Wednesday, August 31, 2016

Character Introduction: Allistasia Grace Tragedy

"Alli! Sweetheart, you're going to be late for school! The bus will be here in ten minutes," Makumae called to me while I finished applying my makeup in my bathroom mirror. She probably thinks I'm still sleeping. I thought as I stood up placing my mascara back in my makeup bag that hung on the back of the door. I looked perfect now.
I swept my long brown curls over my shoulders and blew a kiss to my mirror. It was the first day of my senior year at Mythical and Preternatural Creatures High and it would be the best year ever. I walked out of my room to see that my little sister Kalista was sitting on the leather chaise lounge with her tablet in her hand taking her pre-college courses before she left for the human high school. 
Her thick hip-length dark chocolate brown hair was braided over one shoulder and she was twirling it in her fingers as her red eyes read the page. She was petite and had gorgeous high cheekbones highlighted a fairy like face that was perfect and anyone would be jealous of her features.
She spent way too much time in her books or taking courses online. Today was her first day of her sophomore year at the human high school and I wasn't sure how she did it or why she was skipping two grades. She was wasting opportunities to make friends and become popular, but she'd never wanted that anyway.
"Good Morning, Kali," I greeted her when she finally picked her head up and she gave a small wave before she looked back down. She shut the tablet off and walked up to hug me, which she usually did every day but the last few days she'd been distant.
"Morning Alli. Does Makumae know that Mishael is picking you up? She seems to think you're taking the bus," Kali asked her red eyes looking a bit hesitant. I looked down into them and wondered what she was thinking about. Mishael was picking me up in five minutes, but I didn't remember telling Kali.
"Kalista, what's going on? How did you know that?" I asked before she shrugged. Her powers were obviously starting to show again and I hoped the Council wouldn't try another ritual on her because she was always distant afterward, not to mention the scars that those accursed rituals left behind.
"Never mind that, go get breakfast before Makumae has a fit," she reminded me as our younger sister Nicolette, who was barely two, came running up to us holding two lunch bags with our names on them.
"Thank you, Nicky," Kalista acknowledged and handed me my bag over her shoulder. She picked up our little red-headed sister and I kissed her forehead.
"You be good for Makumae today. Kali, tell Makumae I went out to wait for the bus. Don't tell her anything else," I told her as I ran down the stairs and outside. I was meeting Mishael at the end of the driveway and he’d hate if I was late.
I grabbed my skateboard as I walked out the door and set it down at the bottom of the stairs. I skateboarded to the end of the driveway and walked off it popping it up so I could grab it as Mishael opened the door of his 1965 candy apple red Mustang Convertible that his parents had refurbished for him.
"You're not usually late. Did your mom catch you? Or did Kali?" He asked as I climbed in setting my bag and skateboard on the back seat. I buckled my seatbelt and nodded before I said anything.
"They both did actually. Mom yelled to me that I'd be late and Kali was working on her college classes in the hallway living area when I came out of my room. She asked me if you were picking me up and she should be throwing mom off about right now," I told him. He nodded before pulling into the road and driving toward down town Los Angeles, California.
His brown hair was swept back away from his face so that I could see his green eyes under the mop of hair. He was my betrothed as my parents called him but I preferred the term fiancé. We'd dated since both of us were thirteen and that was five years or a thousand if you were talking about actual years. We'd only been back on Earth for two human years or two rotations of the sun.
"Al you seem tense, don't worry about it. I already asked Justin if I could pick you up and he said it was fine. Did you ask Anna if she knew?" He asked as I shook my head. I was not signing up for that family meeting.
Mom and Dad hardly ever talked anymore, except about work and us kids. It was hard to understand because I shared absolutely everything with Mishael and he did the same with me. Their distance with each other was hard to comprehend.
"They haven't really talked much. Dad's either constantly busy with work, engrossed in his paper, or working on something for the Council…” when he's not beating Mom or Kali. I thought about saying the last bit but left that in my head. When Dad was drunk he beat up anyone that got in his way and I was wise enough to stay well away from him when he was drunk. I wasn't that stupid.
"Al, is there something you want to talk about? You seem distracted. Your first period is with Dr. Dracule so he'll know that somethings up," Mishael reminded me as I grinned. Doctor Lyon Dracule was my favorite teacher. He taught history. He was also sort of friends with Dad. As of recently, they'd grown apart and I was sure that it was due to Dad hurting Kalista or some sort of falling out. I couldn’t be absolutely sure but they’d been drinking buddies until the last guy party Dad had at the house a few months back.
"Alli, you've zoned out again. What's wrong? Is this about me not being at school with you anymore?" He asked as I shook my head. Mishael had graduated last year and he was going to drop me off at school before heading to the Agency for work. I was glad that he'd gotten the job he wanted at the Preternatural and Mythical Creatures Agency, but some part of me wished he hadn't. All of our generation had been groomed for it but I planned on being a fashion designer.
