Posted in a bit of seriousness, blogs, Craft, Links, traditional, writers, Writing and Poetry, YA

The Thing About Genre… Traci Kenworth


The Thing About Genre is…

Traci Kenworth

The thing about genre is that you’re not limited to one, but it helps to remain focused on one for at least three books before you switch to another. I hope to be able to concentrate on two in the future: my Traci Kenworth as a young adult author and my Loleta Abi as a romance author. Concentrating on three at a time at first, helps an agent to place your work better and gets your brand known for that genre.

If you’re bouncing all over the place, it doesn’t give readers the feel that you’re committed to that area until they come to know your work better. It’s like anything: practice makes perfect or in this case, better seen. Now, I have seen Indie authors make this work opposite, where they write what they want but if you want to go traditional, think branding.

I know a lot of authors are slanted either way: Indie or traditional. My preference is traditional, but I may go hybrid later on, who knows? I hear romance does really strong in that category Indie-wise. I had thought to go more Indie for a while, but my thinking has swung around to traditional. Mostly for the brand recognition. I think they have a better way of getting you into the places you want to be than Indie does.

Now, I’ve heard that some big Author Indies can open doors others can’t but remember that Colleen Hoover and several other Indie authors swung around to traditional after going Indie because it helped strengthen their brand and let’s face it, it’s where the money is. Unless you’re someone like James Scott Bell, a traditionally grounded author, who successfully transferred to Indie but again, his branding was already established I think where he can count on his fans buying his work in higher numbers.

Whichever way you go, have fun with it. Get in there, dig, and explore your genre. Learn what works and what doesn’t. Don’t be afraid to take risks. To try twists not invented yet. But I strongly caution, to learn the genre first. Training ground has a reason. It’s for us to be like Bambi on that ice. Fall but get back up. Make mistakes. That’s how we learn.

So, there you have it. The thing about genre is to love the one that you choose and run with it. Until you’re ready to go beyond and try another. Or stay put and expand the genre the way you want to go. None of the greats would be the greats if they hadn’t taken chances. Be confident. Be creative. Love what you do. If the genre doesn’t work for you, move on. It’s never too late to take that next step. Good luck and have a great week! God bless!

Happenings:

Covid is at last, behind me, but I’m having extreme pain in my legs and they are ice-cold in the mornings. I’ve got a doctor’s appointment to see about them next week. I have arthritis already but this just feels so, so painful. I know in my family, legs have been a weak area. My brother had to have operations on his. And my father, toward the end of his life, couldn’t let his legs be touched even in passing by a toddler without writhing in absolute pain. I’ve had to go back to my cane to support me while about right now. I’m very tempted to use those carts you drive at the bigger stores. I know I need to get some exercise in though, regardless, so I’m trying to keep going. How’s your week going?

Some posts about the web you might like:

