Welcome to my blog. I hope you will return often for that second cup.

Writing has become more than a way to make lists or keep in touch with friends. It is a vital part of who I am. For the past few years I've been writing essays, devotionals, a memoir, and several novels. I invite you to join me on this site so we can explore ways together to improve our writings. Words can be beautiful or they can be hurtful - even devastating. The well-placed word or phrase, the choice metaphor, a fresh perspective - each can add to the reader's participation in sharing the thoughts of the writer. I invite anyone who wants to improve their work or even if you have never attempted writing beyond a grocery list to return often. Feel free to add your thoughts. There are no grades given - no critics to deter you. We do this as friends - chatting over their second cup of coffee. (or tea, if you prefer.)

Saturday, February 26, 2011

So what is POV??

In every occupation, sport, genre - the jargon, which seems so natural to the active participant, can be daunting to a newby. When I hear I-pad, I-pod, http, dos - etc, etc, I feel like a total stranger in this new world I live in. Slooowly, I'm learning, but it seems to come as second nature to my grandkids.

Writing has its own language too, and if you're new to this delightful world of words, you may not know what P.O.V. is really all about. Point-of-view is not as confusing as it sounds. As a well-known writer at a recent conference I attended suggested, "pretend you have a video camera on your protagonist's head. You will see the world as she or he sees it."

The point-of-view can be used in the 1st person. It would be similar to a diary - everything as you see it or process it. Most, if not all, memoirs use the first person.

"Head-hopping" is a no-no with most publishers. That would be when the writer writes from the perspective of one character and then in the same scene or paragraph have thoughts coming out of another person's mind. Example:  "I'm heading for the library, Joe," she said, hoping he would tag along.
                "That's funny, so am I," Joe remarked, wondering if she'd accept a date.

Don't be in two minds in the same paragraph. Most editors allow a change in the POV if it is done by chapter changes. Lynn Austen manages to place several characters in a book, each using their point of view. She handles it effectively, but she's an experienced writer.

Omniscient POV is from God's view. Everything can be seen at once. The writer has more freedom, but today readers seem to prefer the personal, human view. Inner thoughts are expressed to show emotional feeling. Italics are used for personal thoughts, prayers, epiphanies.

Most novels are written in the 3rd person and I find that the easiest format to use, but each writer has to discover what works best for their particular style.

Please feel free to add comments. I'm certainly no expert and can always use a fresh view.

Monday, February 21, 2011

Up-coming e-books

          Moving On - Publication date: September 15th, 2011

How does a young woman, faced with an unwanted divorce, continue to raise a teen-age daughter and adapt to her new life as a single woman?

LAURA BARRON must face her options concerning her future. When a fellow bank employee and friend introduces her to a young widower, LEN VICKERS, she feels hopeful that there can be a meaningful relationship that could develop into far more. What she doesn't anticipate is his inability to let go of his past.

Will Laura re-capture her ex-husband's love or find happiness awaiting her somewhere else? Perhaps with Len?  How does one compete with a deceased wife?

The Landlord  - Publication date: December 15th, 2011

After a broken relationship and loss of a job, KRISTEN COLLINS meets her landlord and confronts him on his rules (No PETS!) and rental rates. She finds herself constantly in his presence. In spite of her desire not to like him, things happen. This amusing tale is fast moving and has many surprising moments. A quick and fun read!

 A Special Blessing for Sara -  Publication date April 2012

A Long Way to Go -  Publication date Sept. 21, 2012

Sunday, February 20, 2011

Writing for fun

After eleven years of being innkeepers, my family asked me to write down our collected memoirs. The inn was in the Pocono Mountains of PA. It was named Pine Knob Inn. We had 38 rooms, a pool, tennis court, the Brodhead Creek running through, and 15 wooded acres. It was hard work, but we met many wonderful people and between the guests and the employees, there were many great stories to tell. I took on the job as historian and lo and behold, I found out it was fun to write. When I completed that, I began writing a novel, which ended up being a trilogy. I have not sent it out for publication yet as I know it needs heavy editing, but someday I hope to see it in print.

Nine books later, I'm still coming up with some neat plots. Two of my books will be published this year as e-books. Desert Breeze Publishing House will publish Moving On in mid-September and The Landlord in mid-December. They are quick, easy-read romance novels that you can feel safe allowing your grandkids to read.

Desert Breeze is a great publishing house with a varied sellection of books to choose from. I highly recommend their books and you can select the temperature of the romance - from light and sweet to something more exotic! Mine will be sweet to warm.

In the past I have had devotionals published. My faith is important to me and I hope to always honor God in my writings.

Starting a novel

There are as many different ways to write a novel as there are weeds in your garden. Some people diagram and outline several pages before starting the first sentence and some just sit down at the computer and begin!
However you decide to proceed, I recommend you spend substantial time organizing in your mind first. Have a general plot, a beginning and an end - at least.

Your characters will become flesh as you picture them and hear them speak. Their trials will become yours. Expect to laugh with them - cry with them. I have one book I'm holding off on editing, as it is heart-breaking. And yet after much internal struggle, I knew it had to be written the way it was.

I have written eight novels (two will be published this year) and I have found it helpful to keep large index cards for each major character, which describes them and gives their background as well as character traits. I give them birthdays, sometimes birth defects, parents, anything that will help them be "real."

In my computer, I have ten pages of dialogue between a man and a woman. That's all - right now. But from that, I am contemplating my next novel.
You can start with a photo - a favorite scent - an ad in a magazine. Anywhere! But start. Write something everyday, if possible. It helps to keep the juices flowing.
Writer friends - please feel free to add your input. That's what it's all about. Sharing.