Generating Plot Ideas Using Mechanical Devices

For me, I've got a ton of plot ideas.  My problems are finding the time to write them all, and not knowing if those ideas are worth pursuing (is it worth it for me to "waste" my time?).

So what if you don't have any ideas?  I could lend you a few ;-), but they might not be to your liking (i.e., they suck, in your mind, and you might be right).  But then, that's not using the creative side of your brain, is it?

I bring this up only because of the STUPENDOUS!!  SUPERB!!  UNBELIEVABLE!! ideas writers have come up with to help them out of this particular quagmire.


Elizabeth Taylor, RIP

A true beauty - yes, the violet color of her eyes was real - no faking that.

She gave herself over to helping the AIDS cause...even before her friend, Rock Hudson, came out just before he died.  Okay, maybe there wasn't AIDS back in the 1950s...but Elizabeth Taylor was a very good friend of Montgomery Clift, who was gay...and had to keep it quiet.

After all, we're talking the 1950s, here.

Montgomery Clift was involved in a horrific accident, right in the middle of filming (I think) Raintree County, Liz's try at a Gone With the Wind-type movie.  She stayed by his side, even as he recuperated, and loved him as a dear friend until he passed.

Here's the weird thing for me.  I remember watching all of those silly old Doris Day-Rock Hudson "sex" flicks back in the 1960s (watched them in the 1970s, as I was a liddle too young in the 1960s ;-)).  Since Rock came out, I've never been able to take him seriously in any love scenes.

But I have no problem with Montgomery Clift in love scenes; he's still believable when he's in an embrace with a woman.  ::shrug::  Maybe he's just a better actor than Rock Hudson.

Anyhoo, Liz made a lot of really great movies.  Hard to say which one was my favorite, but two come to mind: Elephant Walk and Father of the Bride.  The first takes place in India; Liz's role originally went to Vivien Leigh, who was having a nervous breakdown (I read somewhere that there might still be some glimpses of Vivien if you look real quick).  The second is the best version (sorry, the Steve Martin version sucked) of, well, Spencer Tracey as the father of the bride, Liz.  Soon afterwards, Liz married Nicky Hilton (of Hilton Hotels), the first of her 7(!) husbands (Richard Burton twice, naturally).

I thought this was a nice compilation of photos and movie stills with a really nice Sammy Davis, Jr. song accompanying it.


I Couldn't Resist This - Laugh Out Loud Query

I don't go onto Query Shark very often anymore, although I probably should, since I think doing up a query will help with cover blurbs.

Anyhoo, this post had me laughing my @ss off.

And read the comments, especially Philangelus, who "writes" the "editor's reply" to the query...


Urban Fantasy Book Covers

I remember on Smart Bitches when they had a post about covers where the heads of the female protags were cut off.

Yup, all kinds o' body parts have been cut off on covers, but it seems heads are number one.

Just thought I'd throw that in there.  This video "examines" how a lot of urban fantasy covers are looking an awful lot alike (tats, right shoulder glances, etcetera).

Enjoy! :-)


Does Anyone Like Goblins?

Thought I'd do a quick post this afternoon, after seeing Jim Hines' Goblin Day post from yesterday.

I loved the original Jig trilogy.  Still have all three books, and will eventually reread them some day.  (After  getting through my TBR pile, both real and virtual).

Well, Jim Hines has now released a short story collection based on that world.  Although I haven't ordered it (yet), I will get to that.  It's $2.99 for five stories, which is definitely worth it, for me.

If you haven't read the originals, I suggest you do that first.  They're a lot of fun, with the basic premise being the flipside of a goblin's life.  I mean, we only know them as ugly things that do all sorts of nasty stuff.

Sorry 'bout that, Jig. :-)

Write to Publish: Why does it have to be one way or the other?

Write to Publish: Why does it have to be one way or the other?

I couldn't agree more.


In Honor of St. Patrick's Day...

I know St. Patty's Day isn't until next week, but by the time I post another video, it'll be after that date.

I've been listening Enya for a long time.  (Met her at some fan shindig in NYC back in 2006, I think.  Petite, sweet lady. :-)  This is my favorite of all her songs.


Copyright Law For Writers (Boring, Hunh?)

Reading on another blog (this one, to be exact), I went to the original site.

On Piers Anthony's site, he had up his February newsletter (which might be gone by the time you read this), but I'll leave the link anyway.

Legal crap, oh boring.  ::yawn::

Except this is actually interesting.


Blurb For Changing Faces

Using Absolute Write's query help in the Share Your Work section as a guide, I've come up with a blurb that I think encapsulates the paranormal suspense I'm working on.

If anyone wants to comment as to whether it's good, so-so, or it sucks, feel free to do so.


How a Book is Published - This is Hilarious!

Thanks to my blogger friend Angie for this one.

I only hope that no one takes this seriously (to paraphrase one part of the narration, "it will take you 20 to 30 years to write your novel").  Okay, okay, so I started WIP #1 about eight years ago, so what the hell am I talking about?  ;-)

Still, the video and the narration are a scream (in a good way, of course).


All That Work For a Lousy $1.75

Holy crap, Batman!  I know I don't usually do posts on Thursdays, but this really got to me.


This is the url for a Publishers Weekly article that talks about a writer, Terrill Lankford, who was in the midst of his agent trying to sell books to one of the Big 6 publishers.

Do I need to tell you that he was having a problem with e-rights?


Phyllis A. Whitney, the First Writer I Ever Went Nuts Over

Yes, Phyllis A. Whitney was a mystery writer, not the genre I prefer to read and write in.  Yes, she died three years ago - at the age of 104!  (I should live so long.)

But she was the first writer that I sought out on a regular basis as a teenager; not that I had the money to go out and buy her books (I'm not sure she was writing much at that point in time), so I went to the library and got out her books.

She had a ton of 'em.

Another thing that most people who enjoyed her stuff didn't know was that she had a how-to book out back in the 1970s...can't remember the name of it, but I so loved her stuff - think lonely teenager ::sniff:: - I thought about writing mysteries.  So it was a surprise and a pleasure when I found that book.

Nothing came of that, and I've since gone through loads and loads of how-to's over the years.  (My current fave is The Fire in Fiction, by Donald Maass, the literary agent.)  But she was the first one that kindled something in me.  I eventually took a course on writing short stories, and managed to sell that after only putting it out there three times.  (It helps to read what the magazine is and isn't looking for.)

That spoiled me.

I thought I was one hot mama.  ::snark::  I came up with an idea from a Beatles tune...and it was rejected and rejected.  Yeah, I gave up.

But I've revived that idea, pouring it into the first book of my paranormal suspense series (which I am diligently editing, although I had to take a break from that the past two days due to work overload and a sinus headache that lasted most of yesterday).

This is the first edit.  I'm committed to only editting two more times and getting it out there.

So a thanks to Ms. Whitney, may she rest in peace, for putting the writing bug in me. :-)

Indie Pubbing Can Get You a Trad Deal - If You Want It

I'm not going to send it's a trend - or at least, not a huge trend - but there have been a number of indie authors who've gotten noticed by trad publishers.

And not just noticed, but received some nice deals.