What makes a good villain?

The villain – don’t underestimate your baddie.

The baddie has to be just as developed as your good guy or gal. They require good and bad points and a way for your reader to identify with them.

Yes, readers do need to have some sort of love for your villain. I’ve skimmed through loads of books when the villain is on stage, because they just don’t appear real.

They need some good motivation for being evil. Did they lose the girl to their best friend? Did their best friend bully them and now they are getting their own back? Were they abused as a child and that’s all they know? Got into the wrong crowd? There are lots of reasons.

Add in a description. Give your readers a way of imaging them. Maybe not a full description but enough to wet their taste buds.

Give them the past your have come up with. Not all in one go – all that narrative can turn a reader off, but in bits and bobs where required. Have they abducted someone? Add in some memories why. Have they killed someone? Again, get some thoughts running through their heads. A person rarely kills without something in his mind.

You might even give them a love interest.

Above all else, most baddies I come across have something in common with the hero. A shared past or partner. Same upbringing – hero comes out better then them. There’s the jealousy.

In a twist, you might start with a hero who turns evil. Or the villain becomes the good guy. Play around and give your readers a hook.

Most baddies aren’t stupid. They are more clever than anyone takes them for. That’s why they get away with things. They make your hero look good.

So, go and plan out your bad guy or gal. Make them lovable. Make them cry out for attention. Give them a backstory your readers are dying for.

Book covers Designed by me

I’ve been playing around with new software and made a cover.

Yes, me.

All images unless stated, are from Pixibay while I play around.

Not a photo stock image as I do photography.

 

Dandelion Wishes watermark
This is one I did after a tutorial. Images from Pixibay.
dragon gears watermark
I thought it lacked a little something so I added some smoke.
dragon gears fog watermark
Not a stock image, but I do love this photo.
Sunset paradise watermark
Then I went further and more complicated. This has 12 layers.  But Again, something was wrong.
Fire dragon pixi watermark
The sky was the problem. This is more like it. Images from Pixibay.
UntitledFire dragon pixi watermark2
I love the background, so ditched the dragon.
Elemental dragon watermark
Here’s another but needs a lot more work on it. My first play with light changing.
Dragon warrior watermark
And last for now. A simple little cover. One image. One overlay. And I adore it.
It also won a challenge award.
Burning rain watermark
Again these are images from pixibay as I’m still playing and learning. But this is the type of cover I love and am so glad I figured out how to do.
This one also won a weekly challenge.
London nights watermark
This is my first attempt at using daz. No stock images have been used in this image. This was to practice colours.

Trapped daz watermark 2

Another Daz. But what is she reaching for? And another colour practice.

Mellish 2 watermark

Another one with new techniques.

Winter's vampire watermark 2

 

 

First Book Talk

I’ve been doing craft fairs for a few years now. Always before I actual began writing. So now I sell my books at the craft fairs, I can talk direct to potential readers.

It was at one of last year’s fairs that a lady brought a copy of Persecuting Abi. After mentioning me to her book club, I got an invite to talk to them. Imagine me shaking and not in delight.

Public speaking? Me? Eh, no way? Yes, you heard. I do not do public speaking. So why on earth did I say yes? Eh, even I can’t answer that one.

Anyway, I went to meet them earlier in the year and booked in for June. Still shaking here. If anyone felt an earthquake, it was me. Sorry. So, I toddled of for the evening and they were so nice.

Anyway, June appeared, I ignored the talk as long as I could. By this point the Persecuting series was unpublished. The first thing I spoke about was myself. Another thing I hate, talking about myself. This is where you are probably asking yourself why I became an author. If you ever get an answer, can you let me know? Next, I talked about the Persecuting series. The woman who bought the book told me it gave her nightmares. But that series is very dark. Next I talked about the Romancing in Scotland series and my future Fareious trilogy.

After that came the questions. Which I think I fielded quite well. I remained nervous the whole time, and repeated myself a few times. However, the experience will make me better the next time. I hope.

The happy group.

Why Indie Publish

I get asked this a lot. Why did I self-publish?

The main reason was because I get to keep full control of my book. Yes, I have to hire an editor, cover designers, find arc readers – all done by publishers if traditionally published, but I don’t have someone telling me to change the story, give the characters different names. I even know authors who are told to change the book’s name.

My editor is brilliant. I can fly ideas across her. She points out plot faults and problems. Makes comments on what needs changing, but at the end of the day, I make the final decision – usually I accept them all, she knows what’s she doing. Believe me, editoring isn’t easy.

Covers, which I’ve done myself, are now professionally done, apart from one series and that might change. The designer’s I use know what they are doing and the covers you’ll see coming through soon are great. If it’s not premade, they listen to what you want.

And the title remains the same. Characters I’ve grown to love aren’t changed. The book I put out there is the novel I wanted too. Just a hell of a lot better than my first draft.

I’m not dishing traditionally published books, they are just as good. But the time for Indie authors is growing. Give us a go. You can approach us just as easy, we don’t bite. We’ve just a friendly bunch who have stories to tell and will fight to do it.

NEWS

Yeah! I’ve sent Falling for Katie through to Amazon review. Release date will be 19th April 2019 – that’s Good Friday. My Easter present to you all.

So, how about a cover? All done too.

This romantic suspense will keep you turning the pages.

Running a business isn’t as easy as it appears, which is something Katie Gowen figures out when she opens a flower nursery.

While on a delivery she’s snowed in at the hotel and must delay her return journey. When she can leave she crashes. Found with amnesia, she is held against her will. With no leads the police are stumped, and her parents call in a private investigator.

Finlay Gallach never wanted to return to Gretna. Bad memories still plague him, and he still carries the scars from a painful childhood. However, as he opens the email, which asks him to help with Katie’s case, his heart pounds at the photo of the woman. With no choice but to return, Finlay realises his own heart cannot be saved.

Can Katie be saved? Will her memory return and what about the boyfriend she already has?

Read their story as it unfolds with twists you won’t see coming.

Katie - with tag_300dpi

 

How about another teaser?

I’ve began the last draft edit of Persecuting 3. Yes, there is a third one. There’s five at the mo.

Anyway, this is the last edit before I transfer it into word for the final checks.

What’s that? Who am I picking on this time? Oh, I’m not telling, but I’ll let you have a little teaser. Reminder, it’s not fully edited yet.

 

‘Another slow sigh hit the air, as she closed her portfolio. With the man back on her mind work would never happen. Of course, over the years she’d been on several dates, taken a few to stage two but non were serious. No one who made her heart burn with desire or made her wet without even being in the same room. The reactions which came as his image jumped into her mind were driving her crazy.‘

Any gueses on who she is? There’s no prize.

What am I upto?

With Falling for a Duke now successfully launched and I’ve only lost one preorder, had several sales since and KU reads, I’m quite a happy bunny.

So, what’s next?

Well, I’ve been gifted three lovely cover for my ‘Magic of Scotland’ series, but I’m not up to working on them yet. Instead, I’m working on ‘The Legend of Tiarne’. It’s a bit out of my comfort zone, still a romance, so it’s taking time and I’m spending time sorting out the first few chapters. In other words I’ve ditched I’ve ditched 20000 words for the moment. They will go back in later.

But most of my time is doing my final edits of the next ‘Romancing in Scotland’ book, before sending it to the editor. At over 90000 words, it’s the longest book yet and this will take time.

Wish me luck, I’m gonna need it.