Showing posts with label romantic suspense. Show all posts
Showing posts with label romantic suspense. Show all posts

Saturday, October 15, 2016

Scorpio's Sting -- Trish Jackson. The story behind the story

Woohoo! I finally completed the second edit of Scorpio's Sting and will be able to send it to my editor, Caroline on Monday. I'm thrilled with the way it's turned out. It's changed a lot since I first submitted it, but I think with her help, we've tied up all the loose ends and filled the holes now.


Scorpio's Sting is about a Drew McBain's VMF System, which is designed to help shore up the US borders and stop the human and drug trafficking. The problem Drew comes up against is the fact that the Cartel that does business on the Arizona and California borders doesn't like the idea of their operations being curbed.

Neelie Nelson is an agent with ICE--Immigration and Customs Enforcement, and she has to handle human trafficking. She and Drew meet in unusual circumstances and find that they have a common goal.

Drew is forced to seek help from the very people he is going to prevent from crossing our borders--the illegal immigrants.

The story came into my mind one afternoon when my friend and co-worker in Young, Arizona received a panicked call from her brother. He had an illegal Mexican working for him, as many people do in Arizona and California. Let's call him Juan, and he had a big problem. He had paid the drug kingpin to bring his wife over the border. The men who escort illegals are called 'coyotes', and the coyote had crossed the border with her, but was now demanding another $3,000.00 or he would abandon her in an undisclosed location in the desert with no water or food. My friend's brother had to help him find $3,000.00 in a hurry. They were only given 24 hours. As far as I am aware, they were able to scrape up the money and the story had a happy ending, but ever since that day my heart has gone out to those whose story doesn't end in joy, and that's what his book is about.

Here's an excerpt from the first chapter:


CHAPTER 1

Drew McBain's eyes opened wide, and before he could do anything to stop her, a smoking hot blonde filled his arms. "Watch it!" he said.
"Oh no, I'm so sorry," she yelped.
"You should look where you're going." She smelled good, and he had just groped a delectable, firm breast. "I didn't mean to . . . "
She ran her tongue over her lower lip, and for a moment their eyes met. "I'm sorry, again." She held up the cell phone she had been checking. "My bad.  I'm late for work."
He released his hold on her, and watched her ass until she disappeared into the darkness. He blew out air, and headed into the Sand Swamp bar, where he had arranged to meet his friend, Dan Lemar after work, for a beer. 
"You missed Neelie," Dan said. "I told you not to be late."
Drew slid onto a stool and the bartender pushed an icy mug of beer over the glossy counter to him. He took a long swallow, and stared at the doorway. "She left already?"
"Yup. Special Agent Cornelia Nelson. She's as hot as a summer revival. If I wasn't married . . ." Dan ran a hand through his short hair. "You might have even passed her on your way in."
"I wasn't really looking at anyone except the blonde who ran into me. What are the odds that would be her? What's she doing in San Diego anyhow? Doesn't she live in Arizona?" She didn't act like she was in law enforcement, but it's possible that was her.
"Yeah. She's working undercover here in San Diego on some secret assignment. We often have to work together as you know, and I invited her for a drink.  As it turned out, she couldn't drink any alcohol because she had to go do whatever it is she does. I was hoping you'd be on time so I could introduce her to you. She had to leave in a hurry."
"Blond, about so high?" Drew held his hand palm down. "Green eyes?"
Dan nodded. "Yup. That was Neelie."
"How long's she gonna be in town?"
Dan grinned. "Let me guess. You want me to arrange another meeting."
If she's the blonde, sure. "Can you?" He could still picture every detail of the unexpected incident. The way she looked, the way she smelled, and the delectable hormone-jerking feel of her breast in his hand. He could use more time with her.
"I'll see what I can do. It'll depend on her work schedule. How are things going with that contraption you’re manufacturing? With all these kids being sent alone from Mexico across our borders we need it like yesterday. And if it can put a dent in the drug trade that's an added bonus.”
 Drew nodded. "The federal government is taking the VMF System seriously at last. I'm meeting with a Specialist from the Department of Homeland Security's Customs and Border Protection Office of Procurement in a couple of weeks."
"I’ll never understand how the thing works." Dan took a long drink of his beer.
"It's not easy to explain the VMF System because there are multiple elements to it. You have to understand quantum physics, and geophysics, not to mention UAV or drone technology." Drew signaled for more drinks and waited while the bartender poured two draft beers from the taps and slid them over the counter.
"I mean, a virtual mine field. What is that? It sounds like sci-fi to me, or a case of bullshit baffles brains."
Drew took a sip, wiped his mouth with the back of his hand and smiled at Dan's description. "The Virtual Mine Field is real. Anyone who steps within range of the sensors will get kicked back the way he came."
"But he won't get hurt? In other words, it's not gonna deliver anything close to a fatal jolt of electricity."
"No. That's the big selling point. Nobody wants to electrify the fences on the borders because they don’t want a whole bunch of dead people to deal with, like what happens in other parts of the world. And now with the rash of kids . . .This'll knock them over, but no normal, healthy person will get hurt."

