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As a reader, I love a good story and I know that you do too! That’s why I’ve attached a link for a free ebook copy of Maybe This Time as a thank you for your ongoing support, enthusiasm and, well, just because you are you! The novella comes out this Friday, but you’re getting it first and for free!

Use this link before May 19 to download your free copy:  

The Jameson sisters are at the center of my Begin Again series. You’ve met Monica Morgan in A Corner of Her Heart. I’m hoping you’ll enjoy this prequel about Kate, the youngest of the three. Her novel, Promises To Keep, is coming soon.

And I haven’t forgotten about Julie Rafferty, the oldest sister. Her story, Playing Games, is coming in the fall.

I’d love to hear from you. Email me at claire@clairefadden.com.

Maybe This Time
​Architect Kate Jameson has sworn off men. That is until she meets Eric, the handsome son of her current client. Fresh out of a messy relationship with a coworker, Kate’s not ready to trust her judgement where men are concerned. She dodges Eric’s advances, but can’t deny the attraction growing between them. Everything–especially his soul-searing brown eyes–makes her want to throw caution to the wind and try again. At her sister’s prodding, Kate finally agrees to date Eric, surprised at the joy he brings into her life. But when their budding romance is threatened, Kate is forced to make hard decisions and fight for her true happiness.

​Undercover CIA agent Eric Wiley has survived enough loss in his life to ever want to risk being hurt again. He has long since given up on true love. Still, he’s drawn to Kate in a way he can’t rationalize. Avoiding her isn’t working and for the first time in a relationship, he wants to be truthful about his past and his career. Before their romance can bloom, however, Kate goes missing. Recognizing the danger, Eric stops at nothing to rescue the woman who has captured his heart.

shutterstock_290012066Women are a sisterhood united by sticky note to-do lists, soccer schedules and occasional spa pedicures. We share laughter and sorrows, taking comfort in each others’ strengths and commonality of experiences.

A few weeks ago, I began a new blog Woman@Heart: Musings on Life, Love and Leftovers celebrating womanhood through heartfelt, whimsical essays

I hope you’ll check out this new blog and see yourself in these slices of life. Maybe you’ve watched your best bra turn into a puppy’s chew toy, or erected a DNA molecule from fruit chews and toothpicks for your child’s science project.

If you’re like me, you’ve probably twisted your body into an inflexible pretzel during yoga class. We’ve both been tooth and toilet paper fairy.

Check out Woman@Heart. Let’s share the ride.

Everyday I wake up thinking how I can best slice my 24-hour pie. A myriad of tasks stream through my mind including how to deepen my main character, amp up the tension of a scene, why there so many calories in lemon olive oil. I jump out of bed convinced that all the “to-dos” in my head will magically become “to-dones” by the end of the day. A fantasy rarely achieved.

But as John Lennon sang: Life is what happens to you while you’re busy making other plans.

The car won’t start. The dog is hacking. An article deadline looms and a key resource hasn’t returned my email. Spin life’s wheel and each day you can substitute “life happenings” pre-empting coveted writing time. Surprisingly, I’m not alone in my struggle.

I read  Katrina Kittle’s post Keep the Faucet On: Slow and Steady Fills the Ocean. After commiserating with every writer’s plight, Kittle offers simple, real-world suggestions to those scheduling conflicts/time management issues.

I’m starting by letting go of my belief that a writing schedule must look the same every day. What a relief. Her words of encouragement got me back to the keyboard.

Maybe, with a little pre-planning and realistic expectation, time really is on your side.

 

They’re not quite the Ten Commandments of novel writing, but they might be close.

Repeating yourself, list-loving, empty adverbs are a few of the slip-ups writers make as they attempt to unearth the fossil (as Stephen King so aptly advises) that will someday become a book.

In a recent blog post by Patricia HoltTen Mistakes Writers Don’t See (But Can Easily Fix When They Do) the editorial consultant outlines in a quick, nonjudgmental way missteps every writer — new or seasoned – has experienced.

I found her post useful. I suspect you might too.

I’m a big fan of “House of Cards” and the devious Frank Underwood  — his initials are FU, for gosh sakes. Underwood  (evilly played by the multi-talented Kevin Spacey–loved him in “The Ref”) shifts from horrifying to sensitive to ruthless as seamlessly as turning your washing machine dial from heavy duty to permanent press to delicate.

