Sunday, October 27, 2013

Writing Again...finally

Hello all, I submitted my manuscript An English Summer three weeks ago today.  So it's a waiting game now.  I'm praying for good results.  In other words, they want to publish my book.  I certainly hope so.  I spent a lot of time and effort on it.

So, I have been not writing for the last three weeks.  I have been thinking of what I should write on.  I have several story lines and had to choose one.  I finally chose one today.  But before I tell you which one I choose, let me tell you my choices.

1.  Young Adult novel about a 17 year old girl who goes to live with her grandfather in a Southern rural town.  Her mother is dead and her father is a CIA agent sent to the Middle East.  She makes three new friends, does her best to avoid the mean girl and her friends and finds out her grandfather's secret.  He has always been an eccentric type of man who would disappear for hour or days at a time, but for Hazel, he literally disappears.  So she and her friends decide to find out why and how.  And they do.  He's a time traveler.

2.  it's 1932 and a 12 year old girl is walking from Myrtle Beach, NC to California to join her father.  While she and her mother wait for her father to send for them, they live with her mother's sister.  She's bitter because the love of her life marries her sister.  Her mother dies, her aunt is outraged the young girl won't call her Mommy so she places her in an orphanage.  The girl runs away and starts walking to California.

She makes it to Colorado where a couple with three boys take her in.  They will contact her father and he can send for her or come and get her.  She's tired and decides to stay.  The older of the three boys don't like her and the boys' female cousin downright hates her.  Will she make it to her father.

3.  It's the 1890s and Lily has traveled from NYC to WY to get married.  She is a mail-order bride.  Her parents are not happy, but cannot stop her as she is 21 years old.  When she arrives by train the warehouse next door is blown up and she is knocked unconscious.

When she wakes up in the reverend's house she learns her fiance has been murdered and he has left everything to her, even if they don't get married before he dies.  She is shocked!  Should she stay and run the sheep ranch, or should she sell and return to NYC?  This is Lily's Delimna.

Please leave a remark below on which one you think I choose to write.  And if your choice is different than what you think mine is, then tell me why you think I should write your choice.

Next Sunday I will tell you which one I have decided to write.

Monday, October 14, 2013

5 Star rating for Garden Plot by Kirsten McKendry

Kristen McKendry is an LDS author from Utah living in Canada.  Her website is:  Kristen McKendry

I was at Seagull Books one day looking for my favorite author when I came upon Garden Plot by McKendry.  I read the blurb on the back and thought it sounded good.  The price was great so I bought it.  I have an hour lunch so thought I would read during work.  That didn't work out too well.  I would sometimes talk or I would get to a spot where I didn't want to stop, but didn't have a choice.  Back to work I had to go.  But I did finally finish the book.  I got a lot of it read while waiting for my two back tires to be fixed last week and I finished it off today while in the ER.  It's a great book.

The opening line of the book is where the heroine finds a faceless dead body in her garden.  Erin, the book's heroine, runs a wellness center and she finds one of her clients dead in the veggie patch.  How horrible?

Erin is a widow with a 13 year old daughter.  Her daughter likes an older boy with lots of piercings and purple hair.  The contractor who's fixing her cottage thinks she has a crush on him, she doesn't.  And two of her guests are father and son, the above mentioned boy with purple hair.  They fight all of the time.  But all of this pales in comparison to Erin finding a dead body in her vegetable garden.

It's a great story.  She meets a good looking police detective with his own demons who never smiles.  She sees a slight uptick of one corner of his mouth.  But no smiling.  He likes her cooking and he gets along with her daughter.  But who killed one of her clients?  To find out, you will need to read the story for yourself.  If you want a book full of filthy language, gratuitous sex and/or violence then this book is NOT for you.  This is a great story told without all of the disgusting trappings of the world.  It is well worth reading and you don't feel like you have wasted your time.  It's entertaining at times and heartbreaking at other times.  She writes with great humor.  So pick up your copy and enjoy.

I give her 5 stars.  She deserves it.  I would love to see a sequel to this story.

Kristen McKendry, Author

Sunday, October 6, 2013

An English Summer - done and submitted

Today, between Conference sessions, I finally finished my novel.  I made some changes to my query letter and summary.  The changes were necessary in order to be more concise and logical.  Then it happened, I submitted to Deseret Books.  Please say a prayer they like my story and want to publish it.  It would mean so much to me.

I started this novel in mid-January  I wrote the first draft, a very rough draft, in four months.  When I finished that first draft I had around 55,000 words.  Now that it is finished and submitted, it has a total of 87,934 words.  What a big difference editing has had on my novel.  I added over 32K words, almost a whole novel worth of words.  The smallest novel is 40,000 words.  Mine is more than double that, but after the first draft it was barely over that amount.  A writer friend of mine said a normal size novel is from 60-90,000 words.  I'm at the top amount.  I'm not sure if that is good or not, but I certainly do hope so.

I want to thank several people for their help throughout this process and journey of mine.  First is author Emily Mah Tippetts.  She would offer words of encouragement when needed and praise when I did something really good.  I appreciate that.  Second is Laura DeLange Bastian, who was kind enough to read my novel and act as editor.  He suggestions for changes and additions was greatly appreciated and acted upon.  It made my story so much better and my writing so much tighter.  Third I want to thank two people who read for me.  The first friend is my long time friend Theresa Lynette Friel Newbury and Philomena Callan.  They both read for me, but did not edit.  The read to tell me if they were interested in the story.  They both liked it.  It kept me going.

Now that the novel as been submitted I can relax.  But just for a little while.  I can relax and enjoy some non-writing time.  I can maybe get a book read now instead of write write write.  I will keep you updated on the progress of my novel as I hear things.

Thank you for following me and being their to support me.

Brenda Birch Gallaher
Author, An English Summer