Wednesday, November 25, 2015

Wednesday's Writer's Tip - Keeping the Reader interested - Part 2 #MFRWauthor #amwriting

Continuing with what I write last week.

The first one today is - Promises made to the Reader - When you set out to write a book one of the things you need to do is think of the reader and what you're going to promise them. No one wants to promise a boring read but all too often this happens. I've read a lot of books with a great potential only to have them fall apart and not keep their promise. One way to keep the promise of a good read is the characters. Give the reader characters with real problems and real struggles to gain their goals. I real a lot and lately I've been reading books that promise a good story but fall short because the characters solve their problems too easily. I reach the end of the book and say so what. That is a writer I'll never read again. The other thing is to have a plot that makes sense. Since the plot is really the journey of the way one character or more reach the end of their quest there have to be twists and turns. Figuring out what will happen next before it happens makes the story fall flat. So when you promise your readers a good story. Keep at the writing until the story is the best you can do with characters struggling with their problems. Don't jsut wave that magic wand and like that the problems are solved.

The second rather goes along iwth the first. The character or characters have motivations that drive them toward their goals. Make sure this is a strong one. A weak motivation will let the story fall flat. Keep the motivation of the character striving to reach that goal and make the reader wonder if that will happen is the way to go.

Tuesday, November 24, 2015

Tuesday's Inspiration - Anne Lamott - Bird By Bird #MFRWauthor #amwriting

The next chapter of the book bears the title School Lunches. I read this chapter several times before I figured the point of the essay. It's about taking a subject you're familiar with ane writing everything you can think of that the subject entails. School lunches are something we've all experienced. Whether you ate the lunches provided in the cafeteria or carried a brown bag, you know a lot about school and lunches. But sometimes writing about this for a period of time sends you off on a tangent and suddenly there's an idea for a story or a character in the story you're currently writing.

My take on school lunches changed over time. The ones when I was a nursing student were the ones that really struck home with me and brought a ton of memories. Some of these found themselves into books. Some into books never written. Our lunches were serven in the nursing home cafeteria. Lunch was a half hour. When on duty you had to run across the street or through the tunnels connecting the two buildings. Those tunnels figured a lot in my memories. In the half hour allotted, a run across the street, or down the elevator to the basement, through the dark tunnel and to the elevator to the fifth floor took time. One never had time to sit and enjoy their lunch before they had to run the gauntlet back to whatever floor one was working on.

So doing this kind of exercise is good for a writer. Brings out many things they didn't know they remembered. This kind of memories bring the writer words, emotions and sensations to add to their word. So try the exercise and see what happens when you do. Try it with other times and places from your past and you'll have things to add to your stories.

Monday, November 23, 2015

Meandering On Monday with Janet Lane Walters #MFRWauthor #poetry

 Meander 1 - Poem - Thirty years ago I watched a dying friend face death with courage. Then recently, I watched another friend do the same. This poem written all those years ago belongs to both these courageous woman.

She walks with death and knows
But turns her face to live and passes
To those around her person a glow,
A charm, a reaching for tomorrow.

The trees in autumn know they are dying, too.
They reach with colored brightness glowing hues
In beauty across the hills- against the sky.
They shoutof life today and not tomorrow.

She walkes with death and yet
She exhales life and peacefulness.
She extends her hands and boosts her friends
Over obstacles that line the way.

The blaze of autumn trees tell
Of dying with colors and with flair.
Their colors extend a welcoming of ends
And point to bebinnings right with flame.

She walks with death and so
She teaches me how to live each day.
She burns in my life a dying flame.
That glows as beauty - autumn tree.

Meander 2 - That lost hour of sleep. I'm usually up between sixthirty and seven greeting the day brightly. Just the other day I had to rise at six to take someone to a doctor's appointment. All day that lost half hour haunted me, sending me into little losses of consciousness and making my day rather disjointed. I didn't write because off I would not and the pen skittered across the page. Neither did I type more than a few words since they were followed with something like thissssssssssss. So the lost hour of sleep left me with a lost hour.

Meander 3. Writing is going slower than I'd like and better than I feared. Wizards is approaching the last of the rewritten drafts and then all needed to be done will be the fixing of sentences. The adding of words or a sentence to clarify what's on the page. Then it will be time to really look at the book I want to finish for my friend. Hopefully the other two will have more ideas than I do right now. Then I can concentrate on another of the seven books I need to finish for reissuing.

