Posted in books, Guest Author, Writing

Writers Living Right by Sharon Ledwith

Hello everyone, I hope all is well with you. I’ve got a guest today and she’s going to talk about Writers Living Right…take it away, Sharon!

Writers Living Right…

Writers are mostly on their butts doing what they love to do, but our bodies were made to move. I used to write first thing in the morning to get my word count, but as the day blossomed, exercise went on the back burner. So I kick-start my day by either doing free weights, abdominal exercises, and push-ups, or gliding on my elliptical for 20 minutes. Once the exercise routine is done in the morning, I feel recharged and ready to start the rest of the day writing, planning, marketing, or promoting my books. I still try to get up and stretch every hour, and to make sure I do this, I purchased a small trampoline and keep it in my writing office. Believe me, it gets all those author parts moving and shaking in all the right places!

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Another healthy lifestyle tip for writers is to take breaks throughout the day. The truth is—we all need to periodically step away. We skip breaks in the name of “getting one more page written,” but when we don’t break from our work, our productivity suffers. We lose focus. We start making small mistakes and even forget things altogether. Our bodies have a natural ebb-and-flow response to stress that allows us to work hard and then relax and recover. The problem comes when we chronically trigger those responses. We become all flow and no ebb, and you can only cheat the system so long before it becomes counterproductive. Set a timer if you must, or download an app that will remind you to pull away from your task, but for the sake of your health, give yourself a break!

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Want another reason to rest and recharge your writing muscles? I find if I overuse my computer mouse—whether writing a novel, editing, blogging, or engaging in social media—my wrist starts to throb. Then I know it’s time to put on a wrist brace, and rest my hand as much as possible. Or I switch up and use my other hand. Eye strain happens more when I’m revising and proofing. Sometimes I use an eye patch to give my sore eye a rest. The one thing writers don’t want to screw around with is the health of their eyes. So take frequent breaks when proofing or editing. Your eyes will thank you. The key for me as a writer is that I’ve learned to listen to my body. I stop if it hurts. I rest. Stretch if I need to release the kinks. It’s pretty much all common sense!

One more thing. Hydrate, hydrate, hydrate! Your body needs lubrication. Water massages your major organs, flushes toxins from your body, increases energy and relieves fatigue. And if that wasn’t enough to get you periodically up out of your seat to go grab a glass or bottle of water, drinking enough water can also help with weight loss. A bonus for any writer who doesn’t want to drag around that secretarial spread behind them. So, drink to your health, and bottoms up!

What do you do to recharge your batteries throughout the day? How often do you take a break? If you’re a writer, what are you doing to promote health and well-being in your life? Would love to read and respond to your comments! Cheers and thank you for reading my post!

The Last Timekeepers Time Travel Adventure Series:

The Last Timekeepers and the Dark Secret, Book #2 Buy Links:

MIRROR WORLD PUBLISHING ׀ AMAZON ׀ BARNES & NOBLE ׀

The Last Timekeepers and the Arch of Atlantis, Book #1 Buy Links:

MIRROR WORLD PUBLISHING ׀ AMAZON ׀ BARNES & NOBLE ׀

Legend of the Timekeepers, prequel Buy Links:

MIRROR WORLD PUBLISHING ׀ AMAZON ׀ BARNES & NOBLE ׀

Mysterious Tales from Fairy Falls Teen Psychic Mystery Series:

Lost and Found, Book One Buy Links:

MIRROR WORLD PUBLISHING ׀ AMAZON ׀ BARNES & NOBLE ׀

Blackflies and Blueberries, Book Two Buy Links:

MIRROR WORLD PUBLISHING ׀ AMAZON ׀ BARNES & NOBLE ׀

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Sharon Ledwith is the author of the middle-grade/young adult time travel adventure series, THE LAST TIMEKEEPERS, and the teen psychic mystery series, MYSTERIOUS TALES FROM FAIRY FALLS. When not writing, researching, or revising, she enjoys reading, exercising, anything arcane, and an occasional dram of scotch. Sharon lives a serene, yet busy life in a southern tourist region of Ontario, Canada, with her spoiled hubby, and a moody calico cat.

