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Wednesday, May 18, 2022

Motivation. Why? Why? Why?

Many reasons exist in life for why we do what we do. In novels, our characters need one too. That’s where the M in GMC comes in. In her book, GMC: Goal, Motivation and Conflict, Debra Dixon writes, “Motivation is what drives  your character to obtain or achieve his goal.” 

Debra Dixon sets out a formula that authors can use when concocting the GMC. The character wants a goal because he is motivated. 

In last month’s post on Goal, I used the basic example of having to go to the store to get milk. Let’s suppose that our character has to get milk because her child needs it so he can have a bowl of cereal because that is the only meal she can afford to feed him. So to put the example into the formula: The mother wants to get to the store to buy milk because that is her child’s only meal. 

That motivation pulls at your heartstrings, which is another tool motivation plays in writing. Motivation helps the reader empathize with our characters as they strive to reach their goal.

Strong motivation can be used to create any tale. That isn’t the only task that strong motivation can accomplish. Strong motivation creates the emotion of the story and our characters. In our above example, we feel for the mother who has to get to the store to get that milk. She wants to feed her child his only meal of the day. We can empathize with the mother who wants to feed her child. The mother who is most likely struggling to provide for her child, a mother who most likely feels like she is a failure. 

As a reader, we are rooting for her. We feel her heartache. That makes a good story. Even if this example doesn’t make for a novel-length story. 

Motivation is the substance that glues the story’s character’s goals and conflict. Next month, the focus will settle on the C of our GMC—Conflict.  


Monday, April 18, 2022

Dreams Are Just Goals With Deadlines

In the development of characters, GMC plays an important part in their creation. GMC stands for Goal, Motivation, Conflict. Every character, plot, and a story needs and requires GMC. This post will focus on the first letter—Goal.

In Goal, Motivation and Conflict by Debra Dixon, she writes, “A goal is a desired result, a purpose or an objective. A goal is the prize or reward your character wants to obtain or achieve.” We all can relate to those statements. We have goals in life, some grand and others are small. Whether it’s to get this month’s rent or get to the store to buy milk. We all have a desired result, purpose, or objective. In our stories, the Goal must be something we are desperate to have. Also, a goal must be acted upon. Our characters must pursue their goal through action. Without action, a goal can never be accomplished. 

Let’s say our objective is to buy milk. We will act by getting dressed, traveling to the store, and buying the milk. Once we walk out of the store with the milk, our goal has been achieved. This example isn’t a goal worthy of a novel but a simplified example of a goal.

 I highly recommend that if Debra Dixon’s book, Goal, Motivation and Conflict isn’t on your bookshelf then get your copy now. 

Next month, I’ll talk about the M—Motivation. 

Sunday, March 27, 2022

New Release: Dragon Mirror by Janice Seagraves


 I have a new release this month, Dragon Mirror

 https://www.amazon.com/dp/B09TL34PX7/

Blurb: Kidnapped and impregnated, Crystal Wedgewood will do anything to get back to her husband. Even fight a king dragon with her bare hands.

 It's a short only six chapters and only .99 cents. 

A lot of things happen in only six chapters and it's the first book in my dragon Magick series. 


Sunday, February 27, 2022

2022 Goals by Janice Seagraves

 

Goals.

I have them.

I don't make resolutions because they are too pie in the sky-ish, too far away to reach, so I don't make them.

I have my rights back to my Chronicles of Arcon series.

I've been publishing my series and renumbering them.

My mini series that starts off the series is number: 1, 2, and 3.


 

Alien Desire is now number Four.


 

Alien Heart is now number Five.


 

And my recent book Alien Enslaved is number Six.


 

Alien Collision is number seven and will be published sometime this year.


 


Friday, February 18, 2022

Hobbies...We Don't Need No Stinkin' Hobbies


The number of hobbies in the world is equal to the number of stars. Though, that may be hyperbole. You get my point. During the pandemic, two subjects dominated the news—the Covid (naturally) and hobbies. People were making sourdough, exercising, knitting or painting, or some other activity that I can't think of at this moment. 



Not me. 


