Monday, July 30, 2007

Reading and Writing

Hi Everyone -
Hope you had an awesome weekend. Mine was pretty good. Got some writing done, which is always a good thing. But last night was "me" time. I picked up a book and started reading the Harrowing by Alex Sokoloff? (I'll have to post her last night later I know it, I just cant spell it) Anyway, I'm up to Chapter 21 I believe and this story gave me nightmares last night. Really, real nightmares. I couldn't sleep a wink last night. Alex I'm mad at you for I'll be too tired to write! But, I will say the story is great. This is Alex's first book, the writing is not perfect, but it didn't matter or bother me in the least, The book is a great story you just don't want to put down afraid you'll miss something....Now if you look for mistakes then its your loss of a good story...just go with the flow... Its a tale about some college misfits who tap into the a ghost who died at the college many years ago. He speaks to them thru the wiji board (sp?), and ends up doing things for them, some good, some not good at all. I'll let you know my opinion when I'm finished, but I'm a little scared to keep reading it right now. I need to sleep sometime... I am to find her next book once I'm done with this one.

Update: It's been 4 weeks since I sent Kate Duffy my partial, I probably have another 3 months of waiting. But, I respect she's so busy, I'd be afraid if she wasn't. (I just remembered something, did I send an SASE? Holy crap!! I hope so.)

Well, next time I see Kate in New Orleans, I'm going to query her with another book. Hey, I'm a new writer, I can only get better right? (haha-- just say yes..)

Tonight: I'm planning to make pralines for a wonderful author friend.. (I hope I do better this go round; yesterday's didn't fair so well. Try, Try Again.)

Good luck on reading, writing, finding the next best seller, whatever you need or want...
Dawn Chartier
Fantasy on the Rocks!

Thursday, July 26, 2007

I'll post tomorrow

I'm still kicking. Just been a crazy last two days...
I'll post something tomorrow...

I will mention one little thing. My RROS partners and I (Romantic Realm of Shadows), we created a myspace page. (We do reviews, book announcements, contests, chat, whatever) It's up, but we haven't decorated it yet. If you have a myspace page send me your addy and I'll hook you up with us... our myspace is: (great free networking)

Mine is

Have a great day...

Listening to: I have no idea?? haha

Dawn Chartier

Tuesday, July 24, 2007

Update on fast draft

Well, I pretty much revised 3 chapters (as you can see I didn't say write), I already had 3 chapters written, so I tweaked them and added more depth into my characters. (I probably wrote 10 pages total) I added more depth to my first sex scene as well. It's much better if I can say so myself. So I've started on Chapter 4 tonight, and hope to finish it by tomorrow.

I find my writing is still improving, but I still have a hard time with POV. I head hop too much. I'm really bad for wanting both my hero/heroine to have equal amount of time in my scenes. It sucks having to decide who is more important. I think they are both equal.

I finished listening to Steven King on writing, but one of the cassettes broke #5. Now I have no idea what I missed. I found him to be very interesting. Did you know he almost died after being hit by a van? Yep. He's been through hell and back poor guy.

I also skimmed inside a book called "Show, don't tell". (or something like that). I plan to read the whole thing, just haven't had time yet. (I'm writing!)

Okay, on a more serious note. Today Dr. Pou was aquitted (sp?). You don't know how much it means to me and all people in the medical field to have this happen. Dr. Pou is a wonderful doctor, a wonderful person. No one knows the crap she went through in that hospital, and after the ordeal of patients dying around her with no air, no electricity, no help for 4 days, having been accused of murder.... I couldn't imagine being in her shoes.... Doctors around the world were waiting to hear the outcome, some would leave New Orleans and never come back if the outcome was bad. We are already tons short in the medical field, this would have devastated us even more. --- Okay, I've ranted a little which I try not to do often, but this was important to me and New Orleanians.. (you'd have to live here to totally understand).... This was a giant step for us in a positive way, finally!

