Friday, May 12, 2017

Writing Exercise #11: The Gap

Shannon Dittemore is the author of the Angel Eyes trilogy. She has an overactive imagination and a passion for truth. Her lifelong journey to combine the two is responsible for a stint at Portland Bible College, performances with local theater companies, and a love of all things literary. When she isn’t writing, she spends her days with her husband, Matt, imagining things unseen and chasing their two children around their home in Northern California. To connect with Shan, check out her website, FB, Twitter, Instagram, or Pinterest.

Happy Friday, friends! First of all, I want to say THANK YOU for continuing to write alongside us. I adore reading through your responses to our writing exercises. Most weeks, I'm able to read each and every one. But some weeks, LIFE happens and I'm not able to get to them right away. Please know that it's TOTALLY ME and not you at all. I love spending time with you and your writing. I just have a very full plate right now.

That said, I've been thinking a lot about how I've grown as a writer. You know that happens, right? The more we write, the more we grow. And while I don't believe we ever ARRIVE, I do believe that it's healthy to look back and, instead of cringing at our early works, choose to see the progress we've made in our craft.

Early on in my journey, I came across this quote by Ira Glass, radio personality, host, producer, and writer. It helped me in more ways than I can say. I wonder what you'll think.


When I first read Glass's words, I nearly sighed in relief. It suddenly made sense--why my writing  didn't live up to the ideas in my head. It helped to know I wasn't alone in that frustration and that this gap--between our taste and our skill level--is, in fact, NORMAL.

So, today, our writing exercise is going to be one of introspection. Oh, you're going to write. How could we NOT write? But you're also going to think. If you have to walk away from the computer for a bit, chew the question over some before you come back and type out your thoughts, please do.


Choose a favorite book (not two or three or four, just one) and consider: What is it about this book that you love so much? And, if you're able to puzzle it out, what did the author do that so appealed to your taste?


Maybe it's the plot. Maybe it's the voice. Maybe you love the characters. Maybe it's the mystery of the thing, or the romance. Maybe it's the whimsy. There is no wrong answer here. There is just YOUR TASTE.

One of the hardest things for us to do as writers is to think critically about the things that we love. And today, I want you to take a stab at it by answering that question up there. Do it in the comments section and then come back throughout the weekend to see what your friends are saying.

And remember, if you participate in the writing exercise, you can use the Rafflecopter to enter our drawing. A winner will be selected next week and will have the opportunity to ask Jill, Steph and me a question for an upcoming episode of Go Teen Writers LIVE.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

75 comments:

  1. My favorite book would have to be Rick Riordan's The Last Olympian. I adore how he pushed the characters, even the ones we had practically just met. Everyone had unexpected choices and made interesting decisions, and the entire thing was just so heart-wrenching. Reading it also felt so *real*, mostly because of the characters' reactions to things. Every time I read it, I get so worn out and excited at the same time, it's like I'm the one who just won a war!

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    1. Books that can manipulate our emotions are The Best.

      -Ann

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    2. Yess! I love Percy Jackson! :)

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  2. Percy Jackson for life *high-fives*

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  3. My favourite book? Percy Jackson (the whole lot). For starters, I love the voice – Percy speaks straight to you, and makes you laugh without slowing the story down. None of the characters are boring – they all have something to them - but they’re not so weird that weird becomes samey and you hate the whole lot. There’s enough romance to tease you and get you shipping, but not so much that you skim through pages and pages of soppy mush. But most of all I love the content/themes/Greek mythology part. The more I read the Odyssey and Iliad, the more I jump up and scream ‘Percy did that in (insert exact page reference here)!’ And although that’s not a writing thing really, it’s pretty special to me .

    Also, yay for finishing the book!

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    1. Sounds nifty that the MC speaks to you. Do you do that with your own work? Just curious. I tend to have my characters speak to the reader at some point in my works, but that isn't my strong suit yet, so I usually edit it out later.

      -Ann

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  4. The Great and Terrible Quest, Margaret Lovett

    This little book sat on our home library shelf for years, before one day I, out of sheer boredom and desperation, flipped open to read. And it blew me away. I found myself eagerly following a little boy named Trad on a "great and terrible quest" with a noble knight who can't even remember what he is even looking for.

    What I love about this book (and many others) is the characters. I love reading books with heroes who are not hero material (a little boy, a jester, an old man with memory problems, a robber) and noble characters (a great knight, a timid man who faces his fear). I read books for the people in them (not the plot or the theme). I love seeing the characters grow, learn, and eventually made the right decision, or else gather their courage, push aside their fear, and save the day.

    For the record, I read this book at least once a year, and just about everyone in my family has read this book now, after my begging them. And they all loved it.

    I feel like I just wrote a book review or something...

    ~Julian Daventry

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    1. Sounds good! You have me wanting to look it up now. :) Characters make or break a story for me too.

      -Ann

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  5. I love the familial relationship in Enemy Brothers by Constance Savery. The character interaction was sometimes funny, sweet,or nostalgic. Reading how the protagonist slowly is won over with the dignity and kindness of the others never gets old for me. And I love the feeling of bitter sweetness I get at the end, because, though the characters have gained something, you also know they've lost something as well--love means sacrifice.

    So for me it's all about the relationships and I've definitely felt the gap when trying to write good ones in my books. The quote was a light bulb moment for me. It can get frustrating to know what you want your work to accomplish and seeing it's not quite there. But until now I couldn't even explain why it wasn't right or how to fix it really. Thought-provoking post. Loved it!

    -Ann



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  6. For most of my life I'd answer the question with "The Lord of the Rings". But I've purposely not read it in over a year, so I could come back to it fresh, so it's not so much in my mind (consciously, that is; it's influenced me in a lot of ways I probably don't notice).

    So I'm going to go with Pendragon's Heir by Suzannah Rowntree. I've always loved Arthurian legend, even if the ending didn't have a lot of hope. Sure, there was some, with you closing the book knowing Arthur will come back. But that was never enough to make up for all the pain and sorrow you'd gone through to get to that point. Without spoilers, Rowntree didn't take the easy way out of all the moral dilemmas she put her characters in, but the ending does still have plenty of hope for the future. I like that.
    The characters are good, too. You empathize with the main character, whose faults are normal and, we think, excusable, but by the end of the book she's grown quite a bit. All the characters do some changing. The way they interact with each other is believable and endearing. There's a married couple, the wife sends her husband out to kill a dragon while she's pregnant because she's craving Welsh dragon sausage, and he goes and does it because it's their fourth child and he's used to this. There's a knight who pushes a chair out of the way and sits on the Round Table, though he slides off when the queen comes in. A boy who was raised in a cave and has to attend a dinner party. . . people.
    Also, awesome villains. I like having good villains in my work, but none of mine are quite up there yet.
    The plot is good, with a few twists and turns you don't see coming, although they're foreshadowed, but in the end it's the people as much as the plot that keep you coming back to read it again.
    One other thing that I'd like to equal Rowntree in, though I know for certain I'm not there yet, is the quality of the writing itself. Rowntree keeps the feel of the original romances without making it impossible for someone born relatively recently to understand, but even if you don't know the source material, it's still really good writing.

    https://ofdreamsandswords.wordpress.com

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    1. Okay, I went to your blog, and can I just say that you had me when you said you liked How To Train Your Dragon. Oh my gosh, I'm too old to like that, but I love the movies so much. They're my favorite right now. I don't watch a lot of T.V, but I got excited to see someone else who has a lot of my points of view and likes How To Train Your Dragon. Your blog is going in my favorites. I also think its cool you had a lot of books to read growing up. I love to read (and write obviously). I know this all probably sounded crazy. I like How To Train Your Dragon because there's consequences to actions and the suspense is pretty awesome for a cartoon movie.
      I'm crazy, lol. Have a blessed day.
      ~PT

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    2. Oh, thanks! No, that's not crazy at all. The plotting of HTTYD (at least the first movie, which is the only one I've seen so far) is quite good for being a kid's movie, and even the characters aren't all as flat as you'd expect. Toothless is also adorable and it helps that he's a lot like my sister's cat :). And, though romance makes me snarky and I especially don't care for teen romances, Hiccstrid isn't terribly aggravating.

