Know Yourself: How Many Worlds Do You Live In?

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Writing fantasy is fun. Why else would so many people do it? Why would so many read it? There’s more than a monetary investment when a reader picks up a fantasy novel. They are taking on faith that the world the writer has created is going to engage them and spark their imagination. As an author, you have to think through more than loving your own world and story – it has to be easily comprehended by a reader so that they don’t get fed up and abandon the attempt to enter into your written world.

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Author Interview: S.D. Grimm

Pen Friends, we are so excited to introduce you to debut YA author, S.D. Grimm! She’s someone you should definitely get to know (and her novel launches next week)! Plus, there’s a GIVEAWAY — check it out below.

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SP: Welcome, S.D.! Can you tell us a bit about yourself and when you started writing?

I write young adult sci-fi and fantasy because I love it. I started writing when I was in elementary school–second grade. It was a story about a lost sock. Only my lost sock was a living being who had been separated from his mother and siblings. Seven years ago I started writing with the hope of being published. And that book? Scarlet Moon.

SP: I know you were a Pitch Wars mentee (like our own Nova McBee is this year). What was the contest experience like? Would you recommend it for up and coming writers?

Pitch Wars was an awesome experience. I highly recommend it. Not only did I have a fabulous mentor, who taught me a lot, but I got my novel ready for pitching, and the edits my mentor suggested led to a polished novel that eventually helped me land my amazing agent. In addition to that, I have a community of friends who went through the same process, and they are so amazing. I would say that community of writers alone is invaluable.  Continue reading

Book Review: Sunset Rising

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Title: Sunset Rising Series

Author(s): S.M McEachern

Publisher: Clownfish Publishing

Genre: Dystopian, Fantasy

Rating: 4 out of 5

 

There are four main words I use for the Sunset Rising series by S.M. McEachern: I love these books.

These books will have your heart pounding on two levels. The obvious is the rich, action-packed scenes that flow seamlessly one to the other. The other is how Sunny and Jack demonstrate a heart-deep courage to be vulnerable and to change. Continue reading

Book Review: Storm Siren

images-11Title: Storm Siren

Author: Mary Weber

Publisher: Thomas Nelson

Genre: Fantasy, Dystopian

Rating: 5 out of 5

Mary Weber knows how to break a heart. For anyone who has yet to experience her debut novel, Storm Siren, you’ll understand what I mean once you dive into her incredible story world. From the lush settings to the descriptive and cleverly immersive vocabulary, the reader is immediately deposited in the middle of Elemental slave-girl Nym’s world, and will soon find yourself attending ridiculously lavish parties, running from bolcranes, dodging flesh-eating horses, preparing to enter the long-waged war against Bron, and hoping you don’t come in contact with the dreaded and infamous Draewulf—because if you do, you’re as good as dead.

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Book Review: Tainted

 

51Tipyv8FfL._SX331_BO1,204,203,200_-2Title: Tainted

Author(s): Alexandra Moody

Publisher: CreateSpace Independent

Genre: Science Fiction, Fantasy

Rating: 3 out of 5

Meet Elle Winters, an ordinary teen who turns out to be extraordinary. A terrified girl compelled by love to tremendous acts of boldness. A loner who lives her life for others. And the bearer of an orphaned heart that just might open to family and to her true identity.

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Book Review: King’s Folly & SP Note

Hello SP friends!

As we learn just how to tweak things for your optimal viewing pleasure, occasionally you, our loyal community, get to experience the natural growing pains with us! All that to say: sorry for the influx of emails – specifically our old book reviews. Going forward we’ll regularly post book reviews on the main page.

If you are interested in contributing a book review, you can send your review to us via thespinningpen@gmail.com, as well as your website (if you have one) so we can link our readers to your corner of the ‘net.

Looking forward to seeing your suggestions for our reading lists!


unnamed-2Title: King’s Folly

Author(s): Jill Williamson

Publisher: Bethany House

Genre: Fantasy, Science Fiction

Rating: 5 out of 5

Jill Williamson’s newest epic fantasy does not disappoint! The settings are descriptive, the plot clips along at a good pace, and the numerous individual Point-of-View character voices are racially and culturally diverse, unique, and interesting.

The Five Realms are on the edge of total destruction, Continue reading

How to Write Vivid Animals and Fantasy Creatures- Part 1

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We often talk about creating characters, but what about those stories that feature animals as the heroes? There are several great books (and series) with animals manning the cast, while other stories include animals playing side (yet still important) roles. Whether your animals speak, your human character happens to have the ability to speak to them, or you’re writing a story with fantasy creatures, the depth and breadth of possibilities with non-human characters are endless.

For today, we’ll tackle two kinds of characters:

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The Essential Guide to Writing Your First Draft

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You’ve sat down, know your characters, have a plan for writing, the plot is nailed down, and you’re itching to get started.

The first sentence comes out and…. sounds like a preschooler wrote it.

You try again, delete your second attempt, and then switch to paper and pen. That will help! Several crumpled papers later, your waste bin is starting to fill but not the pages. How do you get that perfect intro sentence? How do you set the mood, capture beauty, or develop your style?

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Prompt: Park Bench

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The bench was deceivingly inconspicuous. So plain was the chipped white paint and creaky wood, it practically promised that if you sat on it you could enjoy your brown paper bag lunch, watch pigeons in the park, without any life altering events…

What happens next?

Finish this prompt in 500 words or less. Send us yours at thespinningpen@gmail.com . We will select our favorite to be shared with our readers.