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“I don’t normally read chick lit,” the writing student says to Jane Austen. He then goes on to berate poor Jane with his smug, limited viewpoint.

Don’t be that guy! I can appreciate that we want to share what we’ve learned along the road to writing nirvana, but we do not have all the answers. When offering a critique, humility and an open mind are called for.

I found this from “Freshly Pressed.”

Keep writing and keep sharing! – Cronin Detzz

Jane Austen, Programming Languages, and Being “That Guy” in the Writing Class –


Your Redundancy is Boring!

I’m enjoying a book with a great plot.  Sorta.

I wish I could have been a beta reader for the author, before he published his book, so that I could show him his redundant phrases. It’s irksome.

The writing is similar to this:

His eyes were bloodshot from lack of sleep. His team was worried about his exhausted appearance. He rubbed his eyes. They were red.

Are there certain phrases you could tighten up? A common novice mistake is inefficiency.


He rubbed his bloodshot eyes, hoping his team wouldn’t notice.

Heres a link for  more tips on efficient writing (caveat: I don’t always agree with taboo phrases, but this post gives you the general idea):

Keep writing and keep sharing! – Cronin Detzz

Do You Really Know How To Show, Don’t Tell?

Great blog. Sue gives us some examples of words to watch for.

Crime Fiction Writer Sue Coletta

Let me preface this post by saying, I found this generator that rates post titles. Which is why this title seems a bit cocky. It rated high and I’m using it as a test. For those of you who are new to my site and don’t know me, I assure you I do not think I’m better than anyone. This is only a test to see if higher rated titles really drive more traffic. Stay tuned for a post on this if it works. If it doesn’t…crickets.


Yesterday marked my deadline for completing the pre-edits for Marred. “Pre-edits” seems like it would be an easy task. It wasn’t. Once the track edits begin in two weeks I’m not allowed to change anything other than what the editor points out. So I wanted to go through the manuscript…one…more…time…and improve it to the best of my ability. I went word-by-word, line-by-line, scene-by-scene…and checked scene structure, MRUs…

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Symbols as A Literary Device


This is the first thing I saw on my flight into SW Florida. As a literary device, a rainbow symbolizes hope and new beginnings.

Have fun using these in your creative writing. Other items you may want to consider include bridges, stormy weather, and rite of passage events (like a teenager getting his first razor).

What literary devices have you used?

Keep writing and keep sharing! – Cronin Detzz


How can a writer craft a character who is great at disguises? Spies and villains and accidental heroes often need this capability.


Cronin 35 years ago

Im starting to believe that certain body types have an advantage.  My son and I have both found that we have a kind of ageless, raceless appearance. To illustrate:
*I was washing my car when some fund-raising  candy-selling tweens walked by. “Hi!” harkened the eldest. “Is your mom home?” I was 38 years old at the time. Yes, I bought some chocolate from her!
* “Ma’am, can you help me?” I was startled because it was the first time I was addressed as ma’am. I was 16. Don’t tell my parents, but it was easy for me to get served at pubs!
*I’ve been asked, “donde esta el banjo?” several times. I think I surprise them when I answer in my Chicago twang, “I think it’s in the back, near lay aways.”
* Speaking of my black hair, I’ve also been asked what tribe I’m from when I attend pow wows. I also am asked if I am Italian American. To set the record straight, it’s black-haired Irish; both sides of my family are British. Dad was born in Liverpool and I’ve traced lineage to Ireland, Scotland, and England.

And saving the best (or worst?) for last:
*When I was a newly-hatched adult, my husband and I went to Toronto. I had a quick smoke while he went inside a convenient store. It was a bit chilly, but i was fine in my jeans and black jacket. A balding man with a paunchy gut smiled and said, “Hi, how are you?”

Friendly Canadian, I thought. “Fine. You?”

“How much?”

It took me a second. Then I burst out laughing. “No!” I finally said, after I caught my breath. “Waiting for my husband.” I pointed behind me.

Therefore, if your spy/sleuth/villain has black hair and a hard-to-place age, the character may have an easier time blending in America. Other good traits may include malleable accents and an androgenous body shape.

And if you really want to know, I’ll tell you, I am just shy of 50 years old. But I’m saving divulging my weight for carnies, who always get that wrong, too! I make a quick 5 bucks at those weight guessing games.

Keep writing and keep sharing! – Cronin Detzz