header('Cache-Control: max-age=259200'); Excerpt Monday Archives – Kristen Koster
Mar 212011
 

Once a month, Bria Quinlan and Alexia Reed host a bunch of authors who get together and post excerpts from published books, contracted work or works in progress, and link to each other. You don’t have to be published to participate–just be a writer with an excerpt you’d like to share. For more info on how to participate, head over to the Excerpt Monday site or click on the banner above!

If you missed the beginning of this story you can find it here: Sweet Temptation 01 or if you only missed last month’s installment, you can find that here: Sweet Temptation 02.
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Feb 212011
 

Once a month, Bria Quinlan and Alexia Reed host a bunch of authors who get together and post excerpts from published books, contracted work or works in progress, and link to each other. You don’t have to be published to participate–just be a writer with an excerpt you’d like to share. For more info on how to participate, head over to the Excerpt Monday site or click on the banner above!

If you missed last month’s installment, you can read it at Sweet Temptation 01.
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Jan 242011
 

Once a month, Bria Quinlan and Alexia Reed host a bunch of authors who get together and post excerpts from published books, contracted work or works in progress, and link to each other. You don’t have to be published to participate–just be a writer with an excerpt you’d like to share. For more info on how to participate, head over to the Excerpt Monday site or click on the banner above!

This month’s excerpt may feel a bit familiar because I’ve featured a snippet of the story here before, but I’d ask that returning readers be patient with me. I’ve decided that in 2011 for Excerpt Mondays instead of jumping all over the place from story to story to instead do an installment from the same story each a month. So from now until December, we’ll be visiting with the same characters and watching to see how their story unfolds.

I’ve come to harbor a certain fondness for this couple, although their story might not be as big as some of my others, it’s still one that I feel I must finish. So without further ado, let’s join Camilla and Hubert on their journey and I hope you come to love them as I have.

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Excerpt Monday: Take 17

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Dec 202010
 

Once a month, Bria Quinlan and Alexia Reed host a bunch of authors who get together and post excerpts from published books, contracted work or works in progress, and link to each other. You don’t have to be published to participate–just be a writer with an excerpt you’d like to share. For more info on how to participate, head over to the Excerpt Monday site or click on the banner above!

This month’s excerpt is from an abandoned holiday themed contemporary. There’s still something about the characters that keeps me from simply deleting the file, so I hope you enjoy this snipped and don’t have to experience anything similar to their travel woes. I’ve got something different in the works for Excerpt Mondays in 2011, but you’ll have to come back in January to find out what exactly. Until then…

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Nov 152010
 

Once a month, Bria Quinlan and Alexia Reed host a bunch of authors who get together and post excerpts from published books, contracted work or works in progress, and link to each other. You don’t have to be published to participate–just be a writer with an excerpt you’d like to share. For more info on how to participate, head over to the Excerpt Monday site or click on the banner above!

This month’s excerpt is an extended version of the opening of Revealed which got a total revamp during Bria’s SYTYCW contest. I learned so much with this contest. I think the biggest thing was that I could tell people that I’m writing a romance novel and most of them didn’t laugh at me. Ok. You got me. None of them did, at least not to my face. The others things I learned were don’t overthink/overwrite the life out of something. Sometimes you have to go with your first instincts and always get someone else to read it before hitting send. If you decide you don’t like the second sentence, for example, you’re stuck with it in this type of contest — make a note in your word file to change it later and move on!

If you’re one of the many that I begged votes from, you can read the original 2400 word version of Marcia’s story by clicking on it. It reveals something of the trauma she experienced at her first ball. After going back and rereading it just now, I’m surprised to see what I’ve kept and what’s been tossed or changed in taking the original 2400 words and expanding it to its current 41,000-word length. It’s definitely still a work in progress.

Read on below to see the new opening chapter and get a chance to meet the hero (if you’re not a regular reader here at the blog).

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Nov 142010
 

Writing as Art IconIn the past three years (Gosh, it doesn’t seem like it’s been that long!), I’ve come to realize that my writing process is quite cyclic in nature. This isn’t so much tied to the time of year when I may or may not have more free time, but feels more like one of those buckets on a waterwheel. First, it dips into the river and scoops until it’s overflowing, along the trip up out of the river, some may splash out, but really it empties in one big dump to contine back around again for another refill.

Sketch of a water wheel by Jon Constable, Oct 11, 1814I seem to always be in one of those two modes, where I’m either pulling all sorts of things into my brain or dumping them back out again. The river of information includes several sources such as books, blogs or workshops on the craft of writing, published novels both in Regency Romance as well as any other out there (and sometimes the further the better), poking around into various research sources, as well as just plain ol’ people watching. Depletion of these creative stores is where the actual writing and idea generation come in. Once my head is stuffed full of ideas and they have a chance to percolate, they simply must escape again.

