Monday, September 30, 2013

And now, kittens!

Hey all! As you might have read on Friday, my publishing house surprised me to let me know that my book is coming out October 4th. There's still a boatload of stuff that still needs to be confirmed, which means I am trying very hard not to freak out. *reaches for paper bag*

In the meantime, I want to ask that if you can help me get the word out in any way, and haven't let me know yet, please go to this post. I'll be most grateful!

So in the interest of not freaking out, I'm going to not think of my book for the rest of the afternoon. (Out of my hands now...) Instead, I'm giving in to popular demand.

Two things:

1) I know the pictures are sort of squiffy. That's because my camera was just barely fast enough to catch them in hyper mode. The alternative would have been to take pictures of them sleeping. Seriously, they're like four year olds on too much sugar.

2) The names are as yet unconfirmed. See, they're still small, so it's tricky to figure out who's male and who's female. I'll confirm when they go for their first vaccines.

Okay... I present to you...






Friday, September 27, 2013

The Vanished Knight is out next week. HEEEEEEEELP!!!

Yeah... The time has come, ladies and gentlemen! I have a release date, and it's much sooner than I expected.

In fact, I'd like to launch The Vanished Knight by 15 October (projected release is 4 October).

For me to make a bit of a splash, I need your help. I know this is super short notice, but I literally found out thirty minutes ago. The delay between finding out and posting this was caused by me picking myself up from the floor.

Because I know that your schedules are super full, I'm doing it this way: I'm letting you decide when you'd like to do the post. If you can help at all, please let me know in the comments:

What you'd like to do. I'll do: guest posts, author interviews and character interviews. You can also request an e-copy of my book for reviews, or simply my cover and/or blurb to post it on your blog.

When you'd like to do it. Anything from 15 October to 31 January works for me.

Contact details. I need to be able to contact you.

Thanks in advance to everyone who'll help!

Thursday, September 26, 2013

Do You Have a Dream? Update

Hey all! Still as rushed as before, but since it would suck if I missed my own bloghop, I thought I'd give a quick update on my Five-Year-Project activities.
First bit of excellent news is that my ITIN arrived. So at least I know I'll be able to publish.
Then, I've received the draft of The Vanished Knight's cover. Can't share yet, but it's awesome. Can't wait to show you all.
I've also received the first round of copyedits. Will be Iaunching into them this weekend. In the meantime, I'm steaIing snippets of time to finish Birds vs Bastards by Friday. Only two scenes left.
Next month, I'll be back to editing TVK. I'll be drafting in my down-time, but I haven't decided which WiPs to work on.
That's it for now. Who else has news to share?
Want to sign up? Click here.

Tuesday, September 24, 2013

You might have noticed that I've been scarce...

Yeah, I haven't been around for the past few days. Things have been a bit hectic, with me suddenly having to care for five kittens (photos are forthcoming). On top of that, I have guest visiting as well, and work which has become a lot less fun today.

As always, I won't be expanding on the work situation, because I really don't think you'd want to hear me bitch about the magical disappearance of over nineteen forty foot containers of oranges. But then, I might turn it into an escapist story about the world's greatest magician to grace an export office.


Besides this, my 30 September deadline for me to finish the Birds vs Bastards rewrites looms closer and I'm a bit behind...

So. This means that I'll be scarce for a few more days, but I promise to visit and follow all my Follow Fest co-entrants by this time next week, and then I'll be a lot more faithful to my usual blog visits

Okay. That's what's going on at my end.

I do, however, have a real post today, at Untethered Realms. It's about how I (and I suspect most other writers) want our books to be read. I'd love it if you checked it out! X

Monday, September 23, 2013

Follow Fest

Hey all! Sorry for the delay. Have kittens in the house and I'm a bit busy taking care of them. Here are my answers, though...

Name:  Misha

Fiction or nonfiction?
Fiction all the way.

What genres do you write?
At the moment, I'm writing or have written epic fantasy, urban fantasy, sci fi, historical fiction, YA and Adult. 

Are you published?
My YA Epic Fantasy will be published in the near future. 

Where can people connect with you?
My Writing Blog (see to your right for various following options)


Friday, September 20, 2013

Alex J Cavanaugh Taking the World by Storm

Hey all! Yep, you guessed it, I'm part of the ninja conspiracy to have Alex take over the bloggosphere. 

