Monday, July 30, 2012

Author Tara Chevrestt - Plotter or Pantser?


I would like to welcome Tara Chevrestt back to my blog! You may remember she was a guest poster here not too long ago, and I hope to see her back! She's good people! Now let's find out if she's a Plotter or a Pantser? 

Am I a plotter or a pantser? For those of you who don’t eat, breathe, sleep, and crap books and writing, let me explain what that is... A plotter is an author who sits down and makes an entire outline or synopsis before they begin writing their story. A pantser just sits down and writes, making it up as they go.
I’ve done both. *sheepish chuckle*
When I first started writing, I just knew I wanted to write, that a story was itching to be told. The first book I wrote (not the first published) was Ride for Rights. I tried my best to base it on the real life women who rode their motorbikes across the U.S., but only had so much data to go on. So, keeping the real life facts in mind and incorporating what I could, I made the rest up. I even went so far as to close my eyes and place a finger on a map of the U.S. and that’s where the ladies went next!
My following works, A Facebook Affair, Sinful Urges, Afterburn, I knew where I wanted them to go, but didn’t need to write the ending down. I had a beginning, an end, and I filled the middle. Sinful Urges was plotted, but only in my mind. I knew I wanted the characters to do something dirtier, riskier with each scene. Afterburn, I had a conclusion and knew what moral I wanted to inject, but no outline was necessary.
Deaf Isn’t Dumb... well, it feels weird outlining one’s own life. I just wrote the stories in chronological order or placed them where they fit.
The first time I outlined a book was with Maiden Behind the Mask. I submitted it as a pitch to Ruby Lioness Press. A pitch is when you sum up your book, its beginning, characters, middle, and ending in five sentences. I had to make them very long sentences, but I did it. And that was my first time plotting. When it was contracted, I sat down made a list of scenes I needed to add to it.
Yes, I don’t do an outline, just a little list.
Here is what the list for FemDocs looks like:
-women dr, all nations. Men are ruled by *edited*
-man excited. Hands on help!
-seduction/pole scene
-lure of greed
-rapid dwindling of male species.
-visit from the agent.
Course, there’s more, but it was bits I ended up panstering.
FemDocs is a Sonia Hightower book, my sexy alter ego. It releases May 3, 2013. I recently had it contracted by Ruby Lioness Press. I do not have cover art yet, but there is a Goodreads page (http://www.goodreads.com/book/show/15763461-femdocs) if you would like to mark it as to read so you don’t forget about it. It’s a scifi/femdom/fantasy thing. I expect it to be quite controversial.
I have do have a 2013 release by plain ‘ole Tara releasing April 19th. It’s called Opening Up and again, I did a list. It’s a pretty long book so I’ll just show a part of the list. And my lists are barely legible... I’m pretty sure no one can read them but me.
-Dr.’s office. Kim. Dr. Williams. *gasp!*
-Carlos rushes to her house.
-Bathtub scene.
-heart-to-heart
-bull riding
And the rest of the list gives way too much away, but I had you at bathtub scene, didn’t I? LOL
Find out more about Opening Up here: http://www.goodreads.com/book/show/15707644-opening-up
***

Tara Chevrestt is a deaf woman, former aviation mechanic, writer, and an editor. She is most passionate about planes, motorcycles, dogs, and above all, reading. That led to her love of writing. Between her writing and her editing, which allows her to be home with her little canine kids, she believes she has the greatest job in the world. She is very happily married.
Tara also writes as Sonia Hightower. Sonia writes the racy stuff and argues that she was here first. She just wasn't allowed to be unleashed until the last year.
While Tara and Sonia continue to fight over the laptop and debate who writes the next book, you can find buy links, blurbs, and other fun bits on their website: http://tarachevrestt.weebly.com/index.html or their Facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/pages/Tara-Chevrestt-Sonia-Hightower/218383211513877.

Which are you? Plotter or Pantser? Let us know in the comments! 

Kidnapped By My Characters, by Anjie Harrte

I would like to welcome Anjie Harrte to my blog today. She is going to let us know whether or not she plans what she writes (Plotter) or if she wings it by the seat of her pants (Panster).


