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Category: A Writer’s Life

The Challenge of Writing a Book – NaNoWriMo

The Challenge of Writing a Book – NaNoWriMo

The Challenge of Writing a Book

The idea of writing a book in a month, National Novel Writing Month (NaNoWriMo) in November is a good one. However, life doesn’t stop just because you’re writing a book.

Every day writers the world over will say finding the time to write, like all major creative endeavors, is a challenge. And then, in November alone, you’ve got Thanksgiving and shopping for Christmas, who has time to write a book?!

The Commitment

For me, personally, a woman living with disabilities and caretaking a husband with a chronic and often life-threatening illness and now, a new dog, I couldn’t have picked a worse time for NaNoWriMo. Yet, still, I go on. Why?

This month of writing pushes me to make a daily commitment to me. I may not make that overall goal of 50,000 words. Who cares, what matters is that I am writing and like most writers, I need this outlet.

The Creativity

I am happiest when I’m writing and even happier when I’m writing my stories. They allow me to leave the stresses of everyday life behind. They allow me to stretch my creative muscles beyond real life and entertain the “what ifs.”

For instance, in my current NaNoWriMo novel-in-progress, so far I’ve released a hoard of “living” ghosts (one of which is a determined granny eager to get back to her mine.) I discovered two restaurant-owning dragons. I killed a major character in my series and uncovered the murder-plot that ties all these things together. And, the fun is just beginning!

Your Dream of Writing a Book

It’s so easy for us to get so caught in the day-to-day needs and wants that we put off something we’ve been wanting to do, for me, months, for others, years, and for many, decades. Yes, it’s November 11th, and you’re thinking, it’s too late, November is almost half over.

Nah. It’s never too late to follow your dreams! So sign up, join me in NaNoWriMo and just start writing. No matter how much or how little you get done, all that matters is that you’re on your way to fulfilling a dream!

For more about me and my stories – please make yourself at home and stay awhile…

National Novel Writing Month (NaNoWriMo)

National Novel Writing Month (NaNoWriMo)

aka November

This is my second November joining National Novel Writing Month, also known to the faithful as NaNoWriMo. I love doing NaNoWriMo ! Mainly because of the challenge, the feeling of daily word accomplishment and this year, the fellowship. On the whole, Writers are a marvelous group to know. You just have to get yourself out there and jump into the swim so to speak.

For me, it’s all about forcing myself to spend one month meeting a daily word count with the goal of 50K words. That’s a big head start toward a suspense novel! It also inspires me to keep writing, not only this month but the rest of the year.

Now, with all that said, it’s November and National Novel Writing Month. So, back to writing. This year’s project, book three of my Esme Bohlin Suspense series, THE DRAGON’S EGG. Yeah, I’m excited!

Thanks for reading! See you on NaNoWriMo

To learn Ingrid Foster as well as the amazing authors I’ve interviewed, stick around. I think you’ll be glad you did!

A Lifetime Is A Long Time To Grieve

A Lifetime Is A Long Time To Grieve

My therapist asked me why I hold onto the past. I couldn’t give her an answer.

Now I can…

A Lifetime is a Long Time to Grieve

I was asked why I hold onto the past

No, it is not fear that makes me cling

It is pain. It is sadness. It is grief and a deep

Desire to always hold onto you, your memory

I fear to let go of the past is to let go of you

And I never want to let go of you.

I still miss you, every day, I miss your gentle, loving

Ways, I miss your kindness and security, I miss the way

I always knew I was loved when I was with you,

I miss you! And I never want to lose you, your voice,

Your memory. I have been sad since the day you left me…

Some grief is so deep, so real, can one ever let go?

Oh, I wish you were here, and I wish you hadn’t left me

So soon, too soon!

I know you never wanted this for me and if you were here

Now, you’d say, “Ingrid, I know you miss me, but I want you

To be happy. I want you to live. You have a good life and I am

Proud of the woman you’ve become. Let go of the past, heal,

And move on. I am still with you. I have never left you, but you

Need to let go of what was and embrace what is.

You will never forget me, child, and I will always be here in your heart,

Loving you, caring for you, waiting for you, but not before you live

The life you were intended to live.

Be whole, Child, be true to yourself. I have no greater joy than

For you to be who you truly are.”

