Tag Archives: authors

Authors Answer 130 – Till Death Do Us Write

For most authors, writing is a long term activity. But how long do authors write? What age do they quit? Or do they quit in their lifetimes? This week, we talk about how long we intend to write.

Question 130 – How long do you think you’ll write? Is there a point when you think you’ll stop?

Tracey Lynn Tobin

I don’t think that I’ll ever really stop writing. I might reach a point in my life when I decide that there’s no point in attempting to publish anymore, but writing in general is just a huge part of who I am. I’ll always scribble out random scenes that pop into my head, or create new stories for other peoples’ characters. It’s not always about the end game of having a completed book; I write for fun, for love, and out of an almost physical need to, and I’m pretty sure that’s how it’s always going to be.

D. T. Nova

Stop entirely? Doesn’t seem very likely.

Gregory S. Close

I think I’ll write until I die.  Not non-stop.  There should be a couple of pee breaks, at least.

Jean Davis

I don’t foresee a reason to stop writing. There may come a time when I write only for myself rather than books I try to sell, but I tend to write the stories I like to read already so that wouldn’t be much of a change.

Eric Wood

I’ve always been drawn to writing. Even as a little kid I loved writing stories. I was always either writing stories or in a journal (not a diary!) or letters to friends to pass in the school halls. I don’t see an end to my writing any time in the near or distant future. Now I write a blog and I’m seriously enjoying it.

Paul B. Spence

What a strange question. I suppose I’ll stop when I’m dead. Why would I ever stop writing? I’m not doing it for the money. I’m writing because I’m a storyteller.

C E Aylett

Now I’ve been doing it for a decade, I can’t see myself ever stopping. However, lately life has become more hectic, complicated and stressful and I’ve lost my mojo a bit. I fully expect it to return, but in the meantime I am forcing bum on seat and even a paragraph a day is progress the way I see it. The only way I could see me stopping would be to let the routine slip, let life totally take control and not make the time for it. In saying that, I have ideas for eight more novels, half of which are already written in various stages of progress. Can’t see me giving those up, tbh.

H. Anthe Davis

I plan to write until I die.  And if we have reached a technological state by then that one can upload consciousness into the internet, or preserve the mind in some other manner, I’d like to continue writing after death too.

Beth Aman

I don’t think I’ll ever permanently stop writing.  I think there will be times when life is just too crazy to write seriously, but I think I will always pick it up again.  (Just like I sometimes go a few months without reading a book, but then I’ll marathon a series in a week.)  Being a writer is a part of who I am, now.  I think I’ll be the 95-year-old woman in a nursing home who won’t stop jotting down bad poetry on old napkins.

Elizabeth Rhodes

I don’t see myself stopping at any point in the future. Realistically, I’ll stop writing when I run out of viable story ideas, but I doubt that will happen or I’d even recognize my newer ideas as nonsense. So, I think I’ll be writing something or other for a good long while.

Cyrus Keith

I’ll stop writing sometime after they close the lid.

Jay Dee Archer

Stop? What’s that? I have far too many stories in my brain to stop writing. I want them out on paper (real and digital) for people to read. The process of writing takes a long time, and I think it’ll take my entire life to get those stories out.

How about you?

If you’re an author, how long do you think you’ll be writing? Let us know in the comments section below.

Authors Answer 129 – Genres Helping Other Genres

People usually read multiple genres, authors included. Authors usually write only one or two genres, though. But can they hone their writing skills in one genre by reading other genres?

Note: This is the first time Authors Answer has been late in 129 posts. I wrote a post about this. A lot of things were going on. #130 should be on time.

Question 129 – Do you think reading different genres can help you with writing in your chosen genre(s)?

Cyrus Keith

Of course. I write science fiction. But I taught myself how to write action sequences by reading Louis L’Amour’s westerns. I taught myself tension from Robert Ludlum and Tom Clancy. I learned revelation from Andre Norton, JRR Tolkein, and Robert Heinlein. The wider your experience, the more tools you get for your tool box.