Learn more about Sharon Ledwith on her WEBSITE and BLOG. Look up her AMAZON AUTHOR page for a list of current books. Stay connected on FACEBOOK, TWITTER, PINTEREST, LINKEDIN, INSTAGRAM, and GOODREADS.

BONUS: Download the free PDF short story The Terrible, Mighty Crystal HERE

Posted in books, Personal, Writing

Self-Doubt: The Silent Killer

Hello everyone, I hope all is well with you. I’m back today after a busy week at work and writing. I’ve finally gotten through my story. I’ve eliminated quite a few words because I really had to scale it down. It’s coming around. I’m really excited about it.

But enough about that. Today I’d like to talk about self-doubt. As you know self-doubt is something that writers and artists suffer from. It’s the slayer of many stories and paintings. We all suffer from it. Remember when we were kids and we weren’t afraid of anything? We just found joy in creating? That’s the mindset we need to get back.

I call self-doubt the silent killer. Why? Because it has stifled more creative voices than criticism ever will. It’s that tiny voice in your head telling you you’re not good enough. There’s no way to argue with it because it knows every mistake and tiny flaw you have. It magnifies the missteps or flaws until it’s all that you see.

While a critic? You can argue with a critic because they don’t know all the mistakes and imperfections the voice in our head does. A critic doesn’t really “know,” does he? Whereas that voice knows all.

It blows everything out of proportion and steals your inspiration. So, how do you deal with self-doubt. How do you silence that inner voice and move forward?

First, you surround yourself with people who believe in you. This is a must. These people will help you crush that voice when it starts in on you. To find like minded people you could join a club or a writer’s group. They will help you stay strong.

But what about those times when you can’t talk to those shining stars that talk you down from the ledge? That’s when you need to put together some positive affirmations. You can put them in a book by your desk, or tape them to your computer, or to your mirror. Whatever works for you.

Sometimes that inner critic comes out when you’re tired. When that happens, all you need to do is rest. This is when self-care is critical. I know when I’m tired or feeling out of balance that voice comes on strong. So, it’s important to recognize when you’re just worn out and need a change of scenery. Dealing with your inner critic means you must know yourself well.

Remember, you’ll never silence that voice, but you can weaken it until it’s only a whisper. You can do this by surrounding yourself with like-minded people, positive affirmations, and self-care.

Thanks for stopping by and reading my post. Do you have any techniques you use to silence the self-doubt that seeps into your work? Leave a comment! I’d love to hear from you!

Posted in Guest Author, Writing

From the Writing Trenches with Linda Ransom

Hello everyone, I hope all is well with you! Today, I have a guest post from author Linda Ransom and she’s writing today about how to deal with anxiety and self-doubt. Take it away, Linda!

A Post from the (Writing) Trenches

            Writing is difficult. What I have found, however, in writing a young adult fantasy trilogy and now moving onto another young adult fantasy series, is that the anxiety and self-doubt that accompany the written word are even harder to manage.

            Anxiety and self-doubt are things most writers learn to deal with as they go, but that doesn’t mean those things go away. In fact, they usually get worse the more books you write and publish. This seems odd, you might think, and you’re right – it is odd. I can only speak for myself, and from my own experience, of course; some writers may never feel pressure about their work.

            With each book I write and publish, I wonder if it’s good. Will anyone want to read it? What if my characters aren’t compelling enough? What if no one cares about them as much as I do? All of these questions, and countless more, roam randomly through my mind every day. Mind you, sometimes not as loudly as other days – sometimes the questions are mere whispers that I’m able to ignore. Other days, like right now, as I’m writing this, they roar. The doubt and anxiety shriek inside my head so much that I want to go back to bed and never, ever, write again.

