This morning the wonderful Deborah Camp gives us newbie writers some tips and then lets us take a peek at her newest book, Through His Eyes. . . which looks perfect for those who dig suspense stories. Enjoy!
Tips for Novice Writers – and Reviewers!
Hi, everyone! Thanks for allowing me the chance to blog with you.
When I taught writing there was always a student in every class who would approach me after having a few pages edited by me and ask, “Should I just give up writing?” To which I would answer, “If all it takes is for me to tell you to, then by all means, give it up!”
Sure, I knew the student wanted me to stroke and coo and say, “No, you must not quit!” But really? If that’s all it had taken for me to stop writing, I would have thrown away my pen and paper in fifth grade!
If you’re a writer, you write. Doesn’t matter if no one but you reads it. Stories and characters waltz about in your brain and you simply have to allow them to blossom into text. However, once we do allow our works to be seen by people other than those who personally know us, then we have to learn to accept criticism and we must understand when to take advice to heart and when to dismiss it. These are difficult lessons to master.
Here are the top three things I’ve learned from reviewers:
- Get as many reviews as possible from people you don’t know. Look for similar praise and beefs. If several reviewers praised your snappy dialogue, rejoice and strive to make your dialogue sparkle even more. Conversely, if several reviewers note that your pace is slow or that it was difficult to understand her heroine’s motivation, take a close look at those hiccups. Fix them before you write your next book.
- When reviewers find typos or bad grammar and punctuation, hire a professional editor and proofreader for your next project. Be aware that editors and proofreaders aren’t the same thing. Editors discuss plotting, characterization, pacing, word choices, and sentence structure. Proofreaders catch typos, incorrect punctuation, misspellings, and continuity mistakes.
- Be sure that the people who review your books actually like the type of book you’ve written. I’ve had yucky reviews from people who admitted that “I don’t usually read this kind of thing” or “romances aren’t my cup of tea.” I dismiss those. Same goes for the editor you choose. Ask the editor who she/he has read in your genre and what her/his favorite books are in your genre. If she/he hasn’t read any books that have been published in the past two years, then she/he probably isn’t savvy about what’s hot and what’s not in your field.
In closing, let me also caution you not to reply to a reviewer or editor until you’ve given yourself a day to think about it. Temper whatever you say or write, understanding that your work was published and people have a right to their opinion. With reviewers, it’s best to thank them, taking them to task only when they get “personal” in their critiques. With editors, it’s best to discuss why and how you can improve what you’ve put on paper. Great editors can make you a great writer, so when you find one, don’t ruin the relationship by being too cantankerous and stubborn.
by Deborah Camp
Genre: Romantic Suspense
Date of Publication: April 4, 2014
Number of pages: 392
Word Count: 100,000
Cover Artist: Patricia Schmitt
Two psychics – one serial killer.
Someone is stalking women and murdering them in Key West.
Levi Wolfe and Trudy Tucker join forces to help identify the murderer and stop him. Levi can channel the deceased victims and Trudy can tap into the mind of the killer. As a psychic detective team, they’re formidable. As lovers, they discover that they’re insatiable.
But if Trudy can see through the killer’s eyes, can the killer see her?
Book Trailer: http://youtu.be/0JSQzxC8njM
Available at Amazon
Trudy drew in a breath and told herself to chill out. Levi sat in the rattan chair to her right, crossed his legs, and flicked a white thread from his black trousers. He was the picture of calmness and she felt as if her chest was full of butterflies.
“Do you two have separate rooms?” Trudy asked, trying to drive past her nervousness and get Quintara’s goat.
Levi smirked and glanced at a cackling Quintara.
“Levi’s too busy seducing all the pretty television anchor women to want to share a room with a well-rounded, older enchantress like me. Isn’t that right, Levi?”
“You’re the one who was announcing your room number to every waiter and barkeep we ran into last night.”
“And a lot of good it did me,” Quintara said, flipping her string of red beads and puckering her lips in a pout. “But let’s talk about murder.” She glanced from him to Trudy. “Have you felt anything, dear? He’s been talking to you, hasn’t he?”
Trudy fidgeted on the sofa. “Yes, a little. I don’t know . . .”
“You do know,” Quintara said, her tone scolding, scalding. “You have felt him?”
“Yes.” The word almost stuck in her throat. She glanced toward Levi and flinched when she saw that he was completely focused on her. Talk about intense! It was like she was being blasted by a laser beam. “He’s thinking of murdering a barmaid that he knows. But I’m not entirely sure—.” She caught the rapier-edged glance Levi and Quintara exchanged. “What?”
“You have the right person, dear.” Quintara nodded to a folded newspaper on the coffee table. “A barkeep was murdered last night. He mutilated her.”
“Oh, no!” Feeling as if she had been socked in the gut, Trudy reached for the newspaper and located the front page article easily. The details were sketchy. No clues. No leads. Used a serrated knife. Mutilation. Worked at the Gold Lagoon on Canal Street. A shiver ran through her and guilt brought hot tears to the back of her eyes. “I should have told you about the vision sooner.”
