Free Winter Reads

Check out Kathy Steinemann’s post about free holiday reads.

https://kathysteinemann.com/Musings/free-stories-2019/

When you’re done there, don’t forget to pick up a copy of Star Touched and Wolf Dawn.

Startouched front cover2    Wolf Dawn 13

 

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Establishing Characters’ Motives

Andrew McDowell

It’s probably a question you’ve asked yourself before when writing, and certainly one you must answer: what drives your characters? They all want something, just as people in real life want something. It can be love, hatred, power, wealth, knowledge, patriotism, disillusionment, honor, or something else. To help bring characters to life, good and bad, they need to have at least one thing that drives them, which can later on change, but ultimately helps bring the character to life as much as their individual personality traits.

You can begin with basic human emotions or desires and build them into one of many possibilities. As an example, if a character seeks knowledge, it could be knowledge of something or someone or oneself. It’s important for villains to have motivations as well as heroes. In Beowulf the titular hero seeks everlasting glory, while each of the monsters is driven by a dark…

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Author Updates: Brown, Cumiskey, Kaplan & Kazzie

GJ Stevens

In this week’s update I ask what’s been happening in the scribbling lives of Eric Brown, Heather Cumiskey, AL Kaplan and David Kazzie.


Eric Brown

GS: Originally interviewed in January this year, I caught up with Eric to find out what he’s been working on.

EB: At the moment I’m working on two novels. I’m finished going through an edit of The Menace From Mars, a Sherlock Holmes SF adventure due out next February from Titan Books. It’s a mash up of Conan Doyle’s Holmes and Wells’s War of the Worlds – set partly on the red planet, partly on Earth.

I had great fun writing it, and it’ll be my first book from Titan.

And I’m putting the finishing touches on the first draft of Murder By Invitation, the seventh book in the Langham Dupre series of whodunits set in 1956. I hope this will see the light of day…

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WOLF NOTES: An Uncommon Interview – L. C. Son

081Welcome to WOLF NOTES, where interview questions stray from the rest of the pack. It’s nice to know the usual stuff like where an author gets their inspiration and why they write, but sometimes we need a little fun in our lives.

MEL. C. Son has the life she’s always imagined and more. A wife to one and mom to three kids and a very regal Beagle, she would say she is living a life full of awesomeness!

Growing up, she spent hours reading comic books she “borrowed” from her older brother which inspired her love for heroes and all things fantasy and paranormal. Much like the characters she adored, she lives a duplicitous life. By day she works tirelessly to champion the employment of persons with severe disabilities. By night she puts on her wife-mom cape, sharing with her husband at their church and juggling their kid’s very active schedules.

Writing has always come second nature to her and a skill she uses in her professional career. Beautiful Nightmare is her first published work and she’s thrilled to finally bring to life the characters that have lived in the creative corners of her mind. Presently, she’s working on Book Two of the series and developing a chick-flick-novella

Wolf: If you could be any animal in the universe, what would it be and why?

L. C.: A lion. A lioness isn’t afraid to hunt and keep both her family and territory protected. With exception to walking without hind legs, I find little difference between me and a lioness.

Wolf: Remind me not to make you mad. What is the strangest food you’ve ever eaten?

L. C.: I ate eel. I had a serious allergic reaction to it right afterward, so I don’t think I’ll ever do it again.

Wolf: Too bad. I like eel. If you had to pick a weapon, what would it be and why?

L. C.: A katana blade. It’s quiet and swift.

Wolf: Like a Lioness. Do you consider yourself a cat person, or a dog person?

L. C.: I’m a dog person. No contest. While I admire the independence of cats, I like how dogs actually act like they need you; even though they could subsist without humans just fine. It’s nice to be needed by those who don’t need you.

Beautiful_nightmare_eBook_coverWolf: Agreed. If you could have a superpower, what would it be?

L. C.: Telekinesis. The ability to control things with my mind like Jean Grey or Professor X would be great. I could surely get more done in a day!

Wolf: Maybe. There is a door at the end of a dark, damp corridor. You hear rumbling. What do you do?

L. C.: Go the other way. Whatever is rumbling near the door is none of my business.

Wolf: Wise choice. What five items would you want to have in a post-cataclysmic world?

