Sunday, June 23, 2013

Uncharted Territory

Summer is just around the corner (one more crazy busy week!) & I can't wait!!

I've got a lot of (overly optimistic) plans starting next week. I'm looking forward to having a lot more writing time - I'll need it for the major/total rewrite I have planned for one of my books.

Another of my plans for the summer is to consider joining Facebook. A lot of authors are on FB and they've been convincing me it's a smart thing to do. So I need some help!

I know NOTHING about FB - absolutely nothing! So I'd love to get some advice - anything from the very basics on up.
  • as an author, do you find FB worthwhile?
  • I've heard there are personal pages and author type pages - do I need both?
  • What works for you?
  • What doesn't?
  • What's annoying?
  • What's smart? 
If I join, I know I'll make a bazillion rookie mistakes but I'm hoping you'll help me avoid the most painful ones!

Are you on FB? Any advice?

Wednesday, June 19, 2013

Kamy's Back & Talking about Characters

Please welcome again to the blog the lovely Kamy Chetty!


Character Driven Settings

I have often had to ask myself what the difference is between a character driven story and a plot driven story and which would be better for my writing. Everyone out there says it is better to engage with the character and make it real and all about making the connection with the reader. I get that.
Unfortunately what happens when you write a character driven story, you end up with a story that has a complex story structure because characters tend not to do as they are told. So have I figured out which is better and should my writing be plot driven or character driven? Well the short answer is no. I have figured out that knowing my characters does make life interesting and even though I don’t tell my readers everything about my protagonist and her prince charming, I know why they behave the way they do and it makes for a better story.

I go for all out emotion and drama and in order for me to deliver that on the page, I find out what makes my characters tick. I have always loved psychology and the way the mind works so I find human behaviour fascinating. I also understand that all stories need a plot and good conflict to keep the reader interested. So, what are your thoughts on character and plot driven stories and how they contribute to a good yarn? I would love to hear from you and thank you for having me here.

There hasn’t been a time in her life that Kamy hasn’t been writing, or dreaming up some magical love story in her head. As an avid reader, it wasn’t long before she realised her talent for turning a phrase, and add to that a profession of nursing, it’s only natural that her stories have a medical theme with that happily ever after ending.

Recently she’s discovered that all those years she’s been fascinated with TV shows like CSI and Bones, has just been foreplay for her dark side and she now enjoys writing suspense with a dash of medical and a dollop of romance.

Originally from South Africa, Kamy now lives in Auckland, New Zealand with her very own hero and two children who keep her busy. She has two dogs who keep her out of trouble and shelves overflowing with books that she loves reading when she isn’t chasing deadlines.
Kamy Chetty around the web:
After a tour at war and countless shifts in the hospital emergency room, Nick knows that no matter how hard he tries to change things, people are the same. So when his estranged wife Skylar reveals that she stopped taking birth control and is pregnant, he shouldn’t be shocked. Betrayal burns and panic sets in as memories of his shattered home life remind him that he can’t play happy families.

Skylar knows one thing—she’s head over nurse’s shoes in love with the stubborn and unemotional Nick. She loves him enough to believe in the man he is, even though he can’t see it for himself and hides behind a mask. As he calls their child “hers” and tries to live apart from her, Skylar’s heart breaks, but she refuses to give up hope that he’ll do the right thing.

When disaster strikes, Skylar realizes Nick might never change, so she risks everything and sets him free, hoping he’ll come back, for her and their baby. Is heat, passion and a vow enough to seal this marriage and make them a family?

Reader Alert! Their passion and devotion will make you root for them, and their sexual tension will set you ablaze.
Read Reviews
Buy Links:     Red Sage     Amazon     Amazon UK     B&N
Family Ties
A woman with no family ties of her own, desperate to fulfill her dream of having a child

finds she cannot conceive a child naturally. A man who feels guilt over his ex-wife's death, cannot find closure. Can the attraction these two people feel be enough to overcome their conflicting desires, especially when Jack finds himself the guardian of a baby he isn't sure he can be responsible for.

Read Reviews

Buy Links: Amazon     Amazon UK 


Thanks Kamy! I love when my characters demand that I follow them - although it can make for an unruly draft! How about you -- do your characters rule your roost?