The problems come when I foolishly try to work against this cycle. I should know better by now that trying to generate new word count when I’m in need of an inflow period, it isn’t going to be pretty. Talk about a feeling of writer’s block. Oddly enough, reading an article or book on the craft of writing while in the middle of an outflow period, doesn’t switch the flow, it just doesn’t click or get absorbed as well.

Since returning to writing mode late last spring, I’ve been busy building word count and struggling to reach “The End” of Beneath His Touch. The good news is that I have something written for the whole plot line. The problem I’m up against now is that I need to go back and layer in actions, descriptions and thoughts around the runs of dialogue that went down so smoothly in the past couple months and every word is like pulling teeth.

I’ve been fighting the urge to set it aside and work on something else, anything else, because it feels so close to be able to say, it’s done, but I know it isn’t. Also, my critique partner is ready to kill me over the cliffhanger chapter endings and she KNOWS she’s only 4 chapters from the end. I’m nearly done with chapter 18, but the thought of doing two more chapters is killing me.

Because of Veteran’s Day, the kids had a four-day weekend. This translated into more segmented time for me, especially since their dad was home sick one day there as well. I made the mistake of picking up a craft book. Yup, I have even less desire to go work on those last two chapters now. I want to either start a new project or go back to page one and rework all the progress I’ve made in the last three years on this one. And I said I picked up “ONE” craft book right? Wrong. I may have said one, but that lead to at least two others as the weekend progressed.

The great thing about going back and rereading these books is that after letting them percolate for a while and trying out some of the techniques, those ideas become assimilated and internalized. So it’s a great feeling to go back and read them again to find that I get something new from the text, or something that didn’t quite make sense before, suddenly clicks.

My brain is telling me that I’m ready to embark on my next journey of study. But I’ll be good. I’ll force myself to flesh out these last two chapters, but then look out! I’m ready to dive in and conquer plotting. Yep! I seem to be going about this completely backwards, but I believe it’ll all be good in the end. By the time I figure out how to string scenes together effectively, all the other stuff will hopefully be second nature.

If you know of any good books, workshops or websites discussing plot, I’d love to hear them!

So much for a post about what I learned by finaling in the SYTYCW contest, but I think I covered that in the introduction to my Excerpt Monday post that will go up tomorrow morning with the extended opening of Marcia’s story: Revealed. So come back tomorrow to check that out!

Excerpt Monday: Take 15

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Oct 182010
 

Once a month, Bria Quinlan and Alexia Reed host a bunch of authors who get together and post excerpts from published books, contracted work or works in progress, and link to each other. You don’t have to be published to participate–just be a writer with an excerpt you’d like to share. For more info on how to participate, head over to the Excerpt Monday site or click on the banner above!

This month’s excerpt isn’t exactly an excerpt, but more of the spark for one of my works in progress, Sweet Temptation, a Regency-set Romantic Comedy which explores issues of identity and gender. Part of the idea came from listening to When I Was a Boy by Dar Williams and speculating on what would happen to similar characters in the Regency Era. The identity issues came from the similarity of the two female friends’ names and wondering what if neither the heroine or the hero are who they present themselves to be. Then I thought, “But what if they fall in love with each others true selves?”

I thought it might be interesting to share this behind the scenes look for a change. Where do you find your inspiration?
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Sep 202010
 

Once a month, Bria Quinlan and Alexia Reed host a bunch of authors who get together and post excerpts from published books, contracted work or works in progress, and link to each other. You don’t have to be published to participate–just be a writer with an excerpt you’d like to share. For more info on how to participate, head over to the Excerpt Monday site or click on the banner above!

This month’s excerpt is drawn from early on in The Flower Queen’s Daughter.

As always, any comments or criticisms are welcome.
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Jul 192010
 

Once a month, Bria Quinlan and Alexia Reed host a bunch of authors who get together and post excerpts from published books, contracted work or works in progress, and link to each other. You don’t have to be published to participate–just be a writer with an excerpt you’d like to share. For more info on how to participate, head over to the Excerpt Monday site or click on the banner above!

This month’s excerpt is drawn again from Beneath His Touch and comes after the last excerpt where Tabitha has gone off to talk sense into James’ cousin who has run away from home, only to get kidnapped herself.

As always, any comments or criticisms are welcome.
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Jun 212010
 

Once a month, Bria Quinlan and Alexia Reed host a bunch of authors who get together and post excerpts from published books, contracted work or works in progress, and link to each other. You don’t have to be published to participate–just be a writer with an excerpt you’d like to share. For more info on how to participate, head over to the Excerpt Monday site or click on the banner above!

This month’s excerpt is drawn again from Beneath His Touch and comes a bit after the last excerpt where James, Tabitha and his cousins attended Astley’s Amphitheatre for the first time.

As always, any comments or criticisms are welcome.
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