"No, Mish. It's not you. Gods, I swear it's not you. Dad and Mom were fighting again last night when I snuck back in. They didn't think anyone was awake and I wasn't going to draw attention to myself by breaking them up. I didn't get to see mom this morning so I'm not sure if it ended peacefully or in a knock down drag out fight," I admitted letting it all spill out. He stopped the car a block from the school and parked so that he could turn to me. His green eyes were dark and I wanted to take my words back. Mishael was the only one I was able to talk to about things like this or about what went on inside the house in general.
"Allistasia, is Justin abusing you?" He bluntly asked and I blinked at him. I was surprised that he was being so forward about it and I couldn't bring myself to lie to him.
"Not as much as he's abused Kalista and Makumae..." I softly whispered and he leaned in closer trying to hear me. He pulled back and looked up into my eyes. He hadn’t heard me and the lump in my throat grew, restricting my words.
"Can you say that again? A bit louder, this time, so us humanoids can hear you," he joked and I swallowed the lump in my throat, tears blurring my eyes. I didn't want to deal with this today. I wanted to push it aside and leave it at home. This wasn't how I wanted to start senior year.
"Yes… Dammit Mishael. Why are you being so persistent! Packana slapped me once and Kalista was there to heal me. He beat her up on more than one occasion and he abuses Makumae too. There I said it. What more do you want from me?!" I broke down and my tears streamed down my face ruining my makeup. He unbuckled my seatbelt and pulled me into his lap. I was glad his windows were tinted and the top was up because I knew several other kids would have tattled on me for less than this. Personal Displays of Affection or PDA was discouraged on or near school grounds, even if you were betrothed.
"Alli, Mi' Tarah, please don't cry. I'm sorry I asked, but I heard Dad saying something about Anna coming into the Agency looking for Justin with a nasty bruise on her cheek. I had to know if he'd hurt you to Alli. I'm sorry I haven't asked before," he calmed me with his arms around me and I cried into his chest. I was ruining my makeup and his dress shirt, which was the real reason I began to calm down. We both had to get out of this car in a few minutes as if nothing happened and that would be impossible if I didn’t stop crying right now.
"Alli, have you told anyone else? Has Kali told anyone else?" He asked and I shook my head. Kali didn't want to say anything because she knew no one would believe her. They never believed her even if she was telling the truth and it broke my heart that they took Packana’s lying word over hers. Makumae wanted to keep it between them and she didn't even talk about it with Kali or me.
"No, Makumae doesn't want to take care of it and no one would believe Kali even if she had fresh bruises. You know that Mishael," I stated using air quotes. I sat up pulling down his mirror.
 I groaned as I noted the ruined makeup and the thought that I'd have to redo it all. I moved back over into my seat, opened my purse, grabbed a makeup wipe and washed it all off. Mishael put a hand on mine as I pulled my concealer from my purse. He turned my face toward him and his eyes went to the slight discoloration around my right eye.
"He slapped you last night, didn't he? Kalista healed most of it, but I can still see it. Was that the first time he hit you?" he half-asked, half-accused and I pulled away. I didn't want Mishael to get in trouble.
"No, it wasn't last night it was the night before. Yes, it was only this once and it was my fault. He came home after I did and mom had cried herself to sleep upstairs while she waited for him. I waited up to tell him what he was putting her through and he stumbled in around one a.m.," I rambled as I applied concealer and covered my face with foundation. I only had ten minutes before the first bell and I needed to look perfect. I didn't want anyone to notice the slight puffiness to my cheek. I drew my eyeliner on as I continued, "I took one step toward him when he walked through the door and I told him that Makumae cried herself to sleep. I accused him of being out with someone else, because there was a feminine perfume wafting around him."
“Alli…”
“I’m not finished,” I interrupted his argument and he sat back watching me apply eyeshadow. “When I said that he could keep his secrets he slapped me. Kalista ran down the stairs and took me into her arms. She began healing me as she glared at him and her aura felt hot like fire,” I stated as I dragged the mascara wand through my eyelashes before I turned to him again. He sat there biting his tongue because he knew that wasn’t the end of the story. I took a deep breath as I slipped the makeup bag back into my purse and continued, “Mish, don’t get involved. It’s a family matter and I don’t want you to get hurt when Dad finds out that I told you.”
“Allistasia, I can’t sit on the sidelines and do nothing when he’s hurt you. You are my fiancé, my future wife and I’m going to tell Ramah about this,” Mishael vowed as I turned to him and shook my head. There were a thousand ways that could go wrong and Dad would beat the shit out of him if he found out.
“No, Mish you can’t tell him. It’ll be fine ok. I have to go. Promise me you won’t tell him,” I begged as I turned to him and saw the busses pulling into the school parking lot. He looked into my eyes and shook his head.
“I don’t make promises I can’t keep Al. You know that. I can promise that I won’t tell anyone today, but if someone asks me, I’m not going to lie.” 

