Books | Release Blitz - Guest Post - All Shook Up

Do you recall the First Look I hosted a week or so ago for All Shook Up? If not you can read it by clicking here. Well today I have a treat for you because author Chelsey Krause is celebrating publication day and has not only agreed to take over A Page of Fictional Love for the day, but... BUT she has 10 top tips for writing a novel!! Yes, TEN tips for you if you're interested in writing a novel! AND.... I have a cheeky excerpt for you as well. I know I am far too good to you but I love you all so much that I just have to spoil you like I do!

I've always fancied my hand at writing something fictional and this only got heightened when I studied creative writing for my degree at University. So, I don't know about you but I'm about to try and become Teacher's Pet by avidly taking notes throughout the take-over today because I wouldn't mind learning a few tips and seeing if I can put those to good use! BTW (I did not just break top tip number 10!) So, shall we all grab a cuppa, and a seat (and a pretty notebook and cute pen!) and let's pay attention and get some amazing tips from Chelsey! 

Advice on Writing a Novel
  1. Every writer needs to know and understand the elements of good story telling before they can write. Learn these elements and build your writer’s “toolkit” by reading these three books: On Writing: A Memoir of the Craft by Stephen King, How to Write Screenplays that Sell by Michael Hauge, and Story Fix: Transform Your Novel from Broken to Brilliant by Larry Brooks.

  1. After learning the basics, believe in yourself enough to just do it. This really is the most important part: Just write the book. And remember, the first draft doesn’t have to be good. No one ever gets it 100% right the first time.

  1. Find a story idea that excites you. Some authors say that you should just write what you want and forget about your audience. Others say that you should write with massmarket appeal in mind. I tend to think that the answer is somewhere in the middle. As a test, come up with an idea that really excites you, and then tell others about it. You don’t have to say that you’re writing a book. Just throw some “what if” questions out there, and see what happens. Notice what lights their eyes up, what makes them say “Ooh! That sounds good.” Go from there.

  1. Find a time of day that consistently works for you. Some writers say that you MUST write every day. I wouldn’t worry about it too much. Realistically speaking, some days it just doesn’t happen. But don’t put your writing off for too long. (If you’re actively working on a project, I say don’t go more than a week, otherwise you risk losing your “flow” and self-doubt starts to set in). That’s why it’s important to find a time that you can consistently come back to. You’re more likely to get it done if you make a daily appointment with yourself.

  1. Plotting vs. pantsing: Do what works for you. Every writer has a different method. I personally like to plan and outline my novels ahead of time, while others prefer to fly by the seat of their pants. Either way works.

  1. Listen to how people ACTUALLY talk. Sit in Starbucks for a while and eavesdrop. Call it “research.” Listen to the slang, the grammatically incorrect structure, the way people don’t completely explain themselves. Be mindful of what real conversations sound like when you write dialogue. Don’t allow your characters to speak too formally (that is, unless they’re British royalty or something). Also, be wary of dialogue that’s there to reveal backstory. Would a person really talk about their background, in that much detail? Think of creative ways to reveal the same information without it sounding like a job interview.

  1. Remember that every scene must advance the plot in some way. This may seem obvious, but pointless scenes that muddy up the plot show up in books all of the time. If it doesn’t advance the plot (i.e. doesn’t get the main character closer to his/her outer motivation), then cut it. Save it for another book.

  1. Write what you FEEL. I recently listened to an interview with novelist Anne Rice, and she said that writing what you know isn’t always good advice. Instead, write what you feel. I love this concept. As writers, we want to elicit an emotional response in our readers. And so, if you write from a place of emotional authenticity, your readers will respond to that.

  1. If you get stuck while writing, go for a walk. Preferably, go out and see something new. It’ll get your creative juices flowing again. If your body is moving, your thoughts will move too.

