Tag Archives: author

Not sure on anything any more…

Hate feeling so disheartened by something I love so much. Sometimes, I wonder why I have these words in my head, itching to get them down on paper when it feels like they’ll never make it anywhere, like no one is interested in reading them. I give so much of myself, and ask nothing in return and this is beginning to wear me down. I’ve not written properly in months, and the characters no longer want to speak to me as they used to. I know some of the ideas I’ve had and run with are not for everyone, and never will be. But the ideas I have had, that I know are along the lines of something more widely acceptable, are rejected before they can even be read. This is actually making me ponder stopping writing. No longer getting words down, and just concentrating on other things. Five years of writing novels…
 
and I feel like I’ve achieved nothing but an increased sensitivity to the rejections. The critiques that make me feel like crying. The way that other people are always picked ahead of me. I’m always the one in the background, and I just cannot do it any longer, not without really beginning to struggle with who I am. Not even sure I have it in me right now to do the Camp NaNoWriMo’s…or even NaNoWriMo in November. I just don’t see the point in breaking my own heart with characters I love but no one else cares about. Maybe I am better off just helping someone else, and the thoughts of my own skills are where I’ve highly overestimated what I write.

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Sci-fail

So…I know you came here today, expecting something wonderfully written, to do with the terrifying Post-apocalyptic Sci-fi story. I’m sorry >.< I come to you today with one a beginning of one. This story just went nowhere for me. I lost all enthusiasm for it about the same time as I contracted a nasty 2 1/2 week long flu that literally had me down in the dumps. Sci-fi really doesn't seem to be my thing – however…however, the genre for next month? That's something I'm enjoying already. Steampunk Fantasy!

But, I digress. Without further ado – I present you with all I wrote….untitled.

I hunched, shivering, against the wall that had once bound a mighty river in its set route. Now, of course, water was a premium, as the Thames had been drank, emptied. All of the waters had that led into England. The seas remained, but I had never seen one. I didn’t want to. I wasn’t alone in my cringing state. I couldn’t be. There were a dozen of us, all in the same state. Thirsty, starved and dirty. We wore the scraps of clothing on our back as we roamed the streets of London, abandoned by all but the most desperate. The speeding winds beat at me, whipping my hair and clothes about my body. A scream came from somewhere beside me. ‘Davida’. I knew that scream, knew that voice. She was my sister, my only family member remaining.
And yet, I didn’t lift a hand to save her. She’d been marked days beforehand. A fungus, a mould particular to them, had sprouted across her back. We all knew what it meant. We knew what would happen if we tried to stop this. We were born of the first generation after they came to Earth. We’d all believed they were here to bring something new to our lives – to make them easier, somehow. Instead, everyone lived prosperously for a month. A single month in which crops bloomed and the governments were able to put by enough to get everyone through the winter. And then my mother said the Thames itself had dropped by a full foot when the tide came in one day. Davida’s screams stopped suddenly, and instead a slurping sound came from above us.
My fist filled my mouth as I bit down on it. I felt hot tears slid from my eyes – draining away water I couldn’t risk losing. I couldn’t curse, and who knew what would happen if I lifted my head. They could choose me next. I flinched as her body fell to the ground, a meaty smack as she landed on the pavement. She wasn’t my sister any more. She was a sack of meat and broken bones – but I could see the gaping hole where her stomach had been. Every organ was missing, her bones protruding up through the ruined mess of her skin like the skeletal remains of fingers, seeking help that would never come. I stayed still, but red filled my vision. It was the rough grip around my ankle that stopped me from moving away.
I focus my attention on the cracked paving at my feet. Weeds had tried to grow through before the relentless sun and lack of water had dried them. I hoped they fed well on my sister’s blood. I darted my glance along the tanned, scarred arm to Charlie’s face. He was watching me, but looking up. We held still, our gazes locked. He didn’t look at me in sympathy. It was hate and a promise at revenge. I grit my teeth on a fold of skin in my cheek and tasted the metallic wash of blood. ‘Damn…’ Now I had to keep my mouth shut – and wouldn’t you know it? That’s a hard thing to do when you needed to keep yourself under control. I wished for a moment to scream – but there was a lurching, gluttonous beast. A small disk kept it up in the air. Limbs, too many to count, hung down from it, lax from feeding.
I had to keep still, Charlie wouldn’t let me go. He wouldn’t let me get my revenge – and to be honest, I didn’t think it’d be a good idea anyway. Who knew what tools or weapons the beast from beyond this world had? I wasn’t sure myself, and didn’t want to think about it.