Elizabeth Rhodes

I think it’s possible. Other genres can introduce you to new tropes and concepts that aren’t necessarily common in your chosen genre. I took some cues from thrillers when writing my science fiction novel Jasper, for example. There’s also something to be said for reading outside of your comfort zone. Who knows? Maybe you’ll pick up some a new genre-blending story idea.

Beth Aman

YES.  YES.  It allows you to experience a much wider scope of voices, and lets you see the strengths of each genre and learn how to adopt them into your own novel.  Who cares if I’m writing a High Fantasy novel?  I want to have characters as good as John Green’s or Rainbow Rowell’s.  Who cares if I’m writing a Contemporary novel?  I want to have a plot as complex as Throne of Glass or City of Bones.  Read wide, read deep, don’t limit yourself.  (But also read stuff in the genre you’re writing – it’s invaluable as well.)

H. Anthe Davis

I certainly don’t think reading other genres can hurt your writing.  It’s good to have a broad mind and an awareness of tropes and techniques throughout fiction (and/or nonfiction).  And there are plenty of novels that class in more than one genre, or subgenres that pull from several parents, so why restrict yourself?

C E Aylett

Well, storytelling is storytelling, no matter the genre, so I expect all reading will teach you something. I can’t read other people’s books when I’m writing my own as I become too distracted by the novel that’s been completed, edited, published and practically perfect compared to my lump of mess. I find I’m thinking about their characters instead of my own and I don’t want to unintentionally apply their story to mine, so I avoid reading novels when I’m working on one.

Paul B. Spence

Certainly. I think a good writer reads just about everything well-written they can get their hands on. I read fantasy, science fiction, horror, thrillers, mysteries, and lots of non-fiction. Many authors have great skills at writing, even if it isn’t in your chosen genre. Anyone can learn a lot from the good writers.

Eric Wood

Most definitely. I think the biggest difference between genres is the setting. Otherwise, the main story elements are closely related. There is still conflict and rising action and climax and a solution across all genres. Therefore, reading any genre will provide an opportunity to brainstorm new conflicts or perhaps an old conflict with a new solution.

Jean Davis

Yes, definitely. Reading other genres helps us pick up ideas and techniques different from our standard genre tools. There are always other angles that can be incorporated into a story to spice it up or help it appeal to a wider audience.

Gregory S. Close

I think reading in different genres is a great way to build your narrative vocabulary.  Genre is a pretty fluid concept as is, but obviously having great skill writing a mystery could prove beneficial if you’re writing a sci fi epic with a mystery at its heart.  Conversely, having a good handle on writing science can help add authenticity to a mystery set in a research laboratory.  Good writing and good technique is always worth reading.

D. T. Nova

Probably. Especially in areas where there’s any overlap.

Tracey Lynn Tobin

Absolutely, yes. It might not seem like it if you’re, for instance, reading romance when you’re writing horror, but every genre has something different to teach you. You never know what kind of literary tricks you might pick up by broadening your horizons and taking a look at what else is out there.

Jay Dee Archer

Definitely. I write mainly science fiction, though I want to write fantasy. I don’t just read those two genres, though. I also read some classics, especially Shakespeare. And I enjoy a lot of science and history. Non-fiction has helped me a lot with my sci-fi writing. I use a lot of science, and my interest in history and cultures helps me with the development of cultures and change of cultures. In my case, the different genres help me with factual information. I think that reading things like historical fiction or war novels can help with writing combat or fighting. Reading fantasy could help with writing different cultures and worldbuilding. There are so many things you can learn by reading other genres.

How about you?

If you’re an author, do you benefit from reading other genres? Let us know in the comments section below.

Authors Answer 128 – Ghostwriting

Books are not written by ghosts, but there are people who ghostwrite. They don’t write under their own name, but under someone else’s. Some people have their reasons to be ghostwriters, while others would prefer to write their own books. But how about us?

