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Friday, January 25, 2013

A Friday Celebration ~ Blog Hop

Wow! Friday again already! This week, I'd like to celebrate my new blog layout.  I've been meaning to change it for a while, but I haven't had the time to do it until this week.  I wanted something a bit more professional looking.  I'm still not done, though.  Just like SHARDS OF GLASS, my blog is a work in progress.  But that's okay.  I also completed the revision of a couple scenes in SHARDS, and I feel good about them.

So what did you accomplish this week? Feel free to share below.  And check out my fellow blog hoppers to see what they're celebrating.  Thanks!

Wednesday, January 23, 2013

Musical Inspiration

Writers being inspired by music is nothing new.  I have music playing more often than not when I'm writing.  It's a useful tool for setting the mood.  So for today's post, I'd like to share with you a few of the songs that inspired me while I was writing SHARDS OF GLASS.  Music is to me what scents are to others.  In other words, my memories aren't really associated with any scents.  However, there are plenty of songs that take me back to a certain time or place.  You'll see what I mean while reviewing some of the songs on this list.

So here we go:

1. Down the Road, by Kenny Chesney 
This is the song that inspired me the most.  The boy and girl living on the same street forming an immediate relationship.  This is Emily and Nicky.

2. Hit 'Em High, by B Real, Busta Rhymes, Coolio, LL Cool J, and Method Man
Every time I hear this song, I'm taken back to high school basketball games.  This song was used by our team to warm up before games, so every time I hear it I find myself sitting in the high school gym, waiting for a game to start.  I used this song for what is now the opening scene of SHARDS OF GLASS.  The first draft had the song itself, but I have since edited it out.  It still plays in my head, though.

3. I'm Still Holding On, by Clint Black & Martina McBride
This is the song that inspired me to write the important prom scene where Emily and Nicky have their first kiss.  During the scene, which takes place during Nicky's senior year, Emily is aware of her time with Nicky running out since he'll be leaving for college. 

4. Here Comes Goodbye, by Rascal Flatts
The first draft originally had three parts.  In part three, Emily began dating a guy named Jason.  This particular song helped me write their break up scene.  All of part three has since been removed from the story along with part one.  Jason may get his own story some day, though.  I really enjoyed his character.

5. It Matters to Me, by Faith Hill; Wrong Again, by Martina McBride; You Were Mine, by Dixie Chicks; Have You Ever, by Brandy
These songs get lumped together because they were used for the same thing.  All of these songs were ones that I listened to in high school while crushing on particular boys.  I used these songs to put me back in that "high school girl giddy excitement over a boy" mentality.  They're not exactly happy songs, though.  Not sure what that says about my high school years. :)

I could list more, but these are the main ones.  If you have any particular songs that you used for your inspiration, feel free to share them in the comments. 

I'll end with part of Down the Road, which if one of my characters were singing, it would be Nicky singing about Emily. 

"When I was a boy

Four houses down from me, was a family with an only child
She was the only girl, in this whole world who could make me smile
Down the road"

Saturday, January 19, 2013

January Blog Chain ~ Thirteen

Time for the first AW Blog Chain for 2013.  And surprise, surprise, this month's prompt is 13.  After taking a look at my short post, check out the links for my fellow AWers.  They have some great stuff to share!



This can't be happening.  Jemma's trembling fingers dialed the number again.  Please, why aren't you answering?



The countdown continued to flash on the news screen.  Sirens blared.  No! She was running out of time!




She slammed the phone down and turned, tripping over her feet in her haste.



There wasn't time; she knew there wasn't.  On any given day, it took ten minutes to get from her office to the outside lot.  The warning came only one minute ago.



What would she tell him? If the missile hadn't been launched at the government building she worked in?


Tanner, I'm sorry.



Hope you enjoyed.  Now take a look at the following:
Ralph Pines
Amanda R
writingismypassion (you are here)

Friday, January 18, 2013

Celebrate the Small Things ~ Blog Hop

Well, folks, it's Friday.  That means it's time to celebrate the small things.  This is a blog hop that I'm excited to take part in.  The goal is to celebrate achievements and to spread the cheer among other participants.  Signing up is still possible.  Click on the above link for details.

So what would I like to celebrate today? The rewriting of a scene, a kissing scene to be exact.  In SHARDS OF GLASS, my MCs Emily and Nicky share a kiss that was, well, more tell than show.  For a first kiss, it was rather dull.  But with a bit of tweaking, it left me breathless just writing it.  *sighs*  I love writing those types of scenes, the ones that make me feel whatever my MC feels. 

