Wednesday, October 07, 2015

IWSG Wednesday in Autumn, Yay!

The awesome co-hosts for the October 7 posting of the IWSG will be TB Markinson, Tamara Narayan, Shannon Lawrence, Stephanie Faris, and Eva E. Solar!

I want to post today on writing this IWSG Wednesday, because that’s what’s on my mind. Sometimes I take a break during the editing phase of a WIP because I get to a point where I need to research the scene/part I’m working on to give it that “ring of believability/authenticity”. Here’s where it gets tricky. I LOVE LOVE LOVE research. Sometimes I wish that was all I had to do, like being someone’s research assistant! My first novel was over 700 pages because I was soooo in love with the results of my research I just had to add all those interesting (to me) bits in. My mentor was like, “Research Lover! You need to cut this word count by more than half.”
OH NO! That was a mountain to me, like Everest. No way could I cut that much. Yeah way. I did, and good thing too. Anyone who made it past the first chapter would have been bored to death.
Now when I research, I hunt until I find everything I think I might possibly need. I work in what—at first take—looks like will fit. Then I work 70% of it back out again.

Using Mary Burton’s  “One Draft at a Time” Checklist, I usually do this in Draft 3. Why not in the First Draft? Because I’m getting the story down and I need to know my characters before I put that much into setting, dialog, motivation, etc. I have also found that hunting for “people-in-the-know”, experts by any other name, is completely fascinating and a great way to meet new people.

So, that’s my little blip on the “writing” subject today.

What do you do when you want “believ-ability?” Have you met cool experts? How much time do you spend on research and do you put it in and take it out again? Do you hate it or love it?

Images from:

Friday, September 25, 2015

Archie P. Buie, Jr. Happy Birthday

Archie Patterson Buie, Jr.

Today is my Dad’s 89th birthday. Though he has been gone for two years I still find “celebrating” his birthday without him more than a bit painful/sad.

I miss him as much now as I did when he took off without us. Not that I/we don’t have good times remembering anecdotes about him because we do, lots of them, and I must say it does help to think that he’s making up for lost time somewhere, flying fast jets, catching huge bass, snorkeling for blue crabs, and messin’ around with some unsuspecting woman.

In spite of PTSD, survivor’s syndrome, multiple divorces and other of life's negatives, he did enjoy himself. He left behind many whom he loved, and who loved him. What more can one ask for?

For me, he was one of the bravest men I've known. He was also a “hard-headed cuss” that life had to “kick upside the head” every once in a while-or more often-to get him to pay attention.

So today, on his birthday, my celebration is about loving the man who was/is my father and all that he was and all that he gave to me.
Today is about being thankful for who I am because Archie Buie was my father.

I love you Dad. Fly high and catch a big one for me… 

Korea, fighter pilot

Married to my mom
With all his kids in the 1960's

With all his kids all grown up in the 2000's

Our "flower child" father.

Proud grandfather with co-grandfather

Happy times at Christmas

In his last year 2012/13

Thank you Dad, for everything.

Monday, September 07, 2015

Melissa Maygrove's Precious Atonement

Congratulations to Melissa Maygrove on her just released novel! For a limited time only you can find Precious Atonement on sale for .99 cents. Just click on the links below and get ready to read! Melissa is also sponsoring a givaway! Check it out here...

Ruined women don’t hope, killers don’t dream, and the dead don’t feel pain.

Rachel Emerson is resigned to live as a spinster. Her parents keep her shameful secret, and her only brother, Seth, vanished mere days after witnessing her rape, taking her dishonor with him and giving them all an alibi for their grief. But none of that matters. Appearances are useless if she can’t bear the touch of a man.

Jacob Evans welcomes pain as much as he seeks to escape it. The graves of his wife and child remind him of his sins every day. When Lawrence Emerson offers him a job and a chance to move west, Jacob permits himself a fresh start. But letting go of his past is only an illusion. Lawrence’s sweet, shy daughter captures Jacob’s heart and provides him a perfect tool for self-torment.

Despite painful lessons of the past, history soon threatens to repeat itself, and as Jacob’s love for Rachel grows, so does his agony. Giving his precious new wife the life she deserves might cost him the very thing he values most—her.

