{Guest Post} Author Jenelle Jack Pierre (+ Giveaway!!!)

Today, I have a special guest post from author Jenelle Jack Pierre. She’s also offering up two eBook copies of her novel, Before I Breathe (the winners will receive a coupon to use on Smashwords to download the format of their choice). This guest post is especially worth reading if you are a writer. Jenelle definitely makes some excellent points. Onwards!

Your Writing Year is Here

Many people have dreams of publishing a novel someday.  They think about, they dream about it, and they sit down and talk about it.  There’s a full range of wannabees out there, and in order for you not to be one of them, you must start at step one.

1.Begin to Write

In order to grow as a writer, you have to write.  Luckily for you, this can happen at any time.  Like in 2012.  Many beginners read numerous novels, not only for entertainment, but as a way of deciphering what makes a book good.  Reading the work of others is important, but equally as important is writing.  We don’t learn to drive by riding in the car and watching others.  We have to get behind the wheel.  It’s important that you carve out regular periods of time to put words to paper.  The goal is not perfection.  The goal is strengthening your writing muscle.  There is value in getting to work and establishing daily or weekly goals. You do not need to read every blog, writers forum, and magazine on writing out there.  You do need to write so you can get a lot better at it.  At the same time —

2.There’s No Need to Rush

I was sitting at my desk, browsing through the Barnes and Nobles website, and noticed that there was a “Meet the Writers” link.  I clicked on it. Browsing through the section, I noticed that the majority of authors had studied writing as undergraduates or graduates.  I had written two young adult novels that were collecting dust on my computer after numerous rejection letters from literary agents.  Sometimes, these letters came back with words of encouragement.  After some time had passed and I reread my stories, I realized that they could be improved.  I’d enjoyed studying Communications as an undergrad, but I realized that it might be a good idea to now focus on what I loved: writing.  I researched schools and applied to Johns Hopkins University.  During the program, my writing gradually improved, I met other writers, and I learned more about the publishing industry.

Today, indie publishing has allowed thousands to bypass honing their writing skills.  You don’t necessarily need to enter a two-year writing program. However, you should take some writing classes, whether it’s at your local community center, online, or by enrolling at your high school or college.  This leads me to my next point.

3. Learn Your Craft

Serious writers view writing as something special.  Books, television shows, movies, and music all begin with the writing.  The world is full of noise, and things thrown out at us to catch and consume.  It’s for this reason that you should learn the basics of good writing, including how to create characters and build a believable world within your story.  Let readers be enlightened, entertained, feel some type of emotion whenever they read your work.

This will only happen if you build a solid foundation as a writer.  And readers will come back to you because you’ve respected their time.

4. Embrace What Makes You Different

You may admire an author’s young adult novel or short story.  She inspired you to write.  You love the way that she constructs sentences, writes descriptions of places, make her characters leap off the page.  But to be inspired by an author does not mean you should imitate them.  Readers want to hear your voice coming through in your writing.  Readers want original stories.  Original stories come from original, creative writers.

About “Before I Breathe”:

Description from Goodreads:

Kalena Moore is a Montgomery High student who isn’t into school. Isaiah Wilkins is a classmate that her friends think is trouble. Life becomes more interesting when Kalena starts dating Isaiah, but soon things spin quickly out of control and she gets pregnant. Then Kalena sees that there’s another side to her boyfriend.

Determined to put her life back together, Kalena takes a path where there is no turning back.

With compelling characters and vivid storytelling, Before I Breathe is irresistible reading.

Now, the giveaway portion of this post:

Since the Smashwords coupon expires on the 19th, I want to end this contest ASAP in order to provide the winners enough time to download their copies. How is it going to work? Simple, just leave a comment below with your Twitter name. Two winners will be picked at random and announced via Twitter.

The rules:

Send me a tweet (@NicsYABookHaven) stating that you want one of two free eBooks! Easy enough, right? Right!

By the way, the reviews for this are pretty dang good, so why haven’t you requested it yet?!

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Posted on March 14, 2012, in Uncategorized and tagged , . Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.

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