Sunday, February 7, 2010

Amber and Writer's Block

Amber is one of the first substances used by man for decoration. Amber is the fossilized resin of ancient trees. It can range in color from dark brown to a light, almost clear lemon yellow.

Amber is known to clean the environment in which it rests. When wearing, it brings purification of mind, body and spirit . . . which brings me to the writing part of this article--erasing writer's block. There are times when writer's block brings a story or article to a screeching halt. How do you overcome the problem and begin writing again?

1. Make a simple outline of the point you want to cover. This will provide organization and structure. It will also help divide the scene or story into smaller, more manageable chunks.

2. Don't waste time trying to write the perfect scene. Just get some words down on paper or your computer screen. In other words, do the rough draft.

3. Start in the middle.

4. Give yourself time to write. If you feel rushed, you'll feel presssured and that will keep you from writing.

Along with these tips, here are several ways to keep writer's block away.

Experiment - write at different place, at different times and with different writing instruments.

Freewrite - choose one sentence in a paragraph and write a paragraph about it. Then choose another sentence and repeat the process.

Cluster - choose key words and ideas; write associated ideas and words in clusters around them. this process is known to form new ideas.

Be flexible - be willing to throw out sections of text that are causing problems or just don't work.

Follow a routine - following a routine can put you in the writing mood. Try activities like wearing comfortable clothing, using a certain pen, or listening to music.

Move - stretch or walk around.

Take a break - get a snack or drink, talk to someone, or just relax for a five minutes.

Concentrate - focus on a different section or aspect of your writing. This sometimes leads to new insights.

Re-read - read a printed draft and jot down ideas while reading.

Relax - the more you worry, the harder it is to think.

Writer's block brings us back to amber because this gem activates unconditional love in mankind, stimulates the intellect and opens the crown chakra.

Amber has a pine aroma when heated, and the ancient Germans used it as an incense. They called it bernstein, or 'burn stone". Amber is known to attract dust, feathers, straw and small pieces of paper.

Wear amber to attract warm, loyal and generous people into your life, or carry it to lend logic or wit to a difficult situation.

Baltic amber is thought to have healing properties due to its high succinic acid content. It is believed that amber facilitates and transmits healing energy and psychic activity. Supposedly amber attracts spiritual forces. It is said to remove energy blockages and give the body strength. Excellent for enhancing altered states of consciousness. All these attributes help eliminate writer's block.

Saturday, January 2, 2010

Topaz and Sexual Tension

Called the Sun Jewel, topaz has the distinction of being the gemstone with the widest range of curative powers. It takes its name from Topazios, meaning "to seek".

And what are romance writers always seeking to create in their work? Sexual tension.

Sexual tension isn't sex scenes. In romance stories, sexual tension is an absolute must. It's what has them going, 'Oh, my God.' It's the spark that keeps drawing your hero and heroine together. It's the enchantment you create with them wanting each other, whether they're willing to admit it or not.

Topaz, an aluminum silicate, has been used frequently since the late 18th C. The most common color is yellow with a red tint. The most valuable is pink.

The topaz is known for inspiration and awakening. That's what writers are trying to do when working on sexual tension. They are awakening readers to the irresistible awareness between the hero and heroine. They want the reader to feel the deep longing and unsatisfied desire between the hero and heroine.

It's a delicate balancing act to create sexual tensionm and to achieve the goal; like topaz is credited with doing, you'll attract wealth and good fortune.

The popularity of topaz grew during the Middle Ages when people believed the gemstone to have the power to strengthen the mind. People used to rub topaz marinated in wine for three days on their eyes for better vision. Afterwards, the same wine was served to guests.

Topaz is considered a symbol of friendship and often is thought to bring better and deeper relationships together. It is also known to calm anger and guard against envy. That could explain why it is thought to increase creativity and feelings of joy.

As writers you can use your creativity to have your characters notice little things about each other. Make them aware. Use the five senses--sight, sound, scent, touch and taste. It can be the manicured fingernails of the hero, the timbre of his voice. Or, the warmth the heroine feels at his first touch, or the peppermint on her breath that reminds hero of holidays and baking cookies.

Without sexual tension your story is flat. The challenge is to bring that awareness alive with little details about your characters. Sexual tension is not about body parts.

Writing romance with sexual tension calls for you to be a juggler. You have to strive for intimacy all the while sprinkling in obstacles along the way that are sure to test the relationship. Sexual tension isn't about will they or won't they. But, when will they. You have to satisfy both your readers and your characters.

Friday, December 11, 2009

Testing New Water

As 2009 drawls to a close I am venturing into new territory---blogging. Never did it before. I'm glad this year is nearly over. Too many unpleasant things happened. Time to put them behind me. As a friend says when she doesn't want to discuss something or is bored with the subject, "Move along, move along." Right now that's a good motto for me.

I am ready for a new year filled with new challenges. New is good. Challenges . . . maybe not so much. But we'll see.

Hope everyone enjoys the holidays and is looking forward to a Happy 2010. I am!