Flashback in Fiction

What is a flashback?
It is a scene narrated in the present timeline but it pertains to something that happened in the past – something that took place before the current story starts.
A flashback refers to an event so compelling and powerful that it sits in the character’s memory – and it has contributed to make the character who she is.
How can you tell if your story needs a flashback?

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He said, she said: Dialogue Tags

This week, I’m going to talk about Dialogue Tags.

If my book characters say something, how will readers know who spoke?
How will they know who said what when they can’t physically see or hear the characters?

Through dialogue tags, that’s how. Dialogue tags are phrases or sentences that tie or tag a character to a particular dialogue.

Consider this conversation (Example A):
‘What on earth are you doing?’
‘How is it any of your bloody business what I do?’
‘It is my bloody business because this is my bloody house!’

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Is your writing clichéd to the hilt?

A cliché is a phrase that is symbolic or figurative rather than literal; for example: I am over the moon. Really? Clearly not, unless you are in a space ship, in which case it is a literal situation and therefore not a cliché.

A cliché can be an idiom, as in the example above; a metaphor [it was the final straw]; a simile [she sank like a stone]; or a proverb [knowledge is power].

At one time, eons ago, it was considered natty to use such phrases in speech and in writing. The concept was still new and they sounded clever.

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B is for Burnout

This week, the letter is B, and I’m going to talk about Writer’s Block and Burnout.

Let’s first distinguish Writer Burnout from Writer’s Block.
I read an interesting take on the topic at Litreactor.com:
When the voices in your head refuse to speak to you, it is Writer’s Block, but when they’re shouting at you to put pen to paper, and you simply cannot, that’s Burnout.

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A is for Anti-heroes

Welcome to “Authors’ Tips – A to Z of Writing”

This is a new series of blog posts where eight of us – Devika Fernando, Preethi Venugopala, Paromita Goswami, Adite Banerjie, Ruchi Singh, Sudesna Ghosh, Saiswaroopa Iyer and I – will post on a myriad of writing-related topics with the topic corresponding to the Alphabet of the Week.

We are starting with the letter A, a very good place to start, and Adite has set the ball rolling with her post on Authenticity in Writing. I am writing on A is for Antiheroes

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Spotlight: ‘Love Lost and Found’ by Esha Pandey

The Blurb

The heart wants what it wants. When hit by love, there is no reasoning. There is just intense, addictive, exhausting feeling of losing oneself. When found, love can make a person. When lost, love can destroy a person completely. We all have a couple of friends who have held our hands through heart break and celebrated our happiness with us. This book celebrates those friendships and love. Read if you have fallen in love. Must read if you have lost in love.

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Spotlight and Review: ‘The Bodyguard’ by Ruchi SIngh

My review

I enjoyed ‘The Bodyguard’ thoroughly – didn’t want to put it down, but had to because sleep beckoned; but I picked it up again first thing the next morning and finished it.

The Major is tough as bullets – loved her. She (Esha) is a mix of sensuality and solid professionalism, trying to keep the wicked Vikramaditya at bay even as he makes her melt. Vikramaditya is a perfect match for the feisty Esha, who is his bodyguard (I loved this little gender quirk in the conventional way of setting up a bodyguard romance).

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Spotlight: Bombay Heights by Adite Banerjie

Bombay Heights by Adite Banerjie
Blurb:
A FEEL-GOOD ROMANTIC COMEDY

Small town girl Sanjana Kale wants a fresh start in Mumbai. A challenging job and some much needed distance from her ludicrously over-protective family could get her life under control.

Forced to team up with video game designer Ashwin Deo, who is too attractive for his own good, she finds life becoming a whole lot more complicated when he turns out to be her new neighbour.  How can she maintain a professional distance with this charming troublemaker who believes in getting up close and personal?
 
To make matters worse, her ex tries to manipulate her loved ones to work his way back into her life. Hysterical siblings, a cantankerous client, an ex who will not take no for an answer, and a blow hot blow cold neighbour… Sanjana is sleepless in the City of Dreams! Can she do what Ashwin dares her to–create a few ripples even if it upsets her family?

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Book Blitz: ‘Lolita’ by Rubina Ramesh

Love or Stardom? Was there even a doubt what Lolita wanted?

Though what Lolita wanted and what she got were two different things. When notoriety, that came along with fame, was too much for her to bear, she seeks refuge in the luscious greens of Panchgani.

But a chance accident changes her life forever…

Advait Rana was a workaholic and a single dad. And balancing the two roles was not easy. The guilt of neglecting his 10-year-old, motherless child made him decide to become a better father than he was. Taking a leave of absence from his work, he heads towards Panchgani little knowing that fate had some other plans for him.

A chance accident that changes his life forever…

Born in simplicity, shunned for her ambition by her family, shamed for her choice in men, Lolita is exactly the kind of woman Advait doesn’t want his daughter to be acquainted with. Little does he know that it is this attitude of his which makes him a target for the darling of the silver screen.

For she was born to win over hearts!

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Author Pow-Wow: Preethi Venugopala

Dear Preethi,

Thank you for dropping in to talk to me.
I really enjoyed reading ‘A Royal Affair’ – let’s talk about it since it is my favorite from you so far.

How did the idea come about, to write an inter-racial romance? Was it a difficult one to write?

Hi Reet. Thank you so much for having me over. Great to hear that you loved ‘A Royal Affair.’ I don’t know how I got the idea to write an inter-racial romance as most of my story ideas seems to come in from nowhere. But the origin might have been somewhere in the ‘Who do you think you are’ series that I binge watched a long ago. It is a show on BBC where celebrities go in search of their lost ancestors. In ‘A Royal Affair’, Jane is coming to India in search of

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