Question 128 – Have you ever tried or thought about ghostwriting?

Tracey Lynn Tobin

For the longest time I didn’t even know what ghostwriting was. When I eventually found out I thought the idea sounded very interesting, and I did, in fact, consider it for a while and did some searches around the internet for how one would go about getting into it. In the end, though, I don’t think I really settled into the concept of it. I prefer to write my own ideas, my own stories. I’m not necessarily saying that I’d never do it, but I don’t think it’ll ever be something that I actively seek to do.

D. T. Nova

I’ve never really thought about it. I wouldn’t necessarily be opposed to it.

Gregory S. Close

I have thought about ghostwriting, but unless the money was RIDICULOUS I don’t think it’s worth it.  Words and stories are all that I have to offer the world, and attaching them to another person’s name would be very hard.  If that allowed me to pursue my own writing full time, then maybe it would be worth it.  Otherwise, I want the blood, sweat and vowels I commit to the page credited to me, for better or worse.

Jean Davis

I have not tried or thought about ghostwriting. I have so many ideas of my own that I haven’t had the time to consider other avenues.

Eric Wood

I have both thought about it and done it. I joined an online writing website where clients seek writers for various purposes. The pay wasn’t great, but it was good experience. It may have paid more had I stuck with it… But anyway, I ghostwrote a book based on illustrations I was given. It was about two futuristic kids who flew through the solar system in their dad’s spaceship and learned much about space along the way. It’s called “Mr Eus – Story of the Future” and it’s available through Google Play and iTunes.

Paul B. Spence

No? Why would I?

C E Aylett

Have thought about it, never tried it. I decided I’ve got enough of my own ideas to contend with, let alone wrestling someone else’s. And it’s just another distraction from my own writing, so haven’t gone there yet.

H. Anthe Davis

No interest in doing this!  I have too much of my own stuff to write.

Beth Aman

I’d love to write ghost stories sometime!  Ghosts, demons, vampires, blood, death – wait, what do you mean ‘That’s not what ghostwriting is’?  Jokes aside, real ghostwriting has never seemed appealing to me.  If I’m writing something, I want my name on it.

Elizabeth Rhodes

Honestly, I’ve never considered it. I don’t think I could pull off writing as another person, nor would I want to. If I’m putting in the work to write a story, I want my name on it.

Cyrus Keith

Once, for about fifteen seconds. Then I blinked and looked at my own backlog.

Jay Dee Archer

I was once asked if I’d consider ghostwriting. Well, I didn’t. And I still don’t. I have too much of my own stuff to write. This makes this a very simple answer. I just don’t have the time to even consider doing this.

How about you?

Have you ever thought about ghostwriting? Or have you done any? Let us know in the comments section below.

Authors Answer 124 – Should You Write With Plain Language?

Harry Potter is filled with British slang. Lord of the Rings is filled with constructed languages. Is it worth doing that? Or should books be written with easy to understand plain language?

Question 124 – Avoid foreign words and regional slang. Do you agree or disagree, and why?

Tracey Lynn Tobin

I’m on the fence with this one. On the one hand, using foreign words and regional slang can enhance a character. A foreigner in America, for instance, might let a few words from their primary language slip every now and then to remind the reader that they’re not originally from the book’s main setting. Similarly, certain types of characters would be a lot less believable if you didn’t use certain dialog quirks. A simple example would be that Americans tend to say “soda”, when Canadians tend to say “pop”.

With that in mind, you should definitely carefully consider the types of regional slang you use and whether anyone is going to understand it. For example, I once described a school bus as “the big yellow limo” in a short story, and almost all of the people who read it (online) asked me what on earth a yellow limo was suddenly doing in the scene because they didn’t understand the regional tendency to refer to school buses in that manner.

Gregory S. Close

I think an author should be careful using foreign words and regional slang, but as long as you’re doing it right – go for it!

