Meditative Monday: Peace Between Working Smart And Working Hard

Grab a cup of green tea folks, it’s time to be thinkers again.

This time I’m going to talk about something that truly perplexes me.

It came up in an argument that two family members sucked me into. One side was firm, one hundred percent, “Don’t work hard. Always work smart. If you can take shortcuts, you should.” And the other side was, “You have to start from the bottom to appreciate being at the top. People need to work hard.”

And the whole time I was listening, all I could thing was…

Why do both have to be mutually exclusive? Why not just do both?

But don’t think that it’s just them. You’ve probably heard people parroting the phrase, “Work hard and you’ll be successful” or the also popular, “Work smarter, not harder.”

Personally, I don’t think the two should be separate at all.

1.) The Myth Of Working Smart

Working smarter, not harder is admittedly the one I have a bigger problem with. Don’t get me wrong, if I don’t have to work extra time on something, I won’t. If there is a simple way to do something complicated, I’m going to do that instead.

But here’s where working smart gets to be a problem.

Some people take “working smart” to mean that you should not work hard at all. That something should be obtained effortlessly or with little thinking. Cheap and fast like McDonald’s.

Working smart by itself, to me, is a survival advantage. If you use it by itself, you’ll do enough just to get by. It helps to smooth your path. It helps to make your workflow faster. The same way that a good word program can help make a better book.

But you know what?

It doesn’t write that book. You do.

With hard work.

But also on that note, there are just some things that “working smart” can’t offset very well.

I can read a thousand calculus textbooks for the best advantage (not that I want to), but I could still fail the exam if I don’t put in the practice. Our brains don’t retain every single thing that we read or hear in a class. Otherwise, you could just look up new techniques and instantly be a god in your field.

Raw practice is required, even among geniuses. Persistence too. And you can’t avoid it if you want high success in your field. What really put this is into perspective for me was this article. It mentions an experiment on non-military people going through training under the instruction of U.S. Special Operation units.

Now you might think that people who are already physically fit would do well with flying colors here.

Nope.

Sure it helps. But the bottom line is…it’s a mindset thing. The willingness to work however long you need to to get the job done. And “working smart” without “working hard” to me is just an excuse to stay comfortable.

You can’t shortcut mindset. You can’t “work smart” mindset. Yes, you can shift your mindset. But we all have beliefs that we don’t even know that we’re carrying. And we tend to not learn about them until we’re pushed to our limits.

2.) The Myth Of Working Hard

Working hard gets too much praise sometimes in my opinion. Because it paints the picture that if we throw ourselves against the wall enough times, we’ll stick and make the hall of fame.

No. Just no.

For a few reasons…

One. We are human. Flesh and bone. We get tired. We get distracted. We can’t expect ourselves to perform like a machine every waking moment. We’ll get ill. We’ll stress out. We’ll break.

Two. Longer time at the work desk does not make you more productive as this article will have fun telling you. It can burn you out and actually make your work quality plummet. Breaks, in some shape or form, are a must.

Three. And this one is a biggie. Working hard with no direction gets a person nowhere. Think about it. You’re writing your WIP trying to improve. You might sit down and try to hammer out character sheet information for new characters because you’re learning how to make them. Or you save a whole bunch of time and just do a whole bunch of character sketches or whatever character exercise that you prefer and enjoy.

No need to suffer.

But more importantly…

Don’t separate the two.

Working hard and working smart are like a bow and arrow. One by itself is useless. Working smart teaches us where to direct our focus. Working hard teaches us to dig in our heels and stay in for the long haul even through our doubts so we can achieve our potential.

And they make a damn good couple. 🙂

 

 

Fun Friday: Shorty Short Shorts

With a huff, Ciara slams her box down on the ground, green eyes blazing with fury. How dare they?

Putting her on shrapnel-collecting duty? Working in the kitchen? This isn’t what she signed up for!

She reaches for the gloves on her belt and yanks them on, then surveys the gray-skied junkyard. This bites. She wants to ride the wyrms into Bythlonia with the Serpent Knights, patrol the cities with her best friend Lydia, have free sea-salt ice cream on the weekends.

Ciara’s shoulders slump. I’ll never be a Serpent Knight at this rate. She stoops to the ground to pick up a cluster of rusted scraps.

Hey! Why don’t you shake a little more for the captain next time? I’m sure that’ll get his attention!” A familiar voice jeers from behind.

