Tuesday, December 23, 2008

Happy Holidays


Melissa NC

Friday, December 19, 2008

Ramblings of an aspiring writer

In an earlier post I blogged about entering my first contest. Well, I found out today that the list of winners doesn't come out until April 2009. The winners will be notified 10 days before the winning stories are published.

Like I said before, I'm new to this. So, today was spent working on my MS and planning to enter more contests. I got 8 pages on my MS today. I try to get at least 5 a day so, I at least made my quota.

I try to learn from successful authors. Laurell K Hamilton does a mandatory page count as part of her daily MS goal. That's where I picked that up from. I also listen to other authors when they talk about having a thick skin. Still working on that one. It's hard to have a thick skin when you pore so much of yourself into creating characters and their world. You kind of get attached to them, almost like they are real people.

I've been studying, reading and listening to a lot of successful authors and what amazes me the most is, some authors ability to produce and write so prolifically. Dean Koontz and Nora Roberts are two that come to mind. It's nothing for them to have two best sellers on the shelf at the same time.

Authors like L A Banks amaze me with the ability to write in almost any genre. Not only does L A write in several genres but, she does it well. I'm a big fan of her VHL series so, that lead me to read other books written by her. I really like her style.

Well, real life intrudes. My youngest is calling. She has a head cold. It's time to put on another hat. Let's see...wife, writer, nurse and Mom. Let's combine the nurse and Mom hat. That will work. Mommy nurse is coming sweetie.

Melissa NC

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

Family Support - Mini Update

In my profile, I mention the support of my family and friends. My 10yr old daughter wanted to show her support for my writing by drawing a picture for me. I promised her I would post it on the blog so, here it is.

Melissa NC

Saturday, December 13, 2008


Tonight, I am feeling excited and full of energy. I don't know why but, I sure am going to use it. I just got off from working a 12 hour shift so, you would think I would be tired but, I'm not. So, as soon as I post this, it's off to my laptop to work on my MS.

I'll never understand people who are lazy and don't like to come to work or work at all. I guess, they're not working or doing what they love. I'm blessed to do what I love on my day job and also my self imposed job of writing because right now I write for the fun of it. It's a hobby until, hopefully it becomes a job.

Well, got to run while the fires are still burning. I have another 12 hour shift tomorrow.

Melissa NC

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

Writing Class

My writing classes have ended. This month, I am not signing up for another class. Partly due to my new budget and partly because I have more than enough material to go over and study from all the previous classes I've taken. Now it's time to put to use some of the stuff I've learned into my writing. No more procrastination. I've picked a dead line for the completion of my MS.

I'm ready to start receiving those rejection letters and dive into the world of writing full throttle. I've been lurking on the edges afraid to jump in. But, entering my first contest was like breaking the ice for me.

I remember a few months ago, I was afraid to even let my friends and family read my stuff. Their encouragement gave me the push I needed to actually pursue writing as a possible career path. Don't get it twisted, as my daughter would say. I'm not giving up my day job! Just adding dimensions and possibilities.

Melissa NC

Friday, November 21, 2008


I actually entered my first writing contest this week. Friends and family who read the short story have been telling me it's really good but, I am my worst critic. I don't expect to win but, I am happy to be moving in the right direction to become a writer. I suspect, I'll be entering and not winning quite a few contest over the next couple of months, along with working on my MS.

It does feel good to complete something and turn it in though. Each small step bringing me closer to where I want to be.

I was listening t Oprah the other day and I like what she said about reaching your goals. She said, "Step by step, cut away those things in your life that are preventing you from reaching your dreams and goals and instead replace them with things that move you toward them."

I thought about that for a minute and realized that I have been taking same steps toward my goals. I brought a laptop specifically for writing, I'm taking classes to learn how to write better, I started working on my MS and I entered a writing contest for the first time.

All of these things are good but, I can do better. I also need to work on believing in shelf, time organization and production.

Well, now that I've completed one project, what now? Finish my MS. That's what I will be concentrating on now. I'll definitely do a happy dance when I finish that!

Wednesday, November 19, 2008


Sorry for the long absence. I was working hard on a meeting a few deadlines. Self imposed deadlines but, deadlines just the same. Now that I've met them, I can relax but, just for a little bit.

Well, since I've been gone, we have a new President elect! This is so, big! My daughters are excited that two little girls that look very much like them are going to live in the White House. I am so proud and touched that my country has finally taken a giant leap towards true equality and just being able to view people as just people and not white or black.

I called my Mom when Obama won the election and we talked about the significance of his election. It's been a couple of weeks now but, it still seems unreal.

I think we saw through the color lines and picked the right man for the job. Our country is truly in a crisis and now more than ever we need to pull together to get out of this mess. The election of Obama was a step in the right direction and showed not only America but, the world that we are ready for a change.

Melissa NC

Friday, October 31, 2008




Thursday, October 30, 2008

Just for fun

Okay, this has nothing to do with writing but, I couldn't resist posting this picture. It cracks me up. I found this picture while looking to add to my action figure collection. Yes, I am a nerd as my teen aged daughter is forever telling me. Hope this gives you a laugh like it me. These are twelve inch action figures.


Monday, October 27, 2008

Writing Contest

Today, I am putting the finishing touches on a short Urban Fantasy story I wrote for an upcoming contest. As a matter of fact, I'll be going over my short story the rest of this week before sending it into the contest. As my writing instructor says, "we always want to turn out our best work."

Of course, I hope to win but, I'd settle for 1st, 2nd, 3rd or even honorable mention. Any of which, will get me published in the writing journal so, I can finally post some excerpts so you guys can get a peak at some of my writing. (And give myself alittle ego boost.)

The short story is actually about two of the characters in my manuscript and how they meet. I've let a couple of friends and family read it and so far I've gotten only positive feedback. My significant other said it was very good but, dark!

