Thursday, March 31

Cures for Lycanthropy?

Go check out my blog at Castles & Guns today on Cures for Lycanthropy. Perhaps it can make up for my lack of a blog yesterday? *grins* Nah, I'll make up for it next week and try to think of something cool. I promise.

Have a great Thursday, and I'll be back tomorrow with the Weekly Wrap Up!

Monday, March 28

Author versus Writer...

I read a blog not too long ago on the wording of "aspiring writer," and how it implies that someone is "aspiring to write" instead of actually being a "writer." Writers write. That's what we do. If you're "aspiring to write," you're not a writer, right? Wow, that's a mouthful.

Anyways, when it comes to distinguishing those who are published versus those who aren't, what do you call those who haven't reached that point yet? I think "aspiring author" might be a better term since I visualize the term "author" as being someone who has a career writing. Of course, people could say that "writer" and "author" are the same thing. Just a different word. Besides, when reading bios, you tend to see "author of X series available 2016."

The simplest way to avoid issue would be to drop the word "aspiring," which some writers/authors dislike that word anyways. There could just be "published" and "unpublished." But when it comes down to it, I think it's just a matter of personal preference. There isn't going to be any one phrase that will make everyone happy, except perhaps "published author."

What's your opinion on the subject? How should writers be labeled? I hope you're having a great Monday!

Friday, March 25

Weekly Wrap Up

So, it's Friday, and today marks an entire week on my new blogging schedule. Woohoo! Go me!

This week has been more brainstorming on my current work-in-progress, a paranormal romance. I'm going to get back on track writing it this weekend. I've also been wait, wait, waiting on responses from the submissions I have out there. No! Those aren't bloody stumps where my fingernails should be. *grins*

Anyways, I'd like to give a shout-out to Lisa Kessler for the amazing news she's gotten this past week. She has a short story, Across the Veil, up for sale on Kindle and got word of book deal with Entangled Publishing yesterday! Woo!

So... Now to bare my soul on my current progress tally.

This WIP's Word Count

2110 / 85000 words

I hope everyone has a great weekend! How has this week been for you?

Wednesday, March 23

Into the Paranormal: Things That Go Bump In The Night

Yep! You did read the title right. After all this time of me promising more "Into the Paranormal" blogs to no avail, I'm going to bring them back, for sure this time. I'm going with a new weekly format where I post on Mondays about writing, Wednesdays about the paranormal, and Fridays are free-for-all days.

Anyways, the topic I'm going to be talking about today is Things That Go Bump In The Night. I love watching Ghost Adventures. They really document and share their experiences with the viewers about the places they go ghost hunting. Ghost Hunters? I've watched it, but it's not the same. They don't do things as well as Ghost Adventures, in my personal opinion. (Ghost Hunters International is cool to watch sometimes because of the different places they go, but they do things similarly to Ghost Hunters. Maybe I'll have to do a post on the different ghost hunting shows, but I digress...)

I'm a writer and lover of all things paranormal. Why is that? Have I had an uber crazy experience with it? Not as per se. For example, I've had several instances where I'll have a dream about someone I haven't spoken to in a long time and then receive an email from that person the next morning. That's pretty cool, but I haven't had a ghostly experience or been visited by any sexy werewolves. Part of me ponders what it'd be like to experience something spooky and know it involved a ghost or something along those lines. But I think I'm okay without that.

Anyways! Getting into my topic, I did have a pretty nerve wracking experience when I was younger. My mother and I were staying with a family friend in an old house in the very small town of Adams, Tennessee. It basically just had a gas station, a museum and gift shop on the Bell Witch, which also housed a small restaurant, a church, and a post office. If you've ever heard of the Bell Witch that is where she haunted the Bell family. I'd already known about those tales when we'd gone to stay with the family friend for a few weeks.

That already is kind of freaky, right? Being in the same town as a infamous haunting! Well, the family friend lived across from a church with a graveyard, which really added to the spookiness! I looked out the window at night torn between hoping I would or wouldn't see something strolling through the cemetery.

One night, there was a bad storm. The friend was off at her boyfriend's house or something. There was just my mom and me at the creaky, very old house. The lights flickered, and there were strong winds. The house already freaked me regardless of it being dark and stormy that night, but put together with that. Wow! Creepy.

We closed both of the doors coming into the spare room, and I huddled under the blankets. Needless to say, I was happy when we left that town! So...? I didn't see anything. But just knowing that I was so close to where hauntings really had happened emphasized my fear (and overactive imagination, of course. I am a writer, after all.), and well, the graveyard being right there didn't help either! *grins*

How about you? Have you experienced anything paranormal? If not, would you want to if you had the option? Also, what topics would you like to see me discuss?

Monday, March 21

A New Way to Plot... The Slow Simmer

(Repost from Castles & Guns)

First things first, this isn't a blog about the fabulousness of plotting. Don't worry, pantsers! I don't plot all of my books. So I'm not really a plotter, but I don't write by the seat of my pants every book either. Sometimes I do a rough outline of major plot points, and sometimes the book just flows from my head to my fingertips. I guess my style of creating is something in between. Plotser, perhaps.

