News

August Book Releases

Tuesday, August 7th, 2007

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*The Burnt House ~ By Faye Kellerman
*The Intruders ~ By Michael Marshall
* Buried ~ By Mark Billingham
*Clublife ~ By Rob the Bouncer
*Sweet Revenge ~ By Diane Mott Davidson
*The Dark Side of Midnight ~ By Sidney Sheldon
*Death and the Devil ~ By Frank Schatzing
*Soul Catcher ~ By Michael C. White
*Life on the Refrigerator Door ~ By Alice Kuipers
*I Dream in Blue ~ By Roger Director
*Restless Virgins ~ By Abigail Jones, Marissa Miley
*A Killer’s Kiss ~ By William Lashner

HarperCollins Publishing

MiniCon

Saturday, August 4th, 2007

I thought you might like a taste of what you’re missing at the MiniCon taking place right now. If you’d like to participate, go here and register.

Quote from: markdeniz
Hi Karen,

I heard a rumour that you moved from fanfic to novel success. How would you answer those that say real writing isn’t about fan fiction but creating your own worlds/stories/characters?

Karen Miller: It’s true Mark. I wrote a lot of fanfic before I moved on to original fiction. As for it not being ‘real writing’ because you’re often not dealing with your own characters/world building, tell that to professional staff writers on tv shows, like House and Dr Who and Battlestar Galactica and so forth. Tell that to Harlan Ellison, who’s written a number of tv scripts.

Writing is writing. Fanfic has the capacity to teach a great deal of craft — when it comes to narrative prose yes, it can fall short when it comes to teaching the skills of character and world building but there are many other skills you can learn or polish in the process of writing it. I did.

Quote from: JaimeMcD on Today at 08:33:06 PM
Hi Karen!

Congratulations on all your accomplishments thus far.

A lot of new/young writers I talk to struggle a lot with time management and making time to write. Have you found your writing-related time management has improved since you began? Also, do you hold to the statement writing every day is essential for writers?

Karen Miller: Thank you, Jaime!

The trick is, there is always time to write. But there isn’t always time to do everything you want. So at some point you need to sit down and say well, either I can read a book/surf the net/watch a dvd/talk on the phone/go to the gym/bathe the dog/scrub the loo OR I can write. Some of these choices are easier than others. *g* But unless, like me, you’ve got the luxury of writing full time, if you’re juggling a job and family for eg, something has to go to make room for the writing. And that’s an individual choice. But you gotta make it, and stick with it, sometimes in the face of relentless pressure from people who don’t get it. That’s where the grit comes in.

As for writing daily, well, yes and no. Yes insofar as it keeps you in touch with the work and the world. Yes because otherwise, like committing to an exercise program, it’s so easy to let things slide. *g* I think on the whole it’s best to take a realistic look at your schedule, slot in 3 or 4 writing sessions a week and honour the commitment, than making rash unrealistic promises to yourself, breaking them, and feeling like a failure.

Quote from: JM
Have you ever written something with a character or characters you really didn’t like?

Karen Miller: Well, Empress was tough to write because Hekat is so not an easy character. I had to go to my darkside big time to fully bring her to life … I can’t honestly say I dislike her — like an actor playing a villain I find a way to relate to every character — but she was a tough broad to do.

Unabashed

Quote from: JM
Ah, yes. Getting into character. Do you find yourself having to do that a lot, or do your characters tend to be more like little pieces of you/your friends?

Karen Miller: Hmm. I’ve never thought about this exactly. Let me ponder …

sometimes I wonder if my background in theatre as an actor and a director has influenced how I approach character in my fiction. Because I write mainly character-driven stories, and because I use quite a tightly focused character POV narration, I’m always leaping in and out of character, so to speak. I have to look at the world through their eyes, and try to imagine what they would do in a given situation. In order to do that effectively I think, like an actor, I need to find the echo within myself of that particular person. So I’d have to say that so far, every single character I’ve written is available to me in some degree — but that many of my characters do things that I would never do, either for the good or the bad.

None of my characters is wholly or solely based on anyone I know, either myself or a friend or family or work colleagues from the past — but all the people I’ve met in my life have definitely informed me about human nature, and that goes into character creation.

Does that make sense?

Quote from: JM
Absolutely.

