Tag Archives: writing

Snakes and Writing – TRUE LIFE.

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When you live IN the wild, you live WITH the wild, particularly when you haven’t got a house and dwell in a hole in the ground – my caravan office didn’t give much protection either as it had gaps and holes, and the animals soon moved in there, as well.

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The subtropical Top End (Northern Territory) of Australia has its fair share of wildlife. There are wild boar (dangerous), dingoes (dangerous), crocodiles (extremely dangerous), buffalo (dangerous), spiders (yep, deadly) and lots of snakes (you bet, dangerous). In our camp we met Whip snakes, Death Adders, Black snakes, Brown snakes, King Browns and a host of others, all deadly poisonous. Except for one type, the giants on the block – Pythons.

Pythons are actually good to have around. They prey on poisonous snakes and keep their number low, but they also grow to enormous size (much bigger than these photographs show) and prey on other animals, including small wallabies and young kangaroos. We had pets to look out for, so I learned to handle them and move them well out of camp whenever they turned up.

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Busy Days, New Working Schedules and Book 3 – “The Bastard Line”.

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Those who have known me for a while now will certainly have noticed a huge upswing in my blogging activity in the last month or so, and I know there are some of you wondering how that extra effort impacts on current projects – namely Book Three in the Khekarian series, The Bastard Line.

While the last month has indeed been hectic, things are now settling into a routine that also accommodates my writing. I’m currently putting in six or seven hours into blogging, daily, which covers my morning in Australian (evening time in the USA). My afternoon and evening, then, while the Northern Hemisphere is sleeping, is spent with a further six or seven hours just writing the Khekarian series.

This is beginning to work wonderfully. So, please know, I’m back into the manuscript, I’m enjoying it, I’m editing as I go, and writing onward. It’s exciting to be back at work with this story and I’m thrilled with what I have so far.

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Carnivores in the Dark – True Life!

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When the dingoes came around that evening, I was alone. I was stranded on a hillside out in the middle of nowhere with no vehicle, no torch, no weapon and no retreat. My husband had taken the car to go and get a caravan, which would be our temporary home, leaving me by the side of the road with an open trailer of our belongings and two cats to look after.

He was already hours late and the dingoes arrived as the last light was going out of the sky. They moved fast and silently, using the dirt road as their track, not a yip, not a bark, nothing. They were a pack on a mission.

I saw them coming and stood up, not sure what my best option was. They detected me at the same moment. I knew that because, although they kept coming and did not change their pace, they slipped off the edge of the road and disappeared into the dense foliage on the side opposite mine.

I never saw or heard them as they circled around me and kept going. I know they kept going because I would see them again, on other days, coming from the other direction. But on this night, I did not know what they intended or where they went.

Then the night landed for real, and out there, when you’ve got no shelter at all, no light, no distant glow from civilization, and not even a box of matches, you are very aware of carnivores in the dark.

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Imagination the Great Implementer.

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There is no progress without imagination – None – Every innovation has come about because someone sat and thought for a time and worked out how something might work, then figured out how to create it.

From making fire and designing the wheel, all they way up to skyscrapers, computers and landing on the moon, imagination has been the thing that made it happen. It’s the most powerful tool we have. Hand-in-hand with manipulation, it’s a most destructive force used against mankind, but used kindly and openly, it’s our greatest provider.

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Writing Your Book, but it’s Taking Forever!

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So, your story’s not written yet. It’s been years now, and that’s bothering you – Guess what – THAT’S NORMAL!

It takes time to master the writing skill. If you write regularly, you will see your improvement over time, but whether you write regularly or not, improvement will never stop. Growth and development is ongoing and unlimited.

It takes time to get to know your characters. You’re dealing with a lot of people, all of them different from each other. You not only have to discover and portray their personalities but their backgrounds and goals as well. That information will not arrive neatly packaged and at once.

It takes time to get to know your story. As different characters develop and interact, your story evolves. Main areas and scenes might be all worked out, but how they connect and combine adds new flavor and complexity. It takes time for a story to mature and become all it can be.

It takes time to write your book. Deciding or discovering how to express your words, your story, your characters and plot, spending hard time at the keyboard doing it, working it, refining and editing – ALL OF THAT TAKES TIME!

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We Need Them.

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Why are stories so important? Why are fictional characters and their worlds so gripping?

They’re all just ideas and pretty words on paper, right? There’s plenty of important stuff going on in the world – and there are writers and dreamers just wasting their time, pretending that imagination is important.

And yet… we all need them. Most of us read, most of us love to get lost in a tale and step away from the routines and the mundane, from the problems and the woes of our lives. We all escape into stories – movies, books, games – whatever form they come in. We’re driven to.

It must be important. Even in our sleep, there are stories.

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A Writer’s Passion.

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The story forms out of passion and images, heart and mind and creativity weaving a world so tangible that it must be shared – has to be shared – because it really has become an amazing place.

In my darkest hour, when I truly thought my science fiction series would never see life in print, my biggest, deepest woe was that these worlds, these people would vanish with me when I died and no one would ever know their stories, their secrets, their tantalizing dreams.

It drives us all, all writers. It’s the passion to share the majesty within, something that has built over the years and grown into something whole and unique, something much bigger than we are – something that causes us to say, “I have something. It’s marvelous. Look!”

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ALIEN WILDERNESS – From The Khekarian Threat, out now on Amazon.

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Compound Twelve was situated fifteen miles from the center of Cenoth, out where a forest of ancient trees gave cover and isolation. It contained two domes in an area that was considered very pretty by local standards and breathtakingly beautiful by someone who had really only known the barren splendor of Mars. While Earth had vast spectacular forests, Aleisha had joined SEAS for the promise of alien wilderness.

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Win an Autographed Copy of THE KHEKARIAN THREAT.

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Coming up soon, a competition!!! I have four signed paperbacks to give away to four lucky winners.

You’ll hear details in the coming week, so stay close and you’re in with a chance to win!

The Khekarian Threat – Have it on YOUR bookshelf.

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Keep her? Lose her? Why the Clairvoyant?

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Quite simply, I wanted to tie these two main characters together in a realistic way that advanced the story and complicated (in a good way) the plot – Sturn is royalty, and by that, I mean high up royalty – He can choose pretty well any woman in the Khekarian half of the galaxy as his mate, and his marriage will most certainly be to a Khekarian of royal blood with high connections.

Love was never going to work. Aleisha is from the opposite end of society and Terran, and Sturn doesn’t care about emotion or the mentality of young women. What he cares about is power.

Would lust do it? No. My lead villain would just take her and dump her afterwards. Sturn certainly wouldn’t marry her, and he would have no reason to bring her home with him.

So why else, outside of sex, would an exiled prince be interested in a seventeen year-old wanna-be pioneer? She’s totally beneath him. She has nothing to offer. There is nothing that could be deemed of value to him.

This story evolved over many years. Once Sturn gained high connections, I realized that if I wanted to keep that aspect open, I would need to ditch my main character and make the story about Sturn, or find a reason to keep Aleisha.

It took me a year to find this solution, so – please – enjoy it! :D

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