Erin Lausten

Riding the Awesome

Posts Tagged ‘story’

Deadbeat Falls out of the Shadows!

Posted by erinlausten on September 4, 2015

Deadbeat Press

coverRelease

Today is the day! Feel free to open the link for the press release. Deadbeat is live today at a special release price of $4.99. Available at Smashwords, Amazon and other e-book retailers.

I want to thank you all for sticking by me as I dealt with all that Life has thrown my way. While we are still in the thick of change, the ideas are still churning. I hope that you enjoy reading this fun, comedic take on the  paranormal at least half as much as I enjoyed writing it.  l am really looking forward to revisiting Megan, Clarence and the gang soon.

Cheers!

Erin

 

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We’re in a relationship – Surprise!

Posted by erinlausten on September 5, 2013

Writing is about relationships.

Ultimately the biggest relationship is established between the story and the reader. However, beyond that there are relationships between the narrator and the characters, characters with other characters, the characters with their situations and the characters with their environment. Each of these aspects creates a unique perspective. For the author, the challenge comes in presenting these perspectives effectively in unique and authentic voices.

People are people. And there are so many different kinds of people. An author is only one person, with their own personality, worldview and perspective. Some of the greatest stories present that perspective in an engaging and dynamic voice. This drives the reader to absorb the story and experience as something new and fabulous.

But within a story, an author must also present perspectives that may not be their own, as illustrated by their various characters. The most talented writers can create characters with vastly different perspectives that build a story arc which is both believable and fascinating. We want authenticity in our stories, and authenticity relies on a world that mimics our own. No one person sees the world exactly the same.

So how does the writer do it? Not without some serious work.

It is easy for all of us to become insolated. It is more comfortable to surround ourselves with like-minded people. We strengthen our confidence in our own worldview by accepting those things we like and disregarding those we do not. We watch the news we like, read the websites that justify our feelings, and discuss politics with others in our political party.

Things get interesting when we break beyond the safety of our perspective and seek out those that think differently or even directly contradict our ideas. Even more difficult is stepping away from what we know and believe to try to understand the thoughts and worldview of another in a way that is objective and not qualitative. The question is not to see if the person is right, but to be able to see how that person may react to any given situation.

When an author can create a unique personality with opinions, belief, history and experience so vastly different from themselves, it is an amazing feat. It is one that I strive for with varying degrees of success.

So, why is this on my mind today?

I have gone beyond my comfort zone in my latest manuscript and I have learned so much. In general I have limited my characters with control over the story’s perspectives. In the Viator novels, I have had two characters with points of view that the reader is privy to. In other stories, I have limited it to one. But in the latest Cibola novel, I have five active points of view. Is it overkill? Possibly. But I have been able to explore the motivations, philosophies, needs and desires of five extremely different personalities. Some are dark while others are optimistic. Some navigate the world with morals that leave me uncomfortable and others have personal challenges I do not have myself.

As I draw near the completion of the first draft, I am struck by how vivid the relationships between these characters have become. I have seen growth and challenges I could not have seen otherwise. They have taught me so much and I find I am looking forward to the end, when I can step away for a while, then return to look on these fascinating people with a new eye.

This is why I write. This is the magic of stories. How fabulous.

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When Characters Attack

Posted by erinlausten on July 3, 2013

I may have mentioned this previously, but I honestly have no control over my characters. Yes, I know, it sounds trite and like one of those things writers make up to sound more interesting. But trust me, I don’t need to make stuff up to think I am interesting—as my husband has repeatedly reminded me, I have an ego that makes it difficult to fit out the front door. Is it any wonder I don’t stay at home eating bon bons lounging in my awesomeness?

But I digress. We are discussing characters today, not me or my inflated confidence. Today I have an honest gripe with my characters.

In the past, we have seen Hailey from the Viator series swoop in like the girlfriend that throws herself at the boy checking you out across the bar. She’s high-jacked my blogs and my plots. And don’t get me wrong, it has made things highly interesting. But honestly, the issues I have had with Hailey stem from her stubbornness and fiery exclamations. She curses too much, can’t stay calm, and refuses to listen to orders. In general, though, she took the situations I threw at her and ran with them. I created the environment and stimulus. She reacted and moved us to the next scene. It was fabulous—(and did I mention?) highly entertaining.

One would expect that this pattern would continue with my other stories. And in general it has.

Enter Cibola’s Revenge and the mysterious characters jumping in for the ride without a by-your-leave. Oh yes, I have hobo’s grabbing hold of my plot lines. And what is even more frustrating is they come in exactly where they are supposed to and contribute essential and perfect aspects that apparently they knew I needed. I, however, remained oblivious until they wrote themselves onto paper.

Seriously? You couldn’t give me a heads up? Maybe a subliminal dream or a flash of insight? You just had to jump in there like something I had always planned.

And that’s the rub, because one would think if I had added characters then I must prepare for their appearance in previous chapters and would now need to go back to adjust the story for their arrival. Except, it seems I already have. Without intention. But they fit. Perfectly.

Sigh…I really thought I was driving this train.

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Free Free Free!!!

Posted by erinlausten on April 12, 2011

That’s right folks. It’s free!

That’s it. That is about the extent of my schilling skills. But, hey. It’s free.

So what’s free? Well, I am glad you asked.

I have uploaded a short story at Smashwords. It was an experiment to learn how the process works and also to force myself to put something out there. To risk it all and let people see how I write. And so it is there, for You. For Free. So, take a moment, head over to the site and download your copy today!   I hope you enjoy. See below for the description. And as always I welcome your feedback!

Yuma: A short story romance (click link to go to download)

I always thought love was found on exotic beaches and at hometown picnics, not on bombing ranges. But then again, life is never normal for an archaeologist. Here’s the tale of how I met the love of my life, the only man for me.

Excerpt:
“Yep. That’s unexploded ordnance.” Jeffery commented. Both he and Matthew stood with their arms crossed against their chests, looking down at it with the manly consideration reserved for beat up vehicles, broken garbage disposals, and apparently artillery.
“Is it live?” I asked
“Don’t know.” Our trusty EOD expert replied. He pulled a GPS from his backpack and began plugging in the location for future reference.
“If I had stepped on it would it have blown up?” My mind flashed to the training video we had been forced to watch explaining the dangers of unexploded ordnance and the very real possibility of death or injury.
“Maybe.” He smiled.
I pursed by lips and squinted. “You’re messing with me.”
He shrugged and turned back the way they had come. I glared at his back, then walked a good ten feet around the ordnance and flounced through the brush. Matthew’s infectious laughter caught me before I could outrun it.

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