All posts for the month August, 2013

Confessions of A Serial Reader

Published August 30, 2013 by M E McMahon


Yes, my friends, I confess that I am a Serial Reader.  I love books that take a character and make you like them so much that you want to read about them time after time.

I read the first Harry Potter book only because I wanted to see if it was appropriate to give to my granddaughter as a gift.  After the first five chapters, I was hooked and became one of those fans waiting anxiously for the next adventure that Harry and his cohorts would embark upon.

Nora Robert’s (writing as J.D. Robb) hooked me with the first of her “In Death” series (I have a secret crush on that Irish scalawag, Rourke.)  Stephen King’s Roland and crew gave me many years of great reading in the “Gunslinger” series.  I could go on and on, but just suffice to say, I love books that make me shout “More!”

As a writer, I have tried to identify why these authors are so successful in creating characters that we are willing to read about them over and over. And, I found the answer is very simple.  These authors have created interesting, exciting three dimensional characters who capture our imagination…we want to meet them…we want to know them…we want to join them on their adventures.

As I work on my novel, I keep in mind that I would love my readers to relate to my heroine and the other characters  to the point that at the end of the book, they are left wanting more.  In order to do that, I have to give my characters unique characteristics while still keeping them real enough for readers to bond with.

They must be three dimensional and they must be someone the readers would want to know in their own world.  Perhaps, if I achieve this in my novel, I will hear the cries for “More!” from the readers.

I’m not sure I want to write about the same characters over and over again.  But, it would sure be nice to be asked to!

Well, I must go now.  I’ve just downloaded King’s new addition to the “Gunslinger” series titled “The Wind Through The Keyhole”–Roland, Jake, Eddie and Odetta are waiting for me!

Yours in Writing,


Write Now Prompt for August 30, 2013

Published August 30, 2013 by M E McMahon

Here’s a good prompt to start those creative juices!

Today's Author


At Today’s Author, our first goal is to get you (and us) to write. Write Now is our own collection of prompts to help you do that. With Write Now we’re not talking about writing, or trying to teach anyone how to write. Write Now is all about putting pen to paper.

Today’s Prompt:

He knew he shouldn’t be reading her diary and yet he couldn’t put it down.


How to play along with our Writing Prompts

  1. Write in any format or style you wish: short story, poem, script – whatever you like.
  2. Write for at least 5 minutes. There is no time limit – write for as long as you wish!
  3. Editing is not required, though we do recommend that you run a spell check at least.
  4. Post your work to your blog and include a link back here so your readers can find other writer’s work, too.
  5. Come…

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Show It With A Look

Published August 29, 2013 by M E McMahon


How many of you writers out there have heard the expression “Show…don’t tell”…most of you, I bet.  We writers often fall into the “She was angry…she was very happy…she was embarrassed” lines in which you try to tell what the characters feelings are at the time.

These sentences usually appear in my first draft of my story.  I then have to go back and start “Showing” what my character does when he/she is angry, happy or embarrassed. Because I have learned that letting my readers see what my character is feeling and the effect it has on them physically makes my character more real…more alive.

Sometimes, when I’m trying to write about the “look” my character has for a specific emotion, I need a little help.  Luckily, I found a great book titled “The Emotion Thesaurus: A Writers Guide to Character Expression” by Angela Ackerman and Becca Puglisi. This book is always by my side during the second or third draft of my story…when I’m trying to give my characters more life.

It’s laid out in a very easy to understand format and almost does the work for me. The authors have taken each emotion and broken it down into the definition, the physical signals, the internal sensations a character might have, mental responses and much more.  I have yet to find an emotion that isn’t covered in the book and I find it an invaluable resource when I’m trying to “Show” my character’s feelings.

I’m sure there are many excellent books out there that cover the same subject, but I haven’t had the need to look for them since The Emotion Thesaurus does the job so well for my characters.

So, if you are trying to “Show it with a look” I recommend you give The Emotion Thesaurus a try to make your readers see what your character is feeling. I found it on Amazon and I believe it was very, very cheap.

To me, it’s worth it’s weight in gold and I can’t imagine writing without it!

Yours in Writing,


Shhh…It’s Wordless Wednesday

Published August 28, 2013 by M E McMahon


My entries for Wordless Wednesday!

(Psst…for best effects, click on pictures for full view!


Paying It Forward – 8/28/13

Published August 28, 2013 by M E McMahon


This week’s tribute goes to an educator with a sharp wit, a keen eye for life’s silliness and a love for words.  Experienced Tutors has long been one of my favorite sites as I know I will leave his site with a smile on my face.

What first caught my eye about this site was that it’s  with a sense of humor…I go weak in the knees for a writer who can make me chuckle…and Experienced Tutors never fails to do so.

His photographs inspire me, his posts entertain me and I’m following his journey down the publishing road with great interest.  He deserves many, many more followers than he has, but he is always generous in giving praise to other bloggers.

He is definitely one of the Best Blogs of 2013…in case anyone needs a nominee! (How’s that for a plug, my friend?)

So, take a trip into Experienced Tutors world and I guarantee that you’ll be glad you did.  Just click here for a good time and listen to his “thoughts from the corner!”  They are definitely worth hearing!

Yours in Writing,

M E McMahon

Authors note: In case you didn’t know, due to family issues I have missed the past two weeks in the blogging world.  But, now that things have settled down, I’m back up and running!  Thank you for all those good wishes you sent during my absence.

Ese’s Weekly Shoot & Quote Challenge – Open

Published August 26, 2013 by M E McMahon

Here’s a challenge for you photobugs out there! I might even give this a go!

Ese' s Voice

My challenge is my passion – a photo you have taken and a quote, attributed to its author, and of course related to your image. Every week on Sunday I will post a new prompt.
And…I will be sending a few of you a free copy of my book, Butterfly Thy Name, each week, in due course – when it’s finished!

Everyone’ s welcome to join! All you have to do is:
– create a post of your own with the title Ese’s Weekly Shoot & Quote Challenge – Open;
– include a link to this post also for others to find you.

Let your ideas flow and enjoy!  Ese

Prompt 2 – OPEN

A mind is like a parachute. It doesn’t work if it is not open. /F.Zappa/





Can’t wait to see what you will come up with!

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quote- write anyway

Published August 25, 2013 by M E McMahon

This reminds me of the old saying, “Be careful what you wish for.”

Shawn L. Bird

Another quotation from Anne Lamott’s Bird by Bird,

I tell my students that the odds of their getting published  and of it bringing them financial security, peace of mind, and even joy are probably not that great.  Ruin, hysteria, bad skin, unsightly tics, ugly financial problems, maybe; but to write anyway.  But I try to make sure they understand that writing and even getting good at it, and having books and stories and articles publishes, will not open the doors that most of them hope for.  It will not make them well.  It will not give them the feeling that the world has finally validated  their parking tickets, that they have in fact finally arrived.  My writer friends, and they are legion, do not go around beaming with quiet feelings of contentment.  Most of them go around with haunted, abused, surprised looks on their faces, like lab dogs on whom…

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