Posted On September 25, 2009 by Print This Post

New York Times Writing and the EDITS System

I took Margie Lawson’s EDITS class when I was editing my very first manuscript. Let me tell you, Margie helped me see that book in an entirely new light! Today, she’s going to share with us some of the power behind NYT-level writing.

Welcome, Margie!Margie Lawson photo 12.15.07

A big THANK YOU to Adrienne and Kelsey and Tracey for inviting me to be their guest today.  I’m pleased to be here.

Today I’m diving into how to write so well, that your strong writing craft and fresh writing boosts you toward the New York Times Bestseller list.   Sound good?

Please give me ten seconds of your time first.  I want to tell you about my DRAWING for BIG PRIZES.  Anyone who contributes $25 or more in my second fundraiser to support my cousin and ALS, will have a chance to win one of two $450 prizes.

My cousin has Lou Gehrig’s disease. If he’s lucky, he has two more years to live. I am as determined to help him deal with this disease, as I am devastated.   

My determination extends to offering two more $450 prizes for writers. 

Donate $25 on my cousin’s ALS web site, and you could win a prize valued at $450!

Your choice of prizes:

1.  Five Hours of One-On-One Deep Edit Consulting, in Person, by Phone, or Skype — worth over $450!
2.  Registration for a 3-day Immersion Master Class:  Deep Editing Power, in 2010 – –  valued at $450!               
The drawing is October 10th, 5PM, Eastern Standard Time.  Please check out the details on my web site:   www.MargieLawson.com

So far, only four people have entered the drawing.  And — I’m drawing two names.  We’ll have TWO BIG WINNERS!

The odds are in your favor, big time!  Thank you.   

Now – we get to dive into the fun. 

If you’ve taken some of my editing courses on-line, you may recall I recommend adding  NYT to your margin tracking list for your WIP.  Why?  Because when your writing is powerful, it gives you a boost toward the NYT Bestseller list.

I developed four editing courses – and each are loaded with dozens of Deep Editing techniques that teach writers how to add power to their writing.  One of those techniques is the EDITS System.

When creating the EDITS System, my goal was to determine what components of a scene set the strongest emotional hook. What made a book a page-turner.

The EDITS System is the ultimate SHOW DON’T TELL power tool. Writers use the EDITS SYSTEM to analyze scene components. It shows writers what they have on each page. It shows writers where to add power. It shows writers what’s working, what’s not working, and what’s missing.

When writers use this highlighting system, patterns emerge for each scene. They may be surprised to see that in an emotionally-driven scene, they kept the POV character in their head, locked in internalizations. All thoughts, no visceral responses. If the writer slipped in a few visceral responses, they’d take the scene from the POV character’s head, and the reader’s head, to the reader’s heart.

The EDITS System helps writers find a compelling balance of Emotion, Dialogue, Internalizations, Tension/Conflict, Setting, as well as dialogue cues, action, body language, senses, and more…that works for their specific scene dynamics. 

Given that the story is compelling, the plot is strong, and the characters live in your heart or dreams or nightmares – what writing craft processes could make the difference between a skimmer and a winner?

What can writers do to keep a reader so committed to the read, that they’d rather finish your book, than sleep in, eat chocolate, or have sex?

The answers? Write fresh. Add psychological power. Include the incontrovertible power of the visceral response – accelerated heart rate, sweaty palms, dry mouth, tight chest, clenched stomach, weak knees, blood rushing to chest, neck, and face, adrenaline pumping, heart pummeling rib cage…

Now for more fun! Below – you’ll find one character description, three visceral responses, and ten dialogue cues. Wish I could have a 50 page blog. I have over 2000 pages of lectures loaded with power-packed sections on teaching, make-your-heart-pound examples and dig-deep analyses. So fun!

CHARACTER DESCRIPTION:

Tana French, THE LIKENESS:

I’d been expecting someone so nondescript he was practically invisible, maybe the Cancer Man from The X Files, but this guy had rough, blunt features and wide blue eyes, and the kind of presence that leaves heat streaks on the air where he’s been.

Kudos to Tana French! Don’t you wish you’d written that description??

VISCERAL RESPONSES:

In the EDITS System, VISCERAL RESPONSES are the only things highlighted in PINK. Not a kick in the shins. Not watching someone get shot.

