Interview on Sallie’s Book Reviews!

Sallie was kind enough to host me on her blog today! 

Sallie: What do you think makes a good story?
Jo: Good characters. It’s like the Harry Potter series, some of the storytelling was a bit lackluster, the final battle was a letdown, but everyone loves the series anyway because they love the characters. If you make great characters that leave people lots of room to play with (whether this means fan fiction or just ‘fantasizing about’) then readers will forgive a less than stellar story because they just want to see more of the character and learn more of those all important details.

Stop by to see the answers to other questions, such as what is the most common comment I get from readers and the all important one: Buffy or Xena?

http://yesterdaydaugher.blogspot.com/2013/02/joleene-naylor-author-of-ties-of-blood.html

 

Tuesdays with Terry – Part 8

Notes From a Twenty Year Almost Career. The guest musings of Indie Author Terrance Foxxe

Part Eight

 

Get lazy. Don’t bother with researching squat. It’s not that important. You can fake your way through anything. They don’t call it fiction for nothing.

I have invented many a world. Some familiar, some strange, some extreme. Readers can tell if a story rings true. If it doesn’t . . .

 

Blues for a Red Planet

was one of those created-world stories. I took a manned orbital flight around a living and vital Mars, added a monumental disaster, an exploding planetoid between Mars and Jupiter, had that lone survivor get lucky and land on Earth roughly three million years in our past. His present, our past. What I had pointed out to me was, Earth would have been pelted with debris from the exploding planetoid, too. Life might have been wiped out on one planet, but the other planet would have suffered something terrible. Nuclear winter terrible.

My lone survivor lived in the sun, ate freely, and helped found modern humanity.

 

Logical progression.

It’s not a concept, it’s a writing reality.

What is logical progression? One thing leads to another thing, which leads to another, which leads to another. A bowling ball gets knocked off a roof, hits a window ledge, and gets bounced out into the street. Five stories below is where you are. You hear a strange sound, possibly a shout of exclamation or warning. Maybe you hear the ball hit the ledge, a hollow thwok sound. You look up and see the ball falling. You either let it hit you, or you get the hell out of the way. That’s what logical progression is.

New writers tend to rush the process, and you can’t. Each scene has within it potential. Each scene moves at its own pace. Logical progression demands a scene is what it is, is detailed or not, takes as much time to unfold as it does, builds up a sense of what comes next, or builds up suspense, and does all this within the confines of your character’s perception. What they see, touch, taste, hear, smell, feel, physically or emotionally.

This is their world, after all, and you are simply their scribe. Your characters, they don’t know you exist.

Your characters don’t live in your world, but in their world. Do you know how their world works? Do you know the streets of their city, and the flavors of people you find section to section within their city?

Do they live on a space station, another planet, or as part of an alien culture?

Do you have what it takes in knowledge to define their existence? Can you find that knowledge? Probably, sure.

In building worlds you need to know mast from bow if you’re writing about pirates, and it doesn’t matter if the pirates are on this planet or another, solar sails or canvas sails. You need to know how things work, what to do and why you do the things you do. You need to know the details. God is in the details.

 

Your characters need to know what the consequences are to their actions.

The characters you put in your literary world need to know what to do, but they act as themselves. What they would do, and not what you want them to do. Logical progression. Details.

In writing my second novel I had a lot to learn about Heaven and Hell. I had to learn the story of the Christ. Every word had to ring true in a horror story that relies on Revelations to make my plot points. I had to know the rules my world depended on in order to bend or break them. I had to know the details. Mix in logical progression, how one detail affects my character’s actions and/or reactions, you got movement, you got plot, you got a book.

 

What not to do!

 

deus ex machina

. God in the machine. Angels coming out of nowhere to save, at the last minute, your hero.The Soap Opera Effect.

Life has its ups and downs, but you don’t go down in a jet every time you board a plane. The people who inhabit the world of soaps do, and they live through it, only to be saved by a fisherman, who then takes advantage of their amnesia, and on and on. Pointless suffering. All of your suffering should have a point to it.

Do your research. Examine, study, talk to people. Your average working Joe or Jane doesn’t mind talking to you about what they do. In fact, most will be thrilled that you sought them out, and are listening to what they have to say. They, indirectly, get to be in your book! And, it’s kind of fun. You don’t get to carry a gun and solve real crimes, but I have witnessed an autopsy. In real life, the inside of the human body reeks.

 

“Why shouldn’t truth be stranger than fiction? Fiction, after all, has to make sense.”