Sunday, November 22, 2015

Sunday - My Books - Affinities - Escape - J. L. Walters #MFRWauthor #fantasy

In Affinities, Escape, a Books We Love Young Adult Fantasy, two sets of halfling twins, Ashlea, Brandien, Jaydren and Kylandra sent away from their home by their parents to protect them from trouble, search for mentors to teach them how to use their affinities. Each of these young teens has an affinity for one of the elements. Ash for Air, Bran for Water, Jay for Earth and Ky for Fire. During the escape, they face many problems forcing them to use their affinities by trial and error. They also meet Alizand, the son of the ruling prince of Wesren. Zand has an affinity for Fire and this will keep him from gaining the rule. Dom Senet, an advisor to his father, and once a friend of the quartet’s parents suspects Zand’s affinity. He wishes to corrupt the teen and use him to gain control of the four princedoms of the land and of the highlands. The evil dom has all four affinities. The four must reach a secret place and find teachers before the evil man discovers them.


Fantastic Series! I read this book in a very short period of time because I couldn't put it down! I absolutely LOVED it. Well worth the read. In fact am going to get a copy for all my kids as well. I loved the characters of the book, the plot was intriguing, I loved the different twists and turns that the story took. You won't be sorry picking up these books." ~ 5 Stars, Roxanne Nolan

Escape | eBooks | Teens

Saturday, November 21, 2015

Saturday's Blurb - Books By Barbara Bradley #MFRWauthor #sciencefiction romance

Dominated by Desire Book 1 Of the Vespian Way Blurb:
Heather can’t believe she is the only person on Earth that can protect Storm, the ambassador from Vespia. It has something to do with some pheromone the Vespian male exudes. Although everyone tells her she is immune she doesn’t agree. There is something about the man that makes her desire skyrocket whenever she is around him.
Storm finds the Heather fascinating, bright violet eyes that hold a world of emotions in them. He finds himself drawn to her, wanting her with a depth he never experienced before. When she becomes the focal point of several kidnapping attempts he realizes she’s going to need his protection, the perfect excuse to get to know her better.

Animal Desire Book 3 of the Vespian Way Blurb:
Heather is now six months pregnant and finds her mate a bit overprotective. She can’t help if she glows when she is frustrated. Things get a little more complicated when she is called home because of Ialog. He released information, making it look like she is being mistreated by the Vespians. How is she going to hide her pregnancy? She left Earth sterile.
Storm isn’t happy about her leaving the safety of Vespia, but wants to show that Heather is happy and safe under his care. He knows Ialog and is worried the man is going to try to take his mate from him again. His fears become very real when Ialog kidnaps her. Now he has to find a way to bring her home.

Hesitant Desire Book 5 of the Vespian Way Blurb:
Heather swore she’d never go back to Aruka after a mission had gone bad. The planet had an archaic view of women and Heather fought against those views, angering one man to the point of whipping her. Now Earth has requested she rescue a missing woman on that planet. She wants to say no, but Storm has already accepted for her, as long as he accompanies her. They hoped it would be a quick in and out assignment but didn’t expect to run into the man carrying such hatred for her all these years. Now they have to try to finish their mission while evading the man who’s only goal is to make Heather pay for her crimes.
Hidden Desire Book 8 of the Vespian Way Blurb:
Heather wants to fight beside her people, not watch from a safe distance. So when her brother comes up with a way to disguise her she jumps at the chance. Now she can try out for an elite team to help defeat Reasta, who has a stronghold on their planet. No one knows who she is, including her mate, who has also been disguised. They must find each other, qualify for the team and help rescue the elders without being found out.

Timeless Desire Book 9 of the Vespian Way Blurb:

Someone keeps altering the timeline and only Sam and Skye are aware of the change. The culprit doesn’t want Heather and Storm together, yet they keep finding each other, no matter how many times it is changed. Everything needs to be righted and the person messing with it needs to be stopped. It’s up to Sam and Skye to get things back the way it should be.

