Welcome to my blog!

Welcome to my blog! This is my journey, my first steps into the world of fictional writing. This blog is an online journal of sorts, where I share the progress of my work as well as what I have learned along the way. I hope you enjoy your time with me and that my experience may be of some use to you.

Friday, February 16, 2018

Interview - Hope White



Welcome back!

 

Today we have something special; an interview with published writer, the lovely Hope White. This is the first time I have had the opportunity to interview an author who I’ve had the joy of reading.

 

I approached Ms. White back in December, shortly after having read her book, Covert Christmas. While working on the book review article, I discovered her website, and found her email address. I decided to take a chance and contact her. To my surprise, she contacted me back a few short days later! I’m super excited to have her with us today!

 

On to the interview!

 


 

 

Short Bio: With a degree in journalism, Hope White started her career as a reporter for a small town newspaper.  Years later she decided she wanted to do more than report the facts – she wanted to take readers on a suspenseful and thrilling adventure.  Hope has published 11 romantic suspense novels with Steeple Hill including her popular Echo Mountain Search and Rescue series. When not at her computer, Hope can be found hiking a mountain trail to stimulate ideas for her next book.





Published Works:


   


Search and Rescue series

Mountain Rescue, Payback, Covert Christmas, Witness Pursuit, Christmas Undercover, Mountain Ambush

 

Stand alone books: Safe Harbor, Hidden in Shadows

 

Port Whisper Series

Witness on the Run, Christmas Haven, Small Town Protector

 

Coming Soon:

Lost and Found Baby, Jan. 2018 EHarlequin Short story

Baby on the Run, February 2018 (The Baby Protectors)

 

Current Projects: (if any)

Bodyguard Series for Love Inspired Suspense

 

Website/social media:

Hopewhiteauthor.com

Facebook.com/hopewhiteauthor



When did you begin writing?   

 

I’ve always been a storyteller, even as a kid.  I wrote my first book when I was 11 and had a friend illustrate it.  It was a mystery-thriller even back then!

 

Did you receive any special training or attend a school?  

 

I have a B.A. in journalism.  After years of newspaper and PR work, I decided it was more fun to make stuff up.  I had to relearn how to tell story in the fictional sense, which was totally different from collecting facts and sharing a non-fiction message with readers.

 

Where do you get your inspiration from?  

 

Everywhere!  Other books, movies, newspaper stories, conversations I overhear in the Starbucks line.  Writers are ALWAYS listening.  Sometimes ideas come to me when I’m listening to music or cleaning the house.  Which doesn’t make me want to do more housework unfortunately.  Another great way to develop ideas is to meet with other authors and brainstorm.  One story can be told a dozen different ways.  It’s a fascinating process.

 

Do you use any special resources when writing? (other books, computer programs, etc)

 

Blake Snyder’s “Save The Cat” book, plus his Beat Sheet for structure. Character development articles by Michael Hauge.  I hope to outline more, and have heard GREAT things about Scrivener.

 

What is (in your opinion) the most important thing to remember when writing, and why is it so important?

Get out of the way!  It’s important to let your characters develop the way they need to develop and not muddy up the waters by shoving them around.  If you’ve created strong characters, they will drive your plot, which makes for GREAT story.

 

What is (in your opinion) the most challenging part of writing, and how do you overcome it?

 

Staying focused. I mean once I’m “in story” it’s easy, but getting there can be challenging.  So many diversions – Facebook, Twitter, etc.   The best way to counter this distraction is to set goals and commit to writing for one hour.  That’s it.  Most of the time you’ll find yourself writing longer, but it’s less intimidating to go into the process with a one-hour commitment ahead of you.

 

Did you use an agent? (why or why not?)  

 

Not at present.  I have had a few in the past.  I don’t need an agent to negotiate with my current publisher who has a very standard contract.

 

Did you use an Editor? If not, what process did you use to edit your work?

 

I work with an editor at Harlequin AND hire an editor for my self-published projects.

 

How did you get your book published? (self-published, Vanity publishing, Mainstream publisher).

 

Most of my books are published through Love Inspired Suspense, aka Harlequin.  My fiction career started when I won a writing contest and the editor judge asked to see the book.  Contests are a great way to get noticed! I self-publish contemporary romance novels as well.

 

Do you handle your own marketing?  

 

Yes, and am working to get better at it! I belong to a few self-published author groups to get lots of tips on how to expand one’s audience.  May authors feel that promotion is key when you’re self-published.  I agree.

 

What is your best marketing tip?

 

Join an online indie group.  Even if you’re published traditionally, you’ll learn a ton from other writers.  Also, I’ve used Fiverr to promote. Inexpensive and boosted my numbers!

 

Do you have any advice for other writers?

 

Sure.  1) Write because you love it!  2) Write the book you want to read.  3) Create a tribe – other writers who can give you feedback and offer support.

 

In closing, I would like to thank Hope for doing this interview. As someone who is still in the process of finding himself as a writer, I found her energetic personality to be quite motivating. I look forward to reading more of her books in the future.

 

Until Next time,

 

Cheers,

 

Patrick Osborne

Tuesday, February 6, 2018

Current Projects part 37

Welcome back!


February has arrived and Mother Nature can’t seem to make up her mind; some days the weather is mild and others it is still way below freezing. We have seen everything from rain to snow to ice pellet.


However, this gives us the perfect excuse to stay inside and hide from the cold, snuggling up with a loved one on the couch. This seems appropriate, since St-Valentine's day is just around the corner. In honor of the holiday, I have put together a book review of a romance novel, as well as an interview with a published romance author.


free-valentines-day-stock-photo-divvypixel-3
Romance as a theme.


    Before writing this update, I took a look at my progress update from last February, and saw that I ad promise an update on my writing once my home office would be set up. Well, we are a year later, and my office has still not been completed. I’ve run into computer problems which prevent me from accessing the internet and my Google account.


Luckily this has not slowed my normal progress. In fact, after last month’s decision to focus more on my story rather than my blog, I actually managed to get an entire chapter done and submitted for editing. The chapter introduces my three main characters, how they interact with each other, and we gives the reader an initial overview of the setting. It’s a nice way to ease the audience into the story, and came out rather well.


    In terms of art projects, I have started on my first chair ‘revamp’ that I plan on selling. It proved to be a different type of challenge, because not only did I have to be creative style wise, but I had to be creative repair wise, as the chair had a few issues. It is coming along nicely, and I’m looking forward teeing it completed. I seem to be having issues with loading pictures right now, so hopefully I can include some in my next update.


Image result for city of titans


    Though I am no longer working on this project, I am still supporting it, as I did contribute a lot of time and material. Missing Worlds Media has released only one update in the past month. You can read the full article on their kickstarter page:




Feel free to contact me if you have any questions or comments. I can be reached via the following social media:


Twitter: @OzmosisCoH


free-valentines-day-stock-photo-divvypixel-7
Happy St-Valentine's day!
   
That is all I have to report for this month. Thank you all for dropping by and keeping up with my progress. I would also like to thank you all for taking the time to drop by, and to wish you all a happy St-Valentine day!


Until next time!


Cheers,


Patrick Osborne


Monday, January 22, 2018

By the Book - Harry Potter and the Cursed Child


Welcome back,
 
In my latest installment of By the Book, I will be reviewing a novel from the Harry Potter franchise. The book in question is “Harry Potter and the Cursed Child”, written by  J.K. Rowling, Jack Thorne, and John Tiffany.
 
Image result for cursed child

This will be the first time I read a Harry Potter book. It’s a shocker, I know, considering I am a fan of the movies. Having come across this hardcover edition in a used book store, I thought it was time I gave it a try.
 
The story focuses on the dynamics between Harry Potter and his son, Albus Severus Potter. Their relationship is very tenuous at the beginning, as Albus feels he must live up to his father's reputation. Harry tries to connect with him, but cannot seem to find common ground with Albus. The story breezes through Albus’s first years at Hogwarts, and only really begins around his final year, where he comes up with a plan to ‘’fix’’ an event that transpired in the original books. In true Potter-verse fashion, the misuse of magic is involved, causing mayhem and various unexpected side effects.
 

 
Back of the book:
The Eighth Story. Nineteen Years Later.
 
Based on an original new story by J.K. Rowling, Jack Thorne, and John Tiffany, a new play by Jack Thorne, Harry Potter and the Cursed Child is the eighth story in the Harry Potter series and the first official Harry Potter story to be presented on stage. The play will receive its world premiere in London's West End on July 30, 2016.
It was always difficult being Harry Potter and it isn't much easier now that he is an overworked employee of the Ministry of Magic, a husband and father of three school-age children.
While Harry grapples with a past that refuses to stay where it belongs, his youngest son Albus must struggle with the weight of a family legacy he never wanted. As past and present fuse ominously, both father and son learn the uncomfortable truth: sometimes, darkness comes from unexpected places.
 
What I learned:
  • Reading a script: The first thing that jumps at you is that this is not written like a novel, but rather like a script. The only real details are descriptions of the set, everything else is left to the reader's interpretation. This was a new experience for me, and felt slightly odd to be missing so much information. However, having seen the movies helped me fill in a lot of the visual gaps, so the difference was negligible.
  • Butterfly effect: Without reveal any spoilers, all I can say is that time travel plays an important part in this novel. The authors did a good job of demonstrating the many pitfalls and possibilities related to time travel, and the consequences of playing with forces you don’t fully understand.
  • father/son relationship: The story also focuses on the dynamics between father and son, and how their relationship not only affects them, but the world around them. Despite the story’s fantasy setting, there was a nice life lesson to be learned.
    J.K. Rowling, or Joanne Rowling, was born on 31st July 1965 in England. She is an award winning author, best known for the Harry Potter books, as well as Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them. For those interested in reading more books from J.K. Rowling, please check out her website at the following address: https://www.jkrowling.com/
     
    Jack Thorne is an English screenwriter and playwright. Born on December 6th, 1978 in Bristol, England, he has written for radio, theatre and film, TV shows and feature film. For more information on Jack Thorne, please check out these following websites:
  •  
    John Tiffany (born c. 1971) is an English theatre director. He directed the internationally successful productions Black Watch and Once. He has won a Tony Award, an Olivier Award, a Drama Desk Award and an Obie Award. For more information on John Tiffany, please check out these following websites:

Monday, January 8, 2018

Interview - Charlotte Summers





Welcome back,


This month we have Charlotte Summers, the young author behind A Different Kind of Hell novella series. She kindly volunteered as I was searching for interview candidates on Facebook. I’m glad to have her on my blog, sharing her insight with us.

 

     
    

 

Short Bio: I am a young author and writer with a passion for my work. I love nothing more than to sit by the fire with my two dogs and write to my heart's content. This passion of mine started when I was around 13, going through a traumatic situation lead me to start reading and I found that I could write my own worlds to escape - if only for a little while- the real world.

 
Published Works: I have a novella series called A different Kind of hell and a new novel called Trusting Your Instincts

 

Current Projects: I am currently doing the third book in the different kind of hell series.

 


 

When did you begin writing?

 

I begin writing at the age of 13 and have been doing ever since.

 

Did you receive any special training or attend a school?

 

I didn’t have any training and to be honest I couldn’t even read until I was 12 as for writing I didn’t know how to do it right until I started doing it. I self-taught myself to read and then to write.

 

Where do you get your inspiration from?

 

I get mine from my mother who passed away when I was 12, I know she would want me to carry on with my work. I also get inspiration from my favourite author, Cheree Alsop.

 

Do you use any special resources when writing? (other books, computer programs, etc)

 

I use Grammarly and Google docs but that’s about it.

 

What is (in your opinion) the most important thing to remember when writing, and why is it so important?

 

The most important thing is editing. I know you cannot forget it however you need to remember to edit and edit some more during writing and during drafting.

 

What is (in your opinion) the most challenging part of writing, and how do you overcome it?

 

I think the most challenging for me is writer's block and once I have it I find it really hard to overcome. Normally to overcome it I read a book by my favourite author and listen to music.

 

Did you use an agent? (why or why not?)

