Tuesday, December 18, 2012
|Jillian and Sara|
As a history major I love to explore cultures and societies that came before our time. My hope in writing as part of my friend Jillian Kent’s blog is that we can enlighten each other in the history and culture of the Regency Era of Great Britain. My goal is to give you as a fellow reader an insight into aspects of the time period that Jillian may not write about, but aspects we both are passionate about. To begin my first post for Jillian and to everyone one of her friends that read her blog, I wanted to start small and just give an introduction into the Regency Era. As we progress through our time together and become friends my hope is to focus on specific topics for each post whether it be a place, a person, a landmark or a tradition.
As many of you know the Regency Era of British society was a time of cultural expansion and nourishment, one that flourished. It was characterized for its distinctive architecture, literature, fashion and politics. Unfortunately it was also a time of great concern for the middle class due to the rampant over indulgence of the aristocracy and rising poverty levels in the cities. Despite the concerns, the Regency Era was a period of refinement and cultural achievement that would change the social structure of Great Britain for years to come.
|The Prince Regent/Wikipedia site|
There have been many amazing discoveries of the Regency Era such as the adaptation of steam printing which increased the demand of books, pamphlets and newspapers. Steam printing made it possible to print over 1,100 sheets and hour compared to the previous count of 200 sheets per hour. This greatly increased the popularity of novels and gossip sheets that spread the rumors of the royal and aristocratic. Koenig's Steam Press was purchased by the Times of London in 1814.
Jill here again. Doesn't that machine remind you of something? I can't put my finger on it but I see two big eyes and robot like head. Maybe something from the movie Transformers?
Tuesday, December 11, 2012
I found some answers in a number of places this past week and wanted to share them with you in case you're being stalked by similar serpents of Perfectionism and Procrastination.
The first place I was led for help was when I looked up James Scott Bell's weekly Sunday post at the Kill Zone. Ten Ways to Sabotage Your Writing,
I also tuned in to Charles Stanley this week and God answered with the sermon on Solving Problems Through Prayer. I had caught myself trying to solve my problem through my personal abilities. Always a mistake for me. Start with prayer, seek wise counsel, and move forward. I am a person of deep, personal faith and still after all these years I can be duped by The Serpent. The big one. But that's all it takes is recognition and reminder that the villain of all villains is out there. 1 Peter 5:8 warns us: "Be sober, be vigilant; because your adversary the devil, as a roaring lion, walks about, seeking whom he may devour."
For me, the issue of what do next isn't writers block. It's fear of moving forward. Of making a mistake of choosing the wrong direction that will result in some major error. Here's the comment I wrote in response to Jim Bell's post:
I felt like I should know better. I chose 2nd Timothy 1:7 as my life verse a long time ago. "For God hath not given us the spirit of fear; but of power, and of love, and of a sound mind." This is the reason I write. Somehow I had drifted away from that knowledge and needed to be reminded.
Have you ever been there? What got you back on track?
Tuesday, December 4, 2012
|Janeen Coyle and Jillian|
I didn't really know what to expect. We met at a Starbucks inside Kroger's in Montgomery, Ohio and what a fun time. Janeen and group were discussing Patricia Cornwell's latest book, The Bone Bed. Some loved it and some not so much. Great discussion. I loved hearing their comments, very enlightning for a writer.
|What a great bunch of women!|
After discussing Cornwell's new novel we discussed other books that readers were currently enjoying. Many of the participants assured me they owned e-readers.
Later Janeen asked me questions about my books and I filled everyone in on a bit of the writing life and my stories. I felt like one of the gang with this book club. Everyone was very relaxed and interested and asked lots of good questions.
|It's always fun to sign a book!|
Then on Saturday, December 1st I kicked off the month signing books with other author friends at Barnes and Noble in Westcheseter, Ohio.
|Shelley Shepard Gray and Jillian|
|Donna McMeans, Me, and Gail|
|Jillian and Sara|
Sara King is incredibly gifted with three degrees: Biology, History, and Anthropology. She works at B&N whenever she gets the chance and is also employed within the health care community of Cincinnati. I hope to make her a regular guest blogger.
|Me, Gwen Williams, and Donna|
Monday, November 26, 2012
Tuesday, November 20, 2012
You can read the first chapters of all my books here.
Tuesday, November 13, 2012
|Edward Jenner (1749–1823).
Photo courtesy of the
National Library of Medicine.
