Terribleminds Penmonkey Evaluations

So Chuck Wendig at Terribleminds is asking for our answers to the following questions about writing strengths and advice. These are my answers, posted on his blog.


a) What’s your greatest strength / skill in terms of writing/storytelling?

I think my greatest strength is writing dialogue that seems natural (to me), and is usually funny, too.


b) What’s your greatest weakness in writing/storytelling? What gives you the most trouble?

I usually write too much and crowd the scene, but I am too reluctant to cut, so at best it gets a trim and is probably still too cluttered.


c) How many books or other projects have you actually finished? What did you do with them?

I have finished 5 books, one long play and 6 ½-hour episodes of a sitcom that someone once suggest I try writing.  The first book I ever wrote is now going to be published by Tirgearr publishing. The second I have submitted at the moment. The next two are a young adult and children’s stories that I have sent to traditional publishers and am running out of places to submit to, the third adult’s book I left for a few years but have gotten around to sending it out recently…. The sitcom just got rejected by RTE (Irish TV) and the play is in the hands of the National Theatre of Ireland at the Abbey, so we’ll see if they like it or not in a couple of months…


d) Best writing advice you’ve ever been given? (i.e. really helped you)


An editor at a place I sent Leaving the Pack to a few years ago suggested I start the story at the beginning of the character’s relationship, not in the middle and use flashback to tell how they got together. I took the advice and it seems to have been useful!


e) Worst writing advice you’ve ever been given? (i.e. didn’t help at all, may have hurt)


I haven’t been given much advice either way, but I was told as a teenager to stop wasting my time writing. No need to name names there..


f) One piece of advice you’d give other writers?


Sure, if your first novel is getting bounced back at you, go ahead and start your second, but keep giving that first one the odd throw now and then. It’ll help you keep editing it, keep refining it, and someday it might hit the right place.


About davidjmobrien

Writer, ecologist and teacher

Posted on March 3, 2014, in Uncategorized and tagged , , . Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.

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