Saturday, November 21, 2015

Seven Simple Things

By N.J. Nielsen (Guest Blogger)

Hello and thank you for allowing me to pimp my wares on your blog. I’m not sure what to talk about so I thought I would go with. My OCD when it comes to writing… I know as crazy as it sounds this is what works for me. Maybe if you tweak my method and it can work for you too. Every time I start a stint of writing I get a notebook and I try and do these seven simple things.

1) I figure out how many pages per chapter… I number the chapters and write what page I need to start the next chapter by.

2) I draw boxes… 1 for each 1K I plan to write in a story—that way I can mark them off as I go…weirdly it makes me feel like I’m accomplishing things.

3) I keep a notebook beside me with character names and basic descriptions so that I don’t screw everything up. It also stops me from putting the wrong character in the wrong story…believe me it happens more than I’d like. How you ask? Because I write around four stories at once, and I’m continually swapping between them all. I even started keeping inspirational pictures of people I’d see on the net so I also had a visual of what each character looks like.

4) I also set myself challenges… Take 2016: I have a challenge I set for myself and Penny Brandon is going to keep track of me to make sure I don’t slack off… I’ve talked about it on both my blogs.

5) I set my self a wordage count that I need to get done each day. If I fall behind I have to make it up in the following days.

6) I also have two blogs Blogger—Where I talk about anything and everything, and then I have my Wordpress where I talk about my books.

7) Lastly I love each and every character I write about. Don’t tell my family but sometimes I like my characters more, but that can be our secret.

I have many people ask me if I plot, and plan out my stories. Sadly no. I wish I could. I’m horrible. I can sit down and figure out exactly where I want the story to go. Then the moment I sit in front of the computer everything goes haywire. And I wind up somewhere so completely bloody different that I even shock myself. Again something that happens way too often. So now I’ve learnt, and I don’t even try to plan anything out.

Do I base characters on people I know? Guilty! Most everyone who’s read The Lines of Marsden knows that Gypsy Marsden is my daughter Emily. Actually there’s a little bit of Emily in a lot of my characters.

I’m often asked if I have a favourite character. The answer is, I have a favourite character in each and every story. But I do also have one overall favourite character I love to write, and aging he’s from The Lines of Marsden and his name is Doyle Kerwin. In the beginning he started off as a secondary character, but by book two he decided he wanted to play a bigger role in the storyline. Now in book three he’s taken over just that little bit more.

Okay, I know I’m starting to ramble now so I will say goodbye to you all and I’ll leave you with some sneak peeks at a story released on November 6th, and another, which is due out on November 20th. I hope you all enjoy reading them as much as I enjoyed writing each book.

GIVE AWAY TIME! This is the point where one lucky winner will be able to pick two books from my back list… you can see what they are at either of my blogs. From the winner I will need to know which books and which format you’d like them in.

The Lines of Marsden 3
You Make Me Die In Pieces
Released: November 6th
Publisher: MLRPress

Buy Link


What would you do if the past changed everything you ever thought you were?

Everything Michael Marsden has ever believed about himself is about to come crashing down around his ears. The life he never wanted is never going to let him go. How can he deal with the future when the past changes everything?

When Doyle's memories come back, they discover the past isn't always about what you remember. Sometimes, some people live the same life over. What happens when he realises the cycle has to end?

With help from their family and friends, Michael and Doyle are faced with an uncertain future in the fight to regain a sense of self. With each new revelation of what was, Venetia and her followers are knocking on the door and threatening war. She's crazier than ever and hell-bent on revenge.

Will what happened in their past be enough to save their future?

Chapter One

The Fun Never Ends

For once in his life, Michael Marsden would've liked to have woken up when everything was absolutely perfect and he wasn't in some sort of mortal fucking danger. Burning fury rocketed through him with the force of a lightning strike at the way his day was beginning. On the upside of this whole fucked up situation, this wake-up call had kicked his adrenaline up a notch or three. With a burst of his gifted vampiric speed, he rolled to the side of the bed and dropped to the hard floor as his attacker attempted to permanently remove his head from where it rested on his shoulders.

Not gonna happen. Well, not today at least.

There was no doubt in Michael's mind Venetia was the one behind this current state of being attacked at the arse-crack of dawn. No one else hated him this much. Except for maybe Heather, but honestly he hadn't been home enough lately to piss her off. Venetia and her rapidly growing band of idiotic followers were starting to become a big fat pain in his arse. The closer Michael got to actually finding a cure for Doyle's memory loss, the more interference Venetia threw his way. Everything would be okay if the bitch played fair. The only problem was Venetia didn't believe in fair.

The truth was Venetia was pissed at him for more reasons than he was able to take the time to count right now, and he was starting to lose track of why she actually wanted him dead. Her intentions seemed to change with each passing day. Michael supposed it really didn't matter why she hated him, yet he knew her three main motives were: One: he was the mirror image of Benj. Two: when she had orchestrated to have Gypsy taken, Michael had gone in and taken her right back. And three: when she'd had Doyle kidnapped and tortured, Michael had once again walked in and reclaimed what was his. Mind you, the bitch did get the last laugh in taking Doyle's memories of Michael while leaving everything else intact. Her actions only filled Michael with the desire to fulfil his ultimate goal of seeing her dead.

Michael lay on the floor wondering why the hell it was taking so long for his attacker to get on with the job. His assailant seemed to stop and listen, as if trying to gauge what Michael's next move was going to be. The fucker probably didn't even know how good of a fighter he was. The fact was, he'd had to shut down his pacifist tendencies and harden the fuck up ever since the night long ago when he'd woken up as a vampire and had his existence changed forever. To this day, he still both loved and despised Christian for turning him. He'd completely forgiven him, but it'd still pained him to find out his vampirism was because he resembled Benj so much, even if Christian hadn't understood why. For a short time in the beginning, he'd loved deeply and hurt greatly when Christian had regained some of his lost memories and the truth had come out.

Hidden Hearts 1
Harder and Harder to Breathe
Releasing: November 20th
Publisher: Fireborn Publishing

Buy Link


Sammy has loved Micah from the first moment they'd met, but Micah is straight. Years later when he's threatened and he seeks and receives Micah's help, Sammy begins to think maybe Micah isn't so straight after all.

Disaster brings people together in the most unexpected ways. Sammy Ranmore has just become the Steins brothers' next target in their ongoing scam. Being robbed then shot at, his life is falling apart. Who is after him and why? He needs a friend.

Micah Ives was over the unrequited love he'd felt for Sammy. Two years later his life is finally on track--or so he thinks. One phone call in the early hours of the morning has Micah running to save the day--and Sammy.

Sammy moved to Gatton to be closer to the one person he'd never get over. When his life gets thrown a curve ball of epic proportions, he calls Micah for help. With the help of family, Micah and Sammy must find out if they're strong enough to face evil--and see where newfound love can take them.


"Honey, why are you calling me so late?" Micah cringed at both the endearment slipping free and the tenderness of his own voice as he heard his ex-flatmate speaking. Actually, he was kind of surprised he even recognised Sammy's voice when he'd answered the phone. Two years was a long time after the bittersweet end to their time sharing a flat. Now, to suddenly be woken up at--he looked across to the clock on his nightstand--shit! It was three a.m. A sniffle on the other end of the line had all sense of tiredness fleeing from his body, and Micah suddenly found himself wide awake. Once again the strong need to slay all of Sammy's dragons was flooding Micah's system. He wondered if he offered his help again, would he get the same reaction as last time. Still, he couldn't stop himself from asking. "Why are you crying? Is everything okay?"

"I didn't know who else to call. Bradley left me. He took everything and left. I'm...I--" A broken sob filled the line as Sammy shattered on the other end of the phone. Micah needed Sammy to tell him what the hell was going on.

"Sammy, where are you? I'm coming to get you. I need to know where I can find you." Tossing back the sheet, Micah stood, went to his closet, and grabbed the first things his hand fell on as he coaxed Sammy's location from him.

Sammy rattled off his address and shock slammed into him when Micah realised his old friend had been living in the same township and he hadn't even known it. Why hadn't they ever run into each other? It wasn't like Gatton was some huge city. Surely if Sammy had been here for any length of time they would have crossed paths before now. There were so many questions he'd have to ask.

"I'll be there in a couple of minutes, hon. Tomorrow you can decide what else you need to do." Again he cringed at the term of endearment and couldn't believe what a goober he was sounding like.

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Lisabet Sarai said...

Hi, Norma!

Welcome to Beyond Romance.

Do you REALLY do that stuff? Decide where to break your chapters based on the number of pages? Pardon me, but I can't imagine working that way.

However, as I always tell new authors, there is no one correct way to write. So if it works for you (and it obviously does, based on these excerpts), go with it!

Debby said...

Interesting steps you take in writing. I read the second Lines of Marsden and would love to read the first. And now the third.
debby236 at gmail dot com

Ginger said...

Your first chapter in the Lines of Marsden does a lovely job of bringing me up to speed very quickly. Well done! Good luck :)

Sal said...

I would love to own Rules Are Meant To Be Broken and Shadows On The Heart. I would like the to be in a format for Kindle which I think is ePub. If that's no possible then books would be great.

Unknown said...

Great post...I know many writers often have problems with their muse,writing schedules and etc. and it's great you developed your own system for writing (or when there's lack of it).

My choice would be your newest one - Harder & Harder To Breathe and Running Into Zero Tolerance in ePUB format.

ShirleyAnn said...

Congratulations on your recent release I enjoyed the post I think it's really interesting how author find different ways to write their books. I love the "The Lines of Marsden" I have most of your books only ones I don't have Are "The Crimson Grimoire" and "Blood To Blood".


Emily said...

Wow, that's a very detailed schedule...I'm impressed. I can't seem to stick to a schedule to save my life, lol. Thanks for the giveaway!


N.J. Nielsen/ Saddington said...

Every time I write a book I always have loose leaf paper and blank notebooks at the ready... I don't have the best memory in the world so every little bit helps.

I must admit the page thing doesn't always work out, but I just adjust it as I go.

N.J. Nielsen/ Saddington said...

I have added you to the chance to win.

N.J. Nielsen/ Saddington said...

Thank you...I must admit this is my favourite series to right.

N.J. Nielsen/ Saddington said...

Shadows on the Heart is already free... I wrote that one for DRitC in 2010 (I think) Though I am rewriting it and extending it to around 40K it will still be free... I just want to add some stuff before I start writing book 2 in that trilogy... the kindle format is mobi or prc... I have added you into the draw.

N.J. Nielsen/ Saddington said...

PS: I added you to the list.

N.J. Nielsen/ Saddington said...

Thank you... I have added you to the list... My style works for me... I also use a nifty free thing I found on the Lynn Veihl website. NOVEL NOTEBOOK.

N.J. Nielsen/ Saddington said...

Weirdly for me the hardest thing about writing is finding a beta reader... I don't know what it is about me, but they all seem to disappear... except for James A... Or their lives become too complicated to stay with me

N.J. Nielsen/ Saddington said...

No worries... you have the same name as my daughter... My family call me (the list lady) as I have them for everything... next year I have a thing/challenge I have set for myself and Penny Brandon is keeping track of me... I have to finish 2 novels and 20 novellas by 31 December 2016... It should be fun... people will be able to keep track of me via my blogs... I have added you to the give away list.

N.J. Nielsen/ Saddington said...

I will leave this open for a week from going live so I will choose my winner by next Saturday.

the jo said...

Wow! you are much stricter in your writing regiment than I have heard others speak of....I admire you for having your formula and I hafta admit it has created some wonderful books....Now, for what 2 books I would like to PDF format is fine.....would be the next 2 Sons of Evenmore books!!!! I abso-freakin-lutely love that series and am anxiously awaiting more, more, more! :)

Happy Holidays to all!!!


N.J. Nielsen/ Saddington said...

Thank you, Jo... I have added you to the list... at the end of the year on my blogs I will post the list of books I'm going to be working on in 2016

N.J. Nielsen/ Saddington said...

OK the winner is by way of my daughter picking a name out of a shoe box....

Milica Who... I will send the books right now.

the jo said...

I will watch for the list! In the meantime...I am gobbling up all your other books too...You sure have a way with words lady....I cant read your books at bedtime 'cause I cant stop and end up staying up all night! :)
Congrats on all your book releases! and I hope you have wonderful holidays!!!!


the jo said...

Congrats to Milica!!! I am sure you will luv the books!

Happy Holidays to all!

the jo

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