Saturday, February 25, 2012

What would you do if there was a knock on your door in the middle of the night?

After I glare through the peep hole to see who's banging on my door, I may open it :-)

But, what if the person on the other side tells you that he's running from the police?

Well, that's exactly what happened to my guest this week on Romancing the Pen.

Larion Wills writes from the past to the future.  With strong characters, no matter the setting, she drags you into intricate plots in genres you didn't think you liked with a fast moving style that keeps you reading.  Visit her at her website to keep abreast of previously published and those coming.

Veteran, Ward Overland’s wanted nothing but quiet, his wildlife book published, and to stop poachers. Being saddled with a woman to retake his photos was the insult. Acting as her guide to said animals was the injury. Worse, falling for a poacher’s trap and being saved by her. Still, he couldn’t let her just walk away.
Tragedy locked Callie away from life. Only the need for money convinced her to take the job. The sooner it ended with the abrasive and rude loner the better. Saving him from death changed everything. Watching him regain strength for the journey home, she found one part of her still alive…passion. The rules…no strings, no relationship.
The poacher wanted Ward dead. He didn’t figure on Callie, either time.
Traps: find it at MuseItUp Publishing.

Monday, February 20, 2012

Saturday, February 18, 2012

Writer write

Do you choose what you do in life, or does it choose you?

While watching Oprah's interview of Viola Davis on her recent Oscar show, Viola said, "...the two most important days in a person's life...when you're born, and when you know why."

So, if you agree with Viola, and I do, then what you are born to do is always a part of you.  You just have to stand still and listen.

My guest on Romancing the Pen this week is Regan Walsh.  Regan joins me to discuss why she writes, and how she talks with us about how she feels about people telling writers to write what they know.

She'll also discuss some of the influences for her novel Whisper Cape.

Join us at Romancing the Pen this week.

Wednesday, February 15, 2012

Tuesday, February 14, 2012

Kiss Kiss Kiss

Ahhh Valentine's Day.  What is it that makes you love (or hate) the day so much?  I am like so many others, I've had my fragile love affair with V-Day.

Whether single or in a relationship (depending on where I am in a love affair,) I've attended the all black affairs, had the ladies' night out, curled up on my sofa with my lover, or just watched a movie with a bottle of wine.

But, why does Valentine's Day hold such an elite place in all our hearts?

Historically, the significance and origin of Valentine's Day is a bit scrambled to say the least.  Depending on which tale you choose to believe, maybe the day birthed from the tales of Chaucer, or they mark the history of one of the several historical figures (that can be found) who carried the name Valentine at a point in history that fits with the timeline of the holiday.  Who knows, the day has been added and removed from calendars throughout history.

What makes us treasure: hearts, birds, red, white as it relates to Valentine's Day?

Does this look familiar:

The rose is red, the violet's blue,
The honey's sweet, and so are you.
Thou are my love and I am thine;
I drew thee to my Valentine...

(I thought I thought of this as a kid..BRILLIANT! No, Gammer Gurton Garland, or any one of a number of poets before or after him who loved this particular form of poetry.)

Share some of your beautiful Valentine's Day poems with me.  I'd love to read them.

Monday, February 6, 2012

Rules for writing fiction

As written for The Guardian by Hilary Mantel, novelist and short story writer.

1 Are you serious about this? Then get an accountant.

2 Read Becoming a Writer, by Dorothea Brande. Then do what it says, including the tasks you think are impossible. You will particularly hate the advice to write first thing in the morning, but if you can manage it, it might well be the best thing you ever do for yourself. This book is about becoming a writer from the inside out. Many later advice manuals derive from it. You don't ­really need any others, though if you want to boost your confidence, "how to" books seldom do any harm. You can kick-start a whole book with some little writing exercise.

3 Write a book you'd like to read. If you wouldn't read it, why would anybody else? Don't write for a perceived audience or market. It may well have vanished by the time your book's ready.

4 If you have a good story idea, don't assume it must form a prose narrative. It may work better as a play, a screenplay or a poem. Be flexible.

5 Be aware that anything that appears before "Chapter One" may be skipped. Don't put your vital clue there.

6 First paragraphs can often be struck out. Are you performing a haka, or just shuffling your feet?

7 Concentrate your narrative energy on the point of change. This is especially important for historical fiction. When your character is new to a place, or things alter around them, that's the point to step back and fill in the details of their world. People don't notice their everyday surroundings and daily routine, so when writers describe them it can sound as if they're trying too hard to instruct the reader.

8 Description must work for its place. It can't be simply ornamental. It ­usually works best if it has a human element; it is more effective if it comes from an implied viewpoint, rather than from the eye of God. If description is coloured by the viewpoint of the character who is doing the noticing, it becomes, in effect, part of character definition and part of the action.

9 If you get stuck, get away from your desk. Take a walk, take a bath, go to sleep, make a pie, draw, listen to ­music, meditate, exercise; whatever you do, don't just stick there scowling at the problem. But don't make telephone calls or go to a party; if you do, other people's words will pour in where your lost words should be. Open a gap for them, create a space. Be patient.

10 Be ready for anything. Each new story has different demands and may throw up reasons to break these and all other rules. Except number one: you can't give your soul to literature if you're thinking about income tax.