Writing and Blogging

Another Potential Market for Indie Authors – Audio Books – Part 1

Excellent advice from Don Massenzio about audio book creation.

Author Don Massenzio

Back on May 17th, I published a post asking advice on the best way to go about creating an audio book from my independently published novels. I also asked if it was worth doing so. The response was overwhelming and for that I am greatly appreciative.

If you’d like to check out this post and the wonderful advice and encouragement I received, it’s right HERE.

In that short span of time, I have been able to put one audio book on the market with another in process and targeted for completion sometime in August. I received an email from the wonder Anette Rochelle Aben asking for any information I could provide on the creation of audio books since I was able to get one completed.

As I answered her email, I thought that the information I provided, plus a bit more, would make a useful blog post for other…

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My Review of 13 Steps To Evil – How to Craft Superbad Villians by Sacha Black

 

 

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Goodreads Synopsis:

Your hero is not the most important character in your book. Your villain is.
 
Are you fed up of drowning in two-dimensional villains? Frustrated with creating clichés? And failing to get your reader to root for your villain?
  
In 13 Steps to Evil, you’ll discover: 
 
How to develop a villain’s mindset
A step-by-step guide to creating your villain from the ground up
Why getting to the core of a villain’s personality is essential to make them credible
What pitfalls and clichés to avoid as well as the tropes your story needs
  
Finally, there is a comprehensive writing guide to help you create superbad villains. Whether you’re just starting out or are a seasoned writer, this book will help power up your bad guy and give them that extra edge.

These lessons will help you master and control your villainous minions, navigate and gain the perfect balance of good and evil, as well as strengthening your villain to give your story the tension and punch it needs.
 
If you like dark humour, learning through examples and want to create the best villains you can, then you’ll love Sacha Black’s guide to crafting superbad villains. Read 13 steps to evil today and start creating kick ass villains. 

My review:

Confession time. No, it’s nothing to do with my prison record, or my descent into villainy. It’s simply this – I’m pretty lazy about reading books about writing  – but Sacha Black’s 13 Steps To Evil has completely changed my mind! What a fantastic kick ass little book! I wish I’d read a copy years ago.

It’s a detailed resource, which informs and entertains in an illuminating, and humorous way. There are so many excellent examples that I am giddy with the potential for villains. The mental health section is handled with great sensitivity (one of my characters self-harms, so I read this with considerable interest,) and I was also fascinated by the detail on narcissistic personality disorder too.

Sacha’s extensive knowledge of villains prompts me to ask….. Is Sacha a secret villain? Or has she been hanging out with dodgy characters?  The mind boggles. No, none of these apply… at least I don’t think so! Sacha Black has done her research, and it shows. She studied Psychology to 1st Class Degree level and thereafter completed Masters in Research Methods in Cognitive Neuropsychology.  She has also spent an exorbitant amount of time watching villainous films, (from a tender age,) and has read tonnes of books, and absorbed popular culture like a sponge.   Where does this woman get her energy? I am in awe, totally star-stuck… or should I say villain struck!

My recommendation: 5 stars. Get a copy now and write a review. Share the love!

Check out the current Blog Tour hosts….

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DISCLAIMER: “We are a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for us to earn fees by linking to Amazon.com and affiliated sites.”  

My opinions are my own and any reviews on this site have not been swayed or altered in any way by monetary compensation, or by the offer of a free book in exchange for a review. 

 

Original Photo

Buy Links: http://books2read.com/13stepstoevil

Let’s hit the books!!

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My social media hang outs:

Twitter: @marjorie_mallon
My New Facebook club : Authors/Bloggers Rainbow Support Club

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The Curse of Time: Pre-Publication News

I am having a bit of a break through in terms of my publishing plans:

First I’ve changed the name of my manuscript from The Krystallos Cottage to The Curse of Time. This has had quite an impact on the general direction of the novel, with more emphasis on the dark side of the story. But the theme of light/darkness, and good/evil, still prevails. I have done some extra research into self harm, anxiety, and schizophrenia as one of my characters self harms.

There are still lots of light-hearted aspects in the crystals, storyline, dialogue, etc. So I do hope that this will have something for everyone.

I have had two beta readers working hard to make my manuscript the best it can be.  Graeme Cumming author of Ravens Gathering read through the first draft and my bookworm daughter/budding writer Natasha Mallon, has been reading through the final draft, both have done an amazing job and I can’t thank them enough. So the final beta read is now done and I am in the final stages of editing.

At last, it’s nearly there. There will be lots of work to do…. edits of chapters, removal of one chapter, some extra work on dialogue, a few paragraphs here and there that are unnecessary, and I have been working on three short but hopefully powerful chapters to develop the dark aspect of the story.