Comment on Alex’s blog this week for a chance to win a Cassa mug, mousepad, magnet, and swag!

Me: So... What's next?

Alex: Retirement? I’m not sure. I have an idea for another book, but just not in a place to write it now. My music has taken over so much of my life and I’m not sure there is room for writing anymore. Regardless, I’ve achieved far more than I ever thought possible as an author, so I’m happy.

Me: I know I'd love to see another book by Alex. He's one of my favorite authors, after all. Who else would like to see more Alex J. Cavanaugh books? 

By Alex J Cavanaugh

From the Amazon Best Selling Series!

A storm gathers across the galaxy…

Commanding the Cassan base on Tgren, Byron thought he’d put the days of battle behind him. As a galaxy-wide war encroaches upon the desert planet, Byron’s ideal life is threatened and he’s caught between the Tgrens and the Cassans.

After enemy ships attack the desert planet, Byron discovers another battle within his own family. The declaration of war between all ten races triggers nightmares in his son, threatening to destroy the boy’s mind.

Meanwhile the ancient alien ship is transmitting a code that might signal the end of all life in the galaxy. And the mysterious probe that almost destroyed Tgren twenty years ago could return. As his world begins to crumble, Byron suspects a connection. The storm is about to break, and Byron is caught in the middle…

“CassaStorM is a touching and mesmerizing space opera full of action and emotion with strong characters and a cosmic mystery.” – Edi’s Book Lighhouse

"Cavanaugh makes world building on the galactic scale look easy. The stakes affect the entire known universe and yet Cavanaugh makes it intensely personal for our hero. The final installment of this series will break your heart and put it back together."
- Charity Bradford, science fantasy author of The Magic Wakes

“…mesmerizing story of survival, personal sacrifice, tolerance, and compassion. It’s a rare jewel that successfully utilizes both character and plot to tell a story of such immense scope and intimate passion…” - Nancy S. Thompson, author of The Mistaken

$16.95 USA, 6x9 Trade paperback, 268 pages, Dancing Lemur Press, L.L.C.
Science fiction/adventure and science fiction/space opera
Print ISBN 9781939844002 eBook ISBN 9781939844019
$4.99 EBook available in all formats

Find CassaStorm:
Amazon -
Book trailer -
<iframe width="560" height="315" src="//" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe>

Alex J. Cavanaugh has a Bachelor of Fine Arts degree and works in web design and graphics. He is experienced in technical editing and worked with an adult literacy program for several years. A fan of all things science fiction, his interests range from books and movies to music and games. Online he is the Ninja Captain and founder of the Insecure Writer’s Support Group. The author of the Amazon bestsellers, CassaStar and CassaFire, he lives in the Carolinas with his wife.

Thursday, September 19, 2013

Hey all!

I'm sleepy and don't have the concentration span of a goldfish. So I - OMG sandwich!!!

Aaaaanyway, I'm going to play hookie today.

Will be around more tomorrow!


Wednesday, September 18, 2013

Come on over and say hi!

Hey all! Just want to let you know I'm at Cassandra Loskot's blog today, talking about 10 lessons I wish I'd learnt while I was in high school.

I'd love to hear what you wish you'd learnt, so come on over and tell us! :-)

Tuesday, September 17, 2013

When I say "Just Write"...

I've recently returned to social media with a vengeance and you might have noticed, because lately I've been writing quite a few posts inspired by events on other social media.

Mainly, the reason for this was that... well... Blogging really helps me when I have a lot to say.

Today is another one of these posts. Although a lot less angry because it wasn't sparked by someone being an idiot.

This time, it was sparked by a lot of first time writers who are being (naturally) lacking in confidence or even down-right insecure. It might be a bit more direct, though, in the interest in helping the new kids see the light faster.

One of them got annoyed because her every writing question got answered by: "Write it first", "Just write"'s cousin.

Others commented that they also got annoyed by that answer, because it was a cop out. Instead of a "real answer" we veterans just pat new kids on the heads and tell them to write.

Honestly, I can't say I blame them. But I do think the phrase is misunderstood.

So here I am, explaining my take on "Write it first" and "Just write", real answer style:

1. This doesn't encourage people to jump into a story unprepared. 

There are plotters, pantsers and hybrids out there, and my telling people in general to just write the damn story isn't a way to tell them all to become pantsers. It does, however mean that once you've start, that you should try your absolute best to finish that story. There are reasons not to finish a story. But you'll know them by the fact that you'll have a reason to shelf it without having to ask anyone else.