Jean Davis

Disagree. If we all sounded the same, writing would be pretty boring. There is certainly such a thing as too much when it comes to slang and foreign words, but using them for spice here and there can enhance the story and personality of characters.

C E Aylett

Slang is something that intrigues me no-end. It can say so much about a place, its history, and its people, far more sometimes than the confines of straight English. I’m a massive fan of Irvine Welsh, who writes in Scottish phonetics, and he deliberately wanted to get away from the starchiness of English grammar in his works. I use slang a lot in my own writing, and some foreign words too, if the story requires it. I think the key to using these styles is to make sure the context is clear from the surrounding text or actions within the story.

Beth Aman

Again, depends.  If you’re writing Sci-Fi/Fantasy, it can make or break your story.  My favorite speculative fiction does this well: Eragon, Lord of the Rings, Mortal Instruments, Six of Crows, etc – all these stories have their own worlds with their own words.  The idea is to do it in such a way that feels authentic and also Not-Overwhelming.  Let it come slowly and naturally, and I think it can add a lot to your story.

Eric Wood

I disagree. As writers we need to know that our readers are smarter than we give them credit for. As long as you are using the foreign/slang correctly, the context clues will help the reader figure out the meaning. Just remember to provide the proper context clues. Also, a reader will feel smarter if you allow them this opportunity.

D. T. Nova

They can both be good for establishing setting and for being a part of a character’s voice.

However, if the meaning isn’t obvious from the context, words that aren’t as commonly known should only be used if explaining them is appropriate; or if understanding the word is of secondary importance.

Slang should only be used in dialogue and first-person narration, and it probably is a good idea to avoid slang words that mean different things in different regions.

Cyrus Keith

Disagree. To an extent. They add flavor and spice to your characters. But give them a context so readers can keep up. I have several characters in my books that are either foreign, or speak in a foreign language. I keep it short, use it rarely, and make sure the meaning is implicit in the context. Example, in Unalive, Jenna says to a nurse in Tahiti, “This is critical, Madame … This woman is a very important diplomatic attaché. We must leave for Europe immediately, for her safety. Nous devons partir tout de suite. C’est trés importante.” She finished in French, to make sure she was understood.

H. Anthe Davis

Disagree.  One reason is because of my main genre, fantasy, which has a history of using constructed (imaginary) languages — see Tolkien with Quenya, not to mention all the made-up and tweaked terminology that any story that deals with magic, monsters, et cetera has to get into.  I have several of my own conlangs, and while I try not to use them too much, conlang linguistics is important to the story in places.  Likewise, I think that in things like literary fiction, the use of foreign words or regional slang can be very evocative of place, time, et cetera, and possibly necessary to works translated from a foreign language, where there might be no real equivalent of the desired concept in the translated-to language.  I mean, who would strike deja vu from a manuscript just because it’s not English?  (Pardon my lack of accent marks etc.)

Paul B. Spence

Unless you need to use it. Not everything translates well into English. Ennui, for example. Conveys far more in one word than you can express in a paragraph. I don’t even like French, and I like this word.

Elizabeth Rhodes

This is a rule? It’s news to me. I don’t agree with it in any case. Regional/foreign words are great for establishing that sense of place or filling out a character by giving them an origin. And do we really want all characters to sound the same?

There are also connotations and emotions conveyed much well with regional slang or the dreaded profanity. I dare anyone to put together a string of words that have the same impact as a well-placed “Fuck!”

Jay Dee Archer

Totally disagree. I’m fascinated by languages, and I find that foreign words and slang bring a lot of flavour to a book. If it takes place in the southern US, I want to see some southern slang. If it’s fantasy, and there’s a culture with another language, I want to see some of that language. Of course, it shouldn’t be overdone to the point where you can’t understand what’s going on. But when it’s done right, it makes it quite a bit more interesting. Although it’s not literature, I’m very interested in learning the Klingon language. But I’d also like to learn Quenya.

Another thing about slang is that it can provide you with a clue about when and where the story takes place. Slang evolves over time, and when used in the correct context, it can make the story feel much more authentic.

