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Kiss Me, Chloe is FREE for 5 Days!!!

FREE BOOK!!!!

Kiss Me, Chloe, by Linda George

Kiss Me, Chloe
by Linda George
will be FREE for download
from Amazon for 5 days
(April 20-24).

 

Book Description:
Chloe Lewellyn has set aside her hopes and dreams long enough. All she wants now is to escape from Houston, and from Greg, whose career will always come first. She wants a new life, and, in time, a new love who will put her first in his life and allow her to be the person she wants to be.

Kyle Stanton spies her sitting alone in a crowded restaurant in Albuquerque. Somehow, he knows from the moment he sees her sad expression that this woman, whose heart has been shattered, holds the key to the happiness that has eluded him. How can he convince her to give love another chance? The answer lies in the Rocky Mountains. . . .

Linda George and her husband, Charles, have had more than 70 books published, fiction and nonfiction, for children, teens, and adults.  Linda is focusing on romance fiction again, and plans to publish 4 more books this year, and 3 more next year.  Two of her previously-published romances, which came out in hard cover for $26.95, will be released for Kindle in June and August, and both will be FREE for 5 days.

Kiss Me, Chloe  is the first book in the Kiss Me Series of sweet, contemporary romances by Linda George.

To get your FREE copy, click on the link below, which will take you to Amazon where you can download the book to your Kindle, iPad, computer (using the Kindle app for PC or MAC) or other readers.

http://www.amazon.com/Kiss-Me-Chloe-ebook/dp/B00CB7NHC8/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1366339890&sr=8-1&keywords=Kiss+Me%2C+Chloe

This promotional period will last only 5 days!  Get your FREE copy of Kiss Me, Chloe beginning Saturday, April 20!

Do You Talk Aloud to Yourself?

All my life, I’ve talked aloud to myself (when I’m alone).  Whenever I realize I’m doing it–usually practicing what I’m going to say when I call someone with a specific reason for the call, or talking to someone specific, saying what I’d LOVE to say, but know I never will.  I’ve always wondered why I feel the need to do this, and now I know why.

It’s dialogue.  And I’m practicing writing dialogue, just as though I were writing it on a piece of paper or my computer screen.  All that jabbering aloud when I’m driving or sitting on the back porch, reading (I often realize I’ve started reading aloud, simply because the writing is so good I want to hear it aloud as well as in my mind), or working in my garden is simply my mind writing dialogue.  Most of it, I’ll never use in a book, of course, but it’s still practice for writing dialogue between two characters.

When I write, I use this same technique, but in a slightly different way.  I see everything I’m writing about in my mind, like a movie, and I write down what I hear and see, layer by layer.  Dialogue is almost always the first layer, with descriptions, action, foreshadowing of future events and such being added in other layers.  But dialogue is the heart of the story because people are the heart of the story.

I once had an idea for a novel where a man witnessed the death of his friend, then had to tell his friend’s wife about his death.  But he couldn’t bring himself to tell her, so he said nothing.  My goal was for him to remain silent for the first 100 pages of the book.  What a challenge that would be!  I would have to convey his thoughts, feelings, and expressions without using dialogue at all.  There would be inner dialogue, of course–his thoughts expressed as he would’ve said them aloud (introspection), but what he needed to tell her could not be said straight out.  But she’d know why he was there and what he couldn’t tell her, just from his expressions, the way his eyes filled with tears whenever she mentioned her husband’s name, and how, she sensed, that he, too loved her.  I’ll definitely have to think about writing that book someday–Miranda’s Tears.

I was sitting outside, reading, when I started talking aloud to the character in the book.  That’s when I realized I was practicing dialogue again.  And it made me very happy.  Because it’s behavior I suspect all writers exhibit from time to time.  🙂

Kiss Me, Chloe for Sale on Amazon!

Hello, everyone!  Mercy but it’s been a busy two weeks!  I put the finishing touches on Kiss Me, Chloe, sent it to my pre-publication readers for proofing and reviewing, entered changes (typos, etc) and PUBLISHED the book on my birthday, April 10, just as I’ve been planning to do for months!  The reviews will be appearing over the course of this next week.  If you’ve read the book and enjoyed it, I’ll appreciate your putting a review on the book’s page on Amazon.  The link to that page is on this website, along with the cover and the description.  And this past week, our six-year-old grandson, Joey, was here during his spring break from Kindergarten in New Mexico.  Talk about a busy week!  In between bike rides and movies and trips to the park, I was working on Kiss Me, Chloe.  No matter what else is happening, writers keep writing.

