RSS

Tag Archives: speculative fiction

Danger Word film: we have a TRAILER!

*Here it is!* This is the trailer for the short film DANGER WORD which I have been promoting & talking about with you all for weeks now. It is based on a scene from the novel DEVIL’S WAKE which, along with the screenplay is written by Steven Barnes & Tananarive Due & directed by Luchina Fisher! It really exceeds my expectations (and they were high). I can’t wait to see the entire short film! This film features veteren actor Frankie Faison (Silence of the Lambs, The Wire), newcomer Saoirse Scott (One Life To Live), Michael Power (The Dark Knight Rises) & newcomer Nicki Barnes! Great job #DangerWordCrew

Danger Word film: we have a TRAILER!

 

 

Advertisements
 
Leave a comment

Posted by on June 14, 2013 in Film Reviews, Videos

 

Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

If I Could Give New Writers Advice, I’d Start With…

I’ll cut to the chase:

1. READ, READ, READ – You learn from the great writers. For dialogue I learned from Hemingway, figurative language from Richard Wright & to name a contemporary author, Janet Fitch. The point is that certain authors have certain strengths & you can learn from them by reading, from Shakespeare to The Odyssey to Zora Neale Hurston. READ!

2. WRITE, WRITE, WRITE – I have observed many writers focusing on marketing, discussions on social media about writing, illustrations, maps, plot synopsis (over & over again) – just write the book already. Write it without continuously editing it as you write (even I have trouble with this). Get it out of you, then worry about other things. Marketing is meaningless if you wrote & published a crappy book.

3. Find a great, supportive but honest critique group. Develop thick skin. If you put out a sample chapter for people to read be ready for any level of criticism. Do you want people to lie to you & pat you on the back or help you make it better? Decide. If you want the lie, please don’t ever ask me to critique your work. Also, give & take in critique groups. In other words, you should not be receiving more critiques than you give. It should be balanced.  Nothing annoys me more in critique groups than members who always want others to read/critique their work but never do the same for others.  The basic Golden Rule principle comes to mind here. Scribophile is a wonderful site for having your excerpts critiqued because they work on a karma point system & you can’t present your work to others unless you first gain karma points by helping other writers first.

4. DO NOT under ANY circumstances, publish a book that has only been edited by you, no matter how good you think you are. You’ll never catch all of your own errors.Some editors don’t catch every single error. Hire a good editor who is able to give you references & is familiar with your genre. It is my personal opinion that editing speculative fiction (for example) is different from other genres, so I advise getting an editor who has worked with authors in the genre you are writing in. Everyone may not agree with that and yet, the world turns. Don’t go for the “full editorial services for $99-$199” type of people – no serious, credible editor will edit an entire manuscript for so little money because it’s not worth their time – it’s a scam that too many writers fall for. Real editors don’t troll & spam potential clients to the point of ad nauseam, clients come to them.For those cheap prices, they’ll do little more than a spell check, which you can do yourself.

5. If you don’t have the money to pay for editing, wait until you do to publish the book or present it to literary agents and/or publishers. The same can be applied to self-publishing.Now some will disagree with that, citing the fact that an agent or publisher could see potential & offer a contract, even if the manuscript is not perfect. While they might have a point, I say, if you care about your work, you invest in it to polish it as if you only have one shot. If you are in the one percent of querying writers whose partial and/or full manuscript is requested (keywords: one percent), it needs to be error free as much as possible.  Why would an agent or publisher choose your story with errors when Jane Doe submitted a story in the same genre with an equally compelling plot & proper editing? You are competing with every other writer for the coveted 1%. It amazes me how many writers think that if they just put the book out there without professional editing (usually for .99) it will catch on. They think it will sell enough copies to pay for the editing for the sequel or make them rich. Shullbit. Amanda Hocking’s story is rare & most .99 books don’t turn writers into millionaires. Most regularly priced books don’t turn writers into millionaires.Get an extra job, ask your family for the money, sell an egg…or sperm, start cutting grass for $$$. Don’t sell crystal meth in a basement lab in your home. Or, do what I did – I raised money via Indiegogo. Fellow writer Dianne Gardner is doing the same via Kickstarter now. It’s worth the wait.

I’ll be back next week with more advice for writers.

#myrantfortheday

Consevative blogger Talitha McEachin

Talitha “TK” McEachin

TK McEachin is a political/cultural blogger and up & coming writer of fiction. Her first novel, THE ELEMENTS is the first in an epic fantasy series.To learn more about her fictional projects visit www.theelementsbooks.com. You may donate to her campaign on the home page as well, if you missed the deadline for her fundraising campaign.

 
Leave a comment

Posted by on March 12, 2013 in Fictional Writing

 

Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Writing: Author Dianne Gardner on “Magic” in Fiction

Dragon ShieldMagic!
Fantasy stories have magic and so do mine.
But what exactly is magic?

Dictionary definitions
the art of producing illusions as entertainment by the use of sleight of hand, deceptive devices, etc.;legerdemain; conjuring: to pull a rabbit out of a hat by magic.

OR

the art of producing a desired effect or result through the use of incantation or various other techniques that presumably assure human control of supernatural agencies or the forces of nature. Compare contagious magic, imitative magic, sympathetic magic. http://dictionary.reference.com/browse/magic?s=t
Human control of supernatural agencies or forces of nature…exactly what the Dragon Shield does for its bearers. If you’ve read my short stories A Tale of the Four Wizards, especially about the Wizard Kaempie, you know that the young conjurer gave up certain powers that he possessed to The Northern Winds as a sacrifice so that the wicked queen Hacatine, who had been seeking to strip him of his power, could not destroy the peoples of the Realm.

