Saturday, July 25, 2009

I Am Not A Serial Killer by Dan Wells

When I saw this book at the LDStorymakers conference this April I had to get it. I mean I write assassins they're like serial killers right? In fact the discussion about this book while we were in line to purchase the book was the one that got me a MS request. (thanks Dan) I met Dan Wells as we were stading in that line and I got the book signed too. (#17!)

But I am getting off track. That's not what I am writing this blog about. I opened this book and by the third page was deeply drawn in the world of John Cleaver. Once in the book I could only put it down when my eyes refused to stay open any longer.

The book is about a fifteen year old sociopath named John Wayne Cleaver. His mother and aunt run the local mortuary which is a bad thing for a boy who is obsessed with serial killers. the story takes a severe plot hike when a serial killer begins to stalk John's home town.

The book isn't available in the United States yet, but it is in England. You can get it here and here.

The book is amazing for a first novel, completely amazing. Go on, you know you want to get it.

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

Weapons, of course.

Although it is not a requirement for Tang Soo Do lower belts (red and lower). Weapons training is required for red, blue, and black belts. That said, it doesnt mean that I am not interested in learning them.

this is the up close detail of the staff it's GEORGEOUS!!!!

I have gathered quite a few neat weapons that I love to practice with and have to show them off. This is my newest weapon my Jo staff. It is a beautiful weapon made of Apalacian Hicory. It is georgeous. Her name is Ritsu meaning rythmn.

Next is my Zatoichi cane sword. I like the straight make of this sword and the lack of the tsuba(hand guard). His name is Butoku meaning chivalry.

This is my bokken it is a wodden practice sword that you learn the movements with then substitute a live blade when you are much better then I am. No name havn't found one I like yet.

Here are two "just fun" weapons my Hisugaya sword and my dagger. And my "sticks" for a Tang red belt level. I did the decorating on the sticks I thought it would be fun.

Thursday, July 16, 2009

Random thoughts

An article on the LDS Publisher blog this week not only made me think, but I got a good laugh out of it.

The blog post was about book club questions. Which I think are a good idea. I like to read them because it makes me think about what I just read. I have often thought about what I would write as book club questions myself. Then she added this paragraph: (copied straght from LDS Publisher)

As far as a book club kit, the more you provide, the better. You could do themed party ideas and provide suggestions for anything from decorations and invitations, to games and other activities, to refreshments and door prize ideas—your imagination is the limit.

This is an awesome idea too, I love books and to have a bash for one sounds like a grand plan. There is one thing that came to me that I just had to chuckle about. What ideas would you suggest I provide in regards to my book? Would we have a "Come as your favorite assassin?" party? Play musical weapons? Make the invitations in disapearing ink?

The thought made me laugh and I thought I'd share it with you. Post your ideas ( about either my book or yours) and the best idea will get a prize.

Wednesday, July 15, 2009

When Hearts Conjoin by Erin Marie Herrin with Lu Ann Brobst Staheli

I will begin by saying that I am not a normal non-fiction reader. I use my reading time as escapism. But when the opportunity came along to read this book I was facinated and asked to do a book review. I was not expecting such a heart pulling experience.

The story that is told by Erin is a rich, well writen, sometimes heart wrenching, sometimes heart warming story of the Herrin Twins. Who were born conjoined at the chest. One of the things I liked was the story wasn't just about the twins, it was about Erin and her husbands life. We wern't thrown into a marriage with the diagnosis of the twins problems. By the time we heard about the twins diagnosis that fateful day in the ultrasound room we were allready invested in thier lives. I liked that Erin was honest about it, that the problems in her life were not sugar coated for the sake of the story.

I read the book in one evening I was not able to put it down I was so completely wrapped up in it. The story is well told and well writen. Lu Ann or Erin correct me if I am wrong, but I believe that the proceeds of the sale of this book will go to the twins medical expenses. I am very impressed and will be sharing, and recomending this book to lots of other people. Well done.

You can find it here.

Or, to find more information about Lu Ann go here.

Friday, July 10, 2009

The process of editing.

As you readers know, I am in the process of editing my MS making it publishing worthy. Well since last week I have done two edit sweeps on chapter one, that was pretty easy it is a short chapter and there wasn't much correction. I accepted the changes and added a few things. Then when my editor got it back to me I corrected another few things and then it was finished. Yay I thought this is going to be easy.

Boy was I wrong. My second chapter came in the email and one of the suggestions was that I make my ASSASSIN LIKEABLE. Huh? he's an assassin, he kills people. I know him I know he has a good heart but the reader? Not falling for it. So I did the easy stuff first. I accepted all of the changes and changed everyting else first. Then I needed to make my assassin likeable. Its not easy. I went over to one of My writing boards and my facebook asking how to make him likeable. We discussed it and I talked about it with my friend. While this was mulling it in my head I realized that i had a chance to change the readers opinion about my assassin as well as create a moment of huge betrayal in the book.

