Every night, Valerie has unsettling dreams. Does she have psychiatric issues or an eerie insight? Oh No, I’ve Fallen in Love! Is a dark kind of romcom – #readinglife @IndieWriterSupp #comedy #dryhumour #Britishbooks #Psychological

Valerie’s world is turned upside down when she encounters smooth-talking Lex Kendal, and spoilt Lex is treated with a dose of real life. Oh no, I FALLEN IN LOVE is more than just a novel. It’s a ride. Continue reading

Returning to Eden’s prehistoric #scifi saga that stole the hearts of #readers everywhere.

‘I’m scared’, Fly had said. He was never scared. He was her hero. Her rugged hero made up from all the romance books she’d read. Big, bold and beautiful—in an alien kind of way. Jenny’s from Earth. Fly’s from Itor. … Continue reading

The worst thing you can say to someone with #depression is ‘pull yourself together’.

‘I’m not angry, moody or resentful. I just don’t like people.’ – Valerie Anthrope. ‘Oh no, I’ve Fallen in Love! comes a warm, tear-jerking story of strong women, bad-turned-good men and the power of friendship. Valerie’s life has been one of … Continue reading

‘Is it in?’ – A Proper Charlie #romcom #british #badsex #cheapbooks

 A Proper Charlie is a contemporary romance and sums up what the genre is all about: fun, ‘finding yourself’ and relationships.   Charlie Wallis is a ditzy redhead but her heart is in the right place. Without a family, she was … Continue reading

How do you like your love fix?

by
Jan
Ruth
Amazon.UK
Amazon.com
Mills and Boon or hard-core erotica? Realistic and
gritty, or pure fantasy and escapism? Maybe with a blend of humour, or a touch
of the paranormal?
Contemporary romance is all about modern love, sex
and relationships; but the diversity is as vast as the open sea. It’s just
about the biggest umbrella term in fiction and probably the most subjective;
although the sub-genre list is growing so the chances of not finding something
to your taste, is pretty slim!
I love the scope of writing in this genre and the
reading of it has led me to pastures new in terms of variety. To be honest,
there are few books outside this genre that don’t benefit from a romantic
interest running alongside the main theme. And yet . . . I struggle with the
word, ‘romantic’. It still invites those old images of perfect young couples
silhouetted against a sunset, gazing into each other’s eyes. The woman was
always rescued by the man, usually a doctor, the ‘happy ever after’ was always
guaranteed, and usually well in sight by the beginning of the last chapter.
For a good while, romantic fiction has been all
about the beautiful, thirty-something-year-old woman being let down by a man;
but what about the forty-something-year-old man, being let down by a woman?
Romance in novels has evolved and changed along with
the role of women in society. What used to be deemed almost as porn, is now
acceptable in fiction . . . or is it? What does get me slightly hot under the
collar is the idea that erotica is romantic; it tends not to be in my opinion.
We know the basic facts, don’t we? That, as women, we need more emotional
connection for a piece to feel sexy, or romantic.
Can I get away with not mentioning 50 Shades? No?
Okay, I guess not. Well, I didn’t feel the love with this book and I’m taking a
gamble that the current fascination with being tied up will fade, along with
the vampires and the gargoyles. So, is erotica another name for soft porn?
Probably.
On the other side of the coin, romance with no love
scene or hint of sex in any shape or form, is slightly unrealistic for these
times. If an author has built sexual tension into a novel then I tend to feel a
bit cheated when the characters, poised at the scene of the act, skip forwards
to the following day or the chapter suddenly ends. I feel like the door has
firmly closed, with me, the reader, on the wrong side of it.
Amazon.UK
Amazon.com
Personally, I feel sex in fiction works best when
the sexual passages fit within the tone of the book. It’s a very fine line to
write good sexual scenes and, for me, it always works best when it just
triggers the imagination, but without taking its place entirely. I find romance
much more enjoyable to read (and write about) when it is blended within real
relationships. After all, the actual chemistry of love is still something of an
enigma and one of the most powerful feelings we can experience. Although
research can fill in a lot of gaps, there is no substitute for drawing on real
life experiences and most readers can easily tell the difference, especially if
you are aiming at ‘realistic and contemporary’.

