Friday, July 30, 2010

The Final Word ... "A Date to Die For"

To continue the story, Lilly and Kline go to Stone Mountain, but not for site-seeing. Their agenda? Rescue Millie and find a murderer.

On the way, I had time to mull over recent events. Stone had a major movie deal in the works, and then he is murdered. I find myself at the crime scene, get conked on the head, and accused of the murder. This being after an incriminating note is planted in my handbag. Somehow the movie contract has Stone's signature on it, along with Orville's, the one person who gains all profit from the deal posthumously, and Earl's. So, in my mind, that narrowed down the possible suspects to Orville and Earl. Though circumstances seemed to point more toward Earl Honeyville as the murderer, I wasn't convinced. What needled me with doubt was his capability to pull it off, solo. He just seemed too much of a flake to me.
"You know, I've been thinking. What if Earl had help."


"Yeah. Let's say he murdered Stone, but had help." Inside my head the wheels kept rolling.

"Like who? Orville?"

"Maybe." The wheels came to an abrupt halt. "It wasn't killer squirrels. It was kill her Earl!" I pulled up straight and grinned at Kline who by now gave me that look.

Read the grand finale by visiting my website. And if the urge tickles you, drop a line in my guestbook :-) Cheers!

Kathryn Long's Booknook

Thursday, July 29, 2010

Name That Novel #23

Let's see what you can do with this American author's work.

"Look at the ugliness. Yet one has a feeling within one that blinds a man while he loves you. You, with that feeling, blind him, and blind yourself. Then, one day, for no reason, he sees you as ugly as you really are and he is not blind anymore and then you see yourself as ugly as he sees you and you lose your man and your feeling... After a while, when you are as ugly as I am, as ugly as women can be, then, as I say after a while the feeling, the idiotic feeling that you are beautiful, grows slowly in one again. It grows like a cabbage. And then, when the feeling is grown, another man sees you and thinks you are beautiful and it is all to do over."

Title and author name, please!

Good luck :-) Congrats to Joel with the correct answer: For Whom the Bell Tolls by Hemingway

Friday, July 23, 2010

A Date to Die For -- Part IV

Lilly finds herself in deep doodoo. She scrambles to discover evidence that will prove her innocence and find the one who murdered her date. . .

Atlanta Movies Inc. sat on the outskirts of the city. The movie set consisted of some indoor studios and several buildings on the outdoor lot. Kline and I found an empty parking space in the visitor's lot.

"Okay, let's go over this one more time," I said. "I show them my press credentials and start up a dialog. Once I get them to take me on a tour of the studio, you pretend like you're ill. They'll let you stay in the office. And then when you're alone you can snoop to find the contract. Simple."

Read more at:

Kathryn Long's BookNook

Saturday, July 17, 2010

Redundancy, Being Redundant, Are You Redundant?

In a previous post I mentioned the unwise usage of trite expressions in your writing. Now, here's the second half of that topic: redundancy. Yes, we are all guilty of it. There are words in our "stable" of vocabulary that are favorites and used constantly, especially in our first drafts. Mine is "then" and "of course". When going through the editing stages (and I do mean plural of that -- you should make at least 2 or 3 or however many times it takes to make your story "perfect") I perform a word search of words I use too often. That way I can come of with a different wording, phrasing, or at least a substitute word. Of course, you as the writer will notice these words more than the reader, most likely. Still, it's your creation and you want it to your satisfaction, right?

Okay, that's a way to deal with certain words. For instance, you can't really shorten the word "then". But what about those phrases where being more consise would help? If you write "twelve midnight" do you really need the word "twelve"? Just write "midnight". Or "in the event that" can become "if". It's a personal choice, after all, and there are plenty of accomplished and reknowned authors who are quite verbose in their style. William Faulker or Stephen King, for instance. But then those such as Steinbeck show sparse detail, i.e. get to the point, no fluff, no fuss, just be clear enough. The following page has a chart listing of several example phrases and how you can tighten them up. Worth a look, I'd say. (Make sure you scroll down the page a bit to find the chart.)

Here's to being consise!

Writing Consise

Thursday, July 15, 2010

Check it Out ... Weekly Websites

Here are a couple of sites that give multitudes of information on writing, publishing, contests, etc. They are worth checking out:

Writer Advice -- not only provides advice, but also showcases author work and websites in their reviews. An added bonus is their listing of contests and markets.

Writing Fix -- for teachers and students as well as writers, known as home of the interactive writing prompt, this site provides many tips and resources, including information about workshops and classes.

Explore and enjoy!

The Plot Thickens -- continuing "A Date to Die For"

"I just want to know what you've got," Kline argued.

I could hear him on the other side of the wall. While I sat in a holding cell, Kline and the Captain had a heated discussion.

"You can't arrest her with your only defense being she was found there with the body. Hell, she was knocked out cold. Who did that?"

"I'm certainly aware of the law, detective. We have other evidence. And it's not circumstantial."

"And what would that evidence be?"

I wanted to emit an "oh, oh" because I recognized that undertone in Kline's voice. He seldom used it. Only when his anger thermometer rose above one hundred. And it wasn't pretty. I decided maybe the Captain detected it, too, because he offered up the information without anymore persuasion.

"We found a note in her handbag."

To read more, visit:

Kathryn Long's BookNook

Monday, July 12, 2010

Litbits: Stories from Me

I've created a new and budding website to showcase my work. One of the pages will have a continuing storyline. Please feel free to check out the mystery mayhem in "A Date to Die For".

Kathryn Long's BookNook

"I love book signings. They give me a chance to socialize after a very long stint in hermit-like existence. And like most writers I enjoy being able to create and control my make believe world. What I don't love is when my real world gets messy. There's no control in that. Like murder, for instance. That's real messy. So, it's understandable that the book event in Atlanta changed my opinion about book signings. About a lot of things, actually. Murder does that to a person."

Tuesday, July 6, 2010

Name That Novel #22

It's about time I posted another quote. Here's one from the past, but not too distant. And his work ventured into movies and comics until I believe there was a true cult following. See what you can come up with -- title and author.

"In fact he met the brute midway in its charge, striking its huge body with his closed fists and as futilely as he had been a fly attacking an elephant. But in one hand he still clutched the knife he had found in the cabin of his father, and as the brute, striking and biting, closed upon him the boy accidentally turned the point toward the hairy breast. As the knife sank deep into its body the gorilla shrieked in pain and rage. . . .

A vivid and blinding light flashed from the whirling, inky clouds above. The deep cannonade of roaring thunder belched forth its fearsome challenge. The deluge came--all hell broke loose upon the jungle."

Good luck fellow readers! Congrats to Tina for the correct answer! Tarzan and Burroughs

Another Pointing in the Right Direction

Interested in learning about the trend book-buying is taking? Here's a power point presentation put out by Verso Digital that through survey information answers a lot of questions concerning this topic.

Book-buying Trends