      https://ofdreamsandswords.wordpress.com

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    3. The second movie is amazing, too. I've seen them both. (Hiccstrid is cute and they don't overdo it in the second movie.)
      Toothless is an obsession of mine. I usually think movie squeals fall flat from the first movies, but this one was pretty amazing. You should see the second one. You might be surprised by some of the stuff that happens. I won't spoil anymore. :)
      I'm just happy there's someone else out there who likes the movies. I'm a kid at heart, lol. :) God Bless.
      ~PT

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  7. Currently, my favorite book is The Hunger Games, and the reason I loved it was the in depth storyworld, and all the different characters. For my own books, I love going super in depth in my storyworlds. I read Storyworld First and LOVED it.

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  8. So, I'm not entering in the drawing this time, but maybe one day. However, I wanted to join in about favorite books. Since I'm not joining, I'm giving a little backstory on books that impacted me growing up all the way to the point I'm at now.

    When I was younger, I read the Sisters Grimm series and was obsessed with it. While I don't read it now, the books still have an affect on me because they were so different. It was the stories of the Brothers Grimm, but the last known living descendants of them, two sisters who lived with their grandmother and were fairytale detectives. The stories the Brothers Grimm wrote were actually histories that humans, besides the Grimms, knew nothing about. It had action, adventure, slight romance (but they were kids books, so nothing crazy) and it was all so amazing.

    Going back a little further, I loved the Junie B. Jones series. I was little, and those were what I read. Fast forward to now and I've recently read Angel Eyes Trilogy and The Safe Lands trilogy.

    My favorite book right now would be Angel Eyes, the first book in the series. The description was awesome and the emotion felt real. I know we were only supposed to pick one, but as someone who loves to read, this can be difficult. Tied with Angel Eyes is Captives. The whole series, to me, was pretty awesome. It took a little while for me to really get into it, but I still liked the books. I like them because there are consequences to actions. There isn't a bad happening and then all is well kind of thing. There's real action and adventure. There's troubles and a main goal.

    So, if anyone's made it this far through my comment because I tend to ramble, thank you.

    Choosing one book is hard. It really makes you think. I haven't read books all that much lately, but I hope to make a collection of many, many books to have a personal library for my future family. (Because I'm a crazy book nut)

    Thank you, Mrs. Dittemore, for posing this question. Sorry for not choosing one book. I figured, since I wasn't entering the raffle this time, it would just be nice to talk about books that have affected me growing up to this point in life.

    There are so many more books I could talk about, some I had to read for school, but I still enjoyed. All I can say is to be a writer, you're probably a reader, too.

    Have a blessed day, Y'all. :)
    ~PT

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    1. WhenI was little, I ADORED Junie B Jones. I read and re-read many of them. Finishing with one of them, and picking up another.
      You are SO right, PT. it's exceedingly hard for me to pick just one book. Reading is one of my favorite things to do, so you probably have guessed where this is going. Lol Reading isn't just an activity; it's a tool. A tool to make you a better writer. To make you a better understander. What people write are subjects that that person is passionate about, or maybe they just wanna give some people a laugh. And sometimes, they just wanna poke fun at people. We all wan to meet people's expectations, but if you are writing for God and for his kingdom, focus your thoughts on him. He's the one you're trying to please after all. Your willingness for him makes him smile. He loves it when we do things for him. :)
      Sorry, that was a little bit off subject. Lol

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    2. I've tried to reply so many times, but my internet is being stubborn. I jump from subject to subject all the time. I also like the book In His Steps by Charles M. Sheldon. It's pretty inspiring.

      Reading is a tool. It helps us perfect our craft.
      Have a blessed day. :)
      ~PT (hope this one posts.)

