Some of the take-away were these questions to ask, particularly at the revision stage and/or when something seems fundamentally wrong about a piece, but the writer can't put a finger on just what it is:
- Did I avoid the climactic moment? Did I avoid all the chaos it would wreak so that I would not have to try to write my way out from there?
- Have I let my characters do unforgivable, wild, unpredictable things?
- Have I plucked out an ugly duckling (a segment of the piece that may at first seem off) instead of leaving it there and seeing what happens? Seeing if it
turns into a swan?
- Have I shown that all of my characters are flawed in some way? (They should be.)
- Is it very clear what the main character wants?
-Jamie Cat Callan, author of The Writer's Toolbox, and French Women Don't Sleep Alone
You can read the other 11 posts featuring the greatest tips, advice, and inspiration I accumulated in my MFA Notebooks, here.