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 November, 2005


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The Basics: Point of View (Part 5 - Exercise)

by Sandy Tritt


(continued from last month)

EXERCISE: Point of View
(see Section 6 for possible solutions)

Want to try your hand at identifying point of view? Get out your highlighting markers and mark this section, using Blue for Ray’s point of view and Pink for Carol’s point of view. When you are finished, check Section 6. to see if you’ve marked the same things we have. For the purposes of this exercise, assume that all prose is in either Ray’s or Carol’s viewpoint (eliminating the narrator), and that viewpoint changes occur only when something causes us to go into a different character’s head.

Ray was ten minutes early for his appointment the next day. He stood in the doorway and tugged at his beard, wondering if he should interrupt or come back later.
Carol looked up from her work. She smiled at the sight of the large man in the doorway. “Come on in,” she said.
Ray hesitated. Talking to schoolteachers still intimidated him. But he forced himself forward and walked to the desk. “I’m Ray Gambel.” He extended his hand. “David’s brother.”
Carol accepted his handshake. Although he looked nothing like David, there was something familiar about him. She motioned toward an empty chair and waited while he sat. “This is a creative writing class, generally for seniors, but David submitted writing samples last spring to qualify. He’s the only junior in the class.”
Ray nodded. He knew the kid was smart.
Carol shuffled through the folders on her desk. “I’m concerned about some of his poetry. I wondered if you would take a few minutes to read it.”
She handed him a stack of papers. Some teachers would have graded the papers and forgotten the content, but Carol worried about her students.
Ray slowly read through the poems. The first was titled “If I’d Have Loved You More.” Ray immediately knew it was about their mother. David and Joey had written songs during the summer with the same type of stark lyrics. Ray sighed and looked at the next title, “When Wishes Come True.” He rubbed his forehead and handed the paper back to Carol. “Our mother died last November. David never got along with her too good.”
“David seems to have a lot of anger and guilt he’s trying to work through. I’d like to refer him to Mr. Meeks, the school counselor.”
“We talked to Rev. Mitchell right after Mom died, but David wouldn’t cooperate. Rev. Mitchell said not to bring him back unless David decided he wanted to talk about it.”
Carol smiled. David had always been polite in class, but he had that air of arrogance that said he wasn’t going to do anything he didn’t want to.
“Him and Joey—that’s another brother—they wrote some songs this summer about Mom.”
Carol’s eyes widened in sudden recognition. “You’re a musician, aren’t you?”
“I got a band.”
“You played at Dino’s Lounge on Labor Day Weekend.” He was the one with the wonderful voice, the one who filled the air with ions of sensuality.
Ray’s face reddened. Labor Day Weekend was Gary’s last time with the band. They’d chugged two pitchers of beer and gotten rowdy—even did the Lion Sleeps thing. It wasn’t the type of show he’d want a schoolteacher to attend. “You weren’t there late, were you?”
Carol’s blue eyes danced. “You were wonderful.”
Ray wished his face would quit burning.
“Would you mind if I gave David’s poetry to Mr. Meeks? And suggest he talk to him?”
“I’ll ask David for his permission before I do.” She rose to her feet. “I think David will be fine. Thank you for coming in.”
Ray stood.
Carol offered her hand. “Anytime you need to talk to someone, give me a call. I’m in the phone book.”
Ray shook her hand. “Thank you.”
“It was wonderful meeting you, Mr. Gambel,” Carol said, allowing her hand to linger in his. “I hope to see you again. Soon.” And she was sure that one way or another, she would.

- - -
After you have marked your paper and checked to see if you agree with my answers, go ahead and take this to the next level: rewrite this scene, first from Ray’s viewpoint, then from Carol’s viewpoint. Although your scenes are sure to differ from mine, I’ve offered my rewrites in Section 6.

(continued next month)

(c) copyright 2002 by Sandy Tritt. All rights reserved, except for those listed here. November be reproduced for educational purposes (such as for writer's workshops), as long as this copyright notice and the url: http://tritt.wirefire.com are distributed with the pages. For use in conferences or other uses not mentioned here, please contact Sandy Tritt at tritt@wvadventures.net for permission and additional resources at no or limited charge.

   Keep writing!

Sandy Tritt

Inspiration for Writers tritt@wvadventures.net



God Created You: A Guide to Temperament Therapy

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From chapter 2... "How a person behaves is a combination of temperament, living in the strengths and/or weaknesses of their temperament environment, decisions they have made or not made, conclusions they have drawn about right and wrong, their relationship with God or the lack thereof..."

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Publishing New Writers,

November, 2005 (no. 611)


Publisher: Bruce L. Cook, P.O. Box 451, Dundee, IL 60118.  Fax (847) 428-8974.

Submissions /comments  cookcomm@gte.net.

Links are welcome.


