Tuesday, October 22, 2013

All Hallows Eve with Wendi Sotis

Thank you for consenting to be my guest this week, Wendi. I have been looking forward to your post with much anticipation! I have been fascinated with the premise of All Hallow's Eve and love its cover. (I love all of your book covers!) 
I appreciate your kind words about my artwork and am thrilled to hear that you enjoy being surrounded by some of it! (Ooh, and I too, love peppermint tea!) Thank you so much as you made my day! I was happy to have your books and quotes in the 2014 calendar. As you saw, I reserved October for All Hallow's Eve! It was perfect. Now to move on to Wendi's post...be sure to watch the trailer for All Hallow's Eve and check out the giveaway.

My thanks to Janet for allowing me to post today, and for including a quote from All Hallow’s Eve in her beautiful 2014 calendar.
I’m a huge fan of Janet’s artwork. My computer is surrounded by her lovely cards and calendar. Whenever I’m writing, I keep one of her compact mirrors handy, along with a mug of peppermint tea, both displaying “The Kiss,which serve dual purposes—inspiration and utility. I can’t wait to hang up my new calendar and get myself more items with the new artwork!
Since we’ll be giving away copies of All Hallow’s Eve, I’ll tell you a little about the story’s “birth.” AHE was never meant to be! My fingers were itching to write, but I couldn’t start typing the story I had in mind for a month-long NaNoWriMo challenge until November. I searched the internet and found a Halloween challenge to keep my hands and mind busy. I did a little research into the origins of Halloween, and started writing. I had no intention to do anything with it—it was going to be an undeveloped, throwaway story that I’d never think about again after October 31.
Now, here’s where I have to admit to a little secret: I’m a pantster. Don’t worry; it’s not as bad as it sounds. That’s writer’s slang for I “write by the seat of my pants.” In other words, when I start writing, I have no idea what’s going to happen next.
I’ll admit that I’m envious of plotters. I have spent ridiculously long amounts of time online examining the pictures that authors post on their blogs showing their beautifully organized plotting boards covered with color-coded index cards, photos, and sticky notes. Many of them even know which card goes with which chapter number. They have a plan. Everything is prepared before they start writing. They research in advance. They stick to their structured outline, no matter what.
Did you hear a series of wistful sighs as you read that? They were from me.
I have a shelf full of books on plotting. I’ve taken classes. I’ve bought computer programs. Nothing has turned me into a plotter.
For me, plotting ends up being a waste of time. With the stories I’ve tried to plot in advance, the final product is not even close to what was on the original outline.
So, now I’ve come to accept that it’s just not the way I can write. Sometimes I must chart what’s already been written, for example, for The Gypsy Blessing (which will be coming out later this year) I couldn’t keep track of the things I needed to address later in the story without a chart, but it wasn’t anything specific. Plotting in advance doesn’t work for me.
What does happen while I’m writing? Simple—the characters end up doing their own thing. In response to the situations I put them in, they take the story in directions that I had never anticipated. Yes, I’m serious; fictional characters really take over the story. At the end of each sitting, I re-read what I just wrote. Honestly, more than half the time I don’t know from where it came from. Let me tell you, it was a huge relief to hear other writers say the same thing!
I also jump around the story as I’m writing. The characters might react a certain way and the consequences won’t show up for one hundred pages, but these are usually written one after the other, even though I have no idea what might come in between. That makes for a lot of rewriting later, but it works for me.
This is exactly what happened with All Hallow’s Eve. When I began, AHE was only a distraction, one that was supposed to be forgotten once I became busy with something else. When the consequences—the later scenes—started popping into my mind, I realized there was a need for a lot to happen in between. By the time November 1st came along and I was ready to start NaNoWriMo, AHE had already taken on a life of its own. Like the velveteen rabbit, it had become a real story.
If you’d like to see where Elizabeth Bennet and Fitzwilliam Darcy end up in All Hallow’s Eve, we’re giving away some copies right here. See below for the details.
All Hallow’s Eve book trailer:

Blurb:
Since ancient times, every Halloween, the ritual of Sanun is performed, freeing the dead to interact with the living for one night. One Evil Soul discovers a way to hide from the Return, remaining on Earth to meddle with the fates of the living. As the centuries pass, it begins to search for the High Priestess, intending to force her to do its bidding, no matter the cost.
Appearances can be deceiving, even in Regency England. To most, Elizabeth Bennet is simply the second daughter of an insignificant country squire, but in truth, she is High Priestess and leader of an ancient cult secretly co-existing alongside British society. Confusion reigns when she learns that the man she despises, Fitzwilliam Darcy, is her Soul Mate, assigned to protect her from Evil. Can they work together to preserve the future?

About Wendi Sotis:
Having always been an avid reader and adoring fan of Jane Austen, when her triplets were independent enough that she could find a little time to herself, Wendi searched the internet where she discovered a treasure trove of “fan fiction” written by fellow Janeites. At first, experiencing Austen’s stories from several different characters’ points of view caught her interest, but then she branched off into reading sequels, “what if” stories, and modernized versions of Austen’s tales.
Though she had always aspired to become a writer, Wendi did not make a serious attempt until, after awakening from a dream, her imagination began churning up a tale to surround it. In the midst of penning a number of short stories, in 2010, she began posting the first draft of Dreams & Expectations to several online forums, later published in 2012. Wendi then went on to write another novel-length story, Promises, published in 2011. The Gypsy Blessing will be released later this year.
Wendi continues to write while living on Long Island with her husband, son, and two daughters.
Twitter: https://twitter.com/WendiSotis

I'm so glad to have you visit this week, Wendi. I look forward to the release of The Gypsy Blessing. You are welcome to come back and visit again after its release, or anytime.
For the giveaway of the book, All Hallow's Eve, Wendi Sotis is generously offering a signed paperback or eBook, winner's choice, to a USA winner AND  internationally, an eBook for your eReader to a second winner. To be entered leave a comment below as I always love reading your 'say in the conversation'Good luck to all. Be sure to include your email address in the comment. To prevent unwanted spam, put your email address with an (at) instead of @.  Winner will be chosen in a random drawing. Giveaway ends at midnight, October 28. 

