Wednesday, 31 July 2013

Starting another novel, seriously?

A couple of days ago I sent out a Facebook request for people to read my draft novel... and to my surprise, three lovely blogger friends said yes!

So I currently look like this:

While I'm waiting, I randomly picked up an old novel, and wondered if there was something worth rescuing within the pages. In true Crawford style, that novel and the ideas I've been having recently started to merge.

The old novel is the most depressing novel ever written. It starts with a pregnant 15 year old girl whose life just gets worse and worse until she is redeemed in true fairytale style. I liked the character, Grace, but I had issues with just how darn depressing the whole thing was, so it got shelved.

Fast forward to this week, when I looked at the character that's growing in my head and I wondered if she could possibly be Grace's grown-up daughter telling her mother's story. Hmmm, I thought, that could work. So I got my red pen out and started slashing the most depressing stuff. I'm probably going to tell a completely different story, but I'm working with characters I like, and a title that I really love.

How do you occupy yourself while your MS is being read?

Friday, 26 July 2013

I am three!

Okay, not me, but my blog is three today!

It started with this post here (in case you're interested).

I can't believe I'm still blogging - according to my first post, I didn't expect to stay the course. Although, to be honest, it's all down to you guys - the way you keep coming back and reading my writerly ramblings.

And, of course, I love reading your blogs. I couldn't imagine having a mid-writing session cuppa without clicking on a couple of new blog posts. I mean, what do normal people do when they've got a spare ten minutes?

So, my plans for the next three years, I hear you ask?

  • Publishing three more books - two written, one a mere glimmer in my eye at the moment
  • Submitting and winning some competitions... some big ones!
  • Writing some new short stories, and submitting to established literary magazines, like Granta
  • Getting a fluke review that causes everyone talk about me (okay, that one's slightly out of my control)
  • Getting some professional photos taken where I actually look half-way normal (yes, it'll probably take me all three years to summon the courage)
  • Earning enough per year to give up the day job (I only work part time, so this could be achievable)
I think that's enough to be going on with.

What are your plans for the next three years?

Wednesday, 24 July 2013

Say 'hi' to Elizabeth Seckman

Please welcome the wonderful Elizabeth Seckman to my blog today - she is a super supportive blogger, and hosted a stop on my last blog tour, so as a thank you I've given her my blog for the day. I wonder what she has to say...

Want the magnet? Buy it Here!

Hey Annalisa!

Thanks for having me over.

You go put the kettle on (practicing my Brit lingo) while I tell you how a fridge magnet changed my thinking.

I was out shopping with some girlfriends and came across this magnet, "Dear Lord, if you can't make me skinny, please make all my friends fat!"

At first glance I got a good laugh.

I mean misery does love company and if everyone was in the same chubby boat as me, I'd feel a whole lot better about myself.

Or our cellulite covered butts would sink our dingy and we'd all drown.

But still, I wouldn't be THE chunky chick, I'd just be one of many...

Then I started beastly is that sort of thinking?

It's not at all motivating. I mean motivation is the push to do better, to try harder.

I decided this little five dollar cutie was a double fail-

First fail:
"Lord, make me skinny?" Like I was going to get a miracle where chocolates, candies, and cakes were suddenly going to become the new broccoli, carrots, and celery of the world and TV watching would become high impact cardio?

Absurd, right?

Second fail:
I was asking to drag all my friends down (or up the scale) with me.

Ms. Size Six who never finishes a full meal? I hoped your every spoonful had a heaping helping of excess fat.

Ms. Thin who skates every evening? Sorry, I just wished you a broader bum!

Final conclusion? I am what I am because of the choices make. If I want to be something different, I have to make different choices. And if I don't want to put in the sweat equity, then I'll accept and love the person I am.

To wish failure on my friends? Well the only thing that shrinks is my personality.

My pooch is tummy pooch camouflage!



Elizabeth is just a simple Yankee chick who dares to day she'll have a clean house, a tight bum, and a shelf full of books with her name on them. The mother of four boys...she divides her time between the laundry room, the kitchen, and the computer. 

