Tag Archives: stories

What the heck am I doing?

I’m still so new at writing that I often wonder if I’m doing this right. There is so much more to writing than just telling a story. Of course telling the story is the most important part. Without that, I wouldn’t really be doing any of this… so, what am I doing exactly? Well, I’m writing, promoting, and learning about the craft of writing.

The first part, like I said, is writing, telling the story. I’m getting better at that, but I still don’t have a novel published. I have two written, but both are in the editing stages and are not ready yet to be published.  It takes a lot to get a story from the first inkling of a tale to a published novel.

First, you have to think about it for a long time and work it out in your head. Then, you have to start writing things down, and that isn’t even the story yet. You have to write out character sketches, outlines, research notes, and more… I suppose these things are not always necessary, but I don’t know how to write a novel without doing this. I keep a notebook on my stories and jot down ideas, plot lines, and other details constantly.

Then, I start getting serious about a chapter outline. The chapter outline keeps me going and keeps my plot on track. It is not permanent, however. I’ve learned that the best stories have characters that take on a life of their own, and when that happens they change the plot. So, I change my outline. But, the outline helps keep things from getting too far off the original track.

Once I have a pretty good start on a chapter outline, I’ll start detailing the chapters. I start with a loose outline and just start adding more and more details. This is the most flexible part. I don’t put any rules on it. Whatever I think or feel I write, keeping it free and easy. This is where the real creativity comes out, and this is what is turned into the novel.

After the novel is finished, what am I going to do with it?  I’m really interested in self publishing and being and indie (or independent author), but I still don’t think I know enough about it.  I’m learning. A lot of what I’m learning has been found on Twitter. I follow a lot of other indie-authors and resources for indies like the following:

 @WoMensLitCafe 

Indie_Kindle

Indie_Kindle

@IndieKindle

 @IndieBookIBC

@AuthorNetwork

and others…

They help.  I also like following book bloggers that do book reviews and other bloggers that help indie-authors promote their work.  Some are:

@PattiRoberts7

@Tynga

@piercebooks

and many others… too many to mention them all.  The point is there are so many people out there willing to help. It is a network of people helping people and returning that help.  I’ve been very surprised to see so much support and such a robust community. So, I’m learning a lot! Thanks all!!

So, now I’m editing my novel and soon will be publishing, and in doing so, I’m sure I’ll learn even more!! And, somewhere along the lines, hopefully, I will figure out what I’m doing!!

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Legacy of Kings by C.S. Friedman

I’m finally reading the final book in this awesome trilogy! Yeah!

Friedman’s trilogy begins with Feast of Souls. The second book is Wings of Wrath.  Then, the final book is Legacy of Kings.  I had thought I was going to leave all my book reviews on my website, but this one is worth blogging about…

The Magister Trilogy by C. S. Friedman http://csfriedman.com/  is one of the best fantasy/speculative fiction novels I’ve had the pleasure of reading. Her characters are strong, yet flawed. They make mistakes, they learn, and they go on. They feel human.

Her plot is intricate with over-riding themes, and interesting unforeseen twists. I like my fiction unpredictable.  When you think the story is going in one direction, it jumps in another.  She keeps the pages turning!

So, what is the Magister Trilogy about?  Imagine a world where witchcraft exists, but there is a high price to wield it. The witches in this world pay for their craft with a little piece of their life force every time they cast a spell.  Then enters the Magisters. They steal the life force from others  for their magic, making them all-powerful… well, almost.  It turns out there are monsters invading the land, souleaters, and they will destroy humanity if left unchecked.  The heroes, the lyr, have to fight the beasts.  Woven throughout these overarching story lines are sinister plots and back stabbing traitors.  Who can be trusted? 

One thing I admire in Friedman’s writing is how she develops her character, Kamala.  She slowly unfolds depth throughout the three books. This is a young woman who learns to survive in a man’s world, and not always too successfully. She learns how to be human and how to care for others, even when they might not necessarily deserve it, as the reader learns about her.

