3 S.R. Johannes: PSA: Plastic surgery can help your writing

Wednesday, January 20, 2010

PSA: Plastic surgery can help your writing

Oh Heidi, Heidi, Heidi. :( Why oh why did you butcher yourself??? You were so beautiful and real. And the real you is better than a different you.

There is nothing for me to say except - this ones for you (and your larger than life "girls").


But somehow, in seeing Heidi's recent plastic surgery results inspired this post.

She made me think about how plastic surgery might be able to help my writing.

So here it is....my public service announcement to writers.

Top 10 ways we might be able to use plastic surgery to improve our writing. (A stretch I know, but bare with me. :)

10. It helps to slim down - I just had to cut 15,000 words on my book and it was a very rewarding process. Its amazing how lean your book can get if you nip and tuck.

9. Bigger is not always better. Sometimes saying what you need to say in 70,000 words is more powerful than 120,000. Sometimes the small meaningful word makes more of an impact than a thesaurus's alternative.

8. Sometimes you gotta suck it up. This business is tough. The key to succeeding (besides writing well) is pushing forward. No matter how hard it is. That may take nights, tears, and all the energy I have but when push comes to shove I suck it up and keep moving on.

7. Change your shape. Don't be scared to start over. To take some off here and add some there. You never know where you will end up or what shape your book can take.

6. Plump it up - add volume to your characters as much as you add to the story. Characters must be allowed to grow in ways you may not have expected.

5. Get rid of the wrinkles. Revising is key to getting rid of the wrinkles in your book. You have to be willing to go over and over the same lines to be sure they are essential to the beauty of the story.

4. Know what's fake and what isn't. Its important that your voice and story is authentic. Don't try to make it like someone else. You need to do your story your own way. No one way works for everyone. We are all different.

3. Know when to stop. Sometimes you can tweek to death. Its important to know how to recognize when our book feels done or when to get feedback. You can work your work to death.

2. Open your eyes - Immerse yourself in the business. Read and learn about your craft. Always work on your craft. You can always get better if you stay open to learning.

1. It lifts you higher. There is no feeling like sitting down, getting an idea, and have it pour out of you onto the pages. There is no feeling better than printing out your manuscript and know how much you have created. And there is no felling better than someone loving your work.

So appreciate who you are as a writer.

Being yourself is better than looking like someone else.

38 comments:

Lisa and Laura said...

Nicely done! It's nice to see Heidi's nips and tucks being put to good use.

lisanowak said...

Great post. Just out of curiosity, how long was your book before the cuts? And had you tried eliminating anything before this round of edits?

Roni @ FictionGroupie said...

Great analogy. And I totally agree, Heidi should have left things alone.

Rena said...

Great post.

Jonathon Arntson said...

Indeed, especially when it's that someone else. Of course, I'm a guy, but just sayin'.

Word ver. My comment box agrees with me.

Mim said...

Great post--good analogies and they made me laugh!

Little Ms J said...

The before and after pics make me feel sad for this poor messed up little girl. I hope she's not the next cat lady before long!

Love your twist on it!

Robin said...

Awesome post!!!

Suzanne Young said...

Great post!! And sigh, I just watched Heidi on Access Hollywood. She looks like she's wearing a rubber mask with her sad eyes poking out.

I'm definitely more of a plumper than a cutter. My manus go from 45-65k in my revision process. That's a lot of silicone...

Gail said...

Boo to Heidi, yeah to Shelli for such creative analogies!
A true writer can take any bit of info and turn it into something wonderful to read!

Christina Farley said...

Great analogy! I'm in the middle of all that.

Alissa said...

I love this unique take on writing and plastic surgery. Think I'll stick to the book form of plastic surgery as opposed to the more traditional sort.

Catherine Denton said...

How creative. This is genius. I'm inspired to revise now, thank you.

Kelly said...

That girl has some issues (just like your character should have issues!). See another analogy! :) Great analogy and man, Heidi needs to go away and quit crowding the pages of my Us Weekly.

Hardygirl said...

Yeah . . . bigger is not always better. How in the world is she going to do a proper crunch to keep those abs in shape???

Great post!

sf

Linda Kage said...

Love these. Thanks.

Jennie Englund said...

Best post EVER!

Love the irony between numbers 10 and 9.

And #1-- PERFECT!

Jessie Oliveros said...

Ha Shelli! This was hilarious. Yes, sometimes plastic surgery is a good thing.

Patti said...

Great analogy and I'm hoping for only one more operation before it's presentable.

I heart she wants size H. I think she's lost it.

Elana Johnson said...

I love this! Your list is so true, and somehow related to plastic surgery. How do you do it??

Genius.

And oh my heck! My verification word is "panti." I wish I were kidding. Ha ha!

The Rejection Queen said...

Are you serious? Is that really Heidi now? Man, that girl has some serious issues.

Stephanie said...

Great post...lots of helpful advice!!!!

And I agree too...I think she looks awful now!

Katie said...

great post Shellibean!

Rebecca Knight said...

I love "know what's fake and what isn't." HA!

Great post, Shelli! :)

(on a side note, I think Heidi made her face look older... I'm sad.)

Shannon O'Donnell said...

Great lesson, Shelli. And Heidi definitely looked better in her "before" shot. :-)

Emma Michaels said...

great post!

Natalie Aguirre said...

Great post. I so agree that cutting wordy words can help your manuscript. Now I have to work at the hard sucking it up and pushing forward. Hard to do with all the "no's" I know come with this business.

Kerri C at CK Farm said...

Great post!

Melissa said...

I love this analogy. Everything you said is so true! And I agree with someone who said that Heidi looks older now. So sad:(

jdcoughlin said...

That is so funny!
And so true. All of it. Especially Open you eyes. Love that. There is no better way to learn to write than to read. Books, magazines, what others write about reading, all of it.

But who is Heidi?

jessjordan said...

Way to have fun with it, but I have to say ... I cry a little inside every time I see the alien (I mean new) Heidi.

Do tell: What is wrong with having a nicely shaped chin? Why do you have to get it flattened into your face? Gahhh ... Hollywood.

Jackee said...

Great post. Full of inspiration and decision.

But I like my saggy boobs where they are, thank you very much! (JK)

Karen said...

Very fun post.

And poor Heidi...ick on so many levels. :(

Solvang Sherrie said...

Okay, your post is probably the only good thing to come out of her plastic surgery. She was so much prettier BEFORE!!

But I do like your analogies :)

Kimberly Derting said...

I love this post, Shelli. And, poor, sad little Heidi...*shakes head*...I just feel...bad for her and her double G's.

Sliding on the Edge said...

I'm definitely up for some of this plastic surgery stuff. I've been in revision for two months and heading into the home stretch. A little nip here--a little tuck there, and viola! A new and improved manuscript emerges.

Loved the post.

Amy Tate said...

Love, love, love this post! Lol! However I think I'll take it to the manuscript. I'd rather write with wrinkles and saggage.

Stina Lindenblatt said...

Geez, I take it Heidi doesn't run. I don't think there's a sport bra in the world that's that supportive.

I wish it was as easy to "edit" my flaws as it is to edit my ms. :D