Wednesday, September 14, 2011

For Writers - Lynn Sears Williams

Aaand we're back. Thanks for your patience, everyone. This has been a tough couple of months, but I'm on doing better every day... and now I have a whole new realm of experiences to draw from for future stories. It's all fodder, right?

A few items of business before we get started:

First... the winner of DEAR BULLY is: *drumroll*


Please send your mailing instructions to gerb (@) lindagerber (.) com and I'll get it out to you.

Also, for my Ohio area friends, I hope to see you next weekend at the Northern Ohio SCBWI conference in Cleveland! I'll be presenting one workshop on the art of suspense, and one on visual storyboarding with the four-act structure. Come say hello!

I'll also be presenting on the Hero(ine)'s Journey in YA fiction with Jen McAndrews at the Emerald City Writers' Conference in October... which I've just been informed is sold out, so...

If you're interested in the workshop, but won't be at the conference in Seattle next month, you can join us for a month-long online class wherein we will dig into the mythic structure in YA, including breakdowns of recent YA fiction and film. Register through Carolina Romance Writers.

Now, with the business out of the way, I am pleased to welcome Lynne Sears Williams to the blog for this week's Tip Tuesday (or Wednesday, as the case may be...) Lynne's new book, THE COMRADES, made its debut last month. Here's the official blurb:

9th century Wales...

Evan, king of Powys, returns from a wedding to find a village ransacked, with women and children dead. Neighboring Gwynedd has broken the peace, crossing the mountain to pillage and murder. The dead babes tear his heart, and Evan vows to break the heart of Gwynedd.

Gwynedd's most guarded treasure is a pampered princess. In a bloody raid, Evan's comrades return to Powys with Gwynedd's heart.

Evan knows holding the princess will be dangerous and her safe-keeping may mean the difference between the lasting peace he desires and a bloody war. He's prepared for her to be kept safe but unprepared for the girl's intelligence, compassion and damnably kissable mouth.

Morleyna's secret gift of Sight reveals a cruel betrayal that sends Evan on a mystical journey where he discovers his only chance for redemption rests in the hands of his captive.

Her brothers will arrive to claim their sapphire-eyed sister. Will her kinsmen, bent on revenge, destroy Evan and his comrades? Or will destruction come from Morleyna who may be the reincarnation of someone whose beauty captivated a nation?

You all know how much I adore Diana Gabaldon, right? Here's what she had to say about The Comrades: "Three more engaging Welshmen have never been written! By turns hilarious, poignant, bloody--and bloody accurate--historical fiction seldom gets as good as this."

You can find out more about Lynne, and about The Comrades on her website, facebook, and on her blog.

Lynne's tip:

"Diana Gabaldon's advice holds true for all authors: read, read, then read some more.

I would add to not block where your characters are going or decide how they should act; you may be sad or delightfully surprised as events play out. Let *them* speak and do. Since I do not have a plan -- I write in chunks -- I'm amazed how the characters solve their issues. At the end of the day, it's *their* story."

And now, lots of links:

Books for Boys webinar FREE with John Scieszka! (Event Register) <<< TOMORROW!
Boys don't read??? (The Other Side of the Story) Ha. Just ask my son. : )
Boy and Fiction: Is There Any Hope? (New York Times)
1 Reason To Know Your Characters Well (Mystery Writing is Murder) "To stress them out!"
3 Ways to Determine if Your Writing is Crap (Jodi Hedlund) Help is helpful.
5 Ways to Improve Your Fiction (Huffington Post)
5 Things Writing Experts Won't Tell You (James Killick's Blog)
6 Dialog Traps to Avoid (Indie Author)
10 Tips for Becoming a Top-Notch Proof Reader (Procrastinating Writers)
10 Stages of Story Development (W.I.P It)
10 Things NOT to do When Building Characters (Julie Musil)
101 Best Fiction Writing Tips (Write it Sideways pt.1, pt. 2, pt. 3, pt. 4)
Gaining Perspective (Cathering Knutson) Art takes time.
Ooo... Spooky Story Starters (Spilling Ink) Fun. : )
How to Find Cliches in Your Writing (Beyond the Margins) "Take your time. Write what you mean."
Anxious Writer 200 Questions Before Lunch (Beyond the Margins) Very funny.
Details and Generalities (Adventures in Children's Publishing) Excellent post.
Internal and External Inspirations (Writer Unboxed) What inspires you as a writer?
One Teen's Thoughts About YA (Julie Musil) Worth reading.
YA Writers: Read it or Don't Bother Writing it (Fiction Groupie) AMEN.
To Plot or Not to Plot (Ingrid's Notes) The difference between narrative and story.
Frustration: Your Novel's Best Friend (The Bookshelf Muse) "Frustration is awesome."
How to Start a Story (Beyond the Margins) great beginnings.
What to Expect - Writing Workshops for Kids (Imagination Soup)
Mad Libs or Method? On Doing Research While Writing (Grub Street Writer)
So What if Your Book Doesn't Sell? (Jennifer Represents)
There is No Such Thing as an Overnight Success Story (Nathan Bransford)
Nefarious Narrative Distance (The Bluestocking Blog)
Who's Your Audience? (Beyond the Margins)
How to Plot Your Novel (Jill Corcoran Books)
In Fiction, Opposites Attract (Wall Street Journal)
Breaking the Rules Can Lead to Failure... or Possibly Magic (Adventures in Children's Publishing)
Finding Your Writing Process (The Other Side of the Story)
The Difficulty of Finding Ideas that Publishers Like (Jody Hedlund)
Perfection and Productivity (Mystery Writing is Murder)
Dialog - It's Not Just Talking (Scott Egan)
Cramped Middles (Fantasy Faction)
Make Your Ending As Big as Possible (The Sharp Angle)
Should You Outline (The Sharp Angle)
The Power of Deadlines (Cheryl's Musings)

Now go. Write!