As I mentioned on my Saturday post, N.N. Light is hosting a Binge-Worthy Book Festival through the month of August. Every weekday will have a new set of authors. Legends of Windemere: Beginning of a Herois on for today alongside others of various genres. It’s a great selection, so I recommend checking it every day. There are contests you can enter as well.
Some writers are plotters. Others are pantsers. There’s no right way to do it. There are pros and cons to plotting, and it’s up to you to decide what works best. Personally, I’m a plotter. Typically, my plotting consists of a basic outline and little else. It worked for two novels. But on my third, I was struggling. I spent ages trying to figure out why my story wouldn’t work before it hit me. I’d not sussed out the timeline, not properly. And once I had, it changed everything. As such, I’m sharing 5 ways that a timeline helps you write your novel.
Figuring out backstory
Not all backstory needs to be written. I would even go as far as to say most backstory doesn’t need to be written. But as a writer, it’s helpful to know where things started for your characters. It’s important to know what happened before the events of the first chapter. This way, you know what to include and what to omit. It also enables you to add depth to your characters, as undoubtedly their past has shaped them.
Avoiding plot holes
A number of things can cause plot holes, and time is definitely one of them. If your characters and their story are to be believable, then time must move in the way it should. Even if your fictional world has it’s own concept of time, you should adhere to the rules you set for it. Savvy readers are likely to pick up on things that don’t flow naturally.
This week Nicholas Rossis was busy blogging… I couldn’t decide which tones to re-blog – and decided to just publish his entire collection. He has fascinating and informative posts and this way you can decide for yourself which ones are interesting to you. Thanks a lot, Nicholas!
As anyone who’s been following my blog for a while surely knows, I love puns and bad dad jokes (often the same thing). And I often use them in my work, especially in my children’s books. Which becomes rather problematic when translating them into Greek. How can someone translate puns decently?
Rick van Mechelen, aka “that translation student“, recently shared an interesting post on this very subject. He cites Dirk Delabastita 1996 work* to divide puns into four categories of ambiguity. These are homonymy, homophony, homography, and paronymy, each of which is better suited to different forms of communication:
A pun where a word with multiple meanings is used to give multiple meanings at once.
A hard-boiled egg in the morning is hard to beat.
A pun using two words that sound identical, but have different spellings.
First, a caveat: the Middle Ages lasted a thousand years in places as different as Iceland and the Holy Land. So, things differed from place to place and from time to time. After all, did your grandmother get married in a similar way to you?
No matter where and when, though, a general fact about marriage in the Middle Ages is that it was usually an economic affair.
This is not to say that the parties to a medieval marriage inherently lacked affection, passion, or sexual attraction. However, economic considerations played an important role in marriage negotiations and contracts…
This is a guest post by Daniela McVicker. Daniela is a contributor to Essayguard. She has a master’s degree in English Literature and is truly passionate about learning foreign languages and teaching. Daniela works with the students to help them reveal their writing talent and find their one true calling.
7 Tips to Write a Killer Book Presentation
Sometimes, a book you have written draws enough attention that you are asked to speak about it to an audience. You may be asked to present as a subject expert, talk about your material at a conference or convention, present at a book fair, or give a quick presentation as part of a book signing.
As they say, more people are afraid of public speaking than of death. Which means that most people would prefer being in a casket than giving the obituary.
My Ph.D. thesis, Design in the Digital Age: In Search of a Collaborative Paradigm, was all about finding novel ways to help designers interact with their clients. I had envisioned a tablet-based Virtual Reality environment with Augmented Reality elements for the client, thus allowing them to better understand what the architect or designer was trying to achieve. As for the architect or designer, Artificial-Intelligence software would significantly speed up the design process.
My thesis was published in 2000. Unfortunately, my vision has yet to be brought together by a software company, even though most of the elements I was describing are now widely available.
However, that doesn’t mean that technology hasn’t changed in other ways. As an article in IndiaCADworks explains, in the architecture, engineering, and construction (AEC) industries, new technologies are advancing with each passing day that makes the process of construction smarter, more streamlined, and indeed futuristic.
Thank you very much for informing us about the Why’s and How’s of starting our blog. I hope, we can read part 2 soon. This is a great post! Thanks, Kat!
on A Chat with Kat:
“I wish I had my own platform where I could share my views or knowledge. Maybe even build up a positive reputation in my community and an engaged audience.”
If you’ve ever thought something along those lines, you’re just like me. For many months, I read great blogs like Mr Money Mustache and listened to amazing podcasts like The Tim Ferriss Show, wishing I myself had a platform like that. But was I interesting enough? Experienced enough? Funny enough?
Welcome to my mini series on starting your own blog! In the next two weeks, we will explore why starting your own online platform is a recipe for success, no matter who you are, and the practical steps of how to start your own blog.
Charles Yallowitz, over at ‘Legends of Windemere’ published a blog post about cliffhangers in a series. Thank you very much for your great post, Charles.
This came up in conversation and I thought about while coming to the end of War of Nytefall: Eradication. When writing a series, you tend to have 3 types of books.
The opener, which introduces at least some characters, begins world building, and may hint at the main plot.
The finale, which closes up all or most of the plot lines.
Everything in the middle, which I tend to call ‘Bridge Books’. They have their own internal adventure while carrying what was established in the previous books into the next one. You don’t always bring all of the subplots and characters through a bridge book, but you do enough that the main plot can continue.
Ari Meghlen has a great blog post published by her guest blogger Anna Mocikat from Poland. Thanks for sharing this interesting post, and introducing us to Anna, Ari!
Today I welcome author Anna Mocikat onto my blog, who is discusses just why you shouldn’t use Google Translator if you want to include any other language within your novel.
