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Arch Lich Thoth-Amon

National Novel Writing (starts promptly 1 Nov.every year); National Screenwriting to learn writing of dialog (starts promptly 1 Jun.every year)

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There are plenty of wonderful writers on this site, so what better way to initiate my first blog than giving up some great links for P&PG members to compete in writing challenges held online every year.

National Novel Writing Month: http://www.nanowrimo.org/

Screenwriters Challenge 2009: http://www.nycmidnight.com/2009/SC/challenge.htm

Midnight Challenge 2009: http://www.nycmidnight.com/

Everyone feel free to add to my blog in any positive way you see fit. This blog is meant for the benefit of the family and friends of P&PG.

What share you?

Thoth-Amon

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Updated 05-26-2009 at 10:12 AM by Arch Lich Thoth-Amon

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  1. Arch Lich Thoth-Amon's Avatar
    Okay, here are two books i whole-heartedly recommend:

    1) On Writing, by Stephen King. http://www.amazon.com/Writing-Stephe.../dp/0743455967

    2) How to Write a Selling Screenplay, by Christopher Keane. http://www.amazon.com/Write-Selling-.../dp/0767900715

    I've already signed up for the National Novel Writing Month contest for later this year, and will begin participating in both contests in 2010. This is all for fun folks, so i challenge everyone to at least read over the sites.

    Thanks for taking the time to read my 1st blog, and let me send out a special thanks to Farcaster for creating P&PG for the rest of us.

    Thoth-Amon
    Updated 05-07-2009 at 10:16 PM by Arch Lich Thoth-Amon
  2. Tamerath's Avatar
    I'll sign up as well...it's a great contest or at least what I read of it Thanks for posting it amigo!
  3. Arch Lich Thoth-Amon's Avatar
    That's very cool, Tamerath. Glad to hear you're on board with this.

    I'm not sure what my next story will be about, but it will either take place in a Traveller type universe, or in WFRP. Heck, it may even be a story about Conan's adventures. I wont know till my fingers do their tappin.'

    How 'bout you? Any chance your story may have some Ravenloft/horror themes included?

    Btw, thanks for commenting on my blog. Appreciated.

    Say hello to everyone at your gaming table for me. As of right now, looks as though i may be visiting down there late July, so perhaps i can sit in on one of your games.

    Thoth-Amon
    Updated 05-07-2009 at 10:19 PM by Arch Lich Thoth-Amon
  4. Arch Lich Thoth-Amon's Avatar
    Came across something funny today that I'd thought I'd share with the rest of you. Jim Butcher, author of the Dresden Files, shared some of his favorite quotes for writers-to-be during a recent interview:

    “A classic is something that everybody wants to have read and nobody wants to read.” — Mark Twain

    “Good writers borrow from other writers. Great writers steal from them outright.” — Aaron Sorkin

    I just thought them humorous and thought to share.

    Thoth-Amon
    Updated 05-01-2009 at 04:48 PM by Arch Lich Thoth-Amon
  5. Arch Lich Thoth-Amon's Avatar
    Five Screenwriting [and novel writing] pitfalls to avoid, by Nathan Marshal:

    1) Supporting characters as sounding boards.
    2) Obvious endings.
    3) Tone shifts.
    4) Run-on descriptions.
    5) Weak protagonist.

    Read the full article here:

    http://www.scriptfrenzy.org/eng/node/3160550

    Thoth-Amon
    Updated 04-29-2009 at 09:49 PM by Arch Lich Thoth-Amon
  6. Arch Lich Thoth-Amon's Avatar
    Here are some interesting sites:

    1) How to Be a Prolific Writer. Gives the 4 steps to becoming a prolific writer. http://www.ehow.com/how_2110534_be-prolific-writer.html

    2) Prolific Writers. Nice little article with some interesting links. http://ezinearticles.com/?Prolific-Writers&id=29771

    I read somewhere, recently, that stated that 250,000 words a year makes a prolific writer.

    I've also read that 3 pages a day (about 1350-1500 words, depending) makes a prolific writer. So i guess there isn't an official number on this.

    Anyway, thought I'd share these useful sites.

    Enjoy,

    Thoth-Amon
  7. Arch Lich Thoth-Amon's Avatar
    Do you want to work in the RPG business?