  1. Smorgasboard Magazine https://coldhandboyack.wordpress.com/2022/10/21/smorgasbord-bookshelf-new-book-on-the-shelves-fantasy-the-midnight-rambler-the-hat-book-6-c-s-boyack/ Something evil is after the hat. The ageless enemies have battled many times, but this time Lizzie is wearing the hat. She’s also up against a ticking clock, in that if she can’t find the maker of her new friend’s medicine he will die. The Rambler has kidnapped the only witch capable of making Ray’s medicine in an attempt to make the hat sloppy in his efforts. He’s also flooded the streets with deadly minions to impede any progress our heroes might make. As if that weren’t enough, Lizzie is facing more of life’s struggles, both financially and mechanically. This all goes down in the middle of a huge flood event that she’s ill equipped to handle. Join Lizzie… This is one I’m looking forward to snagging asap.
  2. Writers in the Storm https://writersinthestormblog.com/2022/10/7-ways-to-increase-your-creativity-through-workspace-design/ The life of a writer can be unpredictable. Family, medical issues, housing issues, and many more personal-life interruptions can disrupt the flow of words. Many of you may not have options and write when and where you can write. For example, right now I’m writing in the waiting room of a car maintenance shop. The environment here is nice but definitely full of distractions. When we can choose our writing environment, it makes sense to choose a space that optimizes how we write. Keep in mind that not all of us will respond in the same way to the same physical space. In the list of elements I offer below, choose the ones that speak to you, and that feel more creative to you. Brain Science The theory that people are right-brained (creative, intuitive) or left-brained (logical or linear) or both is a popular myth unsupported by neuroscience. The brain’s right and left hemispheres are not separate organs. While the right hemisphere performs more complex functions, and the left hemisphere controls most (if not all) physiological functions, the two hemispheres work together. While the right- versus left-brain theory is a myth, it’s an easy way to understand how people think. At the extremes, a few of us are nearly 100% logical thinkers and a few are almost 100% creative thinkers. A few of us fall into the moves fluidly between the two. In a reality, we are all a mix of the two. Many of us continue to perceive one or the other thinking style as our primary way of perceiving the world. We’re not wrong, but it’s more complex than which hemisphere controls what. Still, we can use brain science and psychology to help us set up a work environment that supports our creativity.
  3. Syl’s 65 blog https://syl65.wordpress.com/2022/10/21/friday-inspiration-francesca-battistelli-the-breakup-song/ I LOVE this song!
  4. Writers Helping Writers https://writershelpingwriters.net/2022/10/fear-thesaurus-entry-being-pitied/ Debilitating fears are a problem for everyone, an unfortunate part of the human experience. Whether they’re a result of learned behavior as a child, are related to a mental health condition, or stem from a past wounding event, these fears influence a character’s behaviors, habits, beliefs, and personality traits. The compulsion to avoid what they fear will drive characters away from certain people, events, and situations and hold them back in life. In your story, this primary fear (or group of fears) will constantly challenge the goal the character is pursuing, tempting them to retreat, settle, and give up on what they want most. Because this fear must be addressed for them to achieve success, balance, and fulfillment, it plays a pivotal part in both the character arc and the overall story. This thesaurus explores the various fears that might be plaguing your character. Use it to understand and utilize fears to fully develop your characters and steer them through their story arc. Please note that this isn’t a self-diagnosis tool. Fears are common in the real world, and while we may at times share similar tendencies as characters, the entry below is for fiction writing purposes only.
  5. Roberta Writes https://roberta-writes.com/2022/10/21/roberta-writes-thursday-doors-riverstill-guest-farm/
  6. Charles French https://charlesfrenchonwordsreadingandwriting.wordpress.com/2022/10/21/favorite-horror-films-5-frankenstein/ The movie that I will discuss in this installment is Frankenstein.  This 1931 film was directed by James Whale and produced by Carl Laemelle, Jr. Universal Studios was following up its huge success with Dracula earlier in the year, so this film seemed like a natural choice to make. While the title and characters come from the 1818 Mary Shelley novel, it is a loose adaptation of the text.  Interestingly, the sequel, The Bride of Frankenstein, is a much more faithful treatment of the novel than this first film. This movie, one of the most important in horror film history, introduces Boris Karloff as the Creature. Karloff gives an impressive performance as the lost and lonely being who is unsure of who he is and his place in the world.  This sounds like so many teenagers and young people, and while frightening, Karloff also gathered empathy from viewers in his nuanced performance. Bela Lugosi had been offered the part of the creature but apparently turned it down because of its lack of speaking lines.  Lugosi made a terrible career choice because Karloff would supplant him after this film’s success as the top box office star and would continue to dominate Lugosi’s subsequent film career. I recall seeing this when I was very young. The movie of course, scared the daylights out of me but I was fascinated with it as well. I didn’t know the background behind the movie until now and that in itself is also fascinating.
  7. This is Horror https://www.thisishorror.co.uk/news-round-up-week-ending-21-october-2022/ Out now from Dark Matter Inc, edited by Sadie Hartmann and Ashley Saywers, Human Monsters: A Horror Anthology Not all monsters are fantasy. Some are very real, and they walk among us. They’re our friends, family, neighbors, and co-workers. They’re the people we’re supposed to trust…and they know it. Contained within this anthology are 35 never-before-published works by supremely talented authors and best-selling novelists. Brace yourself for the unexpected and unimaginable horror of … Human Monsters. Featuring stories by Linda D. Addison, Gemma Amor, Andrew Cull, Andy Davidson, Chad Lutzke, Catherine McCarthy, Josh Malerman, and many more you can pick up your copy in paperback and eBook formats now.
  8. Teagan’s Books https://teagansbooks.com/2022/10/22/spook-tober-shorts-surar-fiends-featuring-robbie-cheadle/ Hello everyone, and welcome back to Spook-tober Shorts.  A couple of weeks ago I introduced some new character-friends, the Pumpkin Hat Girls.  They’re back for some more Twilight Zone-ish fun. BASED ON COMMENTS, I REVISED THE STORY TO INCLUDE AN EPILOGUE. Haunted Halloween Holiday is a delightful story by Robbie and Michael Cheadle.  I mentioned it back on August 20.  When I found out about Robbie’s story, it reminded me that every year, I kept forgetting to do a Halloween story until it was too late.  So, I got busy writing A Peril in Ectoplasm.  My latest novella has nothing to do with Robbie’s new book.  Neither does the short story below, but it was inspired by her fun promo image and many of her fondant characters.  I’ve used her photos of some of them as illustrations for my story.
  9. Books and Such https://teripolen.com/2022/10/22/badmoonrising-house-of-sorrow-by-joan-hall-thriller-shortstory-suspense/ I share this author’s disappointment in ghost tours – we’ve yet to see a ghost. Seems like it’s something that should be guaranteed on that kind of tour, right? The Legends and Lore posts on her blog feature jaw-dropping and uncanny mysteries/legends – I highly recommend you check them out. Furry friends have been stealing the spotlight this month, and she brings a couple of cuties with her today. Welcome, Joan Hall! Which unsolved murder fascinates you the most? Can I cheat a bit by mentioning another type of unsolved mystery? The story of D. B. Cooper has always intrigued me. He hijacked a commercial airliner in 1971, demanded 200K in ransom money, then parachuted out of the plane somewhere over the Pacific Northwest. A portion of the ransom money was found years later, but there’s been no sign of the man (living or dead). Specific to a murder, it would have to be the story of Lizzie Borden. Did she really give her mother forty whacks, then gave her father forty-one?
  10. Stream of Consciousness https://johnwhowell.com/2022/10/22/stream-of-consciousness-saturday-prompt-bowl/ The coffee machine has a mind of its own today. While waiting for the life-saving potion, a bowl of store-brand raisin bran crunch is making a poor substitute. Before long, the machine decides a strike might not produce the best result and coughs up the brew. Abandoning the bowl in favor of the mug, a sip reminds me that today is a safe blow-up day. The security system is already down, and Wile E Coyote is busy in the backyard placing packages around the perimeter of the safe. Joining him and seeing he is using ACME C4 charges. All wired to a plunger, and Wile slowly walks away from the safe with it in his hand. He is allowing the wire to slip from the coil around his arm. “Everything okay?” My question catches Wile by surprise. “Of course,” he says. “Where’s Yosemite Sam?” Wile pulls on his chin for a mini-second and responds. “I locked him inside the safe.” The statement causes my eyebrows to join my hairline. “Is he safe in the safe?” My hand immediately goes to my mouth but too late cause that awful question is already out there.” Wile rolls his eyes. “He’s a lot safer in there than we are out here.” Another statement that threatens to send my eyebrows over the top of my head. It is clear that Wile is about to push the plunger as he gets down on one knee and yells, “Fire in the hole.” “Just a minute.” The words hit Wile like a baseball headed for an infield double. He rises and walks to meet me. “Let me explain,” he drawls. For the first time, his Texas accent comes to prominence. Must happen when he is angry, my brain tells me.” Look, friend.” He pauses, then continues. “You and I have a contract, and how this goes down is entirely up to me to execute. Why did you stop me?” Lol.
  11. Chris the Story Reading Ape https://thestoryreadingapeblog.com/2022/10/23/meet-guest-editor-and-author-alison-williams/ Thanks so much to Chris for this opportunity to tell you about myself and my editing services. I have been providing services for authors since 2016 and have worked on more than five hundred projects in a wide variety of genres. I have a first degree in English Language and Literature and trained as a journalist. I have worked as a freelance writer and have been published in print and online. I completed a master’s degree in Creative Writing at the University of Glasgow and my journey into editing began when I was asked by fellow students to edit their work. I found that it was something I greatly enjoyed and that I have a knack for spotting issues that often writers are too close to their work to see. I have been very lucky in working with some wonderful writers, many of whom ask me to edit subsequent books. It is lovely to see how the advice I give them shapes their later writing and to see their writing craft go from strength to strength. It is always the biggest compliment when authors get in touch because I have been recommended by other authors. The publishing world is changing all the time. It is becoming harder and harder to break into the world of traditional publishing. A polished manuscript is essential when approaching agents. And if, as many authors have done, you decide to pursue your own writing journey through self-publishing, then it is even more essential to make sure that the work you put out there is the best it can possibly be.
  12. Charles French https://charlesfrenchonwordsreadingandwriting.wordpress.com/2022/10/22/my-favorite-horror-films-6-the-bride-of-frankenstein/ The next installment in this series is what I consider to be one of the very best horror films ever made: The Bride of Frankenstein. I also want to mention that I have taught this novel, Frankenstein or The Modern Prometheus several times at both Lehigh University in Bethlehem, PA, and the Department of Graduate and Continuing Education at Muhlenberg College in Allentown, PA. It is also interesting that the sequel The Bride of Frankenstein (1935) to Universal Studio’s Frankenstein  (1931) is a far better film and a more faithful adaptation of Mary Shelley’s classic Gothic novel than the original movie. James Whale directed and Carl Laemmle Jr. produced this film. This is one of my favorites as well. I can remember sitting and watching Scream Theater with my friends back on a Saturday when this was on. The bride’s rejection of the groom was brutal and instantaneous and the repercussions to follow horrific.
  13. Annette Rochelle Aben https://annetterochelleaben.wordpress.com/2022/10/23/angel-messages-oct-23-2022/
  14. Smorgasboard Magazine https://smorgasbordinvitation.wordpress.com/2022/10/23/smorgasbord-blog-magazine-poetry-dorothy-cronin-1949-2006-tuffy-a-much-loved-family-pet/
Posted in Links, MG & YA, traditional, Uncategorized, writers, Writing and Poetry, YA

