Wednesday, September 5, 2012

Insecure Writer's Support Group, Help for a Friend, Ninja News, Cover Reveals, Movie Trivia Answers, and the Exploding Blog Post

It’s time for another group posting of the Insecure Writer’s Support Group! Time to release our fears to the world – or offer encouragement to those who are feeling neurotic. If you’d like to join us, click on the tab above and sign up. We post the first Wednesday of every month. I encourage everyone to visit at least a dozen new blogs and leave a comment. Your words might be the encouragement someone needs.


Special note – one year ago was the first IWSG post. Look how far it’s come! Thanks to all of the participants – you are the reason for this group!

How difficult is it for you to push the limits or raise the stakes?

I’m still working on revisions from CassaStorm and incorporating some of the suggestions from one of my test readers. He’s my go-to guy for dialogue (Rusty and Jeffrey will really appreciate that I’m letting him read it before passing it on to them!) and he’s good with tension.

He sent back a whole page of suggestions for one small scene alone. Basically, he said it wasn’t threatening enough. There was no real sense of dread. He told me to up the ante and make the results devastating. I have since adjusted that scene and now there’s no doubt the characters are in serious trouble.

I guess I’m better at mentally messing with my characters than using physical means to mess with them. But I’m willing to improve!

Anyone else find you are being too easy on your characters or storyline?

Be sure to visit others participating today in the IWSG!

Help for a Friend

He managed to survive Hurricane Isaac as it roared through New Orleans. But last week, blogging buddy and author Roland Yeomans was struck by a car that lost its brakes in the floodwater. He wasn’t seriously injured, but the resulting hospital stay hit him hard in the finances. (The driver had no insurance.)

I am asking the Ninja Army to help. If you’ve never read one of Roland’s books, I invite you do download and enjoy one from Amazon now. He has several that follow the adventures of Victor Standish, the first of which is HERE. He also has many novelette length books, such as Call Me Tombs. He even has a book for writers called Ghost Writers in the Sky. (All of which are awesome.) In all, he has twenty-three from which to choose.

Visit Roland’s page on Amazon, find a book you’d enjoy, and support someone who really needs help right now.

Ninja News

I interviewd Michael Di Gesu at the A to Z Blog today – his theme for the Challenge was flash fiction, perfect for today’s IWSG post!

Jeffrey Beesler’s latest book, Speed Demons is now available, and he’s hosting giveways all week long. Check out his blog for details. Congratulations, Jeffrey!

Angela at Jaded Love Junkie has an agent now – congratulations, Angela!

JW Alden’s story, "The Dragon Weeps," was just published in Kazka Press. You can read it for free, so visit his site for details. Congratulations, Alden!


Don’t forget my
Genre Favorites Blogfest 
on September 17.


Cover Reveals!

Givin’ up the Ghost by Gwen Gardner

Friend or Foe?
Murder victim Bart Bagley is not content to merely roll over in his grave. He wants his murderer caught and he wants teenage ghost whisperer, Indigo Eady, to help him.
It becomes obvious that Bart’s temper lead to more than one disagreement, but is it enough to want him dead? With nothing but a cold trail and a hot list of “friendly” suspects, Indigo and her friends race to find the killer before they become the next victims.
Indigo Eady is not clumsy. At least, that’s what she keeps telling everyone. Can she help that the overactive spirit community of Sabrina Shores causes her psychic abilities to short-circuit? It’s unfortunate that her cute new friend Badger is often on the receiving end of her mishaps. At times, she is positively hazardous to his health. Even so, sparks start to fly in more than one direction...

GIVIN' UP THE GHOST is a YA paranormal cozy mystery, the first in the Indigo Eady series, due out October 8, 2012.

Haunt Gwen at: FB, Blog, Goodreads

Neverlove by Angela Brown

For seventeen-year-old Abigail, one rash decision leads to an unexpected chance for redemption. At V'Salicus Academy, a unique institute where she trains to become an agent of heaven, she struggles with the pain of her past, the changes of the present and accepts a loveless future until her path – and heart – crosses with Basil’s.
Basil's off-chance slip of the tongue binds him to a life of servitude to the Devourer, the master of hell. His existence has no upside until a chance meeting with Abigail brings new perspective.
Keeping the truth of their present lives from each other brings disaster when secrets are brought to light and the life of Abigail’s mentor is put on the line.
Can Abigail and Basil save her mentor and salvage their love amid the chaos? Or will they lose it all, destined forever to NEVERLOVE?

NEVERLOVE is a special project spawned from a blog-challenge-turned-blog-opera, the Abby and Basil affair. It is the first in the Shadow Jumpers series and due out October 8, 2012.

Haunt Angela at: FB, Blog, Goodreads

Movie Trivia Answers!

1 – Sylvester Stallone – John Lithgow - Cliffhanger
2 – Kevin Costner – Gene Hackman – No Way Out or Wyatt Earp
3 – John Cleese – Jamie Lee Curtis – A Fish Called Wanda (or Fierce Creatures)
4 – Emma Thompson – Andy Garcia – Dead Again
5 – Andrew Dice Clay – Wayne Newton – The Adventures of Ford Fairlane
6 – Alec Baldwin – James Earl Jones – The Hunt for Red October

Wow!!! A whole year of posting for the IWSG. Can you believe it? Did you share your insecurities or word of encouragement today? Can you help my friend Roland? Excited about the news? Or the upcoming books from Gwen and Angela? Be sure to visit Michael at the A to Z Blog. Get the trivia questions right? Think this post just might explode from too much stuff????

197 comments:

L.G. Keltner said...

Sometimes I'm too easy on characters because I know if I out them in an impossible situation, it'll be harder to get them out in a realistic way. Though, I often do the opposite and find I'm being overly cruel to my characters. Maybe that's how I work out the frustrations I have with the world.

Good luck with your revisions!

Ted Cross said...

In my first book I had trouble building up tension. I released it too easily, allowing the characters to resolve problems much too quickly. I'm trying to improve. My weakest area is humor. I have a character in my new book that I want to have a humorous streak, but I'm no good at writing humorous dialogue.

Kyra Lennon said...

Sending much love to Roland! I'll be sure to download one of his books later!

Cynthia said...

Happy 1-year anniversary to IWSG. This is my first month posting in this particular blog hop.

