Monday, June 25, 2012

Do you harbor throw away words?

I was reading Deep Editing by Margie Lawson. Her lectures on deep editing helped me see what I needed to change in my MS.
There was a a page or two on throw away words. Words that don't need to be in the story. I went through my work by using the "find" editing button and plugged a few of the words Margie says are throw always. I was surprised at which words I use a ton in my MS. Here is a short list of offenders (so far):


even
though
that
at that moment 
like
maybe
grin
eyes
has
is
are

What about you? What words do you find you use often??

UPDATE:
Taffy here.
I'm adding a few more words to my list:
very
some
really
often
actually
few (I had no idea how many times I used "few"!)
many
most
bit
I'm amazed as I find and eliminate most of these words how much better my writing sounds. Tighter. Clearer. Flowing. 
Totally worth my time to revise.

Friday, June 22, 2012

Foto Friday






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Wednesday, June 20, 2012

Possible Epic Failure

Hello, blog hoppers!
I think I'm suppose to be on the blog tour for Connie Sokol's new book, CARIBBEAN CROSSROADS. I think today is the day. And if it is, I apologize. See, the computer ate my PDF review copy and I haven't been able to read it. Then we went out of town for a few days. Then we had friends come into town for a few days.

And to top off this load of excuses, it's summer solstice! I KNOW that has something to do with my failing to read/post/blog about Connie's book.

So instead, I will blog about Connie because she is the nicest and funniest and sweetest person you'll ever meet. And it shows in her writing.

Here's a few tidbits about Connie: Connie Sokol is a mother of seven—a national and local presenter, and a regular speaker at Education Week. She is a monthly TV contributor on KSL’s “Studio 5” and regular blogger for LDSLiving online. She is a former TV and radio host for Bonneville Communications, and columnist for Deseret News and Utah Valley Magazine. Mrs. Sokol is also the author of Motherhood Matters, Faithful, Fit & Fabulous, and Life is Too Short for One Hair Color, as well as talk CDs and podcasts. Mrs. Sokol marinates in time spent with her family and eating decadent treats. Visit her website at 8basics.com/

 I reviewed MOTHERHOOD MATTERS by Connie and loved it.

When I met Connie she was running a little late for a presentation and she was almost nine months pregnant. Instead of getting flustered and frustrated, Connie apologized, smiled and carried on. She was all business and didn't let anything stop her from joking and having a good time.
The next time I saw her, a few days later, was at a writers conference and she was still pregnant but smiling and joking and enjoying herself.

If you've never seen her segment on KSL Studio, you should go watch (here is a link for her latest video). If you've never been to her blog, you should hop over there. If you've never read her books, you need to. Connie is uplifting and sincere.

And here's the blurb for the book:

New college grad Megan McCormick just got dumped. Hard.

Swearing off men and relationships, Megan is coaxed into performing on a cruise ship where she meets the star performer, Bryant Johnson. Handsome and charismatic, he looks like trouble, but she can't deny the intense attraction between them.

Urged to find a wife and run the family lumber business, Bryant is torn between his family's expectations for his life and his own. However, when he meets spunky, but love-skittish Megan McCormick, settling down doesn't look so bad.

Just when Megan begins to trust again, and Bryant makes some big decisions regarding his future, her former fiance returns with a malicious surprise, taking Megan and Bryant to their own CARIBBEAN CROSSROADS.


Looks like the perfect book to read by the pool! Buy it today!
CARIBBEAN CROSSROADS is available now on Amazon as an ebook and paperback.

Friday, June 15, 2012

Wordle your way over here!

Have you used wordle.net? It's fun, easy and a great distraction if your trying to get your writing done. I copy my book, put it in wordle and this is the "cloud" it created for me:




















The most used words in big letters. It gives a great perception into the words you use in your story. Aiden and Georgie are big in my story and they're not even the main character.
Go try it! You'll like it, hey Mikey!

Monday, June 11, 2012

Never SURRENDER!

THOUGHT:
"It may not be my weekend, but it's going to be my year."


Has there been a time you fisted your hands, firmed up your stance and say, "Never surrender!"? To a bully? A dream that tried to slip away? Hope or fear?



Never Surrender is my new motto as of today.

I came back from a writers conference defeated. I've NEVER felt like that after a conference. I'm usually rearing to go, conquer those pesky adverbs and find the inciting incidents. Not this time.
Let me explain.
No, let me sum up. (Name that movie)
I'm a pantser writer. That pretty much sums me up. I love to turn off the inner editor and let my fingers fly across the keyboard, telling a story I didn't know was inside me. I feel free and gypsy-ish and rogue.
Then I go to classes or talk to an editor and they ask all sorts of questions I couldn't answer:

  • What's the question at the beginning of your book and is it answered at the end? (What if your memory came back and reveled you were a serial killer? That's the question at the beginning of my book. But the answer wasn't satisfying to the editor even though she did request to look at my full manuscript).
  • What's the inciting incident? (Um, her old boyfriend comes back? Or she remembers not killing a friend? Or she finds out her dad is lying to her? Yeah! I like the last one).
  • Does your character grow during the story? (Yes!)
  • What genre do you write? (YA) YA what? (Psychological thriller? Possibly horror).

Oh, I could go on and on with my insecurities and I might scare you off thinking I'm puddle of nonsense. I really try not to be but sometimes my own scared-y self catches up with me.
I've been doing everything to avoid to writing! I'm feeling overwhelmed with what I think I need to do to my story.

Girlfriend Pic!
Then last night I went to Elana Johnson's book launch and sat by Lesli Muir who told me some of the best books in the world are done by pantsers. She told me her story and inspired me in a few minutes more than three days at the conference.


So today, I WILL NOT YIELD!  I will stand strong and I will write. I just needed a reminder that I am unique and so is my writing. I have something to offer. And it's totally okay to free write my story.
I will not surrender!
Today I will edit and write and love my story.  I will not weed the garden or mop the floor or wash the car (that's what kids are for, right??). I will concentrate on the flow of words and sentences. I will stand on hope and conquer my fear of inadequacy.
I will not surrender.




What about you?  What have you done where you have stood tall and didn't surrender?





Disclaimer: Don't misunderstand me! I LOVED the conference. I meet so many new people and caught up with friends and had a great time. I learned more about querying and editing that will help me. The conference was the best organized one I've been to so far. I just wasn't as inspired as I have been and I CLAIM the fault as my own.





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Tuesday, June 5, 2012

Best books I've read so far this year~ Armchair BEA

Lots going on over @ Armchair BEA. Get on over there and check it out.

These are my favorite reads so far this year (I've only read 30 so far this year, so I'm sure my list will change):

Girl of Fire and Thorns
Forgotten
On Little Wings
The Death Cure
Defenders of the Covenant

Saturday, June 2, 2012

What have editors bought lately??

This is what editors have bought lately, according to Pub Rants:

1) A young adult thriller
2) Gothic retelling of a classic--in this case, The Island of Dr. Moreau
3 young adult straight fantasy (as opposed to a bent one! *grin* In other words, a traditional not contemporary fantasy)
4) a time travel young adult novel
5) realistic contemporary young adult
6) animal character middle grade fantasy


ARE YOU WRITING ANY OF THESE?