Sunday, February 19, 2017

Round Robin Blog Fest Membership Restored



I belong to a local writing group in order to better my work as well as support fellow authors.
That was the same reason I had for joining the Round Robin Blog Fest. Recently I had read a comment on my blog that I thought was way out of line. It wasn't worded the way the writer intended and I took it to heart that she thought my writing was awful.

She didn't mean it that way.
I took it wrong and we have since made amends.
I'm glad to say, I will once more be a part of the blog fest and look forward to hanging out with them in the months to come.

My sincerest apologies for overreacting!


Friday, February 17, 2017

February 2016 Round Robin Blog Fest

Welcome back, Round Robin Readers!

Today's topic for discussion is:  Description. What is your saturation point? What is not enough? How do you decide what to include and when to hold back to allow the reader to fill in the blanks? Do you ever skim description when reading a book? If so, what description are you likely to skip?

Wow. That's a lot of questions.

Let me start off by saying I'm NOT a fan of the whole Fifty Shades style of books. As a writer, I'm more uncomfortable reading bad writing than over-descriptive writing, but that's a whole other topic.

I write cozy mystery with a little romance so I like to rein in the description and let the reader's imaginations take them to where they want to go. Romance scenes for me call for a steamy kiss or two then...as they say in Mama Mia: dot, dot, dot. I don't include a lot of graphic violence, gore, or steamy sex scenes because that's not the nature of the genre.

What I do include is just enough titillation to get the reader's imagination going. They can fill in the blanks and don't need to have the details smushed in their faces like birthday cake. If that's the type of novel they seek, there are many writers out there who do that - and do a really great job of it!

As a writer, when I do attempt to write a racy scene, I usually consider my audience as well. Are my kids going to read this? Are my friends? Is my mom? Gulp! Lots of pressure. I'm still learning how to deal with the comments from friends and family about writing books about murder, heaven knows the things they'd say if I wrote something x-rated! Even reading racy material, I will skim over the details to get back to the story. I'd prefer to get lost in a well-written story than something that makes me blush fifty shades of red.

I guess the sort of scenes I prefer to write - and to read - are ones that bring me to a brink of what could happen. The build up. Set the scene, form the relationships between the characters, set the mood and....  Personally, I find the possibilities far more intriguing than the in-your-face sex scenes or even the gory murder scenes in thrillers and horrors.

Trust me. My imagination can fill in the blanks quite well without being told what to envision!
I hope you'll go to check out the blog posts by some very amazing writers - all of whom are very good at filling in the blanks and all the details as well!


Marci Baun  http://www.marcibaun.com/blog/
Skye Taylor http://www.skye-writer.com/blogging_by_the_sea
Beverley Bateman http://beverleybateman.blogspot.ca/
Anne Stenhouse  http://annestenhousenovelist.wordpress.com/
Dr. Bob Rich  https://bobrich18.wordpress.com/2017/02/18/description
A.J. Maguire  http://ajmaguire.wordpress.com/
Rachael Kosinski http://rachaelkosinski.weebly.com/
Diane Bator http://dbator.blogspot.ca/
Rhobin Courtright http://www.rhobinleecourtright.com

Sunday, February 5, 2017

Starting Over

One of the themes that appears in a lot of my books is the notion of starting over. Katie started over in The Bookstore Lady when she left Newville and ended up in the little town of Packham. While her new life there took some time to settle, it didn't take long for her to become part of local lore.

I guess part of that whole concept comes from my own life after my we moved our family from Alberta to Southern Ontario. It's not easy picking up and leaving everyone you have ever known, your family and friends, to move to a small town where you don't know anyone, have no idea where you're going, and are so lonely you're willing to talk to total strangers on the street just to have a conversation!

Flash forward 12 years and we have become a part of the local landscape. Well, I have anyway. My kids grew up here, studied karate and all became black belts, and I gave birth to several novels. Now I am a part of the local theatre scene as well as our amazing little writing group. I'm proud to call Orangeville my home while I get the last of my three kids through school and plan what I want to do with the next 50 years of my life - Yes, I am optimistic!

Here I am at 48 years old starting over after separation. I have a new home. A new job. A chance to write and create without feeling the guilt that I was taking precious time away from my family since most of my family has grown or gone. I don't regret a moment of it. In fact, the confidence I've found recently is far greater than the feeling of security I thought I had before.

Which brings me back to my writing. My books.
I've had the opportunity to create my own office space with all of MY books on one shelf that I gaze upon with pride. Those stories came out of my head and will be joined by several more. It isn't that I have a number of books in mind that I'd love to write over my lifetime, it's that the stories come fast and furious and the opportunities with them. I've written and taken the chance to publish. I take pride in the fact that while my early books may not be to everyone's satisfaction, they are MINE and my writing improves the more I write.

What do I think is the secret to writing success?
KEEP WRITING and DON'T GIVE UP!

I may not be a great success in some people's eyes, but in my heart my greatest success is that I never stop writing. In fact, I'm working on my next novel right now.

Stay tuned for bigger and better!