At the moment it looks as if it is likely that the finished novel will be aimed at the YA market.

In the meantime I’m busy writing my author bio and my blurb…

As well as this I’ve won an month’s advertising in Jenny At Neverland’s blog in November and I’ve decided that would be the ideal time to get everything ready for publishing. Fingers crossed! So, perhaps I may get this book out in time for Christmas….

More news, I’ve  contacted the inventor of the Corpus Chronopage, Dr John Taylor  OBE, to ask for permission to use an image of this celebrated local clock and tourist attraction on my book cover.  My manuscript has been approved by his publicist Tina Fotherby at Famous Publicity. This is great news – now I know that my book cover is going to be pretty striking.

So now I’m getting some ideas together regarding cover photography and Wendy Anne Darling is going to knock it all together for me:  https://wendyannedarling.wordpress.com/bookxeedo-book-covers

How exciting!

I am considering the possibility of a domain name for this blog too. I’m fond of Kyrosmagica but wonder whether my author name should appear in my domain. If anyone has any advice do let me know.

 

Here are some more photos of The Corpus Chronograph courtesy of John C Taylor OBE.

The first is of Dr John C Taylor and his magnificent invention.

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This one is the Grasshopper with his shadow… pretty cool! Especially as one of the themes in my book is shadows…

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The Corpus Chronophage at dusk

The Corpus Chronophage at dusk

The scary grasshopper in all his close-up glory!  EEK!

Corpus Christi Chronophage Detail

Copyright Dr John C Taylor OBE

Copyright Dr John C Taylor OBE

Do let me know what you think of the Corpus Chronopage images. I am absolutely thrilled with them… So one of these with the right dpi (not all pass the level of dpi required for a book cover,) will be gracing my front and back cover. Decisions, decisions!

 

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Bye for now.

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Writespiration #94: Condense Your Novel Into 3 Sentences

Writespiration: Condense Your Novel into Three Sentences

In Sacha’s words:

So, your challenge this week is to boil your plot down to its simplest form. This isn’t marketing 101, don’t try an sell me your book like a pitch sentence. This is purely about plot. Tell me your entire novels story in three sentences.

If you want to join in,  you can pop your sentences in the comments on her blog or in a blog post and ping back  so she can find it. You have until 12pm on the 28th August.

No pressure… three simple sentences. Somehow, that sounds a bit unrealistic, simple sentences, there is nothing simple about my plot, convoluted, yes, but simple, No!  But, this challenge couldn’t have come at a better time, because right now this is the kind of activity I’m engaging in… writing blurbs, author bios, etc, trying to get everything ready for my novel release this coming autumn.

Here are my three sentences:

Da da dee da,

Da da dee da,

Da da dee da!

Only joking…  though I did think the da da’s had a certain ring to them, not sure about those dee da’s! Cup of tea perhaps? Sacha did suggest that we boil our plot! Maybe not… Perhaps I should indulge in a bit of FB? Twitter? Instagram? But no selling… OK, I could be nosey, see what folks are up to… Or I could go for the simple approach.

Right, no mucking about, concentrate Marje, stop procrastinating! You can do this…

Ah, I know what to do, doodle, get a cute doodle pad and write a few words on it:

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That will do the trick… Don’t plan, just write…

By now, you really must be thinking this gal has gone a bit doolally twist… perhaps.

Enough! This procrastination is really becoming a curse.

Here is my contribution, my three simple sentences for my WIP: The Curse of Time.

Amelina Scott doesn’t know it yet, but she is a magical Krystallos. That knowledge might just save her family from the cruel roller coaster ride which has bugged her family’s happiness, since The Curse of Time. A shadow hides, crystals twinkle, and gossamer wings threaten to bring Amelina full circle on the ride of her life.  

I thought I’d elaborate upon this to make an initial blurb idea which would go very roughly something like this:

 Sixteen year old Amelina  Scott lives in Cambridge with her prematurely aged father, cranky mother, a black cat called Shadow, and a self-harming mirror girl.  

She doesn’t know it yet, but she is a magical Krystallos. That knowledge might just save her family from the cruel roller coaster ride which has bugged her family’s happiness, since The Curse of Time. A shadow of two halves hides – Ryder’s  mesmerising eyes and dark charisma draw her to him – but appearances can be deceptive. While crystals twinkle, and gossamer wings threaten, Amelina’s spirit is brought against her will to a tranquil meadow in Grantchester. Whilst there she is encouraged by her captor to paint a  bizarre puzzle of art, and all the while, a threat lingers groaning to turn youth into old age, and to turn neighbour against neighbour.  

