Janet Lee Carey-Dreamwalks DreamWalks Janet Lee Carey Award-winning author of novels for children and young adults

#NaNoWriMo Fiction Magic drawing # 4

Janet: I can’t believe we’ve reached the last #NaNoWriMo post. Congratulations to all of you who’ve devoted time and energy to your WIP this month. By popular demand, Dreamwalks will be hosting more Fiction Magic card posts and extending our giveaway out through mid-December so more writers have a chance to win Deb Lund’s brilliant deck and a signed copy of In The Time of Dragon Moon as well. Deb’s back with us today draw card # 4 from Fiction Magic: Card Tricks & Tips For Writers

We hope today’s post will not only add depth to your ongoing tale, but empower you for this last #NaNoWriMo push and beyond as you complete your brilliant novels.
Okay Deb. Draw!

Deb: Here goes!

Misplace Blame

Here’s what the guidebook says about that Fiction Magic prompt:

Maybe it’s not your character’s’ worst enemies who cause trouble. Maybe it’s well-intentioned characters making their own choices. Your characters can blame or be blamed, and blame can stem from a misperception or misunderstanding. Misplacing blame can cause characters to lose the support of those crucial to their success. Dealing with the effects of blaming may be a way your characters change.

In your writing life, taking responsibility is the only way to achieve your dreams. If you blame others (editors, agents, other writers, family…), you’re telling yourself you don’t have to change. That means no growth. Never play the blame game!

Okay, I’m moving right to the coaching paragraphs instead of the craft portion of this card. Whether talking with clients or reading my own words in the fiction magic cards this month, it often seems like the words I choose to use are the ones I most need to hear.

We’re always full of excuses about all the things that stop us from creating (see how I just snuck you into this along with me?). Guess what? We all had childhood issues, parents who could have supported us more, spouses who… friends who…. We all ran into teachers who knocked creativity out of us. Let’s talk about those teachers for a minute.

My daughter got one of those creativity-killing teacher lines just this week. Sandra loves photography, and her photography teacher looked at her recent photos and said, “Please don’t tell anyone you took these for my class.” Or there’s the music teacher I knew who had a select choir in elementary school. “I tell the students they probably have something else they’re really good at.” Or my own sister who claims she can’t sing because she didn’t make it into the elementary choir at our own school, um, years ago.

Maybe it wasn’t a teacher. Maybe someone laughed at something you made. Maybe you knew you weren’t the best and that was too hard to face. Often we don’t even know where it came from. All we know is we can’t do it. And we wish we could.

That’s a misbelief. That’s you misplacing blame. You can do it. You’re just afraid, and that’s okay. Plan one little step, let the fear wash over you (no, not off you), and take that step anyway. What do you have to lose? No, really. I’m not just asking that as a cliche question you’ve heard and dismissed a million times. Listen. What do you have to lose? Or is it, what do you have to gain? Be in the fear. Be in the creative process.

You can do it.

Janet: Wow that card’s a doozey, Deb. A quote from Glenn Turner comes to mind, “Worrying is like a rocking chair, it gives you something to do, but it gets you nowhere.” I’ve discovered blame takes a lot of energy and, like worry, gets me nowhere. Thanks for the advice to simply take one little step. One little step into the story is often all I need to quit blaming and get back in balance. So NaNos — and anyone else wrestling with your WIP whether you’re NaNoing or not — We hope you enjoyed this last, powerful, NaNoNuj.

If this Fiction Magic card inspires you in any way, feel free to share your story in a comment below. Scroll back through our three other Fiction Magic posts to see card magic and read this month’s previous posts and comments. And you’re welcome to get and share more ideas on Deb’s Fiction Magic Facebook Page We’d love to see you there!


“These cards are a creative way for Deb Lund to extend her       gentle genius for helping fellow writers develop our own magic    with fiction. I can hardly wait to get my hands on them, as both a  writing teacher and a writer myself.” Christina Baldwin, author o  o f Storycatcher

“When I read a book on writing, it takes about 200 pages before   I learn anything I can apply to my writing. I can use these cards   instantly.” Carole Dagg, YA author

“These cards are thought-provoking and inspiring. As an author and literary agent, I plan to use them myself and with my students and clients.” Andrea Hurst, Literary Agent

Fingers wriggling to get your hands on the Whole Deck and Guidebook? Fiction Magic: Card Tricks & Tips For Writers, are 50% off on on Deb’s Website this month, and she promised me she’d send off the 54-card set and guidebook to you in record time.

Enter the Giveaway. One lucky winner will receive:
Deb’s pack of Fiction Magic: Card Tricks & Tips For Writers
Signed copy of Janet’s In The Time of Dragon Moon and Moon Mug to sip from while writing.


NOTE: To those of you who are new to rafflecopter, the only thing you have to do is tweet. The tweet is written for you ahead of time. You just need to click. Also you need to click “I Tweeted” to confirm the entry. Bonus points for joining the Fiction Magic Facebook page, but that part is optional. Good Luck All!

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