Everything can carry emotion, but the only component of the scene highlighted in PINK is a visceral response. Dialogue, action, facial expressions, thoughts (internalizations) – all may carry emotion. But it’s the visceral response that carries the biggest emotional punch.

If the writer neglects to have the POV character experience a visceral response after an emotionally-loaded stimulus – the passage is not as powerful, not as credible. Not a page-turner.

Here are three examples of fresh writing that include a visceral response.

Greg Iles, MORTAL FEAR:

My insides fell to liquid, seemed to foam up and fill my lungs flooding them and forcing away my breath.  I was eleven again, small and scared.

C.J. Lyons, LIFELINES:

Her breath caught, couldn’t make it all the way down her lungs.  It was as if a malignant mass pressed against her heart and chest, threatened to choke her.  And it kept on growing, twisting her gut, an unbearable pressure.

Tana French, THE LIKENESS:

My hand was on the door handle when for a split second out of nowhere I was terrified, blue-blazing terrified, fear dropping straight through me like a jagged black stone falling fast.  I’d felt this before, in the limbo instants before I moved out of my aunt’s house, lost my virginity, took my oath as a police officer: those instants when the irrevocable thing you wanted so much suddenly turns real and solid, inches away and speeding at you, a bottomless river rising and no way back once it’s crossed.  I had to catch myself from crying out like a little kid drowning in terror, I don’t want to do this any more.

DIALOGUE CUES:

Here’s one more Deep Editing goodie.  I coined the term DIALOGUE CUES to describe the phrases and sentences that inform the reader HOW the dialogue was delivered.  Dialogue Cues share the SPEED, TONE, QUALITY, VOLUME, or PITCH.

Dialogue cues are easy to spot with my EDITS System –they usually come right after the dialogue.  If the POV character is describing how he/she is trying to alter their voice when they speak, that dialogue cue is before the line of dialogue. 

Writers may write short dialogue cues that describe the voice in a standard way:

  • His tone was rough. 
  • Her voice jumped an octave. 
  • His voice had a sarcastic edge.
  • Her words sounded more harsh than she intended. 

The first three examples above are basic dialogue cues.  They provide one piece of information regarding how to interpret the dialogue.  The fourth example includes two hits of information regarding the dialogue delivery.

Writers can also write dialogue cues in fresh ways. Here are three dialogue cues from BLACK OUT, by Lisa Unger:

1.  I snap back to the conversation and listen for signs of skepticism in her voice.  But there’s just her usual light and musing tone, the wide-open expression on her face.

2.  I kept my voice flat and unemotional.  I didn’t want him to know my heart—how afraid I was, how much I needed him.

3.  Her cell phone rings, and she looks at me apologetically as she answers it.  I can tell by the shift in her tone that it’s her husband.  Her voice gets softer.

Here are ten dialogue cues from Tana French, THE LIKENESS.

1. All the laughter and façade had gone out of his voice, and I knew Frank well enough to know that this was when he was most dangerous.

2. “Hey, fair enough,” Frank said, in an equable voice that made me feel like an idiot. NOTE:  Stimulus and response in example above.  It works well.  😉

3. There was a ragged edge to his voice, something frustrated and almost pleading.

4. “Yeah,” Rafe said, but the anger had drained out of his voice and he just sounded very, very tired.

 5. “Don’t you want to hear what I’ve been doing with my day?”  That undercurrent of excitement in his voice: very few things get Frank that worked up.  “Damn straight,” I said.

6. There was something in his voice, something precarious as the smell of petrol, ready and waiting to ignite at the first spark.    

7. I couldn’t read his voice; no one does neutral like Frank.

8. “You’ve always been a funny guy,” I said, hoping the wave of relief wouldn’t leak into my voice.

 9. His voice didn’t sharpen, but it had an undertow that made my shoulders go up. NOTE:  Stimulus and response in example above.  Powerful. 

10. Out in the kitchen, Doherty said something shaped like a punchline and everyone laughed; the laugher was perfect, unforced and friendly, and it made me edgy as hell.
WOW!  Tana French writes fresh!   It’s not surprising her debut novel won a Macavity.  😉

The Last Example!

Here’s an amplified example from Harlan Coben, LONG LOST.  My Deep Editing Analysis is below the example.

