Monday, July 26, 2010
Friday, July 23, 2010
Thursday, July 22, 2010
Tuesday, July 20, 2010
- The Lovely Bones -372 Pages
- Incarceron - 442 Pages
- The Hunger Games - 374 Pages
- Catching Fire - 391 Pages
- Bogus To Bubbly - 196 Pages
- Wizard's First Rule - 836 Pages
- Stone of Tears - 979 Pages
- Blood of the Fold - 623 Pages
- Temple of the Winds - 822 Pages
- Soul of the Fire - 788 Pages
- Faith of the Fallen - 785 Pages
- The Pillars of Creation - 725 Pages
- The Girl on the Dock - 132 Pages
- The Short Second Life of Bree Tanner - 192 Pages
- Lodestone Book One: The Sea of Storms - 290 Pages
- Buffy the Vampire Slayer 1 - 678 Pages
Monday, July 19, 2010
Saturday, July 17, 2010
Friday, July 16, 2010
Thursday, July 15, 2010
The Lodestone Series sprang from an idea that I had had for a little while. Einstein's relativity theory predicts the existence of negative matter. Although we have never found any, we know it would have some pretty weird properties, like negative inertia and negative gravity. I started to think, what would happen to a society where this stuff existed?
The idea of two female leads also appealed to me - characters who were opposed to each other, but who had to come together to save their world. It's their conflict that really drives the story forward in Book One.
I have a growing file of ideas for short stories that I haven't had time to write. For example, one, entitled "A Picnic in the Crystal Forest" has to do with quantum entanglement. A family, experiencing a planet-wide natural disaster in complete safety through their shadowy quantum alter-egos are suddenly thrust into the midst of the destruction and are forced to fight for their lives with dire consequences to themselves and their view of life.
Another has a world with subterranean layers, each of which is a separate world in itself. A kind of "Alice in Wonderland meets Journey to the Centre of the Earth." Some of these could become full fledged novels in time. My ideas always come faster than my writing. There's never enough time to do justice to them all!
Wells, Verne, Asimov and Heinlein were my childhhood friends. In later life, I have grown to love Stephen Donaldson and Stephen Baxter. I guess it's as if all of them are standing over my shoulder when I write, if that doesn't sound too corny!
I am currently waiting for the third installment of Paul Kearney's "Sea Beggars" trilogy. He is not the most consistent writer, but when he's good, he's absolutely brilliant.
As I said before, I had had the basic idea for Lodestone for some considerable time. When I started, I read several books on the craft of writing. I started to plot everything out on cards like you're supposed to. What I found was that that technique was a bit of a straightjacket. I, as author wanted my characters to do one thing, but they wanted to do another. And the funny thing was that the character was invariably right!
Now I just have a few "line notes" giving the general direction of the story and I let my characters "live" and tell me how they're going to cope with the various situations that come up. For example, in a scene in the third book, the party is deciding who is going to go on a particular mission. As I was writing it, one of the female characters I hadn't considered put up her hand and said "I'll go." When I thought about it, she was absolutely right! She needed to go along because the story would be much stronger as a result!
Some will say that doing it that way gives you problems in plot and development, but I found that dealing with those "problems" actually produces some of the best results. In the first book for example, Keris has to enter the Fortress of Gort to do a number of important tasks. But I had teamed her up with Boxx, so that left the problem of what to do with the Chandara? She couldn't take it with her as it would detract from what she was doing, but she couldn't leave it out in the desert either. That led to the scene where Boxx is attacked by youths and the whole concept of the Chandara risking everything to help the Kelanni, yet still being on the receiving end of Kelanni prejudice. It's an especially poignant moment when Boxx reflects Keris' own words back to her - "Kelanni Fear What They Do Not Understand."
I think when you finish a book and put it "out there", there is always a feeling of trepidation. You feel you have done the best work you can, but there is no way to be certain how others will recieve it. When I put the book out for pre-publication reviews, I was anxious to see what the reaction would be. Last week, I received the first of those reviews:-
“Once again, Whiteway creates a whole new world for us to revel in. The author hits his stride in terms of plot development and continuous action. In Book Two, Whiteway takes the time, (and wonderfully), to give each of the major characters a distinct personality, and develops intricate relationships and conflicts between them all.
