KAREN’S KILLER BOOK BENCH: Welcome to Karen’s Killer Book Bench where readers can discover talented new authors and take a peek inside their wonderful books. This is not an age-filtered site so all book peeks are PG-13 or better. Come back and visit often. Happy reading!
BROKE, BUSTED, AND DISGUSTED
By The Numbers Series
By LEEANN BETTS
Wherever you find Carly Turnquist, trouble is sure to follow.
At least, that’s what her husband Mike says.
Back in Bear Cove, Carly’s best friend is being courted by a smarmy stranger, and Mike’s latest client is unhappy with him.
When the client turns up dead and Mike is nowhere to be found, the police suspect him, and the video and paperwork they have that shows someone matching Mike’s description maxed out their credit cards and cleaned out their bank accounts is compelling.
But Carly knows her husband couldn’t kill anybody.
Paint Yourself Into a Book
By Leeann Betts
Living in an old house provides lots of opportunity for devising plots, particularly when the task at hand is painting a room. As I slathered yet another coat of paint over the neon blue bedroom walls, I got to thinking about how painting and writing require similar processes.
Here is mine:
- When painting a room, the first step is to visualize what color you want on the walls: choose the genre, then the characters and setting. If your book is a romance, you want to choose your hero and heroine and an antagonist who will try to keep them apart. For a mystery, you will choose the problem, who did it, and then create a sleuth to find the solution. Setting includes the time period as well as geographical location. Understand your characters’ goal, motivation, and conflict, and make the goal worthy of the journey.
- The next step in painting a room is repairing the defects: come up with a plot line. Most often, you’ll find that the first thing you think of for a plot will be the easy point. To create a compelling story, you must think beyond that first idea, and ask more “And then what?” questions. Fill in the holes in the plot. Don’t let your hero off the hook too easily.
- Unless you want your entire room the same color, you’ll likely tape off areas: In writing, your outline, synopsis, and elevator pitch will keep you on track. For seat-of-the-pants writers, you don’t have to write a ten-page outline. Even an elevator pitch, fifty words or less, can keep you on track. And for those who love to outline, the joy still emerges when a character says or does something you weren’t expecting.
- Finally, after all the preparation, now paint: Writing requires tools. Included in your toolkit will be something to write on; a notepad and pen; a space where you can write; some software, and patience. Set daily or weekly goals for your writing. Occasionally read over what you wrote the previous day and make a few changes. Keep your outline in front of you to keep you on track. Review your characters’ GMC to make sure your character is changing and moving toward their goals.
Sometimes I fool myself into thinking I can paint a room in a couple of hours, forgetting all the preparation and clean-up to make the job truly complete. Just as painting a room doesn’t begin and end with a single brush stroke, writing a book takes a lot of preparation, process, and finish. But it can be done. I am living proof of that. I’ve painted many rooms and written a number of books. You can too!
Leeann Betts writes contemporary suspense, while her real-life persona, Donna Schlachter, pens historical suspense. She has released four titles in her By the Numbers series, with Broke, Busted, and Disgusted due for release November 2016. In addition, Leeann has written a devotional for accountants, bookkeepers, and financial folk, Counting the Days, and with her real-life persona, Donna Schlachter, has published a book on writing, Nuggets of Writing Gold, a compilation of essays, articles, and exercises on the craft. She publishes a free quarterly newsletter that includes a book review and articles on writing and books of interest to readers and writers.
Links to Leeann’s website, blog, books, etc.