This will probably be review for all of my readers, but we can’t talk about dialogue without talking about the technicalities of it.
Where quotation marks come in relationship to other punctuation can be rather tricky, especially if you’re like me and you read not just American-published stuff, but British and Australian as well. If you’re outside of the U.S. reading this, please understand that the rules I will refer to apply to standards of American publishing. Also, this will focus on the use of quotation marks in fiction/prose writing.
As 99.99% of fiction writers already know, spoken dialogue is enclosed in quotation marks. A change in speaker is indicated by a new paragraph:
“I’m sure they treat you like a celebrity down in Atlanta.”
“Hmm.” The author grimaced. “Yeah—and that’s one of the reasons I’m here now.”
A thrill of excitement rushed up Kirsten’s spine. “Are you here to…
If you’ve ever met me in person….. (grinning sheepishly…), I probably don’t have to tell you how excited I am that NaNoWriMo (nanowrimo.org) starts this Saturday, 1 November.
NaNoWriMo is National Novel Writing Month, which happens every November.
I’ve started a Facebook page for those who wish to be in a NaNo group and support each other. Support… that means kick in the bum when it’s needed, mostly… It’s a secret group, and by invitation. If you wish to join and don’t know me personally, send me a message via this webpage, with your username from NaNo and an email or your FB page link and I’ll join you up!
The more the merrier!
From last year: My winning entry was called A Sea of Green Unfolding, an historical adventure fiction with romantic elements.
From their page, …..
Your Average Per Day 1,686
Target Word Count 50,000
Target Average Words Per Day 1,667
Total Words Written 50,592 WINNER!
Synopsis… you can see last November’s posts for that, if you’re interested… but better….
Better, because I’ve found TWELVE students where I teach at Waihi College, in New Zealand, who want to do it as well! There is a site for young people who want to do NaNo, where they set their own goals. Find it at ywp.nanowrimo.org !
I am so proud of these students for putting their hands up.
It’s not a popular thing to do, but they have the guts to put it all on the line. I’ve started a “virtual classroom” for them and have joined it as a writer as well, so I’m on both NaNo and NaNoWriMo Young Writers Program sites, as LizziTremayne, if you wish to follow our progress!
The local newspaper, Waihi Leader, is coming on Thursday to interview them at school! YEAH!
If any of you out there want to get involved, go for it!
For myself, this November, I’m going to write the first part of the second novel in the series.
Due to my rearrangement of the novels (including inserting one in between the first and the previous second… now the third), the second half of the second novel is done, as is the first half of the third… Soooooo..
Looking to self publish the first one before Christmas and the other two at two month intervals….
and…. have done the research for the fourth! Guess I’ll be busy…
A big Thank You to Annie Featherstone, aka Sophia James, for mentoring me, my award for winning the Pacific Hearts Award.
Thanks to Annie, A Long Trail Rolling is on its final edits, and the balance of The Hills of Gold Unchanging should be completed by end of November during NaNoWriMo! A Sea of Green Unfolding is mostly written and should follow soon!
I hope to have Long Trail available for Christmas!
Thanks to all of you who have written, wondering, once again, when the books will be out!
Back to work. No rest for the wicked! In addition to teaching high school science and equine veterinary dentistry practice, I’ve managed to put my hand up for acting as co-convenor of the Coast to Coast Chapter of the Romance Writers of New Zealand, and also Secretary for the whole RWNZ… Funny, when neither I nor many of the members actually write “romance”! It’s the most awesome group of enthusiastic, encouraging and empowering writers I’ve yet found in New Zealand…
And, NaNoWriMo starts 1 November… 50 K words in the month of November. If you haven’t been on their page, take a look! nanowrimo.org
Patrick Hearty, my Pony Express Expert, is going to write the Forward for A Long Trail Rolling!
Patrick and Dr. Joseph Hatch wrote a book about the Pony Express Stations in Utah, called…. you guessed it!
Patrick Hearty The Pony Express Stations in Utah
Patrick explains something inside an express station, while Dr. Hatch looks on.
(Photo Credit to Scott G. Winterton, Deseret News)
At the Faust’s monument, which is not where Faust’s actually was, incidentally… :)
Patrick Hearty and Lizzi at Rush Valley (Faust’s) Pony Express Station monument, out of Grantsville, Utah.
