Ten Years of Write Wise - Falcon's Blog

Ten Years of Write Wise

Greetings, welcome to the first blog update of 2021! As this year marks a special anniversary, I thought that I should write an entry that celebrates the many numerous stories that have been made for Write Wise over the last several years. Even after all this time, I still find it hard to believe that our first entries are nearly a decade old. While the site was initially an outburst of creativity from all community members through various monthly challenges, the challenges eventually became less frequent and members dropped out as the years went by. This was not necessarily a negative occurrence as it allowed room for the entries to become more refined and much longer than they previously had been. The challenges became a festive tradition, which I look forward to each year, as they now take place during the holiday season.

I am currently writing my story for the next challenge which should prove to be a good reflection of my vast and varied bibliography. I hope that you will enjoy it when it is published. I am very eager to see what you are all bringing to the table for this occasion.

To kick this update off, I would like to shed light on an important but often unmentioned aspect of the Write Wise process. That aspect being the covers. The artwork, alongside the blurb, is the first impression a reader will have of the book he or she is about to read. Like the entries themselves, I think the cover art has improved over the years as authors have gotten more of a grasp on how to create the images they want. I will be the first to admit that some of my older covers would have benefited from a bit more work being done on them or could have used a more simplistic approach. Taste is, of course, subjective but I’ve listed below some of my favourite covers by each individual writer in the order that I think is best.

Additionally, I have also written a little synopsis of some of the writer’s entries that I regard to be some of their finest underneath my picks for the book covers. I have selected three stories from each author but have excluded my own works. While some of my entries may not have been as polished as they could have been or were not always received as well as I would have hoped, they have been great in helping me become better at crafting stories and are stepping stones leading to bigger and better things. After 35 stories over ten years, I am quite pleased with what I have managed to produce during this time. Do you have any favourite covers or entries yourself? Let me know in the comments below if you do.

My Favourite Covers by Aaron

 The Barista by Aaron

My Other Picks for Aaron

I think Aaron’s best covers are ‘The Barista’, ‘Marlwood Manor’, ‘Steven’s Way’ ‘On Certainty’ and ‘The Lighthouse Keeper’.

My Favourite of Aaron’s Entries

Run – The first entry in the Terry Holloway series, Run is a short but fun story that introduces the main characters of Terry and Helen to readers. Lycanthropy is a big part of Aaron’s works and it is fitting that the entry that started it all gets a mention in this ten year review. I’ll have to keep the werewolf tropes in mind when I am writing his ‘Imposter’ story later this year.

Dark Depths - Another early writing project from Aaron, Dark Depths is one of the first horror entries on Write Wise. It built up an impressive atmosphere as members of Neptune, a deep sea research facility, are attacked by a terrifying monstrosity. The characterisation was well done in this entry, providing real stakes as things become perilous for the characters.

Marlwood Manor – Nicely incorporating the current pandemic into its narrative structure, Marlwood Manor is a brilliant horror story with an eerie feeling of isolation permeating throughout. An interesting history was given to the Manor and it serves as a fantastic setting for a ghost story to unfurl. The mystery of the building kept the readers guessing the further the story progressed along and it had its fair share of intense moments as the menacing warder made his rounds.

My Favourite Covers by Joh

The Workhorse by Joh

My Other Picks for Joh

I believe Joh’s greatest covers are ‘The Workhorse’, ‘Pinky’, ‘The Red Spectre’, ‘The Terrors’ and ‘The Retreat’.

My Favourite of Joh’s Entries

What are you doing on Halloween Night? – A short but very unique entry created for an unofficial Halloween challenge in 2020. This brief story manages to craft an excellent relationship between Caroline and the storyteller without a name that is one of the best that Write Wise has to offer. The strong sense of characters in this entry was very impressive, especially considering one of the characters had no dialogue attributed to them.

The Devil’s Orders – The first of the Killer series that currently has three instalments, ‘The Devil’s Orders’ has a lot of great characters that make the story memorable. This is most notably in the case of the two protagonists, Helena and Alex, who are a pair of hired killers that go through a lot of sinister ordeals during their assignments. Their struggles with their morality makes this series one of the greatest that Joh has created.

War Hero – A first person narrative from Ellie as she serves on the frontlines against an ‘Enemy’ that little is revealed about, War Hero is one of the best entries that Joh has written. It has brilliant moments of dark humour and an interesting cast of bizarre characters that make it stand out from the rest of his more grounded bibliography. Joh excellently balanced the horrors of war and some absurd comedy in this Write Wise project.

My Favourite Covers by Mark

The King by Mark

My Other Picks for Mark

I my opinion, Mark’s best covers are ‘The King’, ‘Purity’, ‘Obsession’, ‘Writer’s Block’ and ‘Stanley’.

My Favourite of Mark’s Entries

Stanley - Often regarded as the best story Mark created by members of the blogging community, it would be remiss if I didn’t include Stanley in this short review. In 3,000 words Mark managed to set up an interesting premise and established a good drama around the titular Stanley as his wife falls into a coma.

City of Angels – Another short story and one of the first to tackle the gangster genre. The plot follows Bobby Brown, a man fed up with his monotonous ways, as he falls in with bad company one night that changes the course of his life. This is one entry that could certainly have been expanded upon with a sequel.

Hunted – The first instalment in the only series Mark ever produced, Hunted conjures up a fantastical world as Kval and Riley, his pet dog, investigate a string of murders in Imperial City. This is one of the few entries on Write Wise that ends in a cliff-hanger. The plot is swiftly concluded by its sequel, Purity. There were also talks of a prequel to the series being considered at the time but that seems somewhat unlikely now considering how long ago it was written.