Let go of the past and live.

Copyright 2019

A Disappointing Trend

A Disappointing Trend

An Awesome Story Unfinished

See the source imageThere is a disappointing trend among some young writers/authors. Last night I finished what could have been an awesome story/series by an author I’ve never read before. An author I will never read again.

This is the second book I’ve read like this and if this trend continues, it will be devastating to the rest of us.

An Author’s Promise

As writers, authors and story tellers, when we publish a story we are making promises to our readers. We promise to give them the best story we can write and polished to as close to perfection as we humans can achieve. We promise to give them a complete story, not a partially written story.

 

 

What is a Complete Story?

At the least, there are three acts to a story: the setup, the confrontation, and the resolution. Or, to explain further, the setup tells what the story is about, the confrontation builds on the setup, raising the action. It is also the story’s midpoint of the story. Every story should contain a pre-climax (which begins the final action), a climax (the big “showdown”), and finally, the post action or closure ending the story.
As writers, we promise to give our readers a complete story. No, this is not necessarily written anywhere, but as every professional, experience author will say, it doesn’t have to be.

The Lie

I think what bothers me the most about this trend, is that I feel lied to. I feel the author has intentionally misled me to believe I was getting a complete story. Instead, she gave me the setup and maybe the midpoint. I don’t know for sure, I’d have to buy her next book and most likely a third book.
Instead, I wrote a review explaining what I found wrong with her presentation. The worst part, this author is a wonderful storyteller. If she had given me a complete story, I would have become a loyal reader, eager to read the other books in her series, and this blog post would be a glowing book review.

Greed

All I can think is that authors who do this are greedy. They saw a way to make more money selling incomplete books. I feel sad for anyone who follows this trend.  Yes, sure, they may make money in the short term. But, as a writer as well as a reader, I don’t believe they can fool all of their readers all of the time.

 

See the source image

Do they?
Eventually their readers will realize they’ve been duped and yet another reader (or two or more, if they write reviews) will be lost forever. Or, if these authors are as intelligent as they appear, they’ll lose the greed motivation and get back to writing good stories. The type of stories we should all be writing.
Thanks for reading! This is this writer’s life…

 

You, Me, and a Spider-Cat

You, Me, and a Spider-Cat

It’s not polished, but it’s a fun impromptu poem I wrote this morning for an upcoming event…

Those who read my stories will know what a Spider-Cat is. 🙂


You, Me, and a Spider-Cat

My dear, wonderful readers,
I’ve written my stories with my ideals
Refusing to yield to market feel-ers
Added the nuances in my mind,
Twists and turns and unexpected hills
All things a money-hungry Publisher
Would derail, shortchange, and kill,
For this writer to write her best
It MUST be on my terms, unfurling
My wings, pushing myself to the
Literary edge knowing that

You, me and a Spider-Cat want to go!

 

Copyright Ingrid Foster

 

Feedback from Writer’s Digest Self-Published Book Awards

Feedback from Writer’s Digest Self-Published Book Awards

Re: MY FATHER’S MAGIC

 

I am so pleased to announce that even though I didn’t win the Award for Genre Fiction, the commentary from the Judge is nothing short of thrilling. These long years of hard work, teaching myself to write creatively rather than technically has proven to be a success. I am so grateful to receive such wonderful feedback from a Writer’s Digest Judge.

Please read on…I hope it will encourage you to read Esme’s story, MY FATHER’S MAGIC, the first book in my fantasy suspense series.

From Judge #14 – Contest 2018 – MY FATHER’S MAGIC 

Special Book Signing Offer HERE

 

Comfort Food

Comfort Food

She crept along the corridor

Taking care to keep footsteps quiet
Her breathing soft
Her ears keen, listening for voices,


They said they were going out

But not to her
She was invisible,
A nonexistent entity
Her sole purpose to do their bidding
And disappear

The house was  empty

Except for her,
All was silent but the kitchen clock,
She was alone, finally
She loved these times
By herself, no one watching

She could sneak into the empty rooms

Restricted to her
Cupboards open, she was hungry
For love and affection but a stolen cookie or two
Would have to do,
To ease the pain and fill the hole

A car door slams, bare feet scurry

Up the stairs to her room, hoping
Her presence in the forbidden canister

Would go unnoticed.

