Aug 10 2015

A Metaphysical Student and Reiki Master

Published by Cathie under Main

Here’s a little taste of my latest book, and the one to come soon.

Life always presents interesting topics and people and I am a very good observer, which helps in my work. I am a metaphysical student and Reiki Master, and I always implement a thread of those themes in my novels. I spend a great deal of time researching , and in Romancing the Vines I traveled to many vineyards and sampled a few glasses of wine. (Okay, more than a few!) Francesca, the main character, becomes the owner and operator of Serrano Family Vineyards, which is known for its zinfandel. Her mission is to be come a top vintner, put their wine on the map, and win the wine competition, no matter what the cost. Francesca, Enrico, and their son, Roberto, spend hours toiling in the vineyard, but the tension that has plagued them for lifetimes returns. They fight, the vineyard struggles, money is extremely tight, and the wine is flat. Something is missing in the ingredients. Wine comes from the heart and hers is in turmoil. Does true love need to exist like the spirit of her dearly departed mother suggested? Francesca doesn’t know if she believes in true love, or soul mates for that matter. She is still conflicted over her feelings for Giancarlo, whom Enrico despises.  Giancarlo owns one of the most prestigious vineyards in the area and has been called the Bad Boy of Sonoma. Enrico is threatened by his looks, money, and empire. Both men want the same woman, but she can’t make up her mind. She takes a trip to Italy, where she is transported into three past lives and learns the truth of the three of them through a seer. Magna reads the energy around her and says that she is conflicted between her head and her heart and this problem has been with her for centuries. “Part of you is in love with a man you think you shouldn’t have, and then there is the man you live with. You are a very confused woman, my dear.” She tells Francesca she will use past life regression three times in order to solve the riddle of her soul. Magna talks about a time centuries ago when there was a beautiful woman, her son, and the farmer she lived with. The lord of the valley fell in love with her and plotted to take her away. She weaves a colorful narrative, and Francesca finds it uncannily familiar. Magna tells her that the heroine didn’t use her heart. She used her head because she didn’t want her noisy neighbors gossiping that she was using her heart.

Currently, I am finishing a love story set in 1923 in Reno, complete with speakeasies, mob activity, bootleg liquor, and Ouija boards, and I’ve been having fun researching that wild period. This is a coming of age love story in a very turbulent, violent time period.

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Aug 01 2015

Develop Your Observation Skills

Published by Cathie under Main

We cannot create observers by saying ‘observe’, but by giving them the power and the means for this observation and these means are procured through the education of the senses.” Maria Montessori.

Ms. Montessori incorporated this statement in her educational philosophy and it is one you need to adhere to if you desire to be a writer. As the bard said, “The world is a stage.” Yes, it is and so is Mother Nature.  She is brilliant with her colors! A talented writer uses the five senses in his/her work which engages the reader and makes the prose leap off the page. Details emerge in the work which will have an influence on what the characters do, say, and think. You are painting the pages with description to fully make the story leap off the page. However, as in everything, there is a balance. One must be careful of over-writing. Instead of using adverbs, choose better verbs which describe the emotions of your characters. Don’t use too many adjectives. The pacing will slow. Give the reader enough to create the scene in his/her own mind and then get out of the story’s way. A good idea to develop your observation skills is to keep a notebook. Jot down your observations. Take pictures with your smart phone. These help when you write. Another thing I’ve learned is not to be too concerned with descriptive choices until the revision process of the work. (This will be discussed at another time.)

Happy writing!

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Jul 23 2015

Sharing is Part of the Human Condition

Published by Cathie under Main

“Writing means sharing. It’s part of the human condition to want to share things–thoughts, ideas, opinions,” Paulo Coelho

(And if you haven’t  read his books, I strongly urge you to read him–especially The Alchemist.)

Why do writers write? What prompts them to bare their inner soul on the page? For me, it is sharing thoughts and creating stories. I am one of those people who would much rather read than watch media. Maybe it’s because when I was a child TV was prohibited. (There were only three stations and all stations went off the air at eleven pm. I know it’s hard to wrap your head around that when you now have over two hundred channels to choose from.) The thing I like about writing is I have the opportunity to edit my thoughts before someone reads them. Unfortunately, with speaking it’s not the same. How many times have you stuck the proverbial foot in your mouth and wished you could retract your words? Creating novels is a process. I liken it to running a marathon. You need to train. It’s going to take time and you need to give it the time and space it needs to develop.  I take a story from a kernel, ask the questions, “What if? What happens next? Who is telling the story and why?” Then I see where the road of writing takes me. Usually I have a vague outline, but I’m not one of those writers who uses detailed outlines. For me, it doesn’t work. I like the spontaneity of the writing flow. As the writer W. Somerset Maugham said, “There are three rules for writing a novel. Unfortunately, no one knows what they are.”

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