My Favourite Covers by Myself

Odyssey of the Rogues: The City of Silk by Falcon

My Other Picks for My Covers

My picks from some of the best covers I have made include ‘Odyssey of the Rogues: The City of Silk’, ‘The Bizarre World of Victor Victorious’, ‘The Imposter Series: Saoirse’, ‘The Death and Life of Ellen Smith’ and ‘Guardian: The Halloween Night Shift’.

My blog will return in February with content that is more typical of my usual updates.

Quote of the Day

As you wish.

Boba Fett

Star Wars Episode V: The Empire Strikes Back

Written by Falcon, Monday 25 January 2021

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Falcon  3 month(s) ago

Thanks for your comments! It was interesting to see your thoughts on your favourite covers and the stories that you believed were particularly memorable over these last 10 years. I found it a bit challenging to restrict my choices down to a select few and it was difficult to justify not including great stories such as 'The President' or 'The Greenwich Golds' considering the amount of work that went into them as well as their high quality of storytelling.

I'm making good progress with my latest entry but there is still much left to do before it can be published. I am aiming for it to be fairly unique but also to feel somewhat familiar to long time readers. I'm hopeful that Write Wise will continue on for many more years to come and that this is just the beginning of its journey. I know that I have many planned entries of various genres, both from an existing series and a few new ones, that are still up my sleeve. I might even crack the 100,000 word limit someday or delve even further than that.

 
Aaron  3 month(s) ago

A great post looking back at Write Wise’s now relatively long history. It’s also nice to see some love for our covers, without which the site would be rather less vibrant.

I was rather surprised to see Dark Depths listed. I myself take a rather dim view of the majority of my older entries.

As to my own favourites of the various authors’ stories and covers, here they are:

Falcon

Favourite stories:

Saoirse: I think this story had your best and most developed characters. The titular character’s development as she figures out who she is was very well done, and the backstories of various others, such as her father, kept me interested all the way through.

Dark Legacy: a story with an ambitious scale, in which it would have been easy for character development to fall by the wayside – but that wasn’t the case. The political developments were intriguing, but you also allowed space for characters to grow and interact.

The Case Files of Dr Wilder: for telling a standalone story with a well-developed setting. I enjoyed the casebook style of writing in this one, and enjoyed the doctor’s adventures.

Favourite covers: The Case Files of Dr Wilder, Hikari and the Other World, and Cogworld.

Jordan

Favourite stories:

The Workhorse: which had a unique setting (with two very different cultures being forced to meet), and very strong characterisation. The ‘absurd’ style of humour, and the various trials that the main character faced, made this a very fun entry to read.

War Hero: like Workhorse, this one had a slightly surreal quality to it, that helped to make it an entertaining read. The situations, though there were moments of darkness in there, were largely comical, and the main character was easy to empathise with.

Mo: a fictional biography that works really well at hooking the reader’s interest from the start. Mo covers a lot of ground – from Mo’s childhood until early adulthood – but it formed a cohesive, well-written whole.

Favourite covers: War Hero, Mo, and That Game.

***

I’m looking forward to reading what everybody submits in March. I myself am still mulling over an idea I can run with, but I’m hoping to come up with something worthwhile.

Here’s to another ten years?

 
Joh  3 month(s) ago

Nice post! It's pretty crazy that Write Wise is coming up to being ten years old.

I like how you did a round up of your favourite covers as they are rarely mentioned but are the first impression as you said. I was a little surprised to see some of the older covers make an appearance: The Retreat and Steven's Way in particular struck me as old ones that wouldn't have come to my mind as some of the more iconic or memorable covers.

For my favourite covers of yours: I would probably pick the first Victor Victorious, The City of Silk and the Dark Legacy covers. They are all quite striking to me.

For my favourite covers of Aaron: I'd pick On Certainty, The Barista and Marlwood Manor. It wasn't intentional, but these are Aaron's three most recent covers. I do think they are very visually pleasing.

For my favourite covers of Mark: I'd pick Stanley, Hunted and Obsession. I think those three are very iconic.

For my favourite story of yours: I would have to go with Saoirse. I thought the characters, plot and storytelling were top notch in that story and I thoroughly enjoyed reading through it. As an honourable mention, I'd go with The Case Files of Dr Wilder - I thought it was very unique and interesting, both in its style and in its mystery.

For my favourite story of Aaron: I'd go with The President. I thought it was pretty flawless and very fresh. I enjoyed it a lot. As an honourable mention, I'd go with On Certainty. Again, this entry was very refined and just an enjoyable to read entry.

For my favourite story of Mark: it has to be Stanley. I thought it was a well told story. As an honourable mention, I'd have to go with Obsession, as I still remember being quite surprised when reading it. It was quite a debut. Sadly, I can't say more about Mark's - as it has been a while.

I think everyone should be very proud of their content on the site. There's a lot of great stories on the site with lots of interesting characters, scenes, settings, conflicts and details. It really is quite something.

I'm very happy with my own contributions to the site.

For my favourite covers of my own, I'd go with Adopt, Don't Shop and That Game. I think they are quite unique and I like how they turned out.

For my favourite story of my own, I would go with The Greenwich Golds. I'm very proud of it and feel very satisfied with calling it my own novel. I'm very happy with the characters, storylines and themes of The Greenwich Golds. I would say that it is the best that I've done.

Earlier last year, I reread all of my own stories that are posted on Write Wise, starting from the beginning. I thought it was very interesting to see how the stories evolved from being very basic and uneventful to eventually becoming fairly complex. It was satisfying to see characters become more developed, plotlines become more engaging and the overall stories starting to more closely resemble actual stories. Even more satisfying was being able to enjoy some of my later stories.

I look forward to seeing what you have prepared for the anniversary.