Tuesday, June 25, 2013

Famous Writing Quote of the Day

“A book cover should tell you all you need to know about that book.”

What you see is what you get.
What you see is what you get.

These Are Ideal  Book Covers

Saturday, June 22, 2013

The Perils of Pantserism

Pauline likes to go where her characters lead her.

Another Character-Driven WIP Goes Wrong!
"This is the last time I'm going to write about mice," said the author. (No mice were injured during the writing of this book.)

Friday, June 21, 2013

To Plot or not to Plot


"Perhaps many writing problems lie not in our characters but in ourselves. Hamlet was driven by outside events and, by failing to take charge, ended his life in a sea of troubles. Is it not ironic that the ultimate pantser was created by the ultimate plotter?"

Vince Mooney

Bonus Writing Quote of the Day


"Characters are members of ‘team novel’ and when they think they are bigger than the team, they always hurt the team." 
Vince Mooney

Plotting for Success


"I’m a character driven writer in the same way an Amish buggy is horse driven. Characters can demonstrate all the personality they want as long as we stay on the right road."

Vince Mooney

Flying With a Pantser

“Mary, that was the smoothest takeoff I’ve ever experienced.”

“I’ve finaled in five takeoff contests and won two.”

“That’s excellent. Now where  are we going?”

“I don’t know. I never learned how to plot a course. We’ll just fly around for a while and see what we can see." 

“I’m afraid to ask this but what else did you not bother to learn?” 

“I never learned how to land one of these things. I want the ending to surprise me.”

“Is there a parachute in this thing?”

Famous Writing Quote of the Day


“There should be as many writing contests on the quality of your total story as there are on how well you can write a first chapter. A great chapter in a so-so story is not going to go anywhere.”
Vince Mooney

Thursday, June 20, 2013

Famous Writing Quote of the Day


“Sometimes our analogies hide more than they illuminate but their light can be so bright we never realize how much more was hidden in the shadows – wonderful things never to be discovered.”

Vince Mooney

Wednesday, June 19, 2013

Famous Writing Quote of the Day


“It seems that the older one gets the more words change their meaning to become the opposite of what they once meant. It’s as if words outgrow their significance and desire to obtain a new identity.”
 Vince Mooney

Tuesday, June 18, 2013

Famous Writing Quote of the Day


“Words suggest more than they mean. Words can even mean the opposite of their meanings depending on the author’s intentions. In this sense words are not things…they are possibilities.”  
Vince Mooney

Poetry Quote of the Day


“Some people like poetry for the pleasing noise it makes. Others like the kind of poetry that only they and a select few can take pride in understanding. I like poetry that lets me see what I’ve not seen before or which shows me how what I once thought was true is not. It’s what happens in the reader that makes poetry great.”

Vince Mooney

Thursday, June 13, 2013

Famous Writing Quote of the Day


“Sometimes when you shoot a character, it leaves a bullet in your reader’s heart.”
Vince Mooney

Sunday, June 9, 2013

A Perfect ‘Textbook Example’ of Mismarketing an Author’s Book

Buy it here.

Excellent Five Star Frontier Wagon Train Romance Survives Minus Five Star Misbranding!

Jan Davis Warren
Volume 2 in a Four Books Series Inspired by Molly Noble Bull.
This is a long short story. About 9000 words.
The readers that "The General's Daughter" was written to please will be delighted with this story. It is well written, well edited, and delightfully unpredictable. I never knew what was going to happen next and this is crucial in a successful short story.

Actually "The General's Daughter" is a longer short story which is just a little shorter than a short novella. (It took me about an hour to read it at a slow enjoyable reading speed.)
The story takes place in the summer of 1829 near Ft. Gibson in Indian Territory. As the story opens the wagon train the heroine is traveling with is attacked by Indians. Things are life and death until the Calvary arrives. There are good action scenes here. The rest of the story covers the unfolding of the romance the story is about. (The blurb tells about this.)
This story was written entirely by Jan Davis Warren and it is well worth the low price.
Now for the mismarketing.
1. Molly Noble Bull did not write or coauthor this story as the cover seems to indicate. Even on my Kindle, Molly Noble Bull, is listed as the author (you can't find the book by searching your Kindle by Jan Davis Warren's name.)
2. This is not a Western. This is a Frontier story. I've read about 1,000 westerns in my life and I know the difference. A genre western should take place after the Civil War and end before 1900.
3. There are no cowboys in this story. This is about the Army, trappers and farmers. It's not about cowboys.
4. This is not a "Shoot `em up" western. A "Shoot `em up" western requires quick draws, modern six-guns, Winchester lever action rifles, and trains. This "Shoot `em up" period was decades after the heyday of wagon trains. The Gunfight at O.K. Corral is a "Shoot `em up" western.
Winchester 1873 "The gun that won the west."
5. This may be an inspiring story but it is not a genre "Inspirational" romance in that the characters spiritual beliefs are not essential to the story. It is a clean story without bad language or sex. People who like Christian Fiction will have no problems with this book.
None of these marketing problems are the author's fault. She wrote a very entertaining story that her fans should really enjoy. I know I did. But then I've been to Ft. Gibson several times and have read a history of the fort. I knew what kind of story it would be regardless of the misleading cover art.
The cover art should have shown a wagon train with some indication that it was under attack. (Not a cowboy!) It would not hurt to have an old wooden fort in the background.
The reference to `Molly Noble Bull' should have been offset in a different typeface and worded something like this:
Story II in the series inspired by Molly Noble Bull.
This would provide the fusion to the other stories the publisher rightly was trying to make without confusing the issue of authorship of the story.
I know this is just a 99 cent story and the publisher may not of thought it was worthy of a more thorough and more costly marketing effort. However, this view is short sighted.
What the cover does is attract readers who are expecting a different kind of story. Such readers could well be disappointed and might reflect this disappointment by giving poor reviews that are really no fault of the author.
On the other hand, the best prospects for this story, and there should be many, may not even notice that this is a story they would enjoy. Thus the best prospects could well be driven away.
In effect, this marketing is attracting non-prospects to the product while potentially driving away the best prospects. Doing this is the unforgiveable sin in marketing. It is better to have marketing that does nothing than have marketing that by misdirection makes things worse.
One last thing: many people will not buy an eBook without knowing how long it is. I've seen ebooks that are only a few pages long. I only bought this story after I emailed the author to find out how long it was. Telling how long a story is should be mandatory for ebooks because doing so is a more powerful way to market the book.
If you want to read a five start Frontier Wagon Train Romance, "The General's Daughter" is the book for you.

