Update – Amy Remus is the winner of the giveaway!
My guest this week is Cadence Denton. She lives in a sleepy town on the Louisiana side of the Mississippi River. A fanatical collector of all things Halloween, she shares her writer’s cave with two mini Dachshunds, a miniature chocolate Labrador Retriever, and a perpetually confused Cocker Spaniel. Welcome to Magical Musings!
Lightning, Love, and a Good Book
We have all felt the lightning strike, that breathless excitement that makes your hands tremble, your fingers clutch around your treasure and sends you scampering to the cashier with the book. You know the one. It’s the book you can’t put down, the book that will keep you up all night frantically turning pages to discover what happens next. What you feel is a bit like falling in love, I suppose, because it is love – love at first sight.
For most readers, love at first sight is actually a result of multiple “sights”. The book’s cover is only the first. If I find the cover art attractive and the book’s title intriguing, I pick it up for a closer look. My next move is to turn the book over and read the blurb. You can tell a lot about a book from its blurb. A mini-synopsis, the well-written blurb uses carefully chosen words to set the hook deeper creating deeper interest and curiosity. Finally, the savvy reader (uh…me) opens the book and reads the first page. The first three sentences provide clues for the entire story in general and for the climax, in particular. I always read to the end of page one to see if the final sentence is equally hooky. Like a siren’s song, I must be seduced to read on. If the book passes these three tests, then off to the register I go with my newest love clutched tightly in sweaty hands. A seasoned writer makes certain these three “sights” are firmly in place to woo potential readers and sell books.
I’ve always been addicted to science fiction, fantasy, and paranormal romance. Selene of the Underworld franchise has been a great favorite, as is Peta Wilson’s Nikita from TNT’s La femme Nikita series, and don’t get me started with Milla Jovovich’s Alice in the Resident Evil franchise! As a writer, I resonate with a strong heroine who has an equally tormented and damaged past. My heroes tend to be wounded ass-kickers who doubt themselves and question their loyalties.
In Fire and Blood, Book one of the Immortal Firewalkers, my heroine, Jeannette Darcy, single-handedly caused the downfall and ultimate demise of her people, the Zha’Ignisiin, a race of blood drinking immortals. If she delivers the one semi-immortal who tricked her then she will be cleared of her crimes and allowed back into Zha’Ignisiin society, but she will never be forgiven. When she finds a Fecund, one of the Zha’Ignisiin’s extinct human mates, she thinks she’s hit the jackpot. Not only will her crimes be pardoned, she’s certain to be named savior of her race. Now she just has to get her prize to the Council of Seven, alive and intact. Here are the first four sentences:
Which was just what a person should expect when she was cursed, right? How well Jeannette Darcy knew this having lived under that shadow for nigh on six centuries.
Fire and Blood ends in a cliffhanger and the second installment, Heart of Fire, is presently in the editing phase. My current work in progress is a Young Adult Science Fiction/Fantasy entitled, Shattered. Set on modern Earth, the story involves a struggle between a harsh, dusky prison planet called Sorrow located in the Scorpio system and Fidelis, the home world. Earth, an ancient Fidelan colony, becomes the battleground when the resource both worlds seek is found there, in the story’s seventeen-year-old heroine. Here are my first paragraphs:
They say lightning never strikes the same place twice.
In fact, scientists claim there’s a one in nine-million chance of a person, once struck, being hit again by lightning. So, why did she have to be that one, Comfort Tiffany wondered?
Yeah, Comfort. A family name she’d had foisted on her while she was too young to object. As for Tiffany, well, she was related to that famous family, but the relation was so distant as to be nonexistent. In school, she was known as the girl with a first name for a last name. Go her.
Writing is fluid, an ever-changing creation. Will these first few paragraphs stick? It’s too soon to tell, but I believe they serve the purpose and foreshadow the proposed climax.
What does it take to sell you on a book? Is it the blurb? On the other hand, is it the cover? Or is it the author’s name and reputation? Comment and one lucky poster will receive a copy of Fire and Blood.
I am also an avid canner. I make jellies, jams, butters, gourmet pickles and chutneys. If you stop by blameitonthemuse.com and post this week, you will be entered for a chance to win a basket of my homemade goodies and a tidy selection of ebooks. Stop by and post. Hey, you could get lucky!