I was all set to post another installment today of what seems to have turned into “Short Story Wednesday” before I glanced at the calendar and realized that Valentine’s Day is just around the corner. In the past, we’ve celebrated here by talking about favorite love poems, romantic gestures, and love letters, as well as with a few original short stories from Michaeline like Olivia, Jack and the Stupid Cupid and A Love Story for Valentine Week.
This time around I found myself in the mood to read a novel set on or around Valentine’s Day. After a quick perusal of my own bookshelves I could only find one that fit the bill. Continue reading
If the heroine of the book you’re reading gets a makeover part-way through the story, do you cheer her on or sigh and roll your eyes?
You won’t be surprised to learn that the heroine of my current WIP, a young woman who’s spent her whole life passing as a monk, eventually gets found out. Shortly afterward, Reasons require her to dress and act like a lady for the first time ever. In different circumstances she’d have enjoyed it, but the stakes are high and she’s way out of her comfort zone, so she finds the experience highly stressful.
I’m having fun torturing her, though, and working on Alexis’s transformation reminded me how much I enjoy a good fictional makeover. Continue reading
Today’s post almost remained unwritten. I blame Galavant. The show is streaming on Netflix and, since I’d heard great things about it, I decided to watch an episode after work before settling down to write.
Next thing I knew, I’d gone through six episodes. If you’re fond of stories where the characters periodically break into song for no reason, I definitely recommend it. Just be careful. The episodes may only be about 20 minutes, but they’re addictive.
I told myself I was watching to “study story” but even I didn’t buy that. I was watching strictly for fun, which isn’t such a bad thing to do.
This week was about more than entertaining television though. Getting back into writing mode has also meant getting back to reading. Here then is what I’ve been reading lately: Continue reading
Last week in our Self Publishing series we talked about the Book Cover, the first (and oftentimes only) chance for a book to make an impression on a potential reader
But what happens after the cover catches the reader’s attention?
Jilly’s post on Monday about the Dreaded Synopsis got me to thinking about some of the other elements you need in order hold a reader’s attention, once you’ve caught it
Loglines, taglines, high-concept – these are all tools that can help you position (and market) your story to your audience. Although we are looking at this through the lens of self-publishing, they are important regardless of the publishing path you choose. Continue reading
Although my eReading app is packed with free books (courtesy of those daily Book Bub emails) and my to-be-read pile has grown to epic-proportions, it has been quite a while since I’ve had time to sit down and read.
Last week I decided to change that, and not just because I was on a business trip and needed something to do.
A New Author
I started out reading Penny Reid’s Neanderthal Seeks Human on my iPhone while I was trapped in the airport waiting for a delayed flight. Those who know me know that I’m not particularly a fan of eBooks, but in this case, having no physical book handy, I made an exception.
Those of you who are paying attention may also recall that I mentioned I had started Continue reading
Recently I’ve been working on the contemporary romance story I drafted during November’s NaNo writing blitz. One of the areas that I’m struggling with is making my hero and heroine’s happily-ever-after believable. I need both my characters and their relationship to grow and develop enough so that there is no doubt that they will be together long after the book is closed and put back on the shelf.
To do so, I need to answer the question: What do you need to “see” during the course of a story that will convince you two characters are going to stay together?
It’s not a trivial question. Continue reading
Where do you stand on sports romances?
I love sports of all kinds. They’re such a great test of character. I love to see how superb athletes react when they’re pushed to their limit and beyond. We learned in class at McDaniel that character is choice under pressure, and sport offers those fascinating, insightful moments on a regular basis.
I like to write with the cricket commentary as background noise. I always know what’s happening on the tennis tour. And if I’m not at Wembley for the NFL UK games, I’m usually to be found on the sofa on Sunday nights, glued to the transatlantic action until way past my bedtime. So it’s surprising that I’ve never thought about writing a sports romance. Until now.
A sports star hero comes with certain built-in advantages for the romance writer and reader. He’s likely to be young, he’ll undoubtedly be in great physical shape, and he’ll almost certainly be rich. Chances are he’ll be high-profile.
His character offers a wealth of possibilities. He should be mentally strong – driven, competitive, goal-oriented, focused and decisive. The flip side of that is Continue reading