Nope, it’s not working. How do I do this writing thing?
Writing fiction fell upon me through my own devices of dreams and things. After some research online where I found the affair of my 19th century, barely out of her teen years debutante, I thought, I must write this story of love, disappointment and murder.
I know, I said to myself, I’ll write a book. After all, I had written a chapter for a history book and been wooed by a publisher. I wrote up school catalogs, wrote course curriculum, wrote up interior design and architectural history lectures, proposals for jobs, poetry and love letters. Surely writing a book would be a piece of cake. Sure, right.
I sat down, pen in hand, put pen down—booted up my trusty Mac, surely that would inspire me, nope, that didn’t help, read “Writing for Dummies,” nothing helped. This is not going to work. What do I write first, the end? What words do I use? How do I find my characters? Where does all this come from? It shouldn’t be any different than giving a lecture. OK, I though smugly, I’ll approach it like a lecture. I could talk for hours about interior design, lighting, space planning, history, architectural anything. Still nothing. I remember the emptiness, the confusion, the lack of words. I didn’t think I had this gift to tell a story, no less write one. If it is pretend, then leave it to the imagination of the gifted.
Tommy the train to NYC
Then I met Brenda. I met this young woman on a train ride into New York traveling to a Michael Hauge workshop.
Michael Hauge is a story and script consultant, author, and lecturer who works with writers and filmmakers on their screenplays, novels, movies, and television projects.
Hauge is a screenwriter who works with storytellers like me, well—me trying to discover my inner sanctum. I didn’t grasp the lesson that day, but on our break, I heard what Brenda had written and asked her if any of what I heard was true. She said no, that she had made it up, Ahha, a storyteller. I asked Brenda to explain how she did that. We talked several times, and she helped me start my story of this young girl, married to a drug addict, and her hero that came along and saved her life.
I discovered the art of writing, a creative endeavor. Creativity is a right brain activity. Have you explored your creativity? I always remember creating. When I was maybe seven years old, comic books were the rage. I would sit at my desk and draw what I saw in the comic books. Wonder Woman was my hero. As I got older, I drew all kinds of things. I played the piano, I took dance lessons, voice lessons, sang in school shows, sang in school choir, took my mother’s dresses apart and remade them. Took my radio apart and my clock apart and put them back together, well, with Daddy’s happy help, it was my curiosity that pushed me to explore. The list goes on, and I wrote little poems and notes to friends and family. I was just not a storyteller.
I wanted to tell this story, and by golly, I was going to. I investigated availability of curriculum to learn the skills of fiction writing. Workshops, online courses and seminars, mentors, crit groups, conferences—later, newly armed with the craft of writing for which I should be awarded a PhD in the subject, I had the first draft done, however, not without help and encouragement from Brenda and my editor. This is not an activity that is easily done alone. I am a member of the Connecticut Chapter of the Romance Writers of America, where so many other writers gather and help each other. The first draft led to the second and the third drafts. By the time I worked on the fourth, I had my publisher’s editor who was amazing. With her edits, I practically rewrote the whole manuscript. In October 2015, Indigo Sky was published by Soul Mate Publishing. I finally felt like a writer, and could call myself ‘Author.’
My book can be found in three formats, paperback, eBook and Audiobook. If you like to watch trailer previews of Disney, you will enjoy the trailer preview of Indigo Sky.
The link to my trailer is right here above on my Author page.
The most wonderful gift that came out of all of this is my growth as a writer. I can teach, edit, develop, critique, mentor and encourage new writers and even participate with seasoned writers doing related activities.
So . . . what is your creative bent?
First transistor portable radio
Recently, I wrote this blog for C.D. Hersh’s post at Soul Mate Publishing. The invitation to their blog guest spot came along at a perfect time, when my print book and audiobook are practically on my doorstep. Now, with the changing and the rapid growth of the book business, authors like myself, are looking for fresh ways to capture a new audience.
Headphones to listen to the books
Readers and listeners have been lured to audio books, but then so have narrators. It’s a, pardon the pun, novel opportunity for actors to perform. Audible.com, an audio company owned by Amazon, has a large pool of professional actors as narrators, and producers who are signing on more and more celebrities. Very often listeners buy based on who is performing. They follow a narrator, like readers follow an author. My actor, Jane Oppenheimer, has brought my book, Indigo Sky, to another level. I like her style and how she interacts with my characters. Here’s her website for your perusal and for contact: Janeoppenheimervoice.com.
Lone Ranger & Tonto
With the stirring notes of the William Tell Overture and a shout of “Hi-yo, Silver! Away!” The Lone Ranger debuts on Detroit’s WXYZ radio station, 1933.
