Tuesday, March 24, 2020
Monday, February 24, 2020
2020 Reader’s Choice Awards contest -
I'm very excited because my mystery book, "She's Not You", was just nominated for the 2020 Readers Choice Awards contest by TCK Publishing! Please vote for it under the "Mystery" category, Page 10, at https://www.tckpublishing.com/2020-readers-choice-voting-page/
This is the same book that came in as a quarter finalist in the Screencraft Cinamatic Book Contest determined by a panel selected to read and judge the books.
This new contest is determined by the number of votes the book gets.-- not exactly the same but it would be nice if you all went out there and voted like crazy. If you haven't read "She's Not You" - you should. The reviews have been awesome.
That's my latest news. Will be back soon.
Tuesday, February 11, 2020
When I saw this photo, I thought, "What a great opening sentence for a novel." Immediately, where does your mind go... right, who has that other 1 % ? Mystery... intrigue, secrets right off the bat.
This is one of the reasons that I write mysteries - I plant those first seeds of intrigue and water them as I go. Sometimes I encourage a secret weed or two of to grow until they begin to get wild and interfere with the growth of my mystery. Then they have to be pulled out and composted... :-) But they have still added to the story in many ways - wrong turn, wrong person, another dangerous person.
The draft of my new "Oyster Point Mystery" has my signature opening... the commitment of the dastardly deed in graphic detail. You, the reader, are there, see it, feel it and more importantly see who did it. Why do I do that? Good question... maybe because I want the reader to know more than the characters; maybe because then the reader can see the right or wrong track that the characters are taking; and maybe because the reader still doesn't know how to catch the deed doer. That's my job as a writer to figure out. For some reason, this has become my style - most call it unorthodox, but it works for me and has become my signature opening.
That style doesn't work for everyone, so each of you has to find your own signature or voice - maybe your story starts with "It was a dark and stormy night...." I was advised a few times by other writers and professors not to have the dastardly deed open the story and I tried moving it. When I did it, I felt that I had lost the powerful opening that I love. So back it went.
My time-travel and romance novels usually don't open this way. But, that said, the other draft manuscript that I'm working on does have a mysterious opening. Now that I think of it, it's both a mystery and a time-travel. Is there such a genre? :-)
So my advice to all is to write your style, find your voice, mix genres if it works for you and have fun. Give your reader something that they love and and can't put down. Make them want more!!
Happy Valentine's Day if that's your thing... just enjoy the day with whoever or whatever is the love of your life.
Wednesday, January 8, 2020
Happy 2020 everyone! It's always a time of both sadness and happiness for me when ringing in a new year. Sadness when I leave behind a year which may have been the best of my life or the worst. I remember years ago when my Dad died, I didn't want the year to change. I know, it sounds strange. You would think that I would have been glad to leave all that sadness behind me, but I wasn't... I didn't want to have to say "He died a year ago" or "He died last year." It seemed to place his death, my loss, far behind me and I wasn't yet ready to do that.
But this year I'm looking forward to writing more. I have two manuscripts that I'm working on and love both of them. One will be another Oyster Point mystery with Jack and Jamie becoming tangled in more cold cases and surprisingly, with old loves. We can only imagine how Jamie feels when Lizz reappears - divorced. And Jack, how jealous will he become when Mike resurfaces from Jamie's past? Think back on all the loves of your life and just imagine how you would feel if one of them popped up unexpectedly. It's interesting to see how people deal with that... myself, the past is the past. As I've said so often, there are no second chances... If you lose one, another will hopefully come along and another and finally, you'll find that very special one or not. That's just how life is as the song says, filled with "traces of love."
No one walks through this life unhurt, at least no one that I've met. And so when the Times Square ball drops and we start with a clean slate, we toast the new year hoping for the best... lots of love, happiness and good health with family, friends, and loves of our life. But we never forget the ones we leave behind last year or the year before or tens of years before. They are always lodged in a little place in out hearts. And when they choose to pop up in our consciousness for some reason, they are greeted with tears or smiles... but they are always, always remembered.
