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Six Structural Tips to Know before Writing Your Story

Hemingway was an iconic American novelist and taught us brevity and economy of words was important to writing great literary fiction.  In addition to the words you choose, and the words you don’t choose, structure brings form and function to the over all story. Here are six tips to help you develop better pieces of literary fiction. Know the structure of your conflict: Writing literary fiction is not simply a presentation of imaginary scenes and events. It is characters wrapped in conflict – physical, mental, or emotional — searching for resolution. To achieve such conflict you must place a reader in the scene through narration, and characters must change over time in thought or trait to a heightened understanding – enlightenment.  Though this process, a reader becomes engrossed in the character’s growth Build change and discovery into your characters: Through the development of characters in your story, a reader’s mind is changed and he or she discovers something new. These moments of enlightenment are best described as decisive moments Decide on what goal your story should achieve: Clearly articulating a goal for your story makes writing more targeted and readers are apt to enjoy your work. Remember while the structure of your story should not change drastically, the goal may change as you work through drafts. Don’t fret, this is normal. Limitations are opportunities to be creativity: Many writers reject structure to the detriment of their craft, arguing that less restraints improve plot discovery and creativity over time. This is dead wrong. Structure does not diminish creativity, it enhances storytelling. Be realistic about writing: The challenge with storytelling is finding the story in images and scenes, than capturing them in words. It is not randomly describing events as they come to your mind. The process is more deliberate. Don’t elevate your prose: Elevated prose downplays action and drama as the source of reader satisfaction and involvement. This error usually arises from a lack of structure. It’s like over compensating for an inadequacy, that of good structure. You should have noticed, structure is as important as the words used to tell a story. Without it, creativity is actually stunted, conflict is difficult to develop, and crystallizing your goal for writing becomes fuzz at best. … [Read more...]

Why did I write “I Remember Me”

Each morning, while on my morning stroll, a succession of  humorous incidents and exciting celebrities kept popping into my mind, things I would have liked to include in my last published memoir, “”. “Hey,” I said to myself, “Who’s stopping you from writing another book …?” And thus “I Remember Me.” was born. Incidently, whenever anyone asked me the title of my book and I told them, “I Remember Me”, it was invariably met with a laugh, or at least a chuckle. My biggest reaction was from a woman who asked, “Mr. Reiner, why did you write “I Remember me?” And I said: “To Save the world!” … [Read more...]

Immerse Yourself in The Life of a Hollywood Comedic Icon

Carl Reiner is known for adopting emerging technology and media trends, first molding the format of the live comedy program as a performer on “Your Show of Shows.”  Later he pushed the boundaries of standard comedy scripts in the hit TV sitcom, “The Dick Van Dyke Show.” He hasn’t stopped pushing those boundaries with the release of his new iBook, I Remember Me. The new digital book has embedded film clips, letters, pictures and motion picture excerpts, which gives a reader the sensation they’re sitting next to Reiner in his home listening to stories of Hollywood’s greatest comedians, directors and stars from his life. /center>I Remember Me weaves a colorful American tapestry of tales, beginning with the timid musings of a young boy on the verge of becoming a man in the Jewish section of New York’s Bronx neighborhood. Reiner brings us to date with the mature insight of a man whose remarkable path has sent him to the top of Hollywood’s elite and sparked the careers of dozens of household-name entertainers. Along the way, Reiner treats his loyal readers to everything from the ordinary to the truly unforgettable: a family trip to a nude beach, French lesson with Mel Brooks, a chapter dedicated to Rinnie the dog who unfortunately mistakes a skunk for a cat, a surprise early-morning visit from the McCarthy era FBI, a heart wrenching story of loss describing the day of his wife’s passing, and then in a revealing chapter of Reiner’s character, he describes “the most theatrically triumphant day” of his young career. Through his memoir, we meet the man behind the success in roles seen before:  son to Romanian immigrant Irving Reiner, husband to fellow Bronx native and renowned singer Estelle Reiner, father to the prolific filmmaker Rob Reiner, Dr. Annie Reiner psychoanalyst and gifted singer, and Lucas Reiner, a globally recognized fine artist. Written with the same combination of playful jest and modest humility that has garnered the love and respect of fans for generations, I Remember Me remembers the creative and inspiring journey of one of the most revered comedic icons of the past hundred years. Given Reiner’s panache for entertainment greatness, the Emmy and Grammy-Award winning actor, film director, producer, writer and comedian is tweeting as well. He jumped into Twitter, embracing the 140 characters to deliver his unique brand of humor with seemingly extinct witty one-liners. “I was so excited to discover I was not in the in memoriam! #Oscars.” Twitter chose this tweet from the 2013 Oscars to be featured as one of the top tweets of 2013. … [Read more...]

