Challenge Your Writing

One of the best things that I’ve ever done for my writing is write the Hartland series. Those books challenged the way I wrote. Typically, I like to write with standard chapters. In this series, the chapters transferred from a number of characters. There were no actual chapters in the books. Instead, the story was told in parts through characters and the reader had to piece things together as they went along. These books were definitely something I had never written before. For those who have read it and enjoyed the story and the unique way it was told, I appreciate all the lovely comments. If nothing else, the Hartland series helped me grow as a writer.

And now, I’ve taken on another challenge with the Ordinaries series I’m currently working on. I don’t write in the first person. Normally, I don’t like to read it either but recently I stumbled across the fact that this story works better in first person. I wrote more than half the book in third only to realize this. So, as I’m going back through and changing things, I actually feel more connected to the main character now. I was having a hard time with Catherine Winters. I guess it was her trying to tell me that I was doing the story wrong. As an obstinate, know-it-all writer, I simply wasn’t listening. And, as I’ve been reworking it, I figured out how I’m going to end the story and what the next several parts are going to be. I was definitely stuck on the plot after I’d gotten almost 40k into it. The story wasn’t feeling the way it should have, which was what made me stop writing on it temporarily. Incidentally, it’s also what got me to finish the edit for the last book in the Hartland series. That was something I wasn’t looking forward to. It turned out it wasn’t as bad as I had thought it would be.

I write this to reiterate what most writers already know. Writing a challenging piece is actually a good thing and helps us grow as writers. So to all those pieces of work that we dread writing because it’s difficult or because it’s something new we haven’t tried before, do it. Trust me, the personal growth you obtain from it is worth it.

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Book Review: Bloodthorn

Bloodthorn: Olive Kennedy (Fairy World MD Book 3) by [Grantham, Tamara]

5 out of 5!

So I have been reading this series like nonstop and this one only took 1 morning to read for me! In fact, it was this morning that I read it. I haven’t read through books this fast in years. That is how good these books are for me. The story, the characters, the romance, everything about this book speaks volumes to me. And I cannot wait to download the other books and read through them.

I highly recommend reading the first book Dreamthief.

Book Review: Spellweaver

Spellweaver: Olive Kennedy (Fairy World MD Book 2) by [Grantham, Tamara]

5 out of 5

Just like the first book, the story completely captured me. I read this in two days! I love this series, even the romance parts in it. I know I’ve not been a fan of romance in the past, but this book has helped change my mind about it. It also helps that it’s not just a romance book but also fantasy. In this one, however, it really tugs at the heart strings. I also love the story and the world the author has developed.

I would type more about the story and everything, but it’s really important to read the first book in the series to fully understand the characters and so that it can really tug at your heart.

Writing Update

The first major edit to New Beginnings, the final book in the Hartland series is finished. It is now going to the Alpha reader who will let me know if anything needs to be fixed. I sure hope not, but as always will wait to hear what’s said. Of course, it will be with a rapidly beating heart. Any time someone reads something I wrote and tells me about it, there is a mixture of excitement and fear. Will they love the book? Will they hate it? Will they think it’s one of the worst books they have ever read? I hope to find out the opinion in a few weeks. And then of course, there will be probably a few more edits before we send it out to a couple of beta readers.

Since this is done, we’ve resumed work on the first book in the Ordinaries series. I started rewriting it in first person as it works better. As such, I have added over 3000 words from where I was when it was in third person. I am only a quarter of the way caught up to where I had left off on the book, unable to write any more on it. I wasn’t liking the way it had gone. The story was good but I knew something needed to change, so that was when I started fiddling around with the book and discovered that first person worked so much better with it. This book is actually the first real attempt at first person. I have tried in the past a few times and gave up pretty quickly. Apparently, what I needed to do to try out first person was find the right story. I have found it and it is moving along swiftly now. Hopefully, I will be able to keep up the momentum.

Book 2 in the Magna Luctus series, is plucking along slowly but slow progress is still progress. I don’t remember the word count we’re at on at the moment, but I know it’s over 30k. The first book in this series is still in the needs editing stage. There are some major edits that need to take place. We’re waiting to do these edits once the book series is done. So much is happening in this series, we wanted to write the entire thing before changing anything in any of the books.

