For those new writer folks here's a great example of how each book has its own agenda. Usually I work out the plot in my head and then write it all down (with changes of course).
The latest new book (Demon Trappers #9) insisted I **list out all the events in the plot** in an organized summary. This has only happened a few times over the 24 years I've been writing. Certainly not the norm for me.
23 pages later I have the "outline". I can see now that this story is gonna be a a**kicker to create. So no, there's no right way to write a book. It all depends on the story.
And as they say, "May the odds be ever in your favor."
When I include a location or a specific building in a story, I’ve usually spent time there. Such was the case with New Orleans (DEAD EASY and CAT’S PAW), Okefenokee Swamp (FORETOLD - DT #4 and KILLING GAME) and Edinburgh (GRAVE MATTERS - DT #5). Or most of London in the Time Rovers Series, including a fair amount of time in various pubs.
So when it came to a particular scene in LOST SOULS (Demon Trappers #8) I knew exactly where I wanted to set the exorcism, at least from the demon's point-of-view. Where would that be? The Biblioteca Joanina at the University of Coimbra here in Portugal.
I've been very quiet on this blog because lots of good things are happening. And with all good things, there's also frustrations, but that's life. So what's new? Let's dig in and see.
I'm currently listening to my spouse try to understand the repairman who is here to fix our boiler (it supplies hot water to our radiant heaters). It's a flurry of Portuguese, the majority of it I don't get, and bless him, the repair guy is being quite patient. My husband is hanging in there, but it's not easy. Which is pretty much a metaphor for this last year.
One of the curious side benefits of spending so much time at home is trying new recipes. I thought I'd discuss my new obsession with curry. (photo courtesy of Minimalist Baker)
Who knew history could be fun?
Back in the day when I was at that University of Iowa my minor was history. I was fascinated with the Tudor period (think War of the Roses, Henry VIII and his numerous wives, as well as Queen Elizabeth I.) Court intrigue! Illicit romances! Religious turmoil! You name it, the Tudors were doing it long before Game of Thrones came along.
As I watched this video I knew I had to share it with you. This is how the people in the Tudor era celebrated the Twelve Nights of Christmas, both rich and poor. It’s amusing, informative, and makes me very glad I live today and not in 1509. Also, Dr. Lucy Worsley is a KICK!
The photo above is from the BBC's webpage on this one-hour series.
Here is the video: https://youtu.be/rDREWMdU8Rg
Have a Very Merry Christmas!
As we continue through what is a truly unimaginable year I've been using the time at home to work on author-related stuff. My theory is that if I get a LOT done now, then once things open back up I'm going to do some heavy-duty traveling. What author stuff have I been doing? Read on!
At the end of June our dear Dali ran out of her allotted nine lives. Her kidneys finally failed, so our vet helped us send her over the Rainbow Bridge. Her transition was done with a great deal of love and care. and we are truly grateful to the staff at Animals Are Family here in Porto.
Dali was a feisty feline, full of opinions, very set in her ways. She was 6 years old when we adopted her from the animal shelter and was always an only cat. Her original name was Dolly, which was rather old-fashioned, so I renamed her after Ilona Andrews' white tiger in her Kate Daniels series. Ironically, as our Dali's eye problems advanced she become more and more like the Daniels' Dali who had issues with her sight as well. She was present in our household from 2012 onward so she leaned on my hand and keyboard during the course of many books. She made the journey to Portugal with us and handled it better than we did.
Now our Dali is romping on the other side of that bridge, turning her nose up at various food offerings, and can see well once more. One day we'll meet up with her and I suspect her first complaint will be that no one is feeding her food she likes. I also suspect whatever angel was assigned to take care of her will shove her at whoever crossed that bridge first, and then scurry away.
Dali was always one of a kind. Rest well, dear. We miss you. And yes, that food is different than what they fed you this morning. Just give it a try, will you?
You might like it ... or not. (sighs)
March, April and May were spent mostly indoors, ordering our food online for delivery while hunkering down to avoid the virus. I typed out a lot of words because social media was driving me nuts, so that's actually good news.
Lest you're interested on how it went down over here, check out the post linked below from our blog on Our Life in Portugal. I'll be posting more often from now on, especially with news regarding the latest Demon Trappers book. Stay well, folks!
Portugal vs. COVID-19
To be human is to deal with stress and my international move to Portugal certainly red-lined that meter in so many ways. Today's post on Janice Hardy's Fiction University explains how all that changed my approach to writing, how I'm coping with that abrupt change, and why it's all very positive. Enjoy!
is an international & multi award-winning author in various genres including young adult, urban fantasy and paranormal romance.