The first two books were excellent, and now that I’m reading the long waited for third and final installment, I have to say I’m even more interested than I was when I first started reading the first book.  I think I need to go back and read the other two again!

Check this one out! A great read… 5 of 5 stars!

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Flexing those muscles!

Recently, I’ve been on a dual quest of muscle flexing!  I’ve been on a physical exercise program for the last 6 weeks that has me been working out a lot more, but I’ve also been on writing quest as well. I’ve really been flexing that writing muscle. I’ve been hammering out my novel, but also working on a few other things. I have been really trying to write even more these past six weeks, and have implemented more specific deadlines. At the same time, I’ve been stepping it up each week in my physical work out.

I made the connection on the track yesterday. I jogged for the first time! Woot! While doing so, I realized that I had also been working out my writing skills. Even while on the track, I’ve been thinking about my novel. There’s nothing like killing two birds with one stone (pardon the cliché!)

It won’t be long now before I’m not only a successful novelist, but also a skinny one!!!

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book trailers are awesome

I’ve been watching a lot of book trailers lately.  They are like movie trailers only for books and they are shorter.  I’m going to make one for the novel I’m working on, so looking at a lot of trailers is a good idea!!

So, here is a trailer for an upcoming book for an author I particularly like.  I adore the trailer and hope I can come up with something half as good.  So, watch it and see what you think! 

[you tube http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tojCn2Y41ig&w=560&h=349]

 

I have to note also, that Maggie Stiefvater is running a contest for people who post her trailer – so I have a dual purpose! I want in the contest. But, also, the trailer is really neat!! She recorded the music herself and drew the animation. She is so talented. I definitely jealous! 

 

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Facing the Challenges

I started writing this blog to document and share my experiences with writing/publishing.  So, I thought I’d take a minute or two to hash out some of the challenges I’m dealing with at this stage…

One of the most difficult and challenging parts of writing fiction is coming up with the names for my characters. I want the names to be appropriate to the character. The name has to fit. If  I have the wrong name, it doesn’t work well. Sometimes it is very difficult. Sometimes it comes easy. It is also a lot of fun. It is part of creating that character. What is that person like? What are their idiosyncracies? What makes that person who that person is? There are times when that is really hard, especially when that person is an alien or is alien like. It is also difficult when you try to name someone within a historic context. If this character comes from ancient Ireland, they can’t be named Fred, right?!

The other big challenge hitting me right now is getting stuck on little things. I keep getting stopped flat by small things that might not even matter, but I get so hung up on them, that I can’t move forward.  This is what I was stuck on this week:

*A different word for canteen.
*Where did I put my notes on a different story entirely than the one I’m trying to work on.
*I needed to buy a new cushion for my chair in my office where I write

Seems like small things, but I’ve wasted a long of time on these things! Gave up on the thesaurus problem, finally found my notes, and bought a seat cushion (on sale at Kohls!) So, now I’m ready to write… what am I working on today?

I need to do some yoga and focus!!

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Look What’s New

Hi all… I posted the prologue for my new novel, Desolute Incubus, on my website…

http://sjordanasble.com/Page_2.html

Please check it out and comment… is this something you want to keep reading? Want to know what happens to Matthew?

The novel is about Vampires. The prologue is probably the only PG rated portion of the book, but the intent is to introduce the hero.

If you purchased my ebook of short stories, you may have seen an introduction to this novel.

It is coming along… hope you will like the prologue. Please let me know what you think…

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Second Place

Working hard on my story about the Hover Craft racer. The title is “Second Place.” I’ve got a great start on it. I have some complex themes that I’m trying to weave into the story, such as learning to live with unfilfilled expectations after you’ve done your best. That’s a hard one for me personally, so that is what pops up in my stories.

When I have it finished I will post it to my website and let everyone know to go check it out. It probably won’t be until next week because I’m going to the Sci-fi convention (www.vulcanevents.com)  this weekend here in Tampa, so I won’t have a lot of time to work on it. AND (even better) I want to see what I learn at some of the writing workshops at the Con and see if I can apply that to this story.

I will keep you posted!

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