Sunday, June 26, 2016

The Writing Book by Kate Grenville This months Book Giveaway and Contest!

The Writing Book by Kate Grenville, is the other book I'm giving away this month along with The Legend of Ghost Dog Island by Rita Monette.

The Writing Book is a workbook for fiction writers. It is full of exercises to stimulate your creativity.
Each chapter except the last one has examples. The last chapter is all about submitting a manuscript. One of the things I like about this book is that it addresses organization. Yes, I want to know how other writers keep their work in progress organized.
I do mine by keeping a WIP folder on the desktop of my computer. Inside that folder is another folder for "obsolete" for the stuff that I cut, but not ready to discard just yet.
Chapter Two is about making piles, the advantages of piles and ways to sort piles.
There are chapters on POV, characters, description, voice, dialogue, revision, and design.

If you want to enter to win this book please leave a comment of how you organize your work in progress.


I just saw this contest in the Sub It Club Facebook page June 2016 Contest Roundup:
It the #PG70PIT contest. I've heard of first pages but this is the first time I've heard of submitting page #70. I don't know much about this contest, but it does look interesting so I thought I would pass it along. If you know anything about this contest (good or bad) please share in comments below.

See you next week when winners of the book giveaway will be announced.

Sunday, June 19, 2016

Happy Father's Day and Book Giveaway

Wiley (Eddie) Brazil on right

My father has been gone for more than a few years now, but I still think about him and the things he taught me.
Despite only having an eighth grade education, he didn't let that stop him from following his dreams. He was a hard worker and always provided for us six kids and mom.

Here he  is working at Cleveland Cap Screw in Ohio. He left this job and moved his family back to Alabama where he drove an eighteen wheeler. He wasn't afraid to try new things and he was always working on machines. There wasn't anything my dad couldn't fix!

Love you dad!

Now to tell you about another girl who loved her dad. Nikki Landry loved her Papa. He knew everything and was a great fisherman. One thing though, Nikki was tired of moving. Her papa would move their houseboat when the fishing got bad and they would move on to richer waters.
This time when they moved she resolved not to make any new friends because she would just have to leave them behind when her papa moved them again.
Their boat was anchored across from Ghost Dog Island. Nikki tells her papa about the howling she hears and asks him what it could be.  Papa tells Nikki the legend of Ghost Dog Island how some monster lures dogs there and then turns them into ghosts. Nikki doesn't believe in ghosts but when her dog comes up missing, she's determined to rescue him.

Nikki does make new friends despite her vow not to,  and with their help she solves the mystery of the howling and saves a woman too!

This is a great mystery by Rita Monette and she also did a great job with the illustrations! 

To enter to win this book or The Writing Book by Kate Grenville, use the Rafflecoptor or leave a comment.

Next week I'll tell you about The Writing book.

Sunday, June 12, 2016

Writing Tips Gleaned from Florida SCBWI Summer Conference

Just got back from the Florida SCBWI Summer Conference and this is the first year I made it to the Silent Auction and Elixir Mixer.

Look what I won the auction! Thank you Tara Powers for donating this beautiful birdhouse.

I bought this for a special friend who will remain nameless. She will get it in July for birthday, but her birthday is in August.

Here are some things I will get to keep even though they are shared here.

From Tracey Adams of Adams Literary shared this about character:
Explore your character. Look online for character studies.
What is your character afraid of?
What does he daydream about?
Use Pinterest to choose  items that inspire you or remind you of your character.
Draw a picture of him/her.
Draw a map or legend of location. The setting could be a character.

How would your character finish these lines?
You need to know____
You can't know____
The truth is____
The first time____
I would die for ____

Jim Averbeck talked about mystery vs suspense.
His book Hitch is a historical fiction about a boy whose aunt is kidnapped and he teams up with Alfred Hitchcock to find her.
Mystery is more of an intellectual who dunit and suspense is more of an emotional process.

There is a difference between shocking/thrilling which last a few seconds to drawing out a scene to build tension. A few movie clips were shown to emphasize the meaning.
Four things needed to build suspense are:
1. Audience awareness. an example was giving of a man talking about baseball (boring) and a bomb exploded and obliterated everyone. But if you told (show) the audience the that there is a bomb and it was going off in five minutes then it builds the suspense.
2. Ticking bomb see above. you can increase by adding another ticking bomb.
3. Stakes- what are the stakes if the bomb goes off?
4. Disempower your protagonist. Put your character in a position where he can't do anything. This can be done by having a power shift between MC and another character, dwindling options, dramatic irony

Linda Sue Park gave several revision tips. She said she doesn't like books on how to write with the exception of authors who write about how they write. Don't worry, I'll still review and giveaway writing craft books here. She said the best way to learn to write is to read hundreds of books.
When you get stuck writing ask your self "What does he want in this scene?"
1. Read story out loud in the voice your character would use.
2. Widows and orphans are when there is one word left on a line before a new paragraph starts. Try to eliminate a word in the paragraph to bring it up. No fair adding words!
3. Change the font and critique it. This helps to fool your mind and help you be more objective.
4. For Voice: Choose a sentence and rewrite it as many different ways you can.. You may be surprised with what you come up with.
5. Copy and paste a section and then delete. Rewrite it. Is it shorter? Only the important things will be left ( most of the time).
6. Start at the end of manuscript and work back. Look for nouns. If the noun isn't in the first 2/3 thirds of the book it needs to go or be added in first 2/3.

Hope this helps!
Don't forget to enter to win The Legend of Ghost Dog Island or The Writing Book.

Sunday, June 5, 2016

The Winners of May Book Giveaways

The winner of Chapter after Chapter by Heather Sellers is Donna Volkenannt.

The winner of the Wollstonecraft Detective Agency No1 The Case of the Missing Moonstone is Renee Grandinetti.

If you didn't win, don't despair! Here are this months books: