Thursday, August 29, 2013

How Authors Write- James Crofoot

Today I'm pleased to host James Crofoot, fellow MuseItUp author who's debut novel The Journeys of a Different Necromancer releases in October. Welcome, James!

What do you write? 
I write fantasy, mostly. My current book is Young Adult fantasy. Some sci-fi and human-interest stories, too.

What do you use? 1st person, 3rd person or multiple POV'S?
I like 3rd person but do often use multiple POVs. I try to keep things as the main character sees them. However, with my current work, I'm switching the pov around to all the main characters.

How do you get started with a book – idea, character, vary from story to story?
I get a lot of my ideas from walking in the morning. Like one, I kept walking past this yard with a lot of stone fairies in it. Another one I got from a house with a tower attached. Always asking that age old question – What if? I love my morning walks, they clear my head and all these what ifs just fill it up.

Do you draft quickly?
When I hand write I do about 1000 words a day, I'm kind of an old school person. I have been getting into typing now though and with the computer; it's about 500-600. Try to type an hour or hour and a half a day.

Do you research before your first draft?
Yes, I do sometimes. If I'm not writing pure fantasy or sci-fi. I grew up playing rpgs and I paid close attention to the aspects such as setting, dress and weapons. How to build castles. So you know, write what you know. [Oh! Another gamer. Love it! I always think of my characters in terms of the characteristics from D&D. Lawful good, neutral good, lawful evil, chaotic evil, that type of thing!]

Do you outline? How?
I find jotting down things for a chapter at a time helps me remember what to put in. I spend time scribbling really, not paying attention to any grammar or punctuation. Indeed little attention to where I put it on the paper. To anyone else it really looks like chickens scratch as they say.

Do you name everything upfront when your drafting or leave comments for yourself to fill in later so you don't lose the flow?
Once I get going there's no interruptions. I'm in a world of my creation. Sometimes I even name the characters differently. I just have to get it down, you know just write. I worry about that stuff in the second draft.

Do you work with cps (critique partners) or betas?
I used to use betas, but I really don't know anybody that reads the kind of stuff I write. No one I hang around with now days anyway. When I was, it usually didn't get seen until the second draft. And if they didn't sit down and read it from cover to cover I knew I had more work to do.
Plus, the more I researched the field, the more I read not to go with just the biased praises of friends and family. I'm really not in this for sycophantic opinions from people I know. I want people to tell me what's wrong with the piece, what I need to correct. Constructively, of course. [Ah, yes. I think we all want to know what's wrong so we can fix it, but told in as nice a way as possible.]

What books/websites have you found most helpful to helping you write your best?
 I've read way too many books to name, but I do have to say the books which gave me the most inspiration would have to be The Hobbit and The Harry Potter series. More so in studying the authors though.

Websites - so far, certainly Fanstory, an online writer's workshop. [I don't think I've heard of this before. Sounds interesting.] The feedback there showed me I needed to learn more. I needed to learn how to make people see what was in my head. So next, Gotham Writing Workshop, where I took the first of many planned courses.
What do you know now that you wish you knew when you started?
Nothing. The learning experience has always been a great joy and labor of love to me. There's a lot of work that goes into even just the schooling and studying of being a writer. I wouldn't change a moment of that learning.

What do you have out now, or coming out? Any upcoming events? A website we can find you and your books at? An author photo? A booktrailer? Anything else you want to share?
The Journeys of a Different Necromancer is due for release in October of 2013. For your enjoyment, here's a blurb from the piece.

Thomas wanted to learn to read and write, things only Xavier the Necromancer could teach. But Thomas learned much more. He learned to raise the dead. Then, with his knowledge, he set out for the distant sea. Along the way, he made an army, encountered a dragon, and fought thieves by the score. But, could he continue to use the knowledge Xavier gave? Could he hold to his teacher's views that all people were self-centered, greedy, and jealous of him for being so much better? Could he return to the obsidian tower to live a life where the world was locked out, where his teacher had kept all life away to simply be left alone? Where no one ridiculed and beat him for being different? Could he return to a life where only the undead, his risen, kept him company?
You will find this on MuseItUp publishing, Amazon and Barnes and Noble in October.
For more of my stories you can visit my website

Monday, August 26, 2013

Winners, News, and a Guest Post


Last week I was blog hopping and am happy to announce the following winners:

From Katie Carroll's blog: Leona Pence

From Helena Fairfax's blog: Marie Laval

From Eric Price's blog: Penny Estelle

From Stuart West's blog: HK Carlton

Congrats to all of you!!! If you would please e-mail me (mewaibel(at)gmail(dot)com) by Friday 8/30/13 and tell me which book (Quest of the Hart or Charmed Memories) and what format you would like it in (Kindle, Nook, or .pdf) I'll get that right out to you!


