The Story So Far…

MONDAY 11th MARCH 2013

Cuppa and a Catch up picHello readers – it has been a while since I did a catch up post on what has actually been happening in the writing world of Missuswolf’s StoryLand. Since launching the Cuppa and a Catch Up Author Interview feature, I have had the pleasure of hosting a variety of wonderful writers who I have connected with this past year. I now have slots free from April so if any author/aspiring author would like to be featured, please leave a comment or get in touch via my Facebook Author Page or DM me on Twitter @Missuswolf.

So what’s happening with Miss Pooshoe?

Well, Miss Pooshoe may be having a change of title to ‘Little Miss Pooshoe’ (will refer to her as LMP) and I am at the half way stages of roundSeventy Thousand one of editing. I work with a lovely lady, Kerry Richardson (read her blog here) who is a crime writer and is in the process of getting her first book edited. She has kindly put me in touch with her editor, Jenny, who contacted me back straight away and has given me loads of advice and we have arranged for her to edit my book woohoo!

Following the advice she has sent, I want to do a second round of edits on LMP before I let  my baby loose to be interrogated to see if she copes with the pressure of having words/sentences/chapters(?) tortured out of her eeek! However, I know it is for the best and will do LMP good, it will be character building for her and make her stronger and more credible.

From next week, I hope to do some serious editing as Jenny has space in April to start looking at LMP (gulp!)

In the meantime, I have been learning a lot in the Social Media world. I am a proud of member of Melissa Foster’s Amazing Support Team #GoTeamPIF, a group I joined in September and it has been the best six months of my life. I have met some fantastic people who have helped me develop as a writer as well as through my social media marketing side. I have even managed to do a Book Trailer for The Ruby of Egypt (Plug Alert – here it is again for anyone who hasn’t had it pushed down their neck http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=D7hRxiyq2LQ) Something I never thought I would do. I now have a clear idea of how to do a book launch and have some exciting ideas in the pipeline for when LMP is eventually released (still hoping it is before I hit the big three zero which is fast approaching – I have ten months left).

It’s all go at the moment, so I am off now to schedule a few more blog posts, catch up on my social media and squeeze a bit of editing in – all before a nine hour nightshift. Now where is that coffee pot…..

Love Missuswolf xxx

Blog Hop – The Next Big Thing

 WEDNESDAY 19th DECEMBER 2012

Well happy hump day everyone! Also a very happy birthday to my little sister today.

In the fabulous world of blogging and social media, I have been very fortunate to come across some amazing people whilst being a proud member of Melissa Foster’s Awesome Support Team #GoTeamPIF. One of the lovely members, S.I Hayes, has tagged me in a Blog Hop and I would like to thank her for requesting that I participate.

You can catch up with the S.I Hayes and the fantastic work she has done on her blog here: A Writer’s Mind, More or Less
http://shannonihayes.wix.com/sihayes#!blog/c14xx.

To find out more about S.I Hayes and her books 

Twitter @shannonihayes
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/S.I.Hayes.Author

Amazon: http://www.amazon.com/author/s.i.hayes

In this particular hop I and my fellow Authors each in their perspective Blogs have answered 10 questions where you get to learn about our current WIP (Works in Progress) as well as some goodies as to our process, from characters and inspirations to photographic/ Cinematic eye candy! I hope you enjoy it!!

If this or any other items pique your interest, please feel free to comment and share your thoughts and questions.

QUESTION TIME

1: What is the working title of your book?

At this present in moment in time, it is called Miss Pooshoe. It is the second title I have used whilst in the draft stages; the first one was too seasonal as I had created that as I started the writing process back in January 2012. However, once I completed the first draft, the story no longer headed in the direction I first thought and therefore needed a complete overhaul of the title.

What on earth does Miss Pooshoe mean?? I hear you cry. Well, that’s the beauty of the title – it’s designed to capture and intrigue.  

2: Where did the idea come from for the book?

It actually stems from my experience of loosing a job I absolutely loved last year and being redeployed into a shift work role I had previously done. I carried a lot of anger, resentment and frustration with me at first regarding the whole situation. Rather than sinking in my misery, I tried to turn a negative into a positive and be grateful for having a permanent job in these hard times; and that the best therapy would be to channel those feelings of turmoil into a book

3: What genre does your book fall under?

