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  • Patricia Hollett

    The Author

  • Currently Writing/Completed

    Currently working on:

    Fallon -70,094 words
    Forest Born -67408 words
    Ice Whisperings -2997 words
    Garrett -9623words
    Northern Blood -11658 words
    Winter's Reign -787 words

    Completed

    Blood Harvest - 998 words
    Keeping Secrets - 1500 words
    Misunderstood -700 words
    Sarah's Amulet-A Necromancer Slave Story -6004 words
    The Cult -1998 words
    Unfortunate Blessings -454 words

    To Be Published

    Artistic Escape - flash (to be pub 2011)
    Happy Birthday Honey - flash (to be pub 2011)
    Making Choices - flash (to be pub 2011)
    Together Forever - flash (to be pub 2011)

    Published

    Allie's Clown - 1500 words (Published on Dark Valentine website March 2011)
    Valeria's Knight - 4807 words (Published in Dark Gothic Resurrected Magazine)
    The Angel Wars/Post-Apocalyptic Emails at the end of time-A collaboration with author Tammy Crosby (Published by PillHill Press in August 2011)
    Valeria's Knight - 4807 words (Published in Night to Dawn Magazine-September 2011)

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  • Copyright ©

    All posts, stories and comments made by Patricia Hollett on WordPress.com are property of Patricia Hollett. All rights reserved. 2010 ©
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Making Progress


No matter how small or insignificant it might be, I’m making progress on my intended target of editing and finishing my first manuscript, Forest Born.

I probably spent the past half year putting it on the back-burner most of the time and writing short stories, or working on other things, and from time to time I went back to it, but not with the enthusiasm I had for it when I first started.

I don’t know what happened to that ‘gung-ho’ attitude I had for this story when I first thought of it, but it slowly slipped from my hands and mind as I realized the magnitude of the writing project I had undertaken. And with so little experience when I first started writing, I really wasn’t sure if I could get it done.

Currently I’m at 71k and still trudging through it. Yes, I’ve got a few plot holes and some editing to do and I’ve rewritten the first couple of chapters at least ten times, but right now I’m at chapter 5 and reading it with a fine tooth comb, filling in the blanks, missing plot parts, character descriptions, details, and ideas that now seem to be flowing more easily. I’ve pre-written, the draft is done, I’m currently in the process of revising, and when that’s done, I’ll do edits, and find beta readers to help find what I’ve missed.

Sometimes we have to ‘step-back’ from our work and take a different look at it in order to see it with fresh eyes, and that’s when we can make some progress again. It’s taken a while for me to get back into the swing of things with this story but it’s one I want to write and tell and I like it. I’m still targeting for the end of April, but at least I’m doing a little each day and that makes me feel a whole lot better about where I’m headed with my writing.

It’s not easy writing a whole book for the first time, especially for a rookie. There is so much to learn and read about how to do it well, and a ton of books on how to write in general. I’ve read a lot over the course of the past two years and taken a few workshops to help me hone my craft, but nothing is as important as writing everyday. We learn and get better by doing it. Just like a guitar player learns his music by practice and becomes good, writers learn their craft by writing regularly.

I’m feeling a bit more optimistic about my story now and making progress is making me feel a whole lot better about achieving this goal I’ve had for some time now.

All I can say is KEEP WRITING, SET GOALS, AND KEEP YOUR EYE ON THE BRASS RING, and you’ll get it done. That’s what I’m doing and hopefully I don’t lose sight of my goals this time around. 🙂

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Writing In Real Life


Damn! I need to be more dedicated and serious about my writing to be sucessful. I know it.  I wish I could be ‘funny’ about this post, but I take it too seriously to joke about. I tell myself constantly, and yet every thing that comes along in real life takes priority over my writing.

Is it because those other things are more important? Sometimes they are. Sometimes they’re not. And yet I think if I just get this small task out of the way, I’ll have time for my writing.

I make the time for everything else I have to do… and then leave my ‘writing’ to be done on whatever leftover time I have. Is it fair? NO!

I’ve talked about this before on my blog, and yet I failed miserably in achieving what I needed to do. There has been a lot going on in my personal life and I’m hoping that I’ve got most of it under control now. We all go through it. It’s just life. It’s normal. I can’t beat myself up over it. I’m just resetting my goals and moving forward.