Kidnapped by my characters
  
Sometime during my many chores and many responsibilities, ideas for stories creep up on me; however, I must retain them in my mind until I am behind a computer. Why? Because I am a panster.

I don’t plot, I don’t plan and I am not organized. I don’t make detailed sheets of who my characters are and what make them up, at least, I don’t do any of these things in the beginning. I sit behind a computer and tap away at the keys. The story flows in my mind and as it goes, I write. I spend a lot of time going back and forth checking details and names so that it remains the same throughout.

When I sit down to edit then I am faced with the task of character sheets and plots. My characters are very secretive; they tend to hold back details about themselves in the beginning. It is through the writing of the story that they reveal who they are, what their motives are and the role they play in my story. So, it is only after I have finished the story can I make up a character sheet for them.

The same thing goes with my plot. I plan a story in my mind but as I write it, it changes on me and surprises me with details that I didn’t plan from the beginning. For example while writing A Fatal Indiscretion (the original story not the one for the blog) I had planned a scene where the MC and her husband are supposed to be fighting in their bedroom. I built the scene on a flaw in their relationship; the fact that they don’t communicate with each other, that is, when she starts a discussion is when he is ready to turn his back and sleep. I had all the details planned out in my mind, what he will say, what she will say, the frustration that will build up when he goes to sleep, her stomping off into the shower and reaching out to someone else for comfort. Then in the middle of the writing these characters decided that they didn’t want to fight. Instead they wanted to let out their frustrations through sex. No matter how many ways I tried writing this scene with a big argument between these two people I couldn’t get it to happen. Eventually I gave in, I allowed them to guide me and I wrote the sex scene. I believe only writers will understand what this is like; to sit down to write something following an idea or a plan and to be guided in another direction. The thing is while trying to write what I wanted to happen it felt forced and it was as if I felt my characters’ frustration, but after writing the scene they wanted me to write I felt relief.

Writing mostly brings relief to me. I write contemporary fiction and most of my stories are about things that happen to me or could’ve happened to me. I think that is what makes being a panster easier for me. I already know the story and the characters; I just need to get it written. I wrote An Unexpected Desire by the seat of my pants and I believe in the end, I over did it. The story turned and twisted and included some mystery and betrayal and soon became what I intend for it to become. I felt as though the characters had kidnapped me and made me to their bidding. This is how I feel most of the time. So, now I am editing and tweaking it to be what it was supposed to from the beginning, a lesbian contemporary romance. I know the story, it is already written. I know the characters; they are already before me. But, still I created character summaries, so that through my edits I can stay true to my summary and I could easily check back to make sure the details about the character is in keeping with the plan of the character.

So I would have to summarize this blog post by saying I have no organized writing process. I don’t even plan when and where I will write. Most times I write when I am at work, but sometimes days go by with me not writing anything. I don’t plan when I am going to write, what I am going to write and who I am going to write about. My mother calls that laziness. I call it spontaneity. What do you call it? Do you think that planning would help me to actually finish a project? Do you plan? DO you make detailed character sheets? How do they work for you?

Anjie Harrte: Romance with some Caribbean flavour
Anjie Harrte is a twenty nine year old mother of one who resides in sunny Guyana, South America. Sometime between running a small business, having a full time job and being a mother and partner she finds time to pursue her passion for creating stories. Anjie dreams up stories of contemporary fiction splashed with some romance, a little dose of murder or an ounce of suspense and sometimes when no one is looking she dashes in a little twist. When she isn’t doing any of that, she is decorating a cake, knitting a chair back or sewing her latest design. Anjie even finds time to lurk around and stalk people and pages on facebook and you too can stalk her if you like at https://www.facebook.com/pages/Anjie-Harrte/  or you can follow her on twitter @anjieharrte or keep updated with her writing at http://authoranjieharrte.blogspot.com/

Sunday, July 22, 2012

Blog Review Policies Make Me Crazy!



Find out on the MasterKoda Blog Tour why the search for bloggers for my debut novel caused me such grief...  http://wwwbookbabe.blogspot.com/2012/07/why-natalie-star-is-pissed.html?showComment=1343014199787#c1588411442242558889

***Special thanks to author Tara Chevrestt for hosting me this week!*** 


Got A Favorite Marilyn Monroe Quote?


