Monday, 31 October 2011

Happy Halloween

Tonight will be the night of little ghouls, ghosts, goblins, and witches, so on and so forth. My message today is simple: Be careful, watch out for all the little ones who are so excited about the candy from the house next door, that they're not paying attention to the possible cars that will be driving down the road -- Let's all have a safe and happy Halloween.

Have a great day.

C. Elizabeth

Friday, 28 October 2011

Family First

This week has been one of reflection and reconnection.  I have a blended family; step-mother, step-father, step-siblings, half-siblings, plain ole sisters, brothers, you catch my drift.  We all know what those titles mean within the family unit, however, do the people who have those titles warrant less or more of your attention?

Though we all may not keep in touch on a regular basis and we may not phone as often as we should -- I love them.  I may not like them sometimes, just as they may not like me sometimes, we may lead completely different lives -- but to me they're not step-anything, they're not half-anything, they are the true and originals -- I have three sisters and one brother.  We may not all be blood related, but they are my brother and sisters, whatever title society gives them... They're my family.

Have a great day and week-end.

C. Elizabeth

Thursday, 27 October 2011

I'm Off and Running

The other day I talked about new people entering the stage and right on cue, some have.  A whole new cast of characters have stepped forward, who are loud and adamant that their story be told.  However, this bunch hadn't been waiting in the wings, they simply showed up, out of the blue and have put everyone else, including the edits on Rose and Michael, backstage.

Their voices are strong and are giving my typing fingers a run for their money while I try to keep up with them. One by one they are coming forward and telling me how each of their lives fit into the others.  That's about all I can say about it at this point, but I will tell you this:  Hang on, this bunch is going to take us another wild journey.

Have a great day.

C. Elizabeth

Wednesday, 26 October 2011

Amazon, Fictionwise -- Kindle, Nook...Oh my!

We as writers would love to have our novels number one and I believe I've touched on this subject before. It's human nature to watch the ratings on the websites that sell our books, like Amazon and Fictionwise.  We wait with anticipation to see where it will end up from week to week and give ourselves a big woohoo when we aren't last, sometimes our novels reach the first or second pages as bestsellers -- that deserves a huge, huge woohoo!

Yet, I wonder why we do it to ourselves, especially when there is no way to decipher how the book rankings work. Example:  Last week I was number 4 on Fictionwise, under Wings ePress Inc., Mainstream category -- an excellent number. I was also number 23, under Wings ePress Inc., Romance category and number 47 out of all books sold by Wings ePress Inc. on that site. An incredibly wonderful week.  This week, I'm number 7 under Wings ePress Inc., Mainstream category, a very good number. However I'm hovering between middle and bottom on the other two and I say hovering because if you're not in the top sellers, your book will jump around and can go from 243 to 1123 in an hour, then the next hour it can go back down to 93 (remember the lower the number the better, working its way to number 1).  It's confusing I know, but you get what I'm saying.

Watching the numbers individually all the time will drive you crazy (well crazier than we already are), wondering why one minute you can be in the top 25 and the next, your almost at the bottom -- we'll never know how they rank the books.  My advice --look at the bigger picture.  If Absolute Obsession holds its own and continues to sell one or two and doesn't drop out of the rankings completely (meaning absolute last) then I'm happy, someone is bringing Michael and Rose alive in their minds -- that was my goal and I have accomplished it. Now that doesn't mean that I won't brag and celebrate when it moves back up in the ranks, it's human nature.

Having said all that, I want to congratulate my friend, Laura Burks the author of  the YA novel, Altered, for ranking number one this week on Fictionwise, under Wings ePress Inc., Romance category and number one, under all the books Wings ePress Inc. sell there. Congrats Laura.

Have a great day.

C. Elizabeth

Tuesday, 25 October 2011

Excitement That's Sad

Well the first draft of the last novel in the Absolute Obsession series is finished, with a beginning, a middle and an end. There is still many more edits that need to be done, which I am now knee deep in making and until then, it won't be considered anywhere near a completed work.

When the last word was written, excitement was the first emotion, then sadness, making it a bitter, sweet moment. Even though I'll be revisiting them quite often doing the edits, their story is told.  What started two years ago is complete for them, their lives are now on paper as they wanted it.  And as Rose, Michael and the gang slowly leave the stage one by one, new characters are taking their place, gathering, waiting for their story to be told.

