Tag: editing

How to Write Strong Female Characters

How to Write Strong Female CharactersLazlo Ferran, Romance, Vampire, Werewolf, Magic and Science Fiction writer writes a guest post on Mohanalakshmi Rajakumar’s blog: ‘How to Write Strong Female Characters‘ This article shows what difficulties are faced and some possible solutions when writing female characters from a male feminist point of view.

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”

Why is it taking me longer to publish my books?

Ordo Lupus and the Temple Gate Front Cover
Ordo Lupus and the Temple Gate Front Cover today

Actually, I know the answer, it’s a rhetorical question, but readers keep asking me this question, so here is how I do it. Other processes might be better so please tell me what you do; I am eager to know!

When I first starting publishing books, independently in 2006, nobody had any interest in my books at all. Apart from one short story, which a few kind souls told me had merit, I could get nobody I knew to read my stuff, not friends or even family.

By the time of completion of my first draft for Ordo Lupus and the Temple Gate, things had changed. Several people were now interested and I felt lucky to have three readers of the manuscript (MS) before publication. This helped me a great deal to improve the book although I really had to bit the bullet because I needed, among other things, to cut 15000 words from the overlong manuscript. This resulted in a big improvement so I had learned that readers of your pre-publication MS, beta readers, can be a very useful part of the writing process. Continue reading “Why is it taking me longer to publish my books?”

Tales of Lazlo Ferran, Freelance Editor. What are yours?

Some people have asked me to write about my editing experiences so here goes:

I haven’t edited a book for another writer since Amit Bobrov’s The Journals of Raymond Brooks. Editing is a marketplace starved of money but I am determined to find more work to fund my writing.

Consequently, a few days ago I joined an editing group on LinkedIn and posted a link to my editing page and asked for feedback. It was a baptism of fire! I must say that editors are a tough bunch! They didn’t hold back and told me the page was too chatty and unprofessional. If you are looking for an editor, I think you will approve of the new page. I have reduced my rates somewhat because of the tough market conditions at the moment. However, even these prices are only a guide; I am open to negotiation. So if you are looking for an editor for your new book, please contact me. Continue reading “Tales of Lazlo Ferran, Freelance Editor. What are yours?”

17 Days to War?

17 Days to War? This was the innocent looking subtitle for an episode of a recent high profile BBC series to mark the Centenary of World War One. It instantly upset me, not deeply – I mean I wasn’t throwing things at the TV or thinking about writing a letter because I was close to tears. But the grammar of that phrase bothered me! I think the Beeb made a shocking error here because their grammar is ambiguous and could mean something insulting. Let me explain:

17 Days to War may seem like an innocent phrase to you but it grates on me, as a writer, editor and reader. It grates especially because I know a thing or two about war, although I have never had to fight in one, for which I thank God in my heart almost every day! I am not a war-lover, despite writing fiction about it. I have an affection for the technology used but more than this, I love writing about people, people in difficult situations, and there are no more extreme situations than war. I would like to think it’s an emotive subject for anybody. Continue reading “17 Days to War?”