On August 5, 1962 Marilyn Monroe's life ended all too soon.  She left a nation of fans to mourn then; and a world of fans who honor her life today. We want to celebrate her 'un-lived life' by honoring her memory and giving the world a look into 'what if Marilyn Monroe had lived?'

We will be hosting special book signings; volunteering with our armed forces (Marilyn was a big supporter and performed many times for the USO); volunteering at our local animal rescue; guest appearances on radio shows; and other signature events.nts throughout the month of August.

Before August hits, we want to vamp up our website and Facebook pages.  We would love to include some of your favorite Marilyn quotes up.

We’re sure you have a favorite quote; most of us have more than one.  A lot of our favorites come from the movies, music, or television.  For some of us, our fave’s end up in our daily repertoire of snappy come backs, lol!  So, to help you along, we have listed some of our favorite quotes of Marilyn for you to choose from.   
Our favorite, just so you know, if we had to choose, would have to be this one:
“I’m selfish, impatient and a little insecure. I make mistakes, I am out of control and at times hard to handle. But if you can’t handle me at my worst, then you sure as hell don’t deserve me at my best.” ~Marilyn Monroe
Wow, she really said a mouthful with this one!  Now, don’t let us influence you!  You can choose from any of these we have listed below (or our favorite one if it happens to be yours) or feel free to add your own Marilyn quote in the comments!!
  
“Before marriage, a girl has to make love to a man to hold him. After marriage, she has to hold him to make love to him.” ~ Marilyn Monroe
“Being a sex symbol is a heavy load to carry, especially when one is tired, hurt and bewildered.” ~ Marilyn Monroe
“Fame will go by and, so long, I’ve had you, fame. If it goes by, I’ve always known it was fickle. So at least it’s something I experience, but that’s not where I live.” ~ Marilyn Monroe
“First, I’m trying to prove to myself that I’m a person. Then maybe I’ll convince myself that I’m an actress.” ~ Marilyn Monroe
“Hollywood is a place where they’ll pay you a thousand dollars for a kiss and fifty cents for your soul.” ~ Marilyn Monroe
“Husbands are chiefly good as lovers when they are betraying their wives.” ~ Marilyn Monroe
“I am invariably late for appointments – sometimes as much as two hours. I’ve tried to change my ways but the things that make me late are too strong, and too pleasing.” ~ Marilyn Monroe
“I am involved in a freedom ride protesting the loss of the minority rights belonging to the few remaining earthbound stars. All we demanded was our right to twinkle.” ~ Marilyn Monroe
“I guess I have always been deeply terrified to really be someone’s wife since I know from life one cannot love another, ever, really.” ~ Marilyn Monroe
“Just because you fail once, it doesn’t mean your going to fail at everything.  Keep trying, hold on, and always, always, always believe in yourself because if you don’t, then who will?  So keep your head high, keep your chin up, and most importantly keep smiling because life’s a beautiful thing and there’s so much to smile about.” ~ Marilyn Monroe"Dreaming about being an actress, is more exciting then being one."you're a human being, you feel, you suffer."
I want to grow old without facelifts. I want to have the courage to be loyal to the face I have made. ~ Marilyn Monroe
Keep your head high, keep your chin up and keep smiling, because life's a beautiful thing and there's so much to smile about. ~ Marilyn Monroe
(oh, and this last one is a doozy, pay attention fellows!!)
All a girl really wants is one guy to prove to her that they are not all the same ~ Marilyn Monroe
So, what’s your favorite Marilyn Monroe quote? We really, really would love to hear from you and add your choice to our website!  We’ll even credit the quote with your name (if it’s ok with you) and you'll be entered into a drawing to win a prize that will be given out in August!!  Remember, you can comment here with your favorite quote.

How to contact us:

AUTHOR BIO'S: 
 
K.R. Hughes
Hughes is an English major from Amarillo, Texas. She now resides near Atlanta, Georgie.  She enjoys writing with her co-author T.L. Burns. They are currently working on the sequel to "What She Knew". The fast paced novel that finishes telling the story.
Hughes enjoys working with budding writers and tutoring English.  Her passion is for at-risk teens.  She volunteers to help teens realize their potential and find their passion.
Find other works by this author in the Historical Romance section, pen name is Kymber Lee, "Treasured Love" is a fun romp written in Regency England in 1811. Lee (Hughes) wrote this novel for her grandmother who is a huge supporter of her work.
 
