And it’s done! With bonus teaser!

Photo by Oliver Hammond on Flickr

Photo by Oliver Hammond on Flickr

Yesterday I wrote, ‘The End’ on my first draft of my fifth book!

I have to say, considering it was supposed to be a light novella at under 30,000 words to give me a bit of a break, it kind of took on a life of it’s own!

I did skip a week at the beginning of August where I didn’t write at all (naughty, I know!), so when I realised I managed to pump out over 45,000 words in 3 weeks I was revelling in quite a lot of triumph!

I’m really starting to get my writing routine down and sticking to it 🙂

It’s always a rather exhilarating moment to finish a first draft, but it does tend to be only for a moment, because then I get the sinking feeling of knowing how much editing there is to do next 😀

And I have to say, I was worried about going back and reading this one. For some reason I got it into my head that the writing was terrible and I was going to practically be changing everything.

So, when I started reading through and looking at editing, I was pleasantly surprised it wasn’t anywhere near as bad as I had told myself it would be! In fact, some parts were pretty darn good, if I do say so myself 😀

There is still plenty of editing to be done, but I have to say I’m enjoying the editing a lot more now I realise it’s much better than I thought, especially considering it’s a first draft.

And now, I am going to brave and post an unedited teaser/excerpt from my new book!

“And now, it’s time to get physical,” she said.

“Huh?” Alex asked, broken from her thoughts.

“What you like in a man, in his looks. But I think that’s pretty easy to determine.” FG slapped her wand against the desk’s surface, the bottom drawer flinging open and making Alex almost topple from her chair in surprise. From the drawer floated a dog-eared, well-read romance novel that Alex only brought out when she was certain she was alone.

“No, you can’t have that!” Alex yelled, trying to clamber over the desk to retrieve it. But it was nestled in the fairy godmother’s lap before she even had the chance.

The front cover was a vivid purple, the title, ‘Love of the Best Kind’, emblazoned in hot red, curling front across it.
“See? There is a romantic buried beneath that professional exterior of yours.” FG chuckled but Alex flushed red, sinking back into her chair and hoping it would swallow her whole.

FG flicked open the book, the crumpled pages falling open with ease. Her brows raised as she scanned the words and her eyes slowly widened.

She snapped the book shut. “Well, maybe not so romantic, but certainly passionate.”

Alex sunk further into her chair with a groan, covering her eyes with her hand.

Hope you enjoyed it!

How are you guys doing with your writing projects? Do you dread the editing phase? Have you ever been pleasantly surprised by your own work when going back and reading it over?

*As usual, I will be away over the weekend and back on Monday to reply to comments and emails 🙂 Have a brilliant weekend everyone!*

Progress Report:

Status of fifth manuscript: Editing first draft.

Books read: 5/4

Mid September Book Review: Currently reading.

First Kiss – Prophecy of Stones

I thought I might try something a little different this week for my marketing post! 😀

So here is a short piece I wrote about Milana and Riff’s first kiss.

Milana and Riff are characters from my newest book, Prophecy of Stones.

It’s not an excerpt, but a kind of backstory piece I wrote in under fifteen minutes for a writing exercise. I hope you enjoy it!

“Are we there yet?” Milana asked, waving her hands about before her, unable to see through the thick material of the blindfold tied around her eyes.

“Almost,” Riff replied. She relaxed when his fingers curled around hers, helping to lead her onwards over the rough, rocky terrain that pressed even through the soles of her heavy boots.

“We’ve climbed a mountain-”

“It was little more than a hill,” Riff interrupted.

“It felt like a mountain.” Milana steadied herself as the path became smoother. “And now you have to blindfold me?”

“It’s a surprise.” Riff continued to lead her forwards and, even through the blindfold, she could tell that wherever they’d just entered was bright.

The light pierced through the dark material and she frowned at the sudden change. The howling wind had stopped, only silence and the echo of dripping water surrounding them like the chimes of a musical instrument.

When Riff’s fingers fell from hers, she tensed, but then the knot of the blindfold was untied, the smooth material falling against her cheeks as it was pulled away. Milana blinked a few times to adjust her eyes to the intense brightness that battered against her. When her vision cleared, she let out a long breath, unable to form her amazement in words.

“Do you like your surprise?” Riff asked, his arm wrapping around her waist.