Saturday, June 15, 2013

On the Road with Jennie

Today I'm visiting over at Jennie Jones' blog Jennie Jones Romance. Jennie is a real sweetie and her book The House on Burra Burra Lane was recently released into the world via Escape Publishing!

A dilapidated house, a city girl looking for a tree change, and a rugged vet with a past. Just another day in rural Australia…

Sounds great, doesn't it? It's waiting for me on my Kindle as my treat for surviving Report Card season (assuming I do survive it...).

Jennie's got some great questions for me over at her place today! Pop on over to see how cowboys and fudge are in my future! See ya there :)

Wednesday, June 12, 2013

Nicole Flockton & A Giveaway!

Please welcome Nicole Flockton to the blog today!

My Journey to Today 

I’ve read romance novels pretty much my whole life. I started with the Sweet Dreams Romances and then graduated to Harlequin Mills & Boon books. As I got swept away in the stories a little seed of ‘I could do this’ started to grow.

I remember the job I had before I had my daughter.  When my bosses were away and I had some time I would open a word document and would take an idea and start a story. I would only ever get about between 500 – 1000 words down. Eventually after my daughter was born I sat down and started writing my first novel. I can’t remember how long it took me to write it but I know it was over a year. Then I let it sit for ages before I got involved in a critique group and then really started to learn my craft and fix that manuscript up.
A lot of people put that first manuscript at the bottom of the drawer or under the bed or in the attic. I loved my first manuscript and so believed in that story. It did sell and is now “Bound By Her Ring”. To see that book up on Amazon is the most amazing thing.

But it went through numerous re-writes and had two rejections before it finally found its home.

My first book published “Masquerade” only went through one rejection before it was picked up by Crimson Romance. Since then I’ve been lucky that Crimson have liked what I’ve proposed to them. Let’s hope it keeps up.

The one thing I’ve learned along the way is that if you want the dream you have to reach out and grab it. You can’t wait for it to reach out and grab you. But sometimes it’s so scary to reach out. What if they hate me? What if they tell me this is the worst writing they’ve ever seen. All possible, but then you get the “I ugly cried at the end of your book”. Or “I loved this book so much I went and found what other books you’ve written”. Those comments make taking the leap all so worth it. For if I hadn’t stood on the ledged and jumped to the other side, I wouldn’t be getting my third book published. It was a scary leap but has been so worth it.

Whether it be in writing or maybe changing careers, have you ever taken that leap?
Blurb for Rescuing Dawn:

He helps save lives, now he wants to save hers.

Dawn Granger has loved and lost and it’s a road she’s not prepared to travel again, that is until her past turns up and has her questioning her resolve.
Andrew Holmes has sailed the globe numerous times, when he almost loses his life, he decides he needs to give something back so he returns home and trains as a paramedic. When he runs into his former sweetheart he is surprised to find an attraction he thought dead come to life. When he sees the sadness in Dawn he knows he will do anything to make her smile again.

Dawn tries to resist Andrew but their past pulls at her in ways she thought long dead. Can she trust a man who's run out on her once before? Can she risk putting her heart on the line again? Or will it all be taken from her again.
Read an Excerpt
Read Reviews
Buy Links:   Crimson Romance         Amazon          Amazon UK       iTunes          Kobo
On her very first school report her teacher said ‘Nicole likes to tell her own stories’.
It wasn’t until after the birth of her daughter and after having fun on the community board of that she finally decided to take the plunge and write a book.
The stories she writes are contemporary romances with either a medical setting or in the boardrooms of high powered business. Nicole enjoys taking two characters and creating unique situations for them.

Apart from writing Nicole is busy looking after her very own hero – her wonderfully supportive husband, and her two fabulous kids.

There will be a kindle copy giveaway of RESCUING DAWN to one commenter!

Nicole on the web:
Website      Facebook     Twitter     Author Page


So, how many of you have taken that leap that Nicole has?

Friday, June 7, 2013


I'm the first to admit I'm a quirky person. I don't fit the mold - any mold.

Growing up, my parents often joked that I must have been switched in the hospital. No one else in my family loves the things I do. They're all list-making, linear, logical thinkers who can organize the heck out of a room, a desk, a house, a wardrobe and a life. Me? Well...

