Category: scfi eidtor

How to Write a Good Book – Post 6. Editing

pen6At last your manuscript about Rudolph and Santa is complete and has  gone to your beta readers for one round of testing. What next?
This is where the hard work begins. Most writers don’t enjoy it, but editing is the stage that will lift your work from just a rough story to a world-class bestseller. Well, okay, we hope it will. Seriously though, without good editing, you book will not stand a chance in an increasingly competitive market.
If you can possibly afford the cost, I recommend you get another writer or professional editor to do the final edit on your work. You can always swap books for editing with other readers, if you are short of money. Why do I tell you this? A writer reads what he thought he wrote, not what he actually wrote, when he reads it back. He or she will read the same paragraph 20 times and not see the typo. It has has happened to me in a very embarrassing situation; a submission to a pubisher had an error in the first line of the query letter. Two other people close to me checked it and didn’t spot it. I read it at least 20 times and missed it. Once the tension of submission was over and I received their rejection, I saw the error and it was blindingly obvious!

Continue reading “How to Write a Good Book – Post 6. Editing”

How to Write a Good Book – Post 5. Varying the Pace

pen5So you have your plot of Rudolph’s adventures all worked out and you know where the climax and twist will be. Now you are considering writing the climax and want to know how to show tension when Rudolph can’t get the tractor down a narrow alleyway, or gets stuck in a snowdrift. So how do you show the tension?

It’s not as easy as you might think!

Action Words and Expletives

The first rule is to use more action words when you are writing action sequences. These are words like ‘ripped,’ ‘spun,’ ‘yelled,’ ‘wrenched,’ and ‘panted.’ Continue reading “How to Write a Good Book – Post 5. Varying the Pace”

How to Write a Good Book – Post 4. Structure

pen4So Rudolph is desperate to guide the tractor on Christmas eve, but his nose won’t glow properly. Erma makes him an enormous apple pie to make him happy and promises him a good night in bed afterwards. She wants that new TV!

How do you you get the structure of your story right?

First Draft

For your first draft, don’t worry about structure. Just get the story down. It will come out chronologically, that is, with the events in the order in which they happen. They may not stay this way, but that’s fine for now. Too many writers worry about writing a blockbuster with their first draft. You won’t. All writers have to write a second draft, so don’t try and avoid it. Continue reading “How to Write a Good Book – Post 4. Structure”

How to Write a Good Book – Post 3. Characterisation

writing3Basic Rules of Characterisation

So, in our story about Santa’s sleigh problems, we have Santa, Rudolph, and Rudolph’s wife, Erma!

Now how do you create characters for them? There are no hard and fast rules, but be wary of simply writing the story as it comes into your head without setting the characters. If you do this, the most likely outcome is that all the characters will sound like the same person, or sub-personalities of the same person. For instance:

“Wow! I got an egg for my birthday. Thanks Erma. I really love you. It’s exactly what a male reindeer wants!”
“It’s okay Rudolph. Wow! I really love you too. I’m glad it’s what you wanted.” Continue reading “How to Write a Good Book – Post 3. Characterisation”

Birthday: A Poem

I am feeling a bit introspective this week due to the death of a friend recently. So here is a poem.

Birthday

Why are birthdays so profound?
The years sound out like death bells,
For the lost, those that shot,
their load too soon,
Those that fell, the hours spent waiting,
The messages not sent, the letters not written.
The times you betrayed yourself,
Not wanting to climb the mountain.

I feel lost and found,
At least I know I can wait,
no longer,
The time has come to do,
Something.
Something great for those I love,
I cannot abandon hope,
That I have one last shot, of straight, dark rope,
to pull us through the rotten defile,
and take us over the final mile.

Hottest, Coolest WWII Gadget Vote Results are in!

The first three places are:

Focke-Achgelis Fa 223
Focke-Achgelis Fa 223

1st Place, with 6 votes: Focke-Achgelis_Fa_223 – A dual rotor helicopter

When Otto Skorzeny was planning his raid to abduct captured Italian dictator Benito Mussolini from the Albert Rifugio hotel on the Gran Sasso in September 1943, his original choice of aircraft was a Fa 223.[14] The Fa 223 would be able to land directly in front of the hotel.[14] However, the chosen aircraft broke down while en route, and Skorzeny instead was forced to use a Fieseler Fi-156.[14]

The Drache could transport cargo loads of over 1,000 kg (2,200 lb) at cruising speeds of 121 km/h (75 mph) and altitudes approaching 2,440 m (8,010 ft). Continue reading “Hottest, Coolest WWII Gadget Vote Results are in!”

Complete this short Survey for a free Vampire eBook

Cover of Vampire Beneficence
Cover of Vampire Beneficence

Just answer 8 quick questions to download FREE ebook: Vampire Beneficence: (Short stories Volume III) Click here!

Included are:

  1. Short Story: Vampire Beneficence
  2. Short Story: The Jesus Monster
  3. Short Story: Lacunashka
  4. Chapter one of Attack Hitler’s Bunker!
  5. Chapter One of scifi Too Bright the Sun

This survey has been discontinued, but if you want a free vampire book, hope over to the Vampire – Find my Grave page.

Win ebook: Who might equal Shakespeare in the 21st century?

Lazlo Ferran Competition: Who might equal Shakespeare in the 21st Century?
Who might equal Shakespeare in the 21st Century?

Win ebook: Who might equal Shakespeare in the 21st century?

See further down for competition to win a free copy of my next eBook.

Here is the latest news…

Editing
I have just finished editing an illustrated novel for a very talented new writer. It’s very exciting work and I can’t wait to see the finished product but it is all top secret at the moment. I will announce the book here when it’s published.

New Novels
I have the basic framework for two scifi novels in my head and of course there is the second Wartime novel and the third installment of the Ordo Lupus series, both of which are with publishers and agents. I am hoping for to get signed but, if not, I will publish myself. If you want the very latest on release dates, competitions and free offers, sign up for the Newsletter. The next issue will go out in late September or early October. Continue reading “Win ebook: Who might equal Shakespeare in the 21st century?”

Keeping up to date with Lazlo Ferran

Ordo Lupus and the Temple Gate - Extended Edition coverHi All
I wanted to let you know that I will only be posting every second Monday from now on. I have to focus very hard on my latest novel and the real world tends to intrude as well so I don’t have to much time.

If you really want exclusive inside information on what I am working on, what is coming up, competitions freebies AND THREE FREE THRILLERS, then you need to sign up for the Lazlo Newsletter.

You will always find a page with the link to the Newsletter in the menu at the top of all my blog pages.

Review: The Blue Max

The Blue Max - 1966
The Blue Max – 1966

The 1966 movie, The Blue Max, stands out in my mind as the only movie I can think of without a hero.

I watched The Blue Max last week (okay I admit it, I have it on DVD). I am a huge fan of aviation films and this one is all about a German Air Force pilot in World War I. Skip the bits about aircraft if that is not your thing but that’s not the main point of this review.

Briefly, Bruno Stachel is an infantry corporal in the trenches. From a working-class background, he nevertheless longs for the noble arena of death in the skies and enlists in the German Air Force. He proves a talented pilot but his new squadron of officers, enlisted from the ruling classes, do not accept his ambitious ruthlessness. They have a strict code of conduct, which he breaks in many ways, including bedding the top-scoring Willi’s aunt and lover, the Countess Kaeti. Willi’s nobility, until now, has extended to taking Stachel under his wing but now the gloves are off and the two duel for supremacy in the skies and in bed. Continue reading “Review: The Blue Max”