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Monday, May 27, 2013

Cover Reveal



Cover Reveal
Cry Me A River
by Devyn Dawson


Caide Palmer, Emerald Isle's resident chef and grieving father.  Everything in his life is turned upside down when his ex-girlfriend Heather dies from an accidental overdose.  She left behind their eighteen month old daughter.  Heather's parents filed for emergency custody of baby Lucy.  Now Caide is in the fight of his life to raise his daughter to the best of his ability.  The courts order Caide to attend parenting classes and Al Anon meetings.  It is there that he meets twenty-two year old River.  She is drawn in by his story, and she wants to mend his grieving heart.  Will Caide allow River in to his world, or will he find his role as single father is to be faced alone?  There's something about her that he wants to save.  Can they really save each other?  

Cry Me A River is a New Adult book with sexual situations and explicit language.  If you've ever mourned the loss of someone you loved, Cry Me A River will show you that love can conquer when you meet the right person.  Available July 2, 2013.

Add to your TBR list Cry Me a River

The author Devyn Dawson is from Oklahoma, but she kicks up her boots in New Bern, NC.  She spends her days writing about the characters who live in her head.  Devyn has been intrigued by the young adult world and is now branching out to new adult.  This is her first non-paranormal book.  Although the characters are fictional, grief of losing someone you love is drawn from her own experiences of death and loss.

Stalk Devyn's website

Devyn's Blog - tons of giveaways!

Amazon

Young Adult Books by Devyn

The Legacy of Kilkenny - book one
The Seduction - book 1.5
Malevolence - book two

The Light Tamer
Enlightened
Light Bound - Summer 2013

The Wisdom Series
Trust - book one  Winter 2013


New Adult Books

Sapphire, A Werewolf Love Story




Saturday, May 25, 2013

Writing Fiction

It seems that some new writers have a hang up or problem with taking that leap in to altered realities of their made up stories.

Taking that step into the unreal, into the part of your imagination that makes your story fiction, different, unreal, or magical.  What the new writer doesn't understand is that the readers are looking for that special moment or point in the book when it strays into that unreal part with altered rules of reality.
Remember your favorite books or movies and the moments they crossed that line and hooked you.  You didn't need a huge drawn out description of the rules of physics for this particular story.  You didn't need to be lead around it, or have it hinted at to you through multiple chapters, you were looking for it when you picked up the book and started reading it.

That moment in the movie of Jurassic Park when they first see the dinosaurs.  The moment in Jaws when the shark appears at the back of the boat and all the sheriff can say is that they need a bigger boat.  When Yoda lifts the X-wing fighter out of the swamp.  Those are the moments people are looking for in stories.  It’s how the author brings these moments out to the audience that makes all the difference.

It’s your story!  Just write it.  It is your chance to be as brilliant, stunning, shocking, and awesome as you can dare to be.

How many times have you read a story where you imagined a terrific ending and yet the book came up short.  You imagine different alternatives a story could go and it doesn't come up to reach any of them.  These stories made it to become books, plays, and many of them even movies.  Of all the stories, books, screenplays, and movies that are created every year many are garbage, some are good, few are great.  Think about the greatest stories you have read, watched as shows or movies and think about what made them great.

Focus on the moments when they stepped past the natural boundaries and became magical, entered the realm of fiction and the story really began.  Unleash your imagination and write your story, the perfect story you would love to read except you haven’t written it.  Then write it.  If you get that feeling you get when you are reading a great book while writing your story then you are on the right track.

Sunday, May 12, 2013

The Great Gatsby


Review of The Great Gatsby
At the time of it’s original publishing in 1925, F. Scott Fitzgerald’s, “The Great Gatsby” received critical reviews and had disappointing sales.

Fitzgerald once said in 1920, almost prophetically, “An Author ought to write for the youth of his generation, the critics of the next, and the schoolmasters of ever-afterward.”

Well, he definitely did that.  “The Great Gatsby” didn't become great in it’s own right until about ten to twenty years after Fitzgerald had died.  When college students were reading it, later it became required reading in schools before ultimately being considered one of the top 100 pieces of literature from the nineteen hundreds.

My daughter read Gatsby in college and began telling me about how I have to read it.  After I wrote and published my first book I was giving her hell about not reading my book.

“Have you read ‘The Great Gatsby’ yet?”  She snapped.

“No, I don’t have a copy of it.”  I replied.

We left lunch and our argument and ended up at a used book store.  She found used copy of “The Great Gatsby” and I bought it.  It upset me that a used copy of a book that was published in 1925 cost me $7.50 and my new and first novel was selling for 2.99 at the time, and frankly I was giving copies away to get people to try mine.

I read the book soon after that.  I don’t believe my daughter has read my book as of yet.  Neither has several of my very good friends or my wife.  I wrote a blog post after reading the book because one distinct point in the book caught me, spoke to me, and convinced me of Fitzgerald’s genius as a writer.  He described something I had experienced but never formed into words before.  He nailed it completely.  The description was so perfect and took me to that existential place that time stood still for a moment.

“He smiled understandingly – much more than understandingly.  It was one of those rare smiles with a quality of eternal reassurance in it, that you may come across four or five times in life.  It faced – or seemed to face – the whole external world for an instant, and then concentrated on you with an irresistible prejudice in your favor.  It understood you just so far as you wanted to be understood, believed in you as you would like to believe in yourself and assured you that it had precisely the impression of you that, at your best, you hoped to convey.”