When Do You Make Yourself Happy? by Traci Kenworth


When Do You Choose What Makes You Happy?

Traci Kenworth

Our lives are built around doing things for others. When do you choose what’s right for you? When do you choose what makes you happy? I hear you. Kids. The spouse. Your boss at work. Friends. They all pull us in different directions. And I get that they’re important. That you love them with all your heart. That’s great. That’s good.

We spend so much time doing for others, we sometimes forget our own priorities. And I’m not saying family, friends, or work aren’t a priority. The truth of the matter is, if you continue to let dreams crumble, one day they’ll be no more. We need to take a step back here and there to see what we’d like to do with our goals/our futures.

I’ve written since I was little but had no idea that that’s what I wanted to do with my life till after I left college. To me, words were something sacred, something that wouldn’t be practical for my life. Don’t all those guidance tests tell us that? Or at least, the guidance counselor? Choose something else. That was hammered in me from those days.

So, I did. Nothing worked out for me. I struggled to find a job that interested me. They were all boring. Or a necessity. But you know, I came to realize that’s what the draw to writing was about. It wasn’t boring. In fact, it was damn exciting. It thrummed through my veins as soon as I put my fingers to the keyboard or picked up a pen.

I stopped fighting what others told me was impossible. In a lot of areas of my life. Today, I’m so glad that I didn’t give up. I wouldn’t have kids. I wouldn’t have a good life. And starting this journey again would be so much harder. My health, admittedly, is something I still have to consider. I’m not where I want to be, but I’m taking strides further.

By the way, if you see someone you used to know from wherever, don’t assume things about them without knowing their health. I’ve had classmates from school and old neighbors assume my weight problems were due to pregnancy. The truth was far from that. I didn’t gain this weight till I ended up in the hospital and then they jerked me from medicine to medicine trying to solve my problems.

There comes a time when you have to realize that if something makes you happy, do more of it. Writing is the elixir of my life. I need it to feel accomplished in my day. No matter if I ever reach the goals I wish, I will keep going, keep fighting. Because to not do so, doesn’t give me anything to shoot for.

It might not seem like much to you, but for me, it’s more than enough. It’s a hope that I haven’t always had a lot of in my life. It’s a strength that builds my day. Who knows how long we have left in this existence? I don’t want to waste another minute. No matter what happens, I will always keep stringing words together. Hoping. Smiling. Keeping the faith. Have a great week, everyone.

Some products you might like. Keep in mind that I may receive a small compensation from the sellers.

  1. Empowered Women Empower Women https://amzn.to/3QT2Xks
  2. Inspirational Gifts for Women https://amzn.to/39VpNYd
  3. The True Measure of a Man https://amzn.to/3OIx7pr

Some blogs you might enjoy:

  1. The Killzone https://killzoneblog.com/2022/06/tips-to-deceive-characters-and-readers.html

Fictional truth is never quite as clear as it seems on the surface. Deceptiveness boils down to manipulation, disguise, and misdirection. The writer can deceive characters and readers in numerous ways.

A villain might murder another character, then lie to avoid detection. This leads to more lies, more misdirection, and deepening deceptions, creating tension and conflict.

What if the main character lies to themselves about who they are or their current circumstances? Because the truth may be too difficult to accept, the charade continues. One of the most widely known examples is The Sixth Sense.

2. Writer’s Helping Writer’s https://writershelpingwriters.net/2022/06/3-design-secrets-for-captivating-book-ads/ With so many books in the world and ads on every platform imaginable, social media can often feel like screaming into a void. In order to get any traction, you need ad design that gets noticed by your ideal reader or target audience. Following these 3 tips will give you a bit of a secret sauce foundation for capturing those clicks.

3. Middle Grade Mojo https://middlegrademojo.com/2022/06/28/mg-summer-reading-5-fun-cinderella-retellings/

Who can resist a fun retelling of a classic fairytale? Having some knowledge of the backstory allows the reader to get invested in the story quickly. Today’s guest post is a fairytale specialist—Leah Cypess is the author of the SISTERS EVER AFTER series and shares some of her favorite retellings of Cinderella.

Leah Cypess: While writing GLASS SLIPPERS, I avoided reading other retellings of Cinderella. But now that GLASS SLIPPERS is out in the world, I was able to revisit some old favorites — and discover some new ones — to recommend to any middle grade readers who are looking for more takes on Cinderella! Here are my 5 favorites:

  1. Ella Enchanted by Gail Carson Levine. I know, I know! It’s so obvious it almost doesn’t bear mentioning. But it’s so good that it has to be mentioned. (And don’t just take my word for it — the Newbery Committee thought so too!) The story of a girl named Ella who is “blessed” with the gift of obedience, this retelling is inventive, enthralling, and thoroughly magical. (And if you’ve watched the movie — go read the book anyhow. Seriously. They are barely telling the same story.)
  2. Princess of Glass by Jessica Day George. This book is the second in a series, and I highly recommend starting with the first, Princess of the Midnight Ball (a retelling of the Twelve Dancing Princesses). With that said, if for some reason you must, you can also read Princess of Glass as a stand-alone. This book is actually about a different princess at that famous ball, thus setting it up for a series of fascinating and fairy-tale-bending twists. It’s a sweet and fast-paced entry in George’s fabulous Princess trilogy.