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    3. My internet ha been awful lately. *sigh*
      I'm finding out so many lovely books to read. I know what I'm gonna be doing this summer. Lol

      I believe the less you read, the harder itll be to write.
      Bless you, PT. :)

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  9. Possibly my favorite fictional book(s) is The Bad Beginning (really, all of books in The Series of Unfortunate Events). I love everything from Lemony Snicket's situational humor to the weird/unique characters. Each person has a very special place in the book, and no two are exactly alike.

    I also love how he fearlessly throws writing rules out of the window for the sake of his story. Only he could fill up an entire page with the same few words over and over again and not make the reader throw the book away in disgust.

    His colorful use of words is fantastic. Each title means something in the story.

    I don't think I have time to list all of my favorite things so I'll just stop here.

    ~Sarah R.

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  10. One of my favorite books is Steelheart by Brandon Sanderson. I love the balance of humor and seriousnous. The main character, David, is a relatable main character and narrator--his sad past doesn't suck all the humor and awkwardness out of him, but instead adds a nice depth. The world-building is also spot-on. The opening scene of the book is so vivid and concise. I love how Sanderson can make a story be epic without being melodramatic.

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  11. My absolute favorite book is The Magician's Nephew by C. S. Lewis. It's been my favorite since the day I read it.

    I think the main reason that I love it is the imagination. Besides creating an amazing/interesting plot, he created such an amazing.... World! :D He created new races (Narnians, Calormens, etc.) as well as used/changed creatures like centaurs and dryads and dwarves and UNICORNS! *flails*

    I've always loved travel and discovering new things, so this book was like opening a present. <3

    Besides all those reasons above, I loved the way C.S. Lewis used symbolism. Aslan representing Jesus is probably my favorite!!!! <3333333

    Plus he squeezes humor in-between the pages, so this book is altogether PERFECT.

    *sighs* lol I think I love everything about this book. :D

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    1. I LOVE, LOVE, LOVE Narnia! Forgot to mention that in my list of favorite books. :) I cried when I read that Peter and Susan couldn't come back to Narnia in "Prince Caspian". :)

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    2. YAY!!!!!!!!
      I get sad, too. It was TERRIBLE. It was even worse when I found out that Susan didn't even believe in it when she got older. *cries* How COULD SHE?!?!?!
      I still luv it, tho. :D My favorite character is probably Fledge the phoenix.
      Jewel the unicorn is pretty darn cool, too..... I can't PICK!!

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    3. Three cheers for Narnia! I grew up loving C.S. Lewis' novels, and now I read his non-fiction as well. His writing voice is definitely not the modern style, but I love how it combines intellect with humor. It's just so fun to read.
      Anyone else have a soft spot for "The Horse and His Boy"?

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    4. Same!!!! C.S. Lewis definitely has a way with words.
      I love that book. The horses are so cool, and they also crack me up. xD

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    5. I don't remember being introduced to Narnia --- it's just always been there, you know? Horse and His Boy was one of my favourites, partly because we had a horse.

      https://ofdreamsandswords.wordpress.com

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  12. Thanks for this post Mrs. Dittemore!

    My favorite book is definitely Petey by Ben Mikaelson. The book’s SO touching, and it made me cry. If you’re like me, then know you’ll be a water pot. Lol

    It’s so emotional and vivid to me. The character’s feeling made me connect to the character. I could relate. I think being able to relate to a character is what makes us readers love them.

    I BEG you to read it. It’s such an amazing book. Thank God I found it.

    It changed my way of thinking, and how I acted around people who are different. I wasn’t mean or anything before, but before I just didn’t realize what the book taught me. Mikaelson’s writing reflected his gift. He’s a wonderful author, and i URGE you to read the book. Pretty please…..???

    Good Day, Ya’ll, and I hope you check out the book that I so passionately love. ;)

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    1. What I chose is beside the Bible for me, of course.

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    2. I love how a book changed the way you interact with people who are different from you! I wrote my first novel about a main character who was willful and angry, which is very different from my personality. I wanted it to make readers empathize with people around them, but I wasn't sure if books really made that sort of a difference. Not sure if that's the kind of thing you were describing, but it was encouraging, anyway.
      By the way, do you have a favorite portion of the Bible? I like reading about King David. The period of time in which his son Absalom rebels is especially packed with interesting accounts.