            What causes the stress and the doubt?  Sometimes, it’s bad reviews. More often than not, though, it’s my inner critic. Every writer has one. The IC lives to tell you how terrible you are. It loves to nitpick every single thing you write. On a writer’s best day, she can tell it to be quiet. Or, you know, yell, “SHUT UP!” at it. Those days, it’s easy to believe in yourself and your work. You love your story, your characters.

            And then there are the other days. For me, that’s today. My next series, The Traitors’ War, is one I’ve been circling around and working on since 2005. I have numerous notebooks and Pinterest boards devoted to it. I’ve written the first book several times; it’s never been right. But I just finished what is probably the fifth or sixth draft of it (I’ve lost count by now), and it’s good. It’s right.

            Or, I thought it was, when I finished it last week (September 5th). Today, when I’m almost a week out from it? The Inner Critic is telling me how bad it really is, how no one would ever want to read it, and that my time spent writing is wasted.

            On my best day, I don’t hear my IC. On a good day, a normal day, I can keep its buzzing voice down so it’s not that noticeable. And on a day like today, I just listen to it, because maybe it’s right. Maybe my time would be better spent doing something else, like a reading a book by one of my favorite authors, a writer who knows what she’s doing.

            But the thing is, does she? Do any of us who write? Or do they do what I have to do: plow ahead anyway, pretending like they know they’re decent, maybe even good, writers?  One can only hope. I know I’m not alone in this struggle with the IC. But even if I am, there’s nothing to be done for it but to keep writing, because I’ve discovered over time that I can’t not write. I can’t let my fantasy world I’ve built up over the last fifteen years waste away out of fear that I’m not good enough for it.

            That’s really the root of the thing for me. I love Imperium, my fantasy world, so much, and the people in it, that I’m afraid I’m not the writer it needs. I’m afraid it needs a better, stronger, smarter writer, that it deserves one. But I also believe that stories find the one meant to tell them, too. I believe Imperium came to me because I can handle it. I believe the same of my Flying Ponies trilogy, too. Those antique magical carousel horses and the Flynn family wanted insignificant me to tell their story, and I did, to the best of my ability. Another writer could’ve done it better, I’m sure. I’m still learning my craft. But they chose me, and I’m so glad they did. That was a marvelous adventure, and I know I’ll have many more with The Traitors’ Warif I don’t listen to my Inner Critic.

            So what’s a writer to do when the anxiety and self-doubt set in? I think the answer is, it’s different for everyone. Every writer is unique. Every story is different. And your IC is specific to you, too, and the kind of stories you write. Writing all of this down, getting it all out – it helps. Will it help you? I don’t know. But once you find what works for you, what keeps your IC at bay – use it. Do it. Why?

            Because no one can tell your story but you.

No description available.

It’s time for the final round-up. Charlotte Flynn has fought enemies, battled monsters and fallen in love. Now, with the help of Black, Dante and her family and friends, she will face down Penumbra and his herd one last time. Penumbra’s power has grown. Summoning all the loose magic to himself, the dapple-grey has become almost invincible. Only a few Flying Ponies, including Dreadful and Chieftain, can withstand his call. Knowing time is running out, Charlotte and her allies make a stand at a run-down amusement park. There they hope to trap Penumbra and strip away his magic. But little do they realize how truly dark his magic has grown, or how strong. Charlotte will have to unite her family and ally with her enemies if she has any hope of defeating Penumbra and unifying the Flying Ponies for good.

Spin (The Flying Ponies) https://www.amazon.com/dp/1732058849/ref=cm_sw_r_fm_apa_i_mP7zFbKXB3SBP

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Lift (The Flying Ponies) https://www.amazon.com/dp/1732058806/ref=cm_sw_r_fm_apa_i_3P7zFb0QC7B2Y

XMA Header Image

Tilt (The Flying Ponies) https://www.amazon.com/dp/1732058822/ref=cm_sw_r_fm_apa_i_kQ7zFbZWB3F80

Thanks, Linda for being a guest today and sharing your thoughts! It’s greatly appreciated. How about you? How do you deal with your anxiety and self-doubt? Leave a comment! I’d love to hear from you!