2. Just write = Suck it up and keep going. 

We writers have three serious enemies that always fight our attempts to get writing done: fear, inner critics and inner censors.

If you've written past that initial thrill of new inspiration, you'll know them well. What if I don't have what it takes to write this story? I can't possibly let that happen to my characters. This isn't good enough. I shouldn't want to be a writer. Who was I kidding? 

They never go away. And no amount of other people telling you you're good enough and that your story will come out fine will make them leave. The only way to beat them is to keep on writing regardless of what those voices say. 

You're welcome to complain about your doubts and insecurities, but all your true writer friends will tell you to suck it up, buttercup keep writing. This is, in fact, the strongest encouragement we have. We can't promise you that you'll get a million dollar book deal. Or that you'll even get a deal. But we can promise that you can finish a story. And that in itself is a huge accomplishment.

3. Stop over-thinking. 

This is actually what got me into writing today's post. I spent the past few weeks writing answers to questions like:

When is it okay to end a chapter? 

What are the pros and cons of writing in first person? 

I have this awesome idea about writing about this war people don't really know about it, but I'm changing it into a spec fic. But is it a good idea? 

And my current personal favorite: How do I avoid info dumps? How do I discretely disperse information throughout the story? 

Oh and: What should I write to manipulate the maximum amount of readers into reading my book?

New kids, I love you. I really do. I do my utmost to give you the tools you need to get those stories written. But you're never going to get that book done if you're constantly worrying about doing things just right so other people (who you don't even know) will think you're an awesome writer.

Write until you feel the chapter is done.

There are no pros and cons to writing a certain way. Only ways of writing that do or don't suit you.

If you love a story idea, it's a good idea. Now go turn it into a book.

Avoid info dumps by either not writing them, or by writing them and cutting them out later. And then you discretely disperse information throughout your story. COME ON. YOU ALREADY KNEW THIS!!!

And for the love of all that is holy. Stop worrying about manipulating millions into reading your book. Firstly, writers have no power over readers until they've already decided to buy and read your book. If you think that writing a certain story in a certain way will win you readers, you're wrong. If you're writing, thinking that it's the easy track to fame (as brought to my attention by your desire to manipulate millions into reading your book), you're wrong. Seriously wrong. Not only that, you're writing for the wrong reasons and therefore doomed to fail unless you change your thinking.

There is no one recipe for writing success. Only this: If you focus on your story and actually write what you love, in the way you love to write it, you'll find at least some measure of success. Eventually. But know that money probably won't be it. Face it. Love it. Write without worrying about it. Takes off a lot of pressure and makes writing a lot more fun.

If you can think of a best seller in our time, odds are there are a lot of people who didn't think it would do well. Those books' authors wrote them anyway. 

Go you and do the same.

Just write.

Perfection comes from editing anyway.

Writing veterans: what does "Just write" and "Write it first" mean when you use it?

Monday, September 16, 2013

Hear Ye Hear Ye! I present to you: Realms Faire 2013


Hear ye! Hear ye! 

Today I announce one week of excitement and fun. 
There's something to do for all and for one. 
Art, dragon hunts, jousting and more, 
But for this to succeed, we need people galore.

I appeal to your hearts so generous and true, 
To think of gifts for us to pass on from you. 
Nothing can be to big or to small, 
We're accepting gifts from one and from all.
And if you wish to only take part, 
There are competitions a-plenty, but you need to start, 
By entering in the many lists below. 
But be quick, for the spaces are quicker to go.


2013 Realms Faire & Joust

November 11-15th



Twitter Hashtag - #grogz


2013 Events and Hosts

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Jousting Tournament

Knights Wanted! Can anyone beat the 2012 champion, Ghost Knight? Angela Brown turned out to be a formidable opponent.

This year, the joust is all about YOU, the knights.

Each knight will be featured during the joust, the tournament held to help promote your book or site. Plus, you'll be publicized in the sidebar on my site until the 2014 champion is declared.

Prizes will be awarded to each day's commenters as well as to the winning knight at the end of the joust. Points are scored by commenters using particular words assigned to the knight. Such as, Zounds! Ghost Knight! Lance that lout! The winning words are zounds, Ghost Knight, and lance. That'd be 3 points for Ghost Knight.

