As my regular readers know, I’m always trying to combat the cynicism that mostly consumes our country (and world?).
And Twitter, for all its faults, provides a decent daily nourishment if you know where to look. And since most of you probably aren’t on Twitter, I thought I’d share some pretty good Tweets from the past week. (As well as just a few that may be newsworthy, but something you didn’t see.)
Hope they encourage you or make you think, as well!
[ ] “Be kind, for everyone you meet is fighting a hard battle.” — Plato (From @)
[ ] Don’t let what you cannot do interfere with what you can do. — John R. Wooden (From @MuscleProdigy)
[ ] Barnes & Noble climbing back out of the abyss as book sales stabilize. pwne.ws/YwtQ3b
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I am proud to announce the release of my newest novel, The Fall, on Amazon Kindle, and Smashwords. Yea me!
This novel has been a labor of love, and its about time I got it out there. I alway brag on this novel because this was the one I wrote when I was on the Disney College Program. 1,500 miles away from home and my parents, out on my own for the first time in the happiest place on earth, it was a dream. The first three chapters of this book were written at Trails End restaurant at Fort Wilderness Resort and Campground in the Disney Resorts. I wrote them on Disney napkins while selling nachos and cookies to Disney guests. Yes, I have been playing around with the story since 2007, but it was worth it and I think it turned out just right.
I’d like to thank M.S. Fowle and Melchelle Designs for my awesome cover (Yes, it’s been a long time).
I think this is my favorite cover. I’m very proud to have it representing my favorite novel.
The Fall is about a girl named Karina who literally falls off a cruise ship into the ocean off the coast of Belize. She is rescued by a man who she assumes is a fisherman at first. Brady, a handsome recluse and Karina’s rescuer, brings Karina to his private island after his boat’s old engine fails. Brady promises to bring her back to the main land after he gets his engine running again, but instead of fixing his engine, Brady lets the boat float away trapping them together. Brady is certain he can get this angel God dropped into his arms to love him. He only needs a little time to convince her. Karina desperately wants to go home before she loses her heart to the island and the lonely recluse who saved her life.
If you’d like to download The Fall to your Kindle click here
If you’d like to download The Fall from Smashwords, please click here
Thanks for believing in me everybody!
Teri Butterfly Harvey
Ever have a scene that is just so perfect? It’s stuck in your head for months and months, and has been there so long that it’s making you crazy. You don’t have time to write it. Everybody needs you. You need to vacuum. you need to take out the trash. You need to write a blog post! The scene has been stewing in its own fabulous juices for the longest time, and you yearn for a piece of paper and five minutes of peace.
Then, one glorious day, you write that scene, and it feels wonderous. It’s like the giant guerrilla standing on your shoulders has finally been knocked off. The relief is so complete, and you’re certain it will never bother you again. Finally. Ever have that feeling?
On to the next obsession. See you on the editing table.
HAPPY 100TH POST!!!
I’ll be the first to admit it, as a writer, I have a lot of bad habits. Writing great scenes in notebooks…and then forgetting which notebook I put them in, spending the whole day thinking about writing…and then not putting pen to page, getting a fulltime job and not writing for several months. BAD BUTTERFLY BAD!!!
I am now preparing once again to pull myself out of the rut. The aliens have been waiting ever so patiently over the last year for me to finish their tale, but it is, of course, very difficult to stop right in the middle of a story, and then try to pick it up again after year. Actually, it’s very close to impossible. My plan, and i hope it works, is to reread every snatch if material i had written before the “great falling away.” I will reintroduce myself to that long forgotten material, find all the scenes I’d hidden away in lost notebooks, put them all in the right order, and BEGIN AGAIN! DEJA VU! And I shall end this post with a very enthusiastic LET’S GET BUSY.