How about you?

Do you think slang and foreign languages should be used in literature? Let us know what you think in the comments below.

Authors Answer 123 – Should You Write What You Know?

Authors seem intelligent, right? They probably know a lot of things. But are they experts on what they write? What happens if an author writes about something they know nothing of? Should authors write only about what they know?

Question 123 – Write what you know. Do you agree or disagree, and why?

Elizabeth Rhodes

Absolutely not. If every writer followed this rule, there’d be no such thing as fantasy, horror, or science fiction. We don’t “know” these things because they aren’t a part of our everyday lives, and yet authors churn out books about magic, robots, interstellar travel, or zombies all the time. By all means research what you’re planning to write, but to say you have to experience things in order to write about them is absurd.

Paul B. Spence

Know? Understand? Have experienced? I have never experienced a space battle, outside of dreams/nightmares. So how could I ever write about it if I followed this rule? I incorporate more of my real experiences into my writing than people would believe anyway.

H. Anthe Davis

Seeing as I write fantasy, sci-fi and horror, none of which I have actually experienced, I would have to mostly disagree.  While it’s great to speak from the heart (and essential in some genres/stories, where you’re trying to speak for someone with a specific experience and the text would be harmed if you didn’t have a real knowledge of that experience), research and imagination can fill in a lot of space.  If you doubt your take on an experience, you can always seek out people who embody it or have actually had it; it’s always good to pass your work through a variety of hands to get a variety of opinions anyway.

Cyrus Keith

Dis…agree. Write what you want to write. If you don’t know it, find out. So I guess really, it’s not “write what you know,” It’s “Know what you write.” I knew nothing about antimatter before I wrote Becoming NADIA. But I researched it. I have an historical novel set in Roman times warming up on the back burner. I REALLY didn’t know some of the awesome things the Romans did, or how their legions were actually organized. I guess I agree, only on the premise that even if you find out five minutes before you actually put the words on the screen/paper, it counts as knowing. The bottom line is, you want readers to be able to live easily in your world. Make it easy by making it believable. Make it believable by doing some research on the world/science/culture. If you write about any real cultures, at least do them the courtesy of getting to know them. If you’re making up a culture, have a culture to know. 90% of them will never be seen by the readers. But if they are there, they make your world more real. So write about what you know, but don’t be afraid to know more than you do. Don’t let yourself stagnate by thinking you have to be an expert with a doctorate and 20 years’ experience before you write about it.

D. T. Nova

I agree with some interpretations of that advice, but not others. You certainly don’t need to have actual experience with what you write about, and in some genres of fiction it’s less applicable than others.

Eric Wood

I definitely agree. If you know the material it will show in your writing. The best example I have of this is when I answer my kids question in my Friday posts. The better I know the answer the better I can explain it. Most times I need learn it (aka Google it) before I can start writing about it because I don’t understand it. So if you know what you write your writing will easily understood. Like Einstein said, “If you can’t explain it simply, you don’t understand it well enough.”

Beth Aman

Again, somewhat agree?  Depends on what this means.  Yes, draw from your experiences and your life as you write, but also use your imagination.  Use empathy, step into another person’s shoes.  Also, don’t be afraid to talk to other people and draw from their experiences as you write.  In terms of “what you know” of the plot: write the parts of the story that you already know are going to happen.  If you’re struggling to write chapter 1 but you have a perfect vision for chapter 3, then write chapter 3.  Write what you can, always.

C E Aylett

I do agree, but in the sense that if you want to write about something you know nothing about, then do the research. Once you are familiar with what or whom you will write about it’s much easier and will seem authentic to the reader. I’ve written many stories in areas I knew nothing about and managed to pull off the authenticity because I thoroughly researched my subject and characters. That’s the job of a writer. But if authors only wrote what they know (as in, only from your direct experiences) then there would be a lot of good fiction not in existence — books involving murders and magic for starters. I think half the fun of a book is the author discovering the unexpected as much as the reader. That kind of spark seamlessly carries over from one party to the other and stops it from becoming dull.