You may think it's crazy, but it's going to be difficult to say good-bye to the gang. They have become a very big part of my life, not to mention that they started me on this wonderful journey of self-discovery -- I can't help but to feel a wicked empty nest syndrome coming on.

Have a great day.

C. Elizabeth

Monday, 24 October 2011

Story Telling: How It Comes To Pass

Below is my article that was published on Blogcritics

Article first published as
Story Telling: How It Comes to Pass on Blogcritics.

A writer, for all intents and purposes, is and must be a storyteller. I’ve had the great pleasure to have readers tell me that, while reading a novel, they often wonder how the author ever came up with such an idea for a book. To understand where those stories come from, one needs to know a little about the source.

To watch a writer, published or not, go about their daily business, working, tending to family matters, running errands, you wouldn’t see anything out of the ordinary. There is no sign with an arrow above their head saying “I’m a writer”, though I’m certain there are a few who wouldn’t mind such a display — they’re as normal as anyone else. Yet there is one decidedly different twist to them. It’s not something you can see, nor is it something you can touch and you will never know that distinction is there until you hold the pages of their book in your hands – it’s what is going on inside their minds. A writer can mentally multi-task, with the ability to stay focused on regular everyday things, as well as allow ideas to flow while doing it.

Extravagant, earth-shaking confrontations are not the norm to produce an idea for a writer. No, it’s mostly the world around them, maybe an encounter with a stranger who reveals a goofy quirk or a shift in the atmospheric barometer — okay, maybe not that – or perhaps seeing the tender moment between two people. Ideas come from everywhere, but it is usually the simplest things the writer takes and brings to life, building places, times, cities, and most of all the beloved characters, developing them as each word is written – unfolding the story so as to take you on a journey.

So if you’re one of those readers who often wonder where the ideas come from, remember while you’re out, you may be in the presence of a writer and you’ll never know if something you do or say will inspire a novel.

Have a great day
C. Elizabeth

Read more:

Friday, 21 October 2011

The Math Equation

Today I'm going to go off on a rampage. Why you ask? Well, because something has been bothering me for years off and on and yesterday someone reminded me how much. I think and this is only my opinion, that kids aren't required to use their brains in school anymore with all the electronics out there.  The one subject that comes to mind is math.

When my kids went to school they weren't allowed to have a calculator until grade ten, now a calculator is manditory on school supplies lists as early as grade three.  The sad thing is, the kids never learn the art of doing math in their heads and as far as I'm concerned, you should be able to, at least, know your basic times table, or be able to calculate how much money you'll save if an item is 10% off and also be able to subtract that amount from the original price.

I see it every day, even with my own kids, they rely so much on electronics to do the work for them, their minds are lazy.  It really isn't their fault, that's how they were taught -- I wish the schools would turn back time, if only to the time when they  actually wanted our kids to be smart.

Nuff said, thanks for listening.

Have a great day and weekend.
C. Elizabeth

Thursday, 20 October 2011

The Pictures

Well the verdict is in about which pictures to use for around the internet -- I've decided to use all of them, intermittently for all the different sites I have.  Every so often I'll change them just to keep things fresh.

Thank you for helping me to decide -- I will let you know the 4/5 and 10/11 came out on top, in a tie. I also want to thank Jill, at J. Shantz Photography for doing the pictures, she did an excellent job making me beautiful. If you need any photography done in the St. Albert/Edmonton area you definately have to check her out. She has excellent prices too.

I have removed the slideshow and again thanks guys. Luv ya.
(I know, I'm not fooling you, what a cop out on today's blog eh?)

Have a great day.

C. Elizabeth

Wednesday, 19 October 2011

Book Review: Altered by Laura Burks

Jenna Larson is an eighteen year old, who tends to leave typical teenage trouble to the other teenagers, relying on her sweet and fun-loving side to get through most days.  She's looking forward to spending the summer in a small town with her grandfather, who is also known as Pops.  When Jenna's curious, high spirited side, discovers a mysterious book filled with blank pages, she thinks nothing of it.  Until words begin to appear, bringing with them a curse from another time and putting the whole town and her Pops in danger. Yet, it also brings with it a budding love. Can she alter the curse to save her Pops and her new love?

There were times when the anticipation of what would happen next had my stomach tight with fear, other times a laugh out loud and a few crying spells along the way too.  Ms. Burks' ability to bring you into this novel is nothing short of amazing. Her writing style and finesse have you transfixed on Jenna's world, not just wanting, but needing to encounter whatever it was that Jenna was about to face, cheering her on.