I love science fiction & rom coms & musicals & sports, but don't ask me to watch relationship reality shows (*shudder*). I don't own a dress or shoes with heels. I don't like hot climates. I eat the same thing for a snack and a lunch at school every day. I cry at sappy commercials - every time I see them. All my socks are the same so I don't have to worry when the washer/dryer eats one... I think I'd better stop there. :)

This post lists a lot of fun writer's quirks! So does this one. I kind of want one...

But, sadly, I don't have time for writerly quirks and if you pop over to From the Write Angle today, you'll see why.

Hope to see you there, but before you go, what quirks do you have? Any suggestions for me?

Sunday, June 2, 2013

Elliot's Tough Questions

The charming Elliot Grace over at So Close, But... has tagged me with the Liebster Award! The rules are simple, offer 11 fun facts about yourself, answer 11 questions provided by Elliot, pass the award on to 11 blogger pals, answering 11 new questions from yours truly. 

On to Elliot's (really hard!) questions...

1) What is your favorite genre to read?
I love so many genres! Currently my fave is definitely contemporary romance, but I also love fantasy, sf, mystery, YA & MG (I know those last 2 aren't genres--humour me) and more!
2) Pizza or pasta?
This is another hard one! We live in a town with a TON of fantastic Italian restaurants. I've been to bigger cities with more famous places and tried a variety of popular chain restaurants, but there is nothing that beats our local pizza & pasta. Nothing! My heart is a little torn with this question, but I think I'll go with pasta!
3) If you were to be stranded on an island and could choose one book to take with you, which would you choose?
AHHH! Can I have an easy question please??? Okay. I'd bring Lord of the Rings. I never tire of Tolkien's characters!
4) If you could choose to have dinner with one writer, in order to pick his/her brain, who would you choose?
Nora Roberts! She is such a prolific author. She's written a mind-boggling number of best-selling romances and each character is unique and intriguing. Her In Death series has an incredible cast of repeat characters and each book keeps getting stronger!!
5) Who is your choice of musician for inspiration while writing?
I never listen to one musician at a time. I always set my iTunes to shuffle. My tastes are pretty eclectic with music too - I've got everything from classic rock to easy listening to jazz to blues to country to Motown to pop... So it would depend on the scene I think!
6) The Walking Dead, or Breaking Bad?
Sadly, neither. I've stopped adding new TV series to my schedule. There's just not enough time to watch and do everything else I want to do so I haven't seen either of these.
7) If you could choose an actor to play the part of lead role in your book, who would it be?
Another tough one! I actually think Chris Pine would make a pretty good Jaz in the book I'm hoping to pub later this year.
8) Do you prefer writing in the a.m or p.m?
Both! I am a morning person, but for most of the year, the job gets in the way. During the school year I tend to write after 9 p.m. once family life has slowed down. In the summer I have more freedom and write whenever I can.
9) What is your best antidote for writer's block?
Try something else. I currently have 4 stories in various stages of editing and another one I'm drafting. For a person who thought she was a one draft at a time writer, it's a bit of a shock, but it works!
10) When going on or fly?
I'd love to fly to more places but the wallet usually says we drive. My hubby likes to drive so that leaves me free to read too!
11) Name the city that tops your bucket list to visit.
So many! Probably Hong Kong. Or New York. Or Rome. Or Cairo...
And 11 fun facts about me...
  1. I hate/despise/detest/loathe housecleaning
  2. My dad and I used to always shop for bonus 'as is' presents for people for Christmas on Christmas Eve when the stores were nuts and the crowds desperate. We got some really strange items and had a ton of fun!
  3. I used to walk along the tops of swing sets as a kid
  4. I've never owned a pet even though I love animals
  5. Although I'm Canadian, I'm a rotten skater. Actually I can skate pretty well, it's the whole stopping thing I never mastered
  6. I make an awesome lasagna!
  7. I want to go on an African photo safari one day
  8. Although I don't watch too many TV series, I'm kind of a sports nut and often have sports on in the background when I'm writing
  9. I LOVE teaching Math!
  10. When I'm baking/cooking I rarely measure anything - that would take the mystery out!
I won't tag anyone specifically, but if you'd like to play along, please do!

Tell me one fun fact I don't know about you!