This was the start of an epic trip across Utah, over the Pony Express Trail, Patrick, his lovely wife, my son and I!
Simpson’s Station, the restored version… It’s lovely… I think it might be on the cover of A Long Trail Rolling!
He’s always got a story for us!
Patrick at Simpson’s Spring Pony Express Station. It’s been reconstructed and you can go inside and see how it was constructed. I think it’ll be on the cover of A Long Trail Rolling
For a young man who loves to take photos, he sure is camera-shy…. my youngest son…
I so loved just being able to touch the old station… even if it was rebuilt!
The Mustangs… They feature in the story, near Dugway!
Here’s a cool pic of them… you’ll understand why we didn’t get any closer to them… The stallion, if you can see it close up, is battle scarred and proud, clearly the winner of many a fight with other stallions for the mares in his herd.
A herd of mustangs out of Dugway… Utah Pony Express Trail.
It was a fantastic day. Will post more pics another time, but just had to share the lovely trip into the mountains…. Patrick, his daughter and I on their favourite mounts…
The world is best seen between the ears of a horse, and especially when it’s Patrick’s favourite one!
Patrick and I on the trail.
Columbines under the aspen… Lovely. Classic Utah high country.
The rocky, dusty July trail.
“What’s for lunch?”
Break time with my wonderful new friends, Patrick and his daughter, plus 3/4…
On Patrick’s favourite boy, no less… Lucky me!
Time for a drink!
… and a rub… “Leave your bridle on, okay?”
“You still takin’ pictures back there?” “Yep…”
If you ever get the chance to go over the Utah Pony Express Trail, do it, you’ll not regret it.
There’s even a man, Davy Crockett, yes, Davy Crockett, who runs an ultramarathon (running) over 100 miles of the trail. See his website at http://ponyexpress100.org/
To those of you who have horses and want to be involved, there’s a re-ride, in both directions, every year. You can ride your portion and carry the mochila. Patrick’s sent me a commemorative letter two years running, one in each direction.. One from St Louis and one from San Francisco. Got this one last year… and they even forwarded it to NEW ZEALAND!
A 2013 Pony Express Commemorative Letter! In NZ!
How exciting. Thank you Pat! And thank you to all the horses and riders who carried those little letters in the mochila for a total of over 4000 miles! Let me know if you’re interested in riding in a re-ride and I’ll get word to Patrick.
There’s a great website about the Pony Express at http://www.xphomestation.com/ From that site, here’s a news release of the ride just past… http://www.xphomestation.com/2014-NR1.pdf Tom Crews, who runs the site, has placed oodles of news, history, stories, etc. of the Pony Express, as well as school program information on the trail! When the re-ride is going, they track the mochilas in real time as they cross the United States! Stop by and see them!
Thanks so much again to Patrick and his wonderful family for having us and letting us in on their life and trail… The Pony Express Trail.
My first novel, A Long Trail Rolling, has won the 2014 RWNZ Pacific Hearts Award!
To say I’m pleased is a bit of an understatement! The big one I get to keep for this year, and a smaller version, inscribed with 2014, forever!
The conference was fantastic, with amazing speakers from New Zealand and overseas, including:
James Scott Bell, Marie Force and, Courtney Milan, Yvonne Lindsay, Trish Morey, bestselling authors
Jim Azevedo from Smashwords
Kevan Lyon from Marsal Lyon Literary Agency
Sue Brockhoff and Lilia Kanna from Harlequin Australia
Malle Vallik from Harlequin North America
Flo Nicoll from Harlequin UK
Sarah Fairhall, Penguin Australia
Karina Bliss, Yvonne Walus, Kamy Chetty, Lisa Whitefern and Frances Housden, award winning authors
With such a lineup, we couldn’t miss, other than not being physically able to attend every workshop!
The agents and editors took pitches throughout the weekend. I pitched A Long Trail Rolling and its sequels to:
Kevan Lyon, Founding Partner of Marsal Lyon Literary Agency,
Sue Brockhoff, Head of Publishing at Harlequin (Australia) and
Malle Vallik of Harlequin Digital Editorial Initiatives North America (Toronto)
They have all requested the full manuscript!
I’m sure it helps to have won the competition!
Accepting prize for A Long Trail Rolling first place in the Pacific Hearts Award 2014
The awards dinner was great, and fellow Coast to Coast Chapter RWNZ member Sheryl Buchanan won second place in the same competition!
