I’ve been busy, busy, busy putting the final touches on my latest project, Soulstice, the companion novella to Souled. This novella puts a spotlight on Alyx, who, in Alyx’s own words, is the “dark, totally misunderstood, totally underestimated, misfit” of Sandpoint High School.
I adore Alyx – her strength, courage, and her mysterious background. What makes her qualified to stand up to Seth in his dark hours? What was her path that brought her to be who she is?
Although she will have floor time in the upcoming sequel, I wanted to satisfy the curiosity of many of the readers who’ve asked me, “Who exactly is Alyx?”
I’m fortunate and eternally grateful that my friend, and outstanding author, Fabio Bueno (his novel Wicked Sense is definitely one of my favorite reads), has taken it upon himself to give me a shout out on his blog and share with you the cover of Soulstice.
In continuing the theme of “keeping it local,” the beauty on the cover is Wrenee, a student here in Sandpoint, Idaho. Once again, Sandpoint produces a teen professional enough to step up and handle something as important as the cover of a book. Add to that the makeup expertise of Kimberlee Langford, creative cover design by Crystalyn Abercrombie (my tattoo artist), and photographer, Victoria Melendez.
Then please head on over to Fabio’s site to check out the cover and to learn a bit more about what the story is all about!
Tags: Cafe 95, Diana Murdock, Diana Murdock's blog, Elemental Magic, Idaho, Long Bridge, paranormal, Sandpoint, small town, soul attachment, Souled, Soulstice, spiritual, teens, undercrossing, YA, young adult paranormal
With so much information out there on the internet, with so many websites to sift through, anyone wishing to get information to a targeted market is up against a lot of competition.
As writers, we look to our friends and family to spread the word and, of course, they always come through. And within our online community, we are fortunate enough to have other writers and readers who open their blogs freely to lend a hand as well.
I want to take this opportunity to thank those bloggers who helped me reveal my new cover of Souled this past week. Please support them by visiting their blogs. They really are awesome peeps!
And a huge thank you to everyone who shared on Facebook and Twitter!
Posted in Uncategorized, Relationships, spiritual attachment, Friendships, Paranormal, Teenager, Blogging, Writing, YA Novels, Young Adult, soul attachment, Souled, Cyber Friendship, Cover reveal, High school, Small Town
Tags: Diana Murdock, Diana Murdock's blog, writing, paranormal, high school, YA, Young Adult, cyber, Sandpoint, cover reveal, writers, teen love, teen, scott snow, sandpoint high school, men's alpine ski team, ski racer
Change is good. Change is positive. But it doesn’t make it any easier to let something go…
As much as I adored the original cover of Souled, I felt a change was needed to encompass more of the essence of the novel, which, in addition to ancient sorcery, was a story of love so absolute, so pure, it could transcend ordinary reason.
And because the location of the story took place in North Idaho, I wanted to include the community of Sandpoint in the Souled experience.
I was fortunate that Scott and Elaina, “regular” teens in Sandpoint, agreed to be the models for this cover. Although neither of them are professional models, they handled themselves like pros and gave the photographer, Victoria McCune, 100% effort. And in my opinion, it shows.
Also helping to put a professional touch to the make-up part of the session, I was thrilled to have Kimberlee Langford, make-up specialist, on board.
The tattoo design from the original cover, designed by Crystalyn Abercrombie, was definitely kept as part of this cover as that is a constant symbol in the story (as well as tattooed firmly onto my own body). Steve McCune pulled together all of the pieces to create the final cover.
It’s been incredible working with the people in the community on something such as this project, because after all, it’s their town, their turf, and their support of the novel is very important.
I’ve had a lot of fun so far and I hope you enjoy this cover as much as I do.
Tags: cover reveal, Diana Murdock, Diana Murdock's blog, fiction, men's alpine ski team, novel, novel covers, paranormal, power and control, Sandpoint, sandpoint high school, scott snow, ski racer, soul attachment, Souled, Tattoo, Young Adult
“The world only exists in your eyes – your conception of it. You can make it as big or as small as you want to.” – F. Scott Fitzgerald
Great words from a great writer, but the question is, how does a writer create a pathway from our eyes to the minds of the readers of novels? Fortunately, archived records and the Internet can bring history of centuries ago into an author’s hands, allowing us to recreate a world long gone, in order to give the reader some sort of anchor as they turn the pages of our novels. With a little imagination and fantastic writing skills, many authors transport us back to a time none of us have experienced first hand (at least not in this lifetime).
