Plotting by the Cards

A few years ago, for my birthday, my sister gave me a deck of Tarot cards called The Dragon Tarot. I had several other decks of cards in my possession at the time, but I didn’t have the same affinity with those decks as I instantly developed with the dragon deck.

I have friends who would definitely frown on my even thinking of owning a deck of tarot cards, much less having an affinity with one, but that is not my concern. I love this deck and use it as one of my best loved writing tools ever. I have a book, also, called Tarot for Writers and learned from it to use the tarot as a means to plot a story.

I’ve written about this previously, but was reminded today, when I spotted an anthology call that I wanted to submit to. I immediately grabbed my dragon deck and shuffled the major arcana cards to find my protagonists and antagonist. I drew the moon, and judgement as my protagonists, and the sun as my antogonist. I can already see the dim outlines of the characters related to those cards taking shape. I then shuffled the court cards and drew two cards to represent minor characters. I drew the Ace of Cups and the Page of Pentacles. Again, immediately connecting to the types of people these cards might align with. So just by shuffling some cards, I have got my main characters minor characters and a sketchy idea for how they all fit together.

Next, I will work with the whole deck to find character motivations, barriers and how those will work to form my story.

This is a quick and simple way that I work when I don’t already have a story or characters in mind for something. How do you go about getting an idea for a particular call?

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Stretching The Writing Muscles

I’ve been doing, just as the title of this post suggests, and stretching the writing muscles for the past few nights. I’m writing fan fiction at the moment and decidedly not anything I am prepared to share with the world at large.

Fan fiction is a bit of a grey area for me. I find it fun to write about my favourite characters from various TV shows etc, and yet, there is that kind of guilty little nag in the back of my mind in re to plagiarism. I guess this is why I tend to add a lot of my own characters into my stories and occasionally–as is the case with Jack and Casey, in fact–they take on lives of their own and make it into a published novel.

I have always said that I cut my teeth on slash fan fiction and I don’t see any reason to hide that fact. I learned a lot about writing, characterization and world building through writing fan fiction and also from role play gaming. I can think of worse ways for a budding author to hone his or her skills.

Anyway, all of that to say that it feels good to be writing again, and I think that before long, the constraints of fan fiction will pall for me and I will get busy with something new for my reader/s.

Hopefully that is not in the too far distant future!

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Release: None So Blind Dec 2013

It is with great excitement and relief that I can finally announce the re-release of the first in my series about paranormal investigators Jack Stephens and Casey Lambeth.

Originally making their debut in my novel length story Hunter’s Dawn: Laying The Ghosts, Jack and Casey have searched for a new home and have finally found the perfect fit with MLR Press.

The story has had a very good polish up with the help of the terrific team of editors and proof readers over at MLR and will release under the new title None So Blind on December 6 2013. I am completely in love with the new cover designed by the extremely talented (not to mention incredibly awesome!) Zathyn Priest.

So, with no further ado here is the long awaited unveiling!


None So Blind (formerly Hunter’s Dawn: Laying The Ghosts)

When a dyed-in-the-wool skeptic meets a starry-eyed psychic, sparks are sure to fly. Can they resolve their differences and find a future together?

Jack Stephens is a skeptic who lectures in Parapsychology at a community college. In his spare time, he works hard to prove that things going bump in the night have rational explanations. When Jack meets psychic, Casey Lambeth, he sees yet another chance to debunk paranormal phenomena. But there is something about Casey that defies explanation. When they’re thrown together to investigate a haunting at Edith Andrews’s home, sparks begin to fly. As they work on the case, Jack and Casey are forced to face some issues from their pasts. Together they work their way towards understanding, respect, and possibly something more…

Buy None So Blind | Read Chapter One

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