Month: July 2016

Writespiration #93 Underwater Ballroom

BallroomI get inspiration from all over the place, I actively seek it out on a daily basis. Basically I’m a sniffer dog only my crack cocaine happen to be quirky ideas. Although I’m hard at work editing Keepers, I can’t help but ferret away at other projects. Currently I’m searching for location inspiration for a different book series.

I found something awesome recently in an article on the Atlas Obscurer, and I just had to share it. They found a ballroom built under a lake. You can check out the article here. The ballroom happens to actually be a smoking room, but they called it a ballroom, and that was enough to send my mind reeling. What if it really were a ballroom? The glass roof, now covered in algae would have allowed dancers to view the creatures in the lake while they danced. I almost have to squeeze my temples to prevent all the ideas falling out. I love this.

Your challenge this week is to set a piece of flash fiction under water. Write a story in less than 200 words. Paste in the comments or use a pingback and submit before 7th August.

As always, I am slow to respond to entries because I read and moderate everyone, you may find a delay before your story appears and before I comment. (more…)

Mantras, Mindset & 7 Secrets You Need To Finish Your Book

Mantra MindsetIf you’re a creative person, then at some point you’ll meet my little bitch of a friend self-doubt. Meeting her is as inherent as the need to play God and cackle as you kill another darling.

Self-doubt really is the queen bee of inefficiency, procrastination and pointlessness. Frankly, she makes Trump seem useful… did I? Lets move on before I offend anyone with something more than just my potty mouth.

I’ve talked about self-doubt before and given four suggestions to beat it. But like anything, as you grow and develop as a writer, you find new tricks to make you better and more efficient.

Writing is always likened to running a marathon. It’s great analogy because personally, I’ve well and truly hit the 18 mile wall. But even if I have to chew my kneecaps off in a bid to keep my arse in the proverbial chair, I will hand my sodding book-baby to beta readers on 30th September. But fuck me, the universe is not making it easy.

So here are some awesome techniques I’ve been using that you can implement to get you and your book to completion without having to gnaw body parts off. (more…)

The Ancient Nuclear War No One Told You About

Nuclear warWe think we’re real smart as a race. We keep creating bigger and better weapons, anything so long as we got the biggest, best toy in the playground and you don’t. But what if we weren’t the only smart cookies on the planet. What if thousands of years ago, we the arse scratching cave men of the period, or in fact, another race entirely had already made big-bad-apocalyptic-world-destroying weapons?

What if we’re late to the game cause someone else already thought of nuclear weapons 10,000 years ago?!

Well that’s todays wonder – the theory that nuclear weapons are not a 20th century invention at all, but a bronze age creation. (more…)

How To Give Your Readers A Book Hangover in 3 Easy Steps

Book HangoverWriting a book is a form of torture, I swear. Between the paralysing self-doubt, the voices constantly screaming in your head and the genuine addiction to playing God late into the night, it is without doubt, a form of torture.

But despite all that, when you see the results or hear of a reader sobbing at 3am because you killed bunnikins the third and all his fluffy bunnywabbit babies, it makes it all worth while.

We’ve all been there: unable to see the page for the hysterical tears, or laughing so hard you drop the book and lose your page. Or the ultimate – been given a book hangover by the latest series you binge read.

As authors, that’s exactly what we want to do our readers: hook em’, shake em, change em’, and set them free again.

The key to a hangover, is being able to change a reader, but in order to achieve that change, we need to drag them into the heart of our story. Which means, we need to know what the heart of our story is in the first place. (more…)

Writespiration #92 First and Last lines

writespiration first and last lineThis week, I am giving you a chance to share something from your WIP. I want to know what the first and last line of your current story is.

To join in, post a link in the comments or drop your lines (identified by which is first and which is last) into the comments.

If there’s a significant number of you joining in, I may not be able to comment on every entry this week as I am snowed under trying to meet a deadline. However, I will publish every one in the next Writespiration.

Here’s Mine: (more…)

7 Things You Need To Know to Master Your Genre’s Book Cover

Book coverI’m not shallow…But I definitely judge a book by its cover.

Shit. That makes me shallow doesn’t it?

Ah well, fuck it. At least I can admit it.

I’ve been thinking about marketing a LOT recently. Minus a total meltdown last week and a decision to bin (and subsequently re-write the last 30K of my book), I am still on track to send my book-baby to beta readers on 30th September.

Being the incessant 5 steps-a-head planner that I am, it means my mind is on marketing, book covers and that big ol’ scare-the-shitsicles-out-of-you decision: Do I run the poison, trap-infested gauntlet to a publishers door? Or drown in the overly saturated ‘Amazon’ rainforest of books as an indie? As it happens, I’ve finally made my mind up, but I’ll leave that for another post.

Book covers are without doubt, THE most important marketing decision you’ll make. Fuck it up, and you can watch your readers Foxtrot Oscar into the sunset, never to return to your bookshelf! So, I’m sharing my research and the lessons I’ve learnt in preparing to have my book cover designed. (more…)

The OTHER Pyramid – Mysteries of Bosnia

The Other PyramidWhen it comes to fame the Egyptian pyramids make Kim Kardashian’s gazillion twitter followers look small fry. There are very few people I know who aren’t aware of the pyramids.

BUT, the Egyptian pyramids aren’t the only mysterious pyramids in the world. Far from it. In Visoko, Bosnia, there reigns another king, and this one really is the biggest pyramid of them all.

(more…)

Lies – 5 Tips to Master The Perfect Character Arc

character arcI confess… Instead of reading the half dozen books I already have on the go, I accidentally (ok, on purpose) opened a guilty pleasure novel. And no, that’s not a sexual reference, you filth-bag, I meant my fave genre – YA fantasy).

Because it’s my genre I took the opportunity to research. I never read a book without taking a lesson from it.

This time I learnt all about the character arc and one awesome method for achieving the perfect curve! The book I read: Frostbite by Richelle Mead (part of the Vampire Academy series), used an awesome technique in which to perfect that arc – Lies(more…)