Tuesday, April 12, 2011

Six Sentence Sunday Made Me A Better Writer

So, before I start this blog, I'd like to give a big shout out to Sara Brookes, one of my fellow Paranormal Romantics bloggers who does so much for Six Sentence Sunday every week. If she didn't do what she did none of this blog would be taking place today. A million thank yous Sara.

For those of you who don't know, nearly every Sunday for the last few months I have participated in a blog tour, of sorts, called Six Sentence Sunday. Each week, on a Tuesday through Thursday, a group of authors (all welcome) sign up their blogs to participate in Six Sentence Sunday. For more information on that sign up, please go here. There are very few rules except that every Sunday by Nine AM, EST, the blogs must be up with Six Sentences from a work of the writer's choosing. Sometimes people put up works in progress, sometimes people put up recently published books, or old books, or whatever. But six sentences appear and over the course of the day, people arrive, read your six sentences, and comment.

At first, I had a hard time limiting myself to just six sentences. Its hard. We're writers who are trying to sell work. We like people to read our stuff. Just six sentences? When my whole first ten pages are so wonderful? (I'm joking but you get the idea.) But then, over the course of several weeks as I participated I found that I was actually becoming a better writer for having done the blog hop every weekend.

Why?

Because six little sentences really DO matter. And if we concentrate really hard on making every little sentence in our work really good--so good that we could randomly pick out six sentences to show for critique--then we are going to become better writers. At least, I think that is what has happened to me.

I was working on my work in progress today and I found myself stopping on every paragraph to consider whether or not it would work as this weeks six sentence sunday entry. If it would, then I knew I had done well.

So, thank you Sara and thank you Six Sentence Sunday because I really think it worked for me, without my even being aware of it for a long time.

Best
RR

13 comments:

Jessica Subject said...

Rebecca,

I find the same thing. I love Six Sentence Sunday for that and it is tons of fun. Plus I appreciate all of the feedback I receive on my excerpt, whether something works or doesn't work.

Thanks to Sara too as she does tons of work for SSS every week.

All the best!

Sara Brookes said...

You know you guys (each and every participant) are the heart and soul of SSS, right? I just give you a platform in which to launch from.

Thank you. Wish I could bundle everyone up in a giant group hug 'cause ya'll make it worth it. :^)

Glad to hear how you've implemented it into your everyday writing!

Sarah Grimm said...

I love Six Sentence Sunday! The feedback is wonderful. And not only does focusing on our own sentences help us to make each sentence the best it can be, reading everyone elses six --how they put the words together and pull us into their story, that's a learning experience, too. IMHO

Jayel Kaye said...

I completely agree with ya'll except for Sara. Sara, you did much more than give platform to all of us. Your idea has spawned a core group who really cares... honestly cares about their fellow writers and gives honest and sometimes no-holds-barred comments meant to help, not tear down the fragile confidence that is a writer's achilles heal. Sure we like the hot sexy stuff...we are human... but I have found that the serious stuff is just as well received from the readers of 6Sunday. For me, to know that I touched someone with a certain phrase or sentence, is very empowering. That , at least to me, is the greatest benefit of our weekly offerings. To have someone not familiar with my work say, "Wow. I love your voice and I look forward to reading your books, someday," is so damn cool!And I know there is a tremendous amount of work that goes on behind the scenes to keep it all going that those of us who just post our "6" have no idea goes on.

So to you, Sara and all those behind the scenes, you have my thanks and love and I am SO glad I foudn this group.

Big ole bear hugs, to you!
J

Taryn Kincaid said...

Feel the same. So addicted now. Not sure how great the feedback is, when often it consists of "nice 6," but the validation helps keep you going sometimes. Very motivating. And having to pull six sentences from a work, definitely teaches you what's essential and what isn't!

JoAnne Kenrick said...

I have most definitely found myself doing the same thing, Rebecca -- is this paragraph ready for public viewing? Can I randomly pick out six sentences and have them shine? I am constantly asking myself this question while doing revisions. I can't move on from a paragraph now, unless I'm happy enough for it to be picked out for SSS!!! Kudos to Sara Brookes, not only do we have a lot of fun on Sundays, now, but we also learn from each other as well as become a better critique to our own work!
......
CYA Sunday, for more SSS!

graylinfox said...

To see this grow from four of us to over a hundred has been amazing. I know, I KNOW, I would not have sold as many books if I didn't have the friends I met through this blog. The supportive network keeps growing but has never lost the closeness.

Because of SSS, I have a CP I trust with anything I write and a beta reader who both became dear friends.

I've purchased books because I fell in love with the characters I read and the voice of the author.

*hugs* Sara, you know I lurve ya!

laynap said...

I'm with you all the way on this one. I can't help but stop every six sentences now to see if everything works and if they could stand alone.

Thank you for sharing, Rebecca! Sara does rock and cheers to many more years of inspiring & helping authors finding a creative outlet to show case our work! *hugs*

Eleri Stone said...

I do that too! When I write something I love, I'll note it if I think it'll work for SSS. Usually, I still end up messing with it b4 I post. But that process of learning how to polish up a short snippet until it shines carries over to the rest of my writing.

Gem Sivad said...

Absolutely agree with you Rebecca and everyone else. Snipping six sentences from a wip or book and *really* looking at them, making the precision cuts, deciding what I'm trying to convey, is helping me hone my work.

As for the feedback--:) well, hey, I'm just like everyone else. I love to hear what others think of my work, and for all that, I love reading other authors stuff too.

Sara deserves much credit for her unique idea. I'm just glad I get to participate.

gem

Hailey Edwards said...

I've enjoyed Six Sunday so much over the past year. It's really been a highlight of my week.

Thanks for keeping it going, Sara!

Vegetarian Cannibal said...

Hmmm...maybe I'll sign up? Do you put your six sentences in order or can you pick any six sentences you want?

Rebecca Royce said...

Any six you want