Knights can provide either a story about their feats or an excerpt from any of their books. Stories/excerpts are limited to 200 words or less. However the tournament goes, you can't lose. I'll be posting everyday the week of November 11th, cheering on knights and promoting their wares.

Knights can also provide prizes.

The Joust is limited to 10 participants. Only 3 slots remaining!

Sign up!


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Masquerade Parade

Attend the ball! You'll have a ball! Writers disguise themselves and submit a 200 word snippet of the party providing clues/hints as to their identity. Spotlights an author's writing to help promote them and their wares.

Prizes provided to commenters and the best snippet, decided on by a panel of judges.

The Masquerade is limited to 10-15 costumed authors.

Sign up!

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The Artist's Way

Featured authors will provide an excerpt from either published or unpublished work. The artist will create a masterpiece based on the excerpt. Prizes will be awarded.

Author Sign Up! * Artist Sign Up!

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Collective Stage Performance

A collaborative "Canterbury Tales" story-telling contest by a group of writing "pilgrims" on a journey where each writer assumes a character and gives their pov. The prize for this contest will most likely be free music in lieu of a free meal. Each writer will post their part of the tale on their site *their moment on stage*

Interested writers can contact Sam.

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Dragon Hunt

Hunt for the hidden dragons. Those who find the most will get a chance to win an Amazon GC by drawing.

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The Stockade Brigade

Selected authors will be put in the stockades and brought on trial for book witchery. Witnesses will score points by testifying for or against the author's crimes. Points will be score for using secret words. An ebook will be given away every day to the witness who scores the most points. A bigger prize will be awarded at the end of the week. Warrants for their arrests have already been issued. The Sheriff of Realmsdom will catch up with them all soon.

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Castle Jumble

Laura will post a word (like Bartizan) on her blog and the first person to give her the correct definition in the comments is the winner. They will need to Google the word most likely. More than one word a day can be posted. A person can only win once a day though.

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Drench-a-Wench / Soak-a-Bloke

Blogs will be selected by committee to be bombarded by comments. A person will be nominated each day. People will go to that person's blog and soak them with blog love. One commenter a day will randomly be selected to win a prize. For the commenters that participate in all five days of the event, their names will be entered into a draw for a grand prize.

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Untethered Realms will post a word each day, such as 'Phaser'. The first commenter would then provide a word they think of associated with 'phaser', such as 'stun'. The next commenter would then provide a word they associate with 'stun', such as 'shock'. The next would provide a word associated with 'shock', such as 'electric'. And so on. The last comment of the day will receive a prize.


Sponsor Any Event

Sponsors will provide prizes. They'll be promoted on their own page on and on the Untethered Realms website. In an Amazon widget, their books will be shown, their name and web address will be promoted. This page will also appear as a thank you on and other sites before and after the Realms Faire.

Want to host an event? Contact mpaxauthor at gmail dot com to be put on the planning committee for 2014.

Be a Sponsor

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Please spread the word to all who might be interested. Let's make this event big, to the benefit of all.

Friday, September 13, 2013

Good news is...

I've just written almost 1500 words.

Writer's block: Smashed.

Me: One happy camper.

Have a great weekend! X

I'm heading into my writer's cave to sulk in solitude.

I've hit critical mass with my writer's block. Either I'll start writing, or I'm in for a long week of being a seriously grumpy camper. 

Grumpiness happens when I don't write or edit, so I'm rather going to take myself offline until Monday in the hopes of getting a breakthrough. It's not really something I want people to experience first hand.

See you on the other side.

Thursday, September 12, 2013

Writing Lesson in Horse Riding

I recently figured that hey, I write about knights and cowboys. Maybe I should learn how to ride a horse myself.

It's something I've always wanted to do. There's something absolutely beautiful about seeing a horse and rider in harmony. Something almost mystical.

Learning how to ride, is another animal altogether. There was Calypso, who hates me. Really. I went up to him, trusting him and... well... He tried to head-butt me. And the riding went worse.

So given that Calypso was out to get me, my instructor introduced me to Juno. Now Juno and I hit it off. With Juno, I thought I'd be able to go all the way.

