Cameron Chapman

Uncensored

Writing A Non-Fiction Book

I am currently working on my first non-fiction book. While I’ve completed somewhere around a thousand blog posts and articles over the past couple of years, this is my first attempt at book-length non-fiction. It’s a bit of a daunting task, the idea of writing 250 or so pages about something that I didn’t make up. And the idea that I will not be judged just based on my words and their ability to entertain, but also on the accuracy and usefulness of those words, is kind of scary. (more…)

How to Write a Novel

To date, I’ve completed at least one draft on five different novels. Two were fantasy, one was science fiction, one was slipstream fiction (though on rewriting it may just become a mainstream novel), and one was women’s fiction. The first novel I ever wrote was a high fantasy epic. It was terrible. The writing itself wasn’t too horrible and the characters were decent, but the storyline was so cliched that I will never let it see the light of day in its current form. Instead, I’ll take part of the basic concept and two of the main characters and start over from scratch. It will bear little resemblance to the first draft when it’s finished. (more…)

Visual Writing Prompt #3

Photos are often great inspiration for writing. Whether it’s a photo of a person, an activity, or a setting (or even something completely abstract), visual images can spark the beginning of some wonderful stories. In my own writing, I like to collect photos while I’m planning a story to give myself an idea of what my worlds look like. This is true whether I’m working on a science fiction or fantasy story or something set in our own world.

If you’d like to share whatever you write based on the image below, please include it in the comments below. It doesn’t even have to be directly related to the image, just as long as the image was the inspiration for it. At some point in the future, this may turn into a weekly competition with prizes. So get your practice in now!

A couple of basic ground rules for submitting your work. Please, nothing derogatory or defamatory about any person, living or dead. Also, please keep your writing samples PG-13 rated. I reserve the right to remove comments that I don’t find appropriate for the site or that I deem may be potentially offensive.

Photo by Elin B, via Flickr

Photo by Elin B, via Flickr

Musical Writing Prompt #1

When I write I’m almost always listening to music. I have soundtracks in my head for different books, and on occasion a song will inspire part or all of a story. Lyrics are a great place to get inspiration, whether you’re working on a novel, a screenplay, a short story, or anything else.

Each week I’ll be featuring part of the lyrics to a song, sometimes just a line or two, never more than one verse, to help you get inspired. I’d encourage you to track down the actual song and listen to it for further inspiration (Last.fm is a good place to start).

A couple of basic ground rules for submitting your work. Please, nothing derogatory or defamatory about any person, living or dead. Also, please keep your writing samples PG-13 rated. I reserve the right to remove comments that I don’t find appropriate for the site or that I deem may be potentially offensive.

Musical Writing Prompt #1

It’s the middle of the night and you’re here
Playing dominoes and drinking beer
I tried to think of something deep to say
But my well is dripping dry today

From Horse, by Live

Visual Writing Prompt #2

Here’s the second-ever Visual Writing Prompt.

Photos are often great inspiration for writing. Whether it’s a photo of a person, an activity, or a setting (or even something completely abstract), visual images can spark the beginning of some wonderful stories. In my own writing, I like to collect photos while I’m planning a story to give myself an idea of what my worlds look like. This is true whether I’m working on a science fiction or fantasy story or something set in our own world.

If you’d like to share whatever you write based on the image below, please include it in the comments below. It doesn’t even have to be directly related to the image, just as long as the image was the inspiration for it. At some point in the future, this may turn into a weekly competition with prizes. So get your practice in now!

A couple of basic ground rules for submitting your work. Please, nothing derogatory or defamatory about any person, living or dead. Also, please keep your writing samples PG-13 rated. I reserve the right to remove comments that I don’t find appropriate for the site or that I deem may be potentially offensive.

Photo by frozenchipmunk, via Flickr

Photo by frozenchipmunk, via Flickr

SPAM Writing Prompt #1

I hate spam in my email just as much as the next person. But it seems like such a waste to just delete it all, week after week. So I started looking at the subject lines, trying to see if there was anything that could be done with them. While probably 80% of them are…dirty, to say the least, the other 20% or so work perfectly as writing prompts.

