BRINGING CHARACTERS TO LIFE

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      “Every person’s feelings have a front-door and a side-door by which they may be entered”

(Oliver Wendell Holmes Sr.)

 

WERE YOU EVER TOLD: “YOU DID NOT BRING  CHARACTERS TO LIFE?”

I was, and it was the biggest let-down I could ever imagine. My first reaction was: if I could not bring life to my characters, why am I writing?  I put the rejected manuscript in a drawer, hidden in shame. After weeks of disappointment, I took the manuscript out of the drawer and   re-read my draft.  That is when I realized, although I felt the emotions and feelings of my characters, I neglected to reflect those feelings in my writing.

It was evident I had to learn the difference between emotions and feelings. I found a wonderful Article written by David Corbett, in Writers’ Digest.

Emotion is created through action generated by the character. Sometimes it is an action not expected of your character.  Sometimes the character is experiencing multiple emotions in the scene you are creating.  One thing I did learn is to ask myself what is the obvious response my character might have, and then what other emotion is possible. His advice: To make your characters more real, give them unexpected reactions to the scene playing out.  In writing a mystery, the character may exhibit misdirected emotions to overlook the obvious.

Feelings require mental examination of the thoughts and motives of your characters. You can create empathy for your character with feelings.  Is it right or wrong to feel this way? Would a stronger person feel the same?  Is it the only response for the character?  Is the response worse or better than the response to other situations?  Allow your readers enough information to process the meaning of what happened and make a plan how to proceed.  Start with an unexpected element, or a surprise, and find a physical analogy for it.

Using both together, I learned that I can create a character that changes from the beginning to the end of my story. Further, he advises that through the thoughts and actions of the characters, the reader is also taken along the same path of self-awareness as the characters.

With this information, I re-wrote my manuscript, hoping to succeed in bringing my characters to life and not having to experience the same discouraging review again.

I thank David Corbett, author of “The Art of Character, for his informative piece.

Happy Writing,

Paula

Legends of the Unicorn Fact or Fiction?

fairy horse-1LEGENDS OF THE UNICORN, FICTION OR FACT?

After the frenzy about Starbucks’ Unicorn Drink, I decided to look into why the never-ending popularity of this mythical creature continues.

We have all read about the mythical beast represented by a horse with a single straight-horn projected from its forehead The Unicorn is usually represented in glorious white, with a flowing snow-white mane, and angel-like wings that flew with swift speed and power that no creature could ever overtake it.
If they did not exist, then where did the legend of this magical creature come from? Maybe it was North Korea that, on November 30, 2012, the central News Agency of that country stated that scientists re-confirmed the existence and location of the final resting place of the unicorn once ridden by King Dongmyeong. Or, maybe because there are those who believe that it is mentioned in the King James Version of the Bible nine times.
The first written account of a unicorn in western literature comes from the Greek doctor Ctesias in the 4th century BCE. While travelling through Persia, he heard tales of a single-horned “wild horse” roaming that part of the world. In the ancient Lascaux Caves in France a drawing dating back to 15,000 BC depicted a one-or two-horned creature. The original discoverers were confused due to the closeness of the horns. It could have been one. Did you know even Marco Polo reported a unicorn sighting? (He thought them ugly) Genghis Khan claimed to see the creature.
According to scientists what these people saw could have been a rhinoceros.

I like to believe that Unicorns did exist as did Handsome Princes, Princesses, Wizards, Elves, Fairies, and Snow Queens in the magical world of the minds of children.

Information taken from an Article from: “TODAY I FOUND OUT” (Feed Your Brain) in 2014.)

Jack of Hearts

                 LIFE IN THE 1940’S AND 1950’S

Ever wonder about life in the 1940's and 1950's, in New York City?.  What is it like to be a teenager at that time?