Except the second time I rode him (yes, I know it's stupid to name a stallion for the Roman goddess of women and motherhood), he started to do things that made me less than comfortable. I mean, I'm new to this riding thing. So when I want the horse to stop, it's nice to know the horse will stop. Still, I figured it'd be okay, since I'd grow better as I practiced more.

The lesson after that, though, I was asked to ride Quicksilver. Now Quicky is rather an ornery beast. He's the one who puts all the horses on the farm in their places. And when he does, he kicks butt and takes names. He's also the one who wants to be in front no matter what, so he's faster than either of the other two. And he bites any horse who tries to take the lead from him.

The thing is... Quicky and I simply hit it off. Sure, he was fast, but never in a way that undermined the trust I had to put in him. In fact, riding him gave me the confidence to think I could actually learn other things. Most importantly, though, he loves me too. If there's a group of people and he's loose, he comes to me and lowers his head for me to pet him. Is he the horse I can trust? Possibly. He might change his mind later, but for now, we're getting along perfectly, even if logic says I shouldn't have liked him.

Incidentally, today, I had to ride Juno and my mom had to ride Quicky. Juno was actually scarier today than Calypso. And my mother felt the same way about Quicky.

Now, I bet you're wondering how I'm bringing this to writing. Well.

When I started writing, there was a western. We got along okay, but when my mom took my computer and gave it to someone else, I stopped working on it for years. The spark just wasn't there. (Juno.)

Later on, there was a fantasy. A quest, in fact. With a chosen one. But it was dark. Took me places I didn't want to go. In fact, it was part of some stuff I was going through at the time that really really messed me up in ways that made my university issues look like kindergarten. In the end, I burnt it. Yep. Wiped it, and all the back-ups, and burnt all the plans and drawings I'd made for it. (Calypso)

I have a few other drafts that I could explain, but right now, there aren't horses that match them.

Finally, in walked a character while I was re-reading Chronicles of Narnia. After all those failed attempts, I'd decided to give up on writing idea until I was certain that my idea was a good one. The character didn't take no for an answer, and the story he revealed to me was so good that I knew I'd finish it. To put money where my mouth was, I even started this blog as My First Book. I planned it to be a blog of me finishing a book and getting it published.

Was it because the story was easy? No. In fact, my older bloggy friends might recall that I called it The Beast. The story was huge. It defied my every attempt at pre-planning. The characters were reticent. In fact I hated one of the main characters. But I couldn't give up. I didn't want to. (That story went on to become The Vanished Knight.)

Maybe it's too soon to make this call, but that sounds a lot like Quicksilver. A bit of a bastard, but hey, it picked me and I love it for giving me that honor.

So in summary, the lesson I've learnt so far in writing and horse riding:

Just because you're struggling to get into it doesn't mean that you should give up. It could be that you just have the wrong horse for right now. 
Anyone want to talk about the drafts before the one they finished? 

Wednesday, September 11, 2013

Return of the Writer's Block

I don't know if I mentioned this before, but for the past week, I've had visitors from the Netherlands. It was great having them. We took them all over the area to enjoy the beauty of our landscape.

In addition, we went to places like lion sanctuaries etc. which I haven't ever been to before. Of course, all this is great for my muse. 

She's probably assimilating everything she saw into even more story ideas. 

Needless to say, I'm glad I had this week out in the world. 

But there's a bit of a hitch. Now that I'm back, I'm so exhausted that I can't seem to start writing. I'm past half-way with the Birds vs Bastards rewrite, but right now, I'm just staring at the empty page. Even though I've already written the whole thing. 

I already know what's supposed to happen. But for some reason, something about the section I'm supposed to start now, just doesn't want to come out. 

It's like something's clogging up my mind. Usually, I don't mind, because usually I know exactly what it is that's keeping me from writing a given story. Mainly, it's another idea, so the moment I sit down and write the idea out, I can go back to my main story. 

This time, though, I can't put my finger on it. I can feel the block. But there's just no visible reason for it. 

I haven't felt this way since I finished The Vanished Knight (Doorways, for those or you who missed the announcement). But I do remember. Days and weeks without writing anything because something snarled up my lines of thought. 

Getting so stuck that I couldn't even write a blog post. 

So in the scheme of things, this isn't too bad. And I already know what to do to make it better: 


Forcing the issue never works. Even though I'd love to be all gung-ho and I'll-write-now-because-I-want-to, but that's not how my mind works. 

