Tuesday, December 28, 2010

Doing For Others

The things we do for . . . You fill in the blank.
Love, friends, glory. How about giveaways!
So, here's to spreading the word that Tristi's monthlong giveaway is winding down to a grand finale and you can still get in on the goods. I've been a 90 something % participant all month long and haven't won a prize yet. But I'm hoping that means I have a good shot at one of the last and best two prizes. (I'm saving the best for last.) Afterall, I did win a Lazyboy recliner with just a $1 raffle ticket (to a good cause), so nothing is impossible.
At any rate, I'm building on that friend word above. Go to trisitpinkston.blogspot.com and get to know this wonderful person (and maybe win a prize).

Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Christmas Time is a Busy Time

Merry Christmas to All!
'Tis the season to be jolly . . . and busy! But I haven't been busy writing. I guess you could say that I took the month off. My critique group decided to do that and I got my manuscript submitted earlier this month, so why not? Yet I feel busier than ever. I've been making some homemade gifts this year. I made some candy and recorded some stories for the grandkids. And I did a 3x4 foot Crayon Batik wall hanging (for an outdoorsy family with them pictured in it). A what? Basically, I painted melted crayon onto cloth, scrunched it up to make cracks all over, and put it in a dye bath. Then I had to iron out all the wax. Tedious, but a nice change of pace for one month out of the year. Sometimes we have to let those other creative outlets find their place. Would you like a glimpse?


 Some detail painted on.                                                

Tuesday, December 7, 2010

(Sub)mission Accomplished!

It's in! I submitted my LDS Adult Book of Mormon Fiction, The Seventh City. This was November's goal. No, the whole year's goal. But today I can check that goal off. I'd love to tell you a little about my book:
A death. A secret. A spirited, sixteen-year-old widow.  For the young, Mayan princess it was either kill or be killed. Then a Nephite missionary comes to preach about repentance. Can Karlinah gain acceptance and remarry without revealing her secret?
As soon as I pushed SEND, I did the happy dance. Then came the second guessing. Why do we do that to ourselves? I'm going to quit thinking about who else should have read it first, etc. It doesn't have to be perfect. That's what an editor is for. It just has to be my best effort. I worte it to be read and that's what pushing SEND will hopefully do. Now comes the waiting game. For the next few months, no news is good news. Wish me luck!
Well, back to writing the sequel ( the second generation of King Lamoni's family).

Wednesday, December 1, 2010

More Contests

A prize a day! If you like contests, this is definately one to check out. It only takes a moment. Hey, and find it in your heart to follow me as well, if you haven't already, or lead someone else here. Thanks!
Tristi Pinkston is hosting an absolutely huge contest over on her blog to celebrate the release of her new book, "Dearly Departed." A new prize will be offered every twenty-four hours, and with multiple chances to win, you can't go wrong! Prizes include books, jewelry, perfume, movies - and the grand prize is a free night's stay at the Lion Gate Manor in Lava Hot Springs. Visit Tristi's blog for rules and more details.

Sunday, November 21, 2010

Book Trailers: No Two Alike

How different can you get? I'm listing three examples of recent book trailers and they are all completely different. Book trailers are as fun to watch as movie trailers, even though the budget is usually much smaller.
Below are links to some recent book trailers or info about them that you might find entertaining. Notice the differences and let me know through a comment what you like or didn't like.
My almost nonexistant book trailer experience has barely begun. I'm writing a song to go with my novel, The Seventh City (soon to be submitted for publishing). A future post will include the lyrics. (I'm still struggling with the chorus.) One of the ways I intend to use it would be as background music for my book trailer. For now, here are a few examples already in the works:
The book trailer for Mark of Royalty just made its debut. It seems to have been a big production with actors, a horse, and a castle. Check out more about it at jenniferkclark.blogspot.com.
Here's one with a contest but I found the book trailer teaser (shortened version) clever and amusing on a low budget. Check it out for yourself at: http://donaldjcarey.com/2010/11/the-bumpy-landings-teaser-contest.html Aka: Another Contest or Look What a Few Legos Can Do.
Lastly, here's a suspenceful one with effective single shots. View Perilous on the Nov. 17 post at tamarahartheiner.blogspot.com or http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mlLBYl9iz8Q
What do you think?