You wouldn’t want to have the need for surgery because chances are that you wouldn’t get it (they rarely performed surgical operations) and you’d die, or you would get it and you’d die, or if you were that sick you’d just want to be left alone to die. Medicine is one of those things that I wouldn’t want to give up if I could escape into Regency England (one of my favorite eras) for a year or so.
Did you know that Edward Jenner discovered the vaccine for smallpox in late 18th century England? I doubt many high school students know about smallpox today unless they watch movies on bioterrorism, etc. Isn’t it scary that a disease that was virtually wiped out by 1977 could be resurrected for horrifying purposes?
Jenner used the pus and infectious matter of a dairymaid’s cowpox to inoculate a small boy in 1796. Do you want to know what that looked like? Probably not but I’ll tell you. He scraped inside nasty looking wounds on Sarah Nelm’s (dairymaid’s) hand and arm, gathered the infection, created two small incisions in the boy’s (James Phipps) arm and spread the pus into the incisions. You can read more here about the method of variolation here.
From Wikipedia, Jenner's Theory:
The initial source of infection was a disease of horses, called "the grease", which was transferred to cows by farm workers, transformed, and then manifested as cowpox.More here. For more on the great and terrible scourge go here.
Did you know the history of smallpox inoculation? Did any of this surprise you? Brings a whole new meaning to the saying, "A pox upon you!" Of course in that day if they didn't mean smallpox they probably meant syphilis. That's another post.
From an etching by James Gillray (1757-1815) 1802 caricature of Jenner vaccinating patients who feared it would make them sprout cowlike appendages. From Wikipedia.
Tuesday, November 6, 2012
|Releasing January 8th 2013|
Here's the new cover for the third and final book in The Ravensmoore Chronicles. Hope you like it.
Jillian Kent writes a sweeping romantic intrigue, brilliant with well-drawn characters and meticulous research of Regency England. ~ Linda Windsor, Author of The Brides of Alba historical series: Healer, Thief, and Rebel
Tuesday, October 30, 2012
I'm using National Novel Writing Month that begins November 1st to explore my ability to write without editing. That's hard for me to do, but I'm going to experiment on a larger scale.
Then I hope to utilize SCRIVENER which I bought last November and never utilized because I was on deadline and knew there would be a learning curve. So I've picked out some photos for my cork board for inspiration in the month of November. You can find some of your own here and here.
So are you participating in the NaNoWriMo Adventure?
Tuesday, October 23, 2012
|Suzanne, Terri, Joni, Terry, Me, Dee|
Unfortunately with the schedule I didn't get to sit in on the panel with fellow Books and Such agency mate, Ann Gabhart, but we eventually caught up with each other and of course I forgot to take a picture. :)
Book club members from River Hills Christian Church in Loveland, Ohio drop by to visit at Books by the Banks. Left to Right: Suzanne Mohr, Terri Weeks, Joni Baker, Terry Kirkland, Me, and Dee Bailey.
Isn't it Romantic? Romance Fiction Panel
|Jillian and Jamie|
- Macy Beckett, Sultry with a Twist,
- Jamie Carie, The Guardian Duke: A Forgotten Castles Novel
- Jillian Kent, Chameleon
- Donna MacMeans, The Casanova Code
Jamie Carie was the other inspy author on this panel and friends Donna McMeans and Macy Beckett were romance authors from the general market. The second panel was titled, “Faith and Fiction: Inspirational and Christian Fiction.”
- J.S. Bailey, The Land Beyond the Portal
- Mary Ellis, An Amish Family Reunion
- Ann Gabhart, Words Spoken True
- Dionna Latimer-Hearn, Unexpected Places.
|Moderator Amy, Macy, Donna, Me, and Jamie|
1) How has the e-book revolution effected us?
2) How do we get our writing done?
3) What do we think makes a strong hero and heroine?
4) Why did we choose to write in the genres we are currently writing in?
Amy asked many questions the audience seemed to enjoy hearing the answers to and then opened it up for questions from those in attendance. Lots of fun!
Duffy Brown, long time friend and fellow member of Romance Writers of America and Ohio Valley RWA was signing her first cozy mystery, Iced Chiffon, which is sure to be a winner.
|Duffy Brown and Jillian at the end of a long day.|
If you would like to know more about who was in attendance this year: Fiction authors 2012 You can also explore all the other authors and genres who were there and get a taste for what a huge book festival is like in Cincinnati. What book festivals do you attend in your area of the country?
