Wednesday, July 23, 2014

That's a lot a BULL! (And updates)

Largest statue of a bison, Jamestown, SD
Yeah, had way too many "anonymous" comments on both blogs, and had to get rid of them. These people are not interested in me or my posts, their aim is to sell something from their web-site. Among a number of things which tips anyone of us off that they are not one of us, is their leaving their website and asking you to come and check them out. Plus, they've got no NAME!
So, hopefully, I've eliminated their comments from getting into my email--yes, it goes there and I can DELETE them! 

Now, on to other things.
All aboard!
Silverton, Colorado
Work on WIP, is coming along. I've been writing a couple of scenes which take place on board a train--yes a locomotive, as a matter of fact. This book takes Sabrina back to the world she visited in the 3rd in series Vampire Nocturne, called Black Veil. Since I've never been on a train, I went and did some checking about trains, best I could. I found out that the conductor takes care of all passengers and everything else except for driving the train, and there's a man who feeds the train either coal or firewood called a "fireman".

I've found some pics of inside of trains on the web to help me out.
seating car
I would love to be able to buy a ticket on a locomotive out west and experience the ride, some day. I've been on short rides where you're cramped in with other people. I've even rode a stagecoach at least twice. Like this one in Silverton, Colorado. It's a dusty ride, in case you have the chance to ride one--bring a scarf--yeah there was a reason cowboys had those scarves around their necks. In our case it rained and we had to put down the window coverings. That was a new experience. In case you haven't noticed, I'm a throw-back--I was born in the wrong century (Dennis and I both). So, these sorts of experiences are something we both enjoy.
Stage ride in Silverton, Colorado 2010
I'm also hunting for a picture of a statue of a woman's face--from the neck up (tight). I may have to ask someone to take a picture of one, if I find something suitable. It's for the next book. Not an angel by no means. I'm not certain where I'll find something, but my search is on.

Other than that I've figured out where the title of my 8th book comes from (usually it takes me a while to either come up with it, or invent it). Six Shades of Hell is the name of a desert that Sabrina must cross in order to get to where she needs to find clues about the missing princess Aljehambra.

My summer has been pretty good, so far. I've gotten a lot of gardening work done--some of it involved moving large, heavy rocks, and setting them down in a spot I needed for run-off when it rains. Still uncertain we'll get away for a day or more. We'll see. I know my husband needs a break from mowing--bouncing on a mower several hours a day does terrible things to your insides.

That's all for now. See ya around. You know I'm busy, but I'll check in with everyone now and then!

Sunday, July 13, 2014

Screw Writing What You Know!

Make it all up as you go. It's more fun that way!

That's my advice for the day. Plus a few more tips that I've had clipped to the back of my upright desk for a while.

When starting out in a new book, you've got to ask and answer two main questions:


In other words, are the stakes high enough?
There has to be DEATH.
Either physical, professional, psychological or spiritual.
You pick one of the above.


This one is one that I sometimes have to kick myself on the behind to produce. I hate putting my favorite characters through so much horror/terror. But, you gotta do what you gotta do.

I remember one fan of my Sabrina Strong series asking me why I had killed off Dante in the end of second book, Vampire's Trill.

Why, indeed. Because he made Sabrina happy. But he couldn't be with her, because he was Tremayne's scion. If Dante (a handsome Native American hunk who happened to be both a shape-shifter and shaman in life), had continued his wooing of Sabrina, Tremayne would have had a hissy-fit in vampire terms. He'd of killed him. Which would have fit nicely in the above. But I needed her to loose him in a different way.
Besides, I brought him back to be Sabrina's biggest secret weapon when shit hits the fan in the third book.

With my current WIP I'm working my way into the meat of the story, and am plotting things to go awry, in every damn way I can think of. Dante, who is now an Undead, can't always be with her physically. He has to feed. Since I've invented this sort of unusual vampire, I'll explain that he has to feed either on the soul of the dying, or on sex. Because at this point I've written books 5,6, & 7, a lot has happened. Let me just say I've made things more difficult for these two to be together--either intimately, or him being able to become a physical being. Otherwise, he's a spirit who can reach her only through a mirror. As long as she carries one, or there's one wherever she happens to be.

I'm working up the villains in this story. One worse than the next. And sometimes, it'll be hard to figure out if the one that's supposed to have been the bad guy, is really all that bad. I'm having fun with it.

