Showing posts from October, 2011

Fun Links, News and Atkinson-Laurie-Shakespeare

ollowers! Nearly 300 followers!

Can you tell I'm blushing bright red? I'd like to thank each and every one of you.

And of course there will be prizes!

In other news, beta revisions are progressing nicely - and I've got a pile of handwritten pages for the new novel, and lots of ideas heading into NaNo!

Until then, I leave you with these links:

Word Wenches: eight historical authors who share a blog. Featuring a little history, a little wordplay and a lot of wit.

Jill Murray: YA author currently leading a workshop on crafting YA stories. And very generously sharing her workshop notes!

Agent Suzie Townsend is holding a query letter contest.
And, if it's been too long since you read something new about Jamie Fraser or Lord John, and you don't mind spoilers, come by the forum, where Sarah and Sheila celebrated their birthdays with an awesome big (a special form of begging designed to elicit a snip from Diana Gabaldon): a bigging cake! Who know how the next bigger will top …

Haunting - Romantic Friday Writers' Blogfest

oooooo... All Hallow's Eve is coming... And, to celebrate, another blogfest:

"Romantic Friday Writers, a weekly on-going blogfest run by L'Aussie and Francine Howarth, has an open challenge to everyone to write a 400-word story or poem on the theme Haunting for Friday 28 October." If you'd like to participate, head over to the Romantic Friday Writers site.

Denise asked me to play, and the more I thought about Ayten and Devran, the quicker my resistance crumbled. So here she is from a scene early on in her novel, Verse, Venice and Viziers. She's waiting in a chapel of the church in her hometown; it's about an hour before her father's funeral begins. And we're in Devran's pov:

She had an elbow propped on a lectern, scribbling on a scrap of paper with the stub of a pencil. He coughed, to let her know he was there without startling her, but she jumped all the same, whirling round with a hand over her heart.

"Who were you expecting?" he as…

Final Installment of Rule of Three Blogfest Story, and a Whisper

enaissance has been good to Ayten.

If you've been following along, we've been having a Rule of Three blogfest, posting a story each Wednesday exploring the relationship between three characters in the created town of Renaissance.

The setting is the same for all of us, but everything else - genre, characters, etc. - are our own. I've been writing a historical romance:

Scene One featured Prince Cem, avowing his love for Ayten.
Scene Two featured Ayten herself, and a narrow escape.
Scene Three featured Devran, holding his emotions in check as he offered Ayten a way out of her dilemma.

And now, without further ado, Ayten on board ship:

he took up the lap desk on Devran's trunk and brought it over to the bunk, unhooking the silver clasp and lifting the lid. Two quills, a bottle of ink, a sheaf of smooth paper. She'd been using bits of lead and charcoal for weeks, while he'd had this wealth of writing material. Judging by the shine of the wood and lack of scratch marks o…

ROW80 Update, Story Links and Into the Woods

've been writing like mad, even if it doesn't feel like it.

While I wait for the final input from beta readers for Out of the Water, I've been delving more into Ayten's story, Verse, Venice and Viziers.

For a while, it was hard to make the switch: Rosa was in my head so much and so often that every time I fell into that world, it was her and Baha I saw. I had to wrench myself from their happy ever after and focus on Ayten and all her conflicts with Devran.

A little of what I've come up with found its way into the Rule of Three blogfest: Part One featured Prince Cem, and Part Two featured Ayten Hanım (Miss Ayten), and Part Three featured Devran, the son of the Grand Vizier. Part Four - the final part - comes on Wednesday.

An outtake, from a scene occurring somewhat later in the story, was my entry in Rach's third challenge as part of the Third Writers' Platform-building Campaign. If you liked my story, please Like it on the linky list for the challenge.

And …

Ayten's Story Outtake for Campaign Challenge Three

ampaign Challenge Three!

I have to stay in the wip, of course. This comes far, far ahead in Verse, Venice and Viziers, after some harrowing events have separated Ayten and Devran from the others on board Devran's ship (challenge details below):

A ship was approaching.