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~




Coming soon. . . . Still waiting for the final cover from the wonderful artists at Soul Mate Publishing, The one on this page is a temp one I made myself.





Sunday, July 24, 2016

Which Blurb is the Best?

Like most writers, I find it challenging to write the logline (or Facebook hook), and pitch or Amazon blurb for my books, and I now have three templates for creating them. Each template has its merits, but I do favor one of them over the others.

When I completed Aquarius Addiction, at the end of 2014, I didn't have a template to use, and now I think the blurb I wrote then was too wordy, so I plan to change it.

I've placed all four of my efforts below and I would love it if readers and other writers would take a look at all of them. Tell me in the comments section below which one you think is the best. As a reward for giving your honest opinion, I'll be happy to share all three templates with you.



1. THE ORIGINAL (NO TEMPLATE)

Logline, One Line Pitch or Facebook Hook


FBI Psychic Arlette Xylander has two goals – to beat death, and have wild passionate sex with Andre Rossouw.

Blurb

Why did hunky Andre Rossouw come into Arlette's life on the same day her doctor told her she was about to die?

Attractive FBI Psychic Arlette Xylander displays all the character traits of her star sign, Aquarius, being feisty, eccentric, freedom-loving, flirtatious, rebellious and unpredictable. She may be only five feet tall, but she epitomizes the old adage that dynamite comes in small packages.

Her emotions rage between denial, anger and tears when her doctor tells her she is suffering from a rare terminal disease. When hunky Andre Rossouw asks her to help find his sister who has been missing for four years, Arlette makes two decisions. To beat the disease and find a cure, and to have wild and passionate sex with him.

Then she finds out he has a fiancée.

Arlette's country home on the banks of Bayou LeGue was left to her by her mysterious aunt Lucie, whom she never met, and whom her dysfunctional parents have never been willing to discuss. She often wakes in the dark hours of the night to hear ghostly voices downstairs, and wishes she could find out who they are and what they want.

A mysterious letter arrives from her aunt, hinting at a secret in the house, and her friend, Reay, agrees to research her home's recorded archives, while Arlette plans to dig into her family history. She starts by visiting her aunt's grave, where she finds a mysterious woman wearing a hooded cloak, who leaves in a hurry. Arlette's instincts tell her the woman holds the answers to all her questions, but how can she find her?


~~~~~~

2. Logline:

FBI psychic Arlette Xylander couldn't predict that her doctor would give her such devastating news on the same day she met the man of her dreams.


Blurb:

Arlette Xylander's aging New Orleans mansion on the bayou is haunted. She wishes she knew what the ghosts were saying, but she's a psychic, not a medium.

She doesn't allow the shattering diagnosis—a death sentence—from her doctor to prevent her from accepting the assignment to use her psychic powers in an attempt to find Andre Rossouw's missing sister.

At the Rossouw farm she and Andre share a passionate kiss. Then she finds out he has a fiancée. It doesn't deter her from placing him—or what she wants to do to him—at the top of her bucket list.

The kidnappers cannot risk being identified. Arlette knows she's getting close to finding the missing girl when she's viciously attacked. What desperate and terrifying lengths will they go to next?  

~~~~~~


3. Logline

FBI Psychic Arlette Xylander meets the man of her dreams on the same day her doctor gives her an earth shattering diagnosis. Will she have time to fulfill her bucket list?

Blurb:

FBI psychic Arlette Xylander accepts the mission to help find Andre Rossouw's missing sister, but her doctor has given her six months to live. Will she be able to complete her quest in that time?

A strong mutual attraction draws her into Andre's arms for a stolen kiss—and then she finds out he has a fiancée. But it doesn't stop her from putting him at the top of her bucket list, and failure is not in Arlette's vocabulary. She is an Aquarius, after all, and true to type—rebellious and independent..

There's only one way you can stop a psychic from getting information, right? A vicious attack tells Arlette she's getting close to revealing the kidnappers' identities, and she has to find the strength and resourcefulness to overcome their terrifying and reckless attempts to thwart her investigation.

