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Sunday, July 17, 2011

Answers, anyone?


I'm bogged down with edits for a new book, plus trying to spread the word about Quest for Magic which is coming out August 9th. Not so far away that I should put off pubbing it, but I'd so much rather just write. Hate edits, hate publicity, really just want to WRITE! Of course I know that's impossible, but a girl's gotta vent sometime!

I'm going to ask some questions so please answer me, somebody. These are things I've wondered about lately.

For writers:
1. What to you do when a character starts clamoring for his own book, telling you to stop the one you're on and get to writing about HIM? Do you give in? Make notes and tells him to behave for a while, ignore that loud voice in your head?
2. What do you do when you're half-way through a book and get completely stuck in the dreaded, sagging middle?
3. What do you do when a little voice tells you you've just written a pile of junk?

For readers:
1. What do you do when an author makes a goof that drives you crazy?
2. What do you do when you find a wrong date in a historical, or a grammatical error that makes you grit your teeth?
3. What do you do when you find out the blurb on the back of the book that made you buy it doesn't really describe the book at all?

And now a fun one for all. What do you do when you've had the same blasted tune running round and round in your head and you can't change the record playing up there?

These are some of the things I've been wondering about lately, and I thought it might be fun to ask.

Now for an excerpt from Quest for Magic. Lee Pearson is my co-author on this one. The first time I've co-authored and it was fun and rewarding.

"He drove home quickly, not wanting the evening to end, but hoping he could kiss her good night again. They said little on the way to the flats. When he took her to her door, he stood looking at her a moment, not able to believe his luck in having her with him, her expressive eyes clearly expecting his kiss.
He took her in his arms, loving the way she moved into them, at first hesitantly, and then with grace.
“I’ll need more than just one goodnight kiss, Hayley.”
Her eyes grew even larger, as she turned her face up to his. Her eyes closed as he kissed her with restrained passion. As her arms locked around his neck he deepened the kiss. He’d promised himself to stay in check no matter how she inflamed him but then she moved her body against his with a low sigh. He’d never known a woman’s body could fit quite so well. Every curve seemed fashioned to meld with his masculine angles. He doubted if a sheet of paper could slip between them without going up in flames.
With a groan he backed her into the shadows against the porch wall and ground his rampant penis into her softness. She gasped, but moved her hips again in the most feminine of welcomes, and Jono forgot all about his decision not to rush her. He kissed her breasts through her thin blouse, moving from one to the other and sucking each nipple in a wild assault. His control, always precarious when around her, almost vanished. Her uninhibited response, even though every move proclaimed her an innocent, sent him over the edge he’d resolved not to cross with her so soon.
But she’d learned so quickly. She was seducing him every bit as much as he was seducing her.
He reached under her skirt and let his hands caress her slim hips, trying desperately to keep control. Her silken panties were thin and he could feel the soft curls under them. He started to drag at the last garment hindering his access to paradise and then he realized where they were. Practically in public, for Merlin’s sake, even though no one had yet walked down the street. He couldn’t insult her in this crude manner.
She clutched him and moaned when he started to pull away.
He gave her one deep kiss and then loosened her arms around his neck.
“It’s too public out here. Will you come into my flat with me, Hayley?"

13 comments:

Cara Marsi said...

HI, Jean. What a hot excerpt!

I'll try to answer some of your questions. I've never had a character in one book cry out to be in another book. Wish I'd had. When I have a saggy middle (which happens a lot), I'll stop writing that book and write a short story. And I keep thinking about the book until I figure out a way to shore up the middle.

I stopped writing a paranormal once because it truly was a pile of junk. I don't know if I'll ever go back to it. There were so many problems.

As a reader, there are goofs I'll overlook. I find typos in most books. If I really like the book, I'll forgive most goofs. I recently read a historical that I liked very much. It was set in Scotland. The heroine was American, the author is American and the publisher is an American publisher. However, the American heroine referred to her husband's sweater by the English term, jumper. That drove me crazy. An American would not say jumper. At least I don't think so. As much as I liked that book, that goof ruined it for me.

jean hart stewart said...

Very interesting, Marsi. The poor author was just trying to be authentic and goofed. I love your approach to the saggy middle. Try paranormal again, they're fun. You can get all tied up in who has which magical ability, though. Jean

Katalina Leon said...

Jean, I'm so happy this post posted!
When a secondary character start getting pushy about having their own story, I just give in and start a new file just for them. I think it's important to capture that initial burst of creative energy-you can always come back to it later.
Lovely excerpt!
XXOO Kat

Sandy said...

Hi Jean,
The excerpt was well worth the wait for your blog.

I start asking myself what ifs when I hit the sagging center.

Good luck with your upcoming release, Jean.

jean hart stewart said...

Kat,thanks for posting. I agree, you just gotta give the newcomer, upstart that he is, his chance!

jean hart stewart said...

Sandy, that's a good answer. I heard Mary Balogh speak once and she answered the question. "Make it worse." That works with me sometimes. I'll have to try your way too. Jean

Molly Daniels said...

1) I do the 'sketch out a general idea of what he wants' thing and tell him to be patient, ha ha:)

2) Slog my way through or take a break for a few days. Depends on if the muse is demanding I push through.

3) Get a second opinion from a crit partner and see if they have any insights.

4) Depends on the goof. Vocab-wise, too-many-body-parts-wise? See if it happens again in next book, and if it drives my too batty, stop reading their work.

5) Hope they caught their mistake and corrects it later on. I have one of these mistakes in my 1st self-pubbed book, so hope readers forgave me!!

6) Very disappointed, but if I liked the book, big deal. If I didn't, then would be leery of any other books by that author, and would read multiple excerpts before buying others by that author.

7) Go to YouTube and listen to it all the way through:) Then surf around that site a little.

GOOD LUCK!

jean hart stewart said...

Such thoughtful answers from you all. Thanks, Molly....More to consider...Jean

Amber Skyze said...

Sometimes I'll write the other characters story or I should say start it. Normally the current wip will call me back and I'll finish it.
Good Luck Jean!

jean hart stewart said...

Thanks, Amber. Go finish that sucker...demanding characters make fun books to write...Jean

Tina Donahue said...

Wow - great questions. Wish I had some good answers. For myself, I just slog through it all and continue writing. Most of the time it works out. :)

jean hart stewart said...

Don't change your MO, Tina...you're great as it is...Jean

Debra said...

It's funny, I write my stories in puzzle format. I may write the end and the middle first and other key scenes before I write the beginning. When its all done, I sort of piece it together.
I do sometimes write usless 'wanderings' of a character and realize its boring and put it aside. Then agin. I may use it for the next book and develope it a little more. I guess I'm still looking for my style.
Great excerpt, you do have a way with words!

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