So the betrayal is set and I have made my assassin likeable and to be honest it came easy once I had more of an idea of what was going on. In fact MC #2 did it for me she said the words right in my head. Thank you! I actually did three sweeps on chapter two and it was declared good.

Now round three, chapter three. Same intensity of problem just a diferent scene, a dificult conversation between Antony my athiest MC and a religious leader. THAT was hard. A panic attack reaction which I have not experienced enough to write it throoughly. Add to that adding detail througout the scene requiring me to relive the scene in my head. Again not the easiest thing.

Yeah editing is hard. Dang hard. BUT I wouldn't have it anyother way. I LOVE my editor. I love that the scenes are coming out much better then they were before. This is going to be a dang good book when its done. I feel it in my bones. :)

To my editor and Paulette, thanks so much. To those of you at AI and Facebook thank you too. You guys are great!

Tuesday, July 7, 2009

Altared Plans by Rebecca Talley

I read Rebecca's first book Heaven Scent and really liked it. I had a hard time keeping my daughter from stealing it before I finished it. This time was no diferent, as soon as I shut the book, my 15 yo daughter swiped it from me. :)

Altared Plans is about Caitlyn a young woman who has everything planned. The perfect wedding to the perfect man and the perfect life planned after the honeymoon. When on the morning of her wedding the groom runs off, she is left devestated. Her perfect plans gone in the flight of a plane.

To Caitlyn love equals betrayal. She returns to BYU vowing to live the rest of her life as a old maid. What will happen to her when she is called to be the "mother" of her family home evening group opposite a hunky cowboy named Travis?

I LOVED this book! It is smart, funny, and a great read. I give it four stars.

About the Author
Rebecca was born and raised in Santa Barbara, California. She spent countless hours swimming in the ocean, collecting shells, and building sandcastles. She graduated from BYU with a Bachelor of Arts degree in Communications. While attending BYU, she met and married her sweetheart, Del. Rebecca now lives in Colorado on a small ranch with a spoiled horse, a dog, goats, and a llama named Tina. She and Del have been blessed with 10 creative and multi-talented children. She has had numerous stories published in children s magazines, including the Friend and is the author of Heaven Scent, an LDS novel published by Cedar Fort. Besides writing, Rebecca also enjoys dating her husband, playing with her kids, knitting, and dancing to disco music while she cleans the house. She has consumed at least 4892 pounds of chocolate and even more ice cream (which is why she needs to dance while she cleans house).

Friday, July 3, 2009

Epithany (AKA apostrophe)

I use that word alot, but the word in itself is powerful.

As a writer I walk around open to almost everything. I see fantastic stories in the everyday world. I hear dialogue in my head and I have characters walk in a room, sit down, and start telling me thier story.

Wednesday night, my Kyo Sa Nim (instructor) started to tell us about the history of Tang Soo Do. The curious person that I am, I came home and started looking at the websites dealing with Tang and Korean Martial Arts history. Of course, it inspired me. I took many notes that I believe will help me with my book. Personally I love research and enjoy the process of making my book better.

The epithany I had this morning was amazing, to me at least. There are fables, and myths in history that explain the workings of the world. So. . . I know the people in my book and thier home planet have thier own history and myths I just haven't figured out what they are. Well, now I know I need to write my peoples history and thier own myths. I am sure it will help me, I know it will make my story better.

So, the next few days/weeks I will be a historian to the characters in my book. At least I have something for my daily goal for Tristi's July writing challenge.

Wednesday, July 1, 2009

Bone Warriors by Bron Bahlmann

We spent a few days at Mesa Verde and then a day at my In Laws and then a day at Primary Childrens Hospital with my 5 yo son. NOW I am home and needed to post a way overdue book review.

Bone Warriors by Bron Bahlmann

The first thing you neeed to know is that Bron was FIFTEEN when he published this book. FIFTEEN!!!!! Think about this, if he's fifteen now what is he going to be able to do when he's twenty?????

The plot of this book is epic fantasy, two young boys righting a wrong, setting off on a grand adventure, rescuing people near and dear to them.

What impressed me was the boys ability to write. He has a descriptive ability that is beyond his age. His ability to write unique, belivable, and likeable characters is inspiring. I especially liked Tweaks, the main characters best friend. He has a quirky personality that immediately made me smile.

My recomendation to you is read this book and be impressed at this BOY'S ability. The story is a great adventure with likeable characters in a unique world.