Posts Tagged ‘Children’

As a writer of Paranormal Romance, I was looking forward to reading Bone Dressing. Most of the books I review tend to be non-fiction or horror; all that is about to change…

I tend to try to avoid reviewing books from the genre in which I write for fear of accidental plagiarism. There is no need for me to worry, as from what I can gather from reading Brooks’s Bone Dressing; we all write VERY differently.

Brooks main character Syd is a tortured teenage soul due to losing both of her parents, and spends most days in the cemetery where they are buried. It’s one of her favourite places, or as the character says, “her neighbourhood”.

Syd lives with strict but caring foster parents, and Brooks carries the natural angst and feelings that such a situation would create, cleverly onto the page.

Our protagonist, Syd, is first person narrator throughout the story and Brooks does not disappoint with her ability to keep in age perfect character throughout. There are moments of adult speak, but didn’t we all think that we were grown ups at that age???

As the genre category suggests, this is a love story, and Syd finds love in the form of Beau (clever naming). Thank goodness that he does not have sparkly skin, nor does he drink blood.

(One of my novels is a vampire story so I really shouldn’t say that!)

This is a fast-paced book cram-packed full of adventure, fear, joy and lurrrve (on top of the angst-filled teenage stresses). Oh yes, and there is an evil teacher thrown in there too, i’m sure that we’ve all had one of them *daydreams*…

…I was once forced to stand on my desk and chew chewing gum – in an exaggerated fashion – for a whole lesson, with boys looking up my skirt! My only crime was not putting my gum in the bin / trash before I got to my desk! Evil.

Anyway, congratulations to Michelle I. Brooks for a grand job, and for creating a thoroughly fabulous read!

4/5 🙂

Perfect for teenagers!

Today we are pleased to be talking to Jennifer Wylie again about her forthcoming short story releases and her writing life. Jennifer is a regular on Twitter and both friendly and helpful. She is published through Echelon Press.

 

 

It’s been a couple of months since you last stopped by, what have you been up to?

I’ve been a very busy bee! Jump had an amazing release in December, jumping (haha) into the Top 10 Best Seller list on OmniLit on release day. It’s stayed there ever since, and is currently at the #1 spot!

Some very exciting news is I was contracted by my publisher for a short story series. I am one of twelve authors from around the world participating in the dynamic new Electric Shorts division. Written specifically for young readers, the Electric Shorts are high impact stories presented in a venue similar to that of popular television series. Electric Shorts will publish one story/episode each month in eBook. An Electric Shorts season will last six months.

Tell us more about your new stories and how we can get hold of a copy

My first episode [Banished] in the “Tales of Ever” series will debut on March 1, 2011.

Electric Shorts are written for readers between the ages of seven and seventeen with fast-paced and intense storylines. My series, “Tales of Ever,” is a modern adventure fantasy geared toward teens, ages thirteen to seventeen.

Banished

My life was normal. It sucked, but it was normal. At least until I got this new power. I can control fire. It would be cool if it weren’t so dangerous and if I knew how to use it. Pretty much my sucky life took a nosedive once I got it. Yup, everything gone. I suppose I should be thankful some uncle I never heard of took me in. Turns out the whole family isn’t normal and my power is a lot more dangerous than I thought. I thought things couldn’t get any worse. I was wrong. They banished me to Ever.

If I’m lucky, I might survive my first day.

I mentioned I’ve been busy, I also have another short story out in March, Immortal Echoes: The Forgotten Echo. It is a paranormal I’m sure everyone will enjoy!

Sometimes death is only the beginning…

After a bad day Cassy is surprised to find herself shot, an innocent bystander in a drive by shooting. Bleeding to death in an empty parking lot she knows she’s going to die. What she doesn’t expect is the arrival of a strange, yet gorgeous, man who tells her he can keep her from passing on in return for being his forever. Whatever that means…

In desperation she agrees, but after an unusual kiss she is beyond dismayed to discover she has died. To make matters worse, the strange man has disappeared. Her spirit wanders, afraid and alone until she meets another like her and she discovers she not a ghost at all, but something much more.

My new short stories are available in eBook formats at Amazon, Barnes and Noble and OmniLit for 0.99 each. See my webpage for more information http://www.jenniferwylie.ca

I know all of the Mum’s out there will want to know; how do you find the time to write, manage your blog, AND keep a family and home in any kind of order?

