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Nov 4, 2011

M. Pax: Semper Audacia Author on Twists and Turns

Posted by Wendy Ewurum  |  at  3:15 AM

I have deviated a little from my new posting schedule but please bear with me, I really wanted to let you know about Mary's new book. Next week will be my first scheduled poetry feature. Thank you for coming and have a fantastic weekend y'all.
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Today I have M. Pax over from the Wistful Nebulae. 
About M. Pax: Inspiring the words I write, I spend my summers as a star guide at Pine Mountain Observatory in stunning Central Oregon where I live with the husband unit and two loving cats. I write speculative fiction mostly and have a slight obsession with giant, man-eating reptiles and Jane Austen. I know, they don’t really go together, but it’d be interesting to insert Godzilla in the middle of Pride & Prejudice.
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Thanks to Wendy for inviting me on her fabulous blog.

One of the greatest joys in reading, for me, are twists and turns. If it is known from the beginning how a book will end, I want to go on an unexpected journey to get there. More exciting yet, is having no idea where the author is going to take me at the end of chapter one. Either of those scenarios will keep me reading. So, that’s what I have to write. Otherwise, I’d bore myself silly and never finish writing anything.

The unexpected is something I strive to capture in my stories, a sense of unpredictability, originality, walking down an off-beat path. I like to feel immersed in a story, as if I walk where the main character walks and discover as he or she discovers. For me, that’s a thrill.

Twists and turns have to make sense. Nothing ruins a story faster than pulling stuff out of left field, or as writers call it, ‘pulling crap out of your ass’. Very technical term there. This is where critique partners are essential. If you groom them right, they won’t be shy about telling you when something doesn’t work. That level of honesty can be tough to hear, but it’s something we all need. So take your feedback with a big smile and say thank you and mean it.

I keep an ‘idea’ journal, in which I scribble down things I observe, snippets of poetry that run through my head (I read a lot of literature which is where that comes from), a line that pops into my head that won’t go away, things I read, things I see on TV, etc ... So when I’m sitting down and tinkering away and I think, “this story needs something”, I’ll flip through my idea journal. If that doesn’t work, I go exercise and take a shower. If that doesn’t work, I carry on but pay attention to the world around me. Eventually something comes along that makes me say, “Aha! That’s it.”

I play and experiment, stitching things together that don’t seem to go together. Always seeking to be original. Honestly, I don’t feel as if I ever am. One of my insecurities is thinking my stuff is too predictable and too ‘done’. So, I keep pushing myself to keep reaching. Maybe someday I’ll be satisfied I got there. Probably not, however. That search for the unexpected led me to writing speculative fiction.

At the core, the twists and turns are about exploring whatever aspect of humanity it is I’m examining in the piece. In Semper Audacia, I looked at loneliness, love, duty, perception and responsibility. I like to toy with my characters’ perceptions of their worlds a lot – that something taken for granted as true, some fundamental core tenet, is false. That’s most often the starting point for what others think is unexpected about my stories. When those comments pop up – ‘unexpected’, ‘unpredictable’ – its the highest compliment a reader can pay me. Well, and that they liked it.

I strive to go to places I’ve never been, and I strive to take the reader along with me. Whether it’s an odd character or an odd world or some combination of the two, I’ll keep doing my best to be original and creating something unexpected. That’s where all the joy and fun is for me.

Where do you find the joy and the fun?

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Alone. Leda is the last living member of the brigade, the sole defender of her world. War took everyone she knew, leaving her in the company of memories and ghosts. Or is it madness?
The siren blares. The enemy is coming. Or is it? The approaching vessel isn't a friendly design, but it answers with the correct code. Leda must figure out whether the arrival is reinforcements or the final assault. In an aging flyer, she ventures out to meet her world's fate, the last stand.

Your support in promoting this book would be greatly appreciated. This is what you can do to help:
1.  Promote on your blog / website, twitter, FB, etc ...
2.  Hit the FB ‘LIKE’ button on Amazon and Smashwords. On B&N when it winds its way there.
3.  Leave a review. Amazon is most important, but if you’re so inclined, you can also leave them on Smashwords, B&N, and Goodreads.
4. Invite the author to do a guest post some time.





Links to iTunes and B&N are on my website and blog.

About the Author

Most know me as the author to Fabulosity Reads and in actual fact, that is the previous name of this blog. I have since then moved my books to a Wordpress self-hosted blog so that I can have a place to show a different side of me which I am equally passionate about and that is marketing and personal development. I hope you will love being here, watching me grow as I share and learn. My highest hope is that we will grown and learn together in all disciplines affecting our lives. I'd LUUURRRVE to hear from you, so don't be shy...

13 comments:

  1. Mary always has great advice to give to writers. I love the "idea journal" and recently have begun to keep one myself. It makes it much easier to remember things although I cheat a little bit and just use the voice recorder in my iPhone. Not a "traditional" journal but it works for me.

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  2. However you gather those snippets that don't have a place at the moment is great. I have one I need to go jot down. Some spot in the sink jiggled up an idea.

    Thanks for having me on, Wendy.

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  3. Pulling crap out of your ass is a writer term to me!
    Need to jot down more of my ideas.

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  4. It's a great term. I've seen it done in traditionally published fiction, which makes me want to whip the book at a wall.

    Keeping your ideas could help you with what you talked about on Wednesday, Alex. :)

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  5. twists and turns make a story exciting!
    thats why people like rollercoasters =)

    great post!

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  6. I really appreciate authors whose books offer smooth reading and surprises throughout. That's why I enjoy Neil Gaiman so much.

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  7. I love rollercoasters, Tara.

    Neil Gaiman is a favorite of mine, too, Wendy.

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  8. Hey there wendy,

    Thank you so much for kind words on my blog. :)
    Your blog is awesome too. You are very welcome for the follow and i thank you in return for following my blog too.
    Take care eve.x

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  9. Such a great post! Love visiting your blog!

    Lola x
    http://lola-x.blogspot.com

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  10. I have a book of ideas and scenes and thoughts...I've scrabbled down.

    T

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  11. Hi, Lola! Great seeing you.

    Tirzah, you'll be glad you did that. Keep doing it.

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  12. I love your idea journal; I tend to write on everything, best to have it in one place! I, too love to be surprised! Twists and turns are part of life, we all need some coaster moments! Great post! Thanks Mary; nice to meet you Wendy!

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  13. Hi Ella, it does help to have it in one place. I take notebooks with me wherever I go. Periodically, I go thru & add what's in them to the main jounral. I do love rollercoasters.

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