Wednesday, July 29, 2015

World Of Ink Network Presents: Dots, Spots, and the 'Nots'

Today on Blogtalk radio, V.S. Grenier and I will talk with Fawn Eindarsen-Nielsen, the president of Hear My Heart Books about the release of their newest book.
Spots, Dots and the Nots?!
Conversations about bullying are as evident in the classroom as they are in the boardrooms of North America, or in the living room of every home.  Prejudice
exists in our minds, when we choose to look for differences in each other rather than similarities.

The things that we perceive to keep us apart actually define how similar we are. That is the moral of this story.

When the Red Spots and White Dots determine that the Nots are separate and different from themselves, in essence, their collective efforts create pink...the

Discover how Pink is able to convert their negative label into a positive self-image.
Come join us at 2 p.m. Mst to listen in and learn about the radical approach this company takes to fight bullying. or
ISBN:             978-0-9868750-5-2   
Book Price:         $10.00
Format:             Full colour, soft cover, saddle-stitched
Page count:         32 pp
Trim size:         5.5” x 8.5”
Category:         Education
Assertiveness concepts
Book Trailer:
This important story presents a real-life review of how bullying impacts society.  When the RED Spots and WHITE Dots come together to exclude the Nots,
they create more and more PINK Nots. 
The story:
list of 6 items
• teaches kids about human rights,
• reinforces that we are all who we are meant to be,
• builds dialogue around inclusion,
• provides support to the bully, victim and bystander,
• reinforces positive, respectful behaviour, and
• reminds us that we all have a choice to exclude (which increases anger and unhappiness) or practice inclusion (where everyone can flourish and grow).
list end
Just read ‘Spots, Dots...and the Nots?!’
It’s friggin’ brilliant!!! Love it!
This book needs to be in schools everywhere!!!
Wes Funk author and host of the Saskatoon TV series Lit' Happens, which showcases Saskatchewan's literary talent.
In the spirit of partnership and possibilities for children and youth, 

“Join the minority that sees a clear path out of present darkness, that never submits to fear and despair, and that does its part to lead everyone out of
crisis into a future full of light.”
Deepak Chopra and Rudolph E. Tanzi
block quote om

Wednesday, July 22, 2015

Primary Character Development

Most of my novels start out with either a plot idea or a setting. I rarely begin a story line with a specific character in mind. This is opposite of what a lot of authors do but for me, the story unfolds and the people in the story take shape with the plot line. May bee because of this, often my characters are difficult to flesh out.
A character must be so real to the writer that it should feel like you're creating a child. You must know their every thought, desire, fear and pet-peeve. You have to know if they are a dog or cat person. You have to know where and if they went to school. Who they liked, loved and hated throughout their life. You must know what they would say in any given situation, why they would say it and whether or not their being honest or covering up their real feelings.
Often an author knows their characters better than they know themselves. This is an intimate, deep and all-encompassing endeavor and can be exhausting and thrilling.It also creates a situation where hundreds of pages are often deleted while the writer comes to know their character. I hate to delete my work. I hate to delve so deeply into a character and then never tell the story that made me so well-informed about who they are. The truth, though, is it has to be done.
So instead of telling you to grit your teeth and bare it, I have another tool that works for me...
Write short stories about your secondary characters as they interact with your POV, or Point of View, character. Write these stories from the secondary character's mind and eyes. It will show you what your POV character looks like, sounds like and how they come across to other people. It will also provide side story lines and series potential for your novels.
I have three books I'm either working on, developing, or re-writing and these secondary character story lines give me the chance to develop other characters, take a break from the intensity of my POV characters and go down side lines with characters I love.
In the meantime, keep writing, reading and developing your characters.