Sheryl, the second place-getter for the Pacific Hearts Award, and her husband.
The C2C’ers who went to the Awards Dinner, Sheryl and her husband, Khushi, Bernadette, Netta, Iola, Catherine, Me, Matthew and Paul.
Netta and Paul
I felt like a princess…..
Bernadette and Netta’s husband Paul
Iola and Catherine
A great time was had by all!
The new trophy for my Writing Trophy Bookcase!
My Writing Awards… From Top Left: Trophy for Best Practitioner Publication by an Equine Practitioner 2010 “Equine Dentistry”. Top right: Trophy and ribbon for Pacific Hearts Award 2014. Lower Left: ribbon for Finalist in Great Beginnings 2013.
Oh, and for my spare time, I was promoted to Secretary of the RWNZ this year, so I should be able to keep up with what is going on!
I don’t think a conference could get much better for me…
Now back to work, to get these submissions finished!
Some of my fantastic beta readers have told me things like…..
“Too much has happened between A Long Trail Rolling and its Epilogue.”
(Hmmm… I didn’t really think so, but your other comments were well-received, Kate…)
Thanks, Kate L.
Matt’s been a bit more blunt…
“You need another novel in between A Long Trail Rolling and A Sea of Green Unfolding”, he said, out of the blue the other day.
(Hmmm… just redid my business card to reflect novels number one and two…)
What does he know, anyway? He’s just another author…
It simply didn’t bear considering, as I was flying along with Sea of Green and didn’t want to look back over my shoulder. I tried to forget about it.
Enter Sheryl, hostess of our monthly C2C RWNZ Branch meeting. Last Saturday, Sheryl, a writer and teacher, offered a fantastic workshop on creation of storyboards as a preparation for novel writing… and Matt had to say it… again…
“You ought to do your board on the novel between your first and third.”
“My first and third?” I knew what he meant, but wasn’t about to admit it… “I’ve only written two..”
“Stories.” He arched an eyebrow at me.
“Oh.” I gulped.
He just grinned and returned to perusing magazines for visuals of characters to use in his own storyboard for his upcoming “Glass” speculative fiction quadrilogy.
“But I haven’t thought about it yet,” I muttered, as I slunk away to find some materials.
Out of the ashes of my attitude has come…
…the storyboard for the ‘intervening’, soon to be my second, novel.
A Sea of Green Unfolding will have to be relegated to third novel… but I’m going to finish it first!
So here’s the storyboard.. It’s unfinished, as yet, but it’s on its way!
It’s 3-D, so I’ve shown it in two views!
In this ‘new’ second novel, Aleksandra and Xavier’s 1860 saga continues from the Pony Express Trail of Utah, via the gold country of 1860’s Nevada and California, through Old San Francisco, to the old Californio Rancho de las Pulgas, Xavier’s old family hacienda.
The ‘new’ third novel, A Sea of Green Unfolding, will take up where this one leaves off…
Working on a name for this new ‘second’, intervening, novel… Something about “The Hills of Gold…. ” or “The Golden Hills… “
Can you think of a good name? I’d love to hear it! This might have to become a competition!
Thanks for stopping by! A couple of bits of news for you today!
I’ve just heard I’ve been selected as one of three finalists in the RWNZ Pacific Hearts Award 2014 with A Long Trail Rolling (previously called Express Desire). The Pacific Hearts Award is a full-novel competition, the only one run by RWNZ! (For more information: http://www.romancewriters.co.nz/contests/pacific-hearts-award-2014-2/ ).
Winners will be announced at the upcoming RWNZ Conference, http://www.romancewriters.co.nz/2014-conference/
I’m truly buzzed about my placing! Can’t wait to hear! Hope to see many of you at the conference!
More news, I’ll be the new Secretary of the RWNZ, starting at said conference!
My final bit of news, is that author Jean Drew offered me a great opportunity, a guest post on her blog this week!
It’s up now and is entitled ‘Love of all things historical gets Lizzie writing!’
In it, I answer questions, like:
When did you first consider yourself a writer?
In which genre do you prefer to write and why?
Can you give us some details about your upcoming release/s?
Who are some of your favourite authors?
When you are not writing, what are your hobbies, passions, etc?
Do you have any advice for new writers beginning their adventure?
And then there’s a blurb, an excerpt from A Long Trail Rolling,