Posts Tagged With: short stories

STARTS WITH A WHISPER–ENDS WITH A ROAR

If the wind could speak, would you understand?

 

Fantasy author E.D. Tice recently released his debut novel, Whisper, the first in a series aimed towards middle-school and young adult readers.

Whisper is the story of Whitney Roseman and her adventures in the northern wilds. Central to the story is her ability to talk to the wind, and the life-changing things she learns from those conversations. Readers young and old alike will enjoy Whitney’s pluck and verve.

The novel consists of a series of four short stories and novellas, each focusing on a different age in Whitney’s life. While beginning with stories of Whitney when she is 11, the second half of the book jumps ahead several years to when she is in high school. Readers will find that, though the story begins relatively quiet and peaceful (if you call an attacking coyote, a charging moose, and a fistfight with a local boy “peaceful”), the story really gains in volume during the second half with the introduction of a shadowy, supernatural villain, hell-bent on Whitney’s destruction.

An ambitious project, Whisper not only bridges different ages in Whitney’s life, but different genres of literature. Starting out as a magical realism story in the vein of Paulo Coehlo’s The Alchemist, the story weaves together elements of fantasy, supernatural, and psychological thrillers.

A graduate of Shepherd University, in Shepherdstown, West Virginia, Tice says he first began work on the story as a character-development exercise, and as a test of his own abilities. “I’d once heard said that men can’t write from a woman’s perspective, and I wanted to challenge that notion,” Tice says. “Originally, my main story centered around a different character, a boy. The current protagonist, Whitney, was in a supporting role.”

ED Tice

E.D. Tice’s debut novel sat dormant for many years until he shared it with his wife Amanda, who pushed him to finish the work. (pic: author with wife Amanda and their son Judah.)

Tice says that, as he began writing more stories about Whitney, he found that he liked seeing the story through her eyes. “There was a freshness to writing from Whitney’s point of view—the story had grown almost stagnant in my mind and switching to her perspective really opened up a lot of creative possibilities. Plus, I relished the challenge of writing from the perspective of a young girl, and watching her grow and develop as a character. From there, I chose a short-story/novella approach—as well as going cross-genre—because I wanted to experiment with the structure of novel-writing, and even the concept of ‘genre’ to see what ways altering those conventions can bring out new methods of story-telling.”

Since graduating from Shepherd in 2009, E.D. Tice says that the story has sat dormant on his computer and in his mind, occasionally dusted off as he’s thought about trying to finish it, only to push it back and focus on other priorities.

It wasn’t until E.D. Tice shared his stories with his wife, Amanda, that he again felt a strong urge to finish. “She really encouraged me to get this first book written,” Tice says of his wife. “She keeps telling me I have to finish the whole story because she needs to know how it all ends.”

E.D. Tice aims to have the second book in the series available for purchase by late June 2016.

Click here to follow E.D. Tice on Twitter.

 

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Guest Post: From Dream to Reality

Today’s guest post is from Fay Moore, of the Blog (Fay Moore: I Want To Be a Writer). I met Fay a few years ago when she came to one of my publishing Workshops or Seminar. I remember our meeting specifically because it was pour more than cats and dogs that night, which kept a lot of people home. But Fay fought the elements to drive down route 81 from Williamsport, Maryland, to learn about publishing. Her enthusiasm is contagious and her drive to make this dream of being a writer is constant.

The results, as you will see in her guest post, is amazing:

Dates don’t stick in my brain. That’s why I always disliked history classes. The tests seemed to focus on memorization of lots of dates. I was at an instant disadvantage. I would have preferred that the instructors focused on the lessons we can learn from history. If that had been the case, I likely would have majored in history. I love to learn. I hate memorization.

But I digress.

I was saying dates don’t stick in my brain. I can’t remember when I first decided that I would start a writers group. If I were to guess, I would say it was two years ago. About that time, I started attending writing workshops by mystery author Lauren Carr, hosted by different local libraries. In fact, it happened after the first Carr workshop, but before the second. At the second workshop is where I asked for anyone interested to give me his or her contact information.

It took a bit of time to find a meeting place. I had a list of 25 names. I had no idea how many would actually show up. Rose Harris, owner of a local coffee-house in historic Williamsport, MD, was willing to let the group use her back room free of charge two times per month. The local library also had a meeting room, but it was in high demand. The writers group may have to compete for meeting dates. That was no good. Plus, the library felt sterile. The vibe at the Desert Rose Cafe was nurturing, creative, friendly. As an added bonus, ”the eats” were good and inexpensive.

The Desert Rose Cafe in Williamsport, is the meeting place for Fay and the authors of their recent release.

The Desert Rose Cafe in Williamsport, is the meeting place for Fay and the authors of their recent release.

It was the vibe that made the decision for me.

Over time the group whittled down to a dozen, then ten regulars. The group was very diverse, from writing styles to personalities to topical interests. Yet we jelled. We shared work by reading aloud. We criticized (in a constructive way) and guided each other in developing our craft. We encouraged and inspired each other.

The restaurant hosted a writing contest, posting short works from the group in the dining room, asking diners to read and vote on a winner.

We all were winners, because, after the contest, we decided to put together the Anthology. We had faith we could create a collection of short works, edit them, compile them, then publish them in a period of about six months.

With the professional assistance  and coaching of Acorn Book Services in Harpers Ferry, WV, by December, 2012, the humble writers group–Writers of the Desert Rose Cafe–released its first e-book. The members range in age from 30 to 80-plus and live in a three state area.

Click on Book Cover to Purchase on Amazon.

Click on Book Cover to Purchase on Amazon.

One member with Asperger’s Syndrome remarked that the release date of the e-book was one of the greatest days in his life. During the course of writing for the Anthology, he made a decision to move out of his parents’ home and into his own apartment, so he could enroll in college. He is currently working on a solo writing project.

An administrator in the local library system called me a couple of days ago to express her surprise and joy that Writers of the Desert Rose Cafe had achieved its goal. She offered to help arrange publicity for the book through the local newspaper. In turn, I offered to promote the library workshops as wellsprings of creativity. Without the library’s workshop, the Anthology would never have been written.

An idea led to a call to action and resulted in the creation and e-printing of a publication. A young man’s life changed. Others came to see that setting a goal and working on it faithfully yielded results. Several are working on new solo projects.

Dreams do come true.

 

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