Friday, November 20, 2015

Friday - Barbara Bradley - Talking About Heroes, Heroines and Villains #MFRWauthor #writing

1. Do you write a single genre or do your fingers flow over the keys creating tales in many forms?
Does your reading choices reflect your writing choices?
Are there genres you wouldn’t attempt?

I mostly write SF.Futuristic (hot) romance with a fantasy short story thrown in for fun. But...I have published time travel, fantasy and a straight historical. I love reading SF of any kind and when I found the romance novels in that genre I read as many as I could get my hands on. I find them fun to write. As far as what I wouldn't write I don't think I'd write a murder/mystery right now. It's not something I see myself writing.
2. Heroes, Heroines, Villains. Which are your favorite to write?

This is a tough one. I do have fun with my villains, but love my heroes and heroines too. Can I say all of them?
3. Heroes. How do you find them? Do pictures, real life or plain imagination create the man you want every reader to love? Do they come before the plot or after you have the idea for the story?

Wow, this is a good one. My heroes are part of plain imagination. I don't use pictures or real life people. I normally have my characters and a basic idea for the plot when I start writing. My books are character driven so they'r always the first thing I create when coming up with a new story.
4. Heroines. How do you find them? Do pictures, real life or imagination create the woman you want the reader to root for? Do they appear before the plot or after you have the idea for the story?

My answer is pretty much the same as it was for the heroes. I'm not one to look for people who look like my characters. These characters whisper in my ear and they're never happy with anyone I think that they could look like.

5. Villains or villainesses or an antagonist, since they don’t always have to be the bad guy or girl. They can be a person opposed to the hero’s or heroine’s obtaining their goal. How do you choose one? How do you make them human?

They basically come out of my plot. I'm a pantser and don't have much more than a blurb in my head as I start my books. It's kind of weird to other authors because I write linear. I start at the beginning and keep going until the book is done. I don't jump around and write different scenes then string them together. I'm not sure why I write this way but it does work. So as I write (I normally have two to three upcoming scenes worked out in my head as I write the rough draft) my way of plotting will work out who the villain is and why they are after the hero/heroine. 
6. What is your latest release? Who is the hero, heroine and or the villain?

My latest release is the 9th book in my series The Vespian Way. Timeless Desire features Heather and Storm, my main hero and heroine of the series. In this book they find Susan (a character from book 3) keeps changing the timeline. She has never liked Heather and wants what she has. Skye and Sam weren't effected by the timeline change and have to fight to get everything back the way it was.

7. What are you working on now?

Right now I'm working on the 10th book of the series. Heather and Storm have declared war on Reasta and Earth has volunteered their help so I have humans on Vespia which has never happened before. I'm about halfway done - that's when I got that aha moment to my plot so have gone back to the beginning to add a few things before I continue to write that rough draft.
8. How can people find you?
Like most authors I've got a lot of social media links - pinterest, facebook, twitter and my blog  - which I try to post to twice a week - one in an interview of other authors - it's so much fun to see the answers, I also do one one the art of writing and have been toying with the idea of doing one on my writing. I keep getting aksed how I find time to write so thought maybe I should try to show how I get it done. Here's the links - 

Thursday, November 19, 2015

Thursday's Heroes, Heroines and Villains from Sanctuary's Ending #MFRWauthor #fantasy