Wednesday, July 15, 2015

If I Never Made A Dime lists more than 300,000 authors in their archives going back to the early 1950's. There are even more than that stretching back to the beginnings of the 19 th Century and beyond if you look at Socrates, The Cesar's and religious historians all the way back to the authors of the Old Testament and earlier. With competition like that, today's author's find themselves wondering if they'd keep writing despite the stiff and relentless barrage of material available.
One of our favorite mantras as writers is the saying:
"I'd keep writing even if I never made a dime, because I love it."
A brave and noble proclamation, Maybe, but also the excuse we use to drive us forward into the fray when the successes can be few and far between. The question we should be asking ourselves isn't "Would I keep writing if I never made a dime?" The question we should ask ourselves is: "Would I keep writing if I had all the money I could dream of?"
Look at J.K. Rowling and  her Harry Potter series.
$1 billion
J.K. Rowling Net Worth of $1 billion came from the royalties she is receiving from her books and from the Harry Potter franchise. Harry Potter brand is
said to be worth $15 billion. The film Harry Potter was the highest-grossing film series of all-time that recorded world box office sales of $7.7 billion.Dec
16, 2014
JK Rowling Net Worth: Harry Potter Author & World's Richest ...
Rowling doesn't need to keep writing...but she does. Her net worth is solid, she won't need to make another dime, but she keeps going. Because she loves to write? Because she's afraid she'll run out of money? Because she's famous and must keep up her public face?
Only Rowling knows the answers to those questions. She is a writer though and so she writes. "I'm just saying I'm going to be enjoying writing without having to publish or
having to think about that.  And it's-- that's a privilege, you know? … I'm immensely privileged." J.K. Rowling in interview with NBC Dateline, 2007

Rowling has released an adult series as well as a mystery since her Harry Potter series. She hasn't found the same success with her other books, but she's J.K. Rowling, she automatically succeeds on her name alone. She is one of many authors who can say they'd keep writing even if they never made another dime, because they don't do it for the money.
There are days, weeks and even months in my life where I wonder if I had all the money I needed...would I keep writing?
The desire to create, build stories, characters and plots must come from a deeper place than the money. It must be a part of the writer that transcends the cash, the fame or the status which can come. It must be a love of the work and a passion for the dream of people who live only in our hearts and minds.
So...keep writing. Even if you never make a dime. Not because you hope some day you won't have to worry about money, but because it's what you do. It's who you are!

Wednesday, July 8, 2015

Paper Gems with Pippa Dacosta

As I research paranormal books to help me write better, I often find surprises in odd places.
The Muse series by Pippa Dacosta was one such discovery.
Let me back up for a moment and start over.
I bought an 11 book box set of paranormal romances with few expectations. I often buy box sets with lots of different story lines in hopes of learning what other writers do. usually only about 5-20% of these books turn out to be any good. Somehow though, I can always find at least one i really enjoy. The series is actually called "Beyond The Veil Series" and follows a woman who is half-deamon and half human. As she discovers the truth about her brutal background and the half daemon assassin who is hired to kill her, a whole fascinating world opens up in the first book. Once you've read "Muse" you must read the rest of the series. I was drawn in with this first novel. Tons of action, intrigue and a fantastic, complicated set of scenery, characters and love interests. There was a little language and some sexual references, but nothing overt. By the time you read the other four books and the pre-quel in the series those things change. Sexual material and language become stronger and more blatant along with the level of violence.
This author has a wonderful ability to develop characters, plot, relationships and intrigue while making it look effortless.
Go check her out on, on google, or on her facebook page

Wednesday, July 1, 2015

Playing Fair

Have you ever read a really good story which begins with a cataclysmic event? The story unfolds in great character development, action scenes, revelations of plot and character until you grasp the edge of your seat to find out the resolution? All of a sudden the book ends with Character A waking from a dream, or coming out of a coma? Worse when all is lost and our heroes and heroines are about to fly the eagles?
Frustrating at the least. Reader betraying at the worst.
Consider before you write your characters into a corner that needs large winged rescuers to save them, that you're not playing fair. A story line with great development and even ending in the death or permanent disability of a main character needs to happen in order not to deflate your reader and lose your credibility as an author.
I read a wonderful story about a young woman who goes blind. A small part of me wished she'd wake up from a horrible nightmare, be a better person from the experience, and then go back to being sighted.
I realized, because I read a story with a wake-up ending, that I feel ripped off by this kind of plot turn.
Bad things happen to good people. Disaster strikes and disease steals a planned future only to replace it with another different and better one. Pretending this is not a fact of life gives a disingenuous feel to an otherwise great story.
Making a story deep, complex, dangerous and deadly only to wrap everything up with an out-of-this-world rescue gives your reader the feeling that the story never needed to happen. The author just dragged you through 300 or more pages of gut wrenching action to say..."Never mind."
When plotting or planning a story, make sure your playing fair with your reader. If a character needs to die, even a character you've developed through 7 or more books...Kill Him!
If your characters end up disabled or diseased but better for the journey...Its Not A Dream!
When the ring is thrown into the mountain and our heroes are drifting in a river of lava to their demise...Let Them Go!
It will hurt a little, but you'll be a better writer with a readership that trusts you because you always played fair.
Keep your chin up, your story's coming and keep writing.