I can honestly say that Book Two is better than the first, and that is quite an accomplishment. This is an absolute must read. HIGHLY RECOMMENDED” Gregg J. Haugland, Allbooks Reviews
The main story arc for the Lodestone series will be completed by the end of the third book. However, Book Three will end with a hook into a possible fourth - a mystery surrounding Annata's last message from the past. I am already playing out scenes from the fourth book in my imagination. However, whether the fourth book gets written or not will depend on the reaction to the series as a whole. The fourth book would take place in the Lodestone universe, but would strike out in a whole new direction.
On the other hand, I have been thinking a lot about my multi-layered world. The main characters would be younger I think - nothing sees wonder quite like the eyes of a child. However, the science behind it would need some work to make it believable, not to mention the purpose behind those who built it. A lot of my ideas are like that. They swim around like fish just beneath the surface of a pond. Occassionally they break the surface, and I get to see them for what they really are.
Wednesday, July 14, 2010
Ladies and Gents, I present to you "Welcome to the ARK" by Stephanie S. Tolan. *Hears Applause in the Background*
I probably read "Welcome to Ark" back when I was in the 7th grade and I remember instantly falling in love. I think one of the great things I loved about this book, and believe me I was bit cautious at first because I wasn't sure if I'd like this, was the author's ability to switch from first person to third. Now this might seem weird, confusing and out of place but Tolan really manages to nail it. She gets her story across clearly switching easily and fluently between the story she's telling, the emails sent, the reports written and the diaries of the characters involved.
"When you disappeared from the lodge I thought you'd gone home.
No such luck. Did you miss me?
It's lonely at midnight in the nuthouse, remember?
So tell me what this group home is all about.
I don't know much yet, except that we are supposed to be a family.
Anyway, it's better here than at the lodge.
I still have my ankle bracelet.
It's still a nuthouse.
(Excerpt taken from Cover)
"In a world of terrorist attacks, random bombings and multiplying militias..."
Welcome to the ark revolves around four misfit youngsters, Taryn is a poetry prodigy labeled schizophrenic and is a healer who is able to communicate with other life forms. Elijah an "autistic" child hears the growl of violence when it happens around him. Miranda, is a world-known baby genius known mostly from her mother's best-selling book "Phenom in the Family", and finally Doug a math whiz that turns the violence he sees in his family against himself.
The four are sent to a Private mental hospital labeled "the Lodge" and are then picked by two of the psychologists there, Noah and Abigail. Together they are thrown into a house they dub "the Ark" and learn about themselves, the link between their minds and their supposed "powers". Together they learn to communicate with other 'misfit children' around the world. As they begin to learn the real power of their connection they realize that there is great hope for the world and danger.
Not only must these four learn if they are strong enough to stop the violence that is engulfing the world they must also fight against forces inside their own sanctuary (the lodge/ark) that are threatening to break their connection.
"Doug understood the world, all right. It was a place where guns won out over knives and knives over tire irons and tire irons over fists and fists over minds. You could accept that and find a place there, or you could let it roll over you, take you out. Noah had asked him what he'd been feeling the night he'd done it. He'd had the right answer, but it wasn't pain. Rage."
(Excerpt taken from book)
I absolutely loved this book, I think the author works the story so well that she keeps you gripped to the end. It's a small book, won't take more than a few days to read it. I read it in a day...a very long boring summer day. -___-
Still I think the book really gets you thinking, about issues going on in the world and what the power of our minds can do (whether realistically or in this fictional connection shown in the book).
Now what really got to me was that after I read this book I went to search for more things on the author and I found this excerpt, I have it written down on a paper inside my book, because I thought it was amazing!
"Welcome to the Ark is a work of fiction and Miranda, Doug, Elijah, and Taryn are invented characters. However, they are based on real people. In working with a group of extremely bright children, I was able to observe the sort of "thinking together" that the children of the Ark begin to do. I know someone who is able to "read" a book merely by holding it in her hands. I can't explain these abilities, but like Noah and Abigail, I know because of my own experience that they exist." Copyright 1997 by Stephanie S. Tolan
So my question is, have any of you read this book or any other book my Stephanie Tolan? What do you think about the power of our mind and if you think we can use it to rid world of violence and create a better living.
Till next time Kiddos!