Saturday, December 13, 2014

About Writing: Your Essential Writing Manual

By Suz DeMello (Guest Blogger)

About writing ABOUT WRITING

Why yet another writing manual? Hasnt this ground been covered before, by far more able authors, such as Rita Mae Brown and Stephen King?

Well, yes, but...


Yes, I do quote the above authors liberally in my short little book. But I do add material they don’t have.

Oh yeah? Like what?

There’s some cool stuff on the mythic structure...

Mythic, schmythic. Joseph Campbell and Chris Vogler dealt with all of that stuff.

Yeah, but I offer something slightly different. Read this:

Legacy from the Distant Past

I wrote earlier that this story is hardwired into our consciousness, our bodies, our very cells. Why?

Picture this:

We are asleep in a cave or a den, curled up with our mates, our brothers, our sisters. This is our ordinary world.

Dawn comes, sliding sly fingers into the darkness. We awaken. Hunger and thirst are our call to adventure. Is there a refusal of the call to join the hunt? Perhaps from some pack members—the old, the very young, nursing mothers.

But others are insistent, approaching the alpha of the pack—the mentor—with a demand for food. Those who answer the call leave the safety of the cave—crossing the threshold.

The alpha selects our best fighters, finding allies while rejecting enemies who might take an opportunity to betray him during the excitement—the test—of the hunt.

We form a hunting party and set forth, seeking prey. But our targets are wily and fast. Some may take refuge in a different cave, behind a waterfall, or in a swamp.

Nevertheless, the alpha leads us to the danger, for the pack must eat. This stage of the hunt corresponds to Campbell’s approach to the innermost cave.

We find another dire wolf trying to kill a great beast, perhaps a mastodon. Even the combined efforts of the pack with our new ally aren’t equal to taking the mastodon, which tramples off, dripping blood from wounds we have inflicted. However, we have gained a powerful new hunter. These events are the ordeal and the reward...

Interested yet?

So here it is: ABOUT WRITING... Both of Suz deMello’s famed writing manuals, now in one handy paperback. A perfect gift for any writer!

Heres what folks said about Plotting and Planning:

Sue has written a concise manual that is valuable for both beginning and seasoned writers. Going to write a book? Read this first!
--Bestselling suspense author Kylie Brant

Suz deMello's PLOTTING AND PLANNING is a concise, informative, and entertaining look at writing a novel.
--Paranormal author Silver James

Not only did Write This, Not That! reach #2 on Amazons writing reference list, but it also garnered many five star reviews:

Five stars...good advice and fun to read.
--Jo Frye

Five stars... Kudos to the author for a well-written manual!
--Book CraZ

Five stars from me... This short guide covers the essentials and is
useful for both new and experienced writers.
--Author Catherine Cavendish


About Suz deMello:

Best-selling, award-winning author Suz deMello, a.k.a Sue Swift, has written seventeen romance novels in several subgenres, including erotica, comedy, historical, paranormal, mystery and suspense, plus a number of short stories and non-fiction articles on writing. A freelance editor, she’s held the positions of managing editor and senior editor, working for such firms as Totally Bound and Ai Press. She also takes private clients.

Her books have been favorably reviewed in Publishers Weekly, Kirkus and Booklist, won a contest or two, attained the finals of the RITA and hit several bestseller lists.

A former trial attorney, her passion is world travel. She’s left the US over a dozen times, including lengthy stints working overseas. She’s now writing a vampire tale and planning her next trip.

Stalk Suzie online:

--Find her books at
--For editing services, email her at suzdemello [at] gmail [dot] com
--Befriend her on Facebook:
--She tweets @Suzdemello
--Her current blog is


Suz de said...

Thanks for hosting me, Lisabet!

Lisabet Sarai said...

HI, Suz,

"Write This, Not That" is a great title! I think you're rather brave, though, trying to tell other authors how to do it!

Suz de said...

For that book, Lisabet, I solicited other authors' comments about what they loved and hated about books they'd read. As I wrote in the book, "Some information surprised me while other statements struck me as mundane."

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