Thursday, April 3, 2008

Maven Darcy's At It Again

Maven Lacey KayeI just finished Maven Darcy's Her Wicked Ways and let me tell you, wow. You are all in for a treat! The bitchly heroine is utterly lovable, the secret identity hero makes me want to tear into his mask and the in laws will keep you laughing until you hit The End. Fabulousness.

All this fabulousness makes me sit back and try to evaluate how she did it. As with any really good book, I tried not to pay attention to the craft while reading it. Given I was in on the planning for the novel, this is a difficult task, but there was enough time between our cping and reading the finished full that I found it pretty easy to glide through without too much heavy thought. What I did decide was that Maven Darcy is really good at two things (among others, naturally): a) Her use of deep POV draws you into the story without being intrusive and without depriving you of sensory details and b) she managed to contain the story within a handful of characters and subcharacters so that it really feels like every line in the book ties up to a purpose.

I envy both of those successes. I envy her book! Great job, Darc. Now to read Maven Jackie's latest...

YOUR TURN: What's your craft tip of the week?

PS Our friends at the Romance Vagabonds nominated the Mavens last week for an Excellence in Blogging award, which we thought was pretty darned cool (not to mention flattering). The "rules" for this award are that the recipient, in accepting said honor, shall nominate ten other blogs for the same award. Since there are five of us, however, we thought we'd split up the task amongst ourselves, and each of us award to two blogs we particularly enjoy.

My two nominations go to:

Tessa Dare (who never fails to amuse -- where DOES she come up with her blog topics?) (I set a new background image at work at least once a month. Keeps my peers amused to glance into the quirks of a writer's mind.)


Darcy Burke said...

I just sat back down after jumping and dancing all over the room. :-) Thanks, Maven Lacey!!!! You made my week! The fact that I made anything look easy...bwa! I can barely contain myself. High, high praise from one of the best writers I've read. Okay, I have to go happy dance again.

Whew! Back again. So I have this corny little acronym that sits in the back of my mind as I write. I've mentioned it before, but I'll mention it again. AID. Action, introspection, dialogue. I try to balance the three in each scene (or at least over the course of the book - some scenes are just naturally more one of the three). And I have to credit the storyboard for the whole purpose thing. Seriously, it works.

As for deep POV, I think I've blogged before about getting into the minds of the chars. As an actor, I did a lot of getting into other people's skins and I think it serves me well now. One thing I've learned recently (and I'm a bit ashamed to say this) is that backstory - and I mean really specific, rich backstory is soooo important for that deep POV. As I'm prepping my next two books, I have much clearer ideas for the h/h than I ever have before. This is one of the things you get from writing multiple books and/or doing this for a few years. I feel like I know these people (and yes, they're people!) already and I can't wait to tell their stories.

Wow, that was a blog post in itself.

Jackie Barbosa said...

Darcy, AID is a great mnnemonic. I love it and will incorporate it into my writing post-haste!

Lacey, if I had a craft tip for this week, I suppose it would have to be to just have faith in the story you want to tell. Don't be afraid to push the boundaries in whatever direction feels "right" to your characters and your vision. that next book--looks like I'm probably going to need to get started on it in earnest pretty soon :).

Santa said...

Great advice, ladies. It seems that no matter where I turn I hear the words 'storyboarding'. Me thinks the universe is trying to tell me something....

Since I've already listened to Jackie's sage advice which has been echoed by my own CP, it only follows suit that I should gather the rest of these pearls.

Who really should stop by more often....

Marnee Jo said...

Darcy, I like your AID acronym. I'm going to keep that in mind.

Tip: Hellion always says that we should write AS IF, meaning that we need to write as if every word we wrote is the exact right word. This keeps me from overanalyzing everything and moving forward.

Of course, this only works on the first draft. :)

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