Saturday, October 22, 2016

A Simple Whack Upside The Head

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A Simple Whack Upside The Head

“Okay, one thing he is, is a son-of-a-bitch,” Julia-Rae swore as she popped the lens cap off one of her two 35mm digital cameras and stared at the obscene crack running crookedly across the lens. The camera was useless to her now. Her cheeks burned with rage as she flung it over her shoulder and stormed down the trail. “Lack of oxygen or not at this altitude, I’ll be damned. No man is going to bowl me over, disturb my shots, wreck my camera, and take off without at least a decent apology. Mr. Name, or no name magnificent tight cheeks, has a few things coming his way.” Julia-Rae yanked her sleeves up. “Oh, I’m so and so and I’m so sorry I’ve bowled you over. Here let me offer you a hand up; it’s the least I can do for you. MEN!” She fumed.
That insidious temper that had got her into so much trouble in the past sank its long, evil claws into her again. As her dad, Dennis McNaughton, would often tell her, “God didn’t plant that wavy pile of red hair on your head to act as traffic lights.”
“You maybe the sexiest man I’ve seen in a long time, but you aren’t getting away with this.” The fire that gripped her heart now had also served her well in the past. It had gotten Julie-Rae through many trials and helped her to stay in command of her life. Of course, it had gotten her in a whole heap of trouble.
Turning a corner of the trail Julia-Rae spied the culprit crouched over staring at something on the stonewall foundations of the ancient city of Machu Picchu. She untied her handkerchief, twirled it taunt and held it like a slingshot. “Here Mr. Magnificent Great Ass, let’s see how you like this!”
That is the opening scene to my novel Shuddered Seduction. I learned a long time ago not to open a novel with ‘It was a dark and stormy night’ and expect to pull your reader in. Smack them upside the head with action and place them head spinning and all into the middle of it.
What if Charles Schulz opened with this instead: Lightning sizzled, hammering away the darkness and in lost in the deafening clap of thunder the clank of metal typewriter keys midst a hot wooden roof.
I think Snoopy would have gone on to be entered into literary contests and not stick to having intimate chats with feathered friends. Not to mention the fact that he’s lucky he’s never been struck by lightning.
Of course one could simply whack someone upside the head and drag them kicking and screaming into the bookstore to buy your novel. Sounds like what Mr. King does. No wonder he’s made a buck or two.

Okay next month I’ll talk about having the sense to immerse your reader so that they feel like they are there in the book with your characters.  Yes, it’s like literally drowning them with words. Which is easier to swim out of. Did I ever mention I can’t swim?

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Also coming soon from Books We Love

Agatha Christie, roll over in your grave, new sleuths on the prowl.  Haida shaman Charlie Stillwaters convinces Carol Ainsworth, a Vancouver detective, to join him as he breaks his way into a high security prison. The duo are determined to find out who killed the previous native elder before all lightning and thunder breaks loose. They encounter deranged inmates, mystical beings, ancient serpents, wood sprites and someone who should have been dead long ago.
Not your usual crime/mystery!
Not your usual criminal investigators!
You thought Jack Nicholson was mad in The Shining
Wait until you meet Charlie Stillwaters in the Sweat lodge.

Frank Talaber’s Writing Style? He usually responds with: Mix Dan Millman (Way of The Peaceful Warrior) with Charles De Lint (Moonheart) and throw in a mad scattering of Tom Robbins (Even Cowgirls Get The Blues). 
PS: He’s better looking than Stephen King (Carrie, The Stand, It, The Shining) and his romantic stuff will have you gasping quicker than Robert James Waller (Bridges Of Madison County).
Or as is often said: You don’t have to be mad to be a writer, but it sure helps.

Writer by soul. Words born within. 
Karma the seed. Paper the medium.  
Pen the muse. Novels the fire.
Twitter: @FrankTalaber