Thursday, November 18, 2010

Contests and Other Gimmicks

Contest. The word leaps with excitement for many bloggers, especially if there is a book or chocolate to be won. It's a gimmick, really. But an effective one. We all want more followers. I've been bummed lately about my November subscribers, but I've been too busy to recruit. Something must be done.
Hmm. I'm going to have to start a contest. I need more followers--Help! My first month, I gained more than a follower a day, on average. But November--not so hot. Of course I've had some interruptions in my life that kept me from posting and checking other blogs very often. That makes a difference. I hope to be more regular again now. And I will dream up a contest before the year is over. Please check back.
I Just learned about another contest that you might want to know about and I will pass them along from time to time. Nichole Giles is giving away a signed copy of LEVIATHAN by Scott Westerfeld, so give it a look. I did and it's easy to enter.  

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Opinions That Count

Okay, so the Harry Potter movie comes out in about 24 hours. Yes, I've read the books, seen the movies, but I'm not jumping in on day one. Why? I've heard some opinions. Too many for good judgement.
"There's a questionable scene."  "Why'd they have to throw some junk in?" "It's not so bad." Who do I believe? I think I'll wait to hear some reviews after someone I trust has seen it. Besides, it's not that big a deal to me to be first on the block.
Is this what we do to books? You bet it is!
We ask our friends what good books (movies, restaurants, etc.) they've read. We might read a review. The word goes down the grapevine. Advertising influences us. We make a decision by other people's opinions even though sometimes we get surprised. It is a way of screening, a protection of not wasting our time. It gives us a basis for judgement--right or wrong. In the end, it's your own opinion that counts above all the rest.
But hey, I still want to know what you think! It's what we do. I'd love a comment.
Did you like the new HP movie?
Wanna pass along your favorite read titles?

Monday, November 8, 2010

Book Review: My Gift To You

What if you didn't think you deserved to be happy? What if you were wrong? 5053599_my_gift_to_you_product

Devastated by the departure of her husband and daughter, Trish faces the challenge of a lifetime. Will Trish find the courage necessary to transcend the shadows of her past? This gripping story reminds us that forgiveness of self and others is both a difficult choice and a precious gift.
The title and premise of this somewhat short, inspirational novel gave the impression of a predictable, feel-good story, but author Lori Nawyn throws in a few curve balls along the way. Pleasantly, it's not the exact book I thought it would be. She started with enough scattered information about several character relationships to pull me in to want to find out more. Unexpected and interesting events are added along the way. Even though I am certain of the outcome, it's the journey that matters. In the end, Nawyn wraps things up with the expected result but a different emphasis than I figured. The ending was satisfying.
The Christmas element of the story is not so strong as to only want to read this story at Christmastime, yet it could be considered a Christmas story if you are looking for one. I thought the amount was just right. I also enjoy Nawyn's succinct writing. She packs visual images, emotion, and a hook into short scenes. A great read by the fireplace on a cold, winter's day.

Wednesday, November 3, 2010

Giving Your Words Over to the Reader

   Who is writing really for--the author or the reader? Your writing may arguably be for you--to fulfill that burning drive to put pen to paper, but if anyone but you are to gain from it, you must finish the work and pass it on to another. So begins November's National Novel Writing Month, or NaNoWriMo. The goal of writing 50,000 words spurs many on. Being at the point of revising and getting my novel ready to send rather than write, I am not offically participating. To those who are, I cheer you from the sidelines.
   To finish a major work is a satisfying experience. To allow others to pass judgement on that work takes courage and is necessary is one seeks publication. It also takes giving. Completing my novel to such a point that I can completely give it over to a reader or editor is my November goal.
   Katharine Coles, professor, novelist, and Utah's Poet Laureate caught my attention recently when she spoke about rejection. Though she relates it to writing poetry, any writing can be applied. She says: "Rejection may be especially hard for poets because their work is uniquely intimate and personal--a rejection of the poem feels like a rejection of the self.  It feels as if it's about YOU in the deepest way.  But when we think about that editor as a mediator between poet and reader, we remember that a finished poem isn't actually about the poet any longer.  In fact, I'd argue that no poem is ever finished until it has become about the reader--until it has created a space for the reader to confront or commune with not the poet but his or her own mind.  If this is true, and I think it is, then the process of finishing the poem is the process of detaching from it and giving it over.  If rejection of a given poem or poems feels so personal to you that you suffer more than a few minutes of ordinary disappointment that your wishes have been thwarted, then you probably haven't really finished the poem."
   I want to strive for the point of finishing my work in progress to the point of not looking back and wondering what still needs to be tweaked. An editor can do that. But first, I must give him or her the chance, after all I can do. Whatever your stage of writing, make November your best writing month yet!