It falls under the ‘Chick-Lit’ Genre; the main theme of the story is serious and topical, injected with some humour and romance that is written (hopefully) in an upbeat style.

Miss Pooshoe has taken some surprising turns on her writing  journey;  in particular a route that one of the characters (Harriet)  takes. It was a direction that even I wasn’t expecting! And how it comes about is even more bizarre, as I sat furiously typing away, my fingers flowing across the keyboard, possessed completely by the characters and their story that they want to share. hat’s when you take a step back and actually go ‘Wow! Where did that come from!’

 That’s the beauty of getting immersed with your characters and story; they  take on a life of their own and do things you don’t expect to happen! Pleasant little surprises I call them.

4: Which actors would you choose to play your characters in a movie rendition?

God this is a really tough question!

Character of Maggie – Kirsten Wiig
Image from Style Bistro

The main character is Maggie Bell, a 27 year old who looses her job as a successful Project Co-ordinator.  She’s blonde, bubbly,  kind of ditsy.  I tried to stick with English Actors in the main however I loved the film Bridesmaids (it even manages to crop up in the book!) and I think Kristie Wiig would be the perfect Maggie Bell and Chris O’Dowd would be a great Paul (they are not lovers in this book, just best friends.Paul is actually gay. Seth is the love interest. In my last blog post I had the yummy Chris Hemsworth to play him but this time I have opted for the lovely Tom Ellis. Although they are both gorgeous, I found that the changes i have made to Seth’s character in the editing process now suit the profile more of Mr Ellis.) 

Character of Paul – Chris O’DowdImage from Digital Spy 

tomellis

Character of Seth – Tom Ellis

Image from

Character of Claire – Emily Blunt
Image from Filmario

Character of Harriett – Sienna Miller
Image from Fanpop

5: What is the one-sentence synopsis of your book?

Riding the Rollercoaster of Recession.

There will be more but synopsis are hard to write but that’s the caption I am going for at this moment.

6: Will your book be self-published or represented by an agency?

Back in March, my intention was to edit over the summer and then send a couple of chapters to Literary Agents, dip my toe in the waters and see if I got any nibbles – then failing that, Self Publish.

However, over this last year I have downloaded a lot of Indie Author books and I have become a part of Melissa Foster’s Awesome Support Team #GoTeamPIF and this has really opened my eyes to the world of Self Publishing. Melissa’s advice is to write what you want to write, not what you think will sell. Which is in contrast to a Literary Agents perspective; they are looking for the next big seller.

Self publishing works; this experience has taught me that.  I have met hugely successful Indie Authors such as Melissa Foster , who is proof of this. I am gradually building up the confidence and the strength of my manuscript and I am going to take Miss Pooshoe down the self publishing route.

7: How long did it take you to write the first draft of your manuscript?

January and February are the hardest, most depressing months of the year.

In order to get motivated I thought; New Year, New Start – Get Writing!

I proceeded to set myself the challenge of writing the first draft of this novel over those two months. I followed my progress on my blog, naming  it Novel Project 2012. I completed just under 80,000 words in those two months, writing nearly every day aiming to write on average 2,000 words a day. It has been through one round of editing and I intend to do another round this Autumn after it has spent it’s Summer in the hands of proof readers.

I have learnt that I am a very seasonal writer and I concentrate more in the cold, dark months when I am all snug inside. I love Autumn; it always reminds me of going back to school so it has been the kick up the backside I need to start round two of editing.

8: What other books would you compare this story to within your genre?

I would love to compare it to Marian Keyes as I simply adore her books; they are so funny and witty with a touching or tragic backdrop that is dealt with so sensitively without loosing the humour to the story.

I am nowhere near as funny as Marian Keyes but I love her writing style; her light heartedness and chatty nature is something I aspire to with this novel and I would love it to come across even half as well as what her novels do.

9: Who or What inspired you to write this book?

