Tag Archive | writing

To Prologue or Not to Prologue

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I had fun doing a library video conference last night at the Buchanan County Public Library, hosted by the lovely Teresa Matney and including Kate Douglas, Beverly Jenkins, and Melanie James and me! We had a great time! Thanks to everyone who showed up and asked questions!

I’ve been editing White Wolf both last night and this morning, so typing changes first thing. I worked on Angel Fae last night after the conference.

So I got a note from my editor that she has removed my prologue in Jingle Bell Wolf because she doesn’t like prologues.

I disagree with her about prologues. I think they can be an important part of showing something that has shaped who the character is in real time. I oftentimes don’t write them in the beginning, but when I find myself referring to the incident over and over again that changed them forever, it’s TELLING. And if I have a prologue, it’s SHOWING. Then readers can feel that too. Telling doesn’t get the point across as well as showing.

Think of it this way–a person is terrified of flying. He was one of the few survivors of a plane crash. Telling. What if I show that in a prologue? Now it’s more real. We feel him. We feel his pain. We actually see what had happened to him and why he has the fear he has. Even in movies they often employ this.

Sure, if the prologue doesn’t have anything to do with the story, don’t have it. I remember reading a book where you think you’re reading about the main protagonist–and she’s murdered. What? Wait! I was all invested in the story in the prologue, waiting for her to get herself out of danger, or someone to rescue her, and now I have to figure out who the main character is again? You don’t learn that the killer is the father of the woman who is the main protagonist until about 3/4ths the way through the book. By that time, I’ve totally forgotten about the woman or her attacker in the prologue. So yeah, in that case, the prologue wasn’t needed. It just wasn’t relevant. Or the connection made so late in the story, by then it didn’t matter to me.

young game match kids
Photo by Breakingpic on Pexels.com

In any event, a prologue can be important. Will I leave this one out? I don’t know. I need to reread the story because taking one thing out can affect everything in a story. So I’ll have to make sure it will be okay.

So to my readers, if you enjoy an exciting prologue that shows a snippet of something that turned a characters life upside down, you will probably have to read them in my other books.

In the meantime, I’m off to edit and still trying to figure out some conflict for White Wolf! And it does have a prologue too, for the same reason I have one in Jingle Bell Wolf.

Have a great day!!! And stay safe!

Terry

“Giving new meaning to the term alpha male where fantasy is reality.”
Connect with Terry Spear:
Website: http://www.terryspear.com
Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/421434.Terry_Spear
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/TerrySpearParanormalRomantics
Twitter: https://twitter.com/TerrySpear
Wilde & Woolly Bears: http://www.celticbears.com

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Coming Up Peachy!

Peach rose in my garden! I love it because it can be pink or orange, or nearly white, or dark pink, or apricot all on one Knockout rosebush.

I’m excited to have finished Saving the White Cougar and Primal Desire and they’re out for beta reading. Or will be soon. But they’re done otherwise, yay!

So yesterday we watched the football game, had chicken wings and I haven’t had those in a long time, so they were good.

I finally went home and I worked on A United Shifter Christmas novella for the anthology with other shifter writers and have 1691 words. That’s at least a start while I try to figure out where I’m going with it. But sometimes I’ll just start writing about the character, some back story, some conflict, and then the rest starts to fall into place. In this one, he’s a homicide detective from previous stories who has discovered that shifters, both wolves and jaguars, exist. So he wants to be part of the team. He wants to be a wolf. The anthology is supposed to be about wolves, but I’ve had a request for more on the United Shifter Force, so figured this was a good way to tell his story that I might not ever have time to tell.

I also wrote on Angel Fae yesterday also and it is now at 10K. Yay! I usually write the teen books at about 50K+. So it’s well on its way to being a book.

I also worked on White Wolf, just editing, and I was looking up characterization sheets, story plot ideas, to see where to take it. It’s nearly the minimum of 80K. Some scenes I love! But I need some driving motivation to do something other than just mate the woman who freed him from her pack a few years back. 🙂 Also, I don’t think I ever really gave his backstory in previous books, except that he’d had a heart attack at 35. So I need to figure out some of that.

