Writing is about experiences, not just publishing.

by 

Janet McNulty


Many people want to write that novel, but they have no idea how to start
or how to complete it.  Another problem
many have with writing is the writing craft itself.  Writers always have to improve their writing
to avoid falling in a rut. To accomplish my first completed novels I did a few
things.
First
I took a couple of writing courses.  One
was a creative writing course that focused on poetry.  My goal in taking it was to get ideas for
stories that I wanted to publish.  It
also enabled me to learn about a different kind of writing.  Most of the time I write prose.  But taking a poetry course introduced me to
the world of rhyme and meter.  Having to
tell a story in a few stanzas that follow a pattern is very challenging.  It forced me to think of a new way to
communicate.
The
second writing course I took was one the involved learning how to write
fiction.  In it I learned to move beyond
telling a story and put the reader in the tale with detailed description.  Writing is about more than just putting what
is in your head onto paper.  Your reader
has to feel as though they are in the story itself.  That is what this class taught me. 

Before
writing any novel I do a little bit of research.  Depending on what I want to write determines
how much research I do.  For Sugar And Spice And Not So Nice, I ended
up researching hauntings.  I knew I
wanted something that was a bit different from a typical ghost story, but I
wanted to be accurate as well.  Before I
wrote the first sentence, I read about hauntings in general.  I even logged onto various blogs to read
about people’s personal experiences.  I
must have read through hundreds of blogs. 
I even visited my local bookstore where I purchased about six books
about ghosts, ghost stories, and haunted places.  After weeks of research, I finally felt
comfortable enough to begin writing.     
You
may be wondering why I bothered doing any research at all since I was writing
fiction.  Research is necessary no matter
which genre you choose.  Obviously,
nonfiction requires research.  But I have
found that sometimes when I write fiction, I need to look up a few facts so that
my novel will seem believable. 
Last
year I published a fantasy novel. 
Fantasy is a genre that allows an author an incredible amount of
freedom.  But, I still had to do some
research for it because I chose to include certain aspects of European myth and
lore to build the world of my book.  If
you wanted to write a space odyssey, you would want to be informed on modern
space technology so that your characters’ exploits seem believable.  The local library is an author’s best friend.
Another
way of doing research involves nothing more than observing the people around
you.  To accomplish this, you only have
to go to your local mall, or just sit in the park.  I routinely observe the habits of people
around me even when I am doing my daily errands.  This helps me to develop my characters.  Every person has a unique habit.  I find it a good idea to give my characters certain
habits that distinguish them. 
Observe
someone while standing in line at the grocery store next time and ask yourself,
“How can I put that in a novel?”  This is
a part of research that is essential to writing a book.  A good writer is also a good observer.
One
of the hardest things about writing anything is juggling life.  Writing for me is a career and a hobby.  I went through college, worked two or three
different jobs, all while writing my first novel.  Usually I only had about an hour a day to
work on my book.  Sometimes I only
managed to spend two hours in one week on it. 
All I can say is, life happens. 
We have families; we have jobs, all of which require our attention.
The
best way to work around this is to just schedule time each week where you can
work on your book.  I have a day planner
that I keep on my desk next to my computer. 
In it I pencil in an hour or two a day that I will sit down and write.  By actually setting up a schedule, it allows
me to work on my writing while still having time for the other things in my
life.  I am an editor and a consultant
with Pampered Chef, both take up a great amount of my time.  But, I make sure to spend a couple of hours each
day of actual writing time.  I just have
to write it in my planner like I do everything else. 
Writing
is a joy and a hobby I love to do.
  It
helps me unwind and allows me to do something I’ve always wanted to do.
  It has allowed me to accomplish my dream of
publishing a book.
  Now I need to move
onto to item number two on my bucket list.
 

Genre – Paranormal Mystery/Thriller
Format – Ebook

Purchase Links: Amazon and Barnes and Noble  

Sugar and Spice and not so Nice

Mellow Summers just wanted to go to college and get her film degree. She moved into a furnished apartment with her friend Jackie only to find that it already had a tenant: the ghost of a girl who was murdered a year earlier. Now it is up to Mellow to not only discover who the murderer is, but to prove it as well.

With the help of the ghost Rachel, Mellow sets out to solve the year old mystery. She soon finds out that she may have taken on more than she can handle. Pursued by someone who wants the identity of the killer to remain a secret, Mellow will have to use all her resources to outwit him and help the spirit of Rachel move on.

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