Archive for 2012

Author Kylee Shields, MSW, an interview with a Family Counselor

Saturday, December 29th, 2012

A Counselor for the ANASAZI Foundation and an author…how exciting. Tell us where you were born and where do you live now. 

I was born in Ut but I “grew up” in Gresham, OR. I currently live in Gilbert, AZ.

I have lived in Utah all my life. How long have you been writing?

I started writing in a journal when I was 9 y.o. and never stopped.

Well that should make you a seasoned author, does it not? What is your favorite part of being an author? (more…)

The Treasure of Isian by Serena Clarke a great book for YA

Tuesday, December 25th, 2012

The Treasure of Asian is an interesting tale about a servant girl who must do what the prince commands. Elani grows up with the prince and they learn many things together: sword fighting, riding horses, hunting, and such. When the prince takes Elani with him to hunt a treasure, he never imagines how this trip will change their lives forever. They have to battle giants, women warriors, a water witch, and poison plants all to get a special treasure that all want, but only the right person can use.

The story starts a bit slow, yet soon draws you in, and won’t let you go. This is a good young adult novel with all the right things to make it your favorite. The romance is cute and clean.

Florence Osmund a Mystery author’s interview

Saturday, December 22nd, 2012

Florence is great to meet you. How long have you been writing?

I’ve been writing my entire life, but it was only when I retired at the end of 2008 that I began writing novels. Before then, it was all business writing. Writing fiction is much more fun and rewarding.

Oh I agree there. Tell us where you were born and where do you live now.

I was born in Prospect Heights, IL, but moved to and grew up in Libertyville, (more…)

Victor a novel by Tony Ross

Tuesday, December 18th, 2012

A review for readers favorite.com

What a ride I had with this exciting and well-paced book. It is a thrilling story of elite assassins, gangs, and clones filled with suspense. I love this story full of chases, twists, and surprises to the very last page. Tony uses a creative way to tell a suspense story to keep you at the edge of your seat to the end.His technique is fantastic, futuristic and, most of all, a great tale that will keep your blood pumping.

Sunlight City is what you and I would consider at free city, in the sense that anything is possible and no one worries much about it. There is corruption, crime, and moral liberties all along the street. Mona Macheski was a scientist employed by the wealthiest and very insane guy who own Sunlight City. (more…)

Shaunna Gonzales author’s interview

Saturday, December 15th, 2012

Shaunna, how long have you been writing?

I started dabbling when my youngest started school so that would make It about seven years now.

Tell us where you were born and where do you live now.

I was born In Southeastern Idaho (where my Time-travel romance Series is set). (more…)

Military in writing fantasy (continuation)

Tuesday, December 11th, 2012

kinds of warfare-

1. attrition – face to face. Last one standing wins.

2. maneuver – move your people into place before and during shooting. Moving/acting smart.

3. asymmetrical – unbalanced sides.

One side is far superior to the other, but someone with more wits can overcome insurmountable odds. *Logistics is what keeps the troops moving and getting into place – it includes feeding the army. (more…)

Interview with humorous author Connie Sokol

Saturday, December 8th, 2012

Welcome Connie. Tell us what did you just finish reading?

Techniques of the Selling Writer by Dwight V. Swain for writing; Caller ID by Rachelle J. Christensen for fun:)

How fun… What book(s) have changed your life?

Rebecca by Daphne Du Maurier, Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austen, Harriet the Spy by Louise Fitzhugh, Agatha Christie’s Poirot and Marple series. Each has taught me something different about writing and life– (more…)

LTUE Military & Military SF / Military Strategies panel

Tuesday, December 4th, 2012

Sherry Taylor reported on two of the LTUE presentations she attended in February. This is a summary of her report to the Oquirrh writers:

Military & Military SF / Military Strategies (The presenters of these two classes were all former or current military personnel. You can easily modify this info to Fantasy.)

