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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Location: Denver, United States

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

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Thursday, December 29, 2011

Finally the last scenes!

I've spent a lot of time contemplating the plot (along with pacing, whining, and talking to mentor) of Heart Secret, and I FINALLY have a list of my scenes. Usually this occurs more like 2 weeks out, which it hasn't this time.

Not only that, but I don't have the ending written. I might actually write it LAST. Zowie.

In any event, here's how they look. Some are written, one I'm not sure where I'll put, but since it increases pressure on Artemisia, my heroine, I'm sure it will stay in...and you know that scene with Garrett that I changed the setting on and posted the before and after here? That's gone.


May your road be clear today.

Wednesday, December 28, 2011

Of Sunsets and Word Wars and Heart Secret

Of Sunsets and Word Wars and Heart Secret: I've had a day off this month, since Heart Secret has gotten all tangled up in the last quarter. I'm not accustomed to having a story go awry at this point and it peeves me. What should I leave in, what should I cut? The chronological/timeline/choreography has already been fixed THREE TIMES, why does it not work. URG!

So when I was on word wars tonight and a new to Denver friend, Cate Rowan, alerted me to a good sunset I took a few shots.

Uplifting, soothing, and now I can go back and try and untangle (again!) my scenes and get them in the proper order.

Love to all,

Sunday, December 25, 2011

A Wish For You

From Fra Giovanni to Friend, 1513

I salute you.

There is nothing I can give you which you have not, but there is much that what I cannot give, you can take:

No Heaven can come to us unless our hearts find rest in it today; take Heaven.

No Peace lies in the future which is not hidden in this present instant; take Peace.

The gloom of the world is but a shadow, behind it, yet within our reach, is Joy; take Joy.

There is radiance and glory in the darkness , to see it we only have to look -- so look!

Life is so full of meaning and purpose, so full of beauty - beneath its covering - that you will find earth but cloaks your heaven.

Courage, then, to claim it is all that's needed; take courage.

And with courage, know that we are all pilgrims together wending through an unknown country, home.

And so at this time I greet you, with the prayer that for you, now and forever, the day breaks and the shadows flee away.

Love to all,

Thursday, December 22, 2011

Enchanted Again's Book Widget

Blog Widget

I'm Sure The Sun's Out There....

I'm sure the sun survived the longest night (otherwise we wouldn't have), but can't see it through the snow and clouds....

May you enjoy the warmth today, wherever you are, wherever you roam.


Wednesday, December 21, 2011

Happy Yule!

Yes, the sun has set and we are now in the longest night of the year. So I give you this sunrise to keep us warm and hopeful through all the night and all our troubled nights and days.

May you have a WONDERFUL holiday season, and a FABULOUS New Year.


Tuesday, December 20, 2011

Enchanted Again Opening Hook

Enchanted Again has one of my favorite opening lines and hook:

If she'd aged naturally, Amber Sarga would have been twenty-six. But her gift for curse breaking cost her days, weeks, months...years.

I hope you enjoy it, and visiting the world of the Lightfolk. The story takes place entirely in Colorado, in Denver and Red Rocks Park.


Monday, December 19, 2011

Enchanted Again Available!

Not sure how it happened, but it's available on amazon for shipping...THOUGHT it was available for download but not until Jan 1st. Weird. Could someone have told the author?


Friday, December 16, 2011

Walker's Sword in Noble Heart

Walker's sword in Noble Heart: I blogged once about being inspired by physical objects, and once the story collection was titled Hearts and Swords, I knew a sword would need to be a part of each story. I had to add a sword to Heart Story (Blush's story), and had one in mind for Noble Heart -- thus the whole new cultural business in that having a sword makes a noble house "more."

And, of course, when I had to think of swords, I had something like that in front of me, and since Walker's sword was when he saw it during his psi-dreamquest-Passage, I could use what I had near.

So here is something like I have, I think it is less detailed, but you can see the wings as the hand guard (quillions) and the tail wrapped around the quilt.

May you not need any kind of sword today.

Sunday, December 11, 2011

Changing Settings, before and after

Changing Settings -- I began writing a new scene today in Heart Secret and set it in a noble lord social club...and realized that during an awful lot of this book, people are having conversations over drinks...caff or cocoa or liquor. In any event, I knew I had to change the setting. So here's the before and after:

Garrett stared into the snifter that held his brandy. He slumped in the richly upholstered chair, legs stuck out. He'd barely noticed the interior of the exclusive FirstFamilies club – for men only. It was his understanding that the women had their own, more suited to their tastes. And as for tastes, the brandy wasn't much good.

But that could be because of the sourness in his mouth. Laev T'Hawthorn, who was the actual member of this club, sat at ease across from Garrett.

Sour mouth from the bitter ashes of regret and stinging pride or not, Garrett had to admit it. So he did, grunting the words. "I made a bad mistake."

Laev raised his brows. "What, another?" he asked in that dangerously smooth tone that a powerful man developed.

"Yeah, yeah," Garrett waved his snifter, nearly slopping the liquid from his glass.

"Shall I tell you the consequences of your last bad mistake?" Laev asked with obvious false sympathy. The guy was sure enjoying payback for earlier in the year.

"I suppose you looked it up," Garrett grumbled.

"Oh, yes. Though I didn't have to look far."

