Creeping Around in the Dark

Jane Johnson has had the good fortune to work on some fine material, and she says some very obvious things, but I continue to be amazed at the number of writers who don’t know this stuff. Check out the article here.

Research is important! The couple of times I didn’t bother or thought I didn’t have to?Readers leaped on them like a starving man on a jelly bean, gleefully pointing out my errors. Do your research! And please get your manuscript beta’d or edited. It takes a village to create one well-written book.

I went out with the camera the other night around ten. It was humid and foggy. I was curious what kind of photos I might get.  

Even at that time of night, there’s plenty of traffic. To get this shot, I had to stand in the middle of the road. In the dark. Yeah. ;/ Early on, I saw headlights behind me but they pulled over. The vehicle sat there, lights on, until I finished shooting, patiently waiting for me to leave. Other drivers didn’t care, so I was hopping on and off the road until I thought I’d gotten a good one.


This one was taken through the bridge railings. That’s Phalen Parkway, and that long brick building on the far left? The Moonshine Bar. Always reminds me of AJ’s WIP; one of his main characters is named Moonshine. And that obnoxious billboard? Everywhere in the neighborhood.


This last one is the best of the bunch and even so, I wasn’t happy about the lights blowing out. However, they looked pretty against the fog, so I’m not entirely unsatisfied either.

Weird, how the camera accurately captured the railings but lost it on the lights. I admit I was doing this handheld (night shots handheld; bad Fen!) and using automatic camera settings. I’d like to try it again using manual settings and the tripod.

I love night shooting. I should have done more of it this summer.



About Fenraven

Fenraven happily lives in south Florida, where it is really hot most of the year. Find him on Twitter, Google +, and Facebook by searching on 'fenraven'.
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9 Responses to Creeping Around in the Dark

  1. diannegray says:

    These are fanatstic pics, Theo – so glad the cars pulled over for you 😉

    I haven’t read Jane’s stuff yet, but I’m going there now.

    • Thanks! I drove over that bridge again this evening and glared at the lights, wishing they’d been better defined in the photos. I really am gonna work on that, see if I can’t solve the problem. I’m rather enjoying the challenge!

  2. therealtbaggins says:

    So interesting. I love the pictures. As for the article … give me a minute, I have read all of GRRM’s books and my biggest complaint with them was, simply, the last two do not appear to have been edited at all.

    Not that I necessarily fault the woman who was assigned to try. I have a strong suspicion that the better an author sells, the more power he or she has (with each subsequent book) to tell their editor, “Nope, thanks for your opinion, I won’t be making any of those changes.” The Harry Potter series is another example. The first three were compact and tight and fun — the last two, rambling messes (IMHO.) I still love the series, but I think a good edit on those last two would have been wonderful. Further proof that even the most talented, experienced, successful authors in the world still need help to produce their best work.

    • I have long said Stephen King needs an editor, because I believe, after he got famous, editors stopped being considered. Not that his writing is bad by any means, because hell, it’s really good, but I got tired of reading him because he tended to ramble without an editor’s hand. A good editor can improve any story. A bad one can ruin it.

      I think I’m pretty good and I’m getting better all the time. One publisher I worked with gave me a free hand to edit how I chose. Although it made me nervous because I wasn’t sure how the author would feel about this suggestion, I told her she needed to completely cut one very long scene right at the end of the book. It didn’t belong there and it was slowing down the action.

      She wasn’t happy about it initially, but after she thought about it, she realized I was right. She cut the scene and thanked me later, telling me I’d been right.

  3. therealtbaggins says:

    Reblogged this on shadesofgay and commented:
    I haven’t read the article yet, but I do love these pictures…

  4. suze294 says:

    Love the first picture, and the story to get it – it makes me think, ” whats going to come over the hump?” – could be anything, good, bad, scary, funny, human, not but its kind of calling for a load of rumbling tanks!!

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