4. Entertaining Stories https://coldhandboyack.wordpress.com/2022/06/29/too-many-windows/

I generally only have one or two windows open at a time. Recently, it’s gotten kind of crazy. I’m working on two manuscripts at once, so when I find something interesting or informative, I currently leave that window open. Beats adding a bunch of bookmarks when I only need them temporarily.

Let’s take a look at them, just for a laugh.

Entertaining Stories – you are here.

Facts about Potassium Iodide – used for radiation poisoning

Google window -for saltwater taffy

Recipe – for saltwater taffy – vehicle for Potassium Iodide

Google translate – for English to Spanish

5. The Write Stuff https://marciamearawrites.com/2022/06/30/thorsdaysmile-humor-amlaughing-11/ Are you ready for a few smiles this morning? Thor thinks you are, so let’s get right to it! Here is a bit of a mixed bag for you, and I hope you find a couple of things you enjoy!

Posted in blogs, horror, Links, traditional, YA

Book Review: The Girl From the Well Rin Chupeco by Traci Kenworth


Bookcover

Book Review: The Girl From the Well Rin Chupeco by Traci Kenworth

Book Blurb: “[A] Stephen Kinglike horror story…A chilling, bloody ghost story that resonates.”― Kirkus

From the highly acclaimed author of the Bone Witch trilogy comes a chilling story of a Japanese ghost looking for vengeance and the boy who has no choice but to trust her, lauded as a “a fantastically creepy story sure to keep readers up at night” (RT Book Reviews)

I am where dead children go.

Okiku is a lonely soul. She has wandered the world for centuries, freeing the spirits of the murdered-dead. Once a victim herself, she now takes the lives of killers with the vengeance they’re due. But releasing innocent ghosts from their ethereal tethers does not bring Okiku peace. Still, she drifts on.

Such is her existence, until she meets Tark. Evil writhes beneath the moody teen’s skin, trapped by a series of intricate tattoos. While his neighbors fear him, Okiku knows the boy is not a monster. Tark needs to be freed from the malevolence that clings to him. There’s just one problem:  if the demon dies, so does its host.

Suspenseful and creepy, The Girl from the Well is perfect for readers looking for

  • Spooky books for young adults
  • Japanese horror novels
  • Ghost stories for teens
  • East Asian folklore

Praise for The Girl from the Well

“There’s a superior creep factor that is pervasive in every lyrical word of Chupeco’s debut, and it’s perfect for teens who enjoy traditional horror movies…the story is solidly scary and well worth the read.” ― Booklist

“Chupeco makes a powerful debut with this unsettling ghost story…told in a marvelously disjointed fashion from Okiku’s numbers-obsessed point of view, this story unfolds with creepy imagery and an intimate appreciation for Japanese horror, myth, and legend.” ― Publishers Weekly STARRED review

“It hit all the right horror notes with me, and I absolutely recommend it to fans looking for a good scare. ” ― The Book Smugglers

My Review: The book opens with a serial killer snatching a young Tark. His cousin joins the search for him. When she discovers his location and frantically tries to get him away, she discovers that Tark is not alone. Something haunts him. A young girl who saves both their lives in her vengeance for victims that’ve gone before.

The cousin watches Tark in the months that follow worried over the presence within him. She doesn’t realize that an even darker force rules the boy due to his mother. Okiku, the ghost, is determined to keep Tark save from the same. When Tark’s father invites the cousin to Japan where his mother was from to delve into the sickness that has grown in the boy, she jumps at the chance to keep him safe.

Okiku begins to reveal to the cousin her past in Japan as they journey along to the mountain village Tark’s mother is from. Once there, they learn secrets about Tark’s mother, what she was trying to do, and what must be done to save him if possible. Because there’s a curse deeper than the one his mother cast on him, one that could cause Tark to die.

Thoughts: This was a decent horror read. I had a bit of trouble getting into the book because of all that I didn’t know about the Japanese culture. At times, it did distract me from the story. I liked when they arrived in Japan versus the American part better. Learning about Okiku was interesting. Also, diving into Tark’s mother’s history.

I think I liked the Japan part of the story because it seemed more grounded, more relevant. While in America, the background wasn’t as well drawn in and therefore, harder to get into. This won’t stop me from reading the sequel, however.


         I have other book reviews to deliver next as part of my getting back into things. At some point however, I do have to go in for a more complicated surgery and I’m not sure how that will play out as far as recovery. I plan to get back to two books by Indie authors that I owe a review for asap. In the meantime, the Netgalley ones have to be gotten through as I go along to keep with their time schedules. This happened to be a Netgalley one. The opinions are my own given in exchange for a free review copy.

Here are some products you may like. I do receive a small compensation from the site for posting them.

  1. The Girl From the Well by Rin Chupeco https://amzn.to/3uNfQ5B
  2. The Shadow and the Bone Trilogy by Leigh Bardugo https://amzn.to/3K01lSa Highly recommend!
  3. The Cursebreaker Series by Brigid Kemmerer https://amzn.to/3IVlGXG Another highly recommend!
  4. The Caravel Series by Stephanie Garber https://amzn.to/3DsZjaJ Still another highly recommended!
  5. The Catcher and the Rye by J.D. Salinger https://amzn.to/3wRz5O3 A classic!

Below are some links you may enjoy:

  1. The Indie Spot https://beemweeks.wordpress.com/2022/04/02/the-hat-is-humorous-and-original/

Lizzie St. Laurent is dealing with many of the struggles of young life. She lost her grandmother, and her living arrangements. Her new roommate abandoned her, and she’s working multiple jobs just to keep her head above water.

She inherits an old hat from her grandmother’s estate, but it belonged to her grandfather. This is no ordinary hat, but a being from an alternate dimension. One with special powers.

Lizzie and the hat don’t exactly hit it off right away, but when her best friend’s newborn is kidnapped by a ring of baby traffickers, Lizzie turns to the hat for help. This leads her deep into her family history and a world she’s never known.

Lizzie gives up everything to rescue the babies. She loses her jobs, and may wind up in jail before it’s over. Along the way, she and the hat may have a new way of making ends meet.