32 comments:

  1. I watched the Youtube video of the promotion of AHE, and I am hooked! I can only begin to imagine the angst that will follow as Darcy and Elizabeth have to work together. You have a great story line, and I can imagine how your characters do take over the plot and dialogue for you, Wendi. Thanks for the giveaway! emedmonds(at)myactv.net

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    1. I'm happy to hear you enjoyed the trailer, Eva. That was my first one - it's not as easy as it looks, lol. Good luck in the giveaway!

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    2. Glad you stopped by and also viewed the trailer. Thanks for your support.

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  2. I am presuming that domestic means just the USA and not Canada as I have just started to read the ebook (but would love a paperback copy) and I am already engrossed
    meikleblog at gmail dot com

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    1. Sorry, Vesper, the paperback giveaway is for the USA. I'm glad you like the story. *Happy dancing*

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    2. Glad you are loving the eBook. I need to be more specific on the giveaway don't I! Thanks for your continued support.

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  3. I always enjoy learning how other writers write. Thanks for sharing what works for you! The cover of All Hallow's Eve is gorgeous! Good luck with it!
    hidee.ekstrom (at) gmail.com

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    1. Hi HiDee! Thanks, my husband paints the cover pictures for me. He'll be very happy to hear you liked it. He's busy painting the next one for me now. Good luck!

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    2. I love the cover too and think it is so neat that your husband paints the covers!

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  4. That's funny! The book that was never meant to be. I think that is interesting how you figured out your writing style, Wendy. I enjoyed this story already so please don't put in for the giveaway, ladies!

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    1. Hi Sophia, thanks for commenting! I'm always second guessing myself, so I sent it to Gayle Mills and Robin Helm, and they both encouraged me to continue. In fact, Gayle dubbed it "her story" immediately, LOL!

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    2. Thanks, Sophia Rose. I look forward to reading this story myself. It has been on my TBR list for some time. I'm way behind in my reading at the moment!

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  5. Thanks for the lovely post, Wendi, I really enjoyed reading it! I loved the idea of the characters taking their lives into their own hands and carrying you along with them :) Thanks for the giveaway too, it sounds like a fascinating story!

    joana[underscore]sw[at]yahoo[dot]co[dot]uk

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    1. Hi Joana! I'm glad you enjoyed the article. Good luck with the giveaway :-)

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    2. So glad you stopped by, Joana! Thanks.

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  6. Your trailer was just fantastic Wendi! Truthfully I had never seen a trailer for a book before so I was totally intrigued. I am presently reading the kindle version of your book and loving it. (a signed paperback copy would be lovely for my collection!) I was also happy to see that you are another "seat of your pants" author as I follow the same criteria; just let each character's personality take the story where they will. Good luck with the book!

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    1. I loved the trailer too and think it is a great tool. Thanks for stopping by, Pat!

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  7. Hi Pat, thanks about the trailer. I'm glad you are enjoying the story. I didn't realize you wrote that way, too. :-) Good luck!

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  8. OOOH! How did I almost miss this giveaway? HAHA.

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    1. Got you entered. Thanks for stopping by.

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    2. I'm glad you didn't miss it! Good luck!

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  9. Wendi,
    Of course I'd love to entered in your book giveaway!
    Hope all is well with you and yours.

    All my best,
    Dawn Randolph
    dawnrroberts at gmail.com

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    1. Thanks, Dawn! Good luck in the giveaway.

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  10. Hi Wendy! Love the book trailer! And I love this blurb about your writing process!

    I'd love to enter your book giveaway!
    Morgan Adams
    morganbrittanyadams (at) gmail.com

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    1. Wasn't it neat to hear her writing process. I'm learning there are quite a few writers that are pansters too.

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    2. Hi Morgan,
      I'm glad you liked the trailer and the article! Thanks and good luck!

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  11. Thanks, again, Wendi, for being my guest this past week. It has been such a pleasure to have you and get to know you through our emails! Loved your post and your trailer!

    I can't wait for your new book to be released!

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    1. Thank you, Janet, for hosting the giveaway!

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  12. That was really fun and interesting to read, Wendi, and thank you for hosting, Janet.

    I too love Janet's artwork and have her calendar here in front of me (and can't wait for the new one!) and other items on the way! I use her lovely cards when I do giveaways and the winners often feedback how much they love them.

    I think I am with you, Wendi. I do have a vague idea at the beginning of the purpose of my story, but I don't plan per se. And yes, those characters DO take over and then the story goes in all sorts of directions! Nightmare and huge amount of fun all bundled into one!

    Good luck with the upcoming release!

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    1. It's great to hear there are others who write like I do, Cassandra :-) Thanks!

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    2. Thanks so much, Cassandra! Your new calendar is on its way! Yay! I'm glad that your winners like the cards too!

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