Tuesday, May 28, 2013

The Great Evil

     Captain Hook…Lord Voldemort…Professor Moriarty…Count Dracula…Hannibal Lecter.
These are just a few names of famous literary villains that we all know and love. Just the mere mention of them is enough to send a euphoric chill down ones spine while causing a morbid little smirk to peek through as if we’re the only ones who know the inside joke. This is how a well-written villain is done.
                However the key to a good villain is not about going past the path of usual evil. Granted it’s a great way to get our attention, but if every bad guy was a sociopathic loner that was hell bent on either ruling the world or destroying it, reading about them would get boring really quick. Sadly, one of the biggest mistakes made when creating a villain is that the author over vilifies them.
The key is to have the villain be believable within the world they’re created in. Don’t believe me? Just picture Lord Voldemort in Neverland instead of Captain Hook?
So tell me, what’s the best way you’ve come across to creating a great villain?


            P.S. if enough Rejects want, I can always go into how I create Villians, Heros, and Plots (the holy trinity of book creation).


Friday, May 17, 2013

Plotting: A New Perspective & ATVs Oh-my!

Hello Lovelies!

I'm back in the writing trenches post graduation! Woo. Some of you may remember me asking followers about their writing methods a few weeks back. I've finally chosen one to try out! I have never had a CP read over my manuscript chapter by chapter as it's written, but it seems like a very interesting idea. Plus a great way to catch any issue before it gets out of control! :) The lovely Kelly Hashway also mentioned writing out a full blown synopsis for your book before writing anything down. (I've never been a HUGE plotter but figure I'm doing so many new things in my life post graduation (I learned how to shuck oysters and got to actually drive an ATV--rather than ride as a passenger) that I may as well tackle my writing from a new point-of-view. Which is exactly what I recommend. In life our writing, relationships, work-life etc. can become stagnant. Sometimes we just gotta shake things up a bit. Just taking a side step and looking at life or our books from a different POV can mean everything and can get our mojo's flowing. 

Here's some great insight into the The Three Act Structure that I received from Beth Fred. Thus far, it has been quite helpful! :) 

1 inciting incident—Pool/ring scene

2. Call to Action—She has to go on dates and gets dumped.

3 Midpoint--Can be a reversal of fortunes where it looks like things were going to work out and they blow up--or things can just get even worse

4. Even Worse

5. The last straw--whatever happens here has to catapult you into the climax

6. Climax--Yeah, u know this one

7. Resolution.

The End.



Wednesday, May 15, 2013

Indie Insights: Lets Talk Money

There has been a lot of discussion about money and self-publishing in the past few weeks. My friend, Leigh Ann Kopans talked about it and got a lot of backlash. And then, today, this article came out.

Now, I'm of the firm opinion that to do self-publishing right, you need to spend money. When I set out to publish Edge of the Falls, I planned my budget and I stuck pretty close to it. My final costs for Edge  was roughly $1400. What did that buy me?
A professional cover.
A copy edit
Swag for giveaways

I will break this down more in a different post on Indie Ignites but my point is this: doing this whole self-publishing thing right COSTS MONEY. If you can find people to do things for you for free, GREAT, but it still will cost you something. Anyone who says it doesn't is not really someone I trust. Sorry.
On the other hand--saying that a book should be several thousands to edit and you should pay a publicist 1k a month? That too is completely ridiculous. There's a happy medium, folks. Finding it is important. And you know--you don't have to do giveaways that cost money. You don't have to advertise. But self-publishing should be treated like a business--in any business, you have to spend money up front. It's not the fun side of business, but there it is. To put out a quality product (and I'm unwilling to do anything but put out quality) you have to spend some money.
What this really comes down to, guys, is what I've repeated ad nasuem. BE. INFORMED. Know what the heck your doing--know what a freelance editor averages (2k is not average for an 80k book.) ((neither is 1k a month for a publicist.)) That way, when you do see something insanely high, you can be like, huh, I think I'm being screwed.
Cuz you are.
I love this industry. I love it so hard. But the fact is, there are people who will screw you. Asshats posing as agents. Vanity presses posing as publishers. And freelance vendors screaming 'you need this PAY ME ALL THE MONEY.'
And with anything else, the best way to know you aren't being screwed is to know what your doing. Research, you guys. Know every step of the way why the step your taking is the right one for you and your book. And if that is the indie path, make sure you know why your hiring someone and if the price they are asking for is reasonable.

