Lessons from My Reading

M. K. Theodoratus, Fantasy Writer, blogs about the books she reads--mostly fantasy and mystery authors whose books catch her eye and keep her interest. Nothing so formal as a book review, just chats about what she liked. Theodoratus also mutters about her own writing progress or ... lack of it.

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Thursday, March 10, 2011

Which Character Do You Like Best?

 Fiction Lesson:
As much as I hate admitting not buying the last couple books in the Otherworld series about the adventures of the D'Artigo sisters,   I bought Yasmine Galenorn's Blood Wyne.   I just realized that the other books didn't feature Menolly D'Artigo.  That's the vampire sister.  Now, I'm wondering why that character motivated me to buy a book and the others didn't.  It wasn't because Menolly is the shortest of the sisters.  Being a vampire, she shouldn't engage my interest since I usually don't care for much for vampires.

So, why?  Galenorn's action is in top form as the sisters fight to save Seattle from murderous ghosts ... and a more murderous vampire with an original twist.  She solves a couple of the sisters' problems.  But, she also complicates Menolly's life with two new hassles:  one a dangerous love interest and the other a new terribly dangerous possible nemesis who she owes a debt to.  [Fae are interesting in that way.]  The only reason I can come up with to answer the question "why" is that I perceive Menolly has "trying harder" to pull her weight in the team.  

Guess I think of vampires as being handicapped by any thin stray pieces of wood flying around.  Plus, she's out of commission while the sun shines.  The other two sisters just get sleep deprived.  What makes you latch onto a character in an ongoing series?

Useful Promotion Info and Other Stuff:
This week's gem comes from Justine Musk of the Tribal Writer.  Basically, she takes on the question of should you blog or not and says it depends on what you want out of it.

She also gave a useful link for gathering an email list for my Half-Elven promotions MailChimp.  A link I am suitably grateful for.  You can learn more about my thoughts on the Half-Elven blog.

Am really looking forward to this year's Northern Colorado Writers conference.  I'll be pitching a Color-a-Comic pre-primer a friend and I did years ago.  We sold a few hundred even though we knew zip about marketing.  Maybe that's one of the reasons I feature how-to-promote  info so much?

Progress on My Writing Journey:
Producing words as been as painful as pulling teeth around here.  The silly idea that I could draft a new novel and revise a previous draft got knocked out of my head.  

Why did I think I could?  After all, there're tons of blogs out there of people who write 1,000 to 5,000 words a day.  Why couldn't I plog along at my usual 500 words and revise too?  ...  Tried it.  I can't.  Have given myself permission to only revise ... and jot down weird wisps of ideas as they drift through my brain on the other WIPs.  [Yeah, there's more than one.]

When I look at what needs to be done with Emma Kloken, Reluctant Hero, it's obvious much of the revision will be like drafting a new novel.  I took a class from Trai Cartwright at Craftwrite and learned a lot about scene setting and flow.   Now I done got ta do the work to make it happen in my manuscript.

Do you design your goals too big to chew?  I find I work best with flexible goals, broken down into small bites.  The pesky things are easier to cross off that way.

I should mention my Far Isle Half-Elven blog.   Yeah, I blog twice a week.  One here [on Thursdays] about general writing stuff.  The other concentrates on building building my writer's platform ... which I do kicking and screaming and not very effectively on Mondays.  --  Last Monday, I wrote about submitting my website -- The Far Isle Half-Elven -- to 1st Turning Point for a critique.

Trivia:
I hate it when I make a comment, proof-read it a couple times, publish it ...
then, discover a typo ... or two.     
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