The verdict is out, hope that made sense, and didn’t bore you.

Bye for now,

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My fun (totally not serious but nevertheless 90% true,) author bio on Wattpad – Link below.

Marjorie Mallon was born in Lion City: Singapore. She grew up in a mountainous court in Hong Kong. Her crazy parents dragged her  spotty soul away from her exotic childhood and her much loved dog Topsy to the frozen wastelands of Scotland. There she mastered Scottish country dancing, haggis bashing, bagpipe playing and a whole new Och Aye lingo. 
As a teenager she travelled to many far flung destinations to visit her abacus wielding wayfarer dad. On one such occasion a  barracuda swam by. It stopped to view her  bikini clad body, longing to take a big bite. With dogs' fangs replacing barracudas' teeth, she returned to her mother's birthplace: Kuching, Cat City. There, Blackie, a black-hearted dog sniffed her frightened butt, whimpered and ran away! Shortly after this extraordinary event an angry female Orang-Utan chased her unfit ass out of the Malaysian jungle believing that she was a threat to her babies! She still monkeys about, would love to own a cat, or a replacement Topsy but refuses to entertain  murderous dogs, or over-protective monkeys.
It's rumoured that she lives in the Venice of Cambridge, with her six foot hunk of a Rock God husband, and her two enchanted daughters. 
After such an upbringing her author's mind has taken total leave of its senses. When she's not writing, she eats exotic delicacies while belly dancing, or surfs to the far reaches of the moon. To chill out she practises Tai Chi and Yoga on the crest of a wave. If the mood takes her she goes snorkelling with mermaids, or signs up for idyllic holidays with the Chinese Unicorn, whose magnificent voice sings like a thousand wind chimes. 

She is a child of the light and the dark. Her motto is simply this: Do what you love,  stay true to your heart's desires, remain young at heart, and  inspire others to do so, even if it appears that the odds are stacked like black hearted shadows against you...

 

My Links: 

Wattpad

Goodreads

Instagram

Twitter

Facebook

 

 

 

 

Writespiration : The Non-Binary Prom

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I’m taking part in Sacha Black’s Writespiration writing prompt. https://sachablack.co.uk/2016/07/27/writespiration-93-underwater-ballroom/

Here’s what Sacha asked us to do this week:

Your challenge this week is to set a piece of flash fiction under water. Write a story in less than 200 words. Paste in the comments or use a pingback and submit before 7th August.

I couldn’t wait to write this, the prompt was just so perfect. I love the idea of setting the flash under water… What could I do with this? I decided to play with the prompt  a bit placing the main character’s emotion under water rather than actually setting the flash fiction under water.

I won’t say anymore about this until the end of the flash other than to say this is not a subject that I’ve ever written about on my blog before. Or even thought that about much until recently….

So I am a bit nervous sharing this piece of flash:

The Non-Binary Prom

I’m underwater, or I might as well be. The sun’s shining but I can’t feel it on my back. All I can hear is everyone whispering, a waterfall of gushing laughter presses against me.  Ed swims through and signs my tee-shirt. Nobody else comes near. I have my back to him but it doesn’t stop me from imagining his face creasing into a confident surfer I know who I am smile. He scribbles something, and his mates laugh. I tear my tee-shirt off, exposing my ripped body, and tiny almost bikini top. He’s written girl and then crossed it out and written boy with this ugly question mark.

‘What you wearing to prom, Les?’ he asks. He’s laughing, because he knows that I can’t make up my mind whether to wear a suit and tie, or a fucking dress.

Non-binary. That’s me. I’m not on the prissy Prom committee but if I was I’d plan an underwater ball with us all swimming, skinny dipping, no clothes, no fancy ball gowns, nowhere to write mean things. Just floating, tattooed skin, splashing I’m human. That’s who we really are. What’s inside counts but Ed can’t see that.  He’s drowning in binary.

© Marjorie Mallon 2016 – aka, Kyrosmagica. All Rights Reserved.

 

The idea for The Non-Binary Prom piece of flash came from several recent events.

Firstly, my daughter’s T-shirt signing, (last day at secondary school,) and the big event of the year – her prom. She absolutely loved dressing up, wearing the fancy dress, high heels, getting her make up done….. and it was lovely. But …. a person who identifies as non-binary would have a different experience. (Any non-binary people reading this do comment below.. I would be interested in hearing your opinion on events such as Prom.)

Also,  we’ve been talking about gender issues at home – a friend of my eldest daughter is non-binary. I have to say when my daughter first told me about her friend I found this really hard to comprehend. How can someone not identify as either male or a female? OK, I can see why someone might think of themselves as male but be in a female body and vice versa, but non-binary is much more fluid and its very fluidity makes it much more difficult to understand. So that gave me the idea to link it with being underwater pushing against a tide of same aged pupils who are secure in their birth gender and don’t understand you.