Posted in mental-health, Writing

Dealing with Disappointment

Hello everyone, I hope all is well with you. I’m back today after a week of busyness with work, writing, and kids. The beginning of the school year is hard for me because I have to put my writing on the back burner and deal with back to school chores.

Even though we did virtual learning for the first three weeks, it was still busy. Next week, we start the in-person learning and I have to say, I’m nervous. However, both boys want to do in-person and I’m abiding by their wishes. They miss their friends and they need to get away from their computers. So, cross your fingers for me.

But enough about that, today I’d like to talk about goals. I want to get away from the virus for a short time, so I’m going to focus on something more positive.

What do you do when you don’t reach your goal? Let’s say you don’t find that agent or publisher? Or you don’t get that promotion? What then? It’s disappointing for sure, so how do you handle that setback? I know what you’re thinking…this was supposed to be a positive post. Bear with me. It is. 😉

I’ve found a way to take the bite out of that disappointment. The way I handle it is…I feel the disappointment, but then focus on another goal. I have three or four goals I’m trying to achieve at one time.  For example, I’m trying to lose weight and maintain my health, so I have exercise and dietary goals. I am also trying to move up in my work environment, so I have professional goals. So, when one goal doesn’t come to fruition, I focus on another one until the disappointment subsides.

For example, let’s say I don’t get the job I applied for, so I change my focus and focus on the fact that I lost some weight, or I finished my novel, or I started a new one. By doing this, I move on much more quickly and don’t sink into that pit of despair. This technique works for me and I hope it’ll work for you, too.

So, how do you handle setbacks? Leave a comment! I’d love to hear from you!

Posted in Writing

Handling Rejection

 

Hello everyone, I hope all is well with you. I’m back today after another busy week at work, and the bustle of starting another school year. We had a few hiccups, but we’ve worked them out, and the boys are settling in to online learning. I’ve also been working on my writing and my story is coming together. This one is flowing and I’m hoping to have it done by the end of the year. Fingers crossed. 😊

 

Girl Writing on the Sofa

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But enough about that. Today, I’d like to talk about handling rejection. Rejection is hard to take no matter what the circumstances are. In the writing world, it’s especially hard because all the time and energy you put into your story has to be reflected in a query letter and a few sample pages. It makes it tough if that letter and pages don’t hook the agent, and it is so subjective.

 

no, cancellation, rejection

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I’ve queried agents who have given me a rejection plus some feedback. This is like a nugget of gold. They’ve told me why my pages didn’t draw them in. It’s a learning process and I learn from each one. I haven’t received a form rejection in quite some time, so I’ve got that going for me. 😉

 

The way I handle rejection is by reminding myself that by receiving the said rejection is getting me one step closer to an acceptance. That’s all it is, a stepping stone to the right agent. So, that’s the attitude I have when I get a rejection and I feel it’s a positive one.

 

acceptance, tolerance, town sign

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When you write, you need to be open to criticism and to revising your story. I know it’s hard to kill your darlings, but we want our story to not only land agent, but to sell when it’s published. So, take that rejection on the chin, rise, and brush yourself off.  Make those revisions and be the amazing author I know you can be. You’ve got this.

 

How do you handle rejection? Leave a comment! I’d love to hear from you!

Posted in Family, quarantine, Writing

Have you got the Pandemic Blues?

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Hello everyone, I hope all is well with you. I’m back today after a week of vacation. I needed the break. It was a great week of sun, boat rides, and swimming. There’s something about being by the water that seems to calm my restless soul.

When we go up north, it’s easy to forget about the pandemic and the restrictions and the illness. We’re in our own little world of boating, swimming, watching sunsets, and just enjoying our down time. I think everyone needs to do this. Get out of the house and go somewhere and just have some fun.

Wave

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When you work from home, you tend to never leave. You don’t need to unless it’s   to go to the store or run a few errands. It’s easy to get stuck in a rut during these times.

