Friday, July 11, 2014

Celebrate The Small Things - 11 July #CTST

It's Friday and time to Celebrate The Small Things (or big things) that happened this week.

I'm thankful for my writing buddies. We beta read each others work, provide honest feedback, and listen to each other lament our lack of production, but there are also times to celebrate. One of my friends came out with a new novel last week. I interviewed him yesterday as part of his blog tour. He did some promotion for me as well. We both saw sales spikes. Win-win.

And I finally got past a block on one of my WIPs. It was driving me nuts. I hope it's a good idea. It's passed the twenty-four hour test, so maybe I'm onto something. We'll see how the words tumble.

Keep writing and keep hoping. What are you celebrating this week?

Want to join in the fun that is Celebrate The Small Things, sign up here.

Thursday, July 10, 2014

Lyn Perry Takes Us to Ma Tutt's Donut Hut

Today I welcome my friend Lyndon Perry, author of Ma Tutt's Donut Hut, a gentle cozy featuring a magical cat and, well, doughnuts. Ma Tutt's is Lyn's first novel. You can find the eBook on Amazon. For a limited time, it's on sale for $1.75, so grab yours before it gets cold.

Chapman: How does it feel to complete and publish your first novel?

Perry: Relieved! I’m a starter of projects and have a hard time completing them. So to see a story through and not leave it at a cliff-hanger of an ending (which I’m oft times wont to do!) is satisfying. It tells me I can do it again – and this time with a longer work.

It’s funny, I started out writing micro-fiction a few years ago, then flash fiction. I graduated to short stories and then novellas. But with this short novel (which is actually four short novellas tied together forming a complete story arc) I think I’ve learned how to structure a complete, full-length novel. I’m excited to get started on the next book. Oops, that spoils my answer to your last question, so I’ll talk more about that later.

Friday, July 4, 2014

Celebrate The Small Things - 4 July #CTST

It's Friday and time to Celebrate The Small Things (or big things) that happened this week.

It's a holiday for those in the U.S. No work today. The sun is shining and it's not blazing hot. It's family fun time. Definitely something to celebrate and be thankful for.

Spaceports & Spidersilk July 2014I'm also celebrating the publication of “In the Kappa's Garden” in the July issue of Spaceports & Spidersilk. Some of you may have read an earlier version of this story a couple years ago. The one just published is revised and expanded, about twice as long as the original. There's a fine crop of stories in this month's issue.

Keep writing and keep hoping. What are you celebrating this week?

Want to join in the fun that is Celebrate The Small Things, sign up here.

Wednesday, July 2, 2014

Insecure Writer’s Support Group: Post #4

It's the first Wednesday of the month again. Time for another IWSG post.

I have no problem coming up with ideas and starting writing projects. My problem is finishing them. It's not I don't work on them. I put in some writing or editing time everyday (well, almost everyday). The stories are always expanding into larger projects. Last week I came up with an idea for a fairy tale retelling. The market wants stories in the 1500 to 2000 range. No problem, I thought. I can finish this off in a few days. At 1400 words, I knew I had a problem. I sent it off to a writing buddy for a second opinion. Yup, the story wasn't working, not enough context to support the action. I likely need 4 to 6k to tell a satisfying tale. Argh. So much for that market. I've lost count of the number of flash stories that tripled or quadrupled in size. Sometimes writing stories is like mowing a lawn that grows faster than you can mow.

Until next month, keep writing.

Tuesday, July 1, 2014

Word of the Week: Wolf

Little Red Riding Hood (c. 1820)
by Fleury Fran├žois Richard (1777–1852).
I suspect everybody knows what a wolf (Canis lupus) is: a furry, four-legged creature with big teeth that lives and hunts in packs and sings to the moon and plays a very important role in a healthy ecosystem. (Deer, elk, and moose might have a different opinion.) What interests me is the meaning of the word wolf when it's applied to people.

Wolf derives from the Old English wulf—meaning the animal, a wolfish person, or a devil—and descends from the Proto-Germanic *wulfaz. Cognates appear in Old Saxon wulf, Old Norse ulfr, German wolf, and Gothic wulfs.

Friday, June 27, 2014

Celebrate The Small Things - 27 June #CTST

It's Friday and time to Celebrate The Small Things (or big things) that happened this week.

This is my first CTST post. WooHoo! I've been seeing these on Lexa Cain's blog for a couple months and finally remembered to sign up.

I mentioned in my previous IWSG posts that I've been waiting and waiting and waiting for responses on some rewrite requests. One of them finally came through: an acceptance! "In the Kappa's Garden" will appear in Spaceports & Spidersilk in July.

Lots of rain this week, which means my garden will grow and I don't have to go out in the blazing sun and water it. Peppers and tomatoes are good for your creativity. Well, maybe, I made that up, but they taste good.

Keep writing and keep hoping. What are you celebrating this week?

Want to join in the fun that is Celebrate The Small Things, sign up here.

Friday, June 20, 2014

Hey! That's My Story

North Carolina LegendsThe other day I was thumbing through a collection titled North Carolina Legends by Richard Walser. These are cool books with brief descriptions of ghosts and other strange stories from the region. Some of the titles from this collection include: “Specter at the Gold Mine,” “Mystery Ship of Diamond Shoals,” “The Witch Bride,” and “The Evil Hunter of Purgatory Mountain.” You get the idea. You usually find these books at gift shops in tourist traps. The write-ups are brief enough to fire your imagination to create your own stories based on the original without weighing you down with too many details.

Highway 24As I'm looking through, I come across a story titled “Girl at the Underpass.” Sounds like a ghost story. It is. A man on a lonely, rural road comes across a young girl in a formal dress. He stops. She tells him in a strange monotone voice that she's trying to get home. Her date to a dance had left her there. The man offers her a ride. When they reach her house, he opens the door for her to find no one in his car. Thinking she somehow slipped out, he inquires about her at the house. An old woman answers and tells him the girl is the ghost of her daughter who was killed in an automobile accident years ago.

If you're familiar with my story Highway 24, you know why I found the “Girl at the Underpass” so fascinating. The stories share the same premise: man comes across ghost-girl in a formal dress on a lonely, rural highway. Deliciously creepy, eh? Ever come across a story so similar to one of your own tales that it could have been the source?