Garrett stared broodingly down the cliff at the bright blue waves topped with white spume, shifting restlessly from foot to foot, something he could only allow himself in the presence of a good friend. GreatLord Laev T'Hawthorn stood beside him, relaxed and easy. This was his land. Hell, the kilometers of the ocean that Garrett could see might be his water, too.

Taking in a deep breath, Garrett tasted salty air. Not especially good. But that could be because the sourness in his mouth. And sour mouth from the bitter ashes of regret and stinging pride or not, Garrett had to admit it. So he did, grunting the words. "I made a bad mistake."

Laev grinned, white teeth gleaming. "What, another?" he asked in that dangerously smooth tone that a powerful man developed.

"Yeah, yeah," Garrett said. He rolled a silver coin over his knuckles, good practice in the wind, demanding concentration and manual dexterity.

"Shall I tell you the consequences of your last bad mistake?" Laev asked with obvious false sympathy. The guy was sure enjoying payback for earlier in the year.

"I suppose you looked it up," Garrett grumbled.

"Oh, yes. Though I didn't have to look far."

As always, may you enjoy all the worlds you visit today.

Saturday, December 10, 2011

Good Lines

Good Lines. The set up: I had another dreadful "deadline" nightmare this morning, and told it a few times at critique and a holiday open house where the craziness of it would have been appreciated.

And, since I live alone, I often talk to myself (or the cats, which is almost the same), and speaking of it aloud, I realized I'd come upon one of those good lines that occasionally happen, maybe even something that could be the hook in a book: "I'm sure I had that dream before, I remember the castle and the fish."

For your amusement.

Thursday, December 08, 2011

Worst Thing for a Writer

Worst thing for a writer. You know what really sends the agony level high in a writer? Losing work. There is nothing worse. Because you'll search forever for it in backups, wonder how it happened, and then grit your teeth and reconstruct, hoping you can get it as good as it was.

Yes, I lost something yesterday, the final draft of chapter 16 of Heart Secret. I was working on chapter 20 when I realized this. Sickening, like when you make that awful mistake at the day job. I'd thought that I'd had a critical scene in it that I'd slaved over the motivation in.

I have multiple backups of everything, and the working copy (pretending to be the final) was saved everywhere.

I think it was one of those "walked away from desk, came back, was asked if I wanted to save the file and absently hit 'no' deals, so all my fault.

It threw me for a couple of hours before I beat back the hysteria and rolled up my sleeves and went to work.

To find out that the critical scene was in chapter 17 WHEW, 16 just needed a little twitching.

Operator error hits us all.

May you be free of sickening mistakes this year.

Tuesday, December 06, 2011

Hearts & Swords OUT, Timeline below

Hearts & Swords is OUT: Here's the timeline again!

Celta Timeline:

HeartMate: Druida City, Celta, 400 years after Colonization, Summer, July, Discovery Day

Heart Thief: Druida City, Celta, 400 Years after Colonization, Autumn

Heart Duel: Druida City, Celta, 403 years after Colonization, Summer, Month of Holly

Heart Choice: Druida City, Celta, 404 Years After Colonization, Spring

**Nuin Ash is born late 404

Heart Quest: Druida City, Celta, 405 Years After Colonization, Late Autumn

Heart Dance: Druida City, Celta, 405 Years After Colonization, Early Winter (two months after Heart Quest, i.e. January/)

Heart Story IN THE COLLECTION OF HEARTS AND SWORDS: Druida City, Celta 406 Years After Earth Colonization, Spring

Heart Fate: Druida City, Celta, 406 Years After Colonization, Mid Winter (one year after the end of Heart Dance) SAMHAIN = NEW YEAR, SO JUST A MONTH AND A HALF AFTER THE NEW YEAR

Heart & Soul IN THE COLLECTION OF HEARTS AND SWORDS, Gael City, Celta 406 Years After Colonization, Autumn (Elder/October) the last days of 406

Heart Change: Druida City, Celta, 407 Years After Colonization, Spring (March)

Heart Journey: Druida City, Celta, 407 Years After Colonization, Late Summer

Noble Heart IN THE COLLECTION OF HEARTS AND SWORDS, Druida City, Celta, 411 Years After Colonization, Winter


Heart Search (Laev): Druida City, Celta, 421 Years After Colonization, Late Spring
Nuin Ash is 17

May you enjoy all the worlds you visit today.

Monday, December 05, 2011

Hearts and Swords Release Nerves

Hearts and Swords release nerves? OF COURSE. The only other novella that I've written and published was Road To Adventure (a contemporary paranormal with THE best cat I've done). So I am wriggling with nerves as to whether people (and people who aren't fans) will buy and enjoy...wriggling is not too bad in the below-freezing weather here, but still....

Guess I'll learn tomorrow...

Thursday, December 01, 2011

Writing Seasons

Writing Seasons: It is 18 Degrees F. out and my nose is cold...the snow storm came in today with about 3 inches.

In Celta it's a hot summer (think August), and Artemisia Mugwort is furious at her HeartMate, Garrett Primross, and leaving her workplace of Primary HealingHall to walk out in the serenity of the Healing Grove.

Did I say my hands are cold, too? Summoning up the heat of a summer's day is almost impossible.

So I'll concentrate on the emotions -- hurt, anger, fear.

And maybe I'll pull up some lovely pics of trees in the summer to remind me that on Celta it's not December.

May your weather be kind to you today.

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