It all began sometime in early 2013, February I believe. At that point in my already charmed life, I had no idea what 2013 would have in store for me. 2013 has probably been the most stressful, wondrous, completely insane year of my life, and if any of you ladies and gents still reading out there in blog land, I would like to tell you about it…
February was a sloppy mess of a month, and not just because of the weather. I had just finished my novel The God Machine and was busy posting all of its chapters on this very blog. I loved seeing people taking the journey with my wizards, but in real life, I was struggling. I worked in the best little health food store where I ran everything. I was able to spend hours of the day writing and reading and doing just about anything I wanted. It was great, but…
My coworker was not doing right. It had gotten to the point where he would write down hours on the time sheet for the store, but he would not work those hours, and this was happening consistently. There were other questionable activities he’d done, like him not dropping the deposits at the bank and them disappearing. Yea. It would have been great had he not involved me in these things. The thing is, he got caught by my boss one day and then he blamed it all on me. Fabulous. Basically what happened was he called me early in the morning and said he would open the store and I didn’t have to come in at all that day. A day off every now and then is always fun, and he never worked for me ever. I went back to sleep. All was well.
I get a call at 10:00 Am from my boss who only visits the store once a month, maybe. She was at the store and no one was there running the store. The store opens at 9, so, basically, he told me not to work, then he didn’t bother to show up to work the shift. He was caught. I told her my side of the story, the correct side, before the other guy could come and explain himself. He came alright. He drove over just as fast as he could tell my boss that I must have misheard him. Hi lies and lies and lies right to her face right in front of me while I’m fuming.
She knows the truth. I just told her the truth ten minutes ago, and she does not fire him! WHAAAA? !@##$%%^^&;*&;*&;(*)()(*^%$$! My head could have exploded all over them. I’d never been so furious in my life and I could have quit right then and there if it weren’t for my mom who talked me down while I bawled my eyes out in the front seat of my car. But that’s when I knew it was time for a change. It was time for me to move on, away from Stillwater and away from the darkness that had inundated my life.
Open Circle was a wonderful place of healing. It is where The Lord led me to finish The God Machine. It is where I helped to heal people and learn about health and herbs and vitamins. I met a ton of friends there, many of whom I believe were angels in disguise, but Open Circle was just a stepping stone in my fantastic voyage of healing, writing, and living a life of light and love and creativity. The next stepping stone in my life was Akins Natural Foods. That’s when the real magic enters my life.
My novel, The God Machine, a fascinating story about wizards, time travel, and romance is available for download at Amazon.com
Tie Dye of the Day
I’ve always found it amazing how much the music I listen to effects the mood of the story I’m writing and my character’s personalities. It’s really difficult to describe how the music makes you feel. Putting it into words is nearly impossible, but the music always seemed to be the lynch pin that pushes my creativity forward and brings me to all different emotional heights, heights that force me to run as fast as I can to find my notebook and get to work immediately. So, I thought I’d share just a few musical pieces that helped me to shape my novel, The God Machine.
First off, I’d like to explain the way I use music in my novels. The songs I use are my characters. Every time that character’s song plays, I brain goes to that character and I, in a sense, become that character. My mind will reset, and all my thoughts will go to that character, how they feel, who they are, how that song describes them perfectly. The song will put me in a mindset that helps me to see how that one person will react to certain situations. In my mind, it keeps their personalities separate because no one wants to read a book where every character is a cookie cutter of the last. That would be no fun.
So, what songs did I pick to represent my characters? Sometimes the song picks the character. For me, it happens when I’m walking along listening to my IPod. All the sudden it hits me. I gasp, and then I realize… This song is Salamander! Holy Crap!
I’ll start off with Salamander’s song. It’s “The Voice” by The Moody Blues. I also was quite fond of Steppin’ in a Slide Zone. Those two songs came to me when I was trying to write the Gauntlet of Fire scene. The great thing about fantasy writing is that you get to make things up completely, world build, but that is also the bad thing about it. I had no clue what the Gauntlet of Fire looked like until that song, The Voice, sneaked its way onto my IPod. When that song played I went from knowing absolutely nothing to absolutely everything about the Gauntlet in a matter of hours. When I heard the music, I saw Salamander get up off the ground and he was running. I could see his wand broken in half and each piece was in his hand. Like Spider Man, he flew into the air and attached himself to this terrible machine, and he had to climb up it by sinking the pointy ends of his wand into it and pulling himself up. Then I realized the machine was alive and evil and it bled acid blood, but Salamander was determined to get inside and defeat the monster. This song is so full of determination, and heart. It speaks of the future and the past and love and finding your dreams. This song is such a beautiful masterpiece, and it’s all Salamander.