To subscribe and/or  review our archive of past newsletters, go to









How Do You Get Talk Radio Interested in your Book?
Hot Tips For Getting On The Air

By Marsha Friedman

If you’re hoping to turn your book into a sensation you can’t afford to overlook talk radio. Your book isn’t going to sell itself, so you need to do everything you can to get the word out. By generating word-of-mouth on talk radio shows around the country, you can create that all-important buzz that can transform your book into a bona fide hit.

Experienced publishers and best-selling authors know that talk radio is the best medium for selling books. We know that talk radio works because we’ve been doing it for over 16 years. As one of the top providers of radio guests in the country, we get asked all the time for tips on getting booked as a guest. Here are a few helpful tips for those of you looking to book yourselves into this medium:
HOT TIP #1 --- The first thing you have to do is continuously follow the news. Study the news, scan the newspapers, and most importantly, make sure that you monitor the talk radio landscape. Take some time to listen to talk shows and hear what they’re talking about. Get a read on the pulse of the public. This research will help you develop a relevant message that people will be interested in hearing.

HOT TIP #2 --- As you follow the news, pay close attention to the hot stories and think how the issues tie in with your book. Perhaps your book ties in with a controversy of some kind. If you can develop a newsworthy angle, you can even get on the air with a fiction book as we’ve done successfully a number of times.

HOT TIP #3 --- As you develop your message, remember that radio hosts don’t want to do infomercials. When pitching to producers, be careful not to pitch yourself too heavily. Instead, present yourself as an expert on a hot issue. Put the emphasis on the issue, not on your book. The simple fact that you’ve authored a book enhances your credibility. Don’t worry, hosts will give you an opportunity to plug your book on-the-air.

HOT TIP #4 --- The fourth and possibly most important part of getting yourself booked onto talk radio is the actual press release. One of the reasons we’ve been so successful in this business is the quality of our pitches. Producers want to see your pitch before they schedule an interview, so make sure your headline is attention-grabbing. In the text, elaborate on the subject matter and be sure to include provocative quotes.
These tips should get you jump-started into the world of talk radio.

Marsha Friedman – CEO of EMSI, a national publicity firm specializing in media coverage since 1990 for authors and experts in a variety of fields ranging from law, finance, politics, to lifestyle, sports, health and food. EMSI is considered to be one of the top resources of guests for talk radio shows around the country, scheduling 50 to 100 talk radio interviews every week with clients also appearing on national TV shows such as CNN, Good Morning America, The Today Show, Montel and Maury Povitch - and covered in major daily newspapers and national magazines.

Write Marsha Friedman a
t mfriedman@event-management.com

Critiquing Special

  • Limited time special, one cent per word.  Just mention Publishing New Writers  Newsletter (November, 2005).

    Critiques by Sandy Tritt

  • Unlike most editors, I consider my role to be a mentor or a coach. Instead of just telling you what is wrong, I explain how to correct the problem, and I work with you to teach you how to write effective prose. More than 50% of my business is repeat business, and I relish establishing long-term relationships with other writers.

  • Treat you with respect and compassion. All criticism will be of the "constructive" sort. My purpose is to improve your writing, not to destroy your confidence.

  • Mark your manuscript, correcting grammatical and spelling errors and suggesting alternative wording where appropriate, line-by-line.

  • Highlight areas that are especially well-written, so you will know where your strengths are.

  • Where appropriate, offer suggestions for plot development, character development or other areas that could be strengthened.

  • Return a two-to-four page written analysis of your work. This will include evaluation of: plot, setting, characterization, dialogue, special effects (flash forwards, flashbacks, etc.), voice, point of view and any other areas particular to your work.

  • If appropriate, recommend reading or resources to strengthen your areas of weakness.

  • Answer any questions you  have via email.

  • Provide my telephone number for a personal follow-up, if you desire.

For Sandy's success stories, see http://tritt.wirefire.com/Manuscript_Critique.html

Write Sandy at tritt@wvadventures.net

(See Sandy's article - above.)








