“Writing novels preserves you in a state of innocence – a lot passes you by – simply because your attention is otherwise diverted.”-Anita Brookner CBE (16 July 1928 – 10 March 2016) was a British award-winning novelist and art historian. She was Slade Professor of Fine Art at the University of Cambridge from 1967 to 1968 and was the first woman to hold this visiting professorship. She was awarded the 1984 Man Booker Prize for her novel Hotel du Lac.
I am thrilled to be here on Ron’s blog to tell you a little about my new book. Firstly, for those of you who don’t know me, my name is Judy and I am the blogger behind Edwina’s Episodes. I have only been blogging for just over a year now, but what a year it has been!
Now to back up a bit, I first encountered Ron’s blog through another blogging friend Hugh, who recommended I visit Ron’s blog as it had loads of hints and tips for bloggers, and also he organised this amazing weekly haiku challenge. Now, I didn’t have a clue what a haiku was, but I am always up for a challenge and I loved the ones Hugh submitted, so I popped on over to Ron’s to check it all out.
Well, that was it, once I got my head around the rules (ok I know I break them sometimes), I had a go, and then the inevitable happened and I was hooked on them! Since that first time, I have never missed a week, and in fact, I love it! On a Monday when I get home from work I love, seeing what prompt words he has thought up to torment us with! I don’t know how he finds the time what with helping others improve their own writing, and having just finished writing his own book too! (Book plus not solicited but appreciated!-Ronovan)
As I said, I love a challenge and about two months after I started blogging I took part in NaBloPoMo (National Blog Posting Month) which is where, throughout the month of November, those taking part should make sure they write at least one post a day. I completed the challenge, and that set the tone really for me being a prolific poster!
Now, I love mucking around with words, manipulating them and especially making them rhyme. I have done since I was very young, so now and again I would write a poem about whatever took my fancy (I even did an Ode to NaBloPoMo)! I always try to inject a little humour in my poems; having a moan about housework, or bewailing the fact that I don’t have any vices left to give up. I even wrote my own version of ‘Twas the Night before Christmas.’
My blog and my poems are about life in all its glory, warts and all. We all have those rubbish days, events that we want to celebrate, family that mean the world to us, or just times of appreciating the beauty of nature that is all around us: I have a rhyme for each occasion!
I felt it was something others could relate to and enjoy as well, so decided to go ahead and put them all into a book. Chris* designed a fantastic cover for me, vibrant and fun, capturing the tone of my book perfectly.
Why not go and check my book out. It is a wonderful opportunity to take time out, get comfy, have a cuppa and some cake, and really indulge yourself! You never know, you might even have a good old laugh too!
Links to my book:
Thanks so much for having me over, Ron, and I look forward to the next haiku challenge!
*Chris Graham The Story Reading Ape Blog-Every Author’s Best Friend.
This has been an Edwina’s Episodes Production brought to you by Ronovan Writes, the maker of dreams and nightmares.
Hello, everyone, it’s me – Colleen, AKA Silver Threading. Ronovan has graciously asked me to share some of the most intimate details of my journey as I write my first novel, The Swamp Fairy.
First, I would like to thank Ronovan for featuring me as a guest author. I am honored to have this opportunity! Thank you, Ron, for your friendship and guidance.
You know, I have wanted to write a book since I was six years old. I read voraciously as a child, and I still do today. Reading and writing have always been what makes me the absolute happiest person in the world.
In college, I discovered a hidden talent for being able to write about other writer’s works. There is a special kind of thrill I get when I read a book and review it. It is a special connection I feel with the author. It’s the best feeling ever when the author realizes that you “get them.”
With all the reading I have done through the years you would think I would have written tons of books by now. The truth is, I never knew how to start. The passion was there but I had nothing that really spoke to me. I had a million ideas, I just did not know how to focus my writing energies.
When I started blogging, it was with the intention of writing and publishing a book. I decided that I would learn everything I could about writing, plot structure, and outlines. My main goal was to network and learn from others. It has been the most fulfilling endeavor I have ever undertaken! After I was blogging for about five months my creative juices were so fired up I was brimming with ideas.
