Wednesday, February 21, 2018

Word Witch Wednesday - brewing a book series

Deciding to write a series or a standalone book is tough. It's important to take your story idea and weigh the options. I'm going to assume you've already sat back and figured that out, and you want to write a series.

Book series are popular. Readers love to follow their favorite characters through all sorts of adventures. But there's nothing more disappointing than picking up the new book of one of your favorite series and finding the story fell flat. I've abandoned many series because the story faltered and the characters didn't grow.

Here are five tips to help you build a successful book series:

1) Make certain your story idea has enough juice to last through the whole series. If the plot flops after the second or third book, you're going to lose readers. Each book must have a solid story that can stand on its own and interconnect with the previous books. It helps if you're a plotter to plan the series. As a pantser, even I made certain when I was writing TOTEM, I had a solid story idea for each book before I started. Sure, those ideas were as simple as "they will search for the ____ totem in this book," but each one had a purpose in the overall plot.

2) Keep a story bible. Plotters usually have this started before they begin to write the first chapter. I keep notes as I go along. I mark down the basic plot points in each chapter and record character traits. It is also wise if you go back and read the previous books in the series before starting on the next one.

3) Don't limit your fictional world. You want to have room for growth. There will be rules and borders, of course, but a book series needs space to stretch and expand. Your characters might be trapped in a walled city, but there is a whole unknown world out there for you to continue on in if you want to do so.

4) Characters must grow. Characterization is vital to a series. Readers want the heroes they adore and the villains they loathe, but it wouldn't be realistic if the characters stayed the same throughout each book. Time has passed. A person will not be the same today as they were last year or even last month. Some internal issues we struggle with for years, but there will be little changes in attitude, a bit of wisdom gained, and possibly a fashion makeover.

5) Be able to let go. If the overall story arc comes to an end or if your individual story ideas disappear, know when to call it quits. I hate it when I read a series and it's the same plot over and over. "This love triangle has been going on for twenty books. Have the protagonist choose one already!" Sometimes it's tough to let go of characters and worlds we've come to love, but you'll fall in love again. That's one of the wonderful things about being a writer.

Have you written a book series? Do you plan to? What tips do you have to share?

Wednesday, February 14, 2018

Happy Valentines Day

Like I need an excuse to eat chocolate, right?

What is your favorite Valentines Day treat or tradition? For me, the thrill will be tomorrow when all the candy goes on sale!

I have a treat for you today. A trio of delectable books all free for five days!

The Sasquatch Susies is about three Bigfoot hunters and their adventures with love. Add in some mystery and suspense, and you have a potent mix. Yes, the stories are a little naughty, but that just makes them even sweeter. Just click on the image above.

Friday, February 9, 2018

Talk Dirty To Me #Romance Book Promo

Whether you enjoy a sweet romance or something naughty, there are stories here for every reader. Grab a box of chocolates and fill up your ereader with all these fantastic books!

Talk Dirty To Me is hosted by Fantasy Book Giveaways. Not only did they organize this awesome sale, but you don't want to miss out on the giveaway!

Right now, my Paramours trilogy is free!

More woo than boo.

Yes, all three books are FREE! Just click on the image above.

Wednesday, February 7, 2018

#IWSG for February 2018

The Insecure Writer's Support Group (IWSG) is the brilliant idea of Alex J. Cavanaugh. The purpose of the group is to share doubts and insecurities and to encourage one another. Please visit the other participants and share your support. A kind word goes a long way.

This month's awesome co-hosts are: Stephen Tremp, Pat Garcia,Angela Wooldridge, Victoria Marie Lees, and Madeline Mora-Summonte!

This month's optional IWSG question: What do you love about the genre you write in most often?

I write urban fantasy most often. I love the myths and magic, and then placing those in our modern day world. Finding out how supernatural beings fit in our society, how they work, the secrets, the adventures. Our seemingly cold technological world doesn't need to be without magic.

My insecurities this month: I'm writing the final book of my trilogy. Right now, I'm in love with the second book. It's as fantastic as the first. But this third one, I don't know. Will it be as good as the first two? Will it be a spectacular ending to the trilogy? Or will it flop?

I'm trying not to think about those things as I'm writing, but those doubts creep up on me. It's not an unusual thing. I always wonder if the book I'm writing will be better than the last. It should be if I'm learning and growing as a writer. But what if it isn't? What if it all sucks?

IWSG newsletter news: Have you subscribed to the IWSG newsletter yet? We have helpful articles and links, and a featured industry guest each month. For February, we have Lisa Cron (author of Wired for Story and Story Genius). I'm so excited!

If you're an IWSG member and you have some news you'd like to share with the group, drop me an email at and I'll put it in the newsletter.