I was about to crack wise—something like “tell all your friends” or “sigh, another satisfied customer”—but something in her tone made me pull up.   Something in her tone overwhelmed me and made me ache.  I squeezed her hand and stayed silent and then I watched her walk away.

ANALYSIS:

1. Showed WHAT WASN’T HAPPENING, what he didn’t say

2. SPECIFICITY – throughout the passage

3. Rhetorical Device – A DOUBLE.  I made up that term – DOUBLE.   SOMETHING IN HER TONE is an intentional echo.  It’s almost the rhetorical device, anaphora — repetition of first word or phrases of three phrases or sentences in a row.   Powerful.

4. Second part of the DOUBLE – goes DEEPER.  Taps emotion.

5. TONE is used as a STIMULUS – and the reader gets FIVE RESPONSES from her TONE:  pull up (stop), overwhelmed, ache, squeezed hand, stayed silent, watched her walk away (did not follow her)     

6. POV character shared what he intended to do, but didn’t – because of her TONE.

7. Rhetorical Device:  AMPLIFICATION:  developed emotion and showed all those responses 

8. COMMUNICATION with HAPTICS – touch

9. Rhetorical Device:  POLYSYNDETON – Last sentence uses multiple conjunctions and no commas.  Makes the read more imperative.

10. CADENCE – strong. 

11. TAPS EMOTION.

I would label the description and all the visceral responses NYT.  I provided a variety of Dialogue Cues — for your enjoyment.  I’d label a few of them, the complex examples NYT.  The writing is fresh – but not so fresh that it trips the reader. 

It’s the kind of fresh that gives the reader an uplift.  It’s cotton-candy-on-your-tongue writing.  It makes you want more and more and more.  It’s the caliber of writing you find in some New York Times Bestsellers.

NOW IT’S YOUR TURN!

Post to the blog – and YOU COULD WIN A LECTURE PACKET!

1.  You may post an example of fresh writing from your WIP or fresh writing from one of your favorite authors.

2.  You may write something fresh – and post it. 

3.  You may post a comment — or post ‘Hi Margie!’

PLEASE INCLUDE YOUR E-MAIL ADDRESS in your post.  THANKS!

For every 25 people who post today, I will draw a name for a Lecture Packet, a $22 value.  Winners may choose a Lecture Packet from one of my six on-line courses: 

1.  Empowering Characters’ Emotions

2.  Deep Editing:  The EDITS System, Rhetorical Devices, and More

3.  Writing Body Language and Dialogue Cues Like a Psychologist

4.  Powering Up Body Language in Real Life:  Projecting a Professional Persona When Pitching and Presenting 

5.  Digging Deep into the EDITS System

6.  Defeat Self-Defeating Behaviors

I teach DIGGING DEEP INTO THE EDITS SYSTEM on-line in October.  It’s a two-part course, each two weeks long.  For people who cannot fit the course in their schedule in October, the Lecture Packet can be ordered through PayPal from my web site.   Parts 1 and 2 of Digging Deep are bundled in one $22 Lecture Packet.

Margie Lawsonpsychotherapist, writer, and international presenter—developed innovative editing systems and deep editing techniques for writers.

Her Deep Editing tools are used by all writers, from newbies to NYT Bestsellers.  She teaches writers how to edit for psychological power, how to hook the reader viscerally, how to create a page-turner.

Over four thousand writers have learned Margie’s psychologically-based deep editing material.  In the last five years, she presented forty-nine full day Master Classes for writers in the U.S., Canada, Australia, and New Zealand.

Lectures from each of Margie’s on-line courses are offered as Lecture Packets through PayPal from her web site.  For more information on courses, lecture packets, master classes, and the four sessions of 3-day Immersion Master Classes for 2010, visit:  www.MargieLawson.com

 

Similar Posts:

Share Button

Craft of Writing

Discussion

43 Responses to “New York Times Writing and the EDITS System”

  1. Hi, Margie! It’s always great to read your tips. Thanks for sharing!

    Posted by Meagan Hatfield | September 25, 2009, 7:18 am
  2. Good morning, Margie and thank you for being here. I’m all signed up for the digging deep class and I’m excited to get my highlighters going again. Your system changed the way I look at my work. I highlight every page and the thing I’ve noticed is that my critique partners generally don’t comment on the elements in the EDITS system. The comments are usually more about plot or characterization. I think using your system has cut down the amount of editing that needs to be done. It’s a beautiful thing!