Jean Davis

Agree. Not to say researching what you don’t know is also valid, but using what you do know as a foundation to build from makes a story more believable and more enjoyable to write.

Gregory S. Close

Sure, write what you know.  But if you don’t know, learn it and write about that too.  Writing fiction is about imagination as well as craft, so I don’t believe you should limit yourself to only what you know and are comfortable with. I think inserting what you know into stuff you don’t is a neat trick, though, and it can add a nice nuance when the truth of your experience peeks through without strangling the spirit of your narrative.

Tracey Lynn Tobin

Yes, and no. I agree in the sense that it is significantly easier to write about what you know, and there is much, much less chance that you’ll make glaring errors that annoy readers. For instance, I do my best to avoid my characters using guns, because I know absolutely nothing about them, and I don’t want to screw up the terminology or imply that a particular gun can do something it doesn’t (say, a character changes the magazine in a gun that takes individual bullets), because that can really turn a reader off if they know the difference.

That said, I definitely think that we should push our limits, do our research, and take chances. If we always stick stubbornly to only what we know, we’ll never learn, and our writing will get stale and boring.

Jay Dee Archer

I agree, mostly. I say mostly because knowledge can be gained. If an author doesn’t know something, they do research. After research, then they know the subject and can write about it in a more accurate manner. But there are things that authors write that simply don’t exist. Take fantasy, for example. Much of what’s in fantasy is completely made up. I guess the author is the most knowledgeable person about that fantasy world, though. They invented it. If I don’t know something, I research it. I find it to be a very interesting part of writing.

How about you?

Do you think authors should know what they write? Let us know in the comments section below.

Authors Answer 122 – Should You Write Every Day?

This month, we return to regular questions and answers, but we have a theme for the month. We’re looking at common advice that may be considered either bad or good advice. We’re starting off with how often we should write.

320px-Modern-ftn-pen-cursiveQuestion 122 – Write every day. Do you agree or disagree, and why?

Tracey Lynn Tobin

Although I might possibly be the worst person in the world at actually adhering to this advice, I do actually agree. In order to be a writer, you have to write, and write a lot, so the best way of accomplishing that is to write something – anything – every day. In that way it becomes a habit, something that you do automatically. Additionally, if you’re writing daily – even if it’s not anything that goes toward your current WIP – you’re getting lots of practice in, and that is never a bad thing. The more you write, the better you’re going to get, and even if what you’re writing is complete crap, it could eventually become something that you come back to and turn into a masterpiece.

Gregory S. Close

Sure, write every day.  If you can.  If you can’t, don’t waste any time worrying that you aren’t writing every day – just write when you can.  It’s great to set goals, so if a realistic goal is writing x amount of words every day – then set it.  If it’s not a realistic goal, then please don’t.  I would substitute “consistently” for “every day” and that’s a more accurate measure.  Write consistently, push yourself when you can (don’t just let yourself off easy), but there’s not a hard and fast rule that says you have to write every day to be a good or successful writer.

Jean Davis

Disagree, sort of. Should you try to write every day, sure, it’s a good way to train your brain to be productive, but my writing also benefits from taking a break for day or two when my creative juices run dry or my head just isn’t in the game. Forcing myself to pound out words I know are no good or stare at a blinking cursor isn’t good for me or what I’m trying to write.

C E Aylett

Yes, I do agree. Writing every day gets you into the habit, then you find you can’t NOT write. I also don’t believe in waiting for inspiration to hit. That may have worked well back in the days of the Brontë sisters when the aristocracy had nothing better but to gaze out of their country manor windows, but in our current lifestyles, when so many things compete for our time, we have to
set aside time for it. Once you make it a part of your daily routine, ideas begin to pop so fast you can’t keep up with them. Also, if you are working on bigger projects, keeping them in mind on a daily basis, even if it is only writing 100 words, keeps you connected to the story.

