Saturday, December 22, 2012

Merry Christmas or Happy Holidays

As 2012 comes to a close, we're stepping away from the blog until after the new year. With that, comes a changing of the guard and we have some exciting new features in the works. But until then:
If your Christian, say Merry Christmas.
If your Jewish, say Happy Hanukkah.
If your African, say Happy Kwanzaa.
If you’re Buddhist, say Happy Budhi.
If you’re atheist, say Happy Holidays.
I will not be offended by hearing you say something nice to me during this holiday season. I believe in free speech for all, including sharing your religious greeting, since in the end, it’s all meant to wish peace for everyone.
I, myself, am Christian.  So I wish everyone a wonderful Christmas. And hope you feel nice enough to wish me peace as well – in whatever religion you practice or not.

Wednesday, December 19, 2012

Gifts for Writers

Writers are like Black Sheep. Everyone knows a writer. In the family, a friend, agiftkooky coworker… we’re common. And in one way or another, we’re all loved. That means with the holidays screaming around the corner, everyone has a writer for whom they need to buy at least a small gift. Here are some gift suggestions for writers (including ones to avoid).

Paper – Reams and reams of it. Because we go through that much. Either for brainstorming, rough drafts, character sketching, revisions (*raises hand*) or querying. We use a lot of it.
Ink – See paper. (With one caveat: it is essential to know the kind of printer the writer has, of course).
Coffee – Most writers need this fully stocked in IV bags. But don’t get them needles- that requires a prescription.
Dragon Dictate Software – For writers on the go, moving around a lot, thisdragonwill help. You’ll need to find out if they have a PC or Mac. Downside: it’s a bit pricey.
scrivenerSrivener  A fantastic new software that most writers love, no matter what they write (fiction or non fiction).
Pens – Like paper and ink, we use these a lot, and therefore run out of ink in the middle of jotting down a great idea, and then chuck the pen across the room, chipping our favorite coffee mug while we desperately search for lipstick or marker to write down said-great-idea before we lose it.
Coffee Mugs – To Replace said-broken-mug from above.
 The Latest Edition of Writer’s Market – This may be baffling for those of you who are not in publishing, but this is the first step to a golden ticket in the Willy Wonka’s Factory of Publishing.
Elements of Style from Strunk & White  – See note above.
Books – Duh. Bonus points for knowing which genre they prefer, but they’ll pretty much take anything. Especially books on writing or autobiographies from serious writers. (FYI- Snooki’s recent book does not count).
Comfy Clothes – Any funny shirt or pants specific for writers. There are sowritershirtmany websites offering screen-printed quotes on shirts like ‘Don’t Piss Me Off Or I’ll Kill You In My Novel’ or ‘Grammar Snob.’ We need something comfortable to write in and what better way to be motivated to write than to wear the reminder. CafePress has some great ones.
Slippers or Socks – See clothes. No writer can write with cold feet.
Computer Accessories – A laptop case, wireless mouse/keyboard, thumb drive. Again, helpful to know what kind of computer they have to make sure the case fits. But a thumb drive is universal. As are screen cleaners and cans of air to blast out the dust from our keyboards.
The Writer’s Block – Nuff said.
Lap Table – A bunch of different kinds, depending on whether they like classic wooden, or contemporary chic, or funky bumbo style. But a cup holder is essential.
Air Fresheners or Wickless Candles – For writers who spend hours sitting in one spot desperate to get the dialogue out of their brains, sometimes we tend to forget to shower. Something to mask the stench in the air is helpful (Scentsy is popular). But nothing that includes a flame where we’ll forget to blow it out and burn down our masterpieces.
Massage – To force us out of the house and relax our writing muscles. Spa gift cards are a great way to achieve this.
Magazine Subscription  – Writer’s DigestWriter’s JournalThe Writer (any of these are precious jewels in the mailbox).
Don’t bother with these:
Journals – Every writer has a million of these shoved away in drawers and closets. Don’t add to their clutter. Plus, it’s a cliché. Lesson #1: all writers hate clichés.
Laptop – Come on! These are so freakin’ expensive, with way too many variables that are too personal to each individual writer. Unless you want to take them to the store to pick out their own, don’t do it. They’ll just end up exchanging it for something that suits their query personality more. It’s like women and shoes. We’re just too picky.
E-Readers – See laptop. Though gift cards to purchase e-books are good.
Thesaurus – Again, every write already has one. And every good writer knows not to use it.
Digital Voice Recorder – Every phone has something that meets this need. My iPhone came with 3 of them. And there’s about 30 more apps they can download for free.
Hopefully this gives you some ideas. Have a great holiday!

