Sunday, 25 September 2011

Prose is architecture, not interior decoration.

Prose is architecture, not interior decoration.
Ernest Hemingway



So I did a Goodreads.com book give away for Goa Traffic. I would have published details of it here on my blog.. but truth be told I thought I had more time on it left. Goodreads.com is a great way to not only publicize your stuff but to apply for a good new book to read. 


very happy that 1192 people applied for Goa Traffic and the lucky winners will be receiving a book in the post shortly! 


If you are a member on my book club on facebook... you will see that One Day by David Nicholls is the book for September. It is the 25th and I still haven't started it. So I have put down The Slap and have picked up one day. Do I have time to finish it before the 1st?! It is a good 400 odd pages lets see how I go

Wednesday, 14 September 2011

Novelists...fashioning nets to sustain...

Novelists... fashioning nets to sustain and support the reader as he falls helplessly through the chaos of his own existence.  ~Fay Weldon


So I bought a website.... check it out www.marissadeluna.com and now I need to create a website for this domain name. Take a look it has my name and says under construction. I am aiming to get it up and running by the end of October- it will be a little project. 


I feel a bit lame... I havent done much with my books to blog about lately... family taking over, cleaning the house, work being busy (i hate that!) and writing kind of slips. Went to my writing group yesterday that was good. 


I feel a little under the weather as well which could have something to do with it. I feel tired. Must rest. 


Tomorrow I am going to call all the head offices of the main book stores, next week I am going to my local Waterstones to ask if they have considered my book.... Now that I have said this I am going to do it. No more complaining... no more lethargy.


If I knew someone who had a published book and who wasn't doing everything they could to promote it- I would wonder why- I would say 'I wish I had a book in print. I would publicize it like there is no tomorrow.' and therefore I should be ashamed for not doing more. 


Tomorrow I start!!!

Tuesday, 13 September 2011

It is impossible to discourage real writers...


It is impossible to discourage the real writers - they don't give a damn what you say, they're going to write.  ~Sinclair Lewis

So today I felt a little blue. Really blue about the state of affairs and getting published and self publishing and the complexities of promotion. It’s a tough world out there. Let me tell you even if you go out into the world with the expectation of not selling many copies etc etc you still feel slightly dejected sometimes.

Apparently the average self published book will sell 150 copies- well I have at least reached that target but will I sell any more? Oh how the mind changes ! The other day I was elated that just someone bought my book and read it. Well today feeling blue I had not a lot to do so I went on amazon.com and under the kindle review I saw something that absolutely made my day. An American review on amazon.com:

There were no reviews for this book on Amazon.com. So I was skeptical initially to buy it. But I found 8 reviews on Amazon.co.uk and all of them said "I could not keep this book down once I picked it" and so on. So I got this book. And now I know all of the comments were so true. Even I completed this book in one sitting. 

The story/plot in the book is amazing. The way Marissa has explained Goa is superb. I myself being from Goa felt very nostalgic. The story takes you through the vibrant and colourful Goan life, you really enjoy every bit of it. I vicariously enjoyed Lisa's (the protagonist) holidays in Goa. The romance is also very well portrayed. Folks, go ahead buy this book...you will only enjoy the read!

I was so chuffed with this I cant begin to explain! But the  main reason for my gloomyness was because I googled tips on writing a novel. It was a bad move! The tips seemed to take out any joy of writing. Do this and do that and never do this- surely there isn’t a formula to writing- and if there is – there shouldn’t be.

For some reason it has really annoyed me. I get there there are basic do’s and don’ts such as the showing and telling – but the tips I read well they were just… I don’t know! Annoying!! Anyway enough of my rant.

I have also discovered that creating a website is going to be hard work! really hard work and there isn’t an easy option- unless I want to pay someone to do it!

Oh and a little tip to keep the world ticking- if you feel like writing a review - make the effort dont push it to the back of your pile! do it! you may just make someones day. 

Monday, 12 September 2011

Intuition is the conception of the whole at once

Intuition is the conception of the whole at once - Johann Kaspar Lavater
So the other day I promised the moon the a stick - not really- I promised big news for authors and photographers- well you will have to wait and it may well amount to nothing. I am working on an idea and if it comes off I will let you know.

In the meantime I have created a website- well not exactly created but I have bought my domain name: www.marissadeluna.com Take a look- It just says it is under construction but it is better than nothing. It took me a while to spend the cash (not a lot) on a website and now I just need to build it up - i.e pay for a webpage package and create my own website.

I have my writing group tomorrow and have done very little- not something I can read out- whilst I am still going through changing the telling to showing. slightly annoying as I promised myself I would always have something to read.

Also the book I am reading: House of the Hnaged by Mark Mills is taking me a while to get into. I think I over read in the last couple of weeks.