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    3. It was amazing how I felt after i read it.
      Oh, yes. That's exactly what I was describing. Oh, books really make impacts. Especially the ones about persecuted Christians.They're sad, but they really make you think. Would you deny God, or grab him up and pull him to your heart? I'm writing one like that now. I know, shame on me for having so many WIPs, but I have SO many ideas.
      I love the parts with Jesus raising from the dead. Other raised with him! I think that's SO cool. Also, the songs of David, Psalms, is really encouraging. It tells a story in a way. :) Absalom? I don't remember him. I'm rusty on David's story. I love it when I read it though. The Bible's basically a book of accounts and God's words to his people. It's so interesting.
      Isn't this amazing?!
      1 Corinthians 15:6
      After that, he appeared to more than five hundred of the brothers and sisters at the same time, most of whom are still living, though some have fallen asleep.
      ----I LOVE this!

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    4. That is really cool. How blessed those five hundred plus must have felt!
      Of course, nothing in the Old Testament can compare to the life of Jesus, but I find the stories related to David and Absalom to be really interesting. There are spies, betrayals, mysteries, and most of all just a bunch of secondary characters who had thoughts and goals of their own. Most of the action is in 2 Samuel, if you're interested.
      I'll definitely look into Petey. :) It sounds like a good book.

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    5. The Bible is so amazing because it is a living book that has different meaning each time you read it. I love the New Testament and the stories of Jesus. They bring me peace and calm. The Old Testament, while very important to the entire story of Jesus, is still gory and sad at a lot of times. But the part of the Bible where Jesus was calm in the face of death and rose for us to be saved is just so ... there are no words to express the glory He has.
      Not sure if y'all have heard of The Bible Project on YouTube, but they got some awesome videos, especially the read scripture series. They turn the Bible into a comic like thing and show visuals (nothing bad or gory) of Biblical stories. They're really cool.
      I finished a study on both of the Corinthians recently. Definitely inspirational in ways.
      God is just so amazing.
      God Bless y'all. :)
      ~PT

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    6. Olivia: I know, it would such an amazing experience to actually meet Jesus. I don't know what I'd do. It would be the best!
      I need to read the story of David. Absalom sounds like he'd make a some very interesting chapters. Lol
      2 Samuel? I'm gonna check it now! :) Thanks for telling me.
      Thanks you. You just made a reader very happy. lol Trust me, it is. I mena some people won't it, I mean everybody's different, but that was just my opinion. :)

      PT: I mean, they're true stories and not fiction. God's intervention chnaged the world. It turned it upside down (in a good way). He was so tormented in the Garden of gethsemane, but he lifted up his head, thought of us, and said "I need to do this for my children. heir too precious to be left behind. (God actually told me his experience. I can't believe he told ME! It's so wonderful. His words give me peace and joy. Yes, no words can compare to his unfailing love and glory. <3
      Wow, my Uncle actually sent us the link to it and said my cousins loved it. I haven't watched it yet, but I'm gonna check it out. I'd really like to see those!
      Yup, the Bible is so inspirational. It gives us a mental push in the right direction.
      He is far better than what I could ever think of imagining.
      Bless you guys! :D

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    7. That's what's so amazing about the Bible is it's all true to what happened. God loved us so much, He sacrificed His only son for us. And Jesus died for us and rose again. :)

      The Bible Project is pretty awesome. They make great content about the Bible. Their whole platform is showing that the whole Bible is a true story all pointing to Jesus. :)

      Have a blessed day, y'all! :D
      ~PT

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    8. I know, it's so neat. :) I love that he just died, and rose for us. He had a choice to do it or not, but he loved us so much, that he gave us his life. His death brought life. Life for us all. I love him so much for that. :)

      I'd love to check it out. I can
      t wait actually! :)

      Bless you, wonderful people. :)

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    9. I love that most of us are Christians on this blog, it's so inspiring to see other teen writers who have the same passions that I do! :D love y'all!
      God bless
      Keilah