Saturday, August 27, 2016

What Writers Do: The Writing Process

(First off, Look around, my blog now has a complete makeover for the Fall season! Thank you to my writer friend, AJ Sims for making my banner and being patient with me while I decided just how I wanted it.) 

Saturday has come again and it's going to be an interesting one, but let's get started. What Writers Do is all about The Writing Process. Each writer has one and some may not realize it or be able to figure it out. Each Process is different and if you don't know what I'm talking about keep reading.

Ever been in a place in your life when you feel like you're a fake? I feel that a lot and it's because I'm not writing like I should be, but when I sit down and put my Process into practice I remember that yes, I am a writer.

A Writing Process is what happens when a writer sits down to write. Some writers have a thought out system while others just sit down and let the creative juices flow. I'll give you two examples of the Writing Process.

Writer (A) has decided to write a book. First: they decided what genre it will be. Second: they sit down and carefully plan out each main character. They decided what they'll look like, what their pet peeves, fears, hobbies, and habits will be. Third: They plan the plot of the book and outline it to perfection. Fourth: they sit down and write having their detailed specifics laid out. This type of writer may edit the chapters as they go along. They write a chapter and go back over and edit it the next day before starting the next one. (Writer (A) is not me).

Writer (B) has an idea for a book. They know what the setting, genre, and plot of the book, but they don't really have an outline. They sit down and write letting the creative juices flow. It's like this writer is listening and watching the story unfold while simultaneously trying to write it all down for the reader to enjoy at a later date. They try to slip in details of who their characters are and what they're like, sometimes it can get lost in translation. This is what their editing stage is about. They read back through the story adding depth, details, and more emotion than the first time around. They may sit down during the editing stage and make lists of their characters and what they are like now that they have all the details. (Writer (B) is me).

Those are just two types of writing processes and two extremes. You could do some of both or none of either one. Each writer has their own process. Trying to find that process is a minefield of trials and errors, but you eventually figure out what works best for you and implement that process to help you crank out books like a pro.