RESEARCH

*Read military guidelines from around the world. Rules can be different from country to country. In the US Military, it’s against the law to use your ranking to make money, but in other countries, it’s not. Example – you can use the barges to transfer goods for trade to make money.

*Read military history. Every war throughout the world, both past and present, have all been different. Different weapons and strategies. (more…)

Chad Huskins an author’s interview

Saturday, December 1st, 2012

Welcome, Chad. My readers are excited to know more about you.

What did you just finish reading?  A Dance with Dragons.  Martin’s a modern master.  It’s my second time reading through the series.  I had to go back through and pick up on all the little details that I’ve missed.  He’s littered the pages with little tidbits, foreshadowing in ways that I don’t think register with most people, at least not on the conscious level.

What book(s) have changed your life?  Sphere by Michael Crichton.  It’s the whole reason I became a writer.  When I was twelve and during summer break from school, my two closest friends happened to be leaving for big vacations at the exact same time.  I asked my friend Doug, “What am I gonna do for the next 3 weeks while you’re both gone?”  (more…)

Zodiac Shmodiac by A. B. Syed a review

Saturday, November 24th, 2012

A review for  Readers favorite

This coming of age story is a well thought out tale that many girls in that age group will identify with. I enjoyed the personality of its four main characters. It is a magical astronomy adventure for all girls and their parents. Zodiac Shmodiac is nicely done and a great fantasy tale. It will be a good choice for any library private or public.

Karina, Carly, Libby, and Ally are friends who go to the same secondary school. One day their teachers tell them that the school has been chosen to receive a collage newspaper. Nobody really cares until the four friends find the horoscope on the last page. (more…)

Marsha Ward is talking about her new book ” Spinster’s Folly”

Saturday, November 17th, 2012

Q: Marsha, is so good to have you with us this week. Could you please tell us when did you first know you wanted to be an author?

A: According to my older sister, I wrote from the time I could hold a pencil, and constantly talked about writing “my novel”. Although I believe her, I have no idea how a child so young as I was even knew about novels. Be that as it may, there’s never been a time that I didn’t have some kind of story to tell. I was editor of the 4th Grade class newsletter. About that time, I wrote a play dealing with the Acadian people’s migration. I wrote a couple of screenplays for a film club I was involved in during my high school years. And of course, my “Great American Novel” began its life in 1965. I didn’t get the commercial I-think-I’ll-actually-let-other-people-read-my-work bug until the 1980s, though. (more…)

How to interview and be interviewed

Saturday, November 10th, 2012

Be a guest on someone else’s blog or have a guest on your blog. Especially when your book is coming out. You can swap interviews with other authors. Some blog have many followers but a small blog will give you exposure nonetheless, so don’t worry about it just do it.

  1. How to find authors. Go to Facebook or google authors and see what comes up. Go visit their sites and befriend them in Facebook. Why Facebook? you can see their friends and many authors have many authors friends and they would love to be interview and hopefully interview you too. Don’t hesitate to ask after their interview airs in your blog if they could interview you. (Especially when your book first comes out.)
  2. You don’t need to follow others before you ask them for an interview.
  3. If you chose to fallow them you will find them:
    1. Facebook, twitter, Linkedin, goodreads, shelfari, Pinterest, Yahoo, and on their blogs.
    2. Why follow them? Do unto others what you would like done to you. Help them and they will help you. But your main goal is to befriend readers if you are an author.
    3. Visit other peoples interview and copy some of other authors questions and then make them relevant to the topic that fits your blog.
  4. Keep a list of questions and answer them according to your expertise or what you want to promote. Then when someone tells you they have never done an interview, you can tell them that you have one handy and can send it to them. This also works for you. Answer the question yourself and you have an interview ready when someone wants to do yours and doesn’t know how.
  5. Many bloggers struggle to find things to put on their blogs and they would love to have material ready to post.
  6. Be professional and double edit your interview. No negative talk or bad language.
  7. Remember to go to the site where the interview is being hosted and make sure you leave a comment that says how thankful you are for being a guest.
  8. Also go back often, for the duration of the post, to answer any questions the readers have for you. (Some post change every other day others stay up a week.)
  9. Do not forget to add live links to all the places your book or whatever you want to promote is sold somewhere in the post. (Usually at the end)
  10. Make sure you tweet the interview and put it on Facebook with a live link, all that time  the post is up. If you save the link to your interview, no to your host blog, you can use it every so often after that week and send new would be fans to it.
  11. Be polite, be grateful, but funny. We all need a good laugh.

