Be critical of but not brutal with your writing. If something isn't essential, get rid of it. Remember that good dialogue can serve a whole passel of purposes in your novel, and to overlook one of them is to overlook one of the tools of the craft. Like hitting a nail with a screwdriver, if you know what I mean.
Here," Myrnin said, his voice still gentle and low. "Amelie said you had to work. No one said you had to work alone." He picked up the next part and slotted it in, took the screwdriver from Claire's numbed fingers, and fastened it with a couple of deft, fast movements. "I'll be your hands." She wanted to cry, because it was so sweet, but it wouldn't do any good.
Here, " Myrnin said, his voice still gentle and low. "Amelie said you had to work. No one said you had to work alone." He picked up the next part and slotted it in, took the screwdriver from Claire's numbed fingers, and fastened it with a couple of deft, fast movements. "I'll be your hands." She wanted to cry, because it was so sweet, but it wouldn't do any good.
North, " said the face beneath the sheet. "I belong to the National Association of Broadcasting Employees and Technicians. If you wake me up before I've slept twelve hours, I get paid short turnaround." "But Rose-" "If you wake me up before seven hours, I get to push a screwdriver into your lungs." - from "The Scarred Man
Authors pretend their stories were always shiny and perfect and just waiting to be written. The truth is, writing is this: hard and boring and occasionally great but usually not. Even I have lied about writing. I have told people that writing this book has been like brushing away dirt from a fossil. What a load of shit. It has been like hacking away at a freezer with a screwdriver.
What is it with these people? They are more obsessed with me finding a girlfriend than I am. "He's concentrating on his studies, " says Mum proudly. "Ah, " says Mr Coles. "I should've done that, but at his age I was out on the town, living it up. Best days of my life, they were." "Oh yes, mine too, " says Mum with a weird twinkle in her eye. I wonder how easy it is to kill two people with a screwdriver and a bag of half-frozen peas.
Secure web servers are the equivalent of heavy armoured cars. The problem is, they are being used to transfer rolls of coins and cheques written in crayon by people on park benches to merchants doing business in cardboard boxes from beneath highway bridges. Further, the roads are subject to random detours, anyone with a screwdriver can control the traffic lights, and there are no police.
The entire island of Martha's Vineyard has gone Obama crazy. There's even a cocktail that they've named after Barack Obama. It's called the Obamarita. Not to be confused with a cocktail inspired by John McCain, the Cosmopoligrip. And then there was one a couple of years ago inspired by George W. Bush, the Mojidiot. Of course, there was the Bill Clinton Screwdriver.
Running along the bank was a white rabbit wearing a waistcoat and looking worriedly at a clock. Appearing and disappearing at various points on both banks was a dark blue British police telephone booth, out of which a perplexed-looking man holding a screwdriver would periodically emerge. A group of dwarf bandits could be seen disappearing into a hole in the sky. "Time travelers, " said Nobodaddy in a voice of gentle disgust. "They're everywhere these days.
Men believe that they are accomplishing something by speaking speak in a different way from men who believe that speaking is a waste of time. Bobby Shaftoe learned most of his practical knowledge - how to fix a car, butcher a deer, throw a spiral, talk to a lady, kill a Nip - from the latter type of man. For them, trying to do anything by talking is like trying to pound in a nail with a screwdriver. Sometimes you can see the desperation spread over such a man's face as he listens to himself speak.
Heroes are important. Heroes tell us who we want to be but when they made this particular hero they didn't give him a gun, they gave him a screwdriver to fix things. They didn't give him a tank or a warship or an X-Wing, they gave him a call box from which you can call for help and they didn't give him a superpower or a heat-ray, they gave him an extra heart. And that's extraordinary. There will never come a time when we don't need a hero like the doctor.
[The Doctor] pulled the thing out of Prince Boris's mouth, waving it around. 'Oh. Blimey. This is not a spatula. What is it?' I [Amy] stared at the stubby thing. It looked like the world's chunkiest novelty gift pen... I coughed. 'That, Doctor, is the sonic screwdriver.' 'Ah, ' Dr Smith boggled. 'Right. Is it? Oh dear.' Another pause. 'What does it do?' 'Well... it screws things... sonically. On a good day, we fight off monsters with it.' 'Monsters, eh?' Dr Smith nodded gravely and... pointed it at the doorway like a gun and said, hopefully, 'Pew! Pew! Pew!' He turned back to me. 'Like that?' 'Other way up, ' I said gently.
Seconds later, the female security officer grabbed a pair of my father's shorts from the top of the duffel bag, and emptied out the contents of his pockets. A lighter, three nail files, a pocket wrench, a pair of pliers, a screwdriver, and a nectarine fell onto the folding table. I looked at the woman, looked at my father, and then looked around to see if anyone else was watching. "What's the problem?" my father asked the woman. "Sir, I'm going to have to take this lighter away from you, " she said. "The lighter?" I asked her. "What about the bomb kit he's carrying around? He could do a lot more damage to a person with that wrench." "I need the wrench!" he shrieked. "For what?" "What if something goes wrong with the plane?
Leo lowered his screwdriver. He looked at the ceiling and shook his head like, What am I gonna do with this guy? "I try very hard to be annoying, " Leo said. "Don't insult my ability to annoy. And how am I supposed to resent you if you go apologizing? I'm a lowly mechanic. You're like the prince of the sky, son of the Lord of the Universe. I'm supposed to resent you." "Lord of the Universe?" (Jason) "Sure, you're all-bam! Lightning man. And 'Watch me fly. I am the eagle that soars-" (Leo) "Shut up, Valdez." (Jason) Leo managed a little smile. "Yeah, see. I do annoy you." "I apologize for apologizing." (Jason) "Thank you." He went back to work, but the tension had eased between them. Leo still looked sad and exhausted-just not quite so angry.
on a number of occasions this book has made reference to magic, and each time you've shaken your head, muttering such criticisms as "What does he mean by 'magic' anyhow? It's embarrassing to find a grown man talking about magic in such a manner. How can anybody take him seriously?" Or, as slightly more gracious readers have objected, "Doesn't the author realize that one can't write about magic? One can create it but not discuss it. It's much too gossamer for that. Magic can be neither described nor defined. Using words to describe magic is like using a screwdriver to slice roast beef." To which the author now replies, Sorry, freeloaders, you're clever but you're not quite correct. Magic isn't the fuzzy, fragile, abstract and ephemeral quality you think it is. In fact, magic is distinguished from mysticism by its very concreteness and practicality. Whereas mysticism is manifest only in spiritual essence, in the transcendental state, magic demands a steady naturalistic base. Mysticism reveals the ethereal in the tangible. Magic makes something permanent out of the transitory, coaxes drama from the colloquial.