Big thanks to Anna for being today’s guest poster, please make sure to check out her links and details at the end of this post.
I still remember the day very well when the Google translator got introduced for the first time. Everybody was so excited! The press was celebrating it and enthusiastically cheering that soon professional translators would become obsolete.
Greedy publishers were rubbing their hands in anticipation, hoping they would soon save tons of money they otherwise have to spend on expensive, professional translators.
Below you will find an interview with Nathan. Read it and find out more about an Angel we only know by name – and by a perfectly tailored suit.
Excerpt from ‘Soul Taker’:
He looked over my shoulder, and I turned around, watching two beautiful looking men walking toward us. One of them was dressed in a suit and tie and looked elegant and chic like a businessman. The other one wore old jeans, cowboy boots, and a long-worn leather coat.
Joseph smiled. He introduced me to the business-like guy. “This is Nathaniel. He’s your replacement and will take your job over from here.”
The Guy shook my hand. “Please, call me Nate,” he said with a laugh.
Hello Nathan. It is great seeing you again. How are you doing?
Hello AJ. Nice to see you too. I’m doing okay. Unfortunately, I’m far too busy. Sometimes I wish I had more time off.
We know you took over from Katie when she wanted to become a Guardian and met Raphael.
Yes, I did. I was quite surprised to hear the two fell in love. I was invited to their wedding but unfortunately couldn’t go because of an emergency.
Why were you surprised? From what I hear, Katie is breathtakingly beautiful, and Raphael, from what I heard, has celebrated quite some success with the ladies.
Yes, but we were taught that it is almost impossible for an Archangel to find his consort. Raphael found his consort, and now we all are curious to see who of the Council Of Twelve is going to be next.
How about you? Is there someone special in your life?
I admit, there is someone I love. But I am not permitted to talk more about all that, remember? You told me to keep my mouth shut about that.
(Oh, yes. *AJ laughs* I forgot)
But now, tell us a little bit about you. Who is Nathan?
I am a Soul Taker, as you know. I have been one for about a millennium. I pick up souls and take them to their respective final destinations. Usually, it is Heaven, but occasionally I have to take them to the gates of Hell. Rarely we Soul Takers are attacked by the other side who try to steal the soul we are working with.
Now, we know Katie got tired of doing this job for three hundred years. Aren’t you tired out by that job?
Well, Katie and I are two completely different personalities. She is younger than I am, for one thing. Also, she is quite emotionally sensitive. I could easily imagine that a soul she takes to the portals of the Underworld is trashing, crying, regretting, screaming, is almost breaking her heart.
And we shouldn’t forget: We are taking all kinds of souls… not only bad ones, not only good ones, and in particular, we do have to pick up innocent souls too. That was very hard on Katie.
I had to harden my emotions and heart against this kind of compassion, or I could never have done that job to my satisfaction and the satisfaction of my bosses.
We met you briefly in Katie’s story. And now we learned a bit more about who you are. Are we going to meet you again?
Yes, you will meet me again. You will learn more about me. Just be a bit patient. I’ll be back.
Thank you so much for dropping in as my guest today, Nathan. We really appreciate it.
THE BOOK DESCRIPTION AND ITS JOURNEY AROUND THE WORLD
I was creating a Goodreads giveaway yesterday when I noticed that one of my book descriptions didn’t look quite right. Then I realized that a few of my book descriptions had similar issues. (I haven’t yet looked at all of my books there, but did check my recent releases.)
The problem was that I had formatted my descriptions at Amazon KDP using the limited HTML that is available (boldface, italics, line breaks, bullet points, and ordered lists). While that resulted in improved formatting at Amazon, the HTML had a few undesirable effects at Goodreads. In particular, if you use short bullet points with words or phrases in each point, the words and phrases might not appear on separate lines and there won’t be any bullet point symbols.
So if you meant to make a list like this:
red riding hood
big bad wolf
It could instead look like this at Goodreads:
red riding hood big bad wolf grandma’s house
It actually can look even worse when it blends together with the previous and following sentences.
In Hollywood, there’s a pretty set calendar for when movies are released: horror movies are usually released around Halloween, high-concept blockbusters in the summer, Oscar movies start in November, movies that aren’t blockbusters or Oscar contenders in February.
Does the book trade follow the same release schedule?
Floridaborne published an interesting ‘must-read’ on her blog. As an Indie author I have to say I was and still am shocked to read it. Thank you very much for sharing this information to us, Floridaborne!
Now, on a serious note.
I happened upon a writer on Twitter and Facebook:
Her Twitter introduction: “Amazon Int’l Bestselling Romance Author | Survived my 1st publishing with coffee & wine | Music Lover | Star Wars Geek Since Birth.”
She explains how non-writers are scamming the system at Amazon
graciously allowed me to reprint (aka copy/paste) her post.
I need to tell a story – it’s going to be a long one, so settle in if you’re interested in hearing it.
I began writing my first book in 2013. I self-published it on December 27, 2015. I was new to the business and I literally knew nothing. I made my own cover, which I’m embarrassed of now. But hey – I was brand spanking new and was learning as I went. And yes, there were typos galore in this first book. My January 2016 sales raked in a whopping $1500. I was shocked! After all, I was a nobody – a brand new author who nobody had heard of and I made $1500 in my first month!
I charged $5.99 per ebook for my debut title (Heart of Stone) and it was enrolled in KU. Looking at the sales, I thought I really had something going. My husband convinced me to quit my day job and do the author gig full time. Please note…I didn’t say “writing” full-time. Being an author comes with a ton of administrative tasks – setting up and maintaining a website, managing social media, searching for advertising opportunities, sending out newsletters, and every other possible thing to help keep you relevant in this business. Only a fraction of time is spent actually writing.