In saying that, I have writing bouts. Usually in the school holidays I don’t work much on novel projects, and I can go for several weeks not really writing anything. Maybe I’ll edit instead and leave the creation of new material for when the house is quieter. Once I get back into it, I’m on it every weekday. Weekends I reserve for writing blog articles.

Either way, some sort of writing or editing will occur on a daily basis.

Beth Aman

Somewhat agree.  There’s definitely something to be said for writing consistently, for setting aside time daily to meet with your story.  That’s part of the beauty of things like NaNoWriMo: they force you to stay in your story, to keep your head in the game.  HOWEVER.  If you have a life outside of writing, it’s not necessarily practical to write every single day.  And it can be counter-productive to teach people “you must write every day or else you’re not a writer.”  The important thing is to write whenever you can, and to forgive yourself when you can’t.

Eric Wood

I guess it depends on why you’re writing. If you’re writing a book with the hope of being published to make money then I would say yes, write every day. The more you write the more the ideas will flow. I count the editing process as writing, too.  If you’re just writing a blog as a hobby (as I do) then write just enough to keep you interested. If your interest feels more like work than play then it’s no longer interesting.

D. T. Nova

The fact that many writers simply can’t do this should not be minimized.

I would say “Write on every day that you reasonably can.”

Cyrus Keith

Of course, write every day. You want it to be a job? Treat it like it’s your job. In a good way, that is. But still, discipline yourself. Many pro’s have daily word quotas, even if it’s unassociated drivel. You’re a writer. Write. Stay on rhythm.

H. Anthe Davis

I agree with making an attempt at this.  It’s one of the things that pushed me from only periodically hacking at my manuscript to actually making leaps and bounds of progress, and publishing three books (with two more still being worked on).  I used to feel that I could only write when I was inspired to, and while that still stands for short stories (which otherwise I hate writing with every fiber of my being), with novels there’s a lot of material that’s just setup, or explanation, or rough-draft raw material that doesn’t require you to be possessed by the creative fire at the time.  I’ve found myself far more capable of writing decent text even when I feel like a lump of crud; this delusion I have that I’ll forget how to write if I’m in a mood or put it off too long is, indeed, just a delusion.  Most of the work in writing is the refining of the drafts anyway.  What you put out from day to day isn’t the final version that everyone will see.  So even if it does happen to be sludge, it’s the sludge of progress.

That being said, everyone needs their rest days, or has days when opening the document is just too much stress.  Still, constant progress is a good habit to get into, as is understanding that every word doesn’t need to be perfect right as it’s first spilling out of your pen (or keyboard).

Paul B. Spence

Disagree. I write when I can. I have a life, career, etc., outside writing. I write well when I think about my subject and let it percolate in my brain. Seems to work for me. If you average the number of words I write in a year, it comes out over 500 words a day. So even when I sleep, I’m writing. *grin*

Jay Dee Archer

In principle, it’s a good idea to write every day. Realistically, I don’t think it’s possible for most people. If you do it full time, then write as much as you can. If you want to write every day, then go ahead and do it. But even authors need to have days off. Between books, some authors may take time off to promote their books, go on signing tours, and so on. But do they write during that time? Some might, some may not. Personally, I’ve been terrible at writing my book every day. But I do try to write something every day, and that is this blog. I’m doing something, even though it might not be fiction.

How about you?

If you’re an author, do you agree or disagree? Should you write every day? Let us know what you think in the comments section below.

Authors Answer 121 – The Parting of New Shores

The Parting of New Shores. What in the world could that mean? I thought this would be an interesting title, and I was very interested in seeing how it would be interpreted. And now you’ll see!

So what happened with last week’s stories? Check out Dodecahedron to read the stories. The winner is… a tie? C E Aylett and Paul B. Spence share the win this time!

On to this week’s story!

