These random ramblings and author musings are designed to entertain, though they might drag you kicking and screaming through my daft indie publishing journey. If you are somehow inadvertently informed, or if you have discovered something useful within, well then . . . count that as a jolly coincidence. Thanks for reading! (header background - Sky_18 Free Texture #133 by Brenda Starr)

20131222

Word of the week: ambiguous \am-ˈbi-gyə-wəs\ - (hear it!) - adjective - : able to be understood in more than one way : having more than one possible meaning : not expressed or understood clearly

Indie author shout out - Hey, hey! I've got a handful of indie accomplishments to crow about this week!

First, Mr. Glen Solosky [indie author of The Abominable Sruvius] has a new short out . . . for FREE on Smashwords: Walt vs The Space Flunkies - a funky little, awesomely written short story he'd adapted from its original comic book style. Come check it out!

Second, indie author Lorraine Sears will be running a special FREE promotion on Amazon for her novel, Soul Reunion, from Christmas Day through the Sunday the 29th. Come for a download! Hey, it'll be FREE. What do you have to lose?

Third, Lisa M. Green [indie author of The First], has reached well beyond her kickstarter goal . . . thanks to the wonderful help of all her backers! Many congrats to Lisa, and we look forward to reading your book, The First, in all its glory!
  
Fourth, I absolutely need to shout out about Sparks, the debut novel by indie author R.S. McCoy, another author whom I truly look forward to knowing and helping to spread the word about.
  
Fifth, the wonderful Miss Holly Kothe (indie author of Sweet Violent Femmes) has a short, Mirror Image, featured in I am Not Frazzle!, a charity anthology put together by Graham Downs, and as the description at Amazon states: "All proceeds of this book go to the Devizes and District Opportunity Centre, a registered charity in the UK that helps children with disabilities and learning difficulties get a better start to life."
  
And finally . . . why haven't you downloaded your copy of Sons of the Falcon (by indie author Court Ellyn) yet?? What the heck are you waiting for? Go! Now! Stat! Shoo, shoo, shoo! At 99 cents, how can you go wrong, really?

And so now . . . the actual blog post! . . . 

Say What??

More than once, I've been told I have a knack for character dialogue, making it come alive on the page. Well, I had taken this to heart and had written an article for Writer's Beat Quarterly about what I'd learned regarding character dialogue.

And honestly, with the holiday season coming up and many people out and about travelling and what not . . . what better time to post up a past article?

Thus and so, here it is. 

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Strictly Speaking: Character Dialogue

Pick up any fiction book and thumb through it. What are you likely to see? Aside from paragraph after paragraph of narration, the second most recognizable part of a novel is the dialogue.

Like real people in the real world, characters who live together within the pages of a fictional world need to speak to one another. Through this, they come to life; they reveal information to the reader about themselves and their situations, and shed light on any number of backstories that might fuel their actions or shape their demeanors.

Thus, well-written dialogue is just as important to the overall structure of a story as narration is. Stilted or awkward speech, characters who speak “out of character,” or one who drones on in exposition can jar or bore a reader, which might make him put the book down in disgust.

But writing believable dialogue can be easy—if a writer is willing to put himself into his characters' metaphorical shoes, that is. How? More on this in a moment.

Let's start by looking at the various parts of dialogue.

Continued here - Strictly Speaking: Character Dialogue

20131211

Word of the week: resplendent /riˈsplendənt/ - (hear it!) - adjective - shining brilliantly : characterized by a glowing splendor - Merriam-Webster Dictionary

Indie Author of the Month: Please Come Meet . . . Lorraine Sears

All right, everyone. I gotta be honest with you. No words can convey the admiration I hold for this month’s indie author.

No, really.

For as long as I’ve known her (and it’s been quite a few years at WB!), she’s been an absolute wonder: heavily involved in so much, yet she manages to balance her time and various workloads with what seems to be a fine-point precision. She’s everywhere all at once—doing, doing, doing—yet she still finds the time to not only write a full novel (indeed, a whole series of them!), but also strengthen and nurture the bonds of friendship both near and at great distances via the internet. She’s strong and honest, kind and wonderful, and I’m very happy to know her as a good friend and fellow indie author.

So, as December 13th rapidly approaches—the official release date of Soul Reunion (first book of the Soul Takers series)—please consider supporting indie author Lorraine Sears in her writing and publishing endeavors.

But first, come learn a little bit about her here, now, at the Ether of my Imagination. Please let me introduce . . . Lorraine Sears.

