Having written many different novels covering multiple genres I often get questions posed to me about why this or that?
The truth of the matter is simple. What I was writing about at that time excited me to do so. What inspired me to write about that subject is another topic.
Some subject matter in our society today is “forbotten” (forbidden) by some group of people who think that they have some right to be its curator and arbiter for all time. Guess what; you don’t own shit!
In the UK I could be in trouble for some of my subject matter as they don’t have freedom of speech. If I say something about some group that is hateful I would be called the hate monger. In your vernacular UK, that is stuffed up! I would vote those cockwombels out of office if it were me. If you like what I write, you should have the right and ability to read it. If you don’t approve of my writings, take your business elsewhere. Vote with your purse.
Now truth told, the folks in the UK are some of my most loyal customers, so thank you so much for that!
As a writer I can write about Race, Gay issues, straight issues, political issues, I can even write about romance. LOL
Writing fiction with gay couples has been something that interested me in that I have many gay friends. I care about them as one might care for a brother or sister. Whether I agree with their lifestyle or not, does not give me any right to judge them. Male-Female romance has been done to death. How many ways can Boy meet a girl and come through some struggles with misunderstandings or biases that they must get through before they reach happily ever after?
“Come on; it has been done to death!” I like strong female characters. I think the world needs more strong women or female characters. Don’t confuse that with ultra-feminism, it is not that. Women are not all airheads as they are often portrayed, and I seek to break that stereotype.
Have you ever watched a Hallmark movie where the leading male figure just made you say EWWW!
It has happened, but not too often. I wanted to ask the producer or director “what were you thinking?”
Some men are just creepy, and I guess some male directors don’t see it. There have been movies in the past where the leading lady had to say all the sweet nothings to someone else as the leading man was a douche. I love the back stories like that. When Hollywood just misses the mark, it warms my heart strangely and wonderfully. Why? It lets me know that nobody is perfect and even with all of their resources they screwed up. Much like finding typos in professionally edited books I feel a little less worried about a there instead of a “their.”
Why am I talking about movies?
Your characters must work not only for you but your audience. When creating your characters, you need to keep in mind who your audience is. The tropes are just that, as the creator, it is up to you to put a different spin on them. The story must have some appeal to it. Why would someone want to pick up your book?
We all judge a book by its cover.
The cover art must pique your audience’s curiosity. I liken it to junk mail. I get stacks of mail every day. Someone wants to sell me a product or service. The phone rolls to voice mail if I don’t know the caller, I don’t allow salespeople to get past the receptionist, so how do they sell to me?
How do you sell to your audience?
In my junk mail, each piece of mail gets about 3 seconds of my attention. Three count them three seconds before it ends up in the circular file cabinet.
The subject matter must be photographic, and it cannot be cluttered. I need to determine if I want to give it more than 3 seconds within three seconds time.
Your cover should be just as inviting. What does your cover say?
In my novel Diamond Joe, I do this.
On the cover of Diamond Joe, I show a young lady running on the beach in a bikini. Under her is a superimposed racehorse. Within three seconds you know it has something to do with a female jockey. You know that horses are involved. The name of the book tells you something about the possible storyline as it is “Diamond Joe.” Who or what is Diamond Joe? What does that have to do with this young lady?
In the very uncluttered text, I have “A heartwarming story of courage of love.”
Now within three seconds, you know enough about this book to either pick it up to look inside or keep looking as you have a thing against heartwarming stories.
Free advice from me to you.
Junk mail must be created similarly, and most often it is not. Just to assist those that put out such mail, if you put a letter opener inside your letter, you are guaranteed to get more than 3 seconds. If you put your logo and contact information on that letter opener, you are going to have your company information on that person’s desk or in their hand every morning when they go through the mountains of junk mail. One more trick, if it is just a letter make sure that when they pull the letter out of the envelope, your business card falls in their lap.
We could talk more about logos, but that is indeed outside the scope of this blog. I am after all talking to authors or writers that want to write a book, not companies who want to sell stuff.
Once you open up that cover, what are you looking for?
The tease the hook, why buy this book?
Tell us something about this girl on the beach or the horse, what is it about her that will compel us to dig a little deeper. Who is this Diamond Joe?
I have read this book a dozen times since it was published. Yes, I am on the hunt for typos and grammatical errors, but the entire truth told, I love the characters and the story. Each paragraph excites me, and that is what I began this blog about, why do I write what I write. I love what I write!
Since I love most of the classics, I would guess that what I love about them and what I write, might be in line with what Austin, Hemmingway or Dickens might have penned.
If after this much time, and that many reads, and I still want to curl up with it, with a cat or my “mews” (muse) and a warm blanket with some hot tea close by, that should tell you something. The winter is a particular time for me and warm blankets. Tea and cats along with a good book are pure gold! Now if you add some excellent Merlot, Dark Chocolat and a crackling fireplace, I might have to pick up Cyber Subs or Perpetual Palpitation and switch to something a little more naughty.
May you find your happy place and take the time to enjoy it as I try so hard to do. Life is precious don’t waste it! Find your Happy Place!
Much Love -TW