Thursday, October 28, 2010

Finding and Fixing the Weakness

My story had a weakness and I needed to know what it was. Was there a problem with the plot, not enough conflict, what? I had my "ah-hah" moment during a writer's conference as the result of two different classes meshing together in my head. Here are some definitions from one class that I wrote in my notes:
Plot: Action that grows out of conflict in a sequence of events leading to the next conflict. Conflict: keeps characters from what they want. I had both of these to some degree, but they really depended on a major consequence.
Here is the tip from the query letter class that jumped out at me:
Consequence: What will happen if the main character doesn't overcome the conflict? State in one sentence the consequence of the MC not getting what he/she wants. Elana's example: Control or be controlled. If you write this out early in your work in progress, it will help you to stick to the main conflict.
I had action growing out of conflict (plot), I had characters who had trouble getting what they wanted (conflict), but I didn't have a strong enough consequence that it mattered to the reader if the MC could overcome the problem. Strengthen the consequence and I take care of my story's weakness.
So, I have been rereading my manuscript, inserting this stronger dimension and hoping it all still flowed. The extra time it takes will make the story better so it is worth it. Anyway, I'm feeling better about getting the story strong enough to submit soon. (I just hope there doesn't have to be another ah-hah moment of which I am not aware.) I do believe that the more knowledge we gain and can put to use in our craft, the better the results. Be not weary in well-doing. Take the time to get it right to the best of your knowledge. Can I get an "Amen"? Who else has a rewrite or "ah-hah" moment to share?

Sunday, October 17, 2010

Book Review: Dead On Arrival

In my last post where I mentioned sitting next to Jeff Savage at dinner, I told him I was half-way through reading one of his books, Dead On Arrival. It was a happy coincidence and kind of bizarre. I found Jeff to be a personable author, hardly getting in a mouthful of food here and there for the attentive conversation with his neighbors. Thus, this week's post will be a short review of his middle Shandra Covington mystery--no spoilers.
 Jeffrey S. Savage has mastered the hook, and I'm not talking boxing. Each short chapter-ending hooked me to turn the page. It was noticeable right off and continued throughout the book. Sometimes this was achieved by splitting the scene in two at a critical or exciting point. Savage also has a quick way of warming the reader to his likeable main character. This is especially necessary in a series. I enjoyed Shandra's character traits from her curiosity that gets her into interesting situations to her quirky eating habits. I also enjoyed Savage's portrayal of a minor love interest that is mutually agreed upon by the involved characters to not become a love interest. (Read the book and you'll understand.) A character exclusive to this story, Pinky Templeton, is just odd enough to be slightly annoying, yet commands the reader's attention because of it. The intriguing twists about him kept me guessing.
The thing I hadn't expected was the abrupt ending where the story continues with A Time To Die. Fortunately it is currently available. But I must admit, I don't like it when I have to wait a while to find out what happens. A profitable technique--Look what it's done for The Hunger Games. What's your opinion on cliffhanger endings?

Friday, October 1, 2010

A Strange Day

Yesterday, while I was having breakfast with Brandon Mull and Lisa Mangum (among others at my table), my husband was called into his boss's office to hear the news that he was one of 400 to be layed off at ATK. While I was having my query letter reviewed my Kirk Shaw and listening to 'story ideas that rock' from presenter John Brown, my husband was packing things from his desk and shelves. As I hob-nobbed with famous authors and author-to-be's and we clicked photo ops with friends old and new, the press interviewed my husband about his feelings of being let go after twenty-five years of service. With my buddy, Melissa Cunningham, we dined out with such delightful company as Jeff Savage, Tristi Pinkston, and too many to name while my husband and last child at home heated something in the microwave.
I thoroughly enjoyed the Book Academy Conference at UVU, pushing to the back of my mind what was going on at home. But it's strange to be gleaning wisdom to make me a better writer and having such a good time when traditionally I should feel upset.
There is a peace about our family situation and I have faith we will be taken care of, but it makes me want to pour all that gleaned wisdom into the final edits of my novel and make it the best I can even more than before. Attending two conferences in two weeks has put a fire under me that I don't want to quench before the manuscript is sent off. The conference did for me what it was intended to do. My goal is to have the MS complete by the end of October. There--I've said it out loud.
Anybody out there want to say their goal out loud?
Happy writing, my friends.

Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Publisher's Panel Discussion

I took notes at the LUW Publisher's Panel Discussion and will pass them along with one change. I will not specify who said exactly what, but will lump the comments together by subject. This will get the points across in the least space possible. If you want specifics, make a comment and I'll dig deeper. Participants included: Agents Katie Grimm and Blair Hewes, commercial fiction author John Gilstrap, LDS editors Kathryn Jenkins and Cory Maxwell, and LDS author and Precision Editing Group owner Heather B. Moore.
Current changes in publishing:
   1. Volume of submissions increased, expectations raised.
   2. Electronic book sales up 3 to 1 over published books.
   3. Internet and blogging used for book reviews, making connections.
   4. Book still needs a hook.
   5. Nonfiction is bigger than it has been.
   1. Much more falls to the author. It's a business, learn it.
   2. Twitter/FB/Blog to connect with audience, to get known.
   3. Be patient. Don't expect huge first novel success.
   4. How much marketing an author can do is factored into picking up a book for LDS market, some others.
   1. Process is different for LDS market. Agents not needed. Agents needed for bigger, national houses.
   2. Internet and blogging essential.
   3. Agents lunch with publishers to connect on personal level so they will know better who to try to fit you with.
   4. Precision Editing will give you free query advice.
   5. New authors generally should have their MS finished when pitching. They want the whole thing but will look at partials. For a series, first should be complete, then an indication of the next ones.
Common Mistakes:
   1.First page with backstory or no hook. Focus on hook first.
   2. Know your central plot and action.
   3. Can't have a sagging middle. Make all compelling.
   4. Know what the publisher/agent currently wants. (Example--Historical wanted more than modern romance.)
Where do you get clients?
   1. Mostly from queries, some referrals.
   2. You need to stand out. If you talk with them at a conference, mention it in your letter, etc.
   3. Tell in query how your book is different than what is out there, especially LDS market.
   4. Be professional.
   5. Incorporating MC's voice in query can make it stand out.
   1. Should have more than cosmetic changes.
   2. Publisher will ask for rewrites if they are interested so use judgement before deciding on your own if the story merits a redo.
   3. Give a little time before a resubmission. Be upfront in query and tell what changes have been made.
   4. There are lots of agents out there so why walk into the same propellor?
   5. Rejection doesn't mean don't try them again. They will always look at what is sent.
Critique Groups:
   1. Get lots of feedback whether through a CG or alpha readers. Need readers who can look critically.
   2. The CG has to work for you. Don't stay in it if it doesn't.
   3. Reader shouldn't tell how to fix it, just what doesn't work for them. Casual input can be damaging.
   4. Skilled writers make the best groups.
   5. Don't ignore publisher guidelines when considering feedback.
Picking Genres:
   1. Start with one genre until becoming known before diversifying. There are advantages to diversifying but it's harder when starting out in a new one.
Timeline from Agent to Publishing:
   1. There are usually 1-2 revisions. Condition of MS plays a part.
   2. LDS market--Decision within 6 months, 8-12 months or longer to publish.
   3. Known authors might have the same time slot for release every year until something happens to mess up the schedule. Writer is given deadlines for the next outline, etc. until release.
   4. Covenant's fiction line is planned through 2012. It can depend if the market is up or down. Generally 18-24 months to turn out a book. (They used to turn out 4 fiction books a month, it went down to one a month, and is now back to 3 a month.)
What feedback was the biggest help to you?