Monday, December 17, 2012

Changing Of The Guard

“Writing isn't about making money, getting famous, getting dates, getting laid, or making friends. In the end, it’s about enriching the lives of those who will read your work, and enriching your own life, as well” ~Stephen King

Beginning in January, this blog will take on an exciting new look, a new focus, and will be moderated by Kimberly P. Walton (w/a Kimberly Packard), another member of the GFW Writers group. My term as moderator has ended.

Writing is a creative outlet of choice.  It chooses us. But to be a writer, we first have to be readers. I know because I've been reading and writing ever since I can remember.  Words can be therapeutic and transformational for both writer and reader.  With the help of members of GFW Writers and our guests, we've painted the world with our words on this blog.

I’m sure the guest authors who willingly shared  tricks of the trade, talked about their books  and  writing  journeys, transformed and inspired you. I know they did me. To all of the contributors and readers, thank you for your support over the years. I hope each of your lives has been enriched by reading our blog. If it has, I know you will continue to follow the blog with GFW Writers. I will be following as well and sharing an occasional post.

See you in the New Year!

Ruby Johnson is the outgoing  blog coordinator and treasurer for Greater Fort Worth Writers. She is a
member of several writers organizations including RWA. She got the writing bug in high school when she won an award from the National Teachers of English, and transfered that love through college into her professional life as a certified registered nurse anesthetist practitioner. She has won short story contests, published in the AANA Journal and has contributed to Hospital Topics and  a book on Hospital Management. She currently writes  medical suspense.

Friend her on P Johnson

Friday, December 14, 2012

Prayers and Condolences

Our hearts go out to the victims of Sandy Hook Elementary School in Connecticut, including their families and friends during this tragedy. The only way to express our feelings are through the words of a beloved American icon, Mr. Rogers:

"When I was a boy and I would see scary things in the news, my mother would say to me, 'Look for the helpers. You will always find people who are helping.' To this day, especially in times of 'disaster,' I remember my mother's words, and I am always comforted by realizing that there are still so many helpers - so many caring people in this world." - Mister Rogers

I have to believe the world is full of more good, caring people with genuine hearts than those that do evil.
Prayers and Condolences to everyone who is hurting.

Wednesday, December 12, 2012

GFW Writer Matthew Bryant is Interviewed on 'My Seryniti' Blog

GFW Writer Matthew Bryant was interviewed by Nova Reylin at 'My Seryniti' blog the other week and know you all would love to read about his journey in writing TOWERS. Enjoy!!

Matthew Bryant is the author of Towers. When he first approached me I thought maybe this book wasn’t for me. I did tell Matt that my husband might really be into this. It sounded perfect for him. So, my hubby has it on his Nook, started reading last week, sadly his reading time is a lot shorter than mine. He’s about halfway through and the more he tells me about Towers the more jealous I get that he’s reading it!! So I thought I would give you the information about Towers. See what you think. All I know is that the first page is awesome and it sounds like the goodness doesn’t end there!
  • Information: Towers
  • Author: Matthew Bryant
  • Release Date: November 3rd 2012


