The Joy of Writing

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The one word that epitomizes Pure Dumb Luck is fun. Definitely. 100%. Fun.

And I definitely made that decision consciously.

The first two novels I wrote in 2019 were emotionally heavy. One was a nightmare to write from conception to the last word. I desperately wanted/needed to enjoy the process of writing again.

Woody and Eddie are the epitome of a Rom-Com. While writing, I definitely visualized the entire story as a movie. Pure Dumb Luck—coming to a theatre near you—I wish.

Sadly, we’ll have to settle for the written word.

It was lines like this that had me laughing constantly.

“What’s a blowjob on the baseball scale of sex?” Woody followed Eddie down the trail. They had four more miles to go before they hit their first campsite of the hike. “Third?”

“Two balls and a strike .”

There are so many moments in the novella that had me chuckling (and wondering if my editor would make me rewrite them.)

She didn’t, thankfully.

I might’ve had to fight her to keep my precious moments of silly humour together.

Do you love a good Rom-Com?

TV Shows that Inspired Pure Dumb Luck

When I’m writing, I generally have a music playlist (or two), but I’ll also have one for movies and TV shows. Not for every novel, it’s just for certain stories I need a little help getting into the vibe. Pure Dumb Luck was definitely one of those.

I thought I’d share ten of the TV shows that I watched while writing my fun travel rom-com.

And they’re not in any particular order.

  1. Travel Man (So damn funny)
  2. World’s Most Dangerous Roads
  3. Amazing Hotels
  4. Parts Unknown
  5. Kindness Diaries
  6. Departures
  7. Stephen Fry in America
  8. Ugly Delicious
  9. The Misadventures of Romesh Ranganathan
  10. The Layover

How about you? What are your favourite travel-themed TV shows?

 

 

Book Excerpt: Pure Dumb Luck

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This is not even close to the hardest part of your day.

Except it had definitely become the most difficult daily event. Woody had never considered himself a coward, yet every single morning, he walked into the gas station to see his best friend, the person he’d been in love with for years, and said nothing beyond small talk.

He never told the truth of the ache in his heart growing too painful to ignore. He couldn’t. What if Eddie rejected him?

“Your usual?”

Woody grinned at Eddie, who ran the family-owned gas station in their little country town nestled in the middle of a national forest in the southern Appalachian Mountains. “You know me. Boring as shit. I’m consistent, at least.”

“One large coffee, one pack of powdered donuts, and three lottery tickets. Two for you, one for me.” Eddie rolled his dark brown eyes and held out a large hand for the card Woody held out to him. “You never change, dude. You’ve been doing this for twenty years—since high school. I know Coach said you were full of dumb luck, but I don’t think he meant with the Mega Millions.”

“Have a little faith, Eddie.” He grabbed both his breakfast and the lottery tickets, winking at his oldest friend, who hadn’t changed much in the thirty years since they’d known each other. Still as fucking hot as the day I first saw him in the shower at the gym. His warm brown skin had glistened under the shower. Maybe stop thinking about Eddie naked in the middle of the gas station. “We still on for fishing this weekend?”

“Unless you get lucky with your numbers. If you do, we’ll go fishing on a yacht instead of your granddaddy’s rickety old boat.” He tapped a finger against the ticket stub in Woody’s hand. “Go on. Get your ass out of here. You’re ruining the atmosphere. Plus, I like watching you leave.”


Amazon US: https://amzn.to/2LJDlZl
All other links: books2read.com/puredumbluck

Movies that Inspired Pure Dumb Luck

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When I’m writing, I generally have a music playlist (or two), but I’ll also have one for movies and TV shows. Not for every novel, it’s just for certain stories I need a little help getting into the vibe. Pure Dumb Luck was definitely one of those.

I thought I’d share a couple of the movies I watched while writing my fun travel rom-com.

And they’re not in any particular order.

Eat, Pray, Love

This one might be a little cliché. And there are definitely parts of this movie I don’t love. But the genuine joy of travel, food, and life was really something I wanted for Pure Dumb Luck. So this movie was a no brainer.

The Way

This might seem a weird choice, particularly as I’m not very religious. But this is one of my all-time favourite Martin Sheen movies. It evokes the spirit of the journey/travel. Not a perfect film, but it did help me get in the mood to write about an adventure.

The Bucket List

If you’ve seen The Bucket List, I don’t have to explain why it’s on the list.

If you haven’t, you probably should. =)

How about you? What are your favourite travel-themed movies?

 

 

 

Book Excerpt: Pure Dumb Luck

67094819_2462361867344618_30024437034123264_n

This is not even close to the hardest part of your day.

Except it had definitely become the most difficult daily event. Woody had never considered himself a coward, yet every single morning, he walked into the gas station to see his best friend, the person he’d been in love with for years, and said nothing beyond small talk.

