It’s that time of year. The Goodreads Giveaway. Want a great summer read? Call Me Emily will not disappoint. Don’t miss your opportunity to enter and win.
I finally had the chance to watch the “Hollywood” release of the big screen adaptation of 50 Shades of Grey. I didn’t rush to the theater upon it’s much anticipated release like most of my demographic; instead I waited in fear for the DVD release. I say “in fear” because like most readers I’m often disappointed when I see a movie following a particularly poignant read. I was disappointed for various reasons, but most importantly it made me think about writing in a different way. As I watched I started checking off a list of things I would have done differently and my mind went to my novels. The reason I turned the pages of that particular book was two-fold. One obvious answer and one maybe not so obvious. First, it was the first book I’d read at that point that introduced a love scene on almost every page and second, the inter dialogue of the protagonist and her inherent struggle was interesting. Those two qualities failed in the movie.
As I take away those observations I wonder how many authors think about the movie version of their work. Not who will be cast, but how it will translate mediums. We’re writing in an age where most everyone watches movies. Often when we read we imagine the Hollywood version. At least I do.
My next challenge – and I’m always looking for one – is to circle back to my works in progress and evaluate at a deeper level if I’m really creating not only a scene but an experience that allows the reader to transfer the written word into a screen adaptation in their mind. I think this exercise will uncover any weak areas where I haven’t portrayed a “GMC” (Goal, Motivation, Conflict) well enough. One of my ongoing works, The Fifth Day, has given me a bit of run for my money in this area, and I think this new outlook could help me turn this work around. Let’s see what I can do. Check back.
In my New Year’s post I talked about shaking things up this new Year. I intend to do just that, but maybe in different ways than some do.
Late 2013 and 2014 marked a period of drastic career change for me. I went from working part time for a number of years while my son was younger, to freelance, and now returning to my career in a full time and-then-some capacity. That alone tested my routines and comforts beyond what I could have imagined. Now, still not entirely living in a “comfort zone,” I do feel like I’m getting the hang of it. That brings me back to what I’m going to do.
They say you use the two sides of your brain for different things. One for creativity and one for analytics. I say I use my whole brain for creativity and my whole brain for analytics. A demanding career can be overwhelming and has at times, but creativity can coexist.
Writing novels is never easy, story-lines don’t always come to me in the shower (although sometimes) and it’s certainly not in my comfort zone. It’s hard work, beautiful, but hard work. Four published novels later I always wonder if I’ve seen the last of it. I’ve written many stories, but some are on a path to publish while others were just for me. It’s the one that continually nags at you that finds it way on Amazon. For me it’s a spin-off. For years I’ve been nagged by my Call Me Emily character “Colin.” Colin resonated with me in a way other characters just tickled me. This man, so loving and selfless, yet in his journey with Emily did not find his happily ever after.
My plan to reconnect with Colin and maybe some other characters from the series is exciting. And no, not in a comfortable way. I’ll post pieces of the new novel here as they come to me and share with you the journey. I’m looking forward to it.
This lovely Friday marks the beginning of a new year for all of us, so from my family to yours I wish you a great year ahead. I find so many of us use this time to inventory and set goals. My husband and I do the same. We take a quick inventory of our finances, vacation plans as well as home improvement goals. If you know my husband it should come as no surprise that although our house is perfectly renovated he always has home improvement plans. I, on the other hand, have vacation plans that are often out of reach – so there. Overall, each year marks a little more of the same for me and for must of us I assume. I find that comforting as well as a little rote. I plan to shake things up a little. I will enjoy the comfort of knowing I have some healthy routines in place, but I also plan to do a few things outside of my comfort zone. I haven’t figured out what those things are yet, but I will and I’ll post them here. So please enjoy your year and maybe do a couple things that are new to you.