Here is a scene from the novel:

Rachel lifted a damp bed sheet from the basket at her feet and clipped it to the line. Concealed by the growing curtain of laundry, she watched her father’s new hand as cool wet cotton rippled and flapped against the side of her face.
Mr. Evans positioned a round of oak, then swung the ax and split the log in two with a single strike. He righted the halves and swung again. Muscles bulged with exertion. Patches of sweat and dirt stained his shirt. Each sharp blow echoed over the land and galvanized the part of her that registered threat. Jacob Evans was a dangerous man.
At least he could be if he wanted to.
But—and this was the thing that puzzled her without end—for all the hulking, dreadfully strong being he was, this bear of a man had a gentle spirit about him. He spoke ably enough and he worked hard, very hard. Yet in spite of that, he possessed a quiet humility like someone with a simple mind. Maybe he was dull-witted. Perhaps he’d sold his stock and left his fields lying fallow because he didn’t have the necessary faculties to manage a farm.
Mr. Evans wouldn’t be the first man whose wife quietly managed things for a less-than-savvy mate. And she had died.
“You’re staring.”
Rachel turned to find her ma staring, too. At her.
She blushed.
Her ma peeked through a gap in the sheets. “That man easily puts two commandments to test. Three, if he weren’t such a gentleman and I weren’t such a devoted wife.”
Rachel gaped. “Ma.” But she had to bite her lip not to smile. She recognized her mother’s scandalous comment for what it was, an effort to treat her like a daughter—just a daughter—and Rachel loved her for it.
“Oh, come now. Don’t tell me you haven’t noticed those handsome blue eyes and that sturdy physique.”
Rachel feigned shock. “Have you no fear of your maker?”
Her ma bumped shoulders with her and retrieved another sheet. “My maker put beautiful things on this earth to be enjoyed. I plan to feast my eyes on all I can before my mind deserts me and my senses fail.”
The rest of the wash was hung amid shameless talk and stifled, girlish giggles.
Rachel hoisted the empty basket onto her hip and chanced one more look between the flapping panels of cotton.

Genre: Western Historical Romance
Category: Adult
Released: July 22, 2015
From Truelove Press

Purchase links: Amazon / Kindle / Barnes & Noble

Cover design by Carrie Butler
Forward Authority Design Services

Native Texan Melissa Maygrove is a wife, mother, nurse, freelance editor, and romance writer. When she's not busy caring for her tiny nursery patients or shuttling teenagers back and forth to after-school activities, she's hunched over her laptop, complicating the lives of her imaginary friends and playing matchmaker. Melissa loves books with unpretentious characters and unforgettable romance, and she strives to create those same kinds of stories for her readers.

Wednesday, September 02, 2015

IWSG & Summer Stupor

Insecure Writer’s Support Group

Forgot to mention the BIG surprise at Alex's site today! Go check it out!!!Alex's blog

Also, please go by, visit, and thank our brave co-hosts this September:
Heather M. Gardner   
Christine Rains
Dolorah at Book Lover 
Julie Flanders 
Murees DupĂ©   

September is here and we’ve actually had at least two fairly cool mornings (in 80’s instead of 90’s) and it is a joy to step outside (at least in the morning) again. I can’t wait for that blush of autumn to blow in and cool us down in a way that says summer is over.

Writing went to you-know-where in a hand basket this summer, and even though I have a good excuse (Both of my children got married (!) and other major events…) a part of me is aching because I’m not where I thought I would be with my WIP by now.  I know we all have times like this, but I think I am sad about it this time more than mad. I lost the threads of my book peoples’ stories. I have spent the last few weeks reacquainting myself with them. That is a good thing.

The sadness, I think, comes from my own expectations of myself, and my drive. I feel drained. I feel out of touch. Even though I’ve had some really good moments of re-acquaintance with my book people, it’s a struggle to “get back in their lives” with the vigor I had at the beginning of the summer.
Scully! My daughter's dog.

Summer Stupor. That’s what I’m calling it. 

Can’t wait for Autumn, how about you?
My husband and our aunt Nadine last November!
All photos Lisa Buie-Collard