    Here is your chance to get that all important big break.

    http://6d6fireball.com/rpg/the-times-are-a-changing/

    Enjoy,

    Thoth-Amon
  8. Arch Lich Thoth-Amon's Avatar
    More quotes from famous authors, for your enjoyment:

    "A writer is a priest of the invisible." --Wallace Stevens

    "You must remember that a writer is a simple-minded person to begin with and go on that basis. He's not a great mind, he's not a great thinker, he's not a great philosopher, he's a storyteller." --Erskine Caldwell

    Thoth-Amon
    Updated 05-08-2009 at 11:01 AM by Arch Lich Thoth-Amon
  9. Arch Lich Thoth-Amon's Avatar
    More relevant quotes for your enjoyment:

    "Begin with and individual and you will find that you have created a type; begin with a type and you will find that you have created...nothing." --F. Scott Fitzgerald

    "F**k structure and grab your characters by the balls." --Jack Kerouac

    And here's one from one of my favorite authors:

    "You can never know enough about your characters." --W. Somerset Maugham
    Updated 05-08-2009 at 08:12 PM by Arch Lich Thoth-Amon
  10. Arch Lich Thoth-Amon's Avatar
    More great quotes for your perusal:

    "You don't start with aesthetic maifesto, you just do what works." --E.L. Doctorow

    "The three most important aspects of screenwriting: structure, structure, and structure." --William Goldman

    "Structure is the flagship in the craft of writing." --Christopher Keane, author of How to Write a Selling Screenplay. Many pearls of wisdom are found within for writing screenplays and novels, alike.
    Updated 05-13-2009 at 10:48 PM by Arch Lich Thoth-Amon
  11. Tamerath's Avatar
    Quote Originally Posted by Thoth-Amon
    That's very cool, Tamerath. Glad to hear you're on board with this.

    I'm not sure what my next story will be about, but it will either take place in a Traveller type universe, or in WFRP. Heck, it may even be a story about Conan's adventures. I wont know till my fingers do their tappin.'

    How 'bout you? Any chance your story may have some Ravenloft/horror themes included?

    Btw, thanks for commenting on my blog. Appreciated.

    Say hello to everyone at your gaming table for me. As of right now, looks as though i may be visiting down there late July, so perhaps i can sit in on one of your games.

    Thoth-Amon
    Hey Amigo!

    After looking at the website a bit more I didn't see any copyrite stuff on there for your novel...so I might not be ACTUALLY signing up...but I WILL do the challenge with you lol I don't know what I'll write about. I was tossing around this idea about a superhero that has like this....blob arm...that is all guey and gelatinous and he like...touches things with it....lol I dont' know. I guess we'll see when I put my fingers to the test November 1st

    Also ANYTIME you want to come join our table you are more than welcome, if it hadn't been for you and Jermaine, we wouldn't have a table to be sitting at! You are like a founding member like us! So ANYTIME amigo...You are always welcome

    Eric
  12. Arch Lich Thoth-Amon's Avatar
    Yep, haven't did the contest yet. This year will be my first time participating, even though i registered in 2008.

    Thanks for the confirmed seat at the table. Looks as though i will be coming out there in a few months. I'll give you all a heads up when time gets close.

    Thoth
  13. TheRageOfGaia's Avatar
    I "won" in 2007 and 2008. It was a lot of fun.

    In 2007, I stuck to my roots and tried to write what my friends and I lovingly refer to as crap fantasy. The result was... more crap that I would have liked. But I pushed through it.

    In 2008, I wrote a zombie survival story trying to hit not so much on the horror of the situation, but more of a Max Brooks-ish flair. How would you survive such an outbreak? There was also a love element. It was much better. Hopefully 2009's will be better yet.

    I have a few pieces of advice just from doing it, which are:

    From one of my high school english teachers, it's been stuck in my head since, "90% of everything you write is going to be crap, write the crap."

    Set goals. When you sit down to write, set a number. Mine is typically between 2 and 4 thousand words a day, which is around 5-10 pages.

    Stay focused. Have a drink near by, a snack if you think you'll need it. Stay off your messenging programs, because, they will tempt you. If you hit a wall, EVERYTHING is going to look like more fun than NaNo.

    If at first you don't succeed, try again. I attempted NaNoWriMo in 2004, 2005, and 2006 and failed.

    I'm looking forward to this year, and I like the look of the screenwriting challenge next year. Maybe a Sword & Sorcery musical? Haha.
  14. TheRageOfGaia's Avatar
    Tamerath - Unless something has changed since last year, you do not have to put your novel on the site, or even register to "win" the contest. Simply writing the 50k words between the 1st and the 30th counts.

