“Please Don’t Kill Me” and Other Tales in Writing

A Cup of English Tea

frabz-please-dont-kill-me-a34e6fHave you ever been writing a death scene in a novel and have this feeling that if your character was a real person he or she’d be giving you puppy eyes while pleading for his or her life? “Please don’t kill me!” he or she says. For me it happens all the time. Yep. Pretty much every time I go to kill off a character. Which I am currently trying to do at the moment with no success…

So today’s lovely post revolves around killing characters. Yes, killing characters.

From a reader’s perspective there is nothing worse than when an author decides to go and off one of your favorites, but honestly as a writer it’s painful too. My characters become special to me and that makes it all the more painful when I have to get rid of one of them. After all, I am their creator, and I…

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Character Worksheet

I never feel like I have anything or important to post on this blog~ but maybe I can offer something helpful to my fellow writers.

I always want to make sure I write the most believable characters possible (even when they aren’t human). To do this I fill out a character questionnaire for every character I add to a storyline.

It’s a bit like filling out paperwork at a new doctor’s office, but it always helps me know my characters better.

And so without further ado, here is my personally created set of pdf character worksheets. Feel free to use and share 🙂

Charity’s Character Worksheet (Printable)

Wicked Intentions Free until Monday:

Regularly $3.99, Wicked Intentions will be free until Monday the 24th. I thought you all might need a naughty fun read to take with you when visiting family this Thanksgiving. 😉

Click on any meme to take you ‘Wicked Intention’s Amazon Kindle page:

Jasmine QuoteLauren Throne Quote

Bloody Coffee Quote

Happy Reading! And Happy Thanksgiving!

Tsū

Okay, so I just signed up for a new social media platform which will pay users to use its service~ (Read more about it on Billboardre/code, ZDNet, among others).

I’m not expecting to get rich quick, but every little bit helps. The app for android operates much like Tumblr and Twitter. I’m still in the early stage of use, but if you’re interested, sign up with my tag *at the moment you must know someone to sign up*: Charity_Langley

My understanding is that revenue will be biased in favor of original content. So if you’re an artistic type, you should do well.

Let me know what you think, or tell me about your experiences in the comments. 🙂

Book Sale!

Wicked Intentions is on sale through Halloween!

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Life was bad enough when Lauren DarPayne hit puberty and sprouted a set of fangs, but now it’s hell.

After almost killing her boyfriend Derik and turning him into a vampire, she quit college and moved from small town Louisiana all the way to Atlanta, Georgia to be a stripper at Wicked Intentions. It’s good money, a great place to hide, and an easy meal ticket… well, at least until a psycho with some interesting non-human abilities starts eviscerating her coworkers. Now, due to her past ‘indiscretion’ with Derik, the governing body of all cryptid, the Abattoir, is giving her an ultimatum: play bait willingly, or by force.

Excerpt:

Lights went out.

A brief moment of complete silence followed. The darkness felt alive and closing in on me. Then a murmur of excitement began to roar through the building. Glasses breaking, a short shriek from backstage. I clung to the pole. Anyone taking me would have to take the damn pole too.

“Can you see anything?” Therone’s voice hissed in my ear.

“No, nothing,” I replied shakily. “Not even the streetlights from outside.”

“Damn,” he said again. “He’s cut off more than the club’s power.”

I stood there for what felt like an eternity. I was squeezing the pole so tight I half expected it to crumble between my fingers. From somewhere downstairs a generator sputtered and flickered to life.

“Our apologies ladies and gentlemen,” the announcer called out as dim fluorescent light washed over the main floor. “There’s been some sort of power issue. We appreciate your business and are handing out vouchers to another show as you exit. We apologize for any inconvenience and wish you all a safe drive home.”

I stood alone on stage watching as the crowd began to move unhappily toward the door. As the last few stragglers left, a familiar scent flooded my nose. My heart pounded in my ears, and fear pushed my stomach up into my throat.

“Therone,” I rasped into my receiver while my eyes darted frantically around, “please tell me that I’m not the only one who smells that!”

“You’re not,” he said after a long pause.

“Where is it coming from?”

“I’m not sure, we have to wait until the last customer leaves. I have two agents checking the bathrooms and five others doing a general sweep. Hang tight.”

My eyes finally adjusted in the eerie light. I inhaled again and started searching for the source.

It was coming from the bar.

I went numb. Greg was working behind the bar, surely the killer wouldn’t have…

“Therone!” I yelled, my voice catching in my throat as I walked toward the scent. “Therone!” I shrieked a second time for lack of anything else to say.

“What is it?” Therone said running to my side.

The message was simple, short, and written on the wall in blood:

YOU’RE NEXT BITCH.

WARNING: EXPLICIT CONTENT. Contains Graphic Violence and Sexual Situations.

Useful technology for writers: Binaural Beats

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I know, you’re reading this thinking what the hell are binaural beats?

Well, there’s a ton of convoluted information out there, but to put it very simply: binaural beats occur when two different frequencies of sound are played in each ear. This results is the listener perceiving a third different frequency.

Binaural beats have been studied for a range of different applications including reducing stress, treating depression, relaxation, meditation and the list goes on. Some research has produced positive outcomes while others show no effect. My favorite study so far resulted in a middle of the road finding:

“[I]t is clear that binaural beats do not represent a one-size-fits-all enhancement technique. They can be effective in enhancing brainstorm-like creative thinking in individuals with low striatal dopamine levels, but they can at the same time impair performance in exactly the same kind of task in others. On the one hand, this calls for more care in the propagation of binaural beats as a cognitive-enhancement method and a better understanding of the underlying neural and cognitive mechanisms. On the other hand, however, it also implies that previous failures to find positive effects of binaural beats on cognitive performance need not be taken as evidence against the efficiency of the manipulation. In fact, careful selection of individuals involving a systematic evaluation of their cognitive control profiles is likely to yield evidence of cognitive enhancement, even under conditions that proved ineffective by previous research.”

(Click HERE to read the full National Center for Biotechnology Information study.)

Where this applies to writers:

Like most writers (I hope I’m not alone anyway), I’ve had trouble concentrating. I have days where every little sound distracts my focus. The television (my husband lives here too), traffic, even the crickets and cicadas—sometimes they’re wonderfully relaxing, other times I wish mother nature had a mute button.

I’ve tried everything! From classical to ambient music and white noise, nothing seemed to help. (I don’t care what anyone says, white noise is horrible.)

So on one of my usual focus lacking nights, I did what we all do—got completely and utterly distracted by the Internet. Somehow, I managed to find a study on binaural beats and immediately hit the app store. What I found was Gnaural. While there is a paid version, I’m currently using the free one. (Though I’ll be upgrading to the paid version soon just to support the developer.)

About the app:

Gnaural is an opensource binaural beat generator available from SourceForge. The goal of this app, according to its creator is “to get everyone meditating”. For me, this app is even far more precious and useful. I have finally found something that helps me focus by blocking outside sound with a series of noises I can actually tolerate. I think I’ve been more productive in the last week than I have in the last three months combined!

The app is pretty simple to operate:

The opening screen:

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Clicking the Gnarual icon will take you to a list of sounds:

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(I alternate between the ‘Problem resolver’ setting and ‘Study time’ setting while writing. When reading for pleasure, I prefer the ‘Tibetan bowls’ or the ‘Babbling brook’.)

And the best part:

This app has minimal permissions and will only take up 542K on a mobile device.

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If you have focus issues like me, I highly recommend this app:

 To download or just to read more about it, visit Gnaural’s SourceForge page or Gnaural’s page in the Google Play Store

Happy writing all!