    Thanks, Margie!

    Posted by Adrienne Giordano | September 25, 2009, 7:33 am
    • Adrienne —

      Yay! You have a healthy addiction to the EDITS System!

      Glad you’re using the highlighters to make your writing stronger. I bet you think the EDITS System while you write . . . and cut back on your editing time too.

      Looking forward to seeing you on-line — and in my Immersion Master Class here on the mountain in May too!

      Thanks for inviting me to be your guest today!

      All smiles………..Margie

      Posted by Margie | September 25, 2009, 10:07 am
  3. I just got through taking Margie’s 3 day workshop and it was great!!! Lots of information to make your writing better.
    Thanks, Margie.

    Posted by Margaret Daley | September 25, 2009, 8:14 am
    • Margaret —

      I should have T-shirts made for all my Immersion Master Class graduates:

      I SURVIVED IMMERSION BY MARGIE!

      You all worked so hard! I needed an electric cattle prod to get you all to quit working on your manuscripts — to eat a meal.

      Of course – chocolate was consumed every hour. :-))

      Have fun staying focused to meet your deadline for book # 66. Oh – -guess that one is # 67 or 68!

      All smiles……………Margie

      Posted by Margie | September 25, 2009, 10:12 am
  4. Hi, Margie,

    I’ve taken a couple of your workshops (Emotions and EDITS) and learned soooo much. I particularly like new ways to look at my manuscript. And now, I see two more workshops I want to take!

    Cheers,
    Ann

    Posted by Ann Macela | September 25, 2009, 8:19 am
    • Hello Ann —

      Thank you! Great to hear from another Margie-alum. 😉

      Ah — I’ll see you in two more on-line classes! Or –if the classes aren’t offered for several more months, you can order the Lecture Packets anytime.

      My web site now sends the Lecture Packets automatically. Anyone who orders Lecture Packets needs to know to wait for the download before closing that screen.

      Thanks for posting!

      All smiles……………..Margie

      Posted by Margie | September 25, 2009, 10:16 am
  5. Hi Margie!!
    Welcome to RU. I cannot tell you how delighted I am to have you join us. In preparation for your Immersion class next spring, I’ve already purchased my nifty highlight bundle. 🙂

    Here’s a few opening paragraphs to A Lady’s Revenge (1806 France/England). I would love to hear your thoughts.

    ***
    Guy Trevelyan, Earl of Helsford, stopped short at the sharp smell of burning flesh. The putrid odor melded with the dungeon’s thick, moldy air, causing his eyes to sting and his lungs to seize. His watery gaze slashed to the cell’s open door and he cocked his head, listening.

    There.

    A sudden scrape of metal against metal. A faint sizzling sound followed by a muffled scream.

    He stepped forward to put an end to the victim’s obvious suffering, but was yanked back, then pushed against the dungeon’s damp stone wall by his closest friend, Anthony, the Earl of Danforth.

    “Easy, Helsford,” Danforth whispered, holding him in place. “We must make sure that’s our agent in there before revealing ourselves. We’re here for the Raven. No one else.”

    Guy tried to refocus on their mission. Rescue the Raven, the spy who’d infiltrated France’s elite and saved thousands of British lives over the past few years. Only a select few knew the agent’s identity, and Guy was not one of them.

    Another gut-twisting sound from the chamber drew Guy’s attention. He clenched his teeth to hold back the burning bile that threatened to erupt. Less than twelve feet away, someone was being tortured by one of Valère’s henchmen. And Guy might have to leave the poor bastard behind to endure the Frenchman’s perverse, yet effective form of interrogation.
    ***
    Oh! Thanks for teaching Adrienne about flying body parts (FBP). I had them zinging all over the place in this manuscript before she pointed them out. 🙂

    Thanks a ton, Margie!
    Tracey

    Posted by Tracey Devlyn | September 25, 2009, 8:34 am
    • LOL!

      Posted by Adrienne Giordano | September 25, 2009, 8:57 am
    • Tracey — Woohoo! Strong opening! I’m happy to dig in! 😉

      Guy Trevelyan, Earl of Helsford, stopped short at the sharp smell of burning flesh.