Please, tell me what you think of this atrocious attempt at sci-fi! I know…it’s so cliche, I cannot believe it. >.<

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Goodbye Winter, Hello Spring Blog Hop

Goodbye Winter, Hello Spring

So sorry there’s not much personal in this! Illness has rocked me (the flu!) and I’ve dissolved into a sneezing, tired author that has no energy! 😦

The Spring comes slowly up this way,
Slowly, slowly,
Under a snood of hodden grey.

The black and white for her array,
Slowly, slowly,
The Spring comes slowly up this way.

Where is her green that was so gay?
Slowly, slowly,
The Spring comes slowly up this way.

Unto a world too sick for May,
Slowly, slowly,
The Spring comes slowly up this way.

Where are the lads that used to play?
Slowly, slowly,
The Spring comes slowly up this way.

She has no heart for holiday,
Slowly, slowly,
The Spring comes slowly up this way.

The trees are out in Heaven they say.
Slowly, slowly,
The Spring comes slowly up our way.

Katharine Tynan

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C-c-c-changes!

Big things are coming this year on my blog! Every month, I have a different flash fiction theme to write to! That means you, my followers, are treated to a short 5000 piece story EVERY month, on the last day – FREE! This will give you a chance to learn my style in a variety of genres. I’ll be posting discussion themes which I hope you join in with!

 

This month’s theme…is a Utopia. Wikipedia’s definition of a Utopia in fiction is this;

Utopian fiction is the creation of an ideal society, or utopia, as the setting for a novel.’ This will be a challenge for me, as I have to think of a setting for this, and a way to portray an ideal society, without it being over the top or boring.

 

Of course, I’m not doing this alone! Fellow author, Jennifer Don, is doing this too! We’re working together to make ourselves better authors – which means you join in with it! (Follow Jennifer here and here)

 

I really hope you’ll enjoy!

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Collaboration/Teaser Flash Fiction

My world shattered one day. I’d been playing at dominance games with Arashi, my bigger brother, when the wind whispered in my ear. It shook me into standing still, those terrifying words on a gentle summer breeze.

“You lack a part of yourself.” I fled my brother then, leaving him behind me as my muscles powered me forwards. I snapped at the air in front of me, seeking to do harm to the very sprites talking so quietly to me. “You need to leave, Amaya. Leave and offer us your thanks as we guide you on your way. You will need us.” I snarled, unable to believe what the world was telling me. As soon as I was under cover, within the trees, the voices stopped.

The thrumming of paw-steps coming after me made me flinch as I turned my head to look at my black-pelted brother, his golden eyes gleaming with concern.

“Amaya…are you okay?” His voice was a concerned whine as he dropped his head forwards, his ears flattening when I replied with a soft, silken snarl that curled my lips into a face of pure anger.

“If I were okay, Arashi, I wouldn’t have run, would I? You are such an omega sometimes.” I had to insult him. It was an urge, deep down. I was reaching the age where I would leave Deephollow. I also knew, deep down, that it was cruel. He was an omega as much as I was. It was our older brother, Ashai that would be alpha, however.

“Fine! Be the bitch that mom says you are.” His snapped words made me stagger back a step, my hackles lifting in a wave that tingled up my spine.