And lastly, what about the men? We have some
terrific male romance writers, which just prove that the old images of this
genre are becoming less and less contrived. So, in answer to the original
question, I like my love fix with some feeling; sometimes funny, sometimes
poignant, but above all it has to be real.

Author Jan Ruth





Jan Ruth has written three, full length, novels: Wild Water, Midnight Sky and White Horizon. Find Jan Ruth here:


Facebook

Website
Jan Ruth on Amazon


July’s discussions will be…

social media


June over already? You sure? Crikey, I blinked and missed it, I reckon!

OK folks, the theme for July is social media.

Social media is important for writers,
but what’s your favourite?  Is it Twitter
that floats your boat? If it is, how on earth do you reach out to people when
you need followers? What about LinkedIn, has anyone fallen in love with that
seemingly lost tool? Is it lost?

Google Plus+ is new and seems a mix of Twitter and FB, and
what of Facebook itself? It’s full of people’s photos of their kids, isn’t it?
Have you tried Triberr? My Space? DevianArt? Live Journal, Tagged, Orkut,
Badoo, Ning… just how many are there? 

What about Pinterest? Pinning pictures to virtual boards? What’s the point of that? 

Just how do you juggle your time connecting and building the author platform?

These are just some of the questions we will be talking about. I have a few spare slots because of authors dropping out so if anyone wants to get in on the discussion…? Well, email me and let’s talk!

Among the social media chats I’d like to introduce you to a new paranormal author Fiona Mayne who will be spotlighting her new book – The Curse of Fin Milton – – A Spooky Ghost Story and Supernatural Romance. Sounds good, right? And I’ll be interviewing Serena Fairfax about her novel Where the Bulbul Sings and finding out about her writing routine.

See you then! 

How one writer discovered a writer’s group and never looked back.

by
 Christine Powell Gomez

I started my writing journey about a year ago.  I just woke up one morning and said “I’m
going to write a book.”  No—really, I
did.  Of course my husband just laughed
and responded, “Yeah…right.”  I can’t
say that I blame him for his lack of support. 
Honestly, it is something you get used to after a while.  You eventually learn that your family and
friends could care less about your next chapter or what your characters are
doing.  
I didn’t give much thought about how to write.  I just opened a new word document and started
typing…Not exactly the best way for a novice writer to begin their
journey.   But, no one has ever accused
me of doing anything with caution; I prefer to jump in feet first before testing
the waters.  After a few weeks it dawned
on me, I really have no idea what I’m doing. 
Not that I was going to let that stop me!  It was time to do a little research.  I needed to know how other authors take their
ideas and make real.  That is when I
found the most important tool for success—A great supportive writing group.  I had no idea that other writers could be
such a big source of knowledge, and that they were willing to share that with
you.  Anytime I had a question, someone
was always there with an answer.  I wish
I would have started my journey here; it would have made things a lot easier.
It took 3 months for me to complete my book.  It was like a weight lifting from my
shoulder…That is until I realized it was just the beginning.  I thought writing it would be the hardest
part, but I was wrong.  I now entered the
realm of need-to-find-an-editor, formatting-is-not-my-friend,
I-hate-my-cover-but-can’t-afford-anything-else, and my favorite
if-you-don’t-market-your-book-nobody-will-buy-it.
It wasn’t until latter that I learn about building a
brand and networking—two things that are essential to becoming a successful
writer.  But, every step of the way was
made easier by those in my writing group that had been there before and was
willing to share their journey.
The moral to this story—even if you don’t know where
to start or what to do next, you can still accomplish your dream if you put
your mind to it.  Everyone has a
different journey…So, embrace your journey, join a writing group, write your
little heart out and most important—never be afraid to ask.  There will always be other writers willing to
lend an ear and give advice.
  

Buy Now!

Broken relationships were a constant in Mae’s life,
causing her to swear off men forever. Unwittingly lured to Ireland, Mae finds
herself knee-deep in a hidden world she never knew existed and head over heels
for the very man that tricked her to coming there. His deception is complicated
by his own feelings for the one person that holds the key to merging the
ancient races that once ruled the ancient word.



Mae finds herself in an underground world of witches, and vampires, which are half-breeds of aliens long gone. She learns about her own unique parentage and powers, which she must study in order to control, before they consume her.