      LOVED THE ALLITERATION. LOTS OF POWER WORDS. BACKLOADED WITH BURNING FLESH. POWERFUL.

      The putrid odor melded with the dungeon’s thick, moldy air, causing his eyes to sting and his lungs to seize.

      GREAT CADENCE. MORE POWER WORDS. USED THE ODORS AS STIMULUS FOR VISCERAL RESPONSE. EXCELLENT!

      His watery gaze slashed to the cell’s open door and he cocked his head, listening.

      SCENE-THEMED WORD — SLASHED. WATERY GAZE — PERFECT. STRONG CADENCE.

      AND — YOU DID NOT HAVE SIMULTANEITY! YAY!

      YOU MADE ONE EVENT FOLLOW ANOTHER.

      YOU DID NOT FALL INTO THE ‘as’ OR ‘while’ SIMULTANEITY TRAP. YOU USED ‘and’ — EXCELLENT! YOU KNOW I WOULD HAVE GONGED YOU. 😉

      There.

      I LIKE YOUR CREATIVE PARAGRAPHING — AND USE OF WHITE SPACE FOR CADENCE AND TO PICK UP PACING.

      A sudden scrape of metal against metal. A faint sizzling sound followed by a muffled scream.

      POWERFUL. GREAT CADENCE — LOVE ALL THE ALLITERATION — S’S AND M’S AND F’S — ALL DRAW THE READER INTO YOUR SCENE. STRONG BACKLOAD — SCREAM. 🙂

      He stepped forward to put an end to the victim’s obvious suffering, but was yanked back, then pushed against the dungeon’s damp stone wall by his closest friend, Anthony, the Earl of Danforth.

      GOOD — I’D NIX — obvious. YOU DON’T NEED IT — AND THE CADENCE IS BETTER WITHOUT IT.

      YOU COULD PICK UP PACE — IF YOU MOVED ‘by his closest . . . ‘ and placed the end of the sentence after ‘yanked back’ — and ended that sentence there. Next sentence — shoved against the wall — will carry more power as a separate sentence.

      “Easy, Helsford,” Danforth whispered, holding him in place. “We must make sure that’s our agent in there before revealing ourselves. We’re here for the Raven. No one else.”

      GOOD! BABY SUGGESTION: ‘in there’ — DOESN’T CARRY PSYCHOLOGICAL POWER. IF YOU CHANGED IT LIKE THIS – IT WOULD TAP MORE EMOTION IN THE READER:

      “We must make sure that’s our agent BEING TORTURED before revealing ourselves.

      TRACEY — MY SUGGESTION MAY NOT WORK FOR YOU. NO WORRIES!

      AND — I’M BEING PICK-PICKY — WOULD IT BE STRONGER TO USE THE WORD ‘ verify’ — instead of ‘make sure?’ EITHER WAY . . .

      Guy tried to refocus on their mission. Rescue the Raven, the spy who’d infiltrated France’s elite and saved thousands of British lives over the past few years. Only a select few knew the agent’s identity, and Guy was not one of them.

      THIS WORKS – BUT . . . IT IS A BABY INFO DUMP. A SLICE OF BACKSTORY.

      WOULD IT WORK TO HAVE DANFORTH SAY SOMETHING HARSH TO GUY? BUT NOT HAVE IT COME ACROSS AS CONTRIVED DIALOGUE?

      SEEMS LIKE — DANFORTH COULD COMPLAIN ABOUT THE BIND THEY’RE IN — NOT KNOWING THE IDENTITY OF THE SPY THEY WERE SENT TO RESCUE. IF DANFORTH KNOWS — YOU CAN STILL MAKE THE DIALOGUE WORK.

      PLUS — IT WOULD ADD MORE TENSION TO THE SCENE — AND ADD MORE TENSION/CONFLICT BETWEEN GUY AND DANFORTH.

      JUST AN IDEA. TAKE IT — OR TOSS IT!

      Another gut-twisting sound from the chamber drew Guy’s attention.

      DO YOU NEED: drew Guy’s attention. ???

      YOU COULD NIX IT – -AND USE ‘GUY’ INSTEAD OF ‘HE’ TO KICK OFF THE NEXT SENTENCE. YOU’D PICK UP PACE . . .

