Creating Tension in Fiction and Memoir

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by Michael Mohr

One of the toughest things to do in fiction or creative nonfiction writing, in my professional opinion, is to create strong, believable tension. Without tension—between the protagonist and a villain, the protagonist and him/herself, the protagonist and the environment, etc—you really don’t have much of a story. And it’s unlikely readers will want to follow you far through the jungle of your narrative.

Tension seems to be lumped in usually with plot. I agree that plot and tension often go hand in hand, but I also think that stories which essentially lack, for the most part, any real sense of “A-plus-B-equals-C” type of standard plot (meaning one thing happens which forces another to happen, etc, a sort of “causes and conditions” situation) can still grab readers’ interest and hold our attention for 250, 300 pages…as long as you’ve got real, authentic tension.

 

via Creating Tension in Fiction and Memoir

Novel Boot Camp #2: Creating Deep Realistic Characters

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One of the most common complaints I hear from writers is, “I don’t know how to make my characters seem realistic!” *cue sad music*

These writers have often tried a variety of character development methods. They might have worksheets and spreadsheets and character interviews. They might know their character’s favorite color, most attractive feature, and every moment of their childhood in chronological order. But none of these things create a realistic character.

You might be gasping in terror because you are certain that your character development exercises have helped you, and they probably have. There’s nothing wrong with that type of character development.

The problem arises when personality replaces depth.

 

via Novel Boot Camp #2: Creating Deep Realistic Characters

“Bound by a Dragon” by Linda K. Hopkins

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Bound by a Dragon (The Dragon Archives Book 1)

by Linda K. Hopkins

Genre: Historical Romance/Science Fiction & Fantasy/Medieval

FREE at time of posting!

Keira is content in her small, medieval village – well, sort of. Her mother is pressing her to marry, but her suitors are less than desirable. So when handsome Aaron Drake arrives in the village and focuses his attention on Keira, she cannot help but be interested. But Aaron is not the only new arrival in the area – a fire-breathing dragon has also taken up residence in the mountains, not far from the remote alpine castle that Aaron calls home. What exactly is the connection between Aaron Drake and the dragon? Why is his arrival coincident with the arrival of a beast? And when the dragon rescues her from the unwanted attentions of some village boys, who will set out to rescue her from the huge, scaly, fire-breathing monster?

Bound by a Dragon sweeps the reader far from the modern world into a world of castles, medieval markets and fantastical romance.

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“My Mother, the Liar” by Ann Troup

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My Mother, the Liar

by Ann Troup

Genre: Thriller & Suspense/Extended Families/Medical

99¢ at time of posting!

Every family has a secret…

When Rachel Porter’s estranged mother dies, she returns to her family home filled with dread about having to face her past, and the people who populated it.

Little does she know that there are dead bodies waiting to be discovered, and a lifetime of secrets are about to unravel.

Secrets kept by her mother, the liar.

 

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“Another Man’s Moccasins: A Longmire Mystery” by Craig Johnson

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Another Man’s Moccasins: A Longmire Mystery (Walt Longmire Book 4)

by Craig Johnson

Genre: Western/Cozy/Animals

1.99 at time of posting!

The fourth book in the bestselling Longmire Mystery series, the basis for the hit Netflix Original series LONGMIRE

Craig Johnson’s The Highwayman and An Obvious Fact are now available from Viking.

Fans of Ace Atkins, Nevada Barr, and Robert B. Parker will love the fourth mystery in New York Times bestselling author Craig Johnson’s award-winning Longmire Mystery series, the basis for LONGMIRE, the hit drama series now streaming on Netflix. It delivers more of the taut prose, engrossing characters, beautiful Wyoming setting, and satisfying depth that reviewers have been hailing since his first book, The Cold Dish. In Another Man’s Moccasins, the body of a Vietnamese woman dumped along the Wyoming interstate opens a baffling case for Sheriff Longmire, whose only suspect is a Crow Indian with a troubled past. But things get even stranger when a photograph turns up in the victim’s purse that ties her murder to one from Longmire’s past—a case he tackled as a Marine Corps .

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#PreOrder “Path to Passion” by Nana Prah

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BLURB

The man who broke her heart . . .

Is the man she now needs more than ever!

Heir to his family’s global empire, branding genius Miguel Astacio turns everything into marketing gold. Only his best friend’s sister seems immune to his magic touch. Until Tanya Carrington comes to him to save her floundering nightclub. Miguel is ready to rectify past mistakes. But will his supreme sacrifice win the heart of the woman he loves?

Add to Goodreads: https://goo.gl/hbCASz

Path to Passion Nana Prah

EXCERPT

Miguel’s blood heated as she gave him a wavering smile. She was just too beautiful, with clear skin marked only by a dark mole at the corner of her nose, angled dark eyes and full lickable lips.

“I mean,” Tanya continued, “I won’t even be able to recognize the place when its completed. Everything sounds incredible, but I may have to draw the line at the cages for dancers.”

