Monday, March 25, 2013

White Easter?

I know statistically the chances are higher of having a white Easter than a white Christmas but all this snow? In March? Really? My back garden is a winter wonderland with the poor birds looking confused and miserable as they battle for the food on the bird stand. Luckily my eldest belle made it home from university before the weather closed in.

Somehow though the weather makes me not want to do anything. I'm back in dormouse mode, stuffing my cheeks with hot cross buns and ignoring my wip which is languishing on the computer.

if it makes you feel the same then why not go and download a copy of Easter Holiday and escape to Cornwall for an hour. Easter Holiday you won't regret it!

Friday, March 15, 2013

Guest Blogger - Lisa Chalmers

I'm so excited to introduce Lisa to you. I've known Lisa on line now for years and we used to get together regularly to talk books, swap stories and generally talk about publishing. One day i hope we'll get to meet but since she's across the pond I'll have to save my pennies.

She has a fabulous new book out so I'm going to let her tell you all about it!

Josh Collins has the perfect life—a beautiful girlfriend and a baby on the way, until an accident takes his life and he’s suddenly forced to fight for everything and everyone he loves.

Alone and pregnant, Avery Rhodes is suddenly faced with a painful new reality. Life without the man she loves is turbulent. Nothing feels the same any more without him and she finds herself facing the unimaginable.

With his newfound guide Gabriel, Josh is forced to learn what happens IF TOMORROW NEVER COMES.

Hi everyone,

First a big thank you to Nell for hosting my first ever guest blog  So happy to be here. It took me awhile to figure out what to talk about, since I’m not quite feeling very ‘published’ and author-like yet.

IF TOMORROW NEVER COMES has had a very, very long journey, and it’s morphed a lot along the way. I originally wrote the first draft about thirteen years ago. It was less than half the size that the story is now. I’m not sure what the original spark of the idea was, although if I went back and read some emails to my writing friends at the time, I could find something to pinpoint it but I do remember listening to the Garth Brooks song of the same name a lot during writing. My original cast of the hero was Nick from the Backstreet Boys. (I do have a weakness for good looking blondes with blue eyes!) and Gabriel his sidekick/guide, well Gabriel really didn’t have a real world counterpart at that point. He was still a bit of a mystery to me as I wrote him. I knew he was around Josh’s height, soft spoken and had a calm to him that he always seemed to want to direct towards Josh. Josh on the other hand, had a bit of a temper, that fire burning inside of him that fuelled his reckless streak that shows up in the book and causes him some trouble.

When I decided two years ago that this could be the first book I’d indie publish, because I didn’t think it would need a lot of reworking (ha,ha), I took another look at Josh. He’d recast himself a little, he’d done a bit of growing up. He still had a bit of Nick in him, but he’d also picked up bits of Josh Duhamel (especially the hair  ) and Heath Ledger too. Gabriel now had an actual inspiration. If you watch the NKOTB video for summertime, the first time I saw Donnie in the white outfit on the sand, well my mind went ‘there’s Gabriel’.

So with that cast in mind, my muse went happily back to work. 

You can get Lisa's book IF TOMORROW NEVER COMES from and from Amazon Uk Smashwords and other etailers following shortly!

For a chance to win a free copy of IF TOMORROW NEVER COMES leave Lisa a comment telling her your teenage boy crush and I'll get her to pick a winner on Monday!

Monday, March 11, 2013

Talks, workshops etc

Today I'm talking to U3A at the Public in West Bromwich this afternoon. I'm also taking bookings for libraries, writing groups and schools. I love running workshops and talking to groups. You meet such interesting and lovely people and I always learn new things myself as well as being able to help other people.

A huge thank you to everyone who's bought Radio Gaga and told me how much they're enjoying it! To those I kept up past midnight - sorry!

I'm busy now working on my new wips 'At the Dolphin Hotel', which is a romantic suspense and 'Stormy Vintage' which is a follow up to Passionate Harvest - telling Jake's story. I really need to crack on with both of those so hopefully now Radio gaga is out in the big world I'll have chance ahead of the paperback launch of Radio gaga in the Autumn.

Yesterday was Mother's Day here in the UK. I got lots of lovely yellow flowers - daffodils are my very favourites, some socks with unicorns on - I suspect those will be borrowed by my youngest belle before too long, and a footmuff shaped like a friesan cow to keep my feet warm. The cow has been named Ermintrude and she has bells on so my feet will be toasty warm and jingly!

Tuesday, March 05, 2013

Guest Blogger - Kelly Martin

Making Your Characters Three Dimensional.