Recently, as many of you probably know, I've been working on plotting a historical urban fantasy type novel. But I've been doing something different than I have with other projects I've worked on. Letting the ideas simmer and reveal themselves to me a little at a time has been quite an experience.  I love letting them brew in my mind and play over and over, trying to figure out just the right way the events should happen before making a note about the scenes. I'm really in no rush since I won't be working on it until November 1st and the fun onslaught of National Novel Writing Month.

I decided to stir up ideas and think about who my characters are before the big move, which has now been completed. I'm now in the aftermaths effect of unpacking. Anyways, I browsed Holly Lisle's website to reread one of her articles on plotting, and what I found very useful was her "Novel Pre-Writing Workshop: Asking the Right Questions." I even decided to try out bubble mapping, which I'd never really done before, effectively at least.

Maybe some of what has helped me has just been the fact that I'm trying something new, but I guess that since I still have the rest of September and the entirety of October to figure out this novel (without burning myself out of it) that I can sit around and tinker with this new system to figure out a way to incorporate to what I usually do. That being said, when it comes to writing with me, "usually" is an abstract word. This way of preparing though makes me feel more at ease since my last few novels had their ideas thrown together at the last minute before I began writing them. Clear procrastination in action. Maybe I can kick my procrastination habit. Who knows?

So how do you prepare yourself before starting a new writing project? Do you have an outline? A vague idea?

Thursday, March 17

Looking for Agents and Editors?

Recently at Castles & Guns, there have been several visiting the blog. I'm thrilled with the wealth of knowledge brewing up over there.

Here's the rundown.

Agent Saritza Hernandez: 10 Answers from Agent Saritza Hernandez She represents, "Primarily romance. I'm currently representing all sorts of romance with a special interest in GLBT-themed erotic romance such as male/male but I also represent gay fiction, urban fantasy, and paranormal suspense. I have several clients whose works straddle genres, but erotic romance is my favorite and what I love to work with the most."

Agent Marlene Stringer: What's Hot, What's Not: A Q&A with Agent Marlene Stringer She represents, "In fiction, Stringer Literary Agency welcomes queries in mystery, thriller, contemporary and urban fantasy, romance, women's fiction, historical fiction, science fiction, and Young Adult and Middle Grade fiction. The agency also represents select non-fiction."

Publisher Christina Brashear, Samhain Publishing: Interview with Christina Brashear, Publisher of Samhain Publishing Samhain's submission guidelines are at

Acquisitions Editor Donna O'Brien, Crescent Moon Press: Interview with Acquisitions Editor Donna O'Brien She's looking for, "Crescent Moon Press as a whole publishes high quality fantasy, futuristic and paranormal romantic fiction. Me personally? I like the dark stuff! LOL Give me a dark hero that needs to be saved by the heroine or some epic dark drama that they both have to navigate and survive. I also like stories with lots of magic and then I grew up watching sci-fi with my Dad, so that always has a special place in my heart. So…I guess, what…that’s everything! LOL And of course, there must always be the romance."

Entangled Publishing: Entangled in Publishing's Brave New World Entangled's submission guidelines are at

Acquisitions Editor Lin Browne, Crescent Moon Press: Interview with Acquisitions Editor Lin Browne She's looking for, "Everything CMP looks at—fantasy, science fiction, paranormals and any variation on those themes with some degree of romance. I like it all. I am particularly excited to see science fiction and high fantasy romances. I do read YA, and like it, but I prefer adult-focused books. However, if you have a great YA story, feel free to send it to me—especially if it’s science fiction. I’m also comfortable editing any heat level. CMP doesn’t accept erotica or erotic romance, but if you write toward the hotter end of the spectrum, I’ll look at it. Oh and if you happen to write funny, PLEASE send it my way. I love funny. Dark is good too, but I find funny is much harder to pull off so if you manage it, I want to see it."

Coming soon:

March 23rd at Castles & Guns: Acquisitions Editor Sherry Soule, Crescent Moon Press.

March 30th at Castles & Guns: Acquisitions Editor Rochelle French, Crescent Moon Press.

I hope this blog helps anyone out there querying and submitting!

Friday, March 4

Back on Track

I posted this yesterday at Castles & Guns.

I've had high hopes for the year, and so far things are going all right. Aside from the illness being tossed around like hot potatoes in my household. Argh!

Anyways, January began strong in my mind. I started writing a novella, editing a novel, and focusing on a healthier lifestyle. It began well, but I had a hard time working on editing and writing the novella. Fitness though, went great. Then stress hit hard at the end of January due to editing the novella for a submission deadline, family coming into town, etc. Things fell apart with what I was doing.

February basically was about stabilizing and dealing with my stress and family, as well as attended DigiCon at SavvyAuthors. Now it's March. Part of me feels like the year is starting to get away from me. With the beginning of March, I decided to get things back under control. I'm back on track with working out and eating better, and I'm starting to get it together again with editing too. Although, I'd much rather be writing. *grins*

Anyways, the point of the blog is it's a new month. If there are things in your life that aren't going as well as you'd hoped, there's time to get back on track. Don't feel like the year is messed up just because two months have passed. There is still a lot of time in the year to make this one great.

I read an article recently about dividing the year up in quarters. January-March, April-June, July-September, October-December. I think that's a great idea. The article said focus on smaller, specific goals and not trying to do something huge within those quarters. Want to write the first draft within April-June? Edit in July-September? Heck, even lose 10 lbs or read 5 books in a single quarter.

So how are you doing with your goals this year? Any that you're getting back on track with?
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