PODCAST

All By My Shelf

Jessica Tuckerman

Hello writers! My name is Jessica and this is All By My Shelf a blog and podcast featuring writing advice for KidLlit and YA writers, interviews with KidLit and YA authors, and a few deep-dive book analyses to see what makes them so good... or bad... Visit ABMS.blog for more and be sure to buy me a coffee at BuyMeACoffee.com/jmtuckerman to support the project.

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Fairy Tales
May 2 2022
3 mins
Fairy Tales
Connect with me: Facebook . Twitter . Instagram Visit ABMS.BLOG Join The Writers’ Society Become a Member and Get Access to More (or follow me for free but get less) RedBubble Bookshop.org Find ABMS on Podbean Let's take a brief tour of fairy tale techniques, all of which can help any writer if given the chance: Intuitive logic: fairy tales don't conform to the rules of our world, but it does have rules. They will not be explained by insistence. Furniture will sing and dance. Paths will appear when you need them. Children can outsmart ancient witches. Disarticulated limbs will turn silver and you can sell them to save yourself later. Resist the urge to explain the logic and let your readers just accept what's happening. Remove transitions like "therefore" and "because." Flatness: In fairy tales, characters aren't deep, psychologically anyway. Snow White doesn't have depression or PTSD after getting hunted by her stepmother, Belle doesn't have a psychotic break after the candelabra and clock talks to her, and little red riding hood doesn't have a panic disorder after finding her grandmother had been eaten by a wolf. But they all had reactions. Now, there's nothing wrong with adding psychological depth to fairy tales (in fact, this is beneficial if you're going for a longer piece). But flat characters leave space to exceed limitations surrounding individuality, uniqueness, and self. Happy endings: J.R.R Tolkien once defended happy endings as a vital technique in literature, because joy can be as poignant as grief. Creating poetic joy in your prose is okay. A lot of fairy tales end with dark, terrible lessons, but you can let the sunset on a girl in a white dress smiling at the tide. Happy endings aren't bad. Fairy tales are some of the first stories we read and often the first kind we attempt to write. So now, go find an old fairy tale or myth and look for instances of intuitive logic, flatness, and happy endings in it. Then look at your own new stories and look for examples of explained logic, character depth, and tragedy. Remove efforts to explain logic, tighten character depth, but do not remove the tragedy. Instead, quickly add a unique and strangely blissful image afterward, your own Grimm gesture to emote through your setting.
May 2 2022
3 mins
Mind Mapping
Connect with me: Facebook . Twitter . Instagram Visit ABMS.BLOG Join The Writers’ Society Become a Member and Get Access to More (or follow me for free but get less) RedBubble Bookshop.org Find ABMS on Podbean Map out a set of characters for your piece so you can play with who your characters will meet, love, hate, rescue, or fight. Write the full name of your main character in the middle of the page. Add in any nicknames or pet names they have. Insert all the people in the main character's life around the name in the center and connect them to the protagonist with bold lines. Include names and details for family, friends, work colleagues, neighbors, lovers, and such. Add people who the main character doesn't know but who might play a part in the story. Don't connect them to the main character just yet. Just come up with a supporting cast. Draw connections between the other characters but leave your main character out of it for now. Try color-coding them so you know which connections your main character knows and which they are in the dark about. Identify potential enemies among the characters in these groups. Underline the characters with potential for evil in a different color so you can find them easily. As you begin to define the relationship your main character has to the rest of the cast, consider writing it down along the lines you've drawn. As the map develops, you may begin to get a much more complete and complex picture of your main character. And the plot of your novel will begin to reveal itself as you find possibilities for connections and further development.
Apr 4 2022
3 mins
An Interview with Carly HeathTwisting Your Genre
Jan 28 2022
5 mins
An Interview with Halli Gomez
Jan 24 2022
9 mins
An Interview with Lisa Frenkel RiddioughAn Interview with Hayley KrischerAn Interview with Soman ChainaniAn Interview with Jessica Vitalis
My guest today is Jessica Vitalis, debut author of The Wolfs Curse. Buy The Wolf's Curse HereConnect with Jessica VitalisConnect with Jessica TuckermanVisit the All By My Shelf Store "I am obsessed with this story!"--Erin Entrada Kelly, author of the Newbery Honor book We Dream of Space "Boldly tells readers to take a closer look at the stories they're told--not to mention at the wolves that might be lurking in the shadows. A clear-eyed, big-hearted fable of compassion, friendship, and love."--Anne Ursu, author of The Real Boy "A lyrical tale of loss and survival, tradition and belief, in which tension and secrets build like a towering wave."--Diane Magras, author of The Mad Wolf's Daughter "A fable as polished and timeless as a fine wooden toy."--Catherine Gilbert Murdock, author of the Newbery Honor book The Book of Boy Shunned by his fearful village, a twelve-year-old apprentice embarks on a surprising quest to clear his name, with a mythic--and dangerous--wolf following closely at his heels. Jessica Vitalis's debut is a gorgeous, voice-driven literary fantasy about family, fate, and long-held traditions. The Wolf's Curse will engross readers of The Girl Who Drank the Moon and A Wish in the Dark. Gauge's life has been cursed since the day he cried Wolf and was accused of witchcraft. The Great White Wolf brings only death, Gauge's superstitious village believes. If Gauge can see the Wolf, then he must be in league with it. So instead of playing with friends in the streets or becoming his grandpapa's partner in the carpentry shop, Gauge must hide and pretend he doesn't exist. But then the Wolf comes for his grandpapa. And for the first time, Gauge is left all alone, with a bounty on his head and the Wolf at his heels. A young feather collector named Roux offers Gauge assistance, and he is eager for the help. But soon the two--both recently orphaned--are questioning everything they have ever believed about their village, about the Wolf, and about death itself. Narrated by the sly, crafty Wolf, Jessica Vitalis's debut novel is a vivid and literary tale about family, friendship, belonging, and grief. The Wolf's Curse will captivate readers of Laurel Snyder's Orphan Island and Molly Knox Ostertag's The Witch Boy. --- This episode is sponsored by · Anchor: The easiest way to make a podcast. https://anchor.fm/app --- Send in a voice message: https://anchor.fm/abms/message
Sep 11 2021
43 mins
An Interview with Michelle MasonGenre VRS Audience in KidlitSelf Care for WritersAn Interview with Jessica Speer100% Awful Writing AdviceGuided Meditation for WritersOutlining Your Kidlit NovelWriting Through Your Lack of MotivationFinding Your KidLit VoiceAn Interview with Brandie JuneThe Writer’s Journey