Thursday, October 29, 2009

Getting it down.

"Get it down. Take chances. It may be bad, but it’s the only way you can do anything really good.” William Faulkner

This has been my mindframe I think pretty much the last few weeks. Or at least, it feels that way. I've been stressing to get to a certain wordcount by Oct 31, just before Nano and between editing and writing the short, I feel like I'm just trying to get anything out to make that count. Well, some is good. There's some moments I smirk at what I've written but there are still a few scenes where I just slap a hand to my forehead and wonder what I was thinking.

You know?

I know that they will change. That's what edits are for. I'm not perfect. I don't have any delusions that I'll get it right the first time round. And yes, I do have areas where I've placed "ADD ACTION HERE" in certain scenes, but I know that I'll get back to it. I just need to get things down... an outline of sorts. If I don't get it down, it won't get done. I'll either forget or... whatever. So I'm getting it all out on paper.

As much as I might sneer at some of the words written, at least I know it's down and it can be changed later. As is a famous quote, you can't edit a blank page.

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Diva Release!

The Forbidden Chamber, from Samhain Publishing, Available today.

“Your life is forfeit if you open that door.”

All her life, Lady Isabel Colven has followed the path laid out for her, content to look neither left nor right for excitement. Her future holds a dutiful, passionless marriage to some nice young man, and she’s content…until the exotic and compelling Lord Rukh Hayle threatens her maidenly reserve. Rumor paints him as a wife-murderer; desire tempts her to look past his aura of danger.

Rukh refuses to let his family’s curse kill a third bride, but Isabel awakens the Raven within him, compels him to take her to wife—and to bed—despite the secrets that live under his skin. That lie is locked in the darkest corners of the manor, waiting to be unleashed. Their lusty union arouses the curse, entangling Isabel in an erotic tug of war that can only end in her destruction. There is no escape for either of them. Not from his family’s shadowy history. Not from demons imagined and real. And not from the choice Rukh faces to save his bride from a fate worse than death…

Warning: This gothic contains heady kisses that lead to ruin, passionate sex on a desk chair, a mysterious husband who may be a murderer, a cursed family of raven shifters, and an unspeakable evil hidden in the closet.

Read the excerpt.
The Forbidden Chamber is available from Samhain at MBaM.

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

New ideas that are old ideas...

They say that there are no original ideas anymore. Everything is reused...over and over again. It's the spin you put on it and your characters that make something that's been used before new/different. I have a confession to make: this is one of my worse fears. You see, one thing that held me back in the past was this fact. I would think my idea is my own... until I read something or watch a show that is similar. What do I do then? Rewrite. It was my answer to it everytime, as though that would change things and this new idea would be different... only to find more similarities.

I still worry about this. But at the same time, I know that it can't be changed much. There will always be something that rings like your idea. For instance, I'm writing a Halloween Full Free Read for Excerpt Monday (due to be posted on Monday) and although I knew my idea wasn't original (I mean it's a time travel idea), there are always similarities like Quantum Leap (which I had never watched or heard of really), and Sliders.

But this is an idea I'm excited about and really want to write. Sure, I could scrap it like my 3 other attempts at a short, but you know what?, I like this idea and it'll be the particular storyline/characters that will make the idea of going back in time and not being able to go back to their own time different. Now, I just have to finish it. Time is running out! Eeks.

Guess I must get to it! How do you handle ideas that are similar to yours? Do you abandon at will or try to twist it in some way?

Monday, October 19, 2009

What I've learned...

I've been writing for about a decade now, although I haven't been serious until just recently. I'll admit that it was more of a hobby than anything, a dream that I always found an excuse not to fulfill or try to do. Those excuses have included: well the plot sucks so it needs to be rewritten from scratch (4x), characters don't have depth so it needs to be rewritten (2x), I don't have the time (ok granted doing school plus writing seriously was out. I couldn't go to school, work then find time to write. There was no time). These were just some of them.

What changed? Events shifted in my life and made my dream reachable, even thought I know I will still have to edit more and probably send out over 100 queries. But that dream of being a writer, of one day holding that book in my hand, each word written, each sentence edited... each query sent, brings me that much closer to that dream.

