Showing posts from May, 2012

What's in a name?

"We should be aware of the MAGIC contained in a name and realize that this single item is wholly and completely owned by the person with whom we are dealing...and nobody else. The name sets the individual apart; it makes him or her unique among all others." (I think this was from Dale Carnegie).

The most beautiful sound in the world? A persons name.
If someone says your name you respond, even if it's not you they're talking to. If you have to find your name on a page of 500 other names, you usually can spot it right away. Am I right or am I right?

Have you read a book where the names mean something to you? Honestly, I didn't pay attention much before Harry Potter. Then I only thought it was obvious that the characters got certain names like Draco (dragon), Goyle (gargoyle), Filch (steal things), Minerva (Goddess of wisdom & war), Skeeter (mosquito), Severus (severe), Narcissa (narcissistic), and Voldemort (flight of death).

This leads me to ask about characte…

Critiquing someone elses work

After a writer's conference, many writers engage in a critique group. It's the best idea!
You soon realize you become an editor for someone. It can be intimidating. Not to mention, having your own work critiqued.
Here are some ideas to help you as you become the best editor you can:

*This is not your book. It is not your job to tell them how to write their story. It's your job to help them write the book they want to write.

*You're not helping by being too nice. Of course, every writer wants to hear how awesome they are. Your job is help them make their story better. Unless all they really want to have the reassurance they should carry on. Then you can tell them how awesome they are and should keep writing.

*You're not helping by being mean either. Remember, we writers have fragile egos. Be gentle. Be kind. Make suggestions that are helpful.

*Be positive. Critique as you would want to be critiqued.

Do you belong to a critique group? Do you have helpful tips or ide…

Kid Writing Video (from LDStorymakers)


Reading will make you a better writer...right?

Today I want to talk about reading. I. Love. To. Read. I really do. This past week, while on a road trip, I read/finished four books. I enjoyed three of them and wondered if some day I would really learn the craft of writing to take someone's breath away.  (My reviews are on The Book Addict).

I began reading in first grade. As soon words formed sentences and made sense to me, I was hooked on reading. I remember the first time I 'understood' what reading was all about. I was in the car, running errands with my parents. All the street signs, billboards and store names came into crystal clear focus. They were telling me something! Talking to me. I'm sure I drove my family crazy as I read everything that came into my view out loud.
A reader was born.

I have heard several authors and writer advise us unpublished newbies to READREADREAD. Pick up a book you love and disect it. What do you love about it? The characters? What about the descriptions, settings, writing? I have ma…

SUFFOCATE by S.R. Johannes is out today!

It is May 21st and guess what that means?
S.R. Johannes’ Suffocate is out today!
Suffocate is the first novelette in THE BREATHLESS series. It is a 15,000 word young adult thriller that combines the dystopic and science fiction genres.
Here’s a little about the novelette…
“For centuries, the world outside the Biome has been unlivable. Today, marks the first time anyone will attempt to leave the suffocating ecosphere. Eria is not worried because her scientist father has successfully tested the new Bio-Suit many times. It's a celebratory day until something goes horribly wrong. In the midst of tragedy, Eria uncovers a deep conspiracy that affects the very air she breathes. 
If those responsible find out what she knows, they won't stop hunting her until she takes her last breath.”
The 2nd novella in the series, CHOKE, is scheduled for Fall 2012. The 3rd, EXHALE, is scheduled for Winter 2013.
You can purchase Suffocate for only 99 cents at Amazon B&N
Also you can add it on Goodreads! …

It's about opportunity~Yours!

I haven't read any of Lee Child's books but his story impresses me. According to his official biography, he was fired at the age of 40 as a result of corporate restructuring. Then he went out and spent $6 on paper and pencils.

And wrote an international bestseller.
He was fired at 40 and become a millionaire within ten years.

There's a couple of ideas here that made me sit up, straigthen my shoulders and carry on:

He was close to my age when he got fired.It took him ten years (ten!) to get noticed.I've been writing only four years.Fear, betrayal, pain didn't stop him. Writing is the cheapest hobby ever. Carry on, brave writers. You. Can. Do. This.

“If you’re fired at 40, it’s not all about hurt and betrayal and fear. It’s about opportunity.” Lee Child

Foto Friday~Create Your Vision


One-Sentance Summary

Do you have a one-sentence summary of your story? 

Here is what Randy Ingermanson says about them:


From Randy Ingermanson:

Here is my one-sentence summary of THE HUNGER GAMES:

"A 16-year-old girl volunteers to take her sister’s
place in an arena where twenty-four teens will battle
each other to the death."

That's 25 words, which I consider the upper limit for a
one-sentence summary. I prefer to see a one-sentence
summary in the range of 10 to 15 words.

The goal is to tell the main idea of the novel in as
few words as possible. Shorter is always better, if it
captures the story.

The shortest one-sentence summary I've ever seen is the
summary for my friend Tosca Lee's forthcoming novel
ISCARIOT. Here it is: "Judas".

That's one word and it tells you everything you need to
know about Tosca's book.

The purpose of a one-sentence summary is to tell people
whether they're interested or not. That's all.

Notice that I didn't say that the …

Welcome Suze Reese! An ExtraNormal blog tour INTERVIEW

Welcome Suze Reese! I met Suze at my BFF-from-high-school's birthday party. I was new to the writing and publishing world and she regaled me with her journey and advice. I'm excited for her new book! Let's get to know Suze a little today.

Hi, Suze! I'm so excited you're here. Let's jump right in!

Give us your elevator pitch.

ExtraNormal is about a teenage girl from another planet, though she does not like being called an alien. She visits Earth on an assignment from her government, and even though she should be totally excited, she's actually scared to death. She doesn't know how to do the simplest things, like use her cell phone or talk like a regular teenager, and she fears she's coming across as a dork most of the time. Things go from bad to worse when she falls in love, which is absolutely forbidden. She's not even supposed to talk to boys. Then when someone starts trying to kill her friends, she has to figure out who and why before she's…