To keep my spirits up, I’m exercising more. That means I’m running. I’m not fast. I won’t be winning any competitions, but it helps me keep a positive attitude and it’s good for my body. Did you know running is good for your bones? If you’re worried about osteoporosis take up running. I just had a bone density scan and my doctor says he can tell I’ve been exercising. 🙂

 

Blonde Woman Running Over The Pedestrian Crossing

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I’m also writing more, which helps me focus on something other than this pandemic and all the information flying around about it. I’ve finished one story and I’ve got another one going and it’s going well. I’m liking this new one almost as much as the one I just finished. The one I just finished has a lot of my heart and soul in the story. I’m very excited about it.

 

typewriter, keyboard, paper, letters, work, desk

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I’ve also started collecting recipes to make some new and exciting meals. We’ve gotten into kind of a food rut lately, and we’ve been eating out more. Which isn’t the best for our health. Cooking with your family is a great way to spend some quality time together and cook up some new healthy meals.

 

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So, the point I’m trying to make is, use this pandemic to work on some projects you haven’t had time to start. You’ll feel productive and it’ll help get your mind off your circumstances. Make it work for you.

How are you spending your time during quarantine? Have you started any new projects? Leave a comment! I’d love to hear from you!

Posted in Writing

Confessions of a Recovering Pantser

 

Hello everyone, I hope all is well with you. I’m back today after a busy week at work and I finally finished a scene I’ve been working on. I’m getting closer to the end of my story. It’s been hard trying to balance writing, work, and family, but I’m managing, but enough about that.

Today I want to talk about writing. I haven’t spoken about it in a long time because I’ve been busy trying to get my story down. It’s a huge undertaking to write a novel. You have to get the characters down and then the setting and plot. I used to write by the seat of my pants, but this last story I plotted out, and even though it takes longer by plotting, I do find my story is better, and there is less editing. This story has taken me a couple of years to write. I’ve written it over a couple of times and it’s better each time because practice makes perfect, right?

Photo on VisualHunt

Being a Pantser, affords the writer a lot of freedom. Plotting, I’ve found, makes you rein in that wildness inside yourself and forces you to move in a direction. Sometimes, I miss my pantsing style. It was so free and easy, but when I look at my story after plotting it out and I realize it is the way to go.

So, for me to master the art of plotting, I had to study it first. So, I purchased the craft book, “Story Engineering,” by Larry Brooks. I recommend it to all of you aspiring writers out there. It takes you step by step through the plotting process and makes sense of your story.  I wish I had read this before I started writing, but live and learn, right?

 

 

The vast majority of writers begin the storytelling process with only a partial understanding where to begin. Some labor their entire lives without ever learning that successful stories are as dependent upon good engineering as they are artistry. But the truth is, unless you are master of the form, function and criteria of successful storytelling, sitting down and pounding out a first draft without planning is an ineffective way to begin.

Story Engineering starts with the criteria and the architecture of storytelling, the engineering and design of a story–and uses it as the basis for narrative. The greatest potential of any story is found in the way six specific aspects of storytelling combine and empower each other on the page. When rendered artfully, they become a sum in excess of their parts.

You’ll learn to wrap your head around the big pictures of storytelling at a professional level through a new approach that shows how to combine these six core competencies which include:

• Four elemental competencies of concept, character, theme, and story structure (plot)
• Two executional competencies of scene construction and writing voice

The true magic of storytelling happens when these six core competencies work together in perfect harmony. And the best part? Anyone can do

 

I also purchased Steven King’s book, “On Writing, A Memoir of the Craft.” This book encouraged me to keep writing. You need to write as often as possible. You need to practice, practice, practice.  That’s what I took away from his book. He gives practical advice in his memoir and gives me hope that I may eventually reach that New York Bestselling Author status I’m striving for.

 

Immensely helpful and illuminating to any aspiring writer, this special edition of Stephen King’s critically lauded, million-copy bestseller shares the experiences, habits, and convictions that have shaped him and his work.

