Tuesday, July 14, 2009

An interesting way to write a novel

Minnette Meador writes the Starsight and Centurion books, among others, and is a really fun author, as well as a fellow inhabitant of Portland Oregon. She invited me to join textnovel.com to read her new thriller, the Bell Stalker, so hot off the press it’s not even written yet, and I’m certainly enjoying the experience.

But you have to be a member to read, and the first thing they asked when I joined was did I want to join their competition too. They said their stories have to start with a synopsis, and I thought it might be good practice. But I couldn’t think of anything to write so, with kind permission of Pat Bertram and Second Wind Publishing, I’ve reused my entry from Pat’s More Deaths than One contest, and am now trying to turn it into a novel.

If you’ve not read More Deaths than One you really should. It has the most amazing premise—a man finding an obituary for his mother when she can’t possibly just have died. In Pat’s novel, the man’s mother died twenty years ago, and again, apparently, in the present. In mine she’s still very much alive and trying hard to marry him off.

My novel’s listed under romantic mysteries and it’s called Obituaries. You can find it by typing “Obituaries” into the textnovel search bar under story name (or type “Sheila Deeth” under pen name), but you have to sign up for an account if you want to read it. Type “the Bell Stalker” or “Minnette Meador” to find Minnette’s novel, and if you like what you see please click on the thumb to give us points. (Clicking on the cell-phone makes them send email notifications for new chapters, but it probably does lots more interesting stuff if you’re less technologically challenged than me.)

Meanwhile, if you’re looking for a nice safe place to type your own novel, password protected to keep your copyright safe (at least I think that’s what it does), with the added advantage of space for character and plot notes, and the incentive to post as many bits as you can to fulfill the challenge, textnovel seems like a fun site. Of course, I’ve only been there a few days. And formatting’s a pain. But I’m really enjoying the writing and hope you might enjoy reading it too.

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