And stop by my post on the Indie Ignites blog to hear more about what I spent where and why I think it's justified. :)


Monday, May 13, 2013

Who Is The Right CP For You?

            Picking the right CP isn’t the easiest thing in the world. It’s right up there with getting the right agent for our novels. In my opinion, a good CP will help make our stories better. A great one will allow us to grow. They will be, in essential, our partner in crime.
            For me, I need someone who will tell me that my story is a hot piece pooh that's riddled with flies if it’s necessary. Yeah I may grumble a bit, but I’ll trust them 10x more than the person who tells me I’m brilliant and will have no trouble getting picked up by an agent.
            Now, if I can, I’ll try to get opinions on my stories from other genre writers. I figure that if I can get a semi good response from them, and some really great constructive feedback on how I can make it better, well, then I’ve just achieved something wonderful. If not, and I'm told that the novel need completly rewritten, i'm not going to respond "well it's not your genre'". That's just plain rude.
            Again this is all just how I see things. I’m sure everyone else sees it differently. If so, I’d love to hear it.


Friday, May 10, 2013

Cover Reveal: This Love

This Love


Nazarea Andrews

Mel Stevens of TheIllustrated Author created the cover art.

She wants a summer job and a ride to a wedding.
He wants an assistant and a distraction from the mess his life has become.
They didn't know they needed each other.

Avery Emili needs two grand. Two grand and a plane ticket--her sister is counting on her to get to Jamaica for the wedding. But the semester is over, and tutoring college freshman and high school students has dried up until the fall.
Atticus Grimes needs help--the messy split with his wife left the twenty-eight year old professor scrambling to keep things together as the semester winds down. Now he's got a research grant he has to actually do research for and all he wants to do is drown himself in a tall bottle of bourbon.
When Avery sees his ad for an assistant, all she's thinking is a summer job. But as they spend time together, in the office and out, both of them begin to realize something is there. Something that can't happen--he's a professor and she's a student. And both of them have histories, pasts that won’t let go. Can two broken people pulled apart by expectations find a way to be whole?

Coming JUNE 2013

Add it to your to-read list on Goodreads!

About the Author:

Nazarea Andrews is an avid reader and tends to write the stories she wants to read. She loves chocolate and coffee almost as much as she loves books, but not quite as much as she loves her kids. She lives in south Georgia with her husband, daughters, and overgrown dog.

You can follow her on Facebook and Twitter.

Wednesday, May 8, 2013

Writerly Graduate. Oh YEAH!!

Well guys, it's official.

I'VE GRADUATED!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

It's been four (super fun/crazy/ridiculous/fast/inspiring/loving/sweet/embarrassing/lovable) years. I've reached a point in my life where I must wonder, "what now?" Seriously--what do I do with the rest of my life without college life to monopolize my time? I don't think I ever truly understood the meaning of bittersweet until now.

A few months back I talked about goals.

So far I've decided goals are awesome, but be prepared to throw them out the window when your dreams, wants, and desires decide to deviate. What I'm starting to realize is it's okay to change my mind and want something different.

We're all navigating life. And right now? I'm just happy I made it DOMINATED the last four years.

I truly believe the best is yet to come.

So for all those hanging out in the query trenches or the agent sub limbo or heck maybe even 5th-book-will-my-editor-love-it-or-hate-it purgatory--just remember--the best is yet to come.

"Things always have a way of working out. Never underestimate the power of prayer, faith, and love."



Monday, May 6, 2013

Tweet Bleeps!

Tweet Twittering Twuckertash! Everyone and their mother is tweeting up a blithering storm lately. With that and all the talk about us treating writing as a business, I thought I’d share some of my pet peeves about tweeting.

1.       No ADM’s (Auto Direct Messages).  Using these are like starting a query with “Dear Miss/Mr Agent”. Tells us that we’re only a number to you.

2.       Respond to followers. Yeah, this one can be a tough one at times. People get busy, we all know it. But if you’re going to use Twitter to promote your stories, well then, ya gotta suck it up. Buggers huh?

3.       No bulk tweets! This should be common sense considering that the maximum character count for a single tweet is 140, but tweeps always seem to commit this faux paw. Hint tweepers: If it takes more than 2 tweets to convey your message, then post it on FaceBook.

So that’s how, in my humble opinion, a tweep becomes a twit. Anyone else have tweeting pet peeves they want to share?