      He clenched his teeth to hold back the burning bile that threatened to erupt. Less than twelve feet away, someone was being tortured by one of Valère’s henchmen. And Guy might have to leave the poor bastard behind

      I’M GOOD WITH ALL THE ABOVE . . . :-))

      to endure the Frenchman’s perverse, yet effective form of interrogation.

      THE END OF THE SENTENCE ABOVE IS WELL WRITTEN . . . BUT IT IS NOT BACKLOADED WITH POWER.

      IF YOU COULD RESTRUCTURE OR REWORD TO BACKLOAD — WITHOUT LOSING FLOW . . . GO FOR IT.

      IT WORKS AS IS — BUT IT SEEMS MORE FORMAL. KNOW WHAT I MEAN? IT LOSES PUNCH — BECAUSE IT’S MORE COGNITIVE.

      NO WORRIES IF YOU KEEP IT AS IS. 🙂

      ******* TRACEY — I am excited about working with you for three-plus days in my Immersion Master Class next year! Love your writing — and your personality too. I’ll have fun — and make you work hard too.

      NOTE TO ALL BLOG GUESTS:

      I wish I had time to Deep Edit any passages you post to the blog. That one took over 30 minutes. So much faster to read — than analyze and reply.

      I can Deep Edit a sentence or two. Thanks for understanding!

      TRACEY — Thank you for posting your opening. It was fun to DIG DEEP — like I do in the on-line course I teach in October — DIGGING DEEP INTO THE EDITS SYSTEM. :-))

      All smiles………….Margie

      Posted by Margie | September 25, 2009, 11:03 am
  6. Morning Margie…

    I bought your Digging Deep Lecture Packet….it’s jam packed full of excellent information! I’m just getting used to the various markers etc, but I think it’s going to help a TON once I get used to it! Chances are you’ll see me in one of your classes as well, if not the October one, then another I’m sure!

    carrie

    Posted by carrie | September 25, 2009, 8:41 am
    • Carrie —

      Thanks for letting me know you’re digging into my Deep Editing — and enjoying the process. It won’t take long for you to THINK the EDITS System colors and write to the EDITS System. You’ll have the highlighting color overlay in your mind.

      Thank you for chiming in!

      See you on-line………….Margie

      Posted by Margie | September 25, 2009, 4:09 pm
  7. Margie –

    Welcome! Can you explain a bit about how your Digging Deep class is different from your first EDITS class? And how those of us who have taken the first one can benefit from the second?

    Thanks much,
    Kelsey

    Posted by KelseyBrowning | September 25, 2009, 8:59 am
    • Kelsey —

      Good question. Thanks for asking about Empowering Characters’ Emotions (ECE) and Digging Deep Into the EDITS System.

      ECE introduces the EDITS System, introduces body language and dialogue cues, and introduces some Deep Editing tips.

      Digging Deep Into the EDITS System is divided into two parts. Here’s what each part addresses.

      Part 1: Digging Deep into the EDITS System
      1. The Big Picture and the Nuances of the EDITS System
      2. Writing Emotion for Visceral Impact –Streaming Emotion for your genre and style
      3. Editing Patterns and Voids
      4. Scene Strategies: Balancing and Tracking
      5. Tension, Conflict, and The EDITS System

      Part 2: Digging Deep into the EDITS System
      1. Analyze strengths, and areas needing strengthening, per EDITS category
      2. Use the Digging Deep Worksheet
      3. Anchor Learning and Application
      4. Dig Deep into Diagnose and Treat –Obtain Feedback from Margie
      5. EDITS System applied and explained — Know WHAT editing you need to do WHERE
      — Know WHY you need to edit that passage
      — HOW – Use multiple options that fit your writing style to create page turners

      Kelsey — Thank you for inviting me to be a guest on Romance University today.

      All smiles……………Margie

      Posted by Margie | September 25, 2009, 4:18 pm
  8. I just finished Margie’s 3-day workshop, which was held up on her beautiful mountain where it snowed all three days. My head is about to explode(cliche alert) from all the knowledge I took in. I’m excited about working in Dialogue Cues and more emotion into my manuscript.

    Posted by Vickie McDonough | September 25, 2009, 9:45 am
    • Hello Vickie!

      You were immersed in my brain for three days – -and immersed in snow. Well — only about six inches. On Sunday — it’s expected to be 85 in Denver — and 73 on the mountain. Want to come back and take a nap in the hammock on the deck?