Could a mysterious woman wearing a hooded cloak hold the key to a cure for Arlette's disease?

~~~~~~

4. Logline: 

How would you feel if you met the man of your dreams on the same day your doctor said you were dying?

Blurb:

When hunky Andre Rossouw asks FBI psychic Arlette Xylander to help in the search for his missing sister, she puts him at the top of her bucket list—to have hot passionate sex with him, that is. 

She also wants to find the secret hidden in the walls of her aging New Orleans mansion before she dies. The ghosts who meet at her dining room table in the darkest hour of the night probably hold the answer, but she's a psychic, not a medium.

Her quest to find the missing girl brings clues, and the shattering information that Andre has a fiancée.

Tensions escalate when Arlette is viciously attacked, and she wonders if she'll run out of time before fulfilling her quest.

~~~~~~

. . . And just in case you want to buy it, here's the link: https://www.amazon.com/Aquarius-Addiction-Trish-Jackson/dp/1619359618/ 


Monday, June 13, 2016

Goodreads Giveaways

I'm giving away two print copies this week on Goodreads.

Capricorn Cravings:

Riley Shaughnessy has the perfect life. Her veterinary practice is thriving, and she loves living in the small town in the Colorado mountains, where no one knows the shocking secret of her past. She loves to gallop her palomino mare across the vast expanse of public land bordering the town, and after a long period of self-denial, she has even committed to a date with handsome horse wrangler, Randy Hansen. 

But now, she knows her assistant, Jamie, would never willingly abandon her child, so why has she disappeared? 

Something dark and sinister is taking place, and it all started on the day hunky Powell Stewart, with the piercing blue eyes, came into her life in a strange and unexpected way. 

Her inner voice tells her to stay as far away from him as she can, but his magnetism drags her toward him and she cannot find the power to resist. 



Click here to enter: https://www.goodreads.com/giveaway/show/190753-capricorn-cravings


Aquarius Addiction:

Why did hunky Andre Rossouw come into Arlette's life on the same day her doctor told her she was about to die? 

Attractive FBI Psychic Arlette Xylander displays all the character traits of her star sign, Aquarius, being feisty, eccentric, freedom-loving, flirtatious, rebellious and unpredictable. She may be only five feet tall, but she epitomizes the old adage that dynamite comes in small packages. 

Her emotions rage between denial, anger and tears when her doctor tells her she is suffering from a rare terminal disease. When hunky Andre Rossouw asks her to help find his sister who has been missing for four years, Arlette makes two decisions. To beat the disease and find a cure, and to have wild and passionate sex with him. 

Then she finds out he has a fiancée. 



Click here to enter: https://www.goodreads.com/giveaway/show/190752-aquarius-addiction

Good luck to all of you.

Thursday, May 5, 2016

Suspense vs Mystery

Back in the day identifying a fiction book genre was simple. The choices were limited to romance, suspense, mystery, comedy, historical, western, etc. Most were identified with one word. Now, it is almost impossible to classify a book's genre using only one word, as so many sub-categories have been created, originally to facilitate search engine keywords.

A lot of people don't seem to know the difference between a suspense thriller and a mystery, so here it is:

In suspense, the reader knows what the bad guy (antagonist) is up to before the protagonist knows. The reader's inside knowledge that someone is lying in ambush waiting for the unsuspecting character creates suspense.  The actual ambush makes it a thriller.

In a mystery, the reader only knows what the primary characters know. If they're hunting for a clue, you don't know where they may find it, and if someone is going to ambush them, you won't know until it happens.

My Redneck P.I. Mystery Series are romantic mystery/comedies.



My Zodiac Series are romantic suspense/thrillers.


Animals always play an important part.

FREE downloads for Kindle or you computer -- http://www.trishjackson.com/#!free-stuff/cjci

Saturday, February 20, 2016

Vote for Scorpio's Sting on Kindle Scout

Woohoo my newest story is finally ready to be published! I entered it into Kindle Scout and if I get enough votes, Amazon will publish it. So please would you guys click on the link below.



You'll be able to read the first few chapters, and then vote if you think it deserves your support. This story is more of a suspense thriller with romantic elements than pure romantic suspense. Here's the low down:

Is revenge really sweet--or totally crazy?

Scorpios are passionate lovers. Drawn together by strange circumstances, Drew McBain and Neelie Nelson's hypnotic personalities and magnetic intensity make for an intense and profound relationship. They find themselves with a common goal when the la Vibora de Coral Cartel causes unforgivable harm to their loved ones. Ferocious anger and a brooding and passionate desire for revenge draws them together, but how can one man and one woman take down the most powerful and malicious cartel in Mexico?

I will owe you if you vote, so if you are an author I'll be happy to promote your work in social media in return. Just let me know how I can reciprocate.

If you're a reader, I'll give you a free download of my psych thriller novelette, Sheer Panic.