Sue Grafton and NaNoWriMo

Monday, July 30th, 2007

silencecov.jpgIt’s never too early for talking about NaNoWriMo, is it?

I didn’t think so.

The word on the internet street is this year’s NaNo challenge will have some extra help when it comes to the inspirational articles participants will get to read during November. It’s said Sue Grafton will be giving words of inspiration and motivation as participants strive to hit the 50,000 word mark.

Don’t believe me? Here’s the email from Chris of the NaNo team:

FIRST CELEBRITY PEP TALKER REVEALED

In the last email, I alluded to the fact that we were turning over the weekly pep talks this year to a group of fantastic novelists. I also claimed that we were going to keep their identities secret until October. Then I got overly excited and began dropping broad and ridiculous hints because I wanted everyone to know who they were. And who am I kidding, really? I can’t sit on this kind of information for another three months. So in each of the next few newsletters, I’ll be introducing some of our pep talkers.

The first pep talker revealed: Sue Grafton. Yep, the author of the “alphabet series” (”S is for Silence” is the latest) will be penning an inspiring and funny pep talk especially for NaNoWriMo participants this year. We swoon. You can find out more about Sue at her website: http://www.suegraft on.com. Thanks, Sue!

And that’s it from here! Hope you’re having a great summer!

Chris
NaNoWriMo

Operation Poem

Sunday, June 3rd, 2007
candle.jpg

Ladies and gentlemen, Operation Poem has been dormant since January of this year.

Whether or not you have been personally touched by the war in Iraq, countless others are being touched every day.

If you have the time, please write a poem and send it to MMB555@aol.com to be posted up on the site.

Agree with the war or not, we can still honor those who have fallen.

Script Frenzy!

Monday, May 14th, 2007
sf_07_flyer_general.jpg

From the people who brought you NaNoWriMo now comes the June event: Script Frenzy.

From June 1st to the 30th, your goal will be to write a 20,000 word screenplay. What is a screenplay? Well, direct from Script Frenzy’s Intro to Playwriting:

So, you’re going to write a stage play. First, what is a play? Basically, it’s a blueprint for a stage production. It’s performed by actors and directed, designed, and perhaps choreographed by others. As a collaborative art, a script is the cornerstone of a production from which the actors, designers, and directors all take their cues.

Read the full article for directions of how to write a script, what to write and what not to write, and how to set up your scenes.

Now, I don’t usually write plays. I’ve written one play for my high school drama club and that was about four years ago.

However, were someone who is participating in this event or plans to participate to challenge me, I could hardly refuse, now could I?

Just to say…

Little Reminders

Monday, April 30th, 2007

reminders.jpg

Ah, it’s time once again for a bunch of little reminders and notes for what’s happened and going to be happening on Fiction Scribe as well as other little reminders. I’ll try to make it as short and sweet as possible.

  • Dear readers, have you forgotten about your Word Count Journal? Then you’re like me. However, I refuse to quit and am trying to catch up. I encourage you to do so as well. I’d like to do a post linking to Fiction Scribe reader Word Count Journals, so let me know what your’s is if you’re still in the race.

    If you have no idea what I’m talking about, go here and check it out. It’s a great way to get you writing and meet new people.

  • Operation Poem is still running! If you are unfamiliar with Operation Poem, basically a blog has been set up to collect poetry for the soldiers over in Iraq. Contribute your poetry via the email address on the blog.
  • A Child Without A Voice is still going and needs a lot of help. If you can contribute in any way, you’ll make a huge difference in a child’s life.
  • My 200 Words Offer is still going. Don’t be shy. I don’t bite.
  • The fist ever Scribes Blog Carnival will be posted up tomorrow! Thank you to all who participated. If you missed out this time and would like to be included in the next one, just go here and submit your post before the last Thursday of May!
  • Also tomorrow, the third issue of The Scribe, Fiction Scribe’s newsletter, is going out. This month features your opportunity to get your site and/or work featured in the newsletter! Along with that, I’ve included my favorite time-wasters, part three of The Art of Good Communication, other goodies, and the early word on an upcoming contest. Gasp! Contest? Yes, Fiction Scribe will be holding its first contest in May, so if you want the early word on what it’s all about, you need to be signed up for the newsletter. You can sign up using the “contact me” button to the right.
  • As far as the Blogger’s Choice Awards are concerned, Fiction Scribe isn’t an education blog. Thank you to all who voted for me. However, Fiction Scribe is still up for a Hobby Blog award and has been nominate in the “Blogitizer” category.

