Category Archives: The art of writing…

Lori Reisenbichler: Interview with a Debut Author

Lori Reisenbichler, Debut Author

 

Allow me to introduce Lori Reisenbichler whose compelling debut novel EIGHT MINUTES is the latest must-read for book clubs and women’s fiction readers.  Lori took time to share background information on her novel as well as insights into her writing process and advice for aspiring authors.  And (ahem) be sure to read to the end to discover Lori’s favorite author.

Tell us about EIGHT MINUTES.

Posted in Cindy Jones, Dallas Writer, Eight Minutes, Guest Post, launching things, Lori Reisenbichler, The art of writing..., writing advice | Tagged , , , | 1 Comment

Writing in Isolation

William Cruise 091

One of the places I did not go this summer.

I have been telling my husband:  if I had one week of total isolation I could finish my novel.  Well, I got my chance to prove it.  As of 8:00 am last Monday morning, I was HOME ALONE.  For five days it was just me and my novel.

Day T-1:  I wanted to hit the ground running so I cleaned my office (for the first time since 2013) and cleared my desk of everything not related to the novel-in-progress.  The result was exhilarating and I decided I should do that more often.

Posted in Cindy Jones, FinishThe7thDraft, My Jane Austen Summer, The art of writing... | Tagged | Leave a comment

Trespassing for Fiction: How I Stole a Manor House for My Novel

Previously published on Girlfriends Book Club

Since we are discussing setting I will reluctantly work past my discomfort to share, not only how I obtained realistic details to create the manor house in my novel, but also how a sense of poetic entitlement caused me to behave badly.  Ahem.  (Sound of me clearing throat).  I avoided arrest and have purposely omitted names in this post in order to protect myself.

Posted in Avon/Harper Collins, Cindy Jones, Jane Austen, Living in a novel, My Jane Austen Summer, The art of writing..., Uncategorized, writing exercise, Writing Nightmares | Tagged | Leave a comment

Five Sideways Sources for Writing Instruction

This post was recently published in Girlfriends Book Club 

Since I don’t have an MFA, my learning curve offers a unique perspective on the subject of writing instruction including several less conventional resources. Here are five sources for important lessons I didn’t learn in a formal program:
  1. Gossip: Understanding how individuals operate under pressure is a prerequisite for creating empathetic characters and a grasp of the complex world of human psychology is expected from the get-go. Fortunately, my grandmother, a professional counselor, shared her expertise with me–her oddly attentive granddaughter–from an early age. We lingered at the table long after meals, solving the the problems of in-laws and outlaws, leaving no unseen pressure under-analyzed. If you don’t have a professionally trained grandmother, an observant girlfriend will do. And if the term gossip bothers you, just call it material.
Posted in Cindy Jones, My Jane Austen Summer, The art of writing... | Leave a comment

My Silent Hotel Room

 

My son rowing in The Head of the Oklahoma Regatta (he's tallest in the middle)

Last weekend I drove to Oklahoma City to cheer my son’s crew team.  I went alone.  What this really means is: I left my personal fraternity house (on Pizza Friday) for the absolute solitude of a remote hotel room.  Husband felt sorry to cancel on me, but I pulled out of the driveway before he or anyone could reshuffle their schedules and get in my car.  For three hours I drove, imagining a block of time in a silent hotel room to work on my novel.  No dog jumping on the bed, no boys arguing over TV controllers, no husband expecting ducks in a row.  I was so excited I nearly missed my exit.

Posted in Cindy Jones, teenagers, The art of writing... | 12 Comments

My Bodice Ripping Love Affair (with summer reading)

Still Life: Teenager With Book

Summer ended today as the last of my four sons surrendered his Xbox controller, packed up his summer reading files, and entered Middle School peacefully.  Structure, discipline, and progress for all.  But before completely buttoning up starry nights and car trips, I want to confess my summer reading affairs and relive the attribute that made me fall in love each time.   

And then I will move on. 

While adjusting to the freedom of no homework and children who sleep all morning, I had a fling with literature.  The Imperfectionists by Tom Rachman was indeed original, perspective-altering, and a teensy bit heartbreaking for an old-fashioned reader like me.  (Italy was great).  Walks With Men by Ann Beattie was edgy for my appetite, but her photo-realistic characters taught me things a writer can use.  Solar by Ian McEwan was way better than the NYTBR led me to expect, the potato chip scene alone was worth the read.              

Posted in Book Review, Cindy Jones, Living in a novel, teenagers, The art of writing... | 19 Comments