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Common writing problems

By on May 11, 2018
Common writing problems

Common writing problems

 

Part 2 of the common struggles writers come across when producing art to read the previous post you can read it here.

 

1.     Endless procrastinating. One of the common writing problems 

 

 

 

Common writing problems for writers. Youtube, Facebook, Pinterest Tumblr you name it. They are a distraction. I spend hours doing youtube “research” which involves watching recipes or music videos of my favorite bands. Organizing bookshelves, the closet clearing. You name it.

 

 

 

 

 

2.       Trying the overcome, the notorious blank page and the cursor blanking you.

Sometimes you have the scene constructed in your head, you know what your characters are going to do, the dialogue, the action. Everything is laid out but when it comes to putting it down to paper, your mind goes blink the words can’t seem to flow.  

 

3.    Trying to figure out how to develop your characters

One-dimensional, too shallow, the Mary Sue. Are the characters likable? Unlikable? What can I do to make them better? It’s a common writing problem coming up with great characters.

 

4.       Trying to find time to write

Writing requires time, discipline, and patience. We daydream of being a full-time author but before that happens, we need to sustain ourselves. We need to eat, like it or not we have to work. Doing a day job is eight hours of our lives, then there are the house chores, the shopping, meeting with friends, picking the children to school. The list goes on and on. We just want time to write!

 

5.       Editing

Last of the common writing problems. A writer is never happy with what she/he produces. We start editing the first draft before finishing it. We wish the manuscript could edit itself without hiring a professional editor. We want to perfect that manuscript the best we can. Therefore, we edit, edit and edit.

 

 

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Top 5 sexiest books: That will get you hot and bothered.

By on February 16, 2018
Top 5 sexiest books

Top 5 sexiest books: That will get you hot and bothered.

 

Still going on the Valentines theme here is my top 5 sexiest books. Disclaimer: these are the books that I have read so I’m not going to list books that I have not read. 

 

The Story of O by Paulin Reage 

 

Top 5 sexiest booksYou thought Fifty Shades of Grey is raunchy? Think again this is the original Fifty Shades of Grey published in 1954 under the pen name of Pauline Reage, the author stated she wrote the novel under series of love letters to her lover.

 

The themes of the book consist of bondage, anal sex, objects inserted into women and branding.

 

Here is a synopsis

 

The Story of O relates the progressive willful debasement of a young and beautiful Parisian fashion photographer, O, who wants nothing more than to be a slave to her lover, René. The test is severe—sexual in method, psychological in substance… The artistic interest here has precisely to do with the use not only of erotic materials but also erotic methods, the deliberate stimulation of the reader as a part of and means to a total, authentic literary experience.

 

  1. Delta of Venus by Anais Nin 

 

Top 5 sexiest booksPublished in 1977 but the stories were written in 1940’s it is a collection of short stories. Although sometimes the book has sexually graphic scenes, I loved her writing its rich, poetic, and stimulating.

 

Synopsis

 

In Delta of Venus Anaïs Nin penned a lush, magical world where the characters of her imagination possess the most universal of desires and exceptional of talents. Among these provocative stories, a Hungarian adventurer seduces wealthy women then vanishes with their money; a veiled woman selects strangers from a chic restaurant for private trysts; and a Parisian hatmaker named Mathilde leaves her husband for the opium dens of Peru. Delta of Venus is an extraordinarily rich and exotic collection from the master of erotic writing

 

  1. A sport and past times by James Salter

 

Top 5 sexiest booksAnther of top 5 sexiest books published in 1967 a young adult novel set in 60’s this is a sad story about a Yale dropout who falls for a French girl. The story is told from the perspective of the unnamed unreliable narrator so there is a surprise ending.

 

Synopsis

 

As nearly perfect as any American fiction I know,” is how Reynolds Price (The New York Times) described this classic that has been a favorite of readers, both here and in Europe, for almost forty years. Set in provincial France in the 1960s, it is the intensely carnal story—part shocking reality, part feverish dream —of a love affair between a footloose Yale dropout and a young French girl. There is the seen and the unseen—and pages that burn with a rare intensity

 

  1.  Women By Charles Bukowski 

 

Top 5 sexiest books Written by one of my favorite authors and published in 1974. I love the honesty and simplicity of his writing no big fancy words but straightforward vulgarity. It was so vulgar that made me both laugh out and be shocked at the same time.