      So fun to get to know you and work with you. Looking forward to seeing you again!

      Tom and I will fly over Tulsa on our way to and from Charlotte — on Thursday, October 8th, and Sunday, October 11th. We could refuel in Tulsa and visit at the little airport!

      Hugs………….Margie

      Posted by Margie | September 25, 2009, 4:25 pm
  9. Hi Mar-G,

    I have enjoyed your workshops, read your lecture packets and attended your debut Immersion Class (highly recommended–everyone sign up now for 2010–fun, inspiring and EXTREME value for the cost). All these things combined, along with your support, has changed my writing life! Not to mention your lecture packet on Defeating Self-Defeating Behaviors, but we won’t talk about those! 😉

    It’s great to read your blog post because it jogged my memory, got me in a great mindset to hit the keyboard and power up my writing today. Just what I needed, a booster shot!

    Thanks, Mar-G and Romance U!

    Tra-C 🙂

    Posted by Tracy Mastaler | September 25, 2009, 9:57 am
    • Tra-C —

      I had such fun with you in my first Immersion Master Class — and at RWA National too. Good for you for joining the WRW Chapter of RWA. You’ll love all those amazing writers!

      I know you’ll stay focused. Think: CONTRACT!

      Hugs…………….Margie

      Posted by Margie | September 25, 2009, 4:31 pm
    • Hey RWA dinner partner! I’m still crackin’ up about the shower issue you had. 🙂

      Tracey

      Posted by Tracey Devlyn | September 26, 2009, 6:41 am
      • Tracey,

        I have been lurking here on Romance U since RWA and a fun dinner with you, Kelsey and Nancy Naigle—Mar-G and Adrienne and Karl and Anna in the next booth—hope I didn’t forget anyone!

        It’s funny what people remember from conversations. Take that little shower story with you when you go to Mar-G’s Immersion Class and you won’t bring home any surprises!

        I have Romance U bookmarked and visit you guys often. Thanks for a great resource!

        Tracy Mastaler 🙂

        Posted by Tracy Mastaler | September 26, 2009, 9:32 am
  10. Meagan —

    Thanks! Glad the blog resonated with you. See you on-line!

    All smiles…………Margie

    Posted by Margie | September 25, 2009, 10:00 am
  11. Margie, I loved this blog! Great examples of powerful writing! I’m going to run out and buy Tana French’s The Likeness.

    Posted by Edie | September 25, 2009, 10:11 am
  12. Hi Margie,
    I learn something new everything time I read something you’ve written. For example, today, would you be able to point to any reference online about when to use “AND” and avoid the simultaneous-thingy? I thought if you wrote “and,” it was simultaneous. i.e., He crawled back on the ledge and called to the fireman for help. What are your thoughts? Thanks a bunch! Kit

    Posted by Kit Donner | September 25, 2009, 11:48 am
    • Hello Kit —

      Dwight Swain addresses simultaneity in TECHNIQUES OF THE SELLING WRITER. His message is simple. Don’t do it. :-))

      Okay — you can have simultaneity, at times. But I don’t recommend having things happen simultaneously very often. It flows better, is easier to absorb cognitively, if you have one event or thought follow another.

      You’ll see simultaneity in print. No worries if you have some ‘as’ and ‘while’ constructions.

      If you want to nix most of your simultaneity — either substitute ‘and’ — or break the sentence and start a new one without the bridge word.

      Looking at your example: He crawled back on the ledge and called to the fireman for help.

      You could interpret that he called for help WHILE he crawled. But when you use AND it’s not a cognitive speedbump. The imagery hits — crawled then called for help. Easy.

      I’m a big fan of cotton-candy-on-the-tongue writing. No nanosecond pause to cognitively process a word, sentence, or passage. Keep the reader wanting more and more, turning pages faster and faster.

      Thanks for posting your question.

      All smiles……………..Margie

      Posted by Margie | September 25, 2009, 4:45 pm
      • Margie and Kit,

        I heard about this book at a local conference this summer. The author mentioned that she used his “rooting instincts” technique and it converted her OK book to a Golden Heart finalist, which led to a publishing contract. Just got my copy a few weeks ago and can’t wait to dive in.

