How Stories Come to Be

This fictional monastery has a life of its own in my writer’s brain, and doesn’t want to go away. It wants to tell its story more fully.

If you’ve read my profile on this or other sites, (or if you read the post called Landscape and Story I posted a few days ago) you will know that I describe myself as (among other things) a part-time student of archaeology.  Currently I’m in the middle of an on-line course from the University of Exeter called “Landscape Archeology I”.  This week’s assignment was to look at what types of environmental archaeological evidence – things like animal bones, soil and water micro-organisms, wood – can be used to interpret either a castle or monastery site.

My response to the assignment was to write a brief story about a fictional monastery and point out all the things we knew about this monastery because of the archaeological evidence, which was fun and more interesting for me than just making a chart or list.  However…now this fictional monastery has a life of its own in my writer’s brain, and doesn’t want to go away.  It wants to tell its story more fully.

It doesn’t fit into the series I’m writing right now, but it may just fit into another planned novel/novel series. Or maybe it will be something completely new.  I don’t know yet.  I’m hoping I can use it for further assignments for the course, but regardless, it is now a real, dynamic place inside my mind, and another dimension of my created landscape(s) has made itself evident.  Now I have to see where it takes me.

Editorial Services Giveaway

A contest for editorial services free of charge….

I am a lucky indie writer.  My young-adult adventure novel, Empire’s Daughter, was accepted for publication by a small press, which meant it received the entire professional editorial process, edited for story, continuity, copy-edited, etc., by two very talented editors.  Sadly the press went out of business – it’s a tough world – before Empire’s Daughter was published, but I benefited enormously and learned a LOT through the months of editing and re-writing. So when I published Empire’s Daughter through Smashwords and Amazon, it was polished to a high standard and has sold well.

This is not an opportunity many new writers get, and it’s one I’d like to pay forward.  So here’s my offer:  I will provide editorial services free of charge to one indie author in each of the following editorial capacities:

  1.  Story review – a read-through of the manuscript, suggestions for expansion/contraction of the story, voice, character development;
  2. Copy-editing – a detailed read of a finished manuscript for typos, grammar and spelling, name change errors, and the like.

Here’s how the give-away works.  First, go into this blog site and read some of my work – there is fiction, non-fiction, verse and a short story to look at.  If you don’t like my writing, then you probably shouldn’t enter. (You can, of course, it’s up to you!)  Then, either in the comments below or by e-mail to marianlthorpe at gmail.com, let me know the following:

Your name, the name and genre of your work, and whether you want a story review or a copy-edit.  All entries received in the next week will be literally put into a hat (by category) and one name for each pulled out by my husband.

And you must be an author without a book contract.  Those of you with contracts will have access to these services – as I did – so please leave this free opportunity to those who need it.  Clearly, I can’t check this, so you are on your honour on this aspect.

Oh, and the work has to be in English.  I speak execrable French and read it to some extent, but not well enough for this…and that’s the end of my multi-lingual abilities.

Feel free to re-blog!