Legends of Green Isle – Blogspot Interview on Books and Banter

Hi everyone! I hope you are enjoying the Christmas month so far. I wanted to extend a personal invitation to visit my friend LocGlin and his blog “Books and Banter” on January 27, 2016. Legends of Green Isle will be the spotlight as well as an interview with yours truly.

And if you need a great Christmas gift for that middle-schooler or teenager in your house, consider Book One – “The Forgotten Spell.” It’s the first in the series of six books and a great adventure.  1280-960-70312

Thanksgiving …. And all I’m thankful for

This Thanksgiving is going to be quiet. No one but me and my boyfriend, 6 1/2 cats, four dogs, a couple of the neighbors chickens, and a Red bird that sits down at the garden. It’s been a year. We’ve managed to eek around several car accidents without too much expense, we’ve had parents, children, and other family visit over the summer, couple of home repairs, and lots of school work as I wind down to the last six months of Masters grad work. The most important event to me is the final rewrite and publishing of the first book in the Green Isle series. I’m very thankful for the steadfast support of my family and friends through the whole process of reinventing myself during middle age. At 50, I stand out in the grad office with the younger crew. And while I’ve got years of life experience over them, I’m thankful to be within this crowd, for they have taught me much in the past two years. Tomorrow is a day of feasting, and yet, it is also a day of reflection. What has the past year brought? Where do we want to go from here? How do we proceed with changes? And who do we want with us as we change to the next year? I’m also thankful for you, the reader and followers of this blog. It’s been a good journey thus far…and it’s only going to get better.

Happy Thanksgiving! And happy writing….

The Next Chapter…

Chapter One

It has been an exciting week for us here in Green Isle land. The series has been added to the GMTA Publishing family, all nine books, and the contract was signed and delivered yesterday. (Six books in Legends of Green Isle and three others, which will feature a prequel story of Green Isle’s beginnings.) Our wonderful cover artist, Sandip, will be hard at work helping with a revision of book one’s cover, along with creating book three’s design.

What a blessing to have met Kitty Bullard and her publishing firm. Everyone in Green Isle is doing a happy dance. After the celebration, we’ll be back at work on book three – “Revenge of the Salamander King.”  Join the adventure by following us on Twitter @GreenIsleAuthor or our Facebook Fan Page at https://www.facebook.com/LegendsOfGreenIsle

Happy Friday everyone!

Reflections of a Graduate Student – Year One.

imagesCA20KNSZWell the first year of graduate studies are completed. I have discovered quite a few things about graduate school. I will list my top ten as follows:

1. Having the department head as your Historiography professor the first semester is scary, especially when he looks at you during seminar with a look that says: “Why are you here?”

2. My office is in the basement and I see no sunlight for a good part of the day. I’m happy summer is here.

3. Students, whose papers you grade, feel like you are out to get them, when in fact, you are only trying to help, and they look at you with a look that says: “Why are you here?”

4. Grading 80 finals in two days is torture, especially when they are all essays and answer the same 5 questions. I applaud the professors who do this for 4 classes at the end of the semester.

5. Your “Statement of Purpose” really doesn’t have a purpose for getting you into the Masters’ programs. They don’t even look at that until you apply to Phd school.

6. You can change your thesis at least a hundred times before you get something cohesive.

7. I have lost weight hoofing from the commuter parking area at the very back of Clemson with my numerous bags of books. If you don’t phone the meter maid at the campus police that you’re dropping off books before you park your car in BFE, you will get a ticket if she sees you doing it, and will give you a look that says: “Why are you here?”

8.  There’s never enough research.

9. Russian literature is actually pretty fascinating.

10. Writing a 25-30 page research paper becomes second nature. I remember when I used to whine about 10 pages.

Any way, summer is here, so I’ll be posting a bit more. Lots of great things happening this year. Happy writing!

Writing a Young Adult Fantasy Series? What you need to know.

Book Cover of “The Mirror Sliver”

Legends of Green Isle is my baby.  Six books with the possibility of three additional ones which tell the back story of Green Isle, has been in the process since 2003.  I’m amazed at how people can generate books within a few short months.  I guess that’s why I’m blogging about Legends today, because it’s taking me quite a while to complete these.  I thought I could do the same thing, write them out in a few years, but reality set in as I was creating the outlines, the characters, the world, the story itself.  It’s not that easy.

Preparing this series, I realized that weaving the story throughout six books requires an in-depth examination of the tale as I completed the outlines themselves.  I was going to need to make sure that what I was writing in book two concurs with book one and also book six.  For example, a key that is silver in book one doesn’t turn into a gold one by book five. (Haha).    

I also got back the first word from my editor after I sent her the first fifteen chapters of Book Two – “The Mirror Sliver.” Our May release had to be pushed off as she requested that I rewrite and add some chapters in the beginning to make the story flow from book one to book two.

Outlining has been a difficult part of the process for me.  I’m not an outliner normally, I shoot from the hip.  Yet, with this series, I found that NOT creating an outline will lead me down a path I don’t wish to go, and that would be, forgetting some important detail from a previous book that needs to be brought out in one of the next books.  For example, a haunted portrait in book one, mentioned briefly, will have a dramatic effect in book three.  Can’t forget those types of detail, so an outline must be created.  (It was a most daunting task.) My boyfriend Kevin has to listen to me sometimes talk about the story, and is in amazement that I have all of it up in my head.  (I had a most horrid thought a while ago that if I perished before the series was done who would complete it since all of it was in my head.  Another reason I created the outlines and notes on characters. Perhaps one of my children would pick up the pieces and finish it.)

Creating an adventure that would appeal to young adults was also another hurtle.  I stopped reading all young adult books because I didn’t want my story to be influenced by any other author’s creative stories. (i.e. Harry Potter)  Music seemed to inspire me though, so I would listen to the Lord of the Rings albums.

Map of Green Isle

So what can you expect as an author wishing to create a long series of Young Adult Fantasy books?  Lots of outlining, pre-planning, character creation (write them down and address their personalities), the world in which they live (helpful is you design a map and the important places for your own viewpoint), and a good editor who can see where the story is supposed to go and get it there. (Thanks Jessica Keaton!)

I can honestly say, never hurry a great idea, it must be simmered and stirred.

Awesome Friend, Cindy Brown and Her “Sunshine Award.” A WooHoo Week!

It’s been one of those weeks when everything that could go wrong with technology in our house is going wrong.  Well not everything, just the computers. I am not mobile anymore as now my laptop has to be plugged into the router in order to get online.  How in the heck did we manage before this?  I actually had to go to the bank in person, to check my balance yesterday because we couldn’t access the internet.  It was frustrating.  I can no longer lay in bed and tweet on my Iphone.  Okay, okay, I know…I have become smitten with the easy access of WiFi.   Last week was a great week compared to this one.  Lots of little problems cropping up, like the dream I had about ants running amuck in my house. Even discovered that my GRE score is not acceptable for the Education department here at YHC in order to substitute it for the GACE testing for teachers.  It was 1 point shy.  😦  Oh the joys of standardized testing.  I really do not believe that I am a stupid person, but these tests are whittling away at my ego.
ON a much brighter note,  I was pleasantly surprised last Wednesday when Kev and I got back home after being out on our little island in the middle of Lake Chatuge camping with critters and the stars, to come back to the cyber world and find a nice note from Cindy Brown (Everyday Underwear)  telling me she was giving me an award on her WooHoo Wednesday blog.  It touched my soul to be noticed by such gifted and wonderful writers last week.
As a recipient for the Sunshine Award, I have to answer the following questions:
Favorite number: “Three. Don’t know why, but it just is.”  This is Cindy’s words, and I left it as is, because for some reason it’s mine too.  Any combination of 3 like 33 or 333 I just find fascinating.
Favorite Non-alcoholic drink: Cold Southern Ice Tea.  I make a fresh pot everyday.
Facebook or Twitter: I started out Facebook, but have to say Twitter is growing on me.
My Passion: I am always a little leery about saying “I have a passion” for anything.  It’s almost like saying I love ice cream (which I do), I love sports, I love camping, I have a passion for the 80s type music, I have a passion for cooking, I have a passion for tattoos.   There is conflict in emotion with the word.  So I’d rather say I delve into writing with lost abandonment,  garden like there is no tomorrow, draw with feeling and quilt with a reserve of energy.
Favorite pattern: The old fashion quilt ones that nobody does anymore.
Favorite Day of the Week: Wednesday.  It’s half-way.
Favorite Flower: I love Impatiens, especially the hot pink ones.
Now I must nominate 10 fellow bloggers to be the next Sunshine recipients:
Some great fellow Triberr members and bloggers.  Give them a visit and a shout “Hello.”  Hope all have a great week!  Me…I shall be tied to the router.