Thank you, thank you, thank  you!



Friday, January 1, 2016

Hello 2016

Sometimes I find it hard to believe we are this far into the 21st century. When I think back to Y2K and all the hype about the end of the world, it seems like just yesterday. So much has changed since then, and yet so many other things have stayed the same.



Virgo's Vice, published in 2015 is seeing some good sales and I've had some great feedback. The only thing readers seem to have a problem with is that there are too many characters all introduced at one time near the beginning. I knew that when I wrote it, but I felt that I had to give readers a little early information about each of the 12 contestants in the reality show.

All my stories highlight social problems, and this one addresses the terrible way childhood sexual molestation messes up a person's life.

Lexie King suffers from PTSD and has anxiety attacks, but she desperately wants to heal herself, which is the reason she goes completely out of her comfort zone by agreeing to work as one of the two camera operators for a new Survivor-style reality show in Africa. It probably would have worked out for her but for two things--the producer doesn't play fair, and one of the contestants is the monster who repeatedly raped Lexie when she was a child.

I got a lot of the information from a person I know who actually was molested and suffered the same way as Lexie.

I love animals and always include at least one in my stories. Jake is the producer's chocolate lab, and he and Lexie have a special bond.

Billy Murphy is a real life cowboy from Texas. He works on the family cattle ranch. Apart from being hot, with a small ass, broad shoulders and intense green eyes, with dark hair that hangs down to his collar, he's tough and resourceful. He's also kind and caring, which is exactly the sort of man Lexie needs. When I lived up in the mountains in Arizona I met some real cowboys whose lives revolved around riding the open range, herding cattle, and camping out in the wilderness. They wore spurs that jingled, chaps and cowboy hats and were all cute, a little shy, and respectful to women.

Lexie's Story is free for you to download in any format you need. Here's the link: Lexie's Story
Here's the link for Virgo's Vice

                                                    ###

I joined Romance Writers of America in 2015, something I probably should have done long ago. It's an organization for romance writers who are serious about their writing careers, and they offer a wide array of useful resources. One suggestion they make is that writers should get a critique partner--someone they don't know, who will give an unbiased opinion of their work. I checked out the list of members actively seeking critique partners and picked Tami Lund because it appeared that she writes similar stories to mine. We clicked right away and I'm extremely thankful for Tami's wonderful help and advice. She's made some excellent suggestions and I've implemented most of them to improve my next novel, Scorpio's Sting. I hope I've helped her in the same way. Strangely, after we had already started critiquing one another's work we discovered we both have the same publisher--Soul Mate Publishing-- and we both write for the SMP blog on Wednesdays.

I plan to post the first three chapters of Scorpio's Sting on my website soon. In this story I address the drug and illegal immigration problems in the U.S. and in particular, the abuse of power and horrific crimes of the drug cartels. I hope to have this novel released later on this year.

###

I've just started work on the fourth book in the Redneck P.I. Mystery Series, and writing about characters you've already created in the past is so much fun, especially when they're all a little quirky. It's like visiting old friends you haven't seen for a while. This story is called "Fat Girls Rock" and I am still amazed at how the story simply unfolds in my head as I write it. It's a great feeling. Almost as good as wine and chocolate. 

Obesity, and the way people treat overweight individuals, as you may have guessed, is one of the social issues I address in this story.

###

Aquarius Addiction was released in January 2015, and is now in print format for those of you who prefer paper to plastic. I'm hosting a Goodreads giveaway starting January 9th.

This story tackled ALS and was released at a time when people were enduring the ice water over the head idea to make a statement. It also touched on human trafficking, and there will be another book which will go into this in more detail in the future.

Happy 2016 to everyone reading this. I hope all your dreams will come true this year.




Thursday, December 31, 2015

Bye Bye 2015

I can't believe I haven't updated my blog for so long. My excuse is that I went to South Africa to celebrate my amazing mother-in-law's 96th birthday, and then when I got home the 'silly season' was in full swing. 


That's all in the past now and 2016 looms on the horizon. I'm hoping it'll be a great year for writers in general. My wish is that you all have something good to celebrate next year.

2015 was a good year for me as a writer. I had two books published and a short story. As always, they include delightful animal characters and romance, plus a message to educate people about the evils of our world.

Sheer Panic is a novella I published myself. It's my first attempt at a psychological thriller. 

Breanna Barton has no love life until the guy she had a crush on at high school shows up unexpectedly on Facebook and wants to get together. After several strange and terrifying incidents, she comes to the realization that someone is stalking her. But it can't be him. He lives in another state. 
Her eight-year-old niece, and Panda, the little black and white mutt who belongs to her elderly neighbor rescue Breanna in more ways than one.
Sheer Panic on Amazon


 Virgo's Vice, the third in my Zodiac Series, was released by Soul Mate Publishing late in the year.