Zolton’s song had been a favorite of mine when I was a teen and I hadn’t listened to it for over ten years when I found it again. It is called “The Everlasting Gaze” by The Smashing Pumpkins. It was also where I came up with the title The God Machine. This song spoke to me because when I listened to it, I heard a tale of lost love, and of a man who wanted his love to know that he was still here, still waiting for a chance to get her back, “forever waiting on the ways of your desire.” He still had his duty, yet he was still in love.
Ferret has two songs, but I say that’s okay. The first one is “The Changeling” by the Doors. You’ll know why if you read the book. The second one is “Like a Stone” by Audio Slave. Before I had to slash and burn song lyrics from my book for copyright reasons, this is one song out of many that Ferret would sing to Amanda to get her to remember him(for the sake of not giving the plot away I’m just going to say that Amanda has amnesia). There was a beautiful scene where Ferret and Amanda were on the beach and he’d been trying to get her to forget about Zolton for a century and he finally wooed her by singing this song to her. “In your house I long to be, room by room patiently. I’ll wait for you there like a stone. I’ll wait for you there alone.” Sadly, I didn’t want to get sued so I had to cut it, but that song does very well to describe Ferret’s heartache, and desperation of chasing after this woman who doesn’t remember the lifetime of love they shared, and she is now in love with another man.
Merlin’s song is really more prominent in the next book because the next book is going to be all about Merlin. His song is “Snow (Hey Oh)” by the Red Hot Chili Peppers. This just happens to be one of the most beautiful songs I’ve ever heard, and It’s difficult to explain exactly how this became Merlin’s song. Well, here goes, I heard lyrics that were not the real lyrics to the song and it gave me the book idea. I can’t go into too much detail because it’s a storyline I’ve never seen done before, but for the sake of the song, Merlin is referred to as “The Perfect Wonder” and his love interest is the “Soul White as Snow.” The real lyrics are “SO white as snow,” but the damage is done.
Bernie’s song is “Once Upon a Time in your Wildest Dreams” by the Moody Blues, but only the intro.
As you can see, I am back from the dead! Yea! After two and a half months of migraines and last week with the Austrailian Norovirus, you can bet that I’m soooo ready to get back to my writing. Actually, today is the first time I’ve actually felt GOOD since the beginning of November. I’ve been doing a lot of thinking while I’ve been incapacitated, and I’ve decided that I would like to put The God Machine on my blog for free for all my WordPress friends. I noticed that my book is exactly 28 chapters long and tomorrow is the first day of February, so starting tomorrow, I will be presenting 28 days of The God Machine! I’ve been enjoying The Redemption of Erath by my blog friend Satis for a long time, and think he might be onto something. Also I don’t really care if I make money on my books. I just want to entertain people, so be prepared!!!! Here comes the entertainment!!! Tomorrow I will be putting up chapter 1 of The God Machine!
As I expected, November and December were bad migraine months. In the two month span, I think I might have had one week total without any pain at all, and those days were spread out.
I had been editing and eventually published my novel, The God Machine, in between migraine attacks. I have a new rule. Keep your hand away from the red publish button whilst in the middle of a month of Migraines! Thank God I didn’t sell much, cause it needed more work.
The way I’m doing it is probably not the best, but I’ve been editing a section of my book a day and republishing the better edits.
Also, I really need to rework my blurb for The God Machine. I knew for months it needed to be done because the current one looked more YA appealing than romance, but I think I have it now.
It’s really quite miraculous how these things happen. Yesterday morning, after a long night of tryptophan induced dreams, I popped up, and the first thing that popped into my head was a great first line for my TGM blurb….and then I wrote the rest of the blurb in five minutes. That brings letting things percolate to a whole new level. I hate migraines, but I love being a writer!
So I will re-re-edit The God Machine, Re-re-edit The Fall and hope to have it out by the end of January, Finish my alien series, etc….
There is no end!!!!!
Today’s tragedy at Sandy Hook Elementary School as left me feeling legless.
Are you like me and want to help the families of the victims of today’s senseless shooting rampage, but don’t know what to do? I want to give each of them a hug, and while not a religious person, I want to say a prayer on bended knee with them.
