Category Archives: Muse

Writing Hub -Books, Writing, Tips & more…


writing-hub

Writing:

Alas my writing has suffered for the past several weeks, setting up a new home takes a lot of time and organizing. However, this week I am back into full freelance work and should have a couple more chapters written for the ghost writing project.

I am itching to get back to my YA novella as well as it is tantalizing close to completion. I can then send it to beta-readers and my illustrator. I find not writing saddens me so the sooner I am back the better.

Has ‘life’ gotten in the way of your writing? How did it make you feel?

Books:

Pawn of the Phoenix

My review:
A spectacular sequel to the first boo. I was completely immersed in Keenan & Moira’s struggles to find the Phoenix but also their blossoming love affair.
We are transported to the world of the previous book with wonderful author skill and attention to detail. Well done Jamie.

hovel
My sister sent me this book from England mainly due to the story behind it. My parents always wanted to live in the wilds of Wales on a small holding. They came close with a small cottage and large garden in Narbeth but never the envisioned ‘hovel’ as depicted in this little book.

My review: Delightful insight into the simple life in near isolation in North Wales. Set in the early 1960’s it is a quaint but realistic story of self sufficiency, persistence and ‘making do’. Loved the imagery and the sheer beauty of the natural world around them.
I will certainly try to find the next book – Garden in the Hills.(Footnote: this next installment is out of print unfortunately.)

Currently reading:

Dreamland

Writing Tips:

Set your writing goals for every writing session

Outline your aims for a writing session in order to keep yourself focused. It may help to write down what you want to achieve in the next chapter or scene. However, remember,  to give yourself elbow room. It is okay to depart from your scene summary if you feel the story should go (or wants to go) in a new direction. Personally, I let the story flow but some writers find writing a pre-scene enables them to maintain a clear sense of direction for each scene in relation to their story arc.

Which process works for you?

Friday Fun for Writers, Authors & Readers…


friday_fun

 

tired

poultry slam

Writers know this struggle…

story idea

Readers wouldn’t this be perfect?

calories

What ‘blocks’ your writing?

cat block

Always with the ideas as you start to fall asleep – why is that?

characters

Writing Hub -Books, Writing, Tips & more…


writing-hub

Writing:

I did manage to increase the word count on my new YA novella to just over 18,000 and will further increase it tonight as I have a couple of hours in the library prior to a Board meeting. The story took a surprising turn so I am following it, wondering where it will end. I am toying with the idea of a new title – Bubble the Gruggle – is good but maybe too childish for a YA. We will see.

With two events coming in the next couple of weeks I need to be prepared for displays and readings. Choosing excerpts of a book can be problematic but I have found that if you gauge them to your known audience at the event it is slightly easier.

How do you choose an excerpt to read?

One event – Word on the Street is in Lethbridge which will entail a road trip – always a favorite past time and will allow more writing time, never a bad thing.

WOTS2017

Books:

Mind of the Phoenix

My review:
I had to finish this book last night so into the midnight hour I went…
Jamie has created a world of intrigue, mystery and suspense in this novel. The relationship between Moira and Keenan had me guessing and hoping.
A world of empaths and blockers, and strict social distinctions is beautifully weaved within and around the story. Great world building by Jamie.
This is a novel I highly recommend and can’t wait to read to next installment.

A Desperate Fortune

I’m already entranced by this novel’s story set in two time periods.

Writing Tips:

lyon

 Always get an outside edit.

Whether it’s a novel or a blog post, sometimes we get trapped in our own ideas, and the grand vision clouds our ability to see the actual words on the page.

So work your vision and polish it up as much as you can … but then, get feedback from someone else whose editorial judgment you respect.

Upcoming Writing Events- Add Yours for your Location…


events

This week I have my writing group sharing meeting on Tuesday. I always look forward to this monthly meeting, as you never know who will attend – sometimes a few, sometimes a lot! The meeting begins with announcements on upcoming events and then a call for submissions for our Muse newsletter and our special newspaper page, Never Been Better which is aimed at the 55+ demographic.

We then have a writing prompt of some sort to energize the writing muse and then share our responses. It is always intriguing to hear how other writers respond to the same prompt – it is how our minds work I suppose. Discussions on the responses follows and then we share part of our current work for constructive critique.

Writers Foundation Strathcona County

What format does your writing group meeting take?

Planning for our Words in the Park event is still in progress. We had to close registrations as we are full. A floor plan has to be devised so all the registrations have a space to display. A plethora of authors are attending but as we co-host with the Arts and Culture Council we also have artisans and performers. With a clown and children’s activities, interactive sessions and food it will be a fantastic day. Event at: Spark Gallery, 2257 Premier Way, Sherwood Park. 10 am – 4 pm  Free admission. The event is also a ‘pop up’ event for Alberta Culture Days.

Web site banner WitP 2017_0

My group will also be launching their Canada 150 book project, Postcards from Canada at the event so doubling exciting. It is an anthology of short stories, poetry and images celebrating Canada.

postcards from Canada

Other events:

Jaspreet Singh “November” Book Launch
Tuesday 5th September at 19:00–21:00 Audrey’s Books

November

Kat Trimarco “Self Approved” book signing

Wednesday 6th September at 12:00–13:00 Audrey’s Books

Self

What events are coming up in your area?

Writing Hub -Books, Writing, Tips & more…


writing-hub

Writing:

Although I did escape with my friend, Linda for a mini break over the weekend, I did not get around to writing for me. We spent time organizing for our Words in the Park event and the launch of our writing group’s Canada 150 book project. Working together is easy and productive, we work well as a team.

Words in the Park – Saturday 30th September 10:00 am – 4:00 pm- Spark Gallery, Sherwood Park. 

Web site banner WitP 2017_0

We did, however enjoy an afternoon of history at the Fort Normandeau, where we were taught some Cree words around a fire pit. Then a wander through the fort itself and conversed with the chickens! Then onto the Kerry Wood Nature Center and a 1 km walk to the viewing/duck hide. Ducks, mostly bottoms up and two greater yellow-legs. A tour of the center – bookstore, gallery and nature discovery. 

 

 It was good to recharge the batteries, so to speak and I returned home refreshed.

 

Books:  My review: 

Santa writes with eloquent descriptions giving the reader a perfect tapestry of place and character. Her characters are well structured, engaging and keep the reader intrigued until the end. Woven between England and Italy this novel gives a taste of life in these two places and the struggle of their inhabitants. I highly recommend this book, it was a joy to read.

The Mermaid Garden

Already enjoying the intricacies of this story! And have just found out there is a sequel launching.

mind-of-the-phoenix

Writing Tips:

I wrote about how stress can have a profound effect on your writing here: https://mandyevebarnett.com/2015/11/16/stress-blocks-creativity/

https://goinswriter.com/how-to-overcome-writers-block/

http://www.writersdigest.com/editor-blogs/guide-to-literary-agents/7-ways-to-overcome-writers-block

What do you do to overcome the ‘block’?