Camera operator Lexie King has a good reason to work out of her comfort zone in Allan Dockery's new survival-style reality show in Africa. She is determined to overcome her PTSD and make something of herself, but she has no way of knowing he would be there. The monster who molested her repeatedly as a child.
Jake, the producer's chocolate lab, and sexy cowboy contestant Billy Murphy are her only hope, but can they do enough to save her?  

Virgo's Vice on Amazon


Lexie's Story is the prologue to Virgo's Vice. I self-published this on Smashwords and it can be downloaded totally free in any format.

   Lexie KIng's childhood sucked. When she wasn't lying in in her bed at night waiting for 'the monster', she was hiding from the bullies at school. It was like she had a sign on her forehead that said "Abuse Me."
   Lexie's parents died in a car crash when she was too young to remember, and Aunt Jess refuses to believe that her live-in lover, Phillip could be molesting Lexie. 
   An ugly mutt named Candy -- a cross between a boxer and a standard poodle -- is Lexie's only friend in the world.

FREE Download of Lexie's Story

See you all next year.

Wednesday, October 7, 2015

Virgo's Vice -- Available for Pre-Order!

I am thrilled to announce that the third novel in the Zodiac Series, Virgo's Vice, is available on Amazon for pre-order. The publishing process always seems to take forever!


I'll be guest blogging on Just Contemporary Romance on October 20/21 and I will be doing a giveaway there


Camera operator Lexie King has a good reason to work out of her comfort zone in Allan Dockery's new survival-style reality show in Africa. She is determined to overcome her PTSD and make something of herself, but she has no way of knowing he would be there. The monster who’d caused her distress. 

Now all she wants is to get away—as far away as possible. But how? They're stranded one stop past nowhere in Africa. 

When traumatic events start to happen, she draws comfort from Jake, the producer's chocolate lab, and cowboy contestant Billy Murphy, who makes her laugh at the darkest of times, and heats up more than her heart with his touch . . . 


Here's the book trailer:




Lexie's background story is told in 'Lexie's Story' which is available for free download on the home page of my website with no strings attached.

In the Zodiac Series each primary character belongs to a specific star sign and exhibits the character traits attributed thereto

Here's the Amazon link for pre-ordering Virgo's Vice

Thursday, September 10, 2015

Stuck on Please Release me by Rhoda Baxter

It's all about being stuck... I'm stuck because I don't have enough time to write all the books stuck in my head just trying to come out. And if I could be stuck somewhere with someone who would it be??? That would depend upon where I was stuck.


Please Release Me

What if you could only watch as your bright future slipped away from you?
Sally Cummings has had it tougher than most but, if nothing else, it’s taught her to grab opportunity with both hands. And, when she stands looking into the eyes of her new husband Peter on her perfect wedding day, it seems her life is finally on the up.
That is until the car crash that puts her in a coma and throws her entire future into question.
In the following months, a small part of Sally’s consciousness begins to return, allowing her to listen in on the world around her – although she has no way to communicate.

But Sally was never going to let a little thing like a coma get in the way of her happily ever after …


Buy it here on Amazon

Rhoda's an incredibly talented romance author, and I'm happy to participate in her blog splash.

Friday, August 28, 2015

Virgo's Vice Cover Reveal

I just received my cover for the next story in my Zodiac Series, Virgo's Vice. As always, Soul Mate Publishing's artists did an amazing job and captured the essence of the story, which is a romantic suspense thriller set in Africa. 


Lexie King can't believe she did this to herself -- she signed up to work as a camera operator in Allan Dockery's new survival type reality show.


She wanted to prove she could break her reliance on anti-anxiety meds, and make something of herself. But she had no way of knowing he would be there. The monster.


Now all she wants is to get away--as far away as possible. But how? They're one stop past nowhere in Africa.


When shocking events start to happen, she draws comfort from Jake, the producer's chocolate lab, and cowboy contestant Billy Murphy, who makes her laugh at the darkest of times, and heats up more than her heart with his touch...





Scheduled for release in October 2015.


Wednesday, August 19, 2015

FREE Download of Sheer Panic

I'm participating in a free download for review site at Story Cartel for Sheer Panic, my new psychological thriller.


This is a novelette, so it's about half the length of a normal novel. You can sign up for Story Cartel at absolutely no cost, and choose any number of free ebook downloads, as long as you agree to post a review on Amazon and anywhere else you may decide to place it. You are under no obligation to write a good review if you think the story was badly written, although obviously authors love good reviews.