Say’s the young conjurer,

If I relinquish my magic to the one force that she cannot conquer, then she’ll never possess it. Never. It will always work against her. –Kaempie A Tale of the Four Wizards

The Wind, being a power of great good, used Kaempie’s contribution to create The Songs of Wisdom. It’s these songs that the children sing which activates the power of the Dragon Shield.

It’s not something the tribal people learn overnight. They must experience some tragic mistakes, sit down and listen to the elders, and accept their people’s tradition before they can take advantage of the benefits of this magic.

In the Dragon Shield, Ian finds himself in the midst of that learning curve, and he too becomes wiser for it.

Where did I get all this besides from my insanely busy imagination?

Well, I don’t really like to think about my stories as being allegories. But on the other hand, I’m a Christian and I believe in a loving Creator that gave mankind a redeeming power (his Son) that, when called on, can save him from any evil the devil (or the world) would thrust at us.

So the Songs of Wisdom and the melody of the Dragon Shield, which is sung by innocent children, creates an aura that keep darkness at bay, and has the power to heal.

Magic, yes. But it could, if you’re looking for it, speak of something more phenomenal.

Dgardner

 

 

 

 
The second installment of the Ian’s Realm Saga The Dragon Shield expounds on the magic of the Realm. For readers wanting to know more, the short stories The Dragon Shield shows us how the native people use that magic as a form of protection.

 

Follow Dianne Gardner on her website & throughout social media:

Publisher’s website: http://www.hydrapublications.com/shop/deception-peak/

Official book blog: http://dragontargeseries.blogspot.com/

Dragon Shield Trailer 

website http://gardnersart.com

Facebook :Dianne Gardner

Twitter @DianneGardner

Author Central on Amazon

 
3 Comments

Posted by on February 16, 2013 in Featured Guest blogs, Fictional Writing

 

Tags: , , , , , , , , ,

Introduction to The Elements

Introduction to The Elements

Some of you who have only followed my political & social writings may not know this, but I am writing a fictional (fantasy) series consisting of four books (so far that’s the plan) entitled The Elements. I started writing it in 2003 and Book I is due for publication in early 2013. When Kgosi, ruler of the Kishnu people refuses to halt his invasion of the neighboring villages of the Lungi people, and Nkosana, ruler of the Lungi people has ordered an act which unintentionally offends a foe that neither ruler could possibly defeat, Baba, the elder Kishnu sangoma or diviner takes drastic measures to preserve both indigenous tribes of the Earth.

The Elements is a story that takes place millions of years ago on Nchiyamolekuli or as we call it in modern times, Pangea, the massive land mass on earth before the division into seven continents. After a major battle in which many lives are lost and the environment is devastated, Baba, the wisest and most trusted adviser to King Kgosi, first exhausts diplomatic means then urges both rulers to leave their lands to seek refuge elsewhere. Baba has learned that the angered foe is Paytah, leader of the Nootau – One of the four elements (Earth-the Onatahi, Wind-the Makani, Water-the Iscindri & Fire-the Nootau) who live within their respective elements on the Earth and at times among the people disguised as human.

After months of failed crops and fishing expeditions do not produce enough food for the people on both sides; they are forced to follow Baba’s recommendation to leave for Kisiwachamani, a large distant island whose indigenous people may be helpful in supplying the people with food as well as medicine and shelter. In both the Kishnu and Lungi mythology, the island and the body of water between it and Nchiyamolekuli is the resting place for all souls before they are judged and returned to this life through the womb of a woman or animal, depending on their favor or lack of it with the ancestors. Warnings not to go into the waters or visit the island have been passed down for generations but; with the barrenness of their lands and the danger of attack from the Nootau known only to Baba, they are left with no choice.Once there, the Mwilimmoja – the island’s only inhabitants led by Nangaza and his wife Ina, agree to aid the Kishnu and Lungi. They only require that the Kishnu and Lungi follow their strict dietary laws and agree to be “prepared”. Nangaza explains that this involves drinking ugolo, a fermented beverage made from the forbidden waters, which will remove all illnesses from the people, thereby preventing the spread of illness to the island’s inhabitants. This is only partially true as the “preparation”also links all of the Lungi & Kishnu people physically in a symbiotic manner causing everything done by individuals to affect the whole population, regardless of their tribes. The Mwilimmoja after hearing about the war from Baba, which drove the people to the island in the first place, unanimously decide this must be done as they have done to themselves for centuries to prevent violent wars and maintain a peaceful society.The two kings and their people are so desperate that they agree without question, not having full knowledge of what preparation really is, nor the freedom or bondage that comes along with it. In Book I we follow this story from the invasion of Lungizwe, the main village of the Lungi, by the Kishnu, to the initial encounter with the Mwilimmoja of Kisiwachamani.

As I approach the publication date I will be posting updates and excerpts from Book I of my series. The irony is that I started writing fiction long before I started writing about the current political climate, from a Conservative Libertarian perspective, so it’s my first love. Writing & Reading great fiction is a passion of mine and I look forward to introducing you all, as well as the entire world with this beautiful story about peace & human nature. Please feel free to send me your name as well as your email address to be added to my mailing list for The Elements here.
From The Elements Book I Copyright 2012 All Rights Reserved
 
 

Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

 
%d bloggers like this: