Saturday, August 10, 2019

Traveling Characters


Image result for man on a walk
Getting characters from place to place in your story is a tricky thing. Like dialog, description must move the plot, or it risks dragging your readers along in the dust. So, as a writer, you must constantly ask yourself, is describing this trek from point A to point B worth it to my reader? Does something happen along the way to create tension, add to the conflict, or show a character’s evolving nature? If not, then just say it happened. “After four day’s travel, the group arrived” and so on. There is nothing worse than dawn to dusk story telling. Very young writers will do this. It’s called bed-to-bed writing and starts with getting up in the morning, documenting every detail of the day, and ending when they turn in at night. Readers don’t need to know every detail. They are smart enough to assume certain things happen. What they want to know is how is this story moving along? They want to know the key events that will add up to be important in the end. If, in your first draft, you’re not sure yourself – which sometimes happens – remember, it is a draft. You can always go back and eliminate things and add things.

Friday, August 2, 2019

New Release!


Please join me in celebrating the release of my next novel – Eye of the Peacock!


What is it about? Well, it’s about a teenager, Aubrey Harrington, who just wants to get the community service hours she needs to graduate from high school. She never thought that taking the volunteer tour guide job at the local mansion would change her life forever. When she falls – or is pushed – down a flight of stairs, Maeve Somerton gives her a hand up, but the help comes with a price. Maeve thinks she was murdered, and now Aubrey must help her.

Spiraling back in time, Aubrey feigns being Maeve’s school chum to try to solve a mystery among strangers. Meanwhile, Aubrey also lays comatose in a hospital, and as her condition worsens, her family and friends wonder if she will ever come back to them. Caught in a twist of time and existence, Aubrey finds herself more ghost than alive in a world in which she was never meant to be.

Will Aubrey be able to solve the mystery of Maeve’s death? And even if she does, will she be able to find her way back home?

So what is the genre? Once again, there’s a lot going on. A little supernatural, a little time travel, a little historical fiction, but it combines for a fun read! Click on the image in the right column to order!

Tuesday, September 25, 2018

Cover Reveal!





At last!

Eye of the Peacock is only inches away from hitting the presses! Proofs were ordered only minutes ago. So, within a week or two, my second novel will be available! Personally, I love this one, and so will readers who are willing to suspend reality.

I am also revealing the cover, designed once again by Aaron La Porta. I think Aaron did a wonderful job capturing the mysterious and supernatural flavor of the book.

Here is the back cover summary: Aubrey Harrington just wants to get the community service hours she needs to graduate from high school. She never thought that taking the volunteer tour guide job at the local mansion would change her life forever. When she falls – or is pushed – down a flight of stairs, Maeve Somerton gives her a hand up, but the help comes with a price. Maeve thinks she was murdered, and now Aubrey must help her.
Spiraling back in time, Aubrey feigns being Maeve’s school chum to try to solve a mystery among strangers. Meanwhile, Aubrey also lays comatose in a hospital, and as her condition worsens, her family and friends wonder if she will ever come back to them. Caught in a twist of time and existence, Aubrey finds herself more ghost than alive in a world in which she was never meant to be.
Will Aubrey be able to solve the mystery of Maeve’s death? And even if she does, will she be able to find her way back home?

I’m so excited! I hope you love it!

Friday, August 10, 2018

Some Irony


Love this entrance to one of my favorite book stores – Northshire Bookstore in Saratoga Springs, NY.

Nothing is written in stone, unless, of course, it is! You have to love the irony!

As I put finishing touches on The Eye of the Peacock, I feel like the whole thing will be written in stone. In a few weeks, the ideas and words will be out there, unable to be changed.

And yet, I am reminded of writers, who have done readings of their works, who change the words as they perform. Do they see imperfections in their work that they wish they could now change? Poet Taylor Mali adds the word “criminally” in his 2008 performance rendition of “Undivided Attention.” Was that a mistake? Or does he wish he would have written it that way?

Maybe as writers we can go back after publication and change things. Maybe that’s what second editions are for. Maybe it’s true. Perhaps nothing really is written in stone!

Friday, July 13, 2018

Ah, the Perfect Spot


Here is my new writing place!

I write in many different locations, depending on my mood and work load, but my favorite creative spot for most of the year is the leather recliner in my living room. The problem is that often I need to wait for a quiet time in that room.

But as I sat there the other day, I looked over to where we had moved a library table. You see, several rooms in our house are under construction, and we moved the library table, which normally sits in a rather wide hall, and jammed it into a corner of our living room.

There it sat, empty of its normal decorations and doo-dads. A vast space on which to write! I moved in a stool, and set up shop!

In two days, I have gotten a ton of work done!

So many would-be writers wait for that perfect place, or that perfect time to create. They are sure, that when they finally build that log cabin in the woods, they will write the great American novel. That’s never going to happen, folks.

Find a writing nook, any flat space, and start writing! The perfect space might be right in front of you!

Wednesday, July 4, 2018

Happy 4th!


I am sitting here staring at a beautiful summer sky. I have just gotten out of my pool, I have eaten my grilled hot dog, and I am waiting to see the fireworks. 


As I was doing this, it dawned on me that we are celebrating this great American holiday because of a piece of writing.


It is a piece of writing that could have gotten its signers arrested for treason. It was, and remains, a source of discussion and debate.


The Declaration of Independence is everything a good piece of writing should be. It made people of the time very uncomfortable. It was and still is very controversial. And it continues to stir conversation.


I thank my lucky stars – and stripes – that a piece of writing is so important to my country’s history.


Happy Independence Day!

Saturday, February 3, 2018

Must Read!


I really don’t like self-help books.

The last one I read in its entirety was What Color is Your Parachute? back in the, I don’t know, 1980s?

But, recently, a friend loaned me a copy of Big Magic by Elizabeth Gilbert – the same author who wrote Eat, Pray, Love. I was skeptical of another self-help book and managed to put off reading it until I had nothing left on my “read now” pile.

I am about half-way through and highly recommend it as a must read for you writers out there who say you will eventually write that book. One of her many messages in the book is, cut it out. Start now!

So many of us complain about a lack of time to do what we love – that life gets in the way. But she points out, “Most individuals have never had enough time, and they’ve never had enough resources, and they’ve never had enough support or patronage or reward…and yet still they persist in creating. They persist because they care. They persist because they are called to be makers, by any means necessary.”
So many inspirational passages in this book. I love it!