Today's guest, Alicia Dean is no stranger to our blog but today she returns to share with us her brand new book, Two Minute Writing Tips (compiled from her weekly blog post of the same name) and her other writing book, Find the Magic (How to Plot a Story in 10 Easy Steps). So without much further ado....here's Alicia!
In today’s busy world—and writers are far busier than the average human being—there is little time for lengthy, detailed, intensive writing courses and writing manuals.
Knowing how rare and fleeting a writer’s time is, Alicia Dean posts a weekly ‘Tuesday Two-Minute’ writing tip on her blog where she shares her knowledge, experience, and wisdom in tiny, bite-sized pieces so as not to squander more than 120-second increments of a writer’s precious time.
Now, you can get those tips all in one convenient place. In simple, quick and easily digestible servings, this book shares loads of advice for writers. Tips such as…
• Recognizing and eliminating filter words that distance your reader
• Understanding Point of View – How to fix it and why
• Writing Faster Drafts
• Clearer, concise writing
• Tips for more effective Tweeting
No matter your level, from novice to experienced author, you will find something beneficial in Alicia’s handy, quick reminders.
Excerpt: ‘Began’ and ‘Started to’ Make Your Writing Inactive
Phrases like 'began to' and 'started to' show up in manuscripts more frequently than you might expect. When you really think about it, though, they do not quite work for what you're trying to convey. Plus, they are weak and inactive.
· He started running.
· He began coughing.
· He placed his hand on the door and began to open it.
· Her legs started to tremble.
· Her heart began to race.
· She started to laugh.
When I see wording like this, I have to ask myself, these questions, and I'll admit, some strange images appear in my mind.
Did he start running but only take a few steps and pause mid-air? Did he hack out half a cough? How do you 'begin to open' a door? Did he turn the knob or pull on the door but not really open it? Did her legs give a few trembles, then go still? Did her heart speed up, then suddenly come to a halt? (OUCH!) Did she open her mouth, and laughter started to come out, then she sucked it back into her throat?
See...kind of gives you some strange visuals.
You can easily fix these to make them more active and stronger:
· He started running. - He ran.
· He began coughing. - He coughed.
· He placed his hand on the door and began to open it. - He turned the knob. Or, He pulled the door halfway open.
· Her legs started to tremble. Her legs trembled.
· Her heart began to race. Her heart raced.
· She started to laugh. She laughed.
See how simple it is? It's a good idea to go through your MS and check for phrases like this and revise them. That way, your writing is move active, more immediate. PLUS, you can give your characters the satisfaction of actually completing that cough, tremble, run, or laughter.
Two Minute Writing Tips can be purchased at Amazon and it's on $ale for a limited time at only .99¢ !!
Now here's a little about Alicia's other writing book....Find the Magic...
Using specific examples from one of my own novels, Without Mercy, I share my method in this mini how to book. The first eight steps actually deal with plotting while the last two are designed to help expand your outline into a well-developed draft. There is no one, perfect way to create a story, but there will be a method, or methods that work for you. I’m not sure if this is the one, but it works for me. Only you can decide if it also works for you. Fingers crossed that it does!
Find the Magic can be purchased at Amazon also.
Award-winning author, Alicia Dean, began writing stories as a child. At age 11, she wrote her first ever romance (featuring a hero who looked just like Elvis Presley, and who shared the name of Elvis’ character in the movie, Tickle Me), and she still has the tattered, pencil-written copy. Alicia is from Moore, Oklahoma and now lives in Edmond. She has three grown children and a huge network of supportive friends and family. She writes mostly contemporary suspense and paranormal, but has also written in other genres, including a few vintage historicals. She is a freelance editor in addition to being an editor for The Wild Rose Press.
Other than reading and writing, her passions are Elvis Presley, MLB, NFL (she usually works in a mention of one or all three into her stories) and watching (and rewatching) her favorite televisions shows like The Walking Dead, Dexter, Justified, Sons of Anarchy, Haven, Vampire Diaries, and The Originals. Some of her favorite authors are Michael Connelly, Dennis Lehane, Lee Child, Lisa Gardner, Sharon Sala, Jordan Dane, Ridley Pearson, Joseph Finder, and Jonathan Kellerman…to name a few.
Find Alicia here:
*** Sign up for our Novel Notes Newsletter, a multi-author newsletter where we give away a $25 gift card each month: https://www.facebook.com/NovelNotesAuthors
her website: AliciaDean.com, or feel free to drop her a line at: AliciaMDean@aol.com
Well friends, I hope you enjoyed today's spotlight.
Remember, once you've written a book and had it published, you'll have to promote it! Need help? Check out the book, Simple Promotional Tools for Authors which I wrote with my friend Penny Carlton and is available on Kindle, Nook and Smashwords.
ALSO if you're interested in learning how to write, don't forget I'm hosting a beginning writers' workshop at the Silver Spur guest ranch in Bandera, TX July 8th - 10th and I'd LOVE to see you there!
Until next time...take care and God Bless.