Best, as always,
It is the season for kindness and giving. Well, that’s what I thought. Let me paint a picture for you. Yesterday evening I’m scrolling through books to download on my Kindle and momentarily wander to the Emily Series to check on my sweet books. When to my surprise there is an additional review for both Call Me Emily and Emily Calls It. With one click and a scroll I see it’s one word, “boring” and one star. My heart immediately sank until the name associated with the review caught my eye. Donna Rhama. Better known as AUNT DONNA. I spent the last twelve hours completely offended and angry. I couldn’t believe a woman who had spent time with my family for the better part of my adolescence would post something so negative. Then I spoke to my mother. Clearly there was a falling out I wasn’t a part of. Still an attack was thrown my way. So I ask, dedicated readers, please add a review to Call Me Emily and Emily Calls It on Amazon.com to bury this silly attempt to upset me and my family. I will be ever grateful. (And if you feel like it, add one to Emily’s Calling and Meet Emily.)
When Emily Parker leaves her small hometown in the late 1980s for California West University, she thinks she has it all figured out. But when manipulation, vanity, and pleasure enter her life in the form of a whirlwind college romance, will she stay true to herself? Add the watchful eye of an older brother who also attends Cal West, friends who care too much, a strenuous class load and part-time job, and throw in a young, interested professor. Emily’s path to adulthood challenges her at every turn.
Released in paperback and Kindle – Amazon.com
Barnes & Noble for Nook:
Smashwords for all other digital downloads including HTML, .pdf and iPad:
I have been a remiss blogger. I know. I hang my head in shame.
To update you, The Emily Series is still my first love, but life has thrown me some curve-balls as of late, and I have been focusing on a new job. I love it, but it takes most of my time and all of the energy that I would otherwise give The Emily Series and subsequent novels.
But hey, it’s summer and when I think of warm summers and long ago loves, I think of Meet Emily. If you haven’t read the final novel in The Emily Series, now’s the time. Here’s a little teaser:
When Emily Parker returns to her hometown after several years, she’s reminded of the rolling hills and captivating quiet, the fond memories of growing up and one lost love. Years of relationships falling short behind her, she’s finally happy on her own. So why when she makes the turn into her hometown does she think of that one boy, that one relationship that only lasted the span of a summer but stayed on her mind over the years? Why have all other relationships paled in comparison?
I was impressed, but he brushed it off as if it was no great feat. We laughed and talked about so many things, yet really nothing at all. We stood by the water and skipped rocks, counting how many skips the rocks made.
“So these are two separate rivers?” he asked.
“Yeah. See over there?” I pointed. “See where they come together?”
He leaned in closer to me and looked down my arm. “Oh, Yeah I see it,” he replied stepping back just a half step. “But then …”
I looked over my shoulder at him knowing what he was seeing. “Then they separate. I know.”
“So they don’t meet up again?” he asked.
“No, they only come together here.” I dusted my hands off against my legs and moved away from the water’s edge. I sat back against a tree and crossed my legs. He moved in beside me.
This is a questions I’ve been asking myself recently. I’ve written a new novel; The Fifth Day. Actually, I finished it last summer, but between working for a living and digesting review comments, I was at a standstill. Now I’m refreshed and no longer paralyzed at the thought of a rewrite.
So my question is, once I’m ready to share, should I post on a FanFiction site or two?May authors have gained traction this way, but is it safe? How is it regarded among authors, editors, agents and publishers? I’ve heard Fifty Shades of Grey got started this way. Hmm. The prospect has me thinking. Let me know your thoughts. Would love to get feedback.
For all of you Auburn folks The Emily Series is now in stores. OK, a store, let’s not nit pick. Wildflower in downtown Auburn now carries Call Me Emily, Emily Calls It, Emily’s Calling and Meet Emily. My teen fiction series is perfect for anyone, but that special teen in your life that is just about to embark on one of the most tumultuous and exciting times in their lives – College – would love the Emily Series.
Wildflower is located in downtown Auburn at 809 Lincoln Way.
As graduation season is now upon us, I find myself revisiting (as if I ever left) the pages of Call Me Emily. A gift for a friend just starting her journey, I signed a few words of encouragement and wrapped it up for her. She’s bright, full of promise and ready to take on the world, just like Emily.
This is such a wonderful time in her life. The excitement is overflowing and the possibilities are endless. She’ll be tested, for sure, but bright young women always come out on top. To all the young people ending their time as children and beginning to live as adults: I raise my glass to you.