Sanctuary's Ending - Hero - David

David stood beside the glistening white eye stone near the peak of the winter pasture. The rays of the setting sun focused near the hole in the giant wheel. The spring equinox signaling the beginning of a new year would occur soon. On that day the light of the morning sun would pierce the opening and illuminate the polished circle of black stone. At night, the moon’s rays would do the same.
The people of the hidden community of Sanctuary would gather to celebrate the day the goddesses Sola and Luna cast their light for equal times on their sister goddess Erda. This event signaled the arrival of a new year.
As David watched the other shepherds stride up the slopes a mantle of sadness settled on his shoulders. The men were eager to join their families in the village to prepare for the ceremony celebrating the start of a new year.
No one waited for him. His mother had been banished to a small cottage in the forest. His sister belonged to the Healers. His father had to be dead. Before David’s and his sister’s birth, their sire had been led to the Gap and stoned. After being tested for a talent David had been named a commoner.
The day passed in quiet. The herds grazed and none of the animals caused him or the dogs a problem. The sun neared setting.
David. He whirled and studied the slopes. The talent he shouldn’t have warned him someone approached. David. His name flowed down the slope and echoed in his head.
Had he heard the call or had his imagination supplied the voice. For several days he’d been edgy. He opened his senses and sensed approaching emotions. Was it Paul? Once they’d been almost inseparable. Was his old friend on the way? Paul had no reason to seek him. He belonged to the elite of Sanctuary. Paul had been favored by the Three and had been selected to train as an elder.
“Hello.” Paul called.
David ran up the path to meet his friend.  Paul’s grin brought memories of their childhood. Though slight in build Paul possessed a wiry strength. His stature often made people think of him as frail. David knew better. Paul had been first in sprint races and best at climbing trees. He’d always made David feel like a giant.
Paul halted and ran his hands through his pale blond hair. “Are you hiding out here?” His blue eyes searched David’s face.
David shook his head. “I’m here to lead the flock to the village. Why did you come? Aren’t you being invested at the spring equinox celebration?”
“I am.”
“Are you running away?” No candidate was allowed to leave the village alone.
“Elder John is on my heels. Why weren’t you with the other shepherds?”

“Someone has to guard the flock.” David clasped his friend’s hand. “I have no problem being the drover. There’s no one waiting for me.”

Sanctuary's Ending - Heroine - Deborah

On the late afternoon of the day of the spring equinox celebration, Deborah sat on the women’s side of the meeting house with the Healers. The hardness of the stone bench made her wish for a cushion. She shifted so she could see the open wooden doors. Would her twin arrive in time? Would he join those who had been his childhood friends?
Ruth sat with the Sensitives. Deborah saw her friend’s ashen skin and the way she bit her lower lip. Deborah wished they sat together for courage and reassurance. The roiling meotions in of the gathered people must responsible for Ruth’s tensions. 
She turned from the door and glanced at the platform where the Singers and Elders sat. She spotted Gabriel with the Singers and Paul on a chair beside the eleven older men. In the center of the stage the Seat of Judgment stood beneath the round glass window.
Where was her brother? He had to arrive. There were few reasons any man, woman or child could be absent from one of the four ceremonies. Punishments were always meted out. A night in the stocks could be ordered or banishment with a stoning was also possible.
Paul had vowed they would leave the community without her twin. Could they survive without someone used to living away from the village and their sheltered houses? Her fingers tightened into fists as a frission of fear walked her spine. What if Paul had been mistaken? What if an accident had prevented David’s arrival?
Deborah turned her head toward the door. Her gaze met the icy blue stare of Paul’s older brother. In that instant she saw lust and anger. Her gut lurched. He would be glad if her brother failed to arrive. Elder Jeremiah’s older son had hated David and would have used his position as Teacher to somehow undermine the testing process.
The first peal of the summoning bell rang loud. David, where are you? She tried to  reach him on the long unused connection of their childhood. She failed.

Sanctuary's Ending - Villain Simon

"Paul. I’ve been looking everywhere for you,” Simon called.

David’s spine stiffened. “Glad to see you. Tomorrow morning we’re meeting to gather supplies.”

Simon glared. “I’ll do my own.”

“Your choice. Anyone who isn’t ready will be left behind.”

“Won’t be me.” Simon faced David. “I go with my father’s blessing. We don’t need you unless you’re going as a servant. You’re nothing.”

Simon’s words were like blows pounding David’s chest. “I will be with you and I will watch you.” He stepped closer until his boots touched Simon’s. “No one will stop me.”

“My father could. The Chief Elder can do anything.”

Paul pulled David away. “Father will stop no one. If you’re afraid, stay here.”

Simon scowled. “I’m going to protect Father’s interests. You tricked him. Why didn’t you give the talk I helped him write? Once again, there was no call. The time to be fruitful and multiply is not now. There will be no weddings for ten years. Father has decreed that a new rule.”

“Lies," David said. "Does he plan to neuter all the herds and flocks?”

“Shut up.” Simon raised his fists. “When we return I will be tested again. I will be an Elder.”

David laughed. “And I will become a Teacher.”

“You failed.” Simon turned toward his brother.

“So you say,” David said.

Paul grasped David’s arm. “Your friends know your worth. Don’t fight him.”

“I won’t.” David walked away. “Tomorrow at the storehouse.”

