Saturday, April 22, 2017

#FriendReadingSwapChallenge : Why You Should Join the Fun!

Readers tend to find what they love and stick to it. Why wouldn't they devour books by authors they love or those convenient "buyers who liked X buy Y" links at the bottom of Amazon pages? There are only so many hours in a day, right?

Still, readers may be missing out on something. As writers, we often find it easy to only read what we're writing to help inspire or to figure out comp titles.

A good friend of mine and I met up at pub for a quick mom's night out, and we got in a passionate conversation about the books we love. Both of us love fantasy genre, but we realized that we'd only read several of the same books outside of the big name and classics such as Tolkien, Rowlings, and Marillier. My friend had never heard of Jenetta Penner or Eliza Tilton or Lori Lee or Michelle Hauck. She'd never laughed out loud at Randy Henderson's urban fantasy series or cried for Ellie as she discovers her Curse of Ash and Iron. My friend had never rooted for the Traitor Knight or learned how a horse thinks from Dun Lady's Jess.

Apparently, I was missing out on some awesome, fast paced, bad ass heroines and unique worlds.

We both looked at each other about like this:

So we dug through black hole, mom purses and dug out crumbling crayons and scrapes of paper, and made each other each a list of books or authors we loved. Then we swapped them with a promise to check out each other's favorites and report back.

I'm going to start reviewing my friend's suggestions as I read them, and hashtagging #FriendReadingSwapChallenge


Connect with a friend who doesn't read quite what you do. They can be a hometown bestie, internet buddy, or someone from your past, whatever.

Then, swap favorites reading lists of at least ten titles or authors. Then read them and either post, review, or blog your feedback. (Make sure you do some sort of intro too!) 

My list is:

Ilona Andrews - Kate Daniels Series
Kim Harrison - The Hollows Series (at least two)
Patricia Briggs - Merry Thompson Series

Pierce Brown

Mary pearson
Sarah J. Maas
Anne Bishop (Vision in Silver and Written in Red)
Leigh Bardugo

Lee Child

I have a feeling I'm about to discover some places I may never have considered going when I get into these novels. I'm super excited.

Have you ever read a suggestion that you might have overlooked before? Tell me who you're swapping lists with in the comments below or Click Here to Tweet:

"Have you joined the #friendReadingSwapChallenge yet? Find out more here @egmoorewriter blog: Please RT!"

Happy Reading!

Thursday, February 16, 2017

Using Amazon Free Samples to Better your Writing

I have a confession. I may or may not be addicted to those free samples on Amazon. You know, the teasers you can download to convince you to buy the book? 

It’s a great marketing tool, and an awesome way for readers to decide whether or not they want to invest in the characters. For writers, it is also a fantastic way to really study the beginning of the competition. 

When I read these beginnings as an upcoming author, I like to look at the first line and see if it hooks me. Examining the sample allows me to figure out the best way to convince a reader that my words are worth their time and money. How does the author make the character or their plight memorable enough to warrant further reading? What unique features of the world or magic system (I love fantasy!) or government or society are highlighted so the reader is immersed? How can I apply those calculations or techniques in my own writing to make my agent able to sell my books to editors who can sell them to the public?

Do you utilize those Amazon samples as a reader or writer? Or do you study the beginnings and blurbs of books you buy? Have you ever done this to improve your writing and/or marketing strategy? Let’s chat about it in the comments below!

Thursday, February 9, 2017

A Study on Tragedy in Modern Literature and Drama

A few years ago, I did a shout out across the interwebs about modern novel tragedies. My latest (and still latest) project was going to be unique. I'd been reading young adult novels in an effort to understand the dynamics involved compared to the middle grade I'd been writing before and realized that mine would be unique simply because almost all YA had the hero's journey as its plot arc.

Mine flipped it on its head in the form of a tragedy.

At that time, I did some research, but I was caught up in the fervor of free writing the draft, my favorite part.

Now I'm in the trenches of my least favorite part.... editing.

And I was at a stand still until recently, when I watched this very helpful video on Youtube by lfrankers. Not sure exactly what she said that I'd never heard before, but between watching this and looking at a list of tragic movies in the last two decades, I understood this on a whole new level:

In Tradegies, the purpose of the character has to be stronger than the outcome, even death.


Some movie examples:

Man on Fire: The protagonist purpose is to save the girl he's supposed to protect. He trades himself for her, and dies to save her.

Blood Diamond: Leo D sets out to become famous, but ends up dying in order to save his partner so that his partner can save his own family.

Gladiator: Maximus wants to avenge his family. He battles and destroys all those involved, even though it means he dies at the end.

And we all remember the Titantic.

Some more recent literary examples:

We Were Liars: The entire time, the main character is trying to fix her family. Slowly, though the reader realizes something isn't right. Eventually, we learn that the protagonist has gone insane after the tragedy of the fire in which her and her cousins were trying to fix the family.

Of Scars and Stardust: Older sister acts as detective to find the wolf that killed her sister. As she finds more clues, she falls deeper into insanity. By the end of the book, you realize the truth is she was insane all along and she killed her sister. She's put back into an asylum.

What does this mean for my editing?

It means I'm excited because I finally figured out two very important things that will guide how I rewrite Rudger's Story.

1. His motive: To be a leader that unites the two races of his world.

2. He'll have to get there at the expense of his character, losing someone close to him, and losing his sanity.

In order to accomplish this, I'll need to up the tension of his guilt as he makes bad decisions, up the animosity with the current leaders that don't treat the other race well, and Rudger will also need more pressure from his family.

