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I'm away from my desk due to an illness in my family. Thankfully Carol Kilgore is here to fill in for me and perhaps bring a touch of sanity back to my blog page. You probably need a bit of a breather after my recent rantings. Carol will brighten your day a bit.
If you've visited my blog, Under the Tiki Hut, you spotted the differences between it and Arlee's Tossing It Out right off. All the same, I love visiting here. Opposites attract.
True to its name, a lot of controversy has been tossed out on this blog recently, but I promised Arlee I wouldn't go down that path. If anyone wants to be a contrarian over my little bit of fluff here, go right ahead. I'll just smile and say something I hope is funny enough to defuse the issue.
If you couldn't tell from the Tiki Hut, I totally hate controversy. I don't like debates, arguments, tension between disagreeing people and groups, or clashes of any sort. I do enjoy discussion among participants with differing viewpoints as long as the discussion doesn't escalate and no one employs bullying tactics.
I inherited my love of harmony from my mother. My dad, however, loved a good argument.
That said, I have no problem heaping trouble, misunderstandings, arguments, and conflict on my characters. But it hasn't always been that way for misunderstandings and arguments.
Hailing from the overall mystery/suspense genre, I learned early how to create suspense, tension, and conflict. But those don't necessarily stem from controversy. I like crawling into the criminal's creepy little mind and learning the why.
My first published short story several years ago was from the POV of the chairman of the largest bank in London … who was kidnapped by a gang of hoodlums. The bank chairman had plenty of problems, and they didn't all come from the thugs. There was much tension, but no real controversy. No debate that a phone call couldn't settle. The story even won an award.
In my recent novel, In Name Only, there are two honest-to-goodness arguments between Gabe Duran and his father, Charlie. Each character believes he is correct, of course, and is the hero of his own story. I tried my best to cut the arguments short, but my critique partners said no way. I was sure I had worked the arguments into great clashes until I got the manuscript back from my editor. She said I made it way too easy on the characters. I needed to flesh it out, make it last longer, make them angrier, dig more deeply into their emotions.
She was right.
As I worked on following my editor's suggestions, I learned that angry exchanges are almost as fun to write as the scenes from the bad guy's head.
But controversy in real life about real things is still not for me. Life's too short to spend it being angry or upset about something you can't control. I'll take Bobby McFerrin's words any day – "Don't Worry, Be Happy."
In Name Only--a synopsis
No home. No family. No place to hide. For Summer Newcombe, that's only the beginning.
The night Summer escapes from a burning Padre Island eatery and discovers the arsonist is stalking her, is the same night she meets Fire Captain Gabriel Duran. As much as she's attracted to Gabe, five years in the Federal Witness Security Program because of her father’s testimony against a mob boss have taught her the importance of being alone and invisible.
No matter how much she yearns for a real home, Summer relinquished that option the night she killed the man who murdered her father. But Gabe breaks down her guard and places both of them in danger. Summer has vowed never to kill again, but she's frantic she'll cost Gabe his life unless she stops running and fights for the future she wants with the man she loves.
Carol Kilgore is a Texas native who has lived in locations across the U.S. as the wife of a Coast Guard officer. Back under the hot Texas sun in San Antonio, Carol writes a blend of mystery, suspense, and romance she calls Crime Fiction with a Kiss. She and her husband share their home and patio with two active herding dogs, and every so often the dogs let them sit on the sofa.
Learn more about Carol and follow her here:
Learn more about Carol and follow her here:
Amazon Link: http://www.amazon.com/author/ckilgore