Sometimes it can be challenging to raise the stakes during the initial drafts because I'm still pampering the character and getting to know them, so to speak. But after multiple drafts, I have a better sense of the character and of what I need to do to move the story along. Good luck with your project.

Elise Fallson said...

I've downloaded several of Roland's books. I hate to hear he's having such a difficult time. He's a wonderful blogger and a talented writer.

Sometimes I think I'm too easy on my characters and then I do something drastic. Still working on balancing it all.

J.C. Martin said...

Oh no! My thoughts go out to Roland. Thank you for bringing our attention to this and for highlighting his awesome books.

Patsy said...

Crikey! IWSG has been going a year. Doesn't seem that long (maybe I didn't join right at the start?)

Yes, I've posted my shiny new insecurity.

Michael Abayomi said...

I never go easy on my characters. To the contrary, I find that I usually put them through all manner of physical and psychological torment. The bigger the stakes, the higher the rewards. :)

Anna Smith said...

Absolutely will buy some of Roland's books, hope he gets better soon.

Happy Birthday IWSG! :)

Creepy Query Girl said...

oh my gosh, I'm so sorry to hear about Roland! I'm glad that he's doing okay physically and thanks for bringing attention to this. Yes, beta readers are the best, especially when they're really strong in one (or several) aspects, like dialogue or uping the stakes.

Marta Szemik said...

Yes, building tension can be tricky. I try to ask myself if things can get any worse and if the answer is yes, then I have to change the scene. It's great you're able to get suggestions from someone else. That always helps.
My heart goes out to Roland. Will definitely help out.

ediFanoB said...

I hope that Roland will get well soon.

I'm no writer but I must say, that your IWSG posts are also interesting for readers.

With such excellent test readers CassaStorm will be a hit.

Natalie Aguirre said...

So sorry to hear about Roland. Hope he gets better soon.

Yes, I am sometimes too kind to my characters. This was a big mistake when I started writing.

And I'm excited for Angela and Gwen and their new books.

michelle said...

Happy One Year Blogoversary IWSG!

I hope Roland gets well soon... I will definitely help out (as soon as my tech abilities improve, I'll be doing a lot of downloading...)
My IWSG post is up, up and away...

Melissa said...

I was nodding all the way through your IWSG post. I avoid conflict in life and tend to do the same with my characters. Unfortunately in fiction, it's not a good thing. I added an entire chapter to my first ms over this.

Great post, Alex, and happy IWSG anniversary. :)

Alex J. Cavanaugh said...

LG, you're tough!

Ted, third book and I'm still working on tension. With humor, I've found banter my best chance.

Cynthia, welcome! Considering this is my third round with these characters, I better know them by now.

Elise, thank you!

Patsy, it's been a whole year.

Michael, wish I could be tougher.

Marta, I am always open to suggestions!

Thank you, Edi!

Melissa, a whole chapter? Whoa...
Thanks everyone for helping Roland!!!!

C.M.Brown said...

My thoughts are with Roland, I hope he pulls through physically and financially, he is such an interesting blogger and has a very kind heart.

Love both covers by Angela and Gwen, all the best with the upcoming release ladies!

Sounds like CassaStorm is moving along well Alex!

Candilynn Fite said...

My dear friend, Roland :(( I've got an idea, which may help. Alex, I'll get back with you on this via email. I'll organize it, but may need your help w/ reaching bloggers.

Hip, hip, HOORAY!!! for Gwen and Angela. I couldn't be happier for you two!

I've been in such a post-Camp NaNo funk (can you believe after the grueling month, I want more?), I forgot all about IWSG. It'll have to be later tonight. Happy 1st IWSG Anniversary, everyone!

Suze said...

'He sent back a whole page of suggestions for one small scene alone. Basically, he said it wasn’t threatening enough. There was no real sense of dread. He told me to up the ante and make the results devastating. I have since adjusted that scene and now there’s no doubt the characters are in serious trouble.'

I've gotten this sort of feedback at times, not exactly because I think you and I write different kinds of stories but I recognized the tenor of the reaction as familiar.

I started several sentences after that and deleted them all. Much to say on the topic but not anything that can really be crammed into a comment, I guess.

Happy anniversary to IWSG! Since AB is a shuttered blog now, you can go ahead and remove it from the list. I may sign SC up for it, at some point in the future. I'll still keep visiting all my faves every first Wednesday, though -- the Captain's blog foremost among them.

stu said...

Sometimes I'm easier on them than I think I am. I think I'm doing the worst things in the world to them, but actually, they come through it all okay.

farawayeyes said...

IWSG already! I better work on that post.

Love Roland a d his work. Thanks for the 'heads up'. There are a couple of his books I would like.

Talli Roland said...

Wow, has it been one year already? That went fast. I've never been accused of being to easy on my characters, that's for sure.

Rusty Webb said...

A year... what a time for me to forget to post... yeesh.

I'm sorry to hear about Roland, I'll check out some of his work.

Em-Musing said...

I always have to remind myself to up ratchet up the tension. Will check out Roland on Amazon. And happy anniversary.

Charmaine Clancy said...

I love to increase the tension for my characters, but I'm a bit cruel like that. Congrats on a job well done building up this blogfest, look how long that sign up list is now!
Hope Roland is getting lots of blogger love right now.

Sylvia van Bruggen said...

That is one of the critiques I get too. It is a tough one as I usually feel like it is contrived when I come up with an incident that throws my character into a baaaaad situation. Haven't found a solution for that either.

Old Kitty said...

I am too cruel to my characters!! I try to be nice but I make them suffer horribly - but there is always redemption and happy endings after! Yay! Take care
x

Sheila Siler said...

Alex - you are fantastic. Do you ever sleep?

I probably am too easy on my characters and storyline - but I am walking the fine line of writing for children. It is an interesting journey.

LynnRush said...

Got to love test readers!! They help so much!

Great post. I even got a couple of those movie trivia questions right. Woot!!

Wishing Roland a speedy recovery!

Alex J. Cavanaugh said...

Candilynn, you know you have my help! And later tonight is fine. No worries.

Suze, I guess it's because real life just isn't threatening all the time, I don't see it that way for my writing. But it needs to be that dire. And I hope you sign up with your new blog.

Rusty, I wouldn't let you forget!

Charmaine, it's huge!

Sylvia, keep working on it.