Humorous and fun, The Hat is novella length. Wonderful escapism for an afternoon. Craig’s work is always worth a read!

2. Entertaining Stories https://coldhandboyack.wordpress.com/2022/04/02/word-count-and-future-ideas/

I closed my iPad, then leaned back in my lounge chair. “That’s a wrap for today, folks.”

Lisa Burton, my robot assistant picked the twin ponytails from her hair. “Back to more Cicis tomorrow?”

“Probably.”

“You really need to get these girls some better clothes.”

“I did, but they tend to wear jumpsuits while they’re on the ship. We’re deep into the mission right now.”

Percy, the Space Chimp, perked up. “Not bad, dude. I’m finally in the shuttle and weapons are hot. I’m expecting to kick some major ass tomorrow.”

“Me, too. We’re nearly finished. You have two adventures left in this book and I should easily break eighty-thousand words.”

3. Word Craft Poetry https://wordcraftpoetry.com/2022/04/02/shareyourday/#comment-113240

Okay, I’ve finally found a theme that works for me. Whew! WP definitely upgraded the editor again, because everything looks different in the post template. I also had to change my browser to Chrome. Not my favorite, but everything seems to be working on WP. Fingers Crossed!! Many thanks to David for his theme inspiration… the Libre2 theme is working. 🙏🏻 🌸

This week for #TankaTuesday, I’m sharing the spot where I do all my writing and creating. Sophie spends the day (and nights) with me most of the time. I’m not ashamed to say that I’m still in my jammies as it’s been another wintry day here in Michigan. I’m looking forward to spring!

4. Kill Zone Blog https://killzoneblog.com/2022/04/up-front-money.html

Not long ago, (but before the lockdown) I was invited to speak at a library down in Mason, just west of San Antonio. That little south Texas town was where Fred Gipson lived, one of my favorite authors who wrote Old Yeller and Savage Sam.

They put me up in a quaint old hotel down there in the hill country, overlooking the town square that wasn’t much more than an intersection of two lane roads. It was one of those little perks I enjoy as an author. I spoke that night and signed my latest novel, then retired to the balcony and sipped a gin and tonic under the stars, thinking about an elderly woman who came to me after the talk, asking if I could help her with a problem.

I’d signed my last book and was getting ready to leave when she took a chair beside me. “You’re a famous author.” She spoke with a German accent, which isn’t unusual in that part of the Lone Star State. The German-Texan culture began here in 1831, five years before the Alamo fell, and significantly increased after the close of the Civil War. It’s estimated that over 40,000 emigrants moved to Texas by the close of the nineteenth century.

“No ma’am. I’m far from famous, just a pretty good writer who entertains people.”

“Well, you surely have an agent.” A note to anyone thinking of publishing. Read this!

5. Smorgasbord Blog Magazine https://smorgasbordinvitation.wordpress.com/2022/04/02/smorgasbord-blog-magazine-memories-music-and-movies-1993-40th-mr2-m-people-mrs-doubtfire/

It is 1993 and in the February I hit the big 40. At the beginning of the year, I looked at my wish list as most of us do before hitting a milestone birthday. One of my top ‘things to do before I am 40’ was to own a racy little number.

As a teenager I had a number of boyfriends who owned sports cars. Whilst they may have anticipated something a little different when I suggested that we adjourn to the car park at Clarence Parade after a date, they were disappointed. I only wanted their car keys! I had spent many a happy hour in a Triumph Spitfire or a later model TR4 doing circuits of the car park.

I did not get my official driving licence until 1980 and had driven for both work and pleasure in the intervening years. We had enjoyed many road trips when living in Texas including across from Houston to New Mexico, a distance of 650 miles without stopping except for gas.

Posted in blogs, dark fantasy, gothic, MG & YA, Reading, traditional, YA

Book Talk 8/21/2020 Traci Kenworth


Image by Jill Wellington from Pixabay

Added Ninth House by Leigh Bardugo.

Bestselling in Baby. Forehead Thermometer, digital. Playtex Diaper Genie Refill Bags. Diaper Wipes Pampers Aqua Pure. The First Years Stack-up Cup Toys. Pampers Swaddlers Diapers, Size 4. Manual Breast Pump. Baby Foot Exfoliation Foot Peel.

Posted in blogs, fantasy, Historicals, MG & YA, Reading, traditional, YA

Book Talk 8/7/2020: Brigid Kemmerer’s A Heart So Fierce and Broken Traci Kenworth


Click on image to be taken to Amazon.

Book Talk 8/7/2020: Brigid Kemmerer’s A Heart So Fierce and Broken

Traci Kenworth

A Heart So Fierce and Broken by Brigid Kemmerer. YA. 2020. Bloomsbury.

Amazon’s blurb: In the sequel to New York Times bestselling A Curse So Dark and Lonely, Brigid Kemmerer returns to the world of Emberfall in a lush fantasy where friends become foes and love blooms in the darkest of places.

Find the heir, win the crown.
The curse is finally broken, but Prince Rhen of Emberfall faces darker troubles still. Rumors circulate that he is not the true heir and that forbidden magic has been unleashed in Emberfall. Although Rhen has Harper by his side, his guardsman Grey is missing, leaving more questions than answers.

Win the crown, save the kingdom.
Grey may be the heir, but he doesn’t want anyone to know his secret. On the run since he destroyed Lilith, he has no desire to challenge Rhen–until Karis Luran once again threatens to take Emberfall by force. Her own daughter Lia Mara sees the flaws in her mother’s violent plan, but can she convince Grey to stand against Rhen, even for the good of Emberfall?

The heart-pounding, compulsively readable saga continues as loyalties are tested and new love blooms in a kingdom on the brink of war.

My Review: The guardsman, Grey, has taken on the identity of farm laborer by the name of Hawk. When his ruse is discovered by accident, his new friend, Tycho is used against him. Back at IronRose, Rhen tortures Grey to find out what he knows about the heir, but Grey won’t tell him. Lia Mara, Karis Luran’s daughter has traveled to see if she can’t make peace for her people with Rhen but he takes her hostage. When Grey uses his magic to save himself and his friends, he must team up with Lia Mara to win a kingdom and a throne. But can he and Rhen bury the past or will they be doomed to repeat tragedy?

LOVED, LOVED! The fairytale deepens with Grey’s side of the story. I wasn’t sure about Lia Mara at first, but she won me over quick. I look forward to seeing how they break the next curse in the next book of the series, The Cursebreakers.