Milana nodded, staring around the cavern, her eyes wide and her breath stolen by the magnificence. Though she’d heard of the glow stones caves, she’d never actually seen one, they were far too protected to get anywhere near without guards shoving a weapon of some kind towards her and sending her back the way she came.

“This is…” Milana stepped further in the cave, the clear sparkling light bathing her in a white glow. “Incredible.”

“I thought you would like it.”

Milana shivered when Riff brushed a strand of hair away from her face, her attention no longer captured by the glow stones, but the man beside her. “You know me well.”

“I hope so,” he said with a gentle smile forming on his lips.

Milana raised an eyebrow and folded her arms. “And you thought bringing me here might just help you to get to know me even better?”

Riff stuttered on his reply, rubbing his hand over the back of his neck.

“Don’t worry, Riff,” Milana said with a soft laugh, saving him from the blush that was rising to his cheeks. “It worked.” She gripped the collar of his shirt and yanked him close to her. Curling her fingers around his neck she had to tip toe to press her lips against his. His lips were soft and warm as they moved against hers in a rhythm that seemed designed only for them, his arm curling around her to press her closer and deepen the kiss.

For years she’d wished to kiss him and the experience did not disappoint.

ProphecyCover Prophecy of Stones
The bond of love can conquer all, but only if it is accepted.

Prophecy states that three champions imbued with the best virtues of the mortal race: heart, strength and soul, will be the ones to save them all from an enemy which threatens to steal the life from their world and those who live upon it.

These three, along with their scribe, his bond mate, and an overly sarcastic oracle, must set off on a journey which will take them through forest, city, swamp and mountain. On this quest they activate the magical stones which charge the only weapon powerful enough to defeat Tildar and his cult of Dwell.

Yet the closer they draw to journey’s end, the more it seems that it is not the evil which will be their downfall, but the fear of a champion unwilling to accept the bond of their destiny.

Prophecy of Stones is a tale of adventure, love and magic.

To Buy:

Amazon.com

Amazon.co.uk

Barnes and Noble

This is a scheduled post as I am away on the weekends and won’t be able to reply to comments or emails until Monday. Have a great weekend! 🙂

Oh, that’s your name too, is it? And yours as well?!

nname

Coming up with character names can be an interesting and fun thing to do. I like to find names with meaning, a name that represents some part of the character’s personality or appearance. I don’t know why, it’s just something I am keen on doing 😀

But I’ve noticed something happening.

After I find these great unique names, suddenly, I see them EVERYWHERE!

I chose the name Otto for one of the characters in my current book, and I was rather pleased with myself for finding a simple, yet interesting name I hadn’t heard of before.

Then, the very next day on a forum, I see the name pop up for someone’s pet. I then hear it for a character on TV.

I had never even known of that name before, then I heard it twice the next day 😀

This has now happened a few times with unusual character names. Maybe I’d heard them before but hadn’t taken notice? Possibly I’m being hyper-aware after spending so long searching for the name? Whatever it is, it’s something that always seems to happen lately.

For my next book, I am using relatively common names to suit the contemporary setting, so I’m not so worried. But in the future if do another fantasy, maybe I will just have to make up names from scratch!

Has this ever happened to you? Do you like using character names with meaning? Do you make up names or use real ones?

Progress Report:

Status of Fourth Manuscript: With the readers (2/3 returned). Cover done, blurb written.

Books read: 2/4

July eBook review: Written and ready.

What a dynamic group!

Photo by Grzegorz Łobiński on Flickr

Photo by Grzegorz Łobiński on Flickr

My fourth manuscript is finally with the readers! Now all I have to do is sit and try not to chew my nails too badly whilst I wait for what they say, and wonder how much editing I will have to do 😀

It will be good to take a break from it myself so as in a couple of weeks, when I get it back, I can start with fresh eyes again.

But, thinking over my current work, I was trying to work out what I enjoyed most about writing it.

What I decided upon was the group dynamic between my characters.

I have written a larger cast of characters before in Heart of the Arena, but this book and its characters are different in that they’ve known each other for quite some time.

I find it fascinating to look at groups of people and friends and see how they interact- You notice the people who are closer to others in the group, the underlying tension in others and even those who are attracted to the other.

