We all wait for our writing to snowball and that snowballing is different for everyone. Well, for me in some ways it has. Between waiting for the edits to come in for Absolute Obstruction, I've been working diligently on Shadows to Eternity for the New York Pitch Conference. It needs to be finished and not only that I have to write the pitch for it to present to them the first minutes we walk into the conference. Yet, the third in the Absolute Trilogy needs to be completed just as urgently. It's awesome. So while I work toward getting Absolute out there, as well as the others, here's another article I wrote for Blog Critics. Enjoy:
STORY TELLING: HOW IT COMES TO PASS.
A writer, for all intents and purposes, is and must be a storyteller. I’ve had the great pleasure to have readers tell me that, while reading a novel, they often wonder how the author ever came up with such an idea for a book. To understand where those stories come from, one needs to know a little about the source. To watch a writer, published or not, go about their daily business, working, tending to family matters, running errands, you wouldn’t see anything out of the ordinary. There is no sign with an arrow above their head saying “I’m a writer”, though I’m certain there are a few who wouldn’t mind such a display — they’re as normal as anyone else. Yet there is one decidedly different twist to them. It’s not something you can see, nor is it something you can touch and you will never know that distinction is there until you hold the pages of their book in your hands – it’s what is going on inside their minds. A writer can mentally multi-task, with the ability to stay focused on regular everyday things, as well as allow ideas to flow while doing it.
Extravagant, earth-shaking confrontations are not the norm to produce an idea for a writer. No, it’s mostly the world around them, maybe an encounter with a stranger who reveals a goofy quirk or a shift in the atmospheric barometer — okay, maybe not that – or perhaps seeing the tender moment between two people. Ideas come from everywhere, but it is usually the simplest things the writer takes and brings to life, building places, times, cities, and most of all the beloved characters, developing them as each word is written – unfolding the story so as to take you on a journey.
So if you’re one of those readers who often wonder where the ideas come from, remember while you’re out, you may be in the presence of a writer and you’ll never know if something you do or say will inspire a novel.
Well, it's happening, Absolute Obstruction is going to be published and it's slated for release in October. I am so excited about it. It's been a long wait, but it has finally come!
Now I've run into another problem. I have posted the cover and the book blurb. The blurb is getting rave reviews, yet mixed reviews on the cover. Some people are expressing that the "model" portraying Rose is not how some they pictured her. Now I originally thought she should be obscured as well, but, this book is more about Rose and I wanted her to be seen. My thought is, if this was the first book, then I would be sure to obscure her face more, so as not to impress upon the readers what she looked like, but because it is the second; you will see the cover, start reading and how you pictured her in the first book will be again, so I'm not going to change it. How you've seen Rose is how she'll return to your mind when you start reading... I promise. Let's just rejoice that we get to read more about her. Yay! I'm beside myself about it. Thank you to all. :)
Another article fist published by Blogcritics. Enjoy.
We all have a plan, regardless of how big or small, and we make decisions in an effort to set those plans in motion while we ponder “now if I do that, then it will get me here?" However, we often neglect to take into consideration, while laying out our plan, that reactions from other parties could ultimately redirect us. Maybe someone reacts sourly to one of your ideas, so you in turn revamp that idea. Or maybe someone laughs at a prospective endeavor you’ve created, and you in turn put it aside for a rethink — or you run with the wind, trying to find something, and you find yourself. It may take weeks, months, or years for you to discover that you are now wandering down a completely different path. What do you do? Well, some would be happy with the detour, others not so much, looking back trying to see where they were misled.
All of the above is also true in writing. Our characters struggle with those everyday decisions as well. As in real life, an author doesn’t always know when our stories have headed down a forgotten trail. It all seems fine until, as in life, we are presented with a different outcome than what was planned. There have been many a book on the cusp of being finished, when the author realizes that the story preceding it doesn’t, in any way, lead to the ending that was perceived. And usually the turn of the tide happened somewhere deep within the novel, where one of our characters reacted differently than what was in the script. Now we can go back and rewrite the reaction so as to give us the outcome we want. Or we can leave it… Life doesn’t give us that choice: what is done, is done. However, as it is writing, you have the free will to change the ending.
An author doesn’t only listen to his or her characters while writing a novel. We also delve into the deepest, darkest depths of the new minds that stand before us, seeing them for who they really are, whether it be friend or foe. There are no templates for one certain hero, heroine, or supporting character; each are as individual as you, with their own quirks and identity and each will be defined when they enter the stage. It is one of the most exciting aspects of the writing journey — however, it can also be the most frustrating. One by one the cast will step forward. Some will easily be read as they wear their most inner thoughts and feelings on their sleeves, allowing us to pluck their personalities off with ease and write their story. Then there are those who seem willing enough, at first, to give us a glimpse of who they are, but only enough to get us started. Then when we’re in full writing swing, they will make an executive decision to stop us in our tracks while they consider whether or not they’re going to allow us into their heads.
Sooner or later they do let us in, but not without further complications. You see, more often than not, they’ll start throwing out their side of the story during the most inopportune times, such as while we’re driving or in the middle of a concert or… well, anywhere that we are unable to write it down. One of my heroes was like that and for the longest time it drove me crazy, but then I realized: that was him, in a display of one of his quirks, and because he was such a challenge he was and still is my favourite.
For an author to pass on a clear picture to you as to whose life you will be exploring, we have to be skilled enough to switch personalities on a dime, even if it means chasing them down so the novel will get written. The true fact is, those co-operators, trouble makers, and jokesters, would never hold back for long – they want their story heard just as badly as we do.
A painter tells their story on a canvas, actors tell theirs on a stage, both of which, as with many others, induce different emotions depending on the audience.
When a story presents itself in the mind of a writer, all five senses engage so as to be in tune with the characters and their world. Colors come to life, so do the bumble bees as they dance on the head of a flower, a quiet spoken word from a passerby will whisper on the breeze, the grass will tickle between our toes with each step we take, and the bitter sweet taste of red wine will flow over our tongues.
We also feel the fear walking through the dark alley as someone follows, we feel the pain of a lover’s loss and the elation of a lover found – we as writers embark on a journey that is just as uncertain for us, as it will be for you when you turn the pages.
However, a writer doesn’t get the use of taste, touch, smell, visual or verbal to arouse those emotions in you. How do we show you what is embedded in our mind so as to bring you along with us on every twist and turn? How do we make you cry, laugh, giggle, hurt, love, lust, be afraid, when using those other senses is an impossibility to persuade you to follow?
Taking you on our journey is not an easy task. It all has to be presented in such a way that you feel as we feel, see what we see, including all the little details that explode on the scene to make it real… The beat of the heart as it pulses against our heroine’s ribs, the taste of salt in a tear as it slides down the hero’s face, as well as the ache that, at first, is a slow burn, only to explode into every crevasse of his body. However, when it comes to scenery, we can’t go on and on with so much detail that it becomes boring, leaving nothing to the imagination.
We’ve all seen pictures of famous paintings, people, and the like, none of which really trigger grandiose excitement. However, to stand in front of the original is a whole different story.
That’s one of the wonderful things about being a writer, we don’t depend on the five senses to spark self-indulgence, we have a fairly simple tool that is powerful enough to stimulate not only those senses, but every emotion there is under the sun – it’s called words. They bring our characters and their world to life in your mind, igniting the imagination.
Our words have the same effect whether they’re read on computer, Kindle or novel. They pack the same punch wherever they are, however they are read and you, the reader…always have an original in hand.