Tag Archives: fridays with james patterson

Lesson 15 Editing James Patterson’s Masterclass

lesson 15 editing
lesson 15 editing

What I loved about this lesson, was listening to James Patterson talk about how he edits and why- and the reasoning behind it.

James Patterson starts this lesson with talking about editing.~“For me and for a lot of writers. And I think for most of you. Editing, polishing and I’m talking about what you’re doing yourself,- not when your book gets to a publishing house. It’s the whole ball of wax. Its not writing, it’s rewriting and it’s rewriting, and it’s rewriting.  I like to do many drafts. I’ve done as many as nine or ten drafts. But, I do the drafts very quickly. I don’t get constipated! I don’t get worried! I just keep going. Let’s do it again! Let’s do it again! Let’s do it again!”

What I got from this lesson was ‘that your story needs to move forward’, editing your words will help cut the fat and making the story clear and on point. Read your words forwards and backward. Read as enjoyment  does something trip you up?

Before you start to edit, walk away from your writing. Take a short break.  Eat something. Clean  something. When you come back you will see your work fresh.

What I know about editing;

  • You need to look for style formatting errors  such as  spacing
  • Dates
  • Capitalization,
  • and make sure your characters have the correct names.
  • Check your POV.
  • The spelling of words such as they’re, there, or their.
  • Conjugations such as ‘should of’, ‘would of,’ instead of ‘could have’, ‘should have’.

When editing, you need to be careful that your story isn’t taken off track. If you’re in the middle of a romantic scene, you don’t want your character to start watching a cat video on YouTube. Unless you’re proving a point against your characters getting together.

Read your writing out loud, straight through before starting to edit. Are you conveying anger, comedy, or sadness correctly? If not rewrite.

“Consider not polishing the book until you’ve written at least one draft.” ~ said James Patterson

When it comes to your dialogue, edit it until it moves the story forward and it conveys what you need to, in the least amount of words. All types of writing will benefit from editing.

Just remember -don’t start editing until you  have  a complete first draft.  Editing  sentences as you write them  will prevent your story, essay, poems, articles from  evolving into a reality.

Procrastination will stop you in the form of early editing.  This is important to reemphasize. Don’t edit until that first draft is fully written. 

Rag doll
Here Kitty-Kitty just look at thos baby blues- Now go back and edit.

Here are a couple of links to Proofreading and or editing  Information.

writing center.unc.edu

Learning English with Michelle.

 

Lesson 11 ‘Writing Dialogue, James Patterson’s Masterclass

Lesson 11 ‘Writing Dialogue, Friday’s with James Patterson’s Masterclass

James Patterson's Masterclass
James Patterson’s Masterclass

“All of your key interchanges with your characters, I mean, they gonna be good, bad or indifferent just because of the dialogue. And how they talk to each other it is gonna reveal who they are. Who’s smarter, who’s taking advantage of who? Who’s lying? Who’s telling the truth? Who’s in charge? And who’s really in charge”. ~James Patterson

Mr. Patterson used Lush Life by Richard Price,  his example of  what great dialogue can sound like. I have that book. I need to sit down with it, read and learn, pull the dialogue apart , examine its details. And figure out its ‘hows and whys’ .  This is definitely the type of dialogue that I would love to write.

Here are a few lines from, page 6 of Lush Life.

“What do we got…”

“Two males in the front.”

“What do we got…”

“Neon trim on the plate.”

“Tinted windows.”

“Right rear taillight.”

“Front passenger just stuffed something under the seat.”

No dialogue tags. Just fast paced dialogue. Short, tight writing. It moves along. In just these seven lines I can feel and see the movement as the cops check out the car they stopped. I felt like I walked around that car.

My thoughts on this: check out your favorite authors and see how they write their dialogue. Read it out loud. Get the feel for it. Then ask yourself if you learned anything new about that character from their dialogue. Where did the author take you in this dialogue?

James Patterson doesn’t write realism. His dialogue is heightened – but it feels real. Without being ‘literally’ real dialogue. Because real dialogue is boring…

Listen to how people speak when you are in the store, at work, on the bus.

This class has a comments section, where you can post your lesson and a video critique by James on his office hour’s page where he will answer questions.

Enroll by clicking the link on the upper left sidebar.

 

Ninth Video Lesson James Patterson’s Masterclass Creating Character

Friday with James Patterson

Creating Characters
Creating Characters

Lesson 9 Creating Character

“If you write something mediocre chances are it won’t get published.” James Patterson

Try to see the world through your character’s eyes, the way that character would see the world. Look through their eyes, their religion, spiritual beliefs, fears, what he hates, loves, and wishes.

What I get from this: If the character you are creating is the antagonist makes sure you give them a redeeming quality. Make them human.Put yourself into your characters, how would you feel in that same situation?

Create a great character by how they see the world. James Patterson doesn’t write realism. He does get into the emotional part of his character, Alex Cross’s  career of being a cop. Get into the emotional feel of your character’s career.

Are you having trouble finding the right career for your character? Here is a link- with a list of careers. – Occupational Outlook Handbook

“Difficult to create a hero that you want to read about- if there isn’t complexity “ `James Patteson

Your secondary characters, the Grandmother in the Alex Cross books is vital, and she is a secondary character.

I am ending this, ‘Friday with James Patterson’ with a picture of Megumi. She is a rescued Ragdoll. She was abused and nearly dead when she was taken in by a local rescue group. I will tell you about her in a future post. I just wanted you to see her. Happy, Healthy and spoiled in her forever home.

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