Words and pictures from the author of the Elizabeth Goodweather Appalachian Mysteries
Sunday, June 22, 2008
The Elusive Miss Birdie
I'm hard at it, changing Miss Birdie's voice from third to first person point of view in The Day of Small Things. I believe I've finally got a handle on her personality -- the complete woman beyond the cute little octogenarian neighbor. I've gotten rid of most of the big words and English major sentence constructions that Elizabeth (and Vicki) tend to use and am trying to write in a simpler style. I do feel as if I'm getting into Birdie's head and understanding her much better.
Interesting developments are occurring -- remember the picture of the two men and the hound a few posts back? Well, it's going to be a story in this book. And Inez and Odessa are going to play a part as well.
I've had an image for the cover for a long time -- I told my editor and she liked the sound of it but nothing will happen till I turn the book in, which I'm not ready to do yet. The picture above is my idea -- as best I can realize it with the limited tools and expertise at hand. A mountainscape, a blue sky, and a bird's wing to hint that the bird is escaping. Light filtering through the feathers, the sky a sort of Maxfield Parrish blue. Could work, but it'll be up to the Art Director and Marketing, I suspect. We can only wait and see.
June 1o - Speaking at a luncheon at Montreat College
June 25-July 1 -- John C. Campbell Folk School. I'll be teaching A Practical Guide to Writing Popular Fiction. Your novel starts here with this intense, week-long class. We will focus on writing realistic dialogue and creating characters that move through and interact with a fully realized setting. We will discuss different approaches to plotting, tricks for building suspense, means of ensuring continuity, and the avoidance of info dumps. We'll also talk about forming or joining critique groups, the ins and outs of self editing, agents and how to query them, as well as the various publishing alternatives available today. All levels welcome. Link to JCC HERE.
July 8-15 Wildacres Writing Workshop. I will be leading a workshop on the novel. Here's your chance to spend a week surrounded by writers of all sorts. More info for 2017 HERE.
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I'm the author of The Elizabeth Goodweather Full Circle Farm Appalachian Mysteries from Bantam Dell. The series includes SIGNS IN THE BLOOD (LA MONTAGNE DES SECRETS in France), ART'S BLOOD, (LE SECRET DES APPALACHES in France,) OLD WOUNDS,IN A DARK SEASON (Anthony Nominee, Best PBO), and UNDER THE SKIN. There's also THE DAY OF SMALL THINGS (a spinoff/standalone)chronicling the unexpected life story of Miss Birdie, one of Elizabeth's neighbors.
Currently I have just completed a historical novel, dealing with a massacre in my county during the Civil War.
I came to this weird business late (my first novel was published in 2005) and am still trying to figure it out.
As my novels are set in a place much like my real life home, I thought I'd use this blog to share pictures of our farm and county. I've been blogging for nearly nine years now, on an almost daily basis, and the topics have ranged from writing, chickens, food, books, quilts, flora and fauna of all sorts, to the occasional tiny rant. There's no plan, but there are lots of pictures.
There's more information about me and my books on my web site: http://vickilanemysteries.com/