This is a wonderful novel that will appeal to both the young adult as well as the cross over to adult. I thoroughly enjoyed reading it and I tip my hat to Ms. Burk for her fine showmanship of her writing skills in her debut novel.

I can't wait to read the next...sequel, perhaps?????
C. Elizabeth

Tuesday, 18 October 2011

Why Do I Write

The above question was posed to me yesterday and I found myself tripping over my tongue trying to give an answer. So of course, I pondered it all day, thinking about all my blogs, things that I've talked about, things the way I see it... Looking for the answer in one or all of it. Then I moved on to the next big question -- is there actually one answer? No, there isn't.

As with most things subjective, the answer will be different for every writer. As for me -- why do I write? I write for the same reason you read. To delve into a different world, to meet new people, to embark on a journey, to maybe go to a place where I can be alone, or have a sword fight with a horde of pirates (no, I'm not writing a book about pirates), but most of all, find a place that is mine and mine alone, if only for a moment, before life is real again.

Have a great day. 

C. Elizabeth

Monday, 17 October 2011

The Hazards of Writing

As I've said before, our job as writers is to show you the story, explaining things in such a way that you can see everything as we do, unfortunately sometimes that's one of the hazards of being a writer. Our visuals of a scene or world can get in the way of the words.  Allow me to explain (I hope).

As the author, we go back numerous, numerous times and re-read, most times our words will rebuild the scene in our mind exactly as you would see it. Yet on a few occasions, with a re-read, I've scratched my head, truly wondering what in the H.E. double tooth picks I was thinking when those words were put down -- in those cases, nine times out of ten it was because I was so focused on the visual of the scene, that I missed the mark for the words. At the time of writing it, it makes sense because I had a vivid picture in my mind's eye, but when I read it later, as the reader, it makes no sense at all, the words not building the scene as it should, also sometimes me forgetting completely, what the scene was in the first place. Wouldn't you call that a huge hazard, when a whole scene doesn't make sense to the writer and they don't even know what they were trying to portray in the first place? Yikes! I'll never confess when that happens, truly I won't.

I guess what I'm trying to say, is this: Remember to take the time to re-read your work no matter how long it takes, because if there is so much as a paragraph that a reader is unable to understand and gets confused, they'll put the book down, never to return and  never mind the word of mouth review.

Does this make any sense?  Well it does to me... Maybe I'll just quit while I'm ahead.

Happy Monday and have a great day.
C. Elizabeth

Friday, 14 October 2011

A Daily Peace

Again I have discovered something, (I know, I know!). I've said  before that writing gives me peace, how much wasn't really known until my discovery yesterday as I wrote. 

As you all know the summer and the past weeks have been a drivel and a dabble of writing for me, only squeezing it in where I could. Well this past week I've been on holidays and at first my days were getting filled with appointments and errands, until at the last minute I decided to clear my whole schedule to write.

My discovery -- I have to write every day. It's as much a necessity for me as my full-time job, eating, and sleeping.  Why?  Because when I write, I am in tune with my whole heart and whole soul, no outside elements matter at that moment, the only thing real are my inner emotions and the story going on within me. How many of us can say that we have delved so deep within ourselves, that we actually immerse ourselves in peace, allowing us to discover without fear -- to me that is writing. With such peace, I fear nothing for which I will discover of myself.

Have a great day and weekend. 

C. Elizabeth

Thursday, 13 October 2011

Running out of Hours

There are 24 hours in a day and out of that we need to take away at least 7 for sleep and that's stretching it. Then we take away 8 for work, another 1 for commuting to and from work (and that's being generous it's more like one and a half hours), say another 2 for meals, on average 1 on errands, maybe 2 at the gym, at least 2 on marketing Absolute Obsession (writing the blogs, articles, etc.) and then time to be with the family.  This is an average work day for most people, the things that have to be done may be different, but it's a pretty good assessment.

If this is how we run our days, where is the time for us to do things simply for ourselves? All of our days are scheduled around doing what needs to be done or has to be done. Is that living or just simply existing?

Today, make an hour just for you, to do as you want, no one telling you what to do, where you need to be, no schedule. Take it, after all, it was yours to begin with before life got in the way.

Have a great day

Wednesday, 12 October 2011

Trying to Get There

They've done it again. They revealed a scene a couple of months ago that has been in the back of mind and which belongs to the third of the Absolute Trilogy -- it being the scene that sets up the end.  However, that scene needed all the defining factors to come into play before it could been written out at all.

