In my day-to-day life, I am a library lady and as such library things interest me. In a meeting with our programming department, we jokingly asked if we could get Neil Gaiman as the author for our NaNoWriMo after-hours party this November. Mr. Gaiman’s appearance fee is a well-earned $30,000—so, no go. But have you heard the man speak? He is SO motivating.
I am no Neil Gaiman.
But in my 20+ years of writing, I have developed a small set of advice that I keep close to my heart. For the low, low price of NO DOLLARS, I want to share it with you now.
Be brave in all things.
Writing is scary. Writing can be downright terrifying even. If you aren’t scared of writing, there is always sharing your stories, editing, soliciting for publication, blurb writing, release day, promo, reviews, self-doubt, and the NEXT story. There’s always something to be nervous about. That’s why you must be brave to pursue your dreams.
The bolder the better. Don’t let anyone set limitation on your story. Write with the graceful wordcraft of an adult and the imagination of a child.
Write for yourself.
Money is awesome. Writing and getting paid to write? Awesomely awesome. But writing FOR money? It’s taxing. It’s draining. I don’t care if you are following trends or not as long as, at the heart of it, you are saying something meaningful for yourself. Speak with your voice, not the voice they want you to have.
You have a lifetime of stories, they don’t have to all be written today.
This is not my advice—it is my friend Lisa’s. She drilled it into my head. When you craft, craft with precision and care. The goal is not to write 100 mediocre stories when a little more effort and a little more time would produce five AMAZING stories.
You are a creative being.
Prove it! Write, draw, sing, knit, garden, dance, bake, design, sew, anything. Get your fingers moving and your brain flowing. Be creative in all things!
We’ve all been told at one point or another that dreams are for babies and dreaming is pointless. SCREW. THAT. Dream big! Dream bold! Dream in defiance! DREAM. And then do something about those dreams.
I believe in you,
Sweet Giordan, Please Remember by Raine O’Tierney
Giordan Stone is lucky, all things considered. Sure, he spent five years in a coma only to wake with a right leg that’s practically useless and no memories other than his name. But now he’s under the care of sassy southern surrogate mother, Chloe Devereaux, spending his days painting and healing. Giordan wants for nothing at all… until he looks out the window one morning and sees Chloe’s gorgeous son, Shane, standing there. Something very familiar stirs in Giordan.
When he sketches, Giordan is able to go into an “art trance” where pieces of disjointed memory come back to him without time or place. More and more of these flashes are of Shane Devereaux and the intense, intimate experiences they shared together. Even though Shane keeps his distance now, Giordan is convinced his flashes are real. But he doesn’t have the whole story. Giordan is determined to fill in his memory blanks and convince Shane his feelings are genuine.
Self-consciously, he glanced up, but Chloe was walking away from the truck, giving him privacy to do what he loved. With no eyes on him or his paper, Giordan laid the sketchbook down and carefully took an eraser to the light age lines on Shane’s face. He softened the look in his eyes, trimmed and then erased entirely his beard, and made him smile—just a little. The effect was so utterly charming that Giordan sank lower into the bed of the truck, more a boy with his first crush than a grown man.
Another clean page. He drew Shane’s face again. This time with more detail, taking special care to get the shape of his ears, his nose, his mouth—a wicked grin on his face—just right. He looked like Chloe in some ways—same green eyes but lighter skin—a blending of Chloe’s coffee and Mr. Devereaux’s cream. Shane’s jaw and brow were his father’s, but his well-defined cheekbones, full beautiful lips, and deep dimple came from some unknown ancestor. To say he was merely attractive was to do him a disservice.
“It’s going to rain.” A voice purred in Giordan’s brain, a deep, seductive, slightly familiar voice.
“We should go back in,” Giordan whispered down at the paper. He sketched Shane’s nostrils, his eyelashes, the intricate lines of his ears, all those hidden, beautiful things.
“Not a chance. I finally get you out here. You think I’m going to let a little rain stop me?”
“We’re going to get caught,” Giordan insisted. He was speaking out loud as if reading a script, and he could barely see the paper anymore. Was he making this all up? He could hear the voice so clearly in his head. “Your parents are—”
“In France. Be with me.”
It started with silliness. They were supposed to have a picnic. Sandwiches and wine in the shade of the new green leaves. But then Shane hoisted him up into his arms and carried Giordan to the grove, a wicked grin on his face.
“I’m not a princess,” Giordan, much younger then, reminded him with a fake look of disapproval. He kicked two good legs. “I don’t need to be carried!”
Shane had put out a blanket and laid Giordan down on it. “Maybe I just want to carry you. Whether you need it or not.”
Wind rustled the leaves of the trees, and a sweet smell filled the air. It was definitely going to rain.
“I can’t believe I agreed to this,” he murmured.
“I don’t know why. We’ve done it a hundred times before.”
“Not outside we haven’t!” Giordan protested.
“No one’s going to see,” Shane promised.
“Well, then maybe I don’t care whether or not anyone sees.”
Raine O’Tierney is an always-writing, boundlessly enthusiastic, exclamation point addict! (!!!) She is known for declaring every day “the best day EVER!” and every thing her “all-time FAVORITE!” Despite this (obnoxious?) exuberance, she still somehow manages to have a wonderfully encouraging husband and writing partner, Siôn, and an amazing group of friends and colleagues who continue to support (read: put up with) her. Raine spends her days working as a library lady, fighting the good fight for intellectual freedom.
Website and social media links
The Hat Party (LGBT Author Interviews) http://raineotierneyhatparty.blogspot.com/
Blog Tour and Prizes!
Sweet Giordan, Please Remember Blog Tour
March 17th–March 29th
*** Set of Sweet Giordan, Please Remember and Under the Table and Into His Heart ebooks
*** I Believe in the Sweetness Notebook
*** I Believe in the Sweetness Tote
*** 2x I Believe in the Sweetness Bumper Stickers
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