“If mom said that, she’d at least say it to my face.” I turned from him, utterly disgusted with myself. I’d let him get to me, again. My nose wrinkled back in a small snarl before I shook my head from side to side and wheeled abruptly around. Wasn’t it just my luck that I walked right into Volkan – pack beta and my uncle on my father’s side? I sighed at the look in his gold eyes – so unlike my own – before sitting down. I even dropped my head to avoid looking at him.

His chuckle made me lift my head up sharply. I almost caught my sensitive nose on the underneath of his jaw, I moved so quickly.

“It’s natural, Amaya. You will want to leave soon, but you are staying here. Only in Deephollow woods are you safe. A pretty wolf, like yourself? You will be a human trophy in a day. We can’t lose any more of the pack.” The concern in his voice made my tail wag, furiously so. To know someone in the pack cared made a world of difference. I stood, arching my back before brushing my nose against his cheek. That was when his words hit me, hard.

“What do you mean, lose any more of the pack?”

*Please note – names/roles/story may change. This is a collaboration between my best friend/fellow author Jennifer Don and I, to take place in November. This will be available…in the future sometime 😀

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Guest Spot! Caitlin Hensley plus…chance to win Paranormal Legacy

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On my blog today, I’m hosting Caitlin Hensley, author of the Inhuman Chronicles Series. She’s a friend of mine, someone I met during NaNoWriMo about 2-3 years ago. Since then, I’ve read and reviewed all her books…and if you read through this…there’s a chance to win a copy of Paranormal Legacy, the first book of her Inhuman Chronicles. Enter through rafflecopter for your chance!

When did you first start writing? Have you always wanted to be a writer?

To be honest, I’ve been writing for as long as I can remember. My dream has always been to see my name on the spine of a book, and now it’s come true! 🙂

Do you outline your books, or write as you go?

I usually type out a rough outline, then spend some time composing character backstories and searching for reference pictures on the Internet. After that, the actual writing begins, and I fill in details and expand the plot as I go.

Do you listen to music while you write? If so, what?

I love listening to movie soundtracks, especially the ones from Pirates of the Caribbean and Star Trek. The more epic the music, the easier the words tend to flow.

For you, what’s the hardest part of writing?

When I’m editing one of my books for the last time, after editing it about a bazillion times before that, I have a hard time focusing. As I’m sure you can imagine, reading a book that much can get pretty tiresome…

What’s your favorite genre to read?

I’ll read just about anything, really. Paranormal, fantasy, contemporary, dystopia, you name it! Right now, I’m reading The Book Thief by Markus Zusak.

November is National Novel Writing Month. Are you participating this year?

I love NaNo! And yes, I’m participating. I wasn’t sure if I would, but in the end, I couldn’t resist the urge. I’m working on a YA contemporary romance, and though this is the first time I’ve written in that genre, I’m having a blast!

What’s the title of your latest release? What genre does it fit into?

1420307_540576799364578_750734291_nIt’s called Beast Within, and it’s the third book in The Inhuman Chronicles. It’s YA paranormal-fantasy.

Can you share an excerpt with us?

Sure! Here’s a bit from chapter one:

“Tell me about your dream,” Luke says.

“Well . . . I was in the woods,” I say. “Only there was snow on the ground, everywhere, really deep. And . . . and I was holding Todd’s body in my arms.”

At this, Luke stiffens and sets down his glass. I drop my gaze to the tile and keep going. It’s too late for me to stop now.

“There was a huge hole in Todd’s chest, like he’d been stabbed, probably with the sword that was on the ground beside us. Because it had, you know, blood all over it.”

“Oh my.”

I glance at him again. His face has turned gray. “D-does that mean anything to you?” I ask.

He swallows. “No,” he says, the word catching in his throat. “It means nothing at all.”

Disappointment crashes over me. I was counting so much on Luke having the answers, but he’s as clueless as I am. Now what?