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    10. It's just so refreshing. I love being able to have conversations about Jesus with anyone on here. It's so nice to be inspired by other people with the same passions and beliefs. God Bless you, too. :)
      ~PT

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    11. This site is amazing. I love feeling like I can just share my heart with all of you. God has done so many wonderful things for me. It's so hard not to. I feel the same way, Keilah. Love Ya'll too! <3
      Bless you all! :D

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  13. My favorite book is Lord of the Rings. I love the descriptions of plants in the books; it gives me a very accurate picture of what everything looked like. A lot of what he writes in his descriptions are what I would notice in real life. The world is diverse and well thought out, and has great history. The characters all have strong morals, which is very important to me. I do not like wishy-washy characters, especially morally. Something that strikes me is the importance of keeping your word. Even Gollum doesn't want to break his. One thing that puts LotR above many of my other favorites is that I would actually like to live in the world. Inkheart is nice, but the fantasy world there is dangerous and unforgiving. Wheel of Time is better, but there seems like there will be no end to the war...
    I also like the languages. I love Elvish, Dwarvish, and the scripts that go with them.

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    1. Yes! Go LotR! It is my second favorite book (because Eragon is the best and always will be).
      ~Mila

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  14. If I had to pick one favorite book (other than the Bible hehe) then I would definitely pick The Outsiders by S. E. Hinton. And honestly, I LOVE EVERYTHING ABOUT IT. I love the characters and how they relate to each other. I love the plot. I love the FEEELLSSS. xD I love that it's a story about brotherhood. But I think what's most important to me about the book is how the author did an incredible job of developing an honest, inspiring theme and wrote a sad story that still shone with hope. :D #endrant

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    1. Of course the Bible is number one. It's timeless. Can't believe I didn't put that in part of my answer. :)
      ~PT

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    2. Me neither, PT. lol
      Jonathan Trout - That book sounds cool! I'll try it out sometime!

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    3. Yes! I LOVE The Outsiders - is one of my favorite books of all time. I still read it often, and it never grows old. It's such an amazing story and the theme and characters are so well done. And what's also inspiring for me was that Hilton was also a teen author and wrote the book when she was 16!

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    4. I just read The Outsiders for the first time and I love it too! For me it is almost the definition of an amazing book. Great characters, dialogue, settings, and plot, but all surrounded by a moving, timeless theme that applies to every person every where and can bring change in people's lives. Wow. I agree with you--love everything about it! :D

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  15. This is so hard to pick just one! I love Percy Jackson, Left Behind, Sherlock Holmes, anything by Agatha Christie, but I'm going to have to go with Harry Potter. :)
    I love the Harry Potter books because they are truly timeless. I first read them last summer, after I turned sixteen. They never seemed like children's books. Now, my parents are reading them and they love them. J.K. Rowling wrote them so well that they truly appeal to all ages. They're inspiring, funny, mature, and captivating. I also love the characters, as they are all different and inspiring. I love Hermione because she's very much like me--we both have bushy, unmanageable hair :) and love to read and study. I also love the different qualities (right word? :) in the books--the concept of love (Lily loved her son so much that she was willing to die for him, and because of her love, Harry was able to survive), devotion (Hermione and Ron stood by Harry through tough trials), and even if you have done something wrong, you can turn from that.
    I could go on all day (haha), but I should stop here. :)

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    1. Ooooh yes I love Harry Potter. And you're right about it being so relatable, which is pretty cool in such a fantastical world.
      And the characters. Awww I love them.

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  16. One book that had a major impact on me was "Martin the Warrior" of the Redwall series. I think reading it was when I first started to realize how much I love medieval worlds. I loved the fight scenes, the humor, the journeys... lots of action and adventure. At the same time, though, I disliked the fact that it wasn't written from a Christian worldview. Thus, I decided to write books that combined adventure with a pursuit of Christ so that kids like me would someday have another author they could trust to guide them.
    Anyway, there are plenty of other books I could mention, but I'll keep it to one. ;) Thanks for this prompt, Mrs. Dittemore! And I loved the quote you provided. It's very encouraging.

