Help me welcome Eryn LaPlant as our guest blogger today. Eryn grew up wishing she could have lived in another time, so now she writes her own romances and lives through her characters. When not writing, she spends time with her loving husband, and their handsome son in the land of Lincoln. If she can’t live in the past, she figures she can at least live amongst it!
Hello to the world! I am a former slave for the working world and presently a woman of many trades. I am a wife, a mother, an antiques collector, a painter, a baker, a gardener, a photographer, a historian and my favorite by far a novelist (well except the first two in my list)! Thanks for checking me out!
As writers, sometimes our ability to create a story out of thin air comes at the strangest moments. It could be while listening to a song or reading another story, or it could be daily life events that strike that creative nerve. In the case of The Blue Lute that was definitely the situation.
The date was March 6, 1999, and I had just moved into my very first single apartment. Before then I had lived with my family in Connecticut and then with a house full of roommates in San Diego, California, where one girl and I did not get along. So I moved out on my own to an old building called El Roberto that was once a hotel and had been converted into studio apartments. It was gorgeous!
Built in 1924, El Roberto was a frequent stopping place for celebrities and rich folks heading down from Los Angeles to Mexico on vacations. The amazing thing was it was built with secret Prohibition features like dumbwaiters that dropped to the basement, crawl spaces in the walls and walk-in closets with doors inside that led to hiding spaces from the law. But the coolest 1920s relic left behind was a huge black boiler in the cellar. It was at least two feet taller than my five-foot stature and doubly wide. The apartment manager informed me that the boiler wasn’t a hot water heater nor was it connected to any ducts that led up to the apartments. He was curious as to why and soon found another piece to the puzzle, a hidden trap door in the floor full of old liquor bottles and a flimsy notepad with recipes in it. Recipes for illegal liquor. The boilers were for making alcohol.
After learning all about my new residence, my storyteller’s mind went into overdrive while I was unpacking and pretty soon I had to stop hanging up clothes and start up writing. That night the words flowed like honey on a hot summer’s day and I had the first handful of chapters to The Blue Lute.
The Blue Lute is a story about a young historian named Lilly Charles who finds a similar mystery in her apartment, the once famous St. Jean Hotel. But her story goes beyond mine – in her story, there is a photograph of a beautiful couple stuck inside the pages of the old liquor recipe book. Oddly enough, the gentleman in the picture happens to look a lot like the man she saw being arrested when she arrived at the apartment earlier in the day. Lilly has to know the connection between the two, and sure enough, what she finds is a mystery full of passion, liquor, murder and money in a little speakeasy called The Blue Lute.
I’m happy to bring back an author who’s visited BIOTM before. Her second book is coming out this Monday. It’s entitled RESCUE ME and tells the story of a young veterinarian who rescues all kinds of stray animals but runs into trouble when she finds the farm she’s using actually belongs to the man across the road. And, she put a lot of personal details in the book–so help me welcome Jody Vitek and find out about some of the quirks in her background she was willing to share! Read the rest of this entry »
Our guest blogger today is R.T. Wolfe author of the Black Creek series. With the coming publication of the third and final book in the series scheduled for later this month, R.T. faced saying good-bye to her beloved characters. Read on for how R.T. solved her problem.
Good-bye can be bitter sweet. On August 28th, the final book in my romantic suspense Black Creek Series will be released. I’ve been living with the characters in this trilogy since 2009. It’s like saying so long to good friends. Brianna is the only witness in the murder of her parents. She buries her loss in the dirt of her landscaping business. Nathan moves in behind her after he inherits his two nephews. He came back to scenic upstate New York to learn to be a better father figure, not fall in love and solve a murder. Book 1, Black Creek Burning, hit the Amazon Best-Seller’s list in February of this year. Go figure!
Last November I listened to a random urge to particiapte in NaNo and signed up for the Savvy Smackdown. One of the best parts was meeting my team mates, including the fabulous Teri Anne Stanley. Because I love her sense of humor, I asked her to be our guest today.
Here’s Teri -
Thanks for inviting me to visit your blog! I have a fable to tell you…
Once upon a time, a silly scientist with a house full of teenagers and dogs and other nonsensical chaos read a romance novel. “I could totally write better than this” she thought.
Dionysus, sitting high on Mt Olympus (note that I said he was high), cracked up laughing. “Hey Apollo! Check this out. This human broad thinks she can write better than the author of that novel! This should be good.”
Apollo took a hit of whatever D-God was smoking, and said, “Well, maybe she can. She’s a scientist. She’s smart, right?”
Aphrodite stopped for a toke, and said, “She loves romance. Whoever loves romance has to be wonderful. I think she can do it.”
