The Muse Party Blogfest

Hi all! Just because I felt like doing something a bit different, today, I decided to take part in Sarah Foster’s Muse Party Blogfest.

Basically, it’s a virtual party where writer’s and muses go. Or characters, if it comes to that. I’m dragging a character along, because he’s been veeeeery vocal while I’ve been editing the book he’s in. (If you’d like to join in or to see who else is at the party, click here.) Now without further ado, time to get going.

Misha: *Checks outside while she finishes getting dressed. Stifles a laugh because Darrion’s scowling while leaning against her car.*
Darrion: *Tugs at his collar, so not into this casual-not-taking-weapons-with outfit, but Callan and Kaela both insisted, so…*
Misha: *Heads out as soon as she’s done.*
Darrion: *Brightens slightly.* We can still skip the party.
Misha: What? No. I said we’re going and just not arriving is rude. Besides. I didn’t get dressed for nothing.
Darrion: *Looks her up and down* Well…you do look nice.
Misha: …Thanks.
Darrion: And I do so appreciate you not trying to make your dress match my shirt.
Misha: *squints, trying to figure out if he’s being sarcastic. Goes with… not.* Yeah. Not the matchy matchy type. *Gets into the car.*
Darrion: *mutters* Thank God. *Takes two bottles off the car’s hood and gets in as well.*
Misha: Says the guy who spends more than three quarters of his life in uniform.
Darrion: *Sing song* Not the same.
Misha: *Little shake of her head. Just drives.*
Darrion: Are you sure you have time for this? I mean–
Misha: Do not bring up all the editing I have to do. It’ll get done.
Darrion: *Tiiiiiny smile. Secretly loves winding her up.*
Misha: I should have invited my muse. *Glances his way.*
Darrion: Now why would you say that?
Misha: Or maybe I should have brought Gawain. He’s always a hit at parties.
Darrion: *Peeved* I can be a hit at parties too, you know. We’re friends for a reason.
Misha: Okay… What are we going to sing for karaoke?
Darrion: *Scowls*
Misha: See? You’re too uptight for strange parties.
Darrion: And yet, I’m a great conversationalist.
Misha: If you can resist hitting someone. *Groans* You’re not going to hit someone.
Darrion: *Scowls* Why am I coming with you again?
Misha: Because you won’t leave me alone, remember? You follow me around everywhere.
Darrion: Right. *Crosses his arms, making his shirt strain at his shoulders.*
Misha: What party game are we going to suggest?
Darrion: Is Quin coming? We can maybe tie him up and–
Misha: Don’t…
Darrion: *Grins* We only need to stop somewhere for sticks.
Misha: Gaaaaaaaah you’re incorrigible!
Darrion: *Chuckles* You love me for it. *Seriously thinks about a game that’s actually safe for everyone to play*
Misha: Musical Chairs it is.
Misha: *Explains*
Darrion: Oh…kay?
Misha: It’ll be fun.
Darrion: If you say so.
Misha: What’s in the bottles?
Darrion: Mulnich for me and… since you definitely can’t handle mulnich, liquid chocolate for you.
Misha: *Grins* Enough to share?
Darrion: *Nods*
Misha: *Grin widens* And that is why I love you.
Darrion: *Little smile back.*
Misha: *Sighs when they arrive at the party.*
Darrion: *Frowns at the entrance where people are milling around.* No one’s seen us yet. We can still escape.
Misha: Oh for the love of — *Gets out of the car.*
Darrion: *Follows* Can’t blame me for trying. You know I don’t generally do well with crowds.
Misha: Nonsense. You’re charming. You’re good looking. You’ll be the heart and soul of the party as soon as you smile.
Darrion: Exactly what I’m not looking forward to.
Misha: …You realize becoming King means you’ll deal with crowds for the rest of your life, right?
Darrion: Worth it.
Misha: *Can’t argue with that* Well…if you really don’t want to go… I’ll just go alone. Just…try and stay out of trouble, okay? *Heads in.*
Darrion: …*Sighs and catches up to her at the door, hooking her arm through his.* This is worth it too.
Misha: *Beams and kisses his cheek, then looks around for people she knows.*

A to Z Challenge: Kinks

Don’t worry. I’m not going all 50 Shades on you today. Honestly, I guess I could have called this something else, but I had a shortage of relevant words starting with K, so deal with it.

It is, however, a very important thing that all writers should know about writing.


You can do what you want. You can plan. You can decide on your road to the end of the story. You can decide how fast you write or how a small thing in your story will have a huge impact in the end.

Your characters (if they’re at all well constructed) will invariably screw it up.

No really. To most of us (or at least I think so), our characters are real people. And no matter how good an idea you think you have, if they disagree, your story ain’t going anywhere.

So, no matter how straight a line you’re setting out on when you start to write a story, there will always be some unexpected kinks to it. (See what I did there?)

It’s not all doom and gloom, though. Often, those kinks actually make the story much better than what you’d set out to do in the first place. Especially if what you wanted would have negated your character’s motivation, personality etc.

So go with it. See where it goes. If it doesn’t work out, you can always go back and wangle things to make them work the way you’d planned. Don’t do that right off though, because characters like to believe they’re really the ones in control.

Failing that, try bribing characters. They like bribes.

Anyone else have characters who like to have their own way? How do you deal with it? 

A to Z Challenge: Zoo

Today’s the last day, kids! Thank for those of you who stuck around. I hope it amused and taught you something new. Also, I want to thank the Veteran Novelists for their thoughtful, useful and encouraging comments. You are all legends in your own rights.

But today, I have one thing a new novelist should know before starting a novel.

The characters.

They live.

They breathe.

They think.

And they make one hell of a racket in your head.