Ciara looks over her shoulder, only to be face-assaulted with a grease-soaked handkerchief. She rips it off her face.

It’s Asmel, Bairo, and those dumb twins.

A bear-fierce scowl on her lips, Ciara tosses more shrapnel into the box. She wishes she could wipe their sneers off with the dirty handkerchief. Haven’t they done enough? “Don’t you high and mighty knight trainees have something better to do than bother me?”

We do,” Asmel says. “But I wanted to make sure you didn’t forget your hankie.”

Ciara hangs the greasy cloth on her box. She would’ve much rather that he kept it to himself. “Hmph. Could’ve lived without that.” She picks up the box. “I’m out.”

Asmel’s eyes narrow into snake-thin slits. Ciara can feel him watching her every move.

You don’t deserve it, you know.”

This makes Ciara do a one-eighty. “What?”

You heard me.” Asmel’s hands ball into fists. “You don’t deserve anything here at Wy Academy. You just got lucky because some old pervert let you in the school. You walk in here like a wild hot mess and you think you deserve to be a Serpent Knight?” He scoffs, then spits on the ground in front of her. “Hate lazies like you. Shape up and act like a knight if you want to be one, or go home.” Then he turns and strides off. His companions watch him leave, eyes wide in astonishment as if they hadn’t been expecting that from him either.

Workshop Wednesday: Are Your Characters Right For The Job? The Weird Things That Happened When My Characters Got Interviewed

It’s that time of week again! Today no tea or confusing rhetoric needed. We’re talking character development in the form of character interviews.

And my question for you today is: Are your characters qualified for the job?

After all, we wouldn’t let a surgeon operate on someone if they had no background in medicine. But we writers often don’t check to see if a character has everything they need for the story, or in some cases for those of us who hardcore pants our way through drafts, check to see if our characters have a pulse! (Sadly, I can personally attest to this. :()

Now you might be wondering why the heck this is even a thing, but hey role-playing is a legit thing. Writing fiction in a way is kind of just one big role-play if you think about it.

I’ll be fair, even if you had all the character development swag in the world, there’s no way you could anticipate all the snags you’ll hit in writing. Planning is a different beast than actually writing the thing.

But don’t knock this one until you try it folks. This is something I tested with a good friend of mine and the results of it were astonishing to say the least.

Here’s what happened:

1.) Learning Some Profound Things About Characters

I’m not talking about you learning your character’s favorite song, or if they like peach cobbler over apple pie. (But let’s be honest, they’re delicious!)

You learn what they believe about themselves and what they believe about others.

This is important because beliefs are core parts of our characters that say a lot about who they are and how they’ll react to people and the situations going on around them.

You might be thinking that one of your characters is all braggy because he’s overcompensating for some *ahem* smallish parts. But it might just turn out that he’s doing that because he feels a lot of pressure to be everyone’s hero and doesn’t want to let anyone to worry.

Your heroine might always walk around with resting bitch face because she was stalked once by a man that took her friendly hello for an invitation.

You will come across a lot of things that simply don’t come up in character sheets or planning questionnaires. And they’ll be a little more organic because you have to come up with answers in the character’s own voice.

2.) Learning To Not Judge “Villains” So Harshly

Some villains actually have really reasonable motivations for why they do things. So don’t be so quick to blame their actions on being insane or just being a bad seed. In some cases, they might feel like they don’t have a choice.

Because we don’t always give our villains screen time, we don’t know the reason why they’re acting. I mean how many times have you ever just got up in the morning decided, “Hey, today seems like a good day to take over the world”?

Most of us don’t even want the world that badly to act on something like that!

Really desperate feelings have to drive a person to get them to believe that “take over everything myself” is the right solution to their problems. And interviews help in that, the interviewer almost becomes a kind of confidant, so your character might be willing to let out a secret or two.

But also, asking your villains what they’re doing helps to understand where they are at certain times in the story when you don’t have your POV characters near them, so it doesn’t seem like they’re just twiddling their thumbs while your hero thwarts all their plans.

3.) Learning How Characters Feel About Each Other

It’s one thing to pair your characters up because they’re your favorite ship, but do you know why your characters like each other?

Or if they even like each other as much as you thought?

Sometimes characters seem to like each other on paper, but the depth of their feelings isn’t quite there. Or some characters have pet peeves about each other. Or you discover that some characters are out of touch with how people feel about them.

