Westerns

The Muses Read: Daughter of ISIS

Posted by on Nov 6, 2013 in Paranormal / Supernatural, Reading, Romance, Science Fiction / Fantasy, Westerns | 6 comments

The Muses Read: Daughter of ISIS

  KJ Confession: I spent years of my childhood studying Egypt and Egyptian mythology. Family members would drop off giant books that I could barely hold so I could pour myself all over them. It only makes sense that I HAD to read this book. Thankfully, I wasn’t disappointed. Daughter of Isis by Kelsey Ketch Daughter of Isis (Descendants of Isis, #1) by Kelsey Ketch Release Date: 10/26/13 Blurb: “Her mouth parted slightly, waiting for Seth to breathe life into her own body, just like in the story. She wanted him to awaken her senses.” Their worlds collide in California’s high desert. The last thing Natara “Natti” Stone wants to do is to start anew at Setemple High School. She wished she had never left London. Yet the brutal murder of her maternal grandmother has made her life very complicated. The only clue related to her murder is an ancient, encrypted necklace Natti discovered after her grandmother’s death. And if trying to adjust to American life is not enough, Natti is being stalked by a mysterious, charming high school senior, Seth O’Keefe, who is annoyingly persistent in his attempts at seduction. Seth O’Keefe is secretly a member of the Sons of Set, an order that worships the Egyptian god of chaos. Seth’s blessing from Set, his “charm,” never failed, except with one person: Natti Stone. Her ability to elude him infatuates and infuriates him, and he becomes obsessed with the chase. But the closer he gets to her, the more his emotions take a dangerous turn, and he risks breaking one of the most valued covenants of his order. The punishment for which is a fate worse than death. The adventure this unlikely couple becomes engulfed in could cost them their lives and their souls.   *Note: Content for Upper YA* Buy Links: Amazon Barnes and Noble Kobo Muse Kristen’s Thoughts What happens when your grandmother dies suddenly, and you end up having to leave London for a small town? What happens when you’re trying to escape the Egyptian culture and the reminder of your mother’s death, only to end up in a town thriving on it? What happens when the one boy you shouldn’t fall for is the only one that pulls you in like a magnet? Or when the girl you shouldn’t fall for is the only one you can’t charm? I know I’m going to love a character when she thinks: “Brilliant, where’s Hermione when you need her.”  You know how I feel about interesting characters – and Daughter of Isis didn’t fail. Natara is witty, tough, and realistic. You’ve got to be tough as it is if you’re moving from London to the middle of nowhere in California. Ever try being the new kid? It’s not fun. It’s especially not fun when the town player (Seth) has his eyes on you as the next conquest.  If I didn’t already love her from the Hermione comment, I’d have fallen in love with her when she brought her own water bottles to a party. You heard me. Brought water bottles to a high school party. Girl’s got guts AND brains. My kind of heroine. Seth is complex, clever, and made me swoon even when I didn’t want to. Every single time I thought I had this boy figured out, guess again. His character has the most interesting growth path in the story, which has me wondering if his life will ever be parallel to any of the gods from mythology.  Q and Ky had me glaring at the book, and muttering remarks under my breath. (This is...

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Basic Story Plots- Quest

Posted by on Feb 21, 2013 in Basic Plot Points, Children's, Genres, Historical Fiction, Horror, Mystery, New Adult, Non-fiction, Romance, Science Fiction / Fantasy, Thriller, Westerns, Writing, Young Adult | 2 comments

Basic Story Plots- Quest

There comes a time in every writer’s life where you’re about to start another project and you’re faced with a tough question: Which plot am I going with? Is your new project all about revenge? Is it a story about a change or metamorphosis? Is it a Romeo and Juliet story about a forbidden love? Either way, welcome to the second installment of Pen and Muse’s Basic Story Plots project. Each week we want to introduce you to a different plot point. Hopefully we can help and be that swift kick in the inspiration booty that you need.  It doesn’t matter if this is your 20th novel, your first novel, or your very first flash fiction. If there’s no plot, there’s no story. This week’s basic plot point is: Quest Details: Quest plots involve your protagonist / main characters being on the search for something. Whether it be person, place, thing, animal, or mineral, your protagonist will not rest until it’s found, obtained, or resolved. Traditionally, the quest story has three facets that seem to be ever-present: The Motivator or motivating situation- In Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone, Harry gets his Hogwarts acceptance letter. In The Hunger Games, Katniss volunteers as tribute after her sister’s name is picked. It’s always a good idea to start your story as close as possible to the starting action. The Journey- This is where everything takes place. This is the part that will hopefully ensure your reader can’t put your book down. Your reader at this point should understand that the journey is about to take place, and should understand why this journey is happening / where the protagonist is going. They may have no clue about all the hardships you’ve planned for your MC or who dies (if anyone), but they need to know the journey has commenced and why it’s important. Tell the story. Make your protagonist wallow through that swamp of sadness, barely escape pirates, or be pursued by crooks in search of treasure. In Defiance, the journey begins when Rachel and Logan head into the Wasteland. In Harry Potter, the journey starts at Harry’s term at Hogwarts for the school year. In The Hobbit, this is when Bilbo Baggins decides to go along with Gandalf and the other dwarves. The Goal- Normally at the end or towards the end of your book, the goal needs to be addressed. Did the protagonist meet their goals? Did they fail? Did they realize that they only accomplished half of it? Or does the protagonist have multiple goals, accomplishing one and ending the novel one step closer to the other goal? For example, in Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone, Harry finds the Sorcerer’s Stone. He thwarts Voldemort’s evil plan but he doesn’t destroy Voldemort. This leaves his stretch goal still unfulfilled and perfect for a sequel, but his immediate goals and journey were met.   Other reading material with a Quest plot: The Hobbit by J.R.R. Tolkein (Fantasy) Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows by JK Rowling (Fantasy) The Lightning Thief (Percy Jackson and the Olympians #1) by Rick Riordon (Fantasy) Neverwhere by Neil Gaiman (Urban Fantasy)   What are your favorite quest plot novels? What tips do you have for someone writing a quest novel? Let us know in the comments below!  ...

