October 27, 2011

Vicki Batman on Lavender Dreams and her story, "Taking Flight"

The Traveling Monarchs

These past weeks, I have had a thrilling sight outside my kitchen window--monarchs are visiting on their way to their home in Mexico.

My family and I moved into this house sixteen years ago. The house needed a huge overhaul which we did a while back. But the yard was unbearable. (Think Teenage Wasteland. LOL.)

I am not the best gardener. I like to put things in the ground, toss some water in its direction, and yank out the weeds on occasion. Once, I read a local gardening column about the attributes of lantana. The biggest plus being "you can run a car over it and it still grows."

I was sold.

October 26, 2011

Shameless Self Promotion by Karilyn Bentley


Thank you for joining me for a session of shameless self promotion. Wolf Mates, my werewolf novella, is out now and the Princesses have happily allowed me on today to blog about it.

So, how did I come up with the idea for Wolf Mates, and what’s it about anyway?

The story starts back in 2008 when I won the Got Wolf? contest on The Wild Rose Press. My short story, "Werewolves in London," was published in an anthology. In the story, a female alpha played a small, but significant, role. Margie, the heroine in Wolf Mates, was born. But what was she like?

October 25, 2011

Angi Morgan on "Plotting? What's that??



PLOTTING? WHAT’S THAT?

I don’t know if I’ll ever become a plotter. The best stories I write…well, I have no clue what’s going to happen. Sometimes, when I re-read what my fingers type (yes, when I’m in ‘the groove’ I feel like they hit whatever keys they want), I get goose bumps and know it’s right. I wish those goose bumps happened each and every time…but they don’t.
I do develop characters. I attempt to discover their motivation and goals. Mostly because they’re needed in the synopsis. But I’ll grudgingly admit that it helps to have a clear picture of those two things as the story develops. It’s also easier to talk through the stalled parts of the story with other writers.

I always know the beginning scene and within the first three chapters jot down the ending line. Yeah, I may not know how the ending GETS to that line, but I normally keep it. Weird. Wired funky? I admit it, I’m a writer.

October 20, 2011

Author Interview: with our PP Gal--Liz Lipperman!


Liz Lipperman is one of nine children and grew up eating casseroles. She spent many years working as a Registered Nurse saving lives, before she gave in to her life-long passion of finding ways to kill people and writing about them. Born and raised in Ohio, she's lived in many places, including Saudi Arabia and Taiwan before finally settling down in a small suburb north of Dallas. When she’s not writing, she enjoys all sports, especially the NFL, traveling, and spending time with her four grandchildren. The first book in her debut cozy mystery series, Liver Let Die, releases October 4th from Berkley Prime Crime. Mortal Deception, a stand-alone romantic mystery will be available soon from Amazon. Check out her website for trailers and excerpts.

How long have you been writing? How did you get from a medical career to writing romance?  Funny that you asked. I audited medical records for the last 15 years of my career. In the 90's, I decided to get a Professional Arts degree, and took a creative writing class as an elective. With the enthusiasm from my professor, I decided to take a shot at doing what I'd secretly wanted to do all my life. I chased the romance genre for a lot of years and got a lot of dings in contests and from professionals. When I finally realized dead bodies were showing up in all my stories, I had to take a hard look at my writing. I am definitely a mystery writer, but my stories all have strong romances in them. So, as of right now, I am officially starting a new genre--romantic mysteries.

October 18, 2011

Worldbuilding Your Perfect Setting by Michelle Miles

Since I write fantasy stories and stories with unusual settings, I spend a good deal of time worldbuilding. Whether you’re creating an exotic city for your action/adventure or you’re making up a new fantasy realm complete with magic, worldbuilding is an important part of the story. I’m certainly no expert, but there are some tips I’ve picked up and to keep in mind when building your new world.

Set up the rules and stick to them. Ask yourself these questions: What are the exceptions? Is there magic? What are the rules of magic? Once you set up the rules, don’t break them unless you have a really compelling reason. Make sure it’s not a plot device and you’re breaking the rules because you can’t figure out how to get your characters out of a jam.

Study other cultures, past and present. By studying how other cultures live, their religion, their traditions, their exchange of goods and money, you can learn a lot about who they. How do they talk? Dress? Do they have any sacrificial rites? When do they worship? What do they worship—one god or multiple gods? If you know this, you can start building the foundation. Other things to consider: politics, military, art, marital customs, education, monetary system, sporting events.

October 13, 2011

Vicki Batman is discussing....

Changing Your Identity



 I don't mean changing your name to a penname; that's another topic. This one is about changing the names of your characters in your book.

I don't know about you, however, I belabor over what to name my characters. I admit, I am fond of certain names and prefer those.

So where do you go to find them? I've had recommendations to try baby naming books and the social security website which lists popular names by years. For example, here is the table I found on their site for 2010 (http://www.ssa.gov/oact/babynames/):

October 11, 2011

PHYLLIS MIDDLETON: I have a Confession

I have a confession. I am the Great Procrastinator. Why? Well, I will think about that tomorrow….

Seriously, that’s my problem.

I am a person of full steam ahead in getting things done or absolutely nothing at all.  I doubt I have much of an in-between state. Generally, if it can wait, it will until it becomes that next highest priority thing to get done.

October 6, 2011

TEMPTATION THURSDAY with Kathy Ivan

It's Temptation Thursday, so I thought we'd try something just a wee bit different today. I'm going to list a few snippets from books written by some of the Plotting Princesses that are already published and available. So, if you read something you like below, you'll be able to go and buy that book instead of having to wait. Instant gratification! Buy links are provided along with the excerpts.

Ready. . . set . . . here we go!


MAGICAL LOVER by Karilyn Bentley
http://www.amazon.com/Magical-Lover-Draconia-Tales-ebook/dp/B005I63WW4/ref=sr_1_1_title_1_ke?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1317258224&sr=1-1

His lids snapped open. “You’ve never done this?”

Uh-oh. He looked worried. Despite the shadows obscuring his face, she knew her virginity concerned him. After tonight it wouldn’t be a problem and there was no way she was stopping now. No way. He was hers.

ONE KNIGHT ONLY by Michelle Miles
http://www.jasminejade.com/p-9619-one-knight-only.aspx

October 4, 2011

Sylvia McDaniel: Witches, Goblins & Spooks--Oh my!!

Witches, Goblins & Spooks--Oh my!
Yeah!! October is here and everyone south of the Red River is doing the happy dance. After 70 days of over 100 degrees, we're finally starting to see the temperatures cool down and know that Fall is on the way.  And with the arrival of Fall comes the holidays. I love Halloween just for this reason. To me it's the kick-off to the holiday season.
While I'm a little old for dressing up and I haven't been to an adult costume party in a few years, I enjoy seeing my neighborhood kids all decked out in their costumes trick or treating. Even the older kids I enjoy seeing the costumes they created right up until about nine pm when I turn out the light and some of you just don't get the message. 
 We're done. Go home!         
As a writer, I feel like I get to dress up every day. I get to step into a different costume, make my characters experience the oddities of life and create their world. When I wrote historical romance, I enjoyed doing the research to see what a woman would wear crossing the Oregon Trail and what a Victorian woman wore during the late 1800's.  All I can say is there is no way I would wear all that clothing in Texas Heat.  I'd probably be arrested for indecent exposure as those petticoats would be tossed in the garbage and that dress would be ventilated or shorter.