And so it is with my characters. When their past crosses their path unexpectedly, what will they do? Give in to trying to recreate what they once had or have the strength to admit that the past should sometimes stay in the past. How lucky am I as a writer that I can test out both premises... fall back or move on.
My second manuscript is another time travel; "The Looking Glass Labyrinth" being the first that I wrote. I'm introducing two new interesting characters with their own life's baggage. So far I like both of them... Elle, a semi-forensic scientist, who's trying to clean out a family home and sell it after her parent's divorced, and Gabriel, an architect hired to restore a nearby Victorian, who is looking to buy a house in the historic town. They are an interesting mix. Elle's long kept secret might take her to 1845 to unravel the mystery of a missing woman who had lived in her house.
Wish me luck with both of them. I'm hoping to have one ready for submission to my publisher by April. We shall see.
Again, happy new year and follow your dreams. I am!
Sunday, December 22, 2019
Tis the season! I know I've been missing for a few weeks, but life is busy these days. I'm working on another "Oyster Point Mystery" where Jack and Jamie attempt to solve one more cold case. In addition, Jamie and Jack find themselves confronted with their ghosts from the past - Lizz and Mike. Will either of them find that the old love still burns...?
I'm also working on another time-travel. "The Looking Glass Labyrinth" was so well received, to my surprise, that I'm writing this other tale concerning a locket. I love writing these - many twists and turns. But when you write a 1845 story, there's a lot of research that has to be done. I haven't decided on the title yet either.
I'm also going to investigate turning my Christmas story, Broken Christmas Promise, into a screenplay. I purchased the tool that everyone uses and after the holidays, will take the tutorial and see how that works. I was told that your screenplay has to be in a certain format... we'll see how I do :-)
Speaking of holidays, please enjoy them with family and/or friends. It truly is a wonderful time of year. I find a bit of sadness creeping in sometimes as I remember the Christmases past and the people who are no longer with us. The memories are wonderful and I'm trying to make new ones that everyone will carry forth like I did.
May the New Year find you ensconced in writing a new novel, memoir, or screenplay! Let's just make sure it happens.
Sunday, December 1, 2019
Just wanted you to know that "Broken Christmas Promise" has been released! https://www.amazon.com/dp/B0826VPM11/ref=sr_1_1?keywords=Broken+Christmas+Promise&qid=1575226458&s=digital-text&sr=1
She froze at the all too familiar sound of his voice. His dark eyes fasten on hers. Her heart hammers. How does she handle this – ignore him and let him think that he had never hurt her or confront him and demand an answer?
She chooses to confront him never imagining what his answer would be.”
Pick up your copy!
Also on Cyber Monday, "She's Not You" - the first in the Oyster Point Mystery Series is on a Free Book Promotion - Monday, December 2, 2019, 12:00 AM PST Monday, December 2, 2019, 11:59 PM PST DON'T MISS YOU one this one. Pick up a copy for yourself or a gift for someone else!!
Sunday, November 10, 2019
Well, as I rewrote it, I found that it became... stronger? Maybe even a much fuller story. And my publisher loved it. And so it never hurts to experiment with the POVs to see which best tells your story. In my first published novel, She's Not You, I used third person but actually wrote it from a number of POVs. When I submitted chapters in my Creative Writing class, the professor said it was not the normal way to write a novel BUT, then she said I had done it so well that it didn't bother her. I actually couldn't imagine telling this story any other way. And as it turns out, most of my books are now written that way.
My latest Christmas story to be released on December 2nd, Broken Christmas Promise, elicited the same comments from the editor assigned to me by my publisher. She was about to tell me to rewrite it as a single POV when I stood my ground and said "This is pretty much my signature now... my voice." She admitted that it didn't bother her but was still unorthodox.
Most new writers attempt the multiple POVs but don't keep them separate. You can't be in one person's head in one sentence and then another's the next sentence. POVs have to be separated by chapters or divided by a break to show that this new section is a different POV, Most writers show a break by three asterisks (***).
I find it interesting to write the same event from a number of points of view... when it makes sense.
So choose your POV carefully. It will make or break your story.
Keeps writing and learning how to be a better and better teller of stories!
Happy Thanksgiving to all!