Wednesday, August 27, 2014

Aw, Do I *Have* to KILL my Darlings?

I've read many articles on killing your darlings. If you can successfully do this, then editing is a breeze. But not all darlings must be eradicated! Sometimes they must stay behind to make your story solid--even if it's your editor's wish to, uh, remove them.

I've written an article for the Au Courant Press Journal on my personal experience with two different editors with two different books from the same publisher. What. An. Adventure!

I would love if you would drop by and see just what it was like for me, click >here< to read article.

By the way, I illustrated the silly comic--what do you think?

Wednesday, August 20, 2014

Digging into *this* Writer's Brain

I’m not going to talk to you today about quick secrets of success, or how to write the perfect book. I’m going to share with how believing in myself changed my life as a writer.

It all started in 4th grade with poetry assignments. I was terrified to come up with words that rhymed, much less read them aloud in class! I honestly thought that would be the end of writing assignments. In 6th, we were given a bound book with blank pages to fill up with a short story. The mountains suddenly stretched tall into the vast skies in my little brain, and the world of novel-writing was born.

I fell in love with fantasy in high school as most young kids do, though reading was something I did not like. The reason for that was my mind would wonder as I read; I failed most required reading tests. At 17, I started my first book, a high fantasy novel about an elf who had lost her sense of self through the evil sorcerer who destroyed an entire nation. I completed that 700 paged novel by hand 8 years later.

Wednesday, August 13, 2014

An Author's Failure ... or is it?

I wish I had excellent words of wisdom oozing from my brain to share with you regarding my writing journey. Though my love is found in writing fiction, I often feel inadequate when it comes to my experiences with my career though I have experienced quite a bit!

I started out with a small publisher who simply extended her service under CreateSpace, though she is an excellent cover artist and formatter. I crashed and burned when I tried to get my books to book stores and though CreatSpace's distributors could get your books directly into brick and mortar stores, I learned the hard way that my books were NOT set up that way.

I had to bring my own box in and sell it differently than other authors at book signings. I have been taken advantage by these stores (not all, most have integrity). What's sad, is that this is a race of one as an author.

I understand that we are networked and support one another, but realistically, we are so busy surviving life with a regular job that writing is a side thing though it does NOT feel that way. How can we make more time for flailing writers who need our expertise? Oh, yes, there are many writers out there who are willing to mentor and share secrets, but those are very rare to find!

Needless to say, I lost all confidence in my career when my old publisher decided to restructure her company and everyone became Indie: we would utilize one another's expertise and help get our individual books published that way.

Though Darkspell was my first published, it was not my first written. I have been writing for over twenty years and decided to push that one the hardest. I became lost and eventually orphaned from my publisher, but I kept writing and writing.

Though I have stumbled much thereafter, I have not given up on my love of writing and have come across second chances that feel like a slow take-off, but I have been led where I am at for a divine purpose that only the future will tell.

As Emily Mah had mentioned, Cinderella stories are far and few and success is dependent upon the view of the beholder. For some, success is simply getting that book published. After all, that is a significant goal accomplished!

What valuable lessons have you learned as a writer?  (Every step is important, even if you're not published!)

Wednesday, August 6, 2014

#IWSG The Glory of Being a Writer!

What a wonderful way to share your support with fellow writers! Click on the badge above to START!

They say that being a writer is a lonely occupation. I agree. We hole ourselves in our writing cave and create vast worlds filled with colorful characters. We research and study hours and hours of material. 

There are many times I feel forlorn as I meet with others who share the same obsession through a 12 inch screen and type away my conversations. Then I move on to my writing cave and I am alone again.

But there are those moments when we shake off those quill feathers of ours and dare to venture into the sunshine, to venture into the world where other writers convene and share our love of our common craft!

Of course there are other aspects of the writer's life like family, a 9 to 5 job, illnesses, rain, walks around the neighborhood! Let me liken a writer's life to Harry Potter: my writing world is witches and wizards, with Voldemort and Buckbeak--my creativity has no limit while my real life is with Muggles (nonwriters) who scurry about their lives never knowing any better of the thoughts that churn in my head that create worlds of every kind. Muahahahah! >:D

How I love being a writer! How I love other writers! No matter where I am, I love being surrounded by others who are as crazy as I am! We are a magical folk.

What are your thoughts on being a writer?

Thursday, July 24, 2014

Exclusive Character Interview with Parker Bennett from the Dream Keeper Series!

So I asked my 14 year old son, Levi--who absolutely LOVES all the adventures you star in and is a proud fan (who debuted in Book Two, and will make a major appearance in Book Three--wheeeee!), to whip up a set of interview questions for you in which he was thrilled to! He's a devoted stalker of your mastermind, Mikey Brooks!