He jumps up from his barstool, so suddenly that my heart stutters in my chest. “Like I said, I don’t know a thing about it. Now why don’t you let me see you to the door? I’d like to return to bed.”

I stand up and ball my hands into fists. “Did you hear a word I just said? This is serious, Luke.”

“Oh yes, I’m sure it seems that way to you. Everyone believes their dreams are important.”

“That dream wasn’t just my imagination,” I say tightly. “It was real.”

He gives a funny little smile. “Was it?”

The urge to whine at him is strong, but I suppress it. I study Luke. He’s staring at a clock mounted on the far wall instead of at my face.

He’s not an idiot, I realize—he’s pretending not to believe me.

“What are you hiding?” I ask, folding my arms. “You should know, it’s really obvious.”

“I haven’t the faintest idea what you’re talking about,” he says. “Now come along, and I’ll show you to the door.”


Any advice for other writers?

Write for yourself. If you worry too much about what other people will think of your book, you’ll never get the first draft written. Just concentrate on reaching the end of your story, and THEN you can consider other people’s opinions.

Where can people go to find information about your books?

Amazon  |  Facebook  |  Goodreads  |  Blog

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Well…I have news…and good news…

My news at the moment is that my health is so so, but that isn’t stopping me from tackling NaNoWriMo at my usual breakneck pace (or faster, as I attempt 50k in 5 days!)

But the good news, I hear you all exclaim, on tenterhooks and at the edge of your seat? Well my monster-length novel, Power of the Song (the working title) has just been accepted by Master Koda Select Publishing, as have I, as one of their writers! Good vibes and with such an immense novel that I was certain no one would want…and now I join those hallowed ranks!

I’m cheering now…can you join me?

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Summer Kindle Giveaway!

It’s that time of year again – SUMMER.

 

Shorts, flip flops, and sunglasses.

 

While the ice cream is thawing, the sun is rising, and that summer heat is blazing, I say it’s about high time for a giveaway! Wouldn’t you say?

 

And what better way to enjoy the beginning of your summer than with a little reading? How about doing that reading on a new Kindle HD?

 

This summer kindle giveaway is brought to you by an amazing group of Indie authors who’ve decided to start your break off with a kick. Follow the giveaway everyday of this month and collect your summer words as you go. Submit them in the end and earn yourself more points towards the grand prize! Complete the rafflecopter and you’re set.

Today’s summer word is: SWIMMING

I N T E R N A T I O N A L

Ends June 30th – 12:00 AM EST

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The Best Moments of Dianne Gardner

What has been your greatest moment as a  writer?

Have you ever had a moment, even if it was a split second when someone noticed you for the unique person you are or complemented you on a job well done? Do you remember what that feels like in your heart?

I’m getting those kinds of moments more and more but I think the most heart warming moments for me is when I get feedback from  the kids that my stories target.

Dianne Gardner 1-1-square

One child I met at one of my book signings. She was clearly autistic yet very loving and I could tell she loves reading. She came up to me, wanted her photo taken in front of the dragon and said, “I am going to bring this book to all my friends. Everyone should read this book.”

A friend who bought her book for her grandson brought word back that his mom said he read it in one night.

One night!!!

My fencing instructor gave the book to his nephew, whom he said the boys parents have a hard time getting him to read. When I saw the boy shortly after that he said, “Hey, I’ve been reading your book!” I said, “Oh yeah? What do you think of it?” He said “Awesome!”

My friends daughter is a devote fan and when her daughter read Deception Peak she actually wrote a review. It’s on my blog. She said,

“The book is very in common with The Harry Potter Series!

My favorite part was when Ian and the Kaempern men go into the mountain to search for Ian’s father, Alex Wilson.

I like this book because it is full of adventure and there is always something amazing that happens around every corner.

This book is one of the greatest books I have EVER read!

I hope that other kids like me love this book. I would recommend this book for ages 9 and up.