By Tuesday, I knew it was time to stop writing, though.  It’s something all writers know and something we all incorporate into the writing of our books.  The writer is too close to the book to be completely objective.  And, the writer is too close to catch all the picky errors!  In “Kiss Me, Chloe” I had her putting on tennis shoes, then later that day kicking off her sandals!  Two of my readers noticed and let me know so I could correct that picky little error and get a corrected version of the book on Amazon.

My proofreaders also catch little typos that I haven’t caught, even though I’ve read the book over and over during the writing.  I get caught up in the story and my eyes skim over those typos, time after time.

I write my books in layers.  When I’m writing the first draft, I get the story written without worrying about typos, inconsistencies, description, or anything other than getting the beginning, middle, and end of the story finished.  Then, comes the real writing.  Layer by layer, I go through and insert descriptions, emotional reactions, additional dialogue, and subplots.  By the time I start polishing, and seeing the final draft in my mind, I’ve probably added ten layers to that first draft.  The final book is much richer and more finely written than the first.

That’s what separates a professional writer from a casual writer.  Rewriting.  I might spend an hour on a few paragraphs, or maybe only a few minutes correcting inconsistencies, like the tennis shoes turning into sandals!  Other times, I may decide to revise the plot completely.  I may add a new character, or a new piece of action that will enable my readers to know the characters better and to think of them as real people.

There’s also a reality that all writers are familiar with.  The book is never really finished.  No matter how many times I reread what I’ve written, I’ll find changes to make.  When I realize that the changes I’m making are putting the words back to where they were two changes ago, it’s time to stop tinkering and declare the book finished.  For the time being, anyway.  Then, my pre-publication readers take over the proofing process.  I make the changes those readers find–but I try not to reread the whole book, or I’ll start tinkering again.

Yes, it takes months to write a 60,000-word book.  But it’s worth every minute I spend to know that the story I’ve told seems like a slice of real life to my readers.

I hope you’ll check out the Amazon page for Kiss Me, Chloe.  If it sounds like a book you’d like, I hope you’ll enjoy reading it as much as I enjoyed writing it!

Click here to order Kiss Me, Chloe.  http://www.amazon.com/Kiss-Me-Chloe-ebook/dp/B00CB7NHC8

 

Plotting My Novel – Kiss Me, Chloe

Kiss Me, Chloe, by Linda George

While going through this book to polish and make the last tweakings, I realized I wasn’t happy with the ending.  It just didn’t have the punch I wanted–the punch that I try to put into all my romances.  It didn’t have enough PLOT.

The answer to this dilemma, of course, was to test the plot using the method I described in my book  Fill-in-the-Blank Plotting, published by Crickhollow Books, which is available on Amazon: Fill-in-the-Blank Plotting

Fill-in-the-Blank Plotting, by Linda George

I pulled out my plotting boards,  with the 12 steps of the Hero’s Journey on one board, and chapter numbers divided into the Three-Act Structure on the other. I went through the novel and wrote the key scenes on cards and placed them into the steps of the Hero’s Journey.  Then, I moved all those cards to the Three-Act Structure board.

It was easy to see, once the cards were in the Three-Act Structure, that the plot had big holes in it!  There simply wasn’t enough plot in the last quarter of the book–where the climax of the story occurs.  I had to rewrite the last fourth of the book, inserting a subplot that would put Chloe into a position of having to choose between “the lesser of two evils.”  This decision hits the reader as hard as it hits Chloe, and it casts doubt on what Chloe will have to do to make it all work out for the best.

This book uses a tried-and-true romance novel premise–one woman, two men.  Chloe has to choose between Greg and Kyle.  In the original version,  Chloe–no matter who she chose–would’ve felt bad about rejecting the other man.  That simply won’t work in a romance.  And yet, there have to be good qualities in each man to create doubt in the reader’s mind about who she’s going to choose.  By inserting a harrowing decision, which puts Chloe into the position of having to make her choice based entirely on love, I knew the reader would agonize along with her–wondering the whole time how it would work out, and hoping for the happy ending all romances are required to have.

That’s the magic of the Hero’s Journey combined with the Three-Act Structure, with the elements of the plot displayed on a board where it’s easy to see the gaps in the story–and how to fill those gaps.

I’m exceptionally pleased now with the ending of this book.

I think you’ll be pleased, too.

