Where I’m at Wednesday

So far, I’ve finished chapter 15, and I am well into chapter 16. This is going slower than anticipated. But, the important thing is I’m writing. Even though it’s VERY tempting to set it down and runaway, I would physically be hunted by the fans who demand to find out “what happens next”. I reassure –I am not that cruel or irresponsible, so I continue to plod-along.
Okay, this is where I’m at: The characters [won’t say who] are RUNNING! The bad people are coming to get them. Although things look grim, our heroes aren’t alone. They do have unnatural helpers that the bad guys won’t expect. My dilemma is—getting my “good” characters from point A to point B. Things are a little sticky, and transportation is limited. Ugh! More research. I juggled some ideas, but I need to refine the details.
A lot of the times when I write, I insert plot ideas only to revise or take out of the story altogether. What I DO love about writing—the creativeness along the journey. Usually I write with a planned direction I need to go. But, I cannot predict the changes along the way. For example: In the first book, The Sphere of Archimedes, I knew my characters needed to be driven to The Devil’s Tower in Wyoming. If you have ever taken a road trip, you know how boring they can be—hours and hours watching scenery pass-by. I didn’t want my readers to get bored, because if it’s boring to the writer, than it is ten-times boring to the reader. I had to make things exciting during the long drive from Arizona to Wyoming.
In the second book, there are several [separate] action scenes going on simultaneously. Everyone you met from the first book is doing something exciting and different. Also, you’re introduced to new, evil characters that intertwine with established persons.  I will admit, with the progression of each book, the intensity amplifies. The last book (#4) will be the most difficult to write –so many obstacles for our protagonists.
Stay tuned every Wednesday for updates on “where I’m at” in The Omphalos of Delphi.


Last week, I gave advice to novice writers. This week I’ll give you some helpful resources:
Writer’s digest is chalked full of helpful tips, webinars, and classes. Even though some of the classes and webinars cost, this site offers many freebies.
 Writer’s diet—a website that helps tidy your project. As a writer, I know I can get too wordy or the opposite –not enough. Sometimes we have a habit of over-using verbs/nouns, adverbs/adjectives, or prepositions. I am guilty of it too. All you do is copy/paste a writing sample of 100-1000 words into the box, choose “Basic or Advanced”, and then click “Run the test”. You will see a detailed chart stating your strengths and weaknesses. Obviously, you want to shoot for “Fit & Trim”.
Author Nathan Bransford has very helpful tips for writing a variety of things. I often refer to his blogs.
     Wikipedia —I can’t live without this one! Most of my research is done online through Wikipedia or my own encyclopedia set.
Dictionary.com—Not only is this site useful for spelling, thesaurus, but also the enunciation of words.
These are just a few resources I could think of off the top of my head. Check out my editor’s website! She has many more helpful sites listed under “Grammar Suppliers”.
Editing Addict
Next Wednesday, I’ll talk about writing query letters and proposals. Plus, I’ll  list helpful websites.

Yup! It’s “Where I’m at” Wednesday again.

Last week, I finished chapter 14, and started researching for the next chapter. Research becomes so time-consuming, considering all that is entailed.
I did manage to start chapter 15 with a BANG –not literary, but it’s coming along. I’m eager to introduce you to a new character- a funny, Irish bloke. Although, I’m not quite sure if he’ll come along for the journey. At first, he isn’t a willing participant, however, under the circumstances what else can he do?
In this chapter, there are a lot of sights to see, people to meet (Jenene- contest winner), and proceed to the next doorway. I don’t know how long the book will be; I’ve never written anything with a set chapter count, or page number in mind. I write until I don’t have any more to say on the subject. At this point, I know it’ll be longer than the first- 26 chapters, 190pgs, and 45,000+words. I’m not a wordy writer, but a details person.
Stay tuned for more insight into The Omphalos of Delphi. I have included encouraging words for aspiring writers.
If you’ve never written a novel, and are considering the task. I will inform you of the INS & OUTS of doing so:
1st Write: You know that short story, blog, or novel in your head waiting to come out? Well, it isn’t going to write itself. Do it!
2nd Find time to write: In my writers group, we have a “9 Minutes per Day” calendar. You can always find just nine minutes in each day: early in the morning before work/school, at lunch, or after putting the kids to bed. Whenever you write those nine minutes put an X on that day. The longer you go without breaking the pattern; you’ll have established a habit.
3rd Join a writing group: Believe it or not, there are SO many resources on the internet, and in your city. If you Google “writing [writers] groups” in your area, I can guarantee something will pop up, (unless you live in a tiny-fly-speck-town or in a log cabin in the middle of nowhere). You are bound to find people –like you –who enjoy writing.
My first advice to new-writers is: “get it on paper”. Too many people [writers] I know try to edit as they write. You have all the time in the world, (or so people think) to go back insert more details, edit, and reread over, and over, and over. Believe me, by the time it is ready to print; you are SO sick of looking at the manuscript.
Don’t get discouraged. I had a difficult time finding anyone willing to read my work. I almost gave up a few times along the way. Finally, I decided to join a group, and found encouraging people who desired to read and share stories. We thrived off each other! Also, –just to let you know, people will come along and try knocking you down. This is because of several things going on in their own personal lives, jealously, or they have nothing better to do. Please don’t let that hinder your passion. Eventually, they will stop, get a life, and leave you alone.
Lastly, don’t dream about the sales and movie rights yet. Even though it is encouraging, you still have a long way to go before getting carried away. Sometimes, the “Dream Big” fantasy can become distracting. Stay focused on your story, plot, character developments, research, descriptions, beginnings and endings. Don’t get sidetracked too soon; a lot of writers abandon their work and never complete anything.
Good luck!
Questions/comments? Feel free to post –I will respond in a timely manner. Or, email me: hsquires9597@yahoo.com

It’s “Where I’m at” Wednesday!

So, I finished chapter 14 of The Omphalos of Delphi!
Now, onto chapter 15, but I’ve got to do MORE research. This book will be the death of me from the research alone! Since the beginning, I’ve had to study:  Greek & Roman history, the Arctic, breeds of sled dogs, gear, and geography. These are brief examples of my studies; I will spare you the details! But believe me, there’s a much longer description to each one. UGH! Although, I will not deny that we’re coming to the exciting parts. Oh don’t fret, the book is definitely a page-turner, but it gets downright electrifying!!


     Currently, I’m writing chapter 14: The Omphalos of Delphi. This book is going to be more exciting than the first –mostly due to not having to introduce the main characters.
     The last book left everyone hanging, (I know–I did that on purpose) but rest assuredly it’ll be worth the journey.  You will be introduced to a couple nasty characters, and not just from the Diadem.
     I must admit that I’m having difficulty with the humor. Even though Oliver maintains his cuteness, he has several death-defying adventures that have no room for “funny”. Overall, I think you’ll be pleased.  I will keep you posted each week on my progress.
Stay tuned!