Copyright 2009

ADHD: An Asset or a Hindrance?

ADHD: An Asset or a Hindrance?

The Bottom Line

The bottom line is being diagnosed with Attention Deficit Disorder with Hyperactivity (ADHD) is not a death sentence, it simply means an answer to many of the questions you didn’t know to ask…and a lifestyle change. You may (most likely) begin to research ADHD and find yourself dealing with a multitude of encouraging advice, ads trying to sell you “cures” or at the very least “helpful daily solutions,” and then there’s those who suffered from ADHD for years and they have all the answers, or none at all.
Like I advise those actively seeking advice on writing, one size does not fit all. You are the only one who can choose what works for you. Long before I learned I had an ADHD mind, I had developed coping skills. I didn’t know why I was different from the other kids in school. All I knew was that I had to find ways to help myself because no one else was helping me. I was on my own.

Just Breathe

And so, I leave you, my fellow ADHD-er with this, take a deep breath and embrace your Attention-Deficit uniqueness. Your ADHD can be either a hindrance or helpful asset. It’s up to you to chose. For me, it’s been more of an asset than a hindrance, I am uniquely made and so is my writing, my creativity. Having ADHD was also a major asset in the computer world. My mind works fast, switching gears on a heartbeat or focusing so keenly on a chosen task that everyone else disappears.
So, you have ADHD. Why is that a bad thing? In my mind, it’s not. I love a challenge and having ADHD enables me to explore new options and areas most people never dream possible.
In Remembrance of a Beloved Friend

In Remembrance of a Beloved Friend

Jimmy 2003 – 2018

Isn’t it strange how the loss of a furry family member hurts as much, if not more, than the passing of a human loved one? But these animals are often such an important part of our lives, it’s no wonder we mourn their loss.

When I think of our dog, Jimmy, as the one-week anniversary of his passing approaches, I remember the constant vigil he always kept between my husband and me.  And, how he would  strategically place himself so he could see or hear us both of us at the same time.

I remember long walks in desert, his playfulness, even at 15. Jimmy was such a loving, happy dog. Yet he was also a fierce protector at our gate, refusing to let anyone pass unless we gave the go ahead.

Yes, we miss you, Jimmy, and feel your loss deeply. We miss our playmate, companion, protector, confidant and beloved friend. Rest in peace, Jim…

 

Jimmy’s Favorite Game

 


Rest in Peace, Sweet Boy, You will Forever be in our Hearts

Jimmy

December 2003 – December 2018

 

 

 

My Interview with Author Tina-Marie Miller

My Interview with Author Tina-Marie Miller

My guest this week is Author Tina-Marie Miller. Hello Tina-Marie, thanks for joining us!

Hello Ingrid, thanks so much for the opportunity.

The Hamptons

I recently read your novel, THE CURIOUS MISS FORTUNE, your second novel in The Hamptons series. I love the way you start the story with Tiggy getting notified by her father’s lawyer, leading her to return to The Hamptons. You don’t tell us why she’s returning or the backstory of why she’s reluctant.  Your writing is mysterious, dynamic and compelling. I couldn’t stop reading.

So, my first question, Tina-Marie, is where did your idea for The Hamptons come from?  

Thank you so much for your kind words Ingrid, I am truly thrilled that you enjoyed The Curious Miss Fortune.

The idea for The Hamptons came about when I was writing my debut novel, Everything Happens For A Reason. Although I always intended to make this a series, I hadn’t at that stage created anything more than King’s Oak, the fictional village, that the main protagonist – Poppy Jackson – was brought up in. As the story developed and I had her returning to her roots, the idea for Hampton Ash and Hampton Waters – known as The Hamptons – evolved. A plethora of future story lines started vying for attention so I took the time to step back and create a whole fictional county! This has fed my imagination further and will hopefully lead me to create many more future books in the series.

The Series

There are three books in the series now, EVERYTHING HAPPENS for a REASON, THE CURIOUS MISS FORTUNE, and FAME and FORTUNE. For those of us who love your writing and are anxiously awaiting your latest book, can you give us a few words about FAME and FORTUNE to wet our appetites?