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#PitMad

Posted by on Jan 25, 2013 in Children's, Contests, Genres, Historical Fiction, Horror, Mystery, New Adult, Non-fiction, Romance, Science Fiction / Fantasy, Thriller, Westerns, Writing, Young Adult | 0 comments

#PitMad

What is #PitMad? First off, if you don’t already follow Brenda Drake, you need to. She is brilliant!!! She is a middle grade and young adult writer who also happens to be a fantastic literary resource and organizer of amazing writerly contests. Recently, she hosted Pitch Wars over at the YA Misfit’s website  where certain writers were selected and mentored to get their pitches and manuscripts ready for agents. So if you’re reading this Brenda, thank you SO much for everything you do! For those not chosen or anyone who desires, Brenda Drake is also hosting #PitMad over on Twitter today. What is #PitMad?  #PitMad is a twitter pitch party that uses the hashtag #PitMad. You pitch your book in less than 140 characters (not easy, but it’s fun to be creative) and agents stop by to peek. Normally, if an agent or editor likes your pitch they will favorite it, meaning they would like to see more. Check out their twitter feeds to see what they’re looking for. Normally the agent or editor will tweet something earlier saying, “If I like your twitter pitch, send me the query and first ten pages” or whatever it is that they would like to see. Agents can also @ reply to you and tell you exactly what they want from you. It varies per person. Don’t forget to check the feed too. Some agents will post things like, “if it’s a contemporary YA novel about dinosaurs” please pitch it directly to me.” Pay attention. You never know what agents or editors may be looking for. And please,  for the sake of writerly love, do not forget to root for your fellow writers. Offer them encouragement! We’re all in the trenches together. If things don’t work out today, remember Pitch Madness is coming up again in March! We’ll keep you informed! There’s still time today to get your #PitMad pitch in!...

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Basic Story Plots- Revenge

Posted by on Jan 23, 2013 in Basic Plot Points, Children's, Genres, Historical Fiction, Horror, Mystery, New Adult, Non-fiction, Romance, Science Fiction / Fantasy, Thriller, Westerns, Writing, Young Adult | 0 comments

Basic Story Plots- Revenge

Basic Story Plots- Revenge There comes a time in every writer’s life where you’re about to start another project and you’re faced with a tough question: Which plot am I going with? Is your new project an adventure? A Romeo and Juliet story about a forbidden love? Something else? Or maybe you’re experiencing symptoms of that dirty bitch named Writer’s Block. Either way, welcome to the first installment of Pen and Muse’s Basic Story Plots project. Each week we want to introduce you to a different plot point. Hopefully we can help and be that swift kick in the inspiration booty that you need.  It doesn’t matter if this is your 50th novel, your first novel, or your very first flash fiction. If there’s no plot, there’s no story. This week’s basic plot point is (insert drum roll here): Revenge Details: Revenge plots revolve around retaliation and reciprocation, a tit for tat so to speak involving the protagonist, antagonist, or a main characters. One of these characters (or more than one character) seeks to deliver payback for an injustice done to them, whether it be something real or perceived (imaginary). Example: Since I’m a Shakespeare loving fiend, let’s use “Hamlet”, one of his famous plays. Basically Hamlet loathes the new man (his father’s brother) that his mother has married and his father’s ghost speaks to Hamlet asking him to set things right. Hamlet discovers and confirms that his uncle is actually his father’s killer. This information paired with Hamlet’s rage (and a lot of other stuff I left out for time sake), drive Hamlet to madness and causes him to revenge-kill his father’s killer (his uncle) to make amends. Other reading material with the revenge plot: The Berenstain Bears and the Bully by Stan and Jan Berenstain (Children’s) (Also if you want a good laugh about it, read this article) Ten by Gretchen McNeil  (YA Mystery) Les Miserables by Victor Hugo (Classic, Historical Fiction) Full Dark, No Stars by Stephen King (Horror) A Storm of Swords by George R.R. Martin (Fantasy) Also, I found this hilarious article on Perfecting Your Revenge Plot from the Onion. It’s worth the chuckle. What are your favorite revenge plot novels? Is this your favorite novel plot to write? Let us know in the comments below! (but you can call me Jolene Plotter and the Chamber of Write Tips)...

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