Going Against Type with Author Sharon Black


Going Against Type
Awhile back I blogged before that no man (or writer) is an island and how important it is to support and promote the work of our fellow authors.  There’s no time to worry about there being enough readers to go around or that the genre in which you write is saturated with thick competition. Get over that!  Not only are you doing yourself a disservice, but you’re forgetting one key point–readers CAN have several “favorite” authors.  ( I know I do!)

Since I’m all about spreading the word,  it’s with great pleasure that I tell you about author Sharon Black’s debut novel, ” Going Against Type,” a romantic comedy released as an e-book by Tirgearr Publishing.

Ms. Black shares that “Going Against Type,” “is set against the backdrop of Dublin newspapers. It’s the story of two rival columnists, –one a sports journalist, the other a fashion writer who write anonymous columns for their newspapers – and fall in love without realizing they are bitter enemies in print.”

IGoing Against Type by Sharon Black - 200 was very surprised to see that her hero was the fashion writer. It puts a different, yet nice spin on things! Lending to the book’s authenticity, is Ms. Black’s background in journalism and her work with The Evening Herald and The Irish Examiner.

Another thing that caught my eye about the novel is that it’s set in Dublin.  Yes! There’s something about a sweet Irish romance that just pulls me in.  As a matter of fact, one of my favorite movies is Leap Year , a romantic comedy with Amy Adams, which is also set in Dublin. I loved the countryside scenery, the people and of course the romance.  “Going Against Type” gives me that same vibe and I so look forward to diving in!

For a sneak peek of author Sharon Black’s debut novel, visit http://fb.me/786XHTMBT
tirpub.com/gatype

Or show some love by tweeting Sharon #GoingAgainstType@authorsharonb

Happy reading!

 

 

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Nurture the seeds of your story

Ideas for stories come to me at the oddest times and from the oddest places, which is why I carry a digital tape recorder.  I hate the sound of my voice, but using the recorder helps me remember a line of dialogue, plot out a key point or work through a scene that makes me want to pull out my hair.

In the middle of the night, I often awake to the sounds of my character’s voices reminding me to take notice of them and their wants, needs or dire circumstances. Such rudeness require that I leave a notebook on my night stand to jot down their issues–even at 3 a.m!

IMG_4364One of the techniques I find helpful is story-boarding my books. (A nice tip I picked up at one of my NJRW conferences.) My office is filled with post it notes. Starting from the first chapter and each scene, I outline the events as they take place in chronological order. I’m a plotter, so this extra step in outlining helps a great deal.

I also love a change in scenery.  Leaving the confines of my office and going to Starbucks or Barnes and Noble gets the creative juices flowing.  But for heavy duty getaway writing, I’m headed for a place filled with nature, water and quiet.

Lake George

A few years ago, I took a 7-hour drive (which is a big deal because I hate driving!)  to the Adirondacks, near Lake George, NY. I rented a cabin for the weekend, complete with a fireplace and kitchenette. With all the essentials a writer needs (or I need): wine, chocolate and gummy bears, I dove into my WIP.

During the early morning, I took walks along the grounds, taking pictures of the sunrise and breathing in the December atmosphere that had—the night before—delivered a dusting of snow.

I felt alive and creative.

If you ever feel the need to break free of your day-to-day writing confines, plan a trip. A short getaway will often do the trick. Not only are you getting away, but you’re setting your muse free to explore things that might otherwise stay silent in your everyday writing space.

How would Scarlett O’Hara pitch her novel?

The New Jersey Romance Writers Conference is fast approaching and I’m very excited. Although I’m not pitching a book this year, I hope to do so next year. In every one of my pitches so far, I’ve been fortunate enough to get a request for a partial or full manuscript. But lately, I’ve been wondering about different approaches, and how others make their pitch.

Since I’m a movie nut, I even wondered how some of the most memorable characters in film might have pitched their work. The first character that came to mind is none other than Scarlett O’Hara from “Gone With the Wind” brilliantly played by Vivien Leigh.

How would Scarlett O’Hara pitch her novel?

