Wednesday, October 31, 2012

NaNoWriMo Tips

It's that time of the year again.  The time when authors enter National November Writing Month, challenging themselves to write a 50k word novel in 1 month! Is it possible?  Of course!  Are you going to go crazy doing so?  Likely.  Yet, it's a fun challenge and I have a few tips to help you out. 

  • Increase your food budget for the month
Most authors already know that they are not going to cook dinner.  No... It's just not going to happen. You need more time to write, so plan ahead because you and your family will be ordering take-out a lot!  

Now the serious tips... 
  • Setting Goals!
Most nano writers set their goal at 1,666 words a day.  That gives them 50k words for the month.  The problem with that is that you are not counting on those days when you just don't feel like writing.  There is also the fact that you'll likely be much more motivated... and less tired, during the first part of the month.  And you are less likely to run into writing obstables during the beginning of your story.  Set higher goals for the beginning.  Maybe 3k words a day?  You can do it! 
  • Write a general outline before you start.  
Just point out the main events in your story and while writing, don't be afraid to change your outline.
  • Character Development
Knowing your characters before you start writing the story is by far what will help you the most in finishing your first draft in 30 days.  Once you really know them, it all becomes a matter of how they react to the situations that you are putting them in.  
I usually get to know my characters by doing a character profile including personality traits, and I go as far as doing a Q&A with my characters.  Ask them questions about who they are, where they came from, what makes them mad, what are they afraid of, what attracts them in a person...
Give your characters flaws and don't be afraid to let them make stupid mistakes.  No character should be perfect all the time.  Flaws make them interesting and adds to their personality.
  • Write everyday!
Even if you just plan on writing for 5 minutes, write everyday!  There were so many times when I thought I was not in the mood and as soon as I got in front of the computer and started typing, things just came to me.
  • Don't be afraid to write out of order.
If you have a specific scene in mind, write it... even if you have to skip and few chapters and then go back and fill in.
  • NEVER stop to edit while writing your first draft.
I know how tough it's not to do this, but editing while writing your first draft is time consuming and a distraction that you cannot afford when writing a novel in 30 days.  If you think of changes that you want done while writing your first draft, just take notes on what those changes are and where they should go.  The ideal time to implement those changes is while working on your first round of revisions.

Happy Writing! 

Tuesday, October 23, 2012

The Next Best Thing!

It's time for a blog hop!  This one includes a Q&A that reveals a couple of things about my upcoming book, Sins of the Fallen, which will be available on December 11, 2012.  After the Q&A you'll find the link for other authors blogs where you can read about their current release or upcoming book.  These are all authors who I personally selected for this blog hop.  :) 

Before answering the Q&A about Sins of the Fallen, I wanted to thank paranormal romance author Tish Thawer for inviting me to this blog hop.

What is the working title of your book?
Sins of the Fallen

Where did the idea come from for the book?
Sins of the Fallen is the third Academy of the Fallen novel.  The idea for the series was inspired by a character from Imprinted Souls who is a vampire/fallen angel hybrid.  I got more and more curious about the part of her that was fallen angel.  I also wanted to create a new world, something that was my own, and that is how the idea for the Academy got started.

What genre does your book fall under?
Urban Fantasy/Paranormal

Which actors would you choose to play your characters in a movie rendition?
Here is my list with a few of the main characters:
Steven R. McQueen as Hunter Chambers
Ashley Benson as Kayla
Chris Zylka as Benjamin
Gerard Butler as Mr. Daniels

What is the one-sentence synopsis of your book?
 They are not just fighting to protect humanity… they are fighting to be worthy of each other.

Will your book be self-published or represented by an agency?
Sins of the Fallen will be published by Rocket Science Productions, who is also the publisher for the previous Academy of the Fallen novels, as well as the Imprinted Souls Series.

How long did it take you to write the first draft of your manuscript?
Somewhere between 4-5 months.

What other books would you compare this story to within your genre?
I honestly have no idea.  Academy of the Fallen is very unique.  I’ve read a lot of books about fallen angels and nephilim, and I can’t say that I have read anything like it.

Who or What inspired you to write this book?
I was inspired by one of the Imprinted Souls' characters.  Anne is a hybrid, vampire – fallen angel, and after writing the part about how she became an angel and then a fallen angel, I wanted to explore more of that world.

What else about your book might pique the reader’s interest?
Sins of the Fallen has very strong female characters.  Kayla has come a long way from the spoiled rich girl and has grown into this role that I believe a lot of readers will love.   Sins of the Fallen also has a new character that I cannot wait for you to meet!  You'll love him. :)


Below you'll find a list of the awesome authors I've tagged for next week! Please stop by their blogs next Wednesday, October 31st to read about their new releases or upcoming books.

Sunday, October 14, 2012

Monster Fest, Halloween Sale, and more!

I know that Halloween is not technically a holiday, but I still consider it one.  Not just that... Halloween is my second favorite 'holiday'.  Needless to say, I was looking forward to October and this month is turning out to be even better than I expected!

The month started out with my first visit to Busch Garden's Howl-O-Scream.  It was all fine and fun while daylight was out.  I even made a few jokes by calling a werewolf Jacob.  Then it started to get dark outside and the clowns were out.  I'm good with werewolves, vampires, zombies, ghosts, but clowns... I don't think so.  Clowns aside, it was a great night.  I absolutely loved that they were playing The Lost Boys soundtrack.  I also had my first (well... first and second), vampire martinis at the Open Casket.  It was truly a fang-tastic evening. v--v

The following week I met not just one, but two YA authors, including Devyn Dawson, who wrote The Light Tamer (among other titles), and Natalie Star, author of The Keeper.  I had such a great time meeting them!  We talked about possible multi-author signings, so I hope to have more on that soon. :)

This Saturday, I had the pleasure to attend my first Monster Fest at the Chesapeake Central Library.  I met quite a few new readers who I got to introduce to the Imprinted Souls Series and Academy of the Fallen Novels.  Someone even made me an awesome tag inspired by the fact that my vamps don't sparkle!  (The necklace was a gift from hubby, and no, it's not real blood in there. lol)

I really wish there were more local events like Monster Fest and Blood at the Beach.  They were both so well organized and SO much fun!  I can't wait for next year's events.

Well, those events might be over, but there is a lot more to come!

On October 30th, I will be hosting a Facebook Halloween party from 12-1am EST.  There will be games, giveaways, and more!  You can join the Halloween Extravaganza here:  This event will take place from October 27th until November 1st, and several other authors will be hosting the event at different times.

There is also a sale on Imprinted Souls Novels which is good until the end of the month.  I hope you can take advantage of this sale, and please stop by and let me know what you think of the series. :)

The discount code for paperback is also valid for the Academy of the Fallen novels.

Now back to revising 'Sins of the Fallen'!  Counting down the days until December 11th! I can't wait to share it.  :)