Kitty, you couldn't be cruel...

Sheila, I adore sleep!

Zoltán Gecse said...

The Adventures of Ford Fairlane is a classic! The Hungarian voice actor adds so much to the entertainment factor of the film.

Lexa Cain said...

Thanks for the heads-up about Roland. I commented on his blog.

I have no trouble torturing the heck out of my characters (and readers) with lots of tension and mile-high stakes. Heh-heh-heh.

Congrats on the 1 year anniversary of IWSG!! :-D

Rick Daley said...

I go back and forth between feeling I'm being too easy and too intense in my characters / plot situations. But I think of it like this:

Anything goes in a first draft. Anything can go in a revision-edit objectively.

Karen Lange said...

Congrats on one year! Thanks for all the links and info. Hopping over to A to Z now.

Yolanda Renee said...

Easy on characters, yes, once, but I'm learning. One villain -- had him going out by his own hand -- changed it so that he got the beating of his life...and death...

IWSG one year? I just discovered it.

Bob Milne said...

Only a year? Whew - I don't feel so bad about coming in halfway through. :)

No insecurities for me today, just a published commitment to my 30 day, 90 day, and 6 month plans to get my writing back on track. Somehow, putting it out there, and knowing that somebody may hold me to it (even silently), puts just the right amount of pressure on me not to procrastinate.

Pk Hrezo said...

Sorry to hear that about Roland. I'll head over to his page now.
I think we're all too nice on our characters at times, but it can be fun making bad things happen too.
Wow a whole year??? Time really flies!

Heather Murphy said...

Alex, thanks for welcoming me to IWSG and for helping Roland out.

As for your re-writes, it sounds like you have a good beta reader, even if he does require more work. Threatening is good, but I can see where I would struggle with that too...a lot!

Michael Di Gesu said...

Has it been a year?! Already?!!!!!!

Wow! That is so amazing Alex.... Congrats on a job well done!

Congrats to Jeff and his new book.

Cool covers from Gwen and Angela!

Sending good vibes to Roland...


AND, thanks for featuring today at the A-Z!

Alex J. Cavanaugh said...

Zoltan, wish I could watch that version!

Lexa, thanks!!

Rick, that's a good way to look at it.

Yolanda, welcome!

Bob, we need those good days as well.

Pk, yes, a whole year!

Heather, he's tough sometimes, but he was right.

Isis Rushdan said...

I think we love our characters so much it's hard to mean to them sometimes. One author said to be successful you must be absolutely "brutal" to your characters. I think it's true.

One year of IWSG has flown by.

Laura Eno said...

How awful for Roland! It's good to know it wasn't too serious.
One year...congrats! You've built such a valuable community, Captain Ninja. :)

L.G.Smith said...

Wow, one year of ISWG already. That's a lot of insecurity unleashed on the world. :)

And I think I could probably be harder on my character. In fact, I think I'll go do something horrible to her today at your suggestion. :P

Pat Hatt said...

I like to put the characters through as much hell as possible, makes it more fun to try to write myself out of. Congrats on one year.

Siv Maria said...

Information slowly digesting :)Congrats on the one year anniversary! This past year has gone by way to fast! I will have to go check on Rolands book list, I think I have all of them but a gift to a friend is always another idea. Off to check out your links and say hi to my Bro. Have a nice hump day :)


Siv Maria's blog, Been there, done that...

Kirsten said...

Congrats on the one year anniversary of IWSG! With all the insecurity out here, this is one great blog hop to be a part of. It has been such a pleasant surprise to find that I struggle with so many of the same things that other writers do.
I'm horrible to my characters, but what ends up happening is that I rush through all their difficult scenes. I really hate to see them hurt!

J.W. Alden said...

What a shame about Roland, that's unfortunate. I'll definitely check those books out!

Congrats on one year for IWSG! I've loved taking part in it, and have met tons of cool people through it. Thanks for hosting!

And, of course, thanks so much for the link to my story! Much appreciated, Alex. Hope the ninjas like it. :)

Tonja said...

That's awesome that Roland has published so many novels. I think it's a brilliant idea to ask people to buy his work to help him out instead of giving donations.

Roland D. Yeomans said...

It's been a year? Doesn't seem so long does it?

L.G. has a point: putting characters in perilous situations demand that they get out in believable ways which is certainly a challenge.

All of you have been so kind to me in my "run-in" by an uninsured car driver. And me on foot with no walls of steel to protect me. Ouch!

I am humbled by my friends. Say a prayer for the thousands in Louisiana still without power ... it is still sweltering in these parts.

Thank you, Heather and Michael and Alex, for doing posts, trying to help. It means a lot. You are all invited to Meilori's. Ah, though making it back out in one piece from the haunted jazz club is not guaranteed! :-)


Miranda Hardy said...

Time flies in the blogosphere. Sorry to hear about Roland. Hope he heals soon.

Good luch with the revisions, Alex.

Susan Roebuck said...

Poor Roland, he certainly needs some help. I'll check out your links. You're so lucky with your critique partners Alex and it's even better that you listen to them. I didn't post today because, for a change I'm heading in a good direction re writing, so I'll just get on visiting as many IWSG as I can this month. (I only knew A Fish Called Wanda!)

Charles Gramlich said...

I may have some latent sadist in me. I'm seldom too easy on my characters. :)

Cassie Mae said...

Oh Roland! I'm so sorry this has happened to you. I'll be sending waves of good vibes through the computer, dancing around and chanting if that helps! And of course, I'll keep my eyes and ears peeled for anything I can do to help.

Karen Walker said...

It's been a year? Really? Time certainly does move faster the older I get. Good luck with your revisions, Alex.
Karen

Michelle Gregory said...

let's see, my characters will have to deal with the death of a friend, their country falling apart, war on two fronts, a kidnapped child, and torture. if i were any harder on them, they'd come out of the book and hunt me down. they might do that anyway.

Patricia Lynne said...

I don't think I'm too easy on my characters. After all, hubby told me the other day when reading my second novel that I was mean to the main character. I grinned because I get meaner in the story.

Gwen Gardner said...

1) Good healing vibes headed toward Roland. I hope you're all right <3 will def head to Amazon for some Roland book lovin'today.
2) Alex, I know my characters need to be put in bigger doo doo - it's just hard:)
3) Thanks Alex for helping Angela and I to reveal our covers! We do so appreciate it ever so much!
4) My mother and sister are visiting the week of 9/17 and so I won't be able to participate in your blogfest.