  1. Don’t tell anyone that you’re writing. Especially if it’s your first book. Now, this is my personal bias, but I liked having my privacy. It’s an incredibly sensitive time for a writer and people can easily crush your ideas, hopes, and dreams when you’re so very new at this. Or, on the flip side, you can get an immense amount of pressure from people asking how your book is coming. This can be particularly discouraging if you haven’t been writing lately and are feeling guilty about it, or are stuck on a particular scene and don’t know how to get around it. So unless you have someone around that you really trust and believe will encourage you, just keep it close to your heart. 

I don't know about you but I could just read more and more of what Chelsey has to say on this topic, I've learnt a few things too! How about you? Fancy a little more from Chelsey? Oh go on then.. here is the cheeky excerpt I promised you earlier. Enjoy! xxx

About All Shook Up:

Title: All Shook Up

Author: Chelsey Krause

Publisher: Tryst Books

Release Date: August 17, 2016

Genre: Contemporary Romance

ISBN: 9781988387048

Natalie’s world is shaken to its core when she discovers an old photo of a woman who looks like her. Could this woman be related to her birth mother, who put Natalie up for adoption as a baby? When she tracks down the person who dumped the photo album at her thrift shop, she’s shaken again. Especially when the gorgeous fire-fighting guitarist offers to help her find the owner. They quickly become friends – which is all they’ll be, as far as Natalie’s concerned. Her rebellious youth turned her off cheating men, and the new Natalie is looking for true love and a family of her own – something Casey isn’t willing to provide. But how long can Natalie ignore her undeniable attraction to the man with the Irish accent and the broken-down ’57 Chevy?

In Chelsey Krause’s second novel, friends become lovers over a whirlwind summer of rockabilly rhythms, twirling skirts, and a mystery that takes them hilariously far out of their element.

Add to your TBR list: Goodreads

A breeze picks up and a chill settles around me. I pull my knees to my chest and pull the blanket tighter. Casey looks at me from the corner of his eye, and after a beat, he lifts up his arm.
Come here.”
I hesitate for a moment, noticing that my pulse has quickened.
I know you’re cold,” he says. “You have goosebumps.”
Umm, yes,” I say, feeling like my tongue is slow and awkward, stumbling over my words. My body feels jittery and cold, as if all the blood has rushed to my heart, and my flesh prickles with an intoxicating mixture of excitement and nervousness. There’s no way I’m admitting that these goosebumps are from being around him.
He tilts his head to the side, inviting me in once more. A shiver passes through me. Probably half from the cold, half from adrenaline. I’m not sure if this is a good idea, but I’m freezing my ass off. I slide over and let him wrap his arm around my body. He pulls the blanket up higher with his free hand and tucks it around us.
There. Snug as a bug in a rug,” he says.
Casey’s body is incredibly warm. Solid. Reassuring. I catch myself thinking that I wouldn’t mind staying right here for the rest of the night.
So, did you sleep with her?” I ask casually after my raging hormones have calmed down a little.
With who?” he asks, sounding genuinely confused.
Ginormous boobs.”
He laughs. “No, I didn’t. I just walked her back to her trailer and said good night.”
No good-night kiss?”
No. She smelled like cigarettes. Yuck.”
It feels like a weight has been lifted off my chest and I can breathe again. The cool night breeze picks up and I shiver. Casey tightens his hold of me.
Wish I’d brought another blanket,” he mutters.
I’m glad you didn’t,” I say without thinking.
Why?” he guffaws.
My heart throbs a quick, panicked pulse. Crap! He can’t know how I feel about him! How can I fix this?
Oh you know,” I say, my voice sounding high and tinny. “You, uh, wouldn’t want to over pack.”
He grunts, sounding amused. “Okay then…”

About Chelsey Krause:

Chelsey Krause has a thing for thrift stores and used bookshops. A nurse, wife, Starbucks addict, and mom to two children, she can often be found repurposing other people’s junk or considering whether the library would let her move in. The rest of the time, she’s reviewing for Chicklit Club or writing. All Shook Up is her second novel.

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