And that’s it! Today I have a library video chat I’m doing with fans, and I hope I don’t totally screw it up. lol I’ve never done one before!

Have a great day and I’m off to see what trouble I can get myself into–or really just my characters!

Terry

“Giving new meaning to the term alpha male where fantasy is reality.”
Connect with Terry Spear:
Website: http://www.terryspear.com
Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/421434.Terry_Spear
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/TerrySpearParanormalRomantics
Twitter: https://twitter.com/TerrySpear
Wilde & Woolly Bears: http://www.celticbears.com

Newsletter Sign Up: http://eepurl.com/u63qP

Wallaby and Baby

I’ve been up forever, but just now getting around to the blog. I’m lucky I don’t have to feed horses, chickens, goats, and clean out pens and stalls. It’s enough to have to feed ravenous birds and dogs and clean up after them. lol

I’m excited to say that I finished proofing Primal Desire! Yeah! So Saving the White Cougar and Primal Desire are done. Well….kind of. After my beta readers get to them, but I was thinking–and that ALWAYS gets me in trouble–but…did I have sufficient motivation for a vampire turning huntresses? Yes! I’ve got it, but that means writing some more, and that’s fine with me.

I love it when I realize BEFORE I publish something that the book needed just a little more…and so as soon as the blog is done, I’m off to write what I need to. And then the book will be done.

Then I’m back to trying to figure out how to salvage white wolf. It needs CONFLICT.

It will come to me. Just like the motivation came to me for Primal Desire this morning while I was trying to get myself out of bed and begin doing the usual chores first thing.

So conflict. I wracked my brains last night before falling asleep, trying to come up with something. Even thought of scrapping the whole book and writing something different. I have nearly 80,000 words, so I really don’t want to do that.

I just need to have a better motivation, goal, world upside down event to cement the story together.

In Primal Desire, there is so much going on, and great motivation, goals, world upside down. That’s what makes a fun story.

Okay, I’m off to finish this one little scene in Primal Desire and get back to slugging it out with white wolf. It’s there. I know it’s there…somewhere.

Have a super fun day today and stay safe!

Terry

“Giving new meaning to the term alpha male where fantasy is reality.”
Connect with Terry Spear:
Website: http://www.terryspear.com
Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/421434.Terry_Spear
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/TerrySpearParanormalRomantics
Twitter: https://twitter.com/TerrySpear
Wilde & Woolly Bears: http://www.celticbears.com

Newsletter Sign Up: http://eepurl.com/u63qP

Goat? Art

I’m not sure what this is. A mountain goat of some sort? I took the picture of him/her at the San Diego Zoo, and his fur looks soft enough to pet. Then I added some texture to the background when originally it was just a rock wall. I’ve never shown him before and it was time he received some love.

The temperatures are dropping and I’m cold! Normally, I get outside and do some weeding, but I feel like just hibernating right now.

A friend has set up a Fine Art account for her photography and I’ve had a lot of requests for photos turned into canvas, so I started working on setting up an account and we’ll see how it does. It’s really cool, and I might even order something off it for friends since it would be my own artwork and it would make it more special for them, hopefully!

Anyway, I finished proofing Saving a White Cougar and then I started on proofing Primal Desire. I’m up to ch 9–12 chapters to go. Once I’ve proofed it and I have nothing more to add, I’ll send it to my beta readers and then I’m off to finish white wolf! And work some more on You Had Me at Cougar.

I’ve read where we could have a Covid super spreader event after the Super Bowl this weekend, let’s hope folks have enough sense not to gather in large crowds. I’m going to the kids’ house to have grilled chicken wings. But it will be just the usual 4 of us. 

Hope you all are staying safe. My daughter said she had to get another condolence card for someone’s older relative who had died from COVID.

Have a great day!