Saturday, 20 July 2013

Happy Saturday

Today is a great day, because after Hubby being away for two weeks he's back! He's been touring around Europe with a wonderful Belgian singer called Nele (pronounced Nay-lah). So after missing the last fourteen or so gigs that they've played together, I'm going to four this weekend. Sun, music and cider - sounds perfect, doesn't it?

And here's a song they sing together, recorded when Nele was in England last year. It's a cover of the Civil Wars song, Poison and Wine.

Wednesday, 17 July 2013

So many ideas... so little oomph!

Some of you may be aware that I have a favourite bridge. Well, this is another picture of it, taken from a completely different angle to all the others I've posted.

On Friday, a friend dragged me away from my WIP for a walk. I think it helped, because when I got home I zoomed through the rest of the re-writes and wrote 'The End' on Sunday!

I didn't make quite as many changes as I thought I would - if you read my post The Ending you'll understand what I'm referring to - but I did correct things that weren't right. For example - trying to not give the end away - I killed a few people off by shooting them, but completely forgot that I'd also set a fire going and that wasn't affecting anyone. I also realised that I'd actually killed off more people than were actually involved in the scene and had more people escaping!

So, after unkilling a few people, and making the fire bigger, I think the scene works a bit better. I'm still unsure about the very last chapter - have I gone far enough? Should I make it more blatant? Would that be out of step with the rest of the story so far?

For some reason though - despite having ideas for two new stories and needing to get the novel ready for some possible readers - I'm lacking the oomph:

  • It's too hot
  • Cat and The Dreamer has just slid down under the one million mark in the rankings (actually a vertical drop on the lovely Amazon Central chart I checked)
  • I'm getting far too negative for my own good.

Here's another picture from my walk last week,
just so I don't finish this post on a downer.

Monday, 15 July 2013

TF Walsh cover reveal

Available August 5, 2013

Cloaked in Fur

As a moonwulf, Daciana never expected to fall in love with a human. Hell, she never imagined that she’d abandon her pack, endanger everyone around her, and break the worst rule possible. But she did.

A rogue werewolf is killing Daciana’s friends, and she sets on capturing the creature.  She’ll do whatever it takes to stop the beast. The police and her boyfriend, Inspector Connell Lonescu, are starting to question her involvement in the murders, which is endangering the pack’s secret existence. But when the pack alpha kidnaps Connell, revealing the awful truth about the creature and its connection to the pack, Daciana must choose between saving the man she loves and saving her pack family from certain death.

Paranormal Suspense With Strong Romance

Publisher: Crimson Romance

About The Author

T.F. Walsh emigrated from Romania to Australia at the age of eight and now lives in a regional city south of Sydney with her husband. Growing up hearing dark fairytales, she's always had a passion for reading and writing horror, paranormal romance, urban fantasy and young adult stories. She balances all the dark with light fluffy stuff like baking and traveling.

Author Links

Friday, 12 July 2013

I'm visiting Rebecca Bradley!

It's no secret I love talking about myself, so when Rebecca Bradley asked if people wanted to talk about themselves on her blog, I jumped at the chance. You can read the interview here and find out all about my first drafts.

Thursday, 11 July 2013

The ending

I'm, once again, getting to the end of my novel. I've been redrafting a novel I first completed over a year ago. When I got to the end that first time, it wasn't as dramatic/amazing/perfect as I'd hoped.

I knew it needed more than just an edit, so I typed the whole thing up again from scratch, which helped because I've added a few scenes that have helped with the flow of the story and moved some chapters around.

But, with only about fifteen pages of the story left, I still haven't found my perfect ending. (By the way, fifteen pages for me is like fifty or sixty for you guys - there's still a lot of story to tell.) I'd hoped, once I got into the heads of the characters again the solution would be obvious. But it isn't.

People who read this novel in its last incarnation said the ending was good, perfectly fine... so maybe I should be happy with that. But there's just a part of me that wants to write something brilliant.

Do you sometimes know you can do better, but you're not sure how?
How do you overcome this?

