Sunday, February 26, 2012

The Farmer's Curst Wife

In my novel "London Towne," I incorporated a (public domain) folk song called "The Farmer's Curst Wife" or "The Farmer and the Devil." Want to hear what it sounds like? Click here!

I should've probably waited until (if) this is published, but knowing how things go, it'll be taken down by then.

Enjoy the new week, peeps!


Tuesday, February 21, 2012

Potty Mouth

AHA! I knew you'd click in ;)

Today I want to talk about dirty language and swearing in fiction. Well, to be more precise, in my fiction. First though...

Confession: I am not perfect. Got that in mind, right? Okay, good. All delusions shattered. We're ready to go.

There are some words I will use in fiction because I think they help establish the character, etc. Some will "swear," others are like me and try their best not to.

Here are words I will NOT use in my writing, on moral grounds:

Jesus' name (in vain)
God's name (in vain)
H-e-double hockey sticks (as a swear word, such as "What the H-word are you talking about?")
The D-word (as a curse)
The C-word (it's just gross and cruel)
The S-word (gross)
The F-word (see above)
The A-H-word (above)

And those are the words I can think of that I choose not to use in my writing. Here are the ones I will include, if appropriate, and why:

Both the B-words (not used here so as not to offend.) They're not dirty words. Period. They're mean, granted, but some of my characters can get mean.

The A-double-snakes-word. It's crude, but it meant a donkey before anything else.

The point is, it is appropriate sometimes. Most of the time, however, it is NOT. Middle grade shouldn't have any of the words I mentioned. At least, not MY middle grade.

Why did I write this post? To defend myself? Maybe. But more than anything to warn my readers--friends and family among them--that my views of what constitutes "language" might vary from theirs.

So, please, if you pick up one of my books one day, do not be surprised. There is no need for the soap. My characters did it!

Tuesday, February 14, 2012

Getting in Shape

No, not physically, though that needs doing as well *cringe* What I'm talking about is getting my writing life in order.

Before December 6th, 2014, I would like to:

-Finish, rewrite, revise and edit LT
-Write and rewrite a query for LT
-Write and rewrite a synopsis for LT

Things I would like to do on a monthy basis:

-Critique at least one short story or chapter on CC

Things I would like to do on a weekly basis:

-Read blog on publishing
-Read at least one chapter of non-fiction

Things I would like to do daily or every-other day:

-Write or edit
-Read one friend's/follower's blog post and comment
-Read at least one chapter of fiction

About everyone's blogs: I'm still very sorry I'm not on top of commenting. I feel bad about that and will try to get my act together soon.

So, that's a brief look at things I want to do. I wonder what areas YOU might be working on improving :) Misery--I mean, friends want company O:)

Friday, February 10, 2012

Dawn Breaks

No, I am not referring to anything remotely Twilight related... but thanks for asking. What I'm actually talking about is the sun on the horizon of a manuscript I'd almost given up for lost. Beyond hope. Ready for the scrap yard. Deader than--well, you get the picture.

LT has been sitting on my desktop for over a year now since it's untimely deployment and helpful rejection. I had a hankering to read the novella again this AM, so I did. And I loved it! ... too much. Murder your darlings, ya know.

I made myself sit down and write out my frustrations on Twitter. I'd been told the plot is hard to define. That struck a chord with me. Yes, I am not TOO close to the manuscript. I can still take criticism on it. Hope! Anyway, Twitter, right. I vented that there was no plot, that my characters run away from everything right to the end. Then good old Abby "Merc" Rustad made a "simple" suggestion: why not have them run towards everything instead?


So, now I've got a goal for my MC, I'm clearer on who the MC is, my antagonist's motives are the same but his means are even more trecherous... Oh, and I've been able to save a lot of the old stuff. Woot! For this round. Un-woot. Next round, we'll see.

That is all!


Saturday, February 4, 2012

Books of 2012

Here's what I want to read this year. Help me add to the list by making suggestions in the comments, if thou art so inclined. Here I go, in no particular order:

1. Ivanhoe (READ)
2. Sugar Rush (READ)
3. The Woman in White (READ)
4. 11/22/63 (READING)
5. When You are Sleeping (READING)
6. Cranford
7. Wives and Daughters
8. Dracula
9. Across the Universe
10. The Moonstone
11. Alice's Adventures in Wonderland
12. North and South
13. The Scarlet Pimpernel
14. The Mysterious Affair at Styles
15. The Missing: Sabotaged
16. Artemis Fowl (Book 1)
17. The Adventures of Tom Sawyer
18. Frankenstein
19. Hex Hall (Book 3)
20. Divergent
21. Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter
22. Dragonquest
23. The Curse of the Pharaohs
24. The Three Musketeers
25. Manhunt
26. Treasure Island
27. The Great Gatsby
28. The Red Pyramid
29. Heartless
30. Peter Pan
31. The Help