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May - 2016: Upcoming, I'll be participating in Desert Sleuth's Donald Maass Workshop. I'm afraid it sold out months ago, but if you have questions, contact me.

Apr - 2016: A 2nd Kami Short will release in the Malice Domestic anthology in Bethesda MD. I'll also be moderating a panel with authors Karen Pullen, Sue Cox, and Gretchen Archer. Don't miss the fun! I'll have special edition signed copies of the 1st Kami Short from the SinC - Desert Sleuth anthology to hand out for free.

Apr - 2016: An adult short story, Big Horn Mountain Carnivores, was selected as the adult category winner in the Tempe Community Writing Contest loosely associated with Arizona State University! The e- & print release where I read a portion of the story was the greatest fun. Thank you everyone who came by! Free download here (scroll to bottom): 

Aug - 2015: Politics of Chaos was released at an event attended by the awesome NYTimes best-selling author Sara Paretsky! Also, a flash fiction entitled, "Lightning" was 3rd runner up in the national 2015 Writers Police Academy's contest.

July - 2015: NYC FBI headquarters. Many thrilling authors were there, the presentations were fantastic, and the experience was a solid 15 on a 10 point scale. Thank you to the International Thriller Writers for inviting me. Thank you to the men and women of the FBI.

MAY - 2015: The Poisoned Pen submitted Chaos Theory for the 2015 Edgar's young adult novel award. Please note that submission is NOT a nomination. Still, it is an exciting development.

MAR - 2015:Tucson Festival of Books booksigning! Great time by all.

FEB - 2015: CHAOS THEORY, released by The Poisoned Pencil, an imprint of The Poisoned Pen Press - one of the nation's largest publishers of hard-back mysteries.

MAR - 2013: Meg was honored to receive a year long mentorship from author Jan Blazanin through the Society of Children's Book Writers and Illustrators - Iowa. Ms. Blazanin praised Meg's multiple characters' distinct and age appropriate voices.

Her writing blog is located at megevonne.blogspot.com contains reviews and writing craft tools.

Friday, August 21, 2009

Thoughts from others. Thank you!

Thoughts from others on my first 250 words of Sacrifice.

Sir Otter said...

I like it. I think 'exploded' is an overused word; you might think of another one less trite, but I got a clear picture of what went on and would definitely read on.

Not sure you could call any hat Ingrid Bergman ever wore a fedora, or would want to, since that's normally thought of as a man's hat. The one she wore at the end of Casablanca was similar but not quite. Might want to rethink that.

Still pretty well done.

Literature Crazy said...

Pretty well hooked. Only a few minor suggestions:

In the first paragraph, I'd write it was "triggered by her gentle laugh"; that way we know, right off the bat, that there's a woman the narrator is thinking about.

In the second paragraph be more precise with the description of Maureen. Don't call it an Ingrid Bergman fedora, give me a color and texture/material--at 30 years old, I'm not old enough to have an immediate frame of reference for Bergman's hat stylings. Does she have a 1940's hairstyle because it's in the 1940's or she's being retro? My guess is the former, but don't make me guess. Describe the hairstyle and have the narrator figure out the timeline to make it less ambiguous. Mention pin curls or something else classic to that time period and then have the narrator say something like (this will be a bad example, but it's quick): "...with a pencil stuck over her ear placed me in a fixed point in time. This woman was Maureen, my wife in the year 1943. She read..."

The set-up is good (it immediately reminded me of the YA paranormal romance/SciFi series Blue Bloods that involves vampires who keep getting "re-born" with memories of their former lives resurfacing in later lives). I liked it and think there's somewhere interesting that you could definitely take this.

Barbara said...

You have a hooky opening paragraph, and the Merlin Scholars piques my interest.

Monday, August 17, 2009

Sacrifice - paranormal romantic

Sacrifice is the piece that I wrote as a novella and then expanded it to full length novel. It has been a learning piece from start to final, final, final etc :-) last revision and I had put it away with great sadness. My opinion at the time was that the heart had been edited out of it, but I had learned so much that it was an invaluable process. It is, however, slick and right.

On re-reading it a year plus later, I'm loving it. The flow and pace are great, no messy snags, subplots are nicely woven in, and I'd managed in the process to include a lot of touch, smell etc. I've re-read 23 of the total 40 so chapters and as a reader, I am once more invested in my characters. Will others? Who knows?

It was nice to see how smooth and easy my 1st POV manuscripts work. The character is strong enough, unique enough to carry it well. In re-reading, I've fallen in love with him all over. He's such a typical guy, his name is even typical, while the powerful women in his life have been playing him through out for the best of reasons. He's decent, thoughtful, a super lover, talented, strong morals, and honestly, deeply, passionately loves his wife and she feels the same for him.

I thought I had a unique plot until Michael A Stackpole in a small group class in AZ workshop called it a "Professor exchanges the complicated world for isolation, only to be forced back into the main battle for what is right." The twist is that to do so, he has to sacrifice his beloved (from several reincarnations)'s soul--never to be with her again. Yep, get out the tissues for a good cry. Readers forced me to put in an out to keep her viable and thus two additional books charted out and partially written.

I'm glad to re-discover it, to be proud of it, and just be pleased that I accomplished such a wonderful manuscript.

Who knows? I shopped it to three agents in order to get my rejection letter goal for the year (2008) and no one asked for partials. Then I moved on to the YA. It really is good enough that I need to send more queries out. Now that I might manage a decent query letter that attracts attention.

The Monday AM e-mails and random thoughts

Aren't Monday mornings great?

Amy, surely we should never fear a new beginning if we need a break? Unless it becomes a habit?

April, I liked your new story beginning. It was peaceful and placed me in the scene. I like the rigidness of the older character, the younger wishing to snuggle back into her comforter. I lacked a sense of 'time placement' as a reader, but as I read it--I was willing to wait to see what unfolded.

Writing in Malta. I always get a kick out of reading that. It sounds so exotic and interesting. Much more exciting than IA. Out of curiosity, do others find themselves slipping into evolving writing patterns? What worked several months ago, seems to drive me crazy later and vice versa. As long as the words get on pages, I figure that I'm ahead of the game.

I still haven't managed to figure out your vocal meetings, but doubt that I'd manage it. This fall there is so much going on in my life. Boring, silly stuff, but it all stacks up. I have a new tiny camper ordered that should be here soon. If you want to take a look, Google "t@b" and then find the model that has a small toilet in it. Yes, it is very 70's and hippie like. Mine is going to be white with the orange handles and trim. Things have changed a lot since the kids and I camped in our fold out tent camper.

I have elusive dreams of weekend camping trips for me and my dog off to see national parks with frequent stops and writing in an awesome natural backdrop. I don't plan on retiring for several years, but when I do I would like to have this set up as a routine. My kids don't have time to travel with me anymore and there is still so much I want to see.

For sometime, I thought that I would just fly, rent a car, board the dog, attend conferences or classes etc--but it all gets so expensive so fast. I hope that the car travel with the dog for companionship will prove a stress free way with less cost to do the same.

Well, that's my dream anyway.

Tuesday, August 11, 2009

On Misunderstood Intentions

As a relative newbie, I immediately wonder, "Oops. Did I step on the rules myself?" Then again, although quite capable of taking rejection when someone expresses hurt--I will always go back and review everything to see if I was out of line and hurt someone. And as a result, I will be purchasing your book, out of guilt but not sure if I should be feeling guilty.

Complete manuscript. Nicole Bokat, http://www.nicolebokat.com/ was nominated for both the Hemingway Foundation/PEN award and the Janet Heidinger Kafka Prize for Fiction said in a class that editing NEVER ends until its published.

Erica Mailman, http://www.erikamailman.com/ suggested that a query letter is always in development. She recommended sending three and if your responses were negative, then go back and re-work it and try again. She saw them as organic, always growing and maturing.

The rejected manuscript that rests in the drawer, once thought complete can be brought out years later to be read through entirely different eyes and thus the revisions and editing begin again.

The short story that never sparked interest can be transformed into a full length novel of wide acceptance as a literary masterpiece and vice versa.

The odds of a query getting past a slush pile are insurmountable. These contests are a wonderful tool (thank you, thank you, thank you authoress) to use in hopes that the perfect agent will see our work from a different perspective than the unending morning e-mail submission stack agents face on a daily basis. Bless their hearts for they have a special place in heaven to read and read and read for days before they find something that they wish to see more pages.

I've two manuscripts that have each had more than a year's work on and both have gone through editing from professionals. From the slush pile there is no guarantee of resurrection--ever.

And if I have offended... my sincere apologies. And if I've not, think only of the egg upon my face!