Here's a blurb from Goodreads:
After spending months traveling the harsh, unforgiving Mesopotamian desert, Jayden reunites with a broken, injured Kadesh. Although everyone was convinced the violent and unpredictable Horeb, Jayden’s betrothed, killed the handsome prince, Jayden knew in her heart that her love was alive and safe. But their reunion is short-lived, as they learn Horeb is on their trail and determined to take back the girl he has claimed. Soon, the two star-crossed lovers are on the run toward Sariba, Kadesh’s homeland, where, as heir to the kingdom, he plans to make Jayden his princess.
But the trek to Sariba comes with heartache and danger. After narrowly escaping being stoned to death for a crime she didn’t commit, and learning that her sister has disappeared, Jayden’s only solace is her love for Kadesh. But even he is keeping secrets from her…secrets that will change everything.
This gorgeous and enchanting sequel to Forbidden is fraught with love, danger, and heated passion that will leave readers breathless.
Now here's Kimberley!
COMMON WRITERLY BEGINNER TICS
I’m so happy to be here at Literary Rambles today! Many thanks for helping me celebrate the release of BANISHED, Book 2 of the FORBIDDEN trilogy.
We wear a variety of hats as a writer: Creator, Drafter, Rewriter, Editor, Copyeditor, and Self-Imposed Critic—but don’t get them mixed up or you’ll make yourself nuts while you’re wearing the Creator hat, or run the risk of too much daydreaming during the Editor stage. Wouldn’t it be lovely to have the ability to pull our stories straight out of our minds and lay them all lovely and perfect on the page? Unfortunately, the technology for that hasn’t been invented yet.
Instead, we travel through these various stages of donning hats many times during the process of writing a book, back and forth and sometimes feeling like our brains have turned into scrambled eggs.
When you feel yourself ready to scream, try to put the manuscript/notes/editorial letters/critiques aside for a few hours or a day or two and give yourself a breather. Take a walk, read a book, have lunch with a friend, watch a favorite movie, brainstorm plot or character solutions with trusted family, friends, or other writers, and you’ll come back to the work feeling refreshed and raring to dive in again.
I’m here to advise you on a few of the most Common Beginner Tics while going through our writing stages.
Beginner tics are those mistakes we all make at one time or another, especially in the beginning of our practice as writers—and even published writers still make them during the Creator or Drafting stages. But it’s also true that published writers, with experience (perhaps even several books under their belts), do get better/faster at finding these problems, recognizing them, and then cutting and revising. Let’s get started.
Common Beginner Tic #1:
Mistaking back-story for Story. Spend time with your setting and characters before you begin to write. Discover what happened to your characters before Chapter 1 begins. Know their goals, their pet peeves, their family, their best friend, their enemy, their secrets, their fears, their weaknesses and strengths. Once you know these aspects of your character’s lives you will automatically give them a richer, more fully fleshed out personality and emotions on the page.
You don’t have to tell the reader all these quirks and nuances (or your MC’s most embarrassing moment in high school), rather, the back-story will come out in small and subtle ways through their actions, dialogue, personality, and interaction with the other characters. You won’t need to stop the story and inform the reader what’s going on, or relay what already happened before Chapter 1; the reader will be able to figure it out. Readers are very smart that way.
It’s very easy to write one or more chapters about what happened to your character before diving into the actual story that the novel is about. Readers want to see your MC in an immediate scene or problem, even if it’s a small problem.
I began Banished like this, diving right into the scene. Background and recapping of past events or characters were woven in bit by bit, a sentence here or there, but no flashbacks.
Another point regarding Backstory: Sometimes we read a novel where the main character is telling the reader what has happened before they dive into their current situation, but in order to do that successfully you need to have a character with a very unique voice.
The only time I’ve seen this done well is in first person contemporary novels where the main character has a distinct personality and leaps to life on the very first page. It’s very difficult to do and usually takes an experienced and skilled writer to do it well. But it can be done with study and practice and creating a unique character with a lot of personality.
Common Beginner Tic #2:
Having the adults solve the problem for the main character child/teen. Your MC needs to figure it out on their own. Let your main character take action, be in the middle of it, and be the driving force behind the plot.
Common Beginner Tic #3:
Too much introspection by your main character or in your narration. We're introverted “Writers” so this is very easy to do. It’s one of the things that I constantly have to watch out for or edit the heck out of later when the first draft is finished. My characters tend to think through things, ponder, muse, agonize, and self-reflect in long paragraphs.
Common Beginner Tic #4:
Telling instead of Showing. Showing requires us to embody the character and live their lives, as if we have *become* the character. Showing a scene gives richer details, conveys emotions, and refrains from becoming a summary of a scene. Instead of telling us that Cinderella went to the ball, danced with the prince, lost her glass slipper, and then her coach turned back into a pumpkin, show the scene by adding action and dialogue. Show us Cinderella dancing with Prince Charming, their conversation, their tender moment falling in love, and then her fright and race to escape the palace as the clock strikes midnight.
Common Beginner Tic #5:
Using abstract words to describe the setting or the characters or the action. Use concrete verbs and http://theeditorsblog.net/2015/04/08/writing-advice-what-about-ing-words-part-four/
Common Beginner Tic #6:
Not hearing the music/rhythm of the language. Read Cynthia Rylant. Read poetry. Read novels written in verse. This will help you see and hear the beauty and rhythm of language and alliteration and sentence length and how they can be used effectively to add depth and layers to your writing.
I hope these are helpful tips, and I wish you much success and joy with your own writing! I’m giving away a hardcover copy of FORBIDDEN and BANISHED along with some cool swag.
Website: www.kimberleygriffithslittle.com (Teacher’s Guides and Book Club Guides)
Stunning FORBIDDEN trailer: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=T3ncXetDyG8
Amazon Page of all my titles: http://www.amazon.com/Kimberley-Griffiths-Little/e/B000APMZIU/ref=dp_byline_cont_ebooks_1
If you mention this contest on Twitter, Facebook, or your blog, let me know this in the comments and I'll give you an extra entry. This is for U.S.
Here's what's coming up:
Next Monday I have a guest post by debut author Melanie Conklin and her agent Peter Knapp and a query critique giveaway by Peter and a giveaway of Melanie's MG contemporary COUNTING TIME.
Next Friday I'm participating in the Lucky Is Reading Book Giveaway Hop.
The following Monday I have an interview with debut author Janet Summer Johnson and a giveaway of her MG contemporary THE LAST GREAT ADVENTURE OF THE PB&J SOCIETY.
Wednesday that week I have an Agent Spotlight Interview with agent Patricia Nelson and a query critique giveaway.
The following Monday I have a guest post by debut author Andrew Brumbach and his agent Danielle Chiotti with a query critique giveaway by Danielle and an ARC giveaway of Andrew's MG historical adventure THE EYE OF MIDNIGHT.
Hope to see you on Monday!