THANKS EVERYBODY FOR THE COVER LOVE!

Julie said...

Wow, congratulations on a year of the IWSG! That's amazing.

I'm sorry to hear about Roland, glad he's okay but I'm so sorry this has caused financial problems for him.

Kudos to you for making the necessary changes to your scene and being willing to improve, I think that's something we all need to work on at all times.

LD Masterson said...

Thanks for passing the word about Roland.

I do tend to go too easy on my characters sometimes. I'm a bit of a softie myself and it sneaks into my writing when I'm not looking.

Leovi said...

Yes, I think the test readers a very interesting tool to confront the most dubious situations.

Roland D. Yeomans said...

Just limping off to work, Alex. But I wanted to thank you and all my other friends for helping me feel not quite so alone. Thank You is such an inadequate phrase for what you all have done. May the rest of the year sparkle for us all! :-)

cleemckenzie said...

Wonderful to have friends with writing talent who are willing to help. Congrats on that.

I'll hop over and see Yeoman's books. I like recommendations.

Joshua said...

Having been involved in a high-speed car wreck, I feel for you, Roland. Headed over to Amazon over lunch. Get better, sir.

Tyrean Martinson said...

I totally understand about the exploding post - this is a busy week in blogland. Yes, I plan to help Roland. I'm excited about Gwen and Angela's books, and I don't think I answered trivia last time . . .sigh.
And for IWSG - it sounds like you have some awesome critique partners, and unfortunately for my characters I am way too hard on them.

Brinda said...

IWSG has only been around a year? That's amazing. It is so well-established, you'd think it's been going on for decades. I'll check out Roland's work. I wish him a speedy recovery.

Nicki Elson said...

Hehe, yes, there's a lot of stuff in this post, but you pull it off w/ panache. ;)

It's wonderful you've found a pre-reader who can push you to your best. I've got one of those too & I wouldn't trade him for anything in the world. Now I await critique from the first round of edits at my publisher & we'll see how I did. *gulp*

Congratulations to Jeffrey, JW, both Angela's and Gwen. And it's about time I get off my butt and buy me some Victor Standish. Thanks for letting us know Roland's situation so we can buy books & send up prayers.

Off to see Michael now!

[Retro-Zombie] said...

I am insecure... period. Great covers and great news for many writers, that they take one step closer. Alex you rock the mic, as always.

trivia:

move and you're dead, i am dead and i move...

have a grand day!

Jennifer Lane said...

Happy IWSG anniversary! You've created an awesome meme, Alex. I'm looking forward to the genre favorites blog hop too. I loved The Hunt for Red October and just DVR'ed Crimson Tide, another great one. That's great you're incorporating feedback to up the ante in a threatening scene. So fun to torture characters!

Donna K. Weaver said...

Yeah, I get the tension thing. Sometimes it's in the actual situation while other times it's that my descriptions are inadequate to the actual peril. Either way it's great having people who can point it out for you.

Cate Masters said...

Wow, so much great news - congrats to all!
So sorry to hear about Roland. How awful. I'm off to Amazon after this.

Liesel K Hill said...

I think I have the opposite problem you have, Alex. I always have to make sure I'm messing with my characters mentally or psychologically, because I don't do that enough. On the flip side, I do tend to beat them up a lot. I think everyone in my writer's group thinks I'm a mean, abusive person because I tend to beat the crap out of my characters. I don't really know why. Maybe because it forces them to stand up for themselves? Maybe physical pain would be a major trial for me so I project it onto my characters? Who knows? Great question, though. I'll try to get around to more ISWG posts in the future. Thanks for visiting my blog lately! :D

Alex J. Cavanaugh said...

Michael, you are welcome!

LG, I feel for your character.

Siv, a gift would be a great idea.

Kirsten, glad you are a part of it.

JW, you are welcome!

Roland, you are most welcome. Can we meet somewhere else though? I'd like to live!

Susan, that's all right - go write!

Michelle, you are tough!

Gwen, you are welcome!

Julie, I am open to all suggestions.

Tyrean, I felt bad I had to cram so much into one post...

Nicki, my test readers and critique partners rock. Now, get off your butt!

Jeremy - The Crow!

Elisabeth Kauffman said...

IWSG is an OUTSTANDING idea... I'm so glad you started it!

Ella said...

Wow a whole year...time is flying!
Sorry to hear about Roland...I will go check out Amazon. Thanks for telling us Captain! Wow Congrats to Alden, Jeff, Gwen and Angela...
Off to Amazon then Michael at A-Z Blog...
Congrats on a whole year for IWSG!

Southpaw said...

I can't believe it's been a year either. There have been so many great posts that have come out of this group around the web.

M.J. Fifield said...

Happy one year anniversary, IWSG!

It may take me a couple drafts to get it exactly right but I love to put my characters through hell. I'm sure they hate me for it.

Best of luck, Alex.

Scribbles From Jenn said...

I'm always better at raising the stakes during the second go round.

S. L. Hennessy said...

A whole year - that's pretty incredible. And wonderful too, when you think about all of us insecure writers getting the support (or simply having an outlet) we need. This is a really amazing group you've started and you should be so proud of what it accomplishes month after month.

Nancy Thompson said...

I think you can testify to the fact that I'm downright mean to my poor characters & put them through utter hell. Wow, you're right, it's been a year for the IWSG. I love this group & I only missed one post during the A to Z. Guess I should be thinking about your next blogfest. Oh my gosh, poor Roland. I will definitely find one of his books to purchase.

Morgan said...

I'm actually surprised it hasn't been longer than a year with how many people are involved! Amazing, Alex! And I'm off to read Michael's post, he's become one of my new favorites! :D

Rachna Chhabria said...

I am learning to be mean and nasty to my characters. I will download a book of Roland's.

RaShelle Workman said...

Alex - I feel so bad for Roland. I'll be sure to pick up a few more of his books.

When it comes to my characters I struggle with that as well. That's what makes a book enjoyable to read though.

Have a great Wednesday!

Andrew Leon said...

I have a couple of Roland's books on my stack. I'll try to slide them higher up and get some reviews out there.