Back to writing Voodoo Style...
Listening to: Nothing but the fingers type on the keyboard...

Fantasy on the rocks!
check out my awesome website:
or myspace at dawntheauthor

Monday, July 23, 2007

Fast Draft starting today for me

Well, if you've been reading my blog, you are aware that my story GENUS was born from Fast Draft. Fast Draft was introduced to me by Candace Havens. It is a challenge where you write 20 pages per day for 2 weeks. (I know you are laughing or your eyes are bugging out, but it does work..I've done it.) 280 pages, a book!!! (after FD is over, then you can join in on Revision Hell, I've not done it the proper way, but next time I will) -- go to Candace Havens website (see right column for her web site if you want to join the fun)

This time though I'm starting a week early. My girls are with their father all week, which means I'll be very lonely (boo-hoo), so this is a great time for me to start. My fellow writers are starting next week. Okay, this will give me 7 extra days so when I do get my girls back, I'll be able to give them extra love and attention and take time off of fast draft and still be on track. (Am I cheating, well. . . yeah!) But, as long as I get er' done...right? Right!

Fast Draft is more to me than just writing a book in two weeks, it is a freedom of writing what ever the heck pops into my brain, I already know my story, but this will take me on journey of writing high or is that High Writing? Anywho, Fast Draft is more than just freedom to write, it is when our writer friends join together and keep each other accountable for our daily goals. We cheer each other on and then crack the whip when needed. (yahpow)...(look out slackers!)

Wish me luck! Lets hope Voodoo Style first draft will be completed in two weeks, ah that sounds awesome!!

Dawn Chartier

Sunday, July 22, 2007

Steven King

Picture from the Dallas conference. Top- Me, Sherrilyn Kenyon (love Sherri), and Dawn McClure, Middle pic is Me, Majorie Liu, Nikki Duncan and Dawn McClure. Bottom- Gina, Me, Dawn McClure and Nikki Duncan. (and hiding behind Dawn M with the shades on is J.R. Ward/Jessica Bird, who happened to win a Rita) How cool is that....

In my prior blog I mentioned I was listening to Steven Kings audio on writing.
I will recommend this to anyone that is a pantster like myself. And some of those that are not. I started thinking that something was wrong with me, because I couldn't plot for the life of me. And, when I did plot, my characters didn't like it. They wanted to take my story somewhere else. Not where I wanted it to go. So now hearing Steven King say plotting is not the only way to write, it makes me feel so much better... I can't quote him exactly, but he said something along the lines of, tell the story that comes out of you. Allow Freedom in your writing. Be honest. Tell the truth. Freedom to me is not having a plot figured out just yet. I know I want to take my characters on a journey, a growth of some kind that I can relate to. Then I love to twist them up in "what if?" situations, and see what happens to them.
No plotting for me. Freedom all the way!!! Yes!!!
You know learning to write is hard. And trying to figure out what advice to listen to is even harder.
I've been listening to everyone, do this and do that, and you shouldn't talk like this or like that... Blah!!! Enough already.... I'm learning my way, I know my grammar lacks, but guess what, I'm going to write a story for me. To entertain myself, and then I can only hope it entertains someone else too. That is me being honest. Thanks Mr. King. And thanks for those crit partners who told me this along time ago, but I was too green to understand it....

Dawn Chartier

Fantasy on the rocks!

Thursday, July 19, 2007

What I'm reading?

Since I've been back from Nationals I've been reading up on writing. Sounds strange don't it.
"The Writers Journey 2nd Edition - Mythic Structure For Writers" by Christopher Vogler", I'm really getting into this "how to" book as I call them. This is a practical guide of the Archetypes and also stages of the journey. It explains the different type of hero's/heroine's and the steps they mostly take. Example: Ordinary World, Call to Adventure, Refusal of the Call, and so on...I'm feeling educated.

I sure wish I would have read this two books ago. Oh well.