Sometimes to the point where you think you’re insane. Because really… you sort of are. And that’s okay. Because if you were normal, you’d be boring. No one wants that. Except boring normal people. Forget about it.

Talk to your characters like they have minds of their own. If you give them time, they’ll start answering. Often in ways that surprise you, yet makes more sense than anything you could have come up with.

Some characters will take over. Even for your muse. If he’s a badass who stuffs up your inner frenemies for you, even better. Most of all, love the zoo of different characters in your head.

You created them. And they all love you in their own special ways.

And deep down, I can’t really think of anything else quite like it.

Other than that, this is the end of this year’s challenge, so I just feel that I need to re-emphasize something from early on.


Nothing is worth the aggravation that comes to a writer who stops writing.

And with that, I bid you good night!

Why I Always Write Doorways First

As you might have picked up, I’ve been a little adrift writing wise. It’s just that I’ve got this belief from studying investment management that one must NEVER put all your eggs in one basket.

So I worked on some other stories whenever I took a break from the Doorways drafts so that I could clear my mind. I’ve finished my third rough draft this way.

But now I’m almost done with editing Doorways, while I have time to burn while waiting for crits to come back. And you know… I’m just not feeling any of the other stories. They’re great. There’s one in particular that I adore. But now I could start rewriting it. And I’m… just… not.

Not because I love it less or lost my passion for it. No… It’s just that my muse is singing a siren’s song, trying to drag me back to the Doorways Series all the time. And it’s really difficult for me to maintain an interest in any other books while this is happening and the reason is pretty simple – if somewhat girlish for a fantasy series.

There are these two guys and they both have the hots for the same girl. And they’re trying to compete without competing, because they’re blood brothers. So… yeah… I know that it sounds like a cliche, but things are considerably more complicated than that. I’m not going to talk that about now, since it’ll take a few pages to explain.

But yeah. These guys, the girl and a few others make my head quite a mess, but every now and then, songs randomly start playing that invariably want to make me write – specifically: write the Doorways Series. Why?

Because the capture the essence of what things are like when the guys are alone with the girl. To illustrate:

First guy and girl together:

Second guy and girl together:

See? Both are INCREDIBLY sexy, but really different. And I am shipping the girl with one guy (not telling which), but the girl just has no idea of who to choose at this stage. In fact, right now, she’s not even vaguely aware of the second guy’s feelings. So… I’m dying to know what happens. And every time these songs, or one or two others play, I just get the urge to sit down and discover more of their story.

Do you have a story or series like this that (for whatever reason) just won’t let you go?

P.S. While we’re on the topic of Doorways, Matthew Rush from the QQE is going to crit my query letter tomorrow, so please go say hi if you have time. The original letter is here.

NaNo Day 4: Progress and Update

Stats: 7667 words written as of 11:28 am. Three pens written dry.

Goal: 2000 to 4000 words.

So far, Aleria’s memory is still gone. But at least a part of Nick and Ryan’s secrets have been revealed. It was sort of important to keep the story going.

I have to admit that I squeed when it happened.

I wish I could post an excerpt for you all, but I’m thinking this book has some serious potential, so I’m afraid this is another one that I’m going to be all secretive about.

Oh and… a new character showed up, although I’m not sure what to do with him.

Meet Vince. He used to look like this.

Sadly, he is currently worse for wear after a run-in with the guys that got Ryan and Nick’s secret out. He’s only been in the story for a few hundred words, but he’s really coming alive. I think I’m seeing sequel potential. Hell knows he should have issues.

In fact, he should be down right tortured, being as he is locked into an existence that goes against his very nature.

Hey. I’m a writer. Who said I have to be nice?

What about you? Anything exciting happening in your project?

NaNo Day 3: Meet the Characters

So I as promised, today I will introduce you to my characters:

Aleria, the character that starts it all off. She wakes up in a hospital after a plane crash, with no memory and absolutely no idea of exactly how much danger she’s in.

Doctor Blake Ryan. Resident at Aleria’s hospital. Has a past as long as the hospital’s corridors.

Agent Nick Parker. He’s the one who was supposed to go away. He didn’t and that makes me very happy, because he shares Ryan’s past. With even more interesting secrets.

So yeah… I’m VERY happy to have those two guys walking about in my mind. Not surprising, is it? 

This happens when you give characters too much say…

Two reminders today! Remember to drop by tomorrow for another installment of GPF and if you haven’t yet, please go check out the competition. 🙂

As you know, I’ve finished my rewrite, exactly ten days ago. I knew from the beginning of the year that I would have to take a break so that I could put some distance between me and the WiP, otherwise the edits aren’t going to work.

An excellent way to get distance is to start something else. Or work on something else.

Yes? Yes… Yeah… I can’t hear any other characters. Because I have one character who decided to take up permanent residence in my mind.

I thought he’d go once I actually finished the writing. But… no. This is an excerpt from our ongoing discussion.

Me: Why are you here?
Him: Because I want to.
Me: Funny. Look. I finished the story you wanted me to write.
Him: Not all of it.
Me: Well I can’t do all of it without editing. And for me to edit, you need to go somewhere else for a while.
Him: No.
Me: What do you mean no? I wasn’t giving you a choice.
Him: (smirking) Yeah… and how are you going to make me go? I might decide to not come back.
Me: Look. Can’t you just go visit with my muse or something?
Him: Aha nice try. No no. I gave you the idea. I pushed you to get it written. I’m the one doing the motivation since I took over from the muse. I want to see the story through.

Yeah… As I said. This is ongoing. At this rate, I’ll be going into edits with his voice as loud as the internal editor’s. That should make the process interesting.

Anyone else have characters who stick around when they shouldn’t?