I don't think anyone will think I'm being too easy on my characters when Brother's Keeper comes out. I mean, just within the first 2 chapters, Sam loses his... well, that would be telling. :P

L. Diane Wolfe said...

Being open to suggestions and willing to change your manuscript is a good thing.

Read about Roland on Michael's post and downloaded two of his books.

SC Author said...

I get soooo depressed when I ruin my characters' lives. Kind of at least. I did a huge scene (but on,y like 200 words) yesterday night and it was.... I don't know. It's are but necessary :)

Gossip_Grl said...

Great post. Congrats on the one year of the writers group! Gonna check out your links to the writer, Roland Yeoman and wow on that accident.

LynNerdKelley said...

Congrats on one year of IWSG. Awesome how it's taken off. Congrats to all the writers with good news and book releases. I'm so sorry Roland is dealing with so much, but thank God he wasn't hurt real bad in the accident. I'm heading over to check out his books. Best wishes to Roland for a speedy recovery physically, mentally, and finnacially.

Sherry Ellis said...

I just got Roland's book, The Last Shaman. I hope things get better for him!

Congratulations on a year of Insecure Writers Group. Still haven't joined. (What am I waiting for? I must be in denial. LOL!)

Sherri Lackey said...

I find that I'm often too easy on my characters as the story progresses. I tend to start off pretty hard on them and then I ease up. Am I afraid I'm being too harsh and so I back off? Apparently so. I need to work on that. No mercy! bwaaahaahaahaa!

Mary Aalgaard said...

What a great way to support Roland and lift his spirits. How aweful that he got hit. Glad he'll be okay.

Allison said...

Wow, a year already! IWSG has come far! Thanks for instigating it.

Allison (Geek Banter)

Hart Johnson said...

Thank you so much for the heads up about Roland! Poor guy. I will definitely give a shout out to see if we can't generate some sales for him.

As for raising the bar... I do this best when I have a push... when someone says 'I love this but...' I am capable of upping my game, but really do need a little outside input to know I need to do it.

Angela Orlowski-Peart said...

So sorry to hear about Roland's latest misfortunes. I hope he is quickly recovering both physically and financially.

Awesome book covers and blurbs. Yay for Angela and Gwen!

As for my characters - I can be pretty mean to them :-) But I also make sure they get all the necessary help, or at least an attention.

Good luck with CassaStorm. When is it scheduled for release?

Maurice Mitchell said...

Sounds like good advice. Although the mental game is what I always find most interesting. Nice job shouting out Roland.

LTM said...

Oh, no! I didn't know that about Roland. Thanks for the heads up!

And yeah, I think sometimes we can get in a hurry and forget to enhance the dread--LOL! Good luck w/revisions! :o)

Barbara Watson said...

One year for the IWSG? Seriously? Wow. And I just found it over the summer and joined in the posting today. I've been under some enormous rock obviously.

But Happy Anniversary, IWSG! What an awesome thing you've become.

J.L. Campbell said...

So much happening. The blogfest sounds nice and easy, so I entered.


Sorry to hear about Roland. Glad he wasn't seriously hurt.

J. A. Bennett said...

So sorry to hear about Rowland, I wish there was more I could do!

Alex J. Cavanaugh said...

Liesel, I like messing with their heads!

Ella, a whole year - whoa!

MJ, you just pretend they are customers from the store, don't you?

Nancy, you are cruel beyond words to your characters. But it made for a great story.

Andrew, I'm sure you're good at that.

Sherry, come on!!! Join us...

Hart, I bet you enjoy every minute of raising the bar. And thanks for giving Roland a shout-out.

Angela, whenever my publisher decides! No idea.

Maurice, I do the mental stuff better.

Thank you, everyone! Really glad this group has been such a place of support for everyone. Still making the rounds...

Arlee Bird said...

Glad that Roland is gonna be okay, but what a strange twist. Here he is always out helping humanity and now he ends up in the hospital. Hope he gets a story idea from it.

Excellent interview on the A to Z Blog.

Lee

Teresa Coltrin@Journaling Woman said...

Poor Roland. Yes, I'll go shopping. Get Well, Roland!!!

Johanna Garth said...

Those are some beautiful cover reveals and poor Roland, that's truly awful!

Mina Burrows said...

Poor, Roland! Thank you for letting me know.

Great cover reveals, Alex!

Thanks for IWSG too. :)

rebeccabradleycrime.com said...

Happy Anniversary to the IWSG! My first real post went up today and I'm thrilled to join such a great group. Thanks for creating and opening it up Alex.

Theresa Milstein said...

I can't believe it's a whole year! It seems like yesterday I began reading these posts.

I don't always raise the stakes enough either. That winds up being one of my revisions.

Empty Nest Insider said...

Happy one year IWSG Anniversary! I'm sorry that Roland was in that horrible accident. Hope he has a speedy recovery. I'll head over to Amazon. Julie

Alex J. Cavanaugh said...

Four of you posted comments while I was trying to compose my last comment - that really messes with my head!

Barbara, glad to have you with us!

Thanks, JL. I like to keep things simple.

Lee, I bet he will.

Rebecca, I'm glad you are a part of it.

Ciara said...

I'm so glad Roland wasn't seriously hurt. I've also been the victim of someone who had no insurance. It stinks.
Tension has never been my problem in books. LOL I have to bring it back a little at times. I'm glad your beta readers are so helpful. They are so important to the process.

Sheena-kay Graham said...

Poor Roland, I wish him all the best. And yeah, I haven't forgot the upcoming genre blogfest. Givin' Up the Ghost had piqued my interest highly. I like the cover and love the story. October 8 has been marked. Neverlove has a good story, I hope it does well when released. Another fun post Alex.

akossiwaketoglo.com said...

I'm currently working on a MG rewrite because I realized I was being too easy on my storyline.
Thanks for your comment on my guest post on Nutschell's blog.

Alexandra Heep said...

Driving without insurance-who does that? Where I live, you can't get away with it. It's all tied to your registration etc. They run all that stuff through data bases and well, you can't get away with it.

Annalisa Crawford said...

Wow - your posts are getting so long, they're like mini-novels in themselves. Yay... I've managed to post for each and every IWSG. I think I've been more insecure than helpful, but it's been fun - thanks x 12, Alex!

Poor Roland. I hope he gets well soon. I'll pop over to Amazon right now.

