It’s time to kill someone…

Oh, relax. Don’t call the cops – yet.

Because the person I must kill is fictional. You’re safe. For now.

Seriously though. This is the hardest part of my job. Some authors love killing off their babies. Other authors wouldn’t DARE. Me? I listen to the Muse and do as she commands, which means there will be one less member of the Find Me crew by the end of today.

Riley will be devastated.

“I’m sorry, he’s gone,” the Doctor said.

The room spun like a child’s top and I reached out for the closest object to my left to steady myself. A medical supply cart on wheels went flying under my weight, striking the wall with a loud bang and I landed with an oafish thump on my hands and knees. The noise startled the baby awake and she wailed into the room like someone had dropped her, even though Jacks had her pressed tightly to his chest.

“No.” It was a raspy whisper, my voice, and that was the only word I could utter.

– Copyright Trish Marie Dawson, Find Me 3

Exciting News for Station Fans!

Yes – this is for the Piper Willow fans.

You already know her story and have fallen in love with her throughout three books. If you’ve read some of my posts on Facebook or here on the blog, then you already know I’ve mentioned that Dying to Return wrapped up Piper’s point of view in the Station series. The series itself is not truly over – I just needed a break from telling the stories through Piper’s eyes. What many readers want to know is WHAT happens after that third book. I want those readers to understand that you will find out. Eventually. But there is something that must happen first…and this is the big announcement I mentioned on Facebook. Are you ready?

How much do you like Andurush, aka ‘Rush’? I hope you like him enough that you want to know lots more about him and his home planet…because, guess what – he’s getting his own spin-off series. And…drum-roll please…you can’t have that much Rush without a little Piper.

I’ll let that sink in – go ahead and get up and do a little dance, squeal or call your friends. I can wait a moment. *files pinky nails…sips coffee…pulls shoe lace out of the puppy’s mouth* Okay – composed enough to continue reading? Alrighty. 😉 Here’s what you have to look forward to:

At least three books based on Rush’s planet. They will be heavy in the YA Sci-Fi Fantasy realm. Readers will learn more about Rush, his family and how things run on Dhara. You’ll also find out more about what happens after book three of the Station series ends. If you enjoyed Piper’s story and her connection with Rush, you won’t want to miss out on this series, seriously.

There are a few things that must be finished before this series can be started, but I assure you it will begin sometime in 2014. I have Find Me fans frothing at the mouth for more Riley – they’ve been waiting a long time. If you have not read this series yet, feel free to do so while you wait for more Station books. 😉

Of course – the Muse eventually takes over and some of the minor details could and probably will change over the course of this year, but I will do my best to give you ALL what you want. Have a wonderful week – and be sure to tell your friends the happy news. In fact, I want to know what you think – so leave me a comment here!

Happy 2014, everyone!

Plot Bunny Outbreak

“Ideas are like rabbits. You get a couple and learn how to handle them, and pretty soon you have a dozen.” –John Steinbeck

Yep, I know exactly what you mean, Steinbeck. What’s a plot bunny you might ask? Well. When a writer’s brain is inundated with story ideas begging nagging to be written that tend to multiply on their own accord from the time we fall asleep at night to the next morning when we open our eyes – you’ve birthed a nice little coven of plot bunnies. You must write said ideas ASAP or they will follow you to the bathroom when you brush your teeth, nag at you while you sip your coffee and itch at your mind throughout the day much like a poison oak rash – and they have teeth. Not little teeth, either.

Plot_Bunny_by_AtraLux494

The only way to rid the curse of a plot bunny outbreak is to actually translate the story idea to paper (pencil, pen, marker, laptop keys – whatever, it’s your poison of choice). You’d think you were safe then, right? Wrong. You never really escape them, because they always seem to pop their furry little heads up, even if that means you were having the most magnificent dream about falling asleep in Thor’s arms. Unless you’re trapped in a significant bout of writer’s block (which might be a blessing in disguise), plot bunnies tend to stick around.

Plot_Bunnies_by_Shahrezad1

Sure, they’re cute and fuzzy and all that…but like real rabbits, plot bunnies multiply. You might get up tomorrow with one bouncing around in your head, then something happens between breakfast and lunch and BAM! there’s a dozen up there…all struggling for room and screaming to be heard. If you don’t keep a notebook next to your bed – or your cell phone with a notepad app on you at all times for the random jotting down of story ideas – you’re recklessly encouraging the unneccessary over-breeding of plot bunnies, i.e. – an outbreak. *shudders* I don’t wish one of those on my worst enemy. They scramble your brains and muck things up in such a way that you end up writing until 2:00am and back spacing constantly because you can’t remember how to spell the word ‘the’.

But there is hope! I’m learning how to train my plot bunnies. In fact, they have their own notebook full of nonsense that I regularly check in with and pull ideas from before diligently giving them my full attention. This way I can organize story ideas whether they are for my current WIP’s or can be used later for the next masterpiece. It keeps us all happy and prevents the overwhelming and messy Plot Bunny Outbreak. Where or how do you store your blot bunnies?

Happy writing, everyone!

Nailing the ‘Close’

Happy Monday! It’s the start of a new week, one that I hope treats you well!

