Una Verdandi

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Una Verdandi is a writer of science fiction and fantasy novels. When she is not exorcising her muses into a Word document, she is probably painting, embroidering, or pondering the meaning of life. (Just kidding—life is meaningless.) As a professional editor, she helps other fiction authors mold their demons into a marketable form and tidies up legalese and financial babble for corporate clients.

Una lives in Toronto with a very vocal tabby cat and at most one potted plant. She would like to keep more greenery, but the only thing she can successfully grow is her to-be-read pile because the cat eats her plants when she’s not looking. She has concluded that she should just get more cats and be done with it.

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Una Verdandi Writer's block is a slippery beast. Sometimes you just need to sit in front of that scary blank screen (or page) and force yourself to make words…moreWriter's block is a slippery beast. Sometimes you just need to sit in front of that scary blank screen (or page) and force yourself to make words happen. If you only have a vague idea of what you want to do -- or if you know what you want to do but not how you want to do it -- the best thing could be to just power through and see what happens. You may come up with a brilliant solution. If you're not happy with the results, you can rewrite it or trash it and start over.

There are other times when you need to let you ideas percolate. Step away from the computer, put your pen down, and just forget about it for a bit. You can only push yourself so hard before the whole exercise becomes counterproductive, and down time (if you can get it) is sometimes the best cure.

However, if you can't get the words out but can't walk away either, move on to another scene in your story/section in your article, or simply work on another writing project altogether. Getting the words flowing, even on an unrelated project, may be enough to burst the dam.(less)
Una Verdandi The best thing any writer can do is make friends with doubt. Don't push doubt away -- invite it for tea every Wednesday and have nice, long chats.…moreThe best thing any writer can do is make friends with doubt. Don't push doubt away -- invite it for tea every Wednesday and have nice, long chats. Sometimes doubt says scary things you'd rather not hear, but you need to listen because doubt has important things to say.

It may be that doubt expresses the insecurities and fears that you've desperately tried to leave behind. Maybe it asks if you are really good enough, or maybe it tells you that you really aren't good enough. But don't let it be cruel. Doubt must talk about your work, not your worth.

Doubt can be an excellent teacher. Properly trained, it can help you learn to ask hard questions about your writing. Have you done enough research? Would your characters really do that, or are you contorting them to fit into a pre-determined plot? Is that the best way to present this information? Have you said what you really meant to say, or does the message need to be clearer?

While it is impossible to be the most accurate critic of your own work, it is all too easy to be the harshest. Doubt should help you evaluate your writing, to see it as others might so you can reshape it as needed and achieve the effects you want to create. When you believe you have done your best to address all of doubt's questions -- or when you feel you can't address them at all -- you need to ask a trusted friend, relative, or colleague for feedback. You may also want to seek support from a writing group or hire a professional editor.

In writing, as with any other activity, only fools rush in. Those who have no doubt or who simply refuse to engage with doubt are the most likely to make mistakes and the least likely to see them. But others will see their mistakes, even if they don't.

So fluff up a cushion and set out your favourite cookies. Doubt is coming for tea.
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Average rating: 4.88 · 8 ratings · 6 reviews · 1 distinct work
Black Wolf: The Binding of ...

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Empty Boots

Today was pretty quiet, so I decided to watch the Halifax ceremony marking the 75th anniversary of D-Day. Halifax is the place from which many young Canadians left their home and native land to serve overseas in World War II. As a symbol of their journey, a pair of combat boots made the train journey across the country to the port city to be presented today.


Stories of the Past and Present

Sevent...

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Published on June 06, 2019 14:29

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