I find I'm far too hard on my characters. I seem to have fallen into the 'romance' category, although my characters start off together, and then I tear them apart... :-)

Cherie Colyer said...

I know there are time I'm too easy on my characters. It's not that I mean to be and it's not that I realize it, but I have some wonderful critique partners who help me see when I've gone too soft and I love them for it.

Alex J. Cavanaugh said...

Ciara, that's awful.

Sheena-kay, I read some of Neverlove during the A to Z Challenge - it was great!

Akoss, thanks for visiting!

Alexandra, sad isn't it?

Annalisa, this one got a little out of control...

Sarah Ahiers said...

I can't believe it's already been a year for ISWG! That's crazy.
Also, Rolan getting hit by a car?! That is ALSO super crazy! I'm glad he wasn't seriously injured

Liza said...

Whoot Whoot! Happy anniversary!

I am currently working on my second novel. My first is in a drawer because I wasn't hard enough on my characters. This time, I just kept asking myself, what is the worst thing that could happen right now? One of those "worst things" stopped me cold. It took me two weeks before I could write it. But having done so, I know the story is better for it. They don't say writing is hard work for nothing!

Thank you Alex, for facilitating this group. It is such a help.

Ink in the Book said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Ink in the Book said...

It's hard to be happy about my own good fortune when someone I "know" through the blog world isn't doing as well. I'm sorry to hear about Roland and hope he recovers soon.

Happy Blogaversary! Although I am late joining up (this is my 3rd month) I can still celebrate with others!

Yey for the release date and cover reveals of the new books from Gwen and Angela!

Melissa Bradley said...

Wow! A whole year of IWSG?! That is just incredible.

I've kept Roland in my prayers, but will encourage others to buy Roland's stories in order to help. Medical expenses are astronomical.

Stupendous covers! I wish Gwen and Angela lots success. And I am off to visit Michael at the A to Z.

N. R. Williams said...

Hi Alex
One thing I've learned after many years, we are all a little challenged in one way or another in our writing. Thank God for critique partners.

Oh no, poor Roland, I wish him the best.

I have learned that short stories sell well as e-books. (2,500 wc). Flash fiction helps to train you on that platform so I'll check out Michael's post. I do Romantic Friday Writer's and have learned so much. Hosted by L'Aussie (Denise) and Donna Hole. It's every other Friday and I think you should encourage your army to look it up. We have a post this coming Friday.

Thanks for being a great friend. Oh yes, I already added my link.
Nancy

Alex J. Cavanaugh said...

Liza, it's tough to do sometimes.

Ink, celebrate with us!

Melissa, he will appreciate it.

Nancy, I can mention it!

VikLit said...

A year of IWSG! What an achievement!

DWei said...

I can't say I have an insecurities due to the only writing I have coming from my blog.

I guess thinking of something on time to post?

M Pax said...

Has it been a whole year?

I have mega anxiety every time I publish, fretting it's not good enough. There are always curmudgeons who will agree with us on that.

But it will be good enough. I have trouble with 'adult scenes'.

Livia said...

Congrats to Angela!

Thanks for reminding me of the Genre Favorites Blogrest. I'm looking forward to joining in the excitement and meeting new people! :)

Jeffrey Beesler said...

Thanks for the shout-out, Alex! To make up for what happened with today's contest, I'll do Wednesday's and Thursdays both tomorrow. Apologies to anyone who went over to my blog from Alex's and didn't see a Day 3 contest. Silly internet connection...

Cally Jackson said...

My beta readers were really helpful with helping me identify which scenes needed the stakes upped. Thanks to them, the danger (or more accurately, emotional turmoil) is much stronger now. Hooray for beta readers.

Heading off to Amazon to buy one of Roland's books now. Which one to start with, that is the question! :-)

Rawknrobyn.blogspot.com said...

No, I can't believe it's been a year. No, I didn't get any of the trivia right.

Thanks for it all, as always, Alex.
xoRobyn

Alex J. Cavanaugh said...

Vik, it's amazing!

SWei, you can offer encouragement as well.

Mary, that's why I avoid those.

Livia, thanks for signing up!

Jeffrey, you're welcome.

Cally, thanks! Really appreciate you buying one of his books.

kmckendry said...

So sorry to hear about Roland! I'm going to pick out a book as soon as I get home.

E.J. Wesley said...

So excited for the ladies! The covers are gorgeous. :-)

klahanie said...

Hey Alex,
First of all, hearty congrats on the first anniversary of the first ever "IWSG" posting.
I agree about visiting at least a dozen new blogs and leaving words of support and encouragement. I often go to sites of bloggers who are either relatively new or haven't had much recognition. This is a great ideal in a sharing, caring blogging community.
All the best with your revisions, Alex.
Wishing all the best to Roland. A bit of a nightmare when the other driver has no insurance.
If I have time, I shall go and visit the A to Z site. I do so love to leave my alternative take to it all over there.
And before your post potentially 'explodes' with info overload...I'm outta' here.......

Monti said...

Thanks, Alex! You inspired me to visit one of "IWSG" folks.

Monti
Mary Montague Sikes

jamieayres.com said...

Happy Anniversary, IWSG:-) I think I joined in January and have loved every minute of it--thank you so much for giving back to this community!! Poor Roland . .. I have one of his books but can certainly go buy another one.

Alex J. Cavanaugh said...

Kathy, he will appreciate that!

Gary, you have such an awesome, giving spirit!

Monti, cool!

Jamie, glad it's meant so much to you.

Lynda R Young said...

I'm looking forward to Storm.
I'm super mean to my characters. Perhaps sometimes too mean and I need to pull back a tad ;)

Susan Gourley/Kelley said...

I'm heading over to check out Roland's books. Health costs are terrible.
Thanks for hosting IWSG. Can't believe it's been a year.

Jai Joshi said...

I think listening to critiques is a fine art. I generally trust my instincts but if several of my beta readers make then same point then I look at it again an see what I need to adjust.

Jai

Heather Gardner said...

Wow is right! Happy anniversary on the GROUP! That is amazing.

Glad to hear Mr. Roland is all right.

So much great info!
Thank you!
Heather

Angela Brown said...

Will definitely check out some Roland Yeoman items. He's such a wonderful person and writer.

Thanks for featuring us and big Congrats to the Angela mentioned that lassoed and agent. Great news.