I didn’t acquire a new one. First, I’m an author of historical romance so writing is my career. I’ve always read, which led to the author part of my life. I don’t cook or bake. My hands aren’t made for knitting anymore (too much typing among other factors) and painting—no, I don’t want to invest in art supplies besides, I live in New York City. I don’t have the space. 


But I must admit that I have been thinking of acquiring a new one. Something to help me reduce my anxiety, stress and just to escape boredom. Then it dawned on me. When I have free time, I don’t want to do anything. I want to sit down or lie down and let my mind stop working. 


We don’t need to be busy every minute of the day. We can relax, be bored and do nothing. 

That sounds like a great idea, doesn’t it? Lives have enough happening to fill the twenty-four hours of the day. Family, friends, pets, work, home, self-care. So, I say your new hobby has to be doing nothing. You deserve it. 

Thursday, January 27, 2022

Book Trailer for my new Release by Janice Seagraves


Book Trailer for Alien Enslaved Book Six in the Chronicles of Arcon.

I made it on https://www.canva.com/ a free website. I linked pages to create this book trailer using my book images and the free images on the canva. 

Super easy to use.

After his planet’s destruction, the Arcon slave, Chase Starstrider, seeks death in every gladiator match. He’s tempted by his master’s gift of the curvaceous Earthling whose touch awakens him like no other, but the Intergalactic Gladiator Starship is no safe place for a mate. Kasandra Lee Sinclair, and known as Kaz to her friends, wouldn’t mind rocking the hunky Arcon’s world for a way home to Earth, but there are dangers on board the spaceship and, in the arena, even for a sex slave like her.

 

For the Kindle: https://www.amazon.com/dp/B09LKS3V31/

For the Nook: https://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/alien-enslaved-janice-seagraves/1140548269

Smashwords: https://www.smashwords.com/books/view/1116279

Tuesday, January 18, 2022

New Year, New You?

 It’s resolution time. 

Exercise three times a week. 

Dry January. 

Read more. 

The options are endless. 

I never like resolutions. The pressure of the new year to makeover your life and lifestyle seemed a recipe to fail. Writing down all the things you’ve failed to do in your life the other 365 days of the last year can certainly knock down the level of your self-esteem. Then as the resolutions fall to the wayside, you feel even worse about yourself. 


I certainly don’t want to feel that way. We have enough hard times in life. So, I deal with the new year and all those bombarding messages of New Year, New You by doing nothing. Sure, I want to exercise more and learn something new and many other things but I don’t try to change my whole life because I know that it won’t happen. 


So what to do then?


Well, as the year unfolds slowly incorporate those new choices in your life. If you have fifteen minutes or an hour, go take that walk for exercise, read two pages of that book you promised to get to. Then if you don’t get to it the next day, that’s fine but maybe the next day, you do. Just take a step. You only need to take the first one then, the next. Thinking about changing your life is too hard but changing an hour of one day is easier to fit those changes into your life.


Remember, January 1 is just another day. So, if you don’t get to it today, there is tomorrow. You’ll get there.  

Saturday, December 18, 2021

Once More Then Again



This past Sunday, the new series And Just Like That premiered. I haven’t seen it though, I’m sure at some point I will. Yet, I’m not interested in it at this time. The press and social media have been buzzing about this show (negative and positive buzz) as well as reboots. Whether it’s Dexter New Blood, West Side Story, or Ghostbusters, it seems the opinion is that there are no more fresh ideas. If true or not, that’s not the purpose of this post. 

When the first teasers of the return of Carrie Bradshaw and her crew, I had dual feelings so let’s use And Just Like That as an example. I was a fan of Sex and The City, tuning in to HBO every Sunday. And I’m not reviewing the new series but the reasons why reboots do not always work. Sex and The City captured another time in the world when we were different people in different places in our lives. Watching the reboots of our past favorite shows or movies stir the nostalgia in us as well as the warring, slightly cynical thought Can’t they think up something new?  