Another book I'm reading (no, make that listening to) is Stephen King's book of writing. That man is a trip. Seriously. He talks about his adventures in life and has he been through some major stuff, I had no idea. But, the important thing is I've learned from his stories. .

I haven't written much this week, my brain still hasn't arrived yet from Dallas, though my books have. I plan to work a bunch this weekend on Voodoo Style, and my goal is at least 30-40 pages. No problem...

So I hear there is a little buzz going around about a couple nice authors who dressed in mini-skirts. I was there, I don't see what the fuss is about. They were in costume, no biggie. They are promoting their characters or books or something, but whatever. Again, no biggie! To each their own is my motto. Hey Kenyon wore a swan hat, I loved it. Is their buzz going on about that?? If so, I'll help cause I love Kenyon. She's the sweetest author I know. I hope she and the other authors have a blast at comic-con, I wish I was going too. Growing up in my parents book store, I read tons of comics. All types. Good luck ladies, let the buzz ride...(cheap promo, haha)

This National was my first, and won't be my last. I say have the most fun you can, dress how ever you like, do what ever you like. (just don't hurt me, haha)... Now count down to Heather Graham's Conference in New Orleans, talk about costumes....

Dawn Chartier
Fantasy on the Rocks!

Monday, July 16, 2007

2007 Rita Winners - Congrats to you all.....

Just in case no one has seen this info yet, here are the winners fo the 2007 Rita's.

...and the winners are!Romance Writers of America congratulates the following winners of the 2007 RITA award:
2007 RITA Winner for Best Traditional Romance
Claiming His Familyby Barbara Hannay
Harlequin Mills & Boon, Romance - (373039077) Kimberley Young, editor
2007 RITA Winner for Best Short Contemporary Romance
From The Firstby Jessica Bird Harlequin Enterprises, Silhouette Special Edition - (0373247508) Stacy Boyd, editor

2007 RITA Winner for Best Long Contemporary Romance
The Mommy Quest by Lori Handeland Harlequin Enterprises, Harlequin Superromance - (373713347) Johanna Raisanen, editor
2007 RITA Winner for Best Paranormal Romance
A Hunger Like No Other by Kresley ColePocket Books, Star - (1416509879) Lauren McKenna, editor

2007 RITA Winner for Best Inspirational Romance
Revealed by Tamera AlexanderBethany House PublishersKaren Schurrer, editor
2007 RITA Winner for Best Romantic Novella
'Tis the Silly Season' in A NASCAR Holidayby Roxanne St. Claire Harlequin Enterprises, HQN - (373771568) Abby Zidle, editor
2007 RITA Winner for Best First Book
The Husband Trap by Tracy Anne Warren Ballantine - (345483081) Charlotte Herscher, editor
2007 RITA Winner for Best Short Historical Romance
The Book of True Desiresby Betina KrahnBerkley, Jove - (515141704) Christine Zika, editor
2007 RITA Winner for Best Long Historical Romance
On The Way To The Wedding by Julia Quinn Avon Books - (0060531258) Lyssa Keusch, editor
2007 RITA Winner for Best Novel With Strong Romantic Elements
A Lady Raised Highby Jennifer Ashley w/a Laurien GardnerBerkley - (515140899) Ginjer Buchanan, editor
2007 RITA Winner for Best Romantic Suspense
Blackout by Annie SolomonWarner Books - (446616311) Melanie Murray, editor
2007 RITA Winner for Best Contemporary Single Title
Adios to My Old Lifeby Caridad Ferrer
Pocket Books MTV Books - (1416524738) Lauren McKenna, editor
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© 2007 Romance Writers of America, Inc.

Friday, July 13, 2007

RWA Nationals Scoop

Oh man, Oh man. I'm having a blast. I had no idea it would be like this.
Please forgive me if I have major typo's I'm trying hard not to pass out.
The classes, the mingling with like minds, and star sighting (as I like to call it, like pictures with Nora, Kenyon, etc. WOW!)