    But, if you would like to use the official word counter, the NaNo website offers methods for "disguising" your work. The one I used uses Microsoft Word to change all of your novel into a single letter. I.e. "the dog is blue" becomes "aaa aaa aa aaaa."
  15. Arch Lich Thoth-Amon's Avatar
    I just added another contest for short stories at the top of this blog, but for your convenience, here it is too: http://www.nycmidnight.com/
  16. Tamerath's Avatar
    Cool Deal thanks for the info Rage
  17. Arch Lich Thoth-Amon's Avatar
    A good friend and fellow Traveller Gamer forwarded this to me, so i thought I'd share.

    I'm going to try to submit something, i encourage other authors to do the same. Looks to be fun.
    **************************************************

    Looking for Traveller Authors

    In addition to being a game designer, I'm also the Senior Editor at Flying Pen Press http://www.flyingpenpress.com. We are currently looking for authors that might be interested in writing in the Traveller universe, using the OTU.

    The authors we are looking for will have a professional attitude with the ability to complete a novel length manuscript on deadline, and they must be very knowledgeable about the game.

    Interested authors, or if you have questions, should feel free to contact me at jerwine@jalanerwine.com. Please include the word Traveller in the subject line so I can filter your messages out from the spam.

    Please, only serious authors should contact me.

    Thank you,

    J Alan Erwine
    Senior Editor Flying Pen Press
    Updated 06-08-2009 at 11:44 AM by Arch Lich Thoth-Amon
  18. Tamburlain's Avatar
    When I get stuck in a rut and need new ideas for games and stories, there are two sources I turn to for GM inspiration: the folklore scholars Vladimir Propp and Stith Thompson. Both individuals are renowned for having devised (different, yet equally universal) schemes for identifying and classifying the "fundamental" story-elements of all traditional folktales.

    From a GM's perspective, I sometimes think of these schemata as two attempts to create a kind of Periodic Table of Elements, but for narrative typology instead of chemistry. If you do not make use of these amazing references already, maybe you will find them as useful as I have.

    1.
    Stith Thompson's extensive system was originally published between 1931 and 1958 in 6 volumes, collectively entitled The Motif Index of Folk Literature. I'm happy to report that there is now an online version of Thompson's magnum opus. Check it out.

    2.
    Vladimir Propp's study was published in his Morphology of the Folktale in 1928. The elements are made up of 31 functions and 7 characters. I haven't found an online version of Propp's schema that is fleshed out to the degree that Thompson's is, but I will try to summarize briefly here.

    Propp claims that traditional (i.e. oral) folktales all incorporate the same basic motifs and sequence, though they may vary by different inversions. After the initial situation of a tale is depicted, it then involves the following functions-- (here, I've copied more or less from Jerry Everard's interesting blog):

    1. A member of a family leaves home (the hero is introduced);
    2. An injunction is placed upon the hero (’don’t go there’, ‘go to this place’);
    3. The injunction is violated (villain enters the tale);
    4. The villain makes an attempt at reconnaissance (either villain tries to find the children/jewels etc; or intended victim questions the villain);
    5. The villain gains information about the victim;
    6. The villain attempts to deceive the victim to take possession of victim or victim’s belongings (trickery; villain disguised, tries to win confidence of victim);
    7. Victim taken in by deception, unwittingly helping the enemy;
    8. Villain causes harm/injury to family member (by abduction, theft of magical agent, spoiling crops, plunders in other forms, causes a disappearance, expels someone, casts spell on someone, substitutes child etc, comits murder, imprisons/detains someone, threatens forced marriage, provides nightly torments); Alternatively, a member of family lacks something or desires something (magical potion etc);
    9. Misfortune or lack is made known, (hero is dispatched, hears call for help etc/ alternative is that victimised hero is sent away, freed from imprisonment);
    10. Seeker agrees to, or decides upon counter-action;
    11. Hero leaves home;
    12. Hero is tested, interrogated, attacked etc, preparing the way for his/her receiving magical agent or helper (donor);
    13. Hero reacts to actions of future donor (withstands/fails the test, frees captive, reconciles disputants, performs service, uses adversary’s powers against them);
    14. Hero acquires use of a magical agent (directly transferred, located, purchased, prepared, spontaneously appears, eaten/drunk, help offered by other characters);
    15. Hero is transferred, delivered or led to whereabouts of an object of the search;
    16. Hero and villain join in direct combat;
    17. Hero is branded (wounded/marked, receives ring or scarf);
    18. Villain is defeated (killed in combat, defeated in contest, killed while asleep, banished);
    19. Initial misfortune or lack is resolved (object of search distributed, spell broken, slain person revivied, captive freed);
    20. Hero returns;
    21. Hero is pursued (pursuer tries to kill, eat, undermine the hero);
    22. Hero is rescued from pursuit (obstacles delay pursuer, hero hides or is hidden, hero transforms unrecognisably, hero saved from attempt on his/her life);
    23. Hero unrecognised, arrives home or in another country;
    24. False hero presents unfounded claims;
    25. Difficult task proposed to the hero (trial by ordeal, riddles, test of strength/endurance, other tasks);
    26. Task is resolved;
    27. Hero is recognised (by mark, brand, or thing given to him/her);
    28. False hero or villain is exposed;
    29. Hero is given a new appearance (is made whole, handsome, new garments etc);
    30. Villain is punished;
    31. Hero marries and ascends the throne (is rewarded/promoted).

