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Liz Fielding on Writing Emotion and Giveaways!

I've decided to post some writing craft posts on this site for now to help or to give some inspiration to all my friends. I asked UK based author Liz Fielding about Writing Emotion, but she came with Giveaways!


                             WRITING EMOTION

When I gave a talk to fellow writers about humour and emotion at the Caerleon conference of the RNA last year, I touched on the subject of the Method. That technique used by actors to create within themselves the emotion felt by their characters.

I went to drama lessons when I was young (my earliest ambition was to be a classical actress) but while I wasn’t taught this technique to bring out emotion in my performance, I had read about it. Not in Stanislavsky’s book xxxxxx, but in a children’s novel about a young girl whose father was an actor.

I can’t remember the name of the book, or the author, but that moment in the book where the heroine, stepping into the breach to save the day, realises that she can use her own feelings to bring a character to life has stayed with me across the decades.

Talking to eighty or so authors and editors last year, I was able to reduce them to tears with the memories that come to me in the dark moment, in the happy moments. Simple childhood memories. Precious moments. Moments of crushing sadness. Memories of place. The memories that make me who I am.

I called on them throughout the writing of The Last Woman He’d Ever Date, especially of place. The island, the aviaries, the river are all real to me, places I played in as child, took my own family to visit. The meadows, the house where Claire lives, even the newspaper office (I once worked in a local newspaper office!)

Memories are your own personal dictionary of emotions and when, as a writer, you’re hunting down the words to portray a feeling, you can, like the method actor, reach deep into your own experience conjure up a moment when you felt just that sense of joy, of loss, of closeness.


THE LAST WOMAN HE'D EVER DATE

Back Blurb

Claire Thackeray: Hardworking single mom and gossip columnist. Hoping for the inside scoop on sexy billionaire Hal North, aka her teen crush!

Most wary of: Gorgeous men who set her heart racing. (Been there, got the T-shirt—and the baby!)

Hal North: Bad boy made good. Back in his hometown as new owner of the Cranbrook Park estate. Determined to put his troubled past behind him.

Most wary of: Journalists—especially pretty ones, like new neighbor and tenant Claire Thackeray.



Eloping With Emmy

Back Blurb


Hot shot legal eagle, Tom Brodie, has been landed with an assignment to test any man to his limits - do whatever it takes to prevent headstrong heiress Emerald Carlisle from marrying a fortune-hunter. He is not happy about it, and when Emmy stows away in his car, his day goes from bad to worse, but since she's the only one who knows where to find the man in question he has no choice but take her along for the ride.

It's a bumpy one!

Emmy is not a woman to sit back and let things fall as they will. She has a plan and she keeps Brodie on his toes in a rollercoaster chase across the UK and France. He's more than up to the challenge, but falling in love with Emmy along the way is always going to end with his heart in pieces.


Liz Fielding’sLittle Book of Writing Romance


This little book is a primer - an entry level aid for the writer who has a story to tell, but is struggling to get it out of her head and onto paper. To quote the theme song for the movie of Erich Segal’s bestselling book Love Story, “How do you begin. . . ”

I know how that feels, I’ve been there and I have written the book I wish I’d had when I was starting out.

My purpose is to explain, in the simplest terms — no jargon! — and using examples from my own work, how to make the transition from the story in your head to words on paper. How to write a compelling opening, deepen conflict, write honest emotion, hopefully with a touch of humour to leaven the mix. How to write crisp dialogue, develop the romance, add a little sizzle.

It will be useful to anyone who wants to write popular fiction but, before we get down to the nitty-gritty, I’d like to say a few words about romantic fiction in particular. Why readers love it and come back for more.


Leave a comment telling me what memory is important to you for a chance to win a copy of The Last WomanHe’d Ever Date, and eBook downloads of Eloping With Emmy and Liz Fielding’sLittle Book of Writing Romance.

Liz Fielding around the web:

Website          Blog        Twitter            Facebook

44 comments:

  1. Liz's books all sound terrific! :)

    My dad died over a decade ago, so any memory involving him is especially precious. I remember laughing until we cried as we watched his favourite Monty Python shows :)

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  2. Hi Nas. Hi Liz. This is a wonderful post and I can imagine your audience being brought to tears by your recount of your memories Liz. I'm sure this emotion translates into your writing. I like the look of your little romance-writing guide too.

    Thanks for a great craft post!

    Ah, a memory? One of my fondest memories is running wild and free around our house in the country. Nothing like the childhood experience of most children today.

    Denise

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  3. I think that method writing/acting is an excellent way to add emotion to a book.

    Once I helped my dad tow a car. I was just 16, a novice driver, and I didn't realize I needed to turn the key to make the steering wheel unlock (on the dead car I was in). I veered out across the highway and a freight truck was headed straight for me. I literally thought I was going to die. Life flashed before my eyes and everything. When I want fear, that is my moment.

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  4. Hi Jemi,

    Thank you for coming by to read and your comment. Thanks for sharing your memory of your dad with us. Hugs.

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  5. Ah, Denise!

    Our childhood memories is way different from the kids now!

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  6. Hi Janet,

    Thanks for sharing your memories with us!

