10 things you wish every aspiring writer would know:
- All writing needs editing.
- No one is qualified to edit their own writing.
- Typos, misspellings, homophone confusion, and poor punctuation pull the reader out of the story.
- Writing should be invisible. The reader should never notice the writing, only the story.
- If someone thinks a section or a sentence is confusing, there will be other people who think so.
- Don’t fall in love with a sentence or a scene, if it needs to be revised or cut to make the story better, then bite the bullet.
- Unless you’re writing a historical novel, such as a regency romance, avoid flowery writing.
- Read your dialog out loud. If it doesn’t sound realistic, if your character would not speak that way, then fix it.
- Don’t force the characters to do things that are contrary to their natures.
- The final product needs to be perfect, the first draft doesn’t. Don’t get hung up on the little things early. Write the story, then worry about revising and editing.
As to my other interests, I love the outdoors, especially the Rocky Mountains. I’ve skied since high school, with one broken leg and one torn ACL to show for it. I’ve hiked and camped all my life. I love to travel, though I haven’t done enough of it. I’ve seen a lot of Russia and Mexico, not enough of England. Amsterdam is amazing, and the Romanian Alps are breathtaking. Lake Tahoe is a favorite, and someday I’d like to see Banff.
by B.R. Kingsolver
Publication date: January 2015
Genres: New Adult, Romance
Ashley isn’t looking for love. She has a dream to travel the world, and getting tied down by a man doesn’t fit into her plans. Relationships always get so complicated, and men always lie. It’s better just to have some fun and no one gets hurt.
When she graduates college and the job offers don’t come rolling in, her life continues as usual: working as the manager of a college town bar and hanging out with her friends. Then a tragic event pushes her to take a chance on romance.
But things are not always as they seem, and Ashley’s white knight has secrets. Her friends try to tell her something isn’t right, but her common sense is smothered by his kisses and soft endearments.
When the job offer she has always wanted arrives, will she follow her heart and choose love, or follow her life-long dream?
Jeff had continued to come by the bar, and I was getting a little tired of him always following me with his eyes. He was nice enough, but still trying to impress me and get me to pay more attention to him.
It was on my second date with Steve when I encountered Jeff. We were leaving and he was just coming into the restaurant. His expression showed surprise, and then his eyes narrowed in kind of a hurt way. We said hello, and as I was getting into the car, I looked back. Jeff was standing in the doorway watching us.
The following Saturday night, Jeff showed up around midnight as he usually did. After I got him a beer, he asked, “So, are you dating again?”
Damn. It really wasn’t his business. I didn’t want to be rude, but I also didn’t want to go out with him. I didn’t know him at all. In all the time he’d been coming in, he hadn’t talked about himself at all. Of course, I hadn’t asked, either. I hadn’t wanted him to think I might be interested.
“Oh, the other night?” I said. “Steve and I are old friends. He used to date my roommate.”
There. That should take care of it. Nice and short and uninformative.
“I was just wondering,” he said. “I would enjoy getting to know you better.”
Guyspeak for ‘I want to get in your pants’. Most girls who are decent looking get tired of being hit on all the time. Working in a bar meant getting hit on all day, every day. I usually didn’t think about it. You get used to just brushing it off, and most guys really don’t expect to score with a server anyway. I sometimes think they feel obligated to try in order to keep up their man card, and then they drop it. I have regulars that I flirt like crazy with, but neither of us expects anything to happen.
“Jeff, I think it would be nice to get to know you, too,” I said. “But right now, I’m still learning the manager’s position, I’m understaffed, and I work all the time. I rarely even have time for my closest friends.” The part about being understaffed was a lie. I’d found another part-time bartender, another part-time cook, and I was actually able to take two nights a week off. As to my friends, Dar and Sheila and I had gone out drinking and dancing a couple of nights before.
He cocked his head and forced a smile. “Okay, Ashley. I can take a hint.”
Read an excerpt and vote to nominate Ashley’s Dream before December 16.