Then, quite by chance I came across a Vegan blog entitled Cooking on A Boot Strap – Self Love Stew written by Mx. Jack Monroe who is non-binary. As an aside the Self Love Stew recipe looked delicious, so I decided to check out Jack’s blog some more. Curious, (writers always are!) I read through Jack’s account.. I Have Something To Tell You

Jack’s account is so well written that I began to understand a little more about what it means to be non-binary. I’ve always considered myself to be a very open minded caring sort of person so that got me thinking… and that got me attempting to write from the point of view of a non-binary individual for the above piece of flash. Not sure I did it justice… Let me know what you think.

Hope my piece of flash got you thinking too… Are you, or do you know someone who is non-binary?

Do comment. I’d love to hear your thoughts on gender issues.

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My fun (totally not serious but nevertheless 90% true,) author bio on Wattpad – Link below.

Marjorie Mallon was born in Lion City: Singapore. She grew up in a mountainous court in Hong Kong. Her crazy parents dragged her  spotty soul away from her exotic childhood and her much loved dog Topsy to the frozen wastelands of Scotland. There she mastered Scottish country dancing, haggis bashing, bagpipe playing and a whole new Och Aye lingo. 
As a teenager she travelled to many far flung destinations to visit her abacus wielding wayfarer dad. On one such occasion a  barracuda swam by. It stopped to view her  bikini clad body, longing to take a big bite. With dogs' fangs replacing barracudas' teeth, she returned to her mother's birthplace: Kuching, Cat City. There, Blackie, a black-hearted dog sniffed her frightened butt, whimpered and ran away! Shortly after this extraordinary event an angry female Orang-Utan chased her unfit ass out of the Malaysian jungle believing that she was a threat to her babies! She still monkeys about, would love to own a cat, or a replacement Topsy but refuses to entertain  murderous dogs, or over-protective monkeys.
It's rumoured that she lives in the Venice of Cambridge, with her six foot hunk of a Rock God husband, and her two enchanted daughters. 
After such an upbringing her author's mind has taken total leave of its senses. When she's not writing, she eats exotic delicacies while belly dancing, or surfs to the far reaches of the moon. To chill out she practises Tai Chi and Yoga on the crest of a wave. If the mood takes her she goes snorkelling with mermaids, or signs up for idyllic holidays with the Chinese Unicorn, whose magnificent voice sings like a thousand wind chimes. 

She is a child of the light and the dark. Her motto is simply this: Do what you love,  stay true to your heart's desires, remain young at heart, and  inspire others to do so, even if it appears that the odds are stacked like black hearted shadows against you...

 

My Links: 

Wattpad

Goodreads

Instagram

Twitter

Facebook

 

 

 

How Not to Get Overwhelmed: Picking Your Publishing Platform(s)

Wonderful advice from Rachael Ritchey about self-publishing. This is a must see for any author considering self-publishing.

Fiction by Rachael Ritchey

Platforms

This is the sixth article in the series: How Not to Get Overwhelmed with Indie Publishing. Below is the list, including links to the subjects we’ve already covered. Today’s topic is publishing platforms. These apply to most countries for accessibility as far as I know, but since most of my research has been about my own publishing, some of the info I share may only be useful to US authors.

Main Types of Book Formats

  1. ebook
    1. epub
    2. mobi
    3. pdf; etc.
  2. paperback
    1. varying sizes
    2. I prefer 5.25 x 8
  3. hardbound
    1. varying sizes
    2. I prefer 6×9

Depending on how you plan to make your book available you…

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Writespiration 91: The Hug You’ve Always Wanted

This week I’m joining in with Sacha Black’s Writespiration. The prompt is the hug you’ve always wanted.

This short edited excerpt to be 200 words is from my current YA WIP, The Curse of Time,  which I’m currently editing.

The main character Amelina really could do with a hug…  Any offers..?

Cruel Time Had Him Prisoner

Still feeling dizzy a wave of nausea hit me hard. The room spun around like I was on an enforced merry-go-round. I closed my eyes willing the strange spinning to stop. As my eyes opened, a narrow tunnel of faded kaleidoscopic images came to me in a giddy whirl.

First, I saw my dad playing his guitar, with my mum laughing by his side. Then, the day my dad disappeared, followed by the day he returned.

Buried memories….

All the moments I’d ever treasured, the mother and father I could laugh with, could hug.  