T.L. Burns
As my co-author puts it "I am the foremost researcher and historical guru for our novel "What She Knew." Our novel was just released March of 2012. She and I are busily working on the sequel, "What She Knew Too, The saga continues." You can learn more about them at our websitewww.whatsheknew.com.
Burns is originally from California (desert region, with mountains), spent nearly 20 years in the panhandle of Texas (again, desert region only without the mountains) and now resides near Atlanta, Georgia. In her words "Trees and flowers everywhere!! Even the weeds are green and lush! I feel like I'm living in a postcard!! And, no wind! The desert regions are sooooo windy."
Burns passion is for at-risk families.  She volunteers her time to help the needy, not wih a hand-out but with a hand-up. 




Our Story....
A few years back, while we were both still living in Amarillo, Texas, Kim (K.R.) was taking a writing class for published authors.  Kim has always loved writing and journalism, and has written five historical novels set in the Regency Era of 1811.  One has been published and is currently available on Amazon.  It’s titled Treasured Love by Kymber Lee.  I (T.L.) was drug into the business after she had taken a class with a well-known published author.  The author giving the class, Jodi Thomas, has over thirty historical romances and is a best-selling author herself.
Well, she and her husband along with my husband and I are very good friends.  We all went to dinner the next evening after her first class.  She told us she really thought she was going to love the class and what her first assignment was: write about something that has never been written about.  Well, after the laughter died down, because, really, what hasn't been written about?  We put our thinking caps on and started to throw around ideas in the 'what if' category. 
At this time, Anna Nicole Smith had just died and everyone was comparing her life to Marilyn Monroe’s.  So, after several minutes of banter, we came up with - what if Marilyn Monroe had lived and because of living, it changes the course of history and John F. Kennedy is saved from assassination?  Kim loved the idea.  We all knew that Marilyn has never died to the public, and neither has JFK for that matter.  Here we have two iconic figures in history, never forgotten. 
Because I had helped her come up with the idea, she asked me to do the research and she would do the writing for this assignment that was due the following week.  I said sure. I love research.  We worked together that week, came up with what is now chapter two of the book and she presented it to the class.  The class loved it along with her instructor, Jodi.  Jodi told her that if she didn't finish this and make it into a novel, she was an idiot.  This had the makings to be a best seller.  This from a best-selling author no less.
Well, the rest is history as they say.  She came home from class, shared what Jodi had said and promptly announced that 'we' were writing a book.  'We' says I?????  I'm not a writer.  “No,” she said, “but you are an excellent researcher.”  Well, I'm not one to back away from a challenge.  We worked together between family, jobs, volunteer work and friends and one year later had finished "What She Knew." 
For Kim and I, making the book as realistic as possible was uppermost in our minds.  It is extremely historically accurate.  I took great pains to make sure that the dates and places were correct in every sequence.  We both love that it feels so real for a fictional novel.
Now, here we are.  Five years later, the book is published, and we have just finished book 2 in the series and are ready to start book three.  It's been an interesting journey.  In Nov of 2008 we self published the book, did some local book signings and sold basically to our friends and family.  We did have a few sales to people we did not know, but not many.  It's a hard road to choose and we knew nothing about promotion.  This is just before Twitter, Facebook, and all the other Social Media that is out there now even existed.  Then three years ago, Kim and her husband moved to Atlanta, Georgia and a whole new world was opened up to us.  It was in Atlanta that Kim met some great people both in the film and book industry.
A year and a half ago my husband and I followed and moved to Atlanta too.  We came so that Kim and I could work on the script for "What She Knew" and to write the second book in the series.  Thankfully, we were in a position to stay.  From there, we met our agent, Janet Espy.  She introduced us to Gator Creek Artists Entertainment, LLC who have now published book one and are shopping the script around.  They had us write book two and want us to put it in script form also; all the while, working on book three of this trilogy.  It’s great fun, very scary, and wildly energizing to be working our dream.  Kim and I are very blessed.  Yes, very blessed.
We would love it if you would join us on Facebook and Twitter.  We can be found at https://www.facebook.com/whatsheknew.krhughestlburns/ for Facebook and @whatsheknewbook for Twitter.  We love all things Marilyn and discussions on her life; things we learned while researching; and anything to do with writing in general.  Feel free to contact us at whatsheknew@gmail.com.