That's all for today. I hope that was insightful and encouraging. Thank you for reading this week's edition of What Writers Do. I have created a couple new pages that contain the links for each of the Writing Series, so if you're looking for a specific one take a look at the top of the page. Now that you've finished reading, go be Awesome.

-Jennifer Williams-

Friday, August 19, 2016

What Writers Do: Self Promotion

It's another Saturday and that means we have another installment of what writers do. Today, I'm going to talk about Self Promotion. You may find this a strange topic but all writers have to do this at some point. Whether you're promoting your work through a vlog, Facebook page, website, blog, or to an agent or publishing house, everyone has to have some degree of self promotion.

Self promotion is a tool to get your name out there and have your voice be heard. Lately, I've been lacking in the self promotion aspect of writing so I'm going to be writing to myself as well. Self promotion is putting your work or you brand name out there for the public to see. I personally use my blog and Facebook page to get the word about my books out there but I know a few self-published authors who also use Youtube vlogs and videos to spread the knowledge of their books around. I think that's a very good way to do it, if you're not camera shy or stumble over your words like I do.

It's hard for me to sit here and type this when thinking about putting my voice and face out there genuinely terrifies me. I'm going to my first Writing Conference in October and even that scares me. Going to a writing conference isn't really scary, but the thought that someone will ask about my books does. Lets be honest, I know that my mind will go utterly blank, I'll trip over my words, and lose my eloquence. I may also suffer from a stress induced headache (concussions are no fun). Anyhow, I'm going to do it. I'm going to a writing conference and taking note cards with me to help myself remember the key things.

I've digressed. Back to the topic. Self promotion is difficult when you're not sure what you're doing or even if you're being heard and understood correctly. My biggest fear is being misunderstood and that's a huge deal because no matter how good your writing may be everyone interprets things differently. Once you put yourself out there and let others see what you're doing, you can't take it back. You can't reconsider and they don't think the exact same way you do, which means that things will get lost in translation.

Anyhow, right now, I'm doing research on finding an agent or publishing company that will consider me and that means more self promotion, but it also means taking a deeper look into my own work. I need to shove my book into a genre box, figure out my target audience, and generally figure out why I am writing this series. All of that is hard to do and is a big part of self promotion. You can't really promote something that you yourself don't understand.

Well, I've talked about the gist of self promotion enough for this blog. I may talk about my experience with it later, but for the time being, I'm going to let you get back to your day. Thank you for reading and don't forget to take a look at my Character Introduction Series that I write every other Wednesday. The link to the newest one is right here or you can click it on the right side of the screen. Also, tell me what you think of my new blog set up in the comments either on the blog or on facebook. Now get out there and Go be awesome.

