A Soldier’s Embrace is a sweet, yet exciting story. The characters are captivating and the settings are perfect. The dialogue between the characters is well written and realistic. Ms. Romero has written a great historical romance.
Reviewer for Coffee Time Romance & More
Reviewer for Coffee Time Romance & More
Sunday, September 23, 2012
Hi, Welcome to my historical writing blog! I hope my advice for writing will help you get from that frightening blank page to a 300 plus word novel and onto the book shelves, whether web based or real.
Congratulations! You've decide to follow your life long dream of writing your novel. Some people have the idea in their head for years before finally putting it down, while others contemplate the notion, but get overwhelmed with where to start. I find the best way to start your novel is plot it out before you start to write. To start at the basics, your novel will need to breathe with life, so choose a topic you're passionate about. If you read a lot of science fiction, romance or political/legal thrillers, for instance, that's a great place to start. In other words, use what you know.
The genres these subjects can fit into are endless. If you have a great legal murder mystery but you want to throw in a romantic twist, go for it.
Writing is a solitary activity so choose some place where you're comfortable and you can get inside your head without being disrupted. For me, all noise making instruments must be off, with beverage and chocolate within reach.
Your novel, whatever genre you decide, will need a beginning, middle and satisfactory end. If you're planning on a trilogy, that's great, but word of caution, it's easy to get overwhelmed plotting book two before you've even written book one. Like my mother always said, "first things first."
I am a historical romance author. Once I get down the basic bones of a plot, I begin to research. Now, warning-I'm a research nut. I easily get bogged down in the fact finding and find an hour has gone by and I haven't written anything, but I have found the most amazing information on 19th century hairstyles for women. If that is your genre as well, a word to the wise, make sure your facts are accurate. You don't want an other wise great novel rejected because of a scene where someone is cooking and pulls their pot roast out of the oven when gas stoves wouldn't be around for another 20 years.
Novel research whether online, library or interviewing involves much more than 10 seconds with Google or a quick interview over lunch. Research is called re-search for a reason: repetitive and continuous searching. Why do you need to re-research? Because even though it's on the internet, doesn't mean it's correct information.
Here are a few steps to researching:
1. It's best to combine "hard" and "soft" research for the best broad search. Hard research is proven facts, figures or statistics, where soft research is opinion based, cultural or personal experiences. By combining the two you get the whole enchilada. Take for example if you have never had a baby but you are writing a scene where your main character is a doctor and helping delivery a baby. The medical information of terms, techniques, instruments make the character shine as a doctor, but your soft research of what a person goes through while giving birth make the scene realistic.
2. Use Different Search Engines and Keywords
Here comes the legwork. Google is great, but there are other search engines out there that can help broaden your search. Use 3-5 keyword combinations. Stay patient and keep changing your keywords. ask.com, Clusty, Surfwax are a couple great engines or you can try the US Government Library of Congress.
3. Bookmark and Stockpile any possible content you wish to keep.
This sounds like a duh, right? You find this great site on cars of the 50's but you forget to save it and can't remember where you found it. Bummer, right? Get in the habit of bookmarking the site as soon as it looks interesting. This can be slow, tedious as you organize your information into necessary piles so you can easily find and sift through them later.
4. Filter and Validate the Content.
This is the slowest but most important step of all. You must filter and examine all your information to make sure it's correct before you site it or use it in your novel.
Carefully consider the author or source, and even the date of publication. Is the author an authority with professional credentials? Does the page have its own domain name like NASA or is it an obscure page or someones blog?
Be patient, skeptical, curious, and double check. Now, get to researching! If you have any questions, you can email me. Good luck!