Or even that some characters are are too nice to tell some people that they don’t want to be friends!

The Interview Itself…

If you’re still on board at this point, you’re probably wondering how to do one of these interviews.

On Questions:

  • There are no questions that absolutely must be asked. But as a general rule of thumb, you want to avoid things that can be answered in one word. Or if you do want to ask those, follow up with questions on why.
  • Try to get characters to recall memories and experiences and to express fears and beliefs. This is stronger than getting them to answer basic facts about what they like because memories and experiences can be applied to the story much easier and make for a much stronger experience.

Now, I will say this. The interviews tend to work best if another person is asking the questions and you don’t know what they are beforehand. So I highly recommend you do this with a writing friend or any willing friend. You can do it alone if you really want to try it.

But as always, this stuff is always optional.

Now if you’ll excuse me… I think I’ll go and fire some of my own characters. 😉

 

 

 

Meditative Monday: On Improving At Writing More Mindfully

Heyo everybody! It’s Monday again which means it’s time to grab some tea and ponder life like awesome sirs and madams.

Since the year is still young I want to talk a little bit on how to improve at writing, especially for those out there who might have made the New Years resolution to get better at it.

We pour open our wallets for craft books, look up articles on how to do things, but even if you do that sometimes the improvement you’re looking for isn’t what you’re getting.

So here’s a few things to remember if you’re in a rut..

1.) Reading Is Great, Knowledge Is Awesome, But Writing Needs Mileage

There is a point where we have to put the craft books, the articles, and the novels down. Don’t get me wrong, they’re invaluable for writing, but we have to remember that writing is an art.

We don’t expect a beginner painter to pick up ten books on painting and then to be able to perfectly make a Picasso-class masterpiece right off the bat. It unrealistic. Nor do we expect an archer to hit the bull’s eyes the first time after downing a bunch of theory books.

And likewise, we can’t expect to write like a god after reading the best-selling authors. The theories we learn are nothing if we don’t put in the work to practice them.

If you’re still skeptical, think back to your school days. When your math and science teachers explained something new to you, did you go home and know it right away and get everything one hundred percent right on the test? Probably not. That’s why they gave you grindy, tedious homework to bang your pencils on.

And that’s why writing also needs mileage.

2.) Target What You What To Improve On

Let’s be honest, no writer would shy away from improving on their writing, unless they had some serious pride issues going on.

But if you go around saying, “I want to improve” and then proceed to try to work on characters, settings, plot, inner emotions, and etc. all at once, you are going to explode your brain like a shaken Cactus Cooler.

If you try to do everything at once, you are more likely to do everything at meh level. But more importantly, if you’ve got your sights on one specific aspect of story-telling, it’s much easier to tell if your improving.

Personally, I have custom-made exercises dedicated to the specific skills that I want to practice. If I want to focus on characters, I might do a character sketch, a character peel, a voice sketch, or whatever suits my need at the time.

Of course you don’t have to do any of this, but if you are serious about digging in your heels and getting better, then you should pick some form of practice that you can tolerate doing for the long haul and doing more than once.

Why more than once? Because… 😀

3.) Repetition Is Key

I can personally attest to writing something, thinking I had the theory all down, and then the next day or so, it feels like my writer skills got amnesia. So then I end up back at square one feeling like I got worse at writing, when in reality it’s just that I didn’t work at it long enough for it to sink in.

And that’s why I say to find some form of practice you can tolerate doing more than once. It takes more than once for skills to click because as soon as you start actively doing something, you start making mistakes. And you can’t learn from them if you don’t make any.

And speaking of mistakes…

4.) You Should Try New Things And Get The Mistakes Out Of The Way

Understand that doing the same thing over and over again with no variety at all is a fast-track to stagnation station. If you want to get better, get into the habit of experimenting with your writing.

You don’t have to do this with your precious draft. I keep freewriting logs and word banks for this purpose and they do wonders.

Now, sure, sometimes I end up with crap. In fact, every session I produce some degree of crap.

But the crap ratio to good ratio usually isn’t that bad because I’ve been keeping this habit for a while. I still make plenty of mistakes, but the good thing about this is that if you let yourself make the mistakes somewhere else, you’re probably not going to put them in your manuscript.