And a different note, my husband bought be a different laptop over the weekend. The one I was working on had gotten squished under the recliner a few months back. It had cracked the screen and the hard covering of the computer. There was also something rattling around inside of it. I worked with the computer this way for a few months, irritated with it because it would randomly shut itself off. I would end up losing a few pages of work because of this annoying development. Fortunately, we no longer have those recliners. My back hates recliners but when we first moved to Savannah all we had was what could fit into a KIA Soul, which isn’t much, and the recliners were what we could afford. Now, we have a comfy couch which my back likes a lot better and cannot squish my new computer. Yay on both accounts!

With patience, things will improve. Your attitude will improve or worsen depending on how you choose to look at the situation and the world. For the moment, after spending months in a horrible mood and depressed, I have chosen to look at the good things in life. Things are certainly not perfect. They never will be, but I have come to realize that everything does happen for a reason, even if we cannot fathom what that reason is. Sometimes, we’ll never know what it is, but regardless, it changes nothing. Things still happen and we still have to deal with those things. What we do have control over is how we deal with them. We can choose to let them break us or we can choose to let them make us stronger and wiser.

I’d like to leave everyone with that thought for the coming week. Have a great week and remember to let the little things go!

Weekly Writing Update

I know this is coming really late in the week, but we’ve been busy. There are only 68 pages left of New Beginnings, book 5 of the Hartland series, left to edit. It’ll go through a few more edits but this is the major edit where things tend to change. It’s also the edit where we discover whether someone’s appearance keeps changing, such as hair color or eye color. It’s happened to us before. So far, in this book it hasn’t. I think we’ve gotten better about this.

For the first book in the Ordinaries series, we’re 33k into it and I decided to redo the first part of it as I want the story done in first person instead of 3rd. I was playing around with it a few days ago and realized it worked better in first person. So there’s that huge change. It’ll set me back a little bit but I think redoing it in the first person perspective will actually help advance the story as I’ve been stuck on it for a few days now.

And for book 2 in the Magna Luctus series, we’re still hovering over 30k. Haven’t made too much progress on this one, but more story ideas have been coming to us and we’ve had to hammer out a basic story plot for each of them lest our scatterbrains forget about the story. This has happened far too many times to be comfortable with which is why we’ve deemed it necessary to sometimes pause our progress on stories to get these out of our heads and in a workable condition for the future.

I’d also like to report that my back is doing better as long as I don’t overdo it. The horrible pain incident reminded me that since we’ve moved to Savannah, GA I haven’t exactly been keeping up with my daily routine of stretches and going on walks. I’ve been attempting to do this more often in an attempt to eliminate most of the pain. It’s definitely been reducing it.

And yesterday, it snowed here in Pooler, GA. I was so excited to see snow again. I really missed it from when we lived in Casper, WY. It made me more eager to leave this town behind. I can’t wait to get back to where it snows occasionally. Watching the heavy snowflakes fall was so peaceful. I smiled most of yesterday because of it. I probably could have written more had I not been watching the snow so much, but I wouldn’t change it. it’s the little things in life that you tend to enjoy more, and for me, it was the snow yesterday.

Everyone have a great rest of the week and enjoy the weekend. We’ll be continuing to work on our stories.

Book Review: Dreamthief

Dreamthief (Fairy World MD Book 1) by [Grantham, Tamara]

5 out of 5 stars

I cannot express how much I enjoyed this book other than it only took me 2 days to read it. i haven’t gone through a book this fast in a long time.

The story was amazing and just captured me instantly. The detail sucked me right into the world and I am saddened the story is over.

It is about a half-human, half-elf woman caught between two literal worlds, caused by a rending. One world is earth and the other is Faythander. Whereas other beings can travel between these two worlds, they lose their memories. Should a human travel to Faythander when he or she returns to earth, she has no memory of the other world. Should a Elf, Wult, or any other creature of Faythander travel to earth and return, they have no memory of their time spent on earth.

In the story, the reader soon learns that Faythander is in danger of being destroyed. Her godson, Jeremiah, is stuck in a nightmare, and she must piece everything together before it’s too late for her godson and Faythander. She must operate in both worlds if she is to discover the truth. Fortunately for her, she is of both worlds and doesn’t run the risk of losing her memory.

This book comes highly recommended!