Saturday, 6 July 2013

It's Christmmmaaaasssss!

Well, that got your attention, didn't it? Here's Jay Mims to explain why it's Christmmmaaasssss!

Hello Gentle Readers,

I'm doing a special Christmas in July tour, and Annalisa was kind enough to let me stop in for a chat. So, brew up a cuppa tea, and let’s sit down to talk about characters.

See, I write books. Specifically, I write light-hearted murder mysteries, which are traditionally called cozies. I have two books out The Five Santas and Cult of Koo Kway, and it’s because of the Santa book, a Christmas murder mystery, that I’m doing this Christmas in July extravaganza. That book is ostensibly about a sarcastic, lovable and cynical private investigator Dan Landis, and his quest to save Christmas.

Actually it’s more to keep someone from killing Santa Claus, but somehow I like that saving Christmas angle better. But, here’s the thing: He’s not an island. See, what I feel works about Dan as a character is that he has other people to play off of.

If you've ever read old school noir, classic detective mysteries like The Maltese Falcon or The Thin Man then you’ll know the stoic detective, with his monologuing and inability to commit. Dames are nothing but trouble, and the next person you meet is trying to kill you.

Well, Dan takes that concept, and sets it on its ear. He has a girl Friday, sure, her name is Abbey. She’s also
an Art History Doctoral student, who wears her heart on her sleeve, is kind to animals, and whose pop culture acumen begins and ends with Disney movies.

If you ever want to see a slow burn romance, meaning that the “Will They/Won’t They” relationship is built more along the lines of Moonlighting  or Cheers rather than 50 Shades of Gray, then you should check out my books. Dan and Abbey are a fun pair, and I can promise their relationship is going to have ups, downs, and spin-arounds.

And the really fun part, the part that I enjoy, is that Dan and Abbey are only two characters out of a dozen or so in The Five Santas. You've got smarmy cops, a French floozy, an anal-retentive bureaucratic nightmare, and a six foot tall cowboy named Mortimer. Except everyone calls him Tex. Because when you’re a gun-toting six foot tall cowboy, you can get people to call you whatever you want.

Basically this is a great big fun sandbox that I'm having the time of my life playing in. And you, gentle reader, have an open and standing invitation to come on in. There’s murder, romance, intrigue and your daily recommended dose of heart.

Jay Mims recently got to pet a llama, and it was truly a magical experience. He lives with a passive-aggressive Dalek named Steve, and when not writing is learning the mandolin. He writes books and is far funnier on Facebook then in real life. He is terrible at Twitter. His next book "The Gray Ghost Inn" is due out October 15, 2013. Feel free to email him here

Goodreads / Smashwords / Facebook / Blog / Twitter

The Five Santas on Amazon and Barnes and Noble
The Cult of Koo Kway on Amazon and Barnes and Noble

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Wednesday, 3 July 2013

July already? Insecure much?

Yes, folks it's July... and it's the first Wednesday... which must mean it's time for another Insecure Writers Support Group meeting, hosted by the wonderful Alex J Cavanaugh. Click this link to find out more, to sign up and to check out the other group members.

Today's post is not an insecurity, it's a deficiency. I have a game plan for my writing career, and I'm not achieving it. Instead I'm achieving other things, like creating my new website and self-publishing my collection of stories. Neither of these things were in my original business plan.

In fact, when I started writing, self-publishing meant taking out a loan and spending an arm and a leg on several thousand copies of your book that you then had to store in your living room and dining room and kids bedroom until you sold them. Print on demand and ebooks have changed the face of self-publishing, so you can excuse my lack of foresight.

Similarly, the internet was born after I started writing. Author websites were something proper authors had - not me - so I never even considered it was something I should do until this year.

My writing plan involved being published in specific literary magazines, and winning high-profile competitions.

And there lies my deficiency... I have not been submitting stories. In fact, while I've been focussing on trying to write my novel, I haven't even written a short story for a while. Which is odd, seeing as though I call myself a short story writer!

Has your writing taken a turn you weren't expecting?