Also when you stumble across the good stuff, you’ve got it stored somewhere you can always look at it. 😉

 

Fun Friday: How To Not Mary Sue/ Gary Stu

Ah… I wanted to put a nice picture up for this, but most pictures I saw on Google made me cringe, so unfortunately (fortunately for our eye sockets) we’ll have to do without.

But today we’re going to dive into the very strange world of Mary Sues. If for some reason you’re not familiar with what a Mary Sue is, I’ll sum it up bluntly.

Mary Sues (or Gary Stus, cuz we all equal around these parts) are basically characters who are perfect, have no flaws, and are pretty much walking wish-fulfillment with the character depth of a dried-up kiddie pool.

Or in other words, something you don’t want to create under any circumstances.

Why?

Mary Sues are notorious for getting out of their problems too easily often due to having things practically handed to them, or because they have such universe-shifting powers that bad guys should pretty much not even bother. They’re also notorious for getting the hottest girl or guy *coughcoughBellaSwancough*, and getting pretty much everything that they want.

And this makes for very flat writing because a) none of that happens in real-life and b) there’s rarely any conflict in it whatsoever.

If you’ve ever been accused of making Mary Sues as main characters, don’t fret too much. You can still make tweaks to get your MC back on track. And there are some easy fixes to make sure that you don’t create one.

1.) Don’t Base Your MC Too Much From Yourself/ Your Life

Now I’m not saying that your character can’t share some similarities with you. But part of what makes a Mary Sue or Gary Stu what they are is that they come across as grossly self-indulgent or an extension of an author’s ego. They tend to run rampant

This is because when you put too much of your self into your MC something else tends to kick in: the desire to want to be seen in a good light. Naturally, we don’t want others to think that we’re flawed monsters. Especially not strangers!

As a result, the Mary Sue writer will hesitate to give their characters flaws because that flaw seems “too harsh” or “too bad” or that would make people “judge” the character in a way they don’t like. Which is ironic because if your character has no flaw, they’ll just get judged for that.

But in truth, readers don’t want perfection. In fact, perfection tends to get under our skin because nothing on this earth is perfect. Except for maybe Korean BBQ.

Perfect people just don’t make the dumb decisions that our favorite lovable flawed characters do.

2.) Try To Not Have A “Jack-Of-All-Trades”

Don’t get me wrong. Some people out there really are jack-of-all-trades. But a main character should not be one, unless you have a really, really good reason that is supported by their backstory.

But unless your character has been alive since the beginning of time, it’s unlikely that they have mastered every skill that comes up in their journey.

It’s even more unlikely that they’ve mastered numerous skills that require years of book learning and hands-on experience like surgery and kung foo and making swords. One or two really good skills is usually enough. Others can always be picked up along the way.

One character doesn’t have to do it all, nor should they have to. After all, what are all those other side characters standing around for? Let them help save the day too.

3.) Give The Mary Sue A Flaw. No, I Mean A Real Flaw.

This is probably by far the simplest solution to the Mary Sue/ Gary Stu problem. I’ve probably said this so many times before but know the difference between a real flaw and a disadvantage.

Something like being a minority isn’t a flaw, having two exotic-looking eyes that are different colors isn’t a flaw, being clumsy isn’t a flaw *shifty eyes*, nor are disabilities, or being poor. Those don’t affect the personality (directly anyway). Those are disadvantages at most (well some of them anyway) that masquerade as flaws!

Disadvantages are great in making things harder for your characters too, but the problem with them is that personality flaws are what humanize overly good characters and lead them to make mistakes.

People don’t make flawed decisions because they’re in X demographic. They make flawed decisions because irrational insecurities, biases, fears, and flaws lead them to make flawed assumptions and those assumptions lead to bad decisions.

4.) Give Them A Weakness/Secret That Can Be Exploited

There’s a reason superheroes have them. They’d be too powerful and just steamroll over the plot if they didn’t have one. Superman would never get into trouble. Nor would Wonder Woman or Daredevil or whoever your favorite superhero.

Now this doesn’t mean that you have to have something physical like Kryptonite that literally renders their abilities useless. Sometimes the weakness is family and friends. Or past hurts that they don’t want to confront. Or something that could earn them ridicule and shame. Sometimes the flaw can play a part in their weakness.

5.) Clearly Define The Rules And Limitations Of Their Abilities

There’s nothing quite as ripoffish as a character that just slips out of trouble because of some bullshit power that came up last minute with no precursor or foreshadowing whatsoever.

