Wednesday, April 16, 2014

More LIAOTP Writing Tips


A few weeks ago I posted the first five of my Leave it All On the Page 
Writing Tips. This week, I am continuing with #6 through #10. Of course there are many more, and the ones I've listed are nothing but common sense--which has taken me half-a-lifetime to learn, LOL.


#6 Highlight all WAS words - change as many as possible to active verbs

#7 Try to eliminate passive dialog tags such as he said, she said. Most dialog tags are completely unnecessary--an action sentence serves to show who is speaking.

#8 Read aloud! Mistakes jump off the page when you read your work aloud.

#9 Watch for repeated words. If you seem to be using certain words over and over, simply go to FIND and highlight that word throughout the story--you may be surprised. I always am.

#10 Allow a few trusted friends to read your first draft -- but only after the first draft is complete. Just as too many cooks can spoil the broth, too many opinions can also ruin an unfinished manuscript. The best thing to do--I have found--is to ask those trusted friends to read with certain things in mind. In other words, instruct them what to look for such as grammar or chronology. Otherwise, you often wind up with I LOVE IT! Or something else just as kind but unhelpful.  =)

Afterthought: I've left off the most important tip of all: READ. EVERYTHING.

 If you aren't a reader, how can you possibly be a writer?

Monday, March 31, 2014

A Heart Forever Wild by Sara Barnard

Book Four in the Everlasting Heart series 

Outlaws. Lies. Executions. Indians.






Available from 5 Prince Publishing www.5princebooks.com  books@5princebooks.com
Genre: Fiction, Romance, Historical
Release Date: April 3, 2014
Digital ISBN-10: 1631120298 ISBN-13: 978-1-63112-029-9
Print ISBN-10: 1631120301 ISBN-13: 978-1-63112-030-5


A Heart Forever Wild

Outlaws. Lies. Executions. Indians. 

When all of their dreams come true, will Sanderson and Charlotte still have what started it all – their everlasting love?

In this final installment of the Everlasting Heart series, Sanderson and Charlotte must make a home for themselves in the Army town of Fort Bidwell, California. When the job as an Indian agent begs him to round up the peaceful area Indians for execution, Sanderson again runs afoul of the government. In answer to the broken promises of the Army, Sanderson and Jerry turn to a well-paying job with the railroad. However, they are warned to turn a blind eye to the treatment of their Chinese workers ...  or else. But can money buy this formerly-happy Arkansas family the happiness they are so desperately searching for?

Meanwhile as Charlotte stands up for Cotton against the town bullies, she accidently falls into favor with Johnny Tan, the handsome young outlaw who slowly transforms into both Sanderson’s nemesis and his saving grace. In a world where women are expected to be silent, can Charlotte be a parent Cotton, a wife to Sanderson who seems to have fallen more in love with money than with her, and friend to Minerva, who seems to be drifting farther and farther away?


Thursday, March 27, 2014

DESPERADO a ghostly novella from 5 Prince Publishing



Another enjoyable read from Best Selling author Sara Barnard

 Desperado

5 Prince Publishing


A haunted mallet. A spooky song. An old west ghost story. Can Shelby survive a family camping trip or will the ghost of past misdeeds come calling? 

Shelby didn’t want to go on the family camping trip with her parents and baby sister Rhea. Sitting around telling ghost stories couldn’t be more boring, even if one of the stories is supposedly true. When she accidently gets a scrape on her finger from the wooden mallet that is the heart of her mother’s ghost story, and not to mention also a bloodstained antique from the cowboy days, Shelby gets a glimpse of what she may have unwittingly unleashed into modern times. With the help of her family, Shelby must try to piece together the story of the haunted mallet and a certain song by the Eagles that keeps playing ... and playing ... and playing – before this Texas-sized ancestral ghost story takes a turn that just might be headed down a dead end. 

Buy links: 5 Prince Publishing  Amazon 

From Bestselling Author Sara Barnard - THE CALLING - New Christian Western

THE CALLING

Western Christian Fiction

Prairie Rose Publications



Esau Fitzpatrick is bad at being good—and even worse at being bad. As he waits for his sweetheart, Ella Allen, inside the Paisley Settlement church, a brewing storm erupts and lightning strikes, setting the church aflame. Ella and her parents pull Esau from the fire, but his parents are lost in the blazing inferno.