The loss of a job I loved; having to experience and deal with strong, unwanted emotions spurned me on to do something about the situation. I have always loved reading and writing; often sitting in my younger years reading books such as The Famous Five or Nancy Drew,  then instantly writing my own version straight after. The urge to write was so overwhelming and that seems to be my coping mechanism in everyday life; a bit of OCD has lead me to be a List Queen. So writing what I am experiencing seemed not only a great way to clear my head, but to start this novel writing adventure I have longed to do!

10: What else about your book might pique the reader’s interest?

This book is by no means a memoir, however people who know me will recognise a fair amount of  myself in the book. To give you a bit of a clue, the title is actually my nickame.

A lot of what happens to Maggie – the funny scenarios and ridiculous phrase –  have either happened to me or the words have fallen out my mouth without thinking . So it may be a little insight into my crazy little life. 

Thanks for reading!

I have tagged the below Authors, who will be joining me by blog,  for updates on WIPs and New Releases!

Sylvia Stein

Facebook

Twitter:@michellebetham

Michelle Betham

Facebook

Twitter:@sylvia_stein07

Love Missuswolf xxx

Creative Writing Cafe: Term Three – Lesson Four – Aficionado

FRIDAY 19th OCTOBER 2012

Well what a whirlwind of a few days I’ve had! Not only did my Facebook Page hit 100 likes, I went to see Chery Cole in concert, did the day job plus overtime inbetween and (best of all) I became an Auntie for the first time to a beautiful baby boy!

So sadly my writing and blogging have been neglected and I am now giving it some well deserved TLC.

I was actually absent from Wednesday’s lesson due to said Cheryl Cole concert (she was amazing! fab dance moves, beautiful costumes and she was so sincere, overwhelmed by the support by shedding a tear or two, unable to thank her fans enough.) Something she said stuck in my mind during an emotional speech she made; she said never give up on your dreams as this was hers (to play at Newcaslel Metro Radio Arena) and there she was, living it.

Despite my absence, I was a good girl though and I still submitted by homework, which was based on a description in the first person of another character, revealing traits about that first person.

Here’s my attempt:

Aficionado

My scissors slipped as I frantically cut around the glossy photograph in the magazine, narrowly missing my thumb on the other hand.

It was worth it though. The picture staring back was exquisite; strawberry blonde hair bouffant, coiffed and glossy, sweeping wispily over willowy shoulders; shoulders that I longed to run my finger along. Aquatic blue eyes reflected an alluring smile that radiated from perfectly formed rose bud lips; blood-red against porcelain skin, inviting and longing to be brushed with my own.

Still the picture did not do her splendour justice. I had met her in person before, once, many months ago, at a book signing in town. I still remember the heart palpitations, the excited sweat trickling down my back as I stepped forward into the light, placed my book down and held my hand out for her to shake. She was even more slender in the flesh and her 5’9 frame had folded perfectly on the chair in front, her long bare legs stretched out in front narrowly peeking out the front of the desk, teasingly revealing those Black Louboutin’s.

She had cast her eyes over me and then nervously stared at my overly groomed hand, glimpsing the clipped cuticles, before abruptly ignoring it. She had hastily scribbled her name in the front with her own perfectly manicured hand, her svelte fingers gripping tensely to the pen as she fought the shakes, before I could say ‘It’s Michael.’ I wanted my name in there. I wanted this book to be personally made out to me. However, the beaming eyes in the magazine picture I now held were not replicated during that encounter. If anything, they had seemed bored, almost irritant and I’m sure I saw a glimpse of disgust in them. There was no small talk, no ‘It’s so nice to meet you Michael, thanks for buying my book and sending me those flowers and letters, I’m sorry I haven’t had a chance to reply, what with the busy schedule’. My response would have been hands flapping In front of me, waving off the apology and suggesting she make it up by accompanying me to dinner. This was not going as planned at all.

The sound of her clearing her throat had brought me to attention as she flung the book back, before turning to the young girl behind me. I was unable to move. Was this it? After all those letters I had written, all the times I had followed her everywhere, to make sure she was safe, to get another glimpse of that beautiful face, this was how she repaid me?