THE SWARM by Frank Schatzing (Review)

 

The Swarm--cover

I’ve just finished reading (rereading, actually) THE SWARM by Frank Schatzing. A fascinating book, packed with scientific information, and “swarming” with possibilities that are sometimes shocking while other times fascinating and entirely understandable, from a certain point of view. Since the book is fiction and based on scientific facts, stretched almost to the breaking point at times, I’d have to call it science fiction. Sort of. It’s exceptionally long–more than 1000 pages–but worth every page. If you aren’t the type reader who relishes scientific fact mixed with fiction, you probably wouldn’t care for it. But if you love being pushed to the edge with “What if…” premises, you might just like this one. I recommend it.

http://www.amazon.com/Swarm-Novel-Frank-Schatzing/dp/0060859806/ref=sr_1_2?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1363106555&sr=1-2&keywords=the+swarm

BREAKING FREE!

Breaking Free!This amazing sculpture is called “Breaking Free!”  It expresses completely how I feel about writing fiction again!  How I feel about being able to write one novel after another–as I yearned to do when I started writing novels (learning how) more than 20 years ago.  I wrote one novel after another–none of them good enough to publish.

But writers have to LEARN how to write, just as doctors have to learn how to be doctors.  You wouldn’t just decide you wanted to be a brain surgeon and hang up a shingle and ask, “Who wants to be first?”  Yet, thousands of aspiring writers do exactly that.  They decide that being a professional writer would be fun, sit down at the computer, type something, print it, then mail it to a dozen editors, essentially asking, “Who wants to be first?”

Writing has to be learned, just as any other profession has to be learned.  It takes YEARS of study, trial and error, and getting thousands of words on paper to master the skills required to be a master writer.

Does it take years to be published?  No.  But a bestselling author once wrote that a MASTER writer controls the emotions of the reader.  If the writer wants the reader to laugh, the reader laughs.  Or the reader cries, or runs screaming from the room, as in the case of MASTER writer, Stephen King.  And, that same bestselling author wrote that in order to become a MASTER writer, it’s necessary to get a MILLION WORDS on paper.

When my first novel, GABRIEL’S HEART, was published in 1998, I added up the words from all the practice novels I’d written, then estimated the word count for the stories and articles I’d written to date.  I had just passed a million words.  I had learned how to write well.

I still don’t consider myself a MASTER writer, but I’ve learned how to include deep emotion in my stories, and even though romance editors often say that my stories have “too much plot,” my readers seem to like having a strong plot along with characters who seem like real people.  My characters seem like real people to ME.  And, I love books with plots that carry me along, wondering what’s going to happen on the next page or at the end.

Romances always have happy endings.  But how two people overcome the differences between them isn’t automatically known to the reader at the beginning of the story.  And that’s the plot.  My goal, when I plot a story, is to keep the reader guessing until the end.

Writing nonfiction means hours and days and weeks of intensive research, quotations, end notes, glossary words, timelines, lists of books, websites, and other sources of information to “Read More About It,” bios, fast facts, and an extensive bibliography of sources.

Fiction also requires research, but with a different purpose.  The research I do for fiction is done in order to help the reader believe that the characters are real people, living in a real place.  Research inserted into a story  creates a picture in the reader’s mind that’s just enough to keep the reader grounded in the story’s setting, but that leaves enough to the imagination for the reader to fill in the blanks.

You may see some crossover among our non-fiction book topics and my novels–research that finds its way from a purely factual presentation to the setting or plot of a love story.

By writing fiction again, I’m BREAKING FREE!!  I hope you’ll come with me on the journey.

Back in West Texas

We got home to West Texas Friday evening, just in time to attend the beautiful wedding and reception for our pastor, Ed Wegele, and his bride, Nicole Martin, who are now Mr. and Mrs. Ed Wegele!  Congratulations!!!!

We had a fairly stiff breeze at the wedding (typical for West Texas) but Saturday turned into an all-out sand storm, with high winds and sand blown hard enough to sting the skin!  I battled a migraine most of the day.  It’s mostly gone this morning, but lurking.  I would love to sit outside, but the wind is still blowing, and the sand is still filling every spare square inch it can reach.

I grew up in the 1950s in Levelland, TX, due west of Lubbock 30 miles.  That was before irrigation kept the sand and topsoil in place.  I remember days when the sand was so thick during the day it was completely dark outside.  Sand piled up on windowsills half an inch thick, and our house was covered in a layer of sand–clothes, dishes, furniture, and everything sitting on a shelf acquired a coat of fine red blow-sand.  We had sand even in the refrigerator!  My father worked for John Deere and learned about irrigation and how to conserve the precious topsoil.  That knowledge served him well throughout his life, primarily growing pecans in Central Texas and between Del Rio and Eagle Pass in the Quemado Valley, where he planted 1500 acres of pecan trees.  Around Rising Star, TX, Chuck and I managed 200 acres of pecans and lived on the edge of two of the orchards we managed–Lost Creek and Southern Star.