“Long live the King” hailed Entertainment Weekly upon publication of Stephen King’s On Writing. Part memoir, part master class by one of the bestselling authors of all time, this superb volume is a revealing and practical view of the writer’s craft, comprising the basic tools of the trade every writer must have. King’s advice is grounded in his vivid memories from childhood through his emergence as a writer, from his struggling early career to his widely reported, near-fatal accident in 1999—and how the inextricable link between writing and living spurred his recovery. Brilliantly structured, friendly and inspiring, On Writing will empower and entertain everyone who reads it—fans, writers, and anyone who loves a great story well told.

So, there you have it, two craft books I’d recommend. What craft books have made an impact on your writing? Leave a comment! I’d love to hear from you!

 

Posted in Health, Writing

Is it Worth it?

 

Hello everyone, I hope all is well with you. I’m back today after almost two months of non-writing. Today, I finally broke the trend and did some editing of one of my stories. I’m back in the saddle again and it feels good. Whenever, I go through these stages of non-writing, I always read because I love to, and when I’m suffering from a little burn out, reading is always my “go to” activity. There’s nothing more comforting on a cold, rainy day than a good book. Am I right, or am I right?

Photo on Visualhunt.com

But enough about that. When I first started this post, I was going to give you a good list of some of the books I’ve been reading, but then inspiration hit, and I’ve decided to write about something else. I’ll do the book one later. 😉

 

Today, I’d like to talk about sacrifices. I know it’s not really a pleasant subject, but one that I feel has to be addressed. You see, all the great writers, artists, and athletes made sacrifices to get where they are now. They sacrificed time with their families and loved ones to practice and create. That shows grit and initiative and that’s great. I’m sure they don’t regret their success. However, I wonder if they ever ask themselves if it was worth it?

Photo credit: The U.S. Army on Visualhunt.com / CC BY

At first glance, you may think I’m crazy for having such a thought, but it’s out there now, so let’s run with it.

Was their success worth their sacrifice?

It’s a good question and I wish I had someone like Michael Jordan or Stephen King around to ask. I’m sure they would say yes, but it’s something I struggle with. Because we all would love to have that kind of success, but the time away from family is hard to take sometimes. So, every time I sit down to write, I ask myself, can I indulge my passion at this time? Am I neglecting my family’s needs? Because let’s face it, I’m not going to get these moments back. So, there are times when I put the computer away and hang out with my family, watching a silly movie or watch my youngest play tennis. It’s a conscious choice during these moments to put my writing on the back burner and sometimes it’s hard, but it’s worth it.

Photo credit: sdobie on VisualHunt.com /CC BY-NC

So, whenever you’re feeling bad because you’re not putting as much effort into your writing or you just need to take a break. Stop yourself. Because moments with your family can disappear in an instant and you might not ever get them back and my motto is live without regret.

 

So, do I regret not spending time writing the last two months? Well, there are moments when I think I should be further along in my story than what I am, but then I look at the fact that I was sick, so I had to take care of myself. Then I look at the tennis matches I got to watch and see the joy on my youngest’s face when he would see me show up at his tennis game and the sacrifice was worth it. I don’t regret it.

Photo on Visualhunt

Yes, it’ll take me longer to get to that bestseller’s list but that’s okay. I’ll have enjoyed the journey to get there much more because I didn’t miss any important steps along the way.

So, when you see other authors getting an agent or hitting the bestseller’s list and you feel like you’re missing out, just think of it as it’s their time to shine. It’s not yours yet. You’re still working on being a great mom and being there for your kids. You’ll get your moment when it’s your time.

Photo on Visualhunt

So, relax and enjoy your journey. Enjoy all the steps along the way. It’ll make the destination that much sweeter!

Thanks for reading my post today! How do you feel? Are you enjoying your journey? Leave a comment. I’d love to hear from you!

 

 

Posted in Guest Author, Writing

Please Welcome Linda Ransom!

