On Writing & Publishing by Robin D. Owens

Personal notes on writing techniques, writing a novel, my writing career and threading your way through publishing a book.

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RITA Award Winning Author -- that's like the Oscar, folks! Futuristic/Fantasy Romance and Fantasy with Romantic Subplots.

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Friday, June 24, 2005

Teasing Readers

I'll admit it. I didn't know what to write about this morning. For a couple of weeks I'd post a draft ahead of time because I knew what I wanted to talk about. And, of course, I have a list of topics, but nothing appealed to me this morning, and if you keep track of when I post, you'll see I'm running late. I got some interesting email lately and replied to that, but it wasn't until Catie Murphy, Luna Author and wonderful writer of Urban Shaman, OUT NOW FROM LUNA, replied to a message here on the blog that I thought about Teasing Readers.

First, I know authors who have huge fan loops and tease their readers with what is happening next in their popular series. I tend to do this only on my thread of the Luna Community loop
http://community.eharlequin.com/WebX?50@151.4c7fayAlGNp.0@.4a82c472/318
on other loops to which I belong when a direct question is asked of me, and in response to email questions.

But Catie replied to my last post on Cover Art with the statement that she didn't realize the peacock was Sinafin, my shape-shifting fairy in Guardian of Honor. So I replied myself ;), with a tease. I told you that inspiration can come from many places, when I saw the peacock on the cover of Guardian, I sighed because, of course, there is no peacock in the book.

Not in Guardian.

But I added HER to Sorceress of Faith. Sinafin is female. But what shapeshifter would want to turn into a peaHen? Not Sinafin. So she parades a couple of times (when she's not being a trickster or scary -- see that's a tease) and I had fun with that. So, if you had fun reading Sinafin in Guardian, this should picque your interest in Sorceress. And, yes, Alexa and Bastien are back and Alexa actually steals a couple of scenes from Marian. So there's another tease.

For the Heart books, I introduce secondary characters, and when I do I either want to match them up or kill 'em off. So a lot of my email is "Whose book is next?" When I answer, I tease -- "oh, you'll see more of him/her in the next book."

Since they ARE secondary characters, you learn things about them throughout the series, hopefully are emotionally involved with them, and can extrapolate what might happen. For those following the Heart books, you know that Straif Blackthorn's and Mitchella Clover's story is next in Heart Choice, and you SHOULD know what their major conflict is. (I won't tell, but all the reviews so far do, and that's fine).

So for you of the Lladrana universe. Marian is an academic from Boulder. Jaquar (the sorcerer in Guardian) is the hero. I left an evil thing following Jaquar in Guardian (an unfinished Payoff), and yes, it does something very bad.

For you who follow the Heart books, the next story I (should be) am writing is Winterberry, the guard, and Mitchella's younger cousin, Trif. Again, if you know the characters, you should know one of their major conflicts. BTW, throughout the series, Winterberry has been only Winterberry. Naturally a hero needs a first name. Since he's part of the Celtan universe, that means he must have a "plant" name. Now Winterberry is a form of Holly -- so the hero Winterberry is distantly related to the Hollys, and that means he gets a plant name that's Holly-like -- which is Black Ilex.

Teasing readers is fun, but I rarely go too far, except for my unfinished payoffs, which I think I'll write today and post tomorrow. Maybe. Or maybe I'll talk about titles. Or reviewers giving away twists....

Love to all,
Robin

4 Comments:

Blogger Holly said...

Ooh, yay! I liked Jaquar. Wonderful teaser, Robin. :) Though, I admit what I'm most looking forward to now is seeing if Marian is a Boulderite, or just someone who happens to live there!

Love the blog - gives me something to wake up to in the morning. :)

~Holly (Laurel) H.
(Who grew up in Colorado, and now thinks perhaps, given her personal affinity for plant names, she should pick up the Heart books)

7:44 AM  
Blogger CE Murphy said...

*laugh*! Eee! *laughs and runs around* Yay for having fun with things! Yay for Sinafin! Just yay in general!

-Catie who needs to get back to work :)

12:22 PM  
Blogger Michele said...

Tease? Oh yea, like - what is going to happen to Holm (Holly) Apple??? I'm still reeling that his dad disowned him!!!! It doesn't sound like his story is going to be finished....I LIKE Holm!....I need him to have his HEA. I can't sleep! (too much melodrama?) Well, I can..but I do wonder....ya know?

1:21 PM  
Blogger Robin D Owens said...

Marian is a Boulderite. *I* lived there for several years...'course I may have forgotten...anyway, Marian's apartment was mine.

Holly! You would LOVE the Holly family in the Heart Books...they walk on stage in chapter one of HeartMate and haven't missed a book yet.

Holm and his wife went to Gael City. They are doing fine at last report. They show up in Heart Choice -- as does T'Holly, Tab Holly and Tinne Holly...I made Holm tremble. You'll see.

Hey Catie, you laugh and run around. I usually dance around bored cats.

Robin

3:59 PM  

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