So that's my achievement.  If you've signed up for the blog hop, I look forward to coming your way to celebrate with you.  If you haven't signed up but want to share something you've achieved this week, feel free to do so below in the comments section.


Tuesday, January 15, 2013

Q&A for my WIP. The Next Big Thing Blog Hop

Today's post comes about from a tag I received from fellow writer/blogger/AWer Alan Ford who was tagged for "The Next Big Thing" blog hop.  Each participant is to answer ten questions about his/her current work in progress.  So without further adieu, here are the questions and my answers. 

1. What is the working title of your current/next book?
SHARDS OF GLASS is the current title I am using.  UNBREAKABLE was the original title, then came SHATTERED INNOCENCE.  I'm still not satisfied...

2. Where did you get the idea for that book?
I wanted to write a story about someone who chose to overcome, someone who made an active decision to not let her life be dictated by her circumstances.  It started out as such, but then it turned into a love story.  Guess I'm a sucker when it comes to romance.

3. What's the genre of the book?
Young Adult

4. If you could pick actors to play the lead characters in your story, who would you pick?
My two main characters are Emily and Nicky.  Emily is average height.  I picture her as 5'5" or 5'6" but her height isn't important to the plot; she just has to have her head at Nicky's chest level.  She has red hair, which is layered and just past her shoulders.  Her eyes are a gray/blue. Molly Quinn, who plays Alexis on the ABC show Castle, would make a wonderful Emily.  Nicky is tall, 6'3" to be exact, has brown hair, dark brown eyes, and has a solid, muscular build.  But he's more on the slim side, not stocky.  A casting call would be needed to find a good actor to play Nicky.  I'm not satisfied with any of the current actors out there.  Or maybe I'm too particular.  That could be.

5. How would you describe your book in one sentence (ten words or less)?
Ha ha, ten words or less? This is not something I am good at. How about: A young girl rises above the tragedies of her past with the help of the boy next door.  Cheesy.  Unoriginal.  Boring.  And more than ten words.  Yet another thing that needs work. :)

6a. How will your book be published, submitted through the traditional route to a traditional publisher or will you be handling it yourself through Indie publishing methods?
My preferred method is to obtain an agent and be published through the traditional route.  That is my current plan.

6b. If you're an Indie author, will you be publishing through your own company or in a collective with other Indie authors?

7. How long did it take you to write the first draft of this book?
My first draft was 172,000 words, and it took me three months to write.

8. What other books within your genre are similar to yours?
My list for this question is blank.  There are surely similar stories out there, but I haven't read them.  Don't mistake that for a lack of effort on my part, though.  I live in podunk.  We no longer have a library and the nearest book store, which is forty-five minutes away, has limited choices.  I tried to find similar stories for research purposes (you know, to see how other writers did it) but had no luck. 

9. Who or what inspired you to write this book?
My own circumstances along with those of many people I know.  I'm not saying all of Emily's experiences are my own; that isn't the case.  But I do know what it's like to recognize life for what it is, and to make an active decision to not let that life determine who I am or who I will become. 

10. What about your book will pique the reader's interest?
Amidst the popularity of paranormal and sci-fi books, I hope readers will see their own struggles reflected in Emily's life.  Zombies, vampires, werewolves, aliens, and magical creatures are interesting enough, but they aren't real, so they aren't entirely relateable.  However, Emily is a young girl who is forced to deal with some pretty harsh circumstances and has to overcome them.  The reality is everyone has difficult circumstances to deal with.  That's just life.  And when readers experience Emily's life with her, I hope they will see their own ability to overcome, even if their struggles aren't exactly the same.

Whew.  I hope this Q&A session has been interesting for you.  Please click the link posted above to see Alan's Q&A.  You will also be able to click on links for a few others.  Enjoy!

Sunday, January 13, 2013

Blog Hop Fun

I'm excited to announce a new blog hop I will be joining, and it's not too late for you to join in the fun! Fellow writer/blogger VikLit is the creator of the Celebrate Blog Hop.  You can click on her link for details.  Every Friday, you will see the following badge here on my blog as I partake in the celebration. 
The purpose of this blog hop is for writers to celebrate small achievements.  Why? Because too often the small achievements are overlooked.  Getting a few hundred words down, getting a scene just right, breaking a bad writing habit.  Those are all things worth celebrating, but we forget that sometimes.  Our focus is usually on the bigger goals such as signing with an agent and getting published.  But there are several steps to be taken before those goals can be achieved, and we need to focus on them too.

So check out this new blog hop and join the celebration!