I do not read every book/author I spotlight or book tour I host!
Readers, Please research and use wisdom before buying

Wednesday, September 23, 2020

#WednesdayWordswithFriends welcomes DiAnn Mills @diannmills

 Good Morning,

Today's guest is no stranger to our blog so please welcome the lovely and talented Mrs. DiAnn Mills back as she shares some words with us on Brainstorming Your Novel. Take it away, DiAnn!

Brainstorming Your Novel 

Novelists often reach a plateau in which the perfect idea won’t coming materialize. The plot germ is there, but the theme, setting, characters, and storyline seem to spin out of control. Solution? Our writing needs a brainstorming session

By using the acronym, BRAINSTORMING, a writer can bring the whirling to a halt and anchor the story onto a firm foundation.

Believe in our gift to write. We understand the craft, and we’re continually educating ourselves to add more tools and techniques.

Realistic writing is what sells. No matter the genre, the storyline must be credible with realistic characters who react and respond according to the traits we’ve assigned them.

Analyze the basic idea. How can we grow our characters by making their goals difficult, perhaps impossible to reach?

Inspire readers through the story to attempt and achieve great things. Fiction is truth. Jesus spoke in parables, and through His stories people gleaned meaning and purpose to their lives. Don’t preach the message. Let the reader see the characters by the way they tackle life’s challenges.

Name the book and characters. Why is this important? Because the title of a book gives the writer passion for the project. Who wants to wake up each morning to the thrill of working on novel X? In the same way, our characters deserve names that mean something significant in the novel. 

Show don’t tell. Propel the story into action by incorporating body language, explosive emotion, purposeful dialogue, and unique settings. 

Technique is essential to every story. To make sure the plotting is tight, pose the following four questions before writing each scene.

1. What is the point of view character’s problem or goal?

2. What does the point of view character learn that he/she didn’t know     before? New Information.

3. What backstory is revealed? (Hold back in the first approximately fifty pages. Also hold back on faults/weaknesses for the first approximately fifty pages.)

4. How are the stakes raised for the point of view character?

Organize the notes and thoughts into a file: plotting, research, characterization, and the original source of information. If the writer is an outliner, now is the time to create a story outline. If the writer is a panster, the next step is personality driven.

Research is vital to every successful novel. If a novel takes place in a backyard, then research the weeds there. Whenever possible, visit the setting during the season of your story. Interview those who have the same careers or experiences as the story characters. Use the services of a library, chamber of commerce, Internet exploration, and any other means of research to root the reader into the story.  

Motivation is the key to every successful novel. We were motivated to begin a writing career. I was motivated to write this blog post. You were motivated to read this post. Our characters are motivated by their wants and needs. Discover the character’s wants and needs to see what he/she will do to achieve them. 

This list is only the beginning to brainstorm a story. Are you ready to position your fingers on the keyboard and speed off on another adventure?

DiAnn Mills is a bestselling author who believes her readers should expect an adventure. She is a 

storyteller and creates action-packed, suspense-filled novels to thrill readers. Her titles have appeared on the CBA and ECPA bestseller lists; won two Christy Awards; and been finalists for the RITA, Daphne Du Maurier, Inspirational Readers’ Choice, and Carol award contests. 

DiAnn is a founding board member of the American Christian Fiction Writers, a member of Advanced Writers and Speakers Association, Mystery Writers of America, Sisters in Crime, and International Thriller Writers. She is the director of the Blue Ridge Mountain Christian Writers Conference, Mountainside Retreats: Marketing, Speakers, Nonfiction and Novelist with social media specialist Edie Melson where she continues her passion for helping other writers be successful. She speaks to various groups and teaches writing workshops around the country. 

Connect with DiAnn here: www.diannmills.com

Airborne can be purchased through Tyndale or wherever great Christian fiction is sold. I've read this book and it is a great adventure! Check out my review on Amazon!

I love the way you've broken down brainstorming for us DiAnn! We wish you the best of luck and God's blessings with your new release.


Saturday, September 19, 2020

No #SaturdaySpotlight Today

 Good Morning,

If you've followed me for long you know this is something I try to avoid but my scheduled guest lost her husband in July and was unable to be here today.

