Wednesday, April 27, 2011

On Voice

I don't usually do book reviews. Nor do I throw a book up and shout, "You MUST read this book!" But I'm going to make an exception today. So often as writers, we're looking for that elusive voice, the magic narrative that makes agents and editors melt into puddles of goo. The voice that causes readers to line up in droves, salivating for our words. Voice can't be taught. It's not like grammar, or spelling. You can't hone voice the way you can a story arc or plot twist. Voice is voice. You can't fake it. That may sound cryptic, but it's true. You've either got it, or you don't.

Voice comes from letting your guard down. From saying, "Screw it! This is who I am, who my character is, and I'm throwing down!" Voice is the truest part of you that flows through your thoughts, your personality, and your imaginings as you slowly wear the letters off your keyboard. And letting go of your writerly inhibitions and allowing your voice to flow is scary as hell.

Read FIRST GRAVE ON THE RIGHT, by Darynda Jones. I'm telling you, from the first sentence, you'll be hooked. Ms. Jones knows her MC,  Charley Davidson like the back of her hand. The narrative flows easily, Charley's personality comes through with amazing clarity, and through Charley, Ms. Jones tells one hell of a good story. I have to say, this book is one of the best examples of narrative voice I've ever read. It's no wonder this book won the Golden Heart in 2009. I'm hooked. The next installment of this series can't come fast enough for me. Ms. Jones, I'm salivating for book 2. ;)

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

A Giveaway

Just a reminder that I'm doing a giveaway over at my facebook author page. Once I hit 100 "likes" I'll be giving away a Barnes and Noble $25 gift card. I love facebook and I love to interact with people there. Most of my book news, contests, etc. will be run through my fan page. Hope to see you there!

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Magic and Mayhem - Your Ad Here

I'm blogging at Magic and Mayhem today about product placement and advertising in media. Hope to see you over there!

Monday, April 18, 2011


Sorry I've been absent for so long! After going off the radar while I worked on edits, I managed to catch the nastiest cold/flu/virus/whatever that I've had in a couple years. Even with antibiotics, these damn germs are holding on for dear life!

So, I realized something in my recent blogging adventures. I'm NOT a blogger. In the month of February I blogged every day. I scheduled posts ahead of time, and I put a lot of thought behind what I did. But when March rolled along, I didn't blog at all. I'd managed to burn myself out in the course of four weeks. Another side effect from my mad February blogging schedule: it caused me to lose a lot of my creative drive. I was putting so much thought into blogging, reading blogs, commenting on blogs, and following new blogs, that when I was done with the blogging portion of my day, the thought of writing wasn't quite so appealing.

Granted, I've been in revising mode. I didn't want to disrupt that groove because I knew I'd be working on edits soon. I have a hard time switching gears from creating to revising. But, really, blogging is creating. I had to plunk down new words once a day. I'd worn myself a little thin.

We're all eager to brand ourselves. We've all read the articles, heard our friends talk about how our careers as writers are staked on our on-line visibility. But if we don't have a product to peddle, that product being our novels, all of the visibility in the world isn't going to do a damn bit of good. I think about some of my favorite authors, take JR Ward, for instance. She doesn't blog. But she posts to her facebook page almost every day. She's interacting with her fans constantly. She also posts on forum pages and is active on her website. But as far as I know, she doesn't blog. At all. In a recent article in RWA's RWR April issue, Ward said that she forgoes a lot of appearances, as well as real life activities for her writing. She basically said, hey, my fans are in it for the books. And it's my job to give them what they want. Without a book to sell, I don't have fans.

Now, it's easy for Ward to put her platform on the back burner. She's already built a tremendous fan base. But I think the moral of the story, at least in my case, is this: don't over do it. Everything in moderation. It's not necessary for ME to blog every--single--day. It's perfectly acceptable to blog once or twice a week. Or once every couple weeks. It's okay to blog in the form of my favorite song, or a quote I want to share, or a joke. It's okay to write an essay or blog about my current work in progress. As long as I'm popping in, saying 'hi' every once in a while, I think readers will be okay with that. I'm going to keep writing blog posts, reading the many blogs I follow, commenting. I'm not going to attempt to be that super-blogger that I know I'm not. I tip my hat to those of you that can blog once a day/five days a week. I envy your hundreds upon hundreds of followers. I wish I could follow in your footsteps. But I can't. And that's okay too. I'll continue to network and build my platform through facebook and twitter. I'll continue to blog with my UF/Para-romance sisters at Magic and Mayhem. And hopefully, you'll continue to pop in every once in a while. You know, just to see what's up!

What's your opinion on blogging? If you don't see a post a day, do you unfollow blogs? Are you okay with the occasional blogger? What's your take on blogging? Love it? Hate it? Undecided?

Tuesday, April 12, 2011

Magic and Mayhem - The TBR Pile

I'm laying out my reading goals and revealing a few gems from my TBR pile on Magic and Mayhem today! Stop by and you might find a new series to read!

Friday, April 1, 2011

Magic and Mayhem - Owning It

Hey everyone! I've finally come up for air while my edits stew a bit and I'm blogging over at Magic and Mayhem today about owning your successes as well as your failures. Hope to see you over there!