Wednesday, August 17, 2016

Character Introduction: Michael Spiriter

**Warning** This one is longer than the usual ones, but I had to finish the scene. I hope y'all don't mind. 
"Michael, what are you doing here still? It's almost one o'clock in the morning and we were about to lock up for the night when we saw the light on," The tenor voice of the graying Calhan Cloud asked as he opened his godson's office door. Michaels dark brown carefully styled hair bounced as his head popped up from the book he was reading. He looked at the clock on the wall and sighed. 
"I'm on to something and I need to finish it before I leave. Go ahead and lock me in for the night. I'll be fine," Michael explained but Calhan gave him a knowing glare. Michael closed the book and set it back on the shelf making sure it was in proper order before he stood up and stretched. 
"You've been here for three days straight Mike. You can't expect me to believe that you've gotten any sleep," Calhan countered as his son, Mishael walked up behind him. Mishael and Michael had been friends since infancy and if anyone could convince Michael to go home for the night it was his best friend. Calhan looked back at his son who push his mop of straight mud brown hair behind his ears.
"Michael, you can't expect to hunt down the kidnapper without sleep. I know you're worried about Kalista, but in order to do that without the proper amount of sleep," Mishael reasoned with him, but Michael only shook his head again. Michael started to answer while gesturing to an anti-gravity chair and couch near the far wall, but Mishael continued, "Taking a nap on the couch doesn't count as proper sleep. You have to take care of yourself. What would Kal think when you rescue her looking like a caveman with bloodshot eyes and beard all scraggly? She's going to kick and scream that you aren't Michael. Now come on, you need to go home for at least eight hours."
Michael took a deep breath and then laughed at the mental picture. Kalista was strong and could possibly kick his butt or at least pull out his beard. He rubbed at the scruff that was starting to grow back since he shaved in the bathroom this morning. 
"I shaved it this morning Mish. It's not that bad," Michael countered and Calhan shook his head. He pushed off the doorjamb and straightened his suit. 
"I have to go home. Jerra's going to worry if I'm not home by two. I'll see you at home Mish. Knock him on the head and drag him out if you have to," Calhan whispered to his son before he left. Mishael looked at Michael and groaned. 
"Come on Mike. You need a change of scenery and we have to meet Alli at the club. I'll even buy you some food.  If you don't come willingly, I'll knock you out and shove you in the trunk of my car," Mishael threatened and Michael's stomach growled in response. Michael grabbed his suit coat from the hook on the wall and slipped it on over his pressed white shirt that was wrinkled from three days of constant wear.
"That's it, bump on a log. We're going clubbing, I know you've wanted to see the club and have a look around yourself, knows your chance," Mishael explained his hidden motive as they both walked out onto the hallway that was more like a balcony that looked out over the Lobby. Michael locked his office before they walked toward the back exit that had a fingerprinted security system. 
"You always have hidden motives behind everything," Michael jeered at his friend. Mishael nodded holding his head high and then barked a laugh. 
"Well, I know you and getting you out of this office was going to take skill, tact, and a lead," Mishael concluded with a smirk as he put his wrapped his hand around the door handle, being careful to set his thumb on the scanner correctly. It beeped and opened for them without delay. As they descended the metal staircase Michael continued, "Why so you want to comb over the scene for anyhow? The team said that there was no evidence to find. It's been four days, any evidence would be tampered with by now." 
"I need to find her cell phone. She was talking to me when she walked outside, but no one found it. I don't understand how they could miss it and when I tried to track it from the plane on the way back from Ireland, her phone was off," Michael informed him. Mishael pulled a set of keys from his pocket as they walked to the only car left in the Peking lot. Mishael unlocked the car and looked at the shadow covering Michael's usually bright eyes. His eyes looked haunted now and darker than usual, which was surprising since one of them was an ebony black and the other a dark emerald green, but tonight it almost matched the black one. 
"Mike, everyone's out there looking for her. The LAPD have her picture and Justin's going undercover to find her. If you were the last one to call, what could her cell phone tell you?" Mishael asked but Michael didn't answer right away. They opened the doors and climbed in while Michael brooded over it. 
"Kalista never goes anywhere without her phone Mish, we both know that. She said something about checking a text before she hung up. I want to know what the text said and without a court order I can't subpoena her phone records," Michael explained to Mishael who knew that better than Michael himself. Kalista constantly had her phone and getting the court order would be harder for Michael since he was her fiancé. Any judge would have him off the case because it was personal. 
The truth was that it would be personal for most everyone at the agency. They all knew Kalista and she frequently visited the Agency to talk with Michael, visit with Stella or grab a case file for her Mother, Anna. She talked with everyone she passed and knew some aspect of their personal life. 
"Yeah, I know. Did she say who the text was from?' Mishael asked, switching Michael's thoughts into the right gear. Michael closed his eyes and leaned back as Mishael drove, trying to job his memory, but nothing from that night stood out to him.
"No, she didn't. I tried to call her back but it only continued to ring. I probably wore down its battery," Michael explained when he'd thought about each part of their conversation. "There was a metallic bang and she nervously told me that she had a text message that she needed to read and she was headed back inside," he expounded further trying to keep a level head, but the more he thought about it the more his heart ached. Mishael parked the car out front of the Lunar Escape and both of them stepped out of the car. 
"This isn't their usual club of choice. Did Alli say why she picked here for her birthday?" Michael asked and Mishael shot him a sideways glance as if that was a foreign concept to him. "Zeldya said that it was Allistasia's choice. Kalista wouldn't have been with them had it not been Allistasia's birthday," Micahel informed his friend who barely shrugged in response.
"Why don't you ask her yourself? She knew you were coming along and she wants to help as much as she can. She feels guilty so don't you dare put on that cold interrogator facade," Mishael warned him and Michael nodded. Allistasia had been absolutely devastated and locked herself in her room for two days before Mishael coaxed her out but she refused to talk to anyone about what happened until tonight.
The music was thumping loudly and they spotted Allistasia sitting at a high table in the far corner near the back door. She slid off the chair, adjusted her short bodycon dress, before she threw her long chestnut curls over her shoulders, and gestured for them to walk outside. They followed her and when the heavy metal door was closed again the sound of the club disappeared as if the night itself had swallowed it. 
"We were sitting at that same table on Saturday night. She said something about you calling her and wanted someone to go with her, but I was on the dance floor with Lottie and Claire was sitting with the drinks, Freedom and Zeldya were in the bathroom cleaning the rum that Bakura spilled on Zee,” She jumped headlong into the story without even saying hello to them. Michael’s eyes wandered over the alley noticing the metal dumpster ten feet from the door. “She walked outside alone because Claire refused to come outside with her and she didn’t want to miss your call. She’d been waiting for your call all night and she was constantly texting someone that night. I’m not sure who, though,” she rambled watching Michael walk over to the dumpster. Mishael followed his gaze and realized he was onto something.
""Mike, what do you see?” Mishael inquired following Michael’s footsteps. Michael walked around the dumpster and looked at the ground. There was a pool of dried blood on the pavement that had been smeared.
“That’s her blood, I can smell it still,” Michael explained to both of them. Allistasia scrunched her nose and Mishael blinked at him.
“Okay, Wolfey, why is it smeared?” Mish asked as Michael walked back around the dumpster and pointed to the corner closest to the door. “They moved the dumpster. Cleaver kidnappers,” he added and Alli punched him in the shoulder. Michael started to push the dumpster back into its proper place and Mishael quickly helped him. When the dumpster was lined up with the pool of blood Michael turned around and saw Kalista’s phone up against the wall. He pulled an evidence bag from his pocket and carefully picked it up.
“I was right, it’s dead and it’s here, which means I need to get it back to the Agency,” Michael started down the alley but Alli grabbed his arm. He looked back into her eyes and she shook her head.
“Come inside and get something to eat then you can go back to work,” she maternally offered and the pleading look on her face convinced him. He nodded and they all walked back inside to eat.