I'm still learning. But I've learned a lot. I've realized that I'm a pantser. Plotting blocks me and I just...can't...get through. Where I used to think that I could only write at night, I've found through a goals group I'm in that I can write during the day. My muse, is finicky but I can make it work. Those characters that I thought were flat? I feel as though they are more alive and that I can flesh them out. Yes, I may still have issues with pacing and plotting but you know what? I can still DO IT. I can write that plot (even if it needs to be reworked). I can even rewrite if I need to without giving up. I'm stubborn. This is MY idea. MY story. Yes, editing is grring at times, but you know what? I can take it. I can even take the critiques. I can be flexible and be stubborn at the same time. For different reasons but's possible. In the past, I might have given up. Heck, I have. I've given up 3 novels mid-write because of a new fancy shiny idea to tease and flaunt my way.

I set my novel aside for almost a month while I reworked the first 3 chapters recently. I just picked up the rest to edit and yes, there are still things to be worked out, but honestly, it could be worse. My writing has grown. And I'm proud of that. Yes, I still have issues, but they are easily workable.

I'm working on the second book in the series now. Yes, I know there will be rewrites. I can point out the issues (well some of them ;) ) and tell you right now that the one plot needs to be strengthened and added to. But that's all still part of the learning process. Either way, first draft is scheduled to be done Dec 1st. Wish me luck!

Finishing that first manuscript, joining RWA, going to the DC conference, getting critiqued, getting that first R... it's all just something that's an ongoing learning experience.

So I'm curious. What has your learning experiences been like? What do you still struggle with?

Sunday, October 18, 2009

Autumn muses

There's something about this time of year when the leaves are just starting to turn colour that inspires my muse. Ok granted, I could do without the cold. Seriously, I'm not a cold person. I like heat. I'm like a lizard in that way. This year has been a bit of a disappointing autumn just because there hasn't been much of one to begin with. It feels as though it has jumped right into winter without the usual fall benefits.

For instance, I'm already wearing my winter jacket and a sweater underneath. If that's going to be an indication that I'll need another warmer jacket, then... um ikes.

But I digress. I do love autumn. Not as much as spring but autumn will do in a pinch as well. There's something about the crisp air that stirs the ideas in my head. If you haven't visited Excerpt Monday, for instance, we're doing a Halloween Full Read. I cannot write shorts. In fact, I get hives just thinking of it. I get writer's block almost. Why? It requires the one thing that makes my muses tremble in fear: plotting. I don't plot. I'm a pantser all the way and I'm sure I've done a post about it before but I just can't sit and write out those little points in detail before writing.

Characters come first. Plot second.

This is what happened with this Full Read. I knew the characters but do you think I could come up with a story? No of course not. Thing I'm debating now is... YA or adult. I haven't quite put this together yet. I'm thinking YA because it fits the chars, but honestly, I have no experience in it. I suppose we'll see what happens. ;) The idea just came to me this morning so we'll see where it goes. I can't wait to write it. You can read it on the 26th when it'll be posted here and for more, visit the Excerpt Monday site. :)

Monday, October 5, 2009

Reading worlds vs writing worlds

When I read, I want to be swept away. Not just by the characters, but by the environment/world that they live in. For me, I don't need the exotic. Whether it's set in downtown... let's say Toronto... or in the middle of the jungle, if done right, I can get lose in whatever world the writer builds. This includes paranormals or urban fantasies. I don't need an exotic local, but it doesn't hurt. I will agree that it's always nice to get lost in a new world, one so vivid in its rules and detail. That world defines the mood. For me, exotic= dark. Take Christine Feehan's Carpathians for instance.

But I don't need it per say when reading a book. I can get just as absorbed in a book about a small town and I have great respect for those who can weave details of a town in that are easily recognizable.

Writing, is another thing altogether. For me, I'm not able to do those little details for a known town. I like writing isolated settings. For instance in my Fatal series, it takes place in the mountains. There's a small town but the story by no means takes place there. It's there as background information, nothing more.

What about you? Is there a certain kind of world you like more? Is it the same when you write?

Friday, October 2, 2009

New release!

Scent of Cin by Ella Drake

Death brought Cin her love, a sexy half-demon she can't resist

Half-demon Vedo resurrects the newly-dead Cinnamon Murphy, detective, bane of the Hellions — and all woman. Vedo needs her to find his son, product of a forced union with a powerful demoness, but Vedo gets more than he bargains for. Once Cin is no longer a shade, her scent becomes a lure his Nephilim nature can’t resist. Cin finds that being raised from the dead gives her uncontrollable cravings for heat, especially for the hot man who needs her help, a man she’s sworn to kill.

Before publication, Scent of Cin was the 2008 novella winner of the Stroke of Midnight Contest, sponsored by Passionate Ink.

This erotic paranormal romance is available at Cobblestone Press.
Excerpt and more information available at