    This award will be presented to the blogger who demonstrates the best writing ability on his or her blog.

    Needless to say, I’d love this award. You have to sign up to vote, but once you do, navigating is easy. However, I recommend signing up with a yahoo email address if you have one because the word is other email addresses are having a hard time registering.

  • My site was nominated for The Blogitzer!

    My site was nominated for Best Hobby Blog!

    And now for the site-specific announcements.

    As many of you know, on May 5th 3pm Australia time, my fiancé and I will take our vows in the local park and officially become Mr. and Mrs. Scribe. I want to thank everyone for their well wishes via comments and emails, and a special thank you to Elisa for encouraging me with the wedding registry. (There are a few weird things on there.)

    Due to the wedding, there will be a couple differences for the next couple weeks in the way things are usually run.

  • Unconscious Mutterings will be Fiction Scribe style, as you probably noticed with this week’s Unconscious Mutterings.
  • Pet Peeves and 200 Words will be taking some time off, but author interviews will continue on! I have a great interview with 451press’ own Dr. Gillian Polack this Friday, so be sure to stop by and take a peek at what she has to say.
  • Guest Bloggers! There are guest blogger posts coming up this week and next. Some of the bloggers include my partner in crime, DaveP, Australian horror writer Kaaron Warren, and a lot more!
  • So, there are a lot of temporary changes, but I hope you enjoy them. Now wish me luck; I have an Australian to marry. ;)

    I Choose to Speak

    Thursday, April 26th, 2007
    One Day Blog Silence

    People around the many blogging communities are buzzing (and often arguing) about the April 30th day of silence. OneDayBlogSilence.com hopes this to be a day of remembrance for not only those to died in the Virginia Tech tragedy but for those all over the world who are dying needlessly.

    However, as you can see from some of the comments here, not everyone feels silence is the best way to go. I agree with them. On April 30th, Fiction Scribe will not be observing the day of silence. Not out of disrespect, by any means, but for what I feel is a necessity.

    I’m not protesting the day of silence. I think it’s a wonderful so many people are gathering together to send warm thoughts to those in pain. However, this is a “last straw” situation for me, and I don’t think silence is the answer. I think we’ve been silent too long.

    Communicate. What happened is terrifying. It’s a horrible tragedy that never should have happened. Speak! Word of mouth is one of the most powerful forces out there. Advertisers would sell their souls to get the key to word of mouth advertising.

    No disrespect meant to the people in mourning right now. I feel for you, and my heart is mourning with you, but I will not observe the day of silence. Too often in too many horrible situations, staying quiet is considered the best option. This is not the time to stay silent even for a day. This is the time to help those in mourning and speak up so these horrible things will stop happening.

    As one who stayed silent in the past when something needed to be said, yelled, shouted at anyone who would listen, I won’t do it again. Take a moment of silence, but only a moment. The longer your mouth stays shut in these situations, the longer your words remain trapped, the easier it is to stay silent.

    In the words of Ghandi, “Be the change you want to see in the world.”

    Speak up. Be the change.

    Virginia Tech Gunman Writings

    Wednesday, April 18th, 2007

    depression1.jpgTo be honest, even after reading the Virginia Tech shooter was an English major and a writer, I wasn’t keen on writing about the incident. To say the least, I felt upset over the incident which took place. My university days aren’t nearly long enough past for me to not think about how easy it would be for the same thing to happen on the two campuses I attended. However, given the commentary in this article and having written about depression last week, I feel the need to say…something.

    “Sometimes, in creative writing, people reveal things and you never know if it’s creative or if they’re describing things, if they’re imagining things or just how real it might be.”
    - Professor Carolyn Rude, chairwoman of the university’s English department

    True enough.

    I feel like I can’t give a full, informed opinion on the events when the counseling department refuses to comment, but from what information I have, I can’t help but wonder how much help was really given/offered to the shooter. If he was offered suitable help and refused, did anyone keep an eye on him? Given the length of time he’d been writing “disturbed” pieces other students and professors were aware of, I would think someone or something would have been done concerning his mental status.