He never told the truth of the ache in his heart growing too painful to ignore. He couldn’t. What if Eddie rejected him?

“Your usual?”

Woody grinned at Eddie, who ran the family-owned gas station in their little country town nestled in the middle of a national forest in the southern Appalachian Mountains. “You know me. Boring as shit. I’m consistent, at least.”

“One large coffee, one pack of powdered donuts, and three lottery tickets. Two for you, one for me.” Eddie rolled his dark brown eyes and held out a large hand for the card Woody held out to him. “You never change, dude. You’ve been doing this for twenty years—since high school. I know Coach said you were full of dumb luck, but I don’t think he meant with the Mega Millions.”

“Have a little faith, Eddie.” He grabbed both his breakfast and the lottery tickets, winking at his oldest friend, who hadn’t changed much in the thirty years since they’d known each other. Still as fucking hot as the day I first saw him in the shower at the gym. His warm brown skin had glistened under the shower. Maybe stop thinking about Eddie naked in the middle of the gas station. “We still on for fishing this weekend?”

“Unless you get lucky with your numbers. If you do, we’ll go fishing on a yacht instead of your granddaddy’s rickety old boat.” He tapped a finger against the ticket stub in Woody’s hand. “Go on. Get your ass out of here. You’re ruining the atmosphere. Plus, I like watching you leave.”


Amazon US: https://amzn.to/2LJDlZl
All other links: books2read.com/puredumbluck

Book Excerpt: Pure Dumb Luck

67094819_2462361867344618_30024437034123264_n

This is not even close to the hardest part of your day.

Except it had definitely become the most difficult daily event. Woody had never considered himself a coward, yet every single morning, he walked into the gas station to see his best friend, the person he’d been in love with for years, and said nothing beyond small talk.

He never told the truth of the ache in his heart growing too painful to ignore. He couldn’t. What if Eddie rejected him?

“Your usual?”

Woody grinned at Eddie, who ran the family-owned gas station in their little country town nestled in the middle of a national forest in the southern Appalachian Mountains. “You know me. Boring as shit. I’m consistent, at least.”

“One large coffee, one pack of powdered donuts, and three lottery tickets. Two for you, one for me.” Eddie rolled his dark brown eyes and held out a large hand for the card Woody held out to him. “You never change, dude. You’ve been doing this for twenty years—since high school. I know Coach said you were full of dumb luck, but I don’t think he meant with the Mega Millions.”

“Have a little faith, Eddie.” He grabbed both his breakfast and the lottery tickets, winking at his oldest friend, who hadn’t changed much in the thirty years since they’d known each other. Still as fucking hot as the day I first saw him in the shower at the gym. His warm brown skin had glistened under the shower. Maybe stop thinking about Eddie naked in the middle of the gas station. “We still on for fishing this weekend?”

“Unless you get lucky with your numbers. If you do, we’ll go fishing on a yacht instead of your granddaddy’s rickety old boat.” He tapped a finger against the ticket stub in Woody’s hand. “Go on. Get your ass out of here. You’re ruining the atmosphere. Plus, I like watching you leave.”


Amazon US: https://amzn.to/2LJDlZl
All other links: books2read.com/puredumbluck

From straight pantser to ever so slightly plotting along.

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I used to be a straight pantser.  (Someone who writes by the seat of their pants instead of plotting with an outline, etc.)

Never did anything, not even writing down character notes, before starting a novel. My mind liked it, but my manuscripts became a bit of a nightmare to edit. It’s hard to keep track of characters, plots, and timelines when NOTHING is written down.

And your memory is a bit shit.

Now, I do better.

I plot a little. I’ll never be a true plotter. Outlines bore me to tears. So, I’ve found a compromise that works.

Stage One: Faces, Names and Places

Three things I usually do before anything else is to pick the location of a story, the novel title, and visual references for the characters.

I’m not a very visual person, so I definitely need an actual image to picture while I’m writing.

Stage Two: Build out a Book Bible.

I use thin A5 Muji notebooks and fill out little character questionnaires for the main characters along with notes about family/friends. I also jot down a loose timeline. I find this helps keep the novel on track, but also with writing newsletters and blog posts once I’m done with the book.

Stage Three: Media.

Before writing, I build two essential lists. A musical playlist, my current WIP has a mostly country music playlist. I also create a TV/movie list. I find watching shows or movies based around the theme of what I’m writing can really help me get in the mood.

For The Royal Marine, for example, I watched a lot of Bake Off. For the Grasmere trilogy, it watched Poirot, of course.

Stage Four: Let’s Play Pretend

This is the stage where I’m usually supposed to be giving myself a writing break, but I’m chomping at the bit to write.

Stage Five: Write

Self-explanatory that involves a lot of coffee, sobbing, and hitting my head against the keyboard.

If you’re a writer, are you a pantser or a plotter?