Wednesday, July 18, 2012

Pretty Sacrifices Blog Tour




BLURB FOR PRETTY SACRIFICES:

In the post-apocalyptic world following a pandemic, dark angels arrive in Glory's small hometown to claim the eternal souls of her loved ones. Targeted by evil because of her heroism during the great plague, Glory fights back with the help of gutsy young witch Kaia, inexperienced guardian angel Sasha, and her intrepid demon-fighting dog Hallelujah. Complicating everything, a rift in time reunites Glory with an old flame and forces her to pay a huge price for love. The legend of Glory continues!

The second book in the Legend of Glory trilogy!

Glory was nominated for the 2011 Best Popular Paperback for Young Adults List, sponsored by the Young Adult Library Services Association (YALSA) of the American Library Association.



AUTHOR BIO:

Bestselling author Devin O'Branagan writes novels about uncommon heroes. Her genres include young adult urban fantasy, paranormal thrillers, and comic mysteries. She also writes a humor column for TAILS Magazine, is a member of the Dog Writers Association of America, and many of her writing projects support animal rescue. All of her books are available in both print and eBook formats. Visit her website at www.DevinWrites.com


PRETTY SACRIFICES is available in both print and eBook formats.

www.GloryLegend.com  has links to most of the places where PRETTY SACRIFICES may be purchased: http://www.devinwrites.com/legendofglory.html  And while there, check out photographs of all the characters from the novel and see a very cool book trailer video!


Smashwords (versions compatible with Apple, iPad, Sony, Kobo, & most every type of eReader) http://www.smashwords.com/books/view/173752

DevinsBookstore - Autographed copies of the paperback may be purchased directly from the author at her online bookstore: http://www.devinsgiftshop.com/bookstore.html


Via Amazon, both the print and eBooks are now available internationally:








DEVIN'S LINKS:







Monday, July 16, 2012

Meet the Echoes of Winter Characters!


First, I'd like to welcome Dominique Goodall to my blog. Today she will give us some insight on her title and character names for her story Echoes of Winter. When you are finished reading the names and their meanings chime in on them down in the comments section so Dominique and I can chat with you! Thanks for stopping by!



Echoes of Winter – a tale of wolves, cougars, lynxes, wildcats and dogs. The name itself is meant to be evocative, made to be remembered. It started when I knew I wanted my book set in winter – and what happens when a wolf howls? The sound echoes. I had an image in my mind of how a howl would sound, especially when partnered with the snow…and it instantly fit into place. I lovethat all the creatures I write about can survive in the snow, as well as the weather and environment in the coming few books.
A friend suggested something ‘of Winter’ and it didn’t take long before the name was complete and I had it in mind every time I wrote. I even loved/love the way I can shorten it to EoW when talking/writing about it!
As for the names in the book, they are mostly names that appear on numerous wolf websites – but some names are those of my friends. Without looking at my MS, I’ll give you a run-down on the names and then what they mean!



Convel – Wolf warrior (Celtic) – I named him this because he is Alpha – a warrior
Tikaani – wolf (Ahtna Athabascan)
Teira – I have no idea where her name came from. She told me that was her name!
Amore – love
Morte – hate
Shadow – Named for her meek personality
Faolan/Hunter – little wolf (Irish, Gaelic) – Later calls himself Hunter for a reason…
Singer – Named after the one character that represents me
Fritz – I wanted an odd name. Something which was almost self-absorbed and different!
Siltin – This seemed apt for a cat for me! It’s sibilant, sounds more innocent than it is and yet…it’s different.
Tamats – This was another cat-name. I often had names spring into mind while I was writing Echoes of Winter
Sage – Sage was named this as it means wisdom, wise woman – and she was an elderly lynx.
Salvia – Not sure where I got her name from either – but it suits her.
Mae – Something short, pretty and memorable for a character who will be appearing often.
Vhenan – One of the most important people in my life provided this name.
Baker – The other important person provided this name too!
Draven – Means protector of love – he could easily be a Beta in the pack in coming novels…
Frazer – Unusual, brash name.
Jessie – Typical little terrier name.
Obviously, Amore and Morte have the easiest names to work out their meanings – they are called love and hate because Morte has been objected to the hatred which can fill anyone’s heart, and Amore called that because she did everything for her sister out of love.
So…