The Sounds and the Echoes by Dew Pellucid

Saturday, November 10th, 2012

A review for readers favorite.com

This is a delightful story, well written for middle-aged kids. I found the tale refreshing, full of new ideas for fantasy. It is great reading for hot summer days or cold winter nights. It portrays a new world shared by characters, so much alike yet so different that they will entertain young men as well as young women.

Life has changed a lot for Will since the moment his twin sister disappeared when they were three years old. His parents spend their days looking for clues of how to get her back home. This has now been going on for more than ten years. The problem is that though (more…)

Sara Fitzgerald author of Saving Savanna

Friday, November 2nd, 2012

This week we have author, Sara Fitzgerald visiting our blog. Hi Sara.

Tell us how long have you been writing and why did you started?

I have been writing since I was a child.  I was extremely shy, writing gave me a way to express myself. 

Tell us, what your day is like?

My days are busy.  I have a six-year-old daughter who takes up most of my time.  I also have a striving (more…)

The Butterfly and the Fire Breathing Dragon a review

Saturday, October 20th, 2012

The Butterfly and the Fire Breathing Dragon is a cute story for young kids, one they will love completely. I enjoyed the story and the great ways it teaches friendship and love. What a great idea for a children’s story, it is personal and to the point. (more…)

Leah Bergquist report on two panels: Evil in Fiction & Writing Action

Monday, October 15th, 2012

Leah Bergquist reported on two of the presentations she attended at LTUE: Evil in Fiction (led by James Dashner, Clint Johnson, J. Scott Savage, Jennifer A. Nielson and Al Carlisle) and Writing Action, led by Larry Correia.

Evil in Fiction:  The evil character needs to be intelligent. No one is evil just because. The more logical the character the harder it is for them to tell the difference between good and evil because they can compartmentalize and justify everything they do. Also, a good villain is someone that the reader may eventually feel sympathy for or even, to an extent, like.

It’s not the person who’s evil, it’s the event. A good person can commit an evil act in the name of goodness. Does that make it less evil? Or does the act itself make the person evil? There is always a reason. Animals/monsters kill for food, people kill for food, love, vengeance, the thrill of the hunt etc.

Everyone, both protagonist and antagonist have their own demons to fight.

Everything the hero gets must be earned. The antagonist needs to have something to take

away from the hero. The villain will ALWAYS exploit the hero’s weaknesses and friends, family,

work, anything earned is a weakness and can be used against the hero.

A writer also needs to ask his/herself if a story requires evil at all. Most stories do not

necessarily need evil, but they do need conflict and generally need an antagonist.

Know your target audience. Get a feel for where the line is that must be drawn and if you must

push against it, do so gently. If you cross the line then you may offend/lose your audience.

Manipulation and Seduction are two great tools for a villain to have in his/her tool belt of evil. A villain can get up close to the hero and draw out what darkness is already there inside of

them and use it against them.

Don’t just throw the villain in at the end of the story

It gives more of a plot twist if the villain is

there the whole time and the reader just doesn’t see/notice him/her because they’re that good

at manipulation. But looking back, the reader should be able to but two and two together.

Ask yourself if the ends justify the means. Once again, going back to the need. A killer won’t kill just because unless they have developed an addiction to the act. Some serial killers have

been known to state that God kills indiscriminately. And the more you do what God does, the

more you feel like God. But even then, there is still a need being fulfilled on the killer’s part.