Welcome Parker Bennett from the Dream Keeper Series! ! 

Levi: What did you think when you discovered your dreams were taking place in another dimension?

Parker: At first I didn’t know what to believe. Magic and stuff is cool when it’s in video games but something else when it’s really happening. Now that I get it and know what’s going on—it’s amazing! I mean I get to see Dreams how it really is, not to mention all the awesome dreamlings I’ve met like Gladamyr, Cerulean, Captain Bootie and Felix. Sure there are some total creepers too, like Mab, Minion, and Fyren, but Dreams is still pretty sweet. Did I mention I have superpowers there too? Yeah. That alone makes visiting Dreams worth it. 

Levi: What made you sure that Gladamyr would stay good after going into the Draig three times? 

Parker: If you ever get a chance to meet the guy he is nothing like the other nightmares. Gladamyr can be scary looking sometimes. In fact he looked pretty gnarly when he came out of the Draig the last time. But I knew he’d be okay because I knew he loved me and Kaelyn. I don’t want to sound all mushy and stuff, but Gladamyr is a pretty cool guy and I love him too. Maybe it’s the bond we share. Or maybe just the trust I have in him. I just knew he’d survive the Draig.

Levi: What did you think when Kaelyn let you hold her hand in front of the Plastics?

Parker: Gosh, man, I really don’t know. Half of me wanted to give Tiffany and her band of snobs a show. You know something to talk about. The other half of me wanted to hold Kaelyn’s hand because . . . well, I like holding it. Let move onto the next question before it become too awkward a conversation.

Levi: Do you think that if you had enough time you could have kept Mab's tower from collapsing?

Parker: I’d like to think so. My powers are growing the more I visit Dreams. I like to think that if Mab would have just gotten her proud butt of the throne we could have fixed everything. That dreamling drives me crazy. It was just so chaotic and I didn’t get the time to figure out what I did. Man, you should have seen my mom’s face. I could tell she was about to ground me . . . again.

Levi: What was your first thought when Jason said he and Mab were trying to save Dreams when Mab was using him to destroy it?

Parker: To be honest, I’m still kind of angry. You’d think Jason would have been a little smarter than that. Hello?! Mab is like the most evil dreamling I have met. I sometimes think she’s worse than Fyren. Both her and Jason make me so made I want to start throwing stones at them. To be honest, it also makes me kind of sad. Jason has been my best friend since kindergarten. I can’t believe he would do something like this to hurt me. Just because I became friends with Kaelyn.

Levi: Do you think Jason was jealous of you for having a cute girl as a closer friend than himself?

Parker: I think Jason’s problem is that he doesn’t like to come in second to anyone, let alone a cute girl like Kaelyn. (Don’t tell Kae I said she was cute. I’ll never hear the end of it.) When I think about it, Jason treats my other friends the same way. He’s always making fun of Connor and Levi, as if he could make me not like them. I think Dr. gates would say Jason is insecure. 

Dude, these have been awesome questions. And this is my first official interview. You’d think I’d have more after saving the world the first time. Just wait until you read what happens in the last book. Mares is not an easy guy to shut down. To be honest, I don’t know if we can defeat him. I hope we can. Kaelyn says, ‘in dark times, hope is all that will get you to the light.’ Man, I hope she’s right.
~Parker Ryan Bennett

Whoa, that was way fun, Mikey, thanks for letting Parker out to play with Levi--I know they will have more fun together in your upcoming book!

**scroll down for a chance to win The DreamKeeper and The DreamStone audio books!**

About Mikey Brooks:
Mikey Brooks is a small child masquerading as an adult. On occasion you’ll catch him dancing the funky chicken, singing like a banshee, and pretending to have never grown up. He is the author/illustrator of the best-selling middle-grade series The Dream Keeper Chronicles, The Stone of Valhalla, and The Gates of Atlantis: Battle for Acropolis. His picture books include the best-selling ABC Adventures: Magical Creatures and Bean’s Dragons. His art can be seen in many forms from picture books to full room murals. He loves to daydream with his three daughters and explore the worlds that only the imagination of children can create. Mikey has a BS degree in English from Utah State University and works fulltime as a freelance illustrator, cover designer, and author. As a member of the Emblazoners, he is one of many authors devoted to ‘writing stories on the hearts of children’ ( You can find more about him and his books at:

Author, Freelance Illustrator, and Cover Designer.
I am the author of the middle-grade fantasy adventures: The Stone of ValhallaThe Dream Keeper, and The Dreamstone.
My picture books include: ABC Adventures: Magical CreaturesBean's Dragon, and Trouble with Bernie.

To find more magic and to see my portfolio visit:

Enter for a chance to win Mikey Brooks' The DreamKeeper audio books!

Rafflecoptor code: