What do you listen to when you write? #writerslife #amwriting

Being quiet

I am guessing not everyone will share my sentiments, but for me, there is great comfort in being quiet when writing. I write best when I am sitting in my little pod office, with the lovely view of trees, and…absolute quiet.

My husband used to be incredibly noisy, which did present some problems on occasion! Recently, he has become an avid reader (he reads way more than I do now!) and I am delighted that he does this in the quiet. For the most part, when I am writing, I am left alone in this noiseless state. I do deviate occasionally, but more on that below…

E.B. White “I never listen to music when I’m working.”

Background chatter

Yes, this is the writing chimp editing in a coffee shop!

I am a self aware introvert. I accept this is what I am. That said, this desire for silence is a little extreme even amongst the introvert brigade. A few years ago I read the aptly named ‘Quiet’ by Susan Cain, a book all about being an introvert. In it, she talks about her writing routine, and she found it more productive to sit in a coffee shop to work on her book. The background chatter, and the unobtrusive presence of people helped her to focus. For her, too much isolation was actually a bad thing.

Pop music

The concept of writing anything of worth while listening to pop music is beyond my comprehension. But E.L. James  found Will.I.Am blasting in the background an inspiration when tackling her ‘naughty’ scenes! Each to their own…

Classics anyone?

Classic music can create a powerful mood in a movie, but what about when we write? I do have a few pieces that I enjoy occasionally when I want to create a pull in a particular emotional direction. I am not alone in this one…

In an interview Edmund White, the writer of award-winning fiction, biographies and memoirs, said he liked to write to chamber music by Debussy, especially the cello sonata.

Chill-out tunes / a beat without words 

This is probably one of my favorite deviations from silence. I love things with a good beat if I’m writing an action scene. It’s a great tool for visualisations!

Ambient music

A final shout out to the ambient music. Birds, wind, waterfalls, waves, the stuff you hear when you go to the spa…if you go to a spa, that kind of thing. Ambient music is all about creating a mood. There is generally no beat to it (although there might be), just drifting notes that (hopefully) create a strong or peaceful mood.

So, what do you write to?

Thoughts and suggestions? Have I missed any obvious ones? What do you like to write to?

Five Tips for Dealing with Writer’s Block

always nice to pick up a few tips for writer’s block 🙂

A Writer's Path

by Felicity Annora

W R I T E R ‘ S   B L O C K S   &   B R I C K   W A L L S

Creative motors are sputtering, you ran out of enthusiasm water, and there’s a lot more dead ends then you remember seeing on the map. Where did all the brick walls come from?

Lucky for you, I have a few tricks up my sleeve that very well might make your blocks disappear with a poof!

View original post 217 more words

Angels and demons, a writer’s life #writingquotes #writing #amwriting #writerslife

Most people carry their demons around with them, buried down deep inside. Writers wrestle their demons to the surface, fling them out onto the page, then call them characters.”

~C.K. Webb


People are contradictory by nature, driven by emotions that manifest themselves in actions defying logic or reason.

We are ancient beings trying to live in a modern world, fighting buried instincts that we defeat only some of the time.

Our failings, and our strength to rise above them, are what makes us so interesting.

Our emotions can make us altruistic, and brave, but they can also make us monsters.

Our cognizance of our inner demons is what separates us from the beasts. It is what makes us human.

As writers we love to explore those inner demons and angels, and what keeps us hanging between the two worlds of instinct and moral code.

From the petty jealousy to the rage that can drive us to kill.

From our ability to appreciate fine art to a parent’s love.

Emotions in all their manifestations, their consequence and their repercussions, give writers a reason to write.


 

WordPress tips – Featured image not updating #Blogging #WordPress

Have you ever noticed that sometimes you update your blog post featured image in WordPress, but when you share it on social media, it still shows the old image…

Annoying, isn’t it!

Here are two super easy ways to fix this for Facebook and Twitter.


Facebook: https://developers.facebook.com/tools/debug/og/object/

  1. Insert your post URL.
  2. Hit ‘show existing scrape information’.
  3. Check the picture.
  4. If wrong hit the ‘fetch new scrape information’.
  5. The picture should now be correct.

Twitter: https://cards-dev.twitter.com/validator

  1. Insert your URL.
  2. Hit preview card.
  3. The picture should now be correct.

Note: If you have problems with this not working the first time, try waiting 5 minutes and then retry.


Happy blogging 🙂

It’s promotion time! Divided Serenity #Free on Amazon! #Bookpromotion #bookboost #scifi

It’s promotion time again! To celebrate some wonderful new reviews, all 3 books in the Divided World trilogy are on sale.

Book 1 is Free, and book 2 & 3 are 99cents (99p)

Happy reading!

Divided Serenity (Book One) #FREE http://hyperurl.co/yfi7m2

Serenity Falling (Book Two) #99cents https://hyperurl.co/1j9tol

Revealing Serenity (Book Three) #99cents https://hyperurl.co/ja0qrt


Divided Serenity (Divided World Book One)

He had waited ten years for revenge, they had waited eons.

John Tanis dreams of killing the man responsible for his exile.

Once loyal to the civilized Aterra, Tanis now fights for Shadowland. But the mysterious arrival of technology outside the wall heralds change.

With the dividing wall failing his new loyalties will be tested, and he must choose between revenge and saving the people he once loved.


Serenity Falling (Divided World Book Two)

Revenge is only the beginning.

Hannah thought her work in Shadowland was complete. Station 54 was operational and Aterra was once more safe. There is just one problem…no one in Aterra knows, and Bill is determined to proceed with the war.

