Tuesday, March 6, 2018

Some Good Reminders from a New Author

Recently, at a Sisters in Crime meeting, we had a young, brand new author. Though I didn't remember him, he  opened his talk by saying that I'd come to a California Writers meeting ten years ago when he was 16. My presentation was on How to Write a Mystery. Already interested in writing, my talk gave him the impetus to write mysteries.

His name is Daniel Stallings and his first book is out now, Sunny Side Up

He talked about his book, how it came to be, other things he did, but he said a few things about writing mysteries that impressed as good reminders.

Have an unusual means of murder.

A really good reason for the murder. Why would someone have such strong feelings about a person to kill him or her? Money? Revenge? Love gone bad?

A good puzzle with honest clues--puzzle pieces.

Having a main character who actually grows and changes in a series. One who is someone the reader actually wants to root for.

Using new locations.

A definite end to the story even if the series will continue.

Monday, March 5, 2018

Trying to Stay Positive

Make Mine Mystery
March 5, 2018
L. Lee Kane

I have to admit I’ve been in a tailspin over my latest two books, ‘Death on the Vine’ and ‘Clyde to the Rescue’ (a children’s book). Over the last three years, I’ve been working steadily on both. In the first, I researched grapes, harvesting, and I used Grammarly and of course, found errors, so like any good writer, I edited, reedited, and reedited it again. Next, I hired an editor, actually two. I wanted both of these works to be perfect. I received it back and put it through Grammarly again and found 1203 errors. This particular person thought I was ripped off by the first editor. I paid both upfront, and unfortunately, Death on the Vine was put on Create Space (I decided to go rogue and publish my own). After reading the book over again, I found more error. Did I pull the book down? Oh, yes! I sent Death on the Vine to another editor (at first you don’t succeed…) that I used for my children’s ooks, and I finally feel good, progress is being made. She knows me; she knows how I think and the message I’m trying to get across.
The last two months blogs wee about happiness and being positive-that’s because I havn’t been. I’ve paid quite a bit of money over the years to editors who I believe were professional and knew so much more than I did. In some ways that’s true but for many your writing is just a job-they get it done in a week or less, charge you thousands of dollars and you’re left with something that isn’t your words, nor your voice.
I’ve learned a valuable lesson, know one knows you as well as you do or cares about what you sent to the public as much as you do. I’ve had to learn to empower myself and learn to belief in myself.
Death on the Vine and Clyde to the Rescue will be out this week. My words-my voice.