Saturday, August 13, 2016

What Writers Do: Habits

This week is installment number thirteen of What Writers Do, but also my fortieth blog post. That's so mind boggling. This week we're going to talk about Habits writers, especially newbies, should have. Habits are a big part of writing. There are good and bad habits. Habits either help or hinder your life and therefore your writing. Forming good habits can take time but they are well worth it.

One habit that every successful writer needs to have is to set (and complete) deadlines for yourself. It could be sitting down to write for ten minutes, maybe five-hundred words, or just writing one sentence. It doesn't have to be an extravagant goal. I usually push myself to write one page or five hundred words a day but, when I start a scene and really dive into character, I usually end up writing more than that. The deadline needs to be achievable and you need to push yourself to complete it. 

The second habit, have a daily or weekly routine. I struggle with this. The only things in my life that are a constant routine are going to church, feeding my dog, going to work, my blog and going grocery shopping. Some people may criticize me for this but I don't have a set sleep schedule. I go to sleep when I am tired enough to sleep. If I'm not drop dead tired, then I will not be able to sleep. It's that simple. I digress.

The third habit, take a notebook, or whatever you write with, along wherever you go. If you have a free minute and nothing is required of you, write. Simple as that. If you don't think you have time, then think about the times you've sat in a waiting room from ten minutes to an hour waiting for someone. 