“I’ll pack for myself,” Simon shouted.

Wednesday, November 18, 2015

Wednesday's Writer's Tip - Holding the Reader's Attention - Part 1 #MFRWauthor #amwriting

You've written your book. You've found a large or small publisher or have self-published. You've found a few or maybe many readers but what do you need to do to keep them interested in the book and to come back when you've written another?

The first thing is to know your reader. If you're writing for a literary audience, then you need to know what interests them. If you're writing for readers of popular fiction you need to know the audience. Your success or failure lies on how you choose to follow your knowledge of what interests people. I've some friends who write what I consider literary fiction and they try to cram it into the popular fiction category. There are some readers who read both kind and enjoy both. But if you're writing for the wrong audience and using the tricks to interest the readers of the opposite kind of story you may find readers are few and far behind. There are also some books that appeal to a wider audience, If you manage that one, you're on your way. So look at your friends and find one who loves to read the kind of book you want to write and keep them in mind as you craft the story.

Another way to keep readers interested is to use the time element. She has twenty-four hours to find a solution. If you're using this to keep your reader interested in what comes next, remind the reader of the lapse of time. The time element doesn't have to be hours or days but could be months. But there has to be the urgency to solve the problem in a short time. The time element could be joined to a major complication or a minor one.

Tuesday, November 17, 2015

Tuesday's Inspiration - ala Anne Lamott - Perfectionism #MFRWauthor #amwriting

I'm enjoying my reading of Bird By Bird for who knows how many times. This piece on Perfectionism brought back memories of when I first began writing. My first short story of 2500 words took me three months to write. Why - because I strove for the piece to be perfect. To quote from Bird By Bird - "Perfectionism is the voice of the oppressor, the enemy of the people."
 She is so right.

Writing that short story took a long time, but my first novel took several years - nearly three. Not that I was striving for perfection, I was learning. Thanks to so many editors who viewed the book and sent me reasons why my book wasn't suitable for them, I learned. I also learned that nothing is perfect.

Recently I've been reworking a number of stories written three or four years ago to have them re-published. I've learned several things. Most of these books received great reviews. 4 or5 on a scale of one to 5. But I discovered there were things that needed to be made better. Notice I said Better not perfect. I'm sure if I look at them in four or five years I'll be able to make them better. I'm not going to do that though.

For me Perfectionism is one way of  procrastinating. How about you? Do you look at your work and write the end, then send it off and have qualms? Is it perfect? Probably not. It's as perfect as you can make it at your stage of writing. If you're like me, the more you write, the more you learn. So the moral of this piece is - There is no Perfection so don't hang yourself up on trying to find it. Save that for the next book or story.

Monday, November 16, 2015

Meandering On Monday with Janet Lane Walters #MFRWauthor #poetry

Meander 1 - This week's poem

Dance, my love, dance into the day
Our night is coming to a close.
The time is short when we can play.

I soon will have to go away
Into the place of sleeping woes.
Dance my love into the day.

I wish I could ever stay
And have this moment in time froze.
The time is short when we can play.

So let our laughter be most gay.
How can we know where this life goes.
Dance, my love, dance into the day.

And as we close our bodies sway
Our love becomes a fading rose.
The time is short when we can play.

I kiss your lips and softly pray.
Wait now I hear the horning blows.
Dance, my love, dance into the day.
The time is short when we can play.

Meander 2 - Start the next book.  I've seen this happen to many of my writer friends, especially those who have finished their first book and have sent it out to agents and publishers. They sit and look at their email every day or wait for the postman to come. I never did this because I heard a writer years ago say that when you finished the book and sent it away you should forget it exists and start the second book. I've seen writer friends who were good and even great writers do the sit and wait and when the rejection came, they weren't able to start a second book. If they had started the second one the hurt of being rejected wouldn't have been so bad. Sure rejection hurts and many writers have been rejected dozens of times but they kept writing more stories. The way you learn is by doing and sitting and waiting to hear isn't learning.

Meander 3 - My writing is going slowly but it is going. Along with writing I need to reach out to my web person so we can upgrade my website and have her do covers for 7 re-released books. I have two of them about gone over to make better and there will only be five more to go.. Wizards is coming to the end of the re-writing draft. Well not so close but maybe halfway there.