Terry

“Giving new meaning to the term alpha male where fantasy is reality.”
Connect with Terry Spear:
Website: http://www.terryspear.com
Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/421434.Terry_Spear
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/TerrySpearParanormalRomantics
Twitter: https://twitter.com/TerrySpear
Wilde & Woolly Bears: http://www.celticbears.com

Newsletter Sign Up: http://eepurl.com/u63qP

Meerkat Photo Art

Meerkat photo taken at the Camera Park Zoo in Waco. It’s a small zoo, but just beautiful. I used to love to go there and just walk and of course, take pictures. The Houston Zoo is downtown, hard to get to, parking issues, terrible traffic getting there and so I never go. But I’m hoping to take my granddaughter there sometime in the spring before the masses of kids get out of school.

So I’ve been proofing Saving the White Cougar and I’m up to chapter 12, yay! and I had a thought. In one chapter, she was leaving him to return home, and I was thinking the day together had been nice, but it needed to be more fun. It’s Halloween. He made tons of scarecrows for the Halloween party. And then I had it! She’s been wounded, so doing a lot of activity isn’t a good idea, but she can help him make a couple of scarecrows.

I love it when my mine works overtime on a situation when it doesn’t come naturally to me when I’m writing the scene! It’s the reason I’m a pantser, writing by the seat of my pants, instead of a plotter, who can plot everything out beforehand. It’s not that I wouldn’t love to be a plotter, but it just doesn’t work for me.

Now I have to write it, and continue proofing. 7 chapters to go and I can turn it over to my magnificent beta reader team.

I need to run into town to do an errand, hate to have to, but it’s a necessary evil. I just wanted to write the new scene and continue proofing to the end.

I might start proofing Primal Desire too. I was writing some extended scenes on it yesterday, and I think it might be done too. Yay! See? All that writing is finally paying off!

It’s colder today, and we’re going to get freezing temperatures next week. Ugh. Some of my azaleas have come out. Everything is confused with the warm weather we’ve been having.

Hope you all are doing well, and stay that way!! Enjoy your day!

Terry

“Giving new meaning to the term alpha male where fantasy is reality.”
Connect with Terry Spear:
Website: http://www.terryspear.com
Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/421434.Terry_Spear
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/TerrySpearParanormalRomantics
Twitter: https://twitter.com/TerrySpear
Wilde & Woolly Bears: http://www.celticbears.com
Newsletter Sign Up: http://eepurl.com/u63qP

Whimsical Giraffe

I had taken this picture of the head of a giraffe, part of his neck and mostly a fenced yard at the Cameron Park Zoo, Waco, Texas.. I think that I was trying to miss all the fencing, back in the day when I didn’t know how to remove fencing from a photo. So what to do with a body-less giraffe? They’re so tall, head in the clouds, munching on a tree, a surrealistic, whimsical piece. That worked!

Sometimes a little bit of whimsy is what we need. I think I’ll do something like that today. My granddaughter is all into rainbow animals, so I might play around with something like that. I have to look up rainbow hippos today for her, but the only hippo pictures I have are of pygmy hippos that are very dark brown, nearly black in color. Maybe I could do a rainbow rhino. They’re a lighter gray. She had a study of frogs at school, and so I showed her frogs on the internet–to show her they weren’t all green. The next thing I know, we see a rainbow frog–photoshopped and we were off to look at rainbow animals. lol

I managed to get some weeding done too while little one had Tanner chase her in the yard, and then she played tug-of-war with 3-foot lengths of grass that I pulled out of my flowerbed. Both would be tired I’m sure. She only took a 45 min nap also, which made it harder for me to get much done.

I got up way too early this morning–4 am. The experts say to get up if you can’t sleep and do something else for a while, then go back to bed. So I’m going to try it and get maybe another hour of sleep. Hopefully. Or I will be dragging all day. I’ve tried this before and it doesn’t work. I can’t shut my mind down on things I need to do. But I’m going to try. Maybe if I think of wolves jumping over fences, I will manage to sleep. Forget sheep.