    Propp's 7 broad character types are:

    1. The villain — struggles against the hero.
    2. The donor — prepares the hero or gives the hero some magical object.
    3. The (magical) helper — helps the hero in the quest.
    4. The princess and her father — gives the task to the hero, identifies the false hero, marries the hero, often sought for during the narrative. Propp noted that functionally, the princess and the father can not be clearly distinguished.
    5. The dispatcher — character who makes the lack known and sends the hero off.
    6. The hero or victim/seeker hero — reacts to the donor, weds the princess.
    7. [False hero] — takes credit for the hero's actions or tries to marry the princess
  19. Arch Lich Thoth-Amon's Avatar
    In This Issue :: June 19, 2009
    CREATIVE WRITING CHAMPIONSHIPS 2009 [ENTRY DEADLINE EXTENDED!]
    TWEET ME A STORY CONTEST [WINNERS ARE ANNOUNCED!]
    EVENT CALENDAR [UPCOMING EVENTS]


    2nd Annual Creative Writing Championships The Final Entry Deadline has been extended until Friday, June 19th at 5PM EST - TODAY! Writers are challenged to create stories 1,000 words or less and accumulate points based on their placement in each round of the competition. Every writer that registers will compete in at least 2 challenges, and writers can compete in as many as 4 challenges based on their placement in each round.

    Feedback will be provided for every entered story and there are thousands in cash prizes. Hurry up and register before it's too late!

    *Special Discount - use the discount code CHAMPS for $5 off the entry fee.

    Click here to Register / Learn More

    Tweet Me A Story Contest
    The winners have been announced!


    EVENT CALENDAR [UPCOMING EVENTS]

    6/19/09 - Creative Writing Championships 2009 Final Entry Deadline
    6/19/09 - Calgary Film Race 2009 Final Entry Deadline
    6/19/09 - Toronto Film Race 2009 Final Entry Deadline
    6/19/09 – Boston Film Race 2009 Early Entry Deadline
    6/19/09 – Vancouver Film Race 2009 Early Entry Deadline
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  20. Arch Lich Thoth-Amon's Avatar
    Strategic Book Publishing is looking to expand our children's book titles.

    http://www.strategicbookpublishing.c...FRwDagodABpLow

    --------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
    Children's Book Submissions
    Strategic Book Publishing is looking to expand our children's book titles.


    To view a list of new children's book releases, visit AEGAuthorsedge.com

    We believe children's literature has the power to entice, motivate and instruct. If you have a book that fits one or more of these qualities, then we are interested in learning more:


    • Your book provides pleasure and entertainment to a specific age group.
    • Your book tells a cultural folktale or heritage quality story that would appeal to a specific audience?


    • Your book has an instructional message told in a refreshing or exciting way.


    • Your book is a non-fiction subject presented to children in a fun and imaginative way.


    • Your book involves children in the text or pictures in a fun and/or instructional platform.

    We prefer to work with author's through a literary agent, however, there are exceptions. If you believe in your story and are dedicated to being a motivating factor in promotions and sales, or you have a strong alliance with a specific group that may provide targeted sales, then we are interested in learning more about you and your book.
    Please complete the following Children's Book Information Request, an abbreviated form that helps us quickly determine if there is a possibility of working together. We will typically respond to this form within one business week with a "yes", "no", or "maybe".
    If you are less than 18 years old, please see our Note to Minors at the bottom of the page.
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