Friday Short: Fire

Click on image for the original post

 

This micro-story was written for this picture prompt (click on the image to read the original post):

 

Fire

 

She was kept in a cold, dark prison for eons; now the light beckons her to take flight once more, to freedom, to the fiery death of all who stand in her way.

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Author Interview: David Cedar

 

** This week we have a special guest with us to share about his debut scifi-mystery-thriller novel, Anniversaries.

 

 

Tell us what first drew you to writing. 

I have a creative mind and an Art background and in lieu of expressing myself in paint on canvas (like my father did), I chose the written word.

 

Do you listen to music while you write?  If so, what kind of music? 

Sometimes. If I do, it’s mostly 1960s pop and rock or Classic Rock. And it’s always on in the “background” to keep me company.

 

Who is your favorite author? Why? 

I have read novels in the past but, I mostly read magazine articles, so I don’t have a “favorite author”.

 

Do you have a favorite magazine or two?

I have, in the past, subscribed to two magazines: “Hemmings Classic Car” and “Collectible Automobile”. And have hundreds of back issues. But, I no longer like either publication anymore, I’m sorry to say.

 

You’ve just published a book. Tell us what your book is about. 

ANNIVERSARIES is about Darren Prescott, an ex-drug dealer/pimp who discovers a way to travel back in time to specific events on specific days in his past (and other people’s past too). He plans to parlay this ability into a money making venture, but gets side tracked when he discovers (while Time-Traveling) something horrible his father did years earlier.

 

What inspired you to write this book?

When I was very young (maybe five years old), my mother gave me a slice of Swiss cheese for a snack and as I was about to bite into it, she said, as a joke, “Don’t eat the holes”. Well, I believed everything my mother told me, so when I was finished eating, on my plate were several Swiss cheese “holes” all with bite marks around their perimeters.

This little memory, this quick “snippet” of my life, has stuck with me all these years. And there are dozens and dozens of other “snippets” in my memory bank. One day, I got to thinking that these memories, although insignificant, all have anniversaries. Let’s say that the “Swiss cheese” incident happened on July 10, 1966, that means that every July tenth, it has an anniversary. My novel is loosely based on this concept.

 

You write under a pen name, what prompted you to do this?  Is there a story behind this pen name (on how you came up with it?)?

I decided to use a pen name because, my late father (Albert Swayhoover) was an Artist and his artwork is all over the Internet. If one were to Google “Swayhoover”, the result would be thousands of websites that sell his work. I was concerned that my book and I might get lost among all of that.

The origins of my pen name are: “David” is my middle name and “Cedar” was part of the name of the street in which I grew up, Cedar Point Drive. Then I searched Author names and didn’t find any other David Cedars, so that’s what I went with.

 

Where can we find this book? 

Amazon

 

What are your writing plans for the near future? 

I’m considering a sequel to ANNIVERSARIES. And there are two or three articles on one of my favorite subjects: American Automobile History that I am writing.

 

Where can we find you? 

www.davidcedar-author.com

 

******

 

About the Author:

David Cedar (aka Robert Swayhoover) was born and raised on Long Island, New York. He graduated from Chamberlayne College in Boston, Massachusetts, in 1984 with a degree in Advertising Design. In 1997, he married Patricia Townes-Swayhoover. The couple lived in New York City before relocating to Raleigh, North Carolina in 2003. Writing has always been something David was interested in, but never gave it a try until seven or eight years ago. Besides writing, his interests include: Automobile History and World War II History.

 

Click on image to purchase

 

 

 

 

#Book #Review: Plan Your #Novel Like A Pro: And Have Fun Doing It!

 

*Please note – I received a free copy of this book by the author for the purpose of a fair and honest review.

 

Having been a writer for a number of years, finishing a novel is still a Herculean challenge.  I don’t consider myself as a true plotter nor am I a true pantser.  I suppose I’m somewhere in between.  The challenge that always stopped me from finishing a book is not figuring out its plot, but with the characters.  I can work with one or two characters, but when I start to juggle more than three, I hit a mental block every time which keeps me from reaching the end of the story.

Then, I read this book.

Filled with applicable writing exercises geared to help the writer create the core blueprint for the book, I came away energized and well, hopeful.  Hopeful in that I now believe I have the tools in hand to help me complete the current manuscript I’m writing.

Through this book, Beth and Ezra Barany share tools and exercises on developing real characters that readers can relate to as well as creating plots and subplots that will keep them glued to each and every page.  They also give tips and ways to effectively create a world for your story that seems real and complex. And these are only the tip of the iceberg!

There are hundreds if not thousands of how-to-write-a-book manuals, but this one actually gives you specific step-by-step techniques that you won’t see in most of them.

So, if you’re struggling to finish that novel then this book is for you!

 

(You will find this book over at Amazon )

#IWSG: New Year’s Goals

 

This month’s question: “What are your writing goals for the new year?” 

 

My writing life is so out of sync at the moment as I’m searching for some way to get back into a routine of some sort. So far, nothing is working.

Hubby was furloughed when the federal government shutdown on December 21st (well, technically it’s only a partial shutdown, but still) which means he’s been home 24/7 since.  I have the only computer in the house, and of course, he’s been monopolizing all my free time on it to keep up with the news as well as other things.  I might be able to get on for maybe 30 minutes each day, not nearly enough time to do much of any real writing. The rest of my time has been spent juggling bills when we have no income coming in, and “spring” cleaning.  He thinks that my sitting at the desk for several hours each day is a sign of my being lazy.