Click on the link below for more info:

https://storycartel.com/books/sheer-panic

Here are the details:

Have you ever wondered who you are really friending on Facebook?

Breanna Barton's love life sucks. That's why she's staying home and taking care of her eight-year-old niece, Shari over spring break instead of heading over to Panama City for some surf, sun and sex.  

She's glad college is over for a couple of weeks so she can escape from Roderick, the maintenance man who always seems to seek her out and make twisted comments, and she doesn't think Dorky Dorian will follow her again after her septuagenarian neighbor's dog, Panda attacked him. 

The only bad thing about Joaquim, manager of the stable where she keeps her horse, is the fact that he's nine years older than her. He has the power to make her hot all over just by looking at her.

Out of the blue, she gets a friend request on Facebook from Lance, the boy she was obsessed with at high school. Strange and terrifying incidents start happening. Is she being stalked? And was someone in her bedroom at night while she was sleeping?


Remember, it's totally free, and I look forward to finding out what you think of it.

Tuesday, August 11, 2015

Psych Thriller Sheer Panic is Now Available

I'm pleased to announce that my next story is available for download in just about every format you can think of. This is a 120-page novella, and my first psychological thriller.


It will appeal to lovers of suspense and romance.




Breanna Barton has no love life. That's why she's staying home and taking care of her eight-year-old niece over spring break.

After several strange and terrifying incidents, she comes to the realization that someone is stalking her. But who? She can think of three men who always seem to be around where ever she goes.

And was someone in her bedroom at night while she was sleeping?


Wednesday, July 15, 2015

Sheer Panic Cover Help Please

I'm thrilled that my next story, Sheer Panic is finally done. This is my first attempt at a psychological thriller, and of course there are always romantic elements and pets included.

This is a novelette, and is only about one third the length of my normal novels.

Tori Barton is staying at home and taking care of her eight-year-old niece over spring break. After several strange and terrifying incidents, she comes to the realization that someone is stalking her. But who? She can think of three men who always seem to be around whereever she goes.

Please add your choice of cover, 1, 2, 3, or 4 in the comments section. Everyone who participates will get a free download as soon as it is published.


Cover 1
                                       Cover 2
Cover 3

















                                                                                                   Cover 4

FREE downloads of four short stories are still available on my website at http://www.trishjackson.com/#!free-stuff/cjci

Tuesday, May 19, 2015

Outlines are Essential, Says James Patterson

When I found out that James Patterson, the most prolific and successful author of our time, was holding a writing class, I was all in. 

The outline is the most creative part of writing your novel, and sometimes, James says, he writes several different outlines for the same story before he decides how it will all work out. He can be working on an outline for months before he is happy with it.

Before you start the outline, you need the raw idea. This is a one-paragraph summary of your story, and if your story is to succeed, the idea has to be something more than a little disparate, create tension and conflict, and should grab readers' attention from the start.

Here's the idea for my upcoming novel, 'Virgo's Variant':

Cinematographer Lexie King is determined to break free from the drugs, and psychoses that haunt her as a result of the sexual abuse she suffered as a child. She signs up as one of the camera operators for a new reality show set in Africa, knowing that it will be totally out of her comfort zone. It is too late for her to quit the assignment when she discovers that one of the contestants is the man who abused her, The producer has dropped her and the other camera operator, with the twelve contestants, in a remote region somewhere in Africa with no means of communication. The producer dies, and the only person who knows where they are is the pilot who dropped them there, who is away on his honeymoon. Rumor has it that all the local inhabitants have abandoned their villages because a monster roams the region. Then the murders start, and the only person Lexie trusts is the cowboy, but could she be wrong? He is certainly physically strong enough to be the murderer.

So my next task is to write an outline. This is a summary of each chapter, with one or two paragraphs per chapter. Every chapter is a new scene, and should contain something that propels the story forward and adds a new twist.

Once the outline is all written up -- and typing it out in Word works for me -- you can go back over the scenes and experiment. Add new twists, reorganize the order of events, make notes for future reference, add something to create more suspense, and make a note of how the events affect the personal lives of each character.

Here you will edit, edit and edit again before you go any further.

The one thing I did notice about the outline is that, without dialogue or the internal conflict and thoughts of the characters, it's pretty blah, but that all comes later, and James goes over the do's and don'ts of dialogue and creating conflict in some detail.

Only when you are completely happy with your outline should you start the novel, which will flow easily now that you know how the story progresses. I used to be a pantser, but now I know better.My greatest problem with this particular novel was that I had already written it before the classes with James, and it was with my publisher, Soul Mate Publishing. I received the first edit from them soon after completing the course. I found that with the outline, I was able to do a lot of editing that I probably wouldn't have done before. I cut out a lot of unnecessary explanations and changed some of the events. (Show don't tell). I also ended up with double the number of chapters I originally started with, because short one-scene chapters make the story move at a faster pace, and if your story drags, your readers will lose interest.


