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Archive for April, 2016

Today, April 30, 2016, is Indie Booksellers Day! Visit one (or more) today!

outsidekidscar

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Experiment 38 is a thrilling read from start to finish, with a sweet romance and friendship throughout. I loved Nate’s devotion to Emily, especially given the dangers that lurked around every corner. I also loved Nate’s friends who helped no matter what catastrophes could befall them. They seemed to like the risks! But, I didn’t expect to be so enthralled as it is a young adult book. I figured it would be an enjoyable romance novel, with a simple mystery thrown in. I also didn’t expect to be guessing until the end what the heck was going on with Emily! Was she a robot, a real girl, something in between? To find out, read Experiment 38 by Charles Suddeth. You won’t be disappointed!

By Shawn Simon, author of Stepping into a New Role, Stories from Stepmoms.

Website: StepmomShawn.com

Facebook: Stepmom Shawn Simon Says

Twitter: @shawnsimon44

 Experiment 38: Young adult thriller, 4RV Publishing, paperback:  ISBN: 978-1-940310-02-2

 

Cover for Experiment 38

YA thriller, publication TBA

 

 

 

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May Louisville SCBWI Chit Chatters Social (Schmooze)

Anyone from Kentucky, Tennessee, and Indiana is welcome.

Monday, May 2, 6 to 8 pm. No RSVP required.
The first hour will be for socializing, the second hour for optional critiques. Writers can read for three minutes. Illustrators are always welcome.

Barnes & Noble’s Café, 801 South Hurstbourne Parkway, one mile north of I-64, on the right. This is NOT the Summit Shopping Center B&N.
You do not need to be an SCBWI member to attend. For more information, contact Charles Suddeth csuddeth@iglou.com

B&N

 

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Experiment 38

Review for Experiment 38

Experiment 38 is a thrilling read from start to finish, with a sweet romance and friendship throughout. I loved Nate’s devotion to Emily, especially given the dangers that lurked around every corner. I also loved Nate’s friends who helped no matter what catastrophes could befall them. They seemed to like the risks! But, I didn’t expect to be so enthralled as it is a young adult book. I figured it would be an enjoyable romance novel, with a simple mystery thrown in. I also didn’t expect to be guessing until the end what the heck was going on with Emily! Was she a robot, a real girl, something in between? To find out, read Experiment 38 by Charles Suddeth. You won’t be disappointed!

By Shawn Simon, author of Stepping into a New Role, Stories from Stepmoms.

Website: StepmomShawn.com

Facebook: Stepmom Shawn Simon Says

Twitter: @shawnsimon44

 

Experiment 38: Young adult thriller, 4RV Publishing, paperback:  ISBN: 978-1-940310-02-2

YA thriller, publication TBA

YA thriller, publication TBA

 

 

 

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Ideas for Dialogue

 

When I do character sketches, I include voice:

How do they speak? Soft, deep high-pitched, raspy, fast/slow talker/child’s voice mumble etc.

Do they speak with an accent? foreign/Southern/educated/teen/child etc.

Do they speak differently under different circumstances? Happy/sad/scared/bored/angry

Do they speak differently in different places? School/home/public/work

What kind of vocabulary do they use? Large/simple/slang/work places terms.

 

I use these as I write and edit. And I read aloud, trying to imitate each character. If a character speaks more than once, I include their voice in a character sketch. When using slang, dialect etc., find a native speaker (E.g. A teen for high school slang) and read it aloud to them.

Dialogue is not just voice or sound:

What are your characters doing while speaking? Washing dishes. Hiking, etc.

Silence is a form of communication. (AKA the silent treatment)

If the POV character chooses to think rather than speak, it is a form of dialogue because it informs the reader the way speech would.

Facial expressions, body language, movements can communicate as much as words.

What is dialogue for?

It either propels the story forward or tells the reader something about the characters. If it doesn’t do either one of these, why is the dialogue there?

Things to forget:

Grammar. Complete sentences.

Answering questions: characters often ignore questions and change the subject, which often tells more than answering the question.

Don’t try to write dialogue that is too real-to-life. The reader doesn’t need every huh, um, etc, speakers say. Writing dialogue is a trick to convince the reader the speech is real. When using dialect, a few hints work better than dialogue that is difficult for anyone to read.

Using exclamation points (let your word choice indicate excitement). Using caps for emphasis (use italics).

Read it aloud:

Dialogue needs a rhythm. Angry or scared words need a faster, frantic pace. Conversation or romance might take a slower, relaxed pace.

People interrupt each other, breaking the rhythm. People are rude to each other.

Beats, tags, or neither?

Beats are actions or gestures that either interrupt or add to the dialogue. Use them but not too often.

Tags should be used ONLY when leaving them out it will confuse the reader. Try to use either said or asked.

Neither. If it is clear who is speaking, and no action or beat is required, then just dialogue is fine (hard to accomplish with more than 2 speakers).

Eights Mask2

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Durham, North Carolina Food from Experiment 38

I am not a cook and these are not complete recipes, just examples of food the characters from my YA novel, Experiment 38, would’ve been familiar with.

The group in this story loved their Durham pizza, especially Carolina Caramelized Onion & Prosciutto Pizza: Pizza Crust, Olive Oil, 1 thinly sliced red Onion, 1/4 cup Brown Sugar, grated Parmesan Cheese, 10 ounces thinly sliced fresh Mozzarella Cheese, 8 slices Prosciutto.

Campfire hot dogs: Emily’s specialty. She skewered them on sticks and slowly roasted them. She would’ve enjoyed Carolina hot dogs—mustard, slaw, chili, and onions.

They preferred Eastern-style barbecue—a whole-hog barbecue. Eastern-style sauce is vinegar- and pepper-based, with no tomato whatsoever.

Dave Burgers: Dave only cooked one thing, but he did it right. Half pound of good hamburger hand formed into a patty & cooked in the flames. Cheese if you have to. On weekends he liked Carolina Burgers—chili, mustard, coleslaw

They also gobbled their Durham-style rise donuts—yeast donuts, often made with sweet potatoes and bourbon glaze.

Tomato gravy: Another Carolina favorite they liked, made with bacon drippings & flour & tomatoes (Of course) make the roux for this simple tomato gravy.

YA thriller, publication TBA

YA thriller, publication TBA

 

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Bannock Recipe

Bannock Recipe

Used by Indians in Canada, unleavened bread, great for campfires

 

In 2-quart freezer bag

2 cups all-purpose flour

½-teaspoon salt

2 teaspoons baking powder

1-tablespoon sugar

¼ cup powdered milk

 

Cook that stuff!

  1. Put 1 cup cold water in bag and mix thoroughly (shake, rattle, and roll).
  2. Put into greased (buttered) skillet. Liquid margarine works great.
  3. Cook until brown. You can turn it or hold the top next to a campfire to brown both sides. I always just browned one side.
  4. Pig out – can be used for dessert with butter or strawberries. Without the margarine, it’s almost fat free.

Eights Mask2

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