Famous Five Display

So this isn’t part of my book or any writing project, but it is literary.

This is a display I did for the library I work at.

by Carolina De Vivo

by Rosa Carr

I wasn’t a Famous Five fan as a child but I did enjoy making this. It was a display for the summer.

Next I will be making a Roald Dahl display.

Excerpt from Air Fay

This piece had originally been a writing prompt exercise that I did ages ago. I don’t remember which words were the prompt though. I was so happy with this piece that I made it fit into my book.

As she looked out at the predawn darkness, she mused about her life. The darkness of the night used to frighten her and force her to relive all the sorrows of her past. But not now. No, last night she had been as far from her past as the sun was to the moon. Sunrise no longer meant relief that she had survived through the horrors of the night. It meant that she had faced them and overcome them. As his arms tightened around her, the happiness and effervescence bubbled inside her from the love she felt. He had appeared in her life so suddenly and yet he fit in perfectly. They were each others’ equal match. This was her bliss: staring at the sunrise through the dewdrop-covered twigs of the nest, wrapped in his warm embrace. She knew she could face anything with him at her side.

The rest of my book can be read on Wattpad.

Books

I saw this Tweet the other day from Lauren DeStefano and it has really stuck with me:

I’ve been thinking about it since then and I realised how incredibly true this is. I tend not to read the top chart books or award winners. Mainly because they’re not the type of books I enjoy. Most of my colleagues at the library read them. I prefer books that take me out of my every day life and mostly take me to a magical place. I do read some normal everyday life books, and some crime books but mostly I read fantasy/sci-fi.

My favourites have been books that have meant something to me. Something that has spoken to me in the story. I always have a book with me, even when I’m writing exams – especially then so I can take my mind off things.

If I could do that for others I’d be so happy. If my work could help someone escape their real life for a bit then what better achievement is there? Of course, I’d love to be JK Rowling (who wouldn’t?) but most people can’t be her. So reaching people and helping them in whatever way is the next best thing.

Books are truly magical.

Editing and posting online

I’m now up to chapter 20 of my book both editing and posting.

It’s been good to edit properly again.

However, I haven’t had the response to my book that I was hoping for. I had hoped for a bigger readership. Hopefully it will improve after I’ve put everything up.

I’m happy with my cover now. I like it. I don’t know if others would like it, but I do.

Here it is anyway: http://www.wattpad.com/myworks/26815850-air-fay

Cover revamp 

Something wasn’t quite working for me with the cover I had made for my book.

I kept the basics of it but added more to it. I think the wings on their own were a good reference for myself but it’s catchier with the sihouette. At least in my opinion. 

 

My book is being posted on Wattpad. I’ve posted more or less half of it up so far:

http://www.wattpad.com/story/26815850-air-fay?utm_source=web&utm_medium=twitter4&utm_content=share_myworks_details&ref_id=18201582

Library Mystery

Thump

Pippa jumped at the sound, looking around. There was no one in sight. Looking around more closely, she edged closer and spotted a book lying on the floor. Frowning, she contemplated it. Falling books were not uncommon in a library. Pippa had worked in the library on and off for many years, starting as a teenager and as she moved on into university. The falling book was not what puzzled her. She was confused by where it fell from.

The book was lying in the middle of the library floor, with the closest shelf several feet away. The book could not have fallen off the shelf and landed there of its own accord. The only way it could have landed that distance away was if someone had thrown or pushed it.

As she got closer to the book, she saw the cover. She didn’t recognised it. Of course, Pippa didn’t know every single book in the library, but there was something about this one that didn’t look familiar.

As Pippa bent down and picked up the book, the hairs on the back of her neck stood on edge and a shiver went down her spine. Perplexed, she gingerly looked at the book. The title was written in elegant, black script. The picture on the front was of shelves receding into the distance, and the edges of the pages were gold. Looking at the spine, Pippa’s eye grew big as coins and she sucked in a breath. The dewey number was 1020.

Pippa gulped and rushed over to the computer. She had to be sure. She quickly opened Google, and typed in ‘dewey decimal system’. The results popped up in seconds and she chose the Wikipedia link. Scrolling down to the actual number categories she scanned the list and as she got to the end at the 900, she yelped.

1020 did not exist, just as she had thought. What is this book? Where did it come from?

Alternative to self-publishing

At my writers group last night, we had a guest author join us, Melanie Gow. She is a non-fiction writer and photographer. Her latest book was entirely made up with photos and as such she struggled to publish it conventionally, even though she already was published before. Because of the costs involved in the book, she turned to crowd funding.