Friday, September 24, 2010

Compelling Characters and Emotion

Characters are meant to be loved, hated, pitied, envied. If a character does not evoke some emotion for the reader, he/she is flat and forgettable. The story will not hold a reader's interest. Readers need to care enough about the character to feel emotion throughout the story. This can be done on different levels. There is no way to cover this subject in a few paragraphs and I don't pretend to be anywhere near an expert, but here are a few things to think about:
1. Show emotion, don't Tell. Let us see the character's feelings through their actions and facial expressions.
2. Connections are made when the character feels real. She has a strength and a flaw. He is believable and shows growth over time.
3. Something movitates the character. Use strong emotion to drive them to the goal. Does fear, vengence, or love spur the hero on to recuse the princess and how will you show that? What are the goals of each major character? Emotion adds drama as the character moves toward a goal.
4. The Point of View of the character whose perspective is being shown can give the imformation about himself (as well as about setting and plot). Make what is relevant to the character become relevant to the reader. We learn more about him through his eyes while emotion seeps into the picture that the reader sees.
5. Give the guard at the door, the pharmacist, the waitress a brief description or characteristic worth mentioning to create visual images in minor characters. You don't want to introduce each attendee at the party, but we can form an opinion or get an emotional glimpse by an action such as a woman fluffing her hair.
My thanks to Elana Johnson and her challenge to write about characterization. Check out the other bloggers who posted this topic today. Put all that info to use and Bam!--you've got compelling characters. (I wish it were as easy as it sounds but improvement is certain with knowledge and effort.)

Sunday, September 19, 2010

Roundup Wrapup

The League of Utah Writer's (LUW) Roundup Conference had a lot to offer this past weekend and I'm going to be blogging about that in my next few posts, maybe even more often than once this week since there are so many great things to pass along. I hope you'll stay tuned and benefit from the notes I took. Think of it as a free mini-conference. Things struck me differently this time than my first conference last spring--probably because I am in the final stages of getting my MS ready to send out.

One thing that left a lasting impression was the closing remarks by Ed Smith. He said something like, "Go back and make use of what you learned today. Otherwise, your time and the presenters' time has been wasted." So true!

I need to implement those hard things I learned so that my novel will become more polished before submitting. I need to work on this blog and perfect that query letter (thank you, Elana). The motivational shot in the arm should flow down to my typing fingers for a little while because I know what I need to fix in order to get desirable results. It isn't easy and it takes time but if we can get to our 100% (as Elana says), then we can push forward with confidence and have a greater chance at success. May you have the desire and energy this week to go out and make use of what you know you should do is my hope as we encourage one another. Happy writing!
I took 3rd place in Creative Nonfiction at LUW!

Sunday, September 12, 2010

Award Winning Authors

It's official. I've joined the ranks of award winning authors. Second year in a row. Okay, so it was just a literary contest sponsered by my community for our annual Peach Days festivities but I did get some prize money and a certificate for both pieces I entered. That counts, doesn't it?
The point is, sometimes we need to stretch ourselves by writing something apart from our WIP (work in progress). It's really nice to work on a short piece sometimes--especially when the novel word count feels like we haven't made a dent. If we get a reward for our efforts along the way, so much the better. The biggest reward is feeling encouraged that one's writing is good enough. Anyone who remains steadfast in the writing craft is a winner to me.
Here's my Second Place Essay (a humorous commentary on today's newlyweds):
Burnt Offerings
Newlyweds have it too easy these days. All they have to do is speed dial Mom and ask which cycle to run the wash for hubby’s dress shirt or for that recipe for Corn Flake Chicken. Or they might check the Internet for the answers. Perhaps they’ll pay attention to the food channel or that do-it-yourself network on the new flat screen TV they got as a group wedding gift from the office.

Why, when I was a bride it was trial and error. If hubby’s dress shirt came out pink instead of brilliant white, he’d just have to find a new tie to go with it. If I got out the ingredients for dinner and found out hubby polished off the Corn Flakes that morning, we’d just have to make do with Shredded Wheat and call it Wooly Chicken instead. If dinner got burned, the bride would cry while her husband told her it was the best meal ever. There was none of this running out for fast food to cover the catastrophe. Folks just didn’t spend money like they do today.

With credit card applications coming in the mailbox every other day, even high school seniors and college freshmen have at least one card to help them feel prepared for emergencies or feel better about those pesky school loans. They’ve learned that it’s only plastic after all, so it’s future money their spending. They’re too into the instant gratification mode to notice the recession going on out there. Haven’t their mothers taught them anything important?

Another thing that rankles my hind end about young couples these days is that they think they can afford a brand new house like the one they just left off living in with their parents. Or a shiny, fast car, for that matter. Just because they waited to marry until they both graduated from college and secured good jobs doesn’t mean they should start out so high on the hog. What about the merits of living off love for those first years? Isn’t that supposed to shape you into the best “one flesh” you can be? There is no “for better or for worse”. There’s only “for better”.

