David Farland Announces Winners of the “Daily Kick Writing Contest!” (You may know these writers!)

Posted: October 22, 2011 in Uncategorized
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Here’s the winners of the David Farland Daily Kick in the Pants Writing Contest hosted by Liquid Imagination. I included the email from JAM, telling me about them, because it was well put together and had some valuable insights at the end.
Hi, Mr. Farland!!

For the winning stories just go to this link: http://liquid-imagination.com/site/?page_id=724

Directly above the announcement about the winners are the stories:

Eldritch by Walker (This is the 1st place story by Deborah Walker called “An Eldritch Restoration”).

The Short Straw by Wolf (This is the 2nd place story by Mark Wolf called “The Short Straw”).

The Minotaur by Mannone (This is the 3rd place story by John C. Mannone called “The Minotaur”).

The writers’ “essays” about how they used your Daily Kick newsletter follow each story. For your convenience I’m inserting them here.

***

1st place Deborah Walker’s An Eldritch Restoration

Essay: Layering (David Farland “Kick” 10 Jan 2011)

David Farland’s Daily Kick on the 10th January 2011 described a layering technique, inspired by his painting. A writer using this technique blocks out a scene, and then make several passes though the work focussing on different aspects of the craft. (This is also a good way of overcoming writer’s block.) I used this technique to ‘kick’ an older story, making several refining and editing passes: for the depth of penetration for my MC, for world-building, and for characterisation. I found layering to be a very useful technique and would recommend it to other writers.

***

2nd place Mark Wolf’s The Short Straw

Essay: Change (David Farland Kick of 5/31/2011)

This Kick made me consider how I might write a short story concerning change and do it in such a way as to be unique in plot and stretch my writing skills. I wanted to make my character face tough obstacles and overcome them.

I decided to start with a dragon and see what I could do in his life for change.

What does a dragon want? What will he do to get it? What obstacles (if any) can hinder a dragon in getting what he wants? Are they valid obstacles?

***

3rd place John C. Mannone’s The Minotaur

Essay:

Initially, “Keeping the Suspense Alive” (1/10/2011) was key in the development of my suspenseful paranormal fiction short story, “The Minotaur.” But “Strategies for Killing Your Babies” (7/30/2010) was most influential since I had to be sure that killing my main characters was justified. I applied most of the eight points, but the fourth did the trick. I took MCs “through the dark tunnel and into the light;” gave them immortality. Also, I was able to justify my storytelling aspects with “Narrative Voice” (1/6/2011). I applied the Tolkien philosophy “to fracture the timeline” of the story, and the point of view.

***

You know, Mr. Farland, to be honest there are a lot of writers out there who are too sure of themselves. They act like they’ve got the answers, they act as if they know how to write. My response to them is this: “Are you a New York Times Bestselling author? If not, you might want to check out David Farland’s ‘Daily Kickts.’” What’s even funnier is that I’ve read some small-press books that could have used the advice from your “Daily Kicks.” Remember the one in which you wrote about location? You said having your characters go to McDonalds in a tiny town isn’t exciting. But I’ve not only read scenes like that from small-press editors, I’ve read stories set in huge metropolises in which such a lack of description left me wondering why it even occurred in the city (take Chicago or New York City, for example).

Anyway, thank you very much for allowing us to promote your newsletter! I like all the stories. The 3rd place story’s chase scene heightened suspense for me personally. The 2nd place story dealt with human emotion (and characterization) as a dragon learns what it means to be human, before learning what it really means to be dragon. And the 1st place story was just such a creative and awesome idea, with the heart of the climax is the main character giving up the illusion offered by her fairy suitor for the sake of grim reality and the children.

God bless!

John “JAM” Arthur Miller

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I have a story in http://www.lightspeedmagazine.com/ this week along with an author spotlight.

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New Writing Contest, $1,000 Pot

My new novel is coming out and can be preordered now and to celebrate I’m hosting a writing contest. It’s not quite ready to start, but I thought I’d give you some advance notice. You can find out about it at http://nightingalenovel.com/.

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