Now you’ve seen my names and heard my reasoning behind the names (as confusing as they may seem)…what do you think? Do you like the names? Have you heard them before?
Dominique Goodall is the author of the soon to be released Echoes of Winter, book one in the Seasons of the Wolf series and a self-confessed wolf addict. She has currently been published in two anthologies by Crushing Hearts and Black Butterfly Publishing and is currently working on getting herself better known by sending in manuscripts for as many different anthologies as she possibly can.
As much as she loves to admit it, she never will be able to count her wolf stuff- there's nothing left for her to be truly able to collect without her own home.

She can be friended on Facebook here: https://www.facebook.com/WaterSinger
Her twitter name is: https://twitter.com/#!/DomGoodall

And her blog can be found here: http://dominiquegoodall.wordpress.com/

Saturday, July 7, 2012

Oh, THAT Book! - Amadi Kyymm

I'd like to welcome Amadi Kyymm to my blog today! Today she is telling us about her current WIP (work in progress)... 



My Book? What Book? Oh, THAT book!


My yet to be published book, “The Knight Riders” started out as a humble two chapters, that I'd posted on my Writing.com account portfolio. The poor thing stayed there for about two and a half years. This was despite the fact that several of my friends read it, liked it, and asked why didn't I write a book about the two characters I'd introduced. Back then I had serious “issues” in my life and wasn't really interested in or had time to do that.

The poor story sat there and gathered virtual dust until NaNoWriMo 2011 (National November Write Month) rolled around. I wanted to make my second try at winning NaNo. The first time I'd failed to finish after one week because of internet problems (Verizon be forever cursed). 

I was wondering what to write, and was simply too frazzled to start something new. So, I revisited my Writing.com portfolio for ideas. It was a toss up between The Knight Riders and another story I'd started named “The Dream Job”. I just wasn't feeling the latter, so the former won out. I'm a typical temperamental writer, if I'm not feeling it, I'm not writing it. . . .

The original inspiration for TKN (The Knight Riders) was the fact that 1. I loved a certain male character and I wanted to use him in totally different milieu. 2. I love and wanted to write about Vampires. 3. I wanted to create a society of GOOD Vampires who live with and protect Human kind. 4. I wanted to try writing a crime novel so I made my main characters private detectives/bounty hunters. 5. I wanted to write a story which is based in my home town, New York City.


You'd think crime and detective stuff would be the last thing I'd want to do. After all, I work with cops for a living. But, this is motivated me to make my 50,000 word NanNoWriMo goal, and now possibly a published novel. Plus, I had so much fun writing it! That is absolutely the best reason of all! 

For a sample of “The Knight Riders” please click the following link. 

http://thestoryhour.blogspot.com/p/knight-riders.html 

What inspired your first novel? Was it related to your job or a hobby you love? Are any of your characters patterned after a certain actor or actress? If so, whom? *Side note from Natalie: Let us know in the comment section below, we love to interact with our readers!

Bio

I, Amadi Kyymm am a humble writer. I am also known as “Two Wolves” on my WRPG profiles, but my real name is “Nanci E. Maynard”. I originally started writing fanfiction for my first love: Star Trek, then WRPGs (Written Role Playing Games), and blogging. I'm currently editing my first novel, “The Knight Riders” which I hope to publish very soon. In real life, I am a mild mannered woman, working a not so mild mannered job as a police clerical. I'm a life long New York City resident, and live with my two “fur kids” (cats) Biscuit and Spiral. 

Links

My Mixed Bag Blog: Radical Scribblings
http://radicalscribblings.blogspot.com/
My Book Review Blog: The Red Shoe Review
http://theredshoereview.blogspot.com/
Facebook Writer/Author Page: Please LIKE if you LIKE
https://www.facebook.com/pages/Amadi-Kyymm/223218331131277 
Twitter Handle: @WriterKyymm
Email: electladynanci@gmal.com or akyymm@writeme.mail.com