Beck and Helen’s love for one another spans across a millennium, her human soul reincarnated to match Beck’s own immortality. This time however the body she occupies is of a being that cannot be eclipsed by her return. After waiting two hundred years, Beck finds himself tormented by Helen’s inability to return and his growing love for her new host.

Some of the underworld creatures welcome her with open arms as a savior, while others seek to destroy the abomination they believe her to be. Will the knowledge of her existence cause a race war when the true power of her blood is discovered? Or will love become her ultimate downfall?


As a teen C.G. Powell was selected as a member of her school’s newspaper staff. After her first article the editor decided the darkroom was a more suitable place for her skills…or lack of. Since then, she has traveled everywhere—thanks to her innate curiosity about the world and the Navy. 


In her life time, she has learned: aviation electronics, CCNA networking, Gemology and how to get bloodstains out of the carpet (you never know when you might need that). But her latest, all-consuming, endeavor is storytelling. 


When asked why, her response was “I live to challenge myself; I like to be pushed outside of my comfort zone and writing is one of those things that pushes my boundaries. Besides it was the only way to share all of the crap bouncing around in my head!” 


C.G. Powell lives in Virginia with her husband and children. When she is not writing, you might find her watching hot guys jog past her front window, ordering the cabana boy to fix her another drink or abusing the local authorities…but that’s just hearsay.
Web
Links:
Purchase
Links:
Reviews: 

I am still dying here from laughter, love the chia pet part of
the story. I must add the running through the castle halls butt naked was a
laughing treat as well 😀 This story is packed with hiding secrets, unknown
events and much more. If your into hot vampires and warlocks this is your kind
of story. They have so a wonderful sense of humor and enjoy using it every
chance they get. Some parts may make you tear up 😦 I know I did, but the story
is so wonderfully put together. Get ready for unexpected events, amazing action
and wild romance. Grab this one now because I can promise you there is going to
be a part 2, and hun I sure hope to be one of your reviewers for that 😀 woot
haha chia pet, haha naked and getting his ass handed to him by his sexy mate
lmao. Ok, ok I’m done now, no I’m not, lmao, lmfao, omg so love it. 🙂

I enjoyed the new take on some of the mythological creatures I
find in books so often. It is quite clear that Ms. Powell has an analytical
mind and it was easy to see from the get go that she had every little bit of
the supernatural completely planned out and understood. She wove the mythical
history that we study nowadays with her own interpretation, and created an
interesting new world.

I was a little put off with Mae at times. She was hard to relate to, because I
never got a good feel of her character. The supporting cast really made this
book interesting, and I am hoping Mae will step up a little more once she
understands herself better. I do look forward to finding out what happens in
the next installment. I think it is going to be even more interesting


Spell Checked is one of the most original
Paranormal Romances that I’ve read in a long time. Forget what you ever thought
about the stereotypical Immortals, this book has you seeing Vampires and
Witches in a whole new light. Truly spell binding, funny and romantic. CG
Powell’s characters are likable and sexy, they will leave you wanting more.
It’s hard to believe this is CG’s first book, I’m anxiously awaiting book 2 to
see what she has in store for us next.

The Importance of Developing Your Author Platform

guest post 
by
Sandra Bunino 

Before my first book, Marooned
In Miami
, came out this past January, I began researching what it meant
to have an author platform.
I’d heard the term. I followed many
terrific authors. But what did “platform” mean exactly? Was it some kind of
pie-in-the-sky marketing concept or something I should take seriously as an
indie author? I have an MBA yet this whole concept was entirely new to me.
Here’s what I discovered:
  • Authors (no matter if you’re self-published or
    traditional) need to have an established presence prior to publishing their first book
    .
Okay, great. But wait, what? Prior to? Wouldn’t I be promoting my
book? Isn’t that the whole point? Yes. And no. I learned that the most
successful authors actually started their platform long before they released
their book!
How do you go about developing this
presence? That’s where I did more research, reading books, going online,
learning what other successful authors I admired had done.
  • For the most part, there’s a basic formula: Twitter, Facebook,
    Goodreads to an extent, and blogging
    . All new to me, but surely not
    that difficult. I had an advanced degree and I deal in the cutthroat world
    of corporate finance every day. Surely, I could do this, right? Well….
     