The three gods started placing bets. Aphrodite snuck to earth and whispered in the human’s ear, “Get writing. I’ve got a lot of money riding on this.” Read the rest of this entry »
I’m thrilled to welcome Eve Devon to the Muse today. Eve is my “release mate” at Entangled Publishing. Both of us released suspense books a few weeks ago and have cheered each other on as we deal with the whirlwind of promo surrounding a new release. As we chatted, we dicovered both of our stories featured a strong connection to the story’s setting. Intrigued by the idea of two authors on two sides of the Atlantic joined by so many common elements, we decided to host each other for a guest post, focused on “location!”
So please welcome fabulous suspense author Eve Devon to the Muse!
Thank you so much for having me here today. As a reader I love getting to “visit” places I’ve never been to without feeling like I’m being given a geography lesson. And as I writer I love discovering how setting can lend an extra dimension to a suspense story.
When I began writing The Waiting Game I knew my heroine Brooke was living somewhere where she could get away with going through the motions and where she didn’t really have to engage with the world. Her psycho-stalker Andre Spinks had been placed behind bars after a very public trial and she needed to be where the press and paparazzi couldn’t endlessly feed off her—somewhere she could heal. Read the rest of this entry »
by R. R. Smythe
My Writer’s Block Cures
I love writing. I love sitting down at my computer and typing away, transferring the stories and the characters that live in my head to the screen—or paper, if I’m away from the computer. I treasure every moment I’m allowed to do this. And with a full-time job, a husband and kids, and a house to take care of, finding time to indulge myself in this pleasure is a rare thing.
So what happens when I finally find the time and I don’t know what to write?
I hear this happens a lot with pantsers, but I’m a plotter. And usually I have the story worked out in my head beforehand. But not always. Plus there are times when things have to be changed. When I can’t think of how to transition a scene or fix something that’s gone horribly wrong, what do I do?
Here are my cures for Writer’s Block.
Back it up. Go back and re-read the last couple chapters. Usually this fixes a block for me. It puts me back into the story, into the soul and depth of it, and sparks ideas for the next scene. It also usually shows me something I didn’t see before, maybe a possible twist or turn I could take to develop the story better.
Skip around. I don’t always write chronologically. If I’m stuck on a chapter, but I know what I want to happen down the road a bit, I’ll skip ahead and write the scene I already envision which will come later in the story. Sometimes it’s easier to connect the dots when you have point A and point B bookending your troublespot.
Step away. Sometimes you just need a clearer headspace to let the ideas flow. Go outside, take a walk, listen to music, or watch a movie. Inspiration usually finds us when we’re not looking.
Plow forward. Once in a while, you just have to write something—anything—no matter, how ridiculous it is, to get the ball rolling. You are allowed to write crap. As long as you go back and fix it later. But at least you’ll have written something. And sometimes, fixing something bad is the best way to move forward to something better.
Sixteen-year-old Zadie’s first mistake was telling the boy she liked she could bring her dead sister back to life. Her second mistake was actually doing it.
When Zadie accidentally messes with the Reaper’s Rite that should have claimed her sister Mara, things go horribly wrong. Mara isn’t the same anymore—Zadie isn’t even sure she’s completely human. To top it off, a Reaper is determined to collect Mara’s soul. Now Zadie must figure out how to defeat her sister’s Reaper or let Mara die … this time for good.
Dorothy Dreyer has always believed in magic. She loves reading, writing, movies, takeout, chocolate, and spending time with her family and friends. Half-American and half-Filipino, Dorothy lives in Germany with her husband and two teens.
Amazon Paperback: http://www.amazon.com/My-Sisters-Reaper-Reapers-Rite/dp/0985029498/
Amazon Kindle: http://www.amazon.com/Sisters-Reaper-Reapers-Rite-ebook/dp/B00CW079T6
The Book Depository: http://www.bookdepository.com/My-Sisters-Reaper-Dorothy-Dreyer/9780985029494
Barnes and Noble: http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/my-sisters-reaper-dorothy-dreyer/1109686823?ean=9780985029494
Author Website: http://dorothydreyer.com
Facebook Fanpage: http://facebook.com/AuthorDorothyDreyer
Today’s post is an interview with Carina Press author Shawna Thomas. Her new book, Journey of Awakening, was released this past Monday. It’s an epic fantasy, my kind of story.
Here is a short description of Shawna’s Journey to Awakening.
Trained from birth for one purpose, Sara must reunite three ancient stones to restore balance to the land but one of the stone keepers has other plans.
To get to know Shawna better, she has answered a few questions.
