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Angels vs. Demons by Kinga Ulazka Mcdonald

April 22, 2021-I thought you would like some different perspectives about pushing the envelope in your writing by bringing in some guest bloggers! They’ll share their take on how they push the envelope and how you can too. Today’s post is written by Kinga Ulazka Mcdonald; she explores a different side to religion in her writing and this allows her to open her mind to infinite possibilities in her manuscripts. I love her take on this and how she pushes the envelope and embraces the flip side to grow and explore something she believes in.

I have always been Catholic and was taught many teachings about the Bible. I have always feared the Devil, just as I fear God. When COVID first hit, I began having horrible nightmares. Some included demons and I didn’t know why, but I figured most likely due to my anxiety. I started writing short stories and poems reflecting my nightmares and I began asking myself why I often wrote about the Devil. Some would say spreading demonic tales just pushes the envelope of satanic worship, but to be honest I think it educates more than anything. Many in my family won’t even read my short stories or listen to them because they feature a demon, a witch or a supernatural force. I can’t say I blame them really. Some of the tales are quite disturbing, but isn’t that the point of writing, to push the envelope? I’m not writing about illegal, crude acts of horror that will mess the psyche up, but the stories aren’t for the faint of heart. They provoke fear and question our beliefs, but Stephen King makes his career off of these tales, why can’t I?
My writing has definitely evolved since this lockdown began. I am more open to ideas, and concepts that may have frightened me before. I was always focused on writing dramatic, or romantic when I’ve realized horror is my cup of tea. Many may not know, but these tales of despair often reflect reality in some way. I’ve realized an actual demon can be a reflection of something we fear in reality. Maybe that witch is the act of taking back the stereotype of strong women. The alien invasion may be the fear of changes in our lives, and the cult theme may be the curiosity of different ideas that we have within ourselves.

I truly believe pushing the envelope is only a different word for exploring something different. Controversy will not always be that because times do change. Something that was once never discussed may be what’s being explored this year. Ideas are also evolving and I along with it, write what you want and what you can. The best writing I have ever done was writing that came to me through nightmares, through the exploration of imagination and the boundary that we push towards making something viewed differently as a masterpiece. So continue fearing the Devil, and for me, I will always believe in God, but those tales of horror only evoke me to think more inside my religion, then create fear about something I’ve grown up believing in.

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Fresh Four

April 6, 2021– We’re talking about pushing the envelope in your writing this month and as we go down the rabbit hole, we’ll explore various topics and ideas that will help you grow as an author. Here are four fresh new ways to do something different and new in your writing.

  1. Explore topics that aren’t usually written about. This is great for blogs, and very niche markets, especially for e-books. People will pay for specialized information that they can have at their fingertips just when they need it! For example, let’s say it’s tax time and you’re an accountant, you could write A Tax Guide for Canadian Small Business Owners with Income Less than $50,000 Per Year (You Could Be Missing These Essential Write offs!) as an example. The narrower your focus, the better chance you have at becoming a best seller and reaching a group of people who need info fast and are willing to pay for it.
  2. Recreate yourself/your sound (narrative). Artists are always re-creating themselves. If we look at authors who have explored different genres, written in different narratives, and have used pen names, we’d have a long list! Some notable authors who have done this include Stephen King, Mark Twain, George Orwell, Lemony Snicket, and Stan Lee. Some authors have had complete makeovers and changed their lifestyles to become more interesting or mainstream or talked about, we’re looking at you E.L. James and your fabulous red-carpet collection of gowns!
  3. Include something that grabs your reader’s attention. Perhaps it’s a contest, or exclusive access to a choose your own adventure series online, anything that engages and grabs your reader is essential in keeping them interested in your work. Maybe it’s an official soundtrack or an alternate ending that you’ve included that helps you push the envelope not only in your writing, but what readers can expect from you as an author.
  4. Collaborate with other authors. This is a great way to expand your writing and your skills. Teaming up with other authors in a collaborative book will help motivate you to step up your writing game. It can push you to explore new ideas and write in a way that you don’t typically write; it can be a fantastic way to get your head out of the box and unleash your creativity.

If you’d like to the chance to collaborate with us on a book, now is your chance; we want your pet stories! Send us stories about how your pet changed your life for the better to pandapublishing8@gmail.com and for submission guidelines/details.

If you’d like more advice on what publishers are looking for, check out my number 1 best selling book here: Advice from a Publisher (Insider Tips for Getting Your Work Published!): Bakker, Lacey L., Goubar, Alex: 9781989506141: Books – Amazon.ca

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Goldilocks is Dead

April 2, 2021-This month we’ll be talking about pushing the envelope in your writing. What does that mean exactly? It means that without pushing boundaries, we’ll never find out how far we can go with our work.

By pushing the envelope in your writing, I’m not talking about putting in gratuitous explicit scenes, or excessive swear words, or shock and awe factors that do not move the story forward; I’m talking about putting your characters in new situations, changing up your writing style, writing in different genres, and exploring new themes. As we explore these ideas, one at a time, let’s start with putting your characters into new situations and what that can entail by using a well known story, Goldilocks and the Three Bears. What do we know about the fairy tale? We know that a little girl ventures into the forest and stumbles upon a cottage to explore. She pushes open the door and finds 3 bowls of porridge on the table: one hot, one cold, and one just right. She eats the porridge and then ventures further into the cabin. She goes to a bedroom where there are 3 beds, one too hard, one too soft, and one just right and the story continues. So how can we change this up and push the envelope? We’ll put together a brief synopsis at the end of this exercise.

  • New location-The original story takes place in the woods. By switching up the location, you can create a whole new spin on a classic. Picture this, Goldie is a 25-year-old living on her own in a penthouse in New York City that overlooks Central Park.
  • New profession-Goldilocks was a little girl in the original book (but perhaps what’s more interesting is that the original story was written with an ugly, old woman as the main character who had been cast out of her community because she’s a thief, liar, and derelict), but using the track we’re on with her being a 25-year-old living in New York, we’ll make her a stockbroker. She works on wall street with three of her closest colleagues that she’s affectionately nicknamed The Three Bears.
  • New spin-Goldilocks and the Three Bears was a story written as a fairy tale for children. You could push the envelope in your writing by turning the classic into something completely different such as a horror, thriller, or mystery.

Synopsis:

Goldie Walker has everything she’s ever wanted; a great job making tons of money, a penthouse with a view of the park, and an active social life in the most exciting city in the world. One late September evening she returns home after drinks and finds the door to her apartment has been left slightly ajar. She enters the front room and sees a trail of blood leading to her bedroom. She reaches for the light when suddenly she’s grabbed from behind and silenced with a blow to the head. She awakes bloody and swollen hours later with no recollection of what happened. She stumbles to her room to find that the wall safe has been broken into and her late grandmother’s ten carat emerald necklace has been stolen. The only thing that remains is a note that reads, returned to their rightful owner, you have 24 hours to contact us before we kill your thieving brother. Goldie must enlist the help of her friends to unravel the mystery of who robbed her, why, and what her brother has to do with it all.

Push yourself. Explore new takes on old stories and in your writing because you never know where it could lead!