 

Hello everyone, I hope all is well with you. Today, I’ve invited a guest to stop by and share her story with us. Her name is Linda Ransom and her book looks wonderful. Give Linda a big hand! Take it away Linda!!

 

REINVENTING  THE FLYNNS

A few years back, I decided to participate in NANOWRIMO, or National Novel Writing Month. The goal of NANOWRIMO, for all of its many participants, is to complete 50,000 words by the end of November, the chosen month for the writing competition. I decided to write a story I’d been making notes for, called Smoke City Heroes. It centered on the Flynn family, a group of six siblings who lived with their eccentric Uncle Baron after both of their parents had passed away. The kids decide to become super heroes after witnessing the many crimes and gangs overtaking Smoke City, where they live.

I absolutely loved the idea. Two notebooks were filled with characters pictures and information, and information on the city itself. November came and I started writing, eager to see the siblings develop into crime-fighting heroes.

Long story short, as they say: the story tanked around 200 pages, and I didn’t hit my 50,000 word count. I liked what I had written, but the story wasn’t flowing like it should, and my main characters, the Flynn family, didn’t seem to be enjoying it, either. Being a writer who doesn’t outline her stories (at least, not more than a few sentences), I count on my characters and the story itself to direct where it’s going. When that doesn’t happen, everything hits a brick wall.

Giving up on the Flynns, I moved on to an epic fantasy story that I completed and sent to a publisher. That story was rejected – it’s being rewritten and will be my next series after the completion of The Flying Ponies trilogy – and I needed something new to work on. In August of 2016, I was browsing my Pinterest home page, and came across a picture of an antique carousel horse that hadn’t been restored (as of the picture’s date). I started thinking about that old horse, and what would happen if he was endowed with ancient magic.

From that idea, the Flying Ponies Grand Carousel was born. Built in the early teen years of the 1900’s, the horses on the carousel were given magic by their owner and placed on Coney Island. After the carousel was removed, it ended up in the Michigan woods. With the story set in our modern time, I needed characters to help the story develop. Remembering how much I had enjoyed writing the Flynn family, I got out my old Smoke City Heroes notebook and looked at their character sketches again. Deciding to take them out of their old story setting and place them in this new one was the best thing I could’ve done, for them and for me.

That idea about magical flying carousel horses turned into Lift, first in The Flying Ponies trilogy. It released in April 2018 from Wicked Whale Publishing. Book two in the trilogy, Tilt, was emailed to my editor earlier this week, on December 10th.

The Flynn family (and Smoke City itself) helped make Lift the book it is. If I had drawn up other characters I don’t know as the story would’ve evolved in the same way. Charlotte, the main character in the trilogy, bonded with the carousel horses and became a stronger character than she could’ve been in Smoke City Heroes. The same is true for the rest of the Flynns; they all grew and became better as a result. For a writer who is concerned with story and character over plot and its many devices, watching characters get up and walk around and become real people is mesmerizing, and that’s what happened after placing the Flynns within the structure of Lift.

If you have characters you love but their stories didn’t pan out the way you wanted, or they hit a brick wall like my initial story with the Flynns did, try placing them in a new story, a new situation. Characters are funny creatures; we as the writers create them, but once they have a space of their own, they become real and want to run the show themselves. While that might seem scary if that’s not how you usually write, it’s an amazing thing, and it can make your writing leap off the page and take twists and turns you never see coming.

           

 

Lift is available as both a soft cover and an e-book on Amazon here: (click the link below)

Available on Amazon

Author bio:

  1. M. Ransom lives in West Michigan with her husband, son, and daughter. She also shares her home with two crazy Dachsunds, and her heart with two naughty ponies. L.M. is a librarian by trade, and an author by passion. She draws from her lifelong love and obsession with all things equine to spin tales about nefarious carousel horses.
    A self-professed geek girl, L.M.’s fandoms span the galaxy from Tatooine to Gallifrey, and back down to the seedy streets of Gotham City. As a Christian, she feels a calling to tell clean, intriguing stories for readers to escape into. You can find L. M. on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, and lmransom.com.