Friday, June 27, 2014

Writing Past the Mountain

Hey babes,

Haven't been around for awhile, although I have a good reason why. It's just a secret.

Honestly, I do have a really good reason and exciting things are afoot. I promise. The WorldWiseWriters have been up to some really fantastic things, we are just waiting to get all our ducks in a row before we announce the ... erm ... announcement.

But until then, I thought I would muse about my current thoughts in a wordy fashion ... since this is what I do it should be interesting.

I call it: Writing Past the Mountain. 

Seriously ... try writing past THIS guy.
 Although GoT jokes aside, I am talking about a serious thing. At least for me. I have two ongoing projects right now (plus at least 2 other short stories that want to grow up into full length books). Yet while my brain may be filled with wonderful ideas, my fingers don't seem to want to write out the words.

I've spent more than a few frustrated hours in front of my computer lately, desperately trying to write a bare minimum of 100 words. Fact: 100 words is nothing. And usually I'll write more than that minimum 100. But the next day I find myself despairing and ...

Delete ... delete ... delete.
Eventually, the word count grows. Slowly and painfully. For me, I've come to realize this is part of the process. And what I mean by writing past the mountain. Some people like to start their book in media res. Car chases, dramatic deaths, some kind of awesome action to catch the reader right from the start. I'm more of a slow build up, hinting at the tension, dropping hints here and there, until like a snow ball rolling out of control, the action really gets going.

While I'm happy with this style of writing, unfortunately it can be a bit tricky. Before I can race down the mountain with scene after scene of (hopefully) exciting action, I have to summit the heights first. And sometimes this seems to take a bazillion million years of eternal solitude forever.

So, both Fractured Time and Gods' Hollow are started. But I still haven't gotten over the mountain and its a bit of a struggle.

 I know I will get there. Its just a matter of patience. Not really my area of expertise. But have faith in me, dear readers. October is getting closer and closer, but it's still the month I have my fingers crossed for FT's release date. Until then, wish me luck on my struggle up the mountain.

And maybe I'll even beat my deadline, eh?

Friday, June 13, 2014

The End of an Adventure

Hey y'all!

So it's official, the fantastically awesome, crazy cool adventure is finally over.

It's been an incredible journey, but Mirrored Time is officially out of the 2014 Amazon Breakthrough Novel Award contest. And you know what? I feel pretty good.

So I'm not going to lie, checking my computer today to find the list of Semi-Finalists, was a bit like this:

And yeah, for a split second, after I saw my name wasn't on the list, I felt kind of ... well ...

... it burns us!!!! 
Then I ate a cookie. (Or five.) And pretty soon I was feeling a lot better. Obviously, if my name had been on the list, I would have danced an amazing dance. Or been happier than a hobbit with a full pantry.

But I didn't, and that's okay. Because I have gained an amazing experience along the way, and made some even more amazing friends. Before ABNA, there was a whole list of things I didn't know and I was woefully out of my league. Then I met some fantastic new friends, formed a writers' group, learned all that I had done wrong, edited MT to an inch of it's life, and now? Now it's published!

To my fellow ABNA writers, if you happen to stop by, I hope today you don't feel too down. Writing is not for the weak, and if you've entered ABNA, hey, guess what? You already have a book written! You already are halfway there! Yes, winning would have been super cool. And made this whole process a lot easier. But don't give up. Your story deserves it. Just like my story deserves it. Remember:

So, nurse your hurts, celebrate your achievements, have a pint (or a box of cookies). Do what needs to be done. And then when tomorrow comes, pick up the pen, open a new word.doc, look up formatting manuals. Get that book out there. Because I believe in you!

Love, J.D.


Saturday, June 7, 2014

The Dark Side

Hey y'all! Happy Caturday!

So, welcome to the Dark Side. And by that, I mean today you get to have a little peek inside the absurd and sometimes frightening place that is my mind. :cue dramatic/spooky music:

... evil laughter ...

Okay, so really, it's not that scary up here. And basically this is just an effort to jump start my imagination in hopes of getting my Muse to come and play with me again. She's been kind of ... :whispers: difficult lately.

Note: If you get irritated when people try to tell you what a book character looks like, run away. Now.

The inspiration for this post is when a friend asked me the other day how I imagined my characters from Mirrored Time. It's a difficult one for me, because it changes. All the time. So even though I'm going to take a trip into fantasy land, and give you my wish-list casting... please don't hold me to it. I reserve the right to change my mind. In five seconds.

So, without further blabbering on my point: My Mirrored Time Actor Wishlist (kind of).

Lyndsy Fonseca (maybe? Gwen is the most difficult for me to picture)
Chris Hemsworth (I can't NOT imagine Rafe making this face)
Jeremy Irons (his voice, to die for)

Idris Elba (the casting that will never change, because Max IS him)
Tom Hiddleston (eek! I don't know ... originally yes, now??)

BONUS: Cassian (suggested to me by a reader ... and just too good!

Sorry, Jack. You just play a jerk way too well.
Okay, phew. That was REAL hard. There are a few other characters I didn't cast, that I'm still not sure about (not that I'm even sure about the above). But I've already spent way too much time on this.

I'd love to know what you think. I think the best part of books is that you can imagine whoever you want. Which is why actually picking actors is super difficult. Part of me even hopes you disagree with me, because then I know you've imagined the characters yourself, and made them your own.

Love you all!!

P.s. OOOH! I totally forgot! There is a book trailer now, if you're interested. :wink wink, nudge nudge: