What is is with Threes?

Today I get to welcome Stephen Zimmer back to my blog with another Rayden Valkyrie novel. Hurray! And there's even a chance to win signed copies of the whole trilogy! It's a trilogy I've been reading and following and enjoying... and it got me wondering, what is it about 3s and Trilogies. So I asked Stephen, and here's his reply.

Trilogies and the Three-Act Narrative
By Stephen Zimmer
Many of the great stories have been told in the form of trilogies, whether in book or movie form.  The Lord of the Rings, Star Wars (which became a trilogy of trilogies), and many iconic franchises serve as powerful examples of this approach to storytelling. 
My latest release, When Shadows Fall, is also part of a trilogy, completing the storytelling journey that I began with Heart of a Lion and continued with Thunder Horizon.  Looking upon the Dark Sun Dawn Trilogy and thinking about trilogies in general, I think the reason they tend to be very effective methods of storytelling for a mul…

The most important characters in an author's universe...?

Today I'm delighted to welcome John F Allen to my blog, author of The Best is Yet to Come. Not long ago, I read and enjoyed his Ivory Blaque novel, the God Killers, which if first in a fascinating series. The Best is Yet to Come contains one Ivory Blaque short story, so I wondered, how do authors combine writing series with strong, memorable characters, and then writing short stories... So, over to you John...

I find that depending on the idea surrounding the story I want to tell, determines whether it ends up being a standalone novel, a novella, novel series or a short story.
Sometimes the ideas and images which come to me for a project have an overarching goal which begins with a single character and/or event. And when this is the case, a series is my choice to carry the narrative through. For me, another factor in determining whether a story idea will be a series is the character themselves.
Some characters are more endearing to…

Title, character, situation, plot AND... Anybody want to play WAR?

Today I'm delighted to welcome author Tommy B. Smith whose novel offers a curious invitation... Anybody want to play War? So, of course, I had to ask the author...
“Which comes first, title, characters, situation, or plot?”And here is his answer... Over to you Tommy!
I seldom devise a story’s title prior to writing the story. Occasionally an interesting title may serve as a writing prompt, but by the story’s end, more often that not, I find the original title would no longer suit the story’s course.
As to which comes first in regard to title, characters, situation, or plot, to be vague, the answer would depend on the type of story.
In the case of my latest novel, Anybody Want to Play WAR? I did not originally confine the story to a specific category, though I understood it must eventually claim one.
I have employed different approaches for different stories. In the world of writing, we have informal terms such as plotting and pantsing, which indicate tales well-plotted in advance, s…

Reasonable doubt? Free ebook!

Today I'm showcasing a free ebook - Every Reasonable Double by Pamela Samuels Young. It's a mystery/legal thriller and I hope to read it soon - definitely on my to-read list. Enjoy! And thank you to Pump up Your Book for introducing it.

Author: Pamela Samuels Young
Publisher: Goldman House Publishing
File Size: 722 KB
Genre: Mystery/Legal Thriller
When attorneys Vernetta Henderson and Neddy McClain are tapped to take on the biggest case of their careers, they are less than thrilled about working together. Their strained relationship, however, is the least of their problems. Their socialite client—charged with the brutal murder of her husband—is demanding an immediate dismissal of the case. But a ruthless prosecutor is determined to make sure that doesn’t happen. Forced to fight a common enemy, the two women close ranks and, in the process, develop a bond that sees them through t…

Obsidian is such a good word!

Looking through those unpublished book reviews and unshelved but long-read books I found an Obsidian Trilogy and an Obsidian short story collection. It's definitely time to shelve them--the trilogy, in particular, is made up of quite large books and if I don't put them away the space will disappear. (Space does that--quantum book expansion I think.) So...

I'll start with the short stories. Obsidian Worlds by Jason Werbeloff is a fascinating collection, not for the easily offended, but uniquely odd, short enough to read while drinking coffee, and weird enough to have you reaching for your science book. Enjoy with some dark five-star coffee.

Then there's the Obsidian Trilogy. Here, magic replaces science, but it's a well-thought-out kind of magic with genuine logic and fascinating differences, balanced by a well-developed fantasy world and fueled by good versus evil. I love how new characters and ideas are introduced in each book, extending the world and constantly p…

Faith, Culture, History and just a few distractions

So much has distracted me this last few months that my pile of books-read is actually larger than the pile of books labelled must-read. I guess I'll start posting a few of those books-read reviews, so I can file the pile back onto shelves. We need to be tidy for Christmas!

One of those "distractions" (the best and most rewarding of them) has been the fact that I've been writing a book about the Bible--Questioning Faith. I'm still hunting for a subtitle, so please leave one in the comments if you can think of something. It's a book designed to help teens, their parents and grandparents, and the teens-at-heart see that the Bible is big enough for all their questions, and God is big enough to encompass all their doubts. I started thinking about it back in England when my son's elementary school friend explained that he didn't believe Bible stories because he'd grown out of fairytales long ago... and I realized the Bible stories were told in elementar…

Want to learn to Write for Fun? Meet TG Wolff

Today I get to welcome TG Wolff to my blog, author of thrillers and mysteries that play within the gray area between good and bad, right and wrong. Clearly the author enjoys the thrill of the story, so I'm looking forward to learning...

How to Write for Fun by TG Wolff
Everyone has a different reason for writing, but one thing should be universal: writing is fun. For many, the mandatory writing on uninteresting subjects forced on us from elementary school on up has left a bitter taste in the preverbal writing mouth. It’s akin to my distaste of plaid after twelve years of Catholic school even though I haven’t worn a schoolgirl’s skirt for thirty years. But fear not, you can overcome the rigid constraints of noun-verb-noun and intro paragraph-body-summary paragraph. It may be hard to overcome the Pavlovian habits, but it won’t be painful.
So, here’s the secret of how to write for fun…write like nobody’s going to read it.
Counterintuitive, right? Well, I’m sure you’ve heard these othe…