Saturday, March 29, 2014

ANGELICA'S DIARY, A character Blog

Angelica, patriot heiress, writes in her diary a few days after the American defeat at New York, 1776.
Originally published as Independent Heart.

I still can't believe what I saw from Aunt  Letitia's parlor window last night. The whole City, south of her house, was aflame. We were afraid, and the servants stood before the door with muskets. So much smoke blowing! We were coughing, and the whole sky turned red, while crowds carrying pitiful bundles of their possessions ran and wept, driving their poor cows and horses down the street! I hadn't believed that General Washington could be driven out of New York and that the British would rule here again, but that's what has come to pass.

My Aunt believes that American sympathizers set fire to the City, that the occupying British troops were not responsible. This morning it still burns, and we've heard that more than half of the buildings have fallen. Auntie and I had hot words on the subject at breakfast, but after what I've seen and heard already of this war, I confess I am truly not certain of what to believe. 

It's unimaginable, what my Uncle Ten Broeck has written of, the things happening up and down our once peaceful valley. There has been looting and burning, the cruel maiming of horses and cattle carried out by those who must have little but evil in their hearts. Everywhere, my Uncle says, men settle old scores with their neighbors, while hiding their shocking crimes behind the names of "Loyalist" or "Patriot."

Oh, why did I ever come to the City? I was tired of Arent's pursuit, but that seems so petty now. Arent is a kind man who is in love with me, but how can I ever marry anyone? I fear I will always be in love with my darling long-lost 'Bram! 

New York is become a dangerous place, exactly as my Uncle feared. I've been a great fool, traveling in the midst of this war! All I want is to go home, to sail up the river back to Kingston,  but I am trapped behind the lines of the enemy. My Aunt Letitia says that I--and my inheritance--are far safer here, that because my Uncle Jacob is a patriot and defies the British, he will be hanged and his lands forfeit to the Crown. It is better, she says, that I "not be involved in his folly and ruin."

She has gone back to her old plan for me, wants me to marry "a respectable English officer" and "leave forever this barbaric place".  She doesn't seem to understand that I am an American, bred in this land and to the bone. Even though General Washington has been defeated, I still believe that in the end--somehow, some way--our Cause will triumph, and that one day we on this continent shall enjoy the blessings of true liberty and peace.

Angel's Flight is the sister book to her award winning Genesee.

~Juliet Waldron~
See all my living, breathing historical novels at: 
And at Books We Love:

The Inciting Incident - By Rita Karnopp

     The first time I was exposed to ‘the inciting incident’ was a movie by that title.  I’ve been fascinated by it ever since.  So what exactly is this ‘inciting incident’ and how does it affect a story?
     Inciting comes from the Latin word incitare which means “to put into rapid motion, urge, encourage, and stimulate.” And that’s exactly what your inciting incident is; it’s an event that triggers your hero to “go into motion” and take action.
     Here are other ways to conceptualize the inciting incident:
  • it jolts your hero out of his everyday routine
  • it is the event which sparks the fuse of your plot
  • it’s something that MUST happen in order for your hook–your book’s special premise–to kick in
     So if the inciting incident is the crucial event—the trouble—that sets the whole story in motion - when should it happen? Usually, your inciting incident occurs within the first ten pages of your book, after you’ve introduced the reader to your hero, shared what his everyday life is like, and a few important things in his life that need fixing.
     Then the inciting incident occurs and it starts to change the dynamics of your hero’s life. He (or she) will react to the inciting incident, maybe even resist it. Your hook kicks in and your hero commits to taking the journey (either physical, emotional, psychological or a combination of these) sparked by the inciting incident.
     With some genres, the inciting incident is almost always the same. For example, in a romantic comedy, the inciting incident is the “cute meet” where the two romantic leads meet each other for the first time. In a mystery, the inciting incident is when the first dead body is found.
     Also keep in mind that each of the protagonist’s attempts to resolve the initial and subsequent inciting incidents must end in failure. There can be partial victories, but once an action ends in success, the story is effectively over. Success, in this case, means that all the problems are resolved. That cannot happen until the final scene of the story.

Wednesday, March 26, 2014

Typical...ouch! Jamie Hill

According to Wikipedia (so it must be true) : The word "rejection" was first used in 1415. The original meaning was "to throw" or "to throw back". Makes sense to me.

Every author has a tale about that first rejection. I've told my story numerous outrageous, 120K manuscript and 27 rejection letters...I barely knew what I was doing back then. That book didn't get published until I knocked it down to a tight 60K.

Instead of rehashing that tale, today I'm going to talk about reviews. Obviously the word rejection shouldn't go hand in hand with the word 'reviews', but occasionally, ouch. In my defense, I've received many more good and decent reviews than negative ones. But those first few bad and so-so comments stuck with me.

There was the man (I'm picturing a middle-aged, paunchy man) who didn't care for my first romantic suspense novel and said it read like a romance novel intended for women. Huh? Excuse me? He was obviously not my target audience.

Some reviewers haven't liked my sex scenes, thought the supposedly sexy dialogue was cheesy, and didn't think I'd rounded out my characters enough. These are all points other people/reviewers have loved about my writing, which goes to show taste is subjective. An early reviewer rated my story in an anthology very low, suggesting it smacked of incest because my ghost was acting promiscuous in front of her ghost father.

Oops. My ghost bad. Okay, that one's not available anymore.

A while back I opened my email to another review. I'll share the last line with you.

It is short, which made it easier to get through and fans of the author’s writing may enjoy this story, as it’s typical of the writing and plot of her offerings.

Typical. Ouch.

One of my critics said, "That's just not the type of book I like to read." (I hate to break it to you, Mom, but that's the kind of book I like to write.)

Fortunately, there are people (and reviewers) who like my work and seem to get what I'm trying to do.

Some of my favorites include:

The talented Jamie Hill creates a story of romance and suspense that is both sensual and realistic. 

A short story that will have readers seeing the light that is Jamie Hill.

Jamie Hill is at the top of her game with her new release and I look forward to reading more from her in the future!


Bottom line for me...rejection sucks. It stings, but I try not to sweat the small stuff and take joy where I can find it. The 'light that is Jamie Hill' line brings a smile to my face every time.

Find all my titles here: and if you've enjoyed something I've written, please leave a review on Amazon.

Go ahead, make my day.

~ Jamie

Short Story - Maude, There's A Body - Janet Lane Walters

I began my career writing short stories but I don't write them any more. This is the last one I wrote and it took me more than two...