 

No, I didn’t use an agent as I wanted to do it all myself, I’m a self-published author so didn’t really need an agent.

 

Did you use an Editor? If not, what process did you use to edit your work?

 

I edited myself, however, I did get my father to edit (he is an editor by profession). The key thing is to use more than one editor, I used three editor programs and got my dad to do it as well. You can never be too careful.

 

How did you get your book published? (self-published, Vanity publishing, Mainstream publisher).

 

I self-published all my books.

 

Do you handle your own marketing?

 

Yes, I do however it’s a lot harder than people make it out to be.

 

What is your best marketing tip?

 

Get your work out there as much as you possibly can. Set up twitter, facebook and any other social media you can think of.

 

Do you have any advice for other writers?

 

Keep writing, even when you feel like quitting; Keep going. Also never feel like a failure, everyone has been where you are and has overcome it. You can too.

 

In closing, I would like to thank Charlotte for doing this interview. As someone who is still in the process of writing his first book, I found this interview to be an eye opening experience. The amount of work she has produced at her age is truly inspiring. I look forward to hearing more about her in the future.

 

Until Next time,

 

Cheers,

 

Patrick Osborne









Tuesday, January 2, 2018

Current Projects part 36



Welcome back,

           Progress report number thirty six. I have now been doing this for three full years; researching material on creative writing, seeking inspiration, talking to authors and trying to put together my own book. Time sure does fly by.

                           

           As I look back on 2017 and everything that has changed in my life since late 2016, I can’t help but feel grateful to those that helped me get through some rough times. Furthermore, all of these changes have made me take good, hard look at myself. This moment of introspection has helped me get a better idea of what I wanted out of life, and where I should start going.

‘’You can fail at what you don’t want. So you might as well take a chance at doing what you love’’ - Jim Carrey.

           When I made the decision to make a serious effort a writing a novel, I started doing research, asking for advice and paid for online classes. A major point that came up was that authors have a better chance at success if they already have a following by the time they write their fist book. This is what motivated me to create this blog; it was a tool meant to document my progress and what I learned, as well as (hopefully) gather an audience. Three years in, and I can see the progress I’ve made thanks to this blog, which is encouraging.

           However, this came at a price. The time I’ve dedicated to the blog has taken my attention away from my book. As I mentioned last month, the overall amount of content I created for my book is roughly 85 pages long. Though I find it pretty impressive, it’s pales in comparison the time spent on my blog. In the past three years, I have written a total of 177 articles, averaging two pages each. That means I have written around 354 pages for my blog since I started. Add that to the work I have actually done for my book, and we are looking at an estimated total of 439 pages… Had I focused on my book from the start, I would probably be done by now, rather than still chipping away at chapter two.

           With this realisation in mind, I decided to change my focus come 2018. I feel that after three years of posting material, I have a solid foundation to help other writers, so I will be adding new content less frequently in order to help me concentrate on my actual work. My updates may be bi-monthly, with other articles appearing when I have time to work on them.

           This will also allow me to work on a second side project I have been considering lately; creating a Patreon page. After posting pictures of recent artwork, I have had two requests from paying customers. I will therefore be trying to generate additional revenue through my painting and sculptures. As usual, you can expect more details as I make progress.


                                        


           Though I am no longer working on this project, I am still supporting it, as I did contribute a lot of time and material. Missing Worlds Media has releases two updates in the past month: one regarding character modeling an another about story progression. You can read the full articles on their kickstarter page:
https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/missingworldsmedia/the-phoenix-project-city-of-titans/posts/2059888

https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/missingworldsmedia/the-phoenix-project-city-of-titans/posts/2066126

         
            Feel free to contact me if you have any questions or comments. I can be reached via the following social media:

Facebook:
https://www.facebook.com/bookmarkboundPMosborne/?ref=aymt_homepage_panel
Twitter: @OzmosisCoH
Google+:
https://plus.google.com/+PatrickOsborneOzmosis




                                         



           That is all I have for this month. Thank you all for listening, as your continued support is always appreciated. I hope to see you all at next month's progress update, and most importantly, have a Happy New Year!

Until then.

Cheers,

Patrick Osborne