That, on top of all this hurricane recovery efforts PLUS the loss of my dad a couple weeks ago, well, I just can't do anything today.

Yes, I have lot's of authors who'd love to fill in, but I didn't have time to give them advance notice.

So...as much as I hate to disappoint you, dear friends, there is no Saturday Spotlight today.

Thank you for understanding.

God bless.


Wednesday, September 16, 2020

#WednesdayWordswithFriends welcomes Carol James @CarolJamesAuth

Good Morning and Welcome!

Hurricane cleanup again today. We're in a RV park so far away it's difficult to go in every day but I do  my best to go every other day. Alas, life goes on....

Carol James returns to share some insight on The Power of Words. Take it away, Carol.....


       Sticks and stones may break my bones, but words will never hurt me.” I can’t remember the first time I heard or even said these words, but years and wisdom have proven their falseness. Words may not cut or bruise, but the pain they inflict often lasts years longer than the six weeks required to mend a broken arm.

            The pen is mightier than the sword.” I do remember the first time I heard these words in history class. We discussed how, in using words to influence a person’s thoughts, you can transform someone. Words, not swords, have the power to cause true heart-change. That one idea began my love affair with words.

            Several years ago, a friend invited me to a women’s conference. It was a time when my life was in a drought. Certain God had called me into a new ministry, Id begun writing. After numerous rejections and some harsh critiques, which all writers receive, I began to question my decision. Writing was too much work. Too hard. Too painful. If I wasnt being successful, maybe I hadnt really been called.

            In addition to the mental pain, I’d been having unexplained back problems, and the thought of sitting for hours in a stadium seat was torturous. But I went. Because time with my friend was priceless.

            As we entered the huge arena, I recognized the background music. Sovereign Over Us, a song written and sung by my church’s worship pastor, Aaron Keyes. What a fun coincidence! Of all the recordings they could have chosen, one by a person I knew. A song I’d sung many times in church. A reminder of God’s sovereignty.

            We found our seats. Mine had an envelope on it. I glanced around the huge convention center. Each seat held an envelope. Thousands of seats, thousands of envelopes.

            I opened mine. Snoopy. I love Snoopy! And he was sitting at a typewriter struggling to find the right words.

            Then I opened the card. Someone had handwritten a Bible verse inside. “Heal me, Lord, and I will be healed. Save me and I will be saved, for you are the one I praise. Jeremiah 17:14

            The song about God’s sovereignty, the verse about healing, even the typewriter, of all things. I can’t remember the teaching from that weekend. I’m sure it was fabulous. But I will never forget what God said to me through the song and the card. The words were streams in my wasteland.

            Oh, the power of words! We all have the responsibility to use our words for good. To build up rather than tear down. To heal rather than hurt. As a Christian writer, my task is to use words not only to tell a story but also to show God’s love.

            The woman who volunteered her time to inscribe my card most likely had no idea the depth of truth the words would speak to my heart. But she was obedient, and the words she wrote were powerful, life-changing.

            Words. Powerful. Life-changing. Heart-changing. Maybe that’s why John tells us Jesus is the Word.

            In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. The Word became flesh and made his dwelling among us. John 1:1,14

Carol James is an author of inspirational fiction, in particular redemptive romance. She lives in a small town outside of Atlanta, Georgia with her husband, Jim, and a perky Jack Russell "Terrorist," Zoe.Having always loved intriguing stories with happy endings, she was moved to begin writing to encourage others as she'd been encouraged by the works of other authors of inspirational fiction.

Her debut novel, Rescuing Faith, was an Amazon number one best seller. 

Carol enjoys spending time with her husband, children, and grandchildren, traveling with friends, and serving in the production department at her church. And most days, in the late hours of the night or the wee hours of the morning, she can be found bringing her newest novel to life.

Connect with Carol at the following locations....





Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/19149238.Carol_James

Bookbub: https://www.bookbub.com/authors/carol-james

Amazon: https://amzn.to/3duHqKc

Get your copy of Carol's newest release, Season of Hope at Amazon, Pelican Book Group (Ebook), and Barnes & Noble (Nook)

Oh, Carol what a lovely story. I adore it when God speaks to me like this! Thank you so much for sharing!

Good luck and God's blessings