7 Questions Every Writer Should Answer before Penning One Word

To reach maximum potential, authors of fiction must discover who they are and why they write. In many ways, the telling of fictional stories is a performance that can be damaged or destroyed by ill-conceived attitudes about writing. Here are some questions you should be asking yourself about writing:  Do I write to master the skills and concepts of writing as an art form (or do I write stories to explain experienced emotions)?  Do I strive to tell a creative fictional story based on imagination (or am I writing a memoir or biography)?  Do I write for creative excellence (or for fame)?  Do I write to provide meaning through entertainment and enlightenment (or to persuade to some presumption)?  Do I rewrite to improve my creative story skills (or do I revise to transform my prose into obscure text with an intellectually intense meaning)?  Do I believe stories are dramatic events for a reader to experience (or written words for the reader to interpret)?  Do I believe stories are structures whose unity is discovered as reading progresses (or that they are meandering observations described step by step)? By answering these questions honestly in your own mind, you will adjust your attitude toward writing to create even better work. In later posts, I will follow up with my thoughts on these. … [Read more...]

Memories That Did Not Make the Cut

After the book went to print, I saw Marlo Thomas being interviewed about St Jude, the wonderful children’s charity her father spearheaded. Three distinct memories flooded back: One was of sitting with my wife at a table at Le Martinique, a night club where Marlo’s Dad was headlining. We were exited to see Danny Thomas , a Chicago comedian who burst upon the scene and had become one of the most popular comedians of the day. It was 1946, I had just been honorably discharged from the army, was unemployed and did not have the wherewithal to afford going to a fancy night club. Miraculously the wherewithal presented itself in the form a small black change purse that I found on the floor of a Walgreen’s phone booth. While chatting with my wife, I examined the purse’s contents and found eleven dollars, and happily, no name or address of its owner. With those eleven dollars I treated my wife and myself to dinner and a performance of the great Danny Thomas telling hilarious stories about his life, which included  his now classic, “Jack Story”. My second meeting was with Danny and his partner Sheldon Leonard, where I learned of their offer to finance the pilot of the Dick Van Dyke Show. If that weren’t enough, Danny was the one who recommended that Mary Tyler Moore play the part of Laura. He had auditioned her to play his daughter on his series. “Make Room For Daddy” but felt that no one would believe a girl with such a cute upturned nose could be spawned by someone with a beak like his. Our third encounter was many years later. Danny hired Mel and I to perform our “Two Thousand Year Old Man” on one of his variety specials. I recently saw a tape of that show and I am happy to report that the 2000 year old man is funnier than ever! … [Read more...]

Importance of Gun Safety

Everyone seems to have a gun these days, and it's more important than ever to have proper protection i.e. using a gun safe. This can be attributed to escalating cases of violence that have necessitated the need for citizens to be on their guard all the time. These events have also been occasioned by changes in legislation that have relaxed laws on firearms. While this change is positive and welcomed, it comes with serious risks that need addressing. Safety concerns dictate that gun holders find ways of keeping their guns away from people who are not supposed to come into contact with them. One of the solutions that have proved secure is gun safes. Importance of gun safes 1. Safes keep guns away from children Kids do not know the issues that come with keeping a gun. They just see their heroes in the movies killing bad people and restoring order in the world. Your kid may not have handled a gun before and most probably does not know the difference between a weapon that is loaded and one that is not .As far as children are concerned; guns are tools they can point at their friends or even themselves. Safes are impenetrable to kids and that is where your gun should stay locked away. 2. Protection from burglars Guns are rare and expensive merchandise, especially for specialists and collectors. If you keep guns for the fun of it, then you have probably made a huge investment in them. It would be truly sad if a thief broke in and simply went up to your drawer and made off with your beloved collection. You do not want this to happen, so you must invest in a gun safe just as you did with the actual firearms. Modern safes are very advanced, some coming with biometric technologies that have an impressive degree of security. Some safes also come rigged with alarm systems that help you to detect any breach. 3. Safes save you from criminal compromise There have been people who have fallen afoul of the law without knowing it. For instance, a gun is stolen from your drawer and then is used in a burglary or murder. When the police carry out their ballistics investigations, they will find your fingerprints all over the gun that is legally registered to you .This could land you in all sorts of trouble. Alternatively, malicious people could use a gun to commit a crime and break into your home to switch it with one of your on. You might have a way to prove your non-involvement, but it will take time, energy and money. Save yourself the trouble by buying a gun safe. Guns are a great tool of protection against adversity. However, guns without safes in which to stash them away are ticking time bombs. Technological improvements have created impenetrable gun safes. Depending on your ability, you can get your hands on a safe that will suit your gun requirements. Advanced safes with biometric potentialities tend to be pricey, but a simple safe worth a decent amount of money will suffice. … [Read more...]