Aug 3, 2010

Get a Little Irony in your Diet

Most writers I know are also lovers of irony (so are most teenagers, but they like to call it 'Fail'). I just had to share my own recent example.

Yesterday, I posted about distractions from writing that I pretend are devices to help me write. I've long suspected Twitter and Blogger are not actually helping me get words down in my WIP (although I think the cookies still do help?). Right after I posted my list of distractions, mostly found in the Internet world, my Internet went down. I was without social networking for the whole day (today I've managed to slip down to the local library for an online fix). Had I upset the ADSL gods?

After a moment of stunned shock, I pulled out my WIP, The Warracknabeal Kids, and wrote. I got in two new chapters and opened up some new connections between characters. I also discovered some important motives. Once I'd exhausted my words, I turned to editing Dog Show Detective, which also turned out to be time productively spent.

Afterwards, I polished off a novel I'd been reading I Am Not A Serial Killer. Dan Wells' novel is about a teenager who feels it is left up to him to stop a vicious serial killer in his home town, ironically, this kid is also a sociopath.

I've learned that sometimes it pays to turn off the technology and just write (but not always! I still need my blogs to read and twitter friends to contact!). I'm thinking of introducing one day a week where I 'switch off'.

So, if we all love a bit of irony, how about finding ways to put it into your manuscript? What if your MC devises a plan to achieve what they want, but it ironically turns out to give their antagonist what they want instead?

And on an exciting note - I've almost reached 200 followers! Keep an eye out for the competition I'll run as soon as I get there (any day now!) - big book giveaway coming up!


  1. Grats on your distraction-less writing spree. I need one of them right now ;)

    I try to take a break from social networking on the weekends just so I have more time to relax and be with my husband (and write as well).

    You haven't had much luck on your connections lately. Hope it sorts itself out soon.

  2. I lvoe irony, both in real life and in books. Dramatic irony is probably my favourite where the reader gets to know more than the characters, but all types of irony can amuse and really help draw me into a plot.
    Thanks for sharing an interesting post.

  3. Well, first of all, love the photos. They are amazingly funny and ironic. I think it's good to just tune out of technology once and awhile.


  4. Does that not count as a spoiler? I was reading about the book and you knocked me off my perch. I'd been feeling like the little gull up until then ;)

  5. Congrats on your 200 followers!

    Isn't it great when we don't have the internet as a distraction!

  6. Good job on the writing spree! Awesome :)

  7. Regarding your plans to 'switch off', have you heard of the add-on for Mozilla Firefox called "Leech Block"?

    It allows you to block you Firefox from visiting certain websites, or to only allow it a certain amount of time per day on them, or to only allow it (you, really) to visit them during certain time periods or on certain days. If you're looking for a way to enforce switching off, it's a useful tool.

  8. Congrats on all the followers. I like the idea of having a switch off day. I might employ that once summer vaca is over for us.

  9. Well, Charmaine, congratulations to you for getting so much work done! And an almost congratulations for almost reaching 200 followers.

    As for the "switch off" day idea, I think I should adapt that idea into my work schedule as well.

    Write on and switch off!

  10. I always say, boredom is great for my creativity. :D

  11. Lynda - thanks, living in the country means our connection can be iffy sometimes, but the technicians do come out and fix any problems, so that's nice :-)

    Casandra - you're most welcome, thanks for commenting!

    Clarissa - yes, love the technology, but I do need to plan more breaks from it ;-j

    Elaine - I promise it's not a spoiler! It's the protagonist's own assumption pretty early on that he is a sociopath (and possibly on the road to serial killing). You'll love the book - very different.

    Aubrie - Thanks, I'm looking forward to choosing which books to feature in the giveaway :-)

    JJ - thanks for the tip, I'll check it out. I like to think I have many powers, but unfortunately 'will' does not seem to be one of them.

    Mary - thanks, I think it's especially hard for us mums to switch off, we always manage to guilt ourselves into thinking there's other things we need to do - but it's great when you can have a self-indulgent writing day :-)

    Vatche - Thanks and 'write on!'

    MPax - I need a little more boredom in my day then! :-)

  12. My Internet (and electricity) conked out several times this spring. It was an interesting experience, trying to figure out which things on my to-do list I could still work on. Fortunately, at the time, I was concentrating on research, so I sat by a window all afternoon and read away!

    (And, yes, cookies definitely help!)

  13. We get several powercuts here in Cyprus, so I get offline time. I deliberately pulled the plug for a few days last month and finished my novel.
    I intend to to the same again soon, now I am on book2.

    Happy scribbling.