1. How long did it take you to write Journey of Awakening? Well, it depends which time. I started writing this story over ten years ago. It’s changed much since then. The last version was done like a speed round. I had a newborn who did not sleep and a two month deadline to rewrite the manuscript. It’s a blur. Read the rest of this entry »
Please welcome author of “Dar’kind Fairy”, motorcycle enthusiast, and all around fascinating lady, Eden Glenn!
Eden Glenn lives in the mountains of Chattanooga, Tennessee with a cat and a loveable nuisance dog that should be in Japan. Eden has blue eyes, but her hair color is subject to change without notice. She is a member of RWA (Romance Writers of America) and FCRW (First Coast Romance Writers).
Prepare to leave your safe world behind.
http://www.edenglenn.com My social networking links are here on my website for FB, Twitter, Amazon and more. Check out my book trailers, blog and news.
Name three places you’ve lived in and loved:
Chattanooga, TN (presently)
What is a career you would have liked to try but didn’t have the chance?
I wanted to be a veterinarian, ocean biologist
I also wanted to be a Mermaid, mustang and dolphin.
What careers have people said you would be good at?
I had a lawyer tell me one time I’d missed my calling as a negotiator.
But then, my x mother in law told me I would be great as a phone sex 1900 operator. I think she meant I had a pleasant voice. Way TMI. LOL
Favorite four hobbies:
Photography; messing with fibers; riding my 750 Vulcan Motorcycle; gardening
Favorite Adult Beverage
Diet Coke. LOL. Okay; Long Island Iced Tea, Green Dragon
Guilty Pleasure: Watching Walking Dead T.V. show
* * * * * * *
Darkind Fairy Maura comes to the human dimension on a search and rescue mission for one of her race. The success of the mission rests on her wits and the skilled aid of her feline tracker, Zelia. Unfortunately, Zelia is experiencing unpredictable shifts between feline and human forms.
Distracted by the sultry woman in her bed, Maura struggles to stay focused on their quest. If they’re unable to figure out how to gain control of Zelia’s shifting, all hope for success of their mission as well as any possibility of their future together will be lost.
Worse yet, an ancient evil targets Zelia and Maura in a bid for power and control of their magic.
Zelia is willing to risk becoming trapped in feline form and losing the love she’s found if it means she can save Maura from the evil hunting them. Meanwhile, Maura searches for the strength to abandon the quest for her lost ‘sister’ if doing so will save Zelia’s life and stabilize her shifting abilities.
* * *
Today we’ve invited Charlene Wilson to to pull up a chair and visit with the Musers. Charlene is an author of paranormal tales that take you away to other dimensions. She weaves magic, lasting love, and intrigue to immerse you into the lives of her characters. She began writing in her early teens when her vivid dreams stayed with her long after she had them. The characters and worlds were so amazing that she brought them to life through her books. Thanks for taking time to hang with us here at the Muse and chat a little about your writing and your books.
Thank you for having me at Blame it on the Muse, Alix. It’s a real treat to be with you all. *smile*
~ * ~
Call it fate, destiny, kismet…I believe some of us were just meant to be together at some level. There are people in my life that I never would have imagined would mean so much to me when I first saw them. It’s like the forces that be align our lives so we meet. Nature takes it from there and with time, magic can happen and lead us from that first sight to more firsts. Like, first blush. First tingly touch. First kiss. First love. And then that first intimate encounter that leads us down the road to a life together. Read the rest of this entry »
I’m an ex-smoker. I admit, with a sad and bewildered sigh, that I probably enjoyed every Marlboro Light I ever smoked, plus whatever brands I bummed from other people. Some of the happiest times of my life were spent writing, smoking, and drinking coffee. The three things went together. Oh, bliss.
Yes, great nasty, stinking, carcinogenic bliss. A number of things—husband, children, three bouts of bronchitis plus an interesting segue into pneumonia—convinced me I should at least try to quit. So I got a prescription for Zyban and enlisted the help and knowledge of my pharmacist daughter-in-law (“The prescription’s usually for 12 weeks. I think you should take it for 16.”) I prayed a lot. Cried a lot. Whispered, “Dammit, I can’t do this” a lot.
But I quit, and I haven’t been sorry even one minute out of the last 11 years. However, I was unable to write for months after I stopped. I don’t remember how long it took to get my creative voice back, but it was enough time to worry me. I remember sitting for hours, staring blankly at the monitor or playing game after game of computer Solitaire. You can’t fix a blank page, I’d think desperately, channeling Nora Roberts, and eventually the words returned. My writer’s heart healed.Bliss again. Read the rest of this entry »