People sometimes send me Asks wanting writing advice. I suck at it. I don’t really know how I do the writing, or how one should do the writing, or what one should do to get better at the writing. All I can ever think to say is “write a lot of stuff and you will get better at the writing.” Which is true, but hardly a bolt from the sky.
Well, as it turns out, I do have one piece of Legit Writing Advice, and I am going to share it with you, right now. If you were in any of my writing workshop groups at a con, you’ve heard this advice already.
Warning: you’re going to fucking hate it. But if you do it, you will thank me.
If you have a piece of fiction you’re serious about, something you might want to actually shop around, or just something you really are into and want to make it as good as you can…do NOT edit it.
Repeat. DO NOT EDIT.
As in, print out the whole fucking thing and re-enter it, every word (or use two screens). Retype the whole thing. Recreate it from the ground up using your first draft as a template. Start with a blank page and re-enter every. single. word.
I hear you screaming. OH MY GOD THAT’S INSANE.
Yes. Yes, it is.
It is also the most powerful thing you will ever do for a piece of fiction that you are serious about.
Now, let’s get real. I don’t do this for most things. I don’t do it for my fanfiction. But if it’s something original, something I might like to get to a professional level - I do it. You absolutely COULD do it for fanfiction. It’s just up to you and how much time you want to sink into a piece.
You can edit, sure. But you WILL NOT get down to the level of change that needs to happen in a second draft. You will let things slide. Your eyes will miss things. You will say “eh, good enough.”
The first time I did this, on someone else’s advice, I was dubious. Within two pages, I was saying WHY HAVE I NOT BEEN DOING THIS ALL THE TIME. I was amazed at how much change was happening. By the time I got to the end, I had an entirely different novel than the one I’d started with. When you’re already re-entering every single word, it’s easy to make deep changes. You’ll reformat sentences, you’ll switch phrases around, you’ll massage your word choice. You’ll discover whole paragraphs that don’t need to be there at all because they became redundant. You’ll find dialogue exchanges that need reimagining. Whole plot points will suddenly be different, whole story arcs will reveal their flaws and get re-drawn.
You cannot get down to the fundamental level of change that’s required just by editing an existing document. You have to rebuild it if you really want your story to evolve. You will be AMAZED at the difference it will make.
It will take time. It will seem like a huge, Herculean task. I’m not saying it’s easy. It isn’t. But it is absolutely revolutionary.
Try it. I promise, you will see what I mean.
*PSA: Tipsy!Lori wrote this post. In case you couldn’t tell.
geologyinaction A gift from one of my very favorite students! It’s a mug with a map of the world on it that when you pour hot water into it, transforms the coastline of the earth to reflect catastrophic sea level change due to climate change and polar ice cap melting.
Peridot gets poofed over the ocean and then sunken into the sea. In the depths of the sea there’s too much pressure and not enough sunlight so she can’t reform. She has to wait until her gem washes up on shore or until the Crystal Gems find her.
She does eventually washes up on shore but that takes a long time. A very long time. Over a million years.
After all that time, thinking she’s been forgotten forever, Peridot washes up on shore and reforms. She fends herself against the harsh abandoned reality and the weird human-gem hybrid monsters that inhabit future Earth.
Eventually she finds the time temple, which after the ocean levels changed, is now on land, it’s the only structure left standing. She uses the time technology there to create a portal into the past.
She knows she’s too far gone, but she can tell past Steven where to find her past self and rescue her on time. Just before she closes off the portal and waits to die in her future timeline, Steven reaches in and grabs her back into his timeline.
They rescue past Peridot together and now there’re two Peridots. Normal past Peridot and depressed existential Future Peridot.
How I turned pro with Tarot Readings (but I still have a lot to learn!) 👌
Divination is a complex art, even though sometimes it doesn’t look like it. As you all know, I do tarot readings and I noticed how this particular method of clairvoyance gets the same reaction as a piece of contemporary art: people look at me and say I could have done it myself, or something along the lines, to which it’s hard not to reply with a Fuck off, why don’t you do it then?
