Wednesday, September 26, 2012

Favorite Passage

Haven't posted a favorite passage lately. This one particularly struck me as moving. This is a fantasy set in a feudal, pre-industrial society. The "Ardentians" below are captives at the end of a drawn out war.

"I offer you what I offered every other warrior that followed Gach."
They had no doubt seen Ardentians they recognized riding in one of the three wings. Yet they hesitated, overly long. Justen's gut ached. Would he have to give the order for more deaths? Sweat etched his upper lip.
No! Your deaths aren't worth loyalty to lords who used you like that!
Heads bobbed, as the warriors conferred. Perhaps it was worth the precedent, of putting them aboard ships and sending them home? He wasn't above striking new boundaries. He'd done it with the four masters at Coast. Maybe. Maybe that is as it should be. Warriors who could expect repatriation might surrender more readily in the future, which would save more lives.
But that isn't our way.
What the hell was there to discuss?
It means you keep your caste! Your lives!
The minutes passed. The sky darkened. Finally nods worked through the forty. An elder among them stood.
"Aye. We accept your offer, my Lord."
Justen dizzied for a three-count. His vision cleared, but his tight chest didn't allow him to breathe. He turned to get away. A leader of men couldn't be seen as weak, emotional.

Untitled sequel to Lord Regent.

Have a great day!

-R. Mac Wheeler
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Sunday, September 23, 2012

Pix-Sunday Sufari – Dunedin, FL

Traipsed over to the gulf coast this morning. Strolled along the intra-coastal between Clearwater and Dunedin. Hope you enjoy.

I wonder if Gilligan is running around out there?

What are these fresh water ducks doing on the intra-coastal?

The Dunedin Marina

I immediately got thirsty

This guy ignored me...he was staring down a fisherman cleaning his catch.

One of the main bridges connecting Clearwater Beach.

I haven't been very lucky getting a good shot of an osprey. They are such cool birds of prey.

Some really, gorgeous-to-die-for homes in Dunedin

Made me want to go cruising

Have a great week!

-R. Mac Wheeler
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Thursday, September 20, 2012

Great Beta Feedback

I received some of the best beta-reader feedback yesterday. No surprise, this character-action-leaning writer was encouraged to add setting. Evidently, it's hard to get into a fantasy world if the setting is dribbled out too thinly throughout the novel.

Go figure.

She recommended a 'caste diagram,' to go along with my map for Lord Regent. What do you think about this?

-R. Mac Wheeler
Home PageContact me On KindleOn NookSunday Safaris

Wednesday, September 19, 2012


If the point to blog is to build a rapport
Ask yourself...why do you want to piss off the people you are trying to reach, by using validation on your comments?

If validation comes up...from now on I'm just clicking out.

I'm done with that.

Where the HECK are we? Guest Post, Angie Cothran

Thanks to the mysterious R. Mac Wheeler for asking me to post today. He asked, "Where does your writing fall in the matrix of PLOT-CHARACTER-ACTION-SETTING?"

Of course, they are all important and most authors make sure to use them all, but let’s be honest we all have a favorite. And I must be weird because not many people share my favorite—SETTING.

I believe without a really strong setting our stories aren't grounded.  Setting can make all the difference. Let me give just a quick example. Here are a few lines of generic dialogue.

“Did you see them?” she asked brushing the hair from her eyes.
He glanced over his shoulder. “No, but I heard them. Isn’t that enough?”

Kind of boring. Now put it in a setting and everything changes. What if you have a couple hiding from zombies in a burned out hospital, or a couple making out in the car at her parents drive way, or two people waiting in line at a concert? Every setting changes the context of the dialogue.

Setting can also immediately give a scene emotion faster than anything else can. How does a rain storm make you feel, or a hot day, or a nursing home, or a windswept moor, or an abandoned store front? I could go on and on.

If you still aren’t convinced ask yourself, “Where would these stories be without their settings?”

Chronicles of Narnia
Harry Potter
Hunger Games
Lord of the Rings
The Help
The Book Thief
Percy Jackson
I could list a million…

I strongly believe that setting should be treated as another character. Give your setting a history, a voice, movement, emotion, a roll to play. So this is my impassioned plea to all aspiring authors, DON’T FORGET THE SETTING.

Hogwarts picture attributed to GunnerVV 

-R. Mac Wheeler
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Monday, September 17, 2012

Amend Article II

I interrupt my normal foolishness for a social rant.

How many times has your phone rung during dinner? And we still have seven weeks until the election.

Imagine what we could accomplish in this country with the BILLIONS being spent on the upcoming presidential election. We could beat heart disease, cancer, and probably find homes for all the unwanted pets in our shelters.

My leisurely Saturday motorcycle ride was interrupted by a motorcade. Have you ever seen one of those motorcades? Talk about shock and awe. A dozen black SUVs, flashing lights, sirens, surrounded by dozens of police cars and motorcycle cops, shutting down every intersection within ten miles. The money saved on ONE motorcade could end poverty in the US.

I think the US president holds too much power anyway. Elect the president from within the Senate. The twist: Elected from the MINORITY party (no…not the Green Party…the party with the second number of members in-quorum). We never want the legislature and executive branches held by the same party. That is always a debacle. Make them work together, or nothing changes. No change can be better than the wrong change.

Kicker: Power changes anytime the president loses a vote of confidence. (One thing I like in European politics.)

Let's end the madness.

Dang, I'm smart. Who's with me?

-R. Mac Wheeler
Home PageContact me On KindleOn NookSunday Safaris

Sunday, September 16, 2012

PIX Sunday Safari – Al Lopez Park

The weather here in Florida, thankfully, has transitioned from spike-in-the-forehead-miserable, to simply sweat-your-brain-dry-hot. The overcast sky helped a little. It was only 90 degrees and 94% humidity. Almost winter. Hope you enjoy the pix.

Someone left Wilson to the gators.

There was love in the air for these two. Serious flirting.

This is the Cancer Survivors Plaza

And across the street is Ray-J, where our Bucs play...

The opposite corner is where the Yankees do their spring training.

Have a great week!

-R. Mac Wheeler
Home PageContact me On KindleOn NookSunday Safaris