Tuesday, October 16, 2012
|Printing press from 1811, Wikipedia|
By the time a book is in galley form it's gone through a number of edits by the author and then on to the substantive edit, which in my case is done by freelance editors. I've had a different editor for each of my three novels. I love getting the galley for several reasons: it means the book is close to finished, I still have a chance to make changes (and you'd be surprised what I find that needs changed at the last minute), and I enjoy seeing the design used on the pages or the
Miriam-Webster defines it as:
|Movable type on a composing stick, Wikipedia|
Tuesday, October 9, 2012
Debra Marvin is back this week with incredible information and pics on the naval aspects of the War of 1812. If you missed her first post on the war a couple weeks ago you can find it here. So come escape with us into the world of naval warfare against Britain. Be on guard though, I have a feeling that Deb may have a pop quiz later about naval stuff. Take it away, Deb!
Hi Jillian! On a beautiful September day in 2012, I had the pleasure of a dream-come-true day sail aboard the U.S. Brig Niagara. Just thinking of it now makes me smile and my heart go pitter-patter. Isn’t she beautiful?
|photo borrowed from Niagara Canadian Military Heritage Society to promote the U.S. Brig Niagara|
Debra E. Marvin tries not to run too far from real life but the imagination born out of being an only child has a powerful draw. Besides, the voices in her head tend to agree with all the sensible things she says. Debra likes to write, weed and wander and is blessed to have the best family and friends in the world. She has decided she needs to live closer to her grandchildren. She’s thankful each day that God is in control, that He chooses to bless us despite ourselves and that He has a sense of humor. Her work has finaled in the TARA, Great Expectations, Heart of the Rockies, Maggie, Rattler and most recently, the Daphne DuMaurier for the second time. Not too bad considering she’s trying a mashup of gospel and . . . gothic.
Tuesday, October 2, 2012
|Gibbs is blogging?|
I've noticed that even Michael Hyatt is changing his thoughts about blogging after he posted How I Unplugged and Lived to Tell About It? A couple weeks after this post he then blogged about Why I Will Be Posting Less This makes perfect sense to me. But Michael Hyatt is well known and has a massive amount of information in his archives. If you haven't scanned these posts to see what might be of interest I encourage you to do so.
Since being published in 2011 the responsibilities of completing a series, working the day job, finding time to spend with my husband and family have become increasing complicated. How to manage everything there is to manage is a continuing question I'm searching to answer. And I know I'm not the only one. I try to ask myself the question I frequently ask the college students that I counsel, "How important is it?"
|That's not possible. Is it?|
So what are we going to do about it? What am I going to do about it? I've already gone from three times a week to twice a week to currently once a week. Hmmm. Blogging, has it morphed into something else? Has it grown obsolete? Is Twitter and Facebook where it's happening now? My agent also recently posted the question Is Facebook Here To Stay?
C.S. Harris commented on blogging as well. See her post at Asocial. I can relate to this. I really want to blog when I have something to say that I really want to say and not feel pressured into doing it because it's what we authors are supposed to do to draw readers in. For the most part I think we frequently draw other writers in and that's okay because writers also read but they really aren't our target audience, right? And I don't want to hire an assistant to blog for me.
Group blogging may be the best option but it depends. Some group blogs work and some not so much. My two favorites have to be The Kill Zone and Seekerville. Do you have favorite group blogs you think are very effective and fun too?
|I don't blog!|
I want to write wonderfully entertaining novels that people will read and look forward to reading. Frequent blogging may interfere with my ability to do that well. So I'm going to be doing some experimenting. If you follow me you're going to notice some changes and it may be things that happen spontaneously or not. :)
James Scott Bell in his post entitled, Social Media Marketing Made Easy said:
Don't Hurt Your Writing Time or Your Life
If you find your social media presence detracting from your writing time and your ability to produce quality words, cut back. If you're on Facebook more than you're with your family, check your priorities. This stuff isn't as important as either of those two things.
What do you think and feel about blogging? About social media in general? Is Twitter, Facebook, etc. enough? Is a great website enough regarding DISCOVERABILITY? I found this link via JSB's blog. Digital Book World I've always heard that word of mouth is the best way to sell our books after we've written a great book. I wonder if that's still true? What's your take on blogging? How far are you willing to go?
Tuesday, September 25, 2012
Please welcome Debra Marvin who will take you on a tour of The War of 1812 and will return in two weeks on October 9th with a discussion on naval vessels which is sure to be fascinating.