The next job, the next fix, the next thrill has been the mindset of Heath Fallows since the day he abandoned his broken home for the harsher call of the streets. But being a homeless thief in a conglomerate society will only get you so far, and he soon finds himself surviving by skirting outside of business infrastructure.
A career of breaking and entering and drug-peddling is brought to a screeching halt when a successful job leads to being chased down by a supernatural entity and left for dead.
Working outside of his traditional networks, Heath is forced to dig deeper into the underbelly of society, locked closets of high culture, and the deadly unknown beyond the district boundaries to uncover what he overlooked and the truth behind the towers of corporate dominance.
We’ll get that review up as soon as he’s done reading but for now please enjoy this interview with such a lovely author!
Hi Matt! Thank you so much for doing this interview for My Seryniti.
Nova – How did Towers start for you? Image, Idea, Dream?
Matt – I’d originally written a much longer work called Doors.  It took me about seven years to finish it and, when it was done, I realized that I hated the book.  But I absolutely loved the world that I’d built and Heath – who was a wise-ass side-character who ended up being far more memorable than the main protagonist.  So I scrapped the first book and wrote an entirely different story following the mischief and misfortune of Heath Fallows.
Nova – Did you have any growing pains with Towers?
Matt – Certainly not to the level I’d had with the first work.  The hardest part was often asking myself, “Wait.. how the hell is he going to survive this scene?”  When you have supernatural antagonists squaring off against a nobody, you have to make the protagonist pretty clever with some luck dolloped on.
Nova – I have to admit, I was thinking Towers may not be for me, but then I was reading a Goodreads review and it says this is Dystopian! One of my very favorite genres! Can you tell us a little more about Towers?
Matt – Certainly!  The story revolves around Heath Fallows, a runaway who lived with a group of homeless kids for a short period of time, only to have his friends wiped out as ‘vermin’.  Civilization as he knows it is broken up into twelve districts, each owned by a major corporation – each at a constant war with the other.  Instead of sending in soldiers, these corporations will hire thieves and saboteurs to do their dirty work.  This is where Heath falls in, having a natural aptitude at getting in and out of places.
Things take a much darker turn when he realizes one of the districts, the same that killed his friends, is working with the Ancients – a name given to supernatural beings known for their evil nature, but mostly regarded as myth and fairy tale to the average citizen.  This begins a long, grueling mission to get to the truth behind this alliance before it gets him – and more unfortunates – captured, exploited, and killed in the process.
Nova – Do you have a message you try to convey when writing a story?
Matt – Absolutely!  There are many messages integrated (though sometimes deeply buried) within Towers.  Heath’s moral flexibility gives him lots of ‘room for improvement’.  I used to teach English at a Juvenile Detention Center, and the rare student that would come back and let us know he’d turned his life around was always cause for celebration.
Nova – What are you reading right now?
Matt – A couple of things.  I’ve been diving into Darren Shan’s Cirque Du Freak series – just finished the third book, Tunnels of Blood.  They’re cute.  A little dark for young adult, but definitely written for the age group.  The teenage boy in me is hooked.
Also reviewing Black Moon by Jessica Mcquay.  I saw that you gave it five stars, so I’m keeping an open mind.  Not my genre, but sometimes people really surprise you.  Amy Joy’s Dystopian YA novel, The Acadamie, was certainly not intended for adult male audiences, but was one of the most memorable works I’ve read all year.
Nova – Are there any authors (living or dead) that you would name as influences?
Matt – Yes and no.  I would love to be as imaginative as Neil Gaiman – or create worlds as beautifully as Clive Barker – but for now I just do what I do best.
Nova – You mention Clive Barker and Neil Gaiman as a couple of favorite authors. What works of theirs do you like best and why?
Matt – Oh wow.  Everything?  For Clive Barker, I would have to go with Imajica.  It was freakishly long… and I finished it in two days the first time I read it.  It was like going to Narnia for adults.  Some scenes I could’ve lived without, but the characters were riveting.  I love how he makes antagonists just as human, if not more so, as the protagonists.
Neil Gaiman, definitely American Gods.  It was an amazingly creative work and has stood for five years now as my all time favorite book.  Being a huge fan of mythology growing up, this modern take on everything with some cynical stabs at the faith of today’s society made this a brilliant must-read.
Nova – What do you do when you’re not writing?
Matt – Thinking about writing.  Not really.  I’m a husband and father above everything else.  I have three young, beautiful daughters and they take up most of my days.  I tutor at-risk kids in the evenings.  I love to read, though can’t do it as much as I’d appreciate these days.  But ya know, plenty of time for that in the future!
Nova – Have you always wanted to be an author?