Forget having babies right off the bat. Who wants to be saddled with midnight feedings and diapers when your new career is hitting the jackpot? Not the newlyweds living next door to me. The lights on at midnight turn out to be the weekend parties they throw. The music is so loud I can’t get to sleep after enduring the evening drooling over the smell wafting out of the catering truck.

Even more important than the neighbors not having babies, my daughter and her new husband haven’t thought about it either. You’d think my daughter would listen to the pleas of her dear mother to make me a grandmother, but every time they come over, my eyes bounce from her flat belly to her face giving me “the look”. I roll my eyes right back at her and bite back a question about if she knows what to do. I’m certain the stork will make a visit later than sooner. My only consolation is that I taught her what it means to use a credit card.

I went to a bridal shower the other day for my niece and the gifts they give these days could put a person into the poor house. No more oohs and ahs over the Teflon cake pans. Now it’s got to be a Bosch mixer or a bread machine before somebody lifts an eyebrow. Even though the bride-to-be doesn’t know where she’s going on her honeymoon, she knows it has to do with plane tickets and beaches. That’s what credit cards are for!

When I was young we got one night in a motel and then we took off to go camping in a tent. I’m talking about the heavy canvas kind handed down from Grandma or Uncle Albert that takes half an afternoon to set up. Those tents retain so much heat they could cook you alive if you stayed in ‘em too long. We didn’t care; there weren’t any of those pop-up dome tents to get jealous over. We worked together, batting our eyelashes at one another before hammering in the next stake. The scent of pine needles and a sky full of stars was our reward. Now that was getting away from it all. That was adventure. You can’t buy those kinds of memories.

I’m standing over the stove, smiling at the recollection of my honeymoon and thinking there’s no use denying times have changed. I just wish girls these days could experience some of the struggles I went through as a new bride—the kind of things that helped a couple make important choices together and drew them closer because nothing was easy. The kind of experiences that keep a couple together through thick and thin, through pink dress shirts and Wooly Chicken.

My nose brings me out of my musings and I shake my head. On occasion I still serve burnt offerings. But tonight I’m leaning toward changing with those times. I call out to the familiar form in the living room arm chair. “Dear, get your coat. We’re going out to eat.”

After all this time, I’ve earned it.

Friday, September 3, 2010

Right Brain, Left Brain

I followed some writers’ comments showing great variance in their answers to such questions as “Do you listen to music when you write?” or “How do you get the creative juices to flow?” Someone may give a tip that I really like and another time I think I would never try that. We are all so different and that is a beautiful thing. We need to find out what works and doesn’t work for us and balance that with a willingness to try something new that could potentially enhance our craft.

This got me to thinking that maybe there is no right way to write. Maybe it’s a Right Brain/Left Brain thing.

I keep hearing that a first draft should just flow and let whatever you are thinking come as fast as it can. The edit and cleanup comes later. Just get it down. Okay. Am I doing that when I type a couple paragraphs that seem to flow, but then I stop and reread them before I can go on with the next flowing sequence? I may not be spending time figuring out a better word but if something glares at me I will fix it right then. It feels creative to me to make it better. Then I get to the end of reading the section I've written and I’m ready to go again. But only for a section. I don’t understand someone who can write the whole thing from start to finish without going back over what they've written. It’s as if my left brain's organization and structure wants to keep inserting herself into my right brain’s creative flow. Is this normal? Perhaps it is for me. Perhaps it’s only lack of experience.

Try this for fun: Clasp your hands together with fingers interlocking. Which thumb is on top? Now fold your arms. Which arm crosses on top? Chances are they are the same. Right thumb or arm on top leans toward being left brained and vice versa. I should say here that everyone uses both sides of the brain but that we have a tendency toward favoring one side to some degree. The amount of favoring can change, especially before adulthood.

Out of curiosity, I took a couple online brain quizzes. The shortest one pegged me as right-brained. Laugh out loud! I really do enjoy the editing process as much as the writing, music distracts me, and I look at a scene sequentially in parts that make up a whole. Very left-brained. Another had me almost totally left-brained and another put me as 58% left to 42% right. Go figure.

In reality, it takes a mixture of left- and right-brained thinking to be a writer. Upfront, one can see the imagination it takes to dream up the story. Underneath, logic is used to figure out the path a character would take or which word is best. The trick is to play our strengths and become a more balanced thinker in the weak areas while we use our whole brains to write. That is when what we write becomes truly satisfying.
Do you agree? So, which side dominates for you and how does it affect your writing?