    I’m not putting blame on anyone except the shooter for his actions, but given at least a few of his professors are at least familiar with the way writing can reveal things about the author, what was done? Writing isn’t always the key to the author’s soul, but pair that up with his other behavior and put him in a major where most, if not all, of his professors are familiar with the intricacies of what writing can truly mean.

    Due to his privacy, he would rather his name not be mentioned, but a friend of mine always wrote very revealing poetry - if one knew to take his words seriously. Shy, a loner, and dealing with bipolar disorder with no medication, had he not had friends (including myself) who took his poetry seriously, I would hate to think of where he would be today. (He is currently enjoying a happy life full of support.) His poetry was the way he said what was on his mind.

    It seems obvious to me the VT shooter certainly had a lot of things on his mind and let them free in his writing. This is where I get stuck. Was he in counseling because of concern raised about his writing? It’s not clear to me in the article exactly what the duration, if there was any, of his counseling was. When did it happen? If he continued to write things like the things mentioned as well as continue on with his behavior, was anything done about it? Were there meetings between the teachers? If he quit counseling (assuming he started), what did they do after?

    These are the things that get to me. If it was so apparent through his writings that something wasn’t right, then what was done about it?

    I suppose being a writer helps me to have an opinion on this, whereas I think a lot of media will spin it as he wrote disturbing things so he was obviously disturbed. I don’t like making that assumption because I’ve killed off scores of characters, but that doesn’t make me a potential murderer. It’s when the behavior fits the writing you should be taking definite action.

    I hope my musings are at least somewhat understandable. If you’d like to comment and let me know what you think, I’d like to start a discussion about this.

    How Cool is This?

    Friday, January 12th, 2007

    Elisa at The Books Stacks gave me a heads up on this one, and I’m glad she did! I’m so excited.

    As it turns out, the United States is hosting another American Idol, but this one is a different sort and is likely to have writers stirring. Using the same sort of popularity voting which is a vital part of the show American Idol, authors will post up their work and get voted through to following rounds by readers.

    The ultimate prize is $5,000, a book contract with Touchstone Fireside and distribution by Borders.

    How awesome.

    U.S. contest seeks to be “American Idol’ of books

    Blood and Chocolate the Movie

    Friday, January 12th, 2007
    film.jpg

    I was actually getting the URL for Elisa at The Book Stacks, and upon nosing through her posts (when it comes to Elisa’s site, I nose, not skim:)) I found her post about the book Blood and Chocolate by Annette Curtis Klause being turned into a movie.

    I invite you to head on over to her site and nose around a bit yourself. The book is a good read (oh, I do hope they go on to make The Silver Kiss as well), and Elisa’s post is a good read as well.

    Pulitzer Prize Available to Bloggers

    Wednesday, January 10th, 2007

    Admittedly, this is slightly old news, but I just came across it so it’s new to me!

    The Pulitzer Prize is an award for any journalist’s resumé.

    The press release is locatedhere.

    You can read all about the fine print in the link provided, but I wanted to bring this to the attention of my readers because I find it fascinating. This is truly a show of how we’re moving forward in the ways of technology that they’re adding the Online Journalism category.

    A Spell for Chameleon

    Tuesday, December 5th, 2006

    I just wanted to do a quick post linking over to Elisa @ The Book Stacks (hehe. She always has interesting things to link to) about this post announcing that a film based on Piers Anthony’s A Spell for Chameleon.

    If for nothing else, I love his books for their play on words. Perhaps a bit simple and obvious at times, they still can be entertaining, and I think they are great young adult reads. (That’s when I read them, anyway. Hehe.)

    I’m crossing my fingers that this movie goes through and actually gets produced. I’d love to see it.

    , ,

    About Fiction Scribe

    Is your spelling less than stupendous? Has getting published gone from possibility to problem? Are you alienating your readers with alliteration? Here at Fiction Scribe you can find what you need for prompts, publishing opportunities and advice, fun wordplay, and more. Use Fiction Scribe for the encouragement you love, the information you want, and pointing out the mistakes writers make that you need. Fiction Scribe: Your source for everything writing.

    Fiction Scribe Author(s)
        » JM

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