A Special Edition—New Tools for the Writer’s Toolbox

Every once in a while I talk about writing craft. When my stories sag in the middle or cliches pour through my fingers faster than a gunslinger in a Louis L’Amour novel, I sometimes need a writing prompt to prevent my prose from derailing at Dead Man’s Curve.

Several years ago I discovered a wonderful blog over at Blogspot called “The Bookshelf Muse.” Angela Ackerman and Becca Puglisi filled their blog with thesaurus-like entries on emotions and using body parts—such as lips or eyes or hands and posts on writing craft. They became part of my writer’s tool box.

They published their first book compiled from the list on their site and turned it into The Emotion Thesaurus. I took my copy to a writer’s conference in Seattle to share the knowledge with my writer friends. Middle Grade author, Chelly Wood, and I pulled out our copies at the same time. Boy did we laugh.

The launch of Angela and Becca’s fourth and fifth thesauri takes place in June. Using setting to build sensory detail layers into each scene are The Urban Setting Thesaurus and The Rural Setting Thesaurus. The books use the five senses: Sight, smell, sound, taste, and texture.

Their site grew, expanded, needed more space, needed a new name. When they moved to their new site to WordPress, Writer’s Helping Writers, I followed right along.

If you haven’t visited them before and want to learn more about their books or just want to poke around Angela and Becca’s wonderful site, they are located at Writers Helping Writers. Their website is like a pound of shelled pistachios, I bet you can’t eat just one serving.

 *  *  *

Before using settings to up the tension.

Character's emotions are only one part of the story.

Character emotions are one part of the story.

After layering setting sensory details.

What do you see?

What do you see?

For those of you in the States, have a wonderful Memorial Day weekend. For those of you elsewhere on our lovely blue planet, enjoy.



About Fannie Cranium

Writing since she could first hold a pen, Tracy Perkins formed her alter ego, "Fannie Cranium" at the suggestion of her husband. Tracy understands smiling makes people wonder what she’s been up to.
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6 Responses to A Special Edition—New Tools for the Writer’s Toolbox

  1. aplscruf says:

    Thanks, T! I needed that! Adding to my “Books to Read” list. I’ll check out their blog, too.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Liz says:

    Sounds like cool authors and a cool book. Way to network, Tracy 🙂 Absolutely reading others is the best way to improve a person’s own writing.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. kerbey says:

    I’ll have to go check out that site.

    Liked by 1 person

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