Please welcome my guest poster, Pete Barber the author of Love Poison. Although Pete claims to have English roots, I do believe for this post he also kissed the Blarney Stone. 🙂
Do give his book a read, I don’t think you’ll regret it. You can read the first chapter: Love Poison – Excerpt or if you don’t have time for a full chapter – read the description here. Don’t forget to enter the rafflecopter giveaway (entry form below).
During my second year of learning how to write fiction, I joined an online writing group. I was apprehensive (crapping myself, actually) about communicating with other writers, even online. At that stage I hadn’t told anyone except my wife what I was trying to achieve, and I certainly didn’t call myself a writer. I was a total newbie. Clueless. My stories were directionless, my writing full of passive-voice and bloated with unnecessary words and mind-numbing telling. I knew it was crap, but I didn’t know how to make it better. Susan was the first member of the writing group to send me a message. A simple, “Welcome to the group.”
It meant a lot.
I clicked over to her profile and read one of her fantasy pieces. It was terrific. Her imaginative, medieval-like worlds were filled with magic and folk lore and populated with characters who conveyed honor and duty. I felt hopeless again. What could I offer this accomplished writer, and what would she say if she saw my pathetic efforts. I did make a comment–something along the lines of, “This is wonderful. Why aren’t you published?”
When I posted my first words, Susan was there for me, offering guidance and more importantly, support. She gave me the courage to keep on; she pointed me to useful articles; she suggested other writers from whom I might learn and she made the introductions. And because Susan recommended me, they critiqued my work, and helped me stretch and grow.
Over the last five years, Susan has read more of my words than any other person (except me). She’s one of the few to experience my close-to-pornographic erotica (sorry, again L). She’s been my alpha and beta reader. Heck, she even made her husband read my first novel!
Without Susan’s chapter-by-chapter prompting to keep Amber’s character on track, Love Poison wouldn’t be the same story today.
Which is why it’s such an honor to guest on Susan’s blog. Everyone needs the help of others to learn to write good fiction—a fresh eye to see the flaws, a kind word when the words don’t make sense. I was fortunate to find Susan. Long may the Twin Gods’ blue magic fill your head with dreams of duty and honor.
Thank you, my friend.