“And what? We would have cased out every bar in Key West and warned the potential victims?” Quintara shrugged. “We must have more to go on than that, dear. We’ll put our heads together and create a profile of this killer. We’ll get to know him so well that we can predict his movements. Eventually, we’ll be ahead of him and be able to identify him and help catch him.”
Trudy turned toward Levi to find that he was still studying her, one brow slightly arched. “What have you been getting about this guy?” she asked.
He lifted one broad shoulder. “The victims haven’t given me much to go on yet. They didn’t see him coming and were knocked out. The woman before this one – Janie Fullbright was her name – was blindfolded, gagged, and when she came to, her wrists and ankles were tied. She was a heroine addict.” He held out a hand for the newspaper. He wore a silver ring on his middle finger and the square black onyx in it glinted in the sunlight.
When he moved, Trudy caught a whiff of lemony lime. One cool customer, she thought. Everything about him was controlled, calculated almost. But there was an undercurrent of turmoil just below his polished surface. She’d always felt it and that intrigued her about him –more than his psychic abilities or his reputation as a womanizer.
Author of more than 50 novels, Deborah lives in Oklahoma. She has been a full-time writer since she graduated from the University of Tulsa. Her background as a reporter for newspapers helped her to write fast and enjoy research. After she sold her first few books, she quit newspaper work to become a freelance writer and novelist.
Deborah’s first novel was published in the late 1970s and her books have been published by Jove, New American Library, Harlequin, Silhouette, and Avon. She has been inducted into the Oklahoma Authors Hall of Fame and she is a charter member of the Romance Writers of America. She is also a member of the Author’s Guild. She was the first recipient of the Janet Dailey Award.
Through His Eyes (April, 2012) is her first romantic suspense book. It has paranormal elements and is erotic. She plans at least two more books featuring Levi Wolfe and Trudy Tucker.
Also widely published in non-fiction, she and writes and edits for a magazine focused on small businesses. Deborah taught fiction writing for more than 10 years at a community college. She has been a guest speaker at numerous writers’ conferences, including Romance Writers of America (RWA), Writers, Inc., and the Oklahoma Writers Federation, Inc. She has served as a judge in numerous writing contests throughout the United States and has judged manuscripts in RWA’s Golden Heart Awards and RITA Awards. She is currently working on her next historical romance set in the wild, wonderful west.
In 2012 her books were re-issued on Amazon for Kindle Direct and have attracted tens of thousands of new fans.
Deborah’s website www.deborah-camp.com
About the Books
Too Tough to Tame
“THIS IS A WONDERFUL BOOK.”
The book is funny and touching. I have read this book over 50 times already and I never get tired of it. Tess is so cute while Storm is strong and loving. They made a great couple. — Amazon review from Snowstar
Tough Talk and Tender Kisses
This is definitely the best novel in the “Tough Man” series. The entire series is great; this one just happens to be my favorite. I absolutely adore Reno Gold (hero) and I love how he wins Adele with love and humor. — Amazon review from A. Gideon
Lover of the west and the people who tried to tame it, Deborah likes to write about strong, independent women and the men who are their equals. She grew up on a diet of TV westerns which have served her well. Living in Oklahoma has also been a godsend. Since she appreciates men with devilish twinkles in their eyes, she likes to mix laughter in with the love scenes in her books.
“ONE OF THE BEST!”
One of the best romance novels I have ever read. There is excitement, sadness, and passion in this book. I know I have read this book at least five times since I bought it. — Amazon review by S. Ceballos
A Tough Man’s Woman
I really enjoyed this book as it was one that kept you guessing most of the time. — Amazon review from Phyl
Ah, fascinating to the last drop (or page). Highly recommended. Surely, a keeper! — Amazon review from M. Hartmann
I found it hard to put down. It made me realize how things were in those years (long before I was born). I looked for more books by the same author. — Amazon review from C. Schmidt
“I LOVED IT!”
The main characters in the book, Copper and Tucker, are great together even though they are totally different. I never read any of Deborah Camp’s books before, but after reading this one, I’m looking for more. — Amazon review from Love to Read Jan.
Books by Deborah Camp
Amazon Exclusive Release
To Seduce and Defend
Amazon Kindle Novella
The Madcap and the Miser 2012
Avon Historical Romances
My Wild Rose
Too Tough To Tame
Tough Talk, Tender Kisses
A Tough Man’s Woman
Belle Starr, Bandit Queen
To Have, To Hold
This Tender Truce
Silhouette Special Edition
For Love or Money
In a Pirate’s Arms
Just Another Pretty Face
Vein of Gold
Right Behind the Rain
Master of Moonspell
The Butler Did It
Hook, Line, and Sinker
Weathering the Storm
The Second Mr. Sullivan
A Newsworthy Affair
Taming the Wild Man
Sweet Passion’s Song
A Dream to Share
To Have and to Hold Romances
They Said it Wouldn’t Last
Available for the Kindle:
Love and Laughter
Love and Adventure