Our friend, Paula Action, shared the school address with me. While far short from a comforting hug or shoulder to lean on, sending a card or letter expressing our sorrow, support, and condolences is at least something. The nation mourns alongside the community. Knowing that we do might help them a bit. As Paula suggested, writing a note would be a lovely thing to do with the family tonight. Excellent idea, Paula. Oh, and pass the word to your friends and family.
The school’s address is:
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I am always shocked at how many books in the writing section are geared toward beginning writers. You can almost compare them to the amount of vampire books in the romance section (zing). This is all well and good because it seems like everyone in the world wants to write a book, and probably has already started. Very few of those everyones ever finish that book, though. Along the way those everyones have bought those “You Can Write That Novel” books, workbooks on how to become a “genius at 3 in the morning,” and books on how to divide your time between your day job and writing the great American novel.
I loved those books when I was first starting out, and they were very helpful. In fact, I still purchase the new ones when they appeal to me, but finding appeal in a book about writing is becoming more difficult the more I write and the more experienced I get. That’s why I think there should be more books devoted to the more advanced writer. I really don’t want to write one cause non-fiction is not my thing, but I would pick up an advanced writer’s book in a heartbeat. What could an advanced writer’s book offer that a beginner’s writer’s book could not? My answer is…X out the chaff! There are three rules of writing and every time anyone makes this quote I want to smash my head into the wall. I am well aware that adjectives are bad and that clichés are even worse. Showing is better than telling in most cases, and it is really an art to explain, but I don’t need to beat a dead horse.
I find myself skimming through writers books saying got it, got it, got it, don’t need this one, but what would go into a writer’s book if the basics aren’t there? Oh, there’s plenty probably. Someone just hasn’t gotten up, and decided to compile them. Maybe some day…
Well, now that I’m done ranting, I am starting my own new beginning now that I have gotten The God Machine (Available at Smashwords and Kindle) out into the world. A little bit about me, I always have something going, so my new beginning isn’t exactly a new beginning. Before I went all nuts out in left field diving over a cliff with The God Machine, I had been writing another novel called The Claiming. It’s my Sci-Rom about aliens, and I won’t go into any more detail than that.
I actually have already written a hundred or so pages of this story, and while I wrote The God Machine, The Claiming was always been in the back of my mind. I’ve been thinking and creating, still not writing down, but always thinking about the story and the characters within, but now I’m ready to get my hard hat on and start some major construction, but I have no clue where to start. The dam is full; all I have to do is open the gates, but what should I sop water on first?
Here’s a chapter for the Advanced Writer’s Book. How do you start again after you’ve stopped, gone on to another project, then came back to the original project? Here’s what I did, but I’m still in the process so I may have better advice later…
Step one: (After you’ve thoroughly congratulated yourself for finishing the first novel) Re- introduce yourself to your story and your characters.
Here is what I’m working with. I have the first three chapters written in a notebook and safely in the computer. I also have two separate notebooks full of out of date character sketches and scenes that I didn’t want to wait to write that were way beyond those first few chapters. I actually haven’t looked at this story in about nine months, but the story in my mind has progressed far beyond what I have written down. My advice to myself or anyone in this predicament is to first re-read everything and bring yourself up to speed.
Step two: Re-align and fix everything. Make it all mesh with the way you picture the story in your mind.
But, Bfly, you may say. “Aren’t you supposed to continue on with the new stuff like you’ve already fixed the stuff in the past?” I would say that (non) rule is true if you’re writing from beginning to end, but it’s hard to just pick something up and start again after months of being away. How good is your memory? Did you write that scene this way, or that way? Is there a fatal flaw in chapter one? You don’t have to re-align and fix if you don’t wanna, but I think it would be a good idea to be on the same page with past you, especially if there are huge things that are going to be different in future chapters.
Step three: Find an appropriate starting spot and continue down the road.
For me, I should probably find that place in chapter 3 where I left off and push forward. I really like those future chapters I wrote because I’m impatient, but I think I should leave those for the future, or when I hit a rut in the first part of the book. At least that’s what I think I would do.
Those were not too difficult, but I still haven’t really gotten back into the swing of thing yet, though I hope to change that. Perhaps the aliens will be good to me today.
Finally, I don’t want to forget my Ebooks that are ready for your eyes and need a good home.
Have a great weekend!
P.S. I hope all this makes sense. This is my third straight day of migraines so I would be surprised if anything I wrote made any sense at all.