I had been ushered discreetly by a security guard to move along the line. As I’d walked off, I turned to look back; nothing. The dazzling smile had reappeared for the young girl, but only briefly. She had treated me like every other person in the world.

It was then I believed if I couldn’t have her, no-one could.

As I decided what frame would suit this wonderful portrait that now lay before me, I wiped the blood clean off the sharp knife and discarded it in the bottom drawer.  I hadn’t ruined that beautiful face; I had not touched that beautiful face. Wounds that never heal are better left unseen….

*********************************************************************************************************************

I received some good feedback regarding this. The critique was a change in the title; it was originally ‘Strike A Pose’  however the teacher couldn’t help but picture Madonna throughout. I became stuck as to what I could possibly change this to before posting on here, so I decided to type the word ‘Obsessive’ into a Word Document and bring up the thesaurus.  Aficionado  immediately caught my eye; snappy, simple, effective and relevant. 

I was also emailed next weeks homework (eeek-geek!)  Man and Machine (or gender-neutral character and machine) – how we cope with gadgets, cars, computers, robots etc. It can be done in any genre, and either as a poem, script or prose.

Hmmmm what to write …

Love Missuswolf xxx

 

Melissa Foster’s Awesome Support Team

FRIDAY 07th SEPTEMBER 2012

Good Afternoon Ladies and Gents!

This week I joined a brand new group that was created by the lovely Author Melissa Foster,  entitled  Melissa Foster’s Awesome Support Team.

How did I come about this? Well I was merrily sat on my first rest day on Tuesday evening having a good old nose through Facebook at the goings on in people’s lives, when I stumbled across a post by Melissa Foster (Check out her website and books here). I have previously blogged about her when I read her wonderful book Megan’s Way and I follow her both on Facebook and Twitter. Melissa had posted on her Facebook page that she had an event coming up and that she was looking for bloggers to help support the effort. As I scrolled through the comments of expressions of interest, I noted that she had created this group as a result.

After a quiet summer on the blog front, I had been contemplating my next moves to get back into the swing of things. I still have my Novel Project 2012, Miss Pooshoe, simmering away beneath the surface, alongside my book reviews, but I needed other areas to blog about. Without hesitation, I swooped on in and clicked that request button, eager to be accepted as part of a new community that would no doubt expose me to an exciting new network of bloggers and writers.

Hurrah, I was accepted, welcomed with open arms and instantly became a part of the IN crowd yey!

No sooner had I joined, did I find myself volunteering to do an Author Interview on my blog as part of the event for the Kindle Book Review’s Best Indie Book Awards. I was delighted and honoured when I was accepted and I now get to interview the lovely Kathleen Shoop (which will be featured on here Friday 14th September 2012). Woohoo!

I have researched her website, downloaded her book to read and have since fired my Five Questions off to her in preparation for next weeks feature, which I am so excited to blog about!

In the meantime, for all you lovely Authors out there, there is a FREE Event on Wednesday 12th September in regards to Two Approaches to Book Marketing, Hosted by Alliance For Independent Author’s Founder Orna Ross with Melissa Foster as a Special Guest. It is being held 4-5pm EST (which I think makes it about 10pm here in the UK). Well worth a look in 🙂

 

Have a lovely weekend

Love Missuswolf xxx

 

Fifty Shades Trilogy – E L James

TUESDAY 17th JULY 2012

 

Yes, I too succumbed to the hype and joined the Fifty Shades Bandwagon; partly after a couple of friends were banging (excuse the pun) on about it on our girly trip to Ibiza and partly out of a need to satisfy my curiosity from a writer’s point of view – what has driven so many women wild about this book, causing a mass media frenzy and a sell out in supermarkets?

As an aspiring Indie Author, I like to know what makes readers tick; where the market is and if anything I write remotely slots into that area. After all, I love writing and there’s no greater pleasure than others enjoying your work.

Exactly three weeks since that trip to Ibiza, I finished reading the third book, Fifty Shades Freed, early this morning.

I have mixed thoughts on the books.

