November 25, 2015
Hi readers! Welcome to our Tour Stop for
The Trouble with Destiny by Lauren Morrill
hosted by Irish Banana.
Be sure to enter the giveaway found at the end of the post!
It’s not about the destination, it’s about the journey...
With her trusty baton and six insanely organized clipboards, drum major Liza Sanders is about to take Destiny by storm—the boat, that is. When Liza discovered that her beloved band was losing funding, she found Destiny, a luxury cruise ship complete with pools, midnight chocolate buffets, and a $25,000 spring break talent show prize.
Liza can’t imagine senior year without the band, and nothing will distract her from achieving victory. She’s therefore not interested when her old camp crush, Lenny, shows up on board, looking shockingly hipster-hot. And she’s especially not interested in Russ, the probably-as-dumb-as-he-is-cute prankster jock whose ex, Demi, happens be Liza’s ex–best friend and leader of the Athenas, a show choir that’s the band’s greatest competition.
But it’s not going to be smooth sailing. After the Destiny breaks down, all of Liza’s best-laid plans start to go awry. Liza likes to think of herself as an expert at almost everything, but when it comes to love, she’s about to find herself lost at sea.
Top 10 Writing Tips for Aspiring Writers
Read a lot.
Some authors say you shouldn’t read in your genre while you’re writing, but I disagree. I do try to avoid books with similar plots to what I’m writing, though, so I can be sure my ideas are fresh and mine.
Write a lot.
Some say write every day. Some say write 1,000 words a day. You have to figure out what works for you. I try to write at least a sentence every day, just to keep my head in the story. Writing a sentence is a small enough goal that I won’t get scared off from it, but most of the time one sentence quickly turns into a paragraph, a scene, a chapter, or a full-on writing binge.
Learn to write anywhere, at any time.
I wrote most of my fourth novel, My Unscripted Life (Fall 2016), from the front seat of my car in parking lots all over town, while my newborn baby snoozed in his car seat. It was the only place I could get him to nap, so it became my only writing time!
Try different things.
Try writing in present, in past, in first person and in third. It not only develops your skills, but keeps the experience fresh for you. Try rewriting a chapter of your novel in a different person or tense. Or try rewriting a chapter of your favorite novel in a different person or tense!
Take your character with you.
Jen Calonita mentioned this on a panel once, and I love it. Spend a day taking your character with you. When you order coffee, think about what your character would order. When someone cuts you off in traffic, imagine how your character would react. Spend your entire day in your character’s head. It’ll help get to know them and make them three-dimensional.
Write it down.
When you have an idea, a funny line, a character name, write it down. You think you’ll remember, but trust me, you won’t. Carry a notebook around with you, or make a note on your phone. Your future self will thank you.
“Said” is enough.
Mused, muttered, uttered, delivered, proclaimed, etc. . . . these words are distractions. Ninety-nine percent of the time, “said” is enough. It’s boring, but that’s the point. It’s the word that disappears and puts the focus on the dialogue, where it belongs.
Read reviews . . . of books you love.
There is no universally loved book. Anything you love, someone out there hates. Seeing this in stark black-and-white will help prepare you for the inevitable criticism coming your way. Jennifer E. Smith once said on a panel, “Your book is not a hundred-dollar bill. Not everyone is going to like it.” If you can’t take the criticism, you’re in the wrong business. That being said, avoid reviews of your own work. I only read reviews my editor or agent send to me, because I know they’re not likely to suck out my soul!
Find your tribe.
Whether it’s an in-person writers’ group or a virtual band of friends, you need support and encouragement. There will be plenty of people in life who will tell you how hard it is to get published. There will be plenty of people telling you you’re wasting your time. Make sure you have a wild band of crazies who tell you to ignore all that and get back to the page.
Everyone you know thinks they can write a novel. Half the people you know have started one. But no one gets published without writing “the end.” Writing is a marathon, and most people quit somewhere around mile five. Keep going. Push through. Finishing is half the battle.
Complete the Rafflecopter below for a chance to win!