I must admit that when I first got into tarot reading, doubting my abilities was somehow legit, since I kept using just a single tarot spread to answer whatever question I got and the answers didn’t always stick to what I needed to know. Luckily, in the last few years I’ve improved my technique. But how did I reach my level of expertise?
I changed my perspective on tarots. This was really the first step. At the beginning of my practice the idea I had on tarot reading was completely different. The questions I usually asked all regarded my future, so I made readings whenever I had no idea about how things would turn. Don’t get me wrong, that is still divination, there is nothing wrong in it. But at the point tarot readings to me were just a game I’d like to play when I was bored and all alone or during sleepovers with my friends. Let’s see if he is gonna kiss me this weekend, and I was all ready to throw a tarot spread. It took a lot of years to understand that in tarots there is more than that. When you ask something to tarot cards what you are actually doing is asking for a consult, as if you were in a therapist’s office or talking with a helpline. Tarots gives advice. Which means you have to talk to them heart-to-heart and listen to their words accordingly.
I made tarot readings personal. Whenever a friend asked me for a consult, I wanted to give them the most accurate response there could possibly be. And in order to do that, I couldn’t just use that one and only tarot spread I knew, but I had to choose a spread that was specific to the case. So I decided it was time to start creating them all by myself and it turned out it wasn’t as hard as it seemed to be as long as you keep in mind these simple rules:
🔮 You need to understand where the Consultant mentally is, what they are facing in that moment, where does the question actually come from. Even when people say they just want to investigate their future, their desire probably comes out of something that buggers them. 🔮 You have to turn the Consultant’s request into a series of simple questions, that can help you get the hang of the situation. If the Consultant can’t find a job, I don’t ask the tarots the when’s and the if’s. Instead, I ask why they are blocked in the situation and what they can do to overcome the problem. 🔮 You should choose a layout that helps you get into the right mindset. Avoiding banalities (a heart-shaped layout for a spread about love can be a little too cliche), you can choose a shape that reminds you of the things you are inquiring on, like a Cupid’s bow if you’re asking about new love interests.
I turned off my rationality. As I said before divination really is an art form and, as most of the art forms, it’s easier to understand it if you don’t look at it through the eye of intellect. It might seems illogical, but that is the best way to let the meaning of the cards gets to you. No prejudice, no preconceptions. Sometimes the response could be hard to accept and that’s why I avoid to do readings about controversial or sensible matters.
Did I really become a pro in tarot readings? There aren’t any tips or tricks to be brilliant at it. It takes time and exercise, and even after decades of practice you’ll find you still have a lot to learn. Some people have a natural inclination, other requires more effort instead. But if you’re receptive enough, tarots will disclose their secrets to you without a hitch.
just add 10 cm to everyone’s canon height and you got it ahahah because i need Bruce Wayne to be more than 3cm taller than me or else i can’t take the big bad Batman seriously, and also i can’t live in a world were i’m taller than jason
Badlands National Park is not in defiance of the president, they are in support of the American People. They don’t work for him, they work for US. Climate change is a direct threat to our national resources, and the most severe threat facing our parks today. This is not a political issue, this is not Democrats vs. Republicans, this is data-backed endangerment of our open spaces and federal lands. If a building is deemed structurally unsound, you fix it, you don’t claim that scientists are lying to you about serious fatigue in the load-bearing members, or else it comes crashing down around you. Climate change is no different, nobody has ever tried to claim that forest fires are a myth invented by the Chinese.
Chemistry is…well, technically chemistry is the study of matter. But I prefer to see it as the study of change. Now just think about this. Electrons, they change their energy levels. Molecules, molecules change their bonds. Elements, they combine and change into compounds. Well, that’s all of life, right? I mean, it’s just…it’s the constant. It’s the cycle. It’s solution, dissolution, just over and over and over. It’s growth, then decay, then transformation. It’s fascinating, really.
honestly??? zack is chilling w trini in her room one day and notices her make-up and how bomb it makes the eyebrows and cheekbones look so he’s like Yo, lay that shit ON me and he gets his cheekbones contoured and feels like he’s achieved a 200% level up like “i look fine as hell. my cheekbones? could literally kill someone.” he SWAGGERS into the pit (he had trini set his face so it wouldn’t mess up during the dive) and is 1000% more insufferable the entire day. he visits kim’s room one day too and just starts fucking around on her vanity and she probably steps out of her bathroom and zack has just like, completely messed with her nude palette and has a choker on probably.
