My first novel!
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

Where authors and readers come together!

Monday, March 24, 2014

Motivation is a chocolate bunny

When writing a novel or a short story, how do we keep motivated?  This is kind of a funny post for me because currently I have no motivation at all. Maybe I have A.D.D because as I'm writing this I keep wondering why the dog is sighing under the table and should I go check on the plants I already watered.

 The most obvious answer and what everyone says is set a daily word count.  Okay.  Done.  I tell myself to try to write at least 300 words.  Some days that's a piece of cake other days I would have better luck extracting my own teeth.  This is one of those days.  Weeks, actually.

Next to rank up there behind word count for me would be remove all games from your computer.  Damn Candy Crush I curse you!  I've had to resort to pinching myself every time I thought of clicking on something other than my word document.  It works.  Of course I have large painful welts on my arms and legs that my husband keeps worrying someone, somewhere is going to place the blame on him for, but the quick pain count reminds me how much my mind wanders and forces me to stay focused.   What was I saying?  Oh yeah, I'm blogging.

Third, keep a supply of chocolate within grabbing reach.  I don't know why, but chocolate gets my creativity juices flowing!  Maybe it's the munching that simulates the brain.  If so, you can substitute chips if you prefer.  Of course by the time your book is published you can't fit into any other than your sweat pants, but on the up swing, your book is done!

Share what motivates you to keep writing when your plot has grown thin and you've written yourself into a corner?  Okay, now back to writing my Irish sequel!

Saturday, March 1, 2014

Selecting the best Point of View for your scene

Finally, Southern California got some rain!  "It was the biggest storm to hit San Diego in several years," said the reporter on the street corner in his windbreaker.  Street gutters became flooded and people got their feet wet.  Actually, I have to admit, the wind was pretty strong.  Two very large branches tore off a couple of my trees in the back yard, but that was about it. 

  While I watched the rain come down, I did some editing on a novel for a friend of mine.  The particular scene I was working on was great, but something was missing. After a while I figured it out.  It was written from the wrong POV.The way she had it written, the words were passive, the action telling instead of showing.  I started to wonder if my own scenes I've been stumbling on were written the same way.  Something I'll have to check on.  Let me give an example.
Take the novel, Gone with the Wind.  In the scene where Melly is going to have her baby and Scarlett runs off to find Dr. Meade, the author Mitchell could have shifted POV to Dr. Meade, to show him exhausted, trying to save the lives of as many of the fallen Confederate soldier's as he could.  As a doctor, he was used to seeing death and dying- we would have felt his powerlessness, his exhaustion. We would have seen Scarlett coming toward him, stepping over bodies. we would have felt his annoyance at her selfishness. 

As it was, Margaret Mitchell wrote the novel all from the POV of Scarlett O'Hara.  From her POV it was far more powerful.  We felt her anger at having to stay with a woman she didn't like.  As a southern belle, she wasn't brought up to be around something so harsh as war.  We felt her shock, her dismay to see the south falling around her ears, her disgust of the dying and her horror and fright to think she would have to do it herself.  In that scene we still got Dr. Meade's side of things as he snapped at Scarlett that he didn't have any medicine to relieve their suffering.

Which held more power to a reader?

Novels now are usually written through several Points of Views changing sometimes every scene.  Try looking over your scenes to see if the drama or action or even romance could be better told their another characters eyes.

If you have any questions, send me an email.  

Thursday, February 20, 2014

POV- how to cure the head hopping nightmare

One thing I noticed about editing my second novel, soon to be published in 2014, is my propensity for head hopping. Years ago that was an accepted form of writing novels. Instead of each scene having the characters own story and point of view, writers used to be able to mash all characters point of view all in the same scene.

I didn't find out about the rule against head hopping until I took an online writing class on synopsis'. The teacher pointed out to me that I needed to pick a character and stick with only their thoughts for the scene. Huh? Only what they can feel, see, touch, think...etc? At first I remember the transition to be a nightmare and then as I read back my work, the problems began to appear to me and I saw how confusing head hopping could be. If you suffer from head hopping, don't worry, you're not the only one. Here are some guidelines to help you.


When first starting a novel, I use stream-of-consciousness journaling to bring out the character’s personality in the parts where he’s thinking or planning or worrying or ruminating, not just when he/she is interacting with others, but just them by their selves. Have him ranting in a personal diary about the people around him, what’s going on, etc. Also show his deepest fears here. Then use this wording to show his personality more in the scenes. This not only teaches you to writing through one characters eyes, you also get to know them as a person. Bringing out their character will also help you with the plot.

An exercise for you to try until you get the hang of it, is writing the scene using first person. You can switch back later. Write a whole scene, or even a chapter or two, in first-person narration/POV to get the rhythm and flow of that person’s language patterns and attitudes. Write the scenery from their point of view. Don't forget to use the senses. Once that's written change it back to 3rd person and you have your scene. Just make sure you change everything back or you'll be switching more than just Point of Views.

This may seem like a lot of work, but once you get the hang of writing only through one person's eyes, you won't have to do it anymore.