Friday, September 24, 2010

How Do You Write a Smile?

Don't take me too seriously on this one, but I like my characters to be happy and I find it a challenge to write a smile. Yes, I know it’s all right to write he smiled, but sometimes it gets monotonous. In an 80,000-word novel it takes a lot of creative writing to keep your character creatively smiling.

The English language doesn’t have enough substitutes for the word smile.Grin, beam, and smirk is all my thesaurus offers. To avoid each smile from sounding like the last, the writer will sometimes use modifiers such as toothy, wide, lopsided, ridiculous, or that the ends of her mouth turn up. If the character’s eyes light up, her smile smiles differently than two pages ago.

Maybe someone should make a long list of smile descriptions, cut them in slips, put them in a jar and market it to writers. Whenever they need to write a smile, they can draw one out and, kazam! It’s done. (The inventor will probably make more money than from book royalties.)

Another word we English conversers got shorted on is laugh. There isn’t a word for an ordinary, boring huff. If it is an everyday grin—no emotion involved—there’s not a lot to choose from. Everyone laughs. If we don’t blow out our breath in a quiet laugh, we just smile, or there we go grinning again.

The best we can do is chuckle, and if you’re under sixteen you can giggle. If you are a little loony you may twitter and chortle. Boys snicker. Males hoot. Old women snort and cackle (may I never be that old.) And if you just lose it altogether, you are allowed a guffaw or two.

None of these offer what I’m looking for. Got laughs?

Wednesday, September 8, 2010

My Double Life by Janette Rallison

Today's guest reviewer is Dylan.

My Double Life by Janette Rallison

Everyone wonders what it is like to be a celebrity for a day.

What a fun book! Any teen would love this story about Elexia, a witty honor student from a poor family, who is a dead ringer for pop star Kari
Kingsley. When Elexia's picture gets posted on the Internet, Kari's manager calls and offers her a job as Kari'
s double. Unbeknown to her fans, Kari is knee deep in debt for gambling and a shopping addiction. And to add into the mix, Kari's father happens to be Elexia's mother's celebrity i

This rags-to-riches story is fun, whimsical, and has a touch of sweet romance. MDL is a
laugh-out-loud ride that keeps you enthralled to the last page. Readers will relate easily to the realistic, likable characters, including the Nazi-ish manager. My Double Life's well thought-out plot is executed smoothl
y like a great movie.

Visit Janette's website.
Visit Dylan's blog.

Monday, September 6, 2010

Today's Smile

Today my young adult children were talking.
Ted: Do kids really believe there are monsters under their beds?
Rex: We always had so much food storage under there that we knew there wasn't room for monsters.