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If I could step back in time and tell my teenage self that personal discovery doesn’t happen until you’re a lot older, I think life would have been very different. But ever since I seriously took up the pen again in my mid-thirties, I’ve been finding out all sorts of strange and unusual things about myself.

For instance, I have an overriding need to be continuously, mentally active. My mind has to be occupied at all times, from the moment my eyes open around 6 a.m., until the second sleep catches up with me (after I’ve spent a while reading in bed) after 10:30 p.m. I was once told I’d benefit from meditation, but I don’t think I could stand the silence.

Whether I am reading, writing, listening to music or watching TV, there has to be mental input. My head is a large funnel with everything pouring in, and the output is my writing. I write technical documents for work, non-fiction on my blog, the occasional article, and of course, my fiction.

I’ve written shorts and had them published and I’ve got the all-important trunk novel in at least three different incarnations. But my main focus for the last three years and into the foreseeable future is my Soul Taker series. The first of which, Soul Reunion, is released on December 13th this year.

I’ve always loved stories of the paranormal variety; even as a child they mystified and intrigued me. A few years ago I stumbled across Christine Feehan’s Carpathian series, which combined the paranormal with romance. … Romance, blegh. Until then, I’d avoided slushy romantic novels like they were contagious diseases. But when you have a hunky immortal male worshipping a delicate human female, and going through all sorts of trials to be together forever … well. I’ve always been a sucker for a happy ending and paranormal romance has those by the bookshelf.

After reading the works of Feehan, then Kresley Cole, Gena Showalter, then finally my favourite, J.R. Ward, I was eager to create a paranormal romance series of my own. But with so many fantastic para-rom authors already out there, I needed something new. Something different. As much as I enjoy reading about vampires, they have been done to death. And some writers (no names mentioned), have taken so many liberties with vampire lore that it’s lost all its bite (pun intended). Werewolves are cool too, and I know I’ve got a great were-story inside me, but I wanted to bring a series to life like J.R. Ward has done with the Black Dagger Brotherhood. I wanted to create a world and develop characters that would pop in and out of each others’ stories. So, I came up with my Soul Takers. And I haven’t looked back since.

All my free time is taken up with literary pursuits. Because I read a lot and write book reviews I’ve been approached by several authors asking me to read and review their work, which is a real compliment. I’ve also been approached by a publishing company; now, as one of their pro-readers I get new releases in my favourite genres delivered to my door, to review upon release. Finding time to read is easy for a non-driver like myself. I have an hour’s commute on the bus every day, and a good book makes the time fly.

As a working wife and mother, there’s always plenty that could get in the way of my writing, if I chose to let it. But through my job I’ve learned the value of planning and prioritising with both family time, housework and writing. I can normally find between at least 2-3 hours every day to commit to writing and other related activities.

With my children getting older, it’s marginally easier to find time to write. They’re more interested in doing their own thing: hanging out with friends, etc. They’re not in that baby state where I have to watch them every second of the day to make sure they’re not swallowing pennies or writing on my walls. But I’m never cut off from them. Even when I’m writing, I’m accessible—I don’t have a choice. My resplendent workspace is in the corner of the dining room. And as we’re open plan, this means I’m never out of sight. Thankfully I’m pretty good at pausing thoughts mid-think so I can make drinks, find shoes and referee the odd sibling altercation.

However, the best, most constructive writing for me is early in the morning, after my postman hubby has gone to work and before my children wake up for school and I get ready for work. I usually get between an hour to 90 minutes all to myself. Otherwise it’s in the school holiday when hubby takes the children down to visit their granddad for a few days. Those times are golden. I’m answerable only to me and my whole day outside of work is about me and my writing activities; I even eat my dinner one handed while I work.

Because writing is so important to me, I want to help and support others who also enjoy it. So it’s a real privilege for me to be on the Writer’s Beat staff team where I can do just that. Even better, as Managing Editor of the Oddville Press, I also get to promote talented authors between our pages and delight our readers with their work.

Writing is definitely more than a hobby for me. It’s a coping mechanism for life. On days when I feel low, perhaps missing my mum, I’ll write about her and the good times we shared. When hubby frustrates the hell out of me, I’ll write about the scenario to get it off my chest (sometimes it actually helps me see things from his perspective too). If the children do or say something funny, I like to write about it to capture the moment, a literary photograph. And, when I just want to relax and enjoy myself I’ll write my stories and chill out with my characters.

Writing is not just my hobby. It’s my way of life!

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Come visit Lorraine at her blog: Red Lorry's Journey