I had already planned out some of the story lines for Fame and Fortune, but despite this, once I began actually writing it, two more ideas were screaming at me to be told. So, I went back and revised my original ideas and was pleasantly surprised by how it all turned out.

Whilst we return to the light-heartedness of village life, Fame and Fortune explores the phenomenon of Ghosting – the practice of suddenly ending all contact with a person without explanation. I have attempted to tackle this serious issue from different perspectives.

We welcome back many favored characters such as Diana Fortune who, as The Curious Miss Fortune reveals, has become quite the celebrity. The Hamptons receive an invitation to participate in the Cotswolds County Majorette of the Year competition and Diana is approached to form a team for the villages’ entry. Enter the Fortunettes, who are soon put through their paces in preparation for the big event – which of course doesn’t come without its challenges!

We are introduced to several new characters too, including the glamorous Georgina Fame, a popular weight loss guru.

It’s a tale of family conflict, deceit, broken hearts and redemption… Well… this is the Hamptons after all!

Sounds wonderful, Tina-Marie!  I can’t wait to read Fame and Fortune.

That’s super kind of you to say Ingrid, thank you.

Getting to Know Tina-Marie Miller 

Just a couple questions so we can get to know you better…

1) If you were a bird, what would you be and why?

It would have to be a hummingbird. Apart from their glorious colors, they always appear to be so happy despite being so busy. I see them as spreading happiness and positivity wherever they go which is something I aspire to do each and every day.

Like you, I admire hummingbirds and your posts and tweets never fail to make me smile.

2) What is your favorite thing to do to relieve stress?

Like many people, I am no stranger to stress and anxiety, and I have tried various techniques over the years to bring relief. I remember once driving into the depths of Oxford for a reflexology session – something I had never tried before. At the end of the session, I felt amazing – until I got up to leave. I hadn’t appreciated that the lotion the practitioner had applied to my feet was slippery and I ended up falling down three flights of stairs! Literally black and blue with bruises over the following days, I had a good chuckle about it. I then went on to try Reiki healing – something completely non-evasive that clicked with me immediately and over the following years I went on to train as a Reiki Master. Now I regularly meditate and perform self-healing. It is always my immediate go-to in times of stress.

Falling down the stairs, how awful! I’m so glad there wasn’t any permanent damage.

As for Reiki healing, I’ve experienced it with my sister who is also a Reiki Master. It just proves how amazing you are, Tina-Marie. An author and a Reiki healer, too worthwhile and time consuming endeavors.

Thanks so much for sharing.

3) What is your favorite quote?

‘Insanity runs in my family. It practically gallops’ – Cary Grant

Another favorite, Cary Grant, what a great quote!

4) Now, do you want to give a shout out to anyone?

I would like to give a huge shout out to my daughter Alexandra who is always on hand to listen to my latest ideas, offering encouragement and giving me the confidence to put a voice to my thoughts. We not only share a passion for books and writing, but we have a wealth of other common interests and never run out of things to discuss! She is a complete blessing to me and I give thanks for her each and every day.

Tina-Marie, Alexandra sounds like an amazing young woman!

Thank you, Tina-Marie, for being our guest today. It was a pleasure getting to know you a little better and for hearing about your new release, FAME and FORTUNE.

Readers, for more information about Tina-Marie Miller, please read on, and thank you, as always, for visiting!

Tina-Marie’s Bio:

Tina-Marie Miller is a UK based author and writer of women’s fiction. She was born and bred in the beautiful, historic village of Sutton Courtenay, near Abingdon, Oxfordshire, famed for being the final resting places of George Orwell (author of Nineteen Eighty-Four) and Herbert Asquith (Prime Minister 1908-1916).

Having previously enjoyed a successful career working for a number of blue chip organizations based in London and the Home Counties, Tina-Marie is now based in a small village in South Cornwall with her husband and two adult children, where she spends her time reading, writing and walking along the idyllic Cornwall coasts.

She enjoys nothing more than curling up with a good book and a cup of tea, and losing herself in tales of love, life and laughter.

Stay in Touch

If you would like more information about Tina-Marie Miller, here are her links below:

http://tinamariemiller.co.uk

https://twitter.com/tinseymiller

https://www.facebook.com/tinseymiller

https://www.instagram.com/tinseymiller

 

 

 

 

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