Posted in blogs, MG & YA, Reading, traditional, YA

Book Talk 6/12/2020 Sarah J. Maas’s Crown of Midnight Traci Kenworth


Book Talk 6/12/2020: Sarah J. Maas’s Crown of Midnight

Traci Kenworth

Crown of Midnight by Sarah J. Maas A Throne of Glass Novel Bloomsbury August 2013.

Amazon’s blurb: She is the greatest assassin her world has ever known.
But where will her conscience, and her heart, lead her?

After a year of hard labor in the Salt Mines of Endovier, eighteen-year-old assassin Celaena Sardothien has won the king’s contest to become the new royal assassin. Yet Celaena is far from loyal to the crown – a secret she hides from even her most intimate confidantes.Keeping up the deadly charade-while pretending to do the king’s bidding-will test her in frightening new ways, especially when she’s given a task that could jeopardize everything she’s come to care for. And there are far more dangerous forces gathering on the horizon — forces that threaten to destroy her entire world, and will surely force Celaena to make a choice. Where do the assassin’s loyalties lie, and who is she willing to fight for?

My review: Celaena is now the King’s Champion. As his assassin, she is sent out to take care of contracts on his enemies but little does he know that she is secretly giving them a choice of freedom or death. She hides this from all until Nehemia wonders how she can be friends with someone so brutal and cunning. Celaena admits what she’s doing. Nehemia asks her to join with her and the Ellywe people, to save them. When Celaena doesn’t, she calls her a coward. A short while later, Nehemia is found murdered. When she discovers Chaol knew about the threat and the king’s intentions to interrogate Nehemia, it breaks her. Slowly, she begins bringing the pieces together of what happened and realized things are more complicated then she knew. Will she ever be able to escape her past or the monster within?

LOVED, LOVED, LOVED! Celaena and Chaol or Celaena and Dorian both make compelling couples. Not sure which way to go there. This is about the destruction inside her and how she is pushed to the limits of herself to discover the truth and avenge a murder. The end will floor you.

Looking for computer software? Windows?

Mac?

Pc, Windows?

PC, Mac?

Posted in blogs, Craft, fantasy, horror, http://rebekahlpurdy.wordpress.com, Indie, MG & YA, Reading, Rebekah L. Purdy, traditional, YA

Book Talk 5/29/2020: What I’m Reading in YA Traci Kenworth


Image by Jill Wellington from Pixabay

I’m reading A Heart so Fierce and Broken by Brigid Kemmerer, Crown of Midnight by Sarah J. Maas, Where There Be Humans by Rebekah L. Purdy, A36 by Teri Polen, Through the Nethergate by Robbie Cheadle, The Girl from the Well by Rin Chupeco, Sightwitch by Susan Dennard, The Book of Dust by Philip Pullman, and How to Write a Children’s Book by Children’s Literature Society.

Want some fun summer games? How about volleyball? Badminton?

Pool table?

Cricket? Horseshoes?

Need some poolside chairs?

Posted in blogs, MG & YA, Reading, traditional, YA

Book Talk 3/27/2020: Roll-Over in What I’m Reading for YA Traci Kenworth


Image by Kohji Asakawa from Pixabay

Book Talk 3/27/2020: Roll-Over into What I’m Reading for YA

Traci Kenworth

I’m reading Wicked Deep by Shea Ernshaw, Saving Grace by Tessa Gratton, Bloodwitch by Susan Dennard, Sightwitch by Susan Dennard, Court of Assassins by Sarah J. Maas, Dark Alley by Mike Anka, Down Among the Sticks and the Bones by Seanan McGuire, Nameless Queen Rebecca Mclaughlin, The Book of Dust by Philip Pullman,  and The Girl from the Well by Rin Chupeco.

Spending your work days at home? How about some new office furniture to help you with your days? Desk one. Desk two. Desk three.

PCs one, two, three.

Laptops one, two, three.

Office chairs one, two, three

Printers one, two, three.

Software one, two, three.

Lighting one, two, three.

Personal fans one, two, three.

Mouse pads one, two.

Mice one, two.

Keyboards one, two.

Corkboard one, two.

Desk notes one, two.

Pens one, two.

Kindle.

Office decorations one, two.

New curtains one.

Coffee cup, just because.

Tea more your thing?

Kleenex.

Lotion.

Tacks.

Candy.

Posted in blogs, Craft, fantasy, horror, Links, Links, MG & YA, Reading, Short stories, traditional, writers, Writing and Poetry

Five Links 3/27/2020 Traci Kenworth


Image by JacekBen from Pixabay

Five Links 3/27/2020

Traci Kenworth

Writing:

1. https://writershelpingwriters.net/2020/03/conflict-thesaurus-bad-weather/ “Conflict is very often the magic sauce for generating tension and turning a ho-hum story into one that rivets readers. As such, every scene should contain a struggle of some kind. Maybe it’s an internal tug-of-war having to do with difficult decisions, morals, or temptations. Or it possibly could come from an external source—other characters, unfortunate circumstances, or the force of nature itself.

It’s our hope that this thesaurus will help you come up with meaningful and fitting conflict options for your stories. Think about what your character wants and how best to block them, then choose a source of conflict that will ramp up the tension in each scene.

Conflict: Bad Weather”

2. https://megdowell.com/2020/03/20/10-signs-writing-success-is-actually-closer-than-you-think/

3. https://nailyournovel.wordpress.com/2020/03/24/how-to-plan-a-novel-ep-6-free-podcast-for-writers/

4. https://jamigold.com/2020/03/writing-craft-basics-how-to-format-dialogue/ “If your brain is any amount of scattered like mine, now might be a good time to cover some of the basics of our writing craft. So let’s tackle a subject I haven’t dug into here before: dialogue formatting and a few do’s and don’ts.

I originally started this post intending to dig deeper into a dialogue point-of-view question a reader asked, but the introduction of these formatting basics took up the whole post. Oops! So rather than shortchanging either topic, I’ll cover the basics today and we’ll come back to the more advanced stuff on Thursday. *smile*

Most of us who want to write also love reading, so we might think we already know everything about dialogue formatting, but sometimes a tricky situation can catch us by surprise. So let’s make sure we know all there is to know about dialogue formatting.”

5.  https://rubyslipperedsisterhood.com/brainstorming-by-yourself/ “All across the nation, people are staying home, socially distancing, and generally isolating themselves. Which means, getting together with your critique partners has become a national no-no, unless you’re FaceTiming or using one of those conferencing aps like Zoom.

