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Sunday, February 17, 2013

Mark Shaffer's Enigma Series is launched and in Kindle space!

I welcome Mark Shaffer to the Writers' Blog. A science fiction novelist, Mark shares his latest project and continuing series...Crimson Enigma!

Come aboard the new "Freedom III" Space Station for out of this world adventure! Once there you join up with the Agents of ISIS as they uncover the what and why of the problems that are plaguing the Station during its opening ceremonies and afterwards. By the time the first Agents arrive on the sceen there has already been sabotage and mysterious murders. Help the members of the Space Station Investigations Bureau save the Freedom III Station, and the Earth!


Crimson Enigma opens with two Agents from ISIS Space Station Security investigating malfunctions and possible sabotage at the United Space Agency’s newest orbital complex, The Freedom III Space Station.   The investigators spend about an hour doing a routine safety check of the outer hull area.  The Agents think they may have found something so they head back inside the station to check their findings with the lab.  Moving into the clean room just inside the pressure hatch they begin to remove their space suits and stow their testing equipment.
As they remove their protective helmets the air lock of the sealed room explodes.  Their environment was being sucked out into the emptiness of space and they could do nothing to stop it.  It was all the two Agents from ISIS could do to not be swept away with their air and anything else that was not nailed down.
They tried to hang on to the contours and projections on the wall but they both knew what the out come would be.  As painful as it was Christine Walters could not help watching her partner and friend as he was wrenched from the once safe confines of the Station out into the vacuum of space.  There was very little that she could do for him as he floated farther and farther away.  Eventually Agent Walters strength ebbed away and she resigned herself to the same fate as her partner and released her hold on the Station. She thought of Mitch Hawkins, a dear friend of hers, and the words left unsaid as she drifted away from the Freedom III Station.  

For her there was only darkness…


“Crimson Enigma” can be found on Lulu.com and Amazon.com 
This Author can be found on Facebook and contact him at:




Saturday, February 2, 2013

What's Right for the Individual Writer - Holly Barbo

On this Writers's Blog, author Holly Barbo gives us writers some sound advice. Kindly offer your comments on your inner writing beast below.
How much writing must a writer write if a writer would write right?

I have often heard that we must bang out something every day if we are serious in becoming a writer. Just set aside some time and do it. There is something to be said for that. Often if we work at something frequently we get better at it. The problem that I have with the statement is two fold. It isn’t always practical or possible to write everyday or for uninterrupted blocks of time. 

Very few writers can make a living from writing. They must have a day job that provides them with the means to bring home the bacon and keep the roof over their head. That means that it is highly probable that there will be days.. perhaps weeks or...~cringe~.. months where they simply can not write. It ..is ..reality. 

I wrote four books in ten months but when my mom died I didn’t write for about a year. There are things that just shut off the productive inspiration that we need to write. That said.. one must factor in the Muse. Those creative stirrings will only allow themselves to be suppressed just sooo long before they start insisting that you pay attention. They will wake you up at night or interrupt your meal. They will be heard and you will comply! 

Then there is the uninterrupted-block-of-time philosophy. It goes like this: “A disciplined writer will set a block of time to write everyday and nothing will disturb the regimen.” I admire a structured life. There are people who are wonderful at it and it works for them but it doesn’t work for me as there is too much going on at all times that demands my attention. 

I started writing while I was working in our store. I got everything done first before I would start to write. I would sit down at the computer and soon things would be chugging along. The story was moving, the words were hopping off my fingertips ...and a customer would walk in. I would smile and as I rose from my desk I would hit “save”. When the store became quiet I would be back at the computer picking up the flow as if I had never stopped. It was a system that worked most of the time. I did have the tendency to repeat myself and struggled to edit that out later. It wasn’t ideal but it was how those writing moments occurred. I averaged a chapter a day and the muse smiled. At least I was letting her out. That is all that mattered.

So listen to those teachers and professionals.. then give it your best. Write when you can squeeze out moments. Learn from your mistakes. Polish your efforts and grow as a writer. Find your rhythm and do what is right for you. ..I’m looking forward to reading your book.  :D


Holly Barbo. Author of The Sage Seed Chronicles: The Founders, Divergent Paths, The Unraveling. Two more to be released this year: Reweaving and The Lost. Currently working on Sunstone.
Twitter: @HBarboWriting