 

A piece of dialogue from the book.

 

“I want to fuck you it’s your face.’”

“What about my face?”

“It’s magnificent I want to destroy it with my cunt.”

 

Synopsis

Low-life writer and unrepentant alcoholic Henry Chinaski was born to survive. After decades of slacking off at low-paying dead-end jobs, blowing his cash on booze and women, and scrimping by in flea-bitten apartments, Chinaski sees his poetic star rising at last. Now, at fifty, he is reveling in his sudden rock-star life, running three hundred hangovers a year, and maintaining a sex life that would cripple Casanova.

 

  1. Tropic of Cancer by Henry Miller.

 

Top 5 sexiest booksAnd the last one in top 5 sexiest books published in 1934 banned from the United States for being too risqué this autobiography of the author while he lived in Paris. One of the most shocking rather funny quote from the book I remember I nearly choked when I read this xD

 

“Yes, he knows how to build fire but I know to inflame a cunt.”

 

Scandalous 0.o

 

Now hailed as an American classic, Tropic of Cancer, Henry Miller’s masterpiece, was banned as obscene in this country for twenty-seven years after its first publication in Paris in 1934. Only a historic court ruling that changed American censorship standards, ushering in a new era of freedom and frankness in modern literature, permitted the publication of this first volume of Miller’s famed mixture of memoir and fiction, which chronicles with unapologetic gusto the bawdy adventures of a young expatriate writer, his friends, and the characters they meet in Paris in the 1930s. Tropic of Cancer is now considered, as Norman Mailer said, “one of the ten or twenty great novels of our century.

How to write a sex scene

Top 5 hyped thrillers I yet have to read

Happy Reading & writing xx

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Best opening lines in books

By on December 9, 2017
Best opening lines in books. 

Best opening lines in books. 

 

Best opening lines in books. The first chapter or the first paragraphs of a book is the most important as this will set the tone of the story. Also, this is your opportunity to hook the reader. It is important to implement this in your writing. It’s not that simple the first chapter is the trickiest to write and sometimes, writers leave it for last. I’ve read and reviewed many books and one the best techniques to use is use curiosity.

 

Yes, you heard me, curiosity. The reader would think oh I have to find out what is going to happen next or this is good, or what? That’s when they dive on into book.  I came up with a few examples that in my opinion are the best opening lines I’ve read so far. I’m going to list only from the best I’ve read there is mix of classic and modern books.  

 

Best opening Lines in books.

 

Best opening lines in books.

 

 

“He knew he was going to die” Killing me Softly by Nicci French

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

best opening lines in books“If you really want to hear about it, the first thing you’ll probably want to know is where I was born, and what my lousy childhood was like, and how my parents were occupied and all before they had me, and all that David Copperfield kind of crap, but I don’t feel like going into it, if you want to know the truth.”

The catcher in the Rye J.D Salinger 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Best opening lines in books.

 

 

 

“It was a bright cold day in April, and the clocks were striking thirteen” 1984 George Orwell

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Best opening lines in books.

 

 

 

“Lolita, light of my life, fire of my loins. My sin, my soul. Lo-lee-ta: the tip of the tongue taking a trip of three steps down the palate to tap, at three, on the teeth Lo. Lee. Ta!” Lolita Vladimir Nabokov 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

“YOU walk into the bookstore and you keep your hand on the door to make sure it doesn’t slam. You smile, embarrassed to be a nice girl, and your nails are bare and your V-neck sweater is beige and it’s impossible to know if you’re wearing a bra but I don’t think that you are. You’re so clean that you’re dirty and you murmur your first word to me—hello—when most people would just pass by, but not you, in your loose pink jeans, a pink spun from Charlotte’s Web and where did you come from?” You by Caroline Kepnes 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Best opening lines in books

 

“Mr. and Mrs. Dursley, of number four, Privet Drive, were proud to say that they were perfectly normal, thank you very much. They were the last people you’d expect to be involved in anything strange or mysterious, because they just didn’t hold with such nonsense.”
– J.K. Rowling: Harry Potter And The Sorcerer’s Stone 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Best opening lines in books

 

 

 

“Mr. Jones, of the Manor Farm, had locked the hen-houses for the night, but was too drunk to remember to shut the popholes.”
Animal Farm by Georhe Orwell 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Best opening lines in books

 

 

“It was a pleasure to Burn” Fahrenheit 451 by Ray Bradbury

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Best opening lines in books

 

 

 

“A story has no beginning or end; arbitrarily one chooses that moment of experience from which to look back or from which to look ahead.” The End of the Affair by Graham Greene,

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Best opening lines in books

 

“The forest had claws and teeth.” ― Riley SagerFinal Girls

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

There was few of the best opening lines in books, hope you can generate ideas with those few opening lines.

 

Happy writing and reading xx

 

Other blog posts 

How to write a book

How to find a setting for your story

Choosing a point of view for your novel

 

 

 

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Writer's Blog

How to write a book

By on December 2, 2017
Five tips how to write a book

Five tips how to write a book

 

     

 

Five tips how to write a book: Anyone can write a book, but it doesn’t mean it’s for everyone. Writing a book is time-consuming; it requires a lot of discipline, skill, patience, and practice. I started writing at sixteen and I didn’t know what the show vs tell was, the plotting, how to write a flashback and so on.

 

 

 

 

 

 

When I finished my third unpublished manuscript, I was excited and nothing beats that feeling. I was doing NaNoWriMo at the time, and one of my fellow writers, suggested I speak to her friend, who’s a published author and editor. I sent the manuscript to her hoping, she’ll tell me how much she’ll love it. Wrong. What I got was harsh but constructive criticism from her. She pointed out I had backstory in the first chapter, a lot telling instead showing, etc. I wanted to die and thought of giving up. She suggested I read books about the craft. Sending my MS to her was learning crave for me.

 

 

So how do you write a book?

 

Here a few books to read if you thinking about writing.

 

 How to write a damn good novel by James Frey

 

Outlining your novel by K.M Wieland

 

Structuring your novel by K.M Wieland

 

Writing active Setting by Mary Buckham

 

Rivet your readers with deep point of view by Jill Elizabeth Nelson

 

How to write dazzling dialogue by James Scott bell

 

Plot and Structure by James Scott Bell.

 

On writing by Stephen King

 

 

 

There are more books about the craft of writing a book, but in opinion, if you start with those you’ll have the basics covered. 

 

 

 

 Five tips how to write a book: Join Facebook groups.

 

I haven’t joined any writer’s groups until recently but it proved to be the most helpful. People in those groups are in the same boat as you are. Either planning to write a book or wrote a book, and published authors. They offer feedback or any help you’ll require. I’ve had a lot of encouragement (and criticism) from the writing community. I found my editor through those groups so head over to Facebook; go to search button and type “writers groups” and start making connections.

 

Bonus: If you want to connect with me or have questions, you can do so on my Facebook page here or join my Facebook group over here.

 

 

 Finding your voice.

 

 The what? Yes, writers have a voice. JK Rowling has her voice and Stephen King has his own voice. Your voice is how you are going to tell the story. Finding your voice will take time and practice it will not come overnight.

 

 Find your writer space and time

 

 

Your writer space is where you are going to write. Is it on a desk in your study or in bed? Find a comfortable place that works for you, and set a time to write. It can be half an hour or two hours see how you are going to fit writing into your timetable.

 

 
Start.

 

And the last tip in Five tips on how to write a book I know it sounds scary but writing is fun and rewarding so butt on the chair

and start cracking.

 

Happy writing 

 

https://joannewritesbooks.com/blog/how-to-find-a-setting-story/

https://joannewritesbooks.com/blog/choosing-point-view/

https://joannewritesbooks.com/blog/basic-methods-outlining-novel/

 

 

 

 

 

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Top 5 Must Read thrillers.

By on July 1, 2017
Top 5 Must Read thrillers.

Top 5 Must Read thrillers.