 "Jack of Hearts" is such a novel and takes you through a time when teen gangs ruled the neighborhoods, and rebellion was an everyday occurrence. This book has romance, rowdiness, a hint of crime, and lots of rebellion. Street gangs were a brotherhood that demonstrated "strength in numbers". they fought hard to protect their territory with fists and knives, then guns. These teens, like those of today, struggled to reconcile who they are, who they want to be, and who everyone else thinks they should be.

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EXCERPT: CHAPTER ONE:
Eleven o’clock Friday night and the moon, at its brightest, illuminated the evening skies, spreading light into the darkness. It was easy to spot the lone figure, in the distance and recognize the bright red jacket with the familiar “Comets” written in bold black letters.

An enemy has wandered into One Eyed Jacks territory–NOT A SMART THING TO DO!

 

 

Jack of Hearts available in Paperback…..$4.95, plus shipping

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A Lesson Learned

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A LESSON LEARNED

My husband was an “I can do it” person and tackled many home repairs–resulting in unforeseen difficulties.  I believed that he should have had a working knowledge before starting any task.

In writing my first novel, I prided myself on using proper grammar, sentence structure and choice of words.  I reviewed every chapter, carefully checking grammar and punctuation.  It took almost one year to complete.  Then, I sent it for publication, and ordered a few books for my family and friends at the same time.

A proof was sent, and I approved it, confident I had done a good job of editing. The books arrived.  It was exciting to see my name printed in bold on the glossy cover, and to know my story unfolded within the pages. I opened the book, and was shocked when I found misspellings, commas where they did not belong, and incorrect hyphenated words, on many of the pages.

Sometime later, recalling the errors in my first novel, I diligently used the features in Word to check spelling and grammar in editing my second book. Again, I was satisfied with the corrections. But I wanted to be certain it was ready for publication, so I asked a friend to proofread the manuscript, and was perplexed when she discovered more mistakes.

Difficult as it is, I was forced to admit that I was not capable of writing without errors. I realized the fault did not lie in the program from Word.  And it did not lie in the friend who read my draft.   The fault is mine and mine alone.  Why? Because I believed all that could be done, was done, and never re-read the proof before publication.

I, who believed, I was proficient, needed professional help! I found it in the following Websites.

  1. MASTER WRITER. For Songwriting and Creative Writing. Need a collection of words for every occasion, happy, sad, triumphant, weak, strong, phrases, rhymes, sayings, and much more. No matter whether you are writing a song, poem, novel or screenplay, this will help you. This was the first software I downloaded. Master Writer offers a free Trial.  Try it!
  2. AUTO-CRIT: Editing software for Writers. It takes the guesswork out of the editing process.  Their or There, lie, or Lie,–it’s all there to help you become a better writer. Sentences too long or too short–words repeated too often?  Auto-Crit is the only software that customizes your work to a specific genre, whether it is Sci-Fi, Mystery, Young Adult, or Movie.
  3. PRO-WRITING AID: An Editing tool for Academic, Business, Content, Technical, Web, and Fiction Writers. Upload your document, and the summary report denotes overused words, readability, grammar errors, clichés, diction, and improvements to your style of writing. Tell Pro-Writing Aid whether it is for Technical, Creative, Business or General, writing, and this software advises how to improve your style such as use of passive and hidden verbs.

 

Happy Writing,

Paula

Hidden Hills

Book-1 – The Search

In the 21st century, in the mysterious forests of the mountains, dwell a Medieval clan of Fairies, hidden from the world for centuries until a human finds his way to their secluded town, resulting in a chain of events that threaten their existence. In their hidden society where no human ever dared to venture before, the Queen finds herself faced with events testing her authority, the consequences of loving a human, and the ongoing conflict with an evil Goddess who awaits the opportune time when she can destroy the Fairies. The Queen knows that any decision she makes will affect the future of her clan, and all the others she is sworn to protect. In the mortal world, where stories of Gods, Goddesses, Fairies, Elves and magic, are thought to be merely myths, there is no one she can look to for help.

