Tuesday, January 26, 2010

Book Review - Dark Fever by Karen Marie Moning

I know my dear friend Eliza already gave a review of this series, but I'm so pleasantly surprised, I thought they were worth mentioning again.
After the Twilight incident, where I was found reading under blankets with a flashlight at 3 AM, I SWORE to all my friends and family that I would never get hooked on another series.  I've always been a vamp girl, so I figured I was safe with the Fae Fever book. Just one taste and I could walk away, no problem.
Sure. Right.
As soon as I met Jericho Barrens and V'Lane, the death by sex fae, I knew I'd been reeled in like a dumb fish. So all I can say is, if you like vulnerable kick ass heroines and sexy sexy bad maybe good and good maybe bad guys and plots that move fives miles a minute, with more twists and turns than an Irish back road, then you have to give this book a try. And see if you're any luckier than me - I'm already on book three and I just started last week - listening to the audio books on my way to and from work. And now you'll find me at my desk at work with a bud in one ear, anxious to find out what's happening next. These guys are so hot, I'm surprised my Ipod hasn't melted.
So I guess you could say, I'm as addicted to the fae as any silly mortal. Check out Dark Fever, and we'll see you under the blankets at 3 AM!
Don't forget extra batteries for your flashlight - or whatever else you might need batteries for under those blankets with two of the hottest guys between any pages. Did I say that? I'm blushing...

Wednesday, January 13, 2010

Jayne Ann Krentz and Christina Dodd's writing tips

All writers are constantly looking to improve on their writing knowledge, whether they are unpublished and greener than Kermit the frog or New York Times Best selling authors. Today I have two well known authors sharing their tips for writers.

First I have Jayne Ann Krentz:


1) VOICE: Your writing voice is what sets you apart from every other writer out there. Give the same plot to ten different writers and you will get ten different stories. Why? The reason is that each writer has a unique story-telling voice and this voice is part of who you are. Discover your voice and hone it.

2) CORE STORY: Analyze your core story – every writer has one. Identify the themes and conflicts that compel you. It is the first step toward finding your place in today’s market.

3) KNOW THE MARKET: The only way to do this is by reading widely in the genre that compels you as a writer. Each genre is divided into a number of sub-genres. Find out where your core story fits. There is probably more than a single sub-genre for you.

4) PROPOSAL: The only thing that matters in a proposal package is your story. Keep all other materials brief. The cover letter should be no more than a couple of lines. It should tell the editor very clearly where your book fits into the market. The synopsis should be only one page and should read like back-cover copy, not like a traditional outline. Add the first 30 – 40 pages of your book to the package and send it out to specific editors and agents (i.e. put their names on the envelopes! Don’t just send the package to: Dear Editor. Get names!)

5) ROMANCE WRITERS OF AMERICA: I highly recommend that you join this organization, even if your novel is not a romance. It is the best genre writers’ organization on the planet. You will learn more in six months -- thanks to the journal, local chapter meetings and the annual conference -- than you will learn on your own in six years in this business. You can check out RWA online at www.rwanational.org

Next we have Christina Dodd:

Christina Dodd's Five Tips:

Write the book you want to read.

Motivate your hero/heroine with big things from the past (torture, murder, betrayal, abandonment) and give him/her a big goal, one that means the difference between life and death, honor or dishonor.

If your heroine starts the book being a timid, bookish librarian in glasses, she had better become a wild, passionate, smart adventurer by THE END.

Torture your hero early & often; it develops his character, sort of like roasting nuts brings out the flavor.

Promo is not writing. Blogging is not writing. Tweeting and Facebook are not writing. Writing is producing pages on your book with the (self-imposed) deadline. Turn off the internet!

Thank you ladies for the insightful and informative tips for us writers. Now writers, you know who you are, get to it! :)


Tuesday, January 5, 2010

Eliza asks an Editor...

(E) I'm going to ask Frances Sevilla, Faery Rose Editor with The Wild Rose Press to elaborate on "Showing vs Telling."
(F) ...Thanks, Eliza. I recently went into great detail with an author friend of mine, on the subject of 'showing' action in a story rather than 'telling' action. I've read three books lately by well-known authors who got lazy with their writing and fell into the 'telling' trap.

What do I mean by 'lazy'?  Well, you can TELL me, he was scared. But it's more exciting and satisfying for you to SHOW me how he felt. He trembled, the chill ran up his spine, and his heart pounded in his chest so loud he could hear it in his head. 

The one word 'scared' says it all. But as a reader, I want to know what scared felt like. I want to experience the action as if I was the one in the story feeling the fear.

Every time I see a single word describing an action or a feeling, I wonder if there's a more definitive way of getting the reader to experience it for him/herself.

Show me the pan is hot, show me the ice is cold, show me the sun is bright, the hero is bold, the heroine is angry.

The water dripped into the pan and sizzled to steam. That ice should be sharp, hard, and crystalline. The sun has to blind the reader, force his/her hand to shade his/her eyes. The hero should walk into the room and sit down without invitation. The heroine should glare at him and walk out.

That's showing...

That's a simplistic example, but I hope it helps define the difference between SHOWING and TELLING a story.
(E) Frances, great examples. Thanks for sharing that. Maybe you can return and discuss another writing topic for our readers.
(F) I'd love to. Thanks for inviting me today.