So, knowing that my self-imposed deadline for this rewrite is the end of September, I'm taking a gamble. I'm going to take time off from the rewrite (and any writing except blogging) until I'm good and ready to get back to it. Hopefully it'll be soon. 

How do you deal with writer's block? 

Before I go. I just want to take a moment to remember those who lost their lives or loved ones on 9/11. 

Tuesday, September 10, 2013

Paying Forward Awards: The Winners

Sorry for the delay in posting this. Things have been going hectic for the past week or so, with me mainly being nowhere near an internet connection.

Anyway, I think it's time for me to announce the generous souls who've volunteered prizes as well as the winners. Because the nominations exactly matched the number of prizes, there won't be a vote this time. 

First off, thanks to the following sponsors!

E-Copy of one of his books

Another Legendary Hawaiian Care Package (US Shipping Only)

A Writer's Survival Kit (US Shipping only)

Signed copy of Giving Up the Ghost (US Shipping only)

30 page/3 chapter critique

E-copies of her whole 13th Floor series

Signed copy of Flank or Genre Shotgun

An e-copy of Christine's Odyssey or Retribution

A $10 Amazon voucher. 

And now, the Inspiring Bloggers: 

If you're one of the winners, please contact me at mishagericke(AT)gmail(DOT)com to claim your prize. 

Thanks to all of you who make the Paying Forward Awards possible! 

Friday, September 6, 2013


I was going to write a nice little thing on editing, but something's bothering me.

I've been hanging out (mostly lurking, sometimes commenting) in some google plus communities. And... Well...

Seems as if the writing community collecting there has one hell of a dark side.

About a week ago, some writers were putting stuff up on the internet saying that writers aren't writers unless you've a firm grip on plot and characters, on grammar etc. Which I think goes above and beyond trying to discourage new writers. So I wrote this.

Then, a few days ago, someone asked whether or not one should actively put messages into the stories you write. I said that I don't, since I think that telling people what they should think is a bit presumptuous. Sorry, people who do actively put messages into your writing. I know some of you who read this blog do it. And that's okay.

That's not really why I'm writing this post, though.

No. It's the response someone left to my comment.

To quote:

"Well, you most certainly can write with that pointlessness +Misha Gericke. That's your prerogative. I'm in the camp that those who have a message have a story. Whether or not someone believes it or likes it is irrelevant. There's an audience for every message, even the message of relativistic nothingness.
If you don't have anything specific to say then you have no right to expect people to read what you write or listen to what you say.

Personally, I know I'm right in what I write as far as my message is concerned. Some may call that arrogant. Some call it confident. I don't know much but the stuff that I know, I know. Therefore, it's not presumptuous for me to convey what I know. It's loving because there are many people who don't know who, after reading my material, will know. That may enrich their lives a little more. That's a good thing. And even if they don't agree, I've still enriched their knowledge by giving them the other side of the coin.

Time is life. Therefore, I believe as a writer you should make sure you have something to say before you waste people's time.

Like the wise sage Monk on his television program used to say, I could be wrong...but I'm not.

What's annoying the crap out of that message is this: 

"If you don't have anything specific to say then you have no right to expect people to read what you write or listen to what you say." 


"write with that pointlessness" 

It's really hard for me not to go off on a rant about this, but instead, I'm going to catagorically state some hard truths. 

This is my writer's credo:

1) My writing's purpose is to entertain people. The way writers of stories are supposed to entertain. This is a writer's first duty. 

2) The writer's second duty is to fulfill a purpose in society. This purpose is to show society the effects of our beliefs, choices and actions in a way relevant to a given story. It does not give us the right to make judgement calls on what's right and what's wrong. 

3) I am a chronicler. A scribe. Not a teacher, preacher, politician or moralist.

4) I have my own code of ethics and morals. But writing is not the medium through which I'd force them on anyone else. 

5) Story and character must always come first. Not the message. Never the message. In fact, the message shouldn't exist.

6) Creating a message is the readers' prerogative. Not mine.

7) I have absolutely no right to deem any writer worthy or unworthy of writing. Or in any way lesser than me because they have a different approach to the craft.  

As I said, I know that some of you will disagree with me. Some of you may disagree with every single point of my credo. And that's okay. 

But what's not okay is to be disrespectful of someone else for what they believe to be right. This is what all this is about for me. 