– Mark Twain

******

Terrance Foxxe is crazy enough to share everything he knows about catering to readers, because readers matter most to the Indie Author of today, and tomorrow. He had two books published under his real name, only to discover publishers really suck. After being royally ripped off and then some, he is the Indie Author of A Post-apocalyptic Story of Love,$2.99 USD & In The Dreaming, $0.99, both for the Kindle. Links provided. He’s now a happy man. Buy his books. Read them. Write reviews.

Post Apocalyptic Love Story

The Dreaming

He blogs at http://terrancefoxxe.blogspot.com/

 

Vampire Poetry

I usually keep the poems on my other blogs, but this was on topic, so….. 😉

Tonight and tomorrow at the Creative Poetry Corral I am hosting Zombies vs Vampires – a night of undead poetry fun:

I'm surrounded by zombies there, so if you're on MySpace then come and help team Vampire out! (click the banner)

Here are two of the poems I’ve posted on the site:

Walk With Me

 

Darkness wraps itself around you

Makes your fears and nightmares come true

In the shadows, can you feel me?

Creeping closer ‘til you can see

So you stand amazed

You can not believe

I slowly smile

And you fall down on your knees

In my casket lay

All our hopes and dreams

Now resurrected

Why is it that you scream?

Drowning in your own confusion

Your questions rising in profusion

All the prayers you cried have come true

From the grave returned to find you

And your tears they fall

Landing on the floor

Your trembling fingers

Reaching for my face once more

Whispered words of praise

Slip softly from your lips

All your desire

Burning in your unspoken kiss

Against the night I’ll raise my voice

At your feet I lay this choice

The world of death beyond this portal

Will you dance with an immortal?

Lie in your grave with me

You can’t look away

I’ll taste you’re life

Save you from life’s slow decay

Intertwined we’ll be

For eternity

Just take my hand

And walk into the night with me

*******************

Haunting Obsession

Darkness black as sinner’s tomb,

Cobwebbed shadows ‘mongst the stones

Eyes of liquid night gazed gently

On her prone and pale form

Hair as black as demon’s dreams

Shaded the features of his face

His hand reached through the shimmering darkness

To trace the gentle gown of lace

His lips drew back from silver fangs

Etched sharp beneath the moon’s pale light

And leaning towards her slender throat,

He gently took away her life

Her blood was sweet as summer honey

Warm pleasure flowing o’re his tongue

Her memories slipped through his mind

Her fragile life so soon undone

Drained dry he dropped her to the bed

Her body but an empty shell

Lifeless, staring at the ceiling

While through his veins burned living hell

Her face had haunted all his dreams

Obsession gnawing at his bones

His heart ached with the need of her

To take her for his very own

And to this end was one recourse

One way to ease this hated fervor

To kill the very thing he loved

To rid himself of her forever

But in his dreams she dances still

A shimmering ghost dressed all in white

Laughing as she calls his name

And beckons him to pale moonlight

Burned by the memory of her touch

As his soul slowly dies

Recalling how she looked in death

His soul as empty as her eyes

********************************

(copyright Jo Naylor)

<!–[if gte mso 10]>

Darkness wraps itself around you

Makes your fears and nightmares come true

In the shadows, can you feel me?

Creeping closer ‘til you can see

So you stand amazed

You can not believe

I slowly smile

And you fall down on your knees

In my casket lay

All our hopes and dreams

Now resurrected

Why is it that you scream?

Drowning in your own confusion

Your questions rising in profusion

All the prayers you cried have come true

From the grave returned to find you

And your tears they fall

Landing on the floor

Your trembling fingers

Reaching for my face once more

Whispered words of praise

Slip softly from your lips

All your desire

Burning in your unspoken kiss

Against the night I’ll raise my voice

At your feet I lay this choice

The world of death beyond this portal

Will you dance with an immortal?

Lie in your grave with me

You can’t look away

I’ll taste you’re life

Save you from life’s slow decay

Intertwined we’ll be

For eternity

Just take my hand

And walk into the night with me

  • Tales of the Executioners

    Short stories from the world of Amaranthine; a universe of blood and darkness where vampires don't sparkle and night is eternal. Each is about a member of the Executioners squad; the special vampire "police" force. Members both past and present share stories of assignments, origins, and more.

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    Joleene Naylor

    An independent author, freelance artist, and photographer for fun who loves anime, music, and writing. Check out my vampire series Amaranthine at http://JoleeneNaylor.com or drop me a line at Joleene@JoleeneNaylor.com

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