Blog Archives

Finding Myself … as a Writer

A few weeks ago, we were cleaning our storage room, and I found box after box of my writing stuff – some of it dated back twenty years, some of it was awful, and there were some beginnings without endings. But what I found more interesting was the variety of topics and genres I’d explored early on: poetry, short stories, cookbook ideas (I’ve always been somewhat of a foodie), children’s crosswords, nonfiction articles, and on and on it went – Clearly, I was trying to find myself as a writer.

My first novel was in there; I probably spent ten years on that thing, and I’m not sure if I’ll ever pursue it further. I was a huge V.C. Andrews fan at the time, and I infused family saga with my love of the 1920s. But over the years, when I tried to reopen it and edit, I realized the story just wasn’t me anymore. Maybe it never was – it was V.C. Andrews’.

About ten years ago, I started the rough draft of my second book, Jaclyn’s Ghost, and started out the same way I had with the first book. At the time, I was reading Anne Rice, and I’ve always loved paranormal. I was going to write a scary ghost story … but I did something different, I let my characters lead the way and it came out as a romantic comedy – and that was when I finally found the genre that inspired me – quirky paranormal romance.

My short stories started out kind of simple and pointless, and now I know exactly which story sparked a turning point:  “Phone Calls and Dwarfs.”  I had discovered fairy tales and how to purposely use something as inspiration to ignite my imagination. I started a website, Supernatural Fairy Tales, and, for a couple of years, I gave myself a challenge each month to write and post a short story with two criteria – fairy tales and paranormal. (Later, I wrote four YA novels inspired by some of these stories.)

A couple of years ago, I decided to go a different route and write a contemporary romance (The Trouble with Snowmen) without fairy tale inspirations or anything supernatural … wrong. Albeit they aren’t the main genre of the book, but they still snuck in there.

So, after many years of trial and error, I believe I have found myself as a writer – or it found me and won’t let go. And if you happen to pick up a copy of The Trouble with Snowmen  (Soul Mate Publishing Summer 2015) you’ll know the origin of all the elements (romantic comedy, fairy tales, and paranormal) that wiggled their way into my story.

Love and Laughter,

Dorlana

Spring For Love: blog hop and giveaway – Featuring Author Dale Ibitz

spring for love blog hop Hi friends,

Welcome to the first day of the weekend long Spring for Love blog hop and giveaway!

My guest today is author Dale Ibitz. Dale was born in Oxford, Connecticut, grew up in the state of Washington, and then re-located back to Connecticut as an adult where she studied English at Central Connecticut State University. She never left, choosing Connecticut as her permanent home. Dale’s a fan of hiking and the outdoors, and she never, ever starts the day without chocolate and coffee (preferably together).

What does Dale like most about spring?

“Green. After a long winter of nothing but stark white, love the green that blooms. There’s no other green like spring-green!”

Dale Ibitz’s latest novel Kiss Me Dead is available on Amazon

Dalt Ibitz - KissMeDead

One curse …
Christian, a nineteen-year-old reaper-human hybrid enslaved to the Other World to harvest souls, earns his freedom by making a bargain with the Goddess of Death. As part of the bargain, he’s been cursed with the kiss of death.

One kiss …
The only way Christian can break his curse is for an angel to kiss him. Willingly. He finds Brooke, a nineteen-year-old descendant of a Naphil whose destiny is to hunt rogue reapers. But she’s hiding, suffocating in a semi-agoraphobic cocoon since witnessing a reaper steal her brother’s soul.

Two destinies …
Christian has found the angel who can break his curse, and the seduction begins. To break her phobia’s hold, Brooke embraces her angelic role and makes it her mission to kill rogue reapers, trying to avenge her brother’s murder.

 Christian can break his curse by kissing Brooke dead. Brooke can avenge her brother’s murder by killing Christian. Neither planned to fall in love.

Giveaway:

Visit the Spring for Love’s Rafflecopter to find out how you can win a $50.00 Amazon gift card or other fun gifts!  (Enter Here)

Visit Dale Ibitz on the web:

Website
Facebook
Twitter
GoodReads
Amazon Author Central
Pinterest

More books by Dale Ibitz:

Last Moon Rising Boxset (Books 1 -3)

Blood Tied (Last Moon Rising #4)

Thanks for visiting! Stop by tomorrow; I will be featuring author Jo Richardson. And make sure to visit all the participating author’s websites for more chances to win and to get the info on new and upcoming titles from Soul Mate Publishing.

Love and laughter,

Dorlana

Spring for Love: Blog Hop and Giveaway

spring for love blog hop

Hi friends,

I will be participating in the Spring for Love Blog Hop and Giveaway Friday March 27, 2015 through Sunday March 29, 2015. This is going to be an awesome event featuring novels by Soul Mate Publishing authors, and there will be a drawing for a fabulous prize!

The authors who will be visiting my site this weekend are:

Friday: Dale Ibitz
Saturday: J.R.Richardson
Sunday: Densie Webb

Be sure to stop by to find out about their books, what they love about spring, and enter the drawing.

Love and Laughter,

Dorlana

Do’s and Don’ts From Dorlana’s Writing Desk

Over the years I’ve developed habits while writing, some good and some bad. Here are a few of my personal do’s and don’ts when writing/editing.

  • Do email myself a copy of the draft I’m working on everyday. Not only does this save a file in case my computer crashes (I’ve lost 50 pages before) it also gives me a writing record. Accountability.
  • Don’t stop writing (rough draft) when frustrated. I have to remember that writing a character into a corner can create fabulous, productive frustration. That is not the time to walk away. That is the time to dig in, think, and analyze. It’s the magic portal past that top layer of fluffy clichés and memories of already written stories, to the raw imagination. Here is more on my thoughts about frustration and writing. Frustration: a writer’s BFF 
  • Do sit up straight. I’m constantly having to tell myself this.
  • Don’t ignore story changes/suggestions/critiques. When I first read through a critique, sometimes I’ll disagree with a suggestion. But then I have to remind myself: if something took the reader out of my story, something is wrong. It might not be what the reader thinks it is, but there’s a problem that needs fixing. Here is more on my thoughts about critiques: Don’t Take Critiques at Face Value.
  • Do trust myself and my work. I had a dream the other night that an artist was frantically rearranging her pictures on display at an art show. She couldn’t get them perfect. I told her she knew colors and she knew balance and at some point she had to trust herself. I then told her to stop and walk away and come back later to take a fresh look. ( I’m trying to take my own advice.)
  • Don’t bring an entire box of snacks to my desk. I get hungry when I type ….
  • Do put cut scenes in a separate computer file. I’m not a pack-rat in normal life, but in my writing life I’m like, “I might need that someday.” And even though I don’t think I’ve ever retrieved anything, it takes away all the anxiety when I highlight a page (or sentence) and hit delete. I’m not deleting it … I’m just moving it.

What are your personal do’s and don’ts when it comes to writing?

Love and Laughter, Dorlana

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