This was a concept I’ve never heard of for a book. Movie yes – the Veronica Mars movie, and various fan-fiction films spring to mind – but not a book. It’s actually an interesting route to consider. Instead of taking on all the costs of publishing, you build a business proposal and get people to invest in your book. This money covers the cost of editing, proofreading, cover designs, as well as printing and distribution. And on top of getting the money you need to produce the book, you are also building an audience.

She also suggested that I build a following for my book because it’s such a niche world. So I will be putting it up on Wattpad as I edit each chapter again.

And then who knows, either self-publishing, or crowd funding.

Character Deaths

So yesterday I was watching The Host film (yes, yes, insert judgement), and I will admit that once you wrap your mind around the weird concept, it’s a pretty good book/movie.

Anyway, I was googling after to see if there was going to be a sequel, because it is set up really well for it. I found a mention on Wikipedia (not the most reliable source, as a researcher I know this), about Stephanie Meyer planning to make it a trilogy but that “she has some qualms since The Host universe is a “dangerous place” where characters might die, and she is not sure if she wants to kill them off.”

That got me thinking about writers. Besides all of the many faults with Twilight, I think the fact that she refuses to kill her characters is, dare I say it, cowardly. I’m not saying kill everyone a la George R. R. Martin, but you have to kill some characters if the story demands it. And not meaninglessly, of course; death is a natural part of life and even if you’re writing a totally peaceful story it’s still natural, old age, sickness etc. But if you’re writing a fantasy or sci-fi or dystopia it is a more likely occurrence given the magic, the revolutions etc. that are commonplace in these genres.

I had to face up to a death in my second book that I’m writing. It was tough writing that scene, but it was the natural evolution to the story. I knew it was coming and it took a lot out of me to write it but I did. There should be a reason for killing characters, and I accepted that.

I hated J.K. Rowling for every character she killed but I respect her immensely for it. It takes courage to face the facts and accept them.  Not to do so, just seems disingenuous.

And I do understand that not all stories have to have a death to make it good and that is of course fine – better for the audience. But if the story is leading to a death, to shy away and not write it is a betrayal not only to yourself as the writer but to your characters as well.

Anyway, just my thoughts on writing.

Prologue rewrite

I’ve been thrown for a bit of a loop with the advice I got about my writing. I got some extra help on the matter which has actually helped make sense of it all. I’ve have tried rewriting it but I’m not sure if I’m on the right track. I rewrote the prologue that I posted here a few months ago. It’s not big changed but small sentence changes. Here’s the new one:

✿ PROLOGUE

Night time is the best chance to search the forest undetected, thought the girl as she sneaked out of the house in the bright light of the full moon. Armed with a torch and an old map in a little book, she crept to the path. Filled with a righteous sense of duty she followed through a plan set down many decades ago.

Several hours later, however, she felt exhausted and disappointed. She spun around on the spot to turn back when she suddenly glimpsed something yellow in the torchlight. Swinging the beam back, she found the yellow rosebush that she had been desperately searching for.

She hurried over to it, and then paused to catch her breath and hide the book safely away.

As the first rays of the brilliantly red sunrise filled the sky, something broke the silence of the forest. A voice chanted, and as it ended, reality shifted. The bounds of human nature shattered, and the girl disappeared into nothingness.

She tumbled between the junction of the worlds, her thoughts a frantic stream of panic.

This is not right!

What has she done to me?!

Her mind went blank as excruciating pain overtook her senses.

Pain. Agony, unlike any other she’d ever experienced, pierced through every inch of her body. It felt like million tiny knives stabbing through her skin. A searing, ripping feeling exploded from the centre of her spine, causing her entire body to shudder. As the convulsions intensified several thoughts blurring through her mind…what’s happening? I need it to stop.

She plunged through turbulent air. The pain gave way to a new pulling sensation, the most severe tugging focused on her back.

She lost all bearings and no longer knew which way was upward. Not that it mattered anyway; she could no longer string a coherent thought together.

A blinding yellow light shot across her vision, and then nothing.

Name look alike

Sorry for my lack of posting, balancing uni and work is just crazy. I haven’t written anything story related in weeks.

Anyway, I was browsing books and I found something that made me cry noooo! I came across a book that used a name I had used.

Now it’s not a name like John, Mary, or Jack. It’s a made up word. Or at least I’d thought that I’d made it up.

They are used to refer to different things. In the book it was someone’s name, whereas I use it for a group of people. But it’s the same name.

‘Auri’ is what I mean. I came up with it from the latin word for gold, aureus, as in the chemical symbol AU. Now I’m not saying it’s very obscure like some of my other names, but it’s still upsetting.

Now I’m going to have to come up with another name for them. And I always struggle with these kinds of names. This is also probably going to stall me slightly.