Even my little granddaughter loves wolves because Grandma does. lol

Hope you all have a great day! Stay safe!!

Terry

“Giving new meaning to the term alpha male where fantasy is reality.”
Connect with Terry Spear:
Website: http://www.terryspear.com
Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/421434.Terry_Spear
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/TerrySpearParanormalRomantics
Twitter: https://twitter.com/TerrySpear
Wilde & Woolly Bears: http://www.celticbears.com
Newsletter Sign Up: http://eepurl.com/u63qP

Sleepy Bear

I took the photo of the black bear at the Cameron Park Zoo in Waco, Texas some years ago and added textures to create photo art.

Little one is here today, which means it’s a down day for writing, though while she takes a break to watch preschool programs and a nap, I hope to get something done. I’m proofing Saving the White Cougar today, as much as I can and hope to get it to my beta readers by Friday.

I’m still editing White Wolf and hope to concentrate on adding more conflict to that book too. And then I’m working on You Had Me at Cougar as my backup when I get stuck on the other. I’m still also working on Angel Fae and I need to pull up my vampire book that I’m nearly done with and see where I stopped on that. I think I about have word count on it, just need to finish it up. So lots of fun books in progress!

I’m hoping I can get Saving the White Cougar done and up for preorders. I never have my books available for that because once it’s finished, I publish it. But in this case, I wrote the cart before the horse. It was just supposed to be a quick novella, ha! And turned into a novel. But the summer book needs to come out first, and that’s You Had Me at Cougar. So that means I should be able to put it up for preorder. One of my beta readers asked me where the bear came from??? Yes, it’s in the book I need to write. lol


Thanks so much for reading my blog!

I’m off to get something done before little one gets here!

Stay safe!!

Terry

“Giving new meaning to the term alpha male where fantasy is reality.”
Connect with Terry Spear:
Website: http://www.terryspear.com
Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/421434.Terry_Spear
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/TerrySpearParanormalRomantics
Twitter: https://twitter.com/TerrySpear
Wilde & Woolly Bears: http://www.celticbears.com
Newsletter Sign Up: http://eepurl.com/u63qP

Plum Bear

This is Plum Bear, ready to ship today!

So this morning, I’m trying to download and save files for 17 of my audiobook. I had a year or two left on the 7 year contract with ACX and was glad they finally changed their policy to 90 days because for a while there I was getting barely any money from them. Even though they pay a higher percentage for exclusive rights, I wasn’t making as much as I was with non-exclusive rights on Findaway Voices for a fewer number of titles!

Even after having these books out for 7 years, I’m still trying to pay off narrator fees for the majority of them. So it hasn’t been a get rich scheme by far, but it’s nice to have print, ebook, and audiobook for titles when you can. And every month, the cost of production is being whittled away.

If I had to do it all over again–I would only do it with the really successful book series and not do it for series that sell at a slower rate. Live and learn.

Anyway, I’m glad to be able to include the titles on Findaway Voices now, instead of wait a year or two for the 7 year contract to end with ACX.

In other news, my son has been creating a game that he hopes to release this summer!

He was working on creating the big boss fights while at my house for Christmas while I was battling it out with characters in my stories. It was a lot of fun!

Still working on edits for cougar, and was doing some last night on white wolf. Need more conflict. Conflict in life isn’t fun. Conflict in books is.

The weather has been up and down, hotter some days than I think we normally get in January and February! I’m enjoying it though. It’s going to be dropping and I’ll feel like hibernating!

Off to write!

Have a great day!!!

Terry

“Giving new meaning to the term alpha male where fantasy is reality.”
Connect with Terry Spear:
Website: http://www.terryspear.com
Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/421434.Terry_Spear
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/TerrySpearParanormalRomantics
Twitter: https://twitter.com/TerrySpear
Wilde & Woolly Bears: http://www.celticbears.com
Newsletter Sign Up: http://eepurl.com/u63qP

Featured Work in Elevating Your Art!

elevateyourart.com

My butterfly painting was accepted for the art class for their magazine! I took the picture in San Diego on a coastal walk. I was amazed at how still the butterfly was on a breezy day, but loved the white on white. It’s one of my favorite butterfly pictures.