The editor averted his eyes from the loosely tied manuscript to the green-clad woman sitting across from him. He watched the velvet purse of the same hue–the one she swung back and forth like a pendulum–collect streams of dust that now covered the sparse, makeshift office.

“Miss O’Hara, no one in any of the 11 confederate states would publish this rubbish,” the editor said, his tone stern, yet somehow appeasing. He seemed uncomfortable sitting behind a desk, and it appeared to Scarlett that he’d be more suitable on horseback, or escorting her to the latest ball. She wondered how he taken on this position.

“Fiddle Dee Dee, Rhett Butler. I had Mammy …I mean I spent all day making sure my story had a hook. I even missed Ashley’s barbecue at Twin Oaks to revise it and now that ole mealy mouth Mellie …”

Butler drew a long puff from his cigar and then placed it in the crystal ashtray in front of him. Squinting through the opaque swirls of burnt cedar, he watched the aspiring writer’s reaction with more than a casual interest. “From what I hear, Miss Mellie is a very talented writer.”

Scarlett flung herself against the high back chair, sending a mass of fringe twisting about like a pile of unruly worms. The salon’s curtains used to fashion the gown didn’t leave much for modesty, and her breasts rose and fell with each pout, giving an unapologetic editor a full, unwavering view.

“You’re a beast, Rhett Butler,” she declared, snatching the bodice of her gown together, “And a cad, which is why you simply must publish my memoirs. You’ve insulted my womanly sensibilities. I am a better writer than Mellie. I’ve led a full life with juicy details that could make lots of money.”

“Scarlett, we’re in the middle of a war. People aren’t spending money to read. They’re trying to survive. Besides, your characters are one-dimensional. There isn’t enough conflict. Your heroine has had too easy a life. She sounds like a flirt, a trollop.” His bluish-grey eyes darkened with a mischievous twinkle. “She sounds like you.”

Scarlett stood and then sashayed toward the open window, the slight rustle of her worn petticoat and the boom of distance cannons, fought for the right to be heard. “Why I could be famous and save Tara with all my new wealth. And I wouldn’t have to marry that old man, Frank Kennedy.”

Rhett checked his pocket watch before standing to stretch his well portioned frame. “Scarlett, I’m not in the habit of throwing away money. But if I had an investment, a promise of sort, I’d see what I can do.”


“Keep your proposal and your offer, Rhett Butler. They matter nothing to me. I’ll find another editor or agent. There are plenty you know.”

Then she turned from the window, her eyes gleaming with determination. “Why …why I’ll stay on the other side of Atlanta where it’s still just humming with literary activity. I’ll stay at my Aunt Piddypat’s. She’s knows everyone in Atlanta society and can certainly find one of her editor friends to publish my book.”If that Beecher-Stowe woman can do it, so can I.”

Okay, so if you plan to pitch your book to an agent or editor, I don’t recommend following Scarlett’s approach. The guidelines in the article, “How to Pitch Your Book at a Conference,” will be safer and smarter. The list below gives you a quick overview. The article gets into the nitty-gritty and what you need to know.

1. Do Your Homework
2. Prepare a Pitch
3. Be Professional
4. Break the Ice
5. Conduct Your Own Interview
6. Get a Business Card
7. Make Lemonade from Lemons
8. End the Right Way
9. Pretend You’re From Missouri
10. Breathe

I’d still like to know how Scarlett would have done. 😉

Let the writing begin …

I tried to post from my phone yesterday, but it wouldn’t go through. Pffft. Technology. Love it. But sometimes …(I’ll stop here. That’s another blog.)

Anyway … on to more exciting things.

It’s officially Feb. 1 and that means it’s Nano Writing time for more than 20 members of New Jersey Romance Writers. We’re calling our stint JeRoWriMo. We received our rules/guidelines (how cute are we?) and are ready to roll.

I’m starting during my lunch hour today, and I hope to put a small dent in the 30K due by the end of the month. I’ll try to blog my success (and yes, some slip ups) over the next 29 days. I’ve received so much great information from the last post. Big shout out to all the great people who offered support. You rock!

I’m so excited. My keyboard is clean, my monitor tidy and I have a week’s supply of Gummy Bears! (I’ll replenish on Saturday)

Woohoo …let the writing begin!