The Princess of Valendria series is growing. The third book, Different Kind of Knight, will release from MuseItUp Publishing in winter 2013/14.

Guest Post:
Today, I'm over at Jimena Novaro's site talking fairy tale re-tellings, gender role reversals, and strong women characters. Come see how it relates to the Princess of Valendria series. Be sure to poke around at her site while you're there. She has a free serial novel, The Withering Sword, available for you to read. The post will be going up at 8PST. Just think how much you can read before then!

Monday, August 19, 2013

Mini-blog tour

This week I am hopping around the blogosphere and visiting with some awesome authors. We'd love you to stop by!!! I will be picking a random winner from the comments next Monday (8/26). The prize? A copy of Charmed Memories  and some really cool swag!!!

Here's where you can find me:

Monday 8/19:  Behind the "writing scenes" look at Charmed Memories

Tuesday 8/20: Helena interviews me

Wednesday 8/21: Interview with Prince Trevor from Charmed Memories

Friday 8/23: Stuart asks some intriguing questions about Quest of the Hart.

Thursday, August 15, 2013

How Authors Write-Stuart West

Today I welcome fellow MuseItUp author Stuart West as he shares his writing process. I'll be having Stuart back soon with an interview about his novel, Tex, The Witch Boy. 

What do you write?
The Tex, The Witch Boy series are YA paranormal, mystery, thrillers, comedy, romance what’s-its and they all deal with current teen issues. Tex, The Witch Boy is about bullying. Tex And The Gangs Of Suburbia is about high school violence and identity. The third book (out in December), Tex And The God Squad, tackles gay issues, religion and teen suicide.

Do you use 1st person, 3rd person, multiple POVs?
The books are all told first person via Tex.

How do you get started with a book- is it an idea, a character, vary from story to story?
Mary, I never set out to write a YA trilogy. But it’s been therapeutic. I’m STILL traumatized from my high school days. Combine that with my daughter’s recent tenure in high school Hades and there was tons of story material.

Do you draft quickly?
I usually rip through a first draft, getting the story down. That’s the fast and fun part. The longer part is revisions. Sometimes I’ll look back and go, “Man, what was I thinking?”

Do you do research before your first draft, during?
If I research at all, it’s on a “do it right then” basis. Mostly I’m just flying by the seat of my pants.

Do you outline? How?
No outlines. But I do like the comfort of having stick-on notes listing the main points to hit in the upcoming chapter or two.

Do you name everything up front when you are drafting or do you leave comments for yourself to go back and fill in later so you don't lose the flow of what you are working on?
I can’t write a character or place without a name! So, yeah, names come first.

Do you work with CP's or Beta's? How soon into your draft do you let them see your work?
I know it’s bad, but the first three books were written without any other eyes. Well, except for my wife and daughter. If it passes muster with them, that’s cool. My wife can be harsh. Now, I’ve learned my lesson, though, and going forward I’ve acquired a few awesome writer pals to look it over.

What books/websites have you found most helpful to helping you write your best?
Playboy? I kid! Google’s my best friend.

What do you know now that you wish you knew when you started writing?
Tons! If I hadn’t met an awesome Muse author who slapped me silly, I’d still be making amateur mistakes. Having said that, I’m now about 35% of the writer I want to be. I’m shooting for the stars, Mary! This time next year? I hope to be at 45%!

What do you have out now, or coming out? Any upcoming events? A website we can find you and your books at? An author photo? A booktrailer? Anything else you want to share?
Tex, The Witch Boy and the sequel, Tex And The Gangs Of Suburbia are out now. Tex And The God Squad (the last of the series) is due in December from Muse. And Muse just picked up my first adult horror novel, Neighborhood Watch, out early next year.

Super special AmazeBalls Deal! Act fast, hit up the MuseItUp website, and you can buy both the Tex books for the price of one! My publisher's going cray-cray! But don't tell her and buy! Our lil' secret! 

Tex, The Witch Boy ($0.99 Special!)                               Tex And The Gangs Of Suburbia

You can find Stuart here:

Thanks for having me blather on, Mary!

You're welcome, Stuart. I look forward to having you back soon!

Monday, August 12, 2013


Today, my friend and fellow author HK Carlton is hosting me on her site. There's a fun interview and an excerpt of Charmed Memories. I'd love for you to stop by. Word of warning, the site is only for those 18 and up.

Tuesday, August 6, 2013

Cover Reveal and Sneak Peek Blog Hop- Charmed Memories

Today is the cover reveal for my novel, Charmed Memories, the second book in the Princess of Valendria series. Charmed Memories is releasing this Friday, August 9th from MuseItUp Publishing. More details available at

I'm sure you're waiting to see the beautiful cover Marion Sipe designed for me and to read the prologue of Charmed Memories. 

Well, head on over to Meradeth Houston's blog, as she's the first stop in this hop!!!