Dad’s homecoming should have been a celebration, but it wasn’t. I’d just turned fifteen. It had been two long years wait, for this – what a joke. A life lived within the clutches of a curse. A tear fell from my eye, and then another and another as I recalled the events of the past. Soon they were spilling, splashing on the canvas – watercolour tears of sadness.

I looked at my painting. For a second, I saw dad’s face on my canvas. His sad expression scratched a raw scar on my vision. Cruel time had him prisoner.   His watery old eyes stared back, begging me to help him.

© Marjorie Mallon 2016 – aka, Kyrosmagica. All Rights Reserved.

If you’d like to join in with Sacha’s Writespiration here’s the link: https://sachablack.co.uk/2016/06/29/writespiration-91-the-hug-youve-always-wanted

Hope you liked my short excerpt. Do feel free to comment. Got my sand timer ready… LOL!!!

I don’t look very friendly in my cartoon me, but it’s all lies, I am really a nice gal… Most of the time!! It’s that sand timer – it’s making me anxious… I’ve got so much editing to do to wrangle this monster into submission. Humph, I’ll get there, but it won’t be today.

Time to attack the house with my magic wand…. Tescos with my credit card, and wash down all I have accomplished today with a cup of tea, or perhaps a glass of vino. Later…

Bye for now,

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Marje @ Kyrosmagica xx

My fun (totally not serious but nevertheless 90% true,) author bio on Wattpad – Link below.

Marjorie Mallon was born in Lion City: Singapore. She grew up in a mountainous court in Hong Kong. Her crazy parents dragged her  spotty soul away from her exotic childhood and her much loved dog Topsy to the frozen wastelands of Scotland. There she mastered Scottish country dancing, haggis bashing, bagpipe playing and a whole new Och Aye lingo. 
As a teenager she travelled to many far flung destinations to visit her abacus wielding wayfarer dad. On one such occasion a  barracuda swam by. It stopped to view her  bikini clad body, longing to take a big bite. With dogs' fangs replacing barracudas' teeth, she returned to her mother's birthplace: Kuching, Cat City. There, Blackie, a black-hearted dog sniffed her frightened butt, whimpered and ran away! Shortly after this extraordinary event an angry female Orang-Utan chased her unfit ass out of the Malaysian jungle believing that she was a threat to her babies! She still monkeys about, would love to own a cat, or a replacement Topsy but refuses to entertain  murderous dogs, or over-protective monkeys.
It's rumoured that she lives in the Venice of Cambridge, with her six foot hunk of a Rock God husband, and her two enchanted daughters. 
After such an upbringing her author's mind has taken total leave of its senses. When she's not writing, she eats exotic delicacies while belly dancing, or surfs to the far reaches of the moon. To chill out she practises Tai Chi and Yoga on the crest of a wave. If the mood takes her she goes snorkelling with mermaids, or signs up for idyllic holidays with the Chinese Unicorn, whose magnificent voice sings like a thousand wind chimes. 

She is a child of the light and the dark. Her motto is simply this: Do what you love,  stay true to your heart's desires, remain young at heart, and  inspire others to do so, even if it appears that the odds are stacked like black hearted shadows against you...

 

My Links: 

Wattpad

Goodreads

Instagram

Twitter

Facebook

Writing Narrative Endings – Infographic…

Writing Narrative Endings – reblog from Chris at the Story Reading Ape.

Chris The Story Reading Ape's Blog

Extract from an article by Kristine Nannini – elementary school teacher, curriculum writer, educational blogger, and founder of Young Teacher Love.

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How many writing pieces have you read with the words THE END scribbled at the bottom? Yes, I know it’s the end. I always tell my students that they don’t have to tell me it’s the end. I should know it’s the end if they’re writing a good ending! The first time I see this in a student’s writing, I write THE END on a piece of paper, crumble it up, and throw it in the trash. It’s like a mini ceremony to say goodbye to THE END, and it sends a strong message!

Barry Lane said it best in his book Reviser’s Toolbox: “Don’t write endings, find them… Endings grow from beginnings and reveal themselves through clues within the story, characters, or ideas.”

The Infographic below was sourced from her…

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Writespiration#99: Burnt Edges – Suicide Burns

 

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I’m glad I came across this prompt via Sacha Black for her  Flash Writespiration – Burnt Edges, I was looking for a writing stimulus for a competition I’m thinking of entering and burnt edges was it. I read a very sad blog post on Cybele’s blog – In Memory of Her Beloved Brother  a very personal and moving tribute which got me reflecting on the preciousness of life, and this developed into a theme for my piece of flash fiction: Suicide. I have heard some shocking stories via family members and in the wider community that really got me thinking.. about the terrible suffering of family and friends of suicide victims.