Yay, finished the Plum Bear! It’s always fun to make up a bear. It’s like finishing a story. Every one of them is different, special.

I’ll show it off tomorrow. Still taking forever to download pictures and I need to get back to writing this morning.

I’m ready to make the next bear though! I will have spurts of wanting to write, or do artwork, or photography or creating bears. I’m ready to make more bears. lol

My granddaughter was upset because she saw that I had headless bodies in my bear cart. I need to make the heads, or finish them, but I’m always stopping to do something else, like a bear order that needs to be done, and not one that I’m just making in case I can sell it. But I have the same thing with my writing. Stories partly finished, stories done but need to be proofed. Stories I’m just starting. And of course, finished stories too.

Otherwise they’re headless too.

I’m back to working on white wolf and doing more on edits on cougar. And I need to get Plum Bear ready to go to her forever home.

I hope you’re having a great start to the week!

Terry

“Giving new meaning to the term alpha male where fantasy is reality.”
Connect with Terry Spear:
Website: http://www.terryspear.com
Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/421434.Terry_Spear
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/TerrySpearParanormalRomantics
Twitter: https://twitter.com/TerrySpear
Wilde & Woolly Bears: http://www.celticbears.com
Newsletter Sign Up: http://eepurl.com/u63qP

Conflict in Stories

woman in brown dress holding white plastic bottle painting
Photo by Yaroslav Danylchenko on Pexels.com

I finished proofing all of Saving the White Cougar, just need to type up changes today, yay! So I was thinking about it and realized I needed to confer more charges against the bad guys.  

When we write a story, we need conflict, or it’s boring. So watching the news, we see plenty of conflict. My friend sent me these articles: soldiers ingest antifreeze, thinking it was alcohol, when they weren’t supposed to be drinking alcohol at a training session; married Texas police chief accused of cheating on his wife–with two girlfriends, arrested after forging annulment document, which is a federal offense. We have stupidity and more stupidity. Really. My first thought is it’s unreal. Unbelievable. But you know the old adage: Truth can be stranger than fiction is true!

Take the pandemic as far as classic case of CONFLICT goes–the rollout of the vaccine seems to be having an impact on new cases of people getting cases–finally!–great news!, deaths of 3,000 a day (a day!) are still happening–not good! BUT now, the variants are threatening to take hold and some of the vaccines aren’t as effective against at least one of them.

This is the stuff of stories. Conflict. Building Conflict. Ticking Time Bomb. Time is running out. People are dying, so the stakes are high. Yes, perfect for fiction!

We haven’t even been able to get a handle on the original virus yet. Way too many people are dying from it. Way too many people aren’t vaccinated against it. Not enough has been done to counteract the effects of the virus when some end up with really bad cases of it. And the numbers aren’t really indicative of the full impact of the virus. Cases of people dying not being reported as COVID, etc.

But if I were writing a story like this, it would be perfect! As in fiction. Not that the world was under siege from a virus that seems unconquerable.

I’m proud of England for rolling out one of the fastest vaccine distribution systems in the world. Maybe we could see how they did it and learn something??? Nah, then where would be the conflict!

Anyway, I’m back to working on the story of romance and shifters and bad guys that can more easily be defeated–not the kind that plans world domination and is so small we can’t see it with the naked eye!

I know it will get better. We just have to keep working at it to ensure we do what we need to do to stay safe and to keep others safe. And I need to stop reading the news!

Have a great day and stay safe!

Terry

“Giving new meaning to the term alpha male where fantasy is reality.”
Connect with Terry Spear:
Website: http://www.terryspear.com
Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/421434.Terry_Spear
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/TerrySpearParanormalRomantics
Twitter: https://twitter.com/TerrySpear
Wilde & Woolly Bears: http://www.celticbears.com
Newsletter Sign Up: http://eepurl.com/u63qP