Thank You: An Appreciation of the “One Lovely Blog Award.”

Being in the social media network you meet some wonderful people who become friends even though you may never speak to them other than across the web.  One such dear friend is Belinda Witzenhausen who is such an inspiration with her blog.   A freelance writer, editor, creativity coach, online radio show producer, artist and amateur photographer, Belinda has been a refreshing inspiration to me each day I open my email and read her words or see her photos.  It was a great and special surprise when I received a note from her saying she mentioned me in her blog, and when I visited her site, I saw she nominated me for the “One Lovely Blog Award.”  What an honor!  Thank you Belinda!  I appreciate your nomination!

There are some rules to the award:

  • Thank the person/people who nominated you and link back to them in your post.
  • Share 7 things about yourself.
  • Nominate 15 or so bloggers you admire
  • Contact your chosen bloggers to let them know.

Okay so here is 7 things about myself:

  1. I have one more year of undergraduate work to do at Young Harris College, and I’m scared to death of Student Teaching in the Spring of 2013.
  2. My greatest hero is my son Christian Wallace, who is in the 101st Airborne Division and jumps out of planes.
  3. My best friend in the world is Kevin Henderson, who not only is a wonderful boyfriend, but is the dirt that keeps up my rock. (Dirt and Rock forever!)
  4. I have two beautiful daughters Calle and Kelsey and they both live in Texas.
  5. I have a love for quilting and wish I had more time to sew.
  6. I love to draw, especially if its messy and encompasses charcoal.
  7. I live in the North Georgia Mountains and where my house is, we’re just minutes from the lake.

Enough about me.  On to some wonderful Bloggers.

  1. http://shootabout.com/author/96arley/  – Arley is a young man about my daughter Kelsey’s age and love photography about as much as she does.  He disappeared off he radar for a while because he had his wisdom teeth removed, but now my email is once again filled with his delightful photos.
  2. http://fuonlyknew.wordpress.com/author/fuonlyknew/ – Laura has a very informative blog.  She is always doing reviews on books.
  3. http://josephpinto.wordpress.com/ – Joseph Pinto feeds my need for a little horror.
  4. http://todayinhh.com/about/ – Peter Kevin Connell who calls himself the Ill-humored Author does a fun twist on “heritage” history.  He always makes me laugh.
  5. http://cabingoddess.com/aboutkriss/ – Kriss Morton Weekley lives in one of my old haunts – Fairbanks, AK.  She does some wonderful blogging and reviews.
  6. http://blogkelliannesweeneydeardiary.wordpress.com/ – Dear Diary Blog by Kellianne Sweeney.  I love her poems and other writings.
  7. http://www.christina-carson.com/ – Christiana Carson, who if I had known in life before the internet, would have probably been a mentor.
  8. http://mkempher.com/ – Mary Ann Kempher – Supplies all my romance needs and is just an all around nice person.
  9. http://knightslanding.wordpress.com/ – Stephen Knight’s blog “Knight’s Landing” (made me think of medieval times, but  when I visit it, it is filled with Zombies.)
  10. http://shannonmayer.blogspot.com/ – I love Shannon Mayer’s blog and book covers.
  11. http://www.2girlsonabench.com/ – These two ladies keep me in stitches sometimes.
  12. http://chickletslit.wordpress.com/ – Trish Gentry ( I love the fact she is a paralegal like I was in my life previous to being a mountain woman, writer and tamer of bears.)
  13. http://ericbt.webs.com/  – Eric is a wonderful twitter friend who is always supportive of EVERYONE.
  14. http://www.kirkusmacgowan.info/ Kirkus Macgowan – A wonderful Dad who writes and Blogs (Love his blog name, “Diapers, Bookmarks, and Pipe Dreams”)
  15. http://krystalwade.blogspot.com/ Krystal Wade a young woman who has beautiful things to say.

I know I could go on and on, but I must stop at 15.  Thanks again Belinda for the nomination and thoughts!