If you are interested in taking the class, here is a link: James Patterson Teaches Writing





Sunday, March 8, 2015

Review - On Angels Wings by Heather Adams

This is a wonderful debut novel, and the first in a series. The author has a masterful way with words, and has woven true historical events into this period romantic suspense novel about a love that endures everything.


In eighteenth century Britain, a mother dies and leaves her child, Angela, alone and without anyone to support her. Her philandering and heavy drinking stepfather steals all the money and sells her to a brothel. Being a spirited young woman, Angela refuses to accept her fate, and in time, she meets Duke Monroe Enderby, and discovers the delights of falling in love.

The two are secretly married, only to be torn apart by injustice, war, and a jealous servant.

With Monroe away fighting the war, Angela gives birth to a son, Weylin. Years pass, and in time, they travel to the New World, where Weylin becomes involved with the Sons of Liberty.

This story is a must read. Follow the two lovers as they live their own Odyssey. Will they ever be reunited? And what is the secret of the wolves?


Here's the link to buy it. 

Wednesday, February 18, 2015

Goodreads Giveaway -- Capricorn Cravings

Capricorn Cravings was published in print format 10 months after it first hit the Kindle market, and with two new books being released over the holiday season I am only just now scheduling a giveaway.

Riley Shaughnessy has the perfect life. Her veterinary practice is thriving, and she loves living in the small town in the Colorado mountains, where no one knows the shocking secret of her past. She loves to gallop her palomino mare across the vast expanse of public land bordering the town, and after a long period of self-denial, she has even committed to a date with handsome horse wrangler, Randy Hansen. But now, she knows her assistant, Jamie, would never willingly abandon her child, so why has she disappeared? Something dark and sinister is taking place, and it all started on the day hunky Powell Stewart, with the piercing blue eyes, came into her life in a strange and unexpected way. Her inner voice tells her to stay as far away from him as she can...

Here are the details of the Giveaway:

Goodreads Book Giveaway

Capricorn Cravings by Trish Jackson

Capricorn Cravings

by Trish Jackson

Giveaway ends March 20, 2015.
See the giveaway details at Goodreads.
Enter to win

Wednesday, February 4, 2015

Aquarius Addiction - Review by Joan Ellis

UK psychological thriller author Joan Ellis just sent me this wonderful review for Aquarius Addiction. I am thrilled with it. 


Tight, taut and thrilling, Trish Jackson at her best.

Trish Jackson can tell a tale. Birth, death, love and hate form the bedrock with a generous helping of Voodoo, kidnap and murder thrown in to spice things up. Trish Jackson deals as expertly as ever with all the elements in this fast, sexy romance. Her fans will love this book and the gutsy story-telling is guaranteed to garner her even more readers.

Meet FBI Psychic Arlette Xylander. No ordinary agent.

When she discovers she’s terminally ill, far from buckling under, she behaves like a typical Aquarius, telling no-one, fighting back and vowing to beat the disease.

What a time for her to meet the gorgeous Andre who needs her help finding his sister who has been missing for four years. She feels an electric connection with him and puts him first on her Bucket List. Just one problem - his fiancée.

Of course, nothing is quite what it seems and there are plenty of twists and turns along the way.

Trish Jackson does what she does best, expertly leading the reader through a maze of events before finally, wrapping up the loose ends as neatly as any good cop.

To give more clues to the story would spoil the plot.


If you like your romances tinged with danger, told tight and taut, this one’s for you.

Get it now from Amazon

Friday, January 30, 2015

It Matters Radio - Trish jackson

Last night I had the privilege of being interviewed by Ken Weene on It Matters Radio, about my new Redneck P.I. Adventures book, Backwoods Boogie.


First I have to thank all three presenters -- Ken, Monica and Kerry. They are so warm and friendly, it's like being invited into their homes. There's even a cat called Punky who manages to get into a lot of the coverage, which made me feel more at home since I love animals.

We discussed the salient points of Backwoods Boogie -- first about the unlikely Picadilly Tearoom -- a British tea room in a little redneck town in Alabama called Quisby.  Ken asked what they were serving I said probably cucumber sandwiches and scones with strawberry jam and thick cream. Of course the interview took place at my time 9:30 pm so I actually had a glass of wine in front of me. Monica was in central time, and hour behind me, and Ken was in mountain time, and Kerry in Pacific time. Before my interview, a very talented musician, John Cee Stannard was the musical guest, broadcasting from London, England where it was some ungodly hour of the morning.