 

 Since I am an inspiring crime/thriller writer this is the genre I read the most. Don’t get me wrong, I read other genres but nothing beats a good suspenseful story where it keeps you guessing what’s going to happen next, who is the killer? Thrillers are page turners. So here are my top 5 must read thrillers that I recommend to read if you are getting started in this genre or looking for your next read, either for on the beach or to relax with a glass of wine. Here is the list of Top 5 Must Read thrillers 

 

Killing me Softly by Nicci French

 

 Top 5 Must Read thrillers

Frist on the list of Top 5 Must Read thrillers, this is one of my favorite books. I read this when I was 16 (a long time ago) and a little too young to read a story with such themes of sex and violence. I keep going to it again and again, it inspired me to write thrillers in the first place. I describe this book with the three S’s; scary, suspenseful, and sexy. This heart-pounding thriller starts with one of the greatest opening lines I ever encountered

 

“He knew he was going to die”

 

Isn’t that a hook or what? It makes you wonder who’s going to die? Tell me! That’s the prologue than the story jumps to Alice. She seems to have everything; a comfortable, safe life, the loving, caring boyfriend, close friends, and a job as a research scientist. One morning, she locks eyes with a man so beautiful, he takes her breath away (it has romance in it.) She goes to work and forgets about him, until she goes out for her lunch break, and finds him standing on the pavement, waiting for her. Creepy right? She goes and has sex with him without knowing his name 0.o you might say hold on a second, how I’m going to relate this? You don’t have to. Driven by wild passion for Adam a mountaineer who was involved in a climbing disaster, she leaves everything behind and marries him without knowing anything about him. Stupid move but anyway.

 

That’s when things start to get spooky. Mysterious notes, phone calls, women knocking on her door claiming that she took Adam away from them, so Alice goes to dig into his past and discovers disturbing secrets. The climbing disaster might not have been accidental at all. If you love steamy sex mixed with suspense this book is for you.

 

P.s The movie version of this book is horrendous does no justice to the book. Terrible.

 

The Collector by John Fowles

 

  Top 5 Must Read thrillers

  This book was a debut novel by John Fowles. One of his famous novels is “The French Lieutenant’s Woman.” This is considered a classic among classics. I know some people roll their eyes when they hear those words but hear me out for a second. This book is mind-blowing, chilling and creepy as AF.

 

   We have Fredrick an uneducated, unloved, and a collector of butterflies.    A beautiful, intelligent art student Miranda infuriates him. When he wins a large sum of money in the football pools, he quits his job, buys a remote house, and kidnaps her with a false hope that she will fall madly in love with him. The story is told from the captor’s point of view and the victim’s point of view, that’s what makes it so brilliant.

 

   I recently watched a TV investigation show (research purposes) about two young men who kidnapped women, locked them in the cellar, raped and tortured and finally killed them. Cutting a long story short, when the police went to search the premises, in the cellar, they found a copy of this book. As the investigation carried on the police found a dozen bodies buried by the area of the house. One killer found the other was never caught. Scary Stuff.

 

 

 

 

The silence of the Lambs by Thomas Harris

 

Top 5 Must Read thrillers

A must read thriller, the second of the series. “Red Dragon” was the first, this book tells a story of a Buffalo Bill a scary fucko who kidnaps and kills curvy women for their skin.  In the silence of the Lambs, we find Clarice, a trainee detective who is assigned to interview the brilliant but dangerous and now one of the most iconic villains Hannibal Lector, in an asylum. He is the one that can help in the case.

 

What makes this character so dangerous was that he was a forensic psychiatrist and cannibalistic serial killer. Which makes everything much worse. Is it just me that found him charming? Read the book, no need to read the first one you’ll be fine.

Ps. The movie is also fantastic.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Misery by Stephen King.

 

Top 5 Must Read thrillers

 

Another in the Top 5 Must Read thrillers more into the horror side of things but it’s also a thriller. Misery is about a famous historical romance author Paul. He is involved in a car crash and saved by Annie Wilkes, his biggest fan. She is not just your average avid reader. She is his nurse, tending his shattered body, and his captor keeping him prisoner in her isolated home.

 

 When she finds out that, he killed off her favorite character Misery Chastain (he wanted to be known for books that are more serious.) Annie goes into an angry fit. She burns the only copy he had of his unpublished manuscript and then forces him to bring Misery back to life by writing another novel she wants. This woman is just terrifying, definitely one of Stephen King’s best novels in my opinion.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

And There Were None By Agatha Christie

 

Top 5 Must Read thrillers

Last one in the list of Top 5 Must Read thrillers Last and not least is the queen of mystery who got her ideas for her books whilst washing the dishes.  This is one of her most famous books, having sold 100 million copies, and is considered her masterpiece and it is. The story is so original a must read thriller.