That depends how you define order… LOL. I have a lot of energy and run around crazy a lot. Lists are a big thing with me, without them I think I’d lose my mind. I’ve piles of little ones beside my computer. I also try to keep as organized as I can, folders to sort my email, my files. I make up documents to keep track of all my blog dates, who’s on my site, where I am and when etc. Every once and I while I get a bit overwhelmed, sometimes I miss things. But I just do the best that I can!

What is your favourite time of the day to write?

Evenings! I don’t do well with distractions. I will occasionally open up one of my stories and jot some ideas down (so I don’t forget) or sometimes even a short scene or dialogue. Normally I really get going once the kids are in bed. Lucky for me their bedtime is around 7pm!

I recently posted a blog about how we channel negative emotions in our writing, and whether it is possible for an author to write about death and pain without ever experiencing either for themselves; what are your own views on this?

I think it depends on the author really. Some people are very emotional and can tune to these feelings well. Others not so much. Some just wouldn’t be able to convey it even if they had experienced it. Writing is make-believe, when I need to write about my MC losing the love of her life, I imagine what that would be like and write how I feel. Sometimes it takes a while.

Describe your writing environment at home (we’re nosy!)

I’m hidden down in my own little room. I’ve a nice toasty fireplace to keep me sorta warm during these horribly cold Canadian winter days. My writing desk is also my craft station (not that I craft much anymore LOL but all the stuff is still here) I’m surrounded by my candy stash of jelly beans, peanut butter cups and gum balls. For Xmas I actually got a real computer chair, it even has a back massager!

(WOW, I want one Jen! Tee-hee)

What are you hoping to do next?

Hopefully, I can keep up with the busy months ahead. I’ve more shorts to write for my series, and am currently working on edits for my novel to come out in May. I’m heading to the USA for two conferences this summer and I’m really excited about that! Of course there is the never ending marketing too, which I actually really enjoy doing. 🙂

Thank you to Jennifer Wylie for stopping by today, we look forward to speaking to her again very soon!

Thanks so much for having me!!

Good luck with the blog tour Super-Mum!

 

Links to Jen’s amazing tales 🙂

http://www.omnilit.com/product-banished-519511-234.html

http://search.barnesandnoble.com/Banished/Jen-Wylie/e/2940012206961/?itm=1

http://www.omnilit.com/product-theforgottenecho-518338-234.html

http://www.amazon.com/Forgotten-Echo-Immortal-Echoes-ebook/dp/B004P5NQ1G

In the words of the organisers; 

“Writing West Midlands is the Literature Development Agency for the West Midlands.”

“We focus on work to develop opportunities for writers, including supporting young writers and building audiences for writing. We exist to help good writing and literature activities flourish in the West Midlands.”

(Event held at South Birmingham College, Saturday 20th November 2010)

This was the first time that I had attended a Writers’ conference in The Midlands, though it was their third gathering; I have always had to travel further afield as I didn’t realise there was such a vast and enthusiastic pod of writers in my area (what is the name for a group of writers?? Suggestions in the comments box please). I came across the conference details purely by chance whilst reading about funding information on The Arts Council UK website; i’m so glad I did!

The event is organised by and hosted by Writing West Midlands; Jonathon Davidson, Chief Executive and Sara Beadle, Director. The day is extremely well organised and thorough, covering a wide range of topics with each Panel Session. They welcome writers of all kinds as well as publishers, agents, producers (Radio, Film and TV), teachers and literature development workers.

The Panel Session Topics were as diverse as they were informative: Writing for Broadcast, Real Writing Lives, Writing and Reading in the Mental Health Sector, Different Fictions, Understanding Publishing, Creative Writers in Schools, The Rights of Writers, Doing Digital, Writing and Science, Writing in Places, The Future of Theatre Writing, Building Audiences for Poetry, Creative Writing and Higher Education.

The speakers / panel members for each session appeared to be both enthusiastic in promoting the aspiring writer / established writer, and encouraging and forthcoming with help and advice. The question and answer sessions at the end of each panel member introduction (of which I seemed to dominate slightly) were helpful and stimulating. Not wanting to come across shy or self-promoting (ahem), I made sure that I asked any questions which I thought could potentially help others, I hope that this worked!

The keynote address: No Messages, Jim Crace, novelist, was humorous and enlightening. I am ashamed to say that I had never heard of Jim but have now ordered some of his books from Amazon!