Sometimes there’s a happy outcome when suicides are prevented but sadly this is not always the case. Sometimes dreadful injuries are sustained by the person attempting suicide which have a long term effect on the person’s future quality of life and/or underlying depression can still remain unchecked waiting to rear its head once again.

If only we could prevent more suicides from happening. Young people are so vulnerable. If only that were possible.

While I’m on this terribly sad topic I thought I’d mention that I read Me Before You by Jojo Moyes fairly recently.

Here’s the synopsis:

Lou Clark knows lots of things. She knows how many footsteps there are between the bus stop and home. She knows she likes working in The Buttered Bun tea shop and she knows she might not love her boyfriend Patrick.

What Lou doesn’t know is she’s about to lose her job or that knowing what’s coming is what keeps her sane.

Will Traynor knows his motorcycle accident took away his desire to live. He knows everything feels very small and rather joyless now and he knows exactly how he’s going to put a stop to that.

What Will doesn’t know is that Lou is about to burst into his world in a riot of colour. And neither of them knows they’re going to change the other for all time.

Here’s the link to my review: Review of Me Before You by Jojo Moyes

Lines can become blurred.  Assisted suicide is such an emotive topic – people tend to have very differing, and deeply felt viewpoints both for and against.  So my piece of creative writing flash fiction is exploring some of these thoughts in a very concise way – only 200 words, to consider what a person would or wouldn’t do to ease a loved one’s daily pain and suffering, when they are suffering from an incurable disease that has stripped them of all dignity, or perhaps have had a life changing horrendous accident, that has left them with constant pain and no quality of life. What cost would that be to the individual who assists their loved one to die? Guilt would always play a part in that decision.. and guilt can be a bit like a jailer..

Here’s my piece of flash, which I have entitled Suicide Burns. The far reaching effects of suicide are like a fire engulfing all in sadness who come near.

Suicide Burns

We all have burnt edges in our lives but mine exist as a form of evidence, a folded piece of paper scarred by a torched flame of memories. The suicide note had intentional burnt edges around the colourless paper creating a waving motion, a final goodbye. She’d wanted me to remember those precious smoke filled memories spent together, before her debilitating cruel illness burnt joy to dust. The note cast a warming glow each time I opened it. I smelt the aroma of logs, her sweet perfume rekindling long lost memories of our passionate love making, the embers of the open fire caressing our naked, youthful bodies.

After her suicide, I placed the folded note next to my heart. For days it remained untouched until I unfolded it’s sad, weary edges. How I longed to hear her thoughts, to say one last farewell, but her silent note told of the pills that I’d stockpiled. The note was no longer in my breast pocket. It was evidence of my confession: loving her too much. Her ghost danced alone, a pain free sparkle of brilliant illuminating light. The prison door claimed my guilt, a small price to pay, my sweet dearest love.

I’d recommend the following site if you are experiencing mental health issues or are feeling alone, lost or suicidal: https://www.betterhelp.com/advice/therapy/how-do-i-find-a-therapist-near-me/

© Marjorie Mallon 2016 – aka, Kyrosmagica. All Rights Reserved.

Please pop over to Sacha’s blog for details how to take part in her Writespiration: Sacha Black’s Writespiration 90: Burnt Edges

Until the next time.. please do feel free to comment…

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Marje @ Kyrosmagica xx

My fun (totally not serious but nevertheless 90% true,) author bio on Wattpad – Link below.

Marjorie Mallon was born in Lion City: Singapore. She grew up in a mountainous court in Hong Kong. Her crazy parents dragged her  spotty soul away from her exotic childhood and her much loved dog Topsy to the frozen wastelands of Scotland. There she mastered Scottish country dancing, haggis bashing, bagpipe playing and a whole new Och Aye lingo. 
As a teenager she travelled to many far flung destinations to visit her abacus wielding wayfarer dad. On one such occasion a  barracuda swam by. It stopped to view her  bikini clad body, longing to take a big bite. With dogs' fangs replacing barracudas' teeth, she returned to her mother's birthplace: Kuching, Cat City. There, Blackie, a black-hearted dog sniffed her frightened butt, whimpered and ran away! Shortly after this extraordinary event an angry female Orang-Utan chased her unfit ass out of the Malaysian jungle believing that she was a threat to her babies! She still monkeys about, would love to own a cat, or a replacement Topsy but refuses to entertain  murderous dogs, or over-protective monkeys.
It's rumoured that she lives in the Venice of Cambridge, with her six foot hunk of a Rock God husband, and her two enchanted daughters. 
After such an upbringing her author's mind has taken total leave of its senses. When she's not writing, she eats exotic delicacies while belly dancing, or surfs to the far reaches of the moon. To chill out she practises Tai Chi and Yoga on the crest of a wave. If the mood takes her she goes snorkelling with mermaids, or signs up for idyllic holidays with the Chinese Unicorn, whose magnificent voice sings like a thousand wind chimes. 