If the setting of the novel is in the present, we have access to maps, photos, and transportation to get to wherever the story takes place so that we may get a first-hand accounting of the sights and smells of the area. Though some novel settings are loosely based on a certain locale, the authors are still able to give the reader the same flavor as if that particular imaginary city actually existed. And those novels that are grounded in an actual place? That could be a lot of fun for the readers as well. Just ask Tamie from Bookish Temptations. She recently toured Toronto in search of the offices, restaurants, museums, and streets that Sylvain Reynard fleshed out in Gabriel’s Inferno. In reading her blog, you can feel her excitement as she was able to “be” where the characters were. What a cool connection, right?
In my upcoming novel, Souled, the characters are firmly rooted in Sandpoint, a small town in North Idaho. Because I am very familiar with the area, I was able to write from first-hand experience. I’ve posted on my website and on Pinterest, pictures of where some of the scenes take place, so when the novel is released (weeks away), the readers who cannot actually visit the area, can at least “see” where it is that the characters live.
In the case of futuristic or high fantasy, a writer can create an entirely new world, or they can do what Angela Peart has done for her soon-to-be-released novel. (By the way, she filled me in on the details of her story, and…yeah. This one is going to rock our socks off.). So, rather than me trying to explain her method of creating setting, I’m going to let Angela do the talking because you just need to experience it.
Take it away, Angela!
“The story of my upcoming Young Adult paranormal novel, Greed (this is a “working title”), takes place in Seattle—the city that I have been calling home for many years now. But because the plot contains elements of high fantasy, some of the scenes happen in imaginary places. I will introduce those amazing places in another post. Today I want to share with you a very special spot from my novel. It is Queen Anne Academy of the Arts and Sciences in the Seattle’s picturesque district of Queen Anne. No, the school does not exist in reality, but the area is 100% real.
All except one of my teenage characters attend this prestigious private school. The Georgian architecture building and the surrounding grounds are not based on any real location. Only my imagination and the knowledge that I have obtained, studying interior design at the Art Institute of Seattle, are responsible for the creation of this intriguing place.
I am not ready to reveal my characters’ names just yet. There will be a special blog post in the near future, where you will learn more about them. For now I am simply “coding” them as X, Y, and Z. I know, not very creative, but try to overlook that and only concentrate on the descriptions of my dream high school.
Here are two excerpts from my novel. Enjoy!”
1. He looked up at the ceiling, his eyes tracing the acanthus leaf castings clustered in the corners and along the sides. An enormous antique chandelier hung down by thick chains. A ring, covered in intricate patterns, encircled a massive hand-painted globe. The pale colors of the land and surrounding oceans looked subdued like on an antique map. Twenty-four sweeping, rounded arms reached out from the metal ring and curved up and out, ending in elongated candle-shaped electric lights. The sphere rotated lazily, as if imitating the real Earth. X gazed at it, transfixed, wishing it was dark outside and the whole thing would light up like it always did in the evenings.
2. He shook his head, smiling to himself, and then walked toward the massive double front door. The door was two stories high, set between two flat columns protruding from the walls on both, interior and exterior, sides. A semi-circular intricately-carved arch encased the top of the door.
Y opened the door and stepped outside. He shaded his eyes with his hand and, squinting, looked at the cloudless sky. The door closed with a dull thud behind him, as he started down the wide stone stairs. Strings of green ivy clung to the solid-stone balustrade on both sides of the steps. The stone was aged, its natural color richly variegated. Two huge urns flanked the staircase, their color scheme identical to the balusters.
So, can you see it? Can you feel it? Thanks, Angela, for a sneak peek into your novel and giving us a great example of how an author’s mind works.
How do you feel about settings in the novels you read? Do you like detailed descriptions or minimally-there descriptions? Everyone’s preferences are different, but then again that is why we have so many types of authors and novels!
Tags: Angela Peart, Angela Peart's blog, Bookish Temptations, Diana Murdock, Diana Murdock's blog, Gabriel's Inferno, high fantasy, Idaho, paranormal, Sandpoint, settings, soul attachment, Souled, spirit attachment, Sylvain Reynard, Toronto, Young Adult