Sincerely,

Alyson Zatt

http://dragontargeseries.blogspot.com/2012/11/allys-review.html

Another great moment when a 90 year old lady called me to tell me how thrilled she was with the book.

Those are the best moments as an author. Hearing directly from the readers and having them tell you what they loved about your story!

 Dianne Lynn Gardner     Dianne Gardner 1-me painting2

Author-Illustrator

Young Adult Fantasy-Adventure Fiction

Dianne Gardner is both an author and illustrator living in the Pacific Northwest, USA.
She’s been a painter all her life having started at the age of 12 under her mother’s supervision. Her first private art lesson was with a sculptress in California. Excelling in art in school and on to college, her portfolio includes portraits, inspirational works, and plein air landscapes. She was the portrait painter for the Washington Renaissance Fantasy Fair for several years painting 20 minute oil paintings during the fair. She has just recently started illustrating books, beginning this endeavor with a 9′ triptych of Stenhjaert the Dragon, the antagonist in Ian’s Realm

Dianne is an active member of the Society of Children’s Book Writers and Illustrators, and the National League of American Pen Women. Besides the Ian’s Realm Saga (Deception Peak, The Dragon Shield, and Rubies and Robbers which will be released in 2013) she boasts authorship to four short stories titled A Tale of the Four Wizards Series which interweaves with the Saga. She writes for middle grade and young adults targeting boys and adventure loving girls, but adults are some of her most zealous fans of all Her writing definitely falls under the ‘family friendly’ category!

Books

Dianne Gardner just cover (1)

Ian’s Realm Trilogy
Deception Peak
The Dragon Shield
Rubies and Robbers 
coming soon
Sequels
Cassandra’s Castle To be released
The Diary of a Conjurer To be released

Short Stories

A tale of the Four Wizards
Silvio
Meneka
Kaempie
Reuben

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Welcome…DeEtte Beckstead!

So today I’m hosting DeEtte Beckstead on my blog…and she’s telling us about everything to do with her writing, including a tale about a puppy mill dog and the life she had with this lovely, supportive woman as well as her tips for being a writer.

 

 

Victory cover DeEtte Beckstead

What is the title of your newest release?

 

Victory is my newest release. It came out in December 2012.

 

Do you have any books in the works?

 

I have a book called From Tinker to Belle: From Worthless to Priceless. That is the story of my first puppy mill rescue: her life in the mills, her rescue, and how she changed our family and others.

 

I have another book of stories about my grandchildren as superheros. I asked them each to tell me what they would be like as a superhero, what their costumes would be, what superpowers they had. Using the information they gave me, I write stories about them. It’s a fun project, and a gift to each of my grandlings!

 

When you read, what is your favorite genre?

 

I like to read Christian fiction, historical fiction, and classics mostly. There are some I have read by my fellow authors that I have really enjoyed, even though I wouldn’t have chosen that genre for myself!

 

Do you have any hobbies? What do you like to do in your free time?

 

Crocheting is one of my hobbies. All my grandchildren have toys and clothes I have made for them. They will often ask me to make them something special, and I will do it. I also crochet dog sweaters, afghans, shawls, and doilies. Right now I am making a butterfly swag for one of my granddaughters with over 30 different crocheted butterflies on a crocheted vine.

 

In my free time…. what is that? I always seem to have something I need to be doing, but I like to read, watch old movies, play with my grandkidlings, or crochet. I also love to visit historical sites!

 

If you would have time travel abilities and could meet anyone from any time, who would you like to meet?

 

Oh, so many choices! It’s hard to pick just one! At the moment, I think I would like to meet Galileo Galliel. As the Father of Modern Science, I would love to chat with him about what he thought about his discoveries and where those discoveries have taken us now.

 

What is your all time favorite movie?

 

That’s a tough question. I have many favorites; it depends on the mood I am in. I love August Rush, The Sound of Music, Pride and Prejudice, but of all the movies I have seen, It’s a Wonderful Life has got to be at the top of my list!