 

We have 10 strangers summoned to a beautiful house on a private island in Devon by an erratic millionaire that never shows up. In their rooms, they all have a poem “Ten Little Indians” on the dinner table there are ten figurines. Those same ten people are accused of committing crimes in the past. One by one, they start to die according to the way the soldiers/Indians die in the poem. Every time someone dies; a figurine is removed from the dinner table until there were none.

 

   I love the simplicity in her writing no big fancy words, no 500-page novel with lots of back-stories to cause confusion. It’s simple and to the point.

 

Top 5 overrated books that are worth reading

 

Happy reading and writing xx

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Top 5 most overrated books we keep hearing about

By on June 11, 2017
Top 5 most overrated books we keep hearing about

Top 5 most overrated books we keep hearing about

 

I’m settling for Top 5 most overrated books we keep hearing about. There are more than just five overrated literary works and these are the ones that came to my head. So, here we go:

 

Twilight series by Stephanie Mayer. Top 5 most overrated books we keep hearing about

To be honest I haven’t read them and I’m not planning to at the moment. Maybe, when I run out of the books to read, which is unlikely to happen since my list is long varying from my personal collection to authors who asked me to review their books. I have heard different opinions; some say they are badly written and don’t deserve the hype. Stephen King used strong words for her writing style and overall theme. If you haven’t seen it here is the link. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zb72V_4N5ko

I don’t think I’ll ever be prepared to read about a sparkly vampire when there is Bram Stoker’s Dracula and Ann Rice’s works to consider.

 

 

The Great Gatsby by F. Scott Fitzgerald.

 

Top 5 most overrated books we keep hearing about

 

I was doing a self-editing course when the editor suggested we read this book to appreciate great writing and prose. I always wanted to read this classic, named one of the greatest American Novels of all time. Finally, I was going to sit down and read it, I couldn’t wait I was so excited. It was a short one so I thought hey, I’ll finish it in three days, perhaps even less. Wrong, it took me nearly a month to finish and it was forced, it made me fall asleep. I read a page, and I dropped dead. The Great Bore more like it. Yes, the writing was beautiful but the character of Daisy was so blunt and stupid. This was the first sign that said I’m not a sucker for romantic tragic tales.

 

The Hunger Game series by Suzanne Collins.

 

Top 5 most overrated books we keep hearing about

 

This series is considered classics by now if you mention the word dystopian Sci-Fi this trilogy is going to slap you in the face. Again, the opinions defer when it comes to this trilogy, some say they are bad some say they are good. I’ve read them and I enjoyed them, the writing is good too. The books are better than the movies but that is always the case. The ending made me weep like a baby, it was a perfect way to conclude the series but it was so sad.

 

A Clockwork Orange by Anthony Burgees.

 

Top 5 most overrated books we keep hearing about

 

Another dystopian classic alongside the masterpieces such as “1984” and “The Handmaid’s Tale.” We have Alex a fifteen-year-old leader of a gang who terrorize the utopian society of England in the future. I needed a dictionary just to keep up with all the slangs; Alex deserved everything he got. Yeah, he’s an antihero but I couldn’t identify with his journey and like the Great Gatsby, I don’t get the big deal behind this book. Some bits did make me laugh though.

 

Fifty Shades of Grey by E.L. James

 

Top 5 most overrated books we keep hearing about

Last one in the list of Top 5 most overrated books we keep hearing about, Most overrated, hyped books of all time. I had to sit there and take it while this was happening. The author is equally overrated. I don’t get it, I never will, here I am trying to learn the craft of writing, reading the best works that made it to publication, and then ladies and gentlemen we have this monstrosity. As I said in the previous post, you can read it here  https://joannewritesbooks.com/blog/top-5-overrated-authors/

People who love this book look at me as if I dropped from another planet when they try to shove it down my throat. Maybe I’m insane or I’ve read too many books to know the difference between a good book, and a terrible one. No man, no matter how good looking, how rich he is, should ever be excused for that sort of behavior.

 

Got an overrated book in mind? Tell me in the comments.

 

Happy Writing xxx

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