This is something that even big name authors don’t always do. Hell, I still don’t understand the rules of wands and why some things happen in Harry Potter. But Harry Potter doesn’t have too much to worry about in the way of Mary Sues.

Unless you count Cedric Diggory.

He’s suspicious.

Just saying.

If your character does have all-powerful abilities, make them hard to access. Give them limits. Make it cost something dear to them.

Great power should come with great responsibility. And great responsibilities should come with great consequences if they aren’t kept.

And that is why the flawed man in fiction wins every time.

 

Workshop Wednesday: Let Them Argue

Conflict, conflict, conflict. The C-word.

We shrug from it in real life, and yet we demand it in our fiction or we feel cheated.

And today I’m here to tell you that if you’re writing a scene where two characters are about to go at each other’s throat and you’re getting ready to make them see sense in the same scene…

Don’t.

Let them fight. And here’s why…

Real-life Conflicts Rarely Wrap Up Neatly

Think of it this way… when was the last time you had a bitter argument with someone and the other person just decided, “okay, I’ll see it your way now and forget all my previous beliefs…”

If you’ve seen this happen video tape that jiminy bologna and send that to me because I’ve never seen it.

People mishear each other and miscommunicate all the time when they are in conflict.  And because of this, people rarely get to say everything that they mean to say.

Because we’re writers who have all the time in the world to craft the perfect response, it’s tempting to dot all i’s and cross all t’s.

And I repeat. Don’t. 

Why?

Because unresolved arguments mean resentment. And resentment between characters can be used later down the road in your novel. It can build slowly. It can turn friends into enemies. It can cause betrayals. It can push lovers to the limits of their relationship. It can bring out people’s flaws in the best possible way and give your story some additional meat.

You can play around with it. You can’t do anything, however, with constant peace and tranquility.

People Don’t Have The Same Communication Styles

Some people are blunt and loud. Some people are passive aggressive and refuse to directly engage. Some people stutter. Some are soft-spoken.

Match different people together and cue the frustration. One character will be yelling their ears off while the other might be glowering, refusing to speak, thinking about how he stuff glue in the other guy’s shoes, or something else dastardly.

And in the heat of an argument, most people jump to criticizing each other and pointing out wrongs which leads to even more resentment. But really this depends on the maturity of your characters.

Which reminds me…

Everyone Doesn’t Handle Every Argument With Grace

Do make sure that people are behaving with the appropriate kind of maturity. You won’t see many toddlers trying to mediate conflicts between adults. And teenagers tend to be more hot-headed than those who are older.

Of course, you still have to take cultures, individual temperaments, occupations, and upbringing into account, but something important to remember is that even the greatest of communicators get caught off-guard by an unexpected insult that hits home. And some people just can’t be reasoned with no matter what you do. Some people will keep fighting even when they know that they’re wrong.

And it’s okay.

In fiction anyway. Not in real life.

Sure we may yell at characters in our heads to get over it and move on, but we don’t read to watch people get along all the time, do we?

Just a thought. 🙂

 

 

Meditative Monday: Emotions Make Books Go Round, And By Round I Mean Go Flying Across The Room

Think hard, readers.

What’s the most important part to any story?

Plot? Nope. Characters? Nope. Characters and plot are important, but you’ve probably read crappy books that had both of these things and still sucked major monkey dung.

Setting? Descriptions? We notice when these are missing or abused to kingdom come, but a story can still (to an extent) live with the setting not being so prominent if characters and plot are strong enough.

Theme? Nope, not even close.

Change? Getting close, but also getting way too vague.

Think of your favorite book. The one that you kept you up late at night. Or the one that made you want to fling the darn thing across the room because you want the MC and their best friend to stop fighting and kiss for fuck sake because their love for each other is so obvious that they both deserve to be hit over the head with something blunt, hard, and sandpapery.

Books like that engage our emotions.

Emotions are what keep us glued to our favorite books and keep us awake at night reading when we know damn well that we need to get up early tomorrow for work commute, exams, doctor’s appointment, or what have you. They are what separates stories from desert-dry instruction manuals.

A good example of this is Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix. Now don’t worry, I’m going to try not to spoil anything for you. But if you want a lesson in heavy emotions, there you go. Though, do make sure you read the other books first! No skipping. 😛

The only way I can describe Order of the Phoenix is that reading it was much like being tossed into a skillet. And as you read on, that skillet gets covered, then the heat goes up a little, then a little more, until suddenly the fire is at max and there feels like there’s no way out and everyone inside is being burned alive.