Matt – After I realized that astronauts didn’t fight aliens and police officers spent twelve hours a day sitting in a car with a radar gun or answering neighbor complaints about parking on the curb, making the world more fascinating just seemed the way to go.
Nova – How did you break into the industry?
Matt –Same way anybody does.  I wrote a book (well.. a couple of them)  I’d been planning on going the traditional publishing route with Towers… then I was disheartened while speaking with a couple of high-profile authors.  One in particular said, if he had to do it all over again, he’d go indie.
I wanted to have final say in my book’s content.  I wanted to design my own cover.  I think the big kicker was… I didn’t want to wait 12-18 months for my book to hit the shelves.  Sure it’s not going to be picked up at any of the big chains anytime soon, but I like having control over something this dear to me instead of handing it over to a bunch of strangers who rate books by sales numbers and dollar figures.
The first day Towers was on the market, I had a free day for the Kindle version.  Every hour or so I’d check the stats and grin.  By the end of the sale, over 350 people worldwide had grabbed a copy of my book.  I was ecstatic.  Sure it’s a giveaway and some people will grab anything if it’s free.  But the idea that my story appealed to so many people felt amazing.
I think Tom Sawyer said it best: “There are wealthy gentlemen in England who drive four-horse passenger-coaches twenty or thirty miles on a daily line, in the summer, because the privilege costs them considerable money; but if they were offered wages for the service, that would turn it into work and then they would resign.”
Nova – What is your writing style? Do you create outlines for your writing or do you just sit and type away?
Matt – I create outlines… pretty intricate ones… and then ignore them and let the characters go wild.  Sometimes they follow their lines, and other times they rewrite the scenes.  Things flow better this way.  You can’t force a character into a scene.  Clever readers will see right through it.
Nova – What is your next project? What have you been working on recently?
Matt – I’m back and forth.  I’ve been working at the next in the World Between series, Impulse, and working on a couple of urban fairy tale novellas.
Nova – What’s your favorite thing about writing?
Matt – The creation process.  I love building people and worlds from scratch, writing out their histories for my own personal resource and then watching them interact with each other.  This actually kills me.  I’ll be half-way through a manuscript and suddenly get a GREAT idea that I’m dying to work on.
Nova – Least favorite?
Matt – Scenes that don’t fit.  Sometimes you write a chapter, then look at it in the grand scheme of things to realize that it just doesn’t fit in with the rest of the story, and have to figure out a completely different way to get the same point across.
Now for the silly questions! Hang on to your hat! :)
Nova – Do you listen to music while writing? If so, what’s on your playlist!?
Matt – This isn’t silly at all!  Music plays a big role in setting and holding the mood of a scene.  I listen to a lot of industrial/electronica.  Towers was mostly soundtracked by The Luna Sequence with some Celldweller thrown in for the heavier scenes.
Nova – Do you have a guilty pleasure?
Matt – A few.  I’m a big fan of the Kairosoft games like Game Dev Story and Venture Town.  They’re like cutesy little sim games.
Nova – What is your favorite word?
Matt – “Stratosphere” – no idea why, just like the way it sounds.
Nova – What is your least favorite word?
Matt – “Wakeup.”  Most evil word in any language.
Nova – Do you talk to your characters?
Matt – No?  They have a distinctive voice in my head, but we don’t discuss politics over coffee or anything.
Nova – What sound do you love?
Matt – Music boxes.  The old classic ones with the bumps on the spindle running past a comb of metal teeth.  There’s just something timelessly magical about the sounds they create.
Nova – What sound do you hate?
Matt – Whining!  Comes a lot in a house full of girls!
Nova – What’s your favorite time of year?
Matt – Autumn.  Fortunately, I live in Texas.. so we don’t really have winter, just extended autumn.
Nova – Tell us a bit about your girls!
Matt – I think the most interesting thing about my daughters is that, even though they’re still young (my youngest is 1) they each have very distinctive personalities.  And they’re completely different from each other.  My middle daughter was diagnosed with autism about a year ago.  When she turned three this past September, I left my job to be a stay at home dad and work in the evenings so I could take her to and from therapies.  It’s amazing the amount of progress she’s made in such a short time.  She went from being completely non-verbal to repeating phrases like ‘apple sauce’ and ‘upside down’.  It sounds like such a little thing, but it means the world to us.  But getting to stay home all day with my girls is wonderful.  It was a really hard adjustment at first, having been used to getting up and going to work every morning, but once you work out some priorities, there’s no place I’d rather be.
Nova – What’s your favorite thing about being a dad?
Matt – Meeting my children.  I always hear people say, “Enjoy them while they’re young,” but I look forward to knowing my girls at every age of their life.
Thank you so much for taking the time to indulge my curiosity!
Anytime!  I had a great time with it and hope your husband enjoys reading it as much as I enjoyed writing it.  And thanks again for having me!