Not so fast. If you’ve dabbled in the world
of social media, you’ll understand when I say that it’s a bit of a different
culture. I didn’t quite get it at first. Many don’t. Twitter seemed kinda…weird
(haha). I even called my younger brother and asked him what these hashtags
meant (he was absolutely no help!). Many people think Twitter is about what
teenagers ate for lunch or a way to keep tabs on your favorite celebrity. But I
found out that as an author, it’s far more than that if used as a marketing
tool. What a powerful resource and best of all – it’s free!
I took a webinar, found a mentor and even hired a consultant to give me some
pointers (she’s also a bestselling author so she knows what she’s talking
about!). I was soon tweeting like a pro and gained over 2,000 followers in just
five months. I’ve met an amazing network of authors and connected with many
readers in a very short period of time – all thanks to Twitter, Facebook and
Goodreads.
  • Here’s where I think some authors make their
    mistake
    : as adults we don’t want to admit what
    we won’t know or understand — so many times we give up, walk away. I’ve learned that in publishing, that’s
    just not an option
    . If you ever hope to be signed by a traditional
    publisher (even an indie publisher), they expect you to have an
    established fan base. And not just with a blog. People need to know how to
    find your blog! And this is where Twitter and Facebook, even LinkedIn come
    in.
     
  • SEO: this is a big
    topic I won’t even try to cover here but it goes to what I mentioned in
    the last paragraph. If you want to be found, anywhere, you need to know
    your branding. This is where marketing yourself comes in. I figured out
    quickly that I needed to have a theme: to my blog posts, my tweets,
    Facebook messages – everything needed to go along with my genre, erotic
    romance.
     

I pay special attention to my brand.
Everything that I put my name on is branded with a consistent look and feel. There’s a sensual atmosphere to my brand
and I use key focal points such as red roses and rose petals, sunsets and
tropical settings on my blog, Twitter avatar and bio page, Facebook, and even
my book covers.
What does this have to do with SEO (search
engine optimization)? Keywords. Know
what your message is, what you want to convey, and be sure those words are in
everything you do so you and your book come up in the search engines.
This is how your readers can more easily find you with the least amount of
effort.
I
hope this peek into developing my author platform has been helpful for you.
There’s really so much more to it! But at least it’s a start for many people.
Any questions, please ask below in comments or contact me directly. And don’t
forget to comment for a free eBook and to enter my Kindle contest!
My
book Marooned in Miami is available
on
Amazon, Barnes
& Noble, AllRomance eBooks
Readers
can contact me through my website
www.sandrabunino.com and on Amazon Author Central. I
am also on Twitter @sandrabunino
(following is sexy!) and Facebook.
Follow your dream, stay positive and don’t
give up! Writing is about the journey not the destination. Enjoy the ride.
 

An erotica novella novel from Sandra Bunino 
*Adult Content*


Undeniable lust and a fierce Miami storm
bring sexy strangers together at The Hotel Del Santos for a passion filled
night. 


Picture
Buy Now!

Stephanie, still reeling from a failed marriage, needs a break from the past. She decides to take her friends’ advice and finds a perfect stranger for a night of no-strings-attached, smoking hot sex. 


Jason, a wealthy Seattle builder has the worst luck with love. Swearing he would never allow another woman to get under his skin, Jason decides a life of casual sex is just fine with him. While watching Stephanie’s sexy stilettos click across the lobby floor he zeros in on his next conquest. 


Cut off from the outside world, the lives of these two strangers collide and burn with desire when stranded in the perfect storm. Both are content with the idea of sharing a glorious one-night stand together, that is, until they go their separate ways. 


Picture


Sandra Bunino began a love of romance stories while penning a creative writing assignment in high school. The story ended with the heroine receiving a long stem red rose in her locker on Valentine’s Day. Since then, all of her stories feature the hero presenting the heroine with roses. Sandra is constantly searching for different ways to achieve a heart-pumping, stomach-flipping, breath-catching reaction from her readers. 

These days, Sandra lives on a wooded mountaintop not far from New York City with her family. Living so close to the city affords her the best of both worlds and provides wonderful writing material. She occasionally pretends to be in a Sex in the City episode and has renamed her best girlfriends Samantha, Charlotte and Miranda which she blogs about often. 

Sandra’s  is currently hard at work on the sequel to Marooned in Miami. 

Contact: http://sandrabunino.com/  Twitter: @sandrabunino

Excerpt:Jason moved closer and spoke slowly in his silky voice. “I wonder if you might dance with me.” She nodded and took his hand.
He led her to the dance floor illuminated only with candlelight and the occasional flash of lightning. Placing one hand in his and the other on his back, their bodies started out a respectable distance apart. Before long, Jason’s warmth drew her in, and she couldn’t ignore the electricity forming between them. Tentatively, she stepped closer and lightly rested her head against his neck. Jason took this as a cue to guide her hand up and over his shoulder. Suddenly, his strong hands urgently pulled her against his rock hard body. The force of his embrace awakened a passion that lay dormant inside her until now. Stephanie couldn’t fight the fire building within her. She closed her eyes and breathed deeply, inhaling his musky scent while caressing his neck with her fingertips. Her face grazed up the side of his neck, stopping at his jawbone. Jason’s touch seared her skin as his fingertips skimmed up her side to her neck and came to rest on her chin. With his thumb and finger, he guided her face upward and she opened her eyes. His smoldering gaze burned a trail down her body. Uncomfortable with the intensity of his stare, she looked away.
“Stephanie.”
Her eyes shifted back to meet his gaze as he lowered his mouth and softly brushed his lips against hers, questioningly awaiting a response. Accepting his invitation, she parted her lips and moaned softly. His lips were soft and enticing. It had been a long time since she was kissed like this. She surrendered her tongue to his and felt desire fill her belly as an overwhelming passion grew by the moment. Breathlessly, she pulled away, embarrassed by her body’s reaction to the kiss. She looked down and placed her forehead on his chin.

Reviews:
5 out of 5 stars “OH. MY. GOD! Strikingly Hottest Erotica Novella! An amazing short story was well-written and convincingly hot and sensual.” – Best Erotica Books
 Marooned in Miami is an excellent short, steamy and very erotic tale.” – Fallen Angel Reviews
 “You’re going to have to trust me on this one, and go pick it up, it’s worth it.” – The eBook Reviewers
“This will make you hot on a cold winter night!” – Reader Review

Just how *do* you begin to write a book?

How do you do it?
guest post 
by

Greg Kiser

Getting Started

Think of a high
concept.  For me, that’s the ability to
tap into the internet with your mind. So you can surf the internet the way you
peruse your own memory today. 


Try to remember
the lyrics to a song.  Might take a few
seconds, then you remember.  You find
that information in your brain, obviously. 
Sort of a local hard drive, to use computer terms.


Now imagine you’re
transparently tapped into the Global internet 24×7. Try to remember the lyrics
to a song.  They’re there instantly.  Feels like you found them in your brain, just
like before. But you didn’t.  You found
the words on a server in Germany.  Doesn’t
matter, all transparent to you.

Characters make a great story. 

For me, anyway,
it’s all about the characters.  I’ll give
a book 50 to 100 pages.  By then if I
haven’t connected with at least some of the characters then I generally won’t
finish the book.  Unless, maybe, the plot
is just a killer, like The Da Vinci Code, or something like that.  Preferably, I’m looking for the protagonist
to blow me away because most of the time you are reading from his/her point of
view.


But occasionally
it’s enough if the antagonist is blowing me away, such as the Hannibal series
by Thomas Harris.


Now, you put
together a novel that has two or three characters that I can identify with?  Or more? 
That’s a novel I’m not going to put down.

Character driven plot – rare gems these days

They make the best
TV and movies too.  Think about Breaking
Bad – hell yes the story is outstanding.  But the cast, the cast!  Walter, Jessie – sure.  But also Hank, Skylar, the various
villains.  So you don’t mind when they
switch scenes because the cast is great so all of the subplots are intriguing.

Confidence is key

Just know that if
you get in front of the keyboard at the right time of day for you, then you’ll
write.  Think about your characters,
where the story is going to go.  You
don’t have to have it all planned out. 
It doesn’t have to be the next Da Vinci Code in terms of plot
development.  It just has to flow, to
take on a life of its own. 


Don’t start off
thinking about how the hell you’re going to write a 300 page novel.  Just start off and let the journey
occur.  Think about it and make your
characters come alive and write their thoughts and lives and then let the
interactions occur and you’ll be amazed and surprised and hopefully delighted
by the results.

Conflict

OK – so you have
the high concept.  Now what? Well, you
have to have conflict.  For me, I created
a moral dilemma between the protagonist, the ‘monster’ Cheslov, and a local
politician who thinks he has a direct connect with God. 


Next – ratchet up
the tension at every opportunity.  I made
my protagonist an ex-Navy seal so he could pretty much deal with anything.  Made Cheslov part wolf, paranormal.  Then went into detail explaining how screwed
up the politician is, he’s hooked on drugs due to his wife’s death, etc.  Keep ratcheting up.


Then create an
outline – and write, write, write to fill in the outline.  Don’t worry about adjectives or effect or the
best dialogue or even grammar/punctuation.

First Draft

My initial draft
took 3 months to write.  Then finishing
the novel took another 3 years.
Oh – and don’t let
ANYBODY read that initial draft.  It will
suck, indeed.


I finished the
first draft and put it down and thought – hey, this has got to be one of the
best books EVER.  The agents will be
beating down my door when they get so much as a whiff of this manuscript!  So I set it aside and took a little
break.  Felt like I was on top of the
world.


A month later I
opened the manuscript and started printing and reading (you must print and read
to get the full effect.  Not good enough
to read a word doc directly from the computer. 
Better yet, print and read out loud to understand how the dialogue
really sounds – helps avoid unrealistic speech. 
Example:  “What is up with that”
quickly becomes “What’s up with that” when you’re reading aloud).


Anyway, I started
reading and was horrified at how bad it was. 
Thus started the 3 year polishing cycle.


Creating the
initial draft is the hardest. The initial overall idea of what your book is
going to be about.  Who are the
characters, what’s the high concept, where will the conflict come from. 


Once you get past
that and start writing, it gets easier.


And once you get
that initial draft completed – then it’s fun. 
Truly.  From that point forward,
you only need to polish.  

Polishing

Keep it Direct, descriptive, colorful, REAL

BAD:  Jim had worked hard his entire life.
GOOD:  Jim worked hard his entire life.

Avoid the word “suddenly”
Surprise and
startle the reader through your action, thru events, by an action occurring
unexpectedly. Don’t surprise and startle by using a time related adverb.

BAD:  She was suddenly hit in the knee by a ball.
GOOD:  The golf ball struck her knee at one hundred
and two miles an hour.
BETTER:  The golf ball
struck her knee doing over a hundred miles an hour with the force and
indifference of a mechanical bull.

NOTE:  There is
no ‘BEST’ in writing.

Pay attention to points of view (POV)
Put the reader
inside someone’s head and then leave them there.  Being inside someone’s head is VERY
INTERESTING because face it, we’re all voyeurs at heart.  Within a few sentences in every chapter, the
reader should know whose head they’re in. 
Whose POV.  And don’t switch
around within a chapter without a white space separating paragraphs. 



“Said” nearly always works.

Dialogue is your
best character development tool.  Keep it
simple, no need to state the obvious. 
Let your reader fill in the blanks.


BAD:
“What time should
we leave,” Fran asked.  She wasn’t sure
about the color of his tie.  Funerals
required a certain degree of somberness. 
Jim glanced at his
watch.  He thought about five o’clock
traffic on the cross town.  He didn’t think
they should take a chance with that mess. 
“We should split in half an hour,” he finally replied.


GOOD:
“What time should
we leave,” Fran said.  Wow, was he really
wearing that tie to a funeral?  Staring
at his watch now. Come on, this isn’t a hard question.  We need to leave soon, that’s the point.
“We should split
in half an hour,” Jim said slowly.
Fran nodded.  “Fucken A we should.”

Pay attention to your words
Blond is a hair
color.  Blonde is a person who has blond
hair.
Passed refers to
distance.  Past refers to time.
BAD:  He ran past the barn.
GOOD:  Running at break-neck speed, he passed the
barn.
BETTER:  He ran at
stomach-cramp speed, passed the barn. 
Clutched his gut and ran some more.

Great Edit Searches with Microsoft Word

One of the great
challenges of writing a novel of any length is the fat fingering.  Misspelled words are easy to find.  But basic mechanical mistakes are harder.  My final draft had about 80,000 words and I
swear to God, every time I read it I found some small mechanical issue.


I finally got
smart and figured out some universal searches that helped.  A LOT.
The following
special characters should be entered into the ‘Find and Replace’ box, ie not
the search field.


NOTE:  in most cases you can use ^$ for “any letter”
or ^^ for “any character”.  The advantage
of ^^ is that you would also pick up numbers.


^$^p
This is “any
letter” followed by a paragraph mark. 
Will find any sentence at the end of a paragraph you forgot to end with
a period.


^^ Z
This is “any character”
followed by a space then capital Z.  Do
this ^^ A thru ^^ Z.  This will find any
sentence within a paragraph you forgot to end with a period.


^$ .
This is “any
letter” followed by a space then a period. 
Finds any sentence you inadvertently inserted a space before the period.


.” ^$
Period, double
quote, space, “any letter”.  This will
occur normally but this can also help find where you used a period instead of a
comma for dialogue.

And finally…

Just pick your gem every few days and polish for a few minutes.  Hear someone say something funny at the mall,
consider a tree limb in a park and how you might describe it, smell a familiar
smell and let your mind run – all of these ‘experiences’ … feel them and bring
them back into your novel as you polish and make it shine and breathe life into
it.



That’s the best part.  Oh, it’s so hard to get that gem established
at first.  But once you do, it’s your
gem.  And it may never sell, it may never
make millions of dollars – but it’s your gem and you can publish it and you can
get it in print and you can show your friends and one day your children and one
day, many years from now, you’ll read that work as a different person, as an
older person.  You’ll wonder who wrote
that?  



You’ll be amazed all over again.

inSyte is a paranormal-thriller that according to Perry Crowe of Kirkus Reviews, is equal parts Crichton, Clancy and King.



It’s Tampa Bay and the year is 2020. Ex-Navy SEAL Mitch “Double” Downing discovers how to tap into the internet with his mind. His new inSyte provides transparent access to the sum of all human knowledge recorded since hieroglyphics. More than mere information – Mitch can see into men’s hearts and be all places at all times (easy in an ‘always on’ surveillance society with fourth generation tweets). Sort of like God.

If knowledge is power, Mitch just became the strongest man in the world.
But inSyte has ideas of its own as the software exposes a politician’s “divine” plan that will unwittingly slaughter millions of people. Is killing the man the only way to prevent Armageddon? The politician’s daughter would probably disagree. And she happens to be the love of Mitch’s life. Losing Kate would be too damn much collateral damage.
At the center of the conflict is a wolf-like killer who will stop at nothing to murder the ex-Navy SEAL. And Mitch must come to grips with inSyte’s dark side – a dominating addiction that soon controls his thoughts and places him on a steep slide to self destruction.

Buy from Amazon:


Greg Kiser is happily
married to a wonderful and inspirational wife, Serena, and has two beautiful
children – Miller and Grace.

Greg graduated from Southern Polytechnic University
in Atlanta with a BS in Electrical Engineering. Greg also earned his MBA from
the University of South Florida. He is currently a Director at Cisco, a high
tech fortune 50 multinational corporation.

Greg has written extensively for fortune 50 high
tech firms in describing next generation networks and painting pictures of the
true evolution of technology for the consumer.

Email – gkiser@cisco.com
Blog – http://gregkiserinsyte.blogspot.com/



Click below for excerpts
He watched a flock of seagulls move
across the sky. A dirty gull in the lead carried some morsel in its mouth that
the others wanted. They swooped and turned and pecked at his tail until he
dropped the scrap. It landed in the water and was devoured from below by a
school of pinfish.

He smiled at the silly selfish birds. They were like people in their behavior
and conviction that the entire group should starve before merely the strong
should eat. Responsibility therefore fell upon the truly bold to take what they
deserved. Any real mother and, indeed, true creator would be pleased to observe
the strongest of her children satisfying their appetites.

Predation, after all, is not violence. Merely the act of survival. To filter
sick, weak animals from the herd is a vital part of any healthy ecosystem.