Was it worth it? Yes. I would say absolutely. I didn't have an appt., but I didn't need one. I just wanted to chit chat with the editors and agents to get to know them, not try to sell something to someone I have no idea if I like or not. I wanted to pick their brain a little, scope them out some and see if we match. Let me say I was pleasantly surprised editors and agents are very nice and down to earth and are doing the same as I was. That's what it's all about (besides selling books of course) but if you don't blend well, then why??

Well, tomorrow is another day full of workshops etc. I'll try to go into details of what "I" got out of it. May not work for me or others, but maybe it might, who knows.

Dawn Chartier
Fantasy on the Rocks!!

Sunday, July 8, 2007

Not sure why but my title doesn't work today. The title is Word Painting.
This book was recommended to me by Lori Handeland. Word Painting by Rebecca McClanahan is a guide to writing more descriptively.
This is the book I will be bringing with me to RWA Nationals, which I plan to dig into on the very short plane ride. I bought a few other books Lori recommended which haven't arrived yet, maybe I'll get them before I leave, but at least I have this one to start on.

People keep asking me if I'm excited. Of course I'm excited. Firsts are always very exciting. I even think my first rejection if/when I receive one will be exciting. It will make me official in some type of way.

Well I have several writer friends phone #'s, spoke to several authors who told me to come say Hello, and now I just need finish washing 4 loads of laundry from my camping trip by tonight so I can stuff my suitcase once again. Weeeeeeeeeeee..... Yep, I'm so happy.......... I just wanna learn!!! All the more the better......... I know all this will pay off and one day I'll get that book out there... When I do, I'll be screaming from the top of my house....hahaha....

Night all,
Dawn Chartier
www.dawnchartier (have you checked out my awesome website yet?? You gotta)
Fantasy on the Rocks!!!

Tuesday, July 3, 2007

Got my crit back from Lori Handeland

Yep, Lori sent it to me last night. Thank you Lori, that was really fast.
She offered excellent advice. And a few things she suggested, I'd already done on my own. I'm glad she confirmed what I thought. It helps to have that confirmation... And a few other things I realize from her crit is too much "telling" and not enough "showing".... I know I've heard this a million times and until someone points it out, finally the light goes on... (I'm buying books she suggested)

Now I'm sitting here thinking all these things I need to work on, and that I sent this to editor Kate Duffy. Too late now. So, what should I do? Well, Kate knows what she likes and what she doesn't. I'm sure she's come across newbie writers before, and then has seen them all grown up and published...(that'll be me, I can only hope) And all I can truly do is continue to write to improve my skills. I have lots of learning to do, and patience is the biggest lesson. It's all in the process, and I 'm enjoying every step of the way. One day I'll get there. Maybe tomorrow, maybe next year, who knows....

Happy 4th everyone,

Monday, July 2, 2007

July 4th Week - Writing and Reading

Well this week I plan to write and read. I have my synopsis all done and I tend to use it this go round. If plotting doesn't work for me, then I'm back to righting on a whim.

Well, what are we doing for the 4th, well we are going camping. First time in our travel trailer, should be fun. Then next week is the big RWA Nationals, whoo-hoo!!! Yes, I'm very excited.

Why? Well because I get to mingle with like minds. All writers know how it is at home. No one their to really share your goals and excitement about writing. I mean we share it, but it's not the same with someone who truly knows how it works. How truly hard writing can be. Some hubbies think it's just a fun hobby. Some think it's a mid-life crisis. Some just think we lost our minds. Well for me it is none of those. Writing is something I must do. I do it to release the story within me. I do it to improve my writing style. I do it because I have to. I want to.

Alright, enough about that. Now, I need to figure out which book I want to take with me camping to devour at night while the hubby is sleeping.... Hmm... JR Ward? Feehan? Kenyon? Too many choices...argh!!

Happy 4th everyone, be safe and have fun, enjoy our independence. Oh and I want to share my made-up book cover my web designer and I did. (him mostly I just picked out the girl)

Dawn Chartier

Fantasy on the Rocks!