Five Reasons Why You Should Create a Soundtrack For Your Novel

Five Reasons Why You Should Create a Soundtrack For Your Novel

Welcome to the Writing On Wednesdays Blog Series where I’ll be posting an article on the writing process each week. While these posts are targeted more towards writers I hope readers will be interested too. This week’s post is on creating a playlist for your novel. Here’s my top 5 reasons why you should do it: Finding the right songs can help you distill the themes of your book. Often when we write we’re not 100% sure exactly what it is we’re trying to say. Looking for inspiration in song form can help you hone in on the message you’re trying to get across, often through the lyrics but sometimes through the music.       Having a soundtrack for the whole book can help you pinpoint the pace of your story. Sometimes when we’re writing the first draft – or even revising it’s easy to one chapter or scene flows into another without any variation in the pace. When you come up with a soundtrack the songs you assign to each chapter will allow you to see if you need more variation. Maybe you have three slow moving scenes or chapters in a row? Maybe the events in one chapter are too similar to the ones that precede it? Identifying the mood and song for each chapter can help you rectify this.   Song lyrics can provide missing clues for your characters. We learn about our characters as we write the story but sometimes there can be something missing. Songs are one way of piecing together the puzzle. Readers connect to our characters when they can relate to...

A Letter From Loretta Hill, Author Of The Girl In The Yellow Vest

Today the lovely Loretta Hill has sent me a letter telling me all about the release of her latest book The Girl In The Yellow Vest. I loved The Girl In The Hard Hat and can’t wait to read this latest book from Loretta. Thanks for visiting Flying Pony Loretta and good luck with the new book. *** * Dear Pamela, How are you? I’m just exhausted. Christmas plus school holidays plus book promotions equals more work then I thought I’d signed up for. I was actually supposed to be slowing down this month but every time I think I’m going to make it to the couch something else needs to be done.  I wish I could borrow some of my kid’s energy so I could be more productive or at least less tired. Having said that, I did just waste two hours on facebook and email this morning and about ten minutes on twitter. I usually try to limit my social media time otherwise I’d never get anything done. But today is kind of special, so I just went nuts. Why is today special? Well, firstly, I heard that  “The Girl in the Yellow Vest” is now on store shelves. So I just had to tell everybody. As you know, the official release date for “The Girl in the Yellow Vest” is Jan 2014. But sometimes they bring out my books out a little earlier so that people can get them as Christmas gifts.  I’m so glad that this year they’ve done the same. My wonderful nanny who is over today, looking after the kids, while I’m “supposed”...

This Week I’m chatting with Jennie Jones and Loretta Hill. Feel free to eavesdrop.

This week I’m making a couple of guest appearances on other blogs, chatting about my about-to-be-released second novel Essie’s Way. Thought I’d share the links with you in case you’d like to hear more about it. You can check out the other great things on these lovely ladies’ blogs while you’re there: Jennie Jones – http://www.jenniejonesromance.com/jenniejromance-blog.html Loretta Hill – http://lorettahill.wordpress.com...

Writers Unleashed: What Do Publishers Want?

Yesterday I had the pleasure of speaking at the Writer’s Unleashed (aka Sutherland Shire Writers) Festival about Rural Fiction. Although the audience was small it was great to be able to chat about writing and to share what I’ve learnt with others. Also of interest was the session on What Publishers Want, where a panel of three publishers shared what they are looking for. So today i thought I’d share some of those tips with you … First up was Emma Rafferty from Pan Macmillan. Emma gave a very detailed talk and here are some of the points she made: The bottom line is that publishers want good stories that are well told An author who can be turned into a brand Someone who has written, or has the potential to write, multiple books A wide potential market – a book readers are willing to pay for and feel like they got their money’s worth An author who has the ability to market and promote their book Publishers are starting to approach successful indie digital authors to publish their works in print (a la 50 Shades) New Adult is an increasingly popular genre Her advice to authors submitting to the slush pile is to – follow the submission guidelines, give your cover letter a commercial flavour, a strong synopsis, a well-edited three chapters with a strong voice and evidence of a strong plot, a full bio Beverley Cousins from Random House followed up with this: Putting “what a publisher wants” into words is like asking “how long is a piece of strain?” It changes throughout the year depending on...

The Power Of a Deadline – How I Wrote A Novel In Six Months

I’ve been caught up in a writing whirlwind for the last 6 months – writing, revising and just this week doing a copyedit on my soon to be released second novel, Essie’s Way. It’s been one of the busiest, high-pressured times in my life but I know it will all be worth it when I hold that first copy in my hand. Over the next couple of months I’ll be writing a few posts to fill you in on the background of the novel and giving you some sneak peeks at the story. One of the most important lessons I’ve learnt over the last twelve months is to keep on writing. I’ve always been the type of writer who works fairly intensely for a period of time and then has a few weeks off. When Blackwattle Lake, my debut novel was published last December, I was so excited I took not just weeks but months off so when I caught up with my lovely publisher, Vanessa, sometime in February and she told me Hachette would like to publish a second novel – soon – I almost choked. Apart from a vague outline for a sequel to Blackwattle all I had was  20,000 very rough words about two characters – an older woman and a younger one – with no plot and no notion of how the two characters were even connected. it’s truly amazing what a little – or a LOT – of pressure can do. I went home and came up with a synopsis that weekend which was accepted within a week and a deadline of just over 4...

Writer Wednesday Interview with Barbara Hannay, Author of Home Before Sundown

This week it’s my pleasure to welcome Barbara Hannay to the blog. Barbara is a prolific writer with over 40 books to her credit. Her most recent release is Home before Sundown. Coming home can break your hear… or change your life For Bella Fairburn, a girl from the bush, her new life in Europe is a dream come true – not least because of her gorgeous French ski-instructor boyfriend. But news of her beloved father’s heart attack brings Bella rushing back to Australia along with her aunt Liz, an acclaimed musician who’s been living in London for the past thirty years. While her father recuperates, Bella seizes the chance to finally prove to him that she’s perfectly capable of taking over until he recovers. But coming home to Mullinjim is fraught with emotional danger for both Bella and Liz.  While Bella is confident she can deal with drought, the threat of bushfires, and cattle bogged in muddy dams, she fears facing her neighbour Gabe Mitchell. Gabe is the man she once hoped to marry, but he’s also the man who broke her heart. For Liz, Mullinjim holds a painful secret from her past that must never be revealed… In the rugged beauty of the outback, new futures beckon, but Bella and Liz must first confront the heartaches of the past. * Thanks for visiting Flying Pony Barbara. Looking forward to reading Home Before Sundown. *** What activities (other than writing) get your creative juices flowing? I find it important to “refill the well” and I have a few favourite ways. I love listening to music (mostly classical), visiting...