        Tracey

        Posted by Tracey Devlyn | September 26, 2009, 6:50 am
  13. This is all new to me, but sounds fascinating. I’d love to learn more and will certainly follow up.
    Barbara

    Posted by Barbara Edwards | September 25, 2009, 2:08 pm
  14. Hi Margie – Thanks for stopping by. I took your body language class. I’ve heard great things about the Deep EDITS class. I thought about taking it myself. Your stuff is so good and heavy, though, it’s scary and overwhelming. Every time I go back and look at my notes from class, I pick up something new to fix and improve in my WIP. Thanks for the insight

    Shannyn

    Posted by Shannyn | September 25, 2009, 2:36 pm
    • Hello Shannon —

      I do pack a lot of info in my on-line classes and Lecture Packets. Lots of examples too!

      I recommend taking Empowering Characters’ Emotions first — then Deep Editing: The EDITS System, Rhetorical Devices, and More — then Digging Deep Into the EDITS System.

      Good for you for reviewing your notes and the lectures. Smart!

      I look forward to seeing you on-line again.

      All smiles…………Margie

      Posted by Margie | September 25, 2009, 4:52 pm
  15. Margie, I love your posts, they’re always so helpful. I try and keep track of your blog appearances, but I almost missed this one! I’m glad I checked my email and found a reminder on one of my writing loops. 🙂

    I’ve yet to take a workshop, but I hope to soon. Thanks so much for sharing your wonderful writing knowledge. It’s greatly appreciated!

    ~Carol

    Posted by Carol B. | September 25, 2009, 3:08 pm
  16. Awesome post! DH just went out to pick up my hold from the library–The Likeness. I’m very excited to read it now!

    Posted by Jordan | September 25, 2009, 4:04 pm
  17. Couldn’t attend when you were at NJRW, but heard nothing but GREAT things from those who did. Look forward to getting the opportunity to do so myself once things settle down around here, but will use this blog for a starting point. Edits aren’t my strong point, but a gal’s gotta do what a gal’s gotta do.

    Posted by Pat | September 25, 2009, 7:17 pm
    • Hello Pat —

      I enjoyed presenting to NJRW — both times. The first full day Master Class I presented for them was four years ago. Fun to see them again — and stretch brains for another full day.

      Sorry I didn’t get to meet you. The next states I’m presenting in are Florida and Texas and California and Missouri. Maybe I’ll see you on-line!

      All smiles…………….Margie

      Posted by Margie | September 25, 2009, 8:09 pm
  18. I’m thrilled with the Master Immersion Class I took this last week. I am a bigger, better, bolder writer wrestling with my prose 😉

    Angie
    http://www.MyGemofWisdom.com

    Posted by Angie Breidenbach | September 25, 2009, 9:23 pm
    • Angie —

      Loved your double alliteration! Glad you could join us on the mountain top for the three-plus days of immersion into Deep Editing. Rewarding and re-energizing!

      I bet you’ll find success with your Courageous Beauty book and Gems of Wisdom.

      Big hugs…………….Margie

      ANGIE WROTE: I’m thrilled with the Master Immersion Class I took this last week. I am a bigger, better, bolder writer wrestling with my prose 😉

      Angie

      Posted by Margie | September 26, 2009, 9:00 am
  19. HELLO EVERYONE!

    Thank you for dropping by Romance University today. I enjoyed your comments — and look forward to seeing you on-line again.

    I decided we needed TWO WINNERS! Good idea?

    The two names I drew are:

    ****************CARRIE and JORDAN****************

    CONGRATULATIONS to Carrie and Jordan!

    Carrie and Jordan – Please e-mail me and let me know which Lecture Packet you’d like.

    Thanks again to Adrienne and Kelsey and Tracey. Romance University is one of my favorite blogs. 🙂

    REMEMBER:
    The drawing for TWO BIG PRIZES worth $450 each — is October 10th!

    See you on-line!

    All smiles…………….Margie
    http://www.MargieLawson.com

    Posted by Margie | September 25, 2009, 10:16 pm

Trackbacks/Pingbacks

  1. […] This post was Twitted by sherri_bwvs […]

    Twitted by sherri_bwvs - December 3, 2009

Post a comment

Upcoming Posts

Subscribe

2013-2016

100-BEST-WEBSITES-2015

2014-2015

Follow Us