Credit has to be given for the storyline – it did have me intrigued and the author very cleverly leaves it on a cliffhanger at the end of Book Two, Fifty Shades Darker, which, with my insatiable inquisitive appetite, had me parting with a couple more English pounds to download the third.

However, I did find the dialogue very repetitive, to a point of annoyance where I was wishing the author had used a thesaurus more on these words; impassive and unreadable. Also, the phrases ‘lips parted to take a breath’ ‘turned on their heels’ (which I think appeared three times in one chapter in book three) were over used and I found myself getting irritated when I read them.

Saying that, I did enjoy the way the author created a comparison between Anastasia’s inner goddess and subconscious throughout the book, I thought that was a clever little insight into Anastasia’s personality and represented the constant battle of emotions she experienced.

The Author builds up the sexual tension in the first book, Fifty Shades of Grey, to an explosive Chapter Eight, which i think was really well done, keeping the reader in almost as much suspense as Anastasia.

Plus, I really enjoyed the snippet at the end of Book Three from Christian’s point of view when he first met Anastasia, reliving the experience through his eyes. This was a wonderful idea by the Author, particularly as it opens the gate of opportunity to release a book written entirely from Christian Grey’s point of view. This I would find interesting as he is such an angry, arrogant character it would be fabulous to see how his mind works.

I think back to when I tried to read the Twilight books, I had varied feelings about them (which I am still only halfway through reading) Again, this was to establish what all the fuss was about and I do think that those books could have been written a little bit better.

I compare them in a way to The Hunger Games, having read the first book in just over a day – something I had never done before. That addiction to the story and the writing lurks in my mind. Another fabulous writer is Rosamund Lupton, with her poetic dialogue making her books a beautiful read.

I think that the Fifty Shades trilogy, although it is not badly written, also proves that if you have the right target audience, you can be hugely successful, and that the best publicity is the oldest form; word of mouth.

Talking about it at work, in the hairdressers, nodding knowingly at the lady on the Metro who is reading the same book as you as another passenger looks on intrigued, harping on at your friends whilst on holiday with them, pouring your enthusiasm into your Facebook and Twitter statuses – women are excellent promoters of products without consciously realising it.

This is something to wake up and take note of.

I have dug myself a grave here, opening myself up to future criticism – I am going to have to practice what I preach now and ensure anything I write does not become repetitive.

Despite my criticism, I did actually enjoy the books and they pleasantly surprised me – as I envisaged with all the hysteria that it wouldn’t be all it was cracked up to be (as I am finding with the Twilight Saga although I am hoping I will be proved wrong when I eventually get into Book Three).

There is a love story in there that is carried along by a mystery that does keep you reeled in. I couldn’t put the books down so that is a good sign; grammar and dialogue can be corrected but if the story ain’t there – you are a bit screwed.

And I do think every woman (and possibly man!) should read it, to experience the Fifty Shades Revolution. (Purchase here)

Take a peek at the Author’s website here.

You can also follow her on Twitter @E_L_James

I think I am with millions of you ladies here when I say that every woman would love a bit of Christian in her life.

Love Missuswolf xxx

Sunday Smiles – Free Prize Draw

SUNDAY 18th MARCH 2012

 

Happy Mother’s Day to all you fabulous mummies out there, you are all wonderful women doing an inspiring role and bring so much love and joy, espesh my lovely mum.

 

To bring a Sunday Smile to someone’s face, today I have drawn at random from the list of my Facebook ‘Likers’ a winner to receive a free copy of my book.

Congratulations go out to : John Hodgson!

Well done and a copy of my book will be winging its by Mr Postie to you tomorrow!

Love Missuswolf xxx

What Makes Writing All Worth While

SATURDAY 10th MARCH 2012

I just wanted to share a little something that made me smile and that made all the hours I poured into my writing all worth while …

Apart from the genuine pleasure I receive  when I have written a story – even getting as far as Self Publishing it and seeing those words in print, encased in a cover of their own – nothing comes close to the sheer joy of someone else appreciating your work.

That joy came in the form of a Thank You card from a girl whose Aunt bought her my book The Ruby of Egypt for her birthday.

It’s little moments like this that are so rewarding.

Love Missuswolf xxx