About Matthew:

Husband to a wonderful woman who challenges me and pushes me in all the best ways… and makes me do laundry. Father to three incredible girls (I am the masculine minority) who make a hero out of me.
I write because it’s my passion. The rest of my heart belongs to my family.

Original interview and the guilty pleasures blog of My Seryniti is here:
Congrats, Matthew Bryant! Thanks for stopping by and sharing this great interview.

Monday, December 10, 2012

Deceiving the Reader is Bad

Putting on my reader scarf for this post. Just forewarning.
Deceiving a reader is good in suspense or mystery novels. Not with reprints.
I ran across a few books last month that looked intriguing. Beautiful covers (yep, I fell for it), an author I hadn't read before and I was excited when I sat down to read them.
And was immensely disappointed.
Found out it was a republished novel from the author's backlist. And not just from 5 or 6 years ago. From 1989.
If it was a relatable story with vivid characters, it wouldn't have bugged me. But this was clearly an outdated story, with un-relatable characters, completely unrealistic plot and an old writing style.
All the author did was recreate the cover and slap a new copyright on it.
This is deceitful in my opinion. Nowhere on the book or the website did this state it was a reprint. I had to find out on Goodreads afterwards (shame on me for not doing my research before I bought it) that this was a 23-year-old book.
And because I'm that kind of reader and feel deceived, I'm not buying any more of that author's books. And have sworn off that publishing imprint entirely.
I understand an author trying to send out their backlist again... on e-pubs. With proper identification of it as such. But only if it's relevant to this time and not outdated. An old plot or characters =  huge turnoff. It's like picking up a 'contemporary romance' where the hero uses a typewriter or a massive brick-like mobile phone.
Come on. They should have at least revised the manuscript before sending it in. And shame on that editor for letting it get through without a necessary re-haul. And backlist stories shouldn't go into reprints on physical books. At least not series or category romances. Stick to e-pubs.
The deceit feels worse since I bought a physical book, one that takes up space on a real shelf. (Not mine- I'll toss this sucker away). The author lost a reader for anything they do in the future because of this sneaky trick. Was it worth it?
Well, chalk this up to a lesson learned on my part. Be more careful to research before I buy. And it's a practice I won't participate in if I'm ever published.
Follow Susie on her blog at
Follow her on @susieQwriter or Facebook

Friday, December 7, 2012

Battle of the Book Formats

Oh, how the battle thickens… it’s no longer a question between paperback orbookbattlehardback. It’s even evolved past physical book or e-book. Oh no, my friends. It’s become so much more complicated.
You can’t just choose ‘e-book’ anymore. Now you must choose which format of technology to read these precious stories.
Mobile (iPhone or Android)