I want to first thank Nell for having me here. I’ve been a fan of hers for a while! I’m excited to be here talking about a part of writing I love—turning an idea into a ‘breathing’ person.

When I began thinking about what to write, I got to thinking about what I was going through—writer wise. One thing that has really stuck out to me is how to make a character three dimensional.

If you think about it, all characters start off as a basic idea: Rachel Harker: Red head, church-goer, sad

Sloan Bridges: former ‘bad girl’, bottle blonde, green eyes.

A few basic adjectives are all that make your character exist… so how do you turn that into a character/a person readers care about?

I’m writing a book right now where the main character has amnesia. Have you ever tried to write that? It’s horrible! I mean, Jason Bourne… a great character to have amnesia, but I didn’t write him (which I’m sure he’s excited about). I’m sure I would have messed him up.

I realized through writing this book that a lot of a character’s 3D-ness (their soul) comes from their past. If a character can’t remember their past, it’s hard to connect with them.

A flat ‘good’ character or a character with no flaws isn’t believeable either because, honestly, how many of us are flawless? To have a character people want to get involved with means to give the character a soul, a past, something to reach for in the future.

Don’t make your characters 1D. Get to ‘know’ them. Do everything you can to make them human (or vampire or werewolf or elf….). If you can make your characters relatable (even your bad guys), you’ve won half the battle. Readers will forget they are ‘reading a book’ and picture themselves watching a movie… or better yet, getting involved with your characters as friends or people they find themselves caring about.

How do you find the soul—the 3D—in your characters?

~Kelly Martin

Kelly Martin is a southern girl who lives with her husband and three rowdy, angelic daughters. By day, she is a teacher. By night, she is a crazy-haired, multi-tasker who writes when the kids go to bed.

She has two young adult novels out now: SAINT SLOAN (about a girl who can’t get away from her past) and CROSSING THE DEEP (a girl’s faith is tested, stranding on a mountain with a guy she barely knows). Both are Amazon bestsellers.

You can find her at any of her two blogs: (author blog) and (daily devotional blog).

Kelly loves God, is addicted to chocolate, and would rather write than sleep.




Friday, March 01, 2013

Release day for Radio Gaga!

Today is the big day! Radio Gaga is officially released! It's available on Amazon for kindle for three months then other ebook retailers will follow with a print version coming in aprox September time.

Over the airwaves everyone can hear you scream!

Radio researcher and part-time presenter Chloe Lark is certain her big show biz break is just around the corner. Live it Up radio may not be the big time, but surely - one day soon - fame will come her way. And, if she could convince the hunky guy next door to give her a chance, her love life might improve too.

Ex-soldier Ben isn’t sure if his new ‘Z’ list celebrity neighbour is crazy or on medication. Either way he’s looking for a quiet life out of the spotlight. The last thing he needs is an accident prone media hungry blonde complete with mystery stalker. Problem is - Chloe doesn’t seem to have received that particular memo…

Here’s an excerpt!

I knew it wasn’t burglars when I noticed the large empty space next to the bay window. No self-respecting burglar would break into someone’s home just to steal a life size cardboard cut-out of Darth Vader would they?

No, it wasn’t burglars who’d nicked Darth or who’d cleared the shelf of the Queen CDs. It was Neil. He’d finally moved out, and taken Freddie Mercury and the Dark Lord with him as he went.

For a moment I stood trying to decide how I felt. Angry? Broken-hearted? In the time it took me to cross the room, enter the kitchen and dump my handbag on the worktop I decided my overwhelming feeling was relief.

Neil had raided the kitchen too: his state of the art coffee maker which I hadn’t been allowed to touch was gone, along with his juicer and his super fancy wok. Only a couple of spilled coffee beans on the countertop showed where they had been. I looked at the clippie magnet on the fridge to see if he’d left me a note. We’d always left messages for each other one there. A few months back they had been little love notes with kisses and pictures of hearts. Now the only thing on there was the ratty message I’d left for him yesterday asking him to pick up some milk on his way home.

I walked back through the lounge to what had once been our bedroom. The wardrobe doors were open showing the empty hangers and his rack of immaculately arranged ties had gone. My mobile vibrated in my trouser pocket telling me I had a text as I sank down onto the edge of the bed. I knew what it would be before I even fished it out of my pocket.

‘Chloe, guess you know by now have moved out, thought would be better this way. U know it wasn’t working, sorry, N’

© Nell Dixon 2013

Available from And AMAZON UK

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