Mitch felt an impact like a stick of dynamite
going off in his shirt pocket followed by somebody swinging a sledge hammer
into his back. He reeled sideways and dropped. Adrenaline flooded his body like
a heavy drug as his central nervous system fired out of control and the outside
world was transformed into a macabre slow motion picture show. A strobe light
flicked off and on like someone beating a drum in his brain.

Then the pain stopped and he lost his eyesight and his world went perfectly
quiet.

The world didn’t go black, more like a white out on a winter mountain. He felt
like he was sliding down a soft hill, falling to whatever awaited him at the
bottom.

He saw a shape and as he began to pick up speed he knew someone somehow shared
this odd journey. He was conscious of his heart the way you might be conscious
of your hand if someone held it. He knew who was with him.

“I’m coming to be with you,” he said.

“Son, I’m not ready for you to come home just yet,” his mother said with a
translucent smile.

“Not sure I have much choice, here,” he said.

“You always have a choice. About everything. It’s up to you if you’d rather
live or die.”

“How is it up—“

“And it’s not just you, now, is it? Goodness, no. You’ve got your friend out
there who can’t make it through this without you.”

It was important for him to get a point across. He knew this was fleeting and
he fought an overwhelming sense of urgency. “Mom, I still have so much to
learn. But I’ve learned a lot, haven’t I?”

His mother’s spirit smiled and her aged eyes looked weary. “Not enough, I’m
afraid. You don’t belong here. Go back and help your friend and you’ll see. God
has special plans for you, son. Special plans. You will learn so much.”
He thought about trying to slow his descent. But the temptation to close his
eyes and accept the fall was overwhelming.


Why am I
here?” Mitch asked again.

“You are a most impressive young man. Of course, they told me you have this
ability. Somehow you know things you are not supposed to know, yes?” Cheslov’s
eyes widened in reproach. He reached beneath his coat and removed a long cigar.
Snipped the tip using a guillotine cutter that looked like a worn, hungry
mouth. Lit it up with a battered, gunmetal Zippo. Leaned back in his chair,
took a deep drag. Exhaled a thick, hot, blue stream of smoke.

“Which is why you find yourself here. In my home.” Cheslov’s face saddened.
Then he continued, as if explaining to a child. “I am sorry, young friend, to
have to say this to you. That this is not a place a man wishes to find himself.
This is not a room from which people live to see a new day. No, my friend, this
is a room in which people take their last breath, see their last light. Hear
their last sound.”

Mitch remembered a long ago camping trip.

Cheslov smiled warmly down at him. “Why were you meeting the Deter bitch?”

Mitch said nothing.

Cheslov raised the cigar cutter to his face and a raven eye peered through the
opening. He smiled as he slid the blades together. “What was your intention?”

Mitch started the process of extracting himself mentally from his surroundings.
He ran number patterns through his head to take his mind beyond the pain and
the possibility of what the lunatic might do next. There was only one place
this was heading.

Of course he wouldn’t answer any of the lunatic’s questions. The best strategy
to resisting interrogation is to simply not provide any information at all.

“Where is the file?”

Once you start to give up information, even about minor unrelated topics, it’s
hard to stop and easier to give up important information. The answers to the
current questions didn’t matter in the least. The only thing that mattered was
to protect Kate. At any cost.

“With whom have you shared it?”

Mitch said nothing.

Cheslov walked to the head of the bed and slowly examined Mitch’s fingertips.

“You wear your micro on your index finger. Painted with green resin. Quite the
fashion statement. To whom have you sent the file?”

Mitch said nothing.

Cheslov grasped Mitch’s left hand and held it the way a man might hold the hand
of his son. Mitch felt a softness to the giant’s touch.

“Why do you not answer? Are you afraid?” Cheslov gazed down at him with a not
unkind expression. The giant’s thick, dark eyebrows rose as if trying to coax
Mitch to speak.

Mitch said nothing.

“I’ll ask you once more,” Cheslov said and a note of sadness crept into his
voice. The hesitant father who does not wish to punish but is left no choice.
“You have nothing to gain by continuing your silence. And quite a bit to lose.
Yes, quite a bit.”

Mitch stared at the overhead ceiling. Focused on the intricate wood carving.

Cheslov spread Mitch’s fingers.

Mitch said nothing.

“Tell me. With whom have you shared the file?”

Mitch said nothing.

“Enough of these games,” Cheslov said.