Prompt: "Oliver, where do you see us 10 years from now?"
“Where do you see us in ten years?”
It wasn’t that long ago that a question like
that would have sent his wife running. Maybe not physically, but emotionally?
Oh, she would have blanched, her eyes widening, a hundred different responses
running through her head as she struggled to find the right one that wouldn’t
entirely show her hand. He hadn’t been much better, although he’d leaned more
towards wearing rose-colored glasses than anything. It’d taken months of hell
to realize neither of them had been fully ready for all that a life together entailed.
Felicity didn’t even flinch where she stood
over the large touch screen down in the bunker. Instead she hummed under her
breath at the question, her fingers not faltering where she was organizing that
week’s case load. The team was stretched a little thin since Rene’a injury, so
there was more to do than usual. He knew she was weighing the ups and downs of
where things could land on top of his workload as the Mayor.
All his various mayoral meetings were also on
His eyebrows went up when he saw she had him
checking out a quick lead on the recent jail break over the lunch hour on
Thursday. Past the fact that she wanted him to do some quick Green Arrow
business in the middle of the day…
“You really think I can get all the way down
to the Glades and back for my 2 p.m.?”
Felicity shot him a smile over her shoulder.
don’t have a choice.
Oliver chuckled as he sidled up behind her,
gripping her shoulders lightly. He dropped a kiss to the top of her right one.
She blindly patted his hip in return, sliding
her hand down his still-leathered thigh. Her eyes never left the screen. “Is
this because John was talking about his first anniversary with Lyla?”
“It got me thinking,” he confirmed.
Felicity shrugged, rearranging a few more
things. She left the Glades stop on Thursday, he noticed with a wry smirk - she
knew his assistant Benjamin was going to flip - before she pulled his attention
back to her.
“Well… I think I see us in that monstrosity of
a brownstone I can’t talk you out of,” she said. He laughed, kissing the side
of her neck this time. She gave him a content sigh and leaned back into him.
“Ten years?” She shrugged. “I think I see me pretending not to cry as you and
William carry all his stuff out to a crappy SUV he bought with money he made
under the table from you when he was helping out at City Hall. And when I lose
that battle, I’ll pretend I’m crying because I’m angry that he’s driving that
thing across the country - and at you, because you’re letting him - but we all
know I’m really crying because I’m not ready for him to leave. Even though I’m
so insanely proud at the school he got into that you had to pry me off him when
he first told us.”
Oliver stopped breathing, barely blinking at
the vivid image she was describing.
“And then,” she added, “when you guys try to
call me on it, I’ll tell you it’s just pregnancy hormones.”
His heart stopped.
Felicity turned to him and she bit her lips
together to keep herself from laughing at the look on his face. It did nothing
to diminish her smile, though.
They hadn’t really let themselves talk too
much about the future. There was always something that came up, that derailed
them, that put their plans on hold, whether it was because of his Mayor duties
or their nighttime activities. But he’d hoped,
and he’d shared those dreams with her, the eventual future that’d taken him years to finally admit to wanting with a
yearning that took his breath away.
Felicity wrapped her arms around his neck. His
hands found their natural perch on her hips and he pulled her closer, breathing
her in. He could already feel the way her body would change as she carried the
life they created.
He wanted it, so bad he could taste it.
“Oliver,” she said, her smile softening.
“Where do you see us ten years from now?”
A thousand responses rocketed through his head
but there was only one response that resonated with all of them.
“Happy,” he promised.
The grin she gave him was blinding and he
sealed the promise with a kiss.