L. C.: My husband, three kids, and our dog. Together we can survive anything!

Wolf: I like the way you think. What is your favorite body of water and why? (river, ocean, waterfall, puddle, bottle…)

L. C.: A bottle. Not fond of water that’s too much for me to drink.

Wolf: What story are you working on now?

HE_eBook_cover_SMALLL. C.: I am wrapping up Hearts Eclipsed: A Beautiful Nightmare Companion Novella. It chronicles the downfall of Damina Nicaud’s love to one man and the rising of another. Narrated by both Jackson Nash and Dalcour Marchand, to see the story unfold from their eyes.

Wolf: I love your covers. What do you like to do when you’re not writing?

L. C.: Re-watch my favorite television shows and movies like, Coming to America, Martin, Angel, The Nightmare Before Christmas, Princess Bride, This Christmas, Smallville, The Originals, and Interview with a Vampire.

Wolf: Thanks for joining us. Catch up with L. C. at these links:

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/LCSonBooks
Amazon Author- https://amzn.to/2Heg3ay
Amazon book: https://amzn.to/2V63nWW
Goodreads https://bit.ly/2EwpEbl
Website- www.lcsonbooks.com

Star Touched

Wolf Dawn

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WOLF NOTES: An Uncommon Interview – Karen Janowsky

081

Welcome to WOLF NOTES, where interview questions stray from the rest of the pack. It’s nice to know the usual stuff like where an author gets their inspiration and why they write, but sometimes we need a little fun in our lives.

Karen BookFestKaren Janowsky has loved superheroes and ancient mythology since the first time she saw the Super Friends on television in 1970’s. Because flying an invisible jet was never a viable career option, and because running around in a cape, swimsuit, and bright red boots is not socially acceptable for adults, she teaches yoga and writing at the College of Southern Maryland. Her stories and poems have been featured in several anthologies and literary magazines since 1991. She received her master’s degree in English from Florida State University.

Wolf: If you could be any animal in the universe, what would it be and why?

Karen: I’ll probably stick to human for the sake of self-preservation. I don’t especially want to be on an endangered list, or anywhere on the food chain.

Wolf: Good idea. What is the strangest food you’ve ever eaten?

Karen: Turkish delight. I was curious because of The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe. Imagine eating one of those fancy soaps that are pink and molded into roses—the kind you see in Grandma’s bathroom on the top of the toilet.

Wolf: Eating soap is no fun. They make Turkish delight in other flavors. They taste much better. If you had to pick a weapon, what would it be and why?

Karen: Words. I will cut my foes down with insults and sarcasm.

Wolf: Ouch. You’ve just been turned into a plant. Describe yourself.

Karen: I’m probably one of those short, squat plants with long, fibrous leaves that look like frizzy, unkempt hair.

Wolf: That sounds very familiar. If you could have a super-power, what would it be?

Karen: Definitely teleportation, because I’m not a fantastic traveler and that would save me some stress. The only power better than that would be shape shifting, because I could make myself a little taller and thinner.

Wolf: I wouldn’t change a thing. You look great. There is a door at the end of a dark, damp corridor. You hear rumbling. What do you do?

Karen: If the rumbling is because of a loud nebulizer, I’d go on in. Damp corridors usually mean mold, which I’m allergic to!

Wolf: Which of your characters is your favorite?

PersistenceofMemory1DejaVu.KarenJanowskyKaren: Daniel is my favorite. I think I identify with him most in terms of the journey toward confidently finding one’s place in the world.

Wolf: What is your favorite body of water and why? (river, ocean, waterfall, puddle, bottle…)

Karen: I think my favorite is a clean, clear lake. Lakes can be vast but have boundaries. I like that surety. Of course, any body of water would have to be 100% devoid of snakes.

Wolf: I take it you are not a serpent fan. What story are you working on now?

Karen: I am working on a sequel to my superhero romance trilogy, The Persistence of Memory. It features a popular side character, Miriam.

Wolf: What do you like to do when you’re not writing?

Karen: I also teach yoga, and the yoga classroom is very much my happy place.