 

The Christmas Visitors cover DeEtte BecksteadAre there any specific authors that you admire?

 

There are so many! Jane Austen, CS Lewis, JRR Tolkien… Of my peers, I admire Kim Emerson, G Mitchell Baker, Joe McCoubrey, Brad Fleming. There are others, too!

 

What advice would you give to aspiring writers?

 

Write about what you love. Don’t worry about making it all work to start with; just write. There will be time later to go back and make corrections, adjustments, deletions. Write what you feel. There is that old saying “Strike while the iron is hot.” When you know you have something to write, get it written then. Carry a notebook and pen with you to make notes or write complete scenes if you are away from the keyboard.

 

If a word count is important, don’t fill in with words that don’t add to the story. Just write. Once the first draft is finished, you can go back.

 

Don’t be afraid of editors; they are your friends, there to help you make your story the best it can be.

 

Find the method that works for you and stick with it, even though your best writing buddy uses a different style. If you need to write an outline and character sketches first, do so. If you write better just sitting down and writing, do that.

 

Whether or not you ever get anything published, you are a writer if you write.

 

Do you plan on being a full time writer, or do you have other career plans?

How long have you been writing?

 

I have been a stay-at-home mom (whatever that means! I certainly didn’t stay at home much with six kids!), a preschool teacher, a teacher at a private school, a trainer for people with disabilities, and a group home manager…. All that was before I started writing in 2007. Now I love to be with my grandchildren and taking life a little slower.

 

Do you prefer Ebook, paperback, or hardcover?   

 

Personally, I love the feel of a nice hardcover book in my hands! Paperbacks are next, and ebooks follow that. However, since I have a limited space, I am thankful I have the Kindle app on my iPad and can carry an entire library with me wherever I go! I think the most important part is being able to read, not so much how it is available!

 

Do you have any writing rituals like a particular treat, good luck charm, etc.?

 

Not really. Before my little dog died, he used to sit on my lap or at me feet while I wrote. I would read to him and he would listen politely.

 

I do write better with some background sounds, like the TV or music. I prefer classical music. I don’t have a particular composer or show I like.

 

Do you have a set writing schedule or do you write when the fancy hits you?

 

I write when, as you say, the fancy hits me. My schedule is never certain right now, so I make use of the time I have. I carry a notebook with me to make notes when I am out if something strikes me as write-worthy!

 

Thank you so much being my guest, DeEtte! Please share your bio and links where others can connect with you and your books.

DeEtte Beckstead author imageAuthor and blogger, DeEtte Beckstead started writing in 2007 when her son challenged her to get involved in the National Novel Writing Month, known by the acronym, NaNoWriMo. The manuscript sat untouched with several others until January of 2012 when a good friend encouraged her to seek publication. The Christmas Visitors is her first published short story, and her current novel, Victory is also her first.

            DeEtte spent much of her childhood playing the piano, clarinet, and guitar, reading, and making up stories. She was active in Girl Scouts, which gave her a  variety of experiences. While in college, she was on the University of Utah Synchronized Swim team, and taught winter camping and survival skills for Girl Scouts. She has spent many years working with people with disabilities.

Originally from the state of Utah, currently DeEtte lives in New England where she writes full time and works on the editing team of Master Koda Select Publishing. Her other interests include swimming, crocheting, reading, traveling, history, and her grandchildren. In addition, this devoted mother of six and grandmother of twelve has been a concerned participant in dog rescue services for many years.  

 

Blog: http://deetteanderton.wordpress.com

 

Facebook: www.facebook.com/DeEtteBecksteadAuthor        

 

Amazon author page: http://www.amazon.com/DeEtte-Beckstead/e/B00ADDW94Y/ref=ntt_athr_dp_pel_pop_1

 

AuthorsdB page: http://www.authorsdb.com/authors-directory/66-deette-beckstead

 

Twitter: https://twitter.com/DBAnderton

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