She stood on the hilltop in the shade of the pine, and shielded her eyes from the rising sun. Three masts. Not their own ship, then.

Devran had led them from the brigands' cave, and estimated that they would reach the city in another week's time. If he was right, and the brigands were unable to track them, then they would only have been gone for two weeks.

She had no idea what to expect - had the brigands demanded a ransom, so that Rosa and the others would at least know they'd been wastopaneer? If there'd been no word whatsoever, she couldn't begin to imagine the worry and confusion the others might be feeling.

She sank to the roots of the pine, the knotty bark digging into her back. It was easier…

Third POV in Rule of Three and Some Book and Contest News

hat would Joss wear?

Susan Bischoff's having a contest!

In ROW80 related news, I'm moving pretty steadily; looking over reviews from beta readers for Out of the Water, and drafting here and there for Verse, Venice and Viziers. It's so exciting diving into the free flow pantsing of a new story!

In sad book-related news, this year's book fair at McGill University is the last.

I ran up the hill on my lunch hour and had my final browse, discovering a few gems (including an A. A. Milne I'd never heard of) and the hardcover of the first book of Janet Evanovich's new series for only 4$. The fair has run for four decades, but there're no volunteers left to organize and run it.

And now we come to part three of my Rule of Three Blogfest story! An as-yet untitled historical romance: Part One featured Prince Cem, and Part Two featured Ayten Hanım (Miss Ayten).

For this part, which is at 596 words, I used the prompt relationships unravel or strengthen.

Devran tapped his q…

7 x 7 Link Award and ROW80


Thank you to Trisha for the 7 x 7 Link Award!

So I've gone through four years (!) of blog posts and found the following: a quote about Tolkien and orcs by Joanna Bourne, a fly-by comment about myself writing romance that was oh so wrong ("I guess writing romance has had it, now that I've gotten those two fan-based novels out of my system and don't seem to be writing any new, adult stories..."), a question about bringing snails to Constantinople, a dream about being a snail, thoughts on serendipitous character naming, and a review of Lady Chatterley's Lover that was very pleasurable to re-read, if I do say so myself.

I also seem to have learned a lot about blogging after the first two years, when I was merely throwing words into the dark - and at a select few friends. I'm glad to be part of a wider community now!

But the award actually specifies that you link to seven types of blog post:

Most beautiful I'm not sure it's beautiful, but here's…

Pay It Forward Blogfest and More Fun Links

ay it forward blogfest is here!

The brainchild of Matthew MacNish and Alex J. Cavanaugh (whose blogs you really should visit), this one is really simple:

"List, describe, and link to three blogs that you enjoy reading, but that you suspect may fly under the radar of a lot of other bloggers. Or they can be famous blogs, as long as they're awesome. But don't stop there! Certainly visit and follow all the blogs that are featured in people's posts the day of the blogfest, but those don't have to be the only blogs you visit. You can visit everyone who enters in on the fun, and signs up on the linky list."

Here are the three blogs I'd like to showcase:

The writers at All The World's Our Page. Five brilliant authors with amazing stories to tell - and two of them are on their way! The stories, that is. Kristen Callihan's Firelight comes out in February.

Jennifer Hendren's By The Pale Moonlight comes out in just a few days! (Trailer in the post below.) …

Rule of Three Blogfest Story Part Two and By the Pale Moonlight Giveaway

ow we come to Ayten's point of view...

The first part of my story for the Rule of Three Blogfest featured Cem Sultan, finally confessing his love for the maiden Ayten, a guest at his temporary home in Renaissance.

This blogfest runs all month; each Wednesday we'll have a new post exploring the relationship between three characters in the created town of Renaissance. The setting is the same for all of us, but everything else - genre, characters, etc. - are our own.

And today's post is belongs to Ayten. My word count is 594, and I was inspired by these three prompts, given by the blogfest hosts:
Someone is killed or almost killed.
A relationship becomes complicated.
A character lies to another on an important matter.