Respect. Respect your readers. Respect your writing colleagues. Respect humanity as a whole. Because we're all part of all three groups. We all display characteristics of those groups. So if you can't respect them, you can't respect yourself either.

Wednesday, September 4, 2013

IWSG and Novel Films Blogfest II

Hey all, welcome to another round of IWSG. First of all, I want to thank Alex J. Cavanaugh for putting together such a great group where we can share our insecurities without judgement and encourage others who are worse off than us. Thank you for a great two years.

If you haven't yet, and want to join, please go here.

So, for once, I'm not particularly insecure about anything.

Instead, since this is the two year anniversary, I thought I'd turn it around and post 10 messages of encouragement. I hope you'll find one that fits you.

1) Any novel is a scary prospect in the beginning. Keep going. You'll regret it if you don't.

2) Word for word. That's how a novel is finished.

3) Reading is a valid way to spend writing time if you're too tired to write.

4) Inspiration comes from life, so don't resent it when life comes knocking at your office door.

5) Never let rejections get you down. You only need to find the right person. You might also want to look to yourself, or to indie publishers if you're stuck with agents.

6) No matter what people say, you're a writer when you write. So never stop because someone doubted your writer status.

7) On that subject, there are idiots out there who will try to get you down. Laugh at them and go on. Odds are, they're trying to hurt you because they're living empty, meaningless lives.

8) Writing is your legacy. Don't waste it by publishing too early because you're dang tired of editing.

9) Editing sucks, but to see the finished project is awesome. Let that be your reward. An amazing finished manuscript.

10) No unfinished novel is a failure. It's a lesson. The difference between a writer with a shelved novel and a failed writer is that the latter gave up on writing altogether.

Anyone else have words of encouragement?

Now, on to the final post on the Novel Films Blogfest

Today's Questions: Have you read any novels where you have yet to see the films/ TV adaptations?

I probably read a few, since I'm a voracious reader. But the one that matters most to me is this one, because the movie still needs to be released. 

Which book adaptions are you looking forward to? 

Tuesday, September 3, 2013

The Novel Films Blogfest II #1 and #2

I goofed! Somehow, I got my dates confused for the blogfest, so  I'm doing day one and two together. Sorry everyone! 


I'm supposed to write about movies I loved, but where the original novel left me cold. Or the movie that prompted me to read the book. 

Usually, those are one and the same. 

I know it sounds odd, but I have this interesting (and often useful) issue. I don't forget something I've read or seen.  Ever. 

Yes, details might grow squiffy, but I only need to see an image associated with the story or read a bit of it, and I recognize it instantly. 

The blessing in this is that I have this living encyclopedia of plots in my head. 

The curse is that if I read a book first, the movie will be ruined, because it jars with the story I have in my head already (and hopefully liked). The same is true for the reverse. 

So, to think of a recent example, The Lucky One, by Nicholas Sparks. The changes to the movie weren't all that big, but big enough to spend most of the book going "hey wait" and comparing it with the movie I'd enjoyed. 

And anything that jars me out of the story gets to me. 

In a sense, I'm more forgiving if I read the book first. I guess it's because I can see film adaptions as items to themselves, while the book always feels connected to the movie for me. So that's what I do these days. I either read the book first, or I avoid reading it at all. 

Anyone else share my unique brand of insanity? 


The adaption I'd most like to see (yep, as far as I can think, there is only one...):

A modern remake of Scaramouche by Rafael Sabatini. 

Monday, September 2, 2013

I'm Co-Hosting the Novel Films II Blogfest

Some of you might remember the Novel Films blogfest from last year. I do because it was fun and interesting to see who liked which movie adaptions and why.

So when Madeleine posted she needed help, I stepped in. Late on Friday. Which is why I'm only posting this now.

Anyway, the entries are still open, so I'd be thrilled if you joined. Here's how it works:

Like last time, it will be a three day fest and on each day there will be something different:However, you can choose to post on just one day if you prefer.

Paying Forward and IWSG

Nominations for the Paying Forward Awards will close on Friday, so please get your nominations in if you haven't yet.

And for you astute people who noticed that the blogfest coincides with IWSG, I will be doing both bloghops on Wednesday.

Anyone in for the Novel Films II Blogfest?

Also, happy Labor Day to all my US friends. :-)