Very lovely, isn’t it?

Order of the Phoenix is the first book that made me feel bad for Harry because he didn’t really do much to deserve the crap he caught from authority, (except for his temper spills). You can literally feel his suffering throughout the whole book. It’s terrible. Terrible for Harry, I mean. The book is amazeballs. And the power to engage a reader’s emotions so strongly is nothing to scoff at.

This is what addicts us to our favorite author’s writing.

But how do we do make our writing emotionally strong?

1.) Pressure

It makes diamonds, it boils eggs, and it makes the perfect batch of rice to boot. Add it to your characters and it forces them to make tough (and sometimes not well-thought out choices).

If your characters never feel any pressure to act, they’ll never feel any need to do anything. And if your character can continually do nothing with no consequences, then what’s the point of reading?

On the other hand, if your characters keep acting but without any pressure, then the story just becomes a bunch of characters forcing themselves through motions that have no significance.

2.) Internal Beliefs

As much as humans like to believe that we are the most logical and reasonable creatures on the planet, that actually isn’t true. We fall prey to our emotions, biases, and insecurities far more often than we do the right thing.

Think about it. You resolve to stick to a diet, do it for a few days and then you’re tempted by that sexy chocolate cake your spouse brings in from work and then you cave because you might think one more cake won’t change a thing.

You resolve to get in shape, buy a gym membership, but then don’t go because maybe you’re self-conscious.

You tell yourself that you’re going to finally write that book, dabble in a few words here and there, and then stop because you think no one will want to read it.

A character’s internal beliefs are like a control center for causing chaos and mayhem in their emotional lives. They aren’t the least bit rational, but they are partly responsible why we don’t do the things we know that we should.

And the best thing about internal beliefs is that most of the time we don’t know that we have them until they’re pointed out to us by someone else or until another situation forces us to confront them.

3.) Flaws

Flaws are another culprit of causing characters to do things that they know fully-well that they shouldn’t. Flaws are also the thing that give a story the friction that mere plot events aren’t capable of.

But unfortunately, flaws tend to be either underused in main characters, or abused too much in villains. I’ll concede sometimes, it’s a tough balance. But where it becomes a problem is when characters are polarized too far to one side or another.

I’ve read a fantasy novel recently where there were two main characters. One girl who was a perfectionist and a boy whose only flaw I could identify was that he was poor which isn’t a real personality flaw. Or maybe it was meant to be interpreted as not having self-confidence, but the self-confidence part didn’t actually show through.

Medical conditions, physical attributes, socio-economic statues and any external part of your character is not a flaw. They are a “disadvantage”. And many disadvantages can be worked around, though some understandably can’t.

Flaws are things like being selfish, possessive, greedy, stingy, or arrogant. They’re frowned upon and also deeply rooted in our egos, shadows of their more positive counterparts. That might be worth another post somewhere down the line, but for now stick to thinking of flaws as cast shadows to positive counterparts.

Now the other issue, is when people make a villain and dump everything bad into their soul because heaven forbid the good characters have a blemish on them. Don’t forget that in order to cast a shadow you need to have a strong enough light. 

4.) The Emotions Themselves

Let the reader experience the emotions along with your characters. Preferably without the name of the emotions involved. If another character is in the scene, don’t tell me that they are angry, especially if they’re being seen through another POV character! Show how red their ears get, her clenched fists, the spinach caught in his bare-toothed scowl.

People aren’t necessarily the best judges of their own character, so unless they have perfect mind reading powers and even more perfect mind interpreting powers, it’s unlikely that they can pinpoint a person’s mood correctly. Not to mention that different cultures might interpret gestures differently!

But more importantly, when a character doesn’t react to something huge that warrants an emotional reaction, a reader is going to feel like they’ve been in the skin of a piece of cardboard, so emotions are worth getting right.

If you have trouble with writing emotions, try paying attention to your body when you feel your different emotions. You’ll probably find that your heart rate goes up. Your pulse might feel more palpable. Body temperature soars or plummets.

You get my drift?

No? Great! 😀 Just kidding.

Seriously though, emotions really are the bread and butter that make or break good books. You definitely don’t want to skimp in this area.

But enough from me, it is late here and there is pie to be had!

See you all next time!