Angry at God, Esau flees his home and all he holds dear, only to fall in with the notorious Covington-Jones gang. He journeys down the path to destruction and darkness, reliving the hellish fire in his nightmares.

Ella clings to the prayer that Esau will find his way back to a godly path – and to her. But Esau is gone, and her world is falling to pieces. Ella must lean on God in a way she’s never had to before as she follows her heart against everyone’s wishes. Can she dare to believe that Esau will ever change?

Esau’s life as an outlaw comes to a head during an epic cattle rustle. He is forced to choose between eternal hellfire and the rocky path of the Lord. Will Ella still be waiting for him? Or has he lost her forever? God reaches out to Esau again, but will it be in time...

Available in paperback and digital formats! The Calling!


 http://www.amazon.com/The-Calling-Sara-Barnard/dp/1497412366/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1395887239&sr=8-1&keywords=the+calling+by+sara+barnard"

Saturday, March 22, 2014

LIAOTP - Writing Tips

Leave It All On the Page    
 

LIAOTP - That's my #1 writing tip - it means every time you sit down to write, get every thought on paper without regard to content or sentence structure--and don't even think about punctuation! Write, write, write. Editing comes later.

#2 Writing tip - set a goal each writing session - notice I didn't say each day. I often sit down to write two or three times a day, if possible. But I don't set goals based on number of words written. I don't understand that. I set my goals according to the clock. For example: I've got an hour, or, two hours, or sometimes, I've got fifteen minutes--let me get this down.

#3 Writing tip - Write the best parts first. In other words, go back to Writing Tip #1 and write what comes to you before it gets away. The best--most exciting--parts always come to me first. Even if they are scenes out of order, I write them anyway.

#4 Writing tip - Don't stop when the best parts are over - push on even if it doesn't seem to be going anywhere. Reward yourself with a walk later.

#5 My last writing tip for today - When you think you're too tired to write another word . . . write another paragraph. The tired mind is a different animal. The next day, you may be surprised what you wrote!


Afterthought: What is your best kept writing secret?

Tuesday, March 18, 2014

Compassion in Fiction and Nonfiction


"Compassion is the basis of morality." 

Influential German thinker Arthur Schopenhauer (born February 22, 1788) wrote The World as Will and Representation, a Buddhist-influenced text that impacted the work of Nietzsche, Jung, and Freud, as well as Einstein.


I believe this quote to be true.
If you've read my Phantom books, you'll know that compassion plays a major role in The Phantom Series. In fact, it may be the basis for everything Stevie does. She cannot turn her back on someone in need. Nor could she hurt anyone or anything intentionally--except in self-defense, of course. Or in defense of another.

At any rate, the above quote inspired me to blog about how I come up with ideas.

I didn't read this quote and then write The Phantom Series. I wrote the book based on traits I admire in others. This quote just seemed to fit the bill. So yeah, I look at my friends and family and come up with ideas based on things they do.

Sometimes, ideas just leap out at me from snippets of conversation, quotes, articles on the internet, even people's names.

I don't know where the name Jelly Wardlow came from, but once it was in my head, I had to create a character to go with it. Now he's part of The Phantom series. Stevie-girl, Jase, and Derol Pavey all took up residence in there, too. And when I met them, they would not go away no matter how many times I tried to set them free. Now, they are like old friends just waiting for me to send them on another adventure.

For example, Book Four in the series is forming as we speak. I have the title, but I'm NOT going to write it here. The last time I did that (on FB actually) another author beat me to the punch and used my title. Yes, I'm sure it was nothing but coinkydink, but why take a chance?

I will say this, the title of Book Four came first, and then an image surfaced a few days later that cemented the plot. I think you'll like it. Especially if you like ghost stories . . .

Did I mention compassion? Oh yeah, I did. Well, it plays a very important role in Book Four, too. But of course it would, it's a Stevie-girl book!

Afterthought:  As for the nonfiction part. I think the Schopenhauer quote pretty much says it all. Don't you?