The Fire in Fiction by Donald Maass

This week I worked on the outlines for several upcoming projects. I had some good moments, some frustrating ones, and others that were filled with horrible ideas that I quickly tore up. (Don’t ask because I will deny they ever existed)

Today, I had a breakthrough. I read a few passages from non-fiction books on writing and a light bulb went off (no, make that fireworks). Some of the best advice I’ve read about how to create believable villains and how to take a suspense story line and make it believable (no matter how implausible it is) came from a book titled The Fire in Fiction by Donald Maass. I haven’t read the entire thing yet, but from what I’ve read so far I recommend it for anyone writing fiction.

Anyway, just wanted to share that my outlines are moving along. My goal is to be back to writing Trapped (my third novel-length gay romantic suspense featuring Walter Simon from More) by August 1.

Hope you all have a wonderful weekend. And happy 4th of July to my US followers. Happy belated Canada Day to those of you in Canada.


Video I love: The Delirium of a Writer

Once a week, I post a video I’ve seen recently that I’m loving. So here’s this week’s Video I love …

I’ve had this episode of The Golden Girls saved on my DVR for a few weeks now. I just watched it again the other day. It’s one of my favorites. In this scene, Blanche is writing a romance novel and has been up for days writing. It cracks me up every time. I hope all you writers and readers of romance novels will find it funny too. Heck, if you’ve ever stayed up for more than 24 hours intensely working on one thing, you know where Blanche is coming from. That delirium that makes you either extremely funny or extremely annoying to others. In this case, Blanche nails the funny side of it. Rue McClanahan’s delivery is perfect.


(embedded video below)

Some of my favorite lines from Blanche:

“I have too many earrings.”
“Buy me a present.”
“What could you possibly find to lie about on a farm?”
“I must publish a guide to go with my book.”
“It will be taught in universities.”
“Rose, what is this? Your eyeballs are staring at me.”

I’m amazed Rose could keep a straight face. I wonder how many times they had to shoot this.

Anyone else still love the The Golden Girls? Which episode was your favorite?

Sloan Parker
Free fiction available at:

Video I love: On Meeting An Agent

Once a week, I post a video I’ve seen recently that I’m loving. So here’s this week’s Video I love…

This one’s for all my writing friends. Be sure to watch both clips. There’s a link at the end to the second one. Funny stuff. Thanks to my writing pal Connie for passing it along.

<<embedded video below>>

Does anyone have a real life experience that matches the video? Want to share? Comment or send me an email. I’d love to hear from you.

Thanks for stopping by,
Sloan Parker

Quote I love: Keeping the Reader in Mind

Once a week, I post a quote that I’ve read/heard recently. So here’s this week’s Quote I love …

Last week, I read the following in this blog post aimed at inspiring writers to become masters of their craft:

“As writers, we owe it to our readers, to our editors, to our agents, to ourselves to produce the best possible stories. We owe it to the people who put down good money for our books to make our next story better than the last.”

Christy Lockhart
Bestselling Author
Silhouette Desire, Silhouette Intimate Moments, Ellora’s Cave, and Loose Id

I like statements like this. They remind me to always keep the reader — who has spent hard-earned money on a book — in mind. Readers put faith in an author and a story. As I look forward to my first release, I hope to always remember to honor that trust by doing the best I can with everything I work on. At the end of the day, publication means my stories aren’t just for me anymore. I want others to enjoy reading them as much as I enjoyed writing them.

Feel free to comment on this post or send me an email. I’d love to hear from you.

Thanks for stopping by,
Sloan Parker