He thought she might. “Trust me, if we charge people to dance in them, they will pay. The one rule is that they have to keep their clothes on.”

“We’ll see.” She stared at the screen again with her eyes unblinking “Um…” She rubbed the back of her neck and a light sheen of sweat broke out on her forehead. “How much will this cost?”

Now for the heavy convincing. He got up and stood beside her to point at the CCTV screen showing the dance area, which had filled up a little more in the hour they’d been going over his ideas. “I can see this place packed, people waiting all the way up the street trying to get in. VIP area filled with actors, musicians and pro athletes flying in to experience it.”

Unable to resist, he leaned close so they were almost cheek to cheek. Her heat and honeysuckle perfume floated into him, and he turned his head so his starving lips could caress her one more time. He kissed along her jaw until he met the sensitive area of her neck, where he teased her with gentle nips until she moaned. She sprang as far away from him as the room would allow.

What had he been thinking? Why did she affect him this way? She took away his willpower like no other woman had ever done. Thinking became almost impossible when she was around. The desire to smooth his hands over her incredibly silky soft skin drove him to get closer, but he stayed rooted to the spot, watching her rub the goose pimples from her arms.

“Answer the question, Miguel.” He was pleased to hear her voice quiver. “How much will it cost?”

He’d rather discuss the turbulent heat swirling between them, but if she wanted to ignore it then he should, too. “You’ve heard the saying that you have to spend money to make money, right?”

Her slow nod brought her hair forward. He watched as she brushed back the strands he wanted to filter his fingers through, bringing her close so they could fall into the attraction drawing them together.

Happy couple at the bar enjoying the cocktail party

PREORDER LINKS

Amazon US: https://goo.gl/nbTvYU

Amazon UK: https://goo.gl/KaobsG

Barnes and Noble: https://goo.gl/eH9ok8

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CONNECT WITH NANA

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/NanaPrah.Author/

Twitter: https://twitter.com/NanaPrah

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/nanaprahauthor/

Website: https://www.nanaprah.com/

 

#ReleaseBlitz “Lost in the Shadows (The Lost Series Book 3)” by Tracie Douglas

Title: Lost in the Shadows

Series: The Lost Series #3

Author: Tracie Douglas

Genre: Adult, Dark Suspense Romance

Page Count: 236 Pages

Published: April 9, 2018

Cover Designer: Dark Water Covers

DIZZY IS LOST

Lost in his own grief, Damien Reynolds hides the man he is behind a mask of jokes and laughter. He’s spent years fooling everyone, including himself, hiding the pain he struggles through every day. Now, Dizzy finds himself assigned to the hardest case Cole Securities has ever taken on. He’s wearing a new kind of mask, one that leaves him questioning the goodness of humankind and the world he lives in.

Surviving this mission is the last thing on his mind. Until the night he’s faced with a difficult choice: To save her or not…

PENNY CAPTIVATES HIM

Sold by her family to a group of criminals, Penelope Lopez finds herself lost into a world so dark, very few survive. She must find the strength within herself to endure her new life, but as it is once again tossed into the winds of fate, Penny decides enough is enough and vows to fight. Even if it means losing her life.

But fate has a different plan for her, one in the shape of an imposing man, who casts a shadow about her. A man who, at first sight, decides he can’t ignore the fire in her eyes and makes a vow of his own: To protect her at all costs…

Will Dizzy let her into his heart, allowing her to show him there is still good left in this world? Or will the danger swirling around them be a power even love can’t overcome?

Lost in the Shadows Excerpt © Tracie Douglas 2018

I only need one reason to say yes, and even though I said no and told him it is a bad idea, the truth is, I wanted to scream “yes” the moment the words slipped from his lips.

As crazy as it sounds and is, this man, this stranger, unnerves and excites me all at the same time. I can’t picture my life without him in it.

“Because I’m not ready to let you go yet,” he murmurs, opening his eyes, letting me see the honesty staring back at me. I gasp at his declaration, and when he continues to talk, I lose my breath. “I will stand by you and protect you. I will give you a good life until all of this can be righted. I will be your friend. I’m not your happily ever after. I’m not the man who can give you the life you dream or the family you want. Our arrangement will be in name only, but I promise, Penny, you will not walk away from our arrangement with a broken heart. I will do everything in my power to protect it.”

I close my eyes and fill my burning lungs with air. His speech started off good, but if he believes I won’t be brokenhearted at the end of all of this, he can think again. I’m already invested, and I can’t seem to figure out when it happened. It’s hard to admit, but he’s already broken my heart a little with his words.

The one thing I can take from his reason is that neither of us is ready to let the other go.

Surviving on caffeine most days, Tracie Douglas lives in the mountains of Southern California with her husband, two children, and one dog. She spends her days chasing children and the fur baby, all while maintaining the illusion of sanity.

Her nights are spent toiling away at the keyboard, creating a world filled with hot men and strong women. She loves to read and write all types of books but tends to lean on the darker side of the spectrum. She’s pretty handy with a crochet hook, too.

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