The choices expand every month. Forty years ago, you still had options of which material you wanted your book printed on, but imagine…  what if not just paper, but perhaps cotton, leather, wood, chocolate (oh yes!), or stone (try balancingthat on your head).
battling_booksAnd the battle continues, with additional, equal amounts of confusion and choices.
Which do you prefer: physical books or e-books?
If you prefer physical, the main choices are hardback or paperback.
If you prefer e-book, which format do you use most?
Personally, I’m still 70% physical books. I love the feel of the paper in my hands, turning the pages between my fingers, and more importantly the smell. There’s not many things in the world better than that new book smell.
The remaining 30% I go back and forth between iPad and my iPhone. Yes, I started reading books on my phone. A concept so foreign to me only 6 months ago. I have evolved (a bit), just as publishing is still evolving.
Just in time for me to purchase my first pair of reading glasses, which I’m sure isbaby_w-glassesjust around the corner for me.

Susie Sheehey is president of GFW Writers. She is a full-time writer and has two completed novels of romantic suspense which she is shopping around.Her leadership reflects her previous background  in Medical Product Distribution. She lives in Keller, Texas with her husband and 4 year old son.

Thursday, December 6, 2012


Do you believe in Santa Claus? Every year there's someone  talking about the subject  of whether or not there is a Santa. The following is a dialogue on the subject recorded by JA Bennett early in the morning before breakfast. As a writer I appreciate how this dialogue moves the story. Welcome back JA Bennett.

"Oh, Erinn. Don't forget, we have to mail our letters today."

"Did you finish yours already? I'm not done. Besides, it doesn't really matter."

"What do you mean?"

"The mailman won't really deliver it. He prolly just puts `em in the paper recycle bin."

"Why would he do that for? Look, I wrote it on the envelope. To Santa Claus, The North Pole. That's the address. He has to deliver it."

"Where would he take it to? Santa doesn't really live at the North Pole Aidan. Only polar bears live there."

"Yes he does. I saw it on a movie."

"Movies are just pretend. They aren't really real. Besides, there's no such thing as Santa."

"What? What are you talking about?"

"Parents just say that to trick their kids."

"What? That's not true. There is too such a thing as Santa. He's a real person. He brings the presents on Christmas."

"Aidan, that's just what parents tell little kids. Santa is not really real. Mom and Dad and Grandma buy our presents and put them under the tree while we are sleeping."

"Nuh uh. How do you know that? Did you see them do that?"

"Well no. But everyone knows that's how it works."

"That's not true. Santa brings the presents."

"Nuh uh. Besides, it doesn't even make sense. How could Santa deliver all those presents in one night?"

"He has magic reindeers. And plus, he doesn't have to bring presents to the Indians or animals."

"What? Why wouldn't the Indians get presents? That doesn't make any sense."

"Does too. Indians aren't kids that's why. Santa only brings presents to kids."

"That doesn't make any sense. Indians can have kids too."

"Nuh uh. Kids can't use real bows and arrows, so kids can't really be Indians."

"Well I guess that's true. But still, there's no such thing as Santa."

"Is too."

"Aidan, how could Santa even live in the North Pole? Its really cold and icy there and there's no grocery stores. How would he eat?"

"He has food delivered. Plus he eats a lot of cookies and milk. Santa likes cookies and milk."

"No, the parents eat the cookies and milk to trick the kids and make them THINK that Santa did it."

"Nuh uh, Santa eats it with his elves."

"Besides, how could he live with all those elves? How would he take a shower or go to the bathroom in all that snow?"

"The polar bears eat it."

"Eat it? The polar bears eat the poop?
"You said `polar bears eat poop!'"

"Nuh uh! That's what you said!"

"Poop! Polar bear poop!"

"You're so weird. Mom! Aidan's being gross."

"Look. I asked for a Donald Duck toy. See, I drew a picture for Santa so he won't get confused."