This also means my beginning needs a complete overhaul. But I already knew that!

Please comment and tell me a recent tragic novel you've read, or what you've learned during some of your own editing. I'd love to hear from you and I will write back!

Or CLICK HERE to Tweet:

"What @egmoorewriter learned while #amediting + recent tragic reads. join the discussion! Pls RT! #amwriting #tragedies."

Monday, February 6, 2017

Discussion:Hello new writerly friends! Let's swap ten things.

I've had a lot of new friends via the #Nanobloghop subscribe to my social media and blog. Until now, most of my readers have been writerly friends I've met face to face or critique partners that I've been interacting with for years. It's been a pleasure to connect with so many creative, amazing people walking the same walk I am, word by word.

One such friend is Wendy Knight, and in her welcoming email for her e-newsletter, she offered ten fun facts about herself and encouraged us to respond with ten things too. I sent her a list and it sparked a really fun conversation that made me smile.

I want to reciprocate that on this blog post. So here are the ten fun facts about me that I want to share!
  1. I love almost every green vegetable and know how to cook most of them from raw state.
  2. I'm not a huge animal person, but I can sit and chat with the elderly all day, every day.
  3. I could live on ice cream, tea, and red meat. 
  4. I deal with depression, and am so thankful for my religion and family for helping me through it.
  5. I have a husband, six chickens, two daughters, two dogs, a cat, and most recently we've added an adorable bunny named Oreo to the hobby farm.
  6. I love fishing. This may or may not be due to my love of the water, and most certainly is due to my father being a fishing tournament champion.
  7. I gave up coffee six, no - seven, times since December 31st. It's a problem.
  8. My family and I are big puzzle people. There's almost always one on a surface somewhere in my house. Its a wonder we don't lose pieces, but it rarely happens.
  9. I'm a health and wellness advocate, and use holistic medicine as much as possible. Need herb or vitamin suggestions? I may have an answer. Curious about essential oils? I'm an open book with lots of resources. Want some interesting stories about healing a body with food? I've got a heap... starting with healing my body from hormone imbalance and fixing my body to get pregnant.
  10. I solemnly swear I won't judge anything you say or do, or I will at least see situations from all sides. I always do. It makes decisions hard sometimes.

Please comment with one or more fun facts about yourself, or ask me questions about one or more of my ten things.

Let's not just click the like, tweet, and subscribe buttons! Let's encourage each other, share our success, our experiences, and our words! We can start right here in the comments of my blog! I'd be honored!

Wednesday, February 1, 2017

Storystorm Part 2: Some Ideas Deserve a Drawer

Well, for my second year in a row, I've completed #Storystorm. Technically, last year it was #PiBoIdMo. The general idea is an idea each day for a whole month.

I'm super excited about a dozen or so of those ideas.

And then there are the other ones.

You know, the ones that deserve a drawer and a bunch of brainstorming. The obscure, the odd ball, the flashes of brilliance that are ridiculous when you think of them and add them to your list but may later be the masterpieces you initially imagined they'd be.

Here are a few of mine for 2017:

Cutting wood - learning the value of hard work
Human squirrel
Mikayla's pile of blankets
Little glasses

So if they deserve the drawer put them there and slam it shut if it makes you feel better.

Just be sure to pull them out once in a while and see if they are ready to show off their shine.

Thursday, January 12, 2017

Storystorm Part 1: Are you participating?

I don't know if you heard, but Tara Lazar's #PiBoIdMo was transformed into #storystorm

and in January 2017 authors all over the world (including moi) are attempting to come up with a new story idea every single day. That's a lot of creativity.  We're about halfway through the month, and I will will be sharing a few of my ideas in a later post, but I wanted to see who else I know is participating and encourage others to jump in on the creative brain stewing, even if the official registration is closed.

Even if you only get 

ideas, that's more than you had on December 31st. 

And who knows where those ideas will lead you?

A Desert

Or a Rainforest

Or a neighbor's yard

Or outer space.

Or just finish that other idea you had!

Tell me if you're participating and the fun idea you're most excited about so far, or just share about other projects your working on. I'd love to hear from you in the comments below or via email.

Tuesday, January 10, 2017

New Year, New Words, and a New Perspective + A #QueryHelper Giveaway!

It's week two of 2017. So far I have....

Worked, shoveled snow, cut firewood, and drove my new truck a lot....


Mentally written some....

And edited very little.

But its all perspective.


I've connected with over 400 people since NANO ended on November 30th. 

Hi you all and thank you...

to those of your that participated in the NANO blog hop hosted by Raimey Gallant. I'm happy to read your words and know you may be reading mine!

I've connected with my daughters at the expense of some computer and TV time, and those memories are invaluable.

Recently I've learned...

As with some other things, less words can have more impact.

Hard work pays off.

Being Organized has perks
(sometimes, let's not get crazy with the sticky notes and folder tabs!)

So I promise my readers this year my blogs will be...

Short, Impactful, and Valuable

And hopefully some good news of publication will be in there too!

Let's start 2017 off "write" with a #QueryHelper Critique Giveaway just for NANO 2016 participants!
(As promised in November, and yes I know that was six weeks ago.)

Please comment with your NANO username, what you'd like like to know more about from my blog, how best to connect with you if you win, and what word project you're working on right now. Winner will be chosen at on JANUARY 31st, 2017! Please share on your social media profiles!