Jul 6, 2011

My Epic Reading Adventures: Practice Makes Permanent and Fanfiction Tips

Chapter 3: Practice Makes Permanent and Fanfiction Tips

I've already noticed so much improvement with my writing since I started this journal. When I wrote the rough daft of my last book review it only took me an hour. Which for me is saying something. When I checked my work I was actually able to notice a couple of my mistakes right away. There were only a few that I ended up missing, but nobody's perfect right? I guess this just proves that practice makes permanent even when it comes to writing. Why permanent instead of perfect you may ask? Well I always tell my dance students that practice doesn't necessarily make perfect. You can practice something incorrectly and then it's permanently incorrect. Thus, only perfect practice makes perfect. Anyhow, I must keep trying to write something every day so I can continue to improve my skills.

I've decided that I can also use this journal as a way to easily communicate with those of you who have commented. First of all I would like to thank Lori and Rachel for commenting on the last post. If you guys would like to check out their blogs here are the links:Sleepless eReader and Under A Star Studded Sky.

So glad you can relate to my fanfiction plight Lori. Good to know I'm not alone in my addiction. Ha ha! Rachel you asked for fanfiction some fanfic suggestions. To tell you the truth I'd really have to think on it. I've been though so many phases with my fanfiction reading since I was 12 I don't know if would remember all the ones I liked. I'm reading quite a few now so it would take forever to put them all down. I will give you my tips to finding a decent well written fanfic.

Step 1: Find one under a fandom you know well. The whole point of fanfiction is that it is continuation or a different take on something you already love. Thus, the authors of fanfic aren't always going to explain back story. So don't pick a fandom you don't know anything about.

Step 2: Completed is best. Try to look for completed works first. The fact is that sometimes fanfiction is written by people who are unpredictable. Thus, they start a story (or several) and never get around to finishing them. Often this leaves you with an unending cliff hanger. So if you can find some thing that is finished go for that first.

Step 3: Look at update dates. This is a follow up to step 2. If your going to read incomplete fanfic look at the update dates before reading. For example if the story hasn't been updated since 2008 it's unlikely the author is ever going to finish it. If the story looks like it is being updated every week or every few weeks it is usually safe to start without fear of being left hanging.

Step 4: Pick something with a good summary. I always like to pick something with a decent summary or tag line. Not just to make sure the story sounds interesting to me, though that is a good reason. The main reason is because I can't tell you how many times I've seen this phrase written in a summary section on fanfiction.net: "I suck at summaries. Just read." I feel like if you can't summarize your own story then you probably can't write it either. I'm not saying that's always the case, but believe me sometimes it definitely is. Another thing a good summery can keep you from is entering a story with atrocious grammar. I mean I'm not the queen of grammar by any means. However, I at least take the time to capitalize the first word of my sentence, and make paragraphs. Some people don't even know how to spell character names correctly. Which is weird right? Your a fan enough to write a story, but not enough to check that you spell major character's names right. Often if someone doesn't take the time to fix minor grammar and basic character names in the summary, they probably didn't take the time to do it in their story. 

I hope this helps you Rachel. If not I'll try to think up some good suggestions later. Though I'm not sure I should be spreading my addiction to the masses. Oh well, it's a fun way to spend a rainy day or a sleepless night. I have insomnia if you guys couldn't tell by my late night posts. 

Progress Report

Number of Books Completed so Far This Week: 2 (v.g)
Number of Books Left to Complete: 81
Number of Book Reviews Completed: 1 (must improve)
Miscellaneous Comments: I'm rocking it on the reading front. I finished both 1602 and Glass today. Yay! This means I have to pick and new primary read and a new secondary read. Hmm... I don't know what I want to pick yet. One of them has to be a re-read. I'll let you guys know tomorrow what I've picked. Keep it shiny all!

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