These shows, movies, or songs remind us of our past, and by doing so, we —most likely compare— our lives now to the time before the present moment and all it's good and bad. But the view behind us isn’t clear. By looking back, we forget the bad times or realize the lessons we learned from those experiences. The happy times are brighter and warmer in our memories, a time we wish to relive and certainly, never forget. The distance of time has softened the edges of memory while we deal with the sharp edges of the present. 


I think we should look back and give a warm smile to the past, just don’t live in it since today will be tomorrow very soon so never miss out on life. 


Do you have a movie, TV show, song, or book that stirs your nostalgia?   

Saturday, November 27, 2021

New Release: Alien Enslaved by Janice Seagraves

 I have a new release just in time for Christmas. It's already set up to buy now as a prerelease.

I wrote this book because one of my critique partners said she loved sci-fi because she liked to see what other worlds and societies are like. And this story just rushed into my mind. 

I did decide Chased needed a friend, an usual friend, and Buster the talking kangaroo leaped onto the scene. 

And the heroine, Kaz, became a Texan because my husband is a Texan.

https://www.amazon.com/dp/B09LKS3V31/


Blurb: After his planet's destruction, the Arcon slave, Chase Starstrider, seeks death in every gladiator match. He's tempted by his master’s gift of the curvaceous Earthling whose touch awakens him like no other, but the Intergalactic Gladiator Starship is no safe place for a mate.
Kasandra Lee Sinclair, and known as Kaz to her friends, wouldn’t mind rocking the hunky Arcon’s world for a way home to Earth, but there are dangers onboard the spaceship and, in the arena, even for a sex slave like her. 

 Excerpt: 

“What are they doing now?” Kazstared at the alloy footboard of the bed and wished she could gaze out a window instead, but there was no opening in the room except for the two doors.

“The pilot has slowed our fall, matched the orbit of the space station and is guiding us in,” Chase said.

Fifteen minutes later came a series of clank sounds. “Did we just dock?”

“Affirmative.” His eyes got a faraway look in them. “They will be coming for me soon.” He stood and headed into the bathroom.

When the shower went on, Kaz climbed out of bed. A rattle made her turn. Metal arms rose out of the headboard, making her gasp. They plucked the pillows and returned through the slot. Next the arms reached to the footboard, taking out a length of both sheet and blanket, and pulled the bedding through a slot in the headboard, which cut the sheet and blanket to fit the bed. The arms tucked the edges around the mattress. A flap opened in the wall above the headboard and two fluffy pillows dropped on the head of the bed.

No need for a maid service here.

She found a brush on the dresser to tidy her hair and sat on a small stool, waiting for Chase to finish with his morning routine.

He walked out dressed in another pair of tight black pants and what appeared to be karate shoes but wore no socks or shirt. The top part of his hair had been brushed back and tied into a topknot, while the rest of his long locks cascaded down his back.

So that’s what he uses the ponytail holder for.

Once again Kaz found herself counting his eight-pack, before she stood and hurried into the bathroom. “My turn.”

When she finished her shower and changed into a new gown that the wall obligingly provided, she exited the bathroom to find Chase doing sit-ups.

She stepped around him, heading for the bed. “Aren’t you going to tire yourself out too much before the match?”

“I’m not doing that many.” He grunted. “I’m warming my muscles. If I’m stiff, I can’t fight well.” He stood to stretch toward the ceiling then bent forward, touching his toes. Next, he tipped forward onto his hands, doing a handstand, and then did vertical push-ups.

I could sit still for this. As she sat on the bed, Chase continued his calisthenics. His muscles bunched with the strain, turning lavender, each muscle group standing out from the rest. His silky, long hair swayed with every movement. The green at the end added an exotic element to his physique. When he turned away to stretch at the waist, she decided he had a nice ass, too.

 https://www.amazon.com/dp/B09LKS3V31/

Thursday, November 18, 2021

12 Easy Steps To Intimacy In A R romance Novel

 A tool in the romance author’s box is the 12 Steps to Intimacy. These steps happen between your hero and heroine (I’m using hero and heroine to simply the explanation of each stage) as discovered by Desmond Morris. These stages happen in the natural world and every attraction you had in your life. It happens even without our awareness and each step cannot be missed. 