Ever since we arrived in Renaissance, we've been feted. I felt like idle lady of the court yesterday; choosing my gown for the masquerade, rifling through a stack of silk ribbons, sitting perfectly still -- with not even any needlework -- as my hair was piled …

A Round of Words in 80 Days and HEAP

quiet sort of check in today as I've slowed down a bit since I finished editing Out of the Water and sent it out to readers.

I try not to think about what they might be doing to the MS with their red pens and their eyebrows raised in disbelief...

Let's not think about that. Remember MAD Magazine? The really old ones from the 50s and 60s? Does anyone remember HEAP? The full colour version is available on Dr Hermes. I learned a bit of the background from that post:

"The two main elements giving basis for this story are the old time radio show, INNER SANCTUM, with its famous creaking door and its sepulchral-voiced host Raymond (his ghoulish puns and wisecracks were obviously a big influence on the hosts of EC's horror titles like TALES FROM THE CRYPT.

But the story presented by "Ramon" here is interesting in itself, in that it does a take-off on the Heap. You can read more about the Heap by clicking on the tag below. He was a long-running character in a back-u…

Carole Anne Carr's Thin Time

uick post from me today!

I'm working on the next installment of my Rule of Three Blogfest story - see post below - and having a great time reading everyone else's stories.

Also, this month's exercise over at the Compuserve Forum is a doozy: can you make Barbara Rogan cry?

My entry features Rosa and Baha from Out of the Water; please let me know if you think I've succeeded. Er, not that I want everyone bawling their eyes out or anything...

Last week I read Carole Anne Carr's middle grade story Thin Time.

"In the Shropshire village of Tong, a bad tempered tomb dog called Fymm makes a mistake and chooses the wrong girl to be Task Bearer. Chased by gargoyles, Alice reaches the Green Lady's cottage, receives the first of her three gifts, and learns that she must enter the Other World at Thin Time.

Her task is to bring back the New Year seeds before midnight, and prevent the world from dying. With her small stepbrother Thomas, Ratatosk the squirrel who can't b…

Rule of Three Story, #ROW80 Party, Insecure Writers - Drinks for All!

ail and well met, visitors!

Stick around, we've a lot to get through. If you'd like a drink, the bar's on the left, and I believe everyone at #ROW80 is having Jelloshots. Share a dram of Lagavulin with me if you like.

Now then, first up, here's my #ROW80 party photo!

Yup, that's my ridiculous FarmVille farm - but look, I've got a pub! Told ya you could have any drink you wanted. I kept my Viking costume on, too.

Need I check in for A Round of Words in 80 Days? Do we check in on party day? I'm holding my tumbler over the first draft of my query, but the words are starting to blur a little. And look - there's another party going on - Indie Book Collective is one year old!

Now comes the maudlin bit, where I've "taken as much ale as is good" for me. It's the second posting day for Alex J. Cavanaugh's Insecure Writer's Support Group. Boy am I feeling insecure. Out of the Water's in the hands of betas, my query and synopsis are a…

I've Finished Editing! and ROW80 Round Four

oo hoo! Round Four of A Round of Words in 80 Days is here!

And my goal is very very simple: query the novel!

Yes! I finished the penultimate round of edits of Out of the Water last night!

On to betas today, and time to begin polishing up the query letter drafts. Thank you Nathan Bransford for all that query writing advice.

October also means a new literary resolution. I picked up the original list from Theresa Milstein. October is another reading month: "Read a best-selling mystery. What can you learn from a well-paced page turner?"

Finally, an excuse to read a couple more Cat Who... books. Lots to learn from those, about pacing, subtle romance and she-makes-it-look-effortless characterisation.

Don't forget - there's going to be a 24 hour Rock the Row party on Wednesday for:
All the participants who just finished Round 3 of ROW80; Anyone who plans to post their goals and dive into Round 4; and Everyone who supported the ROW80 writers throughout the year.
I'm not on T…