With the door to Aterra closed, Hannah and the team head to Thale, the largest and most prestigious of the five great fortresses. But the mysterious return of a badly beaten Marcus has everyone on edge.
The people of Aterra remain ignorant of what is happening beyond their protective wall, but Theo and Nate are determined to uncover the details of Bill’s covert operations in Shadowland. That will mean infiltrating Bill’s private home. And what they uncover will make them question who is really to blame for the enduring conflict between Bill Bremmer and John Tanis.


Revealing Serenity (Divided World Book Three) 

Revenge at any cost.

With the wall once more inoperative and their weapons disabled, Aterra’s war on Shadowland is over.

Bill’s plans may be in disarray and his internal power slipping, but he is a man who knows how to adapt. He still holds the mighty Jaru war-tribe under his tenuous control, and now sets his sights on the fortress leaders as future allies in a common quest for revenge against John Tanis.

But Bill isn’t the only one interested in the Jaru war-tribe and their despot leader Ailey, and the mysterious Outliers have plans of their own.


For the latest news you can subscribe to my newsletter [HERE]


What readers are saying about the trilogy…

AMAZON 5STAR REVIEW

GOT + high-tech = best of both

 

AMAZON 5STAR REVIEW

A fast, exciting if bloody read!

 

AMAZON 4STAR REVIEW

A tense, gripping dystopian novel

 

Goodreads 5STAR REVIEW

Not a new concept – haves vs have nots, but the characters are rich, and the writing is crisp, clean, and colorful. The story is engaging, and using the characters to move the plot forward keeps the pages turning. Any book that entertains while forcing you to consider new possibilities is a winner, and Divided Serenity fits the bill.

 

AMAZON 5STAR REVIEW

Great book with an intriguing plot

 

AMAZON 5STAR REVIEW 

A great read – a great mix of adventure with a deeper intriguing universe

 

AMAZON 4STAR REVIEW

Medeival meets technology

Review of Books in Divided World Series by G. L. Cromarty – Divided Serenity & Serenity Falling

Thank you Claire for taking the time to read and review my book! 😊

Pain Pals

Divided World Series by G.L. Cromarty

Divided Serenity (book 1) and Serenity Falling (book 2)

gl-blog-bannerI was fortunate to be given copies of these books through The Book Club on Facebook and the author in exchange for a fair and honest review.  All opinions are my own.

Serenity.  A world that is divided.  The Aterran people live inside a “virtual” wall with a land is progressive and based upon technology.  Outside the wall live the Shadowlanders and the Jaru, two groups of people sharing as much hatred for each other as for the Aterrans.

Bill Bremmer and John Tanis are sworn enemies, once best friends.  Bremmer is the leader of the Aterran people whilst Tanis has been banished from Aterra and is now a fully-fledged Shadowlander.  When the normal pattern of war between the Shadowlanders and the Jaru seems to have changed, and Bremmer receives intelligence that there might be…

View original post 761 more words

To trope or not to trope…when writing become a cliché! #writing #amwriting

Today I want to talk about tropes. When to use them, when not to use them, and the vast gray quagmire that exists between.

What is a literary trope?

In the literary sense, a trope is a common theme, plot point, event or motif within a story.

What is the problem with using a trope?

There is nothing wrong with using a common trope, there are oodles of them out there and we love them, which I will explore in more detail below. The problem is only when they are overused…badly.

They make us groan, switch off, or even reach for the nearest trashcan to dispense of the literary waste.

Overused tropes and writing clichés are boring, disappointing, and leave the reader feeling cheated.

So, we should never use a trope?

Here is where it starts to get a little gray and fuzzy. It’s pretty difficult to think of something completely original and new. Humans take comfort in a story that triggers a familiar spark in our imaginations. Fairy tales and fables are the ultimate tropes, and even as adults we are happy to read them again and again.

Tropes become tropes, well, because fundamentally they are appealing:

  • They present us with the ultimate challenge > zombies hunger for human flesh or aliens experimenting on humans
  • They appeal to our sense of good and happiness > boy meets girl and lives happily ever after 
  • They identify stereotypes > grumpy boss, evil drug kingpin, nerdy IT student

The good the bad and the ugly…😱

“I can’t believe they did that. It was sooooo obvious!

Avoid overused character tropes like the plague!

Many bad tropes relate to characters, not all, but certainly many do. Not every character has to break the stereotypeI used to work in IT and I can definitely confirm that some stereotypes have a foundation in reality! But deviating from cliché characters can deliver amazing results when done right.

Look what happened when a desperate school teacher dying of cancer became a drug kingpin? Walter White is the ultimate anti-trope character and Breaking Bad was a huge success for exactly this reason.

Tropes we still love…Zombies want to eat us

The flesh-eating zombie trope has been, well, done to death if you’ll excuse the pun. But we still love this trope…there are books and books of this trope and I don’t think our enthusiasm for zombies has yet to show signs of decline. Sure, we can mix it up but fundamentally zombies love eating human flesh and we are still reading about it.

Tropes we love to hate…UFO abductions

Unlike the zombie trope, which might still have a little life left, excuse the pun! Aliens abductions has tipped over the other side. A couple of decades ago this might have been more common, but the basic alien abduction is definitely in decline.

Conclusions

A trope, in itself, isn’t a bad thing, avoiding any familiarity in a book or story is near impossible, and the occasional deviation towards trope-land isn’t going to kill your creation…but too much of it will. The subtle ways in which we explore our writing and challenge ourselves when it comes to tropes and clichés can make an average story, great. Not every character has to break the mould, not every plot point has to be unique (nor can it be!), but within those bounds we should strive to remain vigilant for clichés, and enrich our writing with events, people and circumstance that reflect the diverse and surprising nature of real life.

What are your favorite tropes?

What tropes do you love to hate?

Some great articles on tropes…

Six Unrealistic Tropes and How to Avoid Them

5 Clichés To Avoid In Your Fantasy Novel

Ten tropes you’ll find in science fiction – over and over again