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    1. I wish there were more Christian writings with all our favorite subjects. That's be great. A writer can only write so much. Lol
      Oh, DARN! I just remembered that my favorite books are The Left Behind series by Jerry B Jenkins. Dang.
      Well, now you know. Lol

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    2. You take a genre, I'll take a genre. I'll bet we can make a difference in the market. ;)
      I enjoyed reading the Left Behind series, too. I like how long they were. Prolong the joy!

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    3. I was heartbroken when the series ended! Though, forty books in a series is a good number. Lol
      Yes, we'll change the writing world. Lol
      I wish the books that I adore would be longer. That'd be so cool. :)

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    4. I love Left Behind! I even wrote Jerry B. Jenkins, asking him to write more. :)

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    5. It's my fav! Jerry B Jenkins is a very talented writer. When he mentioned bible verses in Revelation in the story, I would go to my Bible and find the verses ahead of time. The books felt so real to me. I'm gonna read the adult ones sometime. Maybe this summer. I wanna read The Tattooed Rats by Jerry B Jenkins soon as well. ;)
      Did you ever get an answer from him?

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    6. I did! He said no, he couldn't write any more. :) He also sent an autographed copy of one of his other books!

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    7. Lol! I understand. He as probably pooped from 40 other books. That's great that he got back to you. I'd be so excited.
      Wow, an autographed copy? That's great! :) I should write to him sometime. Lol
      Though, it would be be about more books about the rapture. Not for the series, but a different set of novels. (That'd be cool!)

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    8. 40 books? And I thought a trilogy was hard to work on. Impressive that he wrote 40 books.
      ~PT

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    9. Yep! The Left Behind (kids version) is 40 books. That guy's gifted. Sheesh. It's hard enough to write one. Lol

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  17. I have so many favorite books, is so hard to choose just one. But right now, one book that is near the top of the list is The Memory of Light by Francisco X. Stork. It covers some serious subjects - suicide and mental illness - and make you really think. The characters are everyday people and they all have their own story going on during the story, and I really like how Stork waves all of their stories together from the viewpoint of the main character, Vicky.

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  18. One of my favorite books is Since You've Been Gone by Morgan Matson. I love it because of the growth of the main character and her relationship with her best friend. I aspire to write stories with that same amount of well written growth and friendships. (And also, who wouldn't love a book that includes a drive in, an ice cream shop, a pizza place, a vintage store, and a beach?!?)

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  19. I'd have to go with The Book Thief. Markus Zusak has such a wonderful unique voice. It really helps with all the complex emotions in that book. And he hits you HARD. Wow. If you've read it and you think about what it's about (well, there's this foster child growing up in Nazi Germany and she falls in love with her neighbor and hides a Jew in her basement and...) it sounds like a good story but it totally doesn't give it justice.
    And the language in the book is beautiful and the characters are awesome and I'll stop now.

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    1. I want to read it! My fam watched the movie, but books are my favorites. You made it sound very intriguing! I wanna read it. I'll see if my library has it. Thanks for that! :)

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    2. I watched the movie, Gilly! I haven't read the book, but I would like to. The movie was really disappointing for me at the end when her family and everyone she knew had died. I was so emotional!

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  20. I really like The Eagle of the Ninth by Rosemary Sutcliff. I think she appealed to my taste with beautiful, detailed writing, an exciting plot with desperate situations, interesting characters, and cleverly deep metaphors. The book also includes several thoughtful themes as well as accurate historical details about what I consider to be interesting people groups of the past. But mostly the way Sutcliff weaves words together effortlessly to form a seamless story makes me love it.

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  21. For the sake of what this post requires, I'm going to go with Tucket's Travels by Gary Paulsen.

    What did I like about it?
    I'd say the characters would be a main one. I fell in love with Francis. I loved his drive, his determination, his compassion. Mr. Grimes kept me intruiged, and I loved the relationship between him and Francis. I also think Billy had great development.


    Secondly, I'd say the plot. When I first read Francis' weary journey (some five years ago), I was big into westerns. I loved the whole idea of living in the wild. It really appealed to me, especially since Francis had to struggle to survive and he was always trying to get back to his family.

    Lastly, I think the voice really hooked me. It wasn't in first, but it was really good just the same. I loved the way Paulsen showed Francis' feelings, particularly his anger, but also his calmness during situations that could quickly go sour. (Like when he took back Lottie and Billy from the trading post.)


    My favorite book is The Black Arrow, but because I've only read it once, I decided to go with this because I've read it a million times. :)

    Also, if any of y'all want to follow me, I posting anonymously because the comments are doing something wierd. Anyway, my blog is this:

    foreverpersuaded.WordPress.com

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  22. My favorite book series is the Inheritance Cycle by Christopher Paolini. It just uses such good language and describes things so well without over-describing them, and it keeps me hooked for the entire storyline. The plot is so well thought out, and he expresses the character's thoughts so clearly even though it is in third person, especially through Saphira and Nasuada. Also, he started Eragon when he was 13. If I can write a first draft of something that will be good when I am 13, I will be extremely happy. And the characters are so realistic and dynamic. I also like how he includes a list of words in the Ancient Language in the back.
    ~Mila

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    1. Just so everybody knows, when I talk about my favorite books, I'm talking about my favorite fiction books (most of the time). So I say that Eragon is my favorite book, but that isn't including the Bible.
      ~Mila

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    2. Wow, that is very encouraging for young novelists. Thank you for sharing, Mila!

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  23. My favourite book (other than the Bible of course :D) is Anomaly, by Krista McGee. I love this book because Mrs. McGee describes the feelings of the main character, Thalli in a way that everyone can relate to. The plot of the book has many twists that kept me engaged and therefore I couldn't even put it down! I love how she portrayed who God was, and what evil was. Overall, I loved this book (and the rest of the trilogy).

    YAY YOU FINISHED YOUR BOOK! Can't wait to read it!!! :D

    ~ fUtUrE fAmOuS aUtHoR - Keilah

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  24. Wow, that book sounds exciting! I'd love to check it out. Thanks for telling us about it, Keilah. :)
    It's a trilogy. That make sit even better.

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    1. Thanks LHE, it is really exciting! It's a dystopian trilogy (which totally makes it even better!!), and it even has romance in it!

      - Keilah

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    2. I really want to read it now. I'm writing dystopian, so reading that might be helpful in writing better. I'm going to look for that now. Thanks for talking about it, Keilah.
      ~PT

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    3. @Keilah: Your welcome! I can't wait to check it out. Wait, dang. I did. My brain is zapped. Lol
      Thanks for sharing it! :)

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  25. My favourite book is the Bible, but my favourite novel would have to be the Lord of the Rings. The thing that really captured me about it wasn't the depth of Tolkien's worlds or languages (though they are both brilliant), but the depth of his characters and his themes. I was drawn to the immense faith they have, the love and friendship, the hope and courage amidst the darkness...it appealed to me on an emotional level and it is so much more than entertainment. Its such a beautiful story, and Tolkien's faith shines out in it brilliantly.

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  26. Oh, favorites, favorites. So hard to say...but between the Lord of the Rings, Chronicles of Prydain, and Harry Potter, I can kind of figure out what it is that draws me into a book/series and makes me love it. It's the depth. The meaning behind everything, the complexity of the plot, the vividness of the world--J. K. Rowling spent years planning the Harry Potter series. If you've ever read The Silmarillion, you know Tolkien had literally the entire history of Middle Earth plotted out. And by the way Lloyd Alexander tied everything up in the end, it's obvious he put a lot of thought into his storyworld, plot, and even characters. That kind of depth (and dedication :) ) is what I'm hoping to achieve someday.

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  27. The first book that comes to mind is Crooked Kingdom, and the thing (< I'm so eloquent) in that book that absolutely made me fall to pieces and gave me the biggest book hangover of all time was the characters--especially Kaz. UGH. YES. ALL THE FEELS. I aspire to write characters with as much depth as Leigh Bardugo's, and to paint them on the page as effortlessly, simply, and beautifully as she does.

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