Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Think Tomato for Interesting Characters and Chocolate Tartuffo


Have you noticed the list of favorite books in the column to the right? Look now because those books will be going away and a new list will start with the next post.

Also, a new Beginning Life Story Writing Class starts Sept. 7, 2010, the day after Labor Day.

If you can't take a class, just click here for lots of answers to frequently asked questions about life story writing. 

Scroll to the bottom of this post for a new bit of Chocolate Trivia.


One of the best ways to make your story interesting, whether you are writing life story, other nonfiction, or fiction, is to develop characters who can help you tell the story. Other characters in the story present challenges to life writers: how to capture the quality of an admirable person and how to portray people you would just as soon forget. The solution is as simple as picking a tomato.

This morning I spotted a beautiful little tomato on my patio tomato plant. I admired it from the kitchen, anticipating it's rich juicy ripeness. The sun reflected gold on its red skin so it almost glowed.
But when it came off in my hand, I saw the bottom was black and ugly. One way the tomato looked perfect; another way it looked totally ruined.

Then as I turned it in my hand, I saw there was a third angle -- almost perfect, but with a small blemish.

And that's how the characters in your story should be -- neither perfect nor totally ruined. Isn't that what we all are? We have our good side; we have our bad side. We are slightly flawed. Reveal the struggles and small flaws of your good characters. Tell some good about your bad characters. Your characters will be believable, and your story will be interesting.


Think of a family member who is not your favorite. Put that person's name at the top of a page. Make two columns under the name. Good Qualities. Bad Qualities.  List their qualities. Then do the same for a family member you dearly love. It may take some time to think of good qualities of the unfavorite person or bad qualities of the favorite person, but spend some time thinking about it. Write a paragraph narrative about an intereaction you have had with the unfavorite person, and write a paragraph about an interaction with the favorite person.


This is an Italian dessert recipe from Jasper Mirabile, chef-owner of Jasper's restaurant in Kansas City, Missouri. He prepared this recipe for Hen House Supermarket. Find more info at http://www.henhouse.com/.

Jasper's Bing Cherry Tartuffo

1 pound grated chocolate or finely minced chocolate biscotti
16 bing cherries (pitted)
1 pint vanilla bean ice cream
chocoalte syrup

Remove pits and stems from cherries. Scoop 4-oz. portions of ice cream and form into balls using your hands. Make a hold in the middle and place 3-4 cherries inside, cover with ice cream and place on a baking sheet. Continue forming hand-made balls with the remaining ice cream. Roll ice cream balls in the grated chocolate or biscotti and drizzle with chocolate syrup. Place in freezer. Serve with whipped topping.

Find Writing Resources, Life Story Writing How-to, Fun Stuff for Writers, Calendar and other interesting stuff at website http://www.angelinyourinkwell.com/.

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