Friday Conversations With A Self-Publishing Writer 02/06/15

LOVE IS IN THE AIR

Last week I wrote about creating a personal Motivation Diary.  One primary purpose for a writer to do this is to keep grounded and focused on the real reason for writing what we write.  In the process, many of us discover that our resolve centers on the desire to pass forward the best of who we are to those we love.

Some genres naturally lend themselves to writing for those we care about.  Children’s books, from toddler to young adult, are mostly written to encourage and inspire young minds as they grow.  Nature books, magazines and blogs are written to share the beauty that surrounds us and draw others into “loving” nature.  Comedy, in stage and screenplays, novels and short stories, allows both writer and reader to see the humor in “love relationships” that have their ups and downs and sideways moments.  The epic Family Sagas create a timeline that demonstrates how “love conquers many things.” However, the mainstay of sharing concepts of love is still the Romance novel, which includes Historical Fiction, Western/Pioneer Fiction, Science Fiction/Fantasy Romance and Inspirational Romance.

The successful Romance writers I know develop the backbone of their plot on true stories—actually a collection of true stories that they can “clip” from depending on what is needed in their current “love scenario.”  The list below is what they look for in research material.

  • Hero/Protagonist (male) types who 1) holds women in high esteem/respect;” 2) doesn’t hesitate to chase the purse thief; 3) almost always speaks with a positive attitude; 4) isn’t afraid to take a risk in relationships and looking for a lifetime commitment.
  • Hero/Protagonist (female) types who share the same characteristic as those listed above with the additional elements of: 1) needs evidence that her hero is actually who he presents himself to be; 2) speaks her mind freely; 3) has developed a strong set of values that she plans to stick to and/or develop further in her FOREVER relationship and in her children.
  • Main Antagonist (male) types who 1) disrespect women; 2) enjoy “using” a woman’s position or intelligence for their own benefit; 3) always points out the impossibility of a situation; 4) has a string of broken relationships, always blaming the woman for the breakup.
  • Main Antagonist (female) types who again demonstrate many of the above antagonist characteristics with the additional elements of: 1) greater levels of deception to obtain selfish goals; 2) speaks before thinking—often causing harm to others; 3) demonstrates the definitions of “ego” and selfishness.

SO HOW (you ask) do the successful Romance writers blend such opposite characters into novels that fly off the bookstore shelves?  They AIM for happy endings—or if not totally happy then realistically happy endings.  Romance Readers—more than in any other genre—picture themselves IN the scenarios they read about.  No one wants to find themselves in hopeless and/or helpless circumstances.  In fact, they want to learn how to GET OUT of those kinds of situations.  They pick up a Romance Novel and see the hero/heroine conquer “life” (all the messy stuff) and build healthy relationships—all based on LOVE.

Yes, love is a great motivator for both readers and writers.  It is also the stimulus that moves writers to their computers, completes the novels and gets those novels PUBLISHED!

Royalene ABOUT ROYALENE DOYLE: Royalene Doyle is a Ghostwriter with Outskirts Press, bringing more than 35 years of writing experience to authors who need “just a little assistance” with completing their writing projects. She has worked with both experienced and fledgling writers helping complete projects in multiple genres. When a writer brings the passion they have for their work and combines it with Royalene’s passion to see the finished project in print, books are published and the writer’s legacy is passed forward.

Friday Conversations With A Self-Publishing Writer 01/30/15

SAINTS AND SCIENCE FICTION

Somewhere in my memory I hear someone telling me: Experience is an uncompromising teacher.  She first gives the test then slowly outlines the lesson(s) to be learned from them.  When I shared that thought with one of my writing friends, he immediately agreed.  “Of course!  That is the reason I’m writing my young adult books—so maybe our precious youth can avoid some of the very hard lessons I’ve had to learn.”  He then showed me his Motivation Diary.  Now, I’ve started one for myself.  But before I share a few bullet-points from that list, I’ll offer you the following brief paragraph about “the writer’s motivation.”

The word motivation is a noun.  It is that something that provides the reason behind the act or actions that accomplishes a specific purpose.  For the writer, it is the internal (and often uncontrollable, overwhelming) impulse that spurs us to create the next blog, magazine article, poem, novel or textbook.  It is the incentive or inducement that arouses and sustains the continuation of a writing career.

My author friend has created quite an extensive list of motivation statements.  Below are a few of his and a couple from other writers.  He often uses quotes from other authors OR anything he reads or hears that inspires his writing goals.

  • I write (and expose) errors I’ve made in decisions/choices SO THAT others can see the fault in them and AVOID them. (first entry)
  • I write to let others know there is HELP and HOPE.
  • I write to develop my own Faith in God—and show others that it is OK to have FAITH.
  • When I get discouraged, I re-read what Saint Francis of Assisi said: “Start by doing what’s necessary, then what’s possible; and suddenly you are doing the impossible.”
  • I must remember that many very famous writers were “rejected” by editors hundreds of times before their work was accepted. I must keep writing!
  • Science Fiction author, C. J. Cherryh says: It is perfectly okay to write garbage—as long as you edit brilliantly. I will become a better self-editor every day!
  • I LOVE to watch Star Trek movies! Their author (an inspiration) is Ray Bradbury, who tells writers to FIRST find out what your hero wants, then just follow him! That is what I hope my young adult readers find in my books—a hero worth following.
  • Today I read quotes from two people I admire. General Omar Bradley (US Army WWII) said: Ours is a world of nuclear giants and ethical infants. Abraham Maslow (the famous 1960s psychologist) said: The ultimate disease of our time is value-less-ness. This state is more crucially dangerous than ever before in history. I must continue writing to give readers examples of ethical maturity and the certainty that every human being is of great value.

AS YOU’VE read through these entries, were you starting your own Motivation Diary?  I hope so!  My friend and I talked extensively about how his (and my) motivations changed over the years as our writing skills improved.  He feels that reminding himself of the specific reasons for developing his characters and various plots they must traverse KEEP HIM grounded.  They also keep him focused on getting his work published—now, through self-publishing—and not waiting for one person in the haystack of publishing houses to accept his manuscripts.  WRITE ON!

Royalene ABOUT ROYALENE DOYLE: Royalene Doyle is a Ghostwriter with Outskirts Press, bringing more than 35 years of writing experience to authors who need “just a little assistance” with completing their writing projects. She has worked with both experienced and fledgling writers helping complete projects in multiple genres. When a writer brings the passion they have for their work and combines it with Royalene’s passion to see the finished project in print, books are published and the writer’s legacy is passed forward.