Francesca and Eliza

Francesca and Eliza

I began writing this after I completed Repeated Lives and had another idea for a Dark Fantasy book. It started with the opening scene. That’s all I had at first and that was also what drew me in to work on it.
I think I must have written about half of it when I left it. I think I must have suffered writer’s block or was shifting to a new home. Anyway, I had lost somewhat interest in this and wasn’t planning to complete it.
It was around that time that my editor asked me if I was working on anything. I was fairly new at being a writer and didn’t want to admit that even though I was working on a few ideas, nothing had worked out so far. I remembered about this book and immediately responded that I was working on another manuscript.
I completed it quickly and the result was a huge mess. There was too much confusion regarding the plot and the characters were behaving off. Not to mention that as the creator of this story, I had absolutely no idea what was going on.
I put it away for a few days and decided to tell my editor that I had nothing more planned. A few days later however, I came upon an idea to clear away the plot holes. It was so easy! I read it again, edited it, deleted a few parts, added new scenes and was finally satisfied enough to send it for publishing.

You can buy this book at a special sale price for $4.99 only by clicking at the image.

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Repeated Lives Book II: Talia’s Return

Repeated Lives Book II: Talia's Return

I was never going to write a sequel to any of my stories. As far as I knew, Talia had gotten her (more or less) happy ending at the end of Repeated Lives. But after working on two more books, I took this upon as a challenge. The challenge was this- could I actually write a sequel considering how things ended in the first?
It wasn’t easy. I wrote this in 2010 while the first was written in almost four years ago. I had to go back and study the characters once again and learn why they had behaved the way they did. This one is darker than the first. Talia is the same girl, but due to one mistake and an impulsive decision, she’s sent back to live her life once again. Only this time, Talia’s life isn’t as balanced as before and she struggles with new changes.

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Repeated Lives (My first published book)

Repeated Lives (My first published book)

This was my very first published book and it belongs in the dark fantasy genre. At the time when I wrote this, I was a bit obsessed about going back in time and changing things in the past. I was also interested in the concept of reincarnation- okay, I still am.
But most importantly, I used to wonder if my life would have turned out differently had some events not occurred the way they had. Everything could have gone in a completely different direction and I would have been a different person. I kept thinking about this over and over in my head until I had a dream that pretty much explained to me that no matter how much I changed things, I was destined to live through particular experiences. I really did try in my dream to change things, but somehow the wheels turned in the very same direction I was trying to avoid.
Suffice to say, it gave me a new sense of perspective on everything and the ending of the story came from that experience.

This book can be bought for $3.99 only at the Club Lighthouse Publishing website. Click on the picture.

Character Building

Characters are an integral part of the story. Actually, I haven’t come across any story that didn’t even have a single character. When writing a story, it’s a character’s response to a given situation (of course created by the writer) that moves the story forward.

Characters need to be relatable and human in order for a reader to continue to care about the story. Building a character can thus be a complex process because more often than not, the writer either puts too much of himself/herself in the character or creates one that is a secret fantasy of what the writer wishes to be.

For example, I may create a character with zero inhibitions and overly adventurous. If I start writing a story with such a character without doing proper research, I would eventually come to a block which I won’t be able to overcome. If I want to create a ‘human’ character, just giving it my opposite personality isn’t going to work.

I read somewhere once that before writing a story, the writer should take an imaginary interview of the character and note down likes and dislikes to form a personality for him or her.

I did try doing that, but this device never worked for me. I would start writing a story that takes place in a desert, for example, check my “interview” notes and find that one of my characters hates the rain.

Umm….no chance of rain falling in the desert. Eventually I would get confused on how to proceed and whether to pick the story I had carefully planned or the character.

This may seem like a trivial issue, but to a writer, changing any aspect of a story is a hassle because it interferes with the primary vision I had for the story. I could let the character like the rain and therefore have him wish that the sky would burst open and let cool droplets fall on the parched travelers, but that would mean I would have to change the character’s back story too.

He hated the rain because the floods in his village had claimed the lives of his family. He was aggrieved and had suffered a great loss.

You are but a product of your past.

Now that I had changed one trait, the character no longer made sense to me and the vision for future sub- plots in the story were disrupted because of this one tiny change. The character and the travelers were going to befriend a camel in the desert and he would learn that he would have to keep living his life after seeing the resilience of this one camel.

Then I thought that I could perhaps change the backdrop of the story and make it into a rainforest. The character could still hate rain and he would have some interesting snarky dialogues to make. But nope, that wouldn’t work because of the camel sub-plot. No camels in the rainforest!

See the dilemma? There may have been a third way out, but I just couldn’t see it. My vision for this story was destroyed and the story was ultimately scrapped.

What I do now, is to create a back story for the character and live the world through that character’s eyes. I make up a situation and wonder how that person would look at this and respond to it. What perspective would she have gained after her past experiences that made her who she is today?

I guess I’m one of those people who write better when they visualize. 

Rant

Sometimes in order to get some good writing done, you need to get the bad stuff/writing out of the way. Since what I wanted to write before wasn’t coming out well, I’m going to get some of the stuff that’s bothering me, out of the way. 

Here goes:

I hate when people take you for granted.

I hate it when people don’t care about your dreams and try to force you into doing things their way. 

I hate it when people only do things for you when they want you to do something for them first. 

I hate it when people you call friends aren’t there when you need them. 

I hate it when you tell someone your secrets and they in turn use it against you. 

I hate it when you tel someone everything and they don’t bother sharing anything with you. Clearly they don’t trust you. 

 

Hate a lot of things at the moment but what I hate the most is when the things I love to do the most, is something I can never have.

End of Rant. Phew! 

Is the good stuff coming now? Let me write and check.