Wednesday, August 17, 2011

Tough to Be a Kreative Stylish Blogger on Fire

 I have been absent from posting for a time now, due to illness, stress and gremlins. And mustn't forget the ogre attack. That was quite the dramatic event, thank goodness my gladiator Muse and I were able to beat them back. Then there was the hydra! Five heads is a lot of bad breath.....

Well instead of any more excuses as to why I haven't been posting let's just kick off a new posting goal with some fun. During my hiatus I was given three great awards by three fantastic people and bloggers.

The Kreative Blogger Award. Was bestowed by Rose Wade of Outlaw's pRose. Thank you my Sis-in Heart and Bestest friend :)

The Stylish Blog Award by Don Smith of Geezer Sayz Thanks so much Don for your kindness :) Geezer Sayz always gives me a smile.

The Blog on Fire Award by Kathleen Doyle of Writing, Reading, And Life  Thank you Kathleen! Love reading about your journey with your first book :)
 I'm going to cover them all in one post since all three awards have the same rules. Those rules are to post 7 things about yourself, then chose 7 blogs to pass the honors to.

I love these blog awards because it gives us a chance to break the mold if you have a subject themed blog. Mine is mostly writing, though I do step out of the box once in a while :)  But we can share apart of ourselves with our readers and fellow bloggers. Okay, okay before the ogres come back for round two .....

7 Kreative Stylish and Firey things about me

1. Some of you know this but I found my long lost Sister-in-Heart on the Russel Crowe Fan Fic Board. Yes, I play in fan fic land :) Hey wait you got 2 on that one ... ooo you're sneaky. Rose and I started writing together on RCFF then chatting and we haven't missed a day since November of 2007. Love ya Sis!  (she's the keeper of my sanity some days just so you know how important she is :)

2. One of my favorite places in the wold is St. Augustine, Florida. It's the oldest city in the United States and one of the most haunted. Walking down the streets you can feel the history of the place. You might even get lucky and have a ghostly experience or two :)

3. I am a green belt in Tae Kwan Do.

4. For being Kreative, not only to I write, but I love to play with graphic arts. I do book covers, banners, buttons, avatars, web backgrounds....  you can check that out at EV Designs

5. One of my favorite stories is The Fall of the House of Usher by Edgar Allen Poe. Poe may have hit the bottle of Absinthe a bit too often but he really knew how to chill a reader.

6. My Style is pretty casual. I'm happiest in jeans and my favorite NaNoWriMo tee. I do love to dress up though. I like deep rich colors in my clothes and everything else. I'm def. not a pink girl :P

7.  And as for being Kreative and Stylish while on Fire, I was a volunteer fire fighter for over 10 years. After the Wildfires in 2000, the volunteers of my station were given The Distinguished Service Award by Governor Jeb Bush.

Alrighty then... *looks around for Jim Carrey, then shakes head.... Now it's time to nominate 7 other worthy bloggers.  To my Nominees pick the award you think best suits your blog and style and go for it!  

1.  Rose Wade and Outlaw's pRose 
3. Tessa of Tessa's Blurb  
4. Amanda of Simply's Blog  
5. Michelle of Crafts From the Moon  
6. Lisa McCourt Hollar of Jezri's Nightmares 
7. MJ Goodnow of Red Sector N 

I hope you enjoyed this little foray into blogging awards. Next post coming up will be back to our usual fun :) Coming up soon, I promise! 

Until then ... Happy Scribbles :) 

Tuesday, August 9, 2011

Character Recipe

A cup of action hero, a dash of debonair,  a pinch of mystery, or a sprinkle of good looks what makes a character unforgettable?  There are characters we watch faithfully every week on TV, read every book written about them. Even some we write and just can’t stop at one story.

These characters have something that draws us into their world. It’s different for everyone. The same as everyone has a favorite ice cream flavor, they have a favorite character or character type.

There’s no perfect recipe in fact you don’t want any character to be perfect. It’s those, flaws and vulnerabilities that make us fall in love. To find out what it is that will give your character the right quirk you need to ask them questions.