Book Titles: Continent, The Gift of Stones, Arcadia, Signals of Distress, Quarantine, Being Dead, The Devil’s Larder, The Pesthouse.

The Closing Address: The Writer’s Smoking Jacket, Graham Joyce, author. This was an informative and concise speech by Graham and opened my eyes to many possibilities and opportunities.

Book Titles: The Devil’s Ladder, Simple Goalkeeping, Do the Creepy Thing, Memoirs of a Master Forger, The Limits of Enchantment (and many, many more!).

In conclusion, I would recommend that you look for future events held by Writing West Midlands and come and connect and socialise with “others in the business of writing”.

http://www.writingwestmidlands.org

In their words;

“The Word Cloud is a free community where writers can read each other’s work, offer comments and get feedback. Our forums allow you to discuss books, scripts and writing with fellow writers, enter regular competitions, and much more.”

I couldn’t have put it better myself!

The site is run by The Writers’ Workshop & York Festival of Writing organiser; Harry Bingham, “The Boss”.  Harry is a busy published author of five fantastic but very different books, his most recent work being “Getting Published” which was published this year by A & C Black (The Writers’ and Artists’ Yearbook).

By Harry Bingham

Other regular professional contributors consist of a mixture of non-fiction and fiction authors across a variety of genres including:

Emma Darwin (A Secret Alchemy, The Mathematics of love)

By Emma Darwin

Jane Struthers (The Psychic’s bible and many, many more titles)

By Jane Struthers

Kate Allen (Fateful Deception, Perfidy and Perfection)

By Kate Allan

Debi Alper (Nirvana Bites, Trading Tatiana)

By Debi Alper

How these fantastic authors find the time to contribute, comment and critique, is beyond me! Their advice is invaluable to all who write.

From personal experience I can say without doubt that this is the most honest, friendly and unpretentious writers site that I have come across. Once you become a member you can understand why thousands of other writers have done the same; both published and unpublished alike.

It is devoid of any form of prejudice, bullying or cliqueiness, which I have observed on other sites and the critique is honest and professional.

I have made many friends through The Cloud, both cyber and in the flesh, and may not have continued on my writing journey if it had not been for this wonderful and encouraging people who camp within.

http://www.writersworkshop.co.uk

As I get out of my Dad’s van and look into the sky, what do I see?

But a huge black and yellow furry thing, flying straight at me

Tiny lacy wings vibrating either side,

A humongous dangerous sword attached to it’s rear hide.

How does it keep that body flying through the air?

As the bumble bee gets closer, I find I do not care.

With a deafening buzzing sound filling up my ears,

My legs begin to move fast, cranking up the gears.

Running doesn’t help, the buzzing is close behind,

There’s no way i’m looking back, i’m scared of what i’ll find.

That poisonous sword, thrusting, stabbing for my rear,

Oh dear, oh dear, oh dear, oh dear, that buzzing is so near.

Running round the nearest tree and peeking through a branch,

I find I cannot see the bee and decide to take a chance.

Hands at the ready, one on each bum cheek,

Heart pounding in my chest, thumping out each beat.

“Go!” I shout at myself, and run as fast as I can,

How long will it take me to get back to Dad’s safe van?

Breathless, hot and sweaty, with hands shielding my butt,

I charge across the green so hard I cause pains inside my gut.

Twigs and branches all around, broken on the ground,

Tripping over one of them, I land with a thwumping sound.

Buzzing close overhead is some black and yellow fur,

Not one, not twenty, but hundreds of them creating a smoke-like blur.

Not looking seems like a good idea, so I close my teary eyes,

When all of a sudden someone talks to me and takes me by surprise.

“Why are you running? And what is your name?” A tiny voice squeaks,

Opening my eyes and looking around, I find I cannot speak.

On my chest as bold as brass and the size of a small rat,

Is the cutest, fluffiest bumble bee wearing a furry high top hat.

“I’m pleased to meet you, my name’s Buz” He says with a friendly smile,

Were he not sitting on my chest, I would’ve run a mile.

“J-J-Jay” I reply, trying to be brave but quivering all over,

“Friends?” He calls as he’s taking off, waving over his shoulder.

What was I scared of? I think to myself as I stand and watch the bees,

Flying off towards their hive, high up in the trees.

K L Hansen