So what’s a writer to do when you’re staring a new book, and that writer’s retreat that you scheduled where you were going to plot it out with friends has been postponed indefinitely? Short answer: you gotta suck it up and figure it out on your own.

Here’s something I do whenever I get stuck, or I’m just starting a book, and my critique partners and brainstorming posse is unavailable.

Step One: I get a piece of paper and at the top I write the character’s name. And right under that I write down his/her major external goal or problem.

Step Two: For ten minutes I write down stuff that could happen that would make it harder to achieve that goal, or which would make the goal more important. I write down everything including dumb ideas, cliches, and stuff that’s just silly. When the timer goes off, I usually have a list of at least 20 things that could happen, and usually the last few are kind of interesting.

Step Three:  I get a second piece of paper, write down the character’s name and his/her goal at the top.  And then instead of thinking about things that would make the goal more important or harder, I think about all the things that could happen that would make the character’s goal more important/problematic for the community in which the character operates.  In my case that’s always a small town, but for a police procedure it could be the local government or police force.

Step Four:  I get a third piece of paper, write down the character’s name and his/her goal at the top.  And then I list out all the things that might happen that would make achieving the goal or solving the problem a life or death proposition.  This one is harder than the rest because of the kind of books I write.  But I always find ideas when I do this.

When you’re finished with this exercise you will have more ideas on how to “raise the stakes” in your story, and add conflict, which is what people want to read.”

Research & Fun Bits:

1. https://franceandvincent.com/2020/03/20/found-mounds-the-call-of-albion/ “‘…Maybe it is because it is our third visit or maybe it is because there are three of us, or maybe we had to work out the St Andrew thing before we were allowed to ascend, who knows?

Whatever the reasons, we re-convene on top of the man-made-conical-mound which hides behind the Church of St Nicholas, High Bradfield and Wen has an interesting take on proceedings.

“If St Andrew of Scotland is Andrew the Disciple of Christ then he may have come over here with Joseph of Arimathea.”

2. https://legendsofwindemere.com/2020/03/20/types-of-spying-in-war-of-nytefall/ “Now, this may be a better topic for War of Nytefall: Ravenous, but I felt like I couldn’t risk forgetting it.  Spying and gathering intelligence is still very important in Eradication, especially when you see one of the big moves that Leo Kandrel makes.  In fact, the Dawn Fangs and their enemies have come to see that gathering information is more important than battles.  This is where the real struggle comes from since many events come down to who knows what and who learns of things first.  The side that pinpoints the location of the Fist of Durag could very well turn the tide of the slow-moving war.

Now, I’ve noticed about 6 types of spying that goes on in War of Nytefall.  It’s actually 3 to each side.  There is a 7th that I can’t talk about though because of spoilers.  Let’s leave that one alone and dive right into the methods.”

3. https://jenanita01.com/2020/03/20/smorgasbord-cafe-and-bookstore-new-book-on-the-shelves-shortstory-horses-satin-and-cinders-by-jan-sikes/ “A wild black stallion has cautiously watched a beautiful white mare, from the safety of the forest for many years. He longs to be with her, and ventures close to the barn nightly to communicate with her. They share their deepest desires and secrets. Now it is winter, and the rest of the wild herd has moved on, but the stallion stays. He cannot stand the thought of being so far away from her. The scent of sweet alfalfa hay and the enticing lure of the white mare is too much for him. He must find a way to be with her. But will it be worth the risk? Satin and Cinders is a story of courage and determination.”

4. https://scvincent.com/2020/03/21/dignity-and-memories/We were supposed to be in Scotland this week, revisiting a magical place. However, that cannot happen at the moment. As things are rather up in the air, I thought I’d revisit a past trip this week and share a bit of history from a past adventure… and a Yorkshire parish church with an awful lot of history:”

5. https://marciamearawrites.com/2020/03/23/character-archetypes-the-trickster/ “If you’ve been following my reblogs of C. S. Boyack’s series on archetypes, you’ll really enjoy his Story Empire post today on Tricksters. What are they and how can writers use them to add surprising elements to their stories? Just head on over and check it out. You’ll be glad you did! Oh, and please don’t forget to share so others can learn more about archetypes, too. Thanks, and thanks to Craig for such an interesting and helpful post. 🙂

Some Things More Serious:

1. https://www.booksandsuch.com/blog/what-does-this-pandemic-mean-for-writers/ “his is the question I’m getting over and over again from my authors. COVID-19 has changed everything. How is this going to affect us? What’s going to happen to publishing?

The short answer is: Nobody knows. But there are a few truths we can point to.

First, people are going to continue to read. If you’re a writer, keep doing what you do, because we need you.

Second, publishing has already survived pandemics, recessions, the Great Depression, two world wars, the advent of television, the growth of the Internet, and the proliferation of ways to entertain ourselves. Publishing has changed with the times and will continue to do so. My best guess is that books will still be published and people will continue to read them.

In the short term, there may be fallout. Some independent bookstores, which have thankfully been doing well lately, might not survive. That would be a big loss. (You can help by supporting your local indie right now!)”

2. https://conniejjasperson.com/2020/03/23/writing-through-the-perilous-times-amwriting/ “We live in difficult times. You might be temporarily unemployed unless your work is the sort where you can telecommute. My husband falls into the “work from home” category. My brother does not. Like many others, he is mostly unemployed once again.

If you live in Washington State, you have some help available. They’re small, but better than nothing. Our governor immediately put our fallback resources in place, trying to help our struggling workers and our healthcare system.”

3. https://chelseaannowens.com/2020/03/23/11100/ ““Every persons’ definition of happy may hold a different meaning. I feel it’s important that you recognize what that meaning is for you and once you have defined it, understand that it is up to you to walk toward it.

“It’s so very easy to blame those around us or circumstances we find ourselves in for our happiness. What we do not always realize is that we have control of nothing but our inner voice and a choice. A choice to make our lives more amazing than we thought possible.

“Your happiness depends on you, and while it may not always be clear or it may seem like a dark path to walk, when we realize the light comes from within, the search for it elsewhere is no longer required.”

4. https://whenangelsfly.net/2020/03/23/6-ways-to-help-anxious-children-during-coronavirus-behaviour101/Do you have an anxious child right now? Will they benefit from direct strategies to combat this feeling or will a subtle approach work better? This article provides both.

via 6 Ways to Help Anxious Children during Coronavirus — Behaviour101

5. https://megdowell.com/2020/03/23/when-you-learn-writing-gets-lonely-the-blank-page/ “The Blank Page is a new weekly series on Novelty Revisions dedicated to any writer who is just beginning their journey or starting again after a long pause. Check back every Monday for more tips and inspiration.