Yes, I’m asking you to go a lil crazy and talk to imaginary people for a few minutes. You might even have fun doing it. Sit down and ask them a few things about their personality, their wants, needs and goals. Do they think they can achieve the lofty goal you’ve set out for them?

You might even ask what they don’t like, do they have a secret you haven’t been told yet. Or about an event in their past that doesn’t even take place in the book or story. Is it something that they just want to tell you or is it something that could better build your plot?

You might be surprised at the interesting things characters will tell you about themselves. Or even another character in their story, yeah who figured they like juicy gossip as much as we do.  J

To help in plunder for the right spice to add to your recipe here’s a short questionnaire to ask darlings.

1. What kind of childhood did the character have?
2. Was there an event during the early years of life that impacted their future?
3. How do they deal with conflict or change?
4. How do they feel about falling in love/ relationships?
5. What do they want most that doesn’t have to do with the goal of the story?
6. Do they have something they hate/ dislike?
7. Do they believe in God/ faith?
8. What would make them change sides even temporarily? (ie… from a good law abiding person to committing a crime)
9. Do they have keepsakes of their past?
10. Is there someone in their story besides the obvious villain they have concerns about or don’t quite trust? 

This post is part of the Fellow Writers Blog Hop that takes place the 2nd Tuesday of each month. Want to read more great blogs about this months topic Character Building? Just click the Fellow Writers logo at the top of this post or go to that page of this blog for the linky listing of all participating blogs.  Happy Hopping! 

Monday, August 1, 2011

Author Chat with M.J. Goodnow

Gladiator's Pen welcomes author MJ Goodnow to the Ludus. He is a man with a message to inspire others. So get comfortable and refill your cuppa as we chat.

Tell us about M J Goodnow
 Well, I was born in New London, Connecticut and made my way around the tri-state area of Connecticut, New York and New Jersey. Eventually settling in Minneapolis.
I studied to become a Jesuit Priest before I realized the priesthood wasn’t for me. Now I am a Deans List student at Ashford University, a father and an author.
When did you begin writing?
 1990, to be exact.
I was a student of the game at Norwich Free Academy. It started with 5 or 6 short stories and became what is now Red Storm Regime.
You’ve recently released two novels Evolution of the Fallen and Red Storm RegimeEvolution of the Fallen centers around four mentally challenged teens. What inspired the idea for this novel?  
As a young adult counselor at an agency in Connecticut, I saw the horrors of mental illness and trauma. I too suffer from PTSD, which in-fact, is the reason I write. To let go, get it out, and to find recovery through my writing and hopefully inspiring others.

Red Storm Regime you penned with Maria Pacha. Please tell us a bit about this story.
Red Storm Regime, or the codename RG is, was, and what it is. A glimpse into the mind I carried when I was a reckless teenager living  with PTSD and having been staring into walls, passed those walls and to the now.

Do you find it difficult to Co-author a novel?
No, our worlds seem to never collide with it’s story and necessary evils. There are times when words “no” and “yes” are used for deliberate purposes of the story.

These books are very different Evolution of the Fallen is a YA and Red Storm Regime is Sci Fi / Fantasy. Do you have a preference on a specific genre you like to write in?
I by my peers am considered a multi genre author. So be it.

Do you find one genre harder to write than the other?
I do, especially with research and insight into something I do know. If I don’t know about a certain thing, I don’t write about it. If I do, for instance Evolution, I’ll put my head on the chopping block to advocate for something I strongly believe in.
Inquiring minds want to know… What your favorite coffee house drink is
A bit of Columbian regular coffee with a mix of french vanilla. I am weird, geesh.
Do you have a writing space or routine? 
Late nights and early mornings are specific times for me.

Is there a message or something you want your readers to be able to get out of your books?
There is always pain and suffering, but we always must rise against it, to defeat it.

Tell us 3 things people may not know about M.J. Goodnow
I am an ordained minister
Black is my favorite color
I have two children and a loving fiance
Where can we find you and your books?