This week I want to finish my current WIP. I said ‘want’ because every time I think I’m only one writing session away from being done, my Muse or the characters (lately it’s TOTALLY the characters) throw out more for me to write. So I won’t jinx myself today and say for sure The Dry Lands will be done by Friday…but there’s a big fat chance it will be. 😉

Which leads me to today’s topic – The Close. There all kinds of ways a book can end, but one thing is certain for them all – they DO end. Some close out with a tidy ending…one wrapped up nicely in a bow, leaving no major plot questions for the reader to ponder over, no suspense over what might happen next to the characters they’ve become attached to. Others close with a cliffhanger, which is the exact opposite of a tidy ending. There are some in between, as well. Regardless of how the story ends, the close is important for not only the writer – but the reader. Do you like your romance to end with the main characters running off into the first sunset of their happily ever after? If you’re reading a series, do you like the uncertainty of not knowing whether the antagonist is really dead or the protagonist is going to live? Each reader takes something different away with them from a book, which is how it’s supposed to be. But for the author, I think there are things to consider when writing up your big conclusion:

  • Is the ending consistent with the flow of storytelling? By this, I mean – if you like to embellish and go into great detail throughout 60k words of telling your story – and then ‘end’ it with one paragraph, chances are the reader won’t find the ending satisfactory – unless you’ve been building up to it quite well.
  • Does the ending make sense for the characters? The ending is NOT the best time to suddenly turn your MC (Main Character) from a straight-arrow cowboy into an alcoholic alien. If the ending is confusing, the readers may not ‘get’ it. Again – not the most satisfactory ending. Tho, if written properly, this could be a fantastic time for a plot twist in a series.
  • Did you leave the characters hanging in ‘limbo’? As a reader myself, the only time I consider it okay to leave the characters dangling over a cliff, in between that anticipatory kiss, being discovered with a bloody dagger in their hand, or right smack in the middle of an action scene that hints at the demise of a beloved character, etc. is when there will be another book. For the author this can actually be a fun thing to do. I know readers might hate us for it, but really – it keeps people coming back for more of the story! But be careful with this. Like mentioned earlier, there ARE readers who like a story wrapped up in that shiny and pretty little bow. If each book in your series can stand alone – you can ‘close’ each out with their own ending. But if not – have fun with the continuations between books.
  • Does your ending have ‘WOW’ factor? You can take this any way you want, but the books I will love forever are the ones that made me laugh, cry, scream or shake at the end. It’s an author’s job to evoke emotion (of ANY kind, really) from their readers. Remember everyone gets something a little different from each book they read, so what makes one person cry from joy might make another scream in frustration. But emotion is emotion – and books just aren’t the same without it.

So now that I’ve put a few things up for you to consider when closing out your next story, I leave you with this: The story should tell itself, but the Author must tell the story. Don’t force the flow of things but pay attention – especially at the close. 😉

Happy reading and writing, everyone!

Find Me Series…Update

It’s been quiet on here lately and that’s all MY fault. See, I’ve been busy trying to finish the Sci-Fi Fantasy I started after wrapping up Dying to Return. When an idea comes and then won’t LEAVE, and jotting down notes doesn’t keep the Muse at bay, it must be written. What this means, however, is that readers of the Find Me series have been waiting (some more patiently than others, lol) for the third installment to be released. For that to happen, I must actually write it first.

I know now, having two series in the works, when it is time to begin the next book. Because of Hutch & A’ris, Find Me 3 has been simmering in my brain for some time and now it’s about to boil over – in a sticky and wet mess right on my laptop. The Muse is anxious to finish up the Dry Lands and get Hutch and A’ris and their story out there…but the Muse is also so fixated on Riley that I dream about her post-pandemic world weekly. When I get a free moment (which is rare, because I have children, and children demand attention – constantly) I find myself lost in thought about what Riley is up to. The story was outlined, something I don’t do with every book, and now I’m tempted to go back and change up half of it – just take my pen and make ugly lines through pages of notes. Why? Because the more I think about this book, the better the ideas get and the more ‘OMGOSH, THAT MUST HAPPEN’ moments come to me. Usually at 1:00 in the morning, or five minutes before dawn, when no sane person should be awake. Thank god for cell phones with note apps.

Just as I’ve done before, I’ll take a short break after the Dry Lands is published, because I have a ridiculously long TBR list on my Kindle and I’d like to read a few things before writing again. But the break will be short, because y’all know what’s coming next: Find Me 3, or you can refer to it by the working title, Hope Will Find a Way.

If you’ve NO idea which books I’m talking about – catch up by reading I Hope You Find Me, then Lost and Found. Both are available on Amazon and Barnes & Noble. What will you get out of these books? That’s up to you. If you like post-apocalyptic stories, that end-of-the-world type of suspense mixed in with a little bit of love and a pinch of the paranormal, this series should be fun for you. Plus, one of the main characters is a dog based off of my own adorable and spastic mini lab/cocker spaniel/aussie shepherd mix, Zoey.

If you’ve already read books 1 and 2 of the Find Me series…I ask for your patience. I want to get book 3 right for you. 😉

Happy Reading, everyone!