The Non-negotiable Writing Exchange

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What one thing would you give up to become a better writer?

For people dedicated to the craft, writing is an impactful part of their lives and identities. I mentioned in another post, “I acquired and honed skills to interpret and craft words, using a range of prose (and a tiny bit of poetry) to harness the resilient power of language for liberation and resistance.”

Endeavors to generate words can be powerful and empowering, making writing a tool and art form requiring commitment. 

Dedicated writers pick up their pens [or fire up their keyboards] to share their perspectives and stories. The better ones know that wordsmithing involves layers of composition, drafting, editing and revising—all of which require development. Only deluded writers think that their skillsets are fine and they don’t need to hone them. 

Two mistakes many new writers make are thinking that all writing is the same and it will not take that much work.  Continue reading “The Non-negotiable Writing Exchange”

Book Writing, A Numbers Game

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How many hours a day do you write? How long on average does it take you to write a book?

When I saw this week’s Open Book Blog Hop prompt, I laughed because it coincides with some realities I have had to face while participating in NaNoWriMo this month. The month-long writing challenge is meant to get writers to sit themselves down and finish a set goal during November.

Although I signed up for NaNoWriMo years ago, I had not participated. Why? That’s for another blog post. This year, someone encouraged to consider using NaNoWriMo as a tool to complete book four in the Brothers in Law romance series. Brandon and Hawwah want their story out there,  so I agreed.  I am half-way through the challenge and only have a little over 4k of my 50k goal achieved. I have been writing but not just the manuscript.

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Feeling a Character: Why Toni Kent Tore into Me

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Original Post: Feeling a Character: Lyndell Williams’ novel Sweet Love, Bitter Fruit 10/5/19 – Just Contemporary Romance

I am thrilled about the release of my new novel, Sweet Love, Bitter Fruit. It is the second book in the Brothers in Law Romance series and the most difficult to write.

The characters in my books face realistic issues that impact their falling and staying in love. In Sweet Love, Bitter Fruit, Toni must deal with the pain of infertility while watching her sister-in-law have baby after baby. She was successful in concealing her anguish the first time, but with a new pregnancy comes renewed pain and desire to be a mother. She needs to decide if she should stay quiet and suffer in silence or try again, something her husband, Marcus doesn’t want.

Marcus loves Toni and works hard to make her happy. Seeing her in any pain tortures him, so he decides that they just shouldn’t try to have a kid anymore. Unfortunately for him, the infertility demon doesn’t play fair. Toni vacillates emotionally; he feels helpless, and their marriage begins to fall apart. Continue reading “Feeling a Character: Why Toni Kent Tore into Me”

Weaving Stories Readers Want

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Do you try more to be original or to deliver to readers what they want?

Authors frequently discuss notions of originality and fulfilling reader expectations. I have read posts all over social media and on blogs, all with writers seeking to draft texts that pristine from anything else written under the sun and that will satisfy a mass of readers worthy of their artistry. Both are exercises in futility.

Defeatist? No. A powerful storyteller resolves to the realities that neither is their story completely untold nor will it enchant every pair of eyes (ears hearing, fingertips touching) gracing it.  At the crux of any good story is the distinctive style and voice of the weaver of the tale, which is the primary way an author can create something that is theirs to share for people to connect with and respond.

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Know Marcus Kent #urbanromance #contemporaryromance

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Originally Posted on   by 

Know the Hero from Sweet Love, Bitter Fruit by Lyndell Williams @laylawriteslove #RLFblog #urbanromance #contemporaryromanceLyndell Williams, welcome to Romance Lives Forever. I’m Kayelle Allen, author and owner of this blog. Happy to have you here! We’re excited to find out more about your hero…

Know the Hero from Sweet Love, Bitter Fruit

It’s late, he’s bored. What does he do?

Marcus Kent is never bored. He has an intense schedule at work. When he gets a minute, he will chill with his boys Simon, Faisal, and Quinn and then head home to his wife Toni. For Marcus, twenty-four hours is not nearly enough, so he needs to be strategic about his time so he can fulfill all of the demands on him. He’s all about getting things done with efficiency.

What kind of food would he impulse buy if hungry?

Marcus is a carnivorous alpha. Red meat is his food of choice, especially burgers. He doesn’t eat just any meat. Although he is not Muslim, he prefers halal meat, so he will stop by his favorite halal spot or another one (NYC is packed with them) to grab a quick bite.  Of course, he’ll have to go a little longer on his daily morning run but having some ground beef goodness is worth it.

Describe the kind of clothes he prefers to wear.

Marcus has a walk-in closet with a wall stacked with high-end sneakers. They are his award for working hard at the community center he directs, keeping wife, Toni happy and being there for family and friends. He sheds his business suits as soon as possible and slaps on a pair of those bad boys with some sweats and a tee-shirt to run through Harlem or have a game of basketball, completely elephant trunkin’ it.

Does he know how to fix things?

Continue reading “Know Marcus Kent #urbanromance #contemporaryromance”

#WIPWednesday -Queen of The Castle

Like a lot of authors, I have files full of book ideas and multiple works in progress. I just released book two in the Brothers in Law series, Sweet Love, Bitter Fruit, and I am preparing the first book in an AMBW Muslim romance novella series, Open to Love.

The first book in the series, Open to Love, is snuggling with editors. I am currently working on book two, a steamy romance with main characters Hafsah and Aqil. Each has reasons to be wary about entering into a relationship, but it gets harder to resist the desire firing up between them.

I hope you enjoy this excerpt from my #WIP Queen of The Castle.

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“Thanks for doing this, man.” Continue reading “#WIPWednesday -Queen of The Castle”

Dry Those Writer Tears: Dealing with Reviews

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Do you read your book reviews? How do you deal with bad or good ones?

Ah, book reviews. They can send an author’s heart soaring or sink it like a stone into a deep abyss of despair.  Because a writer is often intimately connected to their works, reviews can have a substantial impact on the creative process.

I have warned new authors to be mindful of the effects reviews have on them, particularly negative ones:

All authors get negative reviews. Reading is subjective. There will always be at least one reader who doesn’t like something about a book, and some will express it in reviews. A lot of new authors are simply not ready for people to express any level of dislike.

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I Don’t See No Stinkin’ Writer’s Block

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How do you move past writer's block?

I never get writer’s block. I may say I do but not really. What I usually experience is more like a hurdle to clear and keep things moving. A basic definition of writer’s block is, “the condition of being unable to create a piece of written work because something in your mind prevents you from doing it.” Other definitions describe it as an inability to write—as if there a mystical wall keeping words stuck in the mind or a force imprisoning creativity. There are reasons why a writer can’t write, and it is not always psychological or due to “having something on your mind.”

Through years of academic, professional, teaching and coaching writing, I learned a few things about the ominous “writer’s block” and the external and internal factors that drive writers to fall back on what is ultimately an excuse, a justification, for a blank screen.  Covering everything in one post is not possible. So, I will highlight some prevalent ones.

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Internal Factors

Continue reading “I Don’t See No Stinkin’ Writer’s Block”

LWL Podcast: Naming Characters

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Naming characters can be an involved and frustrating part of the novel-writing process, but it is critical to provide ones that will pique readers’ interest and give them a chance to connect with the personalities making up a story’s plot. In this LWL episode, I talk about the undertaking of finding the most suitable names for my stories’ characters and a little bit of reader drama with one character’s name.

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