Here was my inspiration:
When we lived in Florida (we live in Colorado now) I walked each morning down a country road near our house. It was a foggy autumn morning that changed my life forever. That was my first experience seeing the swamp fairy fluttering in a bush at the edge of Fairy Swamp. Every time I think about that first meeting, I have to slap myself! What an experience!
I began to write posts for my blog about my walking experiences. I literally looked at nature and the real life occurrences that were affecting the reality of Fairy Swamp. I watched as the natural landscape was scarred by the construction crews who began to build a massive housing area on the edge of the swamp.
That gave me my first clue of what I wanted to write about. I wanted to write a young adult fantasy novel that at the heart of the story talked about what we are doing to our native habitats.
Construction land next to Fairy Swamp
Little by little, I developed a basic plot for my book. I even enlisted the help of my talented daughter, Tabitha who is going to draw the swamp fairy for us since I could not capture her in a photo. That fairy moved as quickly as a hummingbird!
Nevertheless, I still struggled with the outline of my novel. One day, while searching Google I stumbled upon The Better Novel Project.com. Christine takes best-selling novels like Harry Potter & The Sorcerers Stone, The Hunger Games, and Twilight and deconstructs them chapter by chapter. She shares how to study the different elements, from word counts to character archetypes. She also shares how to identify why the best sellers share a common element. I had hit pay dirt!
I am using Christine’s Master Outline to write my novel. I have plans to use it for the series, too. It is an excellent source for writing YA fantasy. Your characters and events will always be different even though you will use many of the same elements that are found in most fantasy novels. Her outline takes you through step by step how to write a trilogy story arc.
Here is the synopsis for The Swamp Fairy, Book 1 of the Heart Stone Chronicles to be published in late summer or early fall 2016:
Fourteen-year-old Abbigale Forester, recently orphaned and a Ward of the State of Illinois moves from Chicago to Florida to live with her aunt, her last living relative.
Aunt Magnolia becomes Abby’s Guardian and together they claim an ancient inheritance of land that has been in Abby’s mother’s family for generations.
Abby wears her mother’s most sacred possession – a stone pendant in the shape of a heart forged from a giant mystical stone found on the very swamp land that Abby now owns.
However, Rafe Cobb, a greedy land developer, has other ideas. He wants Abby’s land for himself and he is willing to stop at nothing to own that land.
All Abby wants is to be part of a family again and to learn to ride horses with her two new friends, Savanna, and Blake.
The swamp slowly gives up some of its secrets and Abby is summoned by a primeval nymph who teaches Abby that her true destiny is to protect the primeval nymphs from evil in an ever-changing modern world.
Can Abby save the swamp and the Naiad Nymph Clan from certain destruction before it is too late?
I want to share one other exciting aspect of my blogging experiences and how because of my participation in these events I am adding more creativity to my novel.
Ronovan hosts a Haiku Challenge with prompt words each week. I love haiku! There is something about the brevity of the words in haiku structure (5 syllables, 7 syllables, 5 syllables) in each line that tells a mini story.
I decided instead of naming the chapters in my novel I would use those Haiku I had written each week to enhance the beginning of each chapter. Here is one of my haiku from the challenge: (I don’t know if this particular haiku will find its way into my novel for sure)
My two loyal muses, Sugar, and Spice spend countless hours with me in my creative room as I pound away at the keyboard.
Spice and Sugar, worn out from helping Mom write all day.
Now, I don’t know if all of this will knock your socks off when you read my book but I sure hope so! Somehow, it all feels right to me.
In fact, I can hear my fairy nymphs whispering in my ear again. Time to get back to novel writing!
Thanks for stopping by and please stay tuned to silverthreading.com for all the upcoming information on my book. I am so excited! ❤
All information, images, and content provided by Colleen Chesebro of SilverThreading.com.
Author: Claire Fullerton
Title: Dancing to an Irish Reel
File Size: 373 KB
Print Length: 237 pages
Page Numbers Source ISBN: 0990304256
Simultaneous Device Usage: Unlimited
Publisher: Vinspire Publishing (March 6, 2015)
Publication Date: March 6, 2015
Sold by: Amazon Digital Services, Inc.