This blog post was fit to explode but you rounded things out nicely.

Thank you!!

///////////////////////////////////////////////// said...

Congrats on the first anniversary of The Insecure Writers Group.
Great post as always.

Yvonne.

sydneyaaliyah said...

Hey Alex, I just wanted to say thank you for IWSG. It is my favorite day of the month. The support and advice has been so cool. Thanks again.

I need to beat my characters up even more. They are too nice and tidy sometimes.

Jackie said...

Yay for a year of IWSG!!! Thank you for starting it.

Thank goodness for betas/test readers/crit partners. They're amazing!

Hildie McQueen said...

I recently got a rejection based on my heroine being TSTL. She wasn't stupid, I just didn't want to hurt her! Jeez, couldn't the ac. editor see that?!

Alex J. Cavanaugh said...

Lynda, hope it doesn't disappoint.

Jai, that is wise!

Angela, you are most welcome!

Hi Yvonne!!

Sydney, I'm so glad it means that much to you.

Hildie, yeah!

Kari Marie White said...

I am not very tough on my characters. I have to constantly remind myself that they'll survive (most of them anyway).

Sorry to hear about Roland. I will go check out his Amazon page.

Jemi Fraser said...

Poor Roland - I'm off to help...

I have a hard time being mean to my characters at times too. I want them to be happy *sigh*

ali cross said...

Gah! I have missed Angela's release! Thanks for the heads up on that.

And dude. You bully your characters mentally better than anyone else!

Tara Tyler said...

so much! ah!
but its great! and thanks for this wonderful outlet for us to come together! iwsg!

Angela M. said...

I often don't go deep enough for long enough with the emotional conflict. It's not that they don't hurt, but that I fix their conflicts too quickly. Have to consciously keep my eye on that, lol.

Thank you so much for the shout out, Alex. And it's so awesome that you posted about Roland. I did what I could (hehehe, getting my coworkers hooked) and tweeted and bought more books. Plus, as you saw, I'm giving away one of his books on my blog (hint, hint, if anyone else is reading this comment).

Happy IWSG Anniversary!

Medeia Sharif said...

A whole year. Woo hoo.

I'm hoping for the best for Roland. I'm glad he survived the hurricane.

It's great seeing familiar names in the book news.

Stephen Tremp said...

Oh crap, I missed the ISWG post and I had one pre-written. I'll schedule it for next month tonight so I don't miss it again.

I may be one of the few that liked Cliffhanger. Great show! My family and friends all hated the movie. But I liked it very much. And Jim Carrey's spoof of it in Ace Ventura: When Nature Calls.

She Writes said...

152 comments??? Dude! :).

Donna Hole said...

Its been a year? Wow.

I don't have problems putting tension and danger in my writings; but I do have problems adding in those happy moments, something to lighten the mood.

There's a lot of awesome news and shout-outs here Alex.

And - Cliffhanger is one of my favorite movies. I've seen all these movies except The Adventures of Ford.

.......dhole

Roland D. Yeomans said...

As SHE WRITES wrote: 152 comments! You are the Ninja Captain for a reason.

I've just returned from spending most of the evening with Sandra, recuperating from her 5th Chemo treatment in a row.

All of you have boosted me up Amazon's illogical rankings somehow. It gave something for Sandra to be happy about -- that alone is worth more than my inadequate words can say. You are all champions. Thank you, Roland

Denise Covey said...

What sad news about Roland. I didn't know that. I have most of his books. He's an awesome writer.

Thanks for all the Ninja news.

Sher A. Hart said...

Wow! One year! I held out 11 months? I'm glad I didn't wait any longer. But 3 AM posting? I'm surprised you didn't explode.

I had read a book by Donald Maas saying how writers should up the stakes more. I did, and beta readers complained that too much bad stuff happened. Now I'm taking half of it out.

Thanks for all your support. Now I'm going to check out those books. Our church usually goes to New Orleans on cleanup efforts so we may be there soon.

amschultzcom said...

"I guess I’m better at mentally messing with my characters than using physical means to mess with them."

All the physical stuff in the world doesn't mean as much as a quick journey from one side of a character's brain to the other.

Jamie Gibbs said...

It's been a hell of a year, no doubt about that!

I think I tend to go too way on my characters; I need to learn the GRRM "kill your darlings" style of writing, if only to up the tension.

tfwalsh said...

Congrats on your 1 year anniversary for your IWSG... It's grown so much:) Lots of great new books for me to check out:)

Alex J. Cavanaugh said...

Ali, thank you!

Angela, you are welcome, and that is great you are helping out Roland.

Stephen, won't kick you out for missing one. And I liked Cliffhanger.

She Writes - I know!

Roland, we are more than happy to help.

Sher, glad you're with us. And too much? I doubt I'd be accused of too much bad stuff.

AM, then I guess I do that well.

Thanks everyone for helping Roland and for the thanks on one year with the IWSG!

Catherine Noble said...

Poor Roland! :( fingers crossed things improve for him asap!

Your test-reader sounds awesome. I'd LOVE someone to go into that much detail about my scenes. It shows a great deal of care. I've yet to get to the "test-reader" stage, mind you, but when I do, I hope I've got someone like him!

Damyanti said...

Sorry to hear about Ronald!

Congrats on the anniversary-- can't believe an year has gone by.

Laura Pauling said...

Neat that's it been a year! yes, I find that sometimes I need a good kick in the pants from beta readers about making things worse for my characters. If I'm lucky, I'll realize it beforehand!

oceangirl said...

Hello Alex, Captain. You are very busy and very well organised. I can't believe it has been a year.

shelly said...

Holy Schmoly! You've got lots of comments. So much so, I forgot what I was going write.

Hugs and chocolate,
Shelly

Nicole Ducleroir said...

I'm always amazed at how much deeper I can dig into a scene, after receiving critiques from readers. My stories are richer, thanks to the feedback. What would we do without our reviewers?? Good luck with the project :)))

Bish Denham said...

So sweet of you to ask help for you friend. I'm on my way to his Amazon page.

Kelley Lynn said...

Oh poor Roland! My gosh, that's so scary.

Tina said...