Every Tuesday I’ll be posting a new spam subject line here to get your creative gears going. Feel free to post whatever it inspires in the comments below for everyone to enjoy.

A couple of basic ground rules for submitting your work. Please, nothing derogatory or defamatory about any person, living or dead. Also, please keep your writing samples PG-13 rated. I reserve the right to remove comments that I don’t find appropriate for the site or that I deem may be potentially offensive.

Spam Writing Prompt #1: Not-So-Secret Gardens

Visual Writing Prompt #1

Here is the first-ever Visual Writing Prompt! Photos are often great inspiration for writing. Whether it’s a photo of a person, an activity, or a setting (or even something completely abstract), visual images can spark the beginning of some wonderful stories. In my own writing, I like to collect photos while I’m planning a story to give myself an idea of what my worlds look like. This is true whether I’m working on a science fiction or fantasy story or something set in our own world.

If you’d like to share whatever you write based on the image below, please include it in the comments below. It doesn’t even have to be directly related to the image, just as long as the image was the inspiration for it. At some point in the future, this may turn into a weekly competition with prizes. So get your practice in now!

A couple of basic ground rules for submitting your work. Please, nothing derogatory or defamatory about any person, living or dead. Also, please keep your writing samples PG-13 rated. I reserve the right to remove comments that I don’t find appropriate for the site or that I deem may be potentially offensive.

Photo by emmanuel dyan, via Flickr

Photo by emmanuel dyan, via Flickr

Writing Prompt Schedule

Photo by Joe Lanman, via Flickr

Photo by Joe Lanman, via Flickr

I’ve got three different kinds of writing prompts I’ll be offering up. Here’s the schedule as it stands now:

  • Visual Writing Prompts will be offered up on Monday, Wednesday, and Friday. These prompts are based on photos or artwork from around the web.
  • SPAM Writing Prompts will be offered up on Tuesdays. These are based on the subjects of actual SPAM messages that my SPAM filter catches (and they’ll be kept PG-13 for the most part).
  • Musical Writing Prompts will be offered up on Thursdays. These are based on song lyrics from all musical genres and all kinds of artists.

If you’re feeling particularly proud of some writing you’ve done based on a prompt, I’d like to encourage you to post an excerpt (or the whole thing) in the comments for that post. As participation increases, I may start offering prizes to the ones I think are best each week. I’ve preloaded a week’s worth of writing prompts here, to give you an idea of what they’ll be like and to get those creative gears turning!

Hello and Welcome!

A bit about myself is probably in order, seeing as this is a completely new blog. I’ve been blogging for about two and a half years now. I started on my own blog, GreenStyle Magazine back in July of 2006. It’s still around, though currently on hiatus right now. In 2007 I started writing semi-regularly for Mashable, the 8th most popular blog out there and the most popular blog focusing on social media. And recently I’ve started writing for Smashing Magazine. You can see more of my writing on my portfolio page.

Photo by Silence Of Night, via Flickr

Photo by Silence Of Night, via Flickr

This blog is going to focus primarily on writing and publishing. I’ve written five novels, all in various stages of rewrites at this point, as well as two screenplays (unsold) and various poetry (really horrible and will never see the light of day). I’m currently working on my first book-length non-fiction project, which I plan to self-publish within the next few months. Details of this project will be forthcoming and progress will be reported regularly. In addition to posting about my own writing trials and tribulations, I’ll be offering up writing prompts and discussions of the craft of writing and the business of publishing.

I plan on posting on a daily basis, with a regular schedule of writing prompts (though these will not be the standard “write about an early childhood experience” or “once upon a time…”). An upcoming post will detail that schedule. You can expect regular progress reports and at least one article on publishing and one on craft each week. On occasion I may also post parts of various works-in-progress for your entertainment (and feedback if you’d like to offer it).

So sit back with some tea (or wine) and put your feet up. Enjoy yourself, offer some feedback, tell me I’m crazy (I probably am), or I’m a hack (also a possibility), and have a good laugh.