What Henry James Taught Me about Writing Suspense

What Henry James Taught Me about Writing Suspense

If you’ve read any works by Henry James, American-born British author (1843-1916), great suspense probably isn’t the first thought that leaps to your mind. Consider the all-important first sentence of his famous novella The Turn of the Screw. The story had held us, round the fire, sufficiently breathless, but except the obvious remark that it was gruesome, as, on Christmas Eve in an old house, a strange tale should essentially be, I remember no comment uttered till somebody happened to say that it was the only case he had met in which such a visitation had fallen on a child. That’s sixty-two words in the first sentence alone. By today’s standards, such writing is “wordy” at best and “frankly hard to read” at worst. But writing styles come and go just like the bell-bottoms of the seventies, and during James’s day, this was cutting-edge stuff. Perhaps the economical writing so popular today…

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How Long Before My Book Is Published?

How Long Before My Book Is Published?

Here’s the place where I address common questions about the mysterious world of royalty publishing (as opposed to indie publishing). If you have a question you’d like me to answer, be sure to post it in the comments below. Keep in mind that I’m not as much an expert on some topics as those who are more experienced, but I have worked with three different publishers so far and can give feedback accordingly. How Long Before My Book Is Published? Let’s say you found a publishing home for your book or are seeking one. If you sign a book contract, how long are you expected to wait before that wonderful product shows up (as an e-book or in print form) with your name on the cover? I have no intention of ever glossing over the truth here, so I’ll be straight with you.  At a minimum you’ll be waiting at…

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News: Publisher Interested in Novel #3

News: Publisher Interested in Novel #3

Hey, I have some exciting news to share with my readers. My literary agent (Hartline Literary Agency) called yesterday. One of our targeted publishers likes the book proposal and has requested the full manuscript of Drone (book one in the hoped-for Time Redeemer series). So I’ll be sending off the manuscript today. No guarantees, but at least there’s some activity on the novel front. I’m also about 11K words into Daymare, book two, and having fun with it. In addition, I’m getting started with Scrivener, writing software that is sure to make life easier with book two. I’ll be sure to let you know what happens. Thanks for your support! Can I just say that this writing journey can be lonely at times (after all, writing is a solitary venture), but encouragement from my readers helps me remember that “somebody is out there” who is reading and enjoying my projects.…

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A Chat with Novelist Deb Brammer (with Giveaway)

A Chat with Novelist Deb Brammer (with Giveaway)

Welcome to a new dimension of my blog: interviews. I’d love to highlight friends of mine who’ve written some fantastic books, books I can wholeheartedly recommend to you and your friends. As you know, I believe in clean and meaningful Christian fiction, so I’m careful about who I endorse. My new guest is Deb Brammer, an author friend I’ve known for several years. Without further ado, join Deb and me as we sip our coffee and chat about Christian publishing. So, Deb, how long have you been writing for Christian publication? For about thirty-five years. I had my first article published by Regular Baptist Press in 1979. How many books have you written? I’ve had eight books published. Peanut Butter Friends in a Chop Suey World and Two Sides to Everything are written for preteens and involve cultural changes made by an American in Taiwan and New Zealand. Moose is fiction…

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