Anyway if you do one new thing this week- find my page Goa Traffic - A Novel by Marissa de Luna on facebook!!!!! and like it......

until tomorrow....

Saturday, 10 September 2011

Thank you!

Thank You!

Well I received my royalties statement and I am super happy with it! In total the sales I have made myself and the royalties add up to 150 sales in the first quarter. That’s 150 people reading Goa Traffic !!! Here is what I hope to achieve with GT:
1)   Goa Traffic is not a crusade but there are topics I wanted to explore with the book. Cruel realities that happen in far flung places that we just don’t take notice off. If you are a regular reader of my blog you will see that I am not the crusading type- my motto is live and let live. I wanted to make people aware of the topics (I wont mention for fear of it turning into a spoiler)- This leads to point two
2)   I really wanted to make the reader think. Don’t you love it when you pick up a book and read it and it makes you think about what the protagonist has done or about to do. I think as readers we get so drawn in by the protagonist (after all we are following their journey) that I wanted the reader to ask him/herself- Would I do what Lisa Higgins did? Would I do it – if I knew the truth? Would I have told?
3)   Goa Traffic gets into the depths of Goa, how it is to live there, the sights the smells, the food the people. Having lived in Goa when I was younger and still going back quite frequently- to me Goa is home. I hope I have conveyed the true Goa to readers


This Blog comes with a huge THANK YOU to everyone who bought the book, is going to buy the book and whoever is spreading the word or just even reading my blog. It has been amazing to see since the release of Goa Traffic my ‘stats’ steadily increase!!! So big love for that as well. It would be a bit pointless if I was blogging and nobody was reading (although it can be quite cathartic)

Anyway back to normal on my next blog. In fact I have big news – a must read for any author or photographer!!!!!!

Wednesday, 7 September 2011

The best way to waste you life...

The best way to waste your life, ... is by taking notes. The easiest way to avoid living is to just watch. Look for the details. Report. Don't participate.”-Chuck Palahnuik


My eyes hurt!!! from all the editing I have been doing lately- I was going to have a break from 'The Book Club' and work on some more promo stuff for Goa Traffic but that has evaded me. I am stuck with the book club. More showing than telling this time around. Can I just say that two out of the four people who I have given the first draft to read - have read it! Only my mother has come back with comments- very briefly this morning! her comments were "Very Good, great plot line and dialogue that flows"


You see although a mothers comments are good they are very biased so I will wait for the other less biased ones. I think my dialogue is a bit obvious but who knows maybe it has improved. Anyway I have been editing away- creating short sharp chapters for my readers. This book is going to be a winner I can feel it in my bones! 


I apologize in advance for the lack of blogging now but I have been busy home making- orange seville cake and fish pie (irrelevant) you don't want to know about things like that I know! But I will get back to a regular blog soon! 


Oh on twitter I saw the top ten places for literary inspiration. A few that I can remember are Prague, London, Mumbai, Mexico.......... I think inspiration is everywhere - although I wouldn't mind a Tuscan villa for inspiration! 

Sunday, 4 September 2011

Editing is a labour of love


Editing is a labour of  love.

Here is a tip, once you have finished your first draft – go online or enrol yourself in a workshop and learn about symbolism, themes, developing characters etc. If you are anything like me don’t do this before your first draft- why? Because you need to get the bare bones of your story down first. So this is where I am with ‘the book club’– Let me give you an update.

I completed my first draft and I have emailed it out to a friend, a mother in law and printed a copy for my own mother and husband. I have specifically asked them to see if the plots/sub plots work, if there is pace, if the characters are believable. Lets see what they come back with. In the interim I am slowly plodding through the first draft and making many changes! Practicing what I preach I have been scouring sites for tips on how to improve my writing and as I go through the book I am showing more, not just telling and adding a whole myriad of symbolism. Editing is a labour of love! I am up to 72,000 words already and just past chapter two- which incidentally has turned into chapter five. The chapters were way too long and reading The Lantern reminded me that I much prefer short snappy chapters.

I am excited about the Book Club, not the name though. Its terrible and I still cant come up with something better. Speaking of the lantern I can confirm that I have finished it. In less than a week. The book was easy to read and you did kind of get lost in Provence. I thoroughly recommend it. It is not an eye opener, you probably wont race to the finish. It’s like a nice long drink of hot chocolate and you are a bit sad when it ends. It is somewhat a comforting book – it definitely provides a bit of escapism.

I am getting through the books, my next one is House of the hanged by Mark Mills, he also wrote savage Garden one of my favourite books- It made me want to book a one way ticket to Tuscany. Lets see what House of the Hanged is like it definitely sounds intriguing. That’s what I need an intriguing title!