Book-2 “The Selkie“,

A tale of a human female, who died, and is reborn as a seal creature. She assumes human form to enable her to search for her former mate, now wed to Princess Shaylee. The Queen is, once again, placed in a perilous position as she realizes by sending the Selkie, the Goddess Morrigan has launched her attack. Morrigan, in an effort to insure success, sends her warrior son, who falls, in defeat, at the combined magic of the Fairy clans. Her anger is incensed by their victory and she beckons all of her powers to eliminate the fairies and all who come to their aid.

Book-3 “The Stand

In the final Chapter of the conflict between the Fairies and the Goddess Morrigan, their endurance is tested over and over again, as Morrigan attacks each of the Queen’s Allys, by sending supernatural fierce dogs, her Ravens with razor sharp talons, and giant creatures with two heads, resulting in massive death and destruction amongst the elves, the wood Sprites, and all others. The Allies join together in an effort to stop her attacks, and as they grow weary and weakened, with each ineffective counter-offensive, an unlikely hero makes an appearance.

Buy the Hidden Hills Trilogy (in Paperback) for $9.95, plus shipping

THE SEARCH …buy for.. $3.95, plus shipping

THE SELKIE, buy for $3.95, plus shipping

THE STAND, buy for $3.95, plus shipping

KAELYN AND SANTA, DEC . 2016

After two years, my granddaughter asked to see Santa again.  We were happy to learn that she no longer felt uneasy around him, and wanted to advise him of her wish list for Christmas.  She enjoyed a long conversation with him and left feeling happy and the hope he shared with her for the best Christmas ever.

This is the time of year when families come together to enjoy the peace and harmony of the holidays. The cookies are baked; the tables are set and all is festive.The decorated tree is proudly standing in the living room, covered by bright lights and  shiny ornaments . The fireplace is lit and creating the warmth of Winter.  All the gifts are opened and we are all happy and content.

It is now the time to enjoy those who share this holiday with you, and remember those who have gone.

So, I and my family  are taking this opportunity to wish you a wonderful holiday filled with cheer, love and happiness, and hope  that all good things are waiting for you in the New Year.

Paula and family

REVIEWS

HIDDEN HILLS, TRILOGY:

I was very enthralled with the first book and hated to see it come to an end. I cannot wait to get my hands on the next two books.  Love the magic and fantasy that just popped out of the pages as I kept reading.  I really did not want to put the book down.

Roberta.D. FLORIDA

The kids were crazy about you, and were definitely bragging to all the other Classes that you came in for them.  ( Invited to discuss Hidden Hills and what it is to be a writer).

 TEACHER, 6TH GRADE , NEW JERSEY

I just completed all three books of Hidden Hills, and they were great.  The Search was a little slow for me to get into, but being a reader, I had to finish it.  by the time I did, I had to quickly get into The Selkie book.  It kept me on edge and was very exciting.  I was truly amazed with the author’s imagination.  I was eager for more and had to read the last book immediately after.  The Stand ended better than I imagined.  I definitely will give these books to my granddaughters.                                                                    

REGINA D. New Jersey

 


REVIEW OF JACK OF HEARTS

 

thoroughly enjoyed this intriguing and gracefully woven story that takes us through a year in the life of a group of teens from the Bronx, New York in the 40’s.  The book has romance, rowdiness, a hint of crime and a lot of rebellion.  The street gangs at that time were still very much a brotherhood that demonstrated “strength in numbers”. They fought to protect their turf and each other, but more so with fists and knives than guns.  Back then it seems the drug of choice was a cigarette.But peer pressure was still a driving force and like the teens of today, these teens also struggle to reconcile who they are, with who they want to be and who everyone else thinks they should be.

I was drawn into the story by a colorful cast of characters, and kept there by the central love story between Toby and Mila. They face challenge and heartache and their romance constantly twists and turns because of their very different backgrounds and values.  For both of them, life after love will never be the same.

MARIA M


 

Likes it a lot.    TINA B., Florida

 

TO CONTACT ME:   paulaperron@Hotmail.com

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