Book Reviews and Writing Tips

Book Reviews and Writing Tips

Sunday, April 22, 2012

Tips for YA Authors

I’m sorry everyone. I’ve been tied up finishing a magazine project and have neglected to post here again for too long.

Here are some tips for any YA authors reading this. For readers twelve and up your book should include these elements.

1. Sex and Romance (Parents may cringe but teens want to read about sex and romance, especially girls. These scenes shouldn’t be too graphic and steamy but it has to be in there if your book is going to sell. This is just a fact of life.)

2. Self Concept and Awareness. Teens are self-conscious and need characters that build up esteem.

3. Peer Group acceptance. Teens travel in packs and so should their characters. You shouldn’t have any isolated characters in your book.

4. Future. You should always build up a promise for a bright future for your characters.

5. Place in family. Family and their place in it is very important to teens, even if they don't let on that it is.

And this is very important. Most YA books must have a happy ending. Please no tragic endings.

There you are. Now go and write and try out some of these important writing tips!

Friday, April 13, 2012

Friday the 13th: is it Fraught with Peril or all in Your Mind?

That’s a good question isn’t it, and I had a lot of fun reading all the myths associated with this day.

My thought is that this fear is all in the mind and probably connected to ones upbringing and environment. I always find things like this fascinating, but then so is the subject of ghosts and UFO’s, etc. Usually anything out of the ordinary hits my buttons.

I’d like to share a few facts about Friday the 13th. Did you know that usually every year contains two of them but this year we’ll have three, each 13 weeks apart? Now isn’t that interesting? The last time this happened was in 2009 and the next time will be 2015, but it is very unusual because this a leap year and the next one of those won’t roll around until 2040. In case anyone is worried about this we already had one of them (Jan 13) and the next one is July 13.

No one exactly knows how superstitions get started and they go back so far in history it’s almost impossible to find the origin. I can give you some very interesting facts though. Some people get so distraught over this day that they refuse to leave the house to go to work or to shop or get on the road at all. Studies have shown that there are more accidents on this day, but I think it is probably due to people who think bad things are going to happen, so they do.

Monday, April 9, 2012

Does the Color Green Promote Creativity?

I came across a news article the other day that says it does. According to a study done in Germany, looking at something green for a few minutes will get you moving to do something creative. They suggested putting green plants in your office or workspace, or perhaps painting one wall green.

Green has always been noted for new growth. In spring plants leap to life with new green shoots and flowers bloom. That’s a very inspiring sight after winter. I got to wondering if this would work for writers block.

I thought I’d share this notion with the rest of you. It never hurts to give this a try, does it?

Thursday, April 5, 2012

A Feel Ancient Today!

Do YOU ever have those days?

I'm heading for the Advil and to bed. I've been at it all day - getting a magazine together. Of course nothing goes as planned so it took most of the day to covert some files I needed and then to crop and resize them, along with getting copy together and finishing up some articles. I'm still waiting for some author interviews, but at least I made some progress so all my weariness isn't for nothing.

I have to relax my neck and shoulders because it's back at it bright ad early.

Night all.

Tuesday, April 3, 2012

Book Review - Interesting Fantasy Stories

This book is set in a mysterious place called Snowybrook. Unlike what you may think, this fairy tale is for adults.

Everything in this little village centers on the inn that is run by Mikel Fairdawn. It seems to be the gathering place for all the residents where drink and food and conversation can be had around a roaring fire. Visitors come and go as well throughout the book.

I didn’t really realize it at first but this book is a few short tales all mingled together and centered on the life of Mikel Fairdawn who finds himself involved with fairies, goblins, witches, dragons and the like. Of course the soldiers are always hanging about too and no one in this little village trusts the soldiers.

The innkeeper feels it is his duty to keep everything running smoothly so he tries to intervene to fix any problems that arise, even trying to change the course of history at one point to protect the town from the soldiers. The tales that arise in this book are pretty ridiculous situations, but this is a fairy tale after all and that is what is expected in a good fairy tale.

Mikel does have two helpers at the inn, a fairy named Merrybright and a not-so-bright boy named Bubba. We soon learn that Mikel and Merrybright are in love and having an affair. They sneak off into the woods as time permits, leaving Bubba Boy in charge, which is a recipe for disaster. As I mentioned earlier, Bubba isn’t the sharpest tack in the box. His lack of judgement almost spells disaster for the inn and the entire vale at one point.

Once again Fairdawn comes to the rescue to intervene between the soldiers and to fight a dragon. At one point he even falls under a witch’s spell as he ties to return the sword of a fallen comrade.

Merrybright’s parents don’t approve of her relationship with the innkeeper but they can see it is true love and know she will not marry the fairy they had in mind for her. They finally accept Fairdawn, but in the end he has to prove his true love for her by yet another quest.

This book was interesting and full of crazy characters.