Monday, January 24, 2011

Guest Blogger, Kimmie Thomas

Please join me in welcoming author Kimmie Thomas as the special guest blogger at Thoughts in Progress today as she makes a stop on her virtual book tour.

Kimmie’s current release is THIS SIDE OF CRAZY. Here’s a brief blurb about the book: “Maxine Payne’s poor self-esteem led her to marry the first man that showed any interest in her.  After five years of marriage and misery she has nothing to show for it.  Her sham of a marriage is falling apart and her dream of having a child is fading away each day. To make matters worst, she discovers that the people in her life are not there to love and help her as she has always believed. 
She struggles to come to terms with her failing marriage and her sick mother as she watches her chance at a happy home with children slip away.  Her two childhood girlfriends offer help and support but they have their own personal struggles.  The old saying, “what’s done in the dark will eventually comes to light” has never been more true. 
When tragedy strikes, Maxine will have to make the most important decision of her life.   But will the lies and secrets her husband and friends harbor bring Maxine’s life crashing down around her?”


Kimmie stopped by to talk about ‘encouragement to the aspiring author.’

I am frequently asked why I decided to write a book. I always enjoyed reading in a wide range of genres and often found myself writing short stories or poems in my spare time. When I think about it, I've always been a writer. I've maintained a journal all of my life. On a daily basis I use my writing as a way to relax and stay focused.

Another question I am asked by aspiring authors, is whether I can help them write their novel. I always feel bad because the actual writing of a book is usually a solo job or at least it was for me. There are something's that a new or aspiring writer can do to make the path a little smoother. The most important piece of advise I can offer is to write, write, write. Here are some additional tips that will help a new writer.

1. Use a outline. Writing is like taking a road trip with the family. It is a long and tedious ride that involves a lot bathroom breaks and you watch the scenery as it passes by going to your intended destination that seems to take forever. Like a road trip, your outline should plot out the story from beginning to end. The writer should have a clear idea of how the story would end. You wouldn't pack your car for a family road trip, get in and start driving without knowing where you were going would you?

2.  Know your characters. Each of your main characters should have a written bio, including a full name, address, occupation, marital status, hobbies, friends, general physical description, good qualities, bad qualities, motivations, etc. If you don't know your character how will the reader.

3.  Write what you know. It is always easier to write about what you know. Sure you can research any topic and write about, but will your readers actual feel you passion for it. Real life is much stranger than fiction, tell the reader what you know. There is always passion in what you know and believe.

4.  Keep  your writing relevant. Be careful to stay on task when you write. It is easy to wonder off the path while writing. Make sure that what you tell the reader is relevant to the story. Always ask your self is this relevant and would the story still move forward without this information. If you answer yes, copy and paste that information some where else, but delete it from your current story. Save it for later. You may be able to use it later.

5.  Find a good editor. It is true you only get one chance to make a good impression. There is nothing worst than unedited work. It is always a good idea to have a professional editor review your work before submitting it a publisher.

Most editors will give you a sample edit. This is very important because you need to make sure that you and your editor are compatible. Also be sure the editor you choose is familiar with your genre.

6.  Join a writing group. I belong to several writing groups. I have found it helpful and motivating. It helps to know that you aren't the only person with writers block and that there are other writers have problems with plot twist too.

7.  Don't give up!! My first piece of advise is still my best piece of advise.  Write, write, write. Keep writing. Never throw anything away. You never know when your creative juices will go into overdrive and propel you forward. You may find your self picking up a short story you wrote years ago and weeks later find you have produce a best selling novel.

Kimmie, thanks for being here today and sharing your tips for aspiring authors. These all sound very helpful.

For a little background on Kimmie. She is native Detroiter living with her husband and children. Her experience as a psychiatric nurse has given her the ability to create characters that display common personality flaws. She writes when she not working as a teacher and a nurse. To find out more about Kimmie or to learn more about THIS SIDE OF CRAZY visit http://www.kimmiethomas.com or http://kimmiethomas.wordpress.com.

What are your thoughts on advice for aspiring authors? Have any extra tips to add to Kimmie’s?


15 comments:

  1. Kimmie, thank you for guest blogging here today. Thanks also for sharing your tips for aspiring authors. Best of luck with your writing.

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  2. Great tips. I like "Find a good editor" but I think my favourite tip (and one I need to hear often) is Don't give up!

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  3. Don't give up is the best advice. Writing is indeed a solo job, but there are a lot of us out there for support!

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  4. Congratulations on the new release. Nice tips...I like 'know your characters.' :)

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  5. I'm a big believer in outlines! I don't know how some writers can just wing it.

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  6. Mason - Thanks for hosting Kimmie.


    Kimmie - You've got some very useful tips for writers. It really is so important to understand who the characters are in the story - without knowing that, the story just falls flat. I wish you much success with This Side of Crazy.

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  7. Kimmie, great advice. I like outlining for sure. I like to know where I'm going.

    Mason, thanks for hosting.

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  8. I like Write what you know, and for myself, I add Write what you dream. It's a way to research and use something intriguing to you, and the passion for that dream shines through, too. Thanks Kimmie and Mason!

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  9. Oh, I agree with your whole list. Finding a writing group was so important to me and also it's true that writing what you know is easier.

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  10. Sounds great, especially for women's fiction lovers. Love your list - all great points.

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  11. Sounds wonderful. Wishing you the best of luck.
    Karen

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  12. It sounds like a wonderful book, many thanks to Mason and to Kimmie!

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  13. Kimmie, I love your explanation of why people should outline. I totally agree.

    Mason, thanks for having Kimmie on and bringing her work to my attention.

    Jai

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  14. Some wonderful advice, Kimmie. Like you said, your best advice is write, write, and write. Just as in any other career, the more practice you have in your discipline the better you become. Writing is so much more than putting words on paper.

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I'd love to hear your thoughts on today's post. Thanks for dropping by.