1. Eye To Body:

Think about the movies. When the sexy heroine or hero first appears, the camera pans from the legs to hips, and up the chest, finally reaching the head. The idiom is beauty is in the eye of the beholder. As the beholder, we are experiencing the first stage (hopefully, so is the other character)—the physical attraction stage, or as I call it the damn, he’s hot step.


2. Eye to Eye: 

The second step is the first awareness between the hero and heroine. The spark of attraction grows hotter or fizzles. This is wherein a novel or real life, we notice details about his eyes. We might see a glint or feel cold or afraid and all from a glance (think how you feel when you first met the eyes of the person you love or the first time you saw that Charles Mason photo with his crazy eyes). 


3. Voice to Voice:

Or the Now, we’re talking stage. That’s what I call this one. The hero and heroine are physically close, most likely an arm’s length away so that they can carry on a conversation. Screaming across a room isn’t very romantic. The dialogue—what is said, how it’s spoken, and the sound of the voice. These details reinforce the intimacy. Think about after you’ve talked with someone, you feel as if you know them better. It happens at this stage. 


4.  Hand to Hand:

Have you sat at a bar, talking with a guy and you place your hand atop of his? The first physical touch and the attraction can build and in romance, it’s a must. This step reveals the beginning intimacy between the couple and helps draw them closer, emotionally. Think about that scene in Bridgerton when Daphne and Simon touch hands. You felt the attraction and intimacy in that simple act because you unconsciously understand its meaning. 


5. Arm to Shoulder: 

This step has more unconscious risk than the others. This touch places hands near areas of danger on your body—neck, and head. With this stage, a person could be drawn in for a hug or the hand placed on the back. It’s a level of intimacy not enjoyed by everyone in your life. Imagine if your boss placed his hand on your shoulder. You’d more likely feel uncomfortable maybe violate, having your space invaded and you may even think why are you touching me? 


6. Arm to Waist: 

This act of intimacy happens between people very close to each other. In a novel, desire is boiling, and the bond has strengthened. All who witness this physical act know the meaning of such a touch. Imagine if you spotted your partner with his hand on a woman’s waist. 


7. Mouth to Mouth:

There is nothing like a kiss. Scientists have stated that the chemicals of the saliva exchanged during a kiss have a way of letting our bodies know if the person is a good mate—biologically, at least. A bad kiss can ruin a good start to a developing relationship. We don’t go around kissing people, especially after Covid. Even kisses on the cheek have an attachment. 


8. Hand to Head:

Unconsciously, this is the most physically dangerous touch, which remains from our less evolved days. We are at risk when someone touches our heads. With this step, you must have an intimacy with the other person, knowing that no harm comes from that person. 


9. Hand to Body: 

    This stage can be half a love scene since this is a truly intimate act and the beginning before our hero and heroine enter the bedroom. Here, the body is explored in an amorous way. With the hand-to-body step, intimacy is almost at its apex and perhaps, love has bloomed even if unaware of it. If the next step is to happen, then this is where the couple has to decide to go forward together and toward the next one.


10. Mouth to Breast:

This stage is part of a half love scene as well as the beginning of a love scene. This stage is another actual physical intimate act. Emotions are involved.


11. Hand to Genitals:

   Another step in the half love scene or the middle of a love scene. Genitals are private, our own personal place that is not revealed easily. Think about how awkward GYN appointments are. This is an extremely intimate act, which will only build, at least in romance novels. 


12. Genitals to Genitals:

     S-E-X. The final step of these stages and the end of a love scene. There is trust, desire, and intimacy between the couple. 


But that doesn’t mean the book is over. These twelve stages will reinforce the growing romance between your couple. Best of all, you can mix up these stages. You do not have to countdown each one. If you do put—let’s say—hand to hand before voice to voice, just remember how your character would react in that situation. If she doesn’t like to be touched, then she’s going to pull her hand free. 


Or what if your hero and heroine have sex in the opening scene. That is a purely physical act but intimacy between the two is lacking so this couple will have to build intimacy with these steps. 


So, play with these stages and have fun. Then write them again. 

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