She is a child of the light and the dark. Her motto is simply this: Do what you love,  stay true to your heart's desires, remain young at heart, and  inspire others to do so, even if it appears that the odds are stacked like black hearted shadows against you...

 

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The Writer Q & A Tag

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Thank you very much to James Fahy author of The Changeling series and Hell’s Teeth for nominating me to take part in The Writer Q & A Tag. Do check out his blog: James Fahy Author, and follow him on Instagram, he has an awesome page…………Jame’s Fahy Instagram Page

What’s this tag about? Its a fun tag celebrating books, and writing. Also it’s a way to discover and make new blogging friends. So that can’t be bad can it?

Here are James’s Questions for me – and at the end of the post there are some questions for my Nominees. I believe I have to nominate ten but I like breaking rules so we’ll see how many I nominate…

  1. What book first made you cry, and why? The first book that made me cry. Um….I’m not sure it might have been a little picture book while I was in my pram…Need to ask my mum…..More recently I’m cultivating this crying book lark to a whole new level. There have been a whole bunch of books that have triggered my crying   – here’s some of them: Marcus Zuzak’s The Book Thief,  The Fault in our Stars, by John Green, You Before Me by Yoyo Moyes, Elizabeth Is Missing by Emma Healey, Summertime, by Vanessa LaFaye, The Song of Achilles, by Madeline Miller, The StoryTeller by Jodi Picoult, and The Art of Being Normal by Lisa Williamson, etc… Most of these I’ve reviewed on this blog on my  A – Z Book Reviews. These particular books  definitely had me crying big time. But that’s okay as I love books that stir the emotions. They really make me happy! Nothing like a good cry, but I have to stop doing it in public places that’s too embarrassing!  Just in case you want some crying inspiration look no further than Buzzfeed’s 53 Books That Will Definitely Make You Cry
  2. If you could be any one of your favourite characters (your own or others you’ve read) for one day, who and why? I’d like to be a guy… there you are I’ve said it – confession time!  I’d like to write in the POV of a guy for the second  or perhaps the third book in the series of my current WIP: The Curse of Time….  I’ve been a lass for a long time, and getting inside a guy’s head will be a challenge so perhaps I’d like to be Dorian Grey  for a day ’cause I want to stay young and get up to mischief! Ha Ha!!  I see my Ryder character in my WIP: The Curse of Time developing into a modern day Dorian Grey – he’s a bit young at the moment but he’s heading that way!
  3. What is your favourite opening line from a book? I’m pretty taken with this opening line in this book: “I had just come to accept that my life would be ordinary when extraordinary things began to happen.”
    Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children, by Ransom Riggs.                                       
  4. Do you have any odd writing rituals (has to be a yellow legal pad and a HB pencil for example) No, not really. Apart from lingering in my pyjamas longer than necessary and opening up the door to the Avon lady still wearing them. I swear she thinks I live in my pj’s. Oh, and I forget to drink, eat, brush my teeth, floss, and go to the toilet. Those ain’t so good. When I get to the serious hunger stage I rush off to have breakfast, and do my ablutions…. I’m one of those writers that tends to get their ideas really early in the morning, in fact they often wake me up, sigh…and then I have to get to it straight away… or if I can’t do so due to work or other constraints I’ll jot them down in a note pad and come back to them later.
  5. Have you drawn on real locations / experiences in your writing? Yes, a lot, I think our experiences shape us and in turn they shape our writing. Often this is at an unconscious level. Sometimes I look over what I’ve written and it scares me because to me writing is a bit like bearing your soul for your readers to pick your unsuspecting bones, and often those bones are startling even to yourself.
  6. What story scares you? Horror stories scare me, and up until recently I’ve avoided them! I never read horror as a teen, I was really into detective stories – Agatha Christie, Raymond Chandler, comic books, and fantasy. I only started reading horror books in earnest (if you can call it that,) Halloween 2015. I joined in the red eye readathon and that did it – I found that I really enjoyed them. Shock, Horror! Of all the subsets of horror, psychological horror really scares the heck out of me. This type of horror draws the reader into the character’s thoughts and emotions. You begin to imagine that particular horrific event happening to you. In my opinion those kind of stories are the most scary. A recent example of this is the short story – Big Driver in Stephen King’s compilation of Short Stories Full Dark No Stars, in which a female writer is sexually attacked by a truck driver while driving back from a writing event promoting her work. That really struck home. That for me is horror at its most powerful, and it works so well combined with dark humour, which Stephen King is undoubtedly a master of.
  7. If you were told you could only read one book before being executed for your terrible, terrible crimes, what would you choose and why? My terrible crimes… oh that must be that Dorian Grey influence I suppose. No question it would have to be some steamy romance, one last heart pounding moment before I die!
  8. Have you ever met any of your literary heros, and if so, were they amazing, dissapointing or just plain awkward? I’ve met a few YA authors via events at The Edinburgh Literary Festival, The Cambridge Literary Festival, and been close to some at UKYA.  I think I’ve been pretty chilled about it all..  And nobody has been disappointing as yet… They’ve all been lovely.
  9. Which word / phraze do you find yourself always over-using and having to edit out? Smiled. Smile. Smiling. Cried, Cry, Crying. Yes it’s a light and dark kind of tale so probably these words are over-used….As it’s predominantly written in the past tense I had to be careful not to have to many was’s. At one point there were so many was’s it sounded like I had a wasp infestation. With words funnily enough I think names of people can be tricky. I ended up with two Emily’s at one point, and then I had to make one of them an Emma. She’s still an Emily in my mind…The Chinese girl in the book started off as Aurora or something like that ………….I can’t quite remember but Aurora didn’t sound right so I changed her name to Jade. The main character’s names have always been Amelina and Ryder, liked them from the offset and stuck to those.  Oh and I had to change the name of the dog, it started off as the name of my friend’s son. Somehow that didn’t seem OK, bit cheeky, so in the end I settled for Toby. Woof woof… I met a Toby while working at John Lewis… hope he doesn’t mind! Come to think of it my doggy character is a bit like the JL lad, lively to say the least! He went running every morning before he started work. Toby the dog would approve!
  10. Name three people you would have at your ultimate book-club/dinner party. (living or dead…or undead.) Oh this is a fun one! Maureen Johnson because she’s so witty, and would get the party up and running. Stephen King because he would be so amazingly interesting to talk to, and Oscar Wilde, as I just love Dorian Grey! There would have to be music too, so I’d sneak in some gatecrashers:  David Bowie, and Prince, because I loved them both, and they died too young. One last crazy party in their honour. Also I’d sneak in the lead singer from Stereophonics, Kelly Jones, who’d be my eye candy crush, and last but certainly not least, Bon Jovi. Two crushes – That would be some party!

