WriterCrashTest.com presents: Holly Lisle and the Case of the Exploding Cat

My first writing crit video.

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About the author: Novelist, writing teacher, on a mission to reprint my out-of-print books and self-publish my new ones.

10 comments… add one
  • PD Singer Jan 17, 2010 @ 0:50

    My writing partner and I now inform each other when we’ve ‘exploded a cat’ in our work. Thanks for a memorable way to make an excellent point — we blow up fewer felines these days.

  • Ravenne May 6, 2009 @ 21:17

    I enjoyed the video crit. I think it works well in several ways. First, you speak clearly and at a perfect pace. Second, you allow the viewer to see the text and read it through once, without any comment. Third, you apply your critique and provide a rewrite that solves any problems. Finally, you identify the problems with the excerpt so that the viewer can understand the terms for each specific area.

    Nice job! I’ll definitely come back for more.

    Ravenne

  • Angie May 5, 2009 @ 19:02

    I thought the presentation was clear and gave good writing pointers as well as created interest in your course. Nice teaser.

  • rebelblue May 5, 2009 @ 15:00

    I loved the video. It completely captured my attention from the beginning, and when you explained how to fix the mistakes I was hooked.

    Hopefully lots of people can learn something from this video. I know I did.

  • WanderingAuthor May 5, 2009 @ 12:31

    This is a great idea! When someone who knows what they’re doing points out the weaknesses in a story and shows how to fix them, any writer can learn from watching that process. In ten minutes, you took one short passage and taught me more than I ever got from long hours spent in a creative writing course (thanks to a teacher who wanted to write…).

    I think the ‘writing noir’ theme is cool, although my opinion is hardly considered definitive when it comes to cool, so I’m not sure if that’s a good thing. 🙂 I was also very glad to discover no actual cats were exploded in the course of the video. My cats were afraid to watch, until I told them it was okay.

  • Rick Apr 29, 2009 @ 10:50

    This is barely tangentially related, but… your voice is adorable, Holly.

  • Johanna Apr 28, 2009 @ 18:46

    Great lesson, Holly! I was thinking about it in my creative writing class when we were workshopping someone’s story.

    This is a totally unrelated note, but have you ever read the Mistborn trilogy by Brandon Sanderson? I’ve only read the first one but I really liked it and some of the elements reminded me of you. It’s about a group of thieves and slaves plotting to overthrow their godlike ruler. I think they are the kind of heroes you could really get behind. Plus, it has a really neat world and cool magic system. I’m officially recommending it 🙂

  • ReadingWriter Apr 28, 2009 @ 13:14

    “Instead, she’s talking to a twit.” HA!

    Thoroughly enjoyed this. Smart and focused. Keep ’em coming!

  • vanity Apr 28, 2009 @ 6:01

    Definitely worth watching and I’ll check out any other installments. I thought that while the end was a bit of a whoosh, it provided a surprising turn of direction. But you are right, it’s even better to drop a few hints before that.

  • Krista Apr 27, 2009 @ 16:39

    THis is great, Holly. I’ve twittered it and embedded it in my blog. Hope it gets lots of readers.

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