Some of my family members and friends attended and I wished I could have interacted more with them and the others who were there. 

We talked about Twila's mission to rescue almost 100 abused and mistreated dogs from an illegal puppy mill, and her venture with biker Bart and his vigilante's gang to take down a dog-fighting ring. It just happens to be Superbowl weekend and we discussed the fact that Godaddy agreed to remove their ad from the Superbowl because it depicted puppies being sold over the Internet -- which is how a lot of puppy mill dogs are sold.

Then we discussed my newest book, Aquarius Addiction, which had just been released the same day. 


Here's a link to the show: http://www.spreecast.com/events/talent-of-john-cee-trish-jackson/clips/fun-time-from-talent-of-john-cee-trish-jackson

Backwoods Boogie on Amazon

Aquarius Addiction on Amazon


Friday, January 23, 2015

Review -- Letting Evil In by Ellie Eden

Kristin, wife and mother of three, tries to be understanding when her husband, Michael decides to travel to Rio de Janeiro on his own. He hasn't been himself since his accident.


The problems start when he disappears. Kristi and her teenage son, Josh, travel to Rio to try to find him, and against all advice, they head into the crime-ridden slums or favelos.  After some very harrowing experiences, Kristi finds solace and a broad shoulder to lean on in Brazilian Federal Agent, Tony Lamazzo. But is he really to be trusted, or is he on the payroll of the cruel and malicious drug lord O Dentista?

The author has done a wonderful job of describing life and death in Rio's underworld, and she ratchets up the tension to a terrifying climax. It was hard to put the book down.

Being an animal advocate, I was happy when the homeless kid's dog found a happy ending.


I received a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.

You can buy the book here.

Follow her bog here

Thursday, September 25, 2014

Pre-Release Reviews for Backwoods Boogie

I'm very thankful for the wonderful people who have taken the time to read and review Backwoods Boogie, my upcoming third book on the Redneck P.I. Series. A couple of people are still reading it, and here are the ones that have been posted on Goodreads only because it won't be available on Amazon until November 14th.


Here is the pre-order link for Amazon:
Backwoods Boogie


Twila Taunton, redneck detective, reluctantly joins forces with her ex-fiancée to solve the mysterious murder of British resident, Janice Woodward.

Sensing an innocent woman was setup for the crime, Twila assembles a small group of trusted friends and specialists to dig deep and unearth the truth, and needs all her sass and guile to overcome the many challenges they hit along the way.

Backwoods Boogie, the third in the Redneck Series, is a fast-paced journey that spans America’s Deep South to the rainy reaches of Northern Europe, and keeps you reading on and guessing throughout. The characters are wonderfully vivid and you’re transported directly into their gritty setting, observing them first-hand as they slowly piece together the puzzle – but can they do it in time?

This book will appeal to anyone who enjoys well-written detective stories and wily whodunits.


Lee Bullen, Author, UK

****

If you are looking for a delightful story packed full of an eclectic group of witty characters, Backwoods Boogie is the book for you.

Twila Taunton, self proclaimed detective of the Redneck P.I. Agency, is hired to help her friend Pam Taylor. Pam has been imprisoned for a murder Twila is sure she didn't commit. To make matters worse Pam's attorney is Jimmie-Ray, the man that left Twila standing at the alter.

Murder, Motorcycles, Aunts Gone Goth and Baby Scares, Oh My!

Flat out Fun! Trish Jackson once agains provides a captivating cast that will having you laughing out loud. A perfect balance of mystery, sexual spice and action makesBackwoods Boogie a wonderfully engaging read. 

Beth at Tome Tender Blog

****

I was pleasantly surprised by Backwoods Boogie. To be honest, I'm not usually a fan of real hard-core country books but for the most part I didn't mind it in this one. At times, Twila's rather butch demeanour did get on my nerves but the story was fast-paced enough that I quickly got over it. This book reminded me a little of Charlene Harris and her writing style so if you're a fan of hers you should enjoy this one.

I did quite like how the last page of every chapter contained a perspective from another character, it did fill in a lot of the plot and provide insight and depth into the characters. The supporting cast was fun.

I don't quite see why Twila had to travel to London, I think that was perhaps my least favourite part of the book but it was brief. The plot was captivating and action-packed for the rest of the book I thought.

Overall, I enjoyed reading this. It was fun and wild and I would recommend it to anyone who loves a good mystery with a hint of romance and a lot of crazy

Jules dePlume, Author

Thanks to those three wonderful people, and I'll be adding more when they come. Currently there are two others reading a pre-release version.