It is also a scene that I luv and am extremely excited to write.  So much so, that I find myself wanting to get to it so badly, I'm hurrying through most of the prior story, leaving out details and emotions, simply writing down the skeleton. The plan  is to go back and fill in those very, very important elements, but until my masterpiece part is written, it will stay a skeleton. That's not to say that the gang isn't telling me what those details are as I hurry through -- there are many small pieces of paper, piled in a specific spot, that will eventually complete Rose and Michael's finale'.

Have a great day. 

C. Elizabeth

Monday, 10 October 2011

Writing and Reaction: A Turn of the Tide

It was a wonderful weekend, I hope you all had a good one as well.  My article was published on Blogcritics this past weekend, please have a look and leave a comment if you like, or like it on facebook. The link is below.

Writing and Reaction: A Turn of the Tide

Have a great day.
C. Elizabeth

Friday, 7 October 2011


Well it is thanksgiving this weekend for us Canadians so I'm taking today off from writing something inspirational or goofy or...well you know.  Have a safe and happy weekend.  I'll see you on Tuesday.

C. Elizabeth

Thursday, 6 October 2011

When Things are put into Perspective

Yesterday, through inadvertence, an email that landed in my inbox reminded me of why I write. 

You've heard me say it before and I'm saying it again, the royalties are simply a bonus to this writing thing, no matter the denomination. It's the number of books sold, sitting beside that amount, that appeal to me.

For me, Michael and Rose being alive in your mind is, by far, the most exciting, you being in their world, in the way your mind's eye sees it. Yet in some scenes, you could quite possibly see it the same as I did when I wrote it. All I ask is that you don't ever forget that I'm there with you, in each word you read, each tear you cry, each angry outburst you throw out into the wind -- if you listen closely as you read, somewhere in the scene you might hear the scribbling of the words "I was here."

Have a great day.

C. Elizabeth

Wednesday, 5 October 2011

Feeling Lost

As of late I've been feeling a bit lost. No I don't mean lost in another world -- darn it! I'm lost in the real world, trying to find my way back to my other world. Only us writers can say that and not have the white coats take us away.

All kidding aside, that's how I have been feeling and even though there had been some good writing episodes this past summer, they were mostly for the second in the Absolute series, getting the rewrites into Wings ePress.  The third, I have to finally admit, didn't get a lot of attention these past months.  In my defence I tried, getting bits and pieces done, but never really able to sit down with it, uninterrupted and listen to them, life kept getting in the way.  I'm not complaining (well maybe I am a little bit), but my head was full of words, as were the feelings and truth be told, it was driving me nuts.  Never mind! I know you're asking "but isn't that the norm?"

Fingers and toes crossed that this past weekend was the turning point -- it feels like it. I've written some exceptionally solid things that I feel really good about (even though they took me through one heck of an emotional rollercoaster ride) and have managed to continue to stay focused. So much so, that I've walked through the dark patches and am now writing the outcome from that lead scene I was talking about. There's still heartache and pain, but I can see the light at the end of the tunnel now, when before, it was pitch black.

Have a great day.

C. Elizabeth

Tuesday, 4 October 2011

The Lead

When we hear the word "lead" in reference to a book, we tend to automatically think about the hero or heroine, aka the lead character.  However, it's not only them that lead a novel, so do some specific scenes.

Few scenes can be considered the lead, those are the ones that will keep you interested, the ones that may tie all the previous chapters together, or will bring something to light that may have escaped you, or maybe it will begin a whole new journey that may not make sense at that moment, but will gobsmack you when all the puzzle pieces fit together. These scenes can be as short as a paragraph or two and as long as two or three chapters, depending on which road our characters decide to take us on. Either way, it can set you up to wait for the next shoe to drop, or give you a shiver or even have you scream out loud, "Noooo!".

I bring this up because that's where I was this past weekend. Two days of writing and each was completely absorbed in this one scene.  Why? Because it is the biggest lead I've ever written, it has every emotion flowing through it (it was a very emotional weekend for me... I cried a lot), it pulls it all together up to that point, yet adds another incredible dynamic, leaving you wondering and wanting to find out "how the hell that could  happen to Rose and Michael."

Have a great day.

C. Elizabeth

Monday, 3 October 2011

The Author Article

Blogcritics has published another article I wrote.  Please take a peek and leave a comment;
The Author:  The Master of Mind Reading

Have a gret day.