Monday, May 28, 2007

Happy Memorial Day!

Hi Friends ~
Just wishin' ya'll a Happy Memorial Day.
Today we had a crawfish boil with the family, it was very nice.
We swam and ate, and ate and ate...hehe...
We love crawfish here in New Orleans, it's what we do for most occasions.

Well lets see what's going on in the writing world. Not much last week. Taking a breather and working on my website.... I'm hoping to be up in a few weeks and I'll let everyone know....I'm excited about it...It's dark....

Have a great day everyone,
Dawn Chartier
Fantasy on the rocks!!!

Monday, May 21, 2007

Katrina, that Bitch!

Katrina--that Bitch! I've always wanted to say that.

People often ask me how the city is coming along. (New Orleans).
And I have to say it truly depends on who you ask.
For me, Hurricane Katrina sent me and my husband into a whirlwind after it hit.
We are in construction, so obviously we became swamped in a bad, yet good way.
In a good way we were able to help several hospitals and medical facilities re-open as fast
as we could. We knew patient beds were few, so we busted our butts getting them back open. Our own office was flooded and needed attention, but we saved it for last. Honestly, we were too exhausted to deal with our own problems after helping others deal with theirs. -- But at least I was so damn busy, I didn't have time to sit back and think about alot of things my mind was burying that could have easily thrown me into depression.

Katrina just like any disaster brings out the best and worst in people, always has, always will. The government pointing fingers at each other. Nothing ever resolved. Some residents will never come back and others will never leave. My brother left and won't come back. Some waiting on Insurance money or the Louisiana Road home money before they decide what they are going to do. It's all just so crazy. Everyone that has remained is scared of next season, (June 1st) because the levee's aren't all back to the way they were before Katrina. (which wasn't much to begin with as we saw). I have a levee directly down my street and often think how fortunate I was that mine lucked out due to a jog in the hurricanes path.

But, there are people like myself. We try to hide from it. I don't like to watch the news, I don't like to venture into the areas where you see X's still painted on houses and no one lives there anymore. Just this Saturday we went to a friends birthday party. It was at her cousins boat house on Lake Pontchartrain. As my husband drove down West End Blvd. I felt my chest tightning, and my breathing becoming rapid. My temples were killing me from holding back the tears that wanted to burst free. The houses were like a grave symbol to me. They were dead and empty. I could still see the water mark about 10 feet high. There were a few rebuilding here and there, but not much. My heart hurt for them.

I became sad on the drive to the party seeing this up close again. I had to put on a fake smile once we got there, but after awhile I began to enjoy myself, and pretended all was well once again and forgot about what was next door to this boat house. An empty one, and other empty one. Just down the street all the restaurants were washed away, the good ole' seafood restaurant that you sat on the porch peeling crawfish and shrimp. Sucking heads and pinching tails as they say here locally. (crawfish that is).

No one knows what it is really like until you see it first hand. And we all can argue over the politics, I'll be the first one to tell you "THEY SUCK", especially in New Orleans, and stupid people re-elect them again... But, seeing destruction, death and a city hit rock bottom like that truly breaks your heart. At least it does mine. I love this city. Crime, crooked politics and all! I'll never move. I will continue to rebuild one building at a time and hope more and more people come back to this beautiful, but flawed city. Any thoughts, comments and questions are welcomed. --- I LOVE NEW ORLEANS!!!

Dawn (sorry for the typo's. I didn't spell check this time)

Sunday, May 20, 2007

Being creative

I think most writers have a very creative brain by nature. Always having ideas in their minds wanting to put it on paper/computer to get it out. This is the point I'm at today. I've finished Genus and now I want to just let some creative juices flow. Take an idea I have and just write all about what I want to happen. I didn't start it yet, but I will probably tomorrow.

I hate to say this but I'm so glad school is out for the kids. Now I can stop with the late homework or late studies, believe it or not I feel like I'm back in school. So when the summer comes, I feel like it's more free time to write.

Well, here's to all your creative juices, I hope they are flowing like a river.

Happy writing,

Thursday, May 17, 2007

New James Bond

I'm just curious what everyone thought of the new James Bond? The movie? The actor?

I'll give my opinion. I loved the movie and the actor. I found his role was more along the line of what I would think of a real secret agent to be like. He got dirty. He got mad. He didn't listen. He fell in love. He seemed more real to me in this movie then all the others before him.

I'll always love the prior James Bond movies and actors, but I just love this one more.

What's your thoughts?

Websites for unpublished writers

Should you have a website if you are not published?
Well, that is a question that I think would depend on your situation.
If you are a writer, and feel you want to put your name out there because you are going to write until someone publishes you, then I'd say "yes" get a website.
Even if it's a cheapy site on that cost a few dollars a year for one little page, why not?
I think it shows you are serious about writing. I think it will be easier if someone does want to search you like most people do today.

I wouldn't spend more money than you can afford, but you know you will need to spend some.
I did a yahoo one page template it cost maybe $3 per year. That's it.... Now the page is plain and simple, but being that I hadn't finished a book yet that is why I went that route. And now, I finished a book and I'm serious about finishing more, I'm paying someone to do a professional one. One that represents who I am, and what I like. (which is fantasy, mysterious, spooky & some romance)...

