Monthly Archives: July 2014

Request for Beta Readers For My Camp NaNoWriMo 2014 Manuscripts

This weekend, I have been basking in my winner’s glory due to my camp Nano ‘win,’ and have now turned my attention to the deadline for a free hardcover/hardback proof copy from Lulu.com, which is 31 August 11:59 PM PST. I’m currently looking for beta readers to read and check my manuscript for errors, and suggest changes. So far, I have three unpublished manuscripts: two fantasy novels, and one Y A/ chick lit novel. I’m looking for readers to:

Read through my manuscript
Highlight changes and/or improvements in a BOLD colour, red and bright yellow work well, so I can see them (for those of you who don’t know, I am severely sight impaired/blind)
Suggest changes and/or improvements.
Please remember that I have been writing since November, and so I’m relatively new to it . I use Dragon dictation to dictate my novels, due to my Cerebral Palsy, so , if you find any errors in there, they will have been made by a dictation program, so please clearly indicate these, and also changes for them as I have described above.

Finally, here are the synopses so that you can choose which book you would like to read.
The Spellbrooke Trilogy Book 2: Return to Spellbrooke (Camp NaNoWriMo April 2014)

Casey , Rachel and friends are back! This time they must save Spellbrooke from a curse which has meant the enchanted land has frozen . Will they complete the challenges in time to save Spellbrooke from an eternal Winter ?

The Secret Dreamworld of a Disabled Shopaholic (Camp NaNoWriMo July 2014)

Hi , I am Tiffany, I am 16, and am a shopaholic. I am also a wheelchair user (although I think of my wheelchair as my wings) .
Follow me as I battle queues, lifts, shopping malls and changing rooms and get a unique insight into my life through my diary. Welcome to my (cool but sometimes wierd) life as I know it. Shopping is my passion, as are my friends and my cat Snowball. I also have a special power-I am a super-heroine! who said just because I am in a wheelchair I can’t help people? life is an adventure, and is there to be lived!

I would like to submit both for the proof copy, but, if it turns out I can only submit the one I just dictated for the current session of Camp, then it will be the July one. They are in need of urgent proofreading, so, if you love reading and want to/ can help, please reply to this post with your email, and I will send a copy right over, or email me at katherineclairehayward@gmail.com with the email address you would like me to send the manuscript to.
Thanks in advance!

What Exactly Does Facebook “Friend” Mean? The Good, the Bad & the Ugly

Kristen Lamb's Blog

WANAs at DFWWWCon WANAs at DFWWWCon

What is a “friend?” That’s a good question. One of my personal peeves about The Modern Age, is that English is a very rich language and too often words are employed as a synonym when they aren’t. A HUGE bugaboo? A 13 year-old girl cannot be mature unless maybe she survived a concentration camp or other horrific events (and even then she could actually be emotionally stunted). Maturity only comes from life experience. She is too young to be mature.

The kid can be precocious, meaning she seems very adult-like. The danger in using these two words as synonyms is they AREN’T. Often a precocious child will be given more freedom than is age-appropriate or even handed burdens and responsibilities that are NOT age-appropriate.

For instance, I did most of the accounting, banking and bills by the age of twelve. I helped my mother get through nursing…

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Description—How to Make Readers Fall In & Never Escape

Kristen Lamb's Blog

Sidewalk chalk art near Regent’s Canal in London. Sidewalk chalk art near Regent’s Canal in London.

Today we’re going to address a topic that—GASP—I don’t believe we’ve ever covered in almost 800 blogs. Namely because it is a tricky one to address. We’re going to talk about description. For those who never use description or very sparse description? Don’t fret. That’s just your voice. Readers like me who looooove description will probably gravitate to other books and that is OKAY.

Personally, I’m not a fan of austere modern houses with stainless steel everything and weird chairs no human could sit in and most cats would avoid, but? There are plenty of people who dig it. I also don’t like a lot of knick-knacks and clutter. Makes me want to start cleaning.

Same with books. Not too little or too much. Yeah, I’m Literary Goldilocks.

Plain fact? We can’t please everyone. Description (or lack thereof) is a component of…

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Want More Conflict in Your Novel? Go DM & Balance the Party

Kristen Lamb's Blog

Screen Shot 2014-07-10 at 8.20.24 AM

Recently, I’ve added homeschooling The Spawn to the list of what I already do. Blog, write books, teach, run two small businesses and keeping a house clean, the yard mowed, and my family fed. As an introvert who works from home, it’s easy to realize you no longer leave the house and are talking to yourself way more than is healthy. Thus, I’ve been on a mission to break some patterns and do what might scare me (talking to other people in person).

Btw, writers don’t count.

Welcome to Nerd Land

In the spirit of this “Doing Stuff Differently” I joined some friends for a monthly game of Dungeons and Dragons, and took Hubby as a hostage teammate. I hadn’t played D&D since I was in high school so there is a learning curve. But one thing that struck me is how being an author had changed my perspective. The…

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The Seven Deadly Sins of Prologues

I love this, I have written 3 books , none published yet, I was toying with the idea of a prologue but none of my books have one

Kristen Lamb's Blog

Image via Flikr Creative Commons, via Mikko Luntiala Image via Flikr Creative Commons, via Mikko Luntiala

To prologue or not to prologue? That is the question. The problem with the prologue is it has kind of gotten a bad rap over the years, especially with agents. They generally hate them. Why? In my opinion, it is because far too many writers don’t use prologues properly and that, in itself, has created its own problem.

Because of the steady misuse of prologues, most readers skip them. Thus, the question of whether or not the prologue is even considered the beginning of your novel can become a gray area if the reader just thumbs pages until she sees Chapter One.

So without further ado…

The 7 Deadly Sins of Prologues

Sin #1 If your prologue is really just a vehicle for massive information dump…

This is one of the reasons I recommend writing detailed backgrounds of all main characters before…

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