The Celebration of Ugandan Women Writers:
Ugandan Female Literature Ambassadors

by Jane Musoke-Nteyafas

In the wake of the sixties and seventies vis-à-vis.the dominance of male writers like Chinua Achebe, Ngugi Wa Ngugi wa Thiongo, Leopold Sedar Senghor, Wole Soyinka and Ken Wiwa, it seems like there is a proliferation of female Ugandan writers cropping up. Although we are hearing many of their names in the late 1990’s and early 2000’s that does not mean that they were not writing stories before this period. On the contrary, they were just not getting published. However, like many other fields, African women all over the world are making their mark and Ugandan women are no different. They are excelling in large numbers in the literature field. In a country where the past thirty years have barely produced women writers, let alone male writers, baby boomers and Generation Xer’s are getting out there are passionately telling their stories through the eyes of women.
Part of this so-called literary boom is thanks to the efforts of Femrite-the Association of Ugandan Women Writers. Founded by Mary Karooro and Goretti Kyomuhendo, in 1996 Femrite was created with the aim of creating awareness about women's writings; promoting a reading and writing culture in Uganda; training women writers to upgrade their writing skills; networking and publishing Ugandan women's creative work. Previous to this that only one female writer had been featured among male writers like Okot p'Bitek, Henry Barlow, Timothy Wangusa, John Ruganda, John Nagenda, Taban lo Liyong and Robert Serumaga. There was a considerable disparity that needed to be tackled and these women found themselves inundated with a plethora of female writers that the country did not even know that it had. Several books were published as a result including: Words from a Granary: An Anthology of Short Stories by Ugandan Women Writers, Men love chocolates but they don’t say by Mildred Kiconco Barya and Memoirs of a Mother by Anne Ayeta Wangusa.

The British Council-Crossing Borders Writers Programme was another valuable venue that helped in the representation of Ugandan talent to the world. It is a distance learning scheme linking young African writers to experienced UK mentors and developing their work through e-mail tutorials with the aims of get the writers to hear, identify and develop their voices as writers. Many Ugandan female writers seized the opportunity, which in turn helped them to successfully improve their writing skills and give them exposure.

Throughout history, Ugandan women have played important roles in society. Oral literature has very much been a part of the African past, with women at the forefront. In African tradition women are the traditional storytellers. Passing on history and telling stories to their children was a very important part if African culture. However this was eroded by colonial interruptions that destroyed the cultural network of African societies. Slowly by slowly, with the growth of Negritude, a literary and ideological movement of French-speaking black intellectuals against colonialism, more African men began writing and in turn began to express themselves in the literature field, while the women were left behind. Add civil wars and political unrest to this recipe and it only would be in the 1990’s that Ugandan women would emerge onto the literary scope of Uganda.

Since these women came to writing after the waning of the Negritude period, many Ugandan female writers still have to go through the nuisances of beaurocratic obstacles before their work is accepted and published, which has stagnated them out of the distribution process despite being published. In fact very few works by female Ugandan writers seem to have made it into the Western academic curriculum. A paradox appears as most critics highlight the explosion of women writers in Africa as the most significant attribute of African literature in the 1990's, while devoting almost no space to their works.

Despite these odds though, many of Ugandan women are winning awards including Doreen Baingana who won the 2003 Associated Writing Programs Award for Short Fiction, and her short story collection, "Tropical Fish: Stories Out of Entebbe.” She was also shortlisted for the Caine Prize for African Writing 2004 and 2005. Other writers are Monica Arac de Nyeko for "Strange Fruit" and Jackee Budeste Batanda for "Remember Atita" both from Cook Communication, online magazine AuthorMe who were also shortlisted for the Caine Prize for African Writing 2004. It is clear that these young women are opening the door for the many other women that have yet to have their work recognized on an international level.

Amollo, Regina; Arac de Nyeko, Monica; Baingana Doreen; Bakaluba Jane J; Bamwoyeraki, Nuwagira, Sophie; Barenzi, Lilliane; Barungi, Violet; Batanda, Jackee Budesta; Isharaza, Grace Birabwe; Kaberuka, Jane; Ekochu, Bananuka Jocelyn; Keshubi, Hope; Kiconco, Mildred Barya; Kiguli, Susan N.; Kimenye, Barbara; Kyomuhendo, Goretti; Lamwaka, Beatrice; Musoke-Nteyafas, Jane; Musoke-Nteyafas Rose, Nambozo, Beverley; Namukasa, Glaydah; Nandelenga, Rachel; Ntakarimize, Margaret; Olanya Amaguru, Jackline; Oloro, Nancy Okoed Aimo, Sandra; Okurut, Mary Karooro; Oryema-Lalobo, Christine; Tindyebwa, Lillian; Twongyeirwe, Hilda; Wangusa, Ayeta Anne

*Names of writers courtesy of a Celebration of Women Writers: Uganda



As well as the British Council-Crossing Borders writers Programme Writers gallery

Jane Musoke-Nteyafas, poet/author/artist and playwright, was born in Moscow, Russia and currently resides in Toronto, Canada. She is the daughter of retired diplomats. By the time she was 19, she spoke French, English, Spanish, Danish, Luganda, and some Russian and had lived in Russia, Uganda, France, Denmark, Cuba and Canada. She won the Miss Africanada beauty pageant 2000 in Toronto where she was also named ‘one of the new voices of Africa’ after reciting one of her poems. In 2004 she was published in T-Dot Griots-An Anthology of Toronto's Black storytellers and in February 2005 her art piece Namyenya was featured as the poster piece for the Human Rights through Art-Black History Month Exhibit. She is also a columnist for Bahiyah Woman Magazine and is a fellow with the British Council-Crossing Borders Writers Programme.

Jane Musoke-Nteyafas
















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