So it's up to you. But if you are serious then you need to put your name out there. The website is the best place and the cheapest advertising I know other than being on writers groups.

Writers groups are another way to promote yourself for free. I see authors doing it everyday and no one minds if they play by the rules.

Hope this blog helps,
Happy writing,
Dawn Chartier
Fantasy on the Rocks!!!

Monday, May 7, 2007

POV Point of View

POV ~ I never knew what it was until a few years ago when I joined a critique group. "POINT OF VIEW"...Well, I shifted my POV in one scene, which is also called headhopping....

I was told I headhopped. Huh? What was that I asked? Then someone was nice enough to tell me that I shifted from one character to another without any real reason other than to do it. They said I was confusing the reader and that editors don't like it. Well, I guess I need to figure out how not to headhop. So, I printed out a scene and highlighted with a marker every time I shifted my Point of View. Then I went back and took out the person that I really didn't need to be in their mind and used the one that gained the most from the scene.

I still kept the dialog of course, but just stayed in my hero/or heroine's mind through out that one scene, sometimes more.

Makes since? Not as easy as it sounds. But, I've trained myself not to do it anymore. Thank goodness for dialog, it helps! Just stick with one POV for each scene and you'll be better for it, unless your Nora Roberts, Sherriyln Kenyon and a few others that can do it without you even realizing. If you are new, I'd suggest don't headhop.

That's just a little thing I learned the hard way. I'll share others later.

Good day,
Dawn Chartier
Fantasy on the Rocks!

Friday, May 4, 2007


Anyone seen the movie "DEJAVU"? Well, I watched it tonight and I have to say it really intrigued me. I enjoyed it. A was so proud of the directors not making New Orleanian's sound like idiots as the movie industry usually does. We don't talk stupid like you saw in the movie many years ago called "The Big Easy"... We really don't... Denzel Washington did a wonderful acting job. So did the girl who was murdered. Not sure who she is, but she did great. Val Kilmer had a tiny role in this one, I was surprised about that. I'd like to have seen more of him.

Now what touched me about this movie were the scenes where they showed the houses moved from there foundations from Hurricane Katrina. It hit a nerve, a raw one that I thought healed. It hurt. My husband is in construction and said that area still looked that way. That hurt even more.

But I do want to say thanks to the producer Jerry Bruckheimer and director Tony Scott for reminding me, it hasn't gone away. I just bury myself from that area and try to forget when I shouldn't. Katrina gave me the courage to do what I've always wanted to do in life. To be free with my imagination and write stories. (only good thing from her)

I recommend Dejavu to anyone who likes para-normal, sci-fi, mystery, murder, and very light touch of romance.

Thanks for letting me share my review.
Dawn C

Character Profiles

I've been thinking a lot about character profiles.
I was on this group who gave me a character profile chart to fill out for all my characters and I was stunned at all the questions it asked. It was very overwhelming.

I had no clue all this stuff was important to know.... then it dawned on me... It wasn't really all that important. Especially if it wasn't the Hero or Heroine. Of course it's good to know the basics, and a few tidbits, but really do you know everything up front? No, I think the characters reveal themselves a little at a time. At least mine do. I get to know them as I'm writing. Sure I can pick out their hair color, body features, favorite colors, but to truly know them is to put them in situations and watch them squirm, thats how I figure out what "type" my characters are.

Now this is just my thoughts on the subject, everyone has their own style, this is just what I'm learning as I go along. And, I haven't been writing very long, less than two years. But I pay close attention to what works for me and you should do the same... Don't force yourself to know your characters before the story has taken place or you'll have them do what you want, and not what they want. Understand?? Now if only I can grasp grammar (comma's) I'd feel much better.

Happy writing ya'll,
Weather in New Orleans today: Got 8 inches of rain...(I'll post pics of my flooded yard on monday)
Fantasy on the Rocks!

Thursday, May 3, 2007

To blog or not to blog from a writers view

That is the question. Well, I'm gonna blog and try it out. Why not!

Well, this is my first blog and I'm just experimenting with it today.
I'm a writer of para-normal fantasies usually with romance or romantic elements weaved through out. I like writing a story with action. Sometimes I forget that I'm really putting my characters out there like that. (sorry guys/gals) But, I enjoy the action paced story just as much as the next human. I also like to keep secrets and clues in my stories. Gotta have mystery!!!

I'm also a big fan of "horror", I love to be scared from a great book or movie. The tasteful ones that is. (Stephen King, Debra LeBlanc, Joe Hill to name a few) And the old original movies that made you have nightmares for years. You know which one's they are.

Well, enough about that. I just finished re-writing my last chapter and finally wrote THE END. God, did it feel great. My story is now going into the hands of a woman who will hopefully catch all my grammar mistakes and any open graves that I might have forgotten to fill. I hope she makes it shine like a star. I'm so eager to get this submission to a great lady named Kate Duffy. Kate if you see this by a miracle chance, I'm still sending your request as promised. Just a little better than it would have been if I sent it a month ago. That's what happens when you sit and listen to editors and agents tell you what they like and don't like at conferences. You get a better story. You learn.

Well, it's getting late and my brain is turning mushy. New Orleans is about to get hit with some nasty weather so I better turn off the computer. I'll be back soon.

Have a great Thursday.
Night ya'll.
Fantasy on the Rocks!