Habit number four, keep yourself accountable to the deadlines you set.  This should have been number two, but I'm sticking it in here. Tell someone close to you what your goal is and ask them to keep you accountable. Have them contact you daily or weekly to ask if you achieved your writing deadlines this week. I have yet to do this but I'm going to start this habit this week. 

I think that's enough habits for one blog. Let me know what you think about these habits and what your writing habits are. With that, I'll let you go be awesome. 

-Jennifer Williams 


Saturday, August 6, 2016

What Writers Do For Their Stories: Writing II

Saturday comes way too fast but here it is the middle of the weekend and another What Writers Do blog. This is the Twelfth blog like this and I decided to revisit a topic. Writing is our topic of the day.
Writers write, it's our job description but what it doesn't say is that writing isn't easy. Yeah, it's words on a page placed in the right order and paired with the right punctuation but it isn't easy by any means. Each of us (writers) have a scene or idea in our head and we have to put it into words that you (the reader) will understand. This may sound easy but let me give you an example of how hard it is. 

A writer may say, "the girl had beautiful brown eyes that seemed to sparkle with life." When the words brown eyes were written the author was thinking of a specific shade of brown, but the reader may think of a different shade. The writer may have been seeing warm Amber brown eyes and the reader may think cold dark mud brown eyes. Without writing that specific detail some of the character is lost. 

That's what I mean when I say, "writing isn't easy." It's not just words on a page. It's thoughts, ideas, characters, and quotes that make up what the writer is and what they are trying to convey to the reader. Writing isn't cut and dry, it's not one word after another. It's calculated, planned, edited, and painstakingly thought out stories, ideas, and characters. 

I know, as a reader and a writer I find myself becoming frustrated with inconsistencies and characters that aren't described or displayed properly. When you tell me about the character, I want a physical description. Are they tall or short? Are they willowy or muscular? Does he have sea foam blue eyes or orange eyes that glow like fire? You catch my drift.  

Writing is hard but I have to remind myself that everyone at one time or another had a horrible first draft. It wasn't polished and perfect right off the bat (and some aren't ever that way). Give your favorite author a break, let them experiment and give them  room to grow and improve. Don't put too much pressure on us, we're only human and we have doubts too. 

Anyway, that's the What Writer's Do  for today. Now, go out there and be Awesome, but first here are some quotes about writing.

“If there's a book that you want to read, but it hasn't been written yet, then you must write it.” - Toni Morrison

 "My advice to writers is to allow yourself a terrible first draft. Put the words down and then make them perfect. Also, writing takes practice, and if you are not writing then you should be reading. There is a lot to learn from other writers, too." Lisa Scottoline 

"One Man's trash is another man's treasure." -Idiom

"If at first you don't succeed, do some editing." - Jennifer J. Williams 

Wednesday, August 3, 2016

Character Introduction: Elyon Renee Tragedy

"Let's sit down and talk for a minute Elly, I want to hear about your life other than what I've seen, which isn't much," Kalista Tragedy, Elyon's mother suggested. Elyon obliged, wanting to know more about her and spend more time with her mother too. Elyon really didn't know what to talk about but just being in her mother's company seemed to lighten her spirit. She'd been rather depressed since the Master was sprung from his cell at the Agency and she had been ever since.

"What did you want to talk about?" Elly asked holding her steaming cup of hot chocolate in her hands. They sat near the large picture window of the cabin they had rented for the weekend and watched the snow fall together. 

"Let's start with an easy one. How'd you meet Zeb? I know he's Atty's son and you grew up with his younger siblings, but he was well out of the house by then. Did you even know who he was when you met?" Kalista asked throwing her long soft black hair over her shoulders and gripping her own cup of hot chocolate with a smidge of coffee in it. Elyon blushed as she thought of when her and her, now husband, had first met. It was awkward to talk about to her cousin's let alone her mother, so she had to summarize. 