"There's no such thing as Santa. Mom's gonna buy that for you."

"Nuh uh. Santa's gonna bring it to me. I've been super good. I don't think he's going to bring you anything though, sorry Erinn."

"Hey! Besides, Mom does all the Christmas stuff, not Santa. Mom will buy me a present.

"Nuh uh."

"Mom, you do all the Christmas stuff, like buying the presents and wrapping them, right?

"Eat your breakfast, it's almost time to go to school."

"But you do, don't you Mom? You do all the Christmas stuff, right?"

"What? Are you saying I look like an old man with a white beard?"

"No! That's not what I mean. Moooommm!"

"Told ya."

JA studies creative writing at UNT and is a full time mom of four. After spending 15 years in the Human Resources field she realized that life was too short to ignore what she'd always wanted to do, so after finishing school for the second time around she hopes to teach English as well as pursue a home for her own stories and novels. She enjoys spending time with her family, reading and, of course, writing.
J.A. writes contemporary women's fiction. She contributed Garage Sale Find to our blog earlier in the year. Visit her blog:

Monday, December 3, 2012

Are Holidays As Setting A Good Plot Element?

By Ruby Johnson
There are novels everywhere this time of year that use the weather and the holidays as a setting.
Many authors use travel to unique cities, going home, family, old romances revived,secret babies, mysteries, poor kids, special religious groups,Christmas tree lots, parades as part of their stories. Three books below are descriptions of what I'm talking about.

Christmas at Tiffany's by Karen Swan
I know they say you shouldn’t judge a book by its cover but the moment I saw this cover, with the image of that lone girl walking through snow, I wanted to discover the story behind the cover.
CHRISTMAS AT TIFFANY'SThis is the story of protagonist Cassie who suddenly finds herself on a plane to New York contemplating starting her whole life over again. Her friends try to help Cassie discover exactly who she is by inviting her to live with each one of them in New York, Paris and finally, London. Cassie adjusts to her new life, and the reader experiences New York City, Paris and London through her eyes. The sights, the smells and the tiny details added into the description of the city puts you in Central Park with Cassie as she suffers through the morning jog from hell! Each city in the book is described so well that it’s impossible not to feel like you are there.
The author succeeds in keeping us hooked as we travel to each friend’s city and the settings truly add to the story of a wounded woman trying to find herself.

Another book which who uses the holiday to great advantage is Family Christmas in Riverbend by Shirley Jump. In the story the Christmas tree lot is an element in the plot of the story. Olivia Perkins moves herself and new baby to live in Riverbend, Indiana, a town she fell in love with the previous year. What she isn't anticipating is to run into, Edward, her former lover and the father of her daughter. Edward left Livia because he felt he couldn't give her the family and marriage she wanted. Things change when he discovers that he can work through his doubts, but would Livia want him after all the hurt he has caused her?

And finally an old favorite A Christmas Carol by Charles Dickens.Written in a six-week period in October and November of 1843, the novel was the first of five short Christmas books published by Charles Dickens. Obviously, it was the most successful novel in the series. In fact, he was so certain that people would like his story that he refused to sell the rights to his publisher and instead paid to publish it himself. His instincts proved correct, and soon after its publication, all of the copies were sold. A Christmas Carol is set in a poor section of London, England, during the Industrial Revolution (1800s). The book takes place mainly in Scrooge's business, Scrooge's house, and Bob Cratchit's house.

What settings in books do you remember? Do you think setting is as important as characters ?
Ruby Johnson is blog coordinator and current treasurer for Greater Fort Worth Writers.She is a member of several writers organizations and chapters of RWA . She got the writing bug in high school when she won an award from the National Teachers of English, and transfered that love through college into her professional life as a certified registered nurse anesthetist practitioner. She has won short story contests, published in the AANA Journal and has contributed to Hospital Topics and a book on Hospital Management. She currently writes medical suspense.

Friend her on P Johnson
Follow her on

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