Authorial Intrusion – Back Off! Let Your Characters Do The Talking!

 At the end of last year, an edit of my ‘finished’ novel, Just Say It, highlighted I had a problem with multiple point of views, I largely ignored it, until I received the latest critique, which not only highlighted the multiple POV’s issue, but it also pointed out that I was also guilty of another writer’s crime, authorial intrusion.  So I need to back off, and let my characters do the talking!

Nail Your Shifting Points of View!

There is always a great deal going on inside my head at the same time as I bounce ideas off each other. Too many, on occasions. I flit and float from one thought to the next, so perhaps that is one reason why I have allowed something similar to creep into my fiction writing. Unwittingly, I have beenContinue reading “Nail Your Shifting Points of View!”

SHORT STORY – KARMA

My mother and I were never close. There has never been an unshakable emotional bond between us. No invisible strand that binds a mother to her child, post umbilical tie. Even as a child, I felt more of an accessory than a daughter. She never tried to cultivate a rapport between us, so I never felt that ache. That overwhelming sense of dread that engulfs you when you think about losing someone you love.

CHICK-LIT FOR THE OVER FIFTIES!

A chick, in my book, is a baby chicken covered in downy, yellow feathers up until the age of  6-weeks.   I’ve always bristled when the term is applied to young women, and I have always subconsciously disassociated myself from Chick lit, believing the genre to be driven by scantily clad, sex-driven female main characters.  I couldn’t have been more wrong and, although I’m not a fan of categories, it’s time to reassess the genre I think I’ve been writing in.

Creating Characters – Edna Fowler Would Be World-Renown Author

Edna is a member of both DAWG, the Didsbrook Authors and Writers Group and DADS, the Didsbrook Amateur Dramatic Society.  She is blessed with an unwavering self-belief that she is about to join the ranks of world-renown authors, convinced she is Didsbrook’s answer to J. K. Rowling, hence her rather suspect non-de-plume, E. D. Fowling. Edna is one of my favourite characters from The Doyenne of Didsbrook because every inch of her reminds me of one of Roy Clarke’s wonderful characters, Hyacinth Bucket. 

Creating Characters – The Gin-Swilling Miss Laverty

I would like to introduce you to the gin-swilling Miss Laverty, one of the characters from my first novel, Just Say It. The year is 1963, and my main protagonist, Lisa Grant, is four-years-old. Her mother, the self-centred Elizabeth, has hatched a plan with two families living down the road to employ a governess to teach Lisa and the neighbours’ young daughters.  

Creating Characters – Elizabeth Goldsworthy-Grant, nee Campbell

He stopped his tirade and got up to pour himself a stiff whiskey and, realising he was trembling, knocked it back in one.

‘Damn you, Will!  If we are going to make our marriage work, the least you can do is be civil to me. You’re widely regarded as being exceedingly bright.  So, you should be able to work it out.’

‘Work out what?’ He turned to glower at her, and hissed ‘insufferable as well as insane,’ before slamming his glass down on to the drinks tray and poured himself another one.

‘The dates, Will, they don’t add up.  Not with Jeremy anyway, and Grandbo only wants to walk a virgin up the aisle.  He told me to get out when he found out I wasn’t.’ Elizabeth started to sob.  ‘He was about to put his grandmother’s engagement ring on my finger.  It’s a sapphire… the size of a quail’s egg. Oh, Will, I really thought he was going to be the one. Unfortunately, he’s not interested in marrying a woman with a desecrated hymen, let alone one carrying a developing foetus. My life is ruined, and I never wanted children, and it’s all your fault!’

The Critic – coming back to bite me?

I am about to start submissions, again, so I hope this one doesn’t come back to bite me! I wrote this doggerel almost thirty years ago. It was inspired by an experience I had at sixteen when I still had, misguided, aspirations about pursuing a career on the stage.

After the Editing’s Over

‘Of course, men always look at the mother first to see if they are ageing well. Hopefully, you will age well, Lisa, dear, but that is one reason I always spend time making myself look as good as possible. Mind you, I look so young you and I could easily be sisters. I look at myself in the mirror every morning, and I find it impossible to believe that I’m thirty-six. On a bad day, I only look twenty-five. Unfortunately, you’ve inherited more of your father’s genes on the facial front. I think it’s fair to say you look more like him than me.’ The mention of her father sparked disinterest, and Lisa turned back to look at her typewriter.

JUST SAY IT! Excerpt Cut from the Final Draft

She closed her eyes.

‘Forty-years-old and no husband. It’s unthinkable. How could it possibly happen to a daughter of mine?’

Having a forty-year-old daughter did not sit comfortably with Cynthia, especially a forty-year-old unmarried one.  She squirmed inwardly, turning up her stinky fish nose and pursing her lips as the phrase spinster of the parish flashed into her mind.

She wasn’t really surprised. She always felt Katie’s choice of men over the years had been questionable. Probably satisfying in the bedroom department perhaps, but none of them ever had any money.

In Cynthia’s mind, money, lots of it, and preferably a title were the essential ingredients to sustain a successful marriage.

IT’S GOT TO BE DONE: THE FINAL EDIT

THE EDITING NIGHTMARE – THE END! Well, all bar the kicking, screaming and the next wave of submissions. Or should that be the other way around?

JUST WRITE THE DAMN SYNOPSIS!

Capturing the essence of a 90,000 words (±) novel is a bloody nightmare. We spend weeks, months and years, scripting stories, creating characters, in 500; is a bloody nightmare. Or is it because and I’m trying too hard too hard in my attempts to wow a potential agent?  

FINDING THE COURAGE TO TAKE THAT LEAP OF FAITH

When your writing life begins to smack of lemons, you start questioning your ability. Have you really got the courage to take that leap of faith and separate yourself from the rest of the pack? However determined you are to get into print, it is not enough. You need courage, shedloads of it if you are ever going toContinue reading “FINDING THE COURAGE TO TAKE THAT LEAP OF FAITH”

Stone Angel – Short Story

The wind drops, the rustling of the leaves stops as a feeling of déjà vu washes over me. I’ve felt this rigid iciness beneath my fingertips before.  Thirty-five years ago. I remember.

Bye, Bye Week Number 30, 2020

Bye, Bye week number 30, 2020. You’ve been an interesting one.

BROKEN – A young woman is falsely accused of murder.

The last two weeks of my life are a blur. Flickering in my mind like a black and white cine film. I am running. Travelling at night under the cloak of darkness. Slithering out of the United States, escaping from the injustice thrust upon me.

Dare to Dream

Yesterday, was the dismal end to a shitty writing week, which left me teetering on the edge.  Do I really have what it takes to become a novelist?  Or, can I only dare to dream?

Lacklustre July has gone off a bit like a Damp Squib

So far, July has been a bit of a damp squib. I was bordering on hyper during June.  Honing and buffing the stories that have taken me months and years to write, so I could meet the deadlines for various competitions. I also started submissions again, approaching any literary agents who mention the word humour, somewhere, anywhere, on their wishlist.  My excuse as to why not much blogging got done in June 2020.

Going the Wrong Way

After seventeen years apart, Lisa realises she is still in love with Jack, but after he misinterprets a fond farewell between Lisa and Rory, he flounces off home to NYC.  This extract leads up to the agonising moment Jack realises he has got things horribly wrong.  FEBRUARY 2000 Jack was holding the neck of an empty miniatureContinue reading “Going the Wrong Way”

The Feeling Never Dies

They both laughed until they cried; as if cavorting naked was something they had been doing together for years. 

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