"We met at my first job. I had no idea who he was until he went to leave," Elyon politely and unsatisfactorily answered her mother. Kalista, who was just about to take a sip from her mug, playfully lifted one corner of her lips. 

"That's all you're going to tell me? That's a bit disappointing, but I'll let it slide. Your father said that your old job was something you didn't like to talk about, so I'll leave that alone. He was always a ladies man, though he wasn't a horrendous flirt. He simply paid attention and knew what women liked," Her mother quickly smoothed over and Elyon smiled as she rubbed her swollen stomach. Zeb was always thoughtful and she loved that about him.

"Don't worry Mom. I understand what you mean. He's a good man and good men take care of those around them. It's simply a fact," She reassured her. Kalista nodded and took a sip of her mocha. She smiled as the warmth of the liquid spread into her cold bones. "Anyhow, that's not the only thing you wanted to ask, was it?"

"Of course not, what else do you like to do besides sled and enjoy the snow? Are you and Zeb planning on buying a house or continuing to live with Lou?" She asked, hoping for a little more this time. Elyon took a drink and a smile spread across her lips. Now, this was something she could talk about with her. She pushed her long brown curls over her shoulder and looked into her mother's purple eyes.

"I enjoy reading, investigating, and hearing Zeb play his guitar. Lucifer is having a wing added on to the house on the other side of the security section. He doesn't want to have Zeb move and I really don't mind living there. They're all very helpful and not having to do housework and work at the Agency is a pro," Elyon extended her answer, offering more information than was truly necessary. Kalista grinned at this news. She thought that Ramah might have asked Zeb to move to one of the Agencies new locations and she wouldn't be near both of her kids.

"I'm glad that you enjoy it. I enjoy living nearby though we all practically live at the Agency," Kalista joked and they both laughed. Elyon nodded as the baby kicked her side and she rubbed it.

"I'm glad we don't have to move, but I miss my house in Greece. Zeb and I have made a habit of traveling there for the weekend. He really likes that house and he keeps talking about moving there 'when we retire'," Elyon used air quotes and shook her head. She knew that wouldn't be anytime soon. It was a far off dream, but then again Findibar and Guin traveled to Paris and back every night. Teleportation was a very useful power.

"Don't worry Elly. Nothing lasts forever, you will retire when you feel the need for a sabbatical. We never truly retire from everything. We retire for a few years or decades and when we get bored of it, we come back to work," she reminded her daughter who nodded and set her cup down, using her belly as a shelf. Elyon ran a hand through her curls and shrugged.

"I can't even comprehend Maternity leave at this point. I mean, come on, I've really only been working for seven months and I'll have three more months before I have to start that. I don't want to. Who says I can't work until the baby is born? Why can't I work with a baby? I'm sure Cayleigh, Gabrielle, or Pandora would love to watch the baby while I'm at the Agency," Elyon rambled and the baby kicked her cup. Elyon kept it in place with her telekinesis and shook her head.

"I know, kid, you and me both," Elly chuckled and Kalista shook her head.

"Your body will need some time to adjust Elyon. You won't need the month their giving you after it's born, but you will need at least a week. You can work from the house too. Director Drascul isn't going to push you into staying away. She knows how it is. She doesn't want to take the time off either. She won't for her first set, but the second set will require her to be home more," Kalista prophecied about her namesake and Elyon nodded with a small smile. Her cousin Kalista Drascul was more resilient and personable than she was and she had the charisma that Elyon seemed to lack. Elyon was more laid back, calm, and introverted than her cousin, who wasn't exactly an extrovert herself.

"You can't measure yourself by the deeds and powers of others. Elly. Kalista has her destiny and you have yours. You can't expect to measure them next to each other. No two people have the same destiny," Kalista philosophically reminded her. Elyon nodded before the door opened and her father and husband walked in covered in snow. "Welcome back snowmen, let me go get you two some hot chocolate," She offered with a bright smile. Elyon watched her go and sighed. Zeb shed his snowsuit and ski boots before walking over to sit beside his wife, wrapping his arm around her shoulders.