One of my friends is a Preacher and never reads Urban Fantasy or anything dark. She told me she was just going to read the first couple of lines but, ended up reading the whole story and asking for more. That made me feel good but, weird. She told me that I was very talented if I could get her to read Urban Fantasy:)

Monday, October 6, 2008

Egotistical Characters

Don't mind me. I was just sitting here having an argument with Alex, my supposed secondary character in the next manuscript I was planning. I'm trying to convince her that she needs to lay back and play a supporting role in the book. She's telling me, that she has more issues to deal with than the main character, her best friend the vampire. We've been having this disagreement for a week or more. Right now, she's giving me the silent treatment because she's very passionate about how she feels.

I actually came to the realization that Alex was right a couple of days ago but, I don't want to hear her saying, I told you so, over and over again going through my head.

Alex being right creates a problem for me. I was trying to create a certain type of character. A character that I've always wanted to read about. That character was Alex's vamp friend. Now, I'll have to come up with another character/plot to bring that character to life. I already know her, the character that I want bring to life. This time, I'll have to ensure that her sidekick doesn't have dreams of grandeur.

Melissa NC

P.S. Here's another picture I sketched on a rather stressful day.

Friday, October 3, 2008

Busy Writing Week

This week has been filled with homework from Terry Spear's Conflict writing class, putting the final touches on The Prodigal Demon, a short story I wrote for an upcoming contest in November, working on finishing my 1st manuscript tentatively entitled "Cursed Blood."

As soon as I get the okay, I plan on posting excerpts from some of my WIPs. "The Prodigal Demon" started out as a way for me to get to know two of the characters in my manuscript better. It didn't start out as a story but, when I finished. I thought it actually made a pretty good story by itself, and would give readers more insight into the characters in the book, if it gets published. (fingers crossing)

The classes I have been taking under Terry Spear have been awesome. She gives constructive criticism and invaluable insight. Her classes aren't just for new writers like myself but, for all levels of writing. You can take her classes directly though her website. This is my third class with Terry. I plan on taking all of her classes. The cost is very affordable too. It's only twenty dollars for a month with three assignments a week. An extremely good bargain. The financial state of the nation being what it is, this is a very good thing.

Terry, gives you a lot bang for the buck and she realizes that most of us have day jobs and families so, she is really good about letting you turn in your assignments when you can. I guess she's so understanding because she is quite busy herself. She give lectures, teaches online classes, is a multi-published/contracted author writing in several genres and also has a family life that requires her attention.
Melissa NC
P.S. Last week after three weeks, the person who stole my writing notebook with all my classnotes from the last 5 writing classes and notes on my WIPs "The Prodical Demon" and "Cursed Blood" placed them in a drawer where I would find them. They also returned a book I was reading, "Full Moon Rising" by Keri Author. (Happy Dance)

Friday, September 26, 2008


What do you do for stress relief? You know, when the revision, re-revision blues set in. Or if you're like me, an unpublished author with a DAY JOB, taking writing classes, finding time to work on your WIP and trying to write the next best selling novel.

I read to relax or sketch, as you can see from the inserted picture that I did. (For those who don't know, that's Nightcrawler from the X-MEN.) But, am I really relaxing? Yes and no, I am usually relaxing for the most part but, if I'm reading I am noticing the style and voice of the author. I trying to figure out how she inserts humor at all the right times. I'm picking apart chapters for HOOKS. And looking for a satisfying ending or enough of one to lead me to the next book in the series.

So, when I'm sketching I'm relaxing, right? Yes and no, if I'm sketching an already known character, then yes right? No, I tend to sketch very imaginative creatures or people like, witches, wizards, demons, sword toting women etc. I also like to sketch the characters that I am developing in my WIPs. It helps to make them more real when I'm fleshing them out.

Hence the saying a writer is always working. I never really understood that saying until I started writing. Now I can't watch a movie without analyzing dialogue. LOL

Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Blog changes

Hopefully this week, you will see some cool additions to Dark Whisper Blog Page. I am working on adding some videos, an introduction to the blog and news and article features. As a writer I know I am always looking for information and news regarding the craft of writing and publication.

I hope to have some of the changes completed by the end of this week. I enjoy visiting authors sites like Kim Harrison, Rachel Vincent and others, because they blog almost daily and have alot of interesting things to check out on their sites. I really enjoy Kim's format of answering fan questions usually within twenty-four to seventy-two hours (depends on if it's a weekend or holiday).

Anyway, I found this cute long sleve tee shirt at the top of my post at writer's stuff. I might order it:)



Monday, September 22, 2008

Tools of the Trade

Thought I'd show the tools of the trade. Notice the cup of Java? Absoutely essential when you work a full-time day job, take writing classes and still have to find time to work on your manuscript/book. Today, it's playing catch -up with homework assignments, giving at least a good couple of hours to my WIP then off to work for a 12 hour night shift. Whew!

Yes, that's the teaser poster for True Blood on HBO. I don't get to watch it. (Struggling writer here:) can't afford HBO.) But, I have seen a couple of trailers via my computer. It looks pretty good. I've already read all of the Charlaine Harris books that it's based on. Hope it does well. Maybe my favorite author (Kim Harrison) will get her stuff turned into a movie. Fingers crosses while saying it. Well gotta go. WIP and homework is waiting.


Saturday, September 20, 2008

Aspiring Writer

I'm an urban fantasy reader so, that's what I write. I am working on not one but, two manuscripts now with the help of my critique partners. Which made me wonder... How many of you guys are aspiring writers? If so, what are you currently working on? And how far are you in the process? Are you planning to write in only one genre or several? I currently am polishing off one manuscript, writing another and finished a short story for a upcoming contest. I will be looking for an agent soon.