320px-Modern-ftn-pen-cursiveQuestion 121 – The Parting of New Shores

Elizabeth Rhodes

The Parting of New Shores, a fantasy story set on a tropical island.

A survey crew shipwrecks on an island not marked on any known maps and populated by a yet unknown race of people. They quickly find that these people wanted to remain unnoticed, and why – their island is a wellspring of magical power that civilized nations could only dream of, and can harness this power to make just about anything happen. The people are none too pleased with their new guests, but they’re also reluctant to allow them to go home. And when one of the crew falls in love with an island native, the situation is complicated even further.

Gregory S. Close

The Parting of New Shores (from The Nine and Ninety Tales)

Fantasy Adventure

The Padrah Imesxh has issued a challenge to the people of Isht’in: “Go forth, and part the shores of the unknown!  For the man or woman that can reach the faraway Eastern Realms and return with alliances in trade and knowledge, the reward shall be a Royal Charter of land, coin and a seat among the Wise.”

There is no war to win.  No Dark Lord to defeat.  But power, riches and respect are there for the taking, and Ahtma Ku has need for all three.  With her father’s mare, her mother’s lucky copper coin, and an indomitable will, she sets out to find the eastern end of the world, and all the adventure between.

D. T. Nova

Genre: Fantasy

Setting: the age of exploration, but with magic

Summary: Explorers set sail in search of new lands. What they find is a strange new continent that seems to get farther away the more they try to approach it.

Eric Wood

Mystery

Jack and Annie Shore are pregnant with twins. However, both babies mysteriously disappear from the hospital during their first night. Who took the babies and why? What secrets are they hiding?

Beth Aman

Genre: Contemporary (not really)

Setting: Ocean City, Maryland

Summary: Valarie and John met on accident.  They didn’t mean to fall in love; they didn’t mean to get married; and they certainly didn’t mean to turn into vampires… it just happened that way.  Now they will spend eternity in Love’s Happy Bliss, always seeking the next pair of Young Lovers lounging on the night beaches – after all, teens are easy, delicious prey.

Tracey Lynn Tobin

Genre: Sci-Fi

Setting: Deep space

Summary: Humanity finally accomplishes what it has been dreaming of for millennia: discovers intelligent life on a distant planet. All seems well at first, as the two species’ curiosity in each other takes precedence, but soon a grave event sets in motion the beginnings of the greatest war the universe has ever seen.

Paul B. Spence

Genre: Romance Comedy Horror

Setting: California, near future

Synopsis: The big quake finally hit, and California has separated from the mainland and is moving north rapidly. It wouldn’t have been so bad for Jill and Tom, except that the zombie plague erupted out of the fault, and now they are trapped on a large island, moving into an uncertain future, with zombies trying to eat their brains.

Cyrus Keith

Genre: Science Fiction

Setting: Deep space

Summary: A billionaire has a dream, in which he receives orders from God: “Leave this place, and go to another planet I will show you, a land flowing with milk and honey.” He overcomes resistance, bureaucracy, and sabotage to build and launch the first colony ship, destination unknown. But among those who join him are some who are determined to make him fail, at all costs.

Jean Davis

The Parting of New Shores is dramatic story set in New England. Newlyweds, Jim and Sandy Shores return from their honeymoon only to learn that marriage is a lot tougher than it looks. Divorcing is even harder. Amidst angry parents, opinionated friends who hire hitmen, and a war over the wedding china, the one-time lovebirds must amicably sort things out before death parts them forever.

Jay Dee Archer

Genre: Fantasy

Setting: The continents of Shandar and Torollen

The Carvalians fought a three hundred year war that saw no end. The Gods had no other solution: separate the warring nations. The continents of Shandar and Torollen were born. Kendar Dragonspur lost the love of his life, a new sea forcing them to live apart. Can he find a way to cross the waters and find the woman he loves?

How about you?

Now it’s your turn. Choose a book that you think should be written. Which best fits the title “The Parting of New Shores” in your mind? Vote below, then leave a comment explaining your choice.