Rule #1:

That's the other unwritten rule. If you aren't having fun writing whatever it is you're writing, then stop. Take a break away from it. If ideas aren't coming to you, you need to rest. Your brain needs to rest. Find something else to occupy your time, but above all, don't let the inability to write get to you. We won't call it "writer's block". To me that's a fancy schmancy word that the "professionals" have invented to make you paranoid about your inability to produce every day.

Rule #2

If you pay too much attention to what the "professionals" say about the craft, you'll become constipated on the page. Don't. Listen. To. Crap.

I once attended a critique class a long, long time ago. The word "was" was considered bad, and if you used it in your writing, well, you weren't very good at writing. I busted my buns to try and write without using that word too much. All I got was crap on the page. I got nowhere with that rule. I'm not going to take out every last damned word that other writers - "professionals" - say we mustn't use. I've read all the masters from King to Rowling. What do you know? They don't pay much attention to "the rules". They most definitely break the "rules". So why shouldn't I?

Your main objective is to get the story down, first. Worry about the flow of words later. But the plot is number one. You also have to know who's going to suffer and how and where and who the bad guy's going to do this to your good guy from the beginning. Even if you don't have a name, names and descriptions can come later.

Eventually, "Six Shades of Hell" will get Sabrina down into some hot, nasty, hard to travel territory--that's why the title was chosen. This takes place in a world which is poised in the 1870's. How will she get through it, to her destination on horseback?  Will she be attacked by marauders? Will Dante be able to help her?

Her objective is to get to a small village named Elvira, and find the man who is supposed to have abducted the Princess Aljehambra (we know her from 3rd book, Vampire Nocturne). If she doesn't find Ali, they will kill her.

To top things off, Sabrina becomes romantically involved with the man, Hawk, who may have abducted her. Plus, in the very beginning of the book a wizard, named Booth, has asked her to find his wife and child, who he claims has been abducted by King Drakulya. (Drakulya/his son, Joha, denies this.) Sabrina declines to work for Booth, as she feels there is conflict of interest, since she has worked for Drakulya in the past, and would rather work for the Drakulyas to find the princess, instead.

So, you see, the stakes not only are high, but they become stacked higher and higher. Ali is Sabrina's friend and an innocent waif of a girl. When Sabrina digs deeper, she is startled to find that something more sinister is afoot in another place all together, and by someone else, who may be the most sinister villain I will write as yet.

Lorelei is author of Sabrina Strong series,
Spell of the Black Unicorn,
and short stories

Thursday, July 3, 2014

The "F" Word

This is a rant, if anyone is not interested in my rant you may leave now.
The subject it's a word that is creeping into so-called "romance" books. It's the F word, and I don't mean Fork. See Definition from

I have no problem in using the word, if appropriate in my writing. My character Bjorn Tremayne uses it as an expletive--a lot. But I'm not a big fan of it in using it as a--well--verb. I find it vulgar. Especially when used by women. But then I'm from the old school where women were taught not to swear (and I do my share of it on a daily basis), or spit (I only spit when I'm brushing my teeth, or eating watermelon at a picnic).

Anyway, I got something in my e-mail box the other day, and it simply bothered me, when I read the excerpt. I don't know why I went ahead and opened it. The title [of book] should have warned me off. It's called "Carnal Magic" by Lila Dubois. The site is Paranormal Book Reviews. If you read the excerpt (here). You'll see that the POV is the woman's. And from descriptions I'm guessing it's sort of "high fantasy". But what I don't get is the use of fuck. Twice in the same passage. The rest of the excerpt was well written. But using that word ruins the whole atmosphere of it.

In a way the use of this word is becoming all to common in this way, in writing and speaking. I hear it used a lot by not just men, but women too. Back to the the writing. To me, when I read it in such a book, I feel that the writer didn't use her writing abilities to say what this woman actually wanted to do. Why didn't she say something like rip my clothes off and rape me, or visa versa? There's a lot of ways I would have written it and it would have been more fitting. But then, I'm not a young writer. I'm more seasoned and know that if you're going to write something that you want a broad array of people to read, you don't want to use foul language to do it, or in this manner, and in such a fantasy genre. But that's just me.

It's usage, I read at my is that it's first use was in the 1400's, but it has been used before this. I have read somewhere that it is a German word for "strike", but because it was considered a banned word, it's history has been lost.

Anyway, I had to get this off my chest. As a writer, I hate to see women resort to the word in such passages as the example above. If you're going for gritty novels, fine. However, think about who your audience is, and consider if your female character would really think I want to fuck him.

Have a Happy 4th, everyone!