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  7. This is fascinating- love it! An important memory to me is learning to quilt with my grandma. That feeling of specialness and how she made me feel so talented (even though I really wasn't) has stood in great good for me my whole life.

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  8. Hi Liz,

    This is an amazing post. To me, my most important memories are of my parents and siblings as they are no longer here.

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  9. Thank you for the intro to Liz! Appreciate her thoughts on memories and emotions.

    Important memories to me are the ones I share with my family. It's interesting how even the small ones can have such prominence in our lives.

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  10. I like Liz's back cover blurbs. Short, snappy sentences, with just enough info to pull the reader in! Great tips, Liz. Thank you!

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  11. Ah, yes, Jemi - I think it was building sandcastles with my Dad that got everyone going at my talk.

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  12. Thanks, Denise. I used to spend my summer holidays running wild with my friends in a local park. Out all day, no worries. It seems like a different world.

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  13. Janet! There are a few motoring related incidents that make my blood run cold, too. And I was once alone in my flat in Africa with someone trying to break in. I couldn't make a sound - throat totally closed. One of my early writing attempts was to put that in a radio play.

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  14. Those close moments are just so special, Shelly. Making Christmas cakes with my Mum does that for me.

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  15. Hi Laura - I think it was Oscar Wilde who wrote that memory is the diary we carry with us. My aunt was 97 this week and that brought back a slew of the childhood holidays our families spent together.

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  16. The smallest memories can linger when the big days disappear, especially those moments of extreme embarrassment. They never seem to go!

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  17. Thank you, Lyn. Blurbs are so difficult! I've had some on books that have made me want to scream. (Especially the ones that give away a plot twist!) Like choosing covers, you only discover how difficult it is when you're doing it for yourself. :)

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  18. Hi Liz,

    i think reunion with family and friend is the important and sweet memory :)

    eli_y83@yahoo.com

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  19. I can't seem to find very many happy childhood memories, it was all too long ago perhaps. Maybe that's why I write tragic stuff even though everyone at work thinks I'm a comic. Most of my happy memories are around my children. Seven births to rejoice in and so many birthdays and Christmases together.
    Fi

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  20. That's such a good idea for adding emotion to a scene. Simple yet very powerful way of doing it. Thanks!

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  21. Reunion is very special, Eli. :)

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  22. Golly, Princess Fi - seven children! I'm surprised you have the time to think!

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  23. Thanks, Shelley - I hope it helps. :)

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  24. I majored in acting in college and so much of what I learned translates straight to my writing, especially in character design.

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  25. Decorating Christmas trees, a family member coming home safely from war and just spending time together are all important memories to me. Thank you for the lovely giveaway Liz love your books !

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  26. Interesting post on emotion! And it must have been a really good book for it to stick in your mind like that. :)

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  27. Leslie, I don't think it's a coincidence that so many actors also write!

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  28. Desere, decorating the Christmas tree just has to be one of those really powerful memories. Not always good, but always drenched in emotion.

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  29. Some things do just stick with you, Golden Eagle. I can remember little snippets from so many books I read as a kid. They're there, in the deepest part of the well and sometimes they just whack you out of nowhere.

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  30. It's draw time. Thanks so much to all of you for coming along to chat about emotion and sharing your own memories. I hope the post helps with your own writing.

    Okay, all the comments have gone into the dh's best panama hat and he's drawn the winner, Janet Johnson.

    If you'll email me, Janet at l i z @ lizfielding dot com (close up the gaps etc), with your snail mail addy and which e Reader you use, I'll get the books to you.

    Have a great week everyone.

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  31. Hi Liz! Such wonderful books, thank you! I rely so much on my memory - esp of places rather than events - so whereas now I live in a city, my current wip is set in around canals and river walkways - areas I used to live in!

    Take care
    x

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  32. I was brought up close to the Thames, Old Kitty, and there's nearly always a river in my books!

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  33. Congratulations to Janet Johnson! Please contact Liz for your prize!

    Thank you Liz for taking time out and chat with us here and for this fantastic giveaways!

    Thanks to all our lovely friends for dropping in and sharing with Liz Fielding!

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  34. Her books sounds great - and congratulations to Janet!

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  35. I evoke my memories for my manuscripts. I need that raw emotion when I'm writing.

    Congratulations to Janet.

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  36. Good tip about using your own emotions in writing. It does make the scenes more real.

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  37. Awesome tips! Thank you very much, Liz! Writing emotion is sometimes so hard for me. I'll remember to call on my memories next time.

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  38. memories are certainly a fantastic resource for us writers. I think it's important to tap into them.

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  39. Two of the most special memories I have are the afternoon my husband proposed to me and they day my daughter was born.

    Great tips, Liz and congratulations on having so many books!

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  40. Thanks for all these writing advice, Liz, and congratulation to the winner!

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  41. (Been there, got the T-shirt—and the baby!)

    That's too funny! Says so much about her and her circumstances.

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  42. Wow!! Thanks Nas, thanks Liz! :) What a great thing to wake up to today!

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  43. Thank you to all our friends for coming along to chat with Liz Fielding and thank you Liz for this fabulous giveaway and for taking time out to chat with us here!

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