Writing…lazy?   Really?

Yeah, I have a husband who really doesn’t get me as a writer, but I forgive him for this. Still, it doesn’t make it any easier.

Okay, my rant time is over.

I gave up on setting resolutions as I’ve never really been successful with them.  Instead, I prefer to set goals. For 2019 I do have a few goals I hope to attain:

  1. Take at least one writing workshop (poetry especially)
  2. Finish Draft One for novels: The Hidden Avalon, Terror From the Deep, and Hope Falls
  3. Write every day (min. word count: 250)

I believe these to be quite reasonable with ample room to add more goals if I wish.

 

What about you? What are your writing goals for this year?

#Writing #Reading What Is Your Preference?

#IWSG #Writing Life: Here We Are, December Already

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Our tree-mostly decorated by my son.

 

Question of the month is: what are your writing goals for December? 

 

November is over, and the tree is up! Now, it’s time to think about Christmas shopping. Yeah, I know, I’m late in starting, but that’s how I roll…every single year!

 

Well, NaNoWriMo has ended and I finished just shy of 14k. I am a bit disappointed that it wasn’t way higher, but progress is progress, right? I set another goal for the story I started with this and that is to reach 75k (or if the story feels complete before that) by Feb. 1st, 2019.  This I believe is a reasonable goal.

 

From there I plan to set it aside for a few weeks to work on other projects. I hope to go back to it around March/April and begin the editing/revision phase. After this I’d like to see about gathering a few Beta readers to help me make the story even better.  My goal is to have as polished a manuscript as possible by the end of 2019. Around this time, I may even attempt to take part in the Pitch Wars.

 

What about you?  What are your writing goals for December? I love to hear them!

 

***IWSG stands for Insecured Writer’s Support Group.  Want to know more? Click here.

Story Sunday: Journey’s End

 

There, he stood at the twilight of life

where the sun quickly descended for the horizon.

He glanced back and saw all the closed doors.

So many.

Regrets. Wrecked promises. Missed opportunities.

Yet…

there were also realized dreams, unbroken vows, seeds sowed now in full blooms.

Legacies to live beyond the barriers of the physical body.

No, he refused to linger another moment

for there was one remaining door to cross,

into the rising moonbeams that will carry him

up, up

to the final journey.

 

 

 

 

 

#Thanksgiving: 5 Things I Am #ThankfulFor

 

 

I don’t know about you but I can hardly believe it is THAT time of the year! It feels like it was just  yesterday when I was in shorts and puttering in our garden.  Now, I’m prepping for a Thanksgiving Day meal.

Is it me, or has time sped up?

As in the past, I like to make a list of things I am grateful for.  Here are five:

  1. My family.  I am so grateful for my husband (of nineteen years) and fifteen year-old son. Those two have kept me grounded when I think I might have (permanently) left this reality for an imaginary one.
  2. Writing. I am thankful that I discovered the magic of writing so many years ago. It enabled me to work through the many dark times in life as well as opened up doors to the many opportunities and wonderful people I never would have encountered.  All have been such blessings of hope that kept me going!
  3. This country. I am so so thankful to live in this great country!  It is so full of beauty and variety.  As of today, I’ve visited perhaps thirty states.  I hope to visit the rest in the near future (have yet to see the Pacific coast).
  4. Health. I am thankful to be alive and healthy. I’ve known so many who are no longer with me and they will be in my thoughts tomorrow.
  5. My animals.  Okay, I’m going a little mushy now.  I am thankful for the many pets I have in and around my house.  They keep me thoroughly entertained all day long.  And not to mention, great company when both my guys are gone during the days.

 

What about you?  What are you thankful for?

 

 

#NaNoWriMo: Midpoint

 

 

November is already half over–can you believe it?

And what’s even crazier is that one week from today is Thanksgiving!

Heck, I haven’t gotten a turkey yet much less planned a menu for it.  I’ll work on it over the coming weekend…maybe.

I’ve been writing away on a story for NaNoWriMo currently sitting at about 7,200 words for the month. Yeah, the word count is quite low provided that I didn’t start until the 5th day. I’ve set up a goal tracker for this novel that by February 1st 2019 to have written a total of 75,000 words. This will be more realistic, but that won’t stop me from trying to get as many words done for November as I can. At that point (after November 30th), I plan to go back to writing my other projects.

So, what is this story I’m currently writing?

Click on image to read

 

Brief synopsis:

Nyssa Mann found herself in a zombie apocalypse that claimed everyone she cared for.  In search for a safe haven, she met a stranger who promised just that only to be tricked into a fantastical world where she will face a new kind of terror.

There are currently eight chapters up on Wattpad if you’d like to follow along Nyssa’s adventures. I’ve been trying to write about one new chapter per day. At the moment, a total of 30 chapters are slated for the completion of this book (possibly there will be additional chapters).  This may also be Book One in a series or saga for the overall story but for now I’m taking this one day at a time.

What about you? Are you participating in NaNoWriMo? If not, are you currently working on a writing project? I’d like to hear about it!  🙂