Word Wise: Enabled
Genres: Romance, Contemporary, Fiction
I received a copy of this book from the author for an honest review. And of course with me, you know that’s what you get. Good or bad. Here we go!
What happens when an L.A. music exec goes on sabbatical to Ireland? Well this is a romance, so I’ll say romance, along with love, music, and most of all confusion—caused by love, language, and longing. You might think a Southern girl who moved to L.A. might be accustomed to culture shock and speaking a different language, but Ireland is an island unto itself.
Dancing to an Irish Reel is about American Hailey meeting real Ireland and new-to-love Liam Hennessey. What you get is a story of Hailey learning about the place she comes to call home and as she learns about it and begins to understand it, she also begins to understand the man she falls for.
I like the character of Hailey. She is not your stereotype romantic leading lady that people like to think of. She is strong, knows what she wants, has common sense, and above all—she doesn’t do the typical damsel in distress routines.
Men, you will like this book. I say that because men need to realize that a great deal of books with Romance in the genre are not exactly what you may think. Movies men seem to like have romance in them and could be labeled as such in genre. So get a clue.
In other words this will hit with all people.
I found this book a bit of a surprise in some ways. Things don’t happen the way you expect, which to me is good. You want to be surprised these days. I do want to say that the character of Liam, well—Fullerton does a great job of explaining the Irish male in several places from different viewpoints. Very interesting, I thought.
You might at times want to hit Liam over the head with something, like his accordion, but then, he is a man, it’s love, and he’s young, so what else would you expect? And that is one thing that makes this book real and allows the reader to connect with it. No one is perfect in the book. Even those thought to be perfect are flawed deeply, and not entirely due to their own doing. And as for the accordion, it’s a loved instrument in Ireland and makes Liam somewhat of a local celebrity.
I loved the description of Ireland, the people, how the language works and the culture itself works in so many different ways. Those parts alone make you think you have read a much larger book because you learn so much. I view the romance part of the story as a side by side symbolic representation of Hailey’s coming to terms and coming to understanding Ireland itself.
How does the book end? Is it a happy ending? That’s something you have to find out for yourself. Does Fullerton leave things open for a sequel? Could there be a trilogy or even a series of Hailey books? Personally, I would like to see more of Hailey in Ireland. How Fullerton uses Hailey to teach us about the real Ireland is something that needs to be revisited.
I recommend this book to lovers of Ireland, real people, common sense romance, and reality.
You may be looking at that Reader Enjoyment number and wondering why. There were certain characteristics of Liam that somewhat annoyed me at times. I think maybe it was because I’m American and he’s Irish and as Claire Fullerton explains in the book, those two types of men are different. But Liam is real to the Irish male character. Perhaps being of Scottish background, maybe it’s just me.
Claire Fullerton grew up in Memphis, TN and now lives in Malibu, CA. She is the author of literary fiction, “Dancing to an Irish Reel,” which is set in Connemara, Ireland, where she once lived. She is also the author of “A Portal in Time”: A paranormal mystery that unfolds in two time periods set on California’s hauntingly beautiful Monterey Peninsula, in a little village called Carmel-by-the-Sea. Both of Claire’s novels are published by Vinspire Publishing. Claire is a three- time award winning essayist, a former newspaper columnist, a contributor to magazines including Celtic Life International and Southern Writers Magazine. She is a five-time contributor to the “Chicken Soup for the Soul” book series and can be found on Goodreads as well as the website under her name. Currently, Claire is writing her third novel, which is a Southern family saga based on her award winning essay in the 2013 San Francisco Writer’s Conference.
Ronovan is an author, and blogger who shares his life as an amnesiac and Chronic Pain sufferer though his blog RonovanWrites.WordPress.com. His love of poetry, authors and community through his online world has lead to a growing Weekly Haiku Challenge and the creation of a site dedicated to book reviews, interviews and author resources known as LitWorldInterviews.WordPress.com.
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