Famous Writing Quote of the Day


“Sometimes the most powerful subtext is silence.”
Vince Mooney

Friday, June 7, 2013

There were great writers centuries before there were craft books or fiction writing classes.


Learning How to Write:

1. Write.

2. Write until you face a problem.

3. Read other authors to discover how they solved similar problems.

4. Use what you learned to solve your problem.

5. Place what you learned into your 'writer’s tool box'.

6. Return to step one and repeat process indefinitely.
Vince Mooney

“We are all apprentices in a craft where no one ever becomes a master.”   Hemingway

Sunday, June 2, 2013

Announcing! A New Cover Reveal: “Bleeding Heart” -- A Debut Inspirational Historical Romance by Amber Stokes


About the Book

Five bleeding hearts. One profound journey.

Summer 1886

Sally Clay’s livelihood has been snatched away, but in its place arises an opportunity to escape from her sordid past and an unrelenting, unwanted suitor. Boarding a train with a heartsick rancher and an enigmatic miner, she leaves Virginia City behind and heads to Northern California, waiting for the chance to make right what went wrong three long years before.

But the road to revenge is far from smooth. Sally soon learns that the jagged pieces of a broken heart can far too easily wound the hearts of others – and hers isn’t the only heart that’s broken. Tragedy and fear dog her steps as she flees from the redwood forests to the high desert and back again. Will her bleeding heart ever find a way and a place to heal?

A desperate soiled dove. Three men who come to care for her. One man determined to claim her.

All on a journey that will show them what true love really involves.

Inspirational Historical Romance


About the Author
Amber Stokes has a Bachelor of Science degree in English and a passion for the written word - from blogging to writing poetry, short stories, and novels. After her brief time at college in Oregon, she is now back home among the redwoods of Northern California, living life one day at a time and pursuing her passion via freelance editing and self-publishing her debut novel, Bleeding Heart. You can connect with Amber on her blog, Seasons of Humility.

About the Cover Designer
Lena lives in a scenic small town in Massachusetts with her husband, two kids, and a very spoiled Black Lab. She writes fiction for young adults, mostly light fantasy with a healthy dose of "sigh-worthy" romance. You can visit her online at www.lenagoldfinch.blogspot.com.

  Teaser from Bleeding Heart
Breaking hearts should be considered a crime. That would make Elizabeth Lawson an outlaw and Joe Clifton the victim. And that wasn’t a far stretch in Joe’s mind. She had rounded up his heart, branded her name across it when it should never have belonged to her, and then left him high and dry. Still, he was getting sick of hanging around the scene of the crime. He just didn’t know where else to go.
Lake Tahoe had once been his favorite get-away destination, a place where he could go to just sit back and enjoy the view of water as clear as a shined-up mirror. Now those crystal depths and the unmoving boulders along the water’s edge taunted him, bringing back memories of a happy proposal and a less-than-happy scene where his heart was handed back to him on a silver platter – bruised, broken, and bleeding.
He didn’t want to make any more memories like that. So he made a promise to himself: He would never let anyone break his heart again.

Amber Stokes the Fires of Inspiration!  

Three Men – One Heroine
A Bleeding Heart is Just the Start!


What Characters Say When Their Aspiring Authors Are Away…


“Sally, I don’t think my author gets it. Her current two WIPs are entitled: “Plain Jake” and “Handsome and the Beastette”.  

“Well, Wanda, I’d gladly take those two titles over my author’s, “The Spinster Settles for a Short Fat Balding Poor Guy”. 
“Do you think a critique group would help?”

“I think it would help if they would read some romances.”

Theological Quote of the Day

"The asymmetry of faith:  while faith in the right things can make life worth living, faith in the wrong things can make life a living hell – for ourselves and for others."
Vince Mooney

If Characters in a Romance Could Talk...


“If it’s not writer’s block, it’s time wasted on Facebook. I wish she’d hurry! I have to get this story over with so I can get a  part in a better book.”
Character asked to remain anonymous.

Saturday, June 1, 2013

The Pondering Pantser

“Of course being a pantser is more fun. If I had wanted to follow orders, I’d have stayed in the Army.”
Vince Mooeny


If Characters in a Romance Could Talk...


"Batten down the hatches; she’s coming back from her critique group."

Vince Mooney

Critique Chic


“If you can’t say something nice, join a critique group."

Vince Mooney