Here in Seminole, there are a good many pecan orchards, too, so we’re able to buy fresh pecans every year.  Once we got used to eating pecans straight off the tree, buying them in packages from a grocery store was out of the question.  There’s nothing as delicious as a fresh Choctaw, Sioux, or Cheyenne.

We loved our 5 1/2 days at Pine Ridge, feeding two dozen deer, 20 turkeys, squirrels, chipmunks, raccoons, and even a fluffy gray cat one morning!  Stellar’s Jays, juncos, woodpeckers, chickadees, nuthatches, and others came to tank up on the mid-winter feast of corn and seeds.  They get used to us being on the porch, watching them, and don’t spook when we walk around.

It was my intention to finish the final polishing on KISS ME, CHLOE while we were there, but a complete rest for mind, body, and spirit trumped any sort of work for me.  Chuck puttered around, washing the deck, organizing the trailer, etc., but I remained in my cushy recliner, reading, watching the wildlife, and loving being on the mountain at 8000 ft. among the trees.

Chuck’s sister, Charlotte, and her husband, Roland, stayed at our house in Seminole with Alene–Chuck and Charlotte’s mother–my mother-in-law–while we were gone.  We always appreciate it when they can make the long drive from Tyler to Seminole so we can have some time in the mountains together.

This week, KISS ME, CHLOE will be finished, then I’ll be focusing on getting it ready to be released in April through Amazon Kindle Direct Publishing.  The book will be free for the first five days it’s on Amazon, and I’ll let you know here when to download your free copy.  Then, I’d love to hear what you thought of the book.  If you like it, I’ll appreciate your putting a positive review on the book’s Amazon page.  I’ll give you the link for that, too.

Have a wonderful week!

Kiss Me, Chloe – Coming Soon!

Kiss Me, Chloe, by Linda George

KISS ME, CHLOE

by Linda George

Coming April, 2013

Enough!  Chloe Lewellyn had set aside all her hopes and dreams long enough!  All she wanted now was to escape from Houston, and from Greg, whose career would always come first.  She wanted a new life, and, in time, a new love who would put her first in his life and allow her to be the person she wanted to be.

Kyle Stanton spied her sitting alone in a crowded restaurant in Albuquerque.  Somehow, he knew from the moment he saw her sad expression that this woman, whose heart had  been shattered, held the key to the happiness that had eluded him.  How could he convince her to give love another chance?  The answer lay in the Rocky Mountains. . . .

Cover Art by Carrie Spencer at Cheeky Covers
www.cheekycovers.com

High Country Paradise!

We’ve been in high country–8000 ft.–near Cloudcroft, NM for four days now.  Two more days to go before we have to go home and back to the real world.  Our little piece of paradise is named Pine Ridge, and someday we’ll live here most of the year.  This morning, we fed 16 deer, 20 turkeys, squirrels, chipmunks, and lots of birds.

While here, we’ve slept late, eaten whenever the urge has hit us, read for pleasure, and done some housekeeping chores, like organizing and cleaning out closets and drawers.  Chuck loves working here and enjoys it immensely.  Our rule is that we do whatever we want to do while we’re here.  I mostly want to sit on our covered deck, watch birds and deer and turkeys, and read.

This is also a wonderful place to write!  I’m getting closer to having KISS ME, CHLOE edited and revised and ready to publish in April, and I’m finding out the best ways to promote the book.  The cover and a book description will be on my new website, www.LindaGeorge.net before long, along with information about other books you might be interested in checking out.

I’ve found that being on a mountain, surrounded by pines, firs, and mountain animals is the best way for my mind to rest.  It’s only when a writer’s mind is truly at rest that the writing flows without restrictions.

I hope you’re having a wonderful March!  Please check back frequently!  I promise I’ll be adding new blogs and photos several times a week!

New Website Underway for Linda George

This is a website for Linda George; the site is under construction by Philip Martin, Great Lakes Literary (that’s me, I develop clean, functional websites for authors).

Let us know what you think. Linda and I look forward to your visits and any comments, questions, or suggestions you might have.

Stop back soon for more about Linda’s novels and her other writings!

– Philip Martin, Great Lakes Literary