Monday, May 11, 2009

Explain or not to Explain?

To kick of The Monday Writer’s addition of my blog I am going to talk about something I have a problem with. Explain, Explain, Explain! I either go in detail too much or I don’t explain enough. As a writer you will have your strengths and your weaknesses. I hope over the next few weeks I can address some of my weaknesses, I think this will help me become a better writer. And it may help one of you reading this blog entry with your writing as well. There is a common rule with writing a scene: Show don’t tell. Me, I want to tell and explain to the reader what is going on. Example: Explaining too much: Ashley slammed her coffee mug on the table. She was horrified at what Jake had just said. How dare he? Showing: Ashley slammed her coffee mug on the table. “How dare you imply that I don’t care about my son?” She shook with disbelief. OR Kate watched as the man placed the head of the gun against Drew’s temple. This hostage situation had gone too far. “Please, just let us go and we’ll never speak of this again.” “Shut up lady or I pull the trigger!” The man shouted. Kate quickly shut her mouth to keep Drew alive. This line can be shortened to: Kate quickly shut her mouth. We know why she isn’t speaking now. We don’t need to explain. These are a couple of examples I have from my own writings that critique partners have pointed out for me. I’ve found that when I explain a lot in a manuscript I don’t feel comfortable enough with my writing. I don’t feel like I got my point across, so therefore I must explain it to the reader. After a couple of critique partners pointed this out for me, I can quickly spot it now on my own. And once I go back and re-read the scene without the extra explanation I realize the reader is going to know what is going on. And if the reader will have no clue then I know I need to re-write that particular scene. Also another problem with explaining that I’ve had is using adverbs, mainly the –ly adverbs. These words are words that explain, they tell you something they don’t show you something. With that being said I have been trying to broaden my vocabulary so that I’m not drawn to using as many adverbs. And lastly, another problem I have with explaining comes to my characters. When a character makes a movement: Kate swung her arms. I also wanted to elaborate on that. Kate swung her arms in disbelief. If the reader has read the story up until that point than they are going to know why Kate swung her arms. They aren’t going to need me to explain that. Besides if you have to explain why your character does something than I haven’t done a great job with creating my characters. My readers and I should know my characters well enough to know why or why not they act a certain way. Since a critique partner of mine has made me aware of this weakness I find that I am a much better writer. Now I am catching myself explaining during a scene, so I can quickly stop myself from over writing. Which will save me time with editing and save my critique partners a headache or twoJ What are your thoughts on explaining? Do you feel you explain too much? Or do you have another weakness with writing that you just can’t seem to grasp? Tonya XOXO

Wednesday, May 6, 2009

Sun Master Tanning

YAY! I am so excited my business is up and running. Sun Master Tanning. It's located in Morehead, KEntucky. Know anyone here that would be interested? They can email me $3.00 a session $20.00 unlimited monthly tanning. Wish me luck Tonya XOXO

Friday, May 1, 2009

Author Spotlight: Stephanie Bond

Please help my welcome Stephanie Bond! I am so happy she is joining us today. I grew up in Olive Hill and I always heard talk of her at church and with my family. My mom had several books written by Stephanie. The first two books I read of hers were titled Our Husband and Too Hot to Sleep. Since then I have been hooked. Today Stephanie has given us an article she has written for her Spring Blog tour. But before that here are the three book covers for books 4, 5, and 6 in her Body Movers series.

All I Needed to Know About Life I Learned From Reading Romance Novels

I can trace many accomplishments back to romance novels, long before I ever dreamed of writing one. Growing up on a farm in eastern Kentucky with no neighbor kids around and only one TV station, books were my primary form of entertainment. Our tiny town didn’t have a public library, and there were no bookstores around, but I had a beloved aunt who visited twice a year and brought me bags and bags of novels, most of them sweet Harlequin romance novels and gothic romances by Phyllis Whitney and Victoria Holt. In the summertime, between my numerous chores, I averaged reading a book a day. My father would sometimes chide me to get my nose out of a book and go outside, but I would simply take my book outside to read under a tree!

The words transported me. Through romance novels I learned of people and places I’d never seen. I learned that women could have all kinds of adventures and occupations, all while finding love. I developed a good reading vocabulary through books because I was exposed to wonderful, picturesque words I would never have heard in everyday conversations or school lectures. My extensive romance-novel vocabulary took me to the tri-state spelling bee several times. I think I learned most of my world history through historical romance novels. Because reading begets reading, I excelled at school. My good grades were my ticket to a free ride to college. There were no career women in my family—my female career role models were in the books I read. I remember being especially inspired by Barbara Taylor Bradford’s A Woman of Substance about a woman who went from being the daughter of a servant to starting a tiny store and turning it into one of the world’s largest luxury department stores. After college I tackled the corporate world with the confidence of a woman who always knew I’d be there—I’d learned from the best, after all. Nothing seemed impossible.

When I was knee-deep into my corporate career, I met the love of my life and promptly married him (we’ve been married almost twenty years now). I don’t mind saying that I measured him against the heroes in all the romance novels I read and he certainly held up under the scrutiny! My husband is handsome, masculine, talented, ambitious, funny and kind. I was actually dating someone else when I met him, but he won me over with his humor and persistence. It was a few years later before the writing bug bit me—I knew immediately, of course, that I’d be writing romance novels. Even in my humorous mystery series, Body Movers, romance plays a big role in the story lines. Because I think a story is nothing without the romance—without the promise, without the hope.

So now that I’m an author my life is even more intertwined with romance novels! To this day my favorite pastime is still to settle down with a great romance novel. They never fail to entertain and inspire me. In hindsight, I’d have to say that the most important lesson I learned from romance novels is…that I am the heroine of my own life. _________________ Stephanie Bond has written over 40 romance and romantic suspense novels. She currently writes the humorous mystery series, Body Movers, in which an Atlanta woman works for Neiman Marcus by day, and helps her brother move bodies from crime scenes by night! Look for books 4, 5, and 6 to be released back to back in April, May, and June.

You can visit Stephanie Bond' s website at

Thanks again Stephanie for stopping by. And folks remember to leave a comment for your chance to win your free copy of book number 4 in the Body Movers series.



Happy 3rd Birthday TWRP

Friday, May 1, 2009, The Wild Rose Press celebrates their third birthday in style. Head on over to their BLOG to check out what authors of TWRP are saying and a chance to win a free EBOOK every hour. Head over their between 7-8 and catch my friend and TWRP author Donna Basinow.

Other Blogs from The Wild Rose Press:

Editors Blog Historical Blog Climbing Roses Blog Wilder Roses Blog Tonya XOXO