Heather Webb’s post Anti-Heroes: Why Devious is so Delectable, and Where are all the Women? caught my attention and provided some answers. I enjoyed it and thought you might too.

Reading lets us travel to faraway lands, relive past dynasties or imagine future worlds. And we never have to leave the recliner.

“books are uniquely portable magic.”

When you write a book, you are its potion master, combining facts, feelings and flights of fancy then mixing in generous amounts of your imagination to transport your reader on a breathtaking journey. It’s just like Stephen King declares in On Writing, “books are uniquely portable magic.”

If the “write what you know” adage doesn’t extend to intimate knowledge of sixteenth century England or the Florida Everglades, don’t panic. Kristan Hoffman can help. In her post “Oh The Places You’ll Go, Hoffman suggests six research tools to help you on this quest.

Check them out before plotting that next novel. They’ll enhance your ability to move your readers to any place in the world – real or imagined — without ever leaving home.

The goal of every novelist is to keep the reader reading. But before you can achieve that goal, you must keep the agent reading.

Boring hooks. Misspelled words. Info dumps. One-dimensional characters.

You’ll be enlightened, surprised, maybe even shocked in this Adventures in YA blog post “Five Agents Share What Makes Them Stop Reading Sample Pages.”

Hoping that some day (soon), I will join the ranks of published novelists, I was excited to read Catherine McKenzie’s post on Writer Unboxed. I knew she would unravel some publishing mysteries for me and other hopefuls.

The headline to her post, “5 Things I Wished I Knew Before I Published My First Book,” reeled me in. If l learned one thing from her experiences, I would be a little better armed for what the future may bring.

“…publishing does have its rules and regulations and complications—again, just like any industry—and there are a few things I wish I knew before I started along the path.”

Catherine McKenzie

All of Catherine’s Top Five Things were need-to-knows . If you’re a would-be, like me – or even if you’ve been to the dance a time or two – check out Catherine’s words of wisdom, caution and inspiration.

Ready, set . . .

 

You worked hard, met your self-imposed deadline to complete your novel and crafted a nifty query letter. Now, after weeks, months, years of pitching your book to agents, you’re still unpublished.

In his recent post, “Query Letter Pet Peeves — Agents Speak,” Chuck Sambuchino shares some insight from the professionals in the field about why you never heard back.

I found the candid responses helpful, eye-opening and in some cases, surprising. As a newbie novelist, I can see myself making some of the novice mistakes. But misspelling a name is the unforgiveable error. That’s the first rule you’re taught in Journalism 101.

Every author — whether he writes  novels, essays or how-to articles —  wonders about their readers. Where did they find my work? Did they like it? Did they pass it along to a friend? Is it lining the bottom of their bird’s cage?

Well, as it turns out, readers are just about as organized as writers!  I enjoyed this post “Your Audience is Unorganized” by Dan Blank on the Writer Unboxed site about how to reach readers of every shape and size.

I hope you find it as useful, entertaining and informative as I did.

Blogs I Follow

Follow ClaireFlaire on WordPress.com
Authors & Readers Book Corner

A Connection for Authors to Readers

The Coffeeholic Bookworm

reading books while sipping coffee

reecaspieces

Sharing little pieces of me with you.

Chick Lit Goddess

...because every author wants to feel like a goddess!

Celticlady's Book Reviews

Book Reviews, Book Spotlights and Giveaways

I Do & Adieu

Learning To Live And Love In Japan

beingmommie.com

Sharing my learnings of being a mother

Woman@Heart

Musings on Life, Love and Lefovers

Writer Unboxed

about the craft and business of fiction

Momma Meesh: Entering the World of Foster Parenting

This is the story about a single mother of two becoming a Foster Parent, one step at a time.

Sharon C. Cooper

Just thinking...

San Diego Society of Professional Journalists

Supporting journalists across the San Diego region.

Writers In The Storm

A Blog On Writing

ClaireFlaire

Enjoy the Journey

The Better Man Project ™

a journey into the depths

Eye-Dancers

A site devoted to the Young Adult sci-fi/fantasy novel The Eye-Dancers

Bucket List Publications

Indulge- Travel, Adventure, & New Experiences