Wolf: Very relaxing. Thanks for visiting. You can learn more about Karen at these sites:

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/Karen-Janowsky-391334061451858/
Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/authorkarenjanowsky/
Twitter: https://twitter.com/Karen_Janowsky
Amazon Author Page: https://www.amazon.com/Karen-Janowsky/e/B07QTB7FHS
Website: www.KarenJanowsky.com

 

Star Touched

Wolf Dawn

 

 

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Beta Readers, Critique Groups

Andrew McDowell

Beta readers help polish writers’ work in preparation for submitting to publishers. Sometimes they work with one another one-on-one. Sometimes they form critique groups, where members share their work and receive critical but constructive feedback from everyone. What makes them helpful and essential is they aren’t necessarily in the publishing profession. They are people whom writers can trust with their earliest, roughest drafts. They are in effect the first step to sharing work with the world.

Some say it’s not a good idea to share drafts with family. Well, family is the first source of encouragement and support, and sometimes there are relatives that can offer constructive feedback. Nevertheless, it’s important to interact with and receive feedback from people who aren’t family, but who are passionate about writing and/or are seeking publication. Sometimes they’re already published, and can offer insights into the process. They will provide more critical and constructive…

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WOLF NOTES: An Uncommon Interview – T J Perkins

081

Welcome to WOLF NOTES, where interview questions stray from the rest of the pack. It’s nice to know the usual stuff like where an author gets their inspiration and why they write, but sometimes we need a little fun in our lives.

71208503_725522397963963_7406763108741414912_nTJ Perkins is a gifted and well-respected author in the mystery/suspense Pagan/fantasy genre. Her short stories for young readers have appeared in the Ohio State 6th Grade Proficiency Test Preparation Book, Kid’s Highway Magazine, and Webzine ‘New Works Review,’ just to name a few. She’s placed five times in the CNW/FFWA chapter book competition. Her short story of light horror for YA, The Midnight Watch, was published Oct 2007 by Demon Minds Magazine. Finished works of her young reader’s chapter books are entitled: The Fire and the Falcon (which won two chapter book awards), Wound Too Tight, Mystery of the Attic, and On Forbidden Ground. Published books in the Kim & Kelly Mystery Series include: Fantasies Are Murder, The Secret in Phantom Forest, Trade Secret, Image in the Tapestry (which won a chapter book award) and In the Grand Scheme of Things (all with GumShoe Press 2006). Shadow Legacy series, Silver Leaf Books, book 1 won an award. Four Little Witches, Schiffer Publishing, won the 2016 COVR Visionary Art Award, as well as The Healthy Witch 2019. Mystery of the Attic was made into a play by the Café Theater in NJ, Oct. 2005. TJ has had numerous short stories published in many anthologies 2016-2019.

Wolf: If you could be any animal in the universe, what would it be and why?

T J: Phoenix. Because it will continue to rise from the ashes over and over.

Wolf: And hopefully learn from mistakes. If you had to pick a weapon, what would it be and why?

T J: Bow and arrow. I like silent but deadly

Wolf: That’s always a good thing when hunting. What is the nicest thing you’ve ever done to your characters?

T J: Let them live and achieve a goal

Wolf: Living is good. You’ve just been turned into a plant. Describe yourself.

T J: Spearmint. I’m holistic, healing, attract money. I complement drinks or deserts and I can be used in a love spell.

Wolf: One of my favorite herbs. Do you consider yourself a cat person, or a dog person?

T J: Cat person

Wolf: That’s a fast answer. While walking in the woods you come across…

T J: A Faerie mound

Wolf: I’m sure you have a knack at finding those. If you could have a super-power, what would it be?

T J: Invisibility

Wolf: Wait. Where did you go? (Just kidding) There is a door at the end of a dark, damp corridor. You hear rumbling. What do you do?

T J: Walk away real fast

Wolf: Smart move. What five items would you want to have in a post-cataclysmic world?

T J: Sword, knife, rope, canteen and toothbrush.

Wolf: Two blades. You must be expecting trouble. What is your favorite body of water and why?

T J: Babbling stream – because the sound is soothing, you can connect with the water elementals, and it’s a great source of cleansing

Wolf: So true. What do you like to do when you’re not writing?

T J: Exercise, garden, be in nature, read

Wolf: Thanks for stopping by. Don’t forget to check out T J Perkins books. While you’re there, pick up a copy of Star Touched and Wolf Dawn.

Star Touched

Wolf Dawn

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