Today we have author Patrice Locke visiting. Welcome!
What would you like to tell readers about yourself?
* As a journalist, Patrice Locke wrote a lot of stories with unhappy and even tragic endings. Facts are facts, and a writer doesn’t mess with facts.
* But fiction is another world. Patrice began writing novels, where she could control the endings and make them as happy as she wants. The best thing about fiction, she says, is having time to think before her characters speak, so they can say the things most of us only come up with after the perfect moment has passed.
* She loves to write, read, and watch romantic comedies where life always turns out the way it should. Her only obsessive relationships are with semicolons and Oxford commas.
* Though she doesn’t like to brag, Patrice is an award-winning artist. She won a gold and diamond watch when she was 13 for decorating a turkey drumstick bone to look like Batman. Alas, that was her last recognition in the fine arts.
* Patrice lives in Albuquerque, New Mexico, where the blue sky is brilliant, the air is thin, and the vistas are breathtaking. She is none of those things, which is one reason she enjoys living among them.
Today Patrice Locke will be talking about the best piece of writing advice she’s received and how it’s helped.
* Listening to writers talk about writing helps.
* “There are three rules for writing a novel. Unfortunately, no one knows what they are.” W. Somerset Maugham
* I cling to that when I start to feel lost or overwhelmed. It’s a comforting idea, and it’s true. The thing I hate most is having someone tell me some random writing rule that they believe must be obeyed upon pain of death. I once had a person in a critique tell me that you can never use the word “that.”
* And a friend told me that she was informed that no book could start with the word “it.” Right. “It was the best of times. It was the worst…” Or “It is a truth universally acknowledged…” Yep. Dickens and Austen should be ashamed of themselves. Hacks.
* I think writing is about expressing thoughts, describing actions, and setting scenes. If you can do those things in a way that keeps someone reading, nobody is going to stop to count the “thats” and “ifs.”
* Writing is about breaking the rules and creating something that’s never been seen before in exactly that way.
* “Read, read, read. Read everything – trash, classics, good and bad, and see how they do it. Just like a carpenter who works as an apprentice and studies the master. Read! You’ll absorb it. Then write. If it’s good, you’ll find out. If it’s not, throw it out of the window.” William Faulkner
* Perfect. I try to read like a reader and not a writer, though, because that can suck all the enjoyment right off the page. On the other hand, if I’m stopping to rewrite something in my head to avoid the author’s repetition, or if I’m mentally editing out extra verbiage, I have to question whether I ought to keep reading. It all helps me keep my own ‘voice’ and style in check. I don’t want to be the before picture in the ‘don’t let this happen to you’ feature on the craft of writing.
* And, finally: “I hate writing. I like having written.” Dorothy Parker
* That’s me. I can’t wait to get to revising because I never like what happens the first time through. The only problem, of course, is that you have to actually do that dreadful writing to get to the stage where it can be polished into something you can set free in public.
* I think you have to write as if nobody else is going to read it because the inner-editor will never let the ‘good stuff’ out for fear or embarrassment. You have to hold up the mirror and figure out a way to like what you see there.
A look into…
~ Blurb ~
* Tracy Price has a documentary-style life until rockstar Jesse Elliot rewrites her script and takes the wheel to drive her crazy.
* In her quest to find a writer missing since the 1930’s, Tracy thinks she has discovered exactly how to handle her new relationship. But she may be listening to the wrong voice.
* Then Tracy and Jesse find out they’ve both been keeping some big secrets, and the truth may ruin everything.
* Will sharing the missing writer’s story open both their hearts?
~ Excerpt ~
* Jesse lunged toward me. It was too late. I had already launched. He reached out but didn’t connect. Instead, I broke the trajectory of my upper body by grabbing him at chest level and sliding down. He was pushed backward into the table, which stabilized our ungainly host-parasite tableau. He softened my landing so that physically I was fine, but my pride was ready for intensive care.
* Heaped at his feet, like a demented penitent, I hugged his knees, my face pressed flat into his thighs. I might as well stay down. What’s worse? To stand up and face you, or remain here, nestled between your legs? What do you think? Then, the finishing touch: I erupted into nervous, snorting laughter. He guessed there was no serious injury.
* “It’s nice to see you, too. You are okay, aren’t you? Can you stand?” He reached for my arms to unwrap them from his legs and help me up. I jammed my eyelids together to conjure up a do-over, but no such luck.
* I would have to deal with it.
* He held my elbows in his hands. “I guess we were both in a hurry to see each other.”
* I do appreciate your attempt to lighten the mood, but you are standing SO close. I can feel your body heat. Or is that mine? By the way, you smell tart and fresh, like a lime.
* I stared at his shoulder. My dignity meter was stuck on empty.
* “Enthusiastic greeting. Thanks for that.” He was blatantly amused.
* “It was nothing.” I stepped backward to regain a semblance of independence. Don’t mock me. But, you did go to all the trouble to bring your hair. And your eyes. I might forgive you for witnessing my disgrace. That hair.
Buy Exit Signs here…
Thank you for joining us here today, Patrice Locke! It was a pleasure getting to know you and your story.
ANNOUNCEMENT! Patrice Locke will be awarding a $10 Amazon or Barnes and Noble GC to a randomly drawn winner via rafflecopter during the tour! So be sure to leave a comment AND use this RAFFLECOPTER LINK to enter the drawing. Also, visit the other tour stops for a greater chance of winning!