I’m taking a stand starting today to put my writing before anything that isn’t important. I’ve been working on my story for almost two years now. That may not seem like a long time, but I planned to have it done long before this. I have most of it done. It needs revisions, editing, some rewriting, then off to beta, etc.

As of today, all those other unimportant things will have to wait.

So here’s where I take a stand! I resign myself to getting my manuscript done by April 30, 2012 come hell or high water. At least the full first draft, with completed revisions. At that point, I’ll either send it off for beta unless it’s not ready, in which case I’ll post the chapters I’m concerned with for my writing group to help me work them out.

And no more excuses! I’ve marked it on my calendar and I’m doing a timetable to decide on target dates for completing each chapter with revisions and edits. I’ll update it when I’ve made enough progress to feel like I’ve accomplished something.

No need for anyone else to kick my ass…I do it just fine on my own. 🙂

Character Development


Last week I talked about planning your manuscript right from the beginning. During the Dark Fantasy Writing course taught by Kelley Armstrong, she handed out a form to develop our character profiles.

I took the one she gave us, and revised it. I added lines for information that I needed to know about my characters so its a combination form, partly her ideas and some of my own. So its a full profile for my main characters, and I can when I write about them, I know everything I need to know to develop their personalities in my story.

Then I did another form for secondary characters…you know the people that come and go in your story, but you don’t need to know everything about them. You may need to know a little, but not a full profile.

Doing these has helped me understand my characters so much better. I thought I knew them well enough to write them into my story, but readers need to identify with them, and the writer needs to know them as well as he/she can possibly know anyone.

I know my characters so well that they’re like familiar friends or family members. I don’t know all their intimate secrets yet, but I know enough that I can write about them. They need to be just like real people and that’s what the reader will sense while they read the story. Identifying with your main characters will draw your reader in. If you don’t know them that well, then your reader won’t either.

This is another stage of planning, which I can’t stress enough as being an important part of starting your story. Hope this helps!

Feel free to use mine or make your own if you find anything useful in the form. They’re underlined in blue below.

Keep writing, and enjoy your week! 🙂

Character Profile Page-Primary

Character Profile Page-Secondary characters

Recipe for Writing-Creating Memorable Characters


I started reading a book about creating characters and realized that I’d written approximately 70k without really KNOWING my characters.

I mean I knew my characters, the parts they played in the story, their roles in the plot, who my main protagonist was, and the other main characters in the story, how they all fit together and independently, but what I didn’t know was all the details that made up those main people I was writing about.

Not surprisingly, I was able to make it through 25 chapters and although there were insights into their lives and the plot danced around aspects of their lives, I found the personal connection to my characters could have been much better.

I could picture my characters vividly in my mind, and I could see them interacting as they played out their roles. I didn’t give the reader a view into the personalities, the physical appearances, the psychological, cultural, moral and social attributes of the main players in the story, and I knew missing this made my story weak.

I’ve read stories where I simply loved the main characters and could identify with them, because the author had given me enough information that the character seemed real and pulled me into the story. I’ve also read stories that the main characters left me cold. Those are the stories where I felt I had no desire to follow their journey. The main characters took a back seat to the story and the plot, and yes, while one can argue that it’s still a story, I find it more fulfilling to follow someone’s journey and progress. That’s what makes a good story for me.

And so, I started to read about character development instead of writing and editing my manuscript. I needed to know how to ‘bring my characters to life’.

The key here is that if you can’t identify with the characters in a book, their emotions, their interaction with others, how they feel, why they do what they do, and what motivates them, why would anyone else want to read or know about them?

I’ve realized that I must do this with my characters as well, so with all my research done, I’ve set about detailing each character in my story, and all the details that make up that person’s make-up. Age, appearance, tags, what others think of them, how they act, what drives them, what motivates them, and all the psychological, cultural, moral and social attributes that make them who they are.

I realize I’m doing this backwards and should have done it from the very beginning, but my characters were so clear in my head and I did have a rough sketch of them laid out for reference, just not enough to really know them intimately. Funny thing is my characters have their own personalities and fight with me about the way they want to be written. I want good, they want bad, or vice versa. So, outlining them more clearly will help with that struggle.

It is a learning process for me, and probably always will be but each lesson learnt is a step in the right direction for creating a good story. And now, I’m rewriting from the beginning with character traits in mind, and hopefully it will be a stronger and more enjoyable read when complete.