submitted to the anthology. We lock edits to anthologies, but we can only lock so much and trying to make ANY changes can cause issues with the system. If there is something with your story that absolutely needs fixed, added, etc, PLEASE contact Renee Stevens or another Admin prior to attempting anything. Thank you! Extensions Occasionally things happen that prevent an author from meeting the deadline. If you should find yourself in such a predicament, PM Renee Stevens, before the deadline (not the day of or after), and something may be able to be worked out. Please contact Renee only if you need an extension; requests will only be considered when requested by the author personally. However, if the same author is consistently asking for extra time, extensions may no longer be granted for that particular author. Deadlines exist for a reason. The Anthology Team needs time to prep the anthology to go live and extensions, while occasionally warranted due to unforeseeable circumstances, add to the already hectic workload. If you have NOT made arrangements with Renee prior to the deadline, your Anthology will not be included. Please do not send a message the day an anthology is due requesting an extension, these will not be granted. You are welcome to post your story on your own and include a story note stating that it was originally meant to be part of the anthology. Story Titles Please do not use the anthology themes or your GA Username as a title. Be as original as you can. In case of duplicate titles within the anthology, we will request that titles be changed. Unacceptable entries & Content Warnings Entries that are obviously unedited (containing many errors), are overly graphic, or which are deemed to have unacceptable content will be either declined outright, or changes may be requested as a condition of entry. For information on what is considered to be unacceptable, please see the Story Content Rules FAQ. If you still have questions, ask. Please include a Content Warning in the story notes if your story contains sensitive content. Examples of sensitive content: abuse, especially graphic/extreme abuse or child abuse, in-scene graphic violence, suicide attempts/themes, allowable incest, etc... if you're unsure that your story falls within this type of content please alert Valkyrie when you send the PM requesting the final proof. Previously posted stories (whether at GA or elsewhere) are not eligible for inclusion into the GA anthologies. Editing All entries MUST be edited prior to being sent to the Anthology Proof Team. If you need an editor, please visit the Writing Support Requests forum to request one. There are editors who prefer to edit only one shots, such as anthologies. Please make sure to state that your story is for the upcoming anthology. Also, please make sure to follow the guidelines when requesting an editor. If your story is clearly NOT edited, your story will be returned and the proof team is under no obligation to provide a proof read until it has been edited. Copyright As with all content in GA Stories, the rights remain with the individual authors. Your story will post with a simple 2020 copyright notice, using your GA user display name. If you have another preference (for example, a different name, or a Creative Commons license, or specific copyright wording you'd like to use), please include that with your submission. However, with this anthology, by submitting your story, you are giving GayAuthors.org first worldwide rights with 14 days exclusivity. What that means is you are giving GayAuthors.org permission to archive your story on its website, distribute it via RSS, kindle, iphone, ipad, eyeball…. And you agree not to publish it anywhere else for 2 weeks. If you later decide to post your story at another site, please mention at the beginning or end of the story that it was first published as part of the 2020 Gay Authors Fall Anthology: Shadows and/or Bridges, and include a link back to GA if possible. If you have any questions, please contact Renee Stevens via PM or via the Anthology Blog or Forum.
  19. Please rate each theme on a scale of 0 to 5, with 0 being you hate it and don't want to even give it a score, and 5 being you absolutely love it. The top four will be our top themes for 2021. Don't forget to vote in Poll #1, linked below. Poll #1>>
  20. Please rate each theme on a scale of 0 to 5, with 0 being you hate it and don't want to even give it a score, and 5 being you absolutely love it. The top four will be our top themes for 2021. Don't forget to vote in the second poll, linked below! Poll #2>>
  21. I would say that a short story would help get you noticed. Perhaps I do not represent the majority, but you have a story with chapters the length of a book, in total nearly half a million words, and it's not finished. That might put a lot of readers off, unless they already knew and enjoyed your writing, half a million words is over 41 hours reading! Personally I would have split it, novels are usually, between 50k and 100k. I think five or six books as a series would get you more readers. You can only get reviews after a story is complete, so by now you would have built up both reviews and followers. Comments and chapter likes count and with shorter chapters you get more of those. As I said, I may be the exception, but I'm not very likely to read chapters of 20k to 35k.
  22. Hmmm....I don't read very much of fan fiction these days. But I think my worst peeve is the lazy writers who don't study the established canon, especially the characters. "What? That's definitely not something Ron Weasley would say!" Or they just make characters who previously hated each other have sex within two or three chapters. (Harry accidentally swallows a Misery Potion, starts spilling his heart to Draco Malfoy about all of the horrible stuff that's happened from the day he was left on his relatives' front step, up until The Goblet of Fire; Malfoy starts feeling sympathetic, which leads to attraction, which leads to sex...all within 15 minutes of reading) Or they add things that just don't make sense. This was on Nifty: "Harry Potter rather liked his body, which was gaining some muscle tone from lifting weights and general working out with his best friend, Ron Weasley". Huh. I wasn't aware that Hogwarts had a weightlifting room? Also, they're wizards. Aesthetics aside, what practical purpose would that serve? Just wave your wand and say "Wingardium Leviosa!" to lift any heavy objects.
  23. You can pick as many as you'd be interested in writing for. Next week, we'll do the 2nd round of voting where you'll rate the top 10.

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