It’s a really interesting thing to me, and it was great fun to write a group of characters all with their distinct personalities, but that all have their own opinions and history (remember when I said two of these character had spent the night together?) which shape their way of interacting with these friends who they’ve known for years.

The roles these characters play also made a difference to their interactions and the way they behaved. For example, upon meeting up with an old friend, the group dynamic shifts and that friend once again takes place as leader amongst the group, even though that person had not been with them for a long time. It was a natural shift amongst them, because that is what happens when people who know each other well get together.

Then I chucked in a newcomer, and the fun got even better 😀 Especially because the newcomer is half their age, so they all react to him differently.

Another thing I really enjoyed in writing this book was developing the relationships, not just the romantic relationship, but the friendships and rivalries.

It was something I was keen to try in this book and hopefully have succeeded at writing well!

Do you enjoy writing about the relationships between groups of characters? Do you like discovering the dynamics that grow within a group? Do you enjoy reading about the relationships between different types of characters?

Progress Report:

Status of Fourth Manuscript: Sent to readers.

Books read: 1/4

July eBook Review: Written and ready.

What they don’t know won’t kill them!

The back story of my characters has been on my mind lately, and obviously on other people’s too, as there have been a couple of great posts about it, for example:

Shehanne Moore has a great post about drip feeding the back story into your book.

Rachel Carrera has an interesting post asking for opinions on how readers enjoy reading back story in books.

Knowing where your characters come from and what they’ve done to become who they are when readers meet them is important.

The way back story is introduced is very individual based on the story and the writer, but it wasn’t the technical aspect of writing back story that had me thinking. Instead, lately I have been mulling over the back story itself.

Have you ever had a piece of back story for your characters pop into your head out of nowhere, that is so random or out of character for them, but you just know that it’s right?

What I mean is, I have a group of characters and for some reason I just have this thought that 2 of these characters got together one night.

For this to happen would be rather out of character for them, but now I’ve thought of it, I can’t un-think it, and it’s stuck as being a part of their back story.

Now, this piece of information isn’t written in my story or even hinted at, and it will never be revealed to readers. It’s just a snippet of info about these characters that I, as the writer, know about them and has shaped the way they are.

It got me thinking about other bits of back story from previous characters that I know as a the writer, but that readers would never know, and how it affects the way that I write these characters.

I wonder how many characters I’ve read about in books who have back story I don’t know about.

It’s interesting to ponder, right? 😀

Do you have any interesting back story about characters that only you know about them, that you haven’t shared with readers or other people? Have you ever imagined your characters doing something really out of character? Do you enjoy creating back story for your characters?

Progress Report:

Word Count: 3049 (39,207 total word count)
Status of fourth manuscript: Writing first draft.

Books read: 1/4

June eBook Review: Review written and ready.

Getting my mojo back!

Do you ever get into a frenzy whilst writing because the scene you are doing is so good you just can’t stop?

And then when you come to the end of the scene you sit back and just get this major rush and a buzz that makes you want to scream, ‘THAT WAS AMAZING!’ and make you feel like this:

excited2

Anybody? 😀

Yesterday I was sat writing a scene that was, well, just a scene, it had to be done but it wasn’t one of those ‘candy bar’ scenes (the ones you really look forward to writing). But then, it just seemed to be flowing and turning into something so awesome my fingers were flying over the keyboard so fast you could have seen smoke!

Maybe it would be more accurate to say the characters were flowing. I did a lot of research and character development before going into this book, so I had a good idea of how these characters were gonna be. But the more I’m writing the deeper they get, the more real they are becoming, and they are just turning even the most normal scene into something incredible!

As you can tell, I’m really pumped about getting into write again. It’s amazing to realise how much I missed it over those two months I only did editing and formatting, etc.

Everyday after writing, I am in such a tizzy because I just love doing it so much, but yesterday was a particularly awesome writing day! And it’s times like this I need to remember why I am striving so hard for this dream.

Do you ever get that buzz after writing something you’ve really enjoyed? Have you ever found a normal scene turning into something unexpectedly amazing?

Also, Stolen Bloodline got another 5* review!! Just adding to my excitement so much I could burst! 😀

Progress Report:

Word count: 2840 (22,899 total word count).
Status of fourth manuscript: Writing first draft.

Books read: 1/4

June EBook Review: 100 % read. Writing review.