I nominate these eleven  ….. amazing bloggers to join in, it’s not compulsory but you might just find it fun! Your questions are just below this list.

Annika Perry’s Blog

Al The Author

Vashti Vega

Sue Vincent

Helen Jones

Debby Kaye

Ritu

Linda Hill

Shehanne Moore

Caroline Peckham

Graeme Cumming

 

My questions for you:

1. If you met a sexy vampire what would you do? Hook up, get the garlic and crosses out or run a mile?

2. What’s your favourite genre of book and why?

3. Who is/are your favourite author (s) , poet (s)? What is it about them that inspires you?

4. If you had to control a classroom of year 6 kids would you bale, or enjoy the challenge? Would you be (a.)  too undisciplined to do so, you’d just join in the general mayhem, (b.) enjoy bossy them around, or (c.) pray in a corner for the bell to sound. Guess which one would be my reply, winners will be mentioned on my blog!

5. What made you become a writer/blogger? Do your family support you or do they think you’re crazy, bored,  attention seeking, or all of these? Tell us a bit about your current WIP and/or books…

6. What is the most awful job and/or experience you’ve ever done/had?

7. Are you a plotter or a pantser? Does this spill out onto other parts of your life? Are you generally organised/disorganised? Can you guess what I am?

8. Do you believe in Ghosts? Fate? Love at First Sight? Fairies? Psychic happenings?Numerology, Mermaids, The Loch Ness Monster, Demons…etc…Make your own observations …. and let me know..

9. What is the worst haircut/clothes/hats you’ve ever had/worn? Photos please, or describe in vivid detail…

10. Please finish this sentence with more than three extra words: Life is one foot in and one foot out, you ….

 

Anyone else who’d like to join in please do…

Well, that’s it then, thanks for stopping by, don’t forget to comment. Love ya! xx

Bye for now,

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Marje @ Kyrosmagica xx

 

James Fahy The Writer Q & A Tag

The Artful Author

-musings of a wild book dragon-

Read, Sav, Read.

| B.A. in English. | Writer. | Lover of books. | 2017 Book Count: 61. | Currently Reading: Drums of Autumn by Diana Gabaldon. |

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