How do you make a villain more realistic? Treat them like a person. Give them a name, a past,

goals, reasons etc. Make them human.

Writing Action:

If an action sequence is bad to you, then it’s going to be bad to the reader.

The pacing of an action sequence can make or break it.

Make it big enough to be entertaining and small enough to stay interesting.

Don’t describe every little detail. During an action sequence, things should be happening so

fast that the character whose point of view the story is being told from should miss things.

Avoid making a checklist. But also avoid not describing enough. Don’t be too wordy.

Learn as much as you can about whatever it is that you’re writing about. You don’t have to be

an expert (you can seek those out). But research makes you a better writer because if you’re writing about something that you don’t know enough about, the reader’s that DO know about such things will know it and lose interest.

Learn what actually happens to the body. A person can’t be shot and just get up and keep running. Bullets do a LOT of damage. Look up Wound Ballistics (just don’t eat first).

Action sequences can convey plot. They don’t need to be separate.

A character that’s tough and used to violence will have a completely different thought process

than someone who has never been in a fight before. For instance, a hardened marine could get shot at and think, “Here we go again.” Whereas a person who has never held a gun before would panic and probably get killed. Or get someone else killed.

If something is confusing for the character it should be confusing for the reader.            Ask yourself, who is the most interesting person’s point of view to tell the scene from? And tell

if from there.

A great question for Alpha Readers is, “Were you ever confused about who’s point of view the

story was from?”

Don’t be afraid to kill main characters.

Sudden, unexpected violence at the end of a conflict is a great way to shock the reader. They

think the heroes have saved the day and are home free and suddenly someone jumps out and kills a main character.

Develop people and give them a bunch of things so that you can take them away. It gives the

characters a reason to venture out and become the heroes and/or villains a reason to become

what they are to be.

Training sequences/montages can help the reader learn a lot about the character.

The Rooftop Club, Meet the rooftop Club by Tiffany A. Flowers

Saturday, October 13th, 2012

A Review for Readers Favorite

This is a quite compelling and yet different kind if book that addresses bullying in schools. It is well put together and will keep the attention of the kids reading it. It is a great tool for parents and teachers to use to talk about this difficult theme. It is a great story to open conversations about this horrible practice. It is well written, has a good pace and the characters are quite believable.

Derek Johnson is a fourth grader who just transferred to Paul Robeson Elementary School. In this school there are three groups: the rooftop club, the kindergarteners, and the crew. (more…)

A Timeless Romance Anthology

Saturday, September 29th, 2012

An interview with Donna Hatch one of the authors of  A Timeless Romance Anthology

Q: What is your typical day like?

It’s not really very glamorous. I get up at an obscene hour of the morning and start getting my children out the door. They all leave at different times so it’s a steady stream. Then I walk, exercise, shower and write or edit. Then after lunch, I go to my day job. After work, it’s all about family, homework, dinner. (more…)

The Dragon’s Vision by Sherri Godsey a review

Saturday, September 22nd, 2012

Review for readersfavorite.com

This tale is an unusual and entertaining story of a world divided by a veil. One side of the veil is bloody and full of battles, dried lands, and shadows. The other is its opposite—green fresh and fruitful. In this part of their world where everyone and everything gets along together wonderfully is a kingdom. In this kingdom there is a king who has a strong willed daughter. In the face of her coming wedding, she sets out to find her husband choice accompanied by her dragon. She has already met the other prospects to her hand and doesn’t like them so she runs away to find her own. (more…)

Why Grandpa by Jack M. Schneider a review

Saturday, September 15th, 2012

Review for readersfavorite.com

This tale expresses an interesting, very opinioned point of view of the author. It is not for the feeble of heart. It is a great conversation piece, for those who like analytical philosophy. It is a philosophical, controversial yet un-intrusive collection of questions and answers. It is un-intrusive because it doesn’t really want to change your beliefs. It just sets all the cards on the table and lets you pick what you want. (more…)