Week 3 Classes Part 2

Thursday classes went well:

Science Fiction

We discussed time travel book: Andre Norton’s Time Traders and Madeline L’Engle’s Wrinkle in Time.  We didn’t get a chance to go to in depth with two books to discuss.  But the idea of time travel fascinates me, so that aspect was fun.

Still don’t know what my term paper will be on… really need to get on that.

Forms and Boundaries

We are working with novels in verse, and I did some practice poems to share for critique.  I had never even attempted to write any poetry or novel in verse, but it turned out to be a lot of fun!  And apparently I’m pretty good at it.  People liked part of my poem so much that they demanded to hear the whole thing!    Here’s the poem they liked (it was part of a series of 3 poems):

Dark purple lipstick
smeared
on a coffee thermos
on old stained teeth
She’s late
Strolling in
Like a furry brown sasquatch
Who still wears fur coats anyways?
At lunch
Food dribbles
Tuna
Vinegar
Oil
Olives
Onions
Artichoke hearts
The liquid lingers
at the bottom
of her clear tupperware.
The tupperware is lifted
and
slurped.

It was a character sketch. And the second poem shows my increasing frustration, and then the third shows a redemptive quality in the person and my change of heart.

Fantasy
I finally got critiqued!  And it went really well!
My teacher’s first words on my paper were, “This was lovely.”  Can’t even tell you how good that felt!
Overall, my classmates said they loved it.  They said it had great teen appeal, excellent pacing and flow.  They liked my connections to the original tale.  They liked my characterization and the setting.  They said my dialogue was strong and believable.
My teacher said I picked out the parts of the fairy tale that best suited my story.  And she said that my story could stand alone; you didn’t have to read the original tale for the story to work.
The big thing I have to go back and work on is defining the friendship between the two girls.  People commented that they couldn’t tell why the two girls were friends if they were so different.  The friendship is supposed to be in a state of disrepair, and the two girls are holding onto something that’s no longer there because of their past together and the convenience.  But that wasn’t totally clear, and I have to develop that.  I probably didn’t do a good job of establishing that because I didn’t know that’s where the story was headed when I started.
Encouragement is such a good thing for a writer.  I feel so validated.
Posts coming up this weekend:
-Inside Scoop on How Newbery Awards are Chosen
-Writing Tips and Tricks (featuring The Character Game)
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