Why your editor admires you (and why you might not realise this)

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Hello Space Cadets, I wanted to share a post which has touched me personally. As I slog through the edits of book two, Fortress Beta City, I find that I need to continually remind myself that this is for the better.  As I scrolled through blogs I follow, this jumped out at me.  I definitely needed to hear this today.  A brief discussion has me wondering about the quality of what is about to go live.  If they let me, I’d polish it until nothing was ever published.  Because I’m currently anxiously awaiting the return of my second novel from my editors, with another in the final beta review.  I’m in the thumb twiddling, nail biting stage of WAITING.  I pass the time writing book three and hoping the first two are good enough to warrant publishing this.  Reading this post, when the revisions for book two are so massive, was exactly the pep talk I needed. Thank you to the lovely writer, follow her blog, it is worth it!!

Until next time, stay frosty and don’t forget to keep your powder dry!

brown_bess

JR

 

 

–> I reblog this on the assumption that the author of said post used all images are used in accordance with copyright laws.  She’s a smart cookie so I’m sure they did!

Nail Your Novel

5730710531_07b49820e8_zWhen I write a report about an author’s novel, it usually runs to at least 25 pages of detailed notes and developmental suggestions, plus annotations on the manuscript. Sometimes I’ve written 60-page reports. Although I make my responses constructive and helpful, and discuss strengths as weaknesses, I know it’s daunting to receive such a screed. I know my writers think ‘crikey, she needed to say all that? Did I get it so wrong?’

And this: ‘I thought the book was perfect. What kind of shambolic half-wit does she think I am?’

Well today, I’d like to let you know how the editor sees your book.

My open letter to the edited

Although it may be hard for you to believe when you see the size of my report, I know your manuscript represents aeons more time than the hours it takes me to glide through with my editorial eye…

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Honest Honey, It’s Research!

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Honest Honey, it’s research:

Or Why writers pull apart owl pellets to inspect the bones within.

 

One of the reasons I landed the contract to write a spin-off series in The Human Legion Universe was because I was active in the fan forums and on Tim C. Taylors blog.  As part of the process, I’ve had to research a lot of weird things and even some cringe worthy one.  See my article about my run-in with the law because someone heard me interviewing a nurse over the phone and thought I was planning mass murder!  LOL!!  Luckily it ended well… and not with me on the evening news!

 

Seriously though, one of the best parts of being a writer is the ability to follow these rabbit trails to places unknown.  When I read a book about the history of clowns or vampire deer, I don’t KNOW if I will use it in a book but I might.  So it becomes an issue of constantly learning and growing as an individual.  This growth allows you to flavor your worlds and stories in unique and unexpected ways.  My friend and fellow author, Tim C. Taylor recently did a blog post on this very topic.  Part of this title came from his post, so go on over and check it out!  You’ll be glad you did… and say hey while you are there because your momma taught you manners! So go ahead, click the link below… I TRIPLE DOG DARE YOU!

 

Why writers pull apart owl pellets to inspect the bones within

 

–> As usual, all images are found from Googles cache of open source images.

Keystroke Medium

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When I need a break in the writing, I will often pop on over to YouTube to wet my beak and let my mind go somewhere else to recharge.  One of the many channels I’ve found that I enjoy is Keystroke Medium.  It is a YouTube Podcast made by writers, for writers.  There are a lot of interviews with other authors and it delves into how the sausage is made, how they got their ideas and how the muse translates into the final product.

 

One of my favorite interviews was when they sat down with epic fantasy author Davis Ashura.  He is an author who merges his medical training and his Indian heritage into his Caste and Outcasts Series. You can definitely see the touches of India’s culture and history throughout his series, which give his fantasy novels a uniqueness that I’ve not found elsewhere.  It isn’t the standard Anglo-centric style of world, a trait I greatly appreciate.

A Warrior's Path (The Castes and the OutCastes Book 1) by [Ashura, Davis]
A Warrior's Knowledge (The Castes and the OutCastes Book 2) by [Ashura, Davis]
A Warrior's Penance (The Castes and the OutCastes Book 3) by [Ashura, Davis]

 

Without further adieu, check out the interview!  It made me go buy his books, so gird your loins, hide your wallets and watch this video interview!

–> The artwork in question belongs to Davis Ashura and is being used under the Fair Use Doctrine.

ESA -Week In Images

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Normally I don’t reblog because I’m trying to be VERY careful about pesky things like copy rights… Hey, it would be impossible for me to know that EVERY blogger owned the rights to the stuff they post… If I could make the mistake, which I fixed recently, then other people could too. That said, the images from this blog were taken by the US government and so belong to ALL the people. As you check them out, also click on over to Planet Simon and give his blog a gander!

Beyond the Infinite

This weeks dose of space pics from ESA include a stellar fireball, shrapnel left over from an exploding star and the moon from the ISS.

Click on the link to see the full article.

Hubble’s fireballStellar shrapnelFull Moon

via Week In Images / Highlights / ESA

Simon 🙂

No ownership claimed on images – Credit ESA

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Science Fiction Writing

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As an author of science fiction, can I call myself that before my novel is published?  I digress, as authors of science fiction and fantasy, we often have to shoulder the burdens of creating a world from scratch.  If we didn’t do it, it generally means we are writing   In the lingo of us super cool author types, it is called WORLD BUILDING, but basically it means that we have to create a world from scratch.  In other types of fiction, be it modern or historical, the reader already knows the nuances of life.  You say he wore a Hawaiian shirt, BAM, we can picture a Hawaiian shirt.  Tell me he drove a Porsche, I can picture a real life droll worthy dream car.  Say the knight wore armor, I can picture it in all it’s shining glory.  BUT, you try telling me he rode into town on a wee beastie [insert your super cool name here], then brother/sister you better commence to describing that thing in detail.

 

Now that we’ve established the basic concept of world building, lets get into one way it affects writers with armies in their worlds.  I recently read a great blog post by author Joe Zieja about creating the rank and culture of your army.  Things like the various ranks and how the forces are organized.  He titled his post Military in Fiction #6 – Rank and Organization, and I highly recommend you check it out!  I hope you find the piece as illuminating as I did, but either way let’s talk about it!

 

–> Note to Readers:  This post replaces an earlier reblog that might have inadvertently violated copyrights.

–> This image is under available under the free Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 3.0 Unreported license and originally shared through a Wikipedia posting. It was taken by photographer Murray Kerr and uploaded on 13 November 2008 at 13:17 hours.