Hey Alex, took me a while to find a book that wasn't free...I'm an amazon prime member, but I ended up with the one you had the picture of. The Legend of...see, I can't remember anything these days. Sigh. Please give my best to your friend and wish him a speedy recovery. This medically challenged friend of yours can relate to his struggles. What a great idea you came up with for a fundraiser!
Caught your interview yesterday - good one.
I'm such an insecure writer I haven't had the guts to join yet...but congrats on what you're doing there. I see the badge all over the place.
Tina @ Life is Good

Alex J. Cavanaugh said...

Catherine, I hope you find someone like him as well!

Hey Oceangirl! You've been missed.

Shelly, that made me laugh.

Bish, thanks!

Tina, Roland will really appreciate that. And you really need to join us. I promise, we're not the Borg.

Roland D. Yeomans said...

Thank you, Alex, again. Tina! Victor Standish is stunned that anyone could forget his name. He's humble like that! :-) Thank you, Tina, and all of my other friends who have been so kind to me.

I spent most of last evening with Sandra, enduring the effects of her 5th Chemo treatment. Your buying of my books gave her something to be happy about in a very dark time for her. You guys are champions, Roland

Helen Ginger said...

What a post, Alex! So much going on in your life.

So sorry to hear about Roland. After I comment, I'll link over to his books.

Elizabeth Seckman said...

A good, honest reader is worth his weight in gold!

Julie Dao said...

My characters have it really easy. Looks like I need to be a little tougher on them, too!

Jen Chandler said...

With school starting back, I totally forgot about the IWSG!!! Ugh!! I'll definitely stop by some of the other folk's posts :) Sometimes I do fear pushing the limits of my work. I've done it before and had pretty much everyone who read it go, "HUH?" But, that's where we have to be willing to not appeal to everyone. It's frightening and painful, but the only way to write true is to be true to ourselves and our story!

All my best to Roland! Sorry to hear about the accident.

Jen

Leovi said...

Very interesting book the Roland Yeomans.

D.G. Hudson said...

Talk about being in the eye of the storm, well not exactly, but Roland seems to have some of Victor's talent at being at the wrong place but surviving!

I plan to buy more of his books when budget allows, since now I need to know how Victor does what he does, and I've grown to like the characters. (See my two book reviews if you want a hint of the magic.)

I read Don Maass' books too. I recommend them.

Michael Offutt, Tebow Cult Initiate said...

I understand where you are coming from in increasing the stakes for characters. Beta readers are great because they give you perspective on things you just miss as a writer. I'm so sorry about Roland. I'll go download one of his books tonight.

Alex J. Cavanaugh said...

Roland, glad it made her night as well as yours.

Thank you, Helen! And I know - this was too much for one post.

Jen, that's all right.

DG, he is a bit like Victor! I'm halfway through the first one, but more are waiting.

Michael, he will appreciate that!

Cherie Reich said...

I have a tendency to be too mean to my characters. My first ebook only one MC lived. LOL!

Liz Fichera said...

So sorry to hear about Roland. It'd be an honor to download his book.

Donea Lee said...

Alex!!!! :) It's been FAR too long. I'm such a bloggy slacker... Wow - IWSG at it's 1 year mark? I remember when you thought it up, seems like yesterday.

And, yes - I think I'm far too easy on my characters and plotlines so far.

Too bad about Roland - I'll have to check out his stuff on Amazon.

And awesome cover reveals for the new books - congrats to Gwen and Angela!! They sound like great stories!!! (although Gwen's bums me out a little...sounds eerily similar to my current wip... :( ) Have a good one!!

Ellie Garratt said...

I've popped over to Roland's blog to give him my support. When my Kindle is charged I shall be downloading one of his books.

Jessica Salyer said...

Glad to hear that Roland is okay. I'll be sure to head over to amazon. Happy IWSG anniversary. I can't believe it's been a year all ready. It's been amazing and the support I've received has been priceless. Thank you for having the foresight to start it. :)

Alex J. Cavanaugh said...

Cherie, you are tough!

Liz, he'll be happy to hear that.

Donea! It's good to have you back.

Ellie, thanks - he'll appreciate it.

Jessica, I'm so glad you've enjoyed it.

Ainsley Shay said...

I was way too easy on my character until I received comments on a read-thru...now - the poor boy has all kinds of trouble. Thanks for sharing.

mshatch said...

I remember reading some excerpts of Angela's book and they certainly whetted my appetite for more :)

And congrats on whole year of IWSG!

alexia said...

Lots of awesome news as usual! I'm editing now, too. Wow, Cliffhanger... I forgot about that movie. I think it was good. It's been so long I don't remember.

Patricia Stoltey said...

Wow, you pack a lot of information in these posts, Alex. Thanks about the heads-up regarding Roland's plight.

Michael Pierce said...

It's hard to believe you've only had the group going for a year. It feels so established like it's been building for years. I'm sorry to hear about Roland. I have yet to check out his books, but I'll be sure to do so. I am not easy on my characters at all, especially in my second book. I drag them through hell and back. Hope you have a fun weekend planned!

Lanthie Ransom said...

Hi Alex. Got your message on my blog. Yes - I missed Wednesday's post - not for lack of interest though. My ADSL line went down and I had to crisis manage some projects I am working on so it all got complicated. My line is back up and I hope to spend some time this weekend reading loads of blogs.

Alex J. Cavanaugh said...

Patricia, this one was a bit overflowing...

Michael, it just grew so fast!

Lanthie, sorry about that! No worries - we'll see you next month.

Susanne Drazic said...

CONGRATS on IWSG's one year anniversary!

Sorry to hear about what happened to Roland Yeomans. Bought a Kindle copy of GHOST WRITERS IN THE SKY.

walk2write said...

You're a sweetheart to help a writer friend. As soon as I get a Kindle (coming soon), I will definitely download a book or two. Congratulations on your anniversary. You are one amazing blogger, Mr. Alex. I will re-tweet your tweet.

kimlajevardi.com said...

Happy Anniversary to IWSG!

I'd have to echo some of the comments from above - I get better at raising the stakes as I revise. The first draft rarely puts the characters through half as much as subsequent drafts do. Eventually, though, I torture all of my characters. :)

(Late posting from a IWSG member.)

Melissa Sugar said...

OMG, I hope he will be okay. You did say he wasn't seriously injured, right? Still, being struck by a car. Damn! I have his books, but I will purchase some again & offer them as a prize for something. I adore Roland.