This was the instant in the book that Nick Carraway meets Gatsby face to face and Carraway’s description of Gatsby’s smile.

On my birthday, May 10, last Friday night, my daughter took me to the new movie on the opening night in Kansas City, of the “The Great Gatsby.”  Because of our history with discussing this fantastic book and the many layers of meanings and symbolism, this movie had a special significance to each of us.

Very seldom does a book capture the spirit, the visual interpretations and the heart and soul of the original book.  This movie surpassed my expectations and was as true to the book as I could have ever imagined.  The casting was inspired and only surpassed by the talent of the actors involved with movie.  I almost felt as if it took Leonardo DiCaprio to reach this age and maturity as a great actor to be the perfect person to totally capture the essence of Gatsby.

Tobey Maguire has also matured so much since Spider Man and portrayed Nick Carraway better than what I ever envisioned in my imagination when reading the book.
When Gatsby (DiCaprio) turns and smiles at Nick (Maguire) it was every bit as magical as Fitzgerald’s description.  The Director (Baz Luhrmann) must have sensed the greatness of Fitzgerald’s description because they had Maguire narrate the words from the book as if we could hear his thoughts.  The result was dead on target bulls-eye!
I don’t know what was CGI and what was real but it looked as if you were seeing New York in the 1920’s.  The octologists sign which was featured on numerous versions of book covers.  The Green light at the end of the dock.  The elements of the mansions, the decadence and extravagance of the times before the crash.
Unfortunately many of the people who will go and see the movie will have never read the book.  They will have no idea the great and monumental lengths those who worked on that film went to in order to capture the essence, detail, and relive a piece of the past.  They won’t understand the part of the last sentence and it’s significance to the story, plot, and Gatsby’s fatal flaw.

I give the movie a ten out of ten, perfect score.
As a writer, who is working through my life's work, that which will be my future legacy, I pray I write at least one piece as great as this in my life.  That I write for the youth of my generation, the critics that follow and the schoolmasters of ever-afterward.  That one piece that is hopeful, fun, tragic, true to life and enduring.  To see Carraway write the story in long hand by pen and type it with that antique typewriter spoke to my soul as a writer.

Thursday, May 2, 2013

Snow in May


I am extremely competitive and love to see records broke of about any type, but for snow in May, that one I can do without.  My wife looked it up and the previous record was 1.7 inches of snow in 1907.  Yeah that’s right.  We have the chance to break a hundred and six year old record for Snow in May, in Kansas City, Missouri.
I remember feeling elated that the Ground Hog didn't see his shadow and how that was supposed to predict an early spring.  Somehow a snow storm in May doesn't sound like an early spring.

Wednesday, May 1, 2013

Synchronicity


Synchronicity is . . .

Is the experience of two or more events that are apparently causally unrelated or unlikely to occur together by chance.

"meaningful coincidences"

a causal connecting principle

an apparently meaningful coincidence in time of two or more similar or identical events.


Any of you who read my stuff, here or in my books, will find out sooner or later I am religious, converted later in life mostly because of my wife.  I still have a problem with cussing, in that I still do it habitually out of habit even though I know it is wrong.  My wife and two young boys have enlisted in the crusade of trying to correct my bad habits.


I am a devout Christian because of things I have witnessed which can only be nothing short of a miracle or divine intervention.  A faith Experience.  Many believe, but until you experience something personally that cements your faith in God almighty, you will struggle with faith and your belief.  I love the church my wife and I attend because they are very big on knowing what you believe and why you believe it.  They don't tell you what to believe.  They preach the Holy Word of the Bible and even present different view points on some of the controversial topics, but they believe a you should know what you believe in and why you believe it.

There are times when God has plans for your life and ready or not, when it is time, God moves.  Your plans don't matter.  You want to make God laugh, by all means put your hands together and tell him about your plans.  You understand that point much better when your three year old and five year old son start laying out their plans for the way the evening is going to go.  It dawned on me while explaining what was really going to happen, to my two sons, that God pretty much does the same thing with us, only he doesn't always explain as well to us.  Then again maybe he does but we are listening like a couple of small children and more concerned with our plans.  We don't see or listen when he is speaking to us.

I am old enough and wise enough to realize that not everything is a coincidence.  God brings people into your life for a reason, and it might be years before you figure it out why.  We may never figure it out.  Looking back I can see how my plans and my life has changed and not quite gone the way I had imagined it would, and as it turns out I have ended up in a much better place and better off for what has happened.  I know when God is working in my life and adjusting things, getting ready to change things, and I am wise enough to sit back and marvel in his awesome power and design and watch it unfold.  When I was younger, I would act like my children fighting and kicking while trying to resist the changes.

 There is an oriental proverb that says, that every grain of sand is exactly where it is supposed to be.  When you understand that proverb, you’ll realize we might not like everything that is going on, but it is all according to his master plan and design.  You can fight it, refuse it, change the course but in the end it just means you end up at the same point later in life having taken a little harder and longer road, than you might of.  I probably could have listened to the writing and English teachers years ago and been a writer years ago, but it probably wasn't the right time.  I needed to be seasoned, experience more of life, be tempered by challenges and difficulties, and mellowed in certain areas to get to the place where I am right now.  The Place that is “Exactly”, where I am supposed to be.

We should open our eyes and ears, listen and watch what's going on around us very closely.  We live in a supernatural world and too many don't see all that is truly going on around them.  Most people are going through life sleep walking, while a few of us are walking around totally and utterly amazed at what we see.

 
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