Do you remember the old radio programs and the dramatizations, the stories, the mysteries, the comedies? We all sat around and listened. We used our imagination, we made our own visuals. Dagwood and Blondie (the Bumsteads). The Shadow Knows, Great Gildersleeve, Fibber McGee and Molly, the Lone Ranger and Tonto, and more. I even listened to tap dancing on the Children’s Hour on Sundays. Storytelling is older than Moses, you remember him, right? People were telling stories long before writing stories.
You can discuss finances with your narrator. You will need to discuss the time frame as well. The narrator provides a sample. It’s quite workable.
So how do you hire an actor to produce an audiobook? ACX.com has a great website with information and narrators. If you would like to work or interview Jane Oppenheimer, you can request her on Audible.
Here’s the direct link to the author page at acx.com.
Print book, eBook, Audiobook
Indigo Sky, historic romance, now an Amazon eBook, will also shortly be available in print book and audiobook. Watch for details.
One liner: A dream marriage becomes a trap of addiction, lies and women
Back Cover Blurb: In a whirlwind romance, a lovely New York socialite marries a fêted, debonair author. But beneath the charm is a cheating husband addicted to hasheesh. Her dream marriage turns sour and the simplicity of her life runs amok when a handsome stranger, her husband’s business partner, threatens her staunch loyalty to her wayward husband. When she faces the ugly truth about her marriage, her need to finalize her divorce sends her on mad chase across the wilds of nineteenth century America with a handsome stranger—she learns hard lessons of murder, kidnapping and more that almost destroy her.
Get a taste of the story . . . check out the trailer.
Amazon Author Page: http://amzn.to/1K4GVQA
Amazon Buy Link: http://amzn.to/29NYE5w
Artist Page: https://artist.gailingis.com/blog/
Visit C.D. Hersh on my blog post last week and discover their work as authors.
I’m thinking about the future of Indigo Sky.
In a whirlwind romance, a lovely New York socialite marries a fêted, debonair author. But beneath the charm is a cheating husband addicted to hasheesh. Her dream marriage turns sour and the simplicity of her life runs amok when a handsome stranger, her husband’s business partner, threatens her staunch loyalty to her wayward husband. When she faces the ugly truth about her marriage, her need to finalize her divorce sends her on mad chase across the wilds of nineteenth century America with a handsome stranger—she learns hard lessons of murder, kidnapping and more that almost destroy her.
A new release in paperback and audiobook will be here sometime soon. After last week’s blog, I Write and I Paint, my novel, Indigo Sky needed a blog of its own. If you like romance, and you like adventure, Indigo Sky is for you! Shopping at Tiffany’s, getting caught up in the New York Draft Riot, the Civil War, and the wilds of the Great Plains. Here’s an excerpt from my book that will curl your toes.
Dawn finally broke, and Leila sat listlessly on the pallet. Would today be the day she was raped? Death was preferable.
Little Star peeked through the doorway and crooked her finger. “Come.”
Leila crawled out and blinked against the strong light. Rising stiffly, she stretched, enjoying the sun on her face. She smiled at children laughing and playing between the tipis.
A group of women waited for her. “You bathe.”
Bathe? Leila almost laughed with relief.
The women led her silently to a copse of trees. A stream gurgled over rocks. They stripped her clothes off, urged her into a deep pool and washed her with a chunk of herb scented soap.
She reveled in the cold water until an elder hustled her out, drying her with scraps of soft hide.
Stony faced, the elder worried her gums and mumbled something rubbing herb oils on Leila’s body. Deep crevices on her face sagged in a perpetual expression of discontent. The elder peered over Leila, her small black eyes glittered with malice. She rattled off in an angry tirade.
One of the young women giggled behind slim fingers.
Leila glanced from one to the other. “What did she say?”
Little Star arrived with a hide garment over her arm and handed it to the elder. “She say you white like chicken fat, and don’t know why Red Arrow want you.”
The truth dawned on Leila. This was the moment she’d dreaded. She backed away holding up her palms. “N—no!”
Snarling, the elder grabbed Leila and issued brief instructions. The other women hastily pulled the buckskin dress over her head. Beads and feathers decorated the soft garment. Had circumstances been different, the dress would have delighted Leila. The women took her arms and led her back to the lodge.
Red Arrow stood in the center of a clearing between the tipis, hands behind his back, black eyes impassive.
Leila’s heart pounded and she hung back. The women shoved her and she fell to her knees at the warrior’s feet. “I—I will not be your woman—your whore.” She took his callused hand. “Please, I have a husband.”
He shook her off. “You obey.”
Red Arrow looked at Hook Nose. The leader nodded at a group of warriors. They stepped forward and hauled Leila up, dragging her from the clearing.
She twisted around. “What are they going to do to me?” She cried.
For you viewing pleasure, here’s the Indigo Sky trailer;
Indigo Sky_07_11_15 – Small
Stay tuned for more . . .