Writing — and being a writer — is as fulfilling and worthwhile as it often sounds. There are downsides to every hobby and profession. Writing is also exhausting, sometimes overwhelming and frustrating. But that just makes the entire experience worth the occasional struggle.

Something that isn’t talked about enough is writing and its relation to socialization — mainly that you don’t always understand how lonely writing can be until you experience it firsthand.

It must be discouraging to finally dive into the hobby that could one day become your dream job, only to realize how isolating and lonely it can feel. Especially on days writing is more of a struggle and you wish you had someone to talk with about your frustrations.”

Teaser Fiction & Poetry:

1. https://janedougherty.wordpress.com/2020/03/20/there-are-mowers-mowing/

2. https://kittysverses.wordpress.com/2020/03/21/choice-2/

3. https://www.djranch.org/2020/03/20/flash-fiction-the-storm-to-pass/

4. https://smorgasbordinvitation.wordpress.com/2020/03/21/smorgasbord-short-stories-whats-in-a-name-whats-in-a-name-vanessa-in-a-dilemma-by-sally-cronin/

5. https://susansplace.blog/2020/03/23/thank-you-for-all-that-you-do/

Book Reviews, Cover Reveals, & Author Interviews:

1. https://www.thisishorror.co.uk/news-round-up-week-ending-20-march-2020/

2. https://pitchwars.org/happy-book-birthday-to-the-derby-daredevils-kenzie-kickstarts-a-team-by-mentor-kit-rosewater/ “A highly illustrated middle-grade series that celebrates new friendships, first crushes, and getting out of your comfort zone

Ever since they can remember, fifth-graders Kenzie (aka Kenzilla) and Shelly (aka Bomb Shell) have dreamed of becoming roller derby superstars. When Austin’s city league introduces a brand-new junior league, the dynamic duo celebrates! But they’ll need to try out as a five-person team. Kenzie and Shelly have just one week to convince three other girls that roller derby is the coolest thing on wheels. But Kenzie starts to have second thoughts when Shelly starts acting like everyone’s best friend . . . Isn’t she supposed to be Kenzie’s best friend? And things get really awkward when Shelly recruits Kenzie’s neighbor (and secret crush!) for the team. With lots of humor and an authentic middle-grade voice, book one of this illustrated series follows Kenzie, Shelly, and the rest of the Derby Daredevils as they learn how to fall—and get back up again.”

3. https://mariacatalinaegan.com/2020/03/24/gods-and-dragons-the-dragon-of-time-book-1-by-aaron-dennis-genre-epic-fantasy/ “Gods, Dragons, a mercenary with a blade and no memory of his past…. The world of Tiamhaal is alight in war. Men ruled by kings slay their opposition in the name of their God, but there are others who claim the Gods are little more than scorned Dragons of ages past. Scar has come to find the truth, but is the truth an absolute certainty, or is it just the skewed memory of a forgotten kingdom?”

4.

5.

In need of some post-its?

What about printer paper? Pens?

What about an inspirational book to keep you company during your down time?

Or a good YA title?

Posted in blogs, Christian, Craft, fantasy, Historicals, horror, Indie, MG & YA, Mysteries/Thrillers/Suspense, Reading, Rebekah L. Purdy, Romance, Short stories, traditional, writers, Writing and Poetry, YA

Writerly Things 3/16/2020: YA Writing Tips Traci Kenworth


Image by Jill Wellington from Pixabay

Writerly Things 3/16/2020: YA Writing Tips

Traci Kenworth

Looking for some tips for YA writing? The following instances may help you especially when you’re stuck or facing that blank page and unsure of what to write about.

Prompts.

These seem to help YA writing a lot. In truth, ANY writing. Prompts give us something to consider. Something to figure out. More to envision. They give us a lead down another road. Or into a cave. High diving from an airplane. Do something uncomfortable. Unusual. Your character picks up the weapon while leaning over a body is so cliché. But what if the body fell on them or was discovered in their luggage?

Poetry.

Practice some poetry. It’ll do wonders for your work. It’s helped me with my visuals. It’s given me stronger words to use and helped me not to settle for the ordinary. Within reason, of course. You don’t want to use a fancy word when a simple one will add better clarity. But form some charm and a twist, a more precise phrase could make the sentence all that more potent.

Writing as Often as You Can.

Nope. You don’t have to do it every day. I take the weekends off. It avoids burnout. Instead, if you just practice as regularly as you can, it’ll help. Even if it’s only ten-to-fifteen minutes. Whatever time you can manage and keep at it will get you to your goals eventually. Are you writing a YA novel? Depending on the genre, they can be 25-80k with fantasy running a bit longer but not much. Novellas run closer to the 25k mark though.

You can always check with whatever agent you query, per their recommendations for that level. Even Nathan Bransford was more along the lines of 35k-65k.

P.O.V.

POV stands for point-of-view or whose viewpoint the story’s in. Is it first person-the “I” reference? Or second-the “you” reference. Or the usual, third or “he/she” view. Any of these should be okay but the you one is the hardest, be forewarn. First is what I learned to write in. I then went to third and occasionally find my way back to first from time to time. I like both viewpoints. The first and the third can grow tiresome if all you use are “I, I, I,” or “he/she” continuously. Mix it up. Get in there and learn to switch your sentences about.

Twist them, tangle them, break them apart. Learn the rules then learn how to break them. If you SHOULD break them. Hint: it’s all right from time to time if it better the point you’re trying to get across. Keeps inside the character’s head, so to speak.

Write the Blurb First.

If you don’t know what the blurb is, it’s the summary on the back of a book that hooks the reader. You may find them on short stories, magazine articles, etc. They’re meant to pull the reader in. Most readers know whether they want to read the book by the first paragraph or not. I go by the blurb more than the cover, though a good cover helps in the purchase.

Writing the blurb first helps give you a guideline of what your book is about. Sure, there will be changes along the way but it’s easy to bring the blurb up to date. Second, when you get lost along the way, it will guide you back to where you want to go.

So, there you have it! A few tips for YA